Tionne Rogers - Guntram de Lisle 02 - Into the Lion's Den.pdf

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Into the Lion's Den
Tionne Rogers
COPYRIGHT © 2011 by Inés A. Toledo
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced, stored, or transmitted by any means—whether auditory,
graphic, mechanical, or electronic, without written permission of both publisher and author, except in the case of brief
excerpts used in critical articles or reviews. Unauthorized reproduction of any part of this work is illegal and is
punishable by law.
This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance of characters to actual persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.
Cover Image: Lions' study by Albrecht Dürer.
ISBN: 978-1-4467-3485-8
To Stacey Jo,
who made the magic flow through its proper course.
To Higashi,
who encouraged me to work with her good advise.
To my family and their incredible patience.
Chapter 1
September 25 th , 2001
Buenos Aires
“You owe me big time, Vero. Big time.” The light brown, almost blond boy sighed when he saw the big
bakery truck parked at the door, the driver already upset that he was coming in time and not ten minutes earlier as the
man would have preferred. “Hi, Mr. Fernández. I'll get it open in two minutes.”
“About time, blondie. Hurry up. I'm freezing out here!” the delivery man scoffed through his chewing gum.
“Just a second. I'll get the alarm off,” Guntram sighed as he unlocked the employee’s entrance and quickly
typed the security code. “Ready.”
“Can you give me a hand, boy? My back is giving me troubles today.”
“Yes, no problem.”
“Great. Grab those trays with the croissants and then the bags with the bread. I'll take care of the cakes,” the
man jovially said, glad that Guntram had agreed to do most of his work.
“Don't run away because I have to check the things. Martin counts up to the last piece of bread and charges
me if something is missing.”
“Yeah, he's quite an asshole. Believes he's better than the rest of us because he's the super clever manager.
Hope they kick him out or at least make him eat his University books.”
“Hey, I go there too. I want to be one of those assholes in the banks,” Guntram joked and picked up a large
bag filled with crispy baguettes.
“No way! You couldn't fire your mother like those assholes would.”
“That's because I have no mother.”
“Shit! Sorry kid. I didn't mean it.”
“That's OK. Don't sweat on it. It's been years ago,” Guntram replied softly but sadly smiling. “Nothing left
over? I could have breakfast.”
“Some donuts from yesterday. Still tasty and almost fresh. If I would have known it was you today, I would
have brought something good along.”
“Last minute change of plans,” Guntram shrugged at the delivery man. “Wait a few minutes and I can get you
a coffee to go.”
“No, thanks. I have more deliveries to do. Bye, kid.”
“Good-bye. See you in three days.”
Ten minutes to eight, Guntram had the tables ready, the coffee machine cleaned, as the night shift had not
done it, the cakes artistically set in the refrigerator—but he preferred that Martina would slice them—the lights on and
was waiting for his colleagues and the first customers. One of the waiters, Luis, rushed in, nearly tripping over the
chairs, thinking that he was already late.
“Hey, it took me half an hour to put everything in place!” Guntram protested while he was setting the cups on
the boards, still hot from the dishwasher.
“Shit!” he cursed, rubbing his pained knee. “Thought the Asshole was here.”
“No, Verónica called in sick last night.”
“And he went to play the gynaecologist?”
“Don't be vulgar. She's a lady.” Guntram growled deeply upset that his co-worker was so rude.
“Fuck Guntram. She's a little vixen like many others around here. Look at you. Two big tears and you're
playing the slave for her. Bet she's still getting all the good tips from your side. Welcome to the real life, not the posh
school you were going. You have to grow a thicker skin. No one says ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ like you do. A lady?
Pleeeeaasee !”
“I'm doing a favour for her. That's the minimum any man would do in any case.”
“Smarten up Guntram. From where I come from, you'd better have the dagger out before your neighbour
does. You're no longer in St. George's with the mighty princes.”
“Still, it doesn't give you the right to be rude to her.”
“Grow up and get your feet on the ground because none of your fancy friends give a shit about you. You have
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