01-14-2013, 04:20 PM
9:00 pm to 10:00 pm:
"Gooooood eeeeevening, ladies and gentlemen! Hope you're having a great time tonight! Okay, let's give it up for...Filibuster!"
Lolly and her band climbed up on stage, picking up their instuments as they took their places. Jason, the drummer, counted time with his drumsticks and pounded away on the skins for the band's first number, a hard-driving cacophany with all the angst of teen life behind it.
As she thumped out her part of the song on her bass guitar, Lolly spied Criss Angel himself sitting not too far from the stage, fruity drink in hand, with two women by his side. She almost flubbed a note or two, but quickly recovered, reminding herself why she was there. She'd hook up with him later, between sets.
"Hey, Criss!" Stacy called out over the loud music. "Remember us?"
Criss was at a loss to recall the two lovely ladies approaching him. He had met so many during his career they all seemed to have the same face. He smiled gamely and invited them to sit down with him. "Sooooo," he said, trying to save face. "What brings you two here?"
"Same as you," Stacy replied. "We needed a break from rehersal, you know, have a little fun."
"Yeah," Lyn chimed in. "we didn't see you today in the theater. Where were you, anyway?"
A light went on in Criss' head. Of course! They were dancers from the Cirque show! He still didn't know their names, though. "Oh, well," he flustered, "I had to have a costume fitting, and there were some other things I had to do as well."
They seemed satisfied with that. Criss relaxed, letting the thundering bass and drums of the band pulse against his chest. He drained the last of his drink and set the empty glass aside. As much as he wanted another, he sternly reminded himself that not only was he driving, but that he was under a strict diet and fitness regimen for the show. If he failed his Body by getting drunk, he would fail the Mind and Spirit as well.
Lyn sidled closer to Criss. Stacy, not wanting to be outdone, snuggled next to him, too. Criss suddenly found himself firmly in the middle of a girl sandwich; enticing though it was, his discomfort grew. Desperate times called for desperate measures, and he quickly thought of one.
"Say!" he smiled, extricating himself from his predicament, "how about a drink! My treat!"
Lyn and Stacy smiled back, accepting the generous offer. Criss flagged down a waiter and ordered an iced coffee for Lyn and a Sex on the Beach for Stacy. "And hold the 'beach'!" Stacy quipped laciviously.
The waiter left to fetch their orders. "Aren't you having one?" Lyn asked Criss in a disappointed tone.
"I'm driving," he quickly replied.
Meanwhile, the band played on. Die-hard Filibuster fans mobbed the floor in front of the stage, pumping air to the rhythim of the beat with their fists. It was the last number of the first set. Lolly was all but dehydrated. The water bottle sat patiently by the amplifier where she had set it; it seemed to beckon her with its coolness.
She knew a different kind of thirst as well. Criss Angel sat there, so near and yet so far. She so wanted to meet him, but there were two other girls with him, crawling all over him like a rash. If she could somehow get him alone...
If Athene Christopolous had been put out by Criss' attitude at the Luxor, she was outraged as soon as she arrived at Body English and spotted him sitting there with a girl on each arm. She couldn't believe it! He blew her off for those...those bimbos? It made no sense! She was ten times more attractive and one million times wealthier than they were! That man had no taste whatsoever!
Well, she was here to teach him a lesson, and teach him she would. She'd show him that no one brushed off the heiress of the Omicron empire. What she wanted, she got, and no questions asked.
She glided seductivly towards Criss' booth. She could sense the heads of the other patrons turning as she passed by. They knew who she was, she thought, as well they should.
Alarm bells went off in Criss' mind the minute he saw Athene approaching. He swore under his breath and braced himself for the worst. Who was this (bleep) anyway? he wondered. And why the hell is she coming onto me?
Lyn and Stacy couldn't help noticing the overwhelming presence of Athene Christopolous, either. Too stunned to speak, they gawked at her in stunned silence. Criss, however, retained his composure and eyed her warily, keeping his guard up.
"Hello, again, Criss," Athene purred. Criss gave a barely perceptable nod in reply.
Athene turned to Lyn and Stacy. "If you don't mind," she said imperiously, "Criss and I would like to be alone."
The two women stared at each other in disbelief. Who was she to order them around? They had every right to be here as anyone else. Lyn rose to the defense. "Why?" she demanded. "We were here first."
Criss smiled at Lyn's chutzpah. "Sorry, lady," he said, not in the least apologetic, "but it seems I'm already taken." He put one arm around Lyn and the other around Stacy, thrilling them both to the core.
Athene stood there, fuming. After all her planning, the money she spent just to be close to him in his hotel, the hours she spent on her appearance--he'd rather spend his time with a couple of unknowns instead of her? Criss must have taken too many blows to the head performing his stunts! Irate and insulted, she stormed away. If he wanted to spend the evening with a couple of cheap floozies, fine! There were better venues for her to spend her time and money, men who would do anything she asked. She could buy the whole city of Las Vegas if she wanted.
Yet, deep down inside, what she really wanted was Criss Angel.
Maury woke up on the bench outside the casino. She looked outside through the glass doors of the main entrance. It was night, and there was no Criss. Alarmed, she realized she had to get back to the hotel room or Mom and Dad would be mad at her. Besides, she had Mom's keycard.
She dashed to the elevators and pressed the UP button frantically, over and over again. After an eternity, an elevator opened and she jumped in, pressing Twelve. The car moved so smoothly and quietly that Maury wondered if she was stuck. Then the doors slid open, revealing the twelfth floor. Maury ran to the hotel room, slid the card in the slot in the door, and pushed it open with all her might.
Silence. Mom was still asleep. Dad wasn't there. It was as if she had never left. Grateful that her absence hadn't been noticed, she set the keycard by her mother's handbag and got ready for bed. She removed her faded blue dress and slipped on her threadbare cotton nightie. There were two beds in the suite, but Mom slept in one and Dad the other, just like at home, so Maury was left with the sofa. She took her blanket and pillow and curled up to sleep.
But sleep didn't come so quickly. There was a nagging fear that the minute Dad came back from the casino, Mom would start yelling at him for being out so late, and it would go around and around, just like their other fights at home. They never hugged and kissed like the moms and dads on TV; they just yelled and yelled until one of them left the room or the house altogether. Maury wondered why they got married in the first place if they didn't like each other.
She retreated into fantasy. Criss Angel would come in and rescue her, and take her to his house, one of those big fancy ones like on TV, with a media room and a huge kitchen with lots and lots to eat. Did he have a wife? If he did, she would have to be just as nice as he was. Maybe she was her "real" mommy! And Criss was her "real" daddy! They could be a "real" family again, reunited at last! And she and Criss and her "real" mommy would live happily ever after in their big fancy house.
Maury drifted off to sleep, dreaming of her "real" daddy Criss and her "real" mommy, whoever she was, smiling, loving, laughing, playing in bright summer sunshine, no yelling, no fighting, nothing bad happening at all. Her belly was full and her heart was light. She wasn't lonely anymore. She was safe. She was loved.