(Author's note: This was a story I wrote a few years ago that got deleted because of some issues I bought up which were against the rules. It was very popular back then, got a lot of rave reviews, but the Mods and the Admins cut it out of the forums. Since I have no new story ideas, I present the remix version of "Avenging Angel")
"Attention, passengers, we will be landing in Las Vegas, Nevada in ten minutes. Please fasten your seat belts."
Flight 207 from Detroit to Las Vegas lowered itself gracefully onto the runway, gliding onto the tarmac with practiced ease. The airline crew positioned the accordion-pleated exit ramp to the door of the plane for the passengers to disembark in safety and comfort. On the plane, passengers gathered their overhead bags, purses, and other possessions, groaning as they stetched their cramped limbs after the hours long flight, thankful they had arrived at last.
Carey Conner picked up her broad-brimmed straw sunhat, checking for any dents from having stored it on the overhead compartment, and, having found none, strapped it onto her head. She was fairly attractive for a woman who was three years shy of the half-century mark, with blond hair reproduced by Clairol, a waistline a bit thick in the middle due to the DNA on her father's side (and an overindulgence of Frango's mint chocolates), and the darkest brown eyes ever aided by a pair of bifocals.
She had looked forward to this trip since September of last year when she scored a vacation package during a down period in the travel industry for a two-week stay at the fabulous Luxor Hotel and Casino in February. The opportunity simply to escape Michigan's schizophrenic climate was worth every dime she had shelled out to pay for this trip. Her latest book, Things I Learned At My Mother's Knee and Other Low Joints, had sold well enough for her to go first class. Carey had worked for this vacation, she owed it to herself, and no one was going to deprive her of it.
She waited at the luggage carousel for her big vinyl suitcase that she had owned since her freshman year at university along with her fellow passengers who shared the same hope that the baggage had accompanied them all on the same flight. Mercifully, it did--she spotted the big butterfly name tag dangling from the strap which identified it as hers. Snatching it up from the conveyor belt, she made her way to the car rental desk.
The sunny-faced clerk gave her the keys to a silver and black 2005 Lexus. The sleek vehicle seemed almost intimidating compared to her old '94 Grand Prix back in Detroit. Once Carey got the feel of it, however, it was as if she owned it. It handled so well as she drove to the Luxor, guided by the navigational system installed in the dashboard. No, wait, it wasn't called the "dashboard" anymore, she recalled--it was the "control panel" now. Everything was so high-tech now, so sophisticated and so bewildering to her, a product of the Baby Boom generation. When Carey had been born, the transistor was the big technological development. Now it was the microchip and everything that went with it--and it went into everything, it seemed. So much progress in forty years.
The Luxor wasn't hard to miss--indeed, one had to be blind or three days dead to miss the enormous black pyramid, the giant Sphinx, and the obelisk hotel sign announcing its presence. Carey pulled into the main drive and stopped at the valet parking kiosk. The attendants swung into action, fetching her bags, escorting her into the lobby, and parking her car. She had remembered to bring enough cash to tip them all, and she entered the Luxor at last.
The first thing that struck her was the size of the atrium. It was reputed to be the largest in the world, and it did not belie that claim. It was larger than the main entrance of the Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit. Hell, it was as big as Cobo Hall! The Pistons could play the Final Four in this place, Carey thought. She crossed the cavernous atrium to the hotel desk and checked in without delay. Her room was somewhere in the middle of the hotel, with a window overlooking Vegas' fabled Strip. Carey thanked the receptionist and left for her room.
Tipping the attendant (they weren't called "bellhops" or "bellboys" anymore, so she didn't know what to call them), she settled down to rest after her long trip. She had arrived. She was in Vegas, Sin City, America's primere destination for gambling, entertainment and decadence. So much to see and do, so little time. Two weeks wouldn't be enough to enjoy everything, she figured.
Airline food not being noted for being five-star quality, dinner was the first order of business. Picking up her purse and key card (Geez, even keys had become obsolete, she thought), she headed back down to the atrium and to the first restaraunt she could find.
Seated in a booth in the hotel restaraunt, Carey was perusing the menu when a young man approached her. She stood up politely, shook his hand, and they both sat down. At first she was a bit miffed at this intrusion of her privacy, but he was a traveling magician, he said, and would she like to see a card trick?
Carey consented, having enjoyed magic since she saw Milky the Magic Clown on television when she was six years old. Las Vegas had always been a magician's mecca, and had hosted many famous magicians, from Harry Blackstone, Jr., to the newest phenomenon, Criss Angel.
The one sitting beside her, the young man with red-gold hair and fashionable goatee, fanned out a deck of cards. "Okay," he said, "pick out a card, any card."
Carey obliged, choosing the Seven of Clubs, and concealed it from the magician.
"Now, place it back in the deck, and don't let me see it."
Carey did as she was told. The magician held the deck upright, and seemingly levitated a card from the deck. He held it up before her eyes. "Is this your card?" he asked, holding up the Five of Hearts.
"Uh, no, I chose the Seven of Clubs," Carey replied.
The magician looked at the card. "You sure?"
"Yes, I chose the Seven of Clubs." she insisted.
Frustrated, the failed magician got up and stormed out of the restaraunt in a huff. Well, that's two minutes of my life I'll never get back, Carey thought. The Chicken Fettuccini, however, made up for the intrusion.
Dinner finished, the bill paid, Carey went back into the atrium where a small crowd had assembled around someone vaguely familiar to her. Of course! It was that magician, Criss Angel, that everyone was so crazy about. Well, he certainly has to be better than that lame-ass in the restaraunt, she thought.
Criss had called for a volunteer from the audience, and an eager young girl, barely twenty, tripped forward. Criss put her in a trance and bent her backwards. Pulling away his arms, she levitated in midair to the astonishment of the crowd. Carey was equally impressed. Now, that was magic, she thought. Criss Angel was to magic what Steve Yzerman was to hockey. That red-haired amateur was bush league; hell, he wasn't even ranked. Look at him over there, she said to herself with contempt, still trying those same lame-assed card tricks. The few guests who condescended to watch him were equally unimpressed and walked away from him, completely bored.
"Face it, dude," one t-shirted youth said to him, "you are no Criss Angel." He turned away and headed for the MindFreak shop.
Still weary from the long plane trip and jet-lagged from crossing two time zones, Carey decided to go back to her room and rest. There would be plenty of time to see the sights. It was five-thirty Las Vegas time, but her body clock was chiming seven-thirty Detroit time.
Carey dozed in the peace and quiet of her suite. The Luxor's rooms were amazingly soundproof, she discovered. Would that her condo was the same: no common wall between her and her neighbor who enjoyed late night television and even later night bedroom activities with her boyfriend. It was going to be a great two weeks, no doubt about it, she thought.
Her serenity was shattered by what she thought was an earthquake, followed by a rumbling sound, then the piercing wail of the hotel fire alarm. Jolted out of her nap, Carey dashed for the door, only to be blinded by smoke billowing up from below. The automatic sprinkler system activated immediatly, spraying water everywhere, soaking the carpet and everyone who walked on it.
"Good God!" Carey exclaimed. "What the hell happened here?"
Blinded by smoke and drenched by the fire sprinklers, Carey stumbled out of her hotel room by order of the security guards and was herded to the stairwell along with the other guests on her floor. Down, down, down the neverending stairs to the lobby, then out the back doors into fresh air, smoke billowing in their wake. Staff and guests milled around the perimeter of the huge black pyramid, wondering to themselves what had happened. A few children wailed in fear, their mothers clutching them to their bosoms. There were muttered references to Nine-Eleven in New York among the traumatized crowd. Some made the best of a bad situation by lighting up a cigarrette and biding their time until the all clear was given.
A sandpaper-scalped Bible thumper found himself a captive audience and got on his bully pulpit, taking advantage of the anxiety caused by whatever had happened inside to preach his brand of hellfire-and-brimstone Christianity. It was Divine Judgement on this City of Sin, he said, God's righteous wrath against the fleshpeddlers and sodomites and theves who preyed on the innocent and cheated them out of their money in their devilish games that everyone knew were rigged so that no one won except the godless casinos. This was a warning, he said, and if they all turned to righteousness, they would be spared furthur torment.
Carey ignored him. The first fifteen years of her life were spent being bombarded by such claptrap as this. As a result she had given up on organized religion and its narrow view of life, rejecting its tenets of prejudice and one-sided arguements regarding morality. She was not an atheist but leaned toward reason more than faith, though she did not discount the latter; she knew faith was a powerful force that could move mountains, metaphoically speaking. If it bought comfort to the faithful, she had no qualms about it. It was the zealots like this guy who gave religion a bad name.
She sat on a concrete berm next to an elderly woman clutching a rosary with trembling, withered hands. It's a wonder she didn't die of a heart attack, poor thing, Carey thought. She deduced the old woman's room was closer to the lobby; the strain of going down all those stairs did not prove to be a hardship to her. Carey refrained from starting a conversation with her. God shield I should disturb devotion, she said to herself.
The Bible-thumping bully, meanwhile, had made his way to the berm where Carey and the old woman sat. Spying the rosary beads in the old woman's hands, he snatched them away from her and dashed them to the concrete, crushing them under the heel of his heavy workboot. "Idolatry!" he thundered, heedless of the old woman's tearful protests. "Godless, pagan idolatry!"
An outraged Carey jumped up to her defense. "Now wait just a minute, there, buster! You can't go around stamping on other people's faiths like that! This is a free country, remember? For all I care, you can worship a horse's ass so long as you're a law-abiding citizen!"
"Blasphemy!" the zealot cried. "Your liberal, godless ways will send you to Hell, woman! You and the rest of you liberal socialist heathens!"
"Ah, save it for Sunday!" Carey sneered, refusing to get into a fruitless argument with someone so narrow-minded.
At that point, the all clear was given, and the relieved guests got up and reentered the hotel. Carey escorted her aged companion, still weeping over her crushed rosary, back inside. She would fix her a cup of tea or something, help her relax; this was too much stress for such an elderly woman. How old was she? Seventy? Eighty? She must have a pretty strong constitution to endure all this, Carey thought.
One small problem surfaced: Carey didn't know where the old woman's room was. In fact, she didn't evern know her name. Carey turned to the old woman. "Ma'am? Where is your room? I'll take you there if you want."
The old woman sniffled. "I'll be fine, dear. I can go back up myself."
"You sure, now? Can I get you anything?"
"I'm fine, dear, thank you."
Carey reluctantly left the old woman at the bank of elevators, debating with herself whether or not she should follow, just in case. Her charge stepped into the elevator car, the doors sealing her inside, preventing Carey from offering any furthur assisance.
She sighed and turned away, and as she did so she caught sight of the fire damage in the atrium. Shattered glass littered the blackened, burned carpeting, the indoor plants reduced to ashes. Shop and restaraunt windows were blown in as far as the banquet rooms and elevators. In the very center of the atrium, cordoned off with police tape, were the charred remains of an automobile frame, parts of which lay scattered about like bones in the desert. The most sickening sight of all was the three body bags lying to one side. Who are they? she wondered. She looked up, distracted by the constant movement beyond the atrium.
Carey discovered that the Grand Ballroom had been transformed into a makeshift hospital for the injured. Paramedics and Red Cross volunteers tended to the burned and wounded while hotel staff rushed in and out, fetching pillows, sheets, blankets, towels, soap and basins of hot water. Friends and families stayed at the sides of their injured loved ones, comforting them as only they could.
One such family, the Sarantakos clan, huddled around their son and brother, Costa, who, Carey learned from one of the hotel attendants, had shielded his mother from the blast of the explosion with his own body and had suffered gashes from flying glass. Now he sat on a hotel mattress while his elderly mother tended to his lacerated flesh. Costa was in good spirits, making light of his injuries while wincing from the sting of antiseptic. His two brothers, JD and Criss (Carey recognized him immediatly, having first seen him in the atrium after dinner), praised Costa's heroism. Costa merely shrugged it off, stating that anyone would have done the same under the circumstances.
Carey left the ballroom-cum-hospital; she had no business in there--she'd just be in the way. This is one helluva way to begin a vacation, she thought. It was obvious the number one question on everybody's mind was who was responsible for this horror inflicted upon these innocent people?
She mentally lined up the usual suspects. Terrorists? After Nine-Eleven, that was not too far fetched. But wouldn't they target government or military posts instead of a hotel? A mob hit? Organized crime and gambling went as far back as Al Capone. But killing innocent bystanders was bad for business, if what they did could be described as such. They would have simply focused on a single person and made it look like an accident, if they made it look like anything at all. If not mobsters or terrorists, then who did it?
Even worse, Carey thought with a growing feeling of dread, would he, or they, strike again?
hi great story , can't wait to read more :)
Ambulances lined the main drive to transport the injured to the hospital. Gurneys bearing burned, bleeding bodies rolled over the fragments of glass and debris through the hole in the wall that was once the main entrance of the Luxor Hotel and Resort. Police set up wooden barricades to keep the public and the media away from the designated crime scene. Firefighters doused the few small fires in the atrium, soaking the carpeting. News cameras jockeyed for the best view of the burned out atrium and for any shots of victims, only to be turned away by the authorities. Flashbulbs flashed like summer lightning as photographers snapped pictures of the ruins and the victims being carried away. Television reporters gave minute-by-minute accounts of the disaster.
One lucky reporter succeeded in cornering Criss Angel for a statement and a photo. Criss gave it in spades. "That (bleeper), whoever he is, almost killed my mother and brother, Costa!" he cried, tears streaming down his face. "He was injured trying to save my mother! He shielded her with his own body, and now he's on his way to the hospital! I know three people died here today, and so help me God I'll..."
His words were cut off by his grief and rage. He turned away from the camera, waving away the reporters. A security guard ran interference, turning the reporter and cameraman away. It hadn't been much of an interview, but it was more than the media expected.
The Luxor bombing was the leading story from local stations to the BBC in London, England. It was still not determined if it was a terrorist attack, but it was reported that the explosion was caused by a pipe bomb under the car, close to the gas tank, and the only witness to step forward was a parking attendant named Matt Behr, a native of South Carolina who came to Las Vegas for work four years ago. He was in the kiosk when the car came barrelling through, striking and killing another valet, Jesse Murdoch, and had crashed though the glass doors and exploded. Behr had also stated that he saw no driver in the car when it crashed through the entrance. Two other victims were killed in the explosion, Gary and Shiela Silverman, who were on vacation with their seven-year-old daughter, Bethany. The child had been safe in their hotel room at the time of the explosion. At the present time, authorities were searching for relatives.
A press conference was held at the Mirage Hotel. The President of the Luxor, Felix Rappaport, fielded any questions about the hotel: All video surveillance tapes were handed over to the police, he stated. No threats had been received about the attack, and repairs would be made to the atrium as soon as possible. He was confident that this was and islolated incident and it would not happen again. In the meantime, security would be tightened and an alert posted for any future attacks on any of the other hotels in the city.
The highlight of the press conference came from Criss Angel himself: "First of all, I'd like to extend my condolences to the families of Jesse Murdoch and the Silvermans, for the loss of their loved ones. To little Bethany Silverman, I'd like to say you are in our prayers and our thoughts. We all love you and will get you safely home, we promise.
"To the Murdoch family, I want to say that Jesse was a fine employee here at the Luxor. He was especially fond of driving my Lambo when I brought it to him to park it or pick it up. His friends told me he had a pitching arm like a rifle, and would have made it in the major leagues if he had the chance. Again, you are all in our thoughts and prayers.
"Eighteen people were seriously injured, one of them my own brother, Costa, who sacrificed his own safety to protect our mother from harm. He was taken to the ER for treatment for glass injuries on his body. He was very fortunate to have sustained minor injuries as he did. Others have suffered worse, with second and third degree burns and other injuries, external and internal. We pray for their recovery and for the comfort of their families in this time of crisis.
"To the person or persons responsible for this crime, I say you can run, but you can't hide. We will hunt you down and bring you to justice. For this reason, I am posting a reward of fifty thousand dollars for any information leading to the capture and conviction of the Luxor Bomber. If anyone within the sound of my voice has any information at all regarding this criminal, please contact the Las Vegas Municipal Police Department immediatly. Thank you."
Criss stepped down from the podium, the members of the press peppering him for more statements in his wake. He waved them off and headed back to his suite.
Carey had watched the whole press conference on CNN in her hotel room. She mulled the details of the crime in her mind:
Fact: There was no driver in the car when it crashed.
Fact: The explosion was caused by a pipe bomb fixed next to the gas tank.
Fact: The bomb exploded the moment it entered the atrium, not on impact.
Theory: Something had to set it off at the right moment. A timing device, maybe? Or a delayed reaction?
Theory: The driver bailed out before the car crashed into the hotel. Were there any witnesses?
Carey's mind boggled at these questions. Someone had to have seen someone drive that car! Someone must have seen something!
She was certain of only one thing: whoever did it was still at large. Yet someone must have seen him! Las Vegas was too densely populated, and with thousands of tourists coming in every day to gamble, for anyone to miss someone driving a car bomb. And with such a large reward, anyone would turn him in to the police in a heartbeat. Hell, for fifty grand, some people would turn in their own mothers! Money didn't just talk in Las Vegas--it gave orders and expected to be obeyed.
Carey rubbed her face wearily. It was late, even by Las Vegas standards. A nice hot bath, a good night's sleep, and everything would be just fine. Let the police do the sleuthing--that was their job, not hers. She could only hope that the police would find a lead about whoever it was who bombed the Luxor come morning.
I love mysteries
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The morning did come, but no one was the wiser about the identity of the Luxor Bomber despite the meticulous combing and gathering of every scrap of evidence the investigators could find, including the three hundred and sixty degree photographing of the blast site vertically and horizontally. Nor from the few witnesses whose recollections were hazy at best, each claiming "it had happened so fast" that none were really sure about anything.
The wreckage of the car bomb was cleared away, hauled out piece by blackened piece by waste management. The hotel management hired a company specializing in cleaning and repairing in the wake of crime scenes; it was too difficult and too gruesome a task for the regular housekeeping staff. Contractors set to work replacing the demolished windows and sliding glass doors of the main entrance.
"Jeeeeeezuss!" one of the window men exclaimed, "That (bleeper) blew out the whole damn front!"
"Hell, he blew out half the damn hotel!" one of his coworkers retorted as he pried out a bent window frame with a crowbar.
"Who the hell would do this, huh?" the first worker asked.
"Damned if I know," his companion growled. "That (bleeper) killed three people in there. He's gonna get the death penalty, sure as hell."
CAR BOMB EXPLODES IN HOTEL, 3 DEAD
blared the headlines in that morning's edition of the Las Vegas Sun, with photos of the burned out atrium and bloodied victims for emphasis. The press conference and Criss Angel's fifty thousand dollar reward offer was printed in a sidebar on the front page. Still, no suspects had been found or even identified.
Carey laid down the paper on the restaurant table. Such gory stories didn't exactly whet the appetite for breakfast, but being hypoglycemic, she had to eat something or she'd get the "shakes" from low blood sugar.
Whoever did it was a pro, she thought. He had covered his tracks so efficiently not even the best investigative minds could find him. What was missing? she wondered. Something must have been overlooked. What am I doing? I'm supposed to be on vacation, not chasing crooks! To hell with this, I'm going shopping!
After a quick breakfast of eggs and toast, she strapped on her sunhat and headed out to discover what the fabled Vegas Strip had to offer. She was going shopping, see the sights and for once enjoy herself, Bomber be damned!
She had to leave through one of the side entrances, the main one closed due to reconstruction. Walking around the huge pyramid, she noticed a group of mostly young people huddled around near the crash site, with posterboard signs and Criss Angel MindFreak t-shirts, ball caps and other merchandise. Carey walked up to them, thinking that Criss Angel was going to make a special appearance or something. If he was, they didn't look too excited about it. Curious, she approached a girl of about twenty or so and tapped her on the shoulder. "Excuse me," she said politely. "Can you tell me what's going on here?"
The brown-haired girl turned her tear-filled eyes to her. "We are holding a vigil for Costa, Criss' brother." she explained. "He was one of the victims of the bomb that went off yesterday."
"Oh, yes, I remember seeing him in the ballroom yesterday," Carey told her. "He was lying on a mattress, pretty badly cut up with all that broken glass he caught."
"You saw him?" the girl asked anxiously. "Was Criss in there with him, do you know?"
"Well, yes, in fact his whole family was in there, a couple of other men and I think his mother was in there, too" Carey recalled. "An older woman, long black hair, spoke with an accent."
The brown-haired girl nodded. "That was Dimitra, their mom" she confirmed.
"I see." Carey said
"Yeah," the girl nodded. "Funny you should say that; it's Criss she usually worries about, what with all his demonstrations and escapes. Never thought it would be about Costa."
"Other people suffered in that attack as well, you know," Carey reminded her. "Shouldn't you be concerned about them?"
"We are concerned, really," protested another fan, a slim blond high-school girl in an Affliction t-shirt tied up to her bosom. "It's just that Costa is the only one we know personally. We want all the victims to recover, but Costa especially, because he's Criss' brother."
"Hey," a stocky fellow with a cheap circle-A medallion dangling from his neck spoke up suddenly. "You think they are going to cancel the demonstration for Thursday because of this?"
The group looked at each other as they pondered this question.
"What demonstration?" Carey asked.
"Oh, Criss was going to do this motorcycle demonstration in the desert this Thursday, but after the bombing and all..."
"Criss did the Quad Drag escape when his mother was going into heart surgery," the stocky man pointed out. "you think he's gonna let Costa's injuries stop him?"
"Hmph! If I had been Criss, I would have cancelled and gone to the hospital to be with her!" Carey sniffed indignantly.
"He wanted to, and his mom was in New York at the time, and he left right after." the brown-haired girl argued. "In fact, he dedicated the whole episode to her."
"Criss ain't gonna cancel," the stocky man insisted. "He doesn't want to disappoint his fans."
"Well, I don't know about you, but I am going shopping, no matter what," Carey told the vigil keepers. "So, it was nice meeting you, uh..." she turned to the brown-haired girl.
"Amber. Amber Woods." Amber shook Carey's hand.
"Carey Conner. I'm from Detroit." she said. "Well, if we do meet again, I hope it will be under more pleasant circumstances. Have a nice day."
"Later," Amber waved good-bye along with the rest of the group as Carey made her way to the parking garage for her car.
A few years ago, Carey Conner would have walked past window displays of fashionable clothing and other goods without so much as a glance, knowing she could never afford to buy any of it. Now, with the success of her book, she could indulge a little, savor a taste of the good life, actually buy those items in the store windows instead of letting them blend into the scenery. Ah, shopping! Carey thought to herself. America's favorite form of therapy! Nothing like running up a huge credit card bill purchasing overpriced merchandise you don't really need to soothe the soul!
She entered one store that reputedly was having a sale. Of course, in Carey's experience, the term "sale" was relative. In Las Vegas, it would be marked half-off and still be expensive as far as she was concerned. She missed the days when she shopped in Windsor, Canada, when the exchange rates were so favorable that everything was half off in US dollars, and crossing the border meant just a few basic questions of citizenship and purpose of visit, and they waved you in. Now, the US dollar was weak to the Canadian one, and you needed a passport to get into and out of the country.
Well, this is definatly not Windsor, she thought to herself, though it was even more foreign to her than Detroit's neighbor across the river. She drew a deep breath and plunged into the shop.
The first thing she saw was a London Fog raincoat, on sale for ninety dollars, hanging on the clearance rack. It was the right shade of tan, had a hood, and was actually her size. She snatched it up and bought it. Score!
Her purchase safely stowed in the rental car, she headed out for more bargains. Instead, she found herself at the famous Magic Castle. Well, it was almost lunchtime, so she stopped in.
Seated next to a small stage, she received a drink menu, but ordered a lemon-lime soda instead. She undid her sunhat and was about to look for a place to hang it up when a curly-haired buffoon of a man snatched it up and placed it on his own head, batting his eyes coquettishly to the amusement of the other customers. He twirled it, showing the audience that it was indeed empty, and suddenly produced a small white rabbit from it.
Carey was startled, then amused. It was usually a top hat from which magicians pulled our rabbits, she recalled. But this fellow was pulling out rabbits not just from hats, but other people's shopping bags, under jackets, even a kid's souvenier plastic pirate's chest from the Pirates of the Carribean show. Rabbits were springing up everywhere, it seemed.
Well, she thought, I knew rabbits could multiply, but this is ridiculous!
Her server came with her drink. "Say," she asked the waitress, "who is that guy?"
"Oh, that's Willie Ginsmore," she answered. "He's performing here for the week. He's really funny. He's deaf, so his assistant has to translate for him."
Interesting, Carey thought. I should catch his show later. For now, however, she wanted to make hay while the sun shone and get on with her shopping. Magic could wait. She finished her soda, strapped on her hat, and headed out the door, struggling to remember where she parked. Her capricious memory frustrated her. She could quote whole passages from Shakespeare yet forget where she parked her car! Maybe she should try that Ginko Biloba that was supposed to be so good for memory enhancement--
A giant, invisible hand seemed to smack her down with a mighty force, sending her sprawling onto the pavement. She cried out in fear and astonishment, but was drowned out by a deafening roar. Bits and pieces of glass and mortar showered her as she lay stunned on the street.
Coming to her senses, Carey pulled herself up to her feet and assessed the scene around her, or what she could see through the thick cloud of dust and smoke. She shook off dust and debris from her clothes and cleaned her bifocals as best she could with a small cloth from her purse. Donning them again, she saw the entrance of the Magic Castle in smoldering ruins, just like the Luxor the day before. Whoever could still walk clambered over the rubble, some bleeding, some burned, some both. Others were hauled out by passersby and security personnel from nearby hotels and casinos. Sirens wailed, announcing the arrival of the LVPD, EMS and the LVFD to the rescue.
It's the Luxor all over again! Carey thought. He did it again! God help us! The Luxor Bomber has struck again!
Who is this guy ? great chapter :) i can't wait to read more :)
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