The music was way too loud. Moving uncomfortably in his seat Tom sighed glancing over to the women who had dragged him out tonight. Monica, Agathe and Candice. He would never say no to a good party but today he really didn’t feel like celebrating the end of the two weeks of tennis. He had complained and explained to have a headache but Candice wouldn’t have it. She owed him for the video he had made for the WTA about Monica and Agathe and was determined to cheer him up. Candice was nice, and she thought his bad mood was still the result of his break-up.
The girls were thrilled and they had good reason to be. Monica and Agathe had won their doubles finals. They were the brand new US Open champions. And that was big, proving one more time they were quite the effective team of the moment. All of a sudden, an old disco tune pierced the air turning the whole nightclub upside down. Grabbing his hand, Candice winked at him.
“C’mon, young boy! Come with me on the dance floor and start the hottie hunt!”
Hottie hunt? Rolling his eyes dramatically, Tom shook his head and let his boss go on the dance floor with her girlfriend and Monica. The fact that he had lost all his evidence was puzzling him. Goodbye photos, notes, analysis. Mission failed.
What had happened to his files? When he had realized that all the files were gone he had first thought of a virus on his computer. But a check-up wouldn’t confirm that. It was strange. The whole folder that contained all the pictues and notes was gone. Nothing else however. He finally concluded that all the evidence Tom had regrouped over the past months had been stolen from him. Stolen. The word resounded loud in his head, sinking deep into his heart.
Tom frowned and looked at the bottom of his glass. Someone knew about him, about what he was doing. It was the only possible explanation. It could only be Ted. He was the only one he had told about his idea. Of course, Ted could have told someone else.
“Come on. Don’t stay on your seat alone and come to dance with us!”
Tom looked up only to come face-to-face with Monica’s smile. She was quite the character, with a hilarious humor. Tom liked her, just as he liked Candice and Agathe. Everyone was so nice and friendly to him. Tom bit his lip as doubts began to creep in. Too friendly? Tom swallowed hard, shaking slowly his head at Monica who went away. Why were all these doubles players so nice with him, suddenly? Did they know something they shouldn’t? Did they know about his blog?
He shook his head and waited until Monica had gone again. He looked at the trio dancing on the dance floor like teenagers. Could it be that his assignment to work with the doubles players was a trap set up by Candice? Had Ted talked to her?
He tried to recall his conversations with the doubles pairs and suddenly he realized that he had told Andrea and Martina about Ted and himself. He had tried to guide the conversation to find out about other gay and lesbian players but the two players wouldn’t tell him.
They had suddenly become awfully guarded. Yes, now that he thought about it, they had become suspicious and had refused to talk about it. As if they knew what he was up to or just needed confirmation that he was indeed looking for information.
Tom moaned in frustration but no one heard it in the loud club. He had given away his secret. He had not been careful enough.
His straw hit the bottom of his glass and Tom realized that one drink wouldn’t be enough tonight. He needed more, a lot more.