Devil in Her Eye

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Devil In Her Eye by Maggie Estep

She wasn't the kind of girl to make a bishop kick in a stained glass window, but she got to me all the same. Her name was Sylvia. Dirty blonde. Five-foot-four, 122 pounds, thighs just shy of ample. She was quiet. Seldom looked at you straight on, but once she did, you never forgot it. Which is what happened. She looked at me. Right into me.


And I melted. I’m not the kind of guy to go around melting, mind you. I’m pushing thirty-five. I’ve been locked up a few times, and when I wasn’t Inside, I worked on the back side of racetracks. Mucking horse shit and what have you.


I’m not a melter. But Sylvia got me.


The night I met Sylvia, I was minding my own business sitting on the couch over at Sammy Diabelli’s place, staring at Tina’s ass as she served a plate of salami and cheese to the assorted denizens gathered there. I’d been getting cozy with Tina for

three weeks by then and this was it, the first night she’d brought me to her Uncle Sammy’s.


“I gotta have Uncle Sammy take a look at you,” Tina had told me the night before. We were lying on the bed. Or I was lying; she was standing nearby, not a stitch of clothing on her and that immense chest of hers a little shiny with sweat.


“Who’s Sammy?” I said.


“My Uncle Sammy. If I’m gonna keep seeing you, Sammy’s gotta inspect you,” Tina said.


I had feigned being a little nervous at the prospect of meeting the uncle, but in truth, it’s what I was there for. To get inside Sammy Diabelli’s house and see what was what.


The Feds had busted me six months earlier sponging racehorses — which is

when you stuff tiny sponges up their noses, which doesn’t really hurt them, just impairs their breathing enough to make ’em run a tiny bit slower and lose the race. When I got busted, they offered me a deal. Either I did time again or I did them this one little favor. Get in with Sammy Diabelli and his clan in South Brooklyn. Not, mind you, that they were gonna have me wear a wire or do anything that might drastically impair my staying alive, no, they just wanted me to feel things out, let them know a few things, then,

they’d take it from there. So they told me go to this bar where Diabelli’s son, Little Sammy, hangs out shooting pool. I went and sure enough, I saw Little Sammy there. With him was Tina, who, I’d been informed, was Diabelli’s niece. Now, mind you, the Feds didn’t say: Go fuck Diabelli’s niece. No. But I took one look at her and figured

that’s how I’d do it. All in a day’s work.


She was a little dark-haired girl. She had on a skimpy tank top affording

a healthy view of her disproportionately large breasts. I didn’t even approach

her. Just stood at the bar, sipping a glass of seltzer and watching. Watching her chest touch against the green felt of the pool table when she leaned over to set up her shot.

Eventually, she felt my eyes on her. Looked over at me. In a few more

minutes, sauntered over.


“Have we met?” she says to me.


“No, but we should,” I say.


She giggles. She has tiny teeth. I want to touch them.


“I’m Tina,” she says, flipping her hair.


“So you are,” I say.


She does an encore on the giggle.


“You got a name?” She wants to know.


“I do.”


“It’s a secret?”


“I’m Benjamin,” I finally say and stick my hand out to shake hers.


“Hi, Benjamin,” she says.


About an hour later, I’m walking her home. She’s got a little place she

shares with two other girls on 43rd Street in Sunset Park. She tells me she

works at a beauty parlor a few blocks from home.


“I got a lot of family around here,” she tells me as we’re walking. “Mostly I end up just doing hair for people I’m related to.”


This concept seems to amuse her. She laughs.


I laugh too.


Her bedroom looks like a twelve year old’s. There’s a lot of pastel-

colored things and stuffed animals and I feel particularly perverted as I push her back onto her bed and shove a bunch of stuffed animals aside.


“How old are you anyway?” I ask her as I pull her shirt off and find myself face to face with that huge chest, barely contained by a bright red bra.


“How old do you want me to be, Daddy?” she says, and I wince, I mean, I’m

probably a good fifteen years older than her, but I’m not into playing any

little-girl games and I let her know this, ripping her pants off her and

grabbing hard at her little hipbones and saying: “You’re a grown woman, Tina,

don’t go playing games with me.”


She blushes a little, which gets me incredibly hard.


“I’m twenty-two,” she says, adding an “Ouch, Benjamin!” as I pinch one of her



Her panties don’t match her bra. They’re powder blue like her bedsheets,

and there’s a tiny hole in the seam at the front of the crotch and I get the

end of my finger in this little hole and rip, yanking the crotch of the

panties completely out, making Tina gasp as I reveal her quaint little black

bush, very well-manicured because I guess she applies her beautician skills to every hair on her body. And then, in no time flat, I’ve gotten a condom out of my wallet and she takes it from me and unrolls it on my cock and then climbs aboard and starts grinding away at me in this totally fierce way and I’m going to come immediately so I shove her off of me and she looks angry and puts her hand between her legs and starts touching herself, looking tortured, then says, “Gimme,” and grabs my cock, rips the condom off and starts sucking the living hell out of me. I pull out of her in time to let loose all over that chest of hers. I watch her jerk off. She makes a purring sound like an overgrown kitten as she comes.





Three weeks later, it’s time to meet her uncle.


I’m on the couch there. Getting inspected by Sammy Diabelli and his clan.


“So Benjamin,” Sammy says to me, “Tina tells me you work at the track?”


“Sometimes. Not right now, but sometimes,” I say. Truth is, right now I’m not working at all. Once in a while I act as a lookout for guys I know doing little heists and whatnot. But that’s it. That and being the Feds’ bitch.


“You worked there doing what? You look a little big to ride,” Sammy says.


“Oh no, I wouldn’t get on top of those horses,” I clarify, “those horses are nuts. I worked as a groom.”


“Oh yeah? Well, that’s nice. Good for you,” he says, and then I guess he’s done with me for the time being.


And now I start getting guilt pangs. I had no qualms about banging Tina for three weeks to get here, but now, Sammy’s just one of those instantly likable guys. I start to feel uncomfortable, having a dilemma, if you will. And then, whammo. She walked in the front door. It’s not like she made some grand entrance or anything. But I noticed her. She walked in and went to stand near Sammy’s chair. She’s wearing a navy mid-calf skirt and tan pantyhose. Just to look at her I knew she was wearing big white panties. She had dirty blonde hair blunt cut to her jaw. She had a good shape, some meat on her, but she didn’t make herself jiggle when she walked. She was very contained. I guess that was part of the appeal. Part of why I instantly envisioned hiking that navy skirt up over her ass.


Eventually, Sammy felt her standing there, looked up and beamed at her: “Hi, baby,” he said to her.


She leaned over and kissed Sammy’s cheek.


“Benjamin,” Sammy said to me, “this is my daughter, Sylvia.”


And right away, I got a hard-on. You’d think it’d be the opposite. You’d

think finding out this chick was the daughter of a guy I’m supposed to help take down for the Feds might make any vestige of sexiness evaporate like a raindrop in hell, but no. It added to my fire.


“Hi,” I said like a stone moron.


She offered a smile, at first not even looking at me, too busy listening to what Sammy was telling her about what Little Sammy did to the family car. But then, all of a sudden, for no reason I could really discern, she looked at me. Right into me. Her eyes were medium blue with little gold flecks in them.


Right at that moment, maybe sensing something, Tina came over. She’d gotten rid of the plate of salami and cheese but she was still wearing this ridiculous little serving apron. Normally, my imagination would instantly swell with notions of what to do with Tina in that apron, but I have to say I

don’t get real far with it. I right away picture her in it. Sylvia.


Can you imagine falling for a girl named Sylvia? The only other Sylvia I

ever knew was my great aunt Sylvia. She’d had a wooden leg because, as a

young girl, she’d fallen victim to one of those crazy rides they had at

Dreamland, one of the big amusement parks at Coney Island back then. The

place went up in flames in 1910, but not before the rides had taken a few

limbs, my Aunt Sylvia’s left leg among these. They put a wooden leg on her

and she went through life just fine and married my Uncle Aloisius and had a

bunch of kids and lived to be a hundred-and-three. By the time I met her of

course she was an old lady. An old lady with a wooden leg and actually a hair

or two on her chin.


So Aunt Sylvia with the wooden leg was the only Sylvia I knew, and it’s not

like the name had any major erotic connotations for me. And as I have now

documented for you, Sylvia, this Sylvia, wasn’t your Come Hither type of

girl. Not at all. But she looked at me. Looked right into me.

One thing led to another. I waited until I saw Tina go in the bathroom

then I went out in the yard for a smoke, praying Sylvia would follow, and,

to my astonishment, she did. I was sort of tongue-tied, but then she asked me

for a cigarette and the way she smoked it, like a girl who’s basically never

smoked a thing in her life, that got me harder than I was already. It got



It transpired that Miss Sylvia Diabelli had a mind for numbers and was

very interested in going to the racetrack and learning to handicap horse

races. This I could help her with.


Three days later, Sylvia and I are on the A train heading out to

Aqueduct. I’ve got the Daily Racing Form spread out in my lap, and we’re

sitting with our shoulders touching as the train rattles through the bowels of Queens and I explain how to read each horse’s past performance and how to factor in the many things one has to factor in. I’m having trouble concentrating. The girl is like a virus. A weird, understated, tan pantyhose–wearing virus.


Sylvia either has beginner’s luck or she’s instantly an ace handicapper because she has a place bet come in in the first race and hits an exacta on the second. Me, every horse I bet runs dead last.

By the ninth race, we’re both cold to the bone, because it’s spring but early spring, and Aqueduct, situated as it is there at the very tip of Queens, is subject to gusting winds and I insist on wrapping my sweatshirt jacket over her shoulders and she looks so completely disarming with my blue sweatshirt jacket over her tan sweater that’s lightly distended from her very well-shaped breasts and we’re standing on the platform, waiting for an A train to transport us back into Brooklyn, and I’m not sure what’s what now,

not sure where to take this, not sure of anything at all.


“I can come over?” Sylvia says to me now, just as the train groans up to the platform.


“Uh . . . well, I, uh . . .” I say, not because I don’t want her to come over, not that I care if she sees I live in this little hole of a place, an attic I rent for $472 a month from an old Polish woman who’s convinced I’m one day going to break down and go diving down at those cobwebs between her sizable ancient thighs. No, I have no qualms about Sylvia seeing anything that’s mine, but the thing is, I actually don’t want to just screw her. I mean, there are complications. There’s the Feds. And Tina. And the fact that Sylvia is a tan pantyhose– wearing bank teller who works in Brooklyn Heights and probably wants to get married and start popping out kids and I can’t say that’s a route I’m interested in.

But what the hell. I let her come over.

No sooner are we inside my place than she pulls the tan sweater over her head revealing a very sturdy white bra. She stands there looking at me. I briefly get this image of her reaching up her skirt and jerking herself off for me, but right away I realize that’s just not gonna happen. This is Sylvia at her most brazen, and she’s already pushed it to the outer limits.

And then I just go insane.

I cup her ordinary yet beautiful face between my hands and I kiss her very lightly and I can feel those breasts pressing against my chest and she pushes her hips against me and her height is such that she’s basically pushing her hips right into my crotch and I really don’t know how I got into this. I mean WHY, right? Why me? I know I never should have done that sponging with the racehorses. I fucking love horses. I hate myself for the sponging but what the hell, I got busted anyway and I don’t plan to revisit

that particular occupation, no, the plan was: tell the Feds what they want to know about Sammy Diabelli and then find some down on his luck trainer who doesn’t mind giving a second chance to someone like me and go back to working as a groom and find myself a nice exercise rider, one of those tough little muscular chicks with a sailor mouth and an ass of iron and we’ll shack up in Queens near the track and do our thing. You know. That’s what I thought. But now this. This Sylvia with her tan pantyhose. And her hips are pressing into me and I reach back and start pulling down the zipper on her skirt and my hand meets with the distinctly unsensual tan pantyhose fabric and she lets out this little whimper and then her skirt falls down to her ankles. There’s a run at the top of her pantyhose and I insert my finger just like I inserted my finger in the rip in Tina’s panties and I pull and rip the pantyhose and Sylvia covers her face with her hands, like she’s suddenly totally ashamed of everything as she stands there, so homely and lovely in her cotton white underwear with a pattern of fucking butterflies on them and now I pull these big white panties down too, revealing a patch of brown and slightly unruly

pubic hair and I just shove my hand between her legs and she moans but she’s still got her hands over her face and then I turn away, like some troubled teenager, like no one I’d ever want to know, I pull back and turn away from Sylvia and there’s this weird horrible silence and then I just say it:

“I’ve been sent by the FBI. To find out about your dad. I think you should leave now.” And it’s not like I’ve got this great deep love for the girl, it’s not like I think her and I could have a good run together, in fact, she’s probably not even that great a lay, I mean have you ever known anyone to wear big butterfly panties and be a great lay? No. Not gonna happen. So I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing. I’m basically begging for

a death sentence is what I’m doing. All for the sake of a woman in butterfly panties.

And that is basically all there is to this story. Sylvia stood there in her butterfly panties and her torn stockings and she looked at me and I felt guilty and crummy and she said she wasn’t going to tell her father but I’d better make myself scarce.

I made myself scarce all right. I told the Feds I couldn’t help them. And presto. I’m locked up. In New Jersey no less. Eighteen months. Of which I’ve served two.

As for Sylvia, well, she’s doing just fine. I guess having me rip the tan pantyhose off her must have shaken something loose. She sends me letters now and then and even money. Which I guess she can spare. The fucking girl hit the Pick Six. Twice. That’s when you pick the winning horse in six consecutive races. She even got written up in the Daily Racing Form. They took her picture for it. She sent me the picture. In it, she’s wearing what looks like a slightly racy outfit, like with actual cleavage showing. In the

picture, she looks like she’s got devil in her eye. She probably does.

And all I got is eighteen months in New Jersey.




©2002 Maggie Estep and

Maggie Estep has published five books, most recently Gargantuan, the second in a series of "horse noir" novels. She is an obsessive bike rider, lives in Brooklyn, and likes to hang out at racetracks, cheering on longshots. Her website is