The Gift Please note apparent grammar and spelling mistakes are not mistakes, they were written that way on purpose, that's how people in the story talk, to give it a more authentic feel, people don't speak in perfect English, aight. "Hey, Boo," I say walking into the apartment, "I'm home.
Where you at girl." "I'm in the bathroom hun," Tony yells from the rear of the apartment, "give me a couple minutes." "Aight well hurry up," I yell back grabbing a Old E forty from the fridge, "We gotta meet T and the crew at the club by 10." "Just a couple minutes longer Babe, you want me to look fine for you right." "You'll look dopeno matter what you be wearing girl," I say rolling a blunt on her coffee table.
Tony is a short light skinned Latino girl. She has long flowing black hair that is almost down to her ankles. She has an ass you can bounce a quarter of off. Her huge tits are always perky, and much bigger than you would expect for her size, all real though. At thirty, she is the best girl I have ever had in my short mating career, me being only seventeen, even though she and no one else but a few people know it.
Tony sits on the toilet holding the pregnancy test in her hand, staring at it in disbelief. She shakes it and stares at it again, then tosses it in the trash. She walks into the bedroom and finishes dressing. She pulls on skin tight jeans and a half top that shows her flat stomach off. She looks in the mirror, hugs herself and thinks that her stomach might not be that flat much longer, and then smiles.
Now you might ask yourself how could she not know I'm only seventeen. Well let me tell you, very few adult men let alone teenagers look like me. I'm six foot five, a full foot taller than her. I wear a muscled frame, like business men wear suits. My pecs and biceps bulging against my tight white tee-shirt. I have a full beard on my face, that I have to keep trimmed on almost a daily basis.
The bald head helps me look older as well. That is how most of a city, is fooled by me.
"Damn girlwill you hurry up, we gota go," I yell to the back of the apartment. "Here I come, " she says walking out, looking smoking hot as usual, "Here I am, you ready to go." "Yeah, lets roll, you wanna hit dis," I ask just before lighting the blunt.
"No, I don't feel good," she says slapping my shoulder, "And I told you not to be smoking that shit in here, the landlord was -bitching about the smell the other day." "Ah boo, don't sweat that motherfucker," I say laughing, "We bout to move on up. I told you I been savin my ends, so I can buy my queen a house." "Ok, baby," she says hugging me, "it would be nice to get outa here." We climb into my Navigator and drive to the club, bumping Biggie Smalls from the state of the art sound system.
The windows rattle every time the base hits. We pull into the parking lot, with my boys waiting for us. We met up and walk in the club, with every head turning towards us as we enter. Mostly looking at my girl I know itand love it.
I love the fact that most of the men in this place are jealous of me. We walk back to the VIP section and order our drinks. I notice that Tony doesn't order any alcohol and wonder what is up wit her. The weekend is usually her time to wile out. She has a job as a paralegal during the week, but loves to party on the weekend. She is almost always plastered by the time we leave the club on Friday and Saturday.
She must be sick, she said she wasn't feelin good before that must be it. "Yo cuz, we might have to roll out early," I say leaning over to Terrance. "Why," he asks leaning back sipping his drink. "Tony, ain't feelin good tonight, she ain't drinkin," I say with a shrug, " She must be sick, cause she loves to come out and party on the weekend." "Man we might need you tonight, that fool Ricky is here," Terrance says shaking his head "And you know he's gonna start some shit, we need all hands on deck." "Then I'll take her home and comeback Brah," I say nodding at him, "I'm leaving now, I'll be back in like twenty." "Alright," he says as he stands and we dap up, "He's is beefin wit you so be careful." "I'll be there and back in a flash," I say then walk over too Tony and whisper in her ear, she shakes her head yes and we walk back out too the car.
I see Ricky walking back from his car as we pull from the parking lot. We drive in silence for awhile, then I turn the music back on, to kill the silence, waiting for her to tell me what's bothering her. "Ok, Boo, what's up with you tonight?" "Nothing, Babe," she says rubbing my shoulder, " I just don't feel good, I'll be ok." "You sure nothings wrong?" "Just a little tummy ache," she says smiling, "I just want to curl up with you on the couch, and watch a movie." "Aight, boo," I say rubbing her head and pulling her against my shoulder.
We walk in the house, and I sit on the couch and pick a movie on our DVD changer. She walks into the bedroom, and brings a blanket back out with her. She curls up in the blanket, and snuggles into my chest as the lion roars onto the screen. Halfway through the movie she has slipped down to where he head is laying in my lap, and she is fast asleep. I get a text message from Terrance telling me he needs me back at the club now.
I reply that I am on my way, as I gently lift her head from my lap, place a pillow under it, a head out the door.
I see he wake up just a little, turn her head and settle back down. She hates when I fight so I'm glad to leave her at home.
We have been beefin wit Ricky for over two years now. I kicked the shit out of his little brother and he has been gunning for me ever since then.
I speed back to the club and see our crew squaring off with his already. I jump from my navigator, and walk to the front of the group. I stand next to Terrance staring their whole group down, arms crossed against my chest, flexing my arm muscles in the tight t-shirt.
"Yeah there he is, that's the fucking chocha that did my little hermano," he says pointing to me. "Well what the fuck are you going to do about it puta," I say walking up to him spitting the words in his face.
"I'm going to do this," he says pulling a nine from behind his back and cocking it, and pointing it at me. "I tell you this you fucking little pussy," I say staring into his eyes, and walking into the gun so it is against my chest "If you pull ityou better use it. If you use it, you better not miss, motherfucker cause I will kill you." I feel my phone buzz in my pocket, as we stand there staring each other down.
I see him blink and know that I have won. I turn around and begin to walk away, I pull my phone from my pocket too read the text I just got. It's from Tony 'plse dnt do anythng dumb, u r going to be a father I need u around'. That stops me in my tracks, as I stand the in a stupor I hear the gun fire, and dive to the side.
The bullet breaks apart on the ground the fragments imbedding themselves in my leg. I stand up searching the parking lot for Ricky, leaving my phone laying on the pavement. I spot him and run at him, I don't if the gun jams on him or he is so surprised he becomes frozen, but he doesn't get another shot off before I reach him. I punch him twice in the face and once right in the solar plexus knocking the wind from him.
I pick him up, seeing red and throw him through a cars windshield. I punch out the drivers side window of the car, unlock the door and pull him back out onto the blacktop, with him landing in a puddled mass of pain. "I told you motherfucker, you'd better kill me," I say kneeling down on his chest as he struggles to throw me off, "Now it's over." I grab him by his greasy slick hair, pulling his head up slightly I punch him in the face and watch the momentum carry his head back down to the pavement bouncing of it and propelling him back towards my fist, and I punch him again and again.
Terrence grabs me by the shoulders, lifting me off of Ricky's pulverized face. I turn automatically and throw a punch at him, that he ducks and backs away.
"Woe, Woe," he says putting his hands up, "Let's get the fuck outa here before 5-0 rolls up." We all dash to our cars and race out of the parking lot as we hear sirens in the distance.
Terrance follows me back to my place, climbs into my SUV and hands me a lighter. Weed is one of the few things that calm me down, after a rage state, and I feel the effects immediately after I take a few good hits and then pass it to him. "Did you see, that text," he asks me as Tony comes running out of the house.
"What happened I saw the news, they are looking for both of the groups, god damn it, what did you do to him, they had to life flight." "The asshole shot me, and I threw him the a fucking windshield," I say starting to laugh.
"Yeah, you fucked him up," Terrance says with a laugh, "How's your leg Brah." "We need to take you to the hospital." Tony starts to say.
"Naw, I ain't gonna go to no hospital," I say waving her off and taking another hit before continuing, "You can clean it out and sew it up. You said they was looking for the groups right." She just nods her head. "Then a gun shot wound will bring to many questions," I say breathing the smoke out, " He barley hit me anyway it can't be that bad." "Well let's get you in the house so I can look at it," Tony says and then gasps as she open the door and sees my bloody pants hanging around my leg.
"Come on get in here Jaylan." "Yeah, that looks bad," Terrance says laughing and choking on his smoke, "I'm out, let you woman baby you. You two got things to talk about." He climbs from my truck we hug, he climbs into his cart and drives off. Tony and I directly into the bathroom, where she grabs her first aid kit. She makes me strip off my pants and sit on the toilet, while she sits on the rim of the tub.
She lays out a pair of tweezers a needle and 1 pound test fishing line, on the sink.
I lift my leg into her lap, as she gently begins to search for fragments. It really is only a flesh wound, but she makes a big deal of it anyway, like she always does. "You know one of theses days, you gonna get int some shit, I can't fix with a needle and thread," she says debriding the wound with a saline solution. "That shit don't hurt Jay?" "Why u think I think I puffed a bowl first." I say laughing. "Well there ain't no fragments in it," she says, "It looks more like a brush burn so you don't need no stitches neither." "Aight," I say putting my leg down and leaning forehead to forehead with, "so was that text message true?" "Yes, I found out just before we left," she says hugging my neck, as I feel her crying softly, "Are you ok with this?" "I.I.," I stammer"I don't what to feel about it.
I mean I know you always wanted one, we got money socked away, so yeah I'm good with this, I think it's a great idea." "This is going to be a big responsibility," she says rubbing my cheek with her hand, "You can't been doin shit like tonight, we are both going to need you around." "Aw babe it'll be fine, what else do I know how to do, I'll just sit back more wit T, not do so much," I say applying air quotes, "field work." "You know." she begins to say but I cut here off with a kiss.
We kiss lustfully as we sit in the bathroom. We stand up and walk into the adjacent bedroom, we lay on the bed watching TV, I her hold gently and we fall asleep that way. "Can you help me up," Tonya says holding her arms out to me, she is full belied and can't even see her feet anymore.
"Ok," I say grabbing her hands and pulling her up from the couch, "Where are you going?" "I'll be back I'm just running to the store for a few things," she replies bending gingerly and picking up her purse.
"Ok, can you grab some chips and dip the boys are coming over for the game later." "I thought we talked about this," she says with a sigh, "I don't want them fucking hood rats in my house." "God Damn it, this isn't just your fucking house, I took a back seat in the business, what more d you want from me, " I yell starting a fight we have had many times before. "You know what I want," she yells back, "I want you to go get a real job." "Look at this place, look at the babies room," I say jumping back up from the couch, "You think a regular job, is going to pay for all this shit we have?
You want me to go flip burgers, or what clean up after people, you think that will give me enough money to take care of you and my son?" "I don't want to have to worry about, you getting shot or arrested and spending your sons life in prison like Jerome is.
Why don't you get into construction, you love working with your hands, you fixed this place up nice, you could do that. Please you have to decide if you want us, or you want your friends, what do you want." "I don't know," I say with an exasperated sigh. "I'll be back," she says slamming the door on her way out.
She still isn't back by the time Terrance a couple of my buddies come over for the game. She does this sometimes and then comes home and tells me that she is sorry her hormones got the better of her. "T she is on me to get out again, she stormed out of here today, just before you guys got here," I say with a shrug, "I don't know what to do." "She's right Brah," Terrance says with a sly smile, "You need to wise up and listen to her. You are so young you can get out and start over, for some of us it's to late, but you have skills, your smart as fuck too, so you could be whatever the fuck you want.
I know you, I know you got most of that money you've made tucked away somewhere. You need to take Tonygo back home away from all this shit, and be the family man you were meant to be Brah." "I never thought you'd say that to me," I say after my double take, " You just saying that or do you really mean that?" "I never wanted to get you caught up, in all this when you first came up here," he says leaning on my shoulder, "I thought you would finish high school playing football and go to college, you were good enough and still are to play college ball." "So why didn't you tell me all this before?" "You were so angry and fucked up when you got up here, I figured you needed to let off some steam before you got back to the regular life, and then you got so into it I couldn't think of way to talk you out." "Man that's some deep shit," I say shaking my head, "So I should just diss yins and go straight, man I ain't lettin my son grow up fuckin broke like I did." "Yeah, I'm more worried about him growin up wit out a dad like you did," he says grabbing his beer and heading back towards the living room, "This shit will only end in two ways, with you in jail, or six feet deep, either way that leaves your son wit out a dad, think about it.
Besides look what you did to this place, rich people will pay you damn good money to do this for them, like I said you got the skills, use'em." I sit down on the stool in the kitchen and try and wrap my head around what he just told me. Coming from him, after all that we had done together, was the biggest surprise I had ever gotten. I never thought he ever wanted to get out, or felt that way about this shit.
He always seemed so happy, doing what we were doing. We had lost a lot of friends either to the system or to the bullet, but we never talked about getting out or going straight before.
I grab a beer and walk back into the living room, glancing at the clock wondering where Tony is. I'm not really worried yet, a couple times she has stayed out for hours after a fight, I know she'll come back when she is ready. I clean up after the game, as everyone else is leaving Terrance sticks around. "Did you think about what I told you in the kitchen," he asks.
"Man why the fuck is everyone trying to tell me what to do?" "Hey," he says grabbing me, "I'm lookin out for my little cousin, like I shoulda been when you first got here. I fucked up lettin you get in this shit, now you gotta think about your son and your girl.
They need you, alive and here.
Plus it'll do me some good to see someone to rise above all this bullshit and make it legit." "Why you puttin this on me man," I say pushing him away, " I ain't no better than them guys that just left, I ain't no better than you." "Well what the fuck do you want me to do," I say as I start pacing, "I'm not wanted at home, I don't fit into that cunts little perfect picture.
Now you tellin me you don't want me no more, where the fuck do I belong then huh, fuckin tell me that." "That ain't what I'm sayin," he says shaking his head, "You always jumpin to conclusions cuz, you gota relax.
I hope one day you will understand that I'm tryin to do something good for you here." "If you don't want me around, just say." I start to yell and then hod up a finger at Terrance as I answer the phone, hoping it's Tony calling.
"Is this the residence of Miss Tonya Golski?" "Yeah, who dis?" "We need someone to come to St. Sebastian's Miss Golski has been in an auto accident," the nurse tells me as my heart drops, "We need someone to sign some consent forms." "How bad is she," I ask her hurriedly heading towards the door already. "I'm not able to discuss that over the phone with you, sir. The sooner you get here the better." "I'll be there as quick as I can." I say losing my train of thought.
"Just come to the emergency room, and tell them that you are here for Miss Golski." I just drop the phone at head out the door with Terrance trailing right behind me. We jump into his car, and he screeches out of the parking space heading to the hospital. "What happened," he asks swerving around a slow driving clunker. "They said she was in a car accident, she's gotta be ok right, I mean not on fucking Christmas eve, she's going to be ok," I ramble out in one long spurt, and just mumble the last 5 words to myself, the rest of the way to the hospital.
We get there and I barge in pushing people out of the way. I demand to see her, and we are ushered into a waiting room, for the surgical unit. I pace the floor, then sit and stand every few minutes. I can't sit still. "What the fuck is taking so long," I scream in rage and put my fist threw the wall.
"Sir, your going to have to calm down, unless you want to leave," the nurse says rushing in at the noise. "He'll be ok," Terrance says grabbing me and forcing me to sit down again, "His pregnant girlfriend was brought in here after a car accident. We've been here close to two hours now and haven't gotten a news of how she's doing." "I'm sorry sir," she says sheepishly looking at the floor, "What is her name, I'll see what I can find out." "Her name is Tonya Golski," Terrance answers shaking his head forcing me to stay in my seat.
"I'll be back shortly,with anything I can find out." The nurse returns only two minutes later, and tells us she is still in surgery.
She brings an arm load of forms for us to sign, and then slips out as I start to go over them. My hands are shaking so bad, I can barely write, as Terrance grabs the clipboard and fill the forms out for me. He walks out to the nurses station, and hands them back to the nurse. He apologizes for me, explains we are going out for a cigarette and herds me to the door, and into the calming cold air.
We both light up and stand, shivering in the light dusting of snow, that has begun to fall. "You gota hold it together Brah," Terrance says putting his hand on my shoulder as he stomps out his but. "I just want to know something, what the fuck is taking so long," I say stamping my feet in place for warmth.
"Well.you can't loose it in there," he says hugging me, "Getting angry won't get you anywhere, just relax and let them do their job." We walk back in and sit down in the waiting room, I begin to doze off after my adrenaline let down.
I startle myself awake, and see Terrance talking to the nurse in the hallway. I hurry out to interrupt the conversation.
"Any news yet," I butt in. "She and the baby, are out of surgery, in their respective recovery rooms," they nurse says rubbing my arm gently, " They made it through the hard part, the both should be ok, now." I don't even have the strength to answer, I jut turn, walk back to waiting room, and collapse on the couch.
I hang my head between my knees and just sit there in a daze. "He, they are going to need you," the nurse says to Terrance, "It was really ruff going for both of them, they made it through the hard part, but both are going to need time and possibly another surgery or two." "Ok, don't worry," Terrance says softly, "I ain't going nowhere, when can he see them?" "Tonya should be coming out of the anesthesia in the next few minutes," she replies, " The baby is going to have to stay in the incubator for at least a week." "Just let us know when we can go in and see her," Terrance says stopping to think, "He has to see her first." "Ok." Terrance sits next to me and just hugs me to him, as I breakdown and sob into his shoulder.
"It's my fault they are in here, if we hadn't had that fight she wouldn't have been out there to get hit," I whisper to him. "Don't even start that shit," he tells me, "They both are going to need you, you gota pull it together and this self pity shit ain't gona cut it." "I shouldn't be here, she won't even want to see me." "Yes she does, I know Tony she isn't gonna blame you for this, I promise." The nurse comes in and waves for us to follow her. We follow her to the ICU, I just stand and stare at Tony, with all the machines and tubes hooked up to her.
I can't seem to bring myself to go into the room. "Can I see my son first," I ask as she nods and walks a short way down the hallway. We walk to the NICU and I walk in and and rub his back for the first time. "He is so tiny," I say in awe. "He is a couple of weeks early, but he hasn't had any significant injuries, the ICU is just a precaution," the nurse whispers as the church bells across the street chime twelve, " He should be ready to go home in a few days." "I'm ready to see Tonya now, I need to see her," I blurt out walking back to her room.
I hesitate at the door again, afraid to go in, she looks so tiny and fragile hooked up to all those machines. I feel like I have lead weighted feet, as I drag them over the threshold of here room.
I look up from where my eyes have been, glued to floor, and see her eyes flutter open. She looks to be in shock, and begins to look around the room in a panic. "Hey, hey," I say rushing over to her bed and holding her head so she doesn't thrash around and pull anything loose, "It's ok, everything's ok." "Where, what, where's the baby," she asks panicky, "Where am I ?" "You were in an accident hun, you are that the hospital," I say rubbing her cheek and soothing her hair back, "The boy is alive and fine, they're keeping him in here for a few days, but he is ok.
They say you'll be ok too." "I don't remember anything, did they tell you what happened?" "No hun just that you were in an accident." "You sure the baby is ok?" "The baby is fine they had to do an emergency surgery to take him out, but he came out fine, he's right down the hall." "You saw him," she asks tears falling from her eyes.
"Yes I saw him first," I say kissing her forehead, " And he looks perfect, tiny but perfect." "I'm so sorry, for this.this mess," she says pulling me down and suspending the talk with a quick kiss, "It's all my fault, I shoulda let you just watch the game, and not started bitchin at ya. "It's ok, everyone is going to be ok," I say leaning down and kissing her forehead, "It's my fault I shouldn't off got you started, if I would of lost you." We just hug for a few minutes, I tell myself not to squeeze since she must be sore.
I see her squeeze her eyes shut, in a flash of pain and let go, worried that I am hurting her. She reaches for my face, and pulls my head down to her. "Please just promise me, if I ain't here, make sure he don't grow up like we did," she says staring into my eyes, holding my cheeks. "Your gona." "Shhh, he is your responsibility now, you gotta make sure he has a better childhood than you," she says then closes her eyes for the last time.
My son sits across from my hospital bed, and just shakes his head. "She was a tuff little thing though, she struggled three more days, before she let go. I know she wanted to hold you at least once, before she left," I say tears trickling down my cheeks. "Wow old man, that's some story," he says walking over to the bed and hugging me, "You never answered the question though." "That story was the answer to your question young buck," I say with a cough, "You were and always will be the best Christmas present I ever got.
I am in the position I am today, because you came along and made me grow up." "Don't say that, you never know you." he begins and is cut off by one of my coughing fits. "Naw kid, I woulda been dead by now or in prison, if you hadn't come along. You forced me to change and be a man." "Well we still got time, I want to hear more stories about you and mom," he says helping me sit up and handing me a glass of water.
"I'm not sure how many stories I got left in me," I say going into another coughing fit, "But we'll see. Go home and kiss the grandkids for me. I need a nap right now, bring the babies by tomorrow."