“Pay up, Benjamin Bluetooth!” Reez Newman said, tossing the pool stick on the green felt.

Benjamin’s eyes constricted. He shook his spiked-blond head as he gave Reez a stunned, hateful look. Benjamin’s mind raced… Had he really just seen the eight-ball disappear into the side pocket? Had he, the greatest pool player of Fairvale High School, really lost his first game of eight-ball to the baby-faced Reez Newman who wasn’t much taller than a leprechaun? Yes. Yes he had. And he couldn’t believe it.

“Yea, bro!” Bethany Bluetooth said, taking a seat on the basement steps. She tugged at her pink whirly skirt, then crossed her slender, tanned legs. “Pay up!” She took her finger and started twirling at her blond hair while thinking, Reez is hot! I wonder since he’s small if maybe he didn’t get blessed in the midsection area?!

Benjamin’s gaze turned to Bethany. Her eyes never left Reez who was smiling from ear-to-ear. Benjamin crinkled his brow and hissed, “Shut up, Bet! This is between me and Reez!”

She paid no attention to him at all. Her unblinking, lust-struck eyes watched Reez’s every move. He noticed her looking, so he gave her a cocky, full-of-himself, smile.

Benjamin rolled his eyes at the two. “Damn! You two want me to go leave so you can fuck?!”

Reez got red in the face.

“No,” Bethany expressed. “Well, not with the ATM’s upstairs!”

“You better not let mom hear you call her that,” Benjamin said. “You know how she hates your slang talk.” Benjamin turned to Reez and said, “Look, Tiny-Tim. I’m not going to be able to pay up.”

“Don’t call me that!” Reez barked, raising his chest. “You know I hate being called that!”

“Apologies,” Benjamin said smiling. “I didn’t mean to call you that. What I meant to say was… Look, you wanna-be Tiny-Tim fuck! I’m not paying up!”

Reez charged at Benjamin and landed a nice right hook to Benjamin’s jaw. Benjamin returned the punch with a right of his own, then the two of them fell to the floor in a down-and-out braw.

Bethany gasped. She took off running up the staircase yelling, “Mom! Dad! The dumbass and the leprechaun are fighting!”

Reez and Benjamin exchanged several blows. Benjamin laughed once and said, “You hit like a girl!”

Reez retorted, “Yeah, well later on, I’m gonna have your sister put the stink on me!”

Benjamin’s dad, Buford, came rushing down the stairs with Bethany following closely behind him. Buford wasted no time, he grabbed Benjamin with a muscular arm and stood him up. “Stop this nonsense right now,” he said with a gruff voice. “And tell me what the hell is going on!”

“It’s nothing, dad,” Benjamin answered, rubbing his sore jaw.

“Doesn’t look like nothing,” Buford exclaimed, turning his attention to Reez and saying, “Young man, would you please tell me what’s going on?”

Reez seemed hesitant, but his words came out quickly. “Look, man. Benjamin and I were playing a game of pool when I suggested that we make a small wager. He agreed. But when he lost he didn’t wanna pay up!”

Buford looked at his son. “Is this right, Benjamin?”

“Yea, dad. But Reez is an asshole! He even made a crude comment ‘bout Bethany!”

“Now, son. I’m not worried about what he said…”

“But DAD!” Benjamin broke-in. “He said that he wanted Bethany to put the stink on him!”

Buford’s confused face turned to Bethany. “Okay, Bet. What does that mean?”

Bethany was smiling like a kid with a new toy. “It means that he wants to have sex with me!”

Buford shook his head. “Okay. Now how about you go on upstairs. I need to have a word with these boys.”

“But…” Bethany tried to say.

“Now!” Buford ordered, pointing upstairs. “I’ve got some parenting to do!” Buford turned to Reez and said, “You know, young man, you shouldn’t say such things about women. One of these days you might have a daughter of your own and you wouldn’t want somebody talking about her in that type of manner. Now would you?”

Reez lowered his head. “Nah. I don’t guess so.”

“And you,” Buford’s voice rose, his eyes gawking at Benjamin. “How many times have I told you not to gamble! Especially if you can’t pay off your debts!”

“But dad.”

“Don’t but dad, me,” Buford rebuked. “Pay up, son! Stop being such a sore loser!”

“I’m not a sore loser, dad. I just can’t pay off Reez.”

“Why not?” Buford said, looking pissed-off.

“Because I bet your ‘66 Corvette.”

“Oh,” Buford said, the pissed-off look leaving his face. He looked at Reez, who’s smile grew wide. Buford let out a deep groan. “Well, that’s not going to happen. Son,” Buford said, placing a hand on Benjamin’s shoulder. “You do remember what I’ve told you to do when you can’t pay off a debt. Don’t you?”

Benjamin looked puzzled. “I dunno.”

“Boy do you ever listen to me?”

Benjamin’s puzzled look grew deeper.

Buford snorted, “Boy, I’ve always told you that if you can’t pay off your debt… then kill the debt collector!”

“Oh, yea!” Benjamin exclaimed, pierced lip curling into an evil grin. He leered at Reez who was trembling in fear.

“Just remember, son,” Buford said, heading up the stairs. “To make it quick, and keep it quiet. We don’t want the neighbors thinking we’re a bunch of crazy psychopaths.”

"Pay Up"
Copyright: © 2010 Chad Case
Chad Case lives in Lawrenceburg, Kentucky, with his wife, Melissa. He enjoys writing short horror fiction in his spare time. To date his works have been published on MicroHorror.com, The New Flesh Blogzine, Flashes In The Dark, Flashshot, and in the anthology: Toe Tags.

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