Watching Jerry walk up the ramp and out of my view is hard. I want to hate her. So, so much. But yet, she is my sister. There’s nothing I can do to change that. In fact, she’s my little sister. Aren’t I supposed to look after her? Care for her? Be with her when she needs it most? Or am I supposed to be a shadow, someone who was supposed to be there, but wasn’t?
There is nothing harder than watching someone who you want to hate, but deep, deep down love more than anything, walk out of your life. Not that she was walking out forever, it was just this moment. But that was enough. It still hurt like hell, and I found myself placing my hand over my heart as if to keep it in my chest.
“Are you okay?” Came a voice. I look back, seeing Jeo.
“She’s just having a hard time.” He tells me.
“Jeo, you told me the other day that she has the right. I thought about that, and she does. But this can’t keep going on.”
His arm slinks around my shoulders. “I know.” I smile, but then back away. I didn’t want him to think that he’s got me, because he’s so far from that.
Smirking, I tell Jeo that I’m going to go talk to Jerry. After some arguing- he doesn’t think that I should talk to her because I might get shot- I run up the ramp, though I lose breath quickly.
“I-Need-To-work-out.” I chanted. Thomas the Train popped into my mind “You can do it, you can do it!” I think.
“What the hell are you doing?” I look up, seeing Jerry leaning against the chains that lined the second floor so that people- and things, won’t fall in.
I smile now. “Hey?”
“What do you want?”
“Well, I wanted to come talk to you.”
Pausing, I purse my lips. “I don’t want to fight. I don’t want you to hate me. Why does it have to be like this?”
“Because I want it this way.”
“But why do you want to hate me?”
Jerry pauses, looking around the room. Anywhere but me it seems. “I don’t know. I just- I just don’t think that this relationship- us- will work out.”
Looking to the floor, I rub a scuff mark with my toe. “I don’t know what to do about any of this Jerry. I can’t control this. I didn’t want to go to jail.”
Her head whips around to me, her eyes narrowing. “So you never wanted to meet me?”
My mouth opens. “I didn’t know about you!”
She scoffs, rolling her eyes. “I didn’t!” I counter.
“Sydney, how am I supposed to know that?” she whispers.
“You just have to believe me.”
There was a long, long pause. “I can’t.”
I sighed. Turning around, I went to walk back down the ramp. There was nothing I could do at this moment. Someone who was this hurt can’t be helped, and I’m afraid that this case will never, ever, be fixed.
Stopping mid way, I whisper ‘I’m sorry’.
“Don’t say that.” I heard.
And I smile.
“Sydney! Yo! What do you want to eat?”
“Umm, I don’t know.”
Well I’m going out to get something real quick, you wanna come?”
“Sure.” I shrug, not really caring whether I stay or go. If I stayed, I would stay in a locked car, with the keys. Just in case someone tried to kill me. But if I went out, there was a chance someone would recognize me.
He came over to me, running his tattooed hand through his thick hair. His hand still in his hair, and extends his other hand. “Help?”
I grab his hand, hoisting myself off the cold concrete ground. “thanks.” I say as I dust myself off.
He smiles. “Your welcome.” His gaze locks on mine, and he keeps it there for a minute, and I’m trapped. Finally, he breaks it.
“Ready to go?”
“Hell yeah. Let’s get outta here.”
We start to walk to his car, when the bearded man stops him. “Jeo, pick up some cheese?” He asks.
“Uhh, sure Ben.” Ben? Hardly sounds like a big tough guy name.
Jeo nods his head.
Turning back around, we continue to walk to the car. “Ben?” I ask.
“Yeah. Big Ben. He may seem like he’s tough, even talk like it, but I promise, he’s really not.” He laughs.
Reaching the car, we climb in. “Are you sure we won’t be recognized?”
“How are we going to pay?”
“You don’t think we have money?” He laughs.
“I thought you just steal things?”
“No- we usually pay for them. We get money from our jobs.”
Everything becomes quiet as Jeo backed out of the space he was in, whipping around to speed up the ramp and out of the building. Before we were completely out though, I saw Jerry sitting against the wall with the girl with black hair. She waved her hands vigorously, obviously upset at something. But what could she be that upset about? She was almost crying- I would never think that she would cry at anything.
“Why is Jerry the way she is?” I ask quietly.
“She’s been through a lot.” He tells me, his hands tightening on the steering wheel. “She was given up after all.”
“I know that. But, what has happened to her?”
We were passing under a bridge, our voices becoming tight. “Well, for beginners, she joined the group before me. She quickly became the leader. When I joined, it was about a year after she was ‘in power’ as I should say. She took a liking in me, but I wasn’t sure about her. It was hard for her, I’m sure.
“Eventually, I had to tell her that I didn’t like her that way. She was heartbroken, and only then told me how she didn’t have a family- ever. I felt bad, but I couldn’t do anything after. The damage had been done, and there was nothing I could do about it.”
“How old was she?”
“That long ago?”
There was a pause. “Yes. We’ve been in this for awhile.”
“This… gang. We’ve been a family. About seven years ago, Jerry was shot in the arm. We had to go to the emergency room, and our family relationship strengthened. We all thought that we lost her.”
I look around, finally settling on my hands. “What has she said happened to her family?”
“I-I can’t really comment on that.” He said. “It’s complicated, and I think that she should tell you the news. It’s not for me to tell.”
“She’s keeping something from me?”
“It depends on what you think. If you believe that, then yes. But it’s in good humor. So don’t get mad.” He turned into the store parking lot. Parking the car, he kept his hands on the wheel, turning to me. “Please, don’t get mad at her. Deep down, she wants to do the right thing.”
I smile. “Deep.”
We got out of the car, my door almost bumping into the old beat up green Chevy sitting next to us. “Opps.”
We walk arm in arm into the store, walking carefully. Jeo seemed calm, though I kept looking around, not knowing what’s going to happen.
We’re almost in the store when I see it. A black human-shaped figure following us, ducking behind a stack of flowers. I don’t think anything of it at first, but then the person followed us still.