I don't go to the edge of the desert much. No one does. It's like there's a magic circle, a forcefield, a faerie ring, that circumscribes Las Vegas. Not just the Strip - all of Vegas.
Something that protects us.
The desert is vast beyond anything I could have imagined back east - vast, and dry in a way that tests the limits of the word. Standing on the edge of the desert, you can feel it pull the moisture from your body. From your very cells. From your blood.
You can feel the desert suck your youth from the marrow of your bones.
It sounds melodramatic, but look around. Either the desert absorbs youth and spirit like condensation, like morning dew, or time here moves differently. People here get older quicker. The light in the eyes doesn't last as long.
It's part of the price.
What was Kellen doing?
They say that what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Well, what happens in the desert stays in the desert. Bodies beyond number, bones blasted white and brittle, never to be found. It's its own kind of sacred.
Almost seven years ago, Crystal turned her back on her baby and on the city and walked out into this desert, walked out into death.
I need to know why.