Small World: Chapter 12

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
This chapter features a new character by the name of Justice.

Submitted: February 15, 2015

A A A | A A A

Submitted: February 15, 2015



Justice: The Brother’s Code

It’s Christmas again. Should be good to see Kaya. This is the longest we’ve been separated since birth. We’re not little kids anymore. We both grew into men early because of our situation.

We didn’t really have a choice. Our parents were physically and emotionally abusive, drank, and did a variety of hard drugs; the whole nine yards. Despite the negative factors that we were forced to endure, we eventually chose to run away when I was 13. Kaya was soon to turn 12 at the time.

We managed to get to Quebec by hitchhiking and train hopping before we were spotted trying to steal food in a grocery store by a police officer. He asked us lots of questions on the way to the station as we sat in the back of his squad car. Soon enough, we confessed to him that we’d managed to flee across an entire province away from home in a matter of weeks. We refused to tell him our names, and we refused to tell him who our parents were.

Once we got to the station the officer took us in and told us to sit. They took us into another room separately to question us. Kaya was first.

As I sat there nervously waiting my turn, I started to become overwhelmed by a problematic internal dichotomy.

I didn’t want to tell the police my parents’ names because I didn’t want them to go to jail. However, our life with them was dreadful, and the straw that broke the camel’s back was when Kaya caught my dad smacking me around for forgetting to take out the garbage that morning. Instead of stopping when he saw that his younger son was watching, he forced Kaya to continue observing and made an example out of me.

I guess it can be hard to remember things when you haven’t eaten in two days dad.

With that being said, I know for sure that it was definitely hard for them to provide food for us when all their money went towards what they told us was their much-needed “adult time”. Sticking “fun” needles in their arms, smoking a “wonder” pipe, putting “pixie dust” up their noses…whatever they did they tried to somehow make it okay and age appropriate for us to understand and accept.

Kaya exits the door stone faced. He doesn’t even look at me. All he does is robotically walk over to a chair in the corner and quietly sits there and puts his head down.

I see a husky, scruffy looking police officer walk through the door and look at me. He gestures for me to follow him through the door. I stand up and slowly walk over and follow him. My eyes are on the floor the entire time. Eventually we walk into a smaller room with a table and two chairs. He looks at me, looks at the chair closest to me, and I sit.

I don’t like to think back to it too much. Hard to shake the goose bumps that begin to form on my arms and legs as the police officer continues to question me in an unsurprisingly forceful manner. He is essentially pushing and prodding me to tell him who my parents are and what my name is, and his tone is quite aggressive. I know he can see the remnants of healing bruises and scars on my face, particularly around my right eye.

I stay silent looking at the floor the entire time.

The officer starts to become noticeably frustrated and leaves the room.

When he comes back in he approaches me differently. All of the sudden I sense a tone of genuine care in his voice, and at that point I knew he knew.

I said nothing.

They apologized to us, and two weeks later we were shipped out to a foster home like a couple of stray dogs.

We thought he cared.

We were wrong.

Times were tough after that. Me and Kaya continued to protect and care for each other because we’re family, but once we both got older and on our feet he was gone. He went his way and I went mine. The last time I saw him was last Christmas Eve, and we didn’t leave on a good note.

One too many shots of whiskey at the bar and we were both feeling a little bit frisky.

I often envy his ability to let loose and have fun. He got into college on a basketball scholarship, and I managed to get into university for police foundations, despite our unfortunate childhoods. He was always the cool cat who was a star athlete in virtually every sport he played, and I was always the quiet one who stood by the wayside and was happy to focus more on getting good grades and chilling with a couple of close friends.

I was focused on becoming a police officer.

I wanted to make a difference in the world. I wanted to make a difference in the lives of the kids that were in the same situation as we were as kids. No one ever took us in or truly cared about us. I want to show those kids who need it that I care, and that they’re not alone. 

I want to give them hope.

On occasion Kaya can become arrogant. He thinks highly of himself and is constantly trying be an alpha male, but his insecurity shines through brightly when he puts on facades like a certified attention whore.

Near the end of the night out at the bar, he came over to me and blatantly started hitting on the girl I was talking to. I tried to be cool about it and let him play his game until he went too far. He started running his finger down her back and tried to whisper something into her ear, clearly making her uncomfortable, as she moved away from him and closer to me. I sternly told him to back off and to go have a drink. Being the “alpha male” that he is, he didn’t take kindly to this and became confrontational, perhaps thinking this was the chance to prove himself and take out his older brother. Even though I’m older, Kaya grew to be bigger. I am still a big guy at six foot five and a half, but he’s got at least three or four inches on me and about twenty pounds of muscle.

He started to get in my face. I knew what he was trying to do but I wasn’t going to bite. I gave him two chances: I gently extended my arm to push myself away from him and I clearly stated the following: “Hey bro, if you don’t back up off me, and if you continue to provoke me, I’m going to punch you in the face”.

He thought this was funny and chose to continue to poke the proverbial bear.

Once again he got right up in my face nose to nose, and by this time I could see that the situation was escalating very quickly and that he was becoming much more serious.

I could see the fire burning in his eyes. For the second time I re-iterated that if he persists I was going to hit him, and that this was the final warning.

By this time the woman that I was talking to was long gone and my sole focus was on this now serious confrontation with my drunken brother.

Once again he got in my face for a third time.

By this point I didn’t take kindly to his antics, and with the alcohol and adrenaline flowing through my body, I let him know it by breaking the bones of my knuckles with the bones in his face. This punch symbolized an outburst of years of bottled up frustration and rage on my part, and I just threw it at the only person in my life who ever acted like he cared about me.

He took the punch like a man, but it was clear that he was shaken up and wobbly on his feet.

After a few seconds of stumbling back and trying not to fall over, he regained his balance and touched his fingers to his immediately swollen and cut-open cheek. He then looked at me deep in the eyes and shook his head in disbelief. Thinking back to it, I sit here blankly staring into the abyss, trying to suppress negative thoughts.

I’m on a train home right now to see my family for Christmas. I’ve been at school for University since September. I had just gotten out of an exam when I got the text message from Kaya that our 100-year-old Grandma was sick and I needed to come home a couple days early, because they weren’t sure if she was going to make it to Christmas. Why should I care if Grandma is sick? This woman did nothing to help save her two grandchildren in need after our parents went to jail for several offences. Honestly, I’m surprised the old bitch didn’t croak years ago.

I quietly stand up and move towards the washroom. As I look up towards the doorway where I’m walking, I see a cute little thang walking towards me in a little flight attendant-looking uniform. “Ooooohweeeeee!” I quietly think to myself. If I were Kaya I would have said it out loud, but that’s not how I feel women should be treated. Not as an object of the male gaze.

As I walk toward her I see her eyes sparkle, and I try to maintain a neutral but friendly expression, as she looks me up and down like a tall glass of chocolate milk. To get my attention she lightly brushes into me as I’m walking past her. I feel her push into me a little bit and her hand caresses my upper thigh.

She smiles at me.

I keep moving to the bathroom, trying to ignore her fantastic aroma of coconut cream that gently invades my system and ignites my senses.

When I get to the bathroom I discover that it is closed for cleaning. Seconds later a notice is then announced through a nearby P.A. speaker: “This is the last stop, everyone please get off, repeat, this is the END OF THE LINE.” The words catch my immediate attention, and I go back to my seat, grab my bag, and make my way back to leave the train. I get off and quickly find a washroom to do my business. After this I go back into the station, and look for a quiet corner in the station where I can try and send a text message to Kaya to tell him I’ve arrived at the station and see how far he is away.

When we meet up at Christmas everything will be cool, and we will both act as if nothing happened.

Kaya may put on the act when he drinks, but he’s not stupid, and he knows that he started it by being a drunken jackass for no reason. Did that warrant me punching him in the face? As his brother, I would say probably not. But we all make mistakes.

As I stand in the corner impatiently awaiting his response, I see a young guy walking towards me. He looked like a mix of black and white, but had a predominantly white skin tone with the black facial features. He had a medium build and short, dark hair styled with gel. He wasn’t a very big guy, maybe five feet ten, but he looked pretty put together. He kept looking my way, so I kept my eye on him.

No matter where you are, you always have to be aware of potential problems that could arise, especially with people. When you enter a room in a place foreign to you, it’s imperative to have a survivalist instinct.

He starts walking towards me and I stand up to survey the scene. To show he is friendly he shouts towards me, “hey man, I don’t know where you’re going, but I don’t have a lot of money, and if you’d pay for my gas I’d have no problem giving you a ride no matter where you need to go.”

I respond to his offer bluntly: “You going to try and rob me?” His eyes darted back and forth from the ground, then to me, then back to the ground again.

“Naw, man. I’m just trying to get home for Christmas, and I must have forgotten my wallet at the hotel when I left this morning. I just got off a plane coming back from Amsterdam a few hours ago and cabbed it over here to the train station. I have a buddy of mine who did me a favour by dropping off a car for me. It was a nice gesture, but next time he should have left it with a little more gas in the tank, it’s running on fumes! I likely have just enough to get to the gas station over there across the highway.”

I look at him up and down once more and follow his finger to where he’s pointing.

He seems sincere enough, and if he does try something I’ll be ready. If I take this ride I could get home sooner! The sooner I get home, the sooner the visit is over.

I extend my hand in greeting: “Name’s Justice”, I say.

“Jaden”, he replies.

We jump into his friend’s little car. It has a navy blue exterior with a four cylinder, 2.4 engine. It’s a five speed too, not bad, but I wish it were bigger. Good thing I’m not claustrophobic.

He picks up speed as he gets on the highway and smoothly transitions through a couple of gears. In the car, we sit quietly with the dead radio frequency blaring away in the background. It’s annoying, but it doesn’t seem to bother him, so I don’t say anything. I’ve heard some people enjoy white noise. Weird, but whatever, he was giving me the ride so I guess I can’t be too picky.

As we got on the road it seemed as though a storm came out of nowhere and just caught up to us. All of the sudden the windshield was being pelted with hunks of ice, and the little car swayed erratically on the highway from the strong winds.

Naturally, it felt awkward to be in a car with a stranger like this, but my mind was occupied by the abruptness and severity of the storm. I take my cell phone out and text Kaya again to let him know what I’ve decided to do. He responds surprisingly quickly this time. In his response he says that he is currently on his way in his truck and actually isn’t that far behind me. He also tells me that he hopes I know that we are driving on a closed highway.

I look at Jaden.

“My brother says this highway is closed”.

Jaden looks at me oddly and says: “I didn’t see any signs!”

I simply just shrug my shoulders and tell Jaden that we should be fine, just be careful, take it nice and easy, and watch out for ice.

Jaden nods his head to show that he agrees.

“Okay, good call. I’ll just be careful and we should be fine.”

He looks nervous.

Kaya just sent me another text, it said: “you are probably about thirty minutes or so ahead of me.”

After reading this I feel relief, as I likely made a good decision jumping in with Jaden. Especially considering how bad this storm has gotten, I bet where Kaya is right now is likely just as bad if not worse.

After continuing to sit quietly for another twenty kilometers, we suddenly hear an incredibly loud bang and the car jerks off to the shoulder of the road. Jaden had both feet pushed down on the pedals to try and regain control. He steers the wheel back and forth, and just as it feels like he is regaining control of our bouncing, jerky car, he hits a hidden patch of black ice that had formed on the road. We begin to spin in circles, repeatedly being thrown about in the uncomfortable confines of the seatbelt until finally we skid onto the shoulder of the highway and stop dead in our tracks.

I cough hard and wait for my lungs to start working again from the crushing, unexpected blows that my body just experienced. As I try to move, I feel for broken bones to find that I am okay, but tender contusions and bruises are quickly beginning to form on my ribs, neck, and throat for the seat belt. Although I’m in pain, I know that I’m fine. I turn down the erratic sound of the broken radio signal reception.

The feeling was strange. It was incredibly quiet, apart from the quiet stutter of the car engine and the hefty blow of wind that continued to shake the car.

All of the sudden we start to slowly roll backwards. I see Jaden quickly put out his hand and pull up the emergency brake to prevent us from moving. We skid along the ice as we come to a full stop. He turns the car off.

Jaden shrugs in pain and seems mildly disoriented.

“Shit man, I’m sorry! I didn’t see it!”

I tell him it’s fine, don’t worry about it. I take off my seat belt and stumble out of the car, trying not to slip on the ice. I carefully walk around the car, assessing the situation. 

I walk around to the backside of the car to see that the left back tire has exploded.

The bruising on my neck and ribs continually jabs me with bolts and surges of pain. I gently massage the bruise on my neck as I walk back to the passenger side door while fighting the wind and get back in the car.

Jaden glares at me and says: “you okay man? Was it a tire that blew out? That’s what it sounded like.”

I look at him and say: “I’m fine.  We lost the back left tire. It looks like we have about half a tank of gas. That should last us long enough to stay warm for at least thirty to forty-five minutes. My brother texted me not too long ago saying that he’s not too far behind us. I’ll send him a message and he should be able to stop to pick us up soon.” 

If we stay in here and out of the ice storm we should be fine. I know I can trust Kaya to come get us. If there is one thing I can say about Kaya, it’s that the man is loyal, and I trust him with my life.

As I sit trying to recover from the spinout, I tell Jaden to turn the car back on to keep us warm.

It got cold quickly since he turned it off.

After he turns the key, I take a second look at the gas meter and see that we actually only have a quarter tank of gas. Fucking floater gas gauges!


Okay, this could be a problem. As I look out the front window I can see the frozen treetops swaying back and forth from the force of the powerful icy winds. I think to myself: “I hope Kaya comes soon, cause the gas is burning fast, and the ice is getting thick on this windshield.” I look in the top right corner of my phone and see that there is 33% left. I guess we’ll see if time’s on my side.

© Copyright 2018 shagen91. All rights reserved.

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