Leaving Las Vegas

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
this was written by two of my friends for fun, it's really good hope you enjoy!

Submitted: November 08, 2008

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Submitted: November 08, 2008

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Leaving Las Vegas
My friends’ loud cheering drained into the background. I had blocked out all sounds, and looked at my opponent. I had a pair of twos. It may not sound like much, but my opponent had less. He pursed his lips. “Bluffing again, right? You could fold, you know.” I gave him a reassuring smile. He nervously giggled. “No, I am not,” He said, trying to enshroud his anxiety. “Okay, then. I raise you 200.” “500,” he murmured as he threw in more chips. It’s ironic that I just learned to play poker this afternoon. It’s even more ironic that I’m broke right now, but that’ll change. “I’ll see you.” I half smiled as the color drained from his face. “I thought so,” whispering just loud enough so he could hear.
My name is Kelsey Skeffington. I’m 17 years old in Santa Barbara, California, but 24 in Las Vegas. You could call me a runaway. It all started when my mom announced her engagement. “Someone special, someone different,” she said to me. My mom’s lover arrived at our front door the next afternoon. Elsie. Not a weird name, but a woman’s name. I couldn’t stand it. The adrenaline pumped as I ran to the nearest bus station. “I don’t care where this bus is going,” I said out loud. “As long as it’s away from here,” I added to myself. I paid for my ticket and stumbled into a seat next to a man just older than me. I looked at him and smiled. “So, where are we going?” I asked him. He looked at me and chuckled. “Vegas, baby.” I looked around and saw a variety of people all paying to get a chance at the big shots. From middle aged men wearing tuxedos to shady looking women, we were all going to the same place…. Viva Las Vegas!
My thoughts were interrupted by the man sitting next to me. “I’m Kyle.” I sat and blinked. Kyle…. This guy was pretty cute. He was very tan, wearing a tight black shirt that showed off his impressive, lean muscles, and his pants were the latest style jeans. His hair was as dark as it could get without being dyed, and his bangs reached his eyes. “So, you got a name, or what?” Oops. “Um,” I racked my brain for a fake name. This guy could be a creep. “Titania.” Oh, shoot. But I couldn’t change it now. Shakespeare? What was I thinking? I noticed him staring intently at me. He must have though that I was a dork. “Shakespeare freaks… my parents… yeah,” was all I could manage to get out. He nodded, not taking his eyes off me. I broke off my gaze, and looked at the person across of me, trying to ignore Kyle as much as possible. I’m still not used to guys staring at me, even though it’s been a while. My hair is blonde, my eyes are blue, my legs are long, and I suppose one could call me pretty. I think I look too much like a Barbie. There was not another word said by either of us for the rest of the ride. It was five straight hours of nothing.
When we finally got off the bus in Vegas, he turned to me and said, “Want to come meet my friends, and have a drink?” I thought for a minute…. From then on in Las Vegas, 24 wasn’t only my favorite number, but also my age. “Sure,” I said after mulling it over. He steered me toward a small group of three people. There was one girl and two boys. The girl had brilliant shiny red hair and pretty features, spattered with freckles. Her name was Yvonne. One boy tall and blonde, hair tied back in a short low ponytail, gazed at Yvonne adoringly. His name was Jack. The other boy was short and stocky, whose name was Daren. I later learned that he was gay, like my mom. Kyle spoke up, “This is Titania. Let’s show her a good time.” We all piled into Kyle’s jeep and drove to the casino/hotel. And now, here I am.
I had $1500, in cash. Daren suggested going to a gay bar, but we vetoed that. Instead we went to “The Palomino,” which was the nearest club. We walked to the bar. “So how old are you, Yvonne?” I questioned. I didn’t know anything about my new friends except their names. “19,” she replied dreamily. The bartender was yelling over the music at me. “What can I get you honey?” I turned around and looked at her. I thought of an alcoholic drink as quickly as possible. “I’ll have a Julep.” That was a bit hard core, but I’d have to deal with it. It’s a good thing I look like I’m 24. I got my drink and took a sip. I puckered at the taste. It was so strong of alcohol, but there was a small part of me that thought it was delicious. That small part of me grew and grew, as did the empty glasses beside me.
I was officially drunk. “I want to dance, Jack. Do you want to dance? I want to dance. Let’s dance.” I slurred. I pulled him by his elbow onto the dance floor. It was a mosh pit. I began dancing, pushing my body against him and jumping to the beat. He pulled me in closer. What was he doing? What was happening? He whispered in my ear, “You’re wasted Titania. We should go.” I was kind of hoping for something different than that, even if he loved Yvonne. “No,” I moaned, “I want to dance, Jack. I’m going to go dance with someone who wants to dance with me, somebody who actually respects me.” I literally spat. I stumbled back to the bar to have another drink. I scanned the room for a suitable dance partner.
Kyle. I spotted him sitting on a neon green loveseat. I skipped over to him and plopped right into his lap. “Hey, Kyle,” I slurred again. “Let’s go dance.” I stood up and pulled him with me back into the mosh pit. It felt so good to be wild like this, to not be in control of myself. We got close. Too close. I rested my head on his shoulder. Mmm... I thought. He smells so good. I looked into his eyes and he pulled me up against his body. We kissed. It was the happiest moment of my life, until, “something doesn’t feel right Kyle. I need to go back, I don’t feel good.” I clutched my stomach. I ran to the car where Darren was standing. “I need to go back, something’s not—.” Then it came out all over Darren. “My leather alligator boots are ruined!” He gasped. “They’re brand new!” “Just take me back, please, please, Darren,” I said. I don’t remember the car ride back to the casino.
I forced myself to wake up in the morning. My tongue felt like it was covered in fur. My skin felt cold and clammy. I felt like I was a big, fat, lazy slug. “Good morning, sunshine. It’s 8:00. How’s your head this morning?” It was Yvonne. I mumbled something inaudible. “Yeah, I thought so. I made you some coffee.” Coffee… It sounded good. “Give me,” was all I could manage. Yvonne sat on my bed, next to me. “I think you had too much to drink last night.” I put my head in her lap. It felt so comforting when she stroked my hair. I didn’t want to stay in bed all day, despite what my body was telling me. I had to go get more money. That skimpy pink dress I bought last night for the club used up almost all my money. I popped a few Advil’s into my mouth and was on my way. I trudged down the hall to the elevator. It seemed to take a century. The casino was filled. I walked over to the closest poker table and easily won 500 chips. I went from table to table, winning. It eventually narrowed down to two of us. The woman lifted her eyebrow. I know she’s lying, I just know. I thought. “I raise you 500.” She grinned and said, “I’ll see you.” All in one minute, I lost everything I had.
I weaved through everybody in the casino, and sprinted hard up the staircase to my hotel room. Yvonne was there, sitting on the bed watching T.V. She caught one look at my exasperated expression and said, “Whoa, what’s up, T?” “I lost,” I whispered. I could feel the tears welling up in my eyes. “It’s no big deal, T. It’s only one time. Here, here’s ten bucks, go out and beat that chick!” She reached into her pocket and pulled out a bill. I took the bill and said still in a slight whisper, “I need to talk to Kyle first.”
“Wait, you don’t actually like me?” Kyle questioned me, with a hurt look on his face. Did I ever even send off that vibe? I was kind of confused by how he was reacting. “No, no, I like you, but I just want to be friends. I just don’t think we have that much in common, and I was drunk.” I looked down at my sweaty palms and back up again. Kyle sighed as he sunk into a chair for support and covered his face with his hands. I couldn’t take it. “Sorry,” I murmured and ran out of the room, the tears spilling out now.
I needed to find that woman. I knew I could beat her; I just had bad luck that morning. Like Yvonne said, “It’s only one time.” I found her and joined her table. She had a fat pile of chips in front of her. She smirked at me when I sat down. I had hoped for sweet revenge, I just didn’t get any.
Back in the room, I lay on my bed wondering, what did I do wrong? I was better than this lady, I knew it! I rolled over to look at the clock. 5:00. the next poker round was at 6:00. I had one hour. My thoughts were interrupted by a knock. I dragged myself out of bed and shuffled to the door. An envelope slipped through the space between the floor and door. When I recklessly tore it open a lump of cash fell out and landed on the floor, along with a note. I compiled the money and began reading the note. It read:
We have more in common than you think.
It was anonymous, but I knew who it was.
. . .
It is three days later after the incident now, and I have nothing except a pile of “I owe you” notes and my not-so-great friends. Everyday they remind me how much I owe them and Yvonne keeps giving me more, and I lose it. Unfortunately, that gives her higher authority over me. I’ve been avoiding Kyle, because I owe him most of all: $1000 and an apology for taking it. I keep telling myself I should quit, but I’m addicted. I keep taking and losing, taking and losing. I keep finding myself playing the game, without even knowing how I got there. I can’t stop lying to myself. I need a job and money. I wish I was home.
Down the road there is a Burger King which needs employees. It’s been a while since I felt lucky. I walk down the road in my skimpy pink dress, and enter the restaurant. “Ma’am may I take your order?” a pimply teenager asks. “No, I need a job. Is the manager in?” Right on cue, a door in the back opens, and out comes a fat, bald, grumpy man. “You want a job? Congratulations, kid. There’s an extra uniform in the back. You’ll take charge of the fryer.” Wow. Isn’t it nice to be needed? “Sir, when do I start?” I question. “Five minutes. Be on time, please.” I’m five minutes early for work, which is very good first impression. I grab my uniform from the back and go to change.
After a hard five hours of work, I make an entire $30.00. I slam open the door, waving my check, and yell to Yvonne, “I got a paycheck!” “Good, ‘cause you need to pay,” she says matter-of-factly. “I know I want to start paying you back first.” I reply. “You can pay me back leaving.” She smolders, her eyes cold. I feel like I’m slapped. She doesn’t even want her money? The smile on my face vanishes, while I realize that I have no where to go. I only know one person that might let me stay with them.
Kyle grins after I make my request, and his whole face lights up. “Sure, you can sleep over,” he says cordially. “You get the couch,” I joke, trying to lighten the mood, but I guess he takes it literally, because I get the bed. I drift in and out of sleep, and when I’m about to fall asleep again, Kyle says quietly, “I’ve been thinking, you owe me a lot.” “I know,” I whisper back, and I’m scared. I am scared that I won’t be able to get the money. “I don’t want money,” he says hungrily. It takes me a second to digest his words. When I finally grasp the concept of his words, I start panicking. I grab my shoes and streamline towards door. I felt a strong grip on my arm, “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean it. I just…,” he doesn’t finish his sentence. “Let go,” I say, in a moment of bravery, and stared him down. Just like that, he drops my arm as if it were a hot pan, and I run out of the room. I hear him ask after me, “Where are you going, Titania?” “Home,” I say, mainly to myself. I slow to a walk outside, and head to the park, and find a bench. Curling up to generate heat, I fall asleep.
I wake up with a sore back, and look up at the sky. I get up from the bench I slept on, and walk into the Burger King. Right when I step in, the manager calls to me, “You’re on fryer today, kid. Oh, and, yesterday, was that food you made? It didn’t taste like it.” I walk up to him and chuckle, “I quit.”
Outside the sliding doors of the fast food restaurant, I look up at the sun, and smile. I begin sauntering towards the bus stop where it all began, in my skimpy pink dress and stilettos, hoping to leave this chapter of my life. I am leaving Las Vegas.


 


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