"gather up the gold you found, you fool, it's only moonlight," the radio sings. a familiar melody, strumming away on the strip. it's hot out, and everything is sweating.
a barren sky rains down on bloodless crops like one amorphous icicle. the sky is ominous and all knowing(more); i sigh and it spits. these sunny thoughts are inspired by the crashing of a thousand pennies in the fountain adjacent to thomas and i. he looks at me. we share a gentle wistfulness but say nothing. time creeps on like fungus on an alabaster trellis.
"sometimes it takes a little something like that to remember your humanity," tom says. he shucks the oyster of silence with his southern drawl.
i nod. i sit there nodding with nothing to say, nothing to smoke, and a brain full of snakes.
"we live plastic smiles and take small joys in the connect-four of things we think we need. don't feel bad about what we did."
my stomach churns. i look at him, nearing forty, the both of us with bloody shoes and soft hands. it was his idea to go up and 'get what was ours'. i'd never taken anything in my life. now the two of us had roughly two thousand american in each of our coat pockets.
vegas: a festering wound populated by the transience of money, sex, and recklessness. we stuck out like two sore thumbs. i guess we could have anything we wanted.
"do you think we're bad people?" i ask.
"you've just never seen life before," he says.
"i guess we took it."
"we're playing god, huh?"
"under every kind of skin is the viscera. you can dress it up any way you like, but the truth is that we all bleed."