#Roadtripkill

*The actual title for this is #Roadtripkill but I couldn’t get the text in the title to have the strikethrough format*

The wind howled, battering against the car, almost as if it would lift the thing up and toss it. Darkness surrounded us, swallowing up the road ahead as the trees on the side of the road danced menacingly under the haunting melody of the wind. My three weird friends and I huddled…”

“What are you doing there looking all dark and mysterious Mogen?” Tory asked, snatching my ipad from my hands. She read the few lines I had written out loud despite my protests.

“Weird? Really?” Jess asked from her position on the driver’s seat.

“We’re on a road trip for crying out loud Mogen. Couldn’t you write something less morbid?” Steph raised a perfectly manicured  eyebrow as she twisted around in the passenger seat to look at me.

“Couldn’t she not write at all?” Tory rolled her eyes and closed my typing app.

“Hey I hadn’t saved that!” I complained trying to grab it back from her but she held it away from me.

“You’re wallowing again,” Tory accused me.

“I am not wallowing! Give it back Tory,” I snapped.

She put the ipad down on the other end of the seat and scooted over to the middle closer to me. “Look, I get it. You’re heartbroken and all but your waste-of-space-ex isn’t worth ruining our  road trip.”

“Tory’s right,” Jess nodded, glancing at me  through the rear-view mirror. A sign swept past us stating 100 miles to Riverside where we were headed.

I sighed and Tory put her arm around my shoulders.

“I know just the thing to cheer you up.” She reached over to pick up my ipad and held it up to my face.

“Twitter?” I asked skeptically when I saw the app she had opened. Tory nodded enthusiastically and Steph squealed excitedly.

“I don’t know. I haven’t tweeted anything in a while.” I bit my lip and eyed the ipad nervously. “Not since Dylan…”

“Don’t you dare say it,” Tory warned. I kept my mouth shut and nodded. My three best friends were right, it was time to move on.

“You’re part of the HTS!” Tory shook me excitedly.

“Hillside Trend-setters!” Steph and Jess sang from the front and I couldn’t help the giggle that escaped my lips. The three of them were really the popular ones at Hillside High and I was just popular by association.

“Jess. You know what song to play. It’s time to set a trend,” Tory said typing rapidly on my ipad.

Jess selected ‘Shout out to my ex by Little Mix’  and she and Steph bobbed their heads along to the song.

“Really guys,” I groaned, face-palming.

“Oh yeaaah,” Tory said giving me a devilish grin. She held the ipad up to my face so I could see what she’d written. “Check out your post-twitter-hiatus debut tweet.”

Shout out to my ex. Hey look at me now. I’m all the way up, I swear you’ll never bring me down! #Roadtrip #HTS

“This is crazy,” I laughed.

“Oh just roll with it,” Tory said dismissively as she sent out the tweet and re-tweeted it from her own phone. Notifications immediately began to ping on all four of our phones as our hundreds of followers liked, re-tweeted and replied to my tweet.

Over the course of the journey we sang along to several songs and tweeted selfies of the four of us with a snippet of the lyrics of whatever song we were listening to and the tags #HTS and #Roadtrip and our followers went wild for each tweet.

“We’re the number one trend in Hillside!” Tory squealed as she looked through the local area trends.

“Hey! Dylan replied to your tweet!” Steph yelled. I opened my twitter and  scrolled down to the tweet Tory had sent out. Dylan’s reply was close to the top, just above some scathing tweets directed at him by some girls from our school. Gotta love #galpower.

@imogen_heart Won’t waste a dime or the bartender’s time, trying to catch a buzz over the thought of us. Baby, you ain’t worth the whiskey. 

Another tweet just above that one also from Dylan caught my eye.

@imogen_heart #Buzzkill #Roadkill

“Huh?” I said puzzled. Tory glanced over at my ipad with a bored look on her face.

“That’s completely out of context. What did he do? Google songs about ex-girlfriends and pick the first one on the list?” Tory rolled her eyes.

I put away the ipad and focused on the road. Steph and Tory were still glued to their phones and Jess was singing along to the song playing on the radio. I was starting to drift off when Tory’s shout jolted the sleep right out of me.

“What the hell?” she yelled staring at something on her phone.

“What is it?” I asked annoyed.

“Our #Roadtrip just got bumped to 2nd position,” she shrieked.

Unbelievable. “That’s what’s got you screaming like a banshee?”

She thrust her phone in my lap and pointed at something on the screen. I squinted my eyes at the screen and read aloud what she was pointing at.

“#Roadkill.” I frowned. Something about it sounded familiar. “That’s the number one trend?”

“Uhh guys. Check your twitter feeds,”  Steph said. Tory swiped back to her home page and refreshed it. I read the tweet aloud.

RIP #HTS. Hillside will forever remember the trendesttters. #HTS #Roadkill.

“Is this some kind of a joke?” I asked as Tory scrolled furiously through several tweets that basically all had the same message.

“There’s a link to some article on this one,” she paused on one tweet, finger hovering over the link.

“Open it!” I urged her. She tapped on it and it re-directed to a newspaper article for the HHN, Hillside High News. Our school’s newspaper.

Students of Hillside High are still in shock over the sudden and brutal deaths of four of its own. 

The four girls, Tory Sanders , Stephanie Granger, Jessica Vargus and Imogen Black; all seniors at Hillside High, were on a road trip to Riverside Park where they were going to spend the weekend at the lodge when they were brutally murdered. The four best friends were found in the car at the 50 mile mark from Riverside, brutally cut up and wounded. Imogen was the sole survivor but her condition is critical.

The four girls were popularly known for “trendsetting” on the famous social media platform Twitter and apparently sent out a couple of tweets in the hours before the horrible turn of events.

Police still have no leads on suspects.

My stomach dropped.

“This is some kind of sick twisted joke, right?” Jess gulped.

“When I find whoever did this, there will be hell to pay,” Tory said darkly, typing rapidly on her phone.

I opened the article on my ipad and scanned through it carefully. The date on the article was tomorrow’s date. I wasn’t sure if that was comforting or more frightening.

“There’s another tag trending now. #ImmortalImogen,” Steph said. My throat dried up and I felt like I would be sick.

“This is all ridiculous. We passed the 50 mile mark ages ago and nothing happened to us,” Tory scoffed.

“Uhhm actually, we haven’t. It’s like ten miles ahead of us,” Jess answered in a small voice. Tory paused momentarily and I caught a flash of fear in her eyes but it was gone as quickly as it had come.

“Okay then. When we reach the 50 mile peg, we’ll stop the car, get out and take a selfie right by the peg to show people that this is all a bunch of rubbish,” she said determinedly.

“No way. When we reach that peg, I’m stepping on the gas and flying right past it,” Jess argued.

“I agree with Jess,” I said.

“Yeah, me too. Better safe than sorry,” Steph agreed.

Tory sighed and nodded, resigning to our decision. We all sat quietly, staring at the road as the miles went by. Five miles from the peg, I held my breath and gripped Tory’s hand tightly. She squeezed mine back for comfort.

“Guys, we have a problem,” Jess said and the car started slowing down.

“Why are you slowing down?” I freaked, now in full panic mode.

“There’s a huge pit in the road up ahead. Road works I guess,” Jess replied.

“That’s weird. The navigation system didn’t say anything about roadworks on this route,” Steph said in a small voice.

“Turn back,” Tory said. “Now.” Jess wasted no time in shifting the gears to reverse whilst Steph instructed the navigation app to find the shortest route back to Hillside.

But when Jess tried to turn the steering wheel, the thing wouldn’t budge. The tires screeched against the road and Jess threw all her weight into it but the car wouldn’t move.

“What the hell Jess? Why isn’t the car moving?” Tory yelled.

“Car.Won’t.Budge,” Jess bit out, white-faced from all her efforts to get the car to move. Steph grabbed hold of the wheel and pulled with her but the car still didn’t move.

“Calculating shortest distance to Hillside.” The navigation system was barely audible over our panicked shouts.

“Switch the car off and turn it back on again,” Tory yelled. Jess turned the ignition key and the car switched off. The minute she turned it back on, the car roared back to life and hurtled towards the pit. Jess stomped on the brakes but the car went even faster until it came to a sudden halt, right at the 50 mile peg, sending me and Tory slamming into the backs of Jess and Steph’s seats.

The navigator crackled back to life.

“Destination. Dead ahead.”

***

This is my piece for the #TeenFiction category of my #SelfChallenge. Don’t you just loove twitter? All those hashtags #scream.

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