Running For My Life

January 4, 2012
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 In and out. In and out. My breath quickened with every thought. My state of mania allowed me to run faster, but my body kept telling me to stop. The pain in my legs was nothing compared to the pain in my heart. How could it have come to this?  Then it came to me, it was her, it was all her fault. Every wrong thing that happened in our lives was because of her.  I use to think that mothers were supposed to care and love their children, but I’ve come to know that that's all just a fairy tail.

I remember this one time when we first moved to Boston, it was nothing out of the ordinary, every guy she brought home always left. This guy, whose name I don’t recall, was wearing a strange ACDC T-shirt with multiple stains on the front. He had facial hair that didn’t make a full beard and his hair was dirty blond. They were fighting one night, his bag was packed and she was drinking again.  All of a sudden he picked up his bag and left. I turned to go to my room when she hit me in the face causing my nose to bleed. "You did this! You're the reason he's leaving me!" I tried to reason with her saying she needed to put down the bottle and go to sleep, but she kept beating me. Thankfully she passed out as I started to see black. As she fell, Jason, my brother, came out of his room drunk with tears screaming my name, “Alexus! Alexus!”. I mopped up some of the blood on my face with my long blond hair as to not alarm him.  I knew that as soon as she woke up she would come looking for a punching bag and I wasn't going to let her get her hands on Jason. He helped me to my feet and we both locked ourselves in my bedroom. Just as I thought, when she woke up she came looking for us. She beat the door a couple times and then went to go pass out in her bedroom. That night Jason cried himself to sleep in my arms like the many times he's done before. The next morning I found her asleep on her bed surrounded by vomit and brandy. It smelt like she was dead, but she was stirring every so often so I left her be so I could get Jason ready for school. I was 8.

For years that was the normal routine. My life was like an iPod stuck on replay with me not being able to press next, but I still believed she would change. I am now 18. I am 5’5”, pale, and I still have long blond hair. At school I am quiet and I keep to myself. I don’t have friends, just acquaintances who know only what’s was on the surface. My brother, Jason who is now 16, is the same. Although he is my younger brother, Jason is taller than me by several inches, with short brown hair. Occasionally he gets into fights with kids who say the wrong thing or give him the wrong look. As always I would pick him up from the principals office with either a bloody lip or a black eye. And after being threatened with suspension the principal would send him home with me.

We would sometimes walk through the heart of the city. Passing multiple stores playing my favorite Beatles music and brick houses with children running on the small lawns. In those moments we forgot. We forgot about the fight he just had and about the horrible life we were placed in. Sometimes we would even wish about having a mother who actually cared. Times like these made my life worth while. I loved my brother, he was all I had and I was all he had. Losing him was my biggest fear and today that fear is coming to life.

 I was running for my life because Jason was my life and without him I had no reason to live. My legs had a mind of their own as I continued to frantically run through Boston. Suddenly I turned a corner and collided with some wooden crates creating what seemed to look like a masterpiece of shallow cuts all over my hands and legs. People pointed and shouted at me as I sprinted by saying, "Slow down!" or "Watch where your going!" but I payed no attention. I started to replay the start of the day in my head over and over again.
              I heard a couple knocks on the door, slow at first and then gradually staccato.  Because, like always she was passed out on the couch, I answered the door. Standing in the doorway was a man taller than me, but shorter than Jason. His hair was short and brown and his blue eyes twinkled like the ocean. He was dressed in a sharp black suit that was sprinkled in bright white dandruff. His tie, although it seemed fancy, was slightly cocked to his left side. This brought me to his briefcase which he held in his left hand. It was large and black with gold handles. Directly below the gold handles were the initials L. J. H. which were a slight gray color. He greeted me with a smile and a simple hello followed by his name, Mr. Hugh. Mr. Hugh's smile started to fall as he looked over my shoulder and noticed the drunk that was zoned out on the couch. He gave me the look I’ve seen so many times before. It was the dreaded look of pity. I hate that look, it's been given to me my whole life and I was sick of it. " What do you want?" I said finding myself unable to stop the bitter sound. Without wiping the pity off his face he informed me of the unpaid bills that were soon due and if they were not paid soon our house would be taken. I pleaded with him to give us more time but he wouldn't budge. He said he was sorry and left. 
               After I shut the door I couldn't let go of the door knob. I heard a noise behind me so I spun around to see Jason grab his coat and he headed towards me and the door.  Before I could ask him where he was going he slithered past me and walked out the door. What should I do? How can I fix this? I felt like the floor just dropped and I was falling through the air. Then I thought of Jason and I realized that I have to become the provider for him and myself. All these years I dreamt that one day my mother would wake up from her alcohol coma and become the mother she should be. I realized right then and there that I couldn’t keep dreaming. So I headed out to the diner I had past on my way to school for years. Lately I noticed a help wanted sign and I decided to go check it out. I arrived to see the manager sitting at the counter drinking something from small plastic cup. I approached him with my head held high trying to make myself look professional. When he turned I opened my mouth to ask for the job when he suddenly said, "Your hired, pick up a tray and start." I was shocked and happy. I snatched up he tray and began work at once.

Hours later I was cleaning a table behind a group of boys when I overheard their conversation. They were talking about the recent drug deals that were going on in the town. This didn't shock me because I knew these kids had been dealing drugs for years. What really shocked me was the name of the new member of their drug crew, the name was Jason. I almost dropped the glass in my hand, but I didn't dare disrupt the conversation because I needed to know more. The blond haired boy, whose name I believe was Aidan, said something about a death mission. I tried to get closer without the boys noticing. Aidan was telling the boys that if the police interrogate them they should say nothing. Police?! I thought. Why would the police interrogate them? I started to strain my ears so hard that they started to hurt. The two other boys that sat across the table from him asked the same question I had just thought. Aidan replied saying that hard core drug dealers who sell to him are meeting Jason at the pier and that they didn't plan on leaving him alive. At first I couldn't move or breath, but then adrenaline kicked in and I threw down my tray and bolted out the door.

And now here I am, sprinting down the streets of Boston like a maniac hoping that this is all a dream and that I’ll wake up and start my normal, horrible life. All I want is to turn back time and make this never happen. I want to have a different life and especially I wanted a different mother. But that wasn't the case, I finally came to the realization that my mother is a failure and she will never change, and I am Jason’s only hope. I can see the pier in the distance and I'm getting closer. Underneath the pier on the rocks I can see two people, one I distinctly knew was Jason and the other I assumed was the hard core drug dealer. I started to run even faster. I opened my mouth to scream and the drug dealer raised the gun to Jason's head and...BOOM!





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