A Story by Hawksmoor

It's 10 o'clock at night in the city of Denver. I'm sitting in the bucket seat of a black truck with my brother, he's behind the wheel, on the side of a dark and silent highway. My brother is an obnoxious b*****d who has feet that smell like rotting onions, and a mouth that opens and releases curses into the atmosphere so often that sometimes I think that his brains are hardwired against using decent English. However, these things aside, my brother is a good man who looks out for family…and friends that may as well be family, when the chips are down. Hell, he even gives bums and transients green money when he feels cheerful enough to fathom parting with cash. When he has it to spare, he gives what he can to the less fortunate.

Tonight, we sit in his black truck on the side of an obsidian highway with grease on our fingers and our lips. The Colonel's Best, you see. My brother burps and I wince. I told you; he's a disgusting b*****d. Eats like a f*****g gargoyle, he does.

"You sure you want me to do this?" he asks, peeling the skin off of a big, drug injected thigh with his front teeth.

"You know," I say, "At first, no. Hell no, I wasn't sure at all about this, but now I am. He deserves this, and I wanna make sure he gets what he deserves."

"Sorted," my brother mumbles through a mouthful of barnyard buzzard.

Quite suddenly, two bright beams of light flow down the highway from the opposite direction, nearly blinding us as they close the distance between us and them.

"That it?" my brother asks, shielding his eyes from the high beams.

"White sport car, high sides, stupid f****n ridiculous flame bird on the front of it. I think I can see the tail on the back of it sticking up through the back windshield. Yes, that's it. I can't see the license plate, but the physical of it looks about right."

"Okay then," my brother mutters beneath his breath, as if more to himself than to me. He opens his door and steps out of the truck and into the middle of the highway, waving his arms above his head as he walks.

The sport car blows its horn, but my brother holds his ground. Dead center of the highway.

The sport car screeches to a stop, five feet from where my brother is standing.

The driver’s side door of the sport car opens, and out steps a man who has to be at least seven feet tall. The man is dark against the sheet of light that his car is throwing across the highway and into the night, but his silhouette speaks volumes about his appearance. This man has massive arms that bulge against his shirtsleeves, and a neck that would look more in place on a bull. A large, mad bull.

"The f**k you doing in the middle of the highway at ten o'clock at night, a*****e?" the man says, flinging his foot-thick biceps across the tarmac. Now that I can see his face from beyond the truck's windshield, as he's come beyond the pool of light his headlights are still blaring into the night like white noise, I understand that this man is as pissed as a bear woken from its winter sleep. His face is twisted with revulsion and hate. Each fist is the size of a small Easter ham.

"You wanna be street pizza when the goddamn sun rises, man?" the man bellows. It is obvious that his anger is barely in check.

"Nope," my brother says.

With that, he walks right up to the big man and says; "You cut my little sister off in traffic today, which was dangerous enough, in and of itself, but you went too far when you flipped her The Bird after she swerved and blew her horn at you to avoid hitting you. To top that off, she told me that she heard loud laughing as you sped off, blasting The Steve Miller Band’s 'Jungle Love', I think it was. You owe her an apology."

From where I sit within my brother's black truck, it looks as if the big man is smiling. The smile looks sick, dangerous. The man cracks his apple-sized knuckles and begins to close the distance between himself and my brother, right hand raised like a cudgel.

"Pal, yer in for a world of hurt," the man growls.

"I invoke the right which The Law has given unto me. This is my third and final Freebie," my brother says with a stern-shaky voice.

He draws his right hand back across his right shoulder, exhales, and then slaps the big man across the face with every bit of strength that he can possibly muster. All of a sudden, there is a shining trail of chicken grease on the big man’s jaw.

The force of the blow rocks the big man's head on his tree trunk neck.

The connection is so loud. It sounds like a piece of plywood slamming into the street from about ten miles up. The complete and utter absence of any other sound on this deserted highway in the middle of nowhere doesn't help the lonely bitterness of the sound of the slap at all. I think I can hear an echo.

The big man's eyes widen. His right hand rises up and slides across the area that my brother's hand connected with.

"That's my third and final Freebie," my brother says, rubbing his hand across his thin chest in the darkness. "But you offended my sister's honor, and hey, you had to pay for that. Try to be a better person every now and then, huh?"

My brother walks back to the truck, gets in, and, with the soft crunch of gravel, pulls away from the road's almost invisible shoulder. On his face is a smile similar to the one that the big man wore as he approached my brother, who has to be at least a hundred pounds lighter and a whole two feet shorter. In the rearview mirror, I can still see the big man as we leave him to the night’s eerie darkness. He's still standing in the middle of the highway, his hand on his jaw, his eyes huge. Even in the darkness, I can still see his eyes. They're as wide and as white as saucers.

"I'm going to see that big burley b*****d again someday," my brother says, still smiling. "And I'm probably going to see him soon, too. I'll be in traction for a month after."

He looks at me, still smiling that sick and amused smile. He picks a piece of The Colonel's Best from the bucket that sits between us and says, "You better be grateful for that, because that's the right that's probably going to end up coming back to bite me in the a*s later on. When that happens, I'll have to run like a little girl, because I haven't got any more Freebies left and there's no way in hell that I can kick that guy's a*s, which probably has its own area code, by the way."

I smile. Although I try to pull my lips back down into a proper frown of ominous foreboding, I cannot. The look on my brother's face is too much. It's priceless.

I smile at him across the stick shift in the darkness and I can't help but say one thing. A thing I've said two times before now.

"Be glad that we live in a world where three free B***h Slaps are issued to every child at birth, toll free, and retribution free. Otherwise, you'd have had a horrific beating thrown your way years ago."

We both smile at that. My brother puts his black truck into high gear and lays rubber on the road.

As we speed up, we both begin to laugh. I don't have any idea what he's laughing about, but I'm laughing because I imagine that I can still see the big man, still standing in the middle of the dark highway. I still see him holding his swollen jaw, with a fading fan of chicken grease shining on his face.

Life in the 22nd Century is so f****n’ great sometimes

© 2009 Hawksmoor

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Nice little twist at the end with that reference to the time period. I liked this piece. The only thing I might say is to watch out for using dialogue to give out information. The speech to the big man was good, but could be shaved a bit I think. It almost seemed like the brother was telling him a story, rather than informing him of wrong doing.

And that prophetic line: three free B***h Slaps are issued to every child at birth, toll free, and retribution free, is priceless. LOL.

Posted 13 Years Ago

Nice dialogue B. I had no problems being pulled through the story. Especially liked the grease from the chicken playing into it lol! I like the descriptiveness of the car on the dark highway with it's lights left on.

Posted 13 Years Ago

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Added on April 23, 2009



BRILLIANT! Hawksmoor...From The Bleed. more..


A Story by Hawksmoor


A Story by Hawksmoor