Tommy Vercetti was doing well. He had won the last couple of hands. Remarkably, the game was completely devoid of cheating, but the tension between the gangster and the other four gunmen was still running sky high. Snake had pulled out his SOCOM when Tommy pulled the straight out of nowhere, but the play was legit. He had gotten lucky, but there was still money to win. The game was seven card stud, his deal. There were no wild cards. All the players received two cards down, and he dealt out the remaining cards on top. Snake had a nine up. Master Chief received a jack. Max Payne got a six. Max barely glanced at his cards below. He was sitting on his winnings for now, it seemed. Raiden got a ten, and Tommy Vercetti himself received an ace of spades. Vercetti looked below his hand. There was a seven of hearts and a ten of spades. Nothing.
Tommy flashed a cocky grin. “Well ladies, I think I’ll start this one with forty.”
Snake and Master Chief matched his bet without even thinking about it. Max Payne simply turned his cards over. Ordinarily Tommy might resent that kind of behavior, but in this case he was grateful. Raiden matched his bet, and didn't bother to raise. Tommy dealt out the next round of cards.
Snake received a four, and Master Chief received another jack, doubtlessly bolstering his confidence.
“Wonderful. I picked a good time for a bluff. No choice but to keep going.” He thought.
Raiden got a deuce, which was no help in that game. Tommy flipped down the last card. It was the king of spades. He looked around the table. He had the ten of spades himself. Neither of the jacks on the table were in spades thankfully. If anyone had one though-it was all over for him. He had the makings of a straight flush on the table, a shaky one though. Vercetti smiled and leaned back. Master Chief had the only real hand on the table with a pair of jacks. It was his bid first. Vercetti would let the cyborg set the tone for this one. Chief bet another forty, and Vercetti chose to simply call the bet. He couldn't make it look like he was trying to get them all to fold. Raiden and Snake stayed in as well. Vercetti looked more closely at their hands. Both had the makings of a flush, if their cards below matched the ones above.
The next set of cards went out again. Snake and Raiden got a card outside their choice suits, and Master Chief received an eight. The sight appeared to please him. Vercetti sighed and laid down his card. It was the queen of spades.
Vercetti let his eyes bug out. It wasn't hard to do. He had the ace, king, and queen of spades sitting on the table, with the ten underneath. The others had to be sweating. The next set of cards went out again. Snake and Raiden got a card outside their choice suits, and Master Chief received an eight. The sight appeared to please him. Vercetti sighed and laid down his card. It was the queen of spades. Vercetti let his eyes bug out. It wasn't hard to do. He had the ace, king, and queen of spades sitting on the table, with the ten underneath. The others had to be sweating
Master Chief looked at him, worried, and muttered, “I’ll pass.”
Raiden shook his head. “Check.”
Vercetti tried to look like he was suppressing a smile. “Not bad at all girls. That’s enough to make my snake solid. A hundred to stay in.”
Snake quickly matched his bluff. Master Chief hesitated and look at his cards, but threw in the chips anyways. Raiden did the same. Vercetti smiled. Two more to go…
The last card went out. Snake found himself with a deuce. His hand was looking more and more useless by the minute. Master Chief received an ace. And Tommy himself got a three of hearts. Great.
Master Chief looked at his hand and laughed at Tommy. "Eh, you're full of it." The Chief started rolling thousands of dollars in chips onto the table. Vercetti groaned inwardly. He had nothing to go on, and clearly Master Chief wasn't going to give up. Snake threw his hand down before the bidding even got to him. Chief looked at Vercetti, and began to move his arm in the direction of the pot
Vercetti grinned and widened his eyes. He threw in the necessary chips with a casual flick. "Excellent. But not nearly enough. How about we make this a little more personal.
“Don’t have anything worth that much.”
Vercetti rolled his eyes. "What I want from you is personal. I need a favor from you on the shady side of the law, let's say." His mind raced, trying to think of something that Chief would never agree to. "If I win, I want you to help me out with another contestant. I want you to reprogram KOS-MOS on my behalf.
Vercetti held his breath. Chief looked at him with a mix of disgust and curiosity. The cyborg sized him up slowly. “Please, no…no please,” the Chief thought, very worried.
But finally, said “You’ve got yourself a deal.”
Vercetti exhaled and groaned. This was not good. He'd just humiliated himself and thrown most of his cash way. He allowed his shoulders to slouch. Grimly, he tossed the last card down at Chief, and laid his card in front of himself
It was the jack of spades. He…had…the jack of spades. He had a natural royal flush!
Vercetti couldn't even try to keep his face straight. He was beyond caring what Chief thought. He grinned at Chief and threw his entire stack into the pot. "That's more money than you'll make in a year. You just give me all you have and we'll call it even.
Chief looked at him in surprise. Slowly he shook his head and laughed. "All right, what have you got?"
Vercetti excitedly flipped his cards over. "Let's see, you already know the ace, king, and queen of spades...I have the three of hearts... ten of spades, seven of hearts, and my personal favorite... the jack of spades. Hey, what do you know, that makes a royal flush."
Four pistols were instantly pointed at his head again. Chief didn't even bother revealing his full house. Tommy couldn't keep the freaking grin off his face. "Read 'em and weep gentlemen."
Tommy scooped up the chips as Snake and Master Chief counted the cards. Max shook his head in disbelief. Raiden was just stunned. He held his gun motionless in the air.
"Might want to put that thing down, kid." Chief said absently. Chief looked back and forth between the cards and Tommy, and stared at both in disbelief. Tommy realized he'd been sweating.
“If this kind of luck keeps up I may have to consider going legit. Nah.”
"I saw it myself, and I don't believe it," Snake said, shaking his head. "Vercetti won a game legally."
Vercetti grinned. "You owe me a favor too, Chief, don't forget." He looked over his winnings again. Not bad.