This post contains strong language and mild sexual humor.
That old tree finally fell last night.
Old man Keets hacked away at it right up till he died and the thing outlived him. Three years, a few fist fights, and a hell of storm finally sent it toppling. I whistled at the thick roots. You had to admire Mother Nature. She knows sturdy.
Danie stopped next to me, her fingers half tucked in her front pockets. “Think we can use it for fire wood?”
I shrugged. I didn’t know anything about making a fire.
“Should we tell somebody?”
“Like who?” The tree was in the middle of the woods. The only people who knew about it were delinquents like Danie, Kyle, and me, old man Keets, and the two other cabin owners nobody saw around. Outside of that, the tree didn’t exist. Hell, if it wasn’t for old man Keets and his obsession, we wouldn’t have known about it either.
That fateful day was ingrained into all of us. Kyle and I had just stashed the hot parts by the stream. We ran three miles in mud, rain, and the cover of darkness to hide the stuff. To this day, we have no clue where we buried it but we remember the sound of Danie’s piercing scream. It was a strangled shrill that echoed through the trees.
We thought one of Dante’s crew caught up to us but it turned out to be old man Keets. He had her by her arm. That was all we saw, some old perv grabbing the toughest girl we knew and making her scream. You’d lunge at the guy too. Except he wasn’t a perv. Danie’s leg got trapped in a bear trap and old man Keets stopped her from doing more damage.
I looked down at her ankle. She wore her favorite brown lace up boots but I could still see the wounds from memory. There was so much blood.
“What?” I asked a little to quickly. I tried to mask it to no avail. She snickered and rested her elbow on my shoulder. She’s a good head shorter than me but she loved to act like she was the giant of the trio.
“Did you ever see family photos at Keet’s place?”
Following her gaze, I saw the sudden interest in the old man’s life. My mouth shamelessly hung open. The old man was no looker. He had crater skin, thin hair, jagged teeth, and a slight hunch. There was no way he could have family what sense family that looked hot.
Danie punched the side of my neck. I took it as her attempt to instill some manners but it was too late. I was doubled over and still gawking. The girl had her hair up like Danie in a high ponytail that swayed as she bounced. And I mean bounced. A chest like that deserved to be on playing cards.
“Chris? You do know she sees you right?” She reminded me dryly with another punch at my side. “Stop being weird.”
“Yeah man, stop scaring off the model.” Kyle jogged over to us. If anybody would understand a man’s thoughts, it was him. Rumor had it he was sent to town because he knocked up some chick and her parents wanted to skin him.
What can I say? Delinquents will be delinquents. Least we have a purpose. The longer I stared at that girl though, the more I reconsidered that purpose. Maybe I could be her delinquent. “What do you know?”
Kyle smirked, Danie groaned, and I smiled. He definitely had something. “She’s Keet’s niece. He left the place and the land to her.” He looked at me and we shared a look. “Prime rib-eye steak type of girl. You don’t got the balls to take her.”
“I got yours in my back pocket just in case.” I tossed back with a challenging sneer.
Danie gave us a punch each and stormed off to do the one thing we both forgot. In order to take the girl we needed to introduce ourselves. We were on our way to stake our claim when we saw Danie point and the shared laugh. She spun her finger in the air next. I wanted to tell her to shove it where it belonged but I couldn’t risk Keet’s niece thinking I was a perv.
Her finger kept up its spinning. Begrudgingly Kyle and I sighed. We had to. It was the bi-law of the challenge. Well, we turned, and when we did, we had buckets of what smelled like horse shit and swamp water thrown on us.
“You bitch!” Kyle exclaimed.
I understood why he went straight for that insult when I had my sight back. I locked my jaw in the split half of a second of seeing the buckets but he wasn’t so lucky. Kyle was doubled over, gagging and cursing in between each glob of spit. He definitely got it in his mouth.
“You’re not the only informant in town Kyle!” I whirled around and glared at them all. Danie finally pranked us. It took her ten years but she got us good. Public humiliation and in front of a row of hot girls too. “Go for a dip in the lake. You reek.”
I watched her link arms with Keet’s niece and sighed. Talk about a lasting impression.