A storm was coming. They were calling it Hurricane Michelle.
As I walked out of jail the wind was already picking up something severe. I was bailed out of the jail. I got into the parking lot. It was Venus who bailed me out but when I got into the parking lot I saw more than just Venus. Felix, Tony and Rashad were also in the parking lot. I was actually surprised to see them.
"What's up homie?" Felix asked.
"You bailed me out?"
He nodded, "Got to look out. Regardless of how things have been in the past."
It was Rashad who grunted at that moment, "Right. We are all down."
I wanted to say I was down too. I shook his hand regardless. Truth was I knew that Felix was the one who was responsible for bailing me out. Rashad probably didn't have a damn thing to do with it but he sure was going to sit here and take credit. I knew as well as everyone did that Rashad was nothing more than a bum who liked to act hard. He never worked a day in his life.
"I appreciate it ya'll," I replied.
I had to keep the piece. Regardless of what happened I was out of jail.
"Don't worry too. We started beating that motherfucker's ass. He ended up getting saved by the police though. But we'll find him again," Tony told me.
"What about Shay?"
"Shay was the one who ratted you out," Rashad stated, "Miguel told us. .."
I felt this rage come over me at that moment. I grabbed Rashad. I didn't' know who made the call but he was the leader of GGG. He had to have OK'd them going after Shay. What kind of stupid ass move was he making.
"Are you fucking crazy touching Shay?"
I didn't know I would react like this until I did. I had cuffed him up real hard around the neck. I was pissed. I was beyond pissed. I was really ready to knock this motherfucker out right here and now.
"I'm riding for YOU!" Rashad stated before turning to Felix, "See, I told you this clown ain't down for us. I'm sitting here riding for him. Like you told me to. See how he treats me? Huh? You see it!"
He was acting like a little bitch. Of course Felix and Tony walked through to separate us. They had to save his ass just like they always did. If it wasn't for Felix I would have beat Rashad's ass so many times. He thought he was some bully but he was really the biggest pussy in these streets.
"You ain't shit," I told him, "You dumb as fuck and you ain't shit."
"Yo why are you tripping?" Tony asked.
"Because Miguel is lying. Shay didn't fuckin' rat me the fuck out."
They looked at one another shocked. I could see the look that they were giving each other. They seemed beyond surprised. Before I knew it I was standing next to them and trying my hardest not to lunge at Rashad. It was hard. He had that stupid ass grimace on his face. I wanted to knock it off. I was already annoyed as fuck for being locked up. I had posted bail and I would have to go back to jail for this bullshit.
"Why the fuck would Miguel lie?" Rashad asked.
"Because Miguel's bitch ass was the one who snitched to the cops," I told them.
They looked at me even more confused. It was a shock to me too. I wasn't upset at the fact that they didn't know Miguel was the one who snitched on me. I was upset over the fact that they attacked Shay. Who did that? They just went off of Miguel's fucking word and just beat his ass.
The look on their faces said to say it all. Rashad look dumb as hell. You could almost see the "Oh" in his expression. Tony wasn't that far from it either. Only Felix seemed to still be a little suspicious of everything.
"We are going to need more than that," Felix stated, "It's your word against Miguel's at this point. One thing GGG won't put up with is no snitching. Real talk. So tell me. How is it you know bro?"
"I was given the statement that the witness stated. Miguel used my real name. My real name isnt' Fidel."
"Oh shit. I didn't know that."
"Right. I got into some trouble a while back and had to legally change my name. Miguel is my cousin. He's the only one who knew what my real name was. Shay couldn't have written that statement because Shay didn't even know my real fucking name."
The lawyers had overlooked it. The police had overlooked it. Everyone didn't know that Miguel was the only person who still knew my last name.
It was complicated why I changed my name. There were people out there looking for me. None of that mattered though. Legally I wasn't supposed to be called that name at all for my own protection. However Miguel still used it. Miguel gave himself away.
"Yo Miguel is dirty..." Venus stated at that moment from the sidelines.
"We should talk to Shay."
"Talk to him? You guys beat his ass for no reason and now you want to talk to him? Are you serious?" I stated.
"Relax Fidel, we was trying to look out for you."
"Thanks but no thanks It's because of ya'll that I was locked up in the fuckin' first place. I didn't shoot no gun. Now you doing me a favor but bailing me out? What the fuck? Yo. I don't need your help period."
"Where the fuck you going?"
I was walking away. I didn't give a fuck. I couldn't be around these dudes anymore. I was going to hurt one of them if I stayed around.
"FIDEL!" I heard them screaming out.
"What you leaving?" I heard Rashad's voice say at that moment, "You can't leave us Fidel. You know that right. No body is leaving the gang. You already know that!"
At that moment I wasn't thinking about the gang. I wasn't thinking about none of that bullshit. I was just thinking about going home and seeing what was up with Shay.
I didn't even go home. I went directly over to Shay's house. My heart was racing. I just kept thinking that maybe he was mad at me for real. Maybe he thought I had something to do with this shit. Maybe he thought that I was somehow involved in this.
I knocked on the door that moment.
"Can I help you?"
It was Shay's dad. He was looking over at me. He had this look on his eyes. He must have recognized me. He must have recognized me as the man who got arrested for the shootout. Miguel snitching had put a huge target on my back. He had no idea what kind of target this put on my back. People would know things now...more things than I wanted them to know. If they knew who I was they'd be pissed off.
"Is Shay home?"
"You should leave...you should leave before I call the police," he stated.
"Who is it dad!"
I noticed the person walking by. Shit. It had gone from bad to worse. It was Donovan. Shay's brother walked past the door and as soon as he caught hold of me he just launched himself at me.
I didn't expect it to be honest. Maybe that was why he got his punch off. He hit me hard in the face and I fell onto the patio. I struggled to get up only to see that Donovan was already on top of me.
Donovan was pummeling me.
The fists hit the side of my face.
"STOP IT! STOP!" I heard Shay's father saying.
It was pointless. Donovan was really getting at me. I didn't come here to fight. I knew that but I also knew that I had to protect myself. I had to fight back.
I used all the strength I had to punch Donovan in his side. The punch to his side startled him a little bit. He was a big guy and heavy. Luckily I benched 300 pounds. I was able to literally bench Donovan off me, taking his body and shoving it to the side panel.
"Fuckin' Spick," Donovan said.
At least he didn't call me a faggot. He lazily tried to get up at that moment. I saw him wanting to fight some more. He was slow though. His weight dragged him behind. I had to get over to him and stop him somehow. I had to get over to him and pin him.
"I'm not trying to fight you. I'm looking for Shay."
"I'm gonna kill you motherfucka. I'm going to kill you."
"I just want to talk to Shay----"
He wasn't having it. It was at that moment that finally someone interrupted. I felt the arm on my shoulder pulling me. I struggled to get away from it not knowing where it came from. I turned to see that it was Kenyon.
Fuck. Were they about to jump me.
"Enough!" Kenyon stated.
One of his arms was in a cast but he held the other arm up and took a step away from me. I was still over his brother but Kenyon was clearly being a little bit more cool than Donovan was.
"I don't want no drama. I just came for Shay."
Kenyon nodded at that moment, "Well maybe get off my brother and talk to me instead..."
I looked down at Donovan. I was scared to get off of him. I had fought bigger guys like that. When you get them down you make sure you keep them down. You don't let a fat fuck off the ground. Still. I had to show some trust here if I expected them to trust me in return.
I got off of him at that moment and took a couple steps back. Donovan was about to come at me again but it was Kenyon who actually stepped in his way.
"Get the fuck out of my way," Donovan stated.
"Go inside. Dad. Take Donovan inside."
"This motherfucker was the one who shot you," Donovan stated.
"And I'm a grown ass man. I'll deal with this myself. I don't need this violence bullshit," Kenyon replied, "That's what the fuck got me in this position in the first place."
"Man you a bigger pussy than Shay."
Donovan walked past brushing hard past me. His father followed him quickly behind the house reluctantly.
I was shocked that Kenyon wasn't being just as big of an aggressor as Donovan. I remembered Kenyon on the beach. Kenyon by far wasn't Donovan but Kenyon was very aggressive back on the beach before. He seemed like he was different somehow. I couldn't put my finger on what was different about him but there was something.
"Look. I just came to talk to Shay."
"I heard you the first 10 times."
"So where the fuck is he at? I'm not leaving until I talk to him," I said.
"What the fuck do you mean gone?"
"He left. He just wrote a note about being in danger or something. The note said something that he was going with this homie named Miguel."
"Because. It's my fault he was in that predicament. It's a big ass misunderstanding. I need to find Shay. Please. I know you don't know me like that. Real talk, I didn't shoot you. That's honest. I know people though that thought Shay was involved in snitching."
"Look. Do you know where him and Miguel went or not."
"I'll tell you if you take me with you."
"Man I don't even know where I'm going."
Kenyon had keys in his hand, "Fort Lauderdale. And I got the car. But I don't know where in Fort Lauderdale. I'm assuming you might."
Miguel. Miguel had a homeboy who he would visit all the time in Fort Lauderdale. It was like his ex or something actually. The guy also happened to work for one of those Caribbean cruises so he was always gone. Miguel and me would always go down to the beach house when his ex wasn't there. Miguel even had a goddam key. That was the thing about Miguel. He never caught feelings for these guys. He just used them for shit and threw them away. The fact that he had feelings for Shay blew my mind.
What was the point of him telling the boys that Shay was the one who snitched though?
I hadn't seen this side of Miguel. He was desperate.
"This got nothing to do with you," I told Kenyon.
"You can go to the bus station if you want or we can drive my parent's car. If you choose the latter option though. I need to come."
"It's my brother and my family is worried about him. I want to bring him back."
I hesitated. I couldn't believe I was taking him with me.
"Yo this is going to take forever," Kenyon was saying.
Traffic was thick on the highway to Fort Lauderdale. The rains had started. It was pouring. I had no doubt a lot of people who lived near the coast were evacuating or whatever so that would explain the highway. I had been blowing up Shay's phone. His phone went straight to voicemail.
I found myself blowing up Miguel's phone too, "Pick up this fucking call, you bitch."
I hung up the phone.
"You better not be talking to lil' bro like that," Kenyon stated.
I shot him a crossed eye, "Boy shut the hell up. No one is talking to Shay like that. Relax."
"I don't know how ya'll gangsters are. That's what you are huh? A gangster---"
"You're brother's in the same gang I am. New's flash."
"Shay ain't no gangster though."
"He's tougher than he looks, Trust me," I stated.
Kenyon laughed as though I was making some sort of joke, "I doubt it. Lil bro has always been in need of saving. What you think we doing now? Saving him from making a stupid ass decision. Is he really in danger?"
"Naw. He's good. It was all a miscommunication like I said..."
"Good. Well we need to hurry up then. This fucking traffic bro. Oh my god!"
The rain was pouring down.
"Complaining isn't really doing to do much now is it, Shay?" I asked, "I mean...fuck Kenyon."
At times looking at Kenyon from the side of my eyes I thought he was Shay. They looked so much alike they could have been twins if they had the same hair length. I was surprised when Kenyon actually laughed at the idea.
"Get it all the time," he stated.
"Ya'll must have been close," I replied.
"Not that close. I mean he was gay---"
"Aren't you?" I asked, "I mean I know I didn't dream you coming onto me in the backyard that day."
He laughed, "Offer still stands."
I shot him a look. He was squinting at me hard. I had to admit dude was sexy as fuck. There was something about a DL guy too. I mean he was a more masculine, butchy version of Shay who I honestly thought was one of the most attractive guys I'd ever met. They both had that long nose...those thin dreads and this smile that showed off way too many teeth. Even with all that they happened to just be so fucking adorable. It was hard not to flirt back to be honest.
"I'm good. Truth be told...I'm kind of interested in your brother?"
"Shay? Figured that. Ya'll been vibing huh?"
"After my husband died, Shay was there and I treated him like shit to be honest. I blamed him because of how I felt about him while ignoring my own relationship. I couldn't fight how I felt about him though. You know. It's that feeling like...he could be the one."
"Naw. That sound crazy," Kenyon replied, "The one can't be no dude."
I laughed. This dude was so far in the closet that he might as well organize it.
"You think you can only be in a a relationship with a girl?"
"Yeah...it's easy that way. I'm not trying to marry no dude. Ya'll are tripping," Kenyon replied, "Besides, my brother won't mind. I'm not trying make you hubby. I'm trying to see what's good with that dick..."
Kenyon had his hand between my thighs all of a sudden.
He was actually rubbing on me! I almost crashed the fucking car.
"Yo, chill out!"
"Relax. Why you taking this shit so serious?" he asked.
"I literally just told you that I got feelings for your little brother."
"It aint' that serious. We dudes. Shit...my brother knows about me now by the way."
"He knows you hitting on me all crazy?"
"It don't matter. Shit. We could probably talk to him. He may be down to having you smash both of us... you know what I mean?"
I literally had to fight off a hardon thinking about fucking both Kenyon and Shay at the same time. I was hoping that Kenyon didn't notice. I literally had to put my arm over my crotch area and slump down in the driver's seat a little bit. This was definitely not what I thought this drive to Fort Lauderdale would be like.
"You don't get it," I finally stated.
"Get what. Help me get it."
"How would you feel like if Shay wanted to fuck your girl? Guy that looks like you. I'm sure you got a girl..."
"You trying say you find me attractive?"
"You missing the point."
Kenyon laughed, "Ok. Ok. I'd be pissed but that's a chick. That's disrespectful. Dudes all about sex anyway."
"That's not true. Some people want more. Some people like me. Some people like Shay. You get it. I'm trying to see what's up with him. Don't get me wrong, you attractive but I'm only attracted to you because you look like Shay. I'm just keeping it 100."
I thought it was going to hurt his feelings then I remembered who I was talking to.
"So uh...that mean we can't fuck...or what? Cause you sexy as fuck to me," he replied.
I shot Kenyon a serious look, "No. We. Can't. Fuck."
Kenyon shook his head, "Damn. Ok. That's so odd to me. I guess this whole gay thing is just so weird to me. Maybe that's why I never bonded with Shay. I just didn't get why he just didn't fuck guys on the side or downlow. I didn't understand why he had to be all out and proud about the shit."
Kenyon's face looked like he was really struggling with this. It really seemed like he didn't understand how to men care about each other like a male cared about a female. It really was throwing him. I had to remember that at one point I was like Kenyon. At one point it didn't make sense to me either.
"I have a bad past," I stated, "I don't' talk about it much. I used to be like you thinking why should I settle down? You know? In my past I was let's say framed for doing some shit that I honestly didn't do. It was a bad situation and long story short that changed my life. After that I realized I wasn't going to live my life for other people anymore. You know? If a man makes me happy. I was going to be with a man. You get it?"
I wondered if he got it. He was just looking out the window at that moment.
"You just went real deep bro..."
"Maybe it's a learning opportunity?"
"Learning what it's like to be like Shay. There's no reason that the two of you can't be closer. Clearly you have more in common than just the way you look."
Kenyon looked out the window again. I hoped it was sinking in. Either way he didn't ask me whether or not I wanted to fuck for the rest of the trip or try to feel me up so I guess that was some sort of progress.
It took us 2 and a half hours to finally get to Fort Lauderdale. By the time we got to the beach house the current was rising an insane amount on the beach. Rain was falling from the sky in buckets. The winds were picking up and all the palm trees were bending back.
"Can you wait here?" I asked Kenyon.
"Just give me a minute. Seriously. This shit is kind of serious between Miguel and myself. I just want to make sure that I don't got nothing interrupting this."
"Man...as long as you bring my little brother back," Kenyon replied, "I think I got some things to talk to him about too."
"Look at you. Heart to heart?"
"Man stop with the gay shit. I'm just gonna have a sit down with him, Try to see if we can fix our relationship or...whatever...man hurry the hell up."
I laughed at Kenyon. He wasn't that bad. He was trying to be all macho but I saw that he had a heart under all that. I had no idea how he planned on fixing his relationship with Shay but I hoped he did do it. I think Shay needed that kind of support.
I walked out into the rain. The water fell on me soaking my shirt.
I got to the house and rang the door bell.
In the next few minutes someone answered.
I didn't know what I was thinking. All I could do was hug him. He seemed shocked that I was here and let alone hugging him. I didn't care that I was wet. I didn't care that I got him wet. There was just something about the short time I was in jail that made me miss him. The whole time I was there I was just thinking about him.
"So you aren't here to kill me?" he asked.
"I'm here to kill Miguel and bring you back home. Where the fuck is he?"
"Upstairs in the shower. Come in..."
I walked in the house. The beach house was always nice. This was back in the loose days I had that I always used to come down. I was watching my younger cousins back then a lot for my sister. They were Miguel's little brothers. They had to be all about 10 or 11 at the time. We'd bring them to the beach house a lot lock them in a room with the TV. I was so trifling back then. Miguel and I would put my baby cousins in one room and we'd be partying with sexy boys in the main room.
The room looked the same. As I walked in the fireplace was lit. There were candles everywhere. I had no doubt Miguel's punk ass set this up. I had no doubt that he set it up trying to impress Shay too. Maybe he did care about Shay for real because I'd never seen Miguel go all out like this over one guy.
Shay walked into the kitchen. He came back. He came back and started two wipe me down with a towel. I couldn't stop smiling just looking at him. It was hard to even be mad about Miguel at this moment. I was just so happy to see Shay.
"It's storm out there man," I stated, "Fuckin' crazy out there. You have no idea. You making me not mind it though if you going to be taking care of me all the time."
Shay looked at me. He stopped wiping me off.
"Why are you here Fidel?"
"I know you didn't snitch on me. I trust you."
"Didn't seem like GGG trusted me when ya'll jumped me at the hospital," Shay replied shaking his head, "This shit is getting way out of hand..."
I nodded, "I'll do something. I'll talk to the guys. Just come back."
Shay looked over at me and seemed uneasy, "There's no talking. Fidel. They jumped me! What part of the game is that? The only one what was there for me was Miguel."
"Miguel's bitch ass got you in this predicament in the first place."
At that moment I noticed Miguel.
He must have heard us talking because he walked out of from the bathroom. He had a towel around his torso. I wondered if he was trying to show off his muscles or whatever for Shay. Maybe this was his plan all along. Get me out of the picture so he can runaway wit Shay or some shit. I wasn't sure what his motivation was. He was always jealous of me. Was it jealousy or did he actually want to be with Shay? Maybe it was the fact that Shay was the one guy who wasn't interested in him like all the other guys in Miami. He wasn't used to guys turning him down.
"Did the two of you---" I had to ask.
Shay seemed confused, "What?"
Miguel laughed, "He's wants to know if we fucked? Ain't that right cuz? Naw...we didn't fuck. Man...I knew your desperate ass would try to find us. You a clown."
"If you wasn't my cousin I'd beat your ass right here."
"We can brawl bro. Don't let blood get in the way----it never has clearly."
I think I had an idea what Miguel was talking about. It had nothing to do with Shay though. Then I wondered if maybe this was the reason he had really been acting all grimy. I didn't even come all this way for all that bullshit though.
"You know what cous?" I stated, "I'm not even arguing with you. Whatever you acting all funny for---keep that. Shay get your jacket."
"He ain't going no where yo---" Miguel replied.
"Miguel son. Please don't get beat the fuck up in front of the dude you're clearly crushing over..." I warned him.
At this point I was pacing back and forth. I really really didn't want to have fight my cousin. A part of me honestly did have nothing but love for him. He had been acting crazy lately. I want to say it was Shay that sparked all of this but the more I thought about it the more I wasn't sure. I just wanted to get to the bottom of this.
Shay was clearly stuck between the tension. He had walked over to me, "I need someone to tell me what the hell is going on?"
"Ask your boy?"
Shay looked over at Miguel.
"I snitched on him," Miguel stated.
Shay's mouth dropped. It was nice knowing that Miguel was finally admitting to it. Maybe he did find his balls all of a sudden. I wanted to hear what his excuse was. I wanted to hear his excuse on why he would snitch on his own fucking family.
What excuse could there be in the world? He snitched on me for some butt---what? Shay clearly wasn't even into him like that. Shay clearly wanted to see what was up with me. All that pretty boy shit didn't get him far because Shay was clearly more attracted to me.
"You're lying?" Shay stated.
I could see the disgust in his eyes.
"And then he told the boys that you were the one who did it. You see that grimy shit? Huh? You see that grimy shit," I stated.
My fists were clutched up. I wanted to fight him so bad. It was taking everything out of me not to attack him. I couldn't stand the smug little pretty boy smile Miguel had on his face too. He really thought he was so fly and the shit. Like who had a full grown man conversation with a towel on? Did he really think that was going to help win Shay over or something?
"Me grimey. You're one to talk," Miguel replied, "Shay. I did tell them that."
"Man. I'm out of here," Shay said.
"Wait," Miguel stated.
"YO FUCK OFF ME!"
Shay pushed him. Shay pushed Miguel hard. I was kind of happy when he did it. Neither Miguel or me was expecting Shay to push him as hard as he did. Miguel was on the floor. His towel went off and everything. I could see the embarrassment on his eyes as he sat on the floor butt naked looking up at Shay. All that bullshit and trifling behavior and he got nothing.
"I did it to keep you away from him," Miguel stated,"You don't want to be near him...especially with what I told WAF."
"So wait, you been snitching to the cops and talking to the rival gang?" Shay stated.
"He's a pussy," I added in.
I wish Shay would beat his ass. I wasn't going to fight my own family but Shay definitely seemed mad enough to do it. I saw how Shay was flaming at that moment.
He was clearly more mature though and grabbed me...by my hand...before saying, "Let's get the fuck out of here, Fidel."
"That's not his name," Miguel stated.
"What?" Shay stated turning back.
No. He wouldn't. Miguel wouldn't go there. He wasn't that grimy! I turned back. My eyes had widened.
"That's what I told WAF. You don't want to be around Fidel. Especially now that they know who he is."
"You mean they think he shot up Kenyon's party?" Shay asked.
"No. Why don't you tell him, huh?" Miguel stated, "Why don't you tell him what it is about you that would have WAF really mad? Why don't you tell him why you had to change your name? Why don't you tell him who you really are?"
"Fidel what's going on?" Shay asked.
"His name isn't Fidel," Miguel replied, "His name is Tony. Tony Monteo. You know? The Ass assassin..."
It felt like my world collapsed as Shay turned back at me. He had gave me the most gruesome look. He had known the name. Everyone in America had known the name. I had become something like an urban legend to scare little boys at night over the last 5 years.
I wished I could tell Shay that I was lying. I couldn't though. My name was what I said it was. Tony Monteo.
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