Jeo holds the note in his hands, his face stony and cold. As he read it, slowly and surely, his eyes darting back and forth from line to line, he looks torn. Something was going on, and it hurts me to think about Jeo being hurt.
“What is it man?” One man asks him.
Jeo looks up at the man, his eyes almost looking teary. “Nothing.” He replies simply. But something in his tone of voice gives away that it wasn’t nothing. It was everything.
“Seriously, it’s nothing. Let’s just search the place, and then go home.” His face is downcast, his eyes blocking out the world.
Jerry looks at him for a few seconds, then back at me. Her eyes look straight into mine, trying to tell me something without having to say it. It takes me a minute, but I finally understand. Nodding, I place my hand on Jeo’s broad shoulder, turning him a little before wrestling his left hand out of the tight grip that he had the paper in. Before he could replace his hand on the paper again, I intertwine our hands together, tugging him slightly in the opposite direction. He follows, but his eyes never leave the paper he holds in his strong hands.
Dragging Jeo behind me, I look over my shoulder at Jerry, my identical twin, and smile a little, letting her know that everything will be okay. Her eyes go warm for a second, looking at my reassuring face and Jeo’s retreating back, but they quickly become cold once again. Turning around, she starts barking orders at the other people, telling them where to go and what to look for.
The journey back to the car was completely silent, only the trees rustling and dropping little beads of water down on us made a sound. I can’t even hear Jeo’s breathing, can’t even feel his breath. It makes me wonder if he’s even breathing at all.
As we come to the Jaguar, I spot Jeo’s keys hanging on a little branch, barely visible, and walk to get them. When I turn around again, Jeo is sitting on the hood of the car, note on his lap, with his head in his hands. He sighs deeply once, before looking at me. Smiling a little bit, trying to pretend everything is okay, he sticks his hands out for the keys. I toss them to him, smiling a little as well.
He walks around the car, sticking the keys into the slot carefully, and twisting his hand. The locks pop, and he opens the door to get in. Glancing at me from over the car, I walk quickly to the passenger side, climbing in. The leather seats are hot beneath my legs, to the point where as my legs start to sweat through my jeans, they stick uncomfortably.
After looking at my hands for some time, I finally look at Jeo, who is sitting in his seat silently, his hands on the wheel. His knuckles where white in contrast to his tanned and inked skin. His face is equally as white, as if he saw a ghost. But I couldn’t read him. Yeah, I knew he was upset, but his face didn’t let me in. I couldn’t find one ounce of regret, discourage, anything- in his face.
“Jeo?” I asked him finally. My voice came out soft, but I cringed at it.
He looks at me, his dark eyes seeming to shine with water. My forehead crinkles. Was he about to cry?
“Is there something going on?” I ask him.
Taking his hands off the steering wheel, Jeo looks at them, laying his palms out flat, and splaying his fingers out like a fan. “Yeah.”
“Can you- can you talk to me about it?”
His face twists with many feelings before he turns to me, “I don’t think I can. Only for right now though.”
My stomach twists. “When you’re ready, you do know that I’m here for you, right?”
There was a long silence, followed by a bird chirping. After that, more deathly silence. But then he looks at me again, and nods.
Two hours pass before there is any sound again. Nothing moves. But when the walkie-talkie starts to crackle, we turn sharply to it, examining the cause. “What was that?” I ask more to myself than anyone in particular.
Jeo takes it in his dirtied hands, turning it over. “I think it was Jerry.”
It crackles some more, and Jeo adjusts it to another station, to see if it gets better reception. Finally, a voice picks up.
“Jeo! Syd! Get out of here now! Cops are on our tail. We got all that was left! We’ll be there in one minute! Go!”She yells. I look at Jeo, seeing his face scrunch up as he takes this news in.
“How did the police find us?” I ask him.
“Maybe the tip we got wasn’t so reliable. Maybe it was a setup.”
“Is that common?”
“In our field, yes. Nothing stands in the way of people and their cars. And even more so, their drugs.”
“Are they that addicting?”
“Let’s just say I had a friend in college who was in a fight club.” Jeo begins as he fumbles with the car keys and shoves them into the ignition. “He was definitely a druggie. One night,” The Jaguar roars to life, the motor churning. “I went down to where he and his buddies were, and saw him in a pool of another man’s blood. Apparently, his supplier ran out, and he went crazy on the guy. The man had said that he had used the last bit of drugs an hour before.” His foot lands on the pedal just as we see four cars speed into sight. I can see Jerry at the wheel of a lime green Mercedes sports car, in the passenger seat, Ben. The man jumps out of the car as Jerry sped past his own, grabbing the handle, pulling the door open, and swinging in. Pushing the start button, the car roars to life as well as Jeo rushes after Jerry’s car. “My friend ended up going so crazy- in the matter of minutes- that he killed the guy with a metal pole, stabbing him in the heart, and even drank some of the blood. Just to get the drugs.”
I wrinkle my nose, disgusted. “That’s nasty.”
“But that’s what drugs will do to you. And you know, you could even have a highly illegal drug in you right now without you knowing. There are a lot of experiments that happen. The CIA for example, they once gave one million people- workers and regular citizens- LSD without them knowing.”
“That’s horrible.” Seeing red and blue lights flash behind us, I keep my face forward, looking at the rear-end of Jerry’s car.
“That’s what they do though. And it’s true too.”
“Have you tried drugs?” I ask him.
“Ecstasy, which is a really bad one by the way, has the power to kill you the first time you use it, and also cocaine.” My eyes go wide. He looks at me, a smirk forming on his soft lips. “What do you expect from someone like me?”
“No, I’m not judging,”
“Yes you are.”
“No, I still think of you the same way I did before. But it was just a shock, that’s all.”
“Why is it a shock?”
“Because you don’t seem-” I pause, fishing for the word.
“Screwed up?” He offers. I blush, telling him that that was not the word I was thinking of, before letting the topic drop.
After about ten more minutes of high-speed driving, we finally loose the cops. Not that they were very good. The whole time they never got even close to us, and they didn’t even try to shoot at us. If I were them, I would try to shoot for our wheels, trying to blow them out. That way, we can’t drive. Knowing Jeo and his cars though, if they get hurt, he would probably go to the cops and kill them. Well, I don’t think that’s really true. He’s not a killer. At least, I don’t think.
There was suddenly a chime of a cell phone, and I see Jeo’s phone light up. Looking at it, it says ‘One New Text”. He uses one hand to push it over to me, and he tells me to open it and read it. I do, mentioning that it was from Jerry before going on.
“It says ‘We’re not going back to the hideout. We’re going to another warehouse. This one’s armed though.’Wait, what does that mean?” I ask him.
“It means that we have another place to go. They probably found at least a little bit of drugs, some cars obviously, but she thinks that we can get more.
“How many cars does she plan on stealing?”
“Technically, it’s not stealing. And I don’t know, however many she feels like, or whatever we can get our grubby little hands on.” I laugh at his expression.
“That’s great. Do I have to go on this one?”
“I’d say so.
And we continue driving, just like that. All sadness, all the emotions caused by the mysterious note, disappeared.
And I smiled, despite myself.