So, once more Chuck Wendig has challenged us to create flash fiction. This time we are given 20 movies/properties and we must do a stylistic/thematic mash-up of the two. Standard rules: 1000 words or less, and 1 week in which to write it, post it and link it back to Wendig. Using my trusty d20 I let chaos decide. For me she chose Game of Thrones and Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. (My d20 is awesome.)
Now, while I’m a huge fan of Bueller….Bueller….Bueller? I have never read the George R. R. Martin books, nor do I watch the show. But I know enough to get by I think, and that makes this all the more entertaining a project. I will say, this is challenging because the purpose of the exercise is not to create fanfic or mashup the two in terms of the story, but to create a new work that could be pitched outlandishly as “Game of Thrones meets Ferris Bueller’s Day Off“. Because my knee-jerk reaction was to play with Tyrion Lannister stealing someone’s Ferrari. Tempting. Very tempting. But again, not the point of this exercise. I toyed with the idea of parody, “A Sadie Hawkins Dance With Dragons” or some shit like that. Then I just decided to dig down to the very base of both franchises (sex, death and intrigue and capricious hijinks) and let a story bubble up. It’s my first foray back into flash after a while…and I’ve been in my own Etudes in C# ‘verse for months now. So getting started was like pulling teeth.
Here’s what I eventually settled on. I should also note that the first line of this story came from a Twitter conversation with literary agent Sara Megibow last week. It was my addition to the conversation, but still… Anyway! Without further ado I give you “Bucket List”.
by Jamie Wyman
She had everything: a tank of gas, a loaded iPod and a four-day weekend. She hadn’t even bothered to swing by the dorm after class. With her backpack tucked in the passenger floorboard and the top down, Georgia guided the VW around the sinuous curves of the mountain and wailed like Siouxsie and the Banshees. The officer said he’d clocked her at 80 miles-per-hour, but Georgia grinned.
“That’s all?” she’d asked. Stuffing that first speeding ticket into the glove box, she waved at the cop and roared back onto the freeway.
Get a ticket. One thing to cross off the bucket list.
Soon, twenty miles from home became fifty. Then seventy. Before she knew it, she’d left the state line in her rearview. It was almost midnight when she needed to make a pit stop. While the car sucked up fuel like a hungry newborn, Georgia bounced into the gas station to refill her own tank.
She didn’t notice him at first, she was still lost in the wind and speed of the day. But as she turned into the snack aisle Georgia was faced with the most beautiful man she’d ever seen. Skin the color of espresso and eyes like honey, just looking at him made her salivate. Georgia busied herself by pretending to pick out a brand of chips, but kept sneaking glances at him, admiring the way his loose clothes fit his tight muscles. She lifted her stare to check him out only to find him eyeing her. Busted, she bit her lip and smiled. When he smiled back, she melted.
It didn’t take much convincing for either of them to agree to meet in the back seat of her car. There beneath the stars, she let the burning urge in her blood shove her into recklessness. The stranger was every bit as delicious as Georgia imagined. His kisses tasted like cinnamon and his breath against her throat felt like heaven. The leather seats groaned beneath them as they writhed and pumped into one another. Except for primal syllables and ecstatic cries for more, neither of them said a word.
One-night stand. Sex in a car. Check and check.
The pre-dawn air was cool on her moist skin as Georgia draped herself over her lover’s body. While he dozed, her fingers traced the black ink of the dragon tattooed on his chest. Careful not to wake him, Georgia slipped a hand beneath the driver’s seat and retrieved what she would need to take a lasting memento of this perfect night.
As she straddled his hips, he stirred, his hands sliding up her thighs.
“Again already?” he purred.
In answer, Georgia traced her tongue up the black dragon. The stranger sucked in a breath as the knife plunged in. Those lovely, honey-brown eyes went wide with a thousand questions.
Georgia covered his mouth with her hand—and a handkerchief of chloroform.
“Shhh,” she whispered. “Don’t spoil the moment.”
The poor guy didn’t have time to struggle. Strong hands falling away to his sides, he went limp between her legs. She placed a kiss on his forehead then continued her work.
An hour later, Georgia threw the car into gear and sped off. On the passenger seat, her notebook was opened to her “bucket list”, the myriad of things she wanted to do before she left the world.
Get a tattoo. Check.
She had everything; a tank of gas, a loaded iPod and three more days. She was just getting started.