I was born into a family that had already had two other kids, Patricia and Rodney. At first, things were pretty ok, I played with my toys and my brother and sister did their own
things. Then, my dad lost his job.
I was only five, so I didn't understand much, but I knew my parents were angry. Things started to get worse. Now, both of my parents had jobs, as well as my older brother Rodney. Patricia became something of a baby sitter to me.
Eventually, we had to move to a cheaper house. The neighborhood was terrible. Patricia was killed by a stray bullet. I was nine.
When I finally made it to high school, I was a mess. I was already drinking, had stolen a pack of my father's cigarettes, and lost my virginity. I was in a gang, but it was small and we barely did more then vandalize.
That was around the time I met Gary. The leader of my gang, a guy named Chuck, had introduced us. As I said before, I hated Gary immediately. There was something about the way he stood there, grinning stupidly and going on and on about what great friends we were going to be. But, I learned to pretend to like him, if only to stay on Chuck's good side.
After repeating my sophomore year, I dropped out of high school at the beginning of my junior year. Chuck's gang was larger now, and things were getting serious. I had worked my way up to Chuck's right hand man by this point, and I had a pretty well-known reputation. I didn't fight often, but it was more of the fact that I could stare anyone down in the streets.
Eventually, I did rob a bank. I would have gotten away with it too, if one of Chuck's men hadn't decided to chicken out at the last minute. I went to jail for awhile, but almost as soon as I got out I started doing the same things, vandalizing, setting fires, stealing. I was arrested a few more times, one of which because Gary tipped off the police.
Another gang had been growing in the area. They looked harmless, and only sent a few threats our way, but we should have known better. One day, the majority of Chuck's gang, including me and Gary, were camping out in an old barn. We were celebrating a plot to steal a few beers that had gone perfectly. I was at the back of the room, feeling like I was going to throw up because of a hangover.
"Drink some water or something! You look terrible!" Gary said loudly next to me, a drunken expression on his face.
I could see Chuck standing on a few boxes that had been piled up in the middle of the floor. He was singing like a maniac, and people were dancing. It wasn't a terribly happy scene, but for us, it was better then nothing.
I winced in pain as the doors to the barn opened with a loud screeching noise. A group of shadowy figures were standing outside, their faces hidden by masks. Chuck shouted at them, something like "come on in!" And all hell broke loose.
The next thing I knew, people were screaming, guns were firing, and Chuck was dead. I dived inside of an animal stall, Gary following close behind me. He was shivering, his eyes wide with crazed fear. It went on for what felt like hours, blood splattering the walls and bullets whizzing past. Then it was over.
I looked out from behind the stall, my heart pounding. Bodies where everywhere, and the shadowy figures were gone. I could see a few people moving, but Gary and I were the only ones unhurt. We got out of there before the police and the medics showed up and headed back to my house. That was when I decided I didn't want to do this anymore.
My brother Rodney, who was in the military now, payed for me to go to rehab and anger management classes. My parents no longer cared what I did, so long as I didn't ask them for money. I stopped drinking and smoking, and started looking for a job. Gary, who had nothing else to do, came with me. I found a few, but I seemed unable to keep any of them. Five years later, I was walking through the doors of Heisenberg Laboratories Inc.
I had felt good these past few days with Paul and Annie and The Lab. I hadn't got angry, I hadn't got fired, and most of all, I hadn't got killed. Gary showing up was like shoving everything I wanted to forget in my face. I had felt like my old self in that break room, pissed and ready to do anything.
It felt good telling all of this to Annie, but it also made me feel sick. I was one messed up guy. I half expected her to get up and leave, but she just sat there, listening. When I finished, she said "you know, you sound a lot like Paul. He didn't come from a very good place either." She smiled at me, a kind, reassuring smile.
That smile made me feel good inside, and I decided then that it didn't matter what Dawson did, I was going to tolerate him, if only for Annie. If only I could have kept that promise.
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Book / Horror
Book / Horror
Short Story / Horror
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