I made my way up and down the strip. Not a single casino floor looked familiar. I trekked to Fremont Street with no luck. I was 400 miles from home, dog tired, without a single clue, without a single dollar in my pocket, and a maxed-out credit card as the sun set on the city of sin.
The only thing I could do was check into a hotel off the strip which almost looked worse than some of the bombed-out places I saw in Iraq. I laid down on top of the stained blanket and figured I would spend the next day checking the rest of the casinos in the city that are off the strip and then find a ride back up to Reno.
A hot cut of dread sliced into me as soon as I woke up to the sound of a knock at my motel room door. Nothing good ever starts with a knock on the door of a cheap motel room
I checked the clock on my phone — 3:30 a.m. I heard the hard knock again. It was not an, “I’m a drunk 25-year-old with the wrong room” knock, it was a, “Get the fuck up and strip off everything you own shitbag” knock.
“Look, I can get the key in forty-five seconds if I really want it so just open the door piece of shit,” a powerful male voice boomed on the other side of the door.
“Fuck me,” I whispered to myself.
“You better get moving or I’m gonna spray this door with bullets.”
“Okay, okay. I’m coming,” I announced when I walked to the door.
I opened the door to reveal a guy covered in sores and tattoos with an irritated scalp of buzzed hair. He clutched a sizable handgun and carried an empty laundry bag.
“Sorry, it’s your unlucky day fucko,” the guy announced when he stepped into the room.