Fear of exposure held her back. If she forgot for a minute the purpose of this reunion, assuming her recent role of a high-end escort, where she used her socialite manners to service the likes of magazine editors, top managers, Wall Street stock brokers—clients compared to whom these Florida gentlemen and their son were small potatoes—everything would have gone well. It was unusual for her to be seen as a bride, which disoriented her.

The good-natured senior citizens took off, offering Carmen a bunch of compliments as they left, but the following month not a cent was deposited to Sam’s bank account. At first, he called his parents on the phone and begged them to send money. But they demanded “You have to leave that spic with her cheap cocktail waitress mannerisms. She’s keeping you from finishing your design project and she’s draining all your money.” They knew their son, and they were implacable.

Sam cancelled his trip to Atlantic City and even fell into fell into a light—though, from his perspective, severe—depression. In the end, he had to go to Florida to engage in a “serious discussion with parents,” threatening not to “put up with such interference in my personal life from anybody.”

Sam never returned to Sea Gate. When Carmen attempted to get in contact with him, he replied that his plans changed and he asked her not to bother him. Soon, two persons who looked like moving men came to their apartment in Sea Gate. Having shown their IDs and the papers, they packed up Sam’s things and furniture (with Carmen’s help), stowed them into the truck, and, having handed Carmen a list of the removed items, left.

After yet another wrenching turn of fate, Carmen didn’t want to leave Sea Gate. Moreover, having extricated herself from her life as a prostitute, she didn’t want to go back to the sex business and instead wished to start a new life.

After she left the luxurious apartment in the villa where she’d been living with Sam, she rented a little cheap studio in a shabby private house. With no substantial occupation, and no documents or connections from good circles, she found a minimum wage job working as a house cleaner through the employment agency for illegal Mexican immigrants.

This was her life baggage: deceit, a nine year-old daughter left in Mexico under the care of her parents, prostitution, arrests, and drug addiction. With this baggage the cheerful Carmen encountered the dawn of a new day at Sea Gate and met Roy.