Short story I wrote for school. About gangs I guess....
I ran. A little woozy after what we had just seen, but I had to get away.....I had to get away.
I woke up. Where was I? Then it hit me, last night came over me in a rush of emotions as I pulled into fetal position and tried to clear my head. It was cold, and I didn't have a coat. I got up, tripped, as a headache tore through my skull and sat down again. I opened my eyes, it was still dark, and closed them again as my head pounded. I felt like I had just had an overload of booze, maybe I should go back to sleep....
No, I can't, I thought. Its too chancy, but I couldn't walk. I looked around through blurry eyes and spotted a pile of boxes. As I dragged myself across the filthy cement of the alley, scraping my hands and earning a hole in my jeans, I reached the boxes, curled up, and fell asleep.
I woke, again. My throbbing headache was almost gone, just a faint pulse now. I stood up, feeling much more sturdy and started to walk towards the street. I looked up at the nearest, bright green, street sign and tried to read it. "Colebrook ave" I read, aloud. I thought for a moment, trying as hard as possible to realize where I was, I looked to the sign beneath it "Emerson st" it read. I knew where that was, my old office building was three blocks away...and when I worked there, it was a 20-minute commute from home. I groaned, which turned into a slurred variation of a sigh. I did know of a coffee shop a few streets down, and realized I probably needed to clean myself up.
After walking 5 painful blocks limping from the gash on my right knee, I started nearing the shop. Oblivious of the time but the sun was rising, I prayed for it to be open. As my luck went, it was. I walked into the lime green and brown shop, waving at the cashier, who happened to be a young, brunette girl, who cringed at the sight of me. Did I really look that bad? I headed towards the bathroom, as quickly as possible. I opened the door and found a mirror staring me straight in the eye. I did look bad, my forehead and jeans were smeared with blood, and my brown longish hair, for a guy at least, was matted and tangled. Dirt and mud splattered my dark orange shirt, of which one sleeve was completely torn off. I cleaned up as well as I could, throwing away the towels that were soiled with what I hoped was my own blood.
I walked back into the shop, looking slightly presentable, and ordered a cup of coffee, only to realize I had no money. The girl gave me a sympathetic look, and gave it to me for free. I promised I'd come back and pay it off , though it was only for show. I sat down, only to get up immediately and look for paper and a pencil. I saw the children's area, clean and tidy from the cleaning it must have received this morning or the night before. Being the only customer, I had only the gorgeous cashier to watch my strange actions as I walked over, and searched for something in my criteria of needs. I ended up finding a couple of blank sheet of paper and a black Crayola crayon; I got a couple in case one broke. It would have to do.
Back at my table, I got to work trying my recollection of the night before. After many strange looks, a couple customers, and 4 hours later, I had finished my coffee, broken five crayons, and used 7 sheets of paper. I started to read my writing, correcting misspellings and punctuation as I went along.
At around 2 pm I was on my computer, browsing the webs, when I received a phone call. It was someone I knew, not very well, but I had met him a few times. He was a hefty guy in his mid forties, long stubble covered most of his face, his voice was low and he sounded like he always had a cough. The times I met him, he was always wearing long shirts and it struck me odd, for it was summer and no man in his right mind would brave the Arizona heat in a long shirt.
He started with a frantic note in his voice, saying "Hello? Is this John Olson? Please may I speak to John Olson? This is Dev" I replied with a yes before asking why he was calling, wondering how he got my number. He explained how he needed men and a truck to help him move logs over to his house. Trying to be friendly, knowing I had a truck, and trying to avoid all the work I have to do at home, I agreed to help him. He said thank you, with a notable sigh of relief, after a little conversation about how we would meet he said would come around 5 pm to my house.
At 5, an old beat up gray Volvo pulled into the drive. I stepped out of my apartment and greeted him and he offered to drive. Since he knew the way, I let him. I soon found myself locked in my own car; with a dude I hardly know telling me about a gang he was in. How they needed more members, more man power, and more lives. He told me how they have been fighting to keep their part of the city for years, and it has come down to the final fights. Four of their members were killed yesterday, but only after taking down 8 of the other gang's. I thought this all immature, and like a game the high school jocks play to be cool before he mentioned the deaths. Memories of West Side Story flew back and people die. It hit, and it hit hard. I sat silent for a moment, watching the stop light flick from yellow to red as we stopped. Dev snapped me out of my trance, looks me straight in the eye and said, "Without more help, we are all going to die." He went on to say how the residents of the city depended on them too, to keep everything in order. The other gang, he explains, has a method of killing anyone who does not obey their wishes. They give the residents curfews and rules, which they must follow or horrible things that have been painfully proven many a time may occur. No, nobody wants to mess with these bad boys.
He drives me into his area of town. We parked on the street and walked down a narrow alley. At the end, we turned a corner and entered a door. It was dark and smelled of beer and urine. Twelve men I saw were sitting on stools, barrels, whatever they could find, and huddled in a circle, talking. I was nervous, I had no idea what I was getting into, and like the your typical idiot, was curious and followed. One guy looked up, he was wearing a red bandanna and a scar ran across the length of his forehead and looked young. The rest followed his example and looked up. As I gazed around the dimly lit room, I realized every single one of them had something wrong with them. Dev seemed like the only one without an eye patch or a horrific battle scar. He waved me to sit down on a pile of crates, and like a good boy, I did.
They asked my name, which I could only whisper. They handed me a bottle of beer, knowing well that I couldn't catch it after what they had just told me. They had told me that I was a member, I was going to fight, and told me I sure as hell am not able to complain. I took a huge gulp, hoping it would help me forget that I was going to die in one of these fights. Of course, I have no life, nothing to loose right?
The man with the red bandanna started appointing teams of two to scout the area for the night. I was, of course, paired with Dev. We were planning our attack on the other gang for tomorrow...but things don't always seem to work like that. They attacked us first. We were walking down a street when we heard the signal; a shrill whistle filled the air as we ran towards it. I knew what was happening, I was trying to keep myself under control and my feet moving as my mind screamed, "You're going to die!"
We found the commotion just as another pair did. They had attacked, 14 of the 15 stood before us, one was lying on the ground, either dead or unconscious next to two of our members. We stood our distance as the rest of our members formed. My mind was now all adrenaline, no thought. They charged and it all became a blur of fists and red. One guy was attacking me, he was one of the smaller ones, and I managed to punch him a few times. I kneed him and drove him to the ground. I swerved around at the right moment to see one of our men die, his head hit the asphalt, hard, and even though you weren't sure, you knew he was dead. The next few minutes are a blur of blood, teeth and groan that filled my senses. I felt a sudden sharp pain in my leg and fell to the ground and was knocked unconscious.
I opened my eyes and all was silent, I gazed around me. At least 20 bodies surround me and I know they are all dead. I recognized, through the scene, all of our members, lying there. They were dead. Red bandanna was dead. Dev was dead. They were dead. I ran, I had to get away, I had to get away...
As I finished reading what I had wrote I realized the tears running down my face. It all happened so quickly. And now they are all dead.
After a few minutes I picked up my papers, thanked the very confused cashier and left the shop. I started the long walk home, trying to forget everything. And like a miracle, by the time I arrived home I had forgotten all of it. All of it. I have no idea how it happened, I just know that one day I read those papers, when they are completely forgotten, and remember. And plot revenge.