All Gone

All Gone

A Story by Dante Carlisle

Story of a gambler who loses it all, and receives an offer he can't refuse.


Chris stood staring off into space, eyes bleary with lack of sleep. The expression he wore would fit perfectly in a WWII movie about the bombing of Britain. Shellshocked.

“It's all gone,” he mumbled.

A few of the passersby looked at the mans tuck in the middle of the wide thoroughfare, but no one stopped to help. They had all seen it plenty of times before.

A gambler losing all he had was non strange thing.

But Chris had finally lost too much. Two days he went without sleep. His body fought to keep going, struggling to survive on strong coffee, ten dollar packs of cigarettes, and five dollar beers.

Now, his bank account was overdrawn, and his opportunities had run out. He couldn't even claim his luck had run out. Hell, that had never existed in the first place.

Every dime was gone, and he was pretty sure he maxed out his credit cards on top of it. His rent was coming due, he had bills to pay, and the paycheck he so sorely counted on was already going to the payday advance place down the street.

A tear leaked from his eye, unbidden, and he choked back the sob that rose in its wake. What was he going to do?

His eyes registered the people flowing by on either side, searching for a friendly face. Someone to tell him it was going to be alright.

All he saw were the faces of gamblers. At a glance he could say who won and who lost. The only ones who were unreadable were those who played every day. Win, lose, or draw, those individuals could always smile, because tomorrow was another day, and the odds would eventually even out.

Chris wouldn't have a chance to even things out. All of his money was gone, and there wasn't anymore coming.

How could he get more? What could he do to find it? There just wasn't a game he could win. Poker took the beginnings of his money, so in desperation he began playing games with longer odds, but higher payouts.

Craps was a screaming, shouting pit of people that Chris couldn't understand. Roulette was all anticipation that built up to an enormous let down.

What made it all so much worse was watching everyone around him win. They all left the table he was at with more money than they came with, while Chris was left holding his dick in his hand. None of it made sense.

Knowing he had to move, had to do something, Chris began to walk with the flow of people. There was no destination in mind. The hotel he was comped had run out the night before without his ever seeing the inside.

“Hey there!” A voice broke through his self-pity. “It's gonna take all day for you to get outta here at that pace.”

Chris looked up in shock. “Who--” the question died on his lips. He didn't particularly care who the girl was, she was cute enough to intrude on his misery all she wanted.

“C'mon, I'll get ya a cup of coffee and you can tell me all about it.” She turned to walk away, knowing good and well that he would stare after her.

She was definitely cute, with the kind of body that screamed that she took care of herself. Tight jeans and a green t-shirt that fit like a glove. The shoulder length blond hair bounced along as she walked toward the diner.

Chris would've followed even if he hadn't lost all his money. Even if he had somewhere to go. Even if he had money to get where ever he needed to go, or a car to get there. He was a genuine prisoner at this point, without a dime to pay for an escape.

“I'm not gonna wait all day, guy,” The girl had turned to face him. She tapped her foot impatiently.

He shuffled toward her, and ignored what she said to the host at the diner. His head hung low as he followed her to the table, and slid into the booth across from her. The woman's eyes were on him, but he never looked up from his lap as she ordered coffee for both of them. After a night like the one before, Chris was sure to need coffee to recover his wits and figure out what had happened.

“So, what's your name, guy?”

Chris finally looked up to see the woman studying him curiously. “Why are you so interested? Why stop and talk to me? Offer me coffee?”

The woman smiled, showing off perfectly white teeth. “Well, you could consider me something of a guardian angel. This is what I do. People like you, who've lost everything they own, are my bread and butter. I take someone who's about to end up homeless, and I offer you a job. I offer you the opportunity to earn enough money that you never have to come here again.”

Chris blinked, wondering what the trick was. But, as she probably knew, he was desperate enough to hear her out at least. Hell, he was desperate enough to agree to whatever she asked. “My name's Chris.”

“Alright, Chris. My name's Angelica, and if you're willing to hear it, I'm willing to offer you a deal. A job, if you're up for it. Something to earn enough money to get you back in the black, and enough to do well on after you get there.”

Chris studied her, she was staring at him intently, focusing on nothing but him for the time being. “I gotta ask, why do you do all of this? Why hire people that have lost all their money gambling?”

Angelica laughed, “Because there's no one who's gonna work harder than someone who has nothing. And, I've never found people that were more loyal because I'll be the one who got you outta the hole. I'm the one who's going to save you, Chris. If you'll let me?”

The broken man stared down into his coffee, curious as to what the job would entail. What in the world would this woman require of him? What would he have to do to survive this blow? And would he be able to survive it?

In all honesty, he had already decided to take the chance. There was no way he couldn't. If he didn't accept her offer, then he was getting kicked out of his home. His car was already gone, and he had failed to show up to work today, so chances are the only possible income he possessed was gone as well. There was no other option than to accept what she was offering. No matter the cost.

“Alright, tell me what you have in mind.”

When Angelica began talking, he realized that this pretty girl who had come to save him was in fact no angel. They said the devil wore the greatest disguises, and that he could tempt you with whatever it took to turn you to the dark side. Chris was enthralled listening to her business model.

That was the day he began running drugs for the biggest smuggler in the city. That was the day everything really turned bad.

Looking back, that was the day he should have walked away and simply declared bankruptcy. That was the day he threw his life away. Gambling didn't kill him. An offer of more money than he could ever make in a lifetime killed him. An offer of money, and beautiful woman by the name of Angelica.

© 2016 Dante Carlisle

Author's Note

Dante Carlisle
I'm not as proud of this story, but it was something I happened to start a long time ago, and decided to post as is.

My Review

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There is definitely some work to do here. But it's great until the ending. That needs more. Make his career less of a statement. And show us what happened next. Even better if it's a few cleverly written paragraphs, that tell a reader much, without telling.

I like the details you used, not too much or too little. Nice smooth read.

Posted 3 Years Ago

Dante Carlisle

3 Years Ago

Wow, I forgot I even wrote this!! Agreed 100% that it definitely needs a lot more work. It was a con.. read more

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1 Review
Added on January 24, 2016
Last Updated on January 24, 2016


Dante Carlisle
Dante Carlisle

Chesterfield, MO

I published my third novel last Christmas. Working on the fourth, but fair warning none of them are connected. So if you're looking for a stand alone novel to read, check out Regret Nothing, Hiding Bl.. more..

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