The assistant executive sat at the computer screen and watched a row of financial figures fly by. Barely two years into operation, and the Grand Facade was an undisputed success. Everyday they were killed to capacity. The restaurants were doing good, the customers absolutely loved the free movies, and the nightly entertainments were the best.
It was too bad they had to replace Dire the Decadent at the last minute, with his unexpected trip out of the city, but that was showbusiness. Besides, the new nightly review of singing Hollywood impersonators better suited the casino anyway.
The assistant looked at the clock on the wall and was surprised to see it was almost five. Time to go. He shut down the computer, made a last minute call to assure the night manager was in the complex, and thought about his own plans for the evening. He was just getting ready to get up when the blonde woman knocked on the outer door and nervously walked in. She seemed very timid as she approached his desk.
The assistant sighed. "Yes, ma’am?"
"My name is . . . ." The girl closed her eyes and clenched her fists. She opened them again. "My name is Gail Douglas, and I’m expected."
The assistant looked through the special list. True enough, there was Gail Douglas, third name from the top. "Would you take a seat, please, Ms. Douglas. We’ve had a change in managers, and there are new procedures to follow." The girl went to sit in a corner. The assistant noticed how haunted and pensive her expression seemed to be.
Like she was dreading something, but looking forward to it at the same time.
The assistant hit his intercom. "Mr. Cross, sir, I have a Gail Douglas to see you."
A brief moment. Then, "Another one! For Christ’s sake!"
The assistant winced. "Yes, sir. Another one. What should we do with her?" He looked over at Gail and tried to give her a reassuring smile.
There was a long pause. Finally, Cross answered. His voice sounded tired. "Send her up. We’ll find something for her. It’s our responsibility."
Another evening fell in Las Vegas.