Chapter 15: The Emotional Rescue

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Luther pulled Kim to her feet in one swift motion, then hustled her out through the swirling hole in the wall. Out on the other side she saw that they were no longer in the city, in Ambition, but back in Hollywood, by LAX. 

They ran, Luther’s hand gripped firmly around Kim’s. Kim looked back just in time to see the portal closing up behind her on the side of the Championship Business Center. Just before it sealed up completely Kim saw The Lady standing on the other side, her eyes fixed pointedly on Kim’s. It was very creepy.

“In here, get in,” Luther said. He opened the back door of a black Escalade that was idling by the curb and pushed her inside. He jumped in after her, slammed the door and yelled “Go!”.

The car immediately launched out into the road, sending Kim caroming around the back seat, banging her head against the window. 

“Owwwww wtf,” she said, struggling to right herself in the rocket car. “I’ve had a hard day, you know.” She pulled a strand of hair out from across her eyes so she could see who was driving.

Michelle’s eyes smiled back at her from the rear view mirror.

“Michelle???” Kim said.

“Kim. Hi,” Michelle said. “Look, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking. About us.” Michelle spoke in a calm, kind voice, mostly ignoring the road and to look in the mirror back at Kim, while the car wove in and out of traffic at impossibly high speeds. Kim was certain they were all going to die in a fiery wreck.

“I had a really great time on our date. You seem really great. But you wouldn’t return my calls, so I just feel like maybe we’re in different places right now, you know? I think it’s best if we just break up.”

Michelle’s eyes waited in the mirror to gauge Kim’s reaction. She jerked the wheel, sending them out into the left lane and in between two buses, missing them both by microns, before swerving back into the right lane.

“Umm,” Kim slumped back into her seat. A smiled came to her lips, out of nowhere. “You rescued me from The Lady so you could break up with me?”

“Yes. Don’t be mad but we can’t see each other anymore.”

“You haven’t shown up at So Chic in days,” Luther said, glaring at Kim. “I”m tired of folding those damn outfits by myself. What even is the point of running a store if you have to do all the work yourself? You’re doing a 12-hour shift when you get back, and don’t even try to get out of it.”

“OK,” Kim said, actually kind of looking forward to it. Kim had this weird, warm, kind of electric feeling buzzing around inside her. She had an idea what it was but was almost afraid to name it.

“You guys rescued me,” she said, almost to herself. “My friends rescued me.”

“I’m not your friend, I’m your boss,” Luther said. 

“I guess I’d like to call you a friend,” Michelle said. “But you’ll need to restore my trust, return the occasional phone call, maybe buy me a gift or two, that wouldn’t exactly hurt.”

“And Maria’s going to kill you anyway,” Luther said. “So it’s not like anything matters.”

Kim didn’t care where they were going or what was going to happen to her. Here, right now, she was happy. “I want to make out with both of you,” she said.

“20 K-Stars,” Michelle said immediately.

“Uhh infinity times infinity K-Stars, because no way, ever. And I’m making that a 24-hour shift now, you’re welcome.” Luther said. 

He looked away but Kim thought maybe he was almost smiling.

Kim looked out the window at the city streaming by. “My friends saved me,” she said.

“Ugh, shut up,” Michelle and Luther said together.

Kim didn’t even care. She wiped a tear from the corner of her eye. These extremely crabby and weird people were her friends.

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