Sand Sweat and Snow – James Heath

Aluki gunned the truck around the bend and accelerated down the hill towards the cluster of buildings tucked away behind the huge billboard which called for the sinners of Reno to repent. Aluki ignored the sign, not because he didn’t care but rather because he was so drunk that he was unable to focus sufficiently to be able to read the words. Three days with no sleep and his eyes were reamed with grit and sand. The car was full of cigarette smoke, the only thing keeping him awake after this, another of his infamous benders. All of Aluki’s bleary-eyed attention was devoted to keeping the car on the road without spilling any of his beer from the can which was wedged between his legs.

At this exact moment, Yuti was struggling to stay awake too but for very different reasons. She lit another cigarette and slowly let the smoke drift upwards as she lay back on the bed and contemplated her fate. Another exile stuck in Nevada doing what she could do to survive. She listlessly scratched between her legs like a dog and tried to push the itch both to the back of her vagina as well as to the back of her mind. As she had been told so many times, scratching would only make it worse. Three days of work in The Pink Panther had left her sore and tired. And now, just as she wanted to lie down and sleep, she was forced to contemplate another six hour shift of relentless flirting and shallow fucking just to eke out a living in this brothel, the pride of the Nevadan desert with a reputation which stretched far beyond the state borders.

Aluki bounced the truck in through the entrance gate of The Pink Panther and pulled to a decidedly bumpy stop under one of the numerous Buckeye trees that hugged the outside of the sand blasted lot. He desperately needed both the shade and the seclusion that these trees would provide. Away from prying eyes, he would be able to get himself together and get himself a little more sober. The Pink Panther wasn’t exactly classy but he couldn’t just walk in slobbering and stumbling. He took a good swig of the beer and located his lighter. A quick blast on the pipe would sort him out, as it always did. Aluki knew the meth wasn’t a long term solution to his problems but, right now, it was exactly what his body craved. After three sleepless days and nights his dick was going to need a little chemical assistance if he had any hope of getting hard.

Yuti dropped her cigarette into the beer can on her nightstand and slowly got to her feet. She pulled her knickers out of her ass and stood deliberately in front of the full length mirror and took in her reflection. She still had it but life was beginning to take its toll, both on her face and on her hips. A quick blast of hairspray and an even longer blast of perfume. She didn’t know much about how to live in this world but a lot of perfume and even more hairspray had served her well up to now.

Aluki lay down the pipe and felt the world swim back into view as the meth started to take its hold. He tried to assess his current state of intoxication. Was he actually sober now or did the meth simply make it seem that way? It didn’t really matter, he felt like he could get hard now and that was the most important thing to him at this precise moment. He reached down to find the red can and sprayed himself liberally with Old Spice. He didn’t know much about living life but a liberal spray of aftershave had always served him well. It also had the added bonus of hiding the reek of sweat which the meth always brought on. This fucking desert man. All he ever seemed to do was sweat and drink. It wasn’t good for a man.

He sure was a long way from home.

He laughed at the thought of trying to replicate the last three days back home in Iqaluit. He’d be found dead in the snow by the end of the first night, he was sure of that. Inuit had excellent survival skills but they really depended on you being able to stay sober, something that Aluki had yet to learn.

Yuti wobbled down the garishly carpeted stairs that led to the main lobby of The Pink Panther. Even after two years here, she still found the skimpy clothes ridiculous and the high heeled shoes almost impossible to walk in. She steadied herself on the rail and tried to gather her composure. First impressions were important and she didn’t want to fuck things up before she even made it to the bar. Inuit had good survival skills but walking through three feet of fleshly dumped snow would always be easier for her than walking down these stairs in stilettos whilst trying to maintain her dignity.

She really was a long way from home.


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