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Give In

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Several weeks had passed since the disasterous opening of the hotel. Despite the public support of someone as infamous as Alastor, no new demons had checked in. Still, Charlie remained optimistic. Nifty had done a fantastic job tidying up the hotel, and Alastor had worked his magic on the kitchen and other rooms. They were ready.

If they could get anyone to check in.

Charlie laid her head on Vaggie’s lap with a heavy sigh. The two of them were in the sitting room off the lobby, which now contained elegent red velvet couches and chairs, and several low tables that ended in clawed feet. More portraits covered the wallpaper, and a small fire occupied the soot-free fireplace.

Vaggie ran her fingers through her girlfriend’s hair, not looking up from her book. Charlie sighed again, putting the back of her hand to her forehead in a dramatic gesture. Vaggie giggled and smiled down at her, and lowered her book.

“Alright, I’m listening. What’s on your mind?”

“You look at my notes yet? My ideas for the hotel.” Charlie’s eyes were wide, hopeful.

Vaggie glanced away, and her smile faded. “I took a look.”

Charlie sat up with a grin. “And? What do you think?”

Vaggie snapped her book shut and set it on the sidetable. “Charlie, I know we need to do something to get more demons interested in redemption, but I’m not sure about a party. I don’t like relying on Alastor so much. You know he can’t be trusted.”

“I know, he’s the Radio Demon. I’m not an idiot. But he has connections, he knows people. If the invitation comes from him, people might actually show up. After that interview on the news, you know people won’t come if we say it's from me.”

“Charlie…” Vaggie grabbed Charlie’s hands, and gave them a squeeze. “You know I support you in this. There just has to be a way to get word out that doesn’t involve him.”

Charlie pulled her hands away with a pout. “Well, can you think of anything else? We’ve taken out ads in the newspaper, hung flyers. I would take out an ad on television if I could afford it, but we have to be careful with how much we are spending. But if we can just get people here, show them what we are doing. We can convince them! I know we can!”

Vaggie sighed. “I know, I know. I can’t think of anything else. And the word of mouth would go far. It’s not the party. I just don’t trust him. The way he looks at you when you aren’t looking, it creeps me out. Like you are a juicy little mouse, and he’s a hungry fox.”

Charlie smiled, and stood up off the couch. “He’s Alastor, he looks at everyone like that. Besides, he’s already agreed to help me with this. So… yeah. Nifty’s already started planning the decorations.”

Vaggie slapped her hand to her face. “Charlie! I thought we agreed to discuss hotel stuff before just jumping in!”

Charlie fiddled with the hem of her button up shirt. “I know. But I gave you the notes days ago! I am just so excited to get started! This party could make all of the difference for us!”

Vaggie’s frustrated frown faded into an indulgent smile. She smiled and stood, and kissed Charlie on the cheek.

“I know how excited you get. Just promise me that you won’t get carried away, okay?”

Charlie squealed and bounced on her toes. “Thank you, Vaggie! I’m going to go find Al right now and tell him the good news.”

The blonde demon bounced out of the sitting room. Vaggie’s hand raised after her, but Charlie was already gone. The moth demon sighed and settled back onto the couch and picked up her book. But the words remained unread.