The House That Jacqs Built
A Mystery/Suspense Novel
AUTHORED BY: CAR
Carla had something to prove. There was no way she was going to be just the average. She was the youngest child of a mother who offered her no hope. Her sister was just as hopeless as their mom. At twenty five Carla had grown accustomed to the life. She had dealt with the you can not’s, you should not, it will never work and the your heading for failures all her life. The more she was told not to, the harder she tried. First it was just her mom, but as her sister got older she had let their mom dominate her ability to control her own thoughts which left Carla with double the dose of negativity. Carla grew up feeling like the enemy in her own home. Other than sleeping there, she had practically raised herself since the age of fifteen. That’s when it started. Carla had always had a drive for life. High school had given her that push to experience all that her mother would have never shown her. She had teachers that took interest in her and taught her well beyond the classroom. She had become a part of every program and all the activities that she could. With her school work, her busy after school schedule and then homework; when she finally did reach home, it gave her all the opportunity she needed to avoid her mother. At home she spent most of her time in her room with the door closed. She was not only closing her body away from them but she was protecting her eyes, ears and mind from her surroundings; she refused to let them keep her confined.Her sister Leslie had a group of girlfriends that Carla liked to refer to as the No Fly Deltas. The No Flies were in their mid-twenties at the time. They hung around on the block, most of them not even obtaining a high school diploma, and they gossiped. Their idea of having a good time was to abuse marijuana, drink alcohol and smoke cigarettes all day long. Carla called them the No Flies because in her eyes they were never going to soar to any great heights in life. It is amazing how the world Delta represents both of what these women will never be. A popular airline that flies or a sorority group that excels but yet these Deltas would never fly anywhere. They were Carla’s example of all she would not allow herself to be. She watched their boyfriends physically abuse them. She watched them abuse their friendship. They fought constantly cursing at each other. They borrowed bread, oil, sugar, and even toothpaste if you let them. It saddens Carla to know that Leslie was one of the Deltas which was probably the main reason why Carla and Leslie were never close. They had nothing in common and most of the time, they didn’t even talk. Even now years later, that remains the same. No way was Carla going to adapt to that much longer in her life. She worked hard and graduated from Norman Thomas High School with honors and valedictorian of her class. She was happy to accept her full scholarship to the University of Pennsylvania. She could not wait to get out of her mother’s house; this is what she has been saving herself for. Her bright future awaits her.
Chapter 1Carla looked over at him and smiled. He was sleeping so peacefully she didn’t want to wake him. She quietly slid out of the bed as she glanced at the alarm clock. She pulled the bedroom door shut as not to wake him. The hot shower woke her up as she wiped the sleep from her face. Seconds later she heard the bathroom door open and the sliding glass doors to the shower moved as he stepped inside and kissed Carla without any words. Carla wrapped her arms around his waist as she slid her leg between his to adjust herself firmly into his arms. She could not think of any better way to start her morning. Carla has been with Jon Jacqs for two years now. They spent many nights together between her apartment and his house. Jon wanted Carla to move in with him but Carla refused. Jon lived in a big house all alone. He had plenty of money, not because he worked hard for it but because his father did. Jon’s father passed two years ago when they met and apparently he was worth a lot. Carla was not sure exactly how much but she knew it was far more than she could ever imagine for herself. Although Carla worked very hard every day and she was only months away from becoming Carla Brandon attorney at law, Jon simply saw her as the woman in his life. He admired her hard work maybe especially because he had never worked hard for anything yet he had everything. Carla realized that meeting Jon was wonderful, he was like a gift wrapped in love. She felt as if she had beaten the odds against her. She didn’t have a man like the Deltas who abused her in any form. She had a loving patient caring man. Not only that, he was handsome, smart and sexy to say the least. He could have easily been with any woman who had as much money as him but he chose to be with her.
Carla was excited about her morning start in the office. She was researching a new case for her boss. Amy allowed Carla to freely express herself through her work. She never questioned her work methods and really appreciated all her hard work. Whenever they had a new case the two of them would sit and discuss the facts. Afterwards, Amy would call the client in for an interview. She would get their side of the story and from there take what she gathered back to Carla. Most of the time Amy didn’t even need to tell Carla what she needed because Carla was so thorough that she was already on it.
Amy was a great lawyer. She hired Carla in the beginning of the year when she herself had only been at New Beginnings for a short time. They have grown to know and respect each other’s style of work. They were a powerful team and they complimented each other very well. It was still a shock to Carla that in only two more weeks the year would be over. Ever since she started at New Beginnings that’s exactly what it has been for Carla. Carla looked up to notice the office secretary coming in to work. She was a sweet lady who had to be in her mid to late seventies. Since she was the eldest in the office, everyone referred to her as momma although they would dare not call her that to her face. She refused to be called old or the older lady. The one bad thing was that her desk sat in the middle of the office. She had not privacy or no space of her own. When Carla first entered the office for her job interview with Amy that is one of the first things that she noticed. Carla felt that she was often taken advantage of because of it. They would literally drop files and ask her to do work that was not required of her.In the mist of her deep thoughts Simeyon got off the elevator and waved a friendly hello to Carla. Simeyon was the cute guy with the cute name that often tried to get Carla to have dinner with him. He had been with the firm for years but to Carla he was just the office flirt. Although he was cute Carla had no interest in him. He was the firm’s runner, if that’s a good way to describe his position. He did all the footwork for Mr. Jacobs and the other lawyers. Whatever the office needs were, Simeyon was there to take care of them. When he was in the office he handled the mail but most of the time he was on the go. Mr. Jacobs, the owner of the firm, loved him. He called him his go to man.
Carla was very thorough about her work. The biggest part of her job was uncovering all the little things that the average eye missed. And there was nothing average about Carla. She was a perfectionist and a keen research analysis. She missed nothing. When there is a crime scene or incident that requires detectives, paramedics, police officers, and the many other people that are at the scene, usually there is always something very small that is missed. That is where Carla comes in. Carla’s job was to uncover the unnoticeable. She would look at pictures over and over which was sometimes difficult. Looking at how someone’s life was ended in such a brutal way or looking at the effects on the body of a young rape victim is never easy. If it were not for the justice of knowing and proving how it all happened, Carla doesn’t think she would be able to do this job. Piecing together pieces of evidence along with her critical thinking is what made her so good at what she does. She wanted to be sure that the client that the firm represents could not have committed this crime and the only way to do that was to investigate from both angles, the prosecutors and the defense. That was the secret behind her success.
The new case she was working on hit kind of close to home for her. She had to put all personal feelings aside so she could focus on the facts. After all day of researching it was time to turn over what she had to Amy.
“Ms. Armstrong, I have paperwork for you. Would you like me to call the accused and set up an appointment for your interview?” Carla buzzed in to Amy.
“No Carla, let me look things over first and then I will let you know. Can you bring me what you have?”
“Surely, I’ll be right there”. Carla walked to Amy’s office and handed her the paper work. She told her she was going home for the day. Amy had no problem with that. Carla noticed a change in her boss in the past few months. She had always been nice to her but these days, she was sporting a softer side of Amy. She was still a very strong woman but just with a more polite edge. Carla didn’t know what it was but she knew there was something different about her. On her way back to her office Simeyon greeted her in the hallway.
“Well, if it isn’t my research lady. I have some things I want to research about you if you let me.” Simeyon flashed his cute smile with a dimple. Carla tried to think of how many men she could remember having a dimple.
“No thank you. Not even if you had to do an autopsy would you be able to find out anything about me. I’m far too complex for you to understand.” Carla teased.
“Well, that’s good to know because I am far more interested in getting to know you alive rather than dead. Maybe all that research is getting to your pretty little head. You should let me take you out sometimes just so I can slow down the process of your brain activity.”
“OK Mr. Sims, so does that mean that a woman has to be uh, stupid, to go out with you?” Carla addressed him by his last name. She enjoyed giving him a hard time.
“If that were the case, I’d surely not be going after such a beautiful, smart, and amazing woman such as you.” Simeyon shot back at Carla. Carla walked into her room as he followed her. Every time she looked at him she could not help but to think about how cute he was. The problem was; that was just it. He was cute. Not handsome and not manly to her. He kind of reminded her of the little brother that she never had. Carla realized that she didn’t even know his age. She gathered her belongings and headed out of her room. She stood at the door waiting for Mr. Sims to get the hint and follow suite. Complaining that he was being put out, Carla smiled at him and shut off the lights. On her way to the elevator she said goodnight to the secretary and goodnight to Mr. Sims. As the elevator door opened he asked her to think about having dinner with him. It didn’t take long on the one minute ride down from the firm to the lobby for Carla to give it some thought and make up her mind. As the doors re-opened on the main floor she said to herself “thought about it, not in a million years” as she smiled and headed to her car.
Only heaven knows how much Carla loved being at Jon’s place. His house was in a part of Pennsylvania where seeing the Amish was not rare. Carla found herself fascinated by their lifestyle. She would watch from Jon’s full floor length view, their correspondences with each other and the people they may have come in contact with. They walked very close in proximity to each other, almost even in syn. Sometimes Carla wondered if they rehearsed that, it seemed too perfect to have not been. The only thing that really puzzled Carla was that she thought the Amish were very modest people yet there was nothing modest about Jon’s community. His community was for the blue blood; Carla remembers hearing an old saying that the people with blue blood were rich. One look at Jon’s block of fancy oversized houses with five fancy cars lined up in the front was enough for Carla to know that her blood definitely ran red. So why were there so many Amish living their? Maybe they’ve learned that even they had to change with the times. Jon lived in a town called intercourse. Carla joked with Jon that intercourse should have the highest number of babies born a year with a name like that. Believe it or not, Carla lived in a town named quite opposite of Jon’s. She lived in Blue Ball. Carla could not escape Jon’s jokes for their neighboring towns when he felt he needed to see her. He would say when she’s in Blue Ball then so is he and she needs to come to intercourse so he can be happy. When Carla would tell him to come to Blue Ball he would say there no intercourse over there. He was telling the truth, Blue Ball could not even remotely compare to his rich lifestyle. Carla made a modest living for herself and Blue Ball was great for the average but for Jon it compared to hood life, if he only knew what that was. Although Jon was rich, he never put Carla down, not with word anyway but unbeknownst to him his faces said it all sometimes. Carla would reason that it really was not his fault; he was just born with a silver spoon in his mouth.
The two met on campus. Jon was graduating and Carla had two years to go. After a few acquaintances Carla quickly began to realize that Jon was not the man for her. She did not want him to know that she was in college on a full four year scholarship and not because her mom could afford to pay for school flat out like his rich dad had done for him. She didn’t want him to know that she grew up in the tough streets of Brooklyn on Stuyvesant Avenue in the heart of Bedford Stuyvesant’s hood. She could not tell him that she was raised by a single mother with a history of mental illness, undiagnosed. For these reasons she tried unsuccessfully to keep her distance from Jon. The passing of his father almost sent Jon into an emotional breakdown. There is no amount of money that can heal the pain of a lost loved one; it was at those moments that Carla began to see Jon in a different light. She was there for him as he needed her support through the healing process. Jon hadn’t planned on it, but he took over his father’s business. It took him a year to really learn the ins and outs of the pharmetucal industry. Having just obtained his degree in sports medicine was a big help when talking with all the high powered drug companies agents. Jon ran the largest pharmaceutical drug company ever. Carla remembers her younger years when her peers thought it was actually cool to date boys who were selling illegal drugs to the addicts in the community. She was proud to say that she was dating a drug dealer who was actually helping the sick people and legally.
Carla looked out of the window in Jon’s foyer. As much as she been there, she was still amazed at the view. Even the rich should be overwhelmed living on a grand scale day to day. Jon’s house had double French doors opening to highly glossed slate flooring. A grand piano sat to the left and a huge indoor patio like setting sat to the right. Going past the grand piano where an additional set of French door that led to the family room. The furniture was beautiful cream Italian leather lined with wood trimming. The oversized area carpet was black with square cubes of red, black, and gray. Covering the walls were oil canvassed paintings of family portraits. Jon was an only child so there were many pictures of him. Whenever Carla was in the family room alone, she felt an eerie feeling. The images seemed to give a sad undertone of some of the paintings. The happy moments seemed to be painted in color and the sad where black and white. Actually what she noticed was that all the pictures with Jon in them were color paintings but the paintings of his mom were all gray or filled with some sort of gloom. Her smiling image would throw anybody off to believe that she was a happy woman but Carla saw beyond that. There was sadness in her eyes that spoke to Carla every time she looked at those paintings. The paintings with the whole family were painted in both color and black and white. There was a story behind those paintings that needed to be told. Carla knew that the average eye would have not caught on but this is what she got paid to do every day, to notice the unnoticeable. She wondered if Jon noticed it or knew the story behind the gloom.
The spiral stairs with carpet on each landing lead to the living quarters of the house. Jon recently adorned the walls with black art which was his passion. He had black artist, musicians, and instruments placed on the walls of the long corridors. It was like walking in a maze of jazz singers and swingers from the sixties. Whenever Carla walked the hallway which seemed like it had no end, she felt like she was at the cotton clubs in Harlem during that era. The four bedrooms or suites as Jon liked to correct Carla were all overly decorated and overly huge with its own bathroom in each. Thinking how this lifestyle could easily be hers was far more unimaginable than she could ever believe. As much as she loved it, it was all Jon’s. Carla needed to see the fruits of her own labor. She felt if she had this life then maybe she would lost her drive to work hard, what would there be to work for if she already had everything? Carla strongly believes that all this has affected Jon’s approach to life. Although he was an intelligent man and he had just obtained his degree, he really has never planned a direction for his life. He went to college because he was bored and only due to his dad’s death did he take over the company. Carla does see the change in him over the past year. He has really been doing an excellent job with the business but Carla also notices that Jon loves the power of being in control. He has become a lot more controlling with her lately not really giving her the freedom to make decision like he did in the past but Carla knew it came from the job. She knew how much Jon loved her and she was very careful about how she displayed her love to him. Not to be misunderstood, Carla was very loving and very sweet. She was not ready for the things he wanted. Jon wanted to go visit Carla’s mom and sister in the Brooklyn. She told Jon that her family was nothing like his nor was her upbringing. Carla never used slang terminology around Jon but she was upfront about her past, well almost. He knew that her mom was not very supportive of her but he didn’t know that she was mentally unstable. Undiagnosed mental instability had been difficult for Carla and Leslie to live with. Carla figured out in her teens years that her mom needed help but she refused to get any. As Carla got older she would make suggestions that her mom seek a doctor. She would always refuse saying there was nothing wrong with her. Carla’s mom mood swung from day to day, hour to hour and minute to minute.
Carla remembers going home from school telling her mom that her teacher said they needed money for supplies and her mother would say no problem. The next day Carla would go home and remind her mother about the supplies and her mom would go off the deep end. Carla’s mother also could never see any good in anyone or anything. She was a pessimist about everything. Carla was not allowed to play outside like the other kids for fear that she would be stolen by a predictor. She was not allowed to go the slumber parties for fear that she would be hurt. She was not allowed to go to sleep away camp or day camp in the summer for fear of everything. Fear and anxiety surrounded her home. Carla and Leslie did their best to maintain normal lives without their friends knowing their true lives. Leslie’s approach was to be wild and ignore the situation. She ran the streets with the Delta’s and did everything to disobey and ignore their mom. Carla just wanted out of Brooklyn and her mother’s house so she did everything she could to better herself while she waited on her day of freedom. Over the years their mother’s condition had only worsened. After a few visits to their home by some religious ladies, their mom started to go with them to learn more about God. Carla attended what she thought would be church but this was no church. After several attempts to attend Carla quickly determined that something was not right at that place. Although Carla never went back, her mom continued to go and it just enhanced her mother’s downhill battle to try to hold on to whatever little sanity she had left. From then on, on top of all the negativity, her mom became a bible verse quoting fanatic using God to instill fear into her children. So not only were the plagued by their mom’s fears but now they had to live in fear as well. The religious ladies told her that God promised an opportunity to live forever if their mom would just follow the teachings.
The book can be purchased through amazon, barnes and nobles, bookhitch and authorsden.com. Made very simply for you to purchase ,you can get your copy through her website http://car.vpweb.com
E-books is in the works. Will be available very shortly!
And her blog http://car-carsblog.blogspot.com. Please enjoy and follow her blogs as she keeps it updated for you to know any author events she may be attending or book signings. Also, fellow authors, please use her blog as a tool for promoting your book. Contact her if your interested.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.orgOther Books By CAR
Caught Up In The Grift (Pre-sale available through her website)
The Revelation of Genesis:Unveiled (Coming Soon)
CAR is working on her fourth novel. She welcomes your reviews and comments. Thanks Again, Blessings.