(Sorry I have been MIA for awhile guys, I’m going through some things. Here Is a new piece I am working on, to help me get through it. Hope you enjoy it. Thank for sticking around.)
Have you ever had something happen, and you know that you have seen it happen before? People call it Deja-vu but is it really? I swear it happens to me every hour of every day like I’m a passenger in someone else’s life.
My Gramps calls it a gift, but I’ve got my doubts. Seeing life happen before it happens sucks in more ways than one.
Before life with Gramps, I saw some shit. More than any kid should. Growing up in the rough part of town; an alcoholic mom, and a mentally unstable father, life was rough. Being psychic made it worse. I learned to survive, but that lesson was hard learnt.
I slide into the booth across from the Viking and pull out my computer.
“What did the boss say?”
Not like I really needed to ask, but it makes people more comfortable when I do.
“The drop will go down tonight.”
“Good, did you bring it?”
“Yeah, but you owe me for that shit.” Les pointed to the brown paper bag onto the table, his fork stabbing at the fried egg on his plate, and dipping his toast in the liquid gold now oozing everywhere.
“Hey, she’s your ex, not mine. You knew what you were getting into.” I winked at Joanne as she sauntered over. “Jo, tell this fool that he needs to own up to his own mistakes, and not blame his best friend for his disasters in life.”
The middle-aged, petite brunette rolled her eyes and clicked her tongue. “Gah, don’t drag me into your petty squabbles. You tell my ungrateful son, he needs to fix that broken window from last week if he expects to keep freeloading off me; I found another rat in the basement this morning. If they start nesting there will be hell to pay.” she shot back in her heavy Brooklyn accent.
I peered over my laptop at Les, the screen hiding my Cheshire grin.
My massive ginger haired friend shrink to half his size, as Joanna leveled her icy blue gaze at him.
I couldn’t resist adding fuel to the flames. “If he was any kind of decent son, he would have had it fixed for you already. You should know by now if you want anything done you can only count on me. We both know I love you more anyway.” I laid it on thick, placing my hand sincerely over my heart, even giving her my most-devoted gaze. Earning myself exasperated eye roll as she slid my own breakfast plate unceremoniously if from of me.
“Oh, you two got jokes huh? I see how it is.” He snatched the brown bag off the table. “This is mine now,” he grumbled indignalty between mouthfuls, as I tried to snatch the bag from him.
“Ma, I told you I had to order your damn window. It will be fixed as soon as it’s gets to the shop.” Jo thwacked him loudly across the chest, causing them both to wince.
“Watch your mouth, I brought your ungrateful ass into this world…” She warned as Jack called out the next order from the kitchen. “Just ’cause you’re grown now doesn’t mean I can’t still whoop your ass.” She called over her shoulder as she left to take care of her paying customers.
“Your mom loves me more than you.”
“Bitch please, she feels sorry for you. The poor abused street urchin. It’s pitiful really.” He replied carelessly, before stuffing a fork full of pancakes into his mouth.
“Whatever you need to tell yourself; while you eat away your feelings of inadequacy. Maybe someday you can find a mommy that loves you too.” I ducked to the right as a salt shaker flew past me, barely missing my skull as the booth behind me cushioned its fall. He made it so easy.
“Ass-hole, you would be nothing without me.” He mumbled indignantly through his pancakes.
I smirked and gave him the finger, as I salted my eggs and hash-browns. Jack could cook an egg to perfection, but for some reason, he had an aversion to salt.
Les was right, mostly, I was a lost kid pretty much living on the streets when he found me and brought me home; helped me find my Gramps. I owed him a lot. He always looked after me, no matter how weird shit got. That didn’t mean I was going to kiss his ass though. His ego was already huge.
“I’m sorry.” I caved. “Can I please have it.”
“No. Make me believe you.”
‘’Seriously? Oh my god!” I snorted, before clearing my throat and putting on my most sincere face. “I am sorry, you are the most amazing person on the planted, I wish to grow up to be big and strong like you. Blah, blah, blah, gimmie!”
“Liar,” Les said flatly and handed the bag to me. I smiled victoriously. “Why do you always have to be such a smart ass?”
“Someone has to to be, might as well be me.”
I opened it and pulled out the small leather-bound book. It smelled musty and ancient. I ran my finger delicately over the embossed leather. Finally.
“Shut up.” I snapped my jaw closed.
I didn’t care, I finally had it. I wanted to savor the moment. I slowly opened it my heart thumping excitedly in my chest.
“What the fuck?!” My heart sank.
“What language is that?” Now, what was I going to do? Disappointment filled my chest.
“Don’t know, but it’s not one I’ve ever seen. My job was to get the book, not read it.” Les wiped his mouth with a napkin and tossed it on his plate, before scooting out of the booth. Not hiding his sick delight in watching my excitement fizzle out.
I flipped him the bird again. “You’re the asshole, you now that right?”
“Boss wants us at the pier in 30, you can brood on the way.” He ignored me and reached behind the counter to grabbed a to-go box. “Ma, we’re headed out. I will be home late tonight. I promise to fix the window tomorrow.”
Jo waved him off, muttered something about ungrateful kids, and diseased rats.
I put the rest of my breakfast in the box and cleaned up the dishes, while Les wiped the table down, and reset it. Neither of us willing to suffer her wrath, by leaving our mess for her to clean up.
“See you tomorrow Jo!” I called back as I walked out of the kitchen. I snagged my computer bag and food on my way to the Friar, Lester’s baby, and slipped 30 bucks in the tip jar as I passed the register.
Family isn’t always blood. Jo was safe and didn’t judge me. Never asked questions, just fed me, sheltered me, and accepted me; when no one else did. She didn’t hesitate to take me in when I tagged along with Lester that first night. A scrawny, angry kid, with nothing to lose and everything to prove. Before them, I never knew what it was like to have a family.
I’m not that lost kid anymore, but they’re still my family.