Driving a bad ass metal beast in the form of a 2012 Mustang is always my idea of a good time. I've always admired power and finesse.
Doing a money run for Duval at 2-something A.M. on I-17 South going to Phoenix? It's a job that can kiss my entire ass. I'd rather be home with my kid than doing this shit right now.
My conscious feels better having sent Elyssa to check on my babyboy. Knowing him, he searched through my room looking for shit. I just hope he didn't find anything he wasn't supposed to. Look who his parents are; he's too damn smart for his own good. I'll worry about it later.
The radar's been quiet. It shouldn't worry me, but it does. It doesn't help that he sent one of his bitches to tag along. No, I don't like the cunt. Jackie and I have never seen eye to eye on shit. We came in at the same time long ago, but I left. She thought she'd rise up in rank after I left, and for sticking around after Jones did some time. Not the case.
Jackie stayed loyal, though.
She kept things running on the outside, keeping his boys in check, still making that bank for him. Dumb bitch. Knowing her the way I do, she kept a little sumpin' sumpin' in case she needed to make an exit, stage right. That much she was smart about. How does he repay her for years of loyalty?
She has to be my bitch for the night, no goddamn questions about it, and no questioning me. I love it like homemade brownies.
Jackie's quiet, no doubt fuming about the order, but hot damn does she look good. She keeps herself in fighting shape, thanks to her kickboxing. She traded in her usual jeans and baby tee for black stretch pants, heeled boots, and a Baby Phat leather vest for this occasion.
“Stop eyeing me like a piece of cake.” She turns to glare at me: “Still can't believe he put you in charge of this caper. You're the ass who left, not me! The fuck am I gettin' punished for?” She rolls her window down to let in the warm night air. “And that shit-for-smelling body spray you have on? New brand, baby.”
Jackie's crybaby self-pity bullshit makes me laugh. “Never figured yo ass for a whiner. Bad as you act? I'm actually disappointed. Hell, you act more mannish than most men I know.”
“Fuck you! What the hell do you know, ya damn mutt! It's fuckin' insulting being shotgun on this ride.” She reaches into a vest pocket and pulls out a fat joint. She lights up and takes a big inhale that gets me high just watching her hit it. “It's yo ass that should be riding shotgun, not me” repeating herself through exhales. Yup, gonna be a long ride.
It's quiet while she finishes her joint. I know she's right, that's why I have the hush mouth. Jackie should be the one running this, not me. Don't need the hostility from her or others in Duval's crew. I just wanted to get in, make some cash, get out and get out this fucking state and start over with my mijo. I knew in the back of my mind that Duval would get used to me doing work for him again and would try keeping me in. Fuckface. I don't know if I mean him or me.
Several Impalas are waiting for us when we hit the Metro Center Mall at 3:30. I pull up and reverse to one of the cars, our trunks a few feet away from each other. The cars are surrounded by some of Duval's boys. Jackie jumps out the car and briefly shoots the shit with them. Good to see she's still an attention whore, and these fucks give her plenty. I pop the trunk from the inside and step out.
“Nigga you almost hit me!” shouts one of his boys standing too close to the trunks.
“Not my fault your dumbass is standing close to the back.” That gets them all riled up, except for Jackie, who plays “good cop”. She stands between us, raising her arms and kicking in the sexy before they get closer.
“Fellas, he has issues. Little bit of the Dumbassification Syndrome. He's harmless.”
“I know who this nigga is.” A blast from the past emerges from the back. Bitch ass Lorenzo. He's older, still blacker than night, but doesn't have shit for sense. He was already a player for Duval, until me and my brother played the game better than him. Duval sent his ass down here to Phoenix to “wise up”. Looks like it didn't help.
“Yeah nigga, you leave then come back for the cash. No loyalty, no honor. That's why you left in the first place. You couldn't hang, bitch.”
I don't say shit. I grab the money bag, toss it at Lorenzo's feet, close the trunk. “You say I'm the bitch who couldn't hang, yet who's the trick still grounded to the valley. Who's the bitch?” I point to his monkey ass, and all he does is mean mug. His boys clown his ass with ohs and ahhs. Jackie walks towards me, glaring and talks in a low voice.
“Enough! I'm still on the crew, I don't need you making shit worse for me. Let's go.” I'd argue, but I've been wanting to leave after hitting the city limits. First smart thing she's said all night.
Lorenzo's crew is silent as we get ready to leave, all of them listening to some kind of whisper coming from that fuck-up. All are glaring, none are happy. Don't know what the fuck he said, but they give Jackie the same look. First time I've seen her get nervous. She motions for me to drive, and we peel out of the parking lot, taking the exit to I-17 north.
20 minutes later
“Drive faster, goddamit!”
“Shoot more and stop shouting!”
Jackie fires her gun at the Impalas tailing us. Bullet holes make our once beautiful cars
Lorenzo and his crew followed us out of town. They waited until we got past Anthem to start their shit. Duval won't be too happy, but I don't think these fools care too much. They rammed our car from behind, trying to send us off the road, hoping to make us easy targets.
Jackie's quick to react, leaning out the passenger window and blasting with her gun, hitting the driver. The car skidded to the side, and the other four cars continued. I try to keep the car steady so she has easy shots, but her aim is off. She's emptying clips without hitting anything and wasting bullets.
“Hit'em already! I'm doing my part, help keep us the fuck alive!”
“The fuck you think I'm doing? I'm shooting at them to stay back!”
A hail of bullets shatter the back windshield. Jackie ducks down, I do my best to duck while driving, and something explodes behind me. I try to look in the rearview mirror, and see on the cars swerving all over the road. It hits one side of the railing, bounces off and hit the other side.
Behind Lorenzo's crew are three cars shooting at them. Duval must've had some of his boys follow us up. I'm not complaining. It's just past Cordes Junction where the last car is bumped off the road into a ditch. Duval's crew park behind the downed car, and I skid to a halt, pulling over to the side and reversing until I reach the action.
“Fuck this, we need to get back to Grande!” Jackie looks back and forth between me and the crew. “Your uncle's gonna be pissed when he hears about all this bullshit! The fuck we stopping for?”
I dig in my jacket and switch my gun's empty clip for a fresh one. “Nigga's gonna give me answers, is what the fuck I'm stopping for.” I jump out the driver's seat and head to the last two people I'd expect to have my back: Miller and Shawn. Last motherfuckas I'd expect to see here.
Miller and Shawn are standing over that bitch Lorenzo, who's in bad of shape as his car. Shaun's right foot is standing on something that looks like his leg, but it's too mangled and bloody for me to see.
Miller's gun is pointed at Lorenzo's head. He nods at me and Jackie as we approach.
“What's good, old nigga? Figured you'd need some help when my boy Shawn heard you'd be dealing with this trick nigga.”
“Y'all are the fuckin' tricks, ya punk bitches! All you motherfuckas lap doggin' behind your fucked up uncle!” He spits a wad of blood on Jackie's boots and laughs. She steps back in surprise, then stomps him a good one on his face. Shawn laughs and pulls her away, kicking and cussing.
I pump a round in his leg. Bastard doesn't have the decency to scream or cuss in pain. He just grabs his leg and laughs at me.
“The money he's been sending us? Shit, we started are own empire down here. All us 'fuck ups', the ones who went to jail behind his dumbass and remained loyal? We've had it. Fuck him and all you backwood ass country niggas. We have our own distributors, everything!” He laughs some more, looking at us and flipping us off.
He glares at me, the hate filling his eyes. To me, he's still a bitch.
“Gonna get you the best, ya fucken mutt! Gonna get you right at home! We've been watchin' yo ass for a while. Watched you come and go from your house. That boy of yours?” My stomach drops as he starts laughing again. “ 'M taking a page from the beaner familias, puta. Your son oughta be dead soon and his ho of a momma!” Lorenzo flips me off as he coughs up more blood.
I pounce on his half dead ass. I go wild on his face until the flames from the wrecked cars make his blood glow. Not my son, I've come too goddamn far to have this shit happen. Miller grabs me and pulls me off him, only to hand me his gun. I empty the clip in his body.
Grabbing my phone from my pocket, I speed-dial Elyssa, hoping to all hell she answers and her and our son are safe. Yup, another secret I've hidden from Lamar. I swear if we get out of this, he'll know the truth about everything.
Elyssa picks up on the fifth ring.
“What's up, D?”
“Get Lamar and get out the goddamn house! Duval's boys think we pulled a fast one. We've been set up. Get out the house now!”
“Plan A, just like you said. We'll meet you there!”
Hanging up the phone, I look at the surrounding area. Cars on fire, dead bodies, and Miller waiting for me to make some kind of command.
“Get back to Shawn and Jackie and drive far away from here and hide out. Get the money out of the trunk of that car”--I point to a car that's flipped on it's side, trunk smashed open--”and put it in my car. I got plans for that cash.”
Miller heads to Lorenzo's car, then pauses to look at me. “You know he's had beef with you. That's all he'd talk about since you came back. Just some way to get back atcha”. He goes to Lorenzo's car, grabs the cash and puts it in my ride.
“Who else is involved?”
Miller nods in the direction of Jackie, who's still making a fuss about her goddamn boots. I walk to her and clock her on the nose, dropping her hard. Shawn's eyes bug out and looks like he's about to say something in protest, but my gun to his face makes him change his mind. I turn my attention back to Jackie.
“Bitch, you knew this was a setup the whole time. Back in Phoenix, you said something to Lorenzo to set his ass off. The fuck did you say?”
Jackie sits up, holding onto her nose and fighting the tears. She mumbles something I can't hear too clearly. I pop a round off between her legs, making her jump.
“I said you were a fucken snitch. That's a death sentence for anyone.”
“So you added fuel to the fire and endangered my kid. Stand up, and get in the car.”
Jackie stands up and flips me off. “I'm ain't going NO fuckin'--”
I punch her in the face and she drops. She yelps like dog as a grab a handful of her hair and bring her face to face with me. “Bitch, if my son is dead, you better hope I kill you quick instead of what I have planned for you. Get...in...the...car.”
I stand Jackie up by her hair and push her towards the car. I turn to Miller and Shawn.
“Help your folks and get ghost. Start new lives, do better than this. Make it right for yourself.” They nod at me, and despite how we treated each other, we shake and give hugs.
“Save your fam, Old Nigga” Miller tells me.
I get in my car and peel out. Jackie is still holding her nose and face. I bet she's wishing she never fucked me over. I ease off the gas and keep it just over the speed limit. Highway patrols are bound to be on the road now and looking for suspects. I think of Elyssa and Lamar and hope they're alive and okay.