Death by Selfie Stick
“You’re mine, bitch.”
“In your dreams, loverboy.” I snatched a thin, metal wand from a retreating woman, holding it overhead as Tall, Blond, and Obvious bore down at me. The selfie stick bent, the plastic end snapped off, giving me up without so much as a sorry. Still, it was enough to deflect the blow and give me the moment I needed to retaliate. I pressed forward, creating space to work. He had the advantages of height, weight, and reach.
Me? I was meaner.
He came at me again, telegraphing his over-the-shoulder swing. I blocked it and buried the jagged edge of the selfie stick in his soft belly. He shouted in surprise as much as pain, his weight coming down over me. With a lowered shoulder, I let his momentum take me back. Then I used it against him, lifting him enough that gravity carried him over the short wall behind me.
The crowd screamed.
The body landed.
I looked over the wall. TBO’s body laid across the headstones of a small cemetery, the selfie stick protruding from his belly, his neck broken. And he was still wearing Bennie’s backpack.
I hope she didn’t have anything illegal in it.
I turned back to the crowd. Dozens of wide eyes stared with a mix of intrigue and horror, waiting to see what I would do next. I swiped another selfie stick, broke it over my knee, and tossed it at the owner’s feet. “No selfie sticks!”
Whistles cut through the crowd’s murmurs. The calvary was coming. What felt like forever was only a few minutes. “Get Hanna to a bench before she passes out.” Some people just don’t have the constitution for the messy parts of this business. Uniformed guards flooded the area. Looked like I was going to find out how good the cover Ian created was.
“On your knees. Hands where I can see them.”
Yeah, like I hadn’t heard that line before.
They buried me today and I had the balls to show up. Here I was, on a sunny day in May, shaking my head along with a hundred other people, wondering how someone so young and vibrant could—poof—be gone. I hid in plain sight, loitering on the edge of the crowd. A shit-brown wig in place of my usual chemical blond, matching contacts to camouflage my signature green eyes, and sunglasses plucked from the seventies ensured my face wouldn’t catch the attention of the masses. A theater-quality padded suit added forty pounds to my athletic frame and clothes I wouldn’t be caught dead in completed the illusion. The people who claimed to be closest to me would see what I wanted them to see, another mourner, lamenting the waste of a good life.
Sunny day in May—yeah, I’ve always had trouble with funerals being on sunny days. I firmly believe in mourning and expect nature to get on board with it. A funeral wasn’t a funeral if the day wasn’t gray with clouds so heavy water leaked like tears. Any temperature that didn’t chill through skin and muscle down to the bone was an affront to the guest of honor. Stark silence needed to be center stage, the absence of natural sound, the absence of life, then fill it with the guttural cry of a bagpipe.
That’s what I call a funeral.
Yeah…that’s not what I got. I got the Disney version.