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We had a decent amount of time to kill. The drink, the downtime, and the uppers had me feeling a little better…not new, but better. I was still a tired ho. I felt awful about being a dud. Nothing will make you feel more ancient than being hungover, both by substances and work, and entertaining a twenty-something.

We decided to walk to Hugo’s, bar-hopping along the way. It was a little too close to Uber, but it was also cold and the wind was intense. Afterwards, we joked that we should have gotten a ride. She was in a bando dress, jean jacket and strappy heels. I had warned her about the walking in Vegas, but she was a trooper. We did shots at two joints on our way to the Four Queens. I was over all of it by the time we got there. I was trying my damnedest to rally but my party girl was in a coma. Too early to check in the restaurant, we sat at the bar in the smoke-filled casino. I hate cigarette smoke. Unfortunately, it goes with Vegas like neon and regret.

She face-timed her man. I said a quick hello. I knew my being on the trip was part of her selling point and I’m a team player. My mood was worsening by the nanosecond. I was hanging on by a thread and going through tampons like a mad woman. The second I can feel that disgusting wad of cotton, I pull it out and reup. I would have preferred to use my cups, but this period was 2.0. Cups are too messy in public bathrooms when I’m bleeding out like that. Being a woman isso muchfun.

I barely touched my watered-down excuse for a cocktail. It was time. We descended the carpet stairs to the restaurant. The restaurant that I used to love was lack-luster. Suddenly my dark and amazing spot looked like a strip club after the last customers leave and the house lights come up. I was bummed. And barely buzzed. She said the same. About the buzzed part. We wanted to be drunk. We couldn’t seem to get there.

Ding Dong showed up. He wasn’t dark side drunk, but definitely on his way. More importantly, he was working my every last nerve. I put her in the middle of the C-shaped booth on purpose. Sorry honey. Glad I did. He pulled his dick out four minutes after sitting down. Just had it lying there like a slug on his slacks. What an idiot. Why does he think his quaggy cock is impressive? He’s not John Holmes. And why does he think anyone wants to see it? Including the employees walking by. Not long after his dick airing, she let it slide that she was riffing commando. Amateur. He reacted exactly as predicted. He reached his grubby hand in between her legs. The move made my stomach turn.

“Babe, Jesus, go wash your hands first!”

She didn’t care. I did. I wanted to stab him. I sipped my new god-awful cocktail instead. This night was not going the way I had hoped when we made these plans a month ago. Our food came. The steaks were huge and no one was hungry. I had maybe three tiny bites. We could have split one between the three of us and still had leftover. I made a personal agreement to never go to Hugo’s with him again. I’ll stick to loud restaurants to match his personality. We’ve had fun at Hugo’s in the past, but this wasn’t that. My table companions didn’t seem to notice the horrific situation we were in. They didn’t, of course, because when it comes down to it, I’m generally the biggest freak at the table: hyper aware of every molecule in the room.

I signed the bill. I often sign for him. Nothing to go. The server was equal parts miffed and par-for-the-Vegas course. He’s seen it all. Wouldn’t say he was pleased with us. As I said, the place was old people bright. The pant shenanigans weren’t discreet. I couldn’t get out of there fast enough. He delivers a unique brand of mental anguish in moments like that.

Upstairs, we tackled the question of where to call our Uber from. We went to a back entrance. The wind was still kicking fierce. We managed to get the Uber to find us. It was a blessing and a curse having BP with us. She was keeping him occupied, but also, her first night/twenty-six-year-old energy made me seem even older by comparison. Whatever. Everyone can eat a dick.

She needed a vibrator. I found a toy store on the way back to the hotel. The store was on the deserted stretch of the strip: small businesses, no monolithic hotels. The streets were eerily dead. Vegas in winter is its own brand of strange.

The store was interrogation bright. The vibe was classically chafed. Men scattered like mice at our existence. As if suddenly the presence of two chicks shined a spotlight on their freak flags. As if we gave five fucks. The three of us could match them toe to toe. We got the toy. The bull dyke at the counter was obviously intrigued by us. She gave us free batteries. Or do they always do that, I can’t remember. She made me smile. Back in our Uber (who had gone around the block). All I wanted was to get horizontal in the fetal position on a bed. They weren’t sure if they were going to go out. She wanted to. He wanted to fuck. No shock there. I made it clear I was a pass. Thank god he has the I-have-to-be-the-best-host gene, no way could he keep her in the hotel when she hadn’t been to Vegas in years, and never with him. They went out. I could rest. I assumed they’d be gone for an hour or two, but they ended up staying out until 2 a.m. My period was on a war path and since I hate tampons (as you know), I decided, for some odd reason, to rip through panty liners like a hot dog eating contest. The whole endeavor was utterly gruesome. I was counting the hours until my flight in the morning. At one point (I wasn’t getting any real sort of shuteye), I feared he’d been arrested, but I was mostly grateful for the downtime.

I assumed I’d have to wash-up and buck-up and join the sex stuff upon their return, but the truth was, I was in no shape, and I think I’ve earned a night off. He’d have to give me this rare pass. And he did. I also assumed they’d fuck on the second bed, but they took it to the separate living room. Quite ideal, actually. I figured she’d tire at some point and crawl into the second bed, but she stayed up all night with him. We think he accidentally mixed our stuff with hers. She’s never done crystal before.

I thought I’d heard him come at one point, but I couldn’t be sure.

The sun was making itself known. I dragged my gross ass out of bed and started to gather my things (most of which were in the living room/second bathroom/closet). She took the cue and did the same. He barely took his eyes off his laptop. We got our dough and skedaddled. I didn’t even kiss him goodbye. I waved and said I’d text him when I arrived safely at Burbank Airport. Considering she was running on zero sleep, she was holding up pretty well. I could see it was starting to take its toll by the time when we hugged goodbye. It was fun having a sex sister to talk shit with directly after the situation. One who was there! I don’t often get alone time with her. We ordered Bloody Mary’s at the airport and talked a little smack about him. Nothing detrimental, just old fashion fun about his behavior.

Poor thing text when she got home; she puked the entire flight and for two days after. She’s not used to travel with him and I think the mix—which he says he didn’t do on purpose, but he should have known—fucked her up more than usual. She said she had a good time. Even the all-night jacking off/buzzing watching porn. I get it. It’s fun. Once in a blue moon. Not every fucking trip like it’s been lately. That's what happens when you need to let off major demon steam.

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