Track 17 – The Best and the Worst of Moments
Heartbeat electrified, Jasmine followed Terry into the racing grounds Danny owned with Jimmy. They had to park their car outside the gates because there was no space left inside. Jasmine glanced at the time on her phone. Eleven
o’clock in the night, and it felt like she was walking through a busy street during the day. Danny’s races drew a crowd of spectators. It was a revelation to discover such a following in Nairobi for the races.
Loud music filled the night, it was lucky the property was removed from any residential areas. Excitement skated down Jasmine spine, increasing with every step, bringing her deeper into Danny’s world. Thrilling and frightening at the same time.
Terry took her right hand and squeezed, twining their fingers.
“Don’t be nervous,” Terry soothed, as they weaved their way through a sea of souped-up cars.
Gazes followed their progress. Jasmine suspected it was because she was a new face in the very tight circle. Despite the number of people in the place, they all knew each other. As if on cue, a short man in shiny white leather, who looked like he had married a gym and lived in it day and night, stepped in their way. His hair dyed blonde, Jasmine thought he would fit right in to a boy band.
“Who you with?” he demanded, his expression forbidding.
“Back off,” Terry said, her tone bored. “Rick, run back to your master.”
“No strangers allowed, Terry,” Rick insisted, his gaze on Jasmine.
Jasmine started to explain, but then Danny’s arm slid around her waist and she looked up in surprise when he pulled her against him possessively.
“Ricky, are you giving my gal a hard time? Coz, you know what that means.” Danny kept his tone low, his stance deceptively calm. His eyes though spelled doom. Jasmine hoped Rick saw it too.
Rick’s eyes widened and he took a step back.
“Danny,” Rick said, his tone apologetic.
Danny’s eyes narrowed and Terry sighed when Nic Mugera came to stand beside Rick, placing his arm on Rick’s shoulders.
“Do we have a problem here?” Nic asked, meeting Danny’s gaze.
“”I don’t know, Nic, do we?” Danny asked, his arm still around Jasmine.
She moved closer to Danny and Nic’s gaze shifted to her. Jasmine found she wasn’t afraid of much standing beside Danny. She met Nic’s gaze and smiled.
“I don’t think we do,” Nick said, returning her smile. “Rick, get back to the pit. Make sure everything is running fine. Danny, I apologize for my people. Jasmine Lima, welcome to the fold.”
Danny watched Nic stride away before he pulled Jasmine into his arms. Wanting to make a point, Danny kissed Jasmine. She clung to his jacket and gasped when he stopped the kiss as abruptly as he had started.
“Well,” Terry said, smiling. “You’re in good hands, Jazz. I’m gonna go mingle.”
Danny kept his gaze focused on Jasmine.
“I’m sorry for that,” he said.
“No need to apologize,” Jasmine murmured. “I suppose that makes me one of the babes. I’m not sure how to feel about that.”
“You’re not one of the babes,” Danny said, smiling. “You’re my woman, Jazz. My woman.”
“As long as you don’t call me the little woman at home,” Jasmine said, pulling back. “Now, let’s get this show on the road. How much money are we winning?”
Danny chuckled. “Babe, I like how you think.”
Jasmine frowned at him. “I thought you said I wasn’t one of the babes?”
Danny grinned and lifted his hands up in surrender when she threatened to punch his arm.
“No money tonight,” Danny said, taking her hand and leading her toward his spot. “We’re racing for a log book. Nic has a very smooth running Nissan Skyline. I want it.”
“Nice,” Jasmine said, excited.
“I’ll introduce you to my crew. By the way, my girlfriend, you get to start the race.”
Jasmine gasped at that. “What?”
“You look sexy,” Danny said, running his hand over her hip.
She had worn a short leather skirt and a light blouse for the occasion. Her feet in ankle-length heeled boots.
Danny grinned when she looked like she might stop breathing.
“You’ll love it.”
Yep, he had stolen her heart, she decided when all it did was flip-over in excitement instead of freak out. He was right about the start.
There was something absolutely exhilarating about standing at the starting point while five supercharged engines growled like beasts, itching for take off. Jasmine stood between Danny and Nic Mugera’s cars, her hands raised while Jimmy counted down on the sideline. When he got to one, she dropped her arms and the rush of cars whipping into motion past her let her breathless.
Terry rushed to her side jumping in excitement. They moved out of the road, to the closest screen to watch the race, documented by strategic cameras placed along the circuit. The competition was high-powered energy; Jasmine could feel the current on her skin. Everyone around them vibrated with it, watching with bated breath, she could hardly stay unaffected.
Watching Danny’s car muscle its way along the course was both hard and exciting. She clung to Terry’s arm when Nic’s car got too close to Danny’s or when the curves they took looked too dangerous. Danny was a great driver, but the maniacs racing him worried her. They drove aggressively, and seemed uncaring of safety. A green car tried to overtake Danny on a narrow part of the road, and for a full two minutes, Jasmine couldn’t breathe.
Danny freed himself from the crazy driver in the green car, edging ahead with Nic behind him in a white car.
Then, when Danny started on the last stretch, a brilliant blue car broke into the race. Forcing Danny to swerve out of the road to avoid a crash. The rogue blue car followed him, forcing him into the dirt field in the middle of the racing course. One moment, Danny seemed in control of his car, and then the blue car tapped his back and sent him into a wild spin.
Jasmine stood frozen, screams filled the night but none of that penetrated. The race continued on, but Jasmine’s gaze remained on Danny’s car bringing up a pile of dust in the middle of the field. She started to move, and Terry locked arms around her.
“Let me go,” Jasmine ordered, slapping at Terry’s arms to get free. She needed to get to Danny, save him, make sure he was okay.
“Let them pass,” Terry said, nodding to the oncoming cars.
A bitter taste filling her mouth, Jasmine stopped long enough to let the four remaining cars pass by the tarmac road, and then ran across, heading straight for the cloud of dust.
“Jazz!” Terry screamed.
She ignored the call, and kept going, wishing she hadn’t chosen to wear heels tonight.
Strong arms wrapped around her waist lifting her up.
“You idiot,” Jimmy cursed when she started to struggle. “Don’t go running into a mess you can’t see.”
Jimmy’s hold around her waist was tight, and for a minute, she didn’t understand what he meant until that rogue blue car emerged out of the dust. She felt Jimmy brace to push them out of its way. A scream escaping when the blue car missed them by an inch.
She clung to Jimmy then, her gaze on the blue car driving out of the property in unholy speeds, sending people scurrying out of its way. The driver clearly in a hurry to get away. When she could stand without shaking, she pushed off Jimmy and raced toward the settling dust.
Danny’s car stood still in the middle, parked haphazardly. Heart in her throat, Jasmine raced to the driver’s side in crazed madness.
To be continued….Thank you for reading!