The Emporio State Casino

The Emporio State Casino

It was sharp five in the evening when Alan left for the casino as usual to make his charm work. Alan was an alluring young man in his mid-twenties who possessed the ability to attract people. He was the caretaker at London’s most popular casino, ‘The Emporio State Casino’. 

His blue eyes held a definite sparkle that could never be missed. He was lean with an athletic built and had a perfectly chiselled face that could make the Roman Gods envy. 

These traits had earned him the much deserved popularity and fame at the casino. He had started rather young at the age of twelve under the able guidance of his mentor and adopted Godfather, David.

David was a local goon and owner of the most popular casino in London. He had known Alan since he was a child of two and had taken a special liking for him. 

David had lost his only son to the underworld hostilities. His wife, Maria, whom he dearly loved, was devastated. That’s when David had discovered this street urchin in the streets of London.

Something about Alan had drawn David to him and he had taken him home. Since then, both David and Maria had cared for Alan as their son.

Maria was a devout woman and did not intervene in David’s business matters.

Alan was trained by David since his early childhood. Alan was a quick learner and exceptionally sharp- witted. 

These traits pleased David even more. David saw a reflection of his deceased son in Alan. Soon, Alan had taken charge of operations. With him at the helm of affairs, the business at ‘The Emporio State Casino’ had quadrupled and was ever growing. 

The popularity of Alan overpowered but David only felt proud to have made the right decision to adopt Alan from the streets on that fateful day.

Things were looking good until one day the enemies returned. It was Pedro, the thug who had killed David’s son.

Pedro was owner of yet another popular casino in London ‘The Bridgestone Casino’. However, since Alan had taken charge of operations, there wasn’t another place that could compete with ‘The Emporio State Casino’ in London.

He barged into the casino with his gang and threatened, “I will ensure you are ruined, David. I’m suffering terrible losses. I see that brat Alan responsible for this.”

Being a weekday, the casino wasn’t much crowded. Alan observed the enemy clan entry and immediately sensed surging threats. 

He calmly approached the bunch of goons and said, “Mr. Pedro, I know that you are a huge name in the underworld. I will never underestimate your power. But, does it look good that you threaten my father like this? It doesn’t suit a man of your calibre.”

Pedro’s anger gushed through as he found a mere boy challenging him calmly. He growled, “Don’t you dare intervene, my boy. This has nothing to do with you.”

Alan smiled slyly and said, “Sir, it definitely has things to do with me. Our business is upscaling and you have already mentioned the reasons. My father is playing a fair game. Why not accept it and find your own means of sustenance for better prospects.”

Pedro responded, “Don’t you dare intervene, you little scum. I will have you in the grave even before you can imagine.”

“Well, it would be rather interesting to play it fair. Let’s play three games at the casino. You make your own choice. No restrictions. I will bet against you. If you win, I will hand over charge of the entire casino and accept my defeat. But, if I win, you must leave immediately. Is that a deal?” Alan questioned.

David intervened, “Son, you are —”

Alan interrupted, “Dad, you’ve taught me that life’s a gamble. Why not risk it rather than run away from what’s not in our control?”

David nodded. Alan flicked a coin and the game began. Pedro chose Poker, 7-up 7-down and spin-a-wheel.

Alan knew Pedro’s weakness and let him win the  game of Poker. He also knew the tricks of the trade to play the right game and win the deal. Pedro’s bursting ego and pride was shattered when Alan smartly and clearly won the other two games and was declared the winner.

Pedro hung his head in shame and left the casino never to return again. David glowed in the pride of his son who had saved his life and fate from ruins.
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Lakshmi Ajoy
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