Jeremy had touched down at SETAC about an hour before Stacie’s flight arrived. They had both agreed he should get to the airport first so he could pick up the rental car and be waiting for her at arrivals. The drive to the lodge was only forty-five minutes, but seemed to take forever. Thankfully Jeremy had gotten some sleep on the plane.
As they drove to the lodge he chatted with Stacie about the events of the morning. When he got to the part about Lenny wanting him to spend a year or two in Kyyiv Stacie started to realize just how big this thing they were involved in was. For some reason the half-billion-dollar transfer didn’t phase her, but the Kyyiv option made it seem that they were all putting together escape plans.
“You are going to go, aren’t you?”
“I hadn’t seriously considered it, but I did do some research on it. I guess it would depend on how well Lenny set me up over there and how much he paid me to run the place.”
“It sounds like you are all worried this play may be too big and someone might go to jail.”
“Normally if you admit to insider trading you simply pay a fine and lose your trading license. Since we aren’t a licensed trader, just running individual accounts for others, I don’t think the latter applies. Oddly enough, you can be a financial advisor without much oversight or training.”
“Well, I think you should go sooner rather than later.” Jeremy was rather shocked to hear Stacie say such a thing. He glanced at her and could tell she was dead serious.
“You said yourself what you are doing will play out in a few months. By that time someone will have gotten wise to it and you will need to be out of reach of the law for a while.”
“I’m not so certain that will happen. Just how many people went to prison for shorting Enron when they had insider information? How many did you even hear about getting investigated?”
“Lots of people went to prison over Enron!” she exclaimed.
“Yes, they did. The company officials and the people helping them artificially inflate the stock price along with those helping them get creative with accounting. Nobody got investigated who shorted the company at its peak or when it was on the way down.”
“Martha Stewart went to prison for using insider information.” “Martha went to prison for obstruction of justice. Anyone else would have said they asked their broker to call them when the sell-off started and sold accordingly. They would have paid a fine and the broker would have gone to prison for violating the terms of their license. She denied the arrangement and the broker testified the arrangement existed. There was also a tape of the phone call. It was a dumb play.” “Oh.”
“By the time Martha went to trial the stock was trading for more than when she dumped it. Had she been as dense as a rock rather than pridefully stupid she would have made money and not gone to prison.”
“That’s a rather cold way of looking at it.” “It’s reality. Insider information is only good when you are smart enough to actually read the play. Yes, the company was going to take a hit, but it wasn’t the only product in the pipeline, just the most hyped one. A dump, a short, and a cover done quickly could have made some money, but she didn’t have the information soon enough. You can’t use insider information unless it is at least three days in advance. News the day of gets you in trouble.” “You really are a natural at this, aren’t you? Don’t you worry about going to prison?” “Not really. I’m smart enough to know you cut a deal up front and admit your guilt. Then you pay a large fine and have to stay out of the trading business for a while. You cannot even have your own trading account during your probation.” “Couldn’t the fine be all of your money they can find?” “There are prescribed limits, and even if it were, a lot of our money isn’t here. Even less of it will be here once the Kyyiv office opens up.” “Oh. And they can’t pull you back from Kyyiv?” “No extradition treaty, and insider trading isn’t currently a crime over there. They handle extradition on a case-by-case basis and the crime has to be a crime in Russia before they will even hear the case.” “Wow.”
“Lenny is good.”
“You are getting there from the sound of it,” she chuckled. “Anyway, I think you should go. Get a place big enough for two.”
That freaked Jeremy for a moment and caused him to swerve on the road just a little.
“Careful, big fella, I want to get there in one piece.” “Why two?” he asked once the car was under control.
“If they start digging I will probably turn up. I haven’t signed any confidentiality agreements, nor have I told you anything particularly incriminating, but I would rather have a lawyer handling that part. I said two because if they start looking into this I expect you to call me and let me come live with you, at least until it is all settled. You are going to make enough from this you should be able to support me for a while.”
The girl had a point. Jeremy’s bonus this year would probably be well over a million. There was absolutely no reason he couldn’t support her for a year or two since she was directly responsible for the income. It would cut into his trying to sample the local talent but her talent was incredible.
Finally the lodge appeared. They parked, checked in, and had the luggage carted to the room. Jeremy was dumbfounded by the amount of luggage Stacie had brought for a weekend. It was even more odd considering they would be naked much of the weekend in the hotel room. He had learned early on you don’t bring these things up before sex, though, as their mention tended to shut off the sex.
Once they had made it to the room and tipped the bellhop, Jeremy informed Stacie he needed to take a shower after sleeping on the plane. She told him not to get dressed after he got clean.
Jeremy walked out of the bathroom still drying his hair and was greeted by the most incredible stocking and garter set he had ever seen on one phenomenally hot lady.
“Aren’t you going to say something?” asked Stacie with the most knowing seductive smile on her face she had ever had. “You never did answer about letting me come and live with you in Kyyiv.” Stacie knew all too well that Jeremy couldn’t answer right now; there wasn’t enough blood left in his brain to formulate a response. That piece of information was easily obtained by taking a look at the dipstick. She was enjoying this!
A pounding in Jeremy’s ears was how he first came to realize he hadn’t taken a breath since coming out of the bathroom. Once respiration had returned to him he recovered quickly. “I guess that depends on how well you respond to this,” Jeremy said as he reached into his carry-on bag.
Now it was Stacie’s turn to not be able to breathe. She had just been teasing, but if that was a ring instead of the jewelry she had asked for there was no way she could say no this weekend. There was a momentary breath of relief when she saw two Helzberg boxes come out of the bag. One was obviously a necklace and the other had to be the earrings. It was a good thing she had gotten that breath in, because when he opened the box for the necklace she lost all her air.
Several hours later they were lying in bed very exhausted and incredibly satisfied. Stacie sensed Jeremy was about to doze off again. She herself had just woken up from a brief journey in that abyss known as sleep. “We should probably try out the dual shower and then go find something to eat.”
“We could just put on those robes hanging in there and order room service,” muttered a groggy Jeremy.
“Oh, no. I brought a killer dress and it will show off that jewelry grandly!”
“Are you going to wear that garter set under it?” teased Jeremy as he started to come around.
“I brought several different ones. Thought I might need all of them,” she giggled.
“While I’ve got you like this, I need to talk to you about New Year’s Eve.”
“What about it? That is four months away.” “You received the email with the pictures of my roommates, didn’t you?” “Yes. I hadn’t really known what you were up to with that.” “I wasn’t trying to set up a foursome, Jeremy.–.just cool your jets. They invoked the girl code on me, so we need to talk about New Year’s Eve.” Jeremy had been around long enough to know that “invoking the girl code” tended to bring about less than happy times for a guy.
“You still have some good-looking single friends from college who are at least as successful as you, don’t you?”
Now Jeremy understood where this was going. “You want us to go out as a group on New Year’s Eve?”
“Sort of. My roommates want dates for an all-inclusive New Year’s Eve party at some posh hotel. They haven’t chosen the hotel yet.”
This was starting to sound like a guy was going to have to guilt a friend into going out with his sister. Stacie could see the look forming on his face and continued, “They’ve both promised to put out. For two of your friends this is going to be a sure thing. They simply have to wear a nice suit, make the reservations, and show up.”
Wow! Thought Jeremy. She left me no wiggle room whatsoever.
Finally, he decided to risk the rest of the weekend with the one question he could use to get out of this. “Are they both on the pill?”
Stacie sat up with a shocked look on her face, gasped, punched Jeremy in the ribs and exclaimed “How can you ask that?”
Recovering, Jeremy sat up, looked her in the eye and said, “It is going to be the first question I’m asked.”
Stacie knew it was true. She just hadn’t thought she would have to give up the information. In truth, she had forgotten to make them promise that part as well, and now she was going to be forced to make a commitment for them. “They are, but that doesn’t mean they won’t want …”
Jeremy interrupted her by holding up his hand. “That’s all I wanted to know.”
“But,” Stacie tried to protest.
There it was. She had violated the girl code by taking the choice away from them. Both dates would be infuriated if they had to use a condom now.
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