A Dream Covered in Red
I was in a bathroom, the smell of alcohol burning in my nostrils. Tears dripped down my crystal blue eyes and onto a tiled, black and white floor. Someone's arms were wrapped tightly around me, stroking my hair. "Don't you cry now," the voice whispered, "you have to be brave." A pounding came from the other side of the door. "Open up you little piece of shit," said a drunken voice. The figure hugging me pressed his back against the door. The pounding stopped and I heard footsteps run down a set of stairs. "Listen Cal," the figure snapped, "he's getting the gun--" I looked up to see a boy with brown hair, his face was pale and covered in blood. There were large, dark circles under his eyes. A shot sounded from downstairs that made me bury my face into the boy's shirt. He was taller and stronger than I was. He made me feel safe. "We don't have much time," the boy snapped. He took his fist and rammed it hard into the bathroom window. Blood dripped from his knuckles before it finally shattered. "I'm getting you out of this hell hole," he mumbled, picking me up. He jumped out the window and landed gracefully on the damp pavement bellow. There was a loud crash. The door to the bathroom had been opened. "What the hell?"The drunken voice shouted from the bathroom. I looked at the boy, fear flashing across his brown eyes. "Calvin," he said, clasping me on the shoulder, "you get your ass out of this place, and run like there's no tomorrow. Just don't come back here, ever." He reached into his pocket and took out a shining, silver pistol. I stood there, tears streaming down my cheeks. The boy's face swelled with anger. He reached out a hand and shoved me away. "Get out of here! Get away from this place!" I took one last look at the boy's bloodstained face and bolted down the street. Gunshots sounded as I turned the corner. A piercing scream rang through my ears. Who had been shot?
"CALVIN!" I was awake now, looking around the room. Sunlight was streaming through an open window and a bowl of oatmeal was lying next to me. Sedgwick's face was leaning in close to mine, his green eyes glinting in the white light. "You were crying in your sleep so I decided to wake you up. My face felt hot. I looked down at the bowl of oatmeal. "Is it for me?" I mumbled, my eyes hung low in embarrassment. Sedgwick didn't say anything for a moment, his eyes still focused on me. "Oh--yeah, I made it for you," he said, "eat up."
I took the warm bowl and gobbled down the food. I hadn't eaten since...I can't remember the last time I ate anything. Was it yesterday morning? "Thanks," I said, handing him the empty bowl. "Wow, you practically inhaled that," he laughed. Sitting down at the end of the bed. "You'd think a famous criminal like you could get all the food he wanted." I turned my head away from his, clenching my bedsheets. "It's not like that," I sighed. "Oh, sorry if I offended you I just--" Sedgwick began. "No, it's okay, I don't like to talk about my job much...that's all." Sedgwick nodded, his head turning to look out the window.
"I'm glad you stayed alive," he said, "what happened out there?" I shook my head, trying not to remember the amount of pain I had dealt with only yesterday. "Mobsters--" I choked, "they don't like it if your late on the job." I brought my hand to my face and wiped my watery eyes. Sedgwick looked down, shaking his head. "Damn, I'm surprised you've stayed alive your whole life if that's what you have to deal with everyday." I let a small laugh escape my lips. "I'm usually on time. I was talking to--
My eyes shot up. "Paulina," I gasped. My muscles ached as I struggled to climb out of the bed. "No," Sedgwick barked, "you have to stay put. You're still injured." I stood up, a sharp pain shooting through my stomach. I clutched it tightly, falling back onto the bed. "I've got to warn her," I said, my face cringing. "The mobsters--said they'd kill her." My vision way going. I was blacking out, but the thought of Paulina lying on the ground in a puddle of blood forced me to stay awake.
"Paulina?" Sedgwick asked."Who's-- "I've got t-to warn her," I stammered, trying to stand again. I got to my feet, but the pain was coming back. Sedgwick clasped a hand to my shoulder. "Let me help you," he said, his green eyes beaming into mine. I nodded as he guided me to the door.
All my life I relied on myself, and myself only. I grew mean. I grew tough. I didn't need anyone's help--until now. This man had just saved my life, and I was forever in his debt. He could've let me die. He could've walked right past me without giving a second thought, but he didn't, and I was grateful for that. Paulina and Sedgwick were the first people I'd ever met who showed me compassion. I needed their help, but first--
Paulina needed mine.