Max Burnage, Ep. 02: Ryan and Jessie

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: General Erotica  |  House: Booksiesilk Classic Group

Cheated and abused husband gets help dealing with wife and her lover.

Max Burnage Ep. 02: Ryan and Jessie


by Saddletramp1956

Copyright© 2023 by Saddletramp1956, All rights reserved



Introduction, by Max Burnage


My name is Maximilian Burnage, but you can simply call me Max. I was born Maxwell Burns, but changed my name after my wife and her cohorts targeted me in an illegal scheme that included a plot to murder me. With the help of two incredible individuals, namely, a Civil War veteran named Elijah Jones and an immortal goddess named Adrestia Rhamnousia, I was able to reclaim my life and get a measure of justice from those who sought to do me harm.


I spent three months at Camp Rollins, a facility in north Idaho set up to help men in situations like mine. After my return, I was, for all practical purposes, a completely new man. Adrestia bestowed upon me a gift, something she called a “command voice” that allows me to make anyone do anything. With her guidance and Eli's tutelage, I have learned to use that gift for the good of those who seek my help.


After I dealt with my now ex-wife and her accomplices, I started the Burnage Agency to help people deal with cases of extreme marital betrayal and infidelity. Both Eli and Adrestia have lived up to their promises, providing me with the tools and the guidance to do my job. Adrestia even provided me with the software and systems I would need to monitor anyone, anywhere on the planet.


And for those who are wondering, yes, Adrestia and I are in a fully-committed exclusive relationship. It's a bit difficult to explain – maybe I'll do that in an upcoming episode.


I'm an accountant by trade, and not a writer, so I am grateful that Saddletramp1956 accepted my invitation to shadow me on some of my cases. This is just one of my stories. At my request, the names of those involved have been changed to protect the innocent.



Ryan Davis looked at the door simply marked, “Burnage Agency,” and wondered if he was doing the right thing. He had seen a pop-up ad on the Internet that said he should immediately visit the agency and was intrigued. The ad said no appointment was necessary and simply gave an address. Surprised that it was located in his home town, he drove to the address and took the elevator to the fifth floor.


He turned the knob and opened the door. When he walked inside, he was greeted by a slim brunette receptionist in business attire. Looking around the office, he felt as though he had stepped back in time.


Good morning, Mr. Davis,” the receptionist said with a smile. “Please come on in. Mr. Burnage has been expecting you,” she added, pronouncing the name, “bernahj.”


He has?” Ryan asked, a bit shocked.


Of course,” she said, standing up. “Right this way, please.” He followed her to a door marked, “Private.” She tapped on it twice before opening it. He walked inside and noticed a smoky haze in the office. A well-built man in a dark business suit sat behind a large wooden desk. He looked up as they walked inside.


Good to see you, Mr. Davis,” he said, extending a hand. “I'm Max Burnage,” he added. “Please, have a seat.” He looked at the receptionist before speaking again. “Sally, would you please bring us some fresh tea?”


Of course, Mr. Burnage,” she said, walking back into the front office.


You knew I was coming here to see you?” Ryan asked Max.


Of course,” Max said.


But how did you know that?” Ryan asked. “I never even called.”


The wonders of targeted Internet marketing,” Max said. “My better half is a whiz at that stuff.” Ryan noticed a picture of Max and a very lovely blonde on his desk and pointed at it.


Is that her?” he asked. Max smiled as he looked at the photo of him and Adrestia. He nodded his head.


Yes,” he said. “That's her. I'd be nothing without her.”


You're a very fortunate man to have someone so lovely supporting you,” Ryan said.


I wholeheartedly agree,” Max said. By then, Sally returned with two large cups of hot tea. She set one down in front of Ryan and handed the other to Max, who took a sip. “Perfect, Sally, thank you.” He looked at Ryan as Sally left the office, closing the door behind her. “Go ahead, take a sip.”


This is delicious,” Ryan said after taking a sip. “I've never tasted anything like it.”


It's my wife's personal blend,” Max said. “I find it to be... most invigorating. In many ways.”


Yes, I agree,” Ryan said. Max picked up a pack of cigarettes and pulled one out.


Mind if I... smoke?” Max asked. Ryan shook his head.


No, go ahead,” he said. “It's your office.” Max lit the cigarette and Ryan was surprised it gave off almost no odor whatsoever. He was equally surprised when Max offered him one.


Go ahead,” Max said. “One won't hurt you.” Ryan had never smoked, and considered declining, but something in Max's voice compelled him to take one. He put it in his mouth and inhaled when Max lit it for him. He halfway expected to choke on the smoke, and was surprised when he didn't. Between the tea and the cigarette, he found himself feeling strangely relaxed.


May I call you Ryan?” Max asked.


Please do,” Ryan said.


Thank you,” Max said. “Tell me about your situation.”


Well, it all began about a year or so ago,” Ryan said. “My wife, Jessie, and I had just got back from a night out with friends. That's when we were accosted by two big guys who raped her. I wasn't able to help her at all and I ended up simply watching as they took her over and over again.”


Did you ever report the rape to the police?” Max asked. Ryan shook his head.


No,” he said. “That was at her insistence.”


When you say you weren't able to help her, do you mean that you were held down at gunpoint or forced to watch by the rapists?” Max asked. Ryan shook his head again, looking down. He was clearly embarrassed.


No,” he said quietly. “I, uh, wimped out. I simply laid there and whimpered like a baby. It's like I had no fight in me whatsoever. I can't explain it.” He began to cry.


It's okay, Ryan,” Max said calmly. “People react to situations like that in very different ways. It's like a soldier who experiences combat for the very first time. Some people run, others fight, and then there are some who, like you, simply freeze up. I take it you're one of those who prefer not to fight. Am I right?”


Yes, you're right,” Ryan said. “I've never been much of a fighter. And no one's ever taught me how to fight.”


So, after the rape, what happened?” Max asked.


Well, things between my wife and I got strained,” Ryan said. “It's like she was ashamed to even be around me. I decided to do something about it after a couple weeks. I swore that I would learn how to fight so I could protect my wife if anything like that happened again.”


Sounds reasonable,” Max said. “Go on.”


I found a place that said they taught mixed martial arts, so I went there,” Ryan said. “I had hoped I could learn something.”


Let me guess,” Max said. “The instructor didn't teach you anything, did he?” Ryan shook his head. “He just beat you up and sent you home with a black eye, didn't he?”


Yes,” Ryan said. “Then Jessie got upset that I went without telling her. She thought it was funny that I would even try to learn how to fight. Then she started going with me. And that's when the really bad stuff started happening.”


You mean, between the instructor and your wife?” Max asked.


Yes,” Ryan said. “The teacher, Jim is his name, would simply have me attack him. Then after he beat me, he would work with Jessie. He actually taught her some moves and then the two of them would gang up and take turns beating me.”


Did this 'Jim' even teach you anything?” Max asked.


No,” Ryan said. “All he did was beat me and berate me.”


So he took your money but taught you nothing, is that right?” Max asked.


That's right,” Ryan said. “And after they were finished beating me, they would have sex, right there in the ring, in front of me. The whole time they would berate me and humiliate me even further.”


How long have you been married, Ryan?” Max asked.


Two years when this all started,” Ryan said. “Three years now.”


Have you considered divorce?” Max asked. “Or going to the police? It sounds to me like you would have grounds to have your wife charged with spousal abuse and assault.”


I've considered divorce,” Ryan said. “I even talked to a couple of attorneys, but they told me I'd basically be screwed. I never thought about going to the police. Truth is, I'd be too embarrassed. I've been laughed at enough. I just want it to end.”


You know, there is a facility that helps men in your situation,” Max said. “It's a three-month program, but I think you would benefit from it. I know I have.”


You mean Camp Rollins?” Ryan asked.


Yes, Camp Rollins,” Max said. “You've heard of it, then.”


I have,” he said. “I saw their ad on the Internet and checked them out. Problem is, I can't afford it, and my insurance wouldn't cover it. Otherwise, I'd go in a heartbeat.”


Tell me honestly, Ryan,” Max said. “Do you love your wife?”


Truthfully, right now, I don't know,” Ryan said. “Part of me still does, but a part of me wishes she would just go away and die. She won't even let me touch her, and she brings Jim into our apartment and fucks him in the bed I used to sleep in. Then she expects me to clean her up with my tongue. She's done even worse than that. I can't stand living there anymore. I've even thought about killing myself. I can't take it anymore.”


Has Jim forced himself on you?” Max asked. Ryan looked down, his face red. He slowly nodded his head.


Yes,” he said quietly. “The last time, he shoved his dick in my mouth after fucking Jessie in the ass. He demanded I clean him up. I got sick and threw up on him. Then they both beat me unconscious.”


Did you call the police?” Max asked.


No,” Ryan said. “I was too ashamed.” Max considered the man crying uncontrollably and took out a sheet of paper. He handed it to Ryan.


I'll take your case, Ryan,” Max said. “But you have to do exactly as I say. Do you understand?”


Yes,” Ryan said. “But I don't think I can afford you.” Max shook his head.


Don't worry about the cost,” Max said. “I'm not in this for the money. I'm taking your case pro bono. Now, here's some things you need to do right away,” Max said. “The first thing we need to do is get you out of that apartment and get you someplace safe. Does your wife work?”


Yes, she works at a convenience store down the street from our apartment,” Ryan said.


Alright,” Max said. “Pack up your things and go to the address on this piece of paper. Tell them I sent you. I'll give you a card you can show them. They'll set you up with a room. Do not contact your wife. No one is to know where you are. Do you understand me?”


Yes,” Ryan said. Max handed him a slip of paper. “What is this place?”


It's a safe house I set up for clients in your situation,” Max said. “Do you have vacation time coming?”


Yes, I do,” Ryan said.


Good,” Max said. “Take a week's vacation. If they give you any flak, you contact me immediately and I'll take care of it. You are to stay at the safe house unless I contact you. Do you understand?”


Yes, I understand,” Ryan said.


Okay. Now, write down your address and the address of this so-called gym,” Max said. “I'll be paying him a visit.” Ryan wrote the address of Jim's gym and handed it to Max. “I have an attorney and a counselor on retainer. I'll arrange for them to visit you at the safe house. Any questions so far?”


Not at this time,” Ryan said.


Good,” Max said. “Remember, say nothing to your wife and stay away from her and Jim. They've already broken a number of laws and there's no telling what they intend to do next. You let me handle this from now on. Understand?”


Yes, I understand,” Ryan said. Max nodded his head.


Alright, go get your things and report to the safe house, then call your work and take vacation,” Max said. Ryan nodded his head and stood up. Max stood with him.


Thank you for everything,” Ryan said.


You're welcome,” Max said. He knew the pain Ryan was feeling. He had already seen the file Adrestia provided him on the man's marriage and knew all about the abuse he had suffered at his wife's hands. He sat back down and turned on his tablet. He entered the information Adrestia had given him on Jessica Davis and was soon watching her working behind the counter of a Zip store. He activated the thought monitor and waited for it to sync up to her thoughts.


The surveillance software and thought monitor were programs Adrestia had developed herself. As she once told him, she had doctorates in multiple disciplines and was quite good at all of them. She gave him the tablet with the software installed and showed him how to use it. He found it to be quite useful in his work. By now, the monitor had synced to her thought patterns and he could read what she was thinking.


I can't wait for this shift to end,” he read. “Jim said he'd be coming over tonight with a brand new electric cock cage for the wimp. I can't wait to see him writhing on the floor in pain.” Max shut the monitor off in disgust and left the office.


I'll be back in a bit,” he told Sally as he donned his fedora and long khaki double-breasted trench coat.



Max stood outside the largely nondescript, run down brick building housing Jim Carter's gym. He already knew Carter's history – Seven time world champion in mixed martial arts. His glory days as a fighter and founder of the art form were behind him and he now languished as a “teacher,” training a new generation of fighters. He opened the door and walked inside.


He looked around at the walls, covered with large black-and-white photos of Carter in his prime. Carter taking down an opponent with his fist. Carter throwing a wild kick to an opponent's face. Carter with his hands raised in triumph. Carter accepting a trophy. As he walked around, he took in the trophies that sat in a case along the wall. All of them were inscribed with Carter's name.


He took note of the boxing ring set in the middle of the gym and walked around, looking at the trophies and commendations. He stopped in front of a table that held three samurai swords, each one a different length. One of them he recognized as a “wakizashi,” the sword used in the suicide ritual known as seppuku.


Impressive, aren't they?” he heard a man ask from behind him. He turned to see a slim, gray-haired man wearing a gi with a black belt around his waist. He recognized him as Jim Carter, one of Ryan's tormentors.


Are they real?” Max asked, pointing to the sword set.


Of course,” Jim said. “Perhaps you'd like a demonstration.”


Thanks, but I'll pass,” Max said.


So, do you want to learn how to fight?” Jim asked with a sneer on his face. Max shook his head.


Already know how to fight,” Max said. “Personally, I find the spoken word to be more powerful than a fist.” Jim laughed.


Seriously?” he asked. “Maybe you'd like to show me how that's possible.” Max smiled, but there was no warmth in his smile. Jim's sneer disappeared.


Perhaps one day,” Max said.


So, why are you here?” Jim asked.


I'm curious to know about your training sessions with Ryan Davis,” Max asked. Jim snickered as he walked into the center of the ring.


What's it to you?” Jim asked.


Have you actually taught him anything, or are you just using him as a punching bag so you can fuck his wife?” Max asked.


What has he told you?” Jim asked.


Answer my question,” Max said, using his command voice. Jim felt a strange vibration in his head as Max spoke. What was this, he asked himself. He felt compelled to tell this man the truth.


Of course, he's just a punching bag,” Jim said. “And yes, Jessie and I torture him every chance we get.”


Then I'll make you a deal,” Max said.


What's that?” Jim asked.


I'll bring Ryan here next Friday – that's one week from today – at 5:00 pm. You have Jessie here. Ryan will challenge you to combat in this ring – just you and him,” Max said. Jim snickered.


Seriously?” Jim asked.


Seriously,” Max said. Jim laughed as he nodded his head.


Okay, sure,” he said. “Bring the wimp by here Friday. After I kick his ass, I'll fuck his wife right here in front of him.” Max shook his head.


No, you won't,” he said. Again, Jim felt the strange vibration in his head. “You fancy yourself something of a modern-day samurai, don't you?”


Yes, you could say that,” Jim said.


Good,” Max said. “Here's the deal. If he wins, you take this and commit seppuku right there in the middle of the ring,” he said, pointing to the short sword. “Got it?” Jim felt the strange vibration and found himself accepting the deal.


What about Jessie?” he asked.


She can either join you or turn herself in to the police,” Max said. “I really don't care which. If she chooses the latter, she'll accept Ryan's terms of divorce with no questions asked.”


But what if I win?” Jim asked.


In that case, you can live and keep Jessie, but she'll still accept Ryan's terms for divorce,” Max said. “He walks away and the two of you leave him alone, forever. Deal?” Jim felt the strange vibration and wondered who this man was. He found himself nodding his head in agreement.


You have a deal,” he said. “Be here, next Friday at 5:00 pm. We'll be waiting.” Max smiled grimly as he regarded Jim.


See? I told you the spoken word is more powerful than a fist,” he said. “We'll be here. In the meantime, you and Jessie are to leave Ryan alone so he can prepare. He's already someplace safe, so don't bother looking for him. And one last thing.”


What's that?” Jim asked.


No tricks,” Max said. “Trust me, it won't go well for either you or Jessie if you try to pull something.”


No tricks,” Jim said quietly. Max tipped his fedora and walked out of the gym. Jim eyed him as he left. As the door closed, he wondered who this man was.



You did WHAT?” Ryan asked when Max told him the deal he had made with Jim. “You know I can't beat him. He's stronger and more powerful than me.” Max took Jim's head in his hands and looked him in the eye.


Listen to me, Ryan,” he said. “And listen good. It's time for you to man up. You're younger than him, and whether you know it or not, he's already shown you what to do and what not to do. You need to remember that. He's an old washed-up has-been. His glory days are behind him and he gets off on beating people like you.”


Max is right,” said a tall, thin man standing behind Max.


Ryan, this is Ralph Wilcox,” Max said. “He was in a situation similar to yours once. He got help and he's going to help you remember everything you need to know. But you need to trust him and listen to him. Understand?” Ryan felt a strange vibration in his head. As the vibration wore off, he felt... different, stronger and somewhat more confident. Where did that come from, he asked himself. Deep down, he knew Max was right. He had to man up for his own good. He nodded his head.


Okay, Max,” he said. “You're right. So, what do I need to do?”


You work with Ralph and let Mike put together your divorce paperwork,” Max said. “No matter what happens, you're going to stand up for yourself and dump the cheating bitch.”


Alright,” Ryan said. “I'll do it.” Max nodded his head and stood up. He pulled out a tablet and handed it to Ryan.


What's this?” Ryan asked.


This tablet contains video of every 'training' session you've had with Jim,” Max said. “Use those videos to refresh your memory. Ralph will work with you and show you what you need to know.”


How did you get them?” Ryan asked, confused.


Trade secret,” Max said. “You can thank my better half.”


I will, if I ever meet her,” Ryan said. Max smiled and nodded his head. He turned to Ralph.


You have this under control?” he asked.


No problem,” Ralph said. “We'll get started right away.”


Thanks,” Max said. “Don't forget to give him a cup of tea three times a day.”


Don't worry, I won't,” Ralph said. Max nodded his head.


Thanks,” he said. “I'm heading home now. Call if you need anything.”


I will,” Ralph said. Max left the safe house and headed home.



I had an interesting visitor today,” Jim said after he arrived at Ryan and Jessie's house.


Oh?” Jessie asked.


Yeah,” Jim said. “Some guy who looked like he crawled out of an old movie. Never did give me his name.”


What did he want?” Jessie asked.


You're not gonna believe this,” Jim said. “He actually got me to agree to face off against your wimpy husband next Friday.” Jessie snorted at that.


Seriously?” she asked.


Yeah, can you believe it?” Jim asked. “By the way, where is the limp-dick little brat?”


I don't know,” she said. “He wasn't home when I got here, but he was here earlier. A lot of his clothes and things are gone. I called his work and they told me he took off for vacation. He left this on the dresser,” she added, showing Jim Ryan's wedding ring. He looked at it for a second before speaking.


So you have no idea where he is?” Jim asked.


No, none,” she said. “I tried calling but all I got was his voicemail. Do you think maybe we pushed him too far?” Jim laughed.


Nah,” he said. “Your husband's a wimp with absolutely no backbone whatsoever. Hell, I can beat him with one hand tied behind my back. Trust me, he's a glutton for punishment. Guys like him live to be pushed around. Now, why don't we adjourn to your bedroom and have a bit of fun?” She giggled as he moved in on her.


Okay,” she said. “I've been thinking about this big cock of yours all day. But it won't be as much fun without wimpy here to push around. I was looking forward to pissing in his mouth and making him drink it.”


You are a nasty girl,” Jim said.


Disgusted, Max shut down the tablet and looked at the blonde goddess sitting next to him.


I must say, my love, I like your style,” she said with a slight smile. “What made you think of doing this?”


There's an old saying,” he told her. “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.” She nodded her head as she thought about it.


I can see the logic in that,” she said. “Do you think Ralph can really make a difference?”


I do,” Max said. “Ralph has been trained by the best. Ryan's body already knows what to do and what not to do. His mind just isn't convinced yet. Ralph can help in that regard.”


Do you think Jim will actually perform seppuku if he loses?” Adrestia asked.


He'll do it,” Max said grimly. “Trust me. He's a legend in his own mind and the disgrace of losing to Ryan will be more than he can bear. And I'll be there to remind him of his deal if he hesitates.” Her smile grew wide.


You're a man after my own heart, my love,” she said. “Now, come here and make my day.” He smiled as he wrapped his arms around her.


As you wish, my goddess,” he whispered as he showered her with kisses.



The next afternoon, Max stopped at the safe house to check on Ryan's progress. He went to the basement gym where Ralph and Ryan were working out. Ryan wiped the sweat off his face with a towel as Max walked in.


Well, how's everything going?” Max asked.


We're making good progress,” Ralph said. “I think our boy here has grown a whole new set of balls. Now if I can only get him to breathe right we'll be in good shape” Max smiled and looked at Ryan.


How're you feeling?” he asked. Ryan nodded his head.


I'm tired and sore, but I'm actually learning something,” he said.


Good,” Max said. “Just remember to follow directions and you'll do just fine. How are the divorce papers coming along?”


Mike is taking care of that,” Ryan said. “The plan is to file them Friday morning and you can serve them to her Friday when we get to Jim's place.”


Sounds good,” Max said. “Did you remove the battery from your phone like I said?” Ryan nodded his head.


Yeah, I did that first thing,” he said.


Excellent,” Max said. “Alright, I'll get going. If you need anything, give me a call,” he told Ralph.


Will do, boss,” he said. Max headed home and looked at his tablet to see what Jim and Jessie were up to. Jessie had stopped by the gym after her shift was over and the time Max looked in on them, they were naked in the ring with Jessie riding Jim's cock cowgirl-style. After he ejaculated inside her, she climbed off of him and lay on the mat, her legs spread wide.


Too bad wimpy's not here to clean me out,” she said. He laughed at that. “So, are you ready to face him on Friday?” she asked. He snorted at the idea of preparing to face Ryan.


I don't need to prepare,” he said. “He'll probably trip over his own feet when he climbs in the ring like he did the first day he showed up. Hell, all I'll have to do is stare at him hard and he'll go running to his mother crying like a baby. I can see it now. 'Mama. Mama, I need my diaper changed',” he said, mocking Ryan's voice. Jessie laughed at Jim's impersonation of her husband.


You really hate him, don't you?” she asked.


Yeah, almost as much as you do,” he said. She nodded her head.


Yeah,” she said. “I used to love him, but I lost all respect for him the day I got raped. I've never forgiven him for that. I'm just afraid that maybe we pushed him too far.” He snorted at the idea.


Guys like him deserve to be treated like shit,” he said.


I guess you're right,” she said. “Wait, that gives me an idea.”


What?” he asked.


After you kick his ass Friday, why don't we make him do it?” she asked.


Do what?” Jim asked.


What we've always wanted to do,” she said. “You hold him down and I'll take a dump on him.” He laughed at that.


Seriously?” he asked.


Yeah, why not?” she asked gleefully. “It'll be the ultimate humiliation.”


You're on,” he said.


Max ended the video surveillance and turned his laptop off. He couldn't believe people were capable of that kind of cruelty.


They are capable of that, you know,” Adrestia said, handing him a glass of wine. She was good at that – responding to his thoughts. “I've seen it all, and believe me, they are very capable of that kind of cruelty.” He shook his head in disbelief before taking a sip of wine.


I don't know how you've handled that all these years,” he said quietly.


It hasn't been easy,” she said. “That's why I need your love. I don't know what I'd do without you to remind me that there are still people with a sense of justice and humanity.” He set his glass down and took her in his arms. She was so petite, so soft and warm. So much power in such a beautiful frame. He kissed her face and held her close.


And I'll always be here for you, my goddess,” he said quietly. “I'll always love you.”


And I love you, Max,” she said, kissing him back.



The next few days went as Max predicted. Ryan was getting stronger and more confident under Ralph's tutelage. Jessie and Jim met every day to have sex and plot even more humiliation for Ryan. Finally, Friday rolled around. Mike had filed the divorce papers and handed Max the copy to serve on Jessie. Max went to the safe house and collected Ryan and Ralph.


Are you ready?” he asked Ryan. Ryan, already dressed in a white gi, nodded his head, a look of determination on his face.


I'm ready,” he said. Max looked Ryan in the face.


Listen to me and listen carefully,” he said. “Follow Ralph's instructions to the letter. Don't speak to Jessie – at all. I'll serve her the divorce papers. Jim will probably try to psyche you out. Ignore him. Just do as Ralph says and you'll be fine. Understand?” Ryan nodded his head.


I understand,” he said.


As they drove to Jim's place, Ralph whispered instructions to Ryan. Ryan followed Max's directions and absorbed everything Ralph told him. When they got to the gym, Max parked and they got out. Max put on a pair of leather gloves and picked up the envelope Mike gave him earlier.


When they went inside the gym, they saw Jessie sitting in a chair close to Jim's corner. She smirked as Ryan walked in, but her expression changed when she saw the look on Ryan's face. Something about him was different, and she began to get concerned.


Max walked up to Jessie, holding the envelope with the divorce papers and a restraining order.


Jessica Davis?” he asked. She nodded her head.


I'm Jessica Davis,” she said. He handed her the envelope.


You've been served,” he said before walking away. She glanced in the envelope and saw the petition for divorce and the restraining order. A tiny part of her felt guilt, but that soon went away.


Well, let's get this little show on the road,” Jim shouted from his corner of the ring. Ryan stepped into the ring, looking more determined than ever. Both Jim and Jessie were surprised, but Jim's cockiness never wavered. He never had any respect for Ryan, and it showed.


Let's see what you got, little boy,” Jim said as he danced around the ring. Ryan took the stance Ralph showed him, presenting as small a profile to Jim as possible. He looked Jim in the eye and waited for the older man to move. Jim chuckled and took a swing at Ryan, but Ryan suddenly wasn't there. Somehow, he had turned in a way that perfectly countered Jim's swing and in the process, kicked at Jim's lower right leg, breaking the bone.


Jim fell down in pain, grabbing his right leg. He looked up at Ryan, who was standing still, presenting only a side profile. Ryan eyed the older man and waited for him to rise and make his move. Jim got up slowly, favoring his one good leg. He knew he would have to take Ryan down with a single move. Unable to kick, he tried to close the distance between them. He hoped to get close enough to punch Ryan in the throat, then the solar plexus.


Ryan's face showed no fear, only determination, as he waited for the older man to move. Sure enough, Jim struck out with his right fist, but Ryan had moved again, and kicked Jim's lower left leg, breaking that bone as well. The older man went to his knees, shouting in pain.


Ryan, stop it, you're killing him,” Jessie shouted from her chair as she stood up.


SIT DOWN!” Max roared. Jessie sat down as soon as he spoke.


Ryan wasn't finished with the older man and lashed out with a devastating kick to Jim's throat. Jim was in too much pain to block the kick and went down on his back, trying to catch his breath. Ryan stood back, out of Jim's reach and waited for the older man to get back up on his knees.


Finally, he managed to get back on his knees and looked at Ryan. Who was this man who had managed to defeat him, he wondered.


Do you accept defeat?” Max asked. Jim looked at him for a moment before slowly nodding his head. “SAY IT,” Max roared.


wakizashi, still in its scabbard, and tossed it in the ring. It landed right in front of Jim.


You know what to do,” Max said. Jim felt that strange vibration in his head again. Without thinking, he opened his gi, picked up the short sword and pulled it from its scabbard. As they watched, he performed the ritual as the ancient samurai had done.


As he lay dying on the mat, Jessie screamed and tried to get up, but Max's last order prevented it. She cried as she sat in her chair and looked at Ryan.


Why?” she cried. He looked at her with hard, unloving eyes. He glanced at Max, who nodded his head. Looking back at Jessie, he spoke.


I once loved you with all my heart, Jessica,” he said. “I admit, I was weak, scared, and didn't know how to defend you when you were raped. That was the absolute worse day of my life. For that I am truly sorry. But I sought help and I had hoped that I could learn how to defend you. But you shit all over my love with this piece of crap. And I can never forgive that. Right now, I hate you with every fiber of my being and I wish to God I had never met you.”


I'm truly sorry,” she said, his words stinging her to the core. “Is there anything I can do to make you not hate me?” He looked at Max and Ralph for a moment before turning back to her.


Eat shit and die, cunt,” he growled before stepping out of the ring. He walked to the door with Ralph. Max looked at Jessie with sadness on his face.


You heard the man,” he said before turning away. They walked out of the gym as Jessie sobbed in her chair.



Ryan, Ralph, Max and Adrestia sat in the front room of the safe house and watched the news. Two people, a man and a woman, were found dead at Jim Carter's gym. Police said both deaths appeared to be suicide, providing no details. According to the report, the woman apparently killed herself shortly after receiving divorce papers. The unnamed man, the report said, was named in the divorce.


Are you okay?” Max asked Ryan. Ryan nodded his head, tears falling down his cheek.


Why did she do it?” he asked. Max shrugged his shoulders.


Hard to say why people do the things they do,” he said. “Best thing you can do now is move forward with your life. There's lots of women out there. I'm sure one day you'll meet someone and fall in love all over again.” Ryan shook his head.


I don't know,” he said. “I don't think I could go through something like this again. But I know one thing.”


What's that?” Max asked.


No one will ever call me a wimp or a pussy ever again,” he said.


Well, don't let it go to your head,” Max said. “Look, you have my number and you know where my office is. If you need to talk, I'll be here for you. Take some tea with you – it'll help you relax and clear your head. Right now, I think you may want to head on home. I suspect the police may be stopping by. Tell them you were here with me discussing your pending divorce. I'll corroborate your story.” Ryan nodded his head.


Okay, thanks,” he said. “For everything.” He shook everyone's hands, gathered his clothes and left for home. After Ryan left, Max turned to Ralph.


Thank you for all your help,” he said.


My pleasure,” Ralph said. “You really think he'll be alright?”


I think so,” Max said. “In time. This whole episode has been very hard on him. I'll keep an eye on him for a while just to make sure.” Ralph said his goodbyes and headed out. Max turned to Adrestia.


What do you say we head home, my dear?” he asked. She smiled and wrapped an arm around him.


Lead on, my love,” she said.





As Max predicted, officers stopped at Ryan's apartment a couple hours after he got home. There were two uniformed officers and a detective wearing a dark suit. The detective, who introduced himself as Detective Frank Greene, asked Ryan to accompany him to the police station. Ryan, seeing he had no choice, went with him.


Greene showed him the pictures of Jim and Jessie. Ryan didn't want to look at them, but Greene forced the issue. He saw Jim laying in a pool of blood, the sword still in his hands. Jessie was hunched over a toilet, her face in the bowl. He could see something on her face and wondered if she had actually tried to do what he said.


Ryan sat in the room for two hours, telling and retelling the story of how Jim and Jessie had abused him for the last year. Greene seemed sympathetic but was clearly trying to get him to confess to killing them. Ryan finally sat up and made his demand.


I want an attorney present,” he said. “I told you where I was, and I told you what had been going on. That's why I filed divorce papers. Either charge me or let me go.” Greene considered him for a few moments before relenting.


Alright, Mr. Davis,” he said. “I'll check out your story. I may have to bring you back, so don't go anywhere, you got me?”


I got you,” Ryan said. Greene spent the next few days checking out Ryan's story. He spoke to Max, who corroborated Ryan's alibi and looked over all the forensic evidence. Nothing pointed to Ryan, but Greene wondered how Carter's legs got broken.


Greene knew in his heart that Ryan had to be involved somehow, but there was no evidence to support that theory. Eventually, the case was finally ruled a double suicide.


Ryan went back to work and began to pick up the pieces of his shattered life. He refused to claim Jessie's body, so her parents stepped in and made arrangements for her funeral, which he refused to attend. He let them take whatever they wanted of her possessions and gave the rest to Goodwill. He replaced the bed that Jessie and Jim had used to torment him along with any other piece of furniture that reminded him of Jessie.


He spent the next two years alone, but eventually met a girl at a company function and the two began dating. At her insistence, he started seeing a counselor who diagnosed him with a mild form of PTSD. He enrolled in a martial arts class, and is determined to never repeat the mistake he made with Jessie.













Submitted: May 26, 2023

© Copyright 2023 Saddletramp1956. All rights reserved.

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