|“This is your best idea ever!” Jake shouted.
“I know. Four-wheelers in the desert. We can ride all day.” Brandon jumped a sand dune and spun-out in a big donut. “Whoohoooo! Yeah!”
“Let’s race over to those hills.”
Neck and neck they maneuvered between rocks and sagebrush as each took a turn at the lead. Brandon pushed ahead at the last and landed awkwardly across a rock. He rolled off the ATV and landed with a thud. A steely crunch filled the air and the smell of oil floated through the air.
“Dang. I think I broke an axle.”
“Yeah. Just a scrape.”
“That’s a broken axle all right.”
“My dad is going to kill me.”
“Now, this is your worst idea ever!”
“Tell me about…” Brandon’s voice trailed off as he looked up the brown grassy knoll. A cougar lay just twenty yards away. She growled and licked her lips.
“Brandon. Climb on board. No quick moves.”
Brandon arose and crept toward Jake. His hands trembled, and he became aware of his parched throat. He took another step, and the cougar attacked. The razor-like claws sunk in to his ribs and the large animal bit down on his head. He couldn’t feel his legs at all. His eyes pivoted toward Jake.
“Run.” His voice gurgled in syrupy blood.
Jake stayed manikin still, but the cougar eyed him, and charged. The lightning agility and powerful jaws were too much as Jake succumbed. The beast ripped a large piece of flesh from his neck and he crumpled, lifeless, to the sand.
The lioness waited all day. Her young ate nothing for days, and teetered on the verge of starvation. Her habitat encroached, she finally found a meal -- to survive in this barren land.
Flash Story Must contain the line: "this is your worst idea ever!"
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