The last thing you should think about when you meet me is of the religious Jeremiah. Trust me, that guy and I have nothing in common. He's all good and stuff, but me? For me, being good is just a state of mind, not a means of living. I learned that on the streets. I learned a lot on the streets. My best friend Lester grew up on the streets too, but now who knows where he is? He told me that in life, your name shouldn't define you. When I first met him I thought he would be a know-it-all pain in my butt, but he also thought that I would be a preaching son-of-a-- now, now, I'm not going to disrespect the woman that gave birth to me, even if I don't know her.
I ran away from the orphanage when I was ten and been on the streets for a while. I'm seventeen now, but hey, it feels like I'm thirty because of all the crap that I've seen and been through.
But leaving out there isn't as hard or as bad as some make it to be. I mean, sure, if you are an unlucky loser then you're screwed, but if you know a few people with a few connections then you'll manage a shower here and a meal there. Just have to have some seniority. You know?
I'm walking in a straight line behind several other teenage guys, their arms and backs covered in gang-related tattoos. I never cared much for tattoos, but I have a few that mark my life like a diary-- some important deaths in my life, the moment that I freed myself from the clutches of the government, and the first day that I set a fire.
Looking up at the large building up ahead, I feel a shiver run through me. I've been in some bad scenes before, but nothing like this. The tug of the handcuffs tied to a chain around my hands brings my attention to my current situation. I look behind me as someone shoves me. A muscular, bald guy glares at me. "Move it," he whispers menacingly and I chuckle before launching myself at him, bringing the two guys in front of me with me.
I smile down at the struggling guy, proving to him that just because his big he shouldn't be so demanding. I hold him down and start to feel the familiar heat in me. Then I am roughly taken off of him, kicking my legs in the air before being put back down by one of the guards that came with us in the old, prison bus.
"Take it easy blondie," the guard warns, spittle flying from his oversized mouth. A gold molar tooth glints in the sunlight and his pointy chin showcases some grey and black stubble. Unlike the baldy, he is taller than me and his muscles are better defined so I do as he says. I smile at him mockingly. "It's only your first day here."
I was arrested a few months ago for starting several house fires. No one died in any of them, but all of the fires (ten in total) cost the city millions of dollars. I was the number one wanted suspect in all of Toronto. I can't even begin to explain my love of fire, the simplest thing I can say is that it is like my personality--bright and unrelenting.
Within minutes I'm back in line, the situation forgotten. I can feel the embarrassment and anger coming from the bald guy behind me, but I don't care because I won't be here for long. The outside world awaits me eagerly.
A group of crazy people in white clothes stand by the gates and I spot two normal looking guys sitting beside bags and suitcases. I see they've brought all of us rejects here. Society can sleep peacefully for one more night.