A lonely Saturday night, with nothing to do and no one to spend it with. He sat there on his couch flipping the card over. Playing solitaire was not his idea of a wild Saturday night. Years earlier he would have been out having a drink, meeting some ladies, and having an one night stand with the first bimbo he could find.
Those days were long gone. Now he was responsible. These days his fun consisted of baseball games with his son, and arguing with the woman who haunted his dreams.
Interrupting his crazy night of another game of solitaire was a knock at the door. Before he could get up and open the door, she walked in. Her long blond locks were flowing around her face tonight, making her deep blue eyes sparkle even more, she was breathtaking to him even in her red sweatpants and her t-shirt with the word DEVIL across it.
“What a party animal,” she laughed standing over him.
Lucas turned over two more cards and and finally found the ace he was needing to finish the game. He looked up at her and made a lopsided smile. He wasn’t in the mood for a fight tonight.
“What did you need, Sami,” he asked taking the cards and shuffling the deck again.
“Will just called. He wanted to know if he could stay at his friend, Mark’s tonight,” Sami explained taking a seat next to Lucas on the couch.
“What did you say,” he asked.
“I said it was up to his father, but since his father wasn’t answering his phone, I didn’t see why not,” Sami replied.
“Anything else,” Lucas wondered turning over the first card.
“Yeah, deal me in,” Sami ordered.
“Deal me in. Lucas, I don’t feel like going back to my empty apartment on a Saturday night. So deal me in,” she demanded.
“What am I dealing?”
“Well I don’t have any cash on me, so you are out of luck there,” Sami implied.
“Well who needs money when we have clothes,” Lucas stated.
“You are not serious,” she squealed.
He moved over to the chair across from Sami and dealt the cards. He was going to beat the pants off of her, literally.
“I don’t think this is a good idea,” Sami said picking up her cards.
“What are you chicken?”
“No, I’m not. I just don’t feel like seeing more of you than I need too,” she smiled sitting back on the couch.
It was 15 minutes later when he sat back and enjoyed the view before him. “I will give you $100 if we can quit right now,” she begged reaching for the blanket behind the couch.
“Oh hell no! No amount of money would even tempt me from stopping this game,” he said as he laid his cards on the table.
He sat there in only his jeans. She had been good, but not as good as him. Spending nights in the boarding school had taught him many things, and learning how to play poker was one of the best things.
“Rules of the game include no covering up,” Lucas said grabbing the blanket from her.
She sat there in chills. She had to beat what he put on the table. In only her t-shirt and white lace panties underneath she was shaking from the cold and from the nervousness. Nothing was on underneath her devil t-shirt, and Lucas knew that.
“How about we stop,” she pleaded. “Please?”
“You are the one that wanted to play, Sami.”
“I wanted to play poker. I didn’t know it was going to be strip poker. You just lost your shirt, and I am sitting here in nothing but my t-shirt. Lucas, please,” she begged.
“Sami, you need to learn when to quit while you are ahead,” he stated.
She looked down at his cards and back at her own. She had to finish this.
“Fine, then, you asked for it,” Sami commented putting her cards on the table.
Lucas jumped back in shock as to what he was looking at. He couldn’t believe it.
“Drop the pants, buddy,” she smiled.
He stood up and unbuttoned the jeans slowly watching her lick her lips in anticipation. She had seen him in his boxers before, but this was different. This was much different.
“You look a little flush,” he told her dropping the jeans to the ground.
“I. Ugh. Umm. I guess you lost,” Sami muttered.
“Yup, and you won,” he commented sitting back down in the chair.
“Guess I did,” she said looking him over once again with his chiseled chest glistening from the heat in the room.
She shifted on the couch noticing certain aspects of his body that were paying attention. She had to stop thinking about why this was so wrong.
“You know you are a better poker player than I thought you would be,” he said her.
“Growing up my dad, Uncle Bo, and Abe would have poker nights. I would go with him all the time no matter where it was. I caught on quick.”
“Mom and I spent some time in Las Vegas growing up. It was quite the experience. Everything there was bigger and brighter than anything you could imagine. It had a nice vibe to it.”
“Was Kate a showgirl,” Sami wondered.
“No, she wasn’t.”
“I didn’t gamble much while in Vegas.”
“You did, you just didn’t know it. Getting to the alter with Austin was a big gamble.”
“Lucas,” Sami huffed.
“He left, didn’t he,” he said.
“Lucas, do you think a casino in Salem would make a profit?”
“Yeah, it would. There isn’t much for entertainment here.”
“It would be nice to bring a little bit of night life back to Salem.”
“Things have been really dead lately around here,” Lucas stated.
“Well what do you say,” she asked.
“Bringing the night life back to Salem,” she told him.
“As in a casino. Bring a casino to Salem.”
“Yeah,” she replied grabbing her sweatpants off of the floor.
The poker game was over and she had won. But once the night was over maybe she would win something more than a game.
“You and me? As in partners?”
“Worse things have happened,” she commented standing up from the couch. “Partners?”
He sat there running through all the reasons why this would be a bad idea. It would make no sense. They didn’t have the funding. They didn’t know anything about running a business. But they did have one thing, they had guts. Both of them went after the things they wanted. They didn’t give up. They had fought for everything they had.
“Partners,” he said standing up and taking her hand.
Both of them would be partners in one of the biggest adventures of their life. Their son was the biggest adventure they shared, and now this. A casino in Salem.
“Urrgghh,” she screamed in horror.
Sami Brady was furious. She had asked for one small favor from her step-father and he denied her. It wasn’t a good business deal he told her. A casino in Salem would not turn a profit.
What did he know anyway? Sure, Sami hated John with a passion for what he had taken away from her. But he did give her an internship at Basic Black for a short time, that is until she decided she could never measure up to his precious Belle.
Throwing a jacket over the chair as she entered her apartment she sank into the couch seconds later trying to figure what she could do now. Lucas was off during the day trying to find a location for their new business adventure while Sami was given the duty of finding a financial backer. Neither of them had the financial means to open a business even one as big as a casino or as small as a convenience store.
Bringing her back down to earth was the sound of someone knocking on the door. She got up and opened it to find Lucas standing there with two bags of takeout. Without hesitating he brushed past her and entered her apartment. She stood there with her hands on her hips and looked at him as he got down some plates with the Chinese food he had picked up.
“Come sit down and eat, Sami,” he told her.
She sat down at the table across from him and took a bite of her moogoo gai pan he had bought her. He knew what she liked and what she didn’t like when it came to food, and sometimes more than just the food.
“So what put you in this good mood, Lucas,” she asked.
“Well I did some digging today while you went out and played banker,” he replied.
“I thought we reached an understanding that you would check out locations and I would check the financial portion,” she commented.
“We did. When I was out trying to find a worthy piece of property I came across someone that could help us in both departments. A good location and the money we need to make this dream a reality.”
“Tony,” Lucas told her.
“Do you think that will be wise?”
“I know it isn’t the best choice for us, but it is the only one that will help. I know for a fact John wouldn’t help us. My mother doesn’t have the money, Victor helping either of us out is out of the question. So that left only Tony.”
“Everyone will suspect corruption if Tony is involved with it. We would be looking over our shoulder constantly for either the authorities trying to bring us down or Tony trying to manipulate us.”
“Not necessarily,” Lucas admitted before taking a bite of his shrimp fried rice. “We have a meeting with him tomorrow afternoon where we will go over all the fine details and sign any documents to seal the deal.”
“Lucas, you didn’t tell him everything, did you?”
“What details,” Lucas wondered trying to comprehend what she was talking about.
“Like how we came to this conclusion to open a casino in Salem.”
“You mean the poker game,” he blushed looking down at his food and not at her.
“No, I meant the game of chutes and ladder. Of course I mean the poker game,” she argued.
“In a way I did.”
“What do you mean in a way,” she shouted standing up from the table.
She didn’t need Tony to know that she would strip for just anyone. It was a a simple game of poker that made their idea come about, but it had also turned into something more.
“I told him that we had discussed there not being much for a night life in Salem anymore. I told him that we had both been to Vegas and loved the action of it, and just thought a casino in Salem would bring a profit,” Lucas explained.
“Good move. Throw him some bait and let him run with it,” Sami responded.
“Just hopefully he will help us out without us losing control of what we want,” he admitted to her.
They had thought of the business together, they had made decisions on certain aspects of it. Now if for some reason they were to lose control because of someone else screwing them over, it would not go over well with either of them.
“He has to be a silent partner, Lucas,” Sami told him ten minutes later as they cleaned up their dinner.
She leaned against the counter next to the sink as he sat on the other side of the island.
“Will he agree to that?”
“He will have to,” Lucas replied standing up.
“So this is going to happen?”
“It sure is.”
“Wondering how we are going to split this now,” Sami asked.
“Well before it was 50/50, right?”
“Any other way I don’t think you would have went into this with me.”
“True,” he said.
“Now with Tony, how can we split this evenly?”
“If Tony agrees to it, how about 20/80 with Tony, then we each get 40%,” Lucas suggested.
“That might work, if he agrees.”
“How can you be so sure,” she wondered coming around the island.
“It’s the only way we will go thru with it,” he told her.
“Shake on it,” she said standing in front of him.
“How about sealing it with a kiss,” he commented before crashing his lips upon her.
She tried to fight it. She couldn’t let her ambitions for power slip thru her need for a warm body. A man! She didn’t need them. But the kiss he was giving her was breaking those walls down.
Slipping her arms around his neck bringing him closer, she responded to him. Then suddenly he pulled back away from her. She stood there looking at him in shock. He had initiated the kiss and once she responded he was pulling back.
“Why did you pull back,” she asked turning away from him trying to hide the pain of being rejected once again from a man.
“I didn’t mean for the kiss to turn so,” he stated.
“Passionate,” she mumbled.
“Yeah,” he admitted. “I better go.”
Suddenly Lucas was out of her apartment leaving her standing there realizing what had just happened. They could not risk mixing business with pleasure. It was a deadly combination for all involved if it happened.
“I can’t believe this is happening,” he said to himself standing in the middle of the large room.
The burgundy carpet lit the room on fire, but the feeling of what was about to come electrified the moment.
“Lucas, you have to check out the hall,” Sami shouted coming flying down the stairs in a hurry.
“Do you realize that this is all ours,” Lucas asked her as she came to stand in front of him.
“Yours and mine,” Sami nodded with a big grin across her face.
“This old hotel will be perfect,” Lucas stated turning around a couple of times to see it all once again.
Tony had agreed to the terms Lucas and Sami had come up with. They were in total control of the casino, Tony was the silent partner that provided them with what they needed in means of money.
In just a few short weeks this place would be opened, Tony was going to make sure of that. Now all that had to be done was hire the employees and give it a name.
“You know we still have to figure out a name for this place,” Lucas informed Sami.
“How about Lumi,” Sami replied quickly.
“Lumi? What the hell is a Lumi?”
“Well if you must know it is your name and my name combined,” Sami told him turning her back to him.
“Put alot of thought into that, did ya?”
“Don’t play coy with me, Lucas Roberts. I heard it around somewhere once before. It was years ago, actually. But not until recently have I heard it being used again.”
“So who uses this word Lumi, other than you, of course?”
“Well a few people. One of them not being your mother that is,” Sami explained.
“Why do you always have to bring my mother into the conversation? We were having a good moment, here, Sami,” Lucas wondered turning away and walking to the stairs.
“Hello,” the young voice sputtered from the front door of the run-down hotel.
“Mimi,” Sami questioned turning around to see the best friend of Sami’s half sister.
“I’m here for a job interview,” Mimi said.
“Job interview,” Sami wondered.
“Oh yeah, Sami I forgot to tell you about that. I put an add out in The Spectator,” Lucas said.
“Thanks for telling me this. Is there anything else you forgot to tell me,” Sami interrogated him.
“Just that we have a day full of interviews. If you want to bail, I understand,” Lucas told her.
“No chance in hell,” Sami vocalized.
“Good,” Lucas commented.
“Guys, I only have an hour before I have to be back at the Pub,” Mimi informed them.
“Let’s get to work,” Sami said turning over to Lucas with a smile from ear to ear.
It was 45 minutes later when Mimi left the hotel soon to be casino leaving Sami and Lucas impressed with Mimi’s abilities.
“How much do you want to bet that she learned half of that stuff from her mother,” Sami wondered.
“Betting won’t be a problem, once we get this place up and running. Until then I think you and I need to stop betting against one another.”
“True. That is how we got into this mess. Of course if Mimi played poker with us that night you and I would have lost all of our clothes within 2 games.”
“Sami, poker games like that are only meant for you and I,” Lucas told her pulling her into his arms.
“Well look time for another interview,” Sami said as she caught a glimpse of the young lady standing in the doorway.
This young lady didn’t look familiar to Sami, yet if she was a hard worker and showed up on time, she would do in Sami’s eyes. Sami though had to watch Lucas with her because his eyes turned a charcoal color when he locked eyes with the young woman. Lucas knew her. He had to know her. His eyes didn’t dance like that for a woman he just met. Sami could be in trouble, but she could beat the pants of off Lucas, she could beat this woman.
Two weeks later the old hotel was making transforming into the Salem casino. Lucas and Sami had decided that maybe the hotel would come in handy. Slowly things were coming together, as builders came in and began work on remodeling the hotel and casino.
“Wow,” Belle Black stated walking into the main entrance of the hotel.
She walked down the hallway that led to the casino and came upon construction workers. All of the men made her temperature rise. She had to wipe the sweat off of her that they had created. The men were hot with their shirtless bodies, hard chiseled chests hammering away at the foundation. Belle had to focus. She had seen gorgeous men before, heck she was involved with one of the hottest men in Salem.
“Remember Shawn. Remember the man I love,” Belle whispered outloud as she walked through the corridor of men towards her sister who was talking to a larger balding older man.
“Belle,” Sami shouted as she caught a glimpse of her sister walking in.
Sami was the only one here today while Lucas spent the day with their son and then dinner with Kate. Sami didn’t mind spending the day surrounded my tons of shirtless men. What woman in their right mind would deny themselves this luxury?
“Hey, Sami. I came by to see how everything was going,” Belle explained. “But from the looks of things, it is going well. Very well.”
“Yeah, like the view,” Sami asked watching Belle drool over the guy to the left of them that was on the ladder reaching up to attach one of the chandeliers.
“No comment,” Belle murmured.
“Yeah, I do, but not even Shawn as that good of a butt,” Belle blushed turning away from the dark haired brown eyed guy with the six-pack chest.
“I think you can bounce a quarter off of it,” Sami commented checking out the guy again. “His name is Jason. Want me to introduce you to him?”
“No, bad idea, Sami. Very bad idea.”
“So other than to drool over the workers, what did you want to see me about,” Sami wondered.
“Actually I came over to give you this,” Belle said handing over the large manila envelope she had in her hands.
“What is this,” Sami asked.
“Entries,” Belle answered.
“Entries to what,” Sami questioned looking at Belle strangely.
“Entries to the contest,” Belle began. “Oh god, you didn’t know?”
Sami tore open the manila envelope coming across tons of paper with female names on it along with phone numbers. Plus one thing Sami couldn’t figure out was the names of casinos.
“Why does this have Lucas written all over it,” Sami commented.
“The Spectator is running a contest. It was on the front page yesterday along with a picture of Lucas,” Belle explained glancing back over at Jason, the god of chiseled bodies and tight butts.
“What kind of contest? Belle, tell me,” Sami ordered.
“I was surprised that he would do it, myself. I thought with the two of you were getting closer especially since you were opening this together.”
“We were. I mean we are,” Sami replied. “What did Lucas do now?”
“You might want to read yesterday’s paper.”
“I think there is one in the back office,” Sami mentioned.
Two hours later she had found him. After many calls and shouting matches she had found him at Tuscany along with a copy of yesterday’s paper.
“What the hell is this,” Sami demanded throwing the paper down on the table in front of him.
“It looks like a copy of the Spectator,” Kate intervened.
Lucas and Sami just looked over at Kate giving her the look of death. She got up and left the table knowing full well that this could be the end of Lucas and Sami for good.
“What does it look like,” Lucas said while Sami took a seat in Kate’s chair.
“It looks like you are offering your services to anyone who wants it,” Sami stated.
“I’m not a male hooker, Sami,” Lucas whispered to her.
“Well let’s see if I recall the article said ‘Win a Date with Lucas Roberts’. Spend the entire day and evening with Lucas Roberts, spending the day on a yacht in Lake Michigan, dinner and theater along with a night in the Drake Hotel. All expenses paid for this excursion.”
“There was a catch, Sami and you know it.”
“It’s let’s see how many females can come running.”
“Sami, it’s not like that and you know it.”
“What is it like Lucas? You tell me. Tell me how you are using our casino as a way to get a date or is it just a roll in the hay you want.”
“That isn’t why I am doing this. It’s free publicity for the casino. And you and I couldn’t really come up with a name together. We couldn’t agree, so I talked to my sister and she came up with this.”
“Blame it on the sister, I see. Well you forgot I created that game, Lucas.”
“It is only a date, Sami. It’s not like you and I are together.”
“You are right, Lucas, we’re not. And the way you are going we never will be,” Sami said as she turned around and motioned to the waiter.
Suddenly two waiters appeared with two garbage bags in front of the table.
“Here are your potential dates, Lucas. Have fun choosing a winner,” Sami said as the bags were dumped all over the top of the table. Hundreds and hundreds over entries had been sent in all wanting a date with the handsome Lucas Roberts.
Sami didn’t wait to see the expression on Lucas’ face at all the entries to name the casino. She didn’t want him to see the look of sadness in her eyes. She had thought they had gotten closer, that they wanted the same thing, but maybe she was wrong. Maybe this entire deal was wrong. ">
Banner by Shea
It had arrived. The moment. The moment Lucas had been looking forward to for the past 3 months. It was here. He straightened up his tie and knocked on her door.
She was checking her hair once more in the mirror when he knocked on the door. This was the moment. This was their moment.
“Wow,” he said when the door opened.
He stood there with his mouth wide open. She looked amazing. No she looked more than that. There were no words to describe how beautiful she looked.
“You will catch some flies if you don’t close that mouth,” she replied grabbing her purse off of the table.
“Can we just forget tonight,” he asked looking her up and down once again.
He couldn’t believe this woman, this sexy woman was the young girl who had schemed her way into his life. Many years ago they were partners in another way when they tried to win the affections of her sister and his brother.
“You want to forget tonight,” she questioned. “After everything we have done to make this night possible and you want to forget it? No way in hell.”
With that statement she shut her apartment door and locked in. The limousine Tony had arranged had arrived minutes earlier. That limousine would take them to the Grand Opening of their casino.
It was five minutes later as they sat in the back of the limousine that he knew he had to bring up the topic again.
“Are you glad you stayed with me,” he asked looking over at her.
She just stared outside watching the scenes pass her by. She had taken this route to the casino many many times in the past 3 months, but it was different during in the back of the limousine. Everything was bigger and brighter back here.
He took her hand in his and squeezed it. He was trying, he really was. After everything they had been through together they couldn’t let it end because of a date with someone else.
“So have you informed the winner yet,” she wondered pulling her hand away from his.
She couldn’t dare look at him or it would hurt ten times as bad. He was going through with this date and she knew it. They both knew it. She had to admit the free advertisement was worth it. They were expecting a full house tonight.
“I called her last night. She was ecstatic,” Lucas explained.
“Is she some young college student? Some poor college student majoring in something like Art History.”
“No, actually, she’s not.”
“Oh, do tell, Mr. Roberts,” Sami asked looking over at him.
“She teaches first grade at Will’s school,” Lucas answered.
Before Lucas could answer that the car had come to a stop. They had arrived to their destination. It was show time.
Their driver opened the door and revealed their adventure. Stepping out first of the limousine was Lucas with his dark blue suit with a white crisp button down shirt and dark blue tie with gold accents on it. Reaching in for his companion, his partner, and at the moment one time lover was Sami with her red spaghetti strapped low-cut dress. Her hair was pinned up with a few ringlets hanging down. Both of them were dressed to the nines tonight for this moment.
Sami looked up to see the sign above the entrance. Her dream was coming true and she had to admit Burgundy Royal had a nice ring to it.
“Ready,” Lucas asked standing on the first stair of the main entrance to the hotel.
“Ready as I will ever be,” she smiled.
An hour later the party was in full swing. Mingling through the crowds, Sami wiggled her way towards Belle and Shawn at one of the craps table.
Sami witnessed the moment between the young couple, Belle blew on the dice right before Shawn threw them across the table. They were all smiles as the dice were thrown until the wrong numbers appeared, then Belle’s smile turned upside down.
“It’s okay,” he said putting his arm around her shoulder. “Next time.”
“But that was the last of your money,” Belle told him.
“Who needs money when all I need is you,” Shawn replied giving her a quick peck on the lips.
“Can’t win love here,” Sami interrupted coming up to them.
“Money can’t buy you love, Sami,” Shawn commented pulling Belle closer to him.
“No but it can come in handy when you need it,” Sami stated.
“This place is amazing, Sami. It really is,” Belle told her older sister.
“Thanks, Belle,” Sami responded.
Shawn looked around at all the people and grinned when he noticed one of his close friends dealing blackjack a few tables away.
“Mimi is having a blast working here,” Belle stated noticing who Shawn had been looking at.
“Yeah, she really knows what she is doing. The compliance officer we had train everyone was very impressed with Mimi,” Sami explained.
Sami noticed something out of the corner of her eye. Seconds later she excused herself and walked away from Shawn and Belle. Belle knew who Sami was going after.
Walking into the room he took her hand in his and lead them down the stairs. He didn’t really want to be here, but he had agreed to come because of his wife. Being the step-father of the co-owner of the first casino in Salem meant that he had to come.
“I’m glad you could make,” Sami said walking up the stairs to greet her newest guests.
“We wouldn’t miss this for the world, Samantha,” Marlena stated looking in awe at the lights, the money, and the people losing their fortunes and winning their dreams.
Off in the back corner a woman screamed in delight as she hit the jackpot with triple 7’s on a slot machine. That moment made it all worth it. The woman would be able to pay for those shoes her child so desperately wanted. On the side of the room, a man had put his last twenty dollar bill on the roulette table. He prayed with all his might that his lucky number would come up. He crossed his fingers for the ball to land on number twenty-three, but when it landed on number eight the man’s shoulders fell, and he slammed down his drink in despair.
Sami stood at the top of the stairs watching over all of this. This was what dreams were made of.
Banner by Shea
She walked into the casino slowly. She wasn’t sure she should be here, but he had requested her presence tonight. Walking inside she saw all the people around. She wasn’t used to this. She wasn’t even sure why she entered the contest. It had seemed like a good idea at the moment. But now she had won, she had to go through with the prize. They didn’t know that she used to come to the hotel when she was younger to visit her father since he worked here for years. When the hotel had closed, he lost more than a job. He lost everything.
Now she stood here looking out into the casino. The place was packed with people. And she caught the eye of her prize, but she also caught the eye of someone else.
“Hi, I’m Sami Brady, can I help you,” Sami said coming up to her.
She didn’t know what to wear to an event like this. She dressed for comfort since she was a school teacher. Her students were her life. Teaching was her life. And she wouldn’t have it any other way.
“You’re Sami,” she asked looking at the blond blue-eyed beauty.
Why would he need a date with her if he could have Sami? Was this all a joke to him?
“Shea,” he questioned coming up to her.
He knew it was here the moment she stepped into the building. She had an aurora about her. She didn’t look like any schoolteacher he knew. She had long light brown hair and sparkling brown eyes. She was a petite woman that was a couple of inches shorter than Sami.
“You’re the school teacher,” Sami asked.
“I’m the schoolteacher,” she replied taking Sami’s hand.
“Sami meet Shea Evans, my date to Chicago and hopefully my date for the rest of the night,” Lucas commented putting his arm around Shea and walking away.
She didn’t know what was happening, she looked back at Sami standing there. Sami’s face said it all. Shea didn’t belong here, Sami did. And Shea would help make that happen somehow.
“Blackjack,” the dealer shouted.
Sami looked over at the tables and noticed someone taking more money out of his wallet and putting another hundred dollars on the table. Sami couldn’t believe it, she smiled watching it as he lost that money just as fast as he had put it down.
Sami had to make sure things were going well for the night. The place was packed and the hotel was booked for the night. But for some odd reason she had a bad feeling about a few of the players in here tonight. Two in particular were giving Sami a bad vibe. Walking over to James, the compliance officer, Sami wanted to check on just how much the young man at the blackjack table had lost.
“James, how is it going,” Sami asked him while he stood in between the center of six of the tables.
“Ms. Brady, we are doing pretty good so far,” James responded.
“How about the blue-eyed fella at Table twenty-three,” Sami questioned.
“The blond one,” James asked looking over and nodding at the blackjack dealer.
“How much has he put down?”
James looked down at the notes he had in his hand and up at the dealer of table twenty-three. He knew it was a lot.
“About two thousand, ma’am,” James replied.
“Two thousand dollars since he came in,” Sami asked.
“Yes, Ms. Brady. And he doesn’t look like he is stopping anytime soon. He looks familiar though.”
“That’s because he’s my step-brother,” Sami said before walking away towards the table.
Sami reached the table and stood behind Brady has he put down another hundred dollars. She put her hand over the hundred dollar bill and shook her head no at the dealer.
“He’s done,” Sami said.
“I’m not either,” Brady argued.
“Yes, you are,” Sami responded.
“What’s going on here,” John wondered coming up behind Sami.
“Your son is done here for the night,” Sami ordered.
“You can’t order me around,” Brady said standing up from the table and wobbling a bit.
It then hit Sami suddenly, not only was Brady spending way to much money to quickly but he was also drunk. John grabbed his son before he fell over and Sami got the attention of a couple of the security guards.
“Leave me alone,” Brady shouted as he pushed his father away.
Everyone heard Brady’s outburst, so many of the games stopped as all eyes were on Brady. The security guards come up towards Brady and grabbed his arms before he fell head first into the next table.
“I got him,” John ordered standing up and taking his son’s arm.
“I’m right behind you,” Marlena said as she followed John and Brady as the tried to exit the casino.
“Mom, you don’t need to leave,” Sami stated grabbing her mother’s arm.
“Sami, he needs me,” Marlena replied.
“This is my big day, though,” Sami responded.
At the door John stopped and turned around to look for his wife who was talking to Sami.
“Looks like someone can’t hold their liquor,” Tony stated from the doorway.
John turned back towards the door to see Tony standing there. John gave his brother the look. And then pushed his way through not waiting for his wife.
“Mom,” Belle shouted as she came up behind Sami and Marlena. “What’s going on?”
“Your brother decided to drink to much and caused a scene,” Sami explained.
“Your father and I are taking him home,” Marlena stated pulling away from Marlena.
Marlena walked away leaving Sami and Belle standing there. Belle couldn’t believe what had happened.
“Can you explain what your brother was doing,” Sami demanded.
“It’s Chloe,” Shawn interrupted.
“He decided to cause a scene because of some girl,” Sami said.
“Something a little more than that,” Shawn replied.
“Chloe met someone while on tour in Europe,” Belle said.
“Like I said he decides to ruin my night because of some girl,” Sami asked.
“Not everything is about you, Sami,” Belle replied turning away from her sister and walking for the door.
“She is just a little upset at Chloe right now. She’ll get over it,” Shawn implied. “This place looks great, but I think it’s time for the two of us to leave.”
Sami watched as Shawn chased after her little sister. Sometimes Sami’s family made her crazy. She was the outcast and in many ways she would always be one.
She stood there in the shadows watching them. They looked like they were having fun. The brunette was laughing at his jokes, her eyes were lightening up. Oh god, this was worse than Sami had thought. The teacher, a teacher no less, was putting her hand on his arm. Sami would not lose to a teacher.
Lucas wasn’t teacher material. He didn’t want to come up after a long day and read books and discuss the latest education funding. He wouldn’t want to sit around on a Friday night and watch his lover grade papers. Sami wondered if this teacher would correct his grammar or use a red pen for the grocery list.
Lucas was the life of the party type of woman. He was more the blond bimbo type. That was his style, that was his choice.
Breaking her concentration was the sound of her cell phone ringing. Sami answered her phone and hid behind the corner making sure Lucas couldn’t see her.
“Hello,” Sami asked.
“Ms. Brady, this is James,” James, her employee said.
“What is it, James,” Sami whispered hiding more in the shadows when Miss Teacher walked by.
“You know that gentlemen we had a problem with on opening night,” James asked.
“A certain tall very drunk blond,” Sami questioned.
“That’s him. Well he’s back,” James responded.
“How long has he been there?”
“Over an hour and he has already put down about $400.”
“Okay, here is what you have to do,” Sami explained.
Two minutes later Sami was hanging up her phone and walking towards the door. She needed to take care of the casino, watching Lucas with Miss Teacher would have to wait.
Shea walked back to the table at the prestigious restaurant. She was having fun today. Lucas had picked her up at her townhouse about ten o’clock this morning in a limousine. A limousine. She had never been in a limousine before and she is sure this neighborhood had never seen one. Sure, she made decent money. She was a teacher, so she was in the mid-class like so many other residents of Salem. Yet she also had something more than most of these residents. She had class. And she had morals.
On the ride to the airport Lucas was flirting with her. It was innocent enough of course, and she enjoyed it. She even flirted back a little. Yet she did some research on Lucas Roberts and that proved to be a very good fine. She had morals and she was going to let him know what she would do and wouldn’t do on a first date.
Shea knew that Sami Brady had followed them. Shea could see Sami hiding in the shadows at the entrance during Lucas and her dinner. It was cute in a way. Someone was jealous of Shea Evans. Pretty amazing if she thought about it. But she wouldn’t let it last long. It was the way she was. She would enjoy her day with Lucas and even might enjoy her night in the Drake Hotel tonight. But she would enjoy her night in the king-size bed alone. Lucas Roberts would definitely not be in the bed with her.
In Salem Mimi sat there and watched the table beside her. She was trying to do her job. She was trying to focus. Yet she couldn’t focus at dealing the cards at table thirty-three while table thirty-two had a friend of hers making a fool out of himself.
Mimi had seen his outburst on opening night. She had been a shoulder to cry on for her best friend. Everybody knew why Brady was hurting, but that didn’t make this right.
Mimi got the attention of the compliance officer that was in charge of this set of tables. She quietly told him about her friend while someone took over her table. Mimi had to stop this before it got out of hand.
“Mimi, Franklin told me you know him,” James said five minutes later as she stood in one of the offices upstairs.
“Yes, sir, I do. His sister is my best friend. I have known him since I was 5 years old,” Mimi explained as they watched table thirty-two on the monitor.
“Well you figure out a way to get him out of here without causing a scene. I talked to the boss lady and she wants him out of here,” James said.
“Sami. Sir, you do know that my best friend is Belle Black, Sami’s sister.”
“Ms. Brady said something about him being her step-brother. It doesn’t matter we need him out of here that is the bosses orders.”
“I think I might just have a plan, but I need Rex from Security to help me out,” Mimi requested.
She couldn’t do this alone. She needed reinforcements. She needed her boyfriend, Rex and maybe even Cassie that was working at the front desk of the hotel.
Mimi had a feeling though that getting him out of the casino would be the easy part. Keeping him out of here for good would be the most difficult part.
He sat there on the stool. Laying in front of him was a jack of hearts and a six of diamonds. Sixteen. Betting on a sixteen wasn’t the best choice, but he had a feeling his luck was changing. Looking over at the dealers card was eighteen. He knew that the dealer would stand at eighteen. It was suicide if they tried to beat that.
Well he had to win this game. His luck had to turn around. He had the last fifty dollars on the table. He had to win back his rent money.
“Hit me,” he demanded letting the look of determination spread across the table.
He sat there holding his breath as the card was flipped over. Time stood still for him. He had to win. He had to win. He had to win. As many times he prayed for the card to be lower than a six, it didn’t happen. Face card was the queen of hearts. Go figure. He lost. Not only did he lose the game and his last fifty dollars, he lost the girl.
He needed more money. He wouldn’t stop. He couldn’t stop. Grabbing his beer he had bought earlier, he left the table and tried to think. Where could he get more money? Asking his father was out of the question. Oh, maybe his grandfather could help him. He would give him some excuse about needing the money for a new business deal. Yeah, something for the Blue Note. That might just work.
“Brady, hi,” she said coming up beside him as he walked up the stairs.
“Meems,” he mumbled slamming down his beer and tossing the plastic cup in the trash.
“How about we go for a little walk,” Mimi suggested.
“Not in the mood, need to make a phone call,” he replied.
“No, walk first,” Mimi ordered grabbing his arm.
“Let go of me, Miriam,” he demanded trying to get out of her grip without much success.
“Did you remember how Belle and I used to follow you around when we were younger? I use to look up to you, the big brother I never had. I think at one time I even had a crush on you.”
“Why are you telling me this?”
“Because something has happened to you, and I’m here to stop you before it gets out of hand,” Mimi explained.
Mimi pulled Brady down the hallway leading to the hotel. She had help in this little plan of hers and so far things were moving along perfectly.
“Mimi, how much money you make working here,” Brady questioned swaying a bit.
He felt strange. Something didn’t feel right. He was lightheaded. The world around him was hazy. Trying to focus he saw a man standing in front of him. No matter how hard Brady tried to focus, he couldn’t. He suddenly felt it. He looked over at Mimi and her eyes told him what had happened. He had been drugged. It was the last beer he had ordered. It was the one Cassie had gave him when she appeared.
At the time he didn’t realize it was Cassie. He was paying attention to the dealer. But it was her. It never downed on him at the time since he knew that she worked in the hotel and not in the casino, but she was the one that bought him the drink.
“He is heavier than I thought,” Cassie stated as her brother, Mimi, and him carried Brady to the empty hotel room on the first floor.
“Well if you would lift with your knees and not with your back it might be easier,” Mimi said.
“Remember you asked for my help here,” Cassie responded.
“Stop you two. We have to get him in here before anyone notices,” Rex explained.
“I think a few people might have already noticed,” Cassie replied while watching the old couple walk past them.
Five minutes later Brady was on the bed passed out while Cassie stood over him. He was kind of cute she told herself. Well she was thought he was.
“Cassie, come on,” Mimi said from the door.
“I think I might just stay here and wait for his sister to show up,” Cassie replied sitting on the bed next to him.
“Oh no you don’t,” Mimi argued coming to the bed and grabbing her arm. “You will not sink your claws into this one.”
“He needs someone to watch over him,” Cassie stated as she was being pulled out of the hotel room.
“That job goes to his sister not you,” Mimi replied.
Mimi knew Belle was on her way along with Shawn. She knew that Brady would get the help he needed. And she knew that Sami would be proud of Mimi’s scheme to get Brady out of the casino.
“What is going on here,” Sami demanded as Cassie and Mimi walked out of the hotel room.
“We have a little situation, Sami,” Rex said coming up behind her.
“Who is in that room,” Sami questioned.
“Brady,” Mimi answered.
“Yeah, Brady. James said you were having a little problem with him, so we got rid of him,” Cassie pointed out.
“So why is he in one of the rooms,” Sami wondered.
“We needed to stash him somewhere to sleep it off,” Mimi replied.
“Sleep what off?”
“The drug Cassie gave him,” Rex informed her.
“Do I have to be worried about getting sued for this,” Sami asked.
“Nope, not all,” Cassie said. “Anyway the way it looks he’s broke now.”
“Great, my first addict,” Sami mumbled.
“Belle is on her way here to pick him up,” Mimi said.
Sami had reached Salem on a record time. She didn’t want to leave Chicago. She wanted to watch every minute of Lucas’ date. But she had more things to worry about now. His name was Brady Black. And he was really getting to be a big pain in her neck. One that she would take care of real soon.