The theme of this story: wacky action. The main characters: pious heroine and boring philosopher. The major event of the story: longing.
I decided I'd just do the characters. I'll try and make it wacky.
Every day at 3:30pm, Britta Lingstrom dashed out of the St. Martha's Catholic School for Girls with the lumbering speed of a rhino fleeing a fire. By the time she had hit the concrete steps, she already had her backpack half open. When she reached the bottom of the stairs, she dropped her skateboard and tossed her backpack upon it. She stepped off her loafers and propped them in front of the wheels to keep them from rolling down the sidewalk. In one move, she ripped off her blazer, un-tucked her dress shirt, and stuffed the bundled mass into her backpack with her small fists. She pulled out a rubber band and put it in her teeth.
"Seeya Brit!" said her friend Margaret as she ran past. Britta nodded back a greeting as she pulled off her hairband and swept her mousy blond hair back. She took the rubber band and wrapped up a quick ponytail. Quickly she pulled of her white socks, balled them up with her hairband, and stuffed them in the backpack. The trickle of girls going past her became a steady stream. She quickly arranged her dress shirt into a self twisted tuck, exposing the familiar shape of a young girl rimmed with the plaid waistband of a size 8 school uniform.
She then put her shoes in the backpack, zipped it up, and stood on her skateboard. When she found an opening, she pushed off and drifted lazily among the thinning crowd of classmates, tightening her backpack across her shoulders.
Margaret waved again as Britta sped past her into open sidewalk.
"Our father, who art in heaven," she whispered to herself as she leaned into a corner and entered the sidewalk near the main road. The incline flattered and she responded by more pushes. Her bare feet gripped the board as her knees pushed into the thrusts, gaining a steady pace. Her gold cross fell loose from her plunging neckline; dangling and glinting in the afternoon sun.
"Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come," she said a little louder over the roar of her worn wheels on the pavement. Clack clack clack. Like a clock speeding up. A few beads of sweat formed on her temples. She looked ahead and realized that the light was about to turn. She could make this, though.
"Thy Will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven!" she said again, pulling into a turn that nearly tipped her over, but she took a wide turn into the intersection mere seconds before the light turned green. The sidewalk was too damaged on this side road, so she stayed on the asphalt. As the hill dipped, she compared the roar of her wheels to be like the Lions of Jerusalem.
"Give us this day our daily bread!" she screamed as she tore through another intersection, nearly hitting a bike messenger on his way downtown.
"What the? HEY! Fucker! What the hell???" screamed the messenger, who would later claim he said something far wittier.
Britta stood straight, and clasped her hands in prayer. "And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us..." she said with a smirk because the timing was too perfect to leave this moment unmarked. She turned her head and watched the messenger steady himself on his bike. But the moment fled, and she turned leaned into the hill. Faster and faster. She dipped low to reduce her wind drag and keep her skirt from flapping around.
But soon she felt the familiar wobble of a skateboard going faster than it was designed. She stood up and eased back her foot, her leg muscles bulging from the strain. It was a balance, she knew, between fast enough and too fast, which changed as her wheels wore down from use. Her toes curled down and she closed her eyes for just a moment to get the purity of the moment. A zen-like peace of speed over the smooth street and the relaxing of her calf muscles with a warm spring breeze ruffled through her clothing.
"And lead us not into temptation," she whispered. She opened her eyes as she continued to slow. "but deliver us from evil!"
On the word "evil," she buckled down and gripped one side of the board, turning into a difficult S-curve. But someone had left a plastic bag right into the wrong place, and she could not swerve to avoid it. As time slowed down, she wondered if she rode over it fast enough, would it matter, or would it tangle-- yep, it's going to tangle-- she thought as the bag quickly wrapped itself around the axles on the wheels.
Britta made a split decision to jump free of the board before it was yanked out from under her, but she found she was still going too fast to make a graceful hop. It was all she could do to not break her toes under the weight of her feet as they stumbled awkwardly to try and gain a balance during such a rapid speed change. Her arms flailing wildly, she ended up scraping the balls of her feet against the sandpaper like surface of the sidewalk, and barely managed to throw her hands up before she collided with a phone pole.
The impact was so hard, she bounced backwards and landed on her back. She turned to the side, and was immediately hit in the face with the skateboard.
"Amen..." she moaned, covering her face with her hands.
Klaus looked up from his book. It was French, titled, "Boire du Café en Noir," by Madame Déprimé, and could be upside down for all he cared. He couldn't understand a word of French, but made a good attempt at pronouncing it to fool the local Catholic girls into thinking he was "L'original de Bohême," if he even knew what that was.
He wore black. He wore nothing but black, which forced him to carry a lint roller wherever he went because he also seemed to know a lot of people with cats. Today was no exception, because the book store and cafe he was in front of while he sipped his espresso had the usual resident cat: a fat Maine Coon named "Dade," after the character in the 1995 movie, "Hackers."
"Meow?" asked the cat.
"Go away," said Klaus.
But to Dade, any attention warranted a good body rub, whether the human wanted it or not. Klaus curled away from Dade like a fern leaf, but Dade's cloud of hair that surrounded him sniffed the static electricity coating Klaus's skin-tight jeans and swarmed upon his legs like spitwads on a bathroom mirror.
"Ugh!" gasped Klaus, unwrapping another layer of sticky fly paper on his lint roller and scuffing each errant wavy cat hair from his pristine black denim.
"Meow?" asked Dade.
"Come get your cat!" Klaus called out to the employee inside. But the employee did not hear him, because she was currently dancing to REO Speedwagon hold music from her credit card company over the phone.
"Ugh..." sighed Klaus again. But as he moved his chair in a futile effort to get away for the large walking hairball, he spotted a lone figure slowly weaving her way down the uneven sidewalk towards the cafe. He looked at his watch and noticed it was 3:45.
"How many 'Our Fathers' did it take to get here tod--"
"Cram it, Klaus," said Britta as she rolled to a stop in front of his table.
"My God, Britta, what on earth happened to your eye?"
"Seriously?" Klaus wrinkled his nose in laughter.
Britta threw herself into a metal chair, and flipped her skateboard on its back. She pulled up her skirt, and looked at a weeping scrape down her leg. "I wiped out on Broad Street and 14th. Right before I finished my first Our Father. It took me three Hail Marys to get here after that."
"Why can't you just use a watch like anyone else?"
"Because I must be faithful." she said.
"Reciting Biblical verse is no way to keep time. I mean, anyone can... speed it up or something."
Britta looked up with her bruised eye. "You're a boring and depressing atheist, you know that?"
"Yet you insist on meeting me here because you are also a lovesick fool."
"May God have mercy on your soul, Klaus."
"There is no God, Britta. It's all an opiate to quell the masses."
"You don't even know what that means," Britta said, yanking her skirt down in defiance to Klaus's wandering eyes. She slipped off her backpack and re-buttoned her shirt to the collar.
"Don't flatter yourself, Britta," said Klaus with a smile that faded into the coy shade of a raised coffee cup.
"I am pure and virtuous, Klaus. But I know the roving eye of a man twice my age upon my holy flesh."
"Have you come here to convert me again, or shall we bicker as we normally do?" Klaus put down his coffee cup. "Where were we? Oh yes, you were avoiding the previous day's question. Where did Jesus tell his disciples to go after his resurrection?"
Britta tucked her shirt back in the waistband of her skirt. It was hard to see Klaus because the swelling around her eye was distracting. "He told them to go to Galilee, of course. That's both in the books of Matthew and Mark."
Klaus smiled. "Yet in Luke 24:49 and Acts 1:4, it ist stated that they should go to Jerusalem."
Britta pulled her well-worn Bible from her backpack and flipped to Acts. It was bookmarked from their previous conversation with a receipt from Best Buy. "No, in Luke 24:49, it states, 'ye be endued with power from on high,' which was after their travels after Galilee. Acts was right after Luke."
"The Book of Acts can't be trusted. It also states that there were about an hundred and twenty believers, but in Corinthians says that Jesus appeared to more than 500 believers before his ascension. The book you use is full of holes. I could go on like this."
"I know you can," said Britta. "But ye of little faith--" and Klaus groaned at this cliche, "-- knows little about the nature of God."
"You still trying to convert the brat?" asked an employee from the cafe.
"She has been brainwashed by the Catholic church--"
"I was talking to her," said the employee, scooping up Dade in a waft of fluff that drifted in the sunlight towards Klaus. She winked at Britta who returned a subtle smile of thanks.
"Don't encourage the girl," Klaus said while trying to sip his coffee again, but he had been out of coffee a few sips ago.
"You two always here, arguing the Bible. She's using faith, and you're trying to destroy it with nitpicking. Honestly, Klaus. Why do you continue to do this and annoy my cat?"
Klaus's chest tightened and his heart raced a little when he spotted Britta's slightly coy look from behind her Bible. A hint of light flicked gold on her chin from her cross. He noticed for the tenth time just how perfectly small her ears were. Delicate and unbroken with various piercings of the usual girls these days. They tilted ever so slightly when she smiled, exposing the roots of her blond hair pulled thick and tight into the dense multicolored fabric of blond highlights into her ponytail. Her smooth neck gently sloped into her white collar with a slight glint of sweat.
"Because she's an arrogant religious twit," said Klaus, looking away.
Thanks for indulging me in this little piece. I love writing about characters, and I needed the exercise. Normally I throw this stuff out, or delete it without saving, but people keep telling me NOT to do this. Please do not critique spelling or grammar in my comments, because I don't intend to publish this or anything, and I haven't really given it a good proofread so I *know* there has to be some of those errors.