The City Breaks Its Promise “The Kids of CrackTown”

 

Chapter 1

Kids of Crack Town

 

 

She would always leave now and then, but I knew that this time was different; I could tell by the way she left. It was that night that my sister departed without a trace or a note. Without a goodbye, she left with nothing. No clothes, no belongings, she just left. I didn’t want her to leave but there was nothing I could do to stop her, she always would leave but this time was different. I was scared, I sat up in my bed and looked outside my window hoping I’d see her stroll back but she never did. I stayed like that for half of the fucking night until I finally conceded that she wasn’t showing up anytime soon.

I got about three hours sleep and woke up bright and early; I walked to the bathroom feeling the hangover of the rough night taking its toll on me emotionally and physically. My sister and I had argued all that night, for hours and hours about redundant bullshit. My stomach felt contaminated as I looked at myself in the mirror, my wavy hair matted and all over my head. The anxiety and fear that coursed through my veins gave me a disgusting aftertaste, tarnished my vision with a headache and made my heart whine. I was overreacting as usual to my sister’s rebellion, she was a grown woman and had her own life, but I had reason for my fear.

My baby sister was my life growing up; I took care of her when nobody took care of me. I was her guardian; I had a bond with her that nobody else could have. Throughout trauma and the violence, we stuck together. We held hands, but after a while our grasp became much lighter. Sephrina and I were dealt a bad hand when it came to life; we grew up in Hunts Point, South Bronx in a crack den. Essentially we were raised on the streets by the streets. I knew every scam, every scheme, every hoodlum, every trick and the one after that. All the games people played I had to take seriously in order to survive. I became so good that I made it my living; I joined up with my uncle in his South Bronx crime ring. I was teaching the old timers tricks, like how to make a dollar into three meals for the day.

I was able to take us out of the chaos, but it was far to late for Sephrina. She had already been hurt, torn apart so many times when I wasn’t there. She didn’t blame me, her gentle heart never could but I blamed myself because I was supposed to protect her. I was furious all the time, and the only place I was able to take it out was bare knuckle boxing or on the job. I was in reconstruction; I was a mid-level thug with job security and the best type of life insurance the streets could buy. The violence I surrounded myself with was all an analogical way of fighting the frustration I had in my life. It was clear and obvious, that when I swung my fist I was fighting more than just the person in front of me. I was fighting the past, the present, the future and reality all at once.

I came to realize I could only fight but so much, it hit me the hardest the day my sister left. I had hoped she would have tamed her habits; the drug use and the promiscuity are what hurt the most. I hated thinking of what my sister was actually doing, getting beaten by men, doing things for drugs and being used as a tool. I had thought for some time that maybe the world would show us mercy, but then I had a wakeup call to this atrocity exhibition, this controlled depression that surrounded my life. I didn’t understand it, nor did I ever want to. I hated what she did, and I had fought plenty of abusive boyfriends and made my share of threats but all of that kept me in denial. I believed that I had enough power to somehow influence her and everyone around her. I didn’t and god must have been busy because he never showed himself around these parts.

Hunts Point scared me when I was younger. However, once I grew up I adjusted to it. Sephrina and I were basically abandoned so young we had to take on adult tasks before we were teenagers or else we wouldn’t have survived. We hung out around the red light district at night, during the day we would stay huddled up in our apartment. We’d hear some bitch getting beaten nearly to death almost every night and I’d hold my sister as she cried. It was a bleak life to live. When I say I took us out I meant we moved to a better part of Hunts Point, but it wasn’t far enough from the chaos. I don’t know if I could have ever gotten far enough away especially on days when I was so alone.

I lived in a decent apartment in a shitty neighborhood. It wasn’t far from where we grew up, the “Crack Town”, a part of the City where the Crack Cocaine epidemic had swept so hard it felt like it was something out of a movie. There were apartments that were a sickness, terrifying and unadulterated. We lived on the top floor for some time; passing by the building still in its sullen state was difficult. Crack heads with families piled into the apartments like the fucking rent was free; somehow they found a way to pay up. The land lords never fucked around, we almost got kicked out for missing one month. My mother was a whore and my father was long gone at that point, so I had to find ways to pay the rent. In the beginning I tried to help my mother by rationing money and trying to help her kick her addiction, but over time my blood became cold and I lost all hope for her. I adopted the gun at that point, and after that it was a free for all. If she tried to take the money I made in day, she would face my gun. And if you didn’t stop there, I’d beat my own mother in order to save enough for my sister and me. She never had our best interest in mind, and I didn’t fuck around with her. The kids of crack town didn’t play games, instead we grew up young and became more responsible than the adults.

We pickpocketed sold drugs, committed robbery, worked at chop shops, shoveling snow, walking dogs or even cleaning cars, anything to get by each day. We used to sell Snickers bars in the Subways; we’d find an angle to make a little bit of profit each time. That was the objective, profit no matter how small. We’d get together at night and have meal time in one of our barren apartments and fix dinner for each other. Each night that I had my sister in my sights was a good night; this was before she knew any better. We made it our home, I made it safe for her and it meant something back then.

My Uncle Karol was my mother’s brother, he was a cold hearted son of a bitch. A lot of people said I was basically a clone of him, we both had similar tempers, mannerisms and outlooks on life. I personally didn’t think I was anything like him. He also grew up on the streets in a similar situation to mine. Uncle Karol went on to carry out hits by age thirteen, he bragged about it openly. Now he was the boss of Hunt’s Point, and a very valuable ally to have. I worked for him, as his trusted employee who watched over everyone else. It was mind blowing sometimes, the shit that happened made me want to see a therapist. What I grew up around seemed like nothing to what I saw working with Uncle Karol. It was training in a lot of ways. 

My job was to watch over all the filthy shit that my Uncle had his hand in, the drugs, the gambling, the prostitution, the sales of firearms and even real estate. He was rich, and he tried to make as much legit money as possible. He owned a construction company, a few liquor stores, two car dealerships as well as a few bars. My official “job” was a car salesman, even though I had only sold one car and that was to a Korean drug dealer. It was all ugly and dirty with my Uncle, and if you fucked with him he’d kill you. It was just like a movie, except worse. His temper was explosive and violent, just like mine.

The day after Sephrina left, I was supposed to be overseeing a drug deal but instead I called out. I had to figure things out as soon as possible because I was in frenzy about my sister. I left the house early even though I spent at least an hour staring at the fucking wall. But once I snapped out of my trance, I was able to get out of the house. I decided my first stop would be to see an old friend who knew everything that went down in Hunt’s Point.

Cardinal, was a drug addict and a loyal customer, he was also the unofficial overseer of the city. If he didn’t know something, he knew someone who did. It was amazing, especially since he spent so much time in his room shooting up black tar heroin. Cardinal was my friend since fourth grade. I remembered when he was clean and a decent member of society. The one thing that attracted my friendship to Cardinal was he always respected my sister, he showed respect to me and he actually cared about me.

 I was a different person when he knew me, I was in Foster Care with my sister being abused and raped every night. I was meek, timid and afraid, far more disturbed and hurt then I could have ever comprehended. My sister was going through it even worse, I was haunted by not being able to protect her. One day, I picked her up from her class and ran out the school. We stayed on the run and met up with the other kids of Hunt’s Point for a few months. That was when I returned to Crack Town and learned everything I knew.

They finally found us, but by that time my mother had overdosed and my Uncle was in town. He vied for custody of us, and eventually won. The bastard put us to work, but he never hurt us, protected us and cared about us ultimately. My aunt loved us, I was never sure about Uncle Karol though. My Aunt was the picture perfect Aunt, full of love, hugs and kisses. My Uncle, a brutal bastard was the boss outside the house but in the house my Aunt always had the final say. It wasn’t like my Aunt was oblivious to my Uncle’s activities, he would often come home covered in blood and always carried a gun. She was just alright with it.

I earned my keep and started selling drugs to people like Cardinal who were my friends. I felt guilty about that, especially since I saw what drugs did to my mother. Cardinal had an appetite, and became quite the fiend. We stayed friends, through my guilt I often gave him freebies when we spent time together. Even as a fiend, Cardinal was quite the informant and the closest thing to a functioning drug addict I had ever seen in my life. His information had never been wrong, not once.

Cardinal got his name due to his fiery red hair. He was the classic redhead with very pale skin. He was skinny and tall since I knew him back in school, and he grew to tower over me. Cardinal hadn’t gone by his real name, Donny Wrinkle, also since I knew him. His family was very religious, so he escaped their grasp during high school and we moved into an apartment together. As I said before, Cardinal and I had a long history.

Even years later he only lived a few blocks away from my house, and it took me about ten minutes to trek down there. Considering it was Hunts Point, he lived in a nice area. He lived in an apartment building that was a little run down, but the rent was cheap. For the most part I paid the rent and every other expense Cardinal had, the landlord could give a fuck where the money came from as long as he got it. It was that guilt thing again that got me, plus if I didn’t pay the rent Cardinal would be on the street.

I didn’t do him many favors, all I did was feed his habit and that day I was going to walk over to his apartment anyway to sell him some dope. I wasn’t really selling it, it was below market price and he was probably paying for it with money I gave him. I was conflicted; I hated what I did in general, all the violence and the darkness, the sickness. I knew that I was in to deep at that point, or at least I thought I was.

The cold air hit me hard that morning when I left my apartment. I put my hood over my head, but I had on a thin jacket so it didn’t really matter. I realized was going to be cold that morning. It didn’t matter, as I was heated and stayed deep enough in thought where I didn’t even think about the cold. I checked my waist holster, my Mark XIX .50 Action Express Desert Eagle tucked in there. I didn’t want to be like a movie star or anything, I just liked the way it fired and my Uncle had given me it for my seventeenth birthday and for some reason I cherished it.

After I fixed my shirt to hide the gun I noticed a group of bums across the street walking, it was Harris, Morten and Tommy. They probably just left the homeless shelter and were on their way toward the liquor store. I saw Clarissa pushing her baby carriage across the street, she was bundled up. I waved to her but she didn’t see me. She lived on the first floor of the house I lived in and had bought with earnings I made from the money Uncle Sam knew about. The house was three family, on the first floor was Clarissa, and the second floor was an Old man named Bruce. He was quiet, they both were. It was a quiet house, I spent such little time there. The only person that made noise was Sephrina, and when we argued we really caused a commotion. I felt bad thinking about it, we probably disturbed the old buzzard and the baby, but at that moment I don’t give a fuck.

I thought about her more and more as I walked through the streets. I felt so tired because I hadn’t gotten any sleep, I felt sick because of the combination of everything. I had a headache and a few cars passed blasting music which didn’t exactly help. I slipped on my sunglasses which I forgot I had for the last few minutes of the walk. I noticed there were a lot of cars out that morning; I had forgotten that it was Monday. It took me awhile waiting for the cars to pass in order to cross the street, but they finally did and I was there at the doorstep of Cardinal’s apartment building.

I swung open the door and bolted through the door, charged up the stairs and then banged on the door of the first floor. After obnoxiously slamming on the door, I took out my phone and called Cardinal. I waited for him to come and open up the fucking door, he was taking his time. I decided to bang on the door again.

“Cardinal its Spiro, let me in,” I said as the door unlocked. I swung it open and then walked through. A woman was leaning out of her apartment, she glared at me viciously.

“Why are you hitting the door so god damn loud!” she snapped.

“Fuck off,” I growled. I matched her glare, I outdid it actually. She looked at me and then closed the door; the message must have registered with her fat ass. Then I saw Cardinal waiting for me by his door, he was naked beside a pair of drawers and some socks. “Why don’t you put some god damn clothes on kid?”

“This is my house, don’t nobody tell me what’s good in here,” he said as we shook hands. “Why you around here so fucking early man?”

“Something came up last night and I need to talk to you,” I said as we went inside his filthy apartment. His apartment was very small for one thing, and there was trash almost everywhere. He had a small kitchen area in the front; there was a miniature table on one side which had Chinese food containers, pizza boxes, needles, condoms and a knife on it. On the opposite side of the narrow kitchen space was the counters and the stove, which had all other types of miscellaneous shit on it. Following the horrid kitchen was the Bedroom/living room that had a glass coffee table and a bed. That was it for the apartment, beside a fucking horrible bathroom. Considering the past, it was fairly clean in there that day.

“So what’s good man?” asked Cardinal taking a seat on the bed. I crossed my arms and leaned up against a wall. I looked at him and he must have figured out what I was there for pretty quick. “Is it Sephrina?”

“Yeah…She left last night, I wanted to know if you heard anything lately, know about anything that I don’t?” I asked.

“I heard some things but I don’t want you getting mad it my apartment, ya know you are crazy bro. You’ll start smashing shit up and punching walls and shit man, you know you will too,” said Cardinal. He was right I was equipped with a brutal temper. As I said before, my sister was promiscuous and hypersexual; meanwhile I was violent and explosive. I’d break walls, hands, televisions, floors and anything else that was around and breakable.

“I heard she is back with Jeff,” muttered Cardinal. He looked down as I shuffled around, then I smacked his wall pretty hard leaving a little dent. “Come on man!”

I kept swearing and lounging in my thoughts, I had racing intrusive thoughts that were getting the best of me. I wanted to cry but I never did in front of anyone else. I caught up with myself and then realized what I did to the wall. I looked at Cardinal who had his hands up. I knew exactly what would calm him down so I reached into my pocket and threw him a balloon full of black tar heroin that my uncle and I had got from Mexico.

“You got me that Mexican Mud bro!” exclaimed Cardinal. He stood up and shook my hand during his small celebration. He looked at the wall and waved his hand at it. “Fuck the wall man, we’ll just have to put a picture up or something.”

“Are you sure she is back with that son of a bitch?” I asked bemused by the celebration. I was to wrapped up in anger to care about anything.

“That’s what people are saying, they saw them at the bar…and well…she was high and being all loud and he was kissing all over her and shit. My man was there and I was like, yo you should have knocked that motherfucker out! That’s my nigga Spiro’s sister!” said Cardinal loudly. He looked at me, I was shaking I was so mad. His jubilance disappeared and he came over to give me a hug and pat me on the back. “You know where he lives, let’s go and pay his ass a visit?”

“You want to come?” I asked.

“Hell yeah dude, I owe you anyway but it sounds like a good time,” he said grinning. We did a handshake and then he started moseying around the room. I knew what he was looking for, Cardinal really was a fiend. “You want a rail bro?”

I shook my head as Cardinal pulled out a mirror and placed it on the bed.

“Here is my Lassie, dude I was watching this Scottish movie and there they call bitches Lassies dude, no lie I swear to god. He was like, my lassie and I was expecting to see a dog or something. I can’t believe that, so I named my wonderwall Lassie,” he said plugging one nostril and shooting the cocaine up his nose. “This…this shit; this is the gear you gave me yesterday.”

I nodded my head; I was restless and ready to go. I wanted to hurt something; I was ready to get out of that shitty apartment. I was angry; I was feeling violent and sick. I was ready to explode and bring my sister home. It felt like almost every month my emotions would implode, and then on the outside I’d explode. I’d destroy my house, break someone’s jaw, and simply do something that would be destructive enough to get my rage out. Then after I had done that I would start up again, taking shit from people, torturous pain from trauma would be building inside my body and the angst would slowly take over. It would all build until one day I’d explode. It had been about twenty days since I exploded, so I was impatiently waiting.

“Cardinal let’s get out of here, I can’t sit around here much longer,” I exclaimed. Cardinal nodded his head and reached for a shirt and a pair of pants. I stepped out of the room into the small kitchen as he started changing into the new clothes.

“Ready to make a mess bro?” asked Cardinal. I wasn’t sure what he meant and I thought about it for a few minutes, before I could answer Cardinal elaborated. “I mean, we are going to crack some skulls right?”

“I can’t keep doing this man, I’m serious I can’t keep doing this,” I grumbled crossing my arms again.

“Maybe…maybe give her some space?” said Cardinal quietly. He stepped out of the kitchen and moved back into Cardinal’s bedroom, I glared at him as I was pissed off at the suggestion. “I’m sorry bro, ya know I’m just trying to help and you know how I am. Sometimes I say some dumbass shit.”

“No, well…I think you might be right. Do you know how in movies and TV shows, the brother is giving his sister enough space. I think you might be right man, I think maybe if I tell her that and kind of do it, she might come back home. She is only eighteen, she should be home right?” I asked rhetorically.

“Yeah bro…but you also can’t give her to much space, she shouldn’t be getting used and beat, that’s not right,” said Cardinal putting on his sweatshirt and wiping his nose with the back of his hand. He had a lot of guts to say that, maybe it was the cocaine. I appreciated him telling the truth though; I just hated hearing what happened to her. I knew all to well though, I cleaned up the mess each time. Deep down I hoped that I’d make such a sideshow out of one of one of her boyfriend’s that they’d all know about me. She was attracted to any man who said something nice to her; often they knew she was easy and that she would do anything they wanted. She was beyond insecure and thought of herself as a piece of trash. She’d get beaten, so high she’d be taken advantage of and she would sell herself for money for her dope. In an act of true desperation I would try to give her drugs but she had an expensive habit. Her arm took in thousands of dollars a month.

As Cardinal and I walked out of the house I thought about the real bad times, I wasn’t sure if a tear rolled down my cheek but I casually wiped something away. My sister had been gang raped numerous times, when I would find her I’d be so angry that I’d hyperventilate until I’d pass out or I’d cut myself before I started breaking things. I was loose a cannon, completely out of control. I had absolutely no control over anything in my life. Without my sister I wasn’t sure what I would do, and I knew that I couldn’t beat or kill every man that hit her. That fact paralyzed me, theoretically I could but it really wasn’t possible. She was used so much; I just wish she would learn that she was so amazing. That she was so beautiful and I loved her so much. But she kept running back to bad situations; I was tired of cleaning up these awful messes. I’d wake up every morning with a jolt, sick to my stomach, barely able to breath and with tremors like an alcoholic without the drink.

We walked out of the apartment building and I stepped into Cardinal’s car, a 1988 Lincoln Town Car that looked like World War 3. He had it for ten years as a birthday present from his mother. I had been in it four times when it broke down, once when we were in the middle of nowhere. Cardinal was more than a customer; he was one of my only friends.

“Remember that Mexican bitch Luisa?” asked Cardinal after he started the engine. I hated the word bitch, and he should have known that by now.

“Don’t use that word alright, I hate that word and you know that. Just don’t use it,” I hissed very annoyed.

“Hey man this is my car!” exclaimed Cardinal playfully.

“It might be mine in a second, ill pull out my gun and knock your scrawny ass onto the pavement if you keep it up,” I said laughing. “Just please don’t use that word, you can tell your dumbass story if you keep that out.”

“If you knew her bro, you’d know she is a bitch. Real talk I’m serious, she is big trouble,” said Cardinal. Then he nodded his head and looked at me. “Alright, well…remember that young lady Luisa, the one with the ten kids?”

“Yeah I remember her,” I said. I knew Luisa all to well. One of the products of degradation and New York City, Luisa was a crack head and the mother of ten children, each by men she prostituted with. The reason I knew her so well, was she was also one of the people I sold to. She would sell or do anything for drugs, I stayed away as much as possible but my uncle made me sell to her. He had me convinced that it was ok.

“She is pregnant again, I saw her walking around with a huge belly, a Popsicle, meanwhile wearing what looked like a wedding dress. She looked like she was from Gunsmoke,” said Cardinal laughing. “It’s a shame.”

“You know what, it really is a shame,” I agreed.

“Where does this guy live?” interjected Cardinal taking a turn.

“He lives a few minutes away, in the Point.”

“Now I remember,” said Cardinal taking a right turn. He drove for the rest of the way in complete silence, Cardinal turned on the radio softly to a pop station. That weren’t playing much that I knew or anything that I thought was very good. It all just sounded generic, I got tired of it quick but it helped the time pass.

We drove through the Red Light District during the day, but we saw the whores lined up waiting for sunset. I guess there was probably was business to do in this barren area. There were alleyways, abandoned buildings covered in graffiti, condemned apartments and a lot of garages and storage spaces. The streets were wet; it was especially unattractive when the sky was gray. It was a sad part of town to drive through; it was the epitome of decrepit. We drove a little longer until we got to the apartment that correctly stood between a small Spanish grocery store and the liquor store.

Cardinal drove up fairly close, but he had the right idea to move fast and get going before my sister could escape. The front door to the apartment was unlocked and weary, the hallway was foul. It smelled like urine, it didn’t look that bad but you could tell you didn’t want to live there. It reminded me of my old apartment. We hiked up two flights of stairs, took a left into a hallway of doors and stopped a 205.

 So there I was wielding my weapon, my shoulder touching the door ready to pounce and break it open. I took two deep breaths, stepped back and then lunged forward. I had my Desert Eagle out aiming forward. I rushed into the apartment to find Jeff with his hands up. He had been watching television evidently. He had dropped his bowl of cereal and looked at me with a stunned expression.

“What the fuck! Hey, What the fuck are you two doing here…oh shit,” said Jeff with his hands up. He was wearing a Yankee shirt, and a pair of shorts sitting in a lounge chair with the television on.

“That’s right oh shit, Cardinal go check the house thoroughly,” I ordered. Cardinal dashed away to look through the small apartment as I walked over to Jeff. “Where is my sister?”

“Man, I ain’t seen your fucking sister, since the last time you told me to stay away from her, I listened to you I swear to god I listened to you,” he exclaimed closing his eyes.

“We will see,” I said quietly.

“Listen man…I understand I did wrong ok, but you can’t keep coming in her destroying my house and shit, especially if I didn’t do anything wrong. I listened to you, so–”

“Smack him Spiro, he is lying, I told you my boy saw him kissing all over your sister!” exclaimed Cardinal. I smacked him with the barrel of the gun, and then kicked him off his chair. He whimpered and cried, but I stomped him once in the head before crouching down to his level.

“Is that true?” I growled.

“Well…listen she was there and we were all high man, listen please–”

I kicked him in his face three times as hard as I could, then picked him up by his shirt and threw him against his chair.

“Nothing here bro!” called out Cardinal. I looked at him and nodded my head. I turned my attention back to Jeff who was crying with a bloody face.

“You can’t say I beat you for no reason, you lied to me man. I have a very good reason, a very good fucking reason,” I said blasting my foot against his face one last time. “Now I expect you will tell me the truth right now, I expect that much of you. So tell me, do you know where my sister is.”

“Hold on, Hold on don’t hit me again!” he exclaimed rolling over clutching his nose. He sat up still crying. “I didn’t do anything with her, I kissed her once and it was a mistake, it won’t happen again I swear. But, listen to me for one second…I know that she talked to Razak a lot that night. Razak, do you know…Razak, you know him?”

“Yeah I know Razak, when was this, the night you kissed her. When did all this happen?” I asked peering down at Jeff.

“It was two…two nights ago, there was a party. There were a ton of people there, I talked to her for a few minutes but mainly she hung out around Razak and I’m not lying,” said Jeff.

“You do know what happens if you lie to me, it won’t be me putting you in an oven, it will be Uncle Karol. Do you understand me? He doesn’t have as much mercy and doesn’t honor any type of humanity,” I said. He nodded his head flipping blood everywhere.

“Because you definitely have tons of mercy,” muttered Cardinal laughing. I almost told him to shut the fuck up, but I started laughing. I laughed at the moment we were in, it was so ridiculous and Jeff was funny when I beat him up.

“Ok Jeff, so I’m taking your word that Razak might know something, I apologize for coming into your house and causing all this trouble,” I grumbled taking out a money clip from my pocket. I noticed Jeff looking at the money, as he wasn’t exactly the most righteous guy you’d ever meet. “Why don’t you get a new door, get that nose taken care of and…well maybe you can get a new television, c’mon it’s the digital era, everyone is living it up and you’ve got this old hunk of shit.”

I threw the money clip on the ground and Jeff nodded his head. “Thank you Spiro, and I’m sorry about everything.”
            “Don’t make me mad again Jeff, please don’t.”

Cardinal left the apartment first and then I followed behind, I didn’t put my back to Jeff even though I didn’t expect him to pull out a hand canon and blast us both away. I’d heard of stranger, so I kept watch. I could tell by his facial expression that he was satisfied, he was happy with his money.

With that we left, when we got back into the car I had to catch my breath. I felt sick, like I was going to throw up. Cardinal started the car but I wasn’t ready for it to get moving.

“Hold up, give me a minute,” I grumbled.

“Ok,” said Cardinal. He reclined my seat and grabbed a tissue to blow his nose with. I moved away from him as he did so, he thought it was funny but I already was feeling nauseous. “By the way, how much did you give Jeff back there?”

“Why?”

“Just wondering,” he mumbled. I knew Cardinal to well, he wanted to get paid. “Listen you know I’ll take care of you, but don’t piss me off asking me. You don’t need to worry about that, you respect me and I respect you and you should know that I’d pay you for today. But don’t start with me, we still have to go over and see Razak.”

“Razak…We going over there, well I need to be strapped. Cardinal popped his glove compartment open and pulled out a handgun. He tucked it into his waist and put the car into drive. We started moving but I kept my eyes closed, I was angry and the rage was building up. I knew I was bound to explode, I had rage like crying spells, a fit came every now and then and I’d destroy the house, hurt someone or hurt myself. I knew a bad one was coming, and I worried about when.

If I exploded on Razak I could start a small war. Razak was a Eastern European scum bag who often “hooked up” with my sister, he was part of a street gang in Hunt’s Point. I had my confrontations with him quite a few times, but his people always backed down against my Uncle. Almost everything I did, my Uncle had my back on. No matter how violent or crazy, because we thought alike.

“Where does Razak chill, you know?” asked Cardinal glancing over at me as we stopped at a red light.

“I don’t know, I figure he would stay around the only part that’s theirs. Go around Morris Heights, it’s still early we might be able to catch him before he leaves.”

“He lives in that fuckin neighborhood?” asked Cardinal looking shocked.

“Yeah, why what’s so fascinating about that?”

“Nothing,” muttered Cardinal. We sat there in silence for a little while, Cardinal kept opening and then closing his mouth to say something.

“What?”

“What the fuck is Razak?” asked Cardinal as we stopped at yet another red light.

“He is West Indian or African, something like that. His name is Thierry Razak, like the soccer player. You know Thierry Henry,” I said as Cardinal looked at me with a blank stare. “Oh I forgot you are retarded, you never heard of Thierry Henry.”

“I don’t want soccer, it’s gay.”

“And what’s not gay, football? Yeah, straddling over men isn’t gay that’s right,” I said sarcastically.

“You don’t straddle, you tackle. Fuck that, Football is a man’s support. The bitches love when we ball down at the park, I told you about the bitch Marie, she was fine and she was loving me scoring the touchdowns,” said Cardinal laughing.

“I’m sure, playing catch in the park is impressive. And about the word bitch, if you say it one more time I’m going to strike you very hard,” I growled. Cardinal nodded his head and for the rest of the ride stayed silent. The word Bitch brought back memories for me. My mind was always laced with traumatic memories, and there were certain memories that I desperately tried to erase.

I didn’t have much time to think about it then, as we entered Morris Heights, we passed the low income shit holes and the guys hanging out smoking and drinking. I held my Desert Eagle tight in my hand, I knew we may had put ourselves in danger going through those parts.

“This doesn’t look good, why the fuck are we here bro?” asked Cardinal. We took a turn and then Cardinal pulled over at Clifford’s place. We sat there looking up at the step streets. I noticed a few guys coming over towards us but I tried to ignore it. At the same time however I clutched my gun religiously

“Ay yo, what’s good can I help you with somethin?” asked one of the guys. They both wore windbreakers, one was red and the other was black. They had hoods over their heads as well as fitted caps, I recognized them as part of the street gang Razak was in. The red and black were the colors, and even if theirs were makeshift and I could have been wrong I took it seriously. However, being a hothead I bolted out of the car brandishing my gun and charged up to them.

“Yeah you can help me with something, where is Razak?” I hissed. They actually put their hands up, one more than the other. They looked at each other and then at Cardinal who pointed his handgun at them as well.

“We don’t know no Razak, the fuck is Razak?” said one of them.

“If you think I won’t fucking shoot both of you and leave you here to rot, your brains sprayed on the pavement floating into the sewer. I will, I will shoot you. Just tell me where the fuck Razak is, Thierry Razak!” I shouted. We were drawing attention rapidly and I heard Cardinal say something but it was to late as a mob was rushing us. Instead of just heading to the car I pistol whipped one of them first.

I got to the car right in time as Cardinal sped off, we kept our heads down in case they shot but nothing was fired. We looked at each other and laughed.

“Yo, better luck next time man, we’re lucky we didn’t get tagged,” said Cardinal laughing hard. I looked at him laughing, I may have giggled but nothing near as hard as he laughed. I had pistol whipped the kid so that the message would get to Razak, because my gut feeling told me he knew where my sister was. I worried that he might hurt her then, in that moment I acted like I didn’t care because she got herself into that situation. But then the nervous stomach kicked in and I got scared, I thought about her getting hit and it made me sick. I was clinging on to hope that I would find her sooner rather than later.

 

 

Cardinal dropped me off near my Uncle’s Deli, I waved him goodbye and then there I was alone in the middle of the street. I walked far enough so that I could see the big sign for Karol’s World Famous Deli. Karol’s Deli was only known throughout New York and back in our native Germany, but beside that there wasn’t much acclaim for the Deli and its sandwiches. My Uncle just decided to put that on the label so that he could attract the few customers we got.

As I walked I noticed George Glazer causally walking up to me. Glazer looked good, and I doubted her had anything to do with Sephrina. She just loved talking about him; his Narcotics Anonymous group was one of the only ones she felt comfortable in.

“Spiro how are you,” he said shaking my hand with both of his. He had a warm smile, and was about the nicest guy you ever could meet. He was great, and someone I looked up to.

“I’m not good today George, shit is bad again.”

“What shit is bad? I came over here looking for you,” said George. He surprised me when he said that, I wondered if he knew anything about Sephrina.

“Sephrina is gone,” I said. George sighed and put his hands on his hips, he had a look of absolute dread. “Why were you here?”

“To tell you that your sister hadn’t been attending meetings like we had talked about, sporadically she’d be there but nothing solid. She would show up every other day, maybe a little less than that,” said George.

“Did she look like she was using?” I asked quietly. George shook his head and sighed once more.

“Not really, she was detached but I don’t think she was using. At least it didn’t seem like she was high during the meetings, and she did share once that she had met somebody. I never saw them and knew nothing about them, it’s just what I heard her say,” said George.

            We shared a look of dread, if anything George was my partner when it came to cleaning up Sephrina’s messes. He knew all to well the consequences, and he looked bad that day. I felt the same, I felt like the wind was knocked out me. I just wish she’d pop up in front of my eyes; it would end all the tension and release the stress. I wouldn’t have to worry that much for the rest of the day.

            Instead there was only a gloomy forecast; both George and I had energy sucked from out expressions. I walked over to give him a quick hug, he patted my back and then pulled back to look at me. “She is going to kill you one day Spiro; I just wish it would be easier to figure these damn problems out. But that’s why they are called problems, we have to solve them. We’ve got to solve this one before we are buried next to each other.”

            I laughed but what he said was true, this was no fucking joke.

            “You are right George, right now I’m a nervous wreck,” I said quietly.

            “Meditate, read some literature and keep your mind occupied. I know how angry you get, I’ve seen it and it’s not good for you. You have to focus on you, and stop letting the other things in life get in the way of that. First you have to learn to love yourself,” said George looking at me with solemn eyes. He came close and touched my chest. “I know that you don’t, but I want you to know that we all do. And you can’t probably help your sister if you don’t even love yourself.”

As George walked away after a handshake, I wondered what this life would bring to me to next. I found out early, the waiting room of my Uncle’s Deli. George’s words lingered with me as I took a seat in one of the booths playing with my phone.

I waited at the Deli for two hours before my uncle showed up. He had an ice pack pressed up against his right cheek. It turns out he had gone to the dentist, my uncle’s least favorite activity. He was mad, and he usually had a pretty foul temper. I had never really been the victim of my uncle’s wrath; instead I stayed clear as much as possible.

            “How ya doing kid, I missed you today. You know I had to go to the dentist, but this dumb fuck over here scheduled the appointment with the wrong dentist. I like Dr. Chung, but he scheduled to appointment with that other son of a bitch. Almost got me killed,” said Uncle Karol. He walked over and slapped Stevie, one of Uncle Karol’s new guys.

            “I had a situation today, I’m sorry Uncle Karol,” I said quietly.

            “No worries kid, no worries at all. But I tell you something, that guy was a fuckin amateur. He almost destroyed my tooth; I wanted to rip his fuckin balls off. I’m tempted to have a talk with him, ya know what I mean?” said Uncle Karol keeping the ice to his face. He showed me over to a table near the door, we both sat down and he sighed and groaned.

            “Was it Doctor Stone, the guy with the heavy beard? He can be kind of rough.”

            “He was brutal. I tell you what he’s got some balls, and this dumb fuck didn’t do a thing when he was torturing me. Stevie, Stevie! The least you could have done would have been to tell him to lighten up, right?” shouted Uncle Karol.

            “He is an asshole,” I muttered.

            “A guy like me, ya know a guy like me, you fuck with his teeth and that could be it for you, ya know what I mean?” said Uncle Karol posturing at the table.

            “I’ll call up and file a complaint,” I said smiling. My uncle looked at me and laughed.

            “You do that kid,” he said still laughing. “Your uncle is to much of a dickhead to ever consider something like that. I do it the old street way, right to the neck.”

            I nodded my head still smiling and then looked down at the table playing with my fingers. I started feeling dread, a sick feeling through my body. I started feeling lonely thinking about missing my sister. My Uncle must have noticed my sorrow and picked up on it pretty quickly. “She left again?”

            “Yeah she did.”

            “What did she do, just ditch the apartment in the middle of the night or something?” asked my Uncle. I had always wished that my Uncle take these things with a little more sensitivity and care, instead of being his usual hard ass self when it came to all aspects of life. He was hard to be around for long, he knew it though and sometimes he tried his hardest.

            “Yeah, I think I heard her leave but it was to late. I just don’t understand what the fuck she is doing anymore,” I complained and rubbed my forehead.

            “Listen to me; you are my favorite nephew, honestly the rest of the family I can’t take in large doses if you know what I mean. I support you in whatever you feel is right, but she drags you along and is killing you. Look at your face, you look fucking tired!” exclaimed Uncle Karol. He paused for a second and then grabbed my wrist, so I looked up at him. “You’ve got to let her go.”

            “But Uncle, if somebody knocked around your sister, Aunt Doris. What would you do?” I asked crossing my arms.

            “I’d fucking kill them, but I don’t count I am a horrible person for Christ sake!” yelled Uncle Karol as him and his posse surrounding our table burst into laughter.

            “You’ve got to understand I’m in a horrible spot, she is my sister. Not just some girlfriend or friend, she is my little sister. And you know how I took care of her, not one thing was wrong. She had everything she needed and even stuff that she wanted. I made sure there was food on the table every night, you get what I’m trying to say?”

            “Yeah I do,” answered Uncle Karol.

            “I just can’t stop and do nothing,” I mumbled looking back down at the table.

            “You’ve got no fucking life kid, at your age you should be drinking, partying, getting your dick sucked. You have no life!” exclaimed Uncle Karol.

            “I have a life!” I responded.

            “No you don’t, you don’t. We’ve been trying to set you up with that brunette who lives across the street but you are never interested.”

“I don’t have time for it,” I said fidgeting in my chair. “Anyway what the fuck do you do Uncle Karol; you sit there in front of that television watching re-runs of the Seinfeld all fucking day. So don’t–”
            “Fuck you!” shouted Uncle Karol giggling a little bit. Everyone at the bar fell out in laughter; they were taking an opportunity to laugh at their boss who was usually a very dangerous and volatile man. “It’s a funny show alright, and I’m a happily married man. Marriage is fuckin boring, wait until you get married you’ll find out.”

“I’ll at least pick a better show,” I said smiling, I knew that was enough before I would get beaten to death with a blunt object. My Uncle was less of a tyrant and more of a criminal with a bad temper, nothing more. We weren’t dealing in millions in our little group, sure we were worth five or six million but that was as a whole. We owned three clubs, had monopolized the red light district and had a decent share in the drug game. We sold a lot of Black Tar and some coke. I put my life in jeopardy everyday even working with my uncle, but it didn’t worry me to much. I almost wanted to lose my life, because I really didn’t care about myself. Not at all actually, it was always Survival and Sephrina on my mind. I had been through so much I felt like an old man.

“Listen I got to tell you something, I got a job for you kid,” said Uncle Karol after all the laughter and joy had ceased. I knew it was something big, I could just tell by his facial expression. “I want you go and visit that kid, Mason to help him move some crates. The weight has been heavy for some time and I think it’s about time that we gave him a quick hand.”

My uncle was using code, what he really said was go fucking kill Mason. Mason one of my Uncles Dealers; he had suspected for the longest time that he had been lying about getting robbed on the way to pay up. My Uncle was old school, basically if you crossed him and cheated him out of a somewhat significant sum of money you bet your life. Back in the day he’d personally kill you, but he was getting much older.

I nodded my head and he patted my shoulder. “I’ll head out in a couple of hours, but do me a favor Uncle.”

“Anything for my favorite Nephew!” he exclaimed smiling. He must have been really pleased that I actually accepted the job.

“Get some guys looking out for Sephrina; ask some of the right questions to the right people. Maybe even put some money on the street, the fiends will give her up quick. Ya know I’d pay you back and all that.”

“Done, you don’t even have to worry kid, I know you will because she is your sister for Christ sake but her wellbeing is in good hands. I’ll put my best guys on it,” he said shaking my hand and patting my shoulder. My Uncle always kept his word no matter what. When I left the Deli, my fear had switched from not finding my sister to going back to where it all started.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Ballad of Johnny Handsome

He screamed as the answer to her wishes couldve never been forseen, it was the birth of a dream. Jonathan Clement, the beautiful boy, was his moms shining moment. She wanted to pray but she couldnt think of anything else to say. With her baby in her hand she hovered in dreamland. Home was no paradise, it was as dark as a morbidly outrageous poem, as Johnny’s story was to collapse like rome. But her held her son, as her husband lurked in front of her with a loaded gun. Was he a bum or the shadow of a million suns, what captivated her scream was Johnnys beautiful gleam

They danced to The Clash, the old piggy banks were quickly replaced by a savings account stash. Things had changed, Johnny’s father the horribly deranged had departed and this new ray of hope allowed Johnnys mom to cope. Jim was his name, his face so dim and his clothes were on the administrative brim. The future forcasted acid rain but he kept Johnnys mom sane. Motivation advocated by education, led to a seaside vacation. This was the new sensation, haunted only by Johnnys new uncles indications. Vacation became a hobby, Johnny didnt miss the bland streets. Sand felt great on a eight year olds feet. He was oblivious to this pedophiles lie, he thought he was to old to cry because he didnt want to do it anymore, he wanted to die. Johnny Handsome was his uncles nickname, part of his sick game. As he held Johnny down he wanted to die, it lasted until eleven and he wanted to die. He’d seen the ocean, the Bahamas and cartoons but this pain came to soon.

Rebellion, just as Johnny predicted a riot. The violence was silent, the punishment was to quiet. The hallway had pollution, it was part of the principles solution, chaos was the name of this fuckin institution. There were sustained junkies in the bathroom who just took small 90 proof sips, chapped lips and kids sold tips to keep from taking a police station trip. It was just a teenage population seeking oppressive liberation. Then for Johnny came first love, he hovered like a Peace admiring the sky up above. She was Jan, they strolled through the park just never after dark. As they kissed they held each others hand, then came the pleasure that few felt in these United Lands. Johnny the goon who sank so low, to hurt to recognize a friend or a foe, had brought flour, butter, frosting and dough. Baking the cake would take an hour to finish, but the phone call was just a minute. The cake burned reminiscent to Johnnys fate. He wanted to rally poetry to get her. After a year, he never forgot her. Upset and unclear, Johnny drank ten warm beers. This was the product of his trauma’s fear, and all he owned was a tear

Blood game motherfucker, a young adult alternative that consisted of enforcing on greedy suckers. Johnnys life was a symphony like the laxative’s pergative. It was buy, sell and kill to live, he was twenty and he had no love to give. He did a bid, never had a kid, forgot the one person he loved and protected the dirt that he did. It came naturally, he insisted you had to die a few times to see. If Johnny didnt find the key, he simply would no longer be. Twist to the story, was a rat named Cory. He ducked and showed Johnny he didnt give a fuck. A snitch that he had to scratch like a itch. Brain beaten and in a psychotic state, this odd job could decide his fate. He prayed, but it was obviously twenty years to late.

He arrived at the scene, he tried to figure his life expectancy, but he didnt want to use mode or mean. He insisted on Median. To destroy your heart, soul and every single pole, this pain he carried wasnt his fault. The darkness in the cloud, no matter how loud was not his fault. He made it to the first floor, and he crept to the door. People blessed him with a sense of morality, but Johnny Handsome challanged it would cramp his individuality. But then his body lay lifeless, his head resting next to a puddle of old piss. For years Johnny Handsome held himself ransom, the prize would be new eyes. He had seen to much, lost the sensation of touch. There wasnt much to be said at the funeral, Johnny was finally dead. He was a stain to most, one of life’s banes. They discussed his deeds at the party, but only few understood what was true. Nobody had the right to judge after what he went through

Take a Minute, the Poem

The solemn aggression and pain of lonely nights, the darkness and disputes shine upon city lights

 

I sway in the wind as the feeling of doom creeps in despite all the advantages of a perpetuating preconceived desires and barren roads that seem to never end

 

They say I’m kidding but it’s a fact, it’s a stereotype of the prejudice that’s built to react

 

My past influences the way I act

 

The messages from society shield wondrous dreams, and I’m beginning to waste away it seems, and if you don’t help me now ill fade away in the misery Day in Day out

 

 

 

Misery finds a home it always does, a problem evolves from me to us, and if looks could kill I’d bury your trust

 

I’d always had my heart in hand, I always said if the tide rose I’d stand, maybe I’m just not god’s man

 

As times passes so quick, in motion my life makes me sick, and you remind me of all the things that were ever said by knowing me when my face was plastered red

 

Controlling each impulse and feeling with empty meds, and the tribulation of being hungry and having yet to be fed no, because sometimes I feel like I’m going to just drop dead

 

It’s the nights I loathe and the daylight I dread, I’m wasting away in bed, the feeling is beginning to spread and I’m fading, I’m fading Day In, Day Out, Day In, Day Out

 

 

 

Smash the window resulting in bloody knees, disgusting fiends waiting for the itch to cease

 

The moments of day when I struggle to breath, delaying celebrations because I’m trying to prove to myself that I still even believe

 

And, I remember so clearly the days I slit my wrist, I remember so clearly all the risks I took to exist

 

To abort an idea and watch it wheeze, set fire to the world, hopes and bars

 

My mind is becoming an exhibition that transcends dimensions for tradition, just so I can have faster cars, sometimes I think there is a moon man and I’m living on mars

 

And no I’m not gonna shot for the stars again, fall from the sky and die breathing in air I used to rely in

 

Day in, Day Out, the reality never speaks it shouts, Day in, Day Out, Day In Out, but I don’t want to fade away, I don’t want to leave this world today

 

There is a memory so stand still, Take a Minute prior to pulling the trigger because now I’ve got a view to a kill

 

I was promised good things that end, and I always knew they would

 

I tried to conquer this world, and even as I falter I know I still could

 

So many perfect shapes, how do I compete? Truth is what you perceive but depending on how much you believe will raise the limits on all that you receive.

 

I’m looking at the quiet sky again, and I’m looking at a close up of the past on New Year’s Eve, the silence holds aggression that builds belief, like blasphemy and grace creating a new me yeah

 

Day creeps and night tends, I’ve got the devil inside yet I ascend, and I blend animosity like it’s a trend, nutrition for a theory fueling hypocrisy, with hate so far the eye can’t see

 

And it’s the times of the night that remind, that if it wasn’t for the hate I couldn’t be me, the evil entity

 

 

 

Have you been able to pontificate about dark days and bright nights that we’ve got, making magic out of the illusions of the people in which we are not

 

I can’t think straight, the pain must stop, because if I stay to off balance I’ll drop These are the days when a father is needed by his son

 

I need someone to pick up the pieces instead of turning around to run, I need a clearer vision of the sun, because some days I feel like a big mistake, and then others like the chosen one, these are the days when I’m reminded how I was born by the knife and will live by a gun

 

This teenage minacity is less innocent then a stroll on the city, or the brutality of the town without pity, revenge and repent, tragedy of the years of doves and mud, and the present terror of the past blood

 

Stuck in my mind, its Day in Day out, stuck in design, the fear, the terror I can’t speak much clearer

 

Because the chills become sincerer, its Day in Day Out, the place more lights to shine on my drought

 

I don’t want to drown or burn away, I want to rise above and howl what I’ve got to say, without delay I want all of hell to pay before I fade away. It’s the glimpse of hope, misery of gleams, Day In Day Out its not what it seems

 

 

Warmonger in Therapy: Life is Free Verse

I’m getting far more tired of waiting around as each day goes, so i decided to publish a bunch of stuff on Warmonger. Right now, i have two books prepared to be published. Take a Minute is a book that’s crazy as hell, a true gangster saga. It’s about the progression of crime in the 21st century, the affects of trauma and abuse on a child growing up to a man and the Russian Mafia. (I must admit, i hope i can keep my fingers after publishing this damn book.) Draco Ragonov is a brilliant character, a smart, charismatic young man ready to take over the world that has constantly rejected him. His family is full of cold blooded murderers, and as he becomes one the graphic transformation from a young and innocent student to a mob lord is played out on paper.

The second book is The City Breaks It’s Promise, a novella about a young man and his sister. Set within the beginning of the crack cocaine epidemic, a boy raises his sister on the streets of South Bronx and protects her throughout their random stints in foster care. In foster care they are raped and tortured. Spiro Tobick and his sister are two lost souls, and Spiro is cynical and doubts there is any good in life.

He takes a job collecting debts and beating people, and he finds himself beating any man who touches his sister. Spiro spirals out of control and his sister runs off. The book is about his quest to find her and also by coincidence finds himself.

Both books are good, Take a Minute being a standout. Now i’ve been struggling to do anything with these books. I was very ignorant and tried to contact large companies who wiped their ass with my manuscript that i promptly mailed to them. But they will regret that shit stain on the first page. They will regret on the bodily functions, because these books are going to make a decent impact.

So i partnered with Trafford and Createspace, we are doing this. The third book is in progress and will be more of a bravado novel like Take a Minute. I honestly think that even though right now i don’t have all the answers in the back pocket of my trousers, i think deep down i have the answer to the various “Questions” that are plaguing the crime fiction genre. I think i bring a fresh perspective.

Without you guys i have nothing, so i will try my hardest to keep you occupied and entertained. Thank you so much for sticking around with me, much love!! ❤

Lullaby

walk into the forest too deep wrapping my heart for you to keep
I woke up from a deep sleep I roamed around cold beach like a creep I anticipated the night a quiet riot they kidnap the light
loves tide, the day i stared into your eye, doubt committed suicide. In you arms, i couldve cried, instead rage took hostage with a insidious lie
Id love to say i could try, but with you absent id rather die.

She called calligraphy, my art,my biography. Im a tyrant, painfully referencing life’s bibliography. As soon as i realized life wasnt smiles and flowers, i found you to stare at for hours. Scared by a dispassionate kiss, dolorous by the puddle of old piss.

Id take a stroll, heartbreaks sedatives had taken a toll. I was high on false hope, i built a fortress to try and cope but god got to me. I was going to slit my throat, hoping the blood would keep afloat long enough to see the sunshine. Howls of experimentation, forsaken with loves temptation. Nothing could fructify your lost sensation.

I stood then, my mind below a star. It flew away so far, as my overachieving repertoire kept its prominence on like a dirty scar. I see you in a dream, your portrait still more beautiful then anything id ever seen. But your intentions are as sharp as a scream, i can no longer try and balance on that beam. This poem is the beginning of the team, you think your queen but it wont be long this confidence reigns supreme.

Warning Shot (Chapter 1)

            My name is Pyotr Tchermoeff. But that didn’t matter much to me anymore. My name was nothing, as I was just a spectacle blowing in the wind. I was someone that nobody cared about, nobody knew and that would never make a serious impact on the world. When they tortured me to death I wouldn’t get my name in the paper. We didn’t even have papers like that in Chechnya. This wasn’t the United States, we didn’t have nightly news. If we did then news would be flooded with innocent Chechen children riddled with bullets and burned for decades, heinous and relentless torture of my people.

            I had joined the freedom fighters knowing that we’d never actually be free. We were just making a statement to the Russians that we wouldn’t sit around and let ourselves be killed. I became a shadow, they taught me to use a sniper rifle when I was twelve. I didn’t fire one until I was fifteen, instead while I was progressing in age I learned everything there was about the Sniper Rifle. My sniper rifle at the time was a Remington. It was far less technologically advanced as the Alias CS5 that I had. It looked absolutely amazing. It was high quality, advanced technologically with a custom design. The exterior was mostly red with some streaks of black. It didn’t blend in with anything but I knew if they saw me I was dead anyway so why not die with a cool looking rifle.

            I didn’t care about much, I wasn’t a Muslim and I didn’t want a wife. I was an outcast in Chechnya but I loved the country. I grew up there, I knew the people that lived in this country and especially my village. I decided to become a sniper when my brother was killed by a bombing. I couldn’t believe that it happened. I was absolutely in disbelief, and I was feeling as though I was suffering from shellshock. I already hated Russians, they treated us poorly and they were always very cruel. They beat us, terrorized us by raiding our homes and shot our people. It was unacceptable and nobody did anything about it, so it was our duty to do something.

            For the most part I would lay still on the fifth floor of a building that was in one of the few abandoned cities of Chechnya. Nearly decimated by the bombings and the first war, few people still lived there and if they did they’d stay on the outskirts. My assignment was to kill a high ranking Russian officer. The city was usually a gateway to Grozny, the capital. So often the Russian pigs would roll through. They had done so four or five times since I had been on the fifth floor but I couldn’t identify a good target and they were to close.

            The side of the fifth floor that I was on, was opened from a tank shell that went through the side of the wall. There was a large hole in the ceiling as well, and bullet holes all around the room. I lay in the rubble and kept watch, keeping my binoculars handy. Next to me, was an old Uzi, my CD player, a picture of my brother, a Penthouse magazine and a cell phone. In the other room was some food, I would usually get some food delivered every week. I ate very little and I always would conserve everything, but now I was running out of pills.

            Days got long and time didn’t always pass as quickly as I wanted, so they would give me a couple hundred painkillers a month. I went through them quick and this time I finished a week early. It worried me, and I didn’t want to call them up to ask for more but it seemed as though I was going to be forced to. I didn’t want them thinking that I was some kind of drug addict even though for the most part it was true. They didn’t even make me feel good like they used to, I just needed them to feel sane. My job up on the fifth floor was so boring that sometimes I didn’t know what to do with myself.

            That day I thought about everything before I was shot and killed. Your life really does flash before you when you die, and I’m telling you all this as the bullet rips toward my head. That day, I lay on the ground with my rifle positioned on the bipod. I looked in the scope to see what was going on. There was a plastic bag flying around the streets that ended up getting caught up against a pole. I was just getting ready to go to sleep when I heard a yell. I didn’t think much of it, because there were a group of kids who came around playing and would usually throw me a signal or two if the coast was clear.

            I stayed alert for a couple of minutes but then my attention started to drift off. I figured it was just some kids playing football, so I put my head down and rested against my pillow which was conveniently placed right near where I’d lay with the rifle. But when I closed my eyes I heard a second even louder yell. My heart raced as I shot myself up. I grabbed my Uzi and took cover and peered down. I saw a kid running with two fingers up, he was missing one finger from it get cutting by the Russians so it was slightly awkward. But he made the devils horn sign which made me chuckle but then when I really thought about it this seemed like it could be bad. The little boy made another sign that frightened me, he put his thumb up to the side.

            My heart dropped and I put the thumb to the side back to him, I wasn’t sure if he could see it or not. But I knew what the thumb to the side meant, it meant that there was a high ranking Russian official near me. I was scared to be honest, I had only pulled the trigger a few times but this was the real deal. I could be a hero, a martyr. But I could also be just another death.

            My hands were sweaty and sticky and so was my face. I didn’t know what to do to prepare, I was scrambling. Then I decided to go back to the basics. I sat with my legs crossed and sat up straight. I started to deep breathe, slowly but surely my anxiety went down. After ten minutes of completely going to my zone I departed from it calm, cool and collected. I reached for my rifle and got into position. I set up the bipod and then grabbed the binoculars. I had excellent vision on the fifth floor, basically I could see the whole city. And there I saw a group of soldiers and then what looked like an high ranking Officer.

            The Russians believed that the whole city was a ghost town, like us they believed the only people that lived there were in the outskirts and that they were peaceful. It was the perfect cover for me, so there I lay watching them and continuing to deep breathe. I dropped my binoculars just as the boy who signaled me ran off. The troop was far from him anyway but he must have seen or heard them. Another boy ran behind him, he must have been hiding. I realized I needed to be more aware because I didn’t even see the little bastard. I wasn’t some shitty sniper they put out on the fifth floor of a decimated building to eventually be shot, I was a damn good sniper who was there to kill a high ranking official. The problem was when I got killed I wasn’t going to go to a bunch of virgins, instead I was just going to leave this cruel world. Sometimes I wondered if it was a mistake not continuing to pursue the Muslim faith, what if there really was a afterlife of some form. The Chechen Command initially didn’t want to even put me in a big position despite my skill, due to a complete lack of faith on my part. Instead they decided to take a risk, one that would now pay off.

            So I looked into the scope still calm and cool, I made sure to continue to breathe normally. I saw that they were two streets away and I knew that I had to act. There weren’t many of them in the troop so it was time to make the kill. I put the scope to my eye, positioned the gun and put the crosshairs on his head. He was wearing a hat reminiscent of a high command, I started to get shaky and fearful when the hat reminded me he was an officer. I didn’t know whether or not to pull trigger. I was covered in sweat and I started absolutely panicking. I took a deep breath and then pulled the trigger, I watched the officer’s head whip back.

            Everyone in the troop got down and I jumped back myself. I ran to the back of the room and then jumped into the closet. I smiled as I closed the closet door, I felt accomplished because I did it. I was just about to celebrate in my closet when shots were fired into the room. I started to panic again because I didn’t know what to do. First I ran out to grab the Uzi and fire back but then I decided to stay hiding. I closed the closet door again and started to cry.

            I had no idea what to do so I stayed. Time passed, I thought I was safe. I was as quiet as possible and closed my eyes. I had acted as though I was completely ready to die, but when the opportunity came up I was terrified. I was scared of the unknown, I wasn’t sure what would be up in the afterlife or if there even was one. And if there wasn’t one, everything would just end. And then I remembered that I didn’t have my Uzi.

            Ten minutes had passed and I decided that I had to go for the Uzi. It would end up being the worst choice of my life, and as I dived out of the closet to grab the gun I heard someone in the hallway. I reached for the Uzi but it was to late, I felt the bullet rip through my bicep. I screamed, in the face of death I was absolutely shocked. I lay on the ground looking up at the barrel of the gun.

            They spoke in Russian, and I didn’t even have time to move. Instead I had time to go over my whole life, the first time I had sex, my first true love, my breakups, my mother and father, my favorite things like playing Call of Duty and killing Russians or watching Manchester City with Sergio Aguero or Daniel Silva. There was a moment where I finally felt free, I know I didn’t begin my story years ago but I’d like to start at my death. Life was like that, I have all the time in the world before I go so I can tell you the whole story. In a bizarre way, this end is only the beginning. It was time to tell my story.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

If It’s Not God…(Old Short Story)

6:00 am

I woke up in a white room that was consistent with your typical hospital setting. I got mad, but I was immediately met with intense pain in my arm. I groaned loudly, and a swarm of white coats stormed into the room. The high powered types, the ones I couldn’t stand that made the big bucks and drove the nice cars.

I heard them all talking, I had to really concentrate to try and figure out what they were saying. It hit me suddenly, that I had been shot only hours ago. I had forgotten, in fact I had no idea whether or not they got the perp. I started to think hard, to try and remember but I suddenly got this tingling feeling in my testicles. It was morphine, or some sort of painkiller. I hated that stuff. I couldn’t fight it; it was already in me and working. I realized that one of the white coats was trying to speak to me.

“Detective Taber, my name is Doctor Matthew Dale; do you know where you are?”

“Yeah, it seems as though I’m at a hospital, I don’t know which one but I’m at a hospital, right?” I asked. I felt the urge to be a smartass. “Either that or a Stephen King book, which one?”

“You are in the hospital that’s correct; you were brought in a few hours ago because of a gun shot wound. Do you remember any of that?” asked the white coat. He was tall, skinny and seemed more like a skeleton then anything else.

“Yeah I remember enough. Did my partner get Benoit?”

“I’m not sure, I-”

“Ill get up then,” I said defiantly. They tried to keep me sitting down but I didn’t listen as usual. I enjoyed being hard headed, in ran in my family and it was something we all took pride in. It was my duty and also my prerogative to help my partner, it was also necessary because the only reason I was shot was because I was selling information on raids. I didn’t want Gale to be hounded alone, the guy was the smartest Detective I had ever met but it would be good to have some support. So I used the phone in the hallway after a one legged man hopped away.

I rang Gale’s cell phone and awaited an answer. “Detective Fortgang.”

“Gale, its Oliver, what’s going on downtown?”

“Nothing we are good, just worry about that arm. We are all set, Ash has our backs. Ill be down to see you once I’m done with some paperwork. How do you feel?” asked Gale. It was a huge relief that we were alright, we wouldn’t have just lost our pensions for what we were doing. Captain Terry Ashford, or Ash as we called him, was in a tough spot. Either he would sacrifice two of his detectives and a lot of funding from an investigation, or some moral fiber. Naturally he chose the moral fiber. Nevertheless this wasn’t over, I wasn’t going to let this shit just happen and forget about it. Fabio Benoit shot me, and there was going to be a price to pay.

“No Gale, fuck that. Not how do I feel, what’s the game plan?” I hissed. I wasn’t angry at him, in general I was just a abrasive bastard.

“The game plan is you sit your ass in that hospital, let your arm heal up a little more. Then come home, take time off, get caught up on Rachel Ray or Jerry Springer and then in a few months depending we will figure something out.” One of the problems was Gale was almost as abrasive as I was.

“No man.”

“You’re getting paid, you will be taken care of. We can talk about things before you come back, but in reality that might be a little while,” exclaimed Gale.

“I don’t care about my salary, or any of that police shit. I’m going to go get my motherfucking money. Either you are down or not, I’m not talking about official business, I’m talking about my money.” There was a short silence.

“Alright, I see what you’re saying. Next week, we’ll get Benoit. Is that good for you?”

“No,” I muttered.

“No, what the fuck do you mean no?”

“Today, ill meet you at my apartment.”

8:30 am

Gale knew that Benoit and Claude Sinclair would have left the country by Thursday. Sinclair, was the ringleader of a arms dealing operation which originated from Lyon, France. Fabio Benoit was his right hand man, a contract killer from the French Mafia. The reason Gale and I had started mixing with them, was that we were getting nearly five hundred thousand dollars a year for giving information on raids of their property in Brooklyn and Queens. We were part of the Major Crime Units, and were the ones that conducted the raids. Sinclair must have thought we were going to give him up, so they planned on shooting us. We weren’t going to give them up, instead we were going to make their demise look like an arrest gone bad. I didn’t remember much else.

I had left that god damn hospital instantly, I signed off on the Against Medical Advice papers. It was just the way it was. I called a taxi cab, and had to listen to this asshole talk about how bad his wife cooked. Somehow he didn’t ask me about my shoulder, which was wrapped up and blatantly badly injured.

Once I was home I was exhausted, I figured I could rest a little but once I arrived at my small apartment I had a pounding headache. I kept vomiting, so much that I basically laid by the toilet for about an hour. I felt my eyelids getting heavier, but my arm was pulsating with pain so it kept me awake.

10:25am

“Yo Oli! Open up the fuckin door man!” yelled Gale. I stood up in a daze and shuffled toward the door. I made sure everything was cool outside by checking out the window, paranoia had developed simultaneously with corruption. Everything seemed cool, so I opened the door. “Jesus Christ, didn’t you hear me banging on the door man? I was out there for about five minutes, I thought you were dead.”

“No I fell asleep…for about an hour I think, wait what time is it?”

“Its 10:25,” said Gale sighing. He stared at my me for a few moments. “Look at you, You have to be one of the stupidest motherfuckers I’ve ever met in my life, what the hell is wrong with you man? You just got shot, and now you are home looking for revenge. What are you thinking?” asked Gale laughing. He really wasn’t pissed, in fact he was kind of getting a good laugh out of this.

“I told you, I’m thinking about my money. Take a seat and tell me what happened?”

Gale sat down on my leather couch, while I stayed standing. I was still feeling very lightheaded, I hated waking up like that. “Alright, well you got tagged and i didn’t know what the fuck was happening. I just hugged the corner and pulled you toward me. They bailed after awhile, I called a bus and they sent you to the hospital. I got back to the station, and Ash was pissed off. He was grilling me, but after awhile he got the drift.”

“What’s the official story, we were doing some surveillance right?” I asked. My nerves had hiked for no reason.

“That’s what we are going with, I had Delaney go and make sure there were no cameras. We are completely clean man, that’s why I don’t get why you want to go after them so bad.”

“They have three hundred thousand dollars of our money, I would like to send my kids to a good college. How the hell am I supposed to do that with eighty grand including overtime?”

Gale just laughed. I started to pace and decided to get something to drink. “What are you a prophet, are you a prophet now man?”

“Fuck you.”

“How are you going to think about your kids going to college, when you don’t have any…you don’t even have a girlfriend. Anyway if you do have some, they will probably be just as stupid as you. Little Vigilantes.”

“Don’t talk about my unborn kids, ill put my foot in your ass. Do you want something to drink?”

“I had three cups of coffee already, ill be pissing my pants soon. My prostate is in bad shape, I’m just not getting that examination.” We shared a little laugh. I drank a paper cup of orange juice.

“So today, what’s up?” I asked anxiously. I wanted revenge badly. I had always held grudges, ever since I was five. My brother used to make fun of me with his friends until I was in fourth grade. Then he stopped, but I never forgot it. It left a raw feeling, it hurt when I tried to let it go. I didn’t, and as I became the more aggressive one, I started to mess around with him. One day he was with his girlfriend in a car on Lover’s Creek, and my friends and I cracked his windshield with bats. We scared the shit out of him, but it became a lot more then that. It became something very serious. Some people said I was a bully, I agreed. The last thing I should have been was a cop.

“Today my friend, we are going to visit a little illegal gambling joint in Yonkers. Johnny Handsome, remember that guy we met when we busted Borislav, he gave me the tip this morning. They are having a high stakes poker game, and Benoit cant resist. I say we can help him cash in, what do you think?”

“Definitely.” We laughed. “What time?”

“It starts at two, so you have some time to take a nap. Does that fuckin thing hurt, your arm? I saw you get tagged, Benoit had a hand cannon.”

“Yes it hurts like hell. Tonight ill probably end up going back to the hospital, I don’t know if I can deal with this thing,” I muttered feeling a little defeated.

“Of course you can’t, sometimes you think that you have to be Action Jackson. We can get this done tonight, and then you need to take a easy.”

“I can do that,” I said. I was just as exhausted with this life as my partner.

1:15pm

I was leaning on the windshield, crying. I was glad nobody else was seeing me like that. Everything hurt so bad, my head was pounding. It felt like there was a knife and it was in my head. But instead of going deeper, it just twisted around. I couldn’t hear what Gale was saying, I also really didn’t want to.

During one intense wave of pain I clenched my teeth so hard, I thought they cracked. The saliva in my mouth was becoming bitter, my nose was dripping just enough so that it annoyed me. We were so close, but my mind was so far away. It was stuck in a hole, but I needed my shoulder to climb out.

Gale kept driving though, which actually made it better.

1:45pm

Gale stopped, we were only a few miles away. We were in a seedy neighborhood, the skies were gray and it felt like I hadn’t been asleep in days. I was slowly drifting between a daze and a painfully alert state. Gale reached behind my seat and grabbed a assault rifle. It wasn’t until I got a good look, that I recognized the F2000.

“Did they issue that to you for your birthday?” I mumbled. He was concentrated though, and didn’t pay much attention. I reached into my holster and pulled out my Colt M1911 Government Issue. I grabbed my Beamshot, and started to attach it. It was always difficult, but now the difficulty was magnified through the pain.

“How do you feel partner?” asked Gale.

“I’m doing alright. Better then before.”

“You know the plan, go in strong, give the money to Johnny and make the arrests. There is no back way out of this fuckin place, so we go together. No cowboy shit, ok?”

“I wont do anything.”

“Give me your word, because I don’t need to get shot and die. My wife is pregnant, I have to see this through. After this we need to cool down, no more fuckin cowboy shit. We will get our names in the newspapers, probably get some awards and even get some legitimate bonuses, when was the last time that happened?” asked Gale starting the car back up.

“I think it was back when I won that fuckin trivia game, remember the one with the Denzel Washington question at the end. That was back in 2005, so I think we are due.”

“Oh yeah, the one with his character from Mo’ Better Blues. Only you would know the answer to that bullshit,” said Gale and I laughing. I didn’t know that would be the last time we would laugh together.

2:00pm

Gale edged the car up to a small brick building called Ferry Pool Hall. I had forgotten about a warrant, however Gale had a piece of paper in his hand. The entire search was bogus but the intent really wasn’t the arrest. The emphasis was on the money. We both took a few very loud deep breaths. We looked at each other and burst out of the car.

Gale was much faster, and dashed to the building. The door wasn’t locked luckily. I heard a crack and I knew he had immediately gotten shot. I ran in however, through the suddenly painful realization in my stomach.

It must had been a chair, because Gale was still running. “POLICE! POLICE! HANDS ON YOUR FUCKIN HEADS, HANDS ON YOUR HEAD!” screamed Gale. It felt good, things were smooth so far. I kept a sharp eye once we had made it into the pool area. One guy was there, he was old and looked doped out of his mind. I grabbed him and pushed him with me. It hurt though, and I groaned. We had made it to the big room. There was a table, a dim light, and three men sitting. In the back was Benoit, a overwhelming pain struck my chest, that felt like the old days.

“HANDS ON YOUR HEAD, ALL OF YOU. I’LL SHOOT YOU IN YOUR FUCKIN HEAD IF YOU MOVE!” screamed Gale. He immediately went for Benoit. He searched him and found two guns, one to his side and the other in his sock. I turned my head and saw Johnny sitting in the corner. I got this pain, that made me want to die. It wasn’t fully physical, I felt like a wimp but I couldn’t help it. I was getting through it though, and I stayed on task with vicious aptitude.

“Sinclair, where is the money?” I demanded. He pointed to a cabinet. Johnny reached over and opened it. So far so good, so far so good, i thought. I looked around for a second, and had the bad feeling I was going to get shot again. I checked the back and there was nothing there.

“Hey you, did you like that present I left on your arm. You were crying like a bitch, you probably just were sobbing. They say people from my country are pussies but I’ve been shot eight times and I never cried. How do you feel that I’ll get off on this bullshit, find you and cut you up into little pieces?” asked Benoit. He had so facial expression, no emotion. He had a large scar under his right eye, that was always prominent whenever anybody looked at him. I was clenching my teeth, and the pain got worse. “Is your arm hurting more and more? You might need bed rest tough guy, maybe your partner here can bring you to the hospital and tuck you in with a Hello Kitty doll?”

“Shut the fuck up,” hissed Gale. He smacked Benoit with the back of his rifle. By that time, Johnny had already run out of the room. Gale had handcuffed everybody except Sinclair.

“I hear your mother runs a nice grocery store on 1st avenue, ill need to check out the good buys.” I raised my gun and shot him in the head. I froze, my mouth wide open. I thought for a second that it wasn’t real, but this wasn’t the movies where there was a dream sequence and I could go back. That shot had marked the rest of my life. I had signed my fate with Benoit’s brain. The shot didn’t only mark the end of my freedom, but the end of the story as well.

 Image

The Misery

This Misery

Ive got time to kill, dollar bills, try to get rid of a mountain that clings to the hills
Cheap thrills when the coincidence builds, try to sustain the mind with over the counter pills
Burning buildings, boiling points, chaos
Loud voices, heated exchange, beginning to believe in these payoffs

Misery for the degenerate, more love in the pain if your going to hurt me let me feel it
Let me rise in front of ruby eyes, patronize my endeavors with diamond lies
Break my knuckles to blow off steam, I’m seeing to much red to believe in me
Long nights, bloody fights, paint a picture of the chaos
Clinched fists, death list and that corner in shame and blame city
Pure mourning, Pure misery
Ive got to many wounds to believe in your serendipity

I need a light to ignite my flame
A reason for this world to remember my name
I said I’d play the game, but never fairly
I carry myself to enlightenment with people staring
Shoot for the moon, couldnt leave the ground
I shot further when else was around, defying sound
I did it
Nothing changed, I was livid
Blank spaces, peculiar cases, Its all in my periphery
I shot for the stars but didnt escape the misery

Lovely Lady

Lovely Lady
I ghost wrote in solitude, between the lines of the cruel melody, to simplify all the strange sounds and the compassion that some assholes lack. You are my Lovely Lady i bought the sun and stars together, but it wasnt brighter then your smile, im in love but i held in emotions as I drowned in the river of denile.

My lovely lady, my crown jewel, my everlasting baby. When i uttered your name, my heart floated with the birds and the bees in harmony. There are foreign languages, road blocks, if there are predators, Im the fox. The past is whirlwind that decimates us so fast, and i cry, then im struck with the revelation that in you i can rely.

I held her hand, this lovely girl, i had searched high and low, now there is a future to sew, I found a pearl. A sweet reminder that there is love in the world. Ill never lose you, so hold my hand, when fear commands the end, hold my hand, as tribulation gives a demand, hold my hand. Ill hold so tight, your lovely hand in mine, to take you away would be a hell of a fight

Lovely Lady, this beautiful young lady has the strength to bring light upon the shady. I cried when i wrote this ode, to a crystal ball, the future, a blooming flower, Seconds turn into hours.