Do It. I Dare You.Mature

Let's keep the short story ball rolling with this....

He stormed out of the house, the front door rebounding from the force of his rage. His grey eyes crackled with a thunder and his footfalls pounded fury. A slightly rotund figure was left leaning unsteadily against the doorframe, a sneer twisting his lips.

'Go on! Run off with your dick tucked between your legs!' the man roared from his position. 'There's more woman in you than man. You make me sick!'

The young man's shoulders hunched slightly under the verbal onslaught. He had never felt such anger, like an acid coursing through him. He wanted to break, smash, crush, obliterate.

He looked at his hands. Unblemished, smooth, undented knuckles.

With these? Yeah. Right.

As quickly as it had surged through him, the anger suddenly bled away, leaving him a dry, empty husk.

Something of his body language must have spoken to the older man.

'If you had ever been in any bit of a scrap boy, you'd know hot anger never lasts.' He hissed. 'You have to go cold, cold where you only want one thing: To cause pain. To hurt. To finish. The world is full emotional fools like you. A few men like me could put you out in seconds.'

The young man clenched his fists.

The usual drunken shit. You'd think he'd be sick of saying it by now.

'I'm not like you.' He said quietly, but distinctly. ' And I am not ashamed of it.'

The older man laughed derisively 'Oh I've known you're not like me for years boy. Couldn't catch a ball unless a dick was attached to it.'

The young man half turned back, knowing he was being provoked, but not really caring.

'Go on then. Do it. I dare you.' He spat. 'Take a swing at me. See if those things can do more than push buttons.'

He wants this. You are not him.

With extreme effort, he turned his back on the older man and strode away, telling himself that walking away was the mature, sensible course of action, that he wasn't worth losing his temper over.

Every fibre of him wanted to turn and vent his rage upon the drunken fool.

The wind picked up, blasting into his face, tousling his short, corn silk blonde hair. It was the twilight hour. The calm before the storm. The day's business had ended, most people at home in front of the television or eating dinner with their families.

The night's business was just beginning.

Fishing his cheap phone from his leather trench coat pocket (a source of great criticism from the older man) he checked his messages. Two new messages. The first was from Edward.

'You on your way man? We're gonna start ok? We'll keep a few for you.'

The second was from Jack an hour later.

'ed txt u ya? we'll meet u round the corner from the cashmere.'

Superb. The Cashmere. Why do we always have to go to the fucking Cashmere?

The Cashmere, the only 'night club' in a town built upon pubs. By all accounts it was ridiculously easy to get into the Cashmere compared to clubs in other towns or cities, but that's only if you big breasts and/or a shirt skirt. For fellas, it was a bit more complicated. You had to dress like someone above your age. Jeans were a must. Shirt was a bonus. An 'I don't give a fuck if you let me in or not' expression helps also.

Or you could just have an I.D.

He opened the text composition page on his phone.

'Yeah grand. Get me a double naggin. Pay you when I see you.'

The young man caught the 9.00PM bus to the town centre. It was sparsely filled. The commuters were long gone and the party goers were only stirring.

Four stops later he disembarked. After walking for five minutes he found Edward and Jack in the usual spot, Edward clearly visible due to his bright red hair and Jack from his wiry black curls. The Cashmere might have been shit, but where else would they go?

'Hey, how are things?' Edward said as they exchanged grips.

'The usual.' the young man replied

'Ah is he being a bollocks again?' Jack said, wincing.

'To say 'again' implies he's been different at some point. He's always a bollocks.'

He felt restless, like there was an itch in his soul he just couldn't scratch. He wanted to sprint from one edge of the town to the other, but at the same time he wanted to slump in a corner and drink until he forgot who he was.

Jack and Edward exchanged a look.

'What?' he snapped.

Edward frowned, eyes troubled but replied 'Nothing man. Here's your naggin.'

'How much did it cost?' he said while digging through his pockets for his 'leather' wallet.

'Hey look, I know money has been hard for you to come by these days so it's really-'

'Shut up rich boy and take the money.'

Edward sheepishly pocketed it. A silence ensued, broken only by the small cracks and metallic scraping of the vodka bottle cap. 

'So... You want a mixer for that?' Jack ventured. Always ready with a line. 'We've some Coke if you wan- Holy shit!'

The young man tossed the now empty vodka bottle into the darkness. He closed his eyes. The liquid scorched a trail of napalm down his throat into what was now the churning lava pit his stomach had become.

'Jesus.' Edward breathed.

'How the fuck did you do that without spewing chunks?' Jack said awestruck, yet looking slightly nauseous. Jack had had a vodka incident not too long ago.

'Dunno.' he replied. 'Needed it to kick in soon. It's taking a lot more to get it these days.'

'Yeah I guess it has been, I mean that beer thing with the soccer ball and mousetrap was pretty cool, but this....' Jack trailed off.

'Christ man I thought you'd drink that in at least an hour.' Edward said dismayed.

'Yeah well.....'

As the trio waited for the club to open (and then at least another half hour. Only the desperate are trying at opening time), true darkness overtook the town.

Edward and Jack sprawled on the bench, the young man leaning against a tree trunk opposite them. They chatted easily, the young man contributing more and more as time wore on, his post-rage weariness evaporating under the starlight.

'Right.' Jack announced 'It's just gone quarter to twelve. It's been open since eleven. I think we're allowed to arrive fashionably late now.'

The young man laughed 'Everyone is thinking exactly the same thing, man. It's gonna be a tidal wave of teenage desperation in that queue, I promise you.'

'Thought you didn't care if we got in or not?' Jack said looking at him sideways.

'I don't, but if I'm babysitting Ginger Nut and Pubes Head, I'd prefer to have some ladies to look at.' He smirked.

Jack winced 'Pubes Head? You always get....graphic after drink.'

'Alright Bjorn, since you're so sensible, why don't you take point? That coat gets us in even if you do look like a flasher.' Edward said rising.

'Bjorn the Flasher' the young man mused. 'Not bad Ed, it has a nice ring to it.'

'Yeah, I could imagine a newsreader warning children to stay away and everything.' Jack grinned. They began to walk at an easy pace to the end of the street.

'Whereas I don't have to imagine for you Jack, they just do it anyway. Remember that pedophile a few months back on the news?'

'You realise that by cutting your hair you made people notice more?' Edward interjected.

'Hey guys c'mon, lay off...'

'Are we gonna see the Jack Attack tonight?'

'I don't hit on girls that hard!'

'Oh you do, remember Sarah?'

'To be fair she's a drama queen bitch.' Edward said.

'Yeah I suppose.' The three rounded the corner. The entrance to the Cashmere was a  hundred feet away. 'Look, may as well quit the chatter now, if we act like little boys, they'll only see little boys.'

'Don't get too excited Jack. No one under sixteen in here man.'

'Fuck off.'

'Shut it lads, now's not the time.' the young man said. The drink was really in it's stride now, bordering too much almost. Sitting down and closing down his eyes would be suicide.

But I can always talk when I'm pissed if nothing else.

'Drop back a small bit.' the young man muttered.

The young man had always an easy time of it getting into bars and clubs, places he generally didn't care about. Luck always seemed to be on his side. At that moment, the wind chose to catch his leather coat, flaring it back, his his loose locks ruffling.

First impressions are crucial.

Walk tall, keep eye contact, but not too much.

The railings that left a narrow, long gap to the doors were just being set back into place as a pair of young hopefuls were turned away.

Tsk tsk. Trying to get in with a hoody?

A small part of the young man tensed, waiting for the bouncers to say 'No I.D. lads? Goodnight then.', but most of him really didn't care if they were admitted or not. The alcohol may have stymied his black mood, but he felt more restless if anything.

So it was completely natural that he walked straight past the bouncers and inside without pausing.

He strolled to the cloakroom room, exchanged his trench coat and a few coins for a small stub. Turning, he noticed Edward and Jack removing their jackets, expressions neutral, but eyes euphoric.

'Shots?'

Edward and Jack grinned.

The next several hours passed in a haze, flashing lights, pounding bass, smashing glass, drunken yells, shrieks, sweaty bodies and scrabbling hands.

He hated it. In the confined spaces with the glares from arrogant, narrow-minded Neanderthals, his restlessness grew. He could see the older man in all of these fools, the same tunnel vision on life, the same prejudices.

At roughly 2.00AM, Edward clapped him on the shoulder 'You ready man? It only gets messy in the last half hour. Besides' he gestured at the floor 'Jack isn't looking too good.'

The floor groaned.

'Yeah, yeah whatever,  if we're going we're going, if we're staying, we're staying, let's just fucking decide!'

Edward was stunned (alcoholically aided) for a moment.

'Alright man, alright man. Give me a hand with Jack here would you? We just need to get him a few pints of water to sober him up.'

But the young man had already strode off at a swift pace, all traces of alcohol having left his system.

Don't feel sober though. Feel.... agitated.

He drummed his fingers on the counter as he exchanged his stub. He pulled his coat on quickly. He left quickly, hands in dug into his pockets.

It had began to pour rain.

His hair was quickly plastered to his head, a vanilla splatter on a block of ice. He left the coat untied, the water seeping into his black shirt, jeans and Converse.

It felt wonderous.

He was drenched soon enough, an amazing coldness overtaking him, flaring with the gusts of wind. He did not know what he would do next, run, fall, jump or roar, but he knew he would explode upon it.

A sharp prod in the back.

He froze.

'Here boy, don't move now. Give me your wallet and we'll have no problems.'

A rough inner-city accent.

He began to turn.

'Haigh now, don't be moving, wouldn't want to make me nervous.' the voice said maliciously.

But he kept turning.

He found himself face-to-face with the epitome of all he disliked in his gender. Classic scummy haircut, tracksuit, empty eyes and something to prove. A leech of society.

He couldn't be more than eighteen.

Utter fury gripped him.  But not like before. Not this time. He felt it, the ice spreading through his veins.

They stood half a foot apart, a cheap but sharp switchblade the bridge.

'Are you attempting to mug me?' he asked quietly.

The mugger sneered. 'No 'attempting' you twat. Up against the wall.' He shoved for emphasis.

The young man retreated slowly to the wall, his blank exterior belying the tempest that raged within him.

His back struck the wall.

The mugger stopped within a few inches. He held the knife up to the young man's abdomen, point just touching his shirt.

'Right, no more shit, hand over your wallet now boy.'

'If I may, why have you the blade of your, if I may say, sounvenir stand switchblade pointed at my stomach?'

'What?'

'I'll speak slowly then retard. Why-do-you-have-that-pointed-at-my-stomach?'

The mugger's face twisted in anger. 'Cos I'm fucking mugging you, you fucking idiot!'

'Using the same swear twice in the same sentence? Come on, you can surely do better than that.'

'I swear I-'

'But back to the issue. I don't see the point in having that Kinder egg toy pointed at my belly. I really doubt it'd kill me.'

The mugger gaped. 'You're mental.' he said 'Doesn't matter though.' He pressed the blade a centimetre or two closer, the point drawing a small amount of blood.'

'No, no, no, that wont do at all.'

The young man grabbed the mugger's wrist and raised it until the blade was just below his sternum. Directly over his heart.

He grabbed the back of the mugger's head with his other hand, pushing it forward until they were forehead-to-forehead.

'Do it.' the young man snarled.

'You're insa-'

The young man dug his fingers into the mugger's neck.

'C'mon you're almost there.' he hissed. 'A small push, it's only a few inches.'

The mugger's eyes went wide.

'I don't want to kill you, just give me your bloody money!'

'Oh bloody is right.' the young man whispered. 'How much do you want this money? Enough to shove this blade into my heart and feel my warm blood flow all over your hands?'

The mugger just stared at his hand, where a thin line of blood stood out against the midnight black shirt. His hand was sweaty and shaking.

'Do it. I dare you.'

The mugger shuddered and closed his eyes.

'I can't.'

'Is that right?' the young man sneered. 'Tell me, when I called you a retard, were you angry at me?'

'What are you-?'

'Tell me!' he roared. 'Were you angry when I called you a retard?'

'Y-yeah, yeah I was.' the mugger stammered.

'But why aren't you angry now? Have you forgotten that I insulted you? That you want my money? That you stand with a knife against my heart? Why don't you take your revenge?'

'I-I'

'Why?'

'I don-I don't'

'Why?' he shouted.

'I can't-'

Snarling, the young man leaned back while driving the butt of the hilt into the mugger's nose. The mugger recoiled back, rain and sweat causing him to lose his grip on the knife and the wet ground. He crashed to the floor, hands on his bleeding nose.

The young man reversed the knife, and dove to the floor, black coat swishing, water spraying. He slapped a hand on the mugger's face and then drove the blade into his exposed throat.

His cries cut off with a wet gurgle.

Blood gushed. A great font struck him in the forehead, his overgrown fringe splattered strawberry and cream.

I appear to have struck an artery.

'Oh my God! What the hell did you do?' a voice cried from the entrance of the alleyway. Looking around, the young man realised his feet had taken them to their spot.

Edward stood twenty feet away.

He looked sick.

He staggered to the bench and was threw up violently on the ground. From the looks of his shirt, Jack had already been there. He lay against the wall, semi-conscious.

'Oh Jesus, you killed someone, why?'

'He tried to mug me.'

'So you killed him?' Edward exclaimed. 'Why the fuck didn't you just give him your wallet? It wasn't like there was a lot in it!'

'It was the principle of the matter' the young man replied evenly. 'He wasn't willing to do what was necessary to get what he wanted. He was weak. Hot anger you know? Burns fast. Never lasts.'

'What the fuck are you talking about?' Edward whispered, fear in his eyes.

The young man regarded him, blood dripping down his chin. He smiled.

'Never you mind Ed.'

He leaned down, pushing against the mugger with one hand and pulling the knife with the other. It shot out suddenly with a meaty snick.

More blood flowed.

Edward threw up.

The young man turned to leave.

'Hey, where are you going?' Edward shouted. 'You can't just leave! You have to report this to the police. You should get away with it if you go to them first.'

The young man ignored him and kept walking. The rain had stopped.

'Fucking hell man, this is serious, you can't do this to us! You want me to lie to the police for you? They could put me and Jack away for just being here!'

The young man kept walking.

A hand grabbed him roughly on the shoulder.  He twisted quickly, knife pointed at Edward's heart.

'Go home Edward. You never saw me. You lost me in the Cashmere.'

'But you can't just-'

'Yes. I can. And I will. Goodbye Edward.'

'You never call me Edward.' he breathed. 'Where are you going?'

The young man stopped. He half looked over his shoulder.

'Home.'

He strode away, leaving his friends behind.

The buses didn't run this late. He would usually take a taxi, but suspected it would be slightly more problematic. He walked.

He wasn't sure how long it took him to walk home, but the sky was just turning inky-blue as he stood at the end of the street. He looked at his hands.

The mugger's blood had congealed. They were dark red and sticky.

He sneered the artist. But the funny thing about that, is that if you can build, it's far, far easier to destroy.

Flicking the knife out once more, he wiped it with a sleeve.

He strode up the street.

He walked through the small gate and up the pathway.

'Oh bother' he muttered to himself. 'I seem to have lost my key.'

He rang the doorbell.

Nothing.

He rang it again.

A landing light turned on.

Heavy footsteps pounded down the stairs.

A shape formed on the other side of the bubbled glass on the door.

An icy smile formed on the young man's face.

The door opened.

The End

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