Serial Saturday: Road Trip, Part 14

JT lay on her bed with an arm thrown over her eyes, trying to block out the sound of Israel watching Jeopardy. She felt like some of the tension in her shoulders had slowly unknotted after lying in the motel room for an hour, but she still had a splitting headache, and the nerves brought on by having no weapons other than her tomahawk and knife in the room were getting worse. She would have given fifty bucks for a beer or two, as well.

It all made it hard to think, and thinking was what she needed to do, if she was going to survive this little trip. Half the time, Israel seemed to know exactly what he was doing, but the other half of the time he seemed to be wandering, and in any case she didn’t trust him at all. So why had she even come along? When had she lost her sense?

“What is ‘Smokey and the Bandit’,” Israel said to the TV from over on his bed.

JT surged up and swung her legs off the bed. “Okay,” she said, glancing out the slice of window visible through the curtains. “Dark enough. Let’s get the fucking guns.”

Israel glanced over at the window, then shrugged and shut off the TV. “Maybe we can grab some dinner, too,” he said. “I’m starting to get hungry.”

“Maybe,” JT replied, moving to the window to flick the curtain aside. She couldn’t see anyone in the lot. She checked her tomahawk and knife and headed for the door, opening the locks. She wasn’t exactly hungry herself–the chicken-fried steak was sitting in her stomach like a rock–but her guts weren’t as tied up as they’d been an hour ago. She was still feeling skittish, though, and would rather be forted up in the motel room with her shotgun than sitting in whatever stupid restaurant Israel picked.

“Maybe we can order a pizza or something,” she said, opening the door. She stepped out, sliding a hand under her jacket to rest on the ‘hawk. Someone was just leaving their own room six doors down. It was going to be a pain in the ass hauling guns into their room without attracting attention. They took their time walking to Israel’s car while the guy got in his own truck and drove off. JT glanced around again as they approached the car. No one else was parked anywhere near it, which was convenient, but as they came near JT felt the dread settling back over her again.

The old Pontiac seemed to have become something that oozed a sick feeling over her. It was just a beat up old car with a scratched and battered trunk and missing paint on the roof where the birds had dripped on it, but somehow it had come to represent everything dangerous in what she was doing, and it scared her. Israel fished the keys from his pocket, and glanced around again, then reached for the lock. JT looked around the lot as he did, swallowing against her dry throat. No one was around now, even though the lot was pretty crowded with cars. Her eyes narrowed at the wide gap around their car–four spaces on either side–as Israel turned the key.

“Israel, wait,” JT said. Israel glanced over at her as the trunk came open.

“Wha-” he began.

The thing that came out of the trunk was black.

Copyright © 2011 SM Williams


~ by smwilliams on July 9, 2011.