Kerri Fiction: Everyone Wants to be a Rock Star


This negotiation shouldn’t have had to happen, Kerri thought, crossing her arms over her chest and giving the bodyguard her best sulky look. She was the client. He was supposed to be serving her, not dictating where she could and couldn’t ride her bike.

Hell, it wasn’t even a negotiation. Just a body guard laying down the law.

“No one wants you to turn up dead,” Gene said. He slumped in his chair and unbuttoned the cargo pocket on his pantleg, pulling out what looked like a random romance novel. Kerri knew better. There was nothing random about Gene’s romances.

Clearly, she realized as he curled the cover back and started reading, the conversation had ended. Somehow, she’d lost. No more riding her bike all over town, at least not without Gene. Maybe, she thought, Tony would hire someone new to be her bodyguard. Someone who rode bikes.

Gene was kind, almost doting, when he brought her to Fit Riverview and showed her how to set up a spin bike. He made a point of bringing over the instructor as soon as she walked in the room and introducing her to Kerri — who wasn’t surprised when Gene asked her to be low-key about who Kerri really was.

“Not a problem,” she said. She had a brusque way about her that made Kerri think she was annoyed by the request. Then again, this was Fit Riverview. Everyone who was anyone worked out here, including people with bigger names than Kerri Voss.

Hmm, Kerri thought as she stepped up onto the bike and tried to get comfortable. The handlebars were too far away, compared to her bike at home. No brakes, no gears. Just a knob.

At least pedaling was the same.

The class had a neat ebb and flow to it, Kerri thought as she followed along. Hands here, stand there, and pedal, pedal, pedal. The room was dark and the fans maybe sort of moved the quickly-heating air around.

Biking outside was more fun — until the instructor started playing air guitar. A few of the women near the front piped up and volunteered to be backup singers. As they pedaled away, they shimmied their upper bodies, did the hand motions to the old-time Motown song.

“And Gene?” the instructor asked. “Bodyguard duty?”

“You betcha!” he called over the noise of the rap or hip-hop or whatever was just starting. Kerri wasn’t sure she could make it to the end of this song without hurting someone. Gene was on top of her list.

He caught Kerri’s eye. He winked and mimicked an air guitar.

She shook her head, unable to stay angry with him. Everyone wanted to be a rock star — everyone but her and Gene.

They knew better. They were close enough to the real things to know what it was really like. So much more than air guitar and shimmying shoulders.

Kerri envied her classmates their freedom. She closed her eyes and pedaled some more, wishing she could pedal right out of the studio and onto the street.

This was my first stab at Three Word Wednesday. And, of course, is part of the Weekend Writer’s Retreat. All these fun writing sites these days!


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