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“Psst!” Bobby whispered from the opposite side of the room. “Hey! Jeremy!”
Jeremy West kept his face buried deep within his hands, trying to ignore the screeching baboon. Finally, he slowly turned and glared at Bobby. This was enough to light up Bobby’s face. He twisted his neck to see that no one was looking and made a dash for Jeremy’s desk.
“What?” Jeremy said angrily under his breath.
“Jeremy! I got a job today,” Bobby whispered as quietly as before.
“And I need help.”
“I don’t know. You know I don’t like these ‘jobs.’”
“Trust me on this one! Nothing can go wrong tonight!”
Jeremy turned his head back to the novel on his desk. “I really don’t-“
“Don’t be a p**** man!” Bobby failed to realize that his whisper had evolved into a soft yell and everyone’s head turned toward him including the teacher who just walked in.
“Sit down, Bobby,” she growled.
“Fine, fine, I’m going!” Bobby growled back, before turning to Jeremy one last time. “Seven. I’ll be there.” With that, he trudged back to his desk.
Jeremy turned his eyes back to his book. He tried to move them along the lines of writing, but he couldn’t focus. His mind kept turning back to Bobby. Damn, he thought, why did I have to get sucked into his life?
I never asked him to be nice to me. Hell, I never even said I was his friend. But that’s all anyone assumes I am anymore. “Bobby’s friend.” I could always just stop hanging around him. I’d leave him alone and he’d leave me alone. Who needs friends at all? Especially when that friend is Bobby East. Maybe I’ll just go somewhere else tonight. He’ll be at my house and I’ll be gone.
Jeremy let out a sigh. I don’t even know where I’d go. Even if I did, I wouldn’t have anyone to go with. Bobby’s right. I will change my mind. There’s no doubt. I just wish he’d change his.
His eyes kept trailing across the same two sentences in his book for the rest of school. Even after he made it back home, he kept rereading them. This kept up until Bobby pulled up to his house and let out a steady stream of honking. Jeremy went out and motioned for Bobby to stop. He slowly shuffled toward the red piece of scrap metal Bobby called a truck. Bobby reached over and swung the door open, barely missing Jeremy. Jeremy didn’t even take notice of this and he climbed in the cab.
Now or never, I guess, Jeremy thought, taking a gulp. “Bobby, I-“
“Jeremy, you’ll never guess what I’ve got planned!” Bobby interrupted. “You know the bank on 23rd?”
“Yeah. Didn’t it close down?”
“You aren’t completely dense after all,” Bobby laughed. “Well, that’s where we’re headed.”
“But if it’s closed-“
“No one will be around. And rumor has it they still haven’t cleared out all the cash.”
Jeremy gasped. “Bobby! Your jobs have always been less than moral, but bank robbery?”
“Oh, shut up. Look, it’s different. We aren’t sticking up the joint or nothing. Think of it like picking up a twenty off the ground.”
“It isn’t the same! Jesus, don’t you suppose they’ve got someone to guard it?”
“If there is, which there won’t be, but if there is, I brought this.”
Bobby reached into his pocket and pulled out a shiny Glock.
“Christ, Bobby!” Jeremy leapt in his seat, slamming against the door. “You can’t use that!”
“Chill out. I’m telling you, we won’t need it. And besides, if we did, wouldn’t you rather shoot the guard in self defense than be shot?”
“I-“ Jeremy tired to muster up whatever courage he could, “I don’t think-“
“That’s your problem, Jeremy. You don’t think,” Bobby chuckled, waving around his gun still. “But hell, I can do that for both of us! Just the kind of guy I am!”
“Look, that’s the bank up there, see? I told you it was empty!”
“Yes sir, it’ll be easy pickings for-“
“I won’t help you.”
“What was that?” asked Bobby, still smiling.
“I said I'm done. I won't help you anymore.”
Bobby slowed down the car and turned to his friend. He rested his gun hand, for a moment, on the head support behind him. A look of bewilderment seized his face and for the first time he stopped talking.
“I-I can’t stand this crap. Do what you want, but I’m done helping you knock over banks.”
“Jeremy, what’s gotten into you? We always have fun! Don’t p**** out now! What, is it this gun? Is that making you so nervous-“
In a bout of carelessness, Bobby’s finger slipped. The bullet went flying out of the barrel, straight through Jeremy’s skull and out the window.
“F***! F***, f***, f***, oh f***! Jeremy? F***, Jeremy, cut it out! Get the f*** up, this isn’t funny, s***!”
“You made one hell of a mess, Bobby,” Jeremy said from the back seat. Bobby quickly turned around.
“Oh, thank God you’re still okay! Look, I get what you said, I’ll clean up, I swear! We can get together and just read books or something, that’s what you like, right?”
“Yeah, sure,” Jeremy shrugged, before motioning back to the front seat. “But isn’t there something else you need to clean up, first?” He was pointing toward his limp body, still lying in the seat next to Bobby. His blood started to seep into the turquoise seat and carpet. Chunks of his brain still clung to the side of the door.
“F***, what am I going to do, Jeremy?”
“Well, for starters you can ditch my body.”
“Right. Where- where should I dump it?” Bobby twisted around, seeing if there was any good place nearby.
“The river, obviously. Jeeze, I thought you knew how to do this stuff.”
“I-I never actually-“
“Whatever. You know where the river is, right?”
“Of course. I showed you, didn’t I?” Bobby put his foot back on the accelerator and started heading for the bridge. “It was our first job together, right? Some drug deal gone bad, they dropped the money under the bridge. Weren’t those times fun, Jeremy?”
“I didn’t like them. I told you I hated those jobs.”
“Oh. Yeah. Look, we’re here.” Bobby’s head-lights gleamed off the river and into the woods behind them. The rickety wooden bridge was just high enough to avoid getting wet and just barely stretched all the way across the small river. Jeremy went around to the passenger’s door and dragged out the passenger, grabbing on his arms. He didn’t even bother to look around for anyone else; he just dragged Jeremy’s corpse to the center of the bridge.
“Ung!” Bobby grunted as he pushed half the corpse up the wall of the bridge. “Well, Jeremy, I guess this is good-bye.”
Bobby let go of his grip and the body fell down several feet, making a plop into the shallow stream. Bobby's eyes flung open.
“This isn't the river,” remarked Jeremy, leaning against the truck.
“S***! Why couldn't you have told me?”
“You seemed pretty confident. I didn't want to bother you.”
Bobby made a dash off the bridge, slipping on the puddle of blood Jeremy left behind. He rolled off the wall and landed right next to Jeremy, face down.
“Hey, you might not want to sleep there, buddy,” Jeremy yelled, looking down from the bridge. “You could drown.”
Bobby was too far gone to pay attention. The cool water flowed through his unconscious nostrils into his quickly swelling lungs. Jeremy got his wish: Bobby was done with his life of crime.