- Reading time: three-and-three-quarters minutes
- Word count: 718
- Published: 11 dec 2013
- Author: Matador the First
- Copyright: Matador the First, 2013
The long unmoving line of cars on the Sand Lake exit ramp was made longer and its motionlessness made stiller when Quickbreak spotted his old frienesis Lew one car back in the next lane. Our hero wished he’d bought himself a helmet to hide his face. Maybe even a respectable rough-cut ski mask. He’d had enough run-ins with Lew for even the universe’s lifetime. The last thing he wanted was to get in a fistfight with the leader of an atom-sized mafia that threatened meter maids for the lunch money the meter maids threatened downtown drivers for, and he most definitely—
Someone tapped Quickbreak on the shoulder. He closed his eyes and faced them.
“Don’t get so excited to see me.”
“I would but I can’t.”
“You can’t see? Why you driving?”
“Struck blind just moments ago.”
“An encounter with God. Big flash of light. My eyes feel thick.”
“Huh. Let me take a look.”
“I—Lew I don’t think you’re qualified. You’re not a doctor. Or a Christian.”
“How’d you know I was Lew if your eyes are closed?”
“ ’Course you’re Catholic.”
“Why’s it everyone’s got to talk to me in the middle of the road? Or right next to it?”
“Because you’re begging to be run over?”
Our hero laughed, lost his balance, and slid off his seat toward Lew, who kicked him. Quickbreak opened his eyes.
“Wanted to do that for four years.”
“You wait five years to kick me?”
“And to catch up.”
“On what? We played chess a lot, you tried to kill me once, we also played chess a lot, I won our last game.”
“Hm.” Lew scratched his hat.
“Not much else to it.”
“Well when you put it that way—”
“You realize you were kind of obsessing?”
“No. I realize, anything happens to you in the future, I shouldn’t feel guilty.”
“Gotta get gone. Got a reluctant client down I-Drive I got to talk to.”
“What’s it this time, a tutoring group?”
Lew’s eyebrows almost met. “Yeah.” A distant look of pained worry settled on his face.
“Stone-cold killers, tutors.”
“That’s how I got this.” He pointed to a longish white scar on his face.
“You’ve had that for years.”
“They’re clever. Cut me deep in the center that scar. I’d walk closer and show you but if I did that, I might just punch you. Plus I’ve got to jet. Looks like traffic’s moving and Marty’s holding it up waiting for me.”
“God you’ve gone soft.”
“If I’m late—well. I got a reputation to keep. Gotta be punctual and intimidal.” He hopped in the back of a red Prius.
Quickbreak fixed himself on his mosco and seeing that his lane wasn’t moving at all and that the left lane had just stopped, surveyed the shoulder and the land around him. The grass stretched out forever till it met a retention pond, which it actually encircled, and beyond which it continued till it crashed into a parking lot. Specifically, the parking lot for Kmart. More specifically, the Kmart Quickbreak had been going to this month. So our hero drove his mosco onto the shoulder for a few seconds before gunning it onto the grass, which grass was too slick with pesticides for any cop to be dumb enough to chase anyone there. In fact the cops figured if someone survived without crashing, or walked away from a crash there, they probably deserved to get away.
Quickbreak crashed halfway to the pond. He didn’t deserve to get away but since there were no cops nearby, he got away. Until the fence tackled him. He rolled on his back a bit and righted himself and shimmied his multitool out his pocket and used it to cut an our-hero-sized hole in the fence. He pushed his mosco through before him, careful not to scratch it, and walked through behind it, careful not to cut his arm. Which he ended up doing. He told his brain to tell his feet to stop walking but instead it told them to keep on, and less steady, and faster. The cut became a gash that spanned the length of his forearm. “Should’ve worn the Oxford. But it had to be ninety-three today. Didn’t it.”
“Sit-Still Getaway” is the eighth section in a twelve-part story. You can follow the story as it's posted to the home page or by tracking its tag.