Dinner at 7/11
Wednesday, October 08, 2008, 1:12 PM

A writing prompt. Well, why not? I haven't written anything else lately. (D'oh!) My challenge was this:

Bring your [current WIP] characters to a 7-11/convenience store/ or gas station-combo. They walked in together to get something to eat, and there's nobody in sight, the cash drawer is open and empty, there's no blood no body, no nothing. Keep them true to their characters--what happens next?

Oh...and you must mention a specific food.


Nerves and stress did weird things to Shaine's body. It made her itch in embarrassing places at the worst possible time. Her mother had a bunch of photos of Shaine at various ages scratching inside her nose and at her privates.

"It's nothing to be embarrassed about, honey," her mom giggled when Shaine asked why the photos had been kept, let alone taken in the first place. "You were just a baby."

Except it felt like an, er, sexual itch now. So when Daren parked the Harley outside of a 7/11 convenience store and asked if she was hungry, she snarled, "What’s wrong with McDonald’s?"

He pulled the helmet off his head and slid on a pair of sunglasses. "I want a can of AMP."

Yeah, lots of protein in that, she thought as the bike’s lub-lub-lub noise thrummed slower and slower in her bloodstream. It was like a mini-massage.

Maybe Daren was coming down from his high of killing the two North side members of the Head-n-Heart Brigade a few hours ago, and needed a fix. She, on the other hand, wanted sex, hot-and-sour soup and to kill the bike. After hmmmming along on the bike for the last 40 miles or so, she'd had her fill of what it meant to be a Harley chick. It sucked unless you had a Harley Guy. And a Bond Guy was not the Right Guy unless he meant to act on the Harley Guy part of it all, dammit.

Daren held the bike steady for her while she hopped off clumsily and tried to make it look like she meant to move that way. She wondered about the reason for the sunglasses. Who wore sunglasses at night anymore except for Corey Hart or vampire wannabes?

When the garish light from above shot a needle into her brain, Shaine discovered the merits of sunglasses at night. She could tan under these god-awful blazing halogen lights. Holding her palm over her eyes, she yanked the door open and bumped into something warm and solid.

Daren’s back.


He spun and held his hand over her mouth, then motioned with his head toward the cashier’s counter. In the reflection of his black lenses, she saw her lips were mashed together and her eyes all squin-

He held a raised finger in front of her lips, then slid motionlessly between the aisle of motor oil and candy bars.

Nobody stood behind the counter, which might have been okay, people had to take a pee break now and then. But what about the cash register drawer? Cashiers didn’t usually leave their registers open when they left the counter.

Shaine sank into a crouch, gun in her palm, and moved to the counter. She was nonplussed to see nothing but a grimy floor and a scuffed mat. No unconscious body, no duct tape, no bomb. No nothing.

But where was the cashier?

The thief?

The friggen-fargen bad guy?

The drawer slid into the register with a woosh and bang. Shaine fell on her backside hard, in repentance, when she realized what she’d done-effed up a crime scene, announced her position to anyone with more than two brain cells to rub together. If she was shot, she'd deserve to be. Her father would not be proud. Grandmother wouldn've snarled.

Shaine sucked in a breath of a shame just before the row of Home Products exploded. A package of Holsum Hamburger Buns landed in her lap and she leaned her forehead against it briefly. Soft.

I’m not Bond material, she said to God or whoever was listening. Is it my fault if they wouldn't listen?

Another gunshot snapped and she heard voices.

"Smiiiile! You’re on Candid Camera!"

Shaine popped her head above the wood-scarred counter top to see Daren’s movie-starness bathed in garish light. He sank to one leg and swept a cameraman to Kingdom Come in a roundhouse kick.

"No, no, no, no," the guy with floppy blond hair said. He hippity-hopped four or six paces safely behind the obliterated cameraman. "This isn’t a stick up! This isn’t a mission!"

She watched Daren stand slowly. Watched him keep his cool under the pressure and heat of the lights and cameras. Grinned as he swung a closed fist at the blond guy’s face. It was better than watching a movie at the theater. All she needed was a Coke and a bag of popcorn. Wincing as something hit her ankle, she bent down and grabbed the thing. A friggen...can.

"Candid Camera!" someone yelled with horror in a squeaky voice.

Libby’s Vienna Sausage, she read. It had a pop-top, too. She shoved the gun back into her holster and cracked the top. It wasn’t Spaghetti-O's or a Big Mac or a Bond/Daren snack, but who could complain under the circumstances? Then she did a double take at what was inside in the can. Crap. They looked like little weenies. Her forehead thunked against the fake wooden counter-top. Weenies.

Somebody Up There had a wickedly horrible sense of humor.


5 Did the Unhingey Jiggy Engage in Unhingenosity
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