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The Short Form

“goodbye Hills, hello night”

Kyle Minor


Our plan was to drive around for awhile first. You don’t never show up to a party early. I liked to show up last, give a war whoop, a Banshee cry, make my arriving known. So quarter past eight Freddy Bailey shows up at my house, him driving, his brother Jim in the front seat telling him where to go, Billy Jones in the back, his hand wrapped around one of the baseball bats like he’d ever have it in him to swing one at anything but a baseball.

“Badass Billy Jones!” I said. “Move it on over.” And I slapped him upside the head because that’s how we did him, and he wouldn’t expect nothing else. Freddy thought this was funny and got to laughing, and Jim slapped his ear with his hand cupped shape of a C. If you slap somebody’s ear like that it rings for hours, and Jim knew how to do things like that—he done it to me and said it was to show me how. Jim Bailey knew how to hurt people a hundred ways and more.

We read it in In the Devil's Territory.

Originally published in Plots with Guns #4.