My jaw dropped. Margaret hadn't lied.
"Holy shit," we said in unison.
Al around us we could hear the sound of slot machines and hundreds of people swarming to their gates. Caleb grabbed my hand tightly and we walked toward the exit signs. I walked close to him, afraid we would get separated, and put my suitcase in front of me. It was heavy but I didn't want to run the risk of someone opening it. The strongbox was hidden under all my clothes but I was still paranoid nonetheless.
When we finally got outside, the sun was starting to set. Caleb stood in a line of people flagging down taxis. I had never been in a taxi before and I was excited. One pulled in front of us and Caleb put our luggage in the back. I got in and looked around it. It looked like a regular car but it had some kind of barrier between us and the driver.
"Where to?" the driver asked once Caleb got in next to me.
"The Marriott Hotel on...." He checked the address. "On Martin Luther King, Blvd."
"That's a good hotel," the driver said, merging into the long line of taxis. "You guys here for business or pleasure?"
"Both," Caleb said, holding my hand.
I smiled. "Do you want to get some pictures now?"
"Nah, not with the sun setting," he said. "Everything looks...."
"Cloudy," the driver offered.
"Exactly," Caleb said.
"It's from the smog, pollution, that stuff. It's pretty heavy here."
I didn't know what to say so I just sufficed with looking out the window. We passed by palm trees and a lot of tourists just like us. A lot of them had fanny packs which made me giggle quietly.
"Is that a pirate shit?" I breathed and Caleb leaned in front of me.
"Yep," the driver said. "That's the Treasure Island hotel," he said. "Dead expensive but the shows are fun to watch. Saw a wedding happen there a couple years ago."
"A wedding?" Caleb said. "Wow!"
I felt like a simpleton but I didn't care. I had never been in a city as big and flashy as this one. Sure, Bricktown was flashy but it didn't hold a candle to Las Vegas.
About thirty minutes later, we pulled up to the hotel.
"Would've gotten you here sooner but this darn traffic," the taxi driver said.
"Don't worry about it, sir," Caleb said, passing him some cash. "We're not in a rush."
Caleb passed me my suitcase and we walked in. I still had the camera around my neck so I took a few shots of the lobby. It was incredibly fancy. Caleb checked us in while I looked in at a bar.
"Want to eat there after we put our things away?" I asked, showing him the menu. "I don't feel like walking around the streets yet."
He laughed. "I don't either. The bar sounds great." He nudged me playfully in the elevator. "I've wondered what you'd be like drunk."
I made a face at him. "And you'll keep wondering."
"Aw, you're no fun," he pouted.
When we got to the top level, he unlocked our room. I gasped.
"This is huge!" I said, rushing in and nearly dropping my suitcase.
To the left was a large bathroom and to the right was the closet, also huge. There was a king sized bed after the wall of the bathroom facing a big screen TV. Another wall separated the bed from a sort of living area with another TV. The wall had cutouts, though, so it flowed smoothly. The very back wall was all window and I threw open the curtains. I gasped again. We had a perfect view of the city.
Caleb chuckled and stood beside me, putting his arm around my waist.
"It's so big," I breathed.
Our stomachs growled and we laughed.
"Here's your card," he said, passing me a keycard. "Let's go get some food."
"Yummy," I said enthusiastically.
"Holy shit," I said in a choked voice, coughing. "That's disgusting!"
"Is not," Caleb pouted. "It's fucking delicious!"
We were at the bar and had already eaten dinner. The bartender, after learning that Caleb was a professional photographer, was letting us sample his alcohol for free. In return, Caleb took pictures and wrote down the names.
I shuddered and took a gulp of water and the bartender brought over two shots of Bacardi gold.
"Ooh! Yes!" I said and tossed it back eagerly.
Caleb laughed. "Rum?" he said. "That's your poison? Rum!?"
I stuck my tongue out at him. "Rum rocks. Shut up, Mr. Tequila." I shuddered again. "That shit burns my throat."
I was starting to get a little fuzzy and happily accepted whatever it was that the bartender put in front of me. I leaned heavily into Caleb. He wrote down the names. By the time we sampled all 150, I was feeling hazy.
"Do you have any Froot Loops?" I asked the bartender and he stared at me.
"Froot Loops," I repeated in a slow voice and he smirked for some reason. "You know, with that weird bird with the huge beak."
"I should probably get this one upstairs," Caleb said, laughing. "I'll make sure these get on my website. Here's the link. Check in a couple weeks."
"Thanks!" he said.
"Caleb," I whined. "I want cereal."
"You can have cereal in the morning," he said, finally getting me out of the bar.
I groaned. "Fine. Oh! Let's play!"
There was a slot machine in front of us and I lunged for it. Laughing, he dragged me away by the waist.
"Not while you're this buzzed, my dear."
"God you're no fun," I sighed. "I'll get it," I said confidently when we got to the hotel room door.
"Oh yeah?" he said and I nodded.
I stuck the keycard in but it blinked red.
"The hell?" I mumbled and did it three more times. "Son of a bitch."
Did this man ever stop laughing!?
"Try turning it around."
I frowned at him. "I can't turn the door around, Caleb. Jeez. And I'm the drunk one." He shook his head, smirking, and turned the keycard around. "Oh. Right."
I put the card in again and it blinked green. I whooped and led the way in, kicking off my shoes and jumped onto the bed.
"Dude, Caleb, come here," I said, my eyes wide.
"Hold on a second," he said. "I just need to change out of my-"
I scoffed and yanked on his arm so that he fell beside me.
"It's like a cloud," I sighed.
He chuckled. "Yeah, it's pretty soft."
I looked at him and kissed him. He kissed me back immediately, gripping my hips tightly. I pushed my tongue into his mouth and rolled on top of him. He moaned, running his hand up under my shirt. I kissed his neck but suddenly he stopped me.
"Not while you're drunk," he said.
I blinked a few time. "I can go sober up real fast," I said and he chuckled.
"How about we just sleep for tonight?"
I sighed dramatically and dug around in my suitcase. I grabbed one of my nightgowns and stumbled into the bathroom. Turns out that was a good idea because, as soon as I got into my nightgown, my stomach shifted.
"Oh dear," I murmured and rushed for the toilet.