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Let the Girl Do It

It's all fun and games, until someone loses an eye.

Then, it's just fun and games you can't see very well. 

Let the Girl Do It by Rusty Barnes




"I just need to know what you did with Terrance's lockbox," Jessica said to Hank.

Terrance had been one of her boyfriends up until twenty-three hours ago, when she'd found him slumped in the shower with a bullet hole in his head. Someone matching Hank's description had been seen leaving the house. Jess's neighbor had offered up the information willingly, as Jessica had produced tears on the spot. The neighbors didn't know what really went on inside Terrance and Jessica's house. Donald, another boyfriend, knew what went on. Hank thought he did, but had no idea.

Jessica took a twenty-penny spike and drove it through the palm of Hank's left hand and into the table with three sharp blows. It took the spread of the blood across the table like an inkblot for him to acknowledge it. He spat at her through bloody chewed lips. "This ain't my first rodeo," he said, rattling the cuff she'd attached between his right arm and the chair.

"I know it," Jessica said, putting down the hammer and picking up her Glock. "That's why I have Donald." Donald rapped Hank on the side of his head with his.357.

"I'm still here, motherfucker," Donald said, but Jessica could see Donald's hand trembling. She hoped he could still do what needed to be done.

"Amateur hour," Hank said. "You're not getting anything from me." Jessica considered her options.

"Take your pants down," Jessica said.

"Fuck you," Hank said. Donald hit Hank harder this time, a bloody crease appearing on his upper cheek.

"Watch your mouth," Donald said, his hand trembling.

"I'm going to attach your penis to the chair," Jessica said.

"Bullshit," Hank said.

"Want to bet me, big man?" Jessica holstered the Glock under her arm and picked up another short spike. With a practiced motion, she set the spike to his right eye and drove it home. Blood and fluid burst forth like a split fruit.

"Oh Jesus Jesus fuck," Hank said. Blood ran down his cheek. Jessica felt like licking it.

"Take your pants down, Hank. Donald, help him."

"It's in the back seat of my wife's Prius," Hank said.

"Easy enough," Jessica said. She patted his head like a dog, then shot him in the face. The body slumped to the floor at an odd angle, held up by his spiked hand. More red pulsed from it momentarily. 

"Jesus," Donald said, wiping his mouth.

"The least you could do is not puke on me," Jessica said. It would be a short trip to get the money now, assuming Hank had told the truth. But she knew he had. It was the last thing she saw in his good eye.


Rusty Barnes grew up in rural northern Appalachia. His fiction, poetry and non-fiction have appeared in over two hundred journals and anthologies. His crime novel titled Ridgerunner is out now from 280 Steps. A follow-up, The Last Danger, will be published in Winter 2017.