Caught up with all the TIW challenges. Here's my 500 word take of Challenge 103...an interesting one...
The Elements: Iron Handcuffs, Barn owls, a light bulb salesperson, a Bumper sticker
How is it that straw can always find a way under your clothes and scratch you to death?
"It's a jeep. If I wanted a Hummer, I'd call your sister." He threw my ripped off bumper sticker at me.
"Hey! That wasn't cheap! $1.99 at the drive-through!"
"You were robbed."
I was assaulted. Driving down Highway 10 past Phoenix, I noticed this pick-up on my tail. I thought nothing of it until it rammed me and pushed my car off the road and into a ditch. Before I could recover, a fist came through my window and that was that. Now I'm lying in some farm building, dead of night, trousers missing, tied to a strut on a chain with iron handcuffs, with only a couple of hooting barn owls and a crazy to keep me company.
"You think you can disrespect my sister like that, you got another thing coming!" It wasn't his loud manner that was disturbing, it was the shotgun under his arm.
"It's only a bumper sticker! Hell, you knocked me off the road for that? Unchain me right now!"
"You're in no position to order anyone around! Shut your mouth or I'll shut it for you!"
He paced up and down, glancing at me and toying with his gun.
"Look, guy, I'm a nobody. If it's money you want, I've got some in my..." He'd taken my jacket.
"Yes, I know. I've got all your stuff."
"Then...what? What is this all about?"
"Don't go playing the fool with me!" It isn't the weapon that hurts you, it's the person holding it. A gun butt hurts when placed forcefully against your head. Took me a while to get up from that one.
"So...it's not money, you've got my money. It's the bumper sticker? Seriously?"
"No, of course not! But it shows your shallow mentality!"
"Do...do I know you?" I would have recognised this monster of a man with a gun under his arm if I'd seen him before.
"No. But I know someone you've met."
Met? I'm a light bulb salesperson. I meet a lot of people, sometimes in dark rooms.
"Who? Who do I know?"
Crap. I'd done a few dodgy deals with some old ladies in the past week. Even sold a tonload of LEDs to an old girl down in Ajo. About $200 worth. What she was going to do with them, I had no idea. Perhaps make a disco ball from all her chandaliers. Nice town.
"Yes, really. Does Mavis Henkell ring a bell?"
"Err..." That was the one. Damn. He threw a large opened cardboard box in front of me and aimed his gun.
"Remember her now?"
"Err...yes, yes, I do. I'll reimburse her, I promise. I'll give back double she paid...really, really, I will. I'm sorry..."
"What? Reimburse! No, you dumbass! You gave her the wrong box! She wanted pink and purple lights, not blue and green!"
He locked and loaded.