Fist Full

by Thomas Edward

Fist Full (Present Tense)

The dark, late model sedan settles into a parking spot. The driver turns the car off and opens the door. He looks over to see his friend waiting, leaning against another car. I dont want to hear it, Gary.

So, youre really going to do this? You know this wont go well, Brandon.

Sure it will," Brandon says with a smirk. "Ill be in and out so fast that he wont even notice.

I tell you what, Ill bet you a hundred bucks you get tossed on your rear.

Puh-lease, its not happening tonight. You know what, youre on. If you just want to hand over free money, thats fine with me. Brandon turns back, hitting a button on his key fob, locking his car doors.

Its not gonna to be that easy. Gary joins his friend as they begin walking.

Just because youre a private investigator, you think you know better?

You dont think hes gonna flip out? Gary asks.

I know him too well. Hes too cocky. Hes going to showboat and strut the whole time, just like a flamingo.

A muscle-bound flamingo. Gary stops. "And he's right in there."

Brandon turns, looking inside a local pub. He wont even know.

You do remember the last time you and he were in the same room? The doctors in the emergency room got stories to tell future residents about removing objects in weird places.

Yeah, very funny. Hes never been the brightest person. I imagine he cant think that far back.

Its only been four months. Youre in trouble when he does remember you. No, sorry, youre just in trouble.

I dont think Neanderthals are that far up the evolutionary scale. Besides, he does have a pre-humanoid cranial ridge. Brandon hands over a folder.

Gary states, Hes also six foot, four inches tall and the size of a Buick.

Wont matter, cause I just use a couple of big words and his brain shuts down. Wish me luck.

Youre going to need more than luck." Gary starts flipping through papers in the folder. "How about a rabbits foot? You want me to get a horseshoe off the police horse back down the street?

Gary backs up to lean against another vehicle as Brandon gives him a sarcastic look back before entering bar. The only commotion for a couple of minutes is cars and pedestrians. Soon, the music from inside is mixed with the sound of voices. This is not helping things! As Brandons voice becomes clear, he emerges, being pushed out the door. He lands on his feet, spinning around. Noticing the smirk on his friends face, Brandon quickly points. Dont. Gary smiles, throwing his arms up.

Brandon straightens his shirt. With a quick look back and forth, he musters the intestinal fortitude to enter the establishment again. It does not take long before more yelling starts.

I know my rights! Ive read the constitution! Have you? I bet you havent! I bet See Dick Run gives you a migraine just processing what the word run means! Brandons arguing goes unnoticed as several bar patrons push through the door, carrying him on their shoulders. He is dumped on the ground near the street. Quickly, he crawls back, huddling against a van. Looking up with apprehension, his fists are clenched.

A large, muscular man, who happens to be Brandons target, stands over him. Still trying to be the tough guy, after messing with me and my head, Brandon? Aw, you got your fists up like this is a grade school fight. You dont want none of this. Ill hit you so hard, just like I did to your sister. Brandon remains still, eying him intently. Feeling satisfied with the lack of a response, the large brute turns away. Thats what I thought, a family of losers.

Once the brutish thug vanishes back into the bar, Gary walks over, holding laughter under his breath. Brandon continues lying on the ground, then looks up and asks, You got the baggie?

Gary pulls out a Ziploc bag and opens it wide. Brandon shakes his hands vigorously over the bag. Gary zips the bag closed and places it in his pocket. Told you that youd be on your rear.

Brandon stands up and dusts himself off. Fine, I owe you a hundred bucks. Could have been worse.

I know, but since you didnt think this would be so hard, I thought seeing you get bounced around like a beach ball would be fun. He really had no clue you had a hand full of hair?

Like I said, hes a Neanderthal. I thought they were extinct, or dead until I met him. Now we can get that DNA test so he can start paying child support to my sister. Brandon looks back at the bar.

How about we go down the street and celebrate. I can talk to you about coming to work for me. Gary offers, giving a friendly pat on the back.

Brandon Simmons, P.I.? Do I get a badge?

Not if youre going to be a professional instigator.

Thanks, but Im not interested in job offers right now. Some corporate opportunities should be coming my way any day now. The only thing Im interested in is to get a few drinks in me.

Gary smiles, I know a great dive we can hit. Its got a lot better atmosphere than this dump, plus that hundred bucks you owe me will buy lots of drinks.

Yeah, yeah, on my rear, dont remind me. Brandon follows his close friend, satisfied that his efforts to help his sisters plight are worth the drinks they will soon share.

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