The Crystal Palace

Isa sits on top of her horse and watches as the moon hangs in the night sky like a giant pearl. The desert was quiet at night except for the occasional howl of a lone wolf. She has come to enjoy the night now. It’s not like she is a vampire, but ever since her rebirth. The sun has not been kind to her.

She gazes out into the desert and just enjoy the quietness. The lower temperatures no longer bother her. All the creatures that are normally asleep during the day, are out during the night time. She looks up when she hears a cry in the night. The night was becoming her friend as she guides her horse down a familiar trail that led back to the old Western saloon she has worked hard to restore and run for the tourist.
Isa and a few others had been rescued by a group of Navajo Native Americans out hunting and came across their bodies. At first, they thought them to be dead till one of the people sat up. After a few hours, they managed to wake most of the people up. However, she had to be stubborn and the shaman had to guide her spirit back to her body with the help of her spirit guide.

As much as she would love to avoid the sun all the time, she still needed to live. The Native American shaman that brought her back from the abyss. Made one little mistake in the ritual when he asked the spirits for help. The drugs that had been pumped into her and several other transgenders that had been forcedly kidnapped had an adverse effect on their system.

The synthetic drug was already making change to their bodies on a genetic level. It had put all of them in a coma like state, so the researchers couldn’t tell if they were alive or dead. Their bodies were taken out to the desert to be disposed of. That way the critters could be rid of them and no one would know any different.

The side effects from the drug had made them sensitive to sunlight and bright sun light. If they didn’t use suntan lotion or wear clothing that covered their exposed skin, they would sufferer second degree burns. As for their eye sight, ordinary sun glasses would solve that problem.
Isa rides into the stables behind the saloon they had restored with financing from the Navajo tribe. They kept the saloon as original as possible to give the actual feel of the old west. Only certain parts of the kitchen had been upgraded to modern standards. The twist to the whole Wild West theme they were going with, was the fact they had vampires. Most of the survivors from the testing that the shaman had brought back pretended to be vampires. So, the saloon had a vampire theme to go with the old western feel of the saloon.

They did the bloodletting/drinking of blood with volunteers from the staff that wore fake skin to hide the blood tubes on their neck and wrist. It was the one twist to the saloon that has set it apart from other restored saloons. They had the typical games of the day to play and singers to sing request. They had someone to play the piano as well. The town where the saloon was restored had a no vehicle policy to it. Which meant that you had to take the stage coach from the parking lot or walk into town.

“Did you enjoy your ride Miss. Isa?”

Ben looks at the young girl as she dismounts from her horse.

“Yes, I did Ben. How has the night been so far?”

“Quiet, except for the ruckus coming from inside the saloon.”

Isa just laughs. She knew the saloon made a lot of noise.

“No, what I meant Ben was, did you get your dinner? You know your dinner and drinks are on the saloon for handling the stables.”

“I know and yes, I got my dinner and it was excellent. That cook you recruited does a marvelous job with some of the old recipes.”

“That’s good, I’m glad to hear that. Let me know when you want to close the stables for the night. Remember, we stay open twenty four, seven. Seven days a week.”

“I know Miss Isa.”

Isa turns and walks into the saloon through the back doors and takes the back stairs up to the second floor. Her room was at the corner of the saloon, just above the bar. She walks in and over to the window that faces the street and look out into the night. She didn’t bother to light a candle. She could see pretty good at night.

The saloon was the only place still opened in the restored town. Isa picks a book up and starts reading it. It was a Charline Harris novel she started just the other day. As for the people who used them as test subjects and tried to get rid of them. They were being punished by the FBI. Each of the survivors told the FBI what that company had done to them. The company wasn’t rated to perform human testing and thought they could get away with it kidnapping a bunch of transgender people.

The good thing about the drug, it had made their breast and fat distribution work faster so it was in all the right places. All the transgender women had breast one size smaller then what their mother or sister developed. It did play harder with their emotions, then normal. As for their birth defect, it shrunk in size. Only thing left was to have the operation to change the plumbing.

The drug stopped Isa from growing anymore and left her at five-foot-tall with a slim figure. It did increase the hair growth on everyone, so they all had thicker hair. Isa leans back in her recliner and continue to read her book. She could had gone home, but explaining everything to her folks about her life would had ended up with them saying hurtful words to each other. She already knew how her family felt about people like her. They were against them. They thought it was unnatural.

While Isa is reading her book, there was a knocking at her door.

“Come in.”

“Sorry to bother you Isa, but could you come down and make change for Steven?”

“Sure, give me a second please.”

“Okay.”

June steps back out into the hallway and waits for Isa.

Isa walks over towards the old fashion safe and opens it. She grabs her standard change pouch and closes the safe back up and walks out into the hallway to meet up with June.

The two of them walk down stairs and over towards the cash register to make change for Steven. Isa counts how much money he has and writes it down on a piece of paper and takes out what she needs to make change for the register.

“Thanks boss.”

“Your welcome Steven.”

Isa heads back upstairs to her room and put the cash from the register inside the safe. She’ll do the books later. She already made the loan payment last week. If business keeps going like it has been, they will have the loan paid off in no time.

Isa glances over towards the clock and notice that it was midnight. Isa turns the security cameras on so she could see what was going on down in the saloon. It was as busy as it was at six o’clock this evening. Isa goes back to reading and occasionally she, glances at the security feed to make sure everything was alright down stairs.

By four in the morning, the saloon slows down. She puts her book down and grab the cash bag again and goes down to clear out the cash register. She distributes the tips to everyone still working and those not working she sets the tips aside for them when they come in.
Isa does help with the cleaning of the saloon. She may be the manager and one of the owners, but she still helps. Once the cleaning is done, she checks the bank for how much money the house lost on certain games and how much they won. Normally, they won more than they lost. Once those books are done, she gets to work on the other books.

By the time the sun raises, Isa closes the shutters to the windows for her room plunging it into darkness. She didn’t need another second degree burn like she got last time when she forgot to close her shutters. The staff knew not to bother her unless it was necessary.

The day time manager was Roger Flying Eagle. He was one of the Navajo’s that found her that day. He had taken his own shirt off to cover her body. He also was the only one she trusted to make change and get money from the safe.

Once Isa was done with the books and what she needed to do for the day manager to take over. She strips out of her clothes and slip her nightgown on. She sets her alarm clock for fourteen hundred hours and lays down to sleep till then.

Another night for her to enjoy when she wakes up.



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This story is 1577 words long.