Cancer: Outta here

 

Well... that was unexpected. I went to her house, expecting to simply show Gemme the tattoos on my back and bugger off home - if you can call it that - again. And then she offered to let me stay? Sure, it's better than the drug den place that I stay, but y'know. The drug den is free. They just assume that when I go to sleep there, I've passed out from taking too many drugs and they leave me be. No questions asked.

I keep a small collection of clothes for school or whatever it is I feel like doing on any particular day in a closet that doesn't have a skeleton in it. Literally. Someone stole one of those biology skeleton things from the science block ages ago and left it in the closet. No one could be bothered enough to get rid of it.

We called it Fred.

Sometimes I find things like needles or bits of foil in my clothes, where one of the addicts hid their stuff. I just throw it on the floor, or flush it, and end up in a fight with whoever it belonged to.

I look out of the window. It's getting dark. I pick up the ashtray Gemme let me use and ask her where the bin is. I should probably feel bad about having smoked most of my cigarettes in her house, but she didn't seem to mind much, and it was nice to have someone to talk to that could hold a conversation beyond ‘get the hell out of my way,' or something like that.

"Well, I should probably go," I sigh, returning from the kitchen where I emptied the ashtray out.

"Go back... there?" she asks.

"I don't see where else I would go, to be honest," I shrug, picking up my shirt and pulling it over my head.

"Well, please be safe what will all those men out there." She says softly. I glance at her and nod.

"I'll be fine." I zip up my hoodie and pick up my bag, slinging it onto one shoulder. "Thanks. I'll see you around." She kisses me hesitantly on the cheek.

"Okay. I'll see you... well I probably won't will I?" she says. I only half hear her, kinda shocked by the random little kiss. I smile and nod, showing myself out.

"Bye," I call as I leave. I've seen things in the drug den that have freaked me out less that this whole afternoon. It's not often though, I guess, that someone shoots a Zodiac, you end up healing her, then you go to another Zodiac's house, get offered a room there, and then kissed. I'm a stranger to her! Okay, that makes me sound a lot like I'm all uptight about that kinda thing. I'm not, really, but y'know. I just generally try to know a girl longer than a few hours before I start trying to kiss her.

When I get back to the apartment / drug den, I walk in on a fight that's been going for what seems like a while. There's fresh blood on the floor, and white powder spilled across the mess. I side step it all neatly, dumping my bag in the room I kind of ended up claiming. I want to sleep, but the shouting is kind of annoying.

"Shut it!" I yell loudly from the mattress on the floor. They don't hear. With a sigh, I get up and go back to the fight, trying not to get blood all over my last pair of clean-ish jeans. I step between the two junkies - a scrawny woman clawing at a skinny little guy called Si. I've not seen the woman before, but Si knows when to stop.

He sees the knife already in my hand and he backs off. It doesn't matter how high he gets, he'd never bother picking a fight with me. The woman however doesn't get the message, and as much as I dislike hitting women, she needs a good slap. She doesn't take it too well, and drags her nails across my face. I curse, swearing at her loudly, pushing her off.

"Leave it! It's just a bit of coke, for God's sake!" I roar. She ignores me, and the moment she sees an opening, she dives for Si again. I shake my head. Whatever. I put the knife away and grab my bag from beside my mattress, shoving my clothes in it. "I'm outta here." I announce, to no one in particular; Si is busy trying to fend off the coke woman, and no one else would have been listening.

It's really late by the time I find my way back to Gemme's house. But I knock on the door anyways and hope she'll understand why I'm waking her up at one am with blood on my shirt and scratch marks across my face.

The End

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