- Genre: Comedy, Friendship
- Word Count: 1,727
- Pairing: First Person x ???
- World: Acceleracers
I stared at the passing scenery of the coast road, mouthing the lyrics to the song filling my right ear. The left was empty in case Taro had something to say. It wasn’t very likely, seeing as he’s the quiet type. I’d rather not take my chances though – the last time I listened to music and he tried to talk to me, he got so annoyed that he broke my music player. Getting him to buy me a new one took a lot of convincing and even took getting our leader involved to guilt him into doing it. Thank you, Tork!
I glanced over at Taro before moving my eyes to his window. From the way he was driving, the view of the ocean was on his side of the car while I got to stare at a large rock formation. I offered to drive just for that reason, but Taro isn’t too keen on letting other people drive his car. Or sit on it. Or touch it in general, really.
My eyes shifted to the side mirror where Monkey’s car, Rolling Thunder, was close behind us. A few feet behind him was our infamous leader, Tork. He’s the king of the show tonight, taking on the leader of our rivals, the Teku. To be honest, no matter who wins, it’s not going to take away the anger Nolo has for our leader. Long story short, Tork raced Nolo’s older brother a while back. Nolo’s brother got cocky and made a mistake. The price? His life.
Ever since then, Tork has been hiding feelings of guilt and doubt. On the other hand, Nolo goes out of his way to show his hatred for Tork. Kinda pisses me off, but I’m always told to stay out of it.
“Hey,” Taro smacked my arm. “Turn that off, we’re almost there.”
A small patch of land stretched out from the road, overlooking the water. All of the Teku drivers were there, waiting for us to arrive. Well, I assume they’re waiting, though it seems more like they’re having a party.
With a scowl, I shove my music player into the pocket of my hoodie just as Taro comes to a stop on the side of the road, Monkey right behind. As we stepped out of his car, it became apparent that there was some serious tension between Nolo and one of his members, Vert.
Despite being on the rival team, I was actually pretty cool with Vert. Taro would never admit it nor act like it, but he also has nothing against the blonde teen.
“Hey! Are you Teku here to race, or to fight?” Taro called. It was soon followed by the screeching of tires as Tork made his entrance. Nolo’s attention immediately went to him. Even if I didn’t know about the rivalry, the head-turning really wouldn’t surprise me.
The Metal Maniacs are full of huge, burly guys with the exception of myself – since I’m a chick – and Monkey – since he’s a twig. However, Tork is the largest of the group. When I first met him, I actually thought he was going to kill me.
He stepped out of the car and the two leaders stared each other down. It was pretty typical, really. I moved to sit on the hood of Taro’s Road Runner, checking my watch for the time. I knew that Mark had to be on his way up here even though we made sure that no one told him about the race tonight. It’s not that he’s a bad driver or that we hate him, it’s just…
Well, to put it simply, Mark is a lot like Nolo. He has a grudge that he won’t let go and it fuels him to make bad decisions. Plus Mark is like a wild lion, there’s no taming him OR telling him what to do. He just won’t listen to reason.
After a few more minutes passed, Taro shooed me off his car and the two leaders lined up to begin the race. Monkey had a light device to let them know when to start and he was also in charge of making sure the road was clear of pedestrian drivers. Street racing is always fun, but when you add civilians to the mix… well, it can get pretty messy.
A car zoomed past Monkey at break-neck speed, squealing to a stop between Nolo’s car and Tork’s. Mark had arrived and he was pissed.
“Why didn’t you tell me we were taking on the Teku?”
Tork didn’t spare him a glance, used to the younger man’s antics. “Me against Nolo. That’s how we handle it.” He moved his car forward, but that didn’t stop Mark from yelling after him.
“I want ‘em, Tork, I want ’em all! You knew that from the start!”
I sighed, shoving my hands into my pockets. “You know he’s gonna cause a problem, right?”
Taro didn’t respond, so I sighed again and headed over to where Vert was leaning against his own car, the Deora II. The other Teku glared at me as I came closer and I could feel Taro staring at my back. He didn’t approve of my friendliness with Vert for obvious reasons, but he never said anything about it, either.
I could tell Vert was annoyed that he wasn’t the one racing, but he offered me a smile anyway. I leaned beside him, closest to the road, and threw him a grin. “So, who’s gonna win?”
He held back a grin of his own. “The Teku for sure.”
“Hmm, I dunno. Tork’s pretty good. Plus – ” I paused, staring at Mark sitting in his Spinebuster. “ – I don’t think this race will end how anyone expects it will.”
He looked at me questioningly but was quickly distracted when the race finally began.
Just as predicted, Mark swung his car around and took off after them. Taro yelled his name but it was swallowed by the sound of roaring engines and squealing tires echoing off the rocks. I caught his eye and he shook his head, climbing into his vehicle.
I patted Vert’s shoulder. “You might wanna follow.”
Again, he sent me a questioning look but didn’t say anything as I ran back to Taro, climbing into the passenger seat as the engine roared to life. Monkey and the other Teku followed suit, sensing that something wasn’t right.
We reached the site of the crash fairly quickly. Nolo’s car was sitting on top of some rocks, while Tork’s was half on the guardrail and half on the road. Seeing the guardrail broken a ways down, I rushed after Monkey to the side of the cliff to see Mark’s car dangling from his grappling hook that was embedded in the rock.
“Wylde’s okay!” Monkey announced. “He’s cranking back up.”
I sighed in relief but stopped short when I finally noticed the small floating machine in the middle of the road. I guessed it was the cause for Mark crashing… but what in the world even is it?
Kurt and Vert approached it. Vert addressed it. “What are you doing here?”
“Dr. Tezla needs you.” It spoke.
“Oh really? What about after the World Race when we needed him to give us more Nitrox? He wouldn’t even talk to us!” Kurt sounded like a druggie that had gone too long without his fix. I found myself rolling my eyes before I even realized it.
Huh, maybe Mark’s hatred for his big brother is rubbing off on me.
“Dr. Tezla needed all the fuel for his research.” It spoke again.
“Well we wanted to go through the portals again – ” Vert didn’t sound angry like his teammate, just disappointed. “ – and race in Highway 35.”
I wasn’t around back then, but Taro and Mark had each told me stories about the infamous World Race on Highway 35. Apparently, it’s a race track in another dimension or something and this Tezla guy offered 35 racers a crap ton of money to get the wheel of power found at the end of the track. The story gets kinda fuzzy from there. Something about an evil woman, a spy, and robots built to race? I don’t know. I kinda dozed off during their recollection of the events past.
“No one can go through the portals now.” It explained. “Gelorum and her racing drones have taken the wheel of power.”
I stared at the thing blankly, not even blinking. Huh, so they were telling the truth. And here I thought they were just insane, or in Taro’s case, had too much to drink. I guess I owe them an apology… too bad Metal Maniacs don’t apologize. Ever.
Monkey, who stood on Taro’s left, moved closer. “Hey, Taro, What’s this wheel of power business? What does it mean?”
“Trouble,” Was all he said as he headed back to his car, motioning for me to follow. Since it’s always easier just to do as he says rather than not, I followed silently, sending glances over my shoulder as the woman from Teku started to talk to it. I was too far away by now to hear what was being said between them, but I was close enough to see Nolo throw a hissy fit.
“Give me a car!” He limped toward Kurt and Vert. “I want to finish this thing tonight!”
“There’s something we have to do, Nolo.” Vert sounded annoyed now, and honestly, who can blame him? Just look at his teammates, okay.
“What’s he talking about?!” Nolo screamed. I fought the urge to cringe. God, this kid is annoying. “Nothing’s more important than the Teku!”
“This is.” Kurt insisted, and with that, the Teku took off, leaving their leader in the middle of the road screaming his lungs out.
“Hey, Taro.” Monkey ran up to us as we made our way to the car. “You know this Tezla dude. Wylde told me he paid like millions of dollars to some of his drivers.”
Damn, do you know how much soda and anime I could buy with millions of dollars? Maybe this won’t be so bad after all.
Taro looked at him in disbelief. “You’re coming?”
“You think Tork would mind?” Monkey and I both looked at our leader who was punching his hood repeatedly and growling in frustration. We shared a look before scurrying after Taro. “Hey! Wait up, Taro!”
Next Chapter ➡