I looked at the cruise tracking monitor, the little screens were everywhere. The blip on the screen that was us hovered over the Bermuda Triangle, which meant we were only part way to the Caribbean from New York.
I didn’t mind. The longer it look us to get there, the better. I wanted the vacation to last as long as possible. When I got back, it meant going back to college and I did not want the stress that came along with it.
The boat shook violently, sending almost all of the passengers in the packed casino out of balance. A few looked around concerned, but most ignored it. They returned happily to their drinks and games, smiling through their expensive lipstick. Despite the movement, people wore their finest things in the evenings and went about having their fun. You could easily spot the usual cruisers, the ones with the most extravagant rooms, and the families on a budget. There was certainly variety in the people, but the boat was simply breathtaking throughout.
It was a good thing there was so much distraction for people in the beauty and never-ending activities. The whole ride down had been on rough waters, making for a lot of movement and upset stomachs. That Tuesday, there was even a storm brewing outside.
“What are those, Mel? Are they aliens?” Gene asked as he came up behind me, pointing to the back of someone’s head. His question sent me into a fit of giggles. We had just met on the first day of the cruise, and he seemed to have a knack for doing that.
“No! Silly. It’s for the nausea. It’s a little patch. See?” I pointed to a few others, some had the patches behind their ears, others had bracelets, and so on.
“Looks like they are part of a cult, if you ask me,” Gene said with a smirk. “Let’s go over to our table.”
Our usual roulette table was surprisingly empty. By usual, I mean we met at the table on Sunday, both trying gambling for the first time, and kept returning to try and see each other. Finally on that day, Tuesday, after “coincidently” meeting there a few times he asked me to dinner.
Afterwards it was still stormy, so naturally the casino was the place to return. With no where to go in the middle of the ocean, most of the crowd was driven to drink and gamble. We weren’t as bad as the rest, we even saw one guy each time we came back who spent at least forty grand (we counted), but we definitely did spend our fare share of time in the casino.
“You play this round,” I told him. For some reason, it seemed if we played at the same time we both lost. But if we took turns and helped each other here and there, we won! There was no rhyme or reason, but we ran with it.
That round, it was working.
“Red three,” I whispered to Gene as he held up a chip, his signal for me to choose a number.
The boat shook violently again, the beast of its belly groaned uncomfortably.
I grabbed onto the end of the railing in front of me, something in my gut told me something was changing.
Slowly but in a matter of seconds, the boat tilted and the chips on the table went flying. I could hear the same thing from all the other tables, and a variety of screams from fear to anger (about the chips of course).
I began to spin. Then the boat started turning, slow at first but then it picked up speed. I tried to reach out to Gene, but somehow he was already too far away. The spinning picked up its pace, and I felt like a gymnast on the bars, flipping around my little railing.
It was impossible to say wich way was up or down. I couldn’t even think, I just kept spinning and trying to catch the ground, wherever it was. People were flying across the boat, some smacking into walls, while others went straight down the hallways where I couldn’t see them anymore. There was screaming, but it sounded distant to my ears.
Something kept smacking me and I realized it was raining poker chips. I had heard of it raining cats and dogs, but this was something new, even more bizarre.
Finally, we stopped moving, It was more a slow crash, really. I was death gripping my railing and my butt was on the floor.
I looked around, Gene was about ten feet away gripping the base of the roulette table that must’ve been bolted to the ground. He immediately looked at me and tried to stand, but couldn’t walk straight. No one could, people were dazed. It looked funny, and might have been if it was a movie. Like a mass Dizzy Lizzy race.
Gene and I didn’t speak, but grabbed each other’s hands for balance. The boat was no longer moving, but we were, and couldn’t tell the difference.
I followed his lead over to the window, one of the little circular ones with the thick glass. Gene pointed.
We were at the bottom of the ocean.
Well, maybe not the bottom, but some kind of land mass. I moved closer and squinted, as if that would help see through the water. It was dark, but not too dark, I could make out some moving shapes and…buildings. It looked like a small city.
“Where are we, Gene?”
Daily Prompt: Extravagant