Crouching at the Door

Friday, May 21, 6:45 a.m., Karl’s House

The ceiling fan spun above him, the furniture a blur of shadows around the room. His alarm clock sat out of reach on the dresser. 6:45 a.m. Karl swung his legs over the edge of the bed. He paused and let his feet warm the cold floor as he smoothed out his bedhead.

He opened his curtains. The road in front of his house was quiet; no sign of Devon’s car.

His cell phone buzzed on his dresser. His father’s face shone on the screen. The old man’s text read, “Hey, K-man. Gonna miss grad night. I know. I’m a bitch. Be in Sun. AM. Then, beers and wings until we puke! I apologize for any inconvenience caused,” with a shit emoji. His father had a sense of humor. 

“Par for the course,” he said. “The SOB will be making this up to me for weeks.” Karl smirked.

6:55 a.m. and his second alarm sounded, followed by Devon pounding on the front door.

“Open the door, dingle!” Devon yelled. “Come on, man! So slow! You’re like my mother!”

Karl flung the front door open. 

“Shut it. You’ll wake the neighbors,” Karl said.

Devon mooned him. Karl kicked him, and they tumbled out to Devon’s vintage red ’62 Mustang with white leather seats. Devon had restored it himself. The boy couldn’t hit a fastball, but he could fix a car. Devon checked his perfect wavy blond hair in the mirror.

“Gee, Dev, you’re so pretty!” Karl cooed.

“Suck it,” Devon said.