Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Full Moon

One minute ago, everything was fine. The bar was booming, beers were clanging together. Usual Saturday. Now, Landon has his Glock buried into Shawn’s right nostril. Kevin is aiming at the back of Landon’s head, hoping that if he has to shoot, he’ll split an eyeball with the bullet. Problem is, Neil is pushing his weapon into Kevin’s left ear. Shawn has two Berettas hidden in his belt, but right now nobody knows and nobody cares. The question on everybody’s mind right now is: what the fuck’s going on?

Blaming Shawn is almost too easy. He’s twenty-three years old and just received his bachelor degree from Penn State in geology. It’s his first time in Vegas and he’s already drunk to the point everything’s a blur. He kissed so many girls tonight, he’s not sure the exact number. He already kissed more girls in Vegas than during his complete tenure in college. Right now he’s trying to remember which one looked already taken or uncooperative, so that he can apologize. Because he’s looking at Landon right now and he thinks and thinks, but he’s not able to replace him.

Speaking of which, Landon’s not all pure in this story. It’s also his first night in Vegas, but unlike Shawn, he plans to stay there. He’s from Carson City, not that far away and he just got kicked out by his father. He found his son’s stash of pills and kicked him out, saying he has enough to deal with his own alcoholism already. Landon moved to Vegas with his friend Hector, who he considers a badass. He’s determined to make most of this opportunity and make something of himself. Landon dreams to be a gangster. He pulled his new gun on Shawn because he told him: “move over, pussy” and you don’t talk to a gangster like that. Right now, Landon is looking at the mirror at the end of the bar. He doesn’t know who Kevin is, but he’s telling himself he’s a friend of Shawn.

But Kevin doesn’t know either Shawn or Landon because he’s from Chicago. He’s on a business trip. He’s by far the baddest guy in that room. He just had a very bad day and his nerves are shot. He walked into the bar, hoping to find a little peace at the bottom of a Budweiser bottle. He was still nervous when Landon pulled his Glock out right beside him. All he saw was a shining object flying by. He pulled his new piece out by reflex, but now he’s looking at the possibility to take a little solace and get a kill for his trouble. Anybody would do. The only thing that saved Kevin from his temper was Neil.

Neil doesn’t know shit and he’s not pretty to look at. Tonight, he mixed crank and booze and he wouldn’t be able to recognize his own mother . Neither could she recognize him. Nobody in the bar knows who Neil is or why he’s holding such an impressive piece. Nobody knows who these guys are in the first place or why they’re flashing their guns in a Mexican stand-off like they were in a Quentin Tarantino movie. Nobody but one person.

Behind the bar, Wilson is smiling. He’s the only guy smiling in the joint right now. He’s filling a pint and shaking his head. Today has been a good day for him. The thick pile of dollar bills in the front left pocket of his jeans is a proof of that. His smile has a hint of bitterness in it. Fucking tourists, he tells himself. You give them booze and guns and look what they do.