Tuesday, May 19, 2020

NADIA Picture Tour: Next stop, Las Vegas!

Marco was crouching on the concrete outside the loading dock when Jenna approached the
rear of the Sands Hotel five minutes later. He was engaged in an impromptu dice game, and
judging from the pile of bills in front of him, he was doing well today. He looked up when she
called his name, and a distrustful scowl replaced the grin he’d worn a moment previously.
He stood and sauntered to Jenna. She found herself looking at him eye-to-stomach. She
stood her ground and looked up, meeting his gaze evenly, and held out the card-key. He took it
from her and stuck it in his back pocket. “You could use a bath. You smell like a dumpster.”
Without waiting for a reply, he turned on his heel and strutted toward the loading dock’s door.

“T-Bear, you watch my money, ‘ight?” he said to one of his compatriots, a skinny kid with a
shaved head.

Jenna followed him inside, through the service area, and up twelve flights of stairs. After
they exited the stairwell, he led the way down the hall, finally stopping in front of a door on the
left side. He opened the door with the card-key and held it for her. As she walked past, he said,
“Pick up and dial 8787. Order whatever you need. Tab’s taken care of.” He left, taking the cardkey
with him.

When she saw herself in a mirror, she was appalled. Need a bath? Marco, you were being a
positive gentleman. Her hair looked like an explosion in a wig factory. Her clothes hung in
rumpled, filthy rags on her small frame, and her face sported a couple of bruises from the day

She picked up the bedside phone and ordered two changes of clothing and a steak dinner.
She tried to call Anna at the hospital, but learned that she hadn’t been seen or heard from since
the ‘bomb scare’ the day before last. There was no answer on Anna’s cell, either. This can’t be
good. She couldn’t call upline, not from here. But she hoped they’d have some answers for her
when she did call them.

Lunch came while she soaked in the tub. She finished her bath, toweled off, and ate. That
was when she noticed how tired she was. The bed was soft, the covers warm, and in less than a
minute, Jenna was in the arms of Morpheus.


Got a confession to make: I was not actually in Vegas. My kids were there, for a convention of one of their favorite TV shows. It was pretty cool to hear about. They got to meet the stars, and came back with some awesome souvenirs and even more awesome memories.

I called my son after they landed and checked into the Rio. I specifically had this scene in mind when I asked him to take shots. He did a fantastic job, as will be seen in further installments.

This is actually the loading dock of the Rio, as you can see in the shot. Granted, this is a short, short scene. And maybe it comes across as inconsequential in the grand scheme of the NADIA Project. But strangely enough, this is one of my favorite moments from Unalive. Maybe because the entire sequence leading up to this, and the scenes immediately afterward, were pivotal moments in Jenna's story.

Stay tuned for more updates from Las Vegas!

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