I met Lola at the Lucky Duck on La Brea. I was munching on the orange chicken she’d served me when she said, “You should come to my speakeasy. I run it out of my place on 10th and Broadway every Saturday.” She handed me a card that was busy with color. It featured a sexy-looking Asian girl and a 213 number. Call before you cum it said.
I went with my friend Vince. We lingered by the door while I dialed the number. Once inside, we were led around a drywall partition and into a loft space flickering with strobes. The place was huge, black-lit, and littered with vintage lounge furniture. There was a full bar with an Asian motif, so we ordered Tsingtao and lingered there, bobbing our heads to the techno and watching the go-go girls as they danced with their hula hoops on platforms in platforms.
Then Vince whacked me on the shoulder. C’mon he motioned with his head. I followed him to the bathroom where he pulled out a baggie. “You got a key?” he said. I handed him my set. Propping the bag open between his thumb and forefinger, he extracted a heap of powder, perfectly peaked, like a snowcapped mountain. He steadied it up to his nose and sniffled harshly. Then he did it again, sloppily this time, and a mist of white cascaded to the floor.
My turn. I snorted audibly. The bite was sharp. A bitter drip oozed down the back of my throat. I swallowed, quivered. It’d been nearly a decade, and I’d forgotten about the high, but I remembered the anesthetic quality, so I dipped my pinky in the baggie, put some to my tongue, and in an instant, that decade dissolved away.
We walked back out to main floor. The music was thumping and the strobes were fracturing everything to discontinuity. The dancing girls, short-skirted and knee-high-booted, seemed more elevated now, flashes of light hurling around them, their spasms reduced to a series of slow-motioned jerks. Everything looked sexy. People laughed and danced and drank and laughed and danced some more. It’d only been a week since the last gathering, but it felt like a reunion. It felt limitless.