AKA Las Vegas

What happens in Vegas…well…it doesn’t always stay in Vegas... ~Perfect Place: A Writing Competition entry~


1. AKA Las Vegas

No, I don’t work at a casino.

No, I don’t party every night.

No, I’m not a showgirl.

No, I’m not good at gambling.

No, I don’t have a drinking problem.

No, I’m not a stripper, and you know what? There’s nothing wrong with being one.


When someone finds out you’re a local in Vegas, they assume many different things. Living in the so called ‘Sin City’ makes you ‘interesting’ apparently.

But I am so far from interesting.


I don’t work in a casino, I’m not a fan of dealing with obnoxious people wasting their money.

I don’t enjoy partying, I’d rather a quiet night in with my mom and my daughter.

I’m not a showgirl, I can barely dance to Miley Cyrus’s ‘Hoedown Throwdown’.

I’m absolutely terrible at gambling, the only card game I can even half-way keep a straight face while playing at is Uno.

The only time I drink is when I finally get Nelly down for bed, and that’s a glass of wine to reward myself for all my effort dealing with the two-year-old.

And I’m not a stripper, but I have a friend who is and with the money she makes, we’re all proud of her for being successful.


Me, I work overnights on weekends at an IHOP and work most weekdays as a barista at Starbucks.

Such a glamorous life, I know.


“Where do you live?” An absolutely plastered bride-to-be asked me at 5 AM on a Friday night/Saturday morning. “Do you live in one of the hotels?” Her makeup was smudged after a night of partying. “Wouldn’t that be expensive?” The girl’s words were heavily slurred. “Do you get a discount for living there?” She hiccupped a few times before one of her friends handed her her drink so she could have some water.

“Just ignore her,” one of the two other girls said, shaking her head lightly. “She’s partied a little too hard.”

I smiled at the group, being glad that they weren’t being rowdy like the past few groups had been. “I actually live on the cities edge,” I explained to the bride-to-be, “In a small little house with my mom and my daughter.”

“How old is your little girl?” the soberest of the group asked, she was the one who had handed her friend the water.

A small grin came across my face. “Nelly just turned two last month and she lets everyone she meets know that.”

The group of three let out a laugh, and the topic of my daughter continued as they kept asking me questions about her. I could tell that the sober girl, whose name I came to found out was Liz, was also a mother, and by the questions, she was asking, she was a fairly new one too.

The bride-to-be was Paityn, and she was getting married on Wednesday to a man named Mickey. His bachelor party was also taking place tonight and he was also somewhere in Vegas, but the couple had flown down with their friends separately and they weren’t allowed to see each other until everyone met up for lunch before flying to their home of Kansas City, Missouri.

Anna was the last girl. She had apparently disappeared for roughly an hour earlier and refused to tell her friends what had happened, but by the look on her face, we could all tell that she had done the deed with some random guy, probably in an alley or a back room of the casino, but hey, this is Vegas, people are allowed make bad decisions.

Because, as the saying goes, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.

When they asked me about Nelly’s father, I told them the truth because let’s be honest, I’m never going to see these girls again. They wanted me to sit down with them and since this was the least busy hour of the night/morning, I did.

“I went to college in South Carolina, so when I so I moved back home after graduating, I was actually old enough to have the ‘typical Sin City experience’.” I used air quotes around the words ‘Sin City’. “I partied a little too hard like everyone does,” I said as I gestured towards Paityn, who blushed slightly as she started sobering up a tad bit. “And I had found some random guy who was in town for his buddy’s bachelor party and the obvious happened and I never got the guys last name or phone number so when I found out I was pregnant, there was nothing I could do to get in contact with him.”

“Are you serious?” Anna asked and I chuckled and shook my head.

“Oh god no. I had a fling with this guy in college for a few months when I was 20 before he transferred somewhere else and I lost contact with him. I never told him I was pregnant because when we had had the conversations about what we would do if I had accidentally gotten pregnant, we had agreed that I’d get an abortion.”

“No, offense, but why didn’t you?” Anna asked. “I couldn’t imagine having a baby so young.”

I shrugged slightly. “I made an appointment and with the place I went to there was a mandatory week waiting period and during that time I came home and to talk with my mom and she told me it was my decision and she’d support me either way and as I talked to her, I realized how much I actually wanted to have the baby.”

“So the dad doesn’t even know he has a kid?” Liz asked and I shook my head.

“I didn’t want her to hold him back, and by him not knowing I didn’t have to worry about doing split custody and having her live between homes or anything like that. Michael not knowing makes our lives better and easier,” I explained.

The three girls and I talked until we started getting busy again for the breakfast crowd and they headed back to their hotel, but of course not until we swapped social media information and now I had a few more people to view my snap story and to follow my Instagram.

I went home as soon as the next server got there and clocked in, and as soon as I got home, I laid in bed and waited to grow tired enough to fall asleep, I flipped through the girl’s Instagrams, starting with Liz’s.

Her three-month-old son was absolutely adorable and perfect in every way. He had darker skin and a lot of curly black hair for someone so young.

Anna’s posts here mainly of her and her friends, she had already posted four different things about her time in ‘Sin City, AKA Las Vegas’ as she put it.

I fell asleep as I was going through Paytin’s Instagram, which seemed to contain mainly of pictures of her food and the scenery.


I slept until late in the day and I woke up to Nelly jumping onto my bed.

“Momma, wake up!” she called, shaking me. I chuckled and sat up, pulling the small brunette towards me.

I saw my mother in the doorway smiling and looking slightly guilty. “I tried to keep her away,” she said and I just shook my head.

“It’s okay, this is the best thing to wake up to.” I hugged Nelly to my chest and she squirmed and giggled. “I love you Nells,” I said as I kissed her hair.

“I love you too, Momma.”

The three of us spent the rest of Saturday the way we normally do when I’m still tired from working so late/early in the morning. We went out for breakfast food even though it was time for a late lunch/early dinner, and then to the nearby theater to see a movie.

I wouldn’t change days like these for the world.


Paityn is typing…



A little after 7:00 when I was getting ready for work, I saw I had a message on Snapchat from one of their girls from last night, so I opened it, not expecting it to be much.


Do you work tonight??? I want you to meet my FUTURE HUBBY!!!


I shook my head before letting her know that I got there at 8:00 and she said she’d see me soon. I just shook my head again before telling my mom and Nelly that I’d see them in the morning and heading to IHOP for what I assumed to be the entertaining start of a 12-hour shift.

I was right.


The group of girls showed up and the host pulled together two tables before grabbing me, letting me know that these girls have specifically asked for me and that it was going to be a group of seven.

I went up and greeted the girls and they were so excited to see me again, and it was good to see them substantially soberer than the night before.

“Mikey and his friends should be here soon,” Paityn said to me, smiling widely at the thought of her fiancé. “Just remember that he’s mine and no to hit on him,” she joked and I chuckled.

“There’s nothing to worry about, I promise.”


I went to grab the group glasses of water and as I was walking back to the table, I saw that the group of guys had joined. As I got closer, I saw the guy with his arm around Paityn stiffen, and that’s when my tray fell.



Because let’s be honest: No secret stays a secret forever, especially in Vegas.




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