This is one of my favorite scenes from the book...
The groups now squared off, three against three. Nick noticed that people had spilled out of Ole’s, and the crowd had spread into the parking lot. The Bass looked like he was really having a wonderful time as he strolled up closer to Chad. He was much shorter than Chad but wider through the chest. With his dark tank top and knee high moccasins, Nick thought he really did look like an action hero from a movie.
Bruce grabbed Nick by the chin and looked deep into his eyes. Nick gave him a nod. Bruce nodded back with a crooked smile and let him go, confident that Nick was not going to fall, and that he could fight if need be.
“Soooo, what have we here? Looks like Bruce and I drove by just at the right time! We might have missed the fun, right, Bruce?”
“We almost missed it for sure, Bass,” Bruce responded with a grin.
“That would have been a shame. Not right that Nick should get all the fun, right, Bruce?”
“Not right at all, Bass,” replied Bruce.
“Chad, now I know you’re slow, everybody does, but didn’t your momma tell you that three against one just isn’t fair? That’s not fair, right, Bruce?”
“Not fair at all, Bass.”
Chad was way out of his element. He was torn between rage and cowardice and he looked like he was on the verge of tears.
“This ain’t about you two. This is between me and Davis!”
“You know, it didn’t look like that to me. It looked like all three of ya were going after Nick here, and to tell you the truth…it looked like Nick was gonna take ya all by himself. That is until this one here,” he nodded at Dan Nelson, “clocked him in the back of the head with that bottle. That about right, Bruce?”
“Just about right, Bass.”
There was silence, as the opponents measured each other up, and tension crackled in the air.
“What do ya think, Bruce? Are we gonna do this?” the Bass asked.
“I don’t think so, Bass.”
“I don’t either. I think these three were just getting ready to leave.”
Chad was so mad and frustrated that tears did begin to roll down his cheeks. His face was bright red.
“This ain't over, not by a long shot. You think you’re funny? You think you guys are tough? You don’t know fucking nothing!” He voice became deathly quiet. The crowd couldn’t hear, but Nick and his friends could hear just fine. “You faggots think you won this? You're dead. My beef was just with Davis, and I might have taken it easy on him before. But now you're all dead.”
The Bass had had enough. “One more word out of you and we do this now.”
He walked right up to Chad’s chest, and after a long second, Chad backed down.
“Come on, guys. Let’s get going. We're wasting our time here.” He and the two brothers climbed into his truck, and with screaming rubber, he jumped the curb and was off, north down Coffeen.
Patrick C. Van Slyke. I hope to write horror. I hope people will read it.