Later, they cruised through town and down the drag strip where all the teenagers hung out. When they stopped at a red light, Bruce took out one of his CDs and looked over at Jane.
“’You like Velvet Revolver?” he asked.
“Oh yeah. They’re one of my favorite groups,” Jane answered.
With that, Bruce popped the CD into his newly installed CD player and the intro to the song, “Slither,” began to play over his speakers. Then when the guitars began to scream, Bruce hit the power windows button and let the windows down before turning the music up full blast. The light turned green, and, like any seventeen-year-old boy, Bruce floored the gas and took off.
After “Slither,” faded out, the intro to “She Builds Quick Machines,” began to play.
As the night grew later, the drag strip became more packed until the entire main stretch was lined with sport cars, sedans, jeeps, and four-wheel drive pickups piled full of wild-eyed teens. Several of the other vehicles also had glass packs and you could hear their young drivers revving up the motors while showing up their hotrods.
The stores and businesses that lined the drag strip had rolled up their carpets at six, about an hour before and their empty parking lots were full of parked cars. The parked cars were surrounded by groups of kids with some sitting on the hoods of cars and tailgates of pickups.
In the crowds were Chandler, Kevin, Daniel, Breanna, Audrey, Ashley, and Audrey’s older sister, Giles, who had graduated the year before and was now in college. The group of cliquish former classmates noticed as Bruce’s car passed them by.
“I see McCauley finally got that junkyard piece of shit refurbished,” Chandler scoffed.
“Of course, doofus! Why wouldn’t he? His dad’s a mechanic. You ought to know that punk would have himself a set of wheels eventually,” Audrey said.
“Who’s the blonde in the car with him,” Daniel asked.
About fifteen minutes later, when the refurbished classic car passed them again, Breanna squinted her eyes to get a better look at the mystery girl who sat on the passenger side of Bruce McCauley’s car. This time, she recognized her.
“Well, I’ll be damned! That’s Jane Markowitz in the car with him!”
The clique chuckled derisively.
“Well, looks like old McCauley’s gonna score tonight!” Kevin remarked.
“I wouldn’t doubt it,” Breanna sneered, “Her mama’s a whore, so, you can bet she is too!”
“You ain’t lying!” Audrey agreed.
Chandler’s eyes widened with excitement.
“Hey! I got an idea! Let’s all get in our cars and see where those two losers are headed,” he told them, “I’m itchin’ to have me a little fun with those two!”
It was ten-thirty. Bruce decided to head back toward Jane’s house to beat the dreaded curfew. Jane’s first date had been a memorable one and she’d have the best time of her life with Bruce. Those hours had flown by, and Jane wondered why time always seemed to past by quickly when one was having so much fun. It seemed as if they had only left minutes ago. It was funny how curfews always seemed to come around so quickly.
Bruce looked at Jane as they drove down her road, about six miles from where she lived.
“I had a great time tonight. It sucks that the fun had to end so quickly,” he told her.
“Yeah, I know. I had a wonderful time too, Bruce,” Jane agreed.
Suddenly a pair of headlights, high off the ground, appeared behind them and was gaining fast until they were so close behind them, they lit up the inside of Bruce’s car. Jane turned and looked behind them through the windshield.
“Uh…is there any reason why this idiot is riding our ass?” she asked.
“Aw, shit! Looks like we’ve got company,” Bruce said in a voice of dread just before he put more pressure on the gas pedal and sped up.
“Do you know who it is?” Jane asked, craning her neck and leaning to look between the seats and through the windshield behind them.
“It’s got to be those assholes from school. It looks like Chandler’s truck.
The large Ford F150 kept up with the Trans Am, riding its back bumper and antagonizing the driver and passenger within it. Bruce tapped his break with his toe as his break lights flashed and the truck backed off. The truck finally sped up again and managed to catch up. It switched lanes and rode right alongside Bruce and Jane. Its windows were down and so were the windows of Bruce’s car.
Suddenly, something flew out of the window of the truck and through the driver’s side window of Bruce’s car and landed in the middle console.
“What the-!” Bruce yelled in surprise.
Jane saw what it was and screamed, “Oh my God!”
It was a freshly killed dead chicken drained of its blood. The truck then drove away, with its occupants cackling.
Bruce pulled to the side of the road, got out, reached back in, and grabbed the carcass with a brown paper bag, then slung it in a ditch. He then opened the trunk, grabbed a few rags, then leaned into the car and wiped down the console.
“Sons of bitches! Jane, I’m sorry this happened,” he told her.
“It’s not your fault. You can’t control what stupid people do,” Jane responded.
When Bruce pulled into Jane’s driveway, it was a quarter til’ eleven. They gazed into each other’s eyes, then slowly leaned toward one another, and engaged in a long, passionate kiss. Bruce then cupped Jane’s delicate face in his hands.
“I’m sorry about what just happened, Jane,” he said.
“It’s not your fault. Besides, other than that stunt those people pulled, I had a great evening,” Jane assured.
“Ah,” Bruce said with a smile, “Well, the fair usually comes to town every September and it’ll be in town next weekend. So, how would you like to accompany me there. Instead of tickets, we can get a night’s pass. And just enjoy the entire evening riding all the rides.”
“Yeah. I’d like that.”
Bruce and Jane then got out of the car and Bruce walked Jane to the door before they embraced each other in another breathtaking kiss. Finally, they went inside.