Thrill Rider

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Chapter 10: Peas

Micheal Peterson:

“Ouch,” I cry, my new motorcycle hitting a pillar and sending me forward. Hitting my head on the same pillar only adds to my ever-growing list of motorcycle injuries. From falling off only seconds after I “brought” the motorcycle, to crashing and almost skinning my legs against the side of the building, to now slamming my head against a pillar in the lobby of my hotel hideout, it had been a long and painful night.

“Okay,” I say, sucking up some tears. “Okay. Okay. I have two arms. I have two legs. I have one head. All of them are only slightly damaged. Nevertheless, I still got it.”

Smiling now, I look at my brand-spanking, new, a little damage but not too much, sportbike.

Twisting my body and rotating my arms in wide circles, I stop almost immediately when I hear things crack.

“Ohhh nooo,” I say, falling to my knees before falling completely onto the dusty floor. “Ouch. My everything.”

Brian Wane:

“Ouch,” I say, rubbing my shoulder. “What was that for?”

“That was for making me so worry about you,” Ash yells, crossing her arms after punching me. “What the heck? Why didn’t you call me, or text me, or I don’t know, shoot a flare into the sky?”

“Shoot a flare into the sky,” I repeat.

Ash replies with a second punch to my arm, just as I put my hand down.

“Ouch,” I say again, rubbing my shoulder again.

It’s late into the day, the sun is just setting. Ash called me earlier, asking if I and Micheal could show up at Rocky’s. Strangely, Micheal wasn’t and despite our best efforts, he didn’t answer our calls or reply to our texts. Nevertheless, Ash and Brian sat down to enjoy some pizza. At least, that’s what I thought.

“And what about Micheal? Where is Micheal? Wasn’t he with you?”

“Yeah, Micheal was with me but he wasn’t in the bank. He was sleeping in his car.”

“He was sleeping in his car,” Ash repeats. “Really? A bank robbery and Micheal was sleeping? Inside his car? Really?”

“The most interesting thing was that Thrill Rider showed up,” I say, slamming my hands on the table. “Thrill Rider. Though, from what I’ve seen, he didn’t exactly win. He didn’t lose, but he didn’t win. The money was kind of destroyed.”

“Ouch,” Ash says, lending back in her chair. “Still, that happened a week ago. Why didn’t you tell me about it?”

“I don’t know,” I answer, shrugging my shoulder. “I figure Micheal already told you. I mean, you two spend the whole summer together.”

“So? What does that have to do with anything?”

“You two spend the whole summer together,” I repeat. “Never once calling me. I figured by now, the two of you are like two peas in a pod.”

“Okay,” Ash says, bringing up her hands. “First thing first, I don’t know what your problem is, but whatever it is, it’s extremely stupid and dumb. It’s not two peas in a pod, it’s three. Three peas in a pod. Three peas that have been friends since elementary school.”

“Then why didn’t the two of you peas called this pea in Nevada?”

“I’m sorry for that,” Ash yells, “Listen, I don’t know what got you so upset, but whatever it is, you just need to calm down. You were gone, Micheal and I spend some time together, that’s that. Nothing more, nothing less.”

Pushing out her chair, Ash stomps her hands against the table as she gets up.

“Where are you going,” I ask, watching as Ash turns her back. “I thought you called me here for some pizza.”

“I called you and Micheal here to see if you two were okay,” Ash replies. “You know, something peas in a pod tend to do when one of them learned that something bad happened to the other two, and the other two didn’t tell her about it.”

Stomping her way toward the exit, I get up from my chair and follow after her.

“Hey Ash,” I say, “Wait up. Listen okay, I’m-”

Before I can finish, Ash had just opened the door when, out of nowhere, Micheal walks in.

“Oh hey,” he says, seeing the two of us. “Sorry, I’m late. I was in the middle of something.”

As Micheal stands there looking at the two of us, I can’t help but notice some bruises all over Micheal.

“What’s up? Did I miss something?”

“Oh nothing much,” Ash answers, “Brian and I were just talking. Are you okay?”

“I’m fine,” Micheal says. “Why?”

“Again, nothing. Well, I have things to do. I’ll see you two later.”

With a wave of her hand, Ash disappears out of the exit and leaves the two of us.

Micheal and I just stand for a little bit, looking at each and as the exit.

“Seriously,” he says, “Did I miss something?”

“No,” I say, “You didn’t. Just some talk about peas.”

“Peas,” Micheal repeats, looking all over Rocky. “Did they add some new pizza here or something? And if they did, then why peas? Who wants peas on a pizza?”

“Okay Micheal, I’m not going to talk to you about peas, pizzas, or peas on pizzas. I however want to talk to you about how you’re covered in bruises.”

I point to some bruises on Micheal’s arms.

“What is happening to you? What are you doing?”

“Nothing much,” Micheal replies with a shrug of his shoulders.

“Nothing much,” I repeat, not believing what Micheal is saying He looks like a pepperoni pizza with all the red circles on him. “Micheal, if something is going on, I would really like to know. I mean, come on, we’ve been friends for years.”

“Yes, and as my friend, you should know I’m not much of a secret keeper. I have a very open life.”

“Honestly,” I say, “I’m starting to wonder how ‘open’ that life of yours is.”

Before I can hear whatever is it Micheal is about to say, I shoot him a quick wave and leave Rocky’s.

Micheal:

“What was that,” I ask, looking at the door as it closes. “What’s going on? What’s up with Brian?”

I repeat what he said just before he left.

“Honestly,” he said, “I’m starting to wonder how ‘open’ that life of yours is.”

“What in the world he is talking about,” I ask, leaving Rocky’s myself. Since Brian and Ash weren’t there, there really wasn’t a point in getting a pizza. As I pull open the door and walk over to my car, I think more about Brian.

I think about the first time when we met, the whole soccer ball incident, to middle school when Brian threw me the basketball but instead, it hit me in the face, stunning me and knocking me over, and to high school, when while playing P.E football, he tossed the football and, while trying to catch it, I ran right onto the tracks and right into a track runner.

“Hmm,” I say, thinking it over while putting the key into the ignition, the engine roaring to life. “I really should stop playing sports with Brian. Still, it doesn’t explain what’s up with him lately. It seems like something is bothering him lately, but I just can’t figure out what it is.”

With really nothing else to do, I head back to my hideout.

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