I yell, “Stop whining, for fuck’s sake!” But it makes no difference.
My useless step-brother keeps pulling on my arm, telling me to turn around. The car swerves left and right. I put my hand right on his face and push him back into his seat, while trying to keep control over this beaten-up piece of shit car. Nathan protests, like I’m the one in the wrong. Did he miss that part where those assholes tried to shoot and kill us?
“But Sarah,” he says, breathing heavy and panicking like a little boy, “maybe if we go back and give them the case, they won’t hurt us.”
All those years of sampling the product must have melted his brain.
“No,” I say. “It’s ours now. Stop being a little bitch, Nate. This whole thing is your fucking fault, anyways!”
“Is not!” Outraged, he pulls on my arm again, like it would make me turn around the car. We can be lucky if that piece of shit makes another mile, what with the bullet holes turning it into Swiss cheese. One tire is out, pulling the entire car hard to the left, and it takes all I’ve got to keep it straight. And my dead-beat brother isn’t helping. The glass has been shot out and something’s rattling in the back. “Fuck-sake, Sarah,” he says, launching forward, practically falling on my lap. He wraps his dirty, from smoking stained yellow-brown, fingers around the wheel and pulls it around. Hard. “You’re fucking psycho! We go back and straighten this out. Think of Mitch!”
Oh, I’m thinking of Mitch, alright. “The perfect Honeymoon,” he said. “Just a little detour, and off we go to paradise, baby!”
The car pulls around too fast. I try to compensate, but that idiot keeps an iron grip on the wheel. He’s shaking, too tense. Must have had a line or two already to wake up and get over the hangover from last night’s bachelor party.
He says, “Let go of the wheel, man!”
Instead, I just step harder on the gas. That’s when the car flies off-road. The front hits the ditch, but the momentum throws the whole damn thing ass-first into the air, and next thing I know we’re tumbling down the rocky dirt. Up becomes down, left and right are meaningless. Puffy white clouds in a bright-blue sky mix with the brown prairie dirt, spinning into an uncontrolled tie-dye version of my life passing before my eyes in a blur.
Shit, shit, shit.
Next to me, Nate is flying and twisting with the tumble like too-wet laundry in the dryer. Then I hit my head hard against the roof.
Like that it’s lights out for me.
When I come back, I breath in a heavy sting of gasoline fumes. Something’s sticky is on the side of my face, going up to my skull. I touch it carefully, already knowing what it is. But knowing doesn’t make it easier to see the blood sticking to my fingers.
We’re upside-down. My body is twisted around, but I can still feel everything—and it hurts like hell. My wedding dress is ruined, torn, ripped, smeared with blood and dust. I contort as much as I can to grab the black briefcase from behind me. Somehow, that whole thing survived the crash. Little bent but still closed and locked. Good—there’s about four-and-a-half pounds of quality cocaine in two plastic bags inside. Mitch—my newly wedded fucking husband—and Nate’s idea of a perfect honeymoon. I guess, if the deal would have gone through, we would have had a lot of cash to go on that vacation Mitch promised me.
Maybe he does love me.
Should have taken care of that before the wedding.
Nate’s passed out next to me. I see no blood around him, and he’s breathing. Can’t tell if I’m relieved or disappointed that he’s still alive. I mean, I wouldn’t have taken the drugs for myself if he would have played it cool in the first place. What a disaster, a pathetic excuse for a man.
It takes a minute to push open the door, now that the frame is all bent to hell. When it finally gives in and pops open, it flies right out of it’s hinges and drops to the ground with a loud bang. I crawl out, and from inside the car, Nate begins to moan and move.
“Sarah…” He’s barely here. I should just leave. Let him rot here for the vultures to dine on. Let them get a high from his blood—God knows what’s swimming in his system right now.
“Help me,” he says, trying to crawl out. Even if I wanted to—and I’m not saying that I do—he would just slow me down. In the distance, I can hear sirens, which surely are in response to the earlier shooting. And though I’m sure I lost the tail and left the drug-mob behind me, it’s only a matter of time until they find us. Not a lot of choice of highway out here, and the car tumbling down the dirt left a trail.
No way I’m letting Nate ruin it all again.
He reaches up to me, fear in his tearful eyes. Please, he mouths. I hit him across the head with the briefcase. Again, when he lifts his head after the first hit. Now he just lies there. Useless as always. I smash the case a few more times next to him on the hart ground, until its frame bends and cracks open.
I leave the wreckage of my step-brother with the wreckage of his car and the empty case, having stuffed the two bags of cocaine down my chest. Good thing this dress is my fat step-mom’s old wedding get-up. She’s a lot bigger than me, and even taken in, I can’t fill out the bust. So I replaced the stuffing she so cleverly used to “fill me out,” as she said, with the cocaine, tear off whatever loose scraps I can, kick aside those now-broken heels, and make my way deeper into the countryside.
Away from these losers.
That concludes scene 1 of act 1.
The card I pulled from the deck by chance was Card # 24 — That’s Not The Dragon.
I will go into more detail in a different post later this week about the card, my thoughts before and after writing that piece, and how this already changes the outline a little.
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