This week's [Fiction] Friday topic: The note taped to the door said: See you at Wild Notes Karaoke Bar.
It had been a long day of checking out hotels, visiting the Grand Canyon and hunting for the perfect souvenir by which they would remember their trip. They had also stayed up late the night before, going to a few adult-themed comedy shows and gambling till just about the crack of dawn. Lou needed to rest so that he could get his second wind before they made their way to the revolving restaurant at the top of the Stratosphere.
"That's fine. I'm going to try my hand at some slot machines. One of them has to be lucky!" Cat changed into a black mini-skirt and a hot pink sleeveless shirt with tiny beads framing the neckline. "Should I come back at seven?"
"Sure." Lou could barely keep his eyes open. Before he knew it, the sky had become dark and the bedside clock read 9:08. He rubbed the sleep out of his eyes, realizing he missed dinner. He looked around for Cat to see if she would want to go to a diner instead. All he found was a note taped to the door that said See you at Wild Notes Karaoke Bar.
Lou jumped into the shower to freshen up and put on a plain blue t-shirt and his only pair of jeans. He stopped at a sandwich shop on his way to the karaoke bar, as he realized he was starving. A meatball sub would fix that.
He almost missed the entrance to Wild Notes Karaoke Bar. It was tucked away on a side street and he had to ask a guy handing out prostitute pamphlets if he knew where the place was. He promptly tossed away the pamphlet when he was out of the guy's view.
The karaoke bar was roaring with music and noise from the crowd. Was this the only karaoke bar in town? He looked around anxiously for Cat and then spotted her waving him over. Who could miss that hot pink shirt?
"I'm sorry I made you miss dinner. You looked so peaceful that I didn't want to wake you. I went to a diner instead. Here, I got you a Coors." She handed him the icy bottle and he took a few swigs. "Need some liquid courage, huh? Well, you will when you go up there to sing."
"Cat, I am not going to sing."
"Drink up, hon. You're on next."
"What am I singing?"
"It's a surprise. Classic eighties stuff!"
He heard the announcer, who called himself Karaoke Joe, call his name. "We now have Lou Ames, singing an old Billy Joel hit. Lou, are you ready to rock and roll?"
Lou hoped it would be "Still Rock and Roll." He could have fun with that one, at least.
Then the title came on the screen: "We Didn't Start the Fire." His jaw dropped and sweat started forming on his brow. He had to be a good sport for Cat's sake, but this was going to be hard. "Um...Harry Truman, Doris Day..." He couldn't do it. He dropped the microphone on a table, sending off a reverberation of loud feedback. Then he ducked out of the bar before Cat could catch up to him.
"Jeez, what's his problem?"
"Such a weirdo!"
Cat pushed her way toward the exit, ignoring the mutter of the crowd. She briefly heard Karaoke Joe apologizing for the "technical difficulty." When she finally got outside, she looked for Lou. He couldn't have gone too far. Maybe the guy with the prostitute pamphlets could help her, as long as he wasn't some sort of pimp. That wouldn't be the way to top off her dreadful evening. She was only trying to have fun with Lou and didn't understand what his problem was. She thought he'd be less shy amongst people he'd never have to see again.
When she finally reached their seedy motel, she found a note on the door of their room. Heading home. Will catch a train. Don't call me. I'll call you when I'm ready to talk. Cat let out a sigh of frustration and packed up her clothes. She then got in her car and headed back toward California, wondering if she'd hear from Lou ever again.
This is a continuation from my posts on June 25th, July 2nd, July 9th and August 6th....in case you want to go back to the beginning.