#1
Alright, the story is taking shape and becoming more enjoyable to write. Just hope it is as enjoyable to read.

Section 1
Section 2
Section 3
Section 4
Section 5


***
I laugh so openly and freely that I question to myself weather something has truly ever been this funny.

“Dude, this is serious business man,” Jeb says, with a sincerity I have rarely ever heard in his voice before. He reaches under his seat again, and reveals within a hand-rag, a similar looking pistol to the one I now hold out in front of me like I would a pair of stinky socks.

“Hey, if you need some money man; I’ll see what I can do. Besides, I thought you were raking in pretty good dough at-.”

“Shit man, you know most of that goes to my habit. I’m not really afraid of needles anymore, you know.” Immediately, I feel my heart sink, similar to the feeling I use to get in grade school, when I got a sub-par score on a test. And it all adds up, for the contact between Jeb and I had been quite minimal over the last three months or so. That was about the time we got in a squabble over a sleeping bag; my sleeping bag. He wanted it for a weekend camping trip up in the hills with his drug-buddies. I didn’t want to really give it to him because I thought I should be one of the guys he asked along, even though I didn’t want to go anyway. Besides, we probably would’ve ended up having to share it, which is not exactly my idea of an entertaining weekend. Nonetheless, little more than a few quick chats on the phone was all that really proceeded between us until now.

“Yours isn’t a water gun too, is it?” I blurt, still trying to distract myself from the possible dangerous legitimacy of this situation.

“What the **** you think?”

“Well, I honestly don’t know, Jeb. All this is pretty ****ed up, especially since you are giving me, like, a two blocks notice.”

“Three blocks.” Jeb corrects.

“Whatever; but shouldn’t we think this through a little more? I mean, I can think of many other better ways to get some lute than robbing a ****ing convenience store; and shit, they usually only carry like $50 bucks in the register.”

“That’s why I will be going for the safe,” Jeb says, while he hands me another ‘circus ride partying gift’, which quickly reveals itself as a ski mask. “Put this on right when we pull into the parking lot.” At this point, I am starting to understand that feeling people talk about when they say that their ‘life flashed before their eyes’. I know that this probably shouldn’t qualify as one of those moments, but I can’t help thinking to myself that my death could possibly be coming up within these next few blocks.

“Man, don’t you have anything saved? I mean, what about those investments you talked about that one time?”

“Oh, you mean in the funeral homes? I can’t touch that until retirement. And damn it, I need some money now!” I hold back from continuing to pry, though the urge is quickly becoming harder and harder to fight off. Jeb’s thinking towards his investments in funeral homes has always been: ‘everyone has to die, and there are more and more doing it everyday.’

“I really don’t think I want to do this.” I finally confess, which shouldn’t be an unexpected statement to Jeb.

“Well…what? You have to!” Jeb says, seemingly trying to act like he didn’t expect me to want to go through with this. “Remember that secret you told me that one time about you and that one slut; what was her name? Lorene?”

“Yeah, but that wasn’t even a secret, for Christ-.”

“I could’ve told the whole world about that, you know. But old trusty Jeb, well, he’s a man that stands by his word.” The obscurity of this situation is taking the shape similar to a fortress of monumental stature. Jeb has dug up one of the few things I have ever asked of him, and can only imagine the reason behind his supposed execution of that task was simply because he had forgotten about the ordeal until now. An ordeal that was actually none other than Jeb’s idea anyway, which could be the real reason for his silence.

Loraine was short, simple looking blonde girl that I had met at work a few times while she was inquiring about a new big screen TV. At that time, I always found it odd that Blaine, my co-manager, grew hesitant and uptight when she was around; actions that were rare coming from a majority-proclaimed ladies man. Sharing similar music tastes, I invited her to see a local band called Cardinal Swim down at Tucker’s Bar and Grill, next to Memorial Park in the middle of town. Jeb wanted to see this band too, so I invited him along, reluctantly, which is typically a word universally associated with Jeb’s name anyway.

When we had arrived at the bar, Jeb immediately realized who Loraine was. “Dude, that’s Blaine’s ex-girl from high school,” he said, as he grabbed a handful of sleeve on my shirt, and tugged me toward the back of the bar.

Jeb had known Blaine since the 6th grade, both always active in track and field at Johnsonville High, Blaine the long distance runner and Jeb the shot-putter. They were friends in a mutual kind of way; Jeb would often ‘help’ Blaine with his homework over the phone at night, while Blaine in return would attempt to retrieve girls for Jeb via his supposed charm and good looks. This collaboration lasted a few grade levels until Jeb realized that he didn’t need Blaine’s assistance anymore to get girls if he lied to them in a proficient enough way. Unfortunately for Blaine, he still needed help with his homework, and feeling Jeb’s dismissal of their plan to be unfair, came up with an idea to get back at the newly promoted ladies-man. Blaine decided to tell Mrs. Clark, an algebra teacher of theirs, that both Jeb and him had been cheating on their homework every night since the beginning of the school year. Blaine, though, fatally forgot that this confession included himself as an equally guilty party, and eventually bought both Jeb and him a 2 month lunch hour detention in the gym, cleaning it with anything from a toothbrush, sponge, or mop. Needless to say, Jeb has shown no signs of forgiving his once partner in crime, even now 12 years later.

“What the hell are you doing?” I loudly whisper, as the men’s restroom door swings open from the impact of both of our weights.

“I have an idea to insure that this date works out,” Jebs said, in an even louder whisper than mine, while balanced on one foot in an effort to take what appeared to be his sock off. “Here, take this, it’s for your own good.”

“What? You probably want me to put this down my pants,” I said, expecting the ghost of the joke to be given up at anytime. “Oh wait, you’re serious.”

“Yeah, come on; it can only help.”

“Christ Jeb, I didn’t come into this date expecting it to be the center of another one of your attempts to seek revenge on Blaine.” I knew that, for during the lone semester Jeb and I were roommates at Johnson Valley Community College, it was one of the main topics Jeb would bring up when there was nothing else to bring up. It would usually consist of an awkward brainstorming session with himself trying to figure out a way to get back at Blaine, who I had yet to meet at the time, for I had just moved into town from a couple counties over to attend the college.

“That’s just something you need to do on your own.” I said, as I tried to brush by him with assertive authority.

“Come on, man. Please? Do it for me?” Jeb said, holding me in place rather easily, in a fake sincereness, possibly worthy of some cheap acting award.

“Alright, for Christ’s sake, I’ll wear your ****ing sock,” I blurt, while snatching the sock from Jeb’s light grasp, only to look slowly up from my aggressive stuffing to catch three interested on-lookers gazing at the drama that has so rudely been brought to their room of rest.

The date itself proceeded about as well as I could have hoped. One thing led to another, and we were back at her place quicker than the Cardinal Swim’s guitar solo at the end of ‘Free Bird’. That surprised me, for I had made very few attempts to entice these actions other than commenting on her dress and buying her a drink, which was all she drank, and apparently was enough to get her intoxicated. As the cloths began flying off back in her room, I soon realized she had a cast on her right arm that extended up to near her elbow. So after looking for a pen and singing my name on the white, tightly woven, paper-mache like cloths, the last of our cloths began flying as they were. When it had come time for me to drop my skippies, it hit me I still had even another layer underneath that I wasn’t necessarily in a hurry to let be known. Loraine on the other hand thirsted for a view of something not even her imagination could tame. I insisted I wasn’t ready, but that lasted as long the sock took to hit the ground seconds after my underpants were force by the thrust of her hands.

“Oh, I see. Well, it will have to do,” she said, rolling her eyes, as her mood changed from ‘Oh my god, I can’t wait’ to ‘Let’s get this over with’. And that we did, but only before having to pay a visit to both the doctor and the dentist the next day to repair a slightly fracture nose, a chipped front tooth, and ink marks I had to clean from all over the side of my face.


“Yeah, I guess it is good to have a friend like you,” I say, as Jeb pulls on his left signal light to turn into the nearby 7-Eleven.

“Alright man, time to put on our masks.”
#2
First of all, I felt there were a few too many tangent stories in this, but generally each side story was (for the most part) eventually interesting enough to not be agitating, though at times I just wished it could stay on track for a bit longer periods of time.

Secondly, I didnt like how it ended, the whole time I was reading this I was waiting for the gas station robbery to come, but instead was sidetracked by all these side-stories. I realize/assume the robbery will probably come in installment 7, but I felt it would have been more fitting to have in this piece.

Also, this is the first installment of the series I have read, I don't know if it would have helped me much to read 1-5 first but this one was so long that I just said fukc all that.

On a lighter note, this was very well written and very realistic, I just sometimes wished, as I said before, that it could stay on track for longer than it usually did rather than skipping from tangent story to tangent story.
#3
Thanks Blake, and yeah, I know what you mean by this skipping around a lot. I just had a lot of catching up to do with the characters that I kind of neglected early on, which could make this piece suffer if it is read on it's own. I plan to spread a lot of these flashbacks a little more evenly once I get all my ideas down on paper, for I am planning on this to go on for quite a while. Your comments certainly make me want to achieve this even more now, so thank you for that.
#5
I like it, doc. alot of your descriptions are good. the problem in my opinion is that sometimes you leave it to the reader to think of what you're saying, and sometimes you spell it out. maybe yuo should stick to one of the two - telling or implying. usually with stories, one would tell, but i dont know. i agree that it deviated from the story too much, but the little vignette (if you could call it) as a flashback was good.