The Last Resort
By Chantale Reve
Copyright © 2011 Chantale Reve
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Chapter 1 – Strange Baptisms
LaVonda had been throwing back drinks for so many hours on the casino floor that the cocktail waitresses were changing shifts. Not a clock was in sight, and cell phones were unreliable inside the towers. Her watch, usually the one connection to reality, also conspired against her, its gold-tone hands paused indefinitely at three o’clock. So much for the valililidddittty of street vendors hawking Ann Klein knockoffs ... Swiss movement my ass, she murmured, slurring through her slushy brain. Three in the morning or in the afternoon — it didn't matter. She was a slave to the slots and to her faucet of a bladder. With players lighting up in full defiance of the non-smoking law, she was a reel-spinning, wrist-flicking risk-taker. Imbibing thirty-proof per cup — as in plastic, because glasses were too classy for New Jersey’s casinos — she was one match away from combustibility.