Bikers Among Us

Bikers Among Us

Adrian is a biker who is unclear of his path in this world. The story is set in general life, but has a couple of turns that may take on a supernatural undertone.


Action / Adventure


Scott Trainer (United States)

Bikers Among Us

The sun is hot, but the speed-induced breeze makes it bearable. The speedometer reads 120mph on an Aprilia RSV4. It is a comfortable speed for Adrian. Up ahead he sees a glimmer. It’s the flash of the sun off a new Dodge Charger Police Cruiser. Without losing any speed, Adrian reaches behind with his left hand and unzips his rear saddle bag while keeping his right on the throttle. With his left hand he retrieves a portion of his leather jacket and drapes it behind him to cover up his license plate. The wind tries to blow the jacket upward, but the pads in it have just enough weight to hang it in place. In his left mirror he sees the cruiser pull out, lights flashing. Fully alert, he knows the road, though he doesn’t remember how. He knows he can lose the cruiser in the first batch of turns and that the intersecting roads give him many choices to turn off. He also knows that the radio backup is far enough out that the cop will give up pursuit. Several minutes later, Adrian feels it when he does.
Adrian rides for another four hours, though he reduces his speed to something only slightly over the speed limit. He breaks only once to relieve himself on the side of the road. Finally stopping, he pulls into a cheap motel. Tin walls hold up this abandoned looking structure with rust covering most of it. As he walks in, there is a smelly little bald mudget of a man behind the desk. Adrian is pretty sure he sees a fly buzz off of his head as he enters. The attendant glances up from the pornographic comic book he is reading with an annoyed glance before he returns to it.
“I need a room for the night,” Adrian interrupts with a hundred dollar bill in his hand.
The attendant, annoyed, puts down his book and takes the bill. His fingers remain together as if glued and he snatches the bill between them and his thumb. His hands resemble flippers, or maybe talons to compliment the beak of a nose that protrudes under thin, wire glasses. “$79 for the night,” he squawks.
“Sign says $59.”
“Rates go up for bikers.”
“Alright,” Adrian says, not wanting to attract the authorities. He figures he can take his money back, by force if necessary, the next morning before riding out.
After he gets his key, Adrian returns to his bike. He checks one of his saddle bags, revealing stacks of banded hundred dollar bills, the sum he knows to total $60,000. He zips up the bag containing the money. Then he unfastens the three bags from the bike, and carries them all, like fish on a stringer, to his room.
In his room he retrieves a small flat head screwdriver from one of the bags. He follows a wooden base board to where it is nailed into the wall and uses the screwdriver to pry it off. He uses the handle of the screwdriver to knock a hole through the drywall. He then retrieves his money, puts it in the hole and replaces the baseboard, kicking it into place with the heel of his boot. He gathers up the dust and crumbles left behind and throws them into the toilet, flushes, and takes a much needed shower.

Adrian walks across the street to a local tavern. He can tell right away that it is a place for bikers. As he walks in he sees tags of various biker gangs carved into the walls and any other wood surface. The bartender is wearing a vest of a respected gang, but only locally. Because of the rings the bartender wears, Adrian knows that, at one time, the man was a high ranking member. Adrian also knows that the bartender must have lost some respect by the comtempt he displays as he wipes the glasses and tends his duties.
“Whisky,” Adrian states.
“Five bucks.”
Adrian knows better than to disagree here or he won’t get served, though the sign clearly says that whisky shots are $2.50.
“Make it a double,” Adrian says and hands the bartender a twenty, rightly assuming the loss of his change. The bartender smiles and pours him eight fingers in a tall glass.
Adrian takes a sip, pulls a ten dollar bill out of his wallet, and asks for change to play pool. As he walks to the pool table he notices a couple lower level thugs of another club. By their threads, club symbol and next to no patches or jewelry, he recognizes that this is a gang that stretches the states. They make eye contact, but theirs remain fixed on Adrian even after his move to where he is going. Adrian puts the quarters in their slots and drops the balls. He pulls out the triangle to rack.
“This ain’t your table, friend,” one of the thugs says as both of them approach. The one speaking is a bit littler, dark buzzed haired and a black goatee, with surrounding scruff. The second is bigger, hefty, shaved head (that probably hasn’t been shaved in a week), and a full beard.
Adrian, who has had enough at this point, shrugs and quietly says, “My mistake.” He walks to the juke box, whisky in hand. Anticipating the thugs following him, he drops some quarters quickly into the machine. He pushes a song number that he knows, but not from memory.
The littler thug grabs Adrian’s shoulder and pushes him abruptly into a supporting peer. “That’s not yours either.”
Adrian felt angry, but knew it wasn’t enough to take two seasoned bikers. Both probably fought their entire lives and more than likely had a small arsenal on their person. He was waiting for something, but he knew not what, until it hit.
The Allman Brothers came through the juke box on staticky speakers. “Ramblin Man” started playing. Adrian steps, more like dances to the song, but so fluidly that it seems natural. He grabs the littler thug, his left hand holding the tattooed right wrist. Adrian hits him square in the nose with a choreographed right punch. Restraining the thug’s wrist, Adrian knees the elbow to dislocate it as the thug falls to the ground.
The bigger thug starts to run at him now. Buh bump bump, in rhythm with the music, Adrian takes one step on his right foot, then one on his left, raising his right leg in a powerful side kick into the gut of the charging thug, his boot almost swallowed in the jiggling belly. The thug was unconscious from the impact before he hit the floor.
Adrian, in somewhat of a trance, takes a few steps still in rhythm with the music. He retrieves his whisky and gulps down two swallows then exhales in a flat grin brought on by the strong alcohol. Only then does he look back to the bartender.
The bartender, still in his biker threads, is now different. There in his place is a younger looking man closer to the age of Adrian. He has a charm or a class in his presence as he wipes the glasses. He could just as easily been in a formal suite or something even more elegant. His eyes are on the glasses. He looks up to Adrian, then back, giving attention to the glass he is working on. “It appears you have a liking for music,” he says. After an exhale, “I was wondering what you were waiting for with those two.”
“Do I know you?”
With a warm voice and a slight grunt, the bartender says, “Heaven and hell and the like. You would think some things run deeper than memory.”

Competition: June 2015 Pen Factor, Round 1


Read Reviews

Review 1:

Compelling hook?


Strong characters?


Attention to mechanics
  • The grammar, typography, sentence structure and punctuation would benefit from a further round of editing to avoid distracting from the quality of the story.
Narration and dialogue: Balance
  • Your story struck a good balance between narration and authentic dialogue.
Narration and dialogue: Authentic voice
  • Your characters’ voices were convincing and authentic.
  • Make sure your characters are multidimensional. Do they have strengths and weaknesses? Mere mortals make the most interesting stories because they are like you and me and we are able to empathize with their journey. That’s how the connection with a character is formed.
Main character
  • Your protagonist exhibited a unique voice and had original characteristics. Their actions and dialogue were convincing!
Character conflict
  • Your characters drew me into their world from the very beginning. Their goals and conflicts were clearly conveyed.
Suspense and conflict
  • The joy of reading often lies in the element of suspense prompted by internal or external conflicts. Think about the conflict and tension in your story. How effectively has it been introduced?
Authentic and vivid setting
  • The setting was realistic and vivid. The characters’ mood and emotions were conveyed successfully through the believable setting.