High Seas

Lots of drugs, drinks, and titty fights, but the Climax Cruise ends in clammy anticlimax

"Titty fight!" DJ Diaz encourages. Then he instructs the contestants, "Show us your monkey!"

Nyssa has become self-conscious and is barely dancing. She does not smile. In fact, her face is completely blank until Ross saunters behind her and rips her T-shirt down, exposing her nipples. Nyssa's eyes pop out, and she grabs at her shirt, desperate to conceal her chest. She is abruptly booed offstage. Contestant two has some mediocre moves, but really there is no contest here. Ross handily outboobies two girls half her age. For the remainder of the cruise, enchanted Ultimate Partiers follow her everywhere.

To celebrate her win, Ross and boyfriend Kevin head over to the body-shots demonstration.

Heather has been taking body shots with a bodybuilder she met on the first night of the cruise when Ross and Kevin approach. Heather gets up, and Ross lies down. But Heather decides she isn't finished. The two women, covered in whipped cream, begin taking body shots and licking the whipped cream off each other.

"She was really young and really cute, and we went to second base, and it was really cool," Ross says afterward. But Heather's blond friend, who is supposed to watch out for her, apparently doesn't like the direction things are headed. She scowls in Ross' direction.

"Don't worry about me," Ross tells her.

"I'm not worried about some 50-year-old bitch," the blond counters.

"First of all, I'm not 50," Ross says calmly. Then she snaps Heather's bikini. Before Ross can see what's coming, the blond girl punches her just above her right eye.

"She was jealous because we were getting the crowd going," Ross says afterward, sporting a bruise. "It was her turn next, and she didn't know what she was going to do to top that."

Kevin isn't amused. He yanks Ross' arm, then storms off. When the two finally reunite a few hours later, Kevin pretends nothing happened, but the miffed Ross decides to ditch him. That's when Robert, a young party cruiser originally from Nicaragua, begins following her everywhere.

"He has been so sweet," she says of the 20-year-old. "Like, he's totally up my butt. And he's not the only one. The guy hosting the Climax show — Freddy. He's up my ass too. Freddy is like, 'You don't understand. You have the hottest body. You are smoking.' I was like, 'I have a child your age,' and he was like, 'I don't care. You need to know. Oh my God, you are so hot.' "

The desperate boys following Ross around — they're amusing to her. And they don't have a snowball's chance. Like the rest of the women on the party cruise, Ross has a look-but-don't-touch policy. It's something she picked up as a stripper. She worked in 42 clubs in Florida, Georgia, Texas, and Washington D.C., she says. When the champagne room became the rage, Ross became a house painter.

"These guys want lap dancing, they want coochie grinding, they want blowjobs in the back. Oh my God. I don't do that stuff," she says. "I like to perform. I'm a very sexy dancer. I know how to perform on stage and off stage, but nobody better ever touch me or I'll break their freakin' arm off, OK?"

On the final night of the cruise, Volinsky stands guard in front of the Grand Lounge in a Hugh Hefner-esque black bathrobe, admitting women only if they have complied with his dress code.

Lingerie/pajamas only.

A promising idea but one that not too many of the girls seem comfortable with. To get in to the party, though, they oblige. After all, this party is serious.

The guys are clad in pajama pants or boxers and T-shirts, some with adorable slogans like "Don't worry, I pull out."

At the start of the evening, a middle-school dance aura predominates. Guys stand silently near the dance floor. Girls go to great lengths to isolate themselves. "I can't believe I'm wearing this," says a tall blond in a yellow lacy bra, thong, and fishnets. She's folded into a corner, unsuccessfully trying to hide behind skinny friends. Another voluptuous, thong-clad partier refuses to stand up from her barstool. But drinks are flowing, and more people in lingerie arrive. Barely clothed girls wander into the open. Arms are grabbed and bodies dragged to the dance floor, which turns into a pelvis-grinding station.

Heather floats in wearing Hot Topic black and hot-pink boy shorts and a hot-pink, sequin-covered Victoria's Secret bra. She's fucked up, having polished off a seventh bar of Xanax and enough liquor to intoxicate a small army, she tells New Times. Xanax — a tranquilizer and prescription drug for anxiety — allows Heather to feel exponentially drunker on the same amount of alcohol, without the vomiting, she explains.

Heather is the dark princess of the cruise. In her own words, a spoiled little bitch. Her anything-goes attitude and tiny, hipless frame have guys reaching for their wallets as often as she says "Hello." She's driving them wild. Maybe too wild. What she later refers to as "the bad thing" is about to happen.

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