“Do ya really believe the words you just professed, sugar?” Reno Sweeney cringed slightly at the word sugar. If Moon’s just messing around or if a pick-up-line had been attempted, she’d felt it- he wasn’t discreet.
‘The words’. Like her evangelist sermon is more than legs, twirls and hips. The nightclub singer, dedicated to ‘saving sinners twice a night’ through song and dance, usually forgets how her sexy and rather cabaret-ish act went against every single religious premise. And how it would most likely turn believers into sinners than the other way around.
She brushed it off- “What are you doing here and not around your new, dare I say latest fiancée?”
Moon chuckled, “Very funny, Reno- thought you could use some company.”
“And that’s all?”
His eyebrow raised at her remark, “Do I need any other reason?” The showgirl shrugged bluntly, and the tone changes, as he proceeds, “Drinks?”
“Martini, maybe.” Her rather nasal pronounciation of the vowels, or the way she slightly dragged the word, it was adorable. To about anyone. And all Moon could do was chuckle.
He never once thought of her romantically, no. Lies. Maybe when they met. But who would depare themselves with the sexiest showgirl in all seven seas and think otherwise, drift her gaze? Right now, not once. She’d become a friend, a companion. No matter how much they butted heads - which was a lot - he grew fond of the ‘evangelist’.
“Martini?” The tough, do-no-good attitude forcedly arises, as he scoffed. He could be plenty of things, but he wasn’t the slightest bit of soft. He’d deny it ‘til the end of times.
“Go big or go home?” She squinted, trying to make a point, which quickly soured.
“Then you want scotch. On the rocks.”
“Spiked?” The showgirl assumed that was what the man meant.
“If you want to. But why raise the leverage, God knows if a skinny, tiny creature like you would handle it, huh?”
The last comment made Reno snicker. “I’m taller than you.”
“Well, thank you for ruining the party.”
Reno was just like she displayed, or so she presumed - she looked for the thrill, for a good time. For a blasting hangover, a regretful one-night-stand. Give her a bottle of Vodka, a man and some spotlight and she’d take it all home. Or that’s how she liked to be seen. These days, she wasn’t so sure whether the first statement was correct, or the latter. But Moon-
He didn’t exactly show off that tough, do-no-good attitude, let alone anyone would say at first glance he was a public enemy. In retrospective, he was clumsy. Goofy. Dorky. And Reno remained well attentive of all those traits.
“So?” The gangster’s remark avoids her from dozing off.
“I pass the spike. Long day tomorrow.” Truth be told, she didn’t really want to. And about the long day part- wasn’t it true?
Billy was thinking of crashing an engagement for a girl he hardly knew. She was honestly beyond impressed how he wasn’t by now clapped in irons for all the fouls he had committed inside the ship. Oh, but people loved bad, vile guys, they were in for display, and how it showed. But Billy had an attitude bound for disaster, and yes, the wedding was the following day, but the night was just about to start. She feared for him-
One day she thinks she’s in love with him, she wants him to herself - they have their good times, he gives her the run-around, and all of a sudden, it sinks. It’s another girl he wants, someone named Hope. A goody-two shoes, a debutante, classy, beautiful in an oh so beatific way. Nothing she ever was or could ever pretend to be.
“A wedding to crash.” He assumed, while Reno’s blood boiled. She could let Billy go, after all it wasn’t hard, but she was so concerned. Not for the man, but for the friend.
“I already told Billy not to-”
“You think he’s gonna hear ya? He’s lovesick, Reno. Words come out twice as fast as he gets them in.”
Her weight sunk on the chair she sat on, she felt bad. Uneasy, to say the most. “He’s gonna get himself in danger, I just know it.”
“Billy’s a tough guy, he can handle it.”
“Right.” Two glasses of scotch were placed on the table, as she fixed her sight on the glass, a liquid in motion from being stomped on a surface, until it stopped at last. As it did, the glass that was now in her hand was ever so swiftly downed in a couple of hard gulps, rather effortlessly, like she needed it, like it was her pomade. “And you’re saying that because you know Billy for what, two days in a whole?”
The Public Enemy followed suit and yet another glass hit the counter, leaving the rocks to melt alone with time and with the heat of the evening. “Don’t you trust your dear friend Crocker?”
Reno hesitated, “I do- I think…” She was lying. She wasn’t thinking much and she honestly didn’t want to reflect anymore, especially about Billy Crocker - that wasn’t her - Reno Sweeney wasn’t an intellectual figure and thinking about life, her problems and others’ wasn’t Reno Sweeney.
Reno Sweeney was sex appeal, she was charisma, she was showing off, or gossip in magazines. She was nerve, and skin, and long legs that made a grown man cry. But one thing she wasn’t, was one with much intellect.
“You trust him.” Reno didn’t want to think anymore, so she took his word, not once questioning, getting convinced she did, shaking the thoughts off. She nodded and commenced to get up, not knowing much where - maybe she just wanted fresh air, a scent of the sea, but one thing was for certain, she was overwhelmed, beaten and her night was over.
“Reno- just, be good, alright? If you wanna talk, you know where my cabin is.” Once again she nodded and, this time, without looking back, she heads outside, lost for words, meaning or anything of that sort.
The only certainty she had was that however she was, whenever and wherever, she had a friend in Moonface Martin. No matter how much their personalities soured in contact with each other. He was here, and she was thankful.