Blog | Current Projects
I am pleased to report that two of my "drabbles" (stories containing precisely 100 words), have been accepted by Shacklebound Books for their DrabbleDark Anthology! One drabble, titled Cicadae Fall, will be expanded into a much longer tale with the same title.
“Whoohoo! I’m 21 today, bitches!” Chelsea stumbles into me as we make our way to the next bar. I think she’s already trashed. Chels never could hold her liquor. I try not to hold it against her though. After all, she IS my best friend, and has been since we were in grade school together.
“Where to next, Birthday Girl?” I teeter a bit on my heels as Chelsea leans into me. I boost her up, and try to pull her dress up a little before she pours out of it. She loves to show off her boobs when she’s lit.
“OMG, Cortney! Are you trying to feel me up?” She says giggling and grabbing her breasts, one in each hand. “These are NOT for you!” She gives me a wink and dissolves into laughter. The boys on the street behind us hoot and catcall us, but Chelsea gives them the finger. “Are you guys looking at my asssss?” She yells over her shoulder before bending completely over and putting her palms on the filthy sidewalk. “STOOOOP LOOOKING AT MY BUUUUUUUTTTTTT!” She cackles.
Chelsea: always so modest!
I pull her upright and we stumble into the line at the Carnival Lounge, that trendy new bar downtown that everyone has been talking about. Chelsea has been here before, with a fake ID, but this is my first time here. The place is very trendy and the line goes half way down the block. The doorman catches my eye and subtly shakes his head. Obviously, we need to sober up a bit before he’ll admit us… but given how long the line is, that shouldn’t be too much of an issue.
“Be cool, Chelseabean!” I whisper in her ear and point to the doorman. “They won’t let us in if we’re too drunk.”
“I’m fine!” she shouts dramatically. “I can even walk a straight line… see?” She puts her hand on her nose and proceeds to weave back and forth over the sidewalk. Several pedestrians dodge her but she connects with one of two as we make our way to the back of line. One of the girls she runs into gives her a disgusted look, but her boyfriend just looks amused.
The traffic along Central is heavy tonight, which isn’t surprising, given the warm summer weather and the holiday weekend. Several cars thump by with their stereos blasting. Some teenage boys lean out the windows and catcall the Carnival Lounge’s waiting patrons. The air smells of exhaust, and if I am being honest, it stinks a little like garbage here at the end of the line. There’s an alleyway about 20’ away, and I am guessing that the dumpsters there are overflowing.
Chelsea and I settle into the back of the line but she seems oblivious about the congestion or the length of the line. She’s kinda off in her own little pink bubble. I am glad she has me around to look after her.
Or at least I thought she was.
The guys ahead of us start chatting her up and Chelsea is lapping up the attention. She has her back to traffic, and I am facing her and the street behind her. I am not really following the conversation, but I know it’s the same old “blah, blah, hello baby, where you been all of my life?” sort of nonsense that guys ALWAYS say. Chelsea plays along, whoring it up by biting her lower lip and playing with her hair. I don’t mind. It’s her night, and her birthday after all.
It sounds like a car backfiring when it happens. Or fireworks. That was my first thought: “who is shooting off fireworks downtown?” But then I saw the flash of the muzzle as it poked out the passenger side window. Something warm and wet splatters over my face and Chelsea’s eyes go wide. She falls into my arms, but I can’t seem to get a grip on her. Her back is soaked with blood. We collapse onto the sidewalk amidst the screams and gunfire. I can hear the bullets ricochet off the wall behind me, but all I can think about is saving Chelsea. Her beautiful dress is drenched in blood. She looks up at me and asks me what happened.
It all happens so fast. Before I know it, the shooting stops. Chelsea is looking up at me with those great big blue eyes of her’s, but there’s no life behind them. The blood drips off the sidewalk and into the gutter.