Rick turned east to avoid the Jocks.
This last week had been a small slice of hell. Osterman and his Varsity buddies were all football players, and of course they’re all massive and bulked up. Steroids, Rick thought, I bet they have the tiny winkies to match their tiny brains.
Best avoided. Meeting the Frankenstein Brigade again would only lead to more bruises and pain. So Rick peddled his bike around the strip-mall and toward the corn fields today, instead of his regular route.
Thinking dark thoughts and plotting impotent vengeance schemes Rick knew would never happen. Not in the surrealist world at Beacon High. He pedaled along in silence, thinking about the math homework and what Mom might be making for dinner.
Suddenly he heard the eardrum-piercing low-flying military jet sound, almost directly overhead. Looking up, his eyes just registered the impression of a fireball, roaring past and into the cornfields. Just a blink, and it was already gone.
Then the boom, and an explosion of dirt and plants and flaming corn cobs. Expanding into the sky, and falling back just as quickly. What the hell was that?
Dumping his bike at the side of the road, Rick pushed his way through the rows of corn plants. Came from over here, he thought, just as his foot bumped against a sizable and charred clod of dirt.
Rick started moving more cautiously as he passed through the corn plants. Some still smoking, but too green to really burn. Not any real danger of a cornfield fire. He could see a clearing in the plants just ahead, and he pushed aside the last corn still standing around the–crater?
A hole in the dirt, twenty or thirty feet wide. Must’ve been a small meteor. The field was pushed up around it, forming walls of earth. In the cavity inside, Rick could feel heat, and saw a small, glowing rock about the size of a fist.
The glow was diminishing quickly as the rock cooled. Rick approached, carefully testing the earth with the toe of his tennis shoe. Reaching down, feeling residual warmth of the earth around the rock. Carefully, he tapped the rock with one finger—hot, but not enough to burn.
This is awesome, Rick thought. How many guys get to find meteors?
He scooped up and examined the rock, tossing it from hand to hand as it cooled down. It looked vaguely volcanic, like something that had been melted and burned. In science class Mr. Scott said these things were supersonic, how fast is enough friction to melt rock?
As he turned the stone over, Rick noticed that bits and pieces of it were flaking away. Sandstone or sedimentary? Organic? It flaked and broke off like charcoal or graphite, my meteor is crumbling!
Just the tiniest pressure of his hands and the rock broke cleanly into several pieces. Among them lay a shiny, colorful ring.
First Draft, obviously, and more yet to come. Just concerned I may have to leave this story alone until after work. What’s the story behind the mysterious ring? What happens next?
Inspired by this Picture It & Write photo: