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^ Ray ^

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After dinner, I got a phonecall from the hospital. Apparently they had bad news. Damarius wouldn't wake up. Ken dropped me off at the hospital and drove off without saying nothing. Ken is a real dickhead sometimes.

I walked inside to the elevator. My phone buzzed with a text when I got on the elevator.

Ray- It's Ray. Saying sorry on Ken's behalf. We can come back if you need it.

Me- Nah I'm good. It's whatever

Ray- Alright Ig

I ignored the next text I got and walked to Damarius' room. I went in and was hit with sadness and anger all at once. It was pretty dark except for a light over the bed. A nurse was checking his vitals or whatever.

I walked in and stood on the other side of him. The nurse jumped and looked at me scared.

"My bad. He's my brother. Didn't mean to scare you." I said thinking about what Trey said to me earlier.

"Oh you're fine honey. He's really fighting. Most would be dead by now. But there's a good possibility he'll make it." I looked at her weirdly. What a weird thing to say when trying to make someone feel better.

With that, she walked out knowing I wasn't about to say anything back. I sat down in a chair and let my thoughts take over. If I moved with Trey, almost everything would get better.

Losing one brother and gaining another. I just didn't know. If Damarius lives I would have to stay and take care of him until he got better. But if he dies and I stay here...I wouldn't make it to 18. Let alone 21.

I put my head in my hands and cried. I never cry. But I was so overwhelmed. I heard footsteps and quickly wiped my tears. It was Tatiana.

"What are you doing here?" I asked looking at the floor. She sat next to me and intertwined her arm with mine.

"I know you need someone. I know what happened and I knew where you were. So I'm here now." She explained laying her head on my shoulder. I sighed and tensed up.

"I'll be okay Tatiana. I don't need you here." I stated bluntly. She quickly snatched her arm away.

"Really? Your brother is on his death bed! But your pride is so big that you won't even accept my care? Are you kidding me?!" She stood up and got in front of me.

"Get out." I said feeling myself get angry. I was getting more tense.

"No Jalea! I fucking care about you. Don't you see that?!" I was about to say something and she smacked me. Hard as fuck. I jumped up and grabbed her arms so tight. I could see the fear in her eyes. I didn't care.

I smacked her in her face so hard she fell. First she sat there shocked then started crying. I pulled her back up and held her against the wall.

"Get the fuck out. Don't come back either. I'm not afraid to hit you again." I said as she looked down and tears streamed down her cheeks.

"I get it. You won't see me again." I let go of her and she left. I sat back down and let out a long exhale. I have never been so out of it. Fuck her.

I got up and left the hopsital. I was walking around in the dark for a while until a man walked up to me and stopped me. I was too angry to be scared.

"Jalea.." He wasn't anyone I knew.

"What you want?" I asked.

"I want to give you a job. Can we talk in private?" He asked.

"This is private. But lets go." I said. I followed him inside this house. There were people everywhere. I felt so many eyes on me. He took me down to the basement. Drugs were being bagged up on pool tables and a group of people assembled guns in the corner.

Inside this dude's office, it was quiet. I sat down and he sat at the other side of the table.

"Aight. So I'm aware that some members of my enemy's 'gang' have been jumping you. You don't need to know who I am. I know you. Now I know how we can get back at him." He explained.

"Ightt. How?"

"Work for me. Sell. Kill. Simple shit. Won't be hard to infiltrate their whole gang." He proposed with a sneer smile.

"Ok ok. How would I infiltrate their side?" I asked. I was really considering working for him.

"Just get one of them to fall in love. They would be your way to the bigdogs and the money. Money won't be a problem." He proclaimed.

"Alright. I'll work for you. How does this work?" I asked sitting back.

"Good. I have a new phone for you. This is only to communicate with me and other members here. A membership to the gym. Can't have you out here bony and skinny as hell. And a gun." He slid everything across the table.

I put the phone and card in my pocket. I made sure the safety was on the gun and put it in the back of my jeans.

"Now..I need you to show up here. Whenever I text or call that phone. Show up. No set times. I don't care if you're at school or dealing with family. Show up." I stood up and nodded.

"Alright. There shouldn't be a problem with that." I said. He stood up and held out his hand to shake. At that moment I had no idea I would be signing my life away to one man. Through a hand shake.

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