An Exchange Of Death Glares

She firmly presses her foot down on the gas pedal, confidently matching the posted speed limit, the radiant afternoon sun reflecting her smile. She’s wearing the killer boots she purchased from some store with a strange name less than a half-hour ago. She loves her killer boots.

“Faster, Kenzi,” says her younger brother, sitting in the passenger seat with his head stuck out the car window as he madly grins, enjoying the wind in his face; his short, thick, dark hair flapping wildly at its ends. Veils of dust kick up from the tires behind him as they hug the dirt road at speed-limit velocity.

“Hell to the no, Craig,” Kenzi says. She holds one hand on the wheel, the other brushing her straight, black, shoulder-length hair over her pale ear, pierced in two places on the lobe. Beside a small, gold hoop earring dangles a thin, clear crystal earring. “This is a new car. I’m not going to take a chance at wrecking it.”

“Ah, come on,” Craig whines.

Her delicate, brown eyes flash a nervous feeling. “No. I can’t get pulled over. I don’t think my shirt is cut low enough to avoid a ticket.”

Craig pulls his head back into the car. “You’re no fun. Hey, why’d you have to get such a shitty car, anyway?”

Not so subtly attempting to change the subject, Kenzi asks, “Oh hey, Craig, how’s your girlfriend, Bo?”

“Don’t mention her name, please.”

Her voice breaks with compassion. “She didn’t leave you for that famous midget thumb wrestler again, did she?”

“Wait,” he says, confusion washing over his tanned face. “There was a first time she left me?”

Sadness overcomes her, despite the fact that, a moment ago, he had insulted her car. “Oh my God, you didn’t know? I’m so sorry…”

Suddenly, Craig’s eyes widen with fear. “Kenz! Look out!”

Kenzi’s gaze jumps out the front windshield as she spots an orange Dodge Charger, with a ‘01’ painted on the side door, speeding toward the intersection, destined to be in her path the moment she crosses into it.

She instinctively slams the soles of her new, killer boots on the brake pedal. Both her and Craig jolt to a stop harder than an average kid being laughed at by a cheerleader he just asked to the prom. The car abruptly halts in front of the Charger as it skids to a stop. With the cars enveloped in a cloud of dust beginning to settle, Kenzi and the driver of the Charger – a tall, sandy blonde-haired, past middle-aged man – exchange glares as he angrily pulls himself out through the window of his car.

“Does his door not work?” Craig asks.

“What in the hell, little girl?” the man yells.

Opening her door, Kenzi’s face fills with rage, as red as the paint job on her new, shitty car. She leaps out, storming to the small open area between the cars, more harsh words from the other angry driver greeting her. “I’m just a good ol’ boy, never meanin’ no harm, an’ here you are tryin’ to kill me with that fancy new car of yurs? Sumthin’ wrong with you?”

With her hand on her chest proclaiming innocence, Kenzi asks, “Me? Something’s wrong with me? I had the right of way!” Her proclamation turns into an accusatory finger pointed at the man. “You had a stop sign!”

“Yur makin’ that up!”

Kenzi points to the stop sign while never shifting her intense stare away from the man. “It’s right there!”

The man stays focused on Kenzi. “I don’t see it!”

“Then you must be blind as well as smelly,” Craig calls out as he takes Kenzi’s side.

In a huff, the man yells, “You lookin’ for a beatin, kid’s stuff?”

“That’s it,” Kenzi exclaims. “Nobody threatens my little brother!”

Craig turns to her. “Except your boyfriend.”

She casually turns to Craig, “Well, yeah, but that’s only because I like him.”

“Hey,” the man impatiently yells. “We gonna stand ‘ere talkin’ or are we gonna dance?”

Kenzi’s glare shifts back toward the man. “Oh, we’re gonna dance.” She reaches behind herself and whips out what she would simply describe as a cool-ass, kick-ass knife with a sharp ten-inch blade.

Craig looks her up and down, his face becoming puzzled as he notices the form-fitting black T-shirt and jeans outfit she’s wearing. He leans over, whispering to her, “Where were you hiding that?”

Teeth gritting with rage, Kenzi quietly responds, “You don’t want to know.”

Unimpressed, the man yells, “That’s not a knife!”

Kenzi sighs, “Oh Lord, he’s quoting Crocodile Dundee.”

“That was a shitty movie,” Craig says.

“Dude, totally shitty movie,” Kenzi agrees.

The man reaches behind himself, swiftly bringing forward a machete.

Kenzi and Craig look him up and down, their faces becoming puzzled as they notice the form-fitting white tank top and blue jeans he’s wearing. In unison they call out, “Where were you hiding that?”

The man sniffs loudly, looking around uncomfortably. “That’s not important,” he mildly says as he clears his throat. Suddenly, he refocuses his death glare back on Kenzi to which Kenzi reapplies her own death glare on him.

Craig leans over to her once again, whispering, “Are you really going to do this?”

Kenzi softly responds, “Just get back a safe distance.”

“How much distance is a safe distance?”

“I don’t know. Just… get back.”

Placing a hand on Kenzi’s shoulder, Craig gives the man a burning stare. “Fuck him up good.”

Kenzi relaxes and turns to Craig, “Why do you have to swear so much? Oh my God…”

The man begins to charge. Craig jumps back in fear as he shoves Kenzi forward, “Kenz! Look out!” Kenzi looks up to see a face boiling with rage, the machete, raised high in the air, striking down on her. She sidesteps his attack, slamming her shoulder into his exposed ribs as she buries what she would simply describe as a cool-ass, kick-ass knife with a sharp ten-inch blade into his beer-fed belly, giving the blade a harsh twist because that’s what they do in the movies.

Sharp, rusted steel falls from his hand, clanging on the pavement. His body mimics his blade’s short journey, making a thumping sound as loud as Kenzi’s heartbeat.

She stands over him as Craig runs up. “You actually did it!”

“That’s what happens,” Kenzi says, flaunting a badass attitude as she continues glaring at the man, wiping her mouth for extra dramatic effect. “By the way, before you suck in your final worthless breath, I want to know the name of the man who ran a clearly posted stop sign and almost wrecked my new car.”

“For the police report?” the man asks with a scratchy voice.

“Duh,” Kenzi responds.

The man draws in one last breath. “My name is…” Releasing his soul into the ether, he mutters, “Bo.”

Kenzi turns to Craig, playfully commenting, “Oh hey, like your girlfriend.”


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