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The Dare

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Matt moved quickly down the dark street, looking back over his shoulder nervously to see if he was being watched. He couldn’t rid him self of the familiar feeling of unseen eyes watching him. Matt started to feel unsure. Maybe this isn’t such a good idea, he thought. He paused for a moment, and then shook his head hard. He had to stop thinking like that. Matt continued on his way. He was almost there now, just a little bit farther. Matt moved around a streetlight, keeping to the shadows as much as possible. He could see it now, the brick house at the end of the street. Once again Matt stopped. This time there was no mistaking the feeling he felt, it was fear. He could feel it welling up inside him, making him want to turn and run. But Matt knew that running was not an option. James and Dillon had told him to do this, and he always did what they told him to do. Matt took a deep breath, shot one last glance over his right shoulder and then walked up the gravel driveway. He stopped in front of the house and knelt down in front of the basement window. With trembling hands he fumbled around on the ground for a rock. His shaking hands found a large circular rock. This will do, he thought. Matt gripped the rock firmly in his right hand, took a deep breath, closed his eyes, and swung forward with all his might.

Matt jumped backwards as shards of broken glass cut his wrist. He was bleeding, but he didn’t care.
“I did it. I actually did it!” he said out loud to himself. “They will except me after this!”
Now that the worst was over Matt was eager to finish his job. Quickly he climbed through the window and dropped down on to the basement floor below. He glanced around, spotted the door that led up to the first floor, and moved toward it. All he had to do was steal one of Mrs. Dupley’s dolls from her antique doll collection, and that should be easy because James had told him that Mrs. Dupley was away on vacation. No one will know it was me who broke the window and stole the doll, thought Matt. He reached the door and reached out to turn the doorknob. Suddenly the door flew open, hitting Matt in the face, and pushing him back against the wall.
“Freeze” shouted Mrs. Dupley, waving a Glock handgun. Matt got to his feet with his hands over his head. “Don’t move thief” said Mrs. Dubose in a failed attempt at a brave voice. The gun shook in her hand as she tried to hold it steady.
“I’m just gonna go” said Matt in a terrified voice. “I didn’t take anything”
“You’re not going anywhere boy! I’m callin’ the police,” shouted Mrs. Dupley in a shaky voice, no longer pretending not to be afraid. She reached for her phone, dropping her gun hand slightly as she did.
Matt didn’t think, he just acted. With out a thought about what he was doing he grabbed the door knob and slammed the door forward against Mrs. Dupley. A gunshot went off, and Matt felt a bullet whiz by him. Without thinking, he lunged at Mrs. Dupley, who was getting up, slamming her back against the stairs. She tried to raise the gun, but Matt grabbed her hand and wrestled the gun out of her grasp. With out even realizing what he was doing, he aimed the gun at her and pulled the trigger.
Matt stared in complete disbelief as Mrs. Dupley’s eyes rolled back in her head and blood gushed out of her forehead. He couldn’t think, he couldn’t feel, his entire body was frozen in shock. Then it came like a giant tidal wave, spreading up his body; there was no name for it except terror. Complete, full on terror. Matt jumped to his feet.
“Oh s***! Oh s***! What the hell did I do?! Matt screamed aloud, clutching at his chest. “Ahhhhhhhhgggg!” He roared in a combination of anger and fear.
Matt turned and ran, diving through the basement window and not caring about the searing pain as his knees slammed into the cement.
Matt couldn’t think strait. He was out of the house but where could he go? Where could he hide? He knew Neighbors probably heard the gunshots. Knew that the Police would come soon. Matt started to sprint toward his house, Mrs. Dupley’s gun still clutched in his left hand. His fear was starting to be replaced by anger. Anger at his older brother James who had dared him to break into the house and steal one of Mrs. Dupley’s dolls. James who had promised that Matt could hang out with him and Dillon if he did it. And James who had lied, saying that Mrs. Dupley wasn’t home. As he jogged towards his house, Matt thought of nothing except how much he hated James. He couldn’t grasp what he had just done, but there was one thing he knew for sure; it was James’s fault!








***

Matt carefully pushed the door open and, making as little noise as possible he slipped quietly into his house. He quickly glanced around the living room. No one was there. Matt moved slowly up the stairs the gun still held loosely in his left hand. He paused at the upstairs landing listening. Sure enough, he could here James and Dillon laughing about something, probably him. They won’t be laughing for long thought Matt, a small smile spreading across his face. Slowly he pushed open the door to James’s room.

“Hey loser” said James. “What took ya so long?” Matt said nothing, he just stared and James.

“Where’s the doll loser?” asked Dillon. Matt still said nothing. “Hey loser why aren’t you sayin’ anythin’?”

“I don’t have the Doll,” said Matt in an angry whisper.

“Oh wimped out again did you? Said James. “Well that’s not surprising. I bet ya didn’t even get to her house before ya chickened out an’ ran back here.

“I killed her,” said Matt in a hollow whisper.

“What are ya talkin’ about? yelled James.

“Mrs. Dupley. I killed Mrs. Dupley. Matt stared incuriously as James and Dillon started laughing.

“He killed Mrs. Dupley! Like were gonna fall for that! Shouted Dillon.

“Hey guys I killed Mrs. Dupley, can I hang out with you now?” said James, imitating Matt in a high-pitched voice. James and Dillon roared with laughter.

“Hey guys, whose blood do you thin this is splattered all over my shirt?” asked Matt. James and Dillon stopped laughing.

“He probably just put ketchup on his shirt to fool us.” Said James, trying to sound confident.

“Hey what’s that in his hand?” yelled Dillon in a terrified voice.

“This is Mrs. Dupley’s gun. Said Matt calmly as he switched the gun to his right hand.

“Playing with toy guns are you loser?” asked James in yet another attempt at a brave voice that couldn’t conceal his fear.

I’m getin’ out of here James! Said Dillon, not even bothering to conceal his terror. Dillon moved toward the door.

“Yeah me to” said James, still trying and failing to sound unafraid. “I’ve got better things ta do than watch my loser brother play with toy guns and tell us made up stories. James followed Dillon toward the door.

“You’re not going any where James.” Said Matt calmly, a small smile crossing his face. Dillon walked out the door slowly, passing Matt who had his gun pointed at James. He gave on last glance at the nightmarish scene in James’s bedroom and then ran.

“You said she wouldn’t be home James.” Said Matt in a deadly whisper. “You knew she was there and you set me up.” James just stared at Matt, wide eyed in complete terror. “ All I ever wanted was for you to except me and treat me like a brother.” Said Matt in the same whisper.

Dillon was just opening the door of the house to leave when he heard the gun shot followed by James’s scream. He took off running full speed toward the police station passing Mrs. Dupley’s house on the way, which now had ten police cars in front of it.

Matt stood in James’s room staring down at James’s body. A day a go he had been a completely normal, innocent person. Now, just one day later he had killed two people. Matt couldn’t move. He knew he should try to hide but he couldn’t bring himself to move.

A minute later Matt heard the wail of sirens. Still he didn’t move. Suddenly Matt heard the booming sound of a SWAT megaphone.

“We have you surrounded! Come out with your hands up!” Matt sighed. He thought about what this would mean. He’d seen it on T.V. many times. It would mean a murder trail in front of a grand jury and then either jail for the rest of his life or maybe even death. There was no way he would be found innocent. He had never planed either of the murders and there were fingerprints everywhere. Once again Matt heard the SWAT order booming from the microphone.

Matt stood up and walked down the stairs and toward the door, the gun still held in his hand.

“This is your last warning! Come out with your hands up or were coming in!” came the boom of the megaphone. Matt opened the front door and walked forward toward the SWAT officers the gun still held in his hand. “Drop the weapon!” boomed the officer with the megaphone. This time yesterday I was probably trying to figure out how to get James to except me, thought Matt. Now I can’t even figure out why I cared if James accepted me in the first place. Matt smiled a miserable smile at that thought. With that smile still on his face and that thought still in his mind Matt raised the gun.

Bullets exploded from twenty different guns hitting Matt in the head and chest. Matt staggered backward and dropped to the ground. As matt lay dieing the last thing he thought was, why the hell did I even care what James thought.





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