My Night on the 15th Floor

My Night on the 15th Floor (January 2019, Round 2, Day 4)

“Thank you. I hope your next passenger is awesome.” Dani pulled her bag out of the car behind her and slammed the door. She’d given him an address about a block away from the hotel she was actually headed to, just in case, so she waited until he’d driven away to turn in the opposite direction. She put her ear buds in with one hand and dragged the roller bag with the other. Dani knew how to blend in.

The hotel she was headed for was ornate, opulent, and more grand than she was used to. She took note of the little extras that sent off the loud-yet-subtle signs that this space was for With people. With people were those with means, with things, with privelege – she and her sister had coined that phrase back when they were in high school living lives seriously lacking With. Dani’s lips curled with satisfaction as she nodded to the doorman and crossed the threshold. 

The room was almost too full of With to be handled. There was a grand piano off to the side being played expertly by a pointy man in a tuxedo. There were bowtied waiters walking around in soft-soled shoes offering tiny food items to overdressed men and women lounging in overstuffed chairs. There was the expected team of workers behind the counter who all seemed to be related their look was so similar, and additional uniformed men standing at attention just to the side of the desk waiting to assist guests with luggage. One of these men broke ranks and rushed over to Dani, clearly mortified that she’d gotten as far into the building managing her belongings on her own.

“Miss, I can take that for you.”

Dani lifted her chin as she let go of the bag. “Thank you. Your name?”

“Maxwell, Miss.” He almost bowed. “At your service.”

“Thank you, Maxwell.” Dani touched his arm before turning away to approach the counter. She had practiced these steps often though this was the poshest place she’d needed to use them

Scanning the staff, Dani chose to avoid the women. The only man behind the counter wasn’t much older than Dani, and that served her purpose just fine. “Good afternoon, Miss, and welcome.” His voice was deeper than she’d expected.

“Good afternoon and thank you. I need to get checked in and shown to my room so I can get out of these clothes.” She paused, letting the impact of her words ripple over both the man behind the counter and Maxwell behind her before reaching into her purse. “You’ll find all my information here.”

The man shook his head a bit and reached for her ID and credit card. Dani had kept her hand on the cards and, as the man’s hand brushed hers, smiled at the flush that crept up past his collar.

“Oh.” He’d looked down at her identification. “Oh. Yes, Miss-” He flushed further. “Yes. You’ll be staying on the fifteenth floor, of course.”

“Of course.”

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