Trifecta 109: Not Worth It

“Hey, geek.” A beefy hand reached out and slapped the books out of Randy’s hands. “You should be more careful!”‘

“Asshole,” Randy muttered.

Rough hands grabbed his shirt and slammed him against a locker. The chaotic murmur of the hallway stopped as eyes turned to the spectacle. “What’d you say, you little prick?”

“Nothing! Leave me alone!” Randy searched for salvation. Stares averted or filled with contempt no matter where he looked.

Except for one. Elizabeth, a cheerleader, put her hand on Brad’s arm. “Come on, Brad. You don’t want to be suspended, do you?”

Brad’s face filled with disgust. “Whatever. You’re not worth it, nerd.”

Randy’s eyes watered as he bent down to pick up his books. He never saw Elizabeth looking back at him.

***

“Do you think Elizabeth Rogers would say yes if I asked her out?” The sounds of silverware against plates and mouths masticating stopped in unison. Randy squirmed at his parents’ incredulous looks.

Randy’s older sister, Lisa, cackled, sending food flying in his face. “Go out with you? Elizabeth Rogers? She would never go out with you.”

“Lisa, that’s enough,” Mom muttered, not looking at Randy. Dad studied his mashed potatoes.

“I’m not hungry.” Randy left the table and stormed upstairs. He flopped on his bed, muttering, “Whatever. I don’t care what they think. I don’t care! I don’t…”

***

Randy waited until the hallways filled. He glanced around, feeling phantom eyes watching. Everyone ignored him.

Except one.

Brad stood at his locker nearby. Randy breathed deep, the bulge under his jacket colder and heavier than it was in the morning. He stalked close, hand inching in his coat, when Elizabeth intercepted him. “Yes,” she said.

“What?”

“I heard your sister talking about how you wanted to ask me out. The answer is yes, but,” she glanced at his left side, “only if you don’t do this.”

Randy sighed, hand falling to his side. “He’s not worth it.”

Lips brushed cheek. “You’re right. He’s not. You are.”

Word Count: 333

Trifecta time again! This week’s word prompt and third definition to be used:

 

 

WHATEVER: (adverb) Used to show that something is not important

The challenge: Use 33-333 words to tell your story using the word.

Normally, I’m not one to shy away from the dark stuff, and I almost went there with this one. As I wrote, I found I really didn’t want to go that route. I went with what I wished would happen instead. Why? Because I wanted a happy ending for this situation where too often there is only horror. I didn’t think anyone would object.

Head over to Trifecta and read some great writers and their takes on the prompt.

Happy Reading and Writing!

J. Milburn

 

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30 thoughts on “Trifecta 109: Not Worth It

  1. This was good. Makes me wonder if one person had showed a little friendship to other bully victims, if it would have averted tragedy.

  2. Nice work!

  3. Yay for all the Elizabeths in this world. 🙂 Good story and great writing.

  4. Whew, that was close! I’m glad she was a caring person…just what he needed all along.

    • Yeah, I originally was going to make her Brad’s girlfriend, kind of an “unattainable dream” type, but I wanted a different ending than the one that would have led to. I’m thinking she’ll help him get back on the right path 😀

  5. nice, glad there was a happy ending to this. great story. ☺

  6. Why are they always named Brad? Pesky bullies.
    Great story, very powerful.

  7. LOved reading this 🙂

  8. A little something different from you indeed! I’d like to see your entry if they had a writing contest where the max words were 666. A beastly story, I bet!

    Dj

  9. I liked the way this ended. It felt good that reasonable ways to avoid sinking to a bully’s level (or worse) are available. I enjoy happier endings these days too! Good work, Jeremy.

  10. There is nothing to object friend you are perfect at writing somehow dark pieces too 😉 Loved Randy’s character. You’re right. He’s not. You are…… Yay 😀 Happy endings are always nice to read 🙂 Great story xx

  11. Beautifully crafted story , and I love happy endings! 🙂

  12. So glad it turned out that way, instead of what could have been. And thank goodness for the sister talking about his plan to ask out Elizabeth!

  13. Because I am dark and sinister, I’m already thinking that she said yes just to calm him down. Now she’s stuck with a psychopath. Chapter 2, please. Thanks for linking up.

  14. A cheerleader heroine. Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about! A lot going on at the end. You really did a good job ratcheting up the energy and tension. 🙂

  15. It was a good story. It’s true that kindness can redirect a person to taking the high road. If you seek revenge you to dig two graves one for yourself and one for the other. When someone starts thinking with their primitive lizard brain, i. e. anger and revenge, reason doesn’t always work.

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