After picking up Joe and Donna, Jim drives to the movie theatre. It’s still early Saturday morning, so the theatre hasn’t opened yet. They’re waiting outside.

Jim yawned. It was still too early for his liking. He much preferred to sleep in on the weekends, but movies were cheaper in the morning. Besides, Donna couldn’t come any later in the day, and Joe wouldn’t come without Donna. Every week, it seemed, Joe broke another girl’s heart. This week, it happened to be the very girl he had a crush on.

“Still asleep?” Joe said and jabbed his elbow into Jim’s side.

“Yeah,” Jim said, trying to ignore Joe. He wasn’t sure why he had even agreed to come the movies.

“Wake up, Jimmy-boy,” Joe said, poking him again.

Again, Jim ignored it. He was too tired…too agitated to be played around with this morning.

“Come on, Jimmy,” Joe wailed, thrusting his fist into Jim’s shoulder, throwing a fake punch he knew Jim would dodge. Jim didn’t move, though. The sound of Jim’s breath being forced out of him pierced the empty parking lot as he tumbled over, rubbing his arm in painful agony. Donna giggled at this.

Jim’s lips tightened as he stood back up and strode up to Joe. His eyes burned with anger. He could feel his muscles hardening, preparing his body to be attacked, preparing his body to do the attacking. He did nothing, though, smoke bellowing from his nostrils into Joe’s face.

“Jimmy,” Joe said, still too carefree to alleviate Jim’s anger, “what’s the matter, bro?”

“I’ll tell you what,” Jim growled, pulling his fist back and slamming it into Joe’s jaw—

Donna screeched, shouting their names—though whose it was was gravely unclear.

“What the?” Joe said, rubbing his chin as he stood back up. “What’s wrong with you?”

Jim said nothing, choosing instead to snort in response before he ran at Joe, tackling him to the ground. In the background of his mind, as he dodged another punch and threw one more of his own, he could hear Donna’s screaming, pleading for them to stop.

It wouldn’t stop, though. Jim had kept this in far too long. It was going to continue for a long time.

But then, it did stop.

The ground began shaking, shaking terribly badly. Joe forced Jim off of him and stood up, rushing over to Donna to hold onto her. The shaking continued as Jim stood up, still glaring at Joe. Glaring at Joe as he and Donna backed away, their faces donning expressions of speechless horror as they turned their gazes upward into the sky, away from Jim and where he stood in the shadow of the trembling theatre.

Jim turned around to see what was behind him—then he heard the bloodcurdling crack.


Date: July, 2006
Prompt: The story ends during an earthquake. The story takes place in the morning. During the story, there is a fight. (


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