“Thanks for taking me home.”
I'm standing outside of my house. I just know the shit is going to hit the fan at this moment. I just have a feeling everything is going to happen. Luckily after Ashley let me know that I may have gotten her pregnant Zion was nice enough to drive me home.
He stops in front of my house and I'm just in his car. It's actually a pretty nice new mustang. It seems a little strange but if Zion hadn't come out of the closet he'd probably be the most popular dude in school. He was handsome, athletic, and he dressed nice, had nice things and he was cool as fuck. But just because he was out of the closet...he was an outcast.
“Are you going to be ok?”
“Why do you ask that?” I ask him.
Zion looks over at me, “You and your brother both had sex with the same girl and possibly got her pregnant. I think that triggers a need for me to ask you if you are ok.”
I shake my head.
“Rami is my adopted brother...just by law. And I don't remember having sex with her,” I say.
“Not remembering isn't going to cut it when it comes to taking care of the baby,” Zion stated.
I shake my head, “It's more than that. I just feel like I changed so much after the accident. Like...I can't imagine going behind my Rami's back and having sex with his girlfriend now.”
Zion shakes his head, “I can...unfortunately. I knew of you, from afar. You always had a different girl around. You were a lady's man. Every guy wanted to be you.”
I shake my head.
Lady's man. There is that term again.
“That's the thing. I can't imagine having sex with so many fucking females. Like... I can't imagine having sex with....any...”
I don't know why I'm confiding ( xxx) this with Zion. He seems confused with the words that I'm saying. He looks over at the passenger seat.
“Wait...what are you saying?” he asks me.
I'm gay. Completely gay. Not even Bisexual. I want to tell him that but I can't. Somehow the crash completely changed my sexual orientation.
Instead of telling Zion what I wanted to tell him though I bitch up, “Nothing.”
I don't wait. I leave Zion and slam his car door behind me. I'm walking towards the house. I can feel his eyes on me. I'm not sure what to do. I'm sitting here confused. How am I supposed to deal with the fact that my former self was a male whore who fucked girls with no condom and got them pregnant. Not just any girl either. Rami's girl.
By the time I enter the house I can already tell that the shit has hit the fan. I find Yuri, Rami and Houston in the lounge area. They are just sitting there.
“I told them,” Rami says.
I can see Houston do his judgmental thing at that moment. He's sitting there just shaking his head. The look on his face says it all. Rami is crying. For as macho as he's supposed to be I wonder why he feels comfortable breaking down into tears already.
“So let me get this right...you BOTH were fucking this girl?” Houston asks shaking his head, “Is that like the thing to do? You guys were what...sharing the pussy? Was it like a gang bang or something? Is that the thing to do now?”
Rami shakes his head before answering, “I didn't know that James was having sex with her.”
Houston looks over at me.
“You did it behind his back?” Houston asks.
“I don't remember...”
“Yo CUT THE SHIT!” Houston says at that moment, “This amnesia BULLSHIT is getting old. Stop acting like you don't remember anything and own up to the fucked up individual you are...”
“He doesn't remember Houston back the fuck up,” Yuri tells him.
Houston paces around. He is shaking his head at this moment. I look over at Rami. I feel so bad. He just looks...defeated.
“We need to tell Darryl,” Houston responds.
“No,” Yuri responds, “Darryl would kill you guys. This girl is looking for a free meal ticket. These hoes get kids with basketball players and try to live off child support”
“What the fuck are you talking about?” I ask, “We're in high school.”
“She's trying to get in early,” Yuri argues shaking his head, “We all know that you're definitely going to get drafted to the NBA when you graduate...and Rami has a good chance as well.”
Rami is standing there, “So what do we do?”
“Convince her to have an abortion. Pay her off...” Yuri explains.
I look at Yuri. He's dead serious. He's plotting this like he is some goddam mastermind or some shit like that. I don't get it.
Houston shook his head, “If she was going to have an abortion, don't you think she would have told them that she was. Besides, who has money to pay her off?”
“Dad?” I suggested.
Yuri looks at me, “What part of Darryl would kill you don't you understand? Do you want to die? No. There is one way though, April.”
“April?” Houston asks confused.
“She is in love with James,” Yuri says, “If you tell April you got a girl pregnant, I know for sure she will pay that girl off.”
Rami has his eyes up. Houston looks shocked. It's at this point I realize that Yuri is breaking news to them. They had no idea.
Houston raises an eyebrow, “Wh---WHAT!”
Yuri looks over and crosses his arms. I'm kind of shocked he's breaking the news to the others. This is his master plan? Get a woman obsessed with me to pay another girl off. This was his grand plan?
Yuri looks at Houston, “You know how Darryl thought April was cheating? Well. She was. She was sleeping with James.”
Houston's face just blows at that moment.
“Is there nothing you wouldn't fuck? Seriously? That woman ADOPTED you.”
I could tell him that I don't remember. I could try to play that role again but I could tell Houston didn't believe me. I just stay quiet not wanting to get into an argument with Houston.
It's Yuri who shakes his head, “Listen. Darryl is going out of town this weekend with Sydney. James...you talk to April. Get her to give you some money. I'll throw a party. If we all pressure Ashley to get this abortion then she just might do it.”
Houston shakes his head at Yuri, “You're always covering for him, aren't you?”
I can't take it anymore.
“Yes. That's what brothers do. Why don't you act like one?” I ask, “You sit around and play this holier than thou bullshit with the rest of us. Rami and I fucked up. Me a little more...clearly. Stop acting like you're our fucking father.”
I go off on him. I'm standing in his face at that moment.
“Hell. With your reputation you might try to fuck me too,” Houston says getting red in the face before stopping and adding, “Oh my bad...you already have tried. And I turned you down.”
Houston just outed me! I don't even know I'm reacting until I react. I swing at him hitting him hard in his face. The hit connects. I expect Houston to swing back but he doesn't. Rami and Yuri hustle to hold me back, pulling me into the kitchen away from him.
The last thing I see is Houston spitting up blood.
As we get in the kitchen I see Yuri looking confused.
“He's joking right? Is he...holy...shit....he's not joking is he?” Yuri starts.
I ignore Yuri and walk away at that point. There is no reason for me to go ahead and answer that question with me being worked up like this.
As I go to bed I realize my life just transitioned into complete chaos.
Things are awkward for the rest of the week. Everyone is kind of avoiding one another. Houston and I aren't communicating with one another at all. We walk around the house without even speaking. Yuri seems awkward around me. Rami seems upset still. I tried to talk to Rami but he always seems to make an excuse about him being busy. It's clear that he's avoiding me especially after finding out that I was sleeping with his girlfriend at some point behind his back. The amnesia shit isn't really an excuse anymore.
If it wasn't for Zion I'd go crazy. I find myself meeting him in the mornings like we said we would. He doesn't ask me about what I said in the car luckily.
Friday rolls around soon and after a week of playing basketball with Zion and playing basketball at practice I realize I'm getting better.
“There you go,” he says, “You're getting better.”
He's being nice. I'm making a few shots. But Yuri mentioned that I was supposed to be drafted to the NBA. People were looking at me? My skills were nowhere near that point. Not nowat least.
“Because of you,” I tell him.
Zion smiles and shakes his head, “That's so odd hearing you say that. Before your accident I used to look up to you. I used to damn near worship the ground you walked on. I went to all your games. I was your biggest fan. I was way too shy to play ball because I felt nervous being around you.”
“You felt nervous around me?”
Zion laughs, “I still do. I'm sure your inner Lebron is going to kick in any day now and you won't need me anymore.”
I smile, “Well I'll keep you around for other things.”
He stops dribbling the ball and holds it. We are on the court. It's early morning. Zion is just looking at me with those eyes again. He licks his lips.
“What kind of other things?” he asks me.
The tension between us is something else at this point. It's been going on all week. No touching or nothing but the flirting was getting strong. It was getting real strong. Zion was getting bolder each day. I couldn't take it anymore. I couldn't take him grinding to the hoop by shoving his ass into my crotch. I couldn't take much more of him somehow just falling between my legs after we crash into each other and staring at me for longer than he should. I can't take much more of him slapping me on the ass after every shot I make to say, “There you go.”
I feel like a fat kid who is having cake eaten right in front of him. The chemistry with Zion is something ridiculous.
“I guess you'll have to find out,” I respond, “Yuri is throwing a party on Saturday. Things are a little awkward after this pregnancy scare. Maybe you can come by and keep me company.”
“James Payne wants me to be seen in public with him?” Zion asks, “You do realize I'm Wagner's token gay athlete right. I don't fit in at the popular table with you and your brothers...”
“You aren't a token anything. You are a good ball player. And I'd love to be seen with you,” I state, “But hey...I have to meet someone.”
“Damn. Hate to see you leave but I love to---I'll just keep that to myself,” Zion replies.
His eyes follow me as I leave...
I walk out into the parking lot and see April standing there. She is dressed in black. I sent her a text message explaining the situation that I was in. As I walk outside of the school she just stares at me smiling.
“Are you ok?” she asks.
“I'm fine. No one's tried to kill me yet if that's what you mean,” I tell her.
“Don't joke about that sweetie,” she responds.
April brushes her hand on my face. I feel a little disgusted by this. She's not an unattractive woman but the fact that I had sex with her blows my mind. I mean she raised me for a portion of my life. Maybe they didn't adopt me when I was a baby but she was still the adult in my life. I just feel disgusted by her touching me in the way she is.
“Listen I'm sorry to ask you for this...” I started off. I want to get this over with as quickly as possible.
“We used to fuck everywhere,” April tells me, “As soon as Darryl would leave we'd sneak into his office. You'd put me over the table. You'd fuck the shit out of me. You'd nut all inside of me. You know Darryl and I adopted you guys because we thought I couldn't have kids of my own. Then I got pregnant by you.”
I'm afraid about what she's going to tell me next.
“Relax. I got rid of it,” April explains, “I regret it though. Worst regret in the world. This girl you got pregnant. She's going to regret giving up that baby. It's tough on a woman sometimes. She may not agree to it.”
“So you're not going to help me?” I ask.
April laughs, “I didn't say that. I'd do anything for you James. You hear me? Anything...”
She reaches over at that moment and hands me an envelope with money in it. Then she reaches over and kisses me on my forehead. I open the envelope and see how much money she gave me. At that moment I realize that this shit really is real. This woman really is crazy.
It's Saturday and the party is starting. My father doesn't have a clue as to what is about to take place. Luckily, Yuri, Houston and Rami decorated the house. When I come downstairs I see that people are starting to arrive. It's the moment of truth and I'm nervous as I'm standing there.
As we gather in the kitchen Houston doesn't even make eye contact with me.
“Did you get the money?” Yuri asks.
It's what's on everyone's mind. Rami is standing there. He looks worried more than anything.
“How much?” Yuri asks.
“She wrote Ashley a check for 100 thousand dollars...”
Everyone's eyes get open at that moment. Houston just stares in shock. Yuri starts to jump up and down. Rami's reaction has a lag to it but within seconds he reaches over and hugs me! It's at that moment I realize that Rami could care less about the fact that I fucked Ashley. He was being awkward because he was worried about this being his kid.
“Oh my god yes! Oh my fucking god!” Rami says at that moment, “This is great. This is fucking GREAT! How the hell did you get that out of her?”
“I didn't even ask for a specific amount,” I say.
Rami is excited but I'm nervous. I'm beyond nervous. What kind of woman just pulls out all this money over a teenage pregnancy? The more I think about it the crazier April seems to be. The thing is she did it with a completely straight face too.
Rami lifts up a bottle, “Let's toast to this shit. NO baby mama's! Give this bitch her money and get this bitch out of our hair.”
By the time the glass goes down it's clear we are celebrating.
More and more people show up to the house and by the time it gets night time the party is packed. I look around at everyone. Yuri definitely knows how to throw a party. It goes from 0 to 100 real quick. He has his homie being the DJ. There are girls walking around in bikinis.
“The pool was drained. Make sure no one goes out back,” Yuri is stating as he walks by, “Hey Riley...run to the store get 6 more boxes of henny. This is a celebration!”
As the music plays I'm sitting on the side of the wall. I'm watching Houston dancing with some chick in the middle of the dance floor. There are a couple of girls just around.
Before I know it I see Tanya walk in the house. She's with Shayla. It doesn't take long for her to spot me and it doesn't take long for me to realize that I completely forgot to break up with her with all the pregnancy drama going on. Even with me ignoring her throughout the week it doesn't stop her from walking over to me and beginning to talk to me.
“I miss you hunny...” she says, “You still love me?”
I sigh a little bit, “Look Tanya you mind going to help unload some beers in the fridge? I think Yuri just got a few boxes that are at room temp.”
“Sure baby. I'll do whatever you need.”
The party is crowded and truth be told I am more interested in other things but her. I'm interested in Ashley showing up accepting this money and agreeing to an abortion. I'm interested in Zion showing up and spending some time with me. That's where my mind is.
As soon as Tanya walks away, I feel free but then I realize Shayla is walking over to me.
“We should go to your room.”
“You know...do that thing we like to do when Tanya is around.”
I sigh. I forgot that I was having sex with her too at one point. She reaches down and grabs my dick squeezing it. It's trifling really especially giving that she was best friends with my 'supposed' girlfriend.
“Um...my room is a mess.”
“Then let's go out back.”
She's pushy. She's pushy as fuck. She really wants to have sex with me.
Luckily Yuri walks over at that moment, “Pools area is off limits. No water. As thirsty as you're being Shayla you probably drank it all.”
Shayla gives Yuri a hard look and turns and leaves, “Ew. Yuri...you're drunk as fuck.”
“And you're a whore. So we're even.”
“Thanks,” I tell him, “I owe you one.”
It's clear Yuri is really drunk. A lot of people are. I should be drunk too but I'm too worried about what's going on.
“You do. I actually had a crush on that girl for the longest time and you knew that. But you ended up getting her before I did I guess.”
I shake my head, “Damn man. Yo...I was a dickhead. I honestly apologize about this...”
“Relax. It's ok. Well that is at least. The other thing is what you should be worried about. You know. The pregnant hoe thing. Ashley's here.”
“Are you serious?”
“Hell yeah I'm serious...” he says, “Rami is talking to her upstairs. Don't let anyone up there.”
“You ok man. You should be celebrating. In a few minute Ashley is going to agree to the money and you won't have to worry about raising some brat at 18.”
“True. I'm just...”
“C`mon. Let's talk.”
Yuri takes me out back at that moment. It's the only place in the house that isn't swarming with people. He's locked the back door to keep people away from the pool. The pool is huge but it's a little dirty and there's no water in it. It would have been nice to have a pool for the party but I think Rami just never got to cleaning it out. I remember hearing Darryl scream at him about it a few times but it always went on deaf ears.
We're in private and I'm just looking around confused.
“Talk to me. I know I'm drunk but...I want to know what's wrong,” he tells me.
“Listen. Life man. I'm just changed after the accident.”
“You mean the gay thing right?”
“Yeah. All these girls in my life. The detective telling me someone was trying to kill me.”
Yuri raises his eyebrow, “Wait roll that tape back. What?”
“Yeah. He said that the accident wasn't an accident. Someone fucked with my car intentionally. Someone tried to kill me.”
“Fuck...” Yuri says, “Who the fuck would want to do that?”
I shrug, “That's what I'm trying to figure out.”
Yuri shrugs, “You know I got you right. Anything you need. You know that. As long as your big brother is here, you are good. Everything except ass, I can't give you no ass...”
“You're drunk ass. I don't want it no way...”
Yuri laughs and hugs me.
Then he says the strangest thing, “I can give you dick though...”
I'm shocked as I pull away from him.
“Wait what the hell did you just say to me?” I ask him.
Yuri laughs at that moment, “I'm just joking man. I'm drunk. I'm just fucking with you. You know...”
There is an awkward silence at that moment.
That's when I realize Yuri is looking at me, “Unless I'm not.”
I'm beyond confused at this point, “Yuri what are you saying to me?”
Yuri shrugs, “I'm saying that everyone has a little...curiosity in them. You know...what it might be like. I can't lie and say I haven't thought about it. I saw you staring at me in the showers dude. I liked that shit. I wanted to do this...”
I gasp a little when Yuri comes close to me and starts kissing me. He's drunk and his breath smells like gin but for some reason it's still sexy. I find him squeezing my ass at that moment and pushing me up against a wall. After a few seconds of hard kissing he stops.
“Where is this coming from?”
“We should just fuck...” Yuri explains, “One time and see if we like it...”
My dick is hard as a brick right now. Yuri is looking at me with those slanted eyes. He has on some jean shorts but I see his dick print in the jean shorts. He squints his already slanted eyes even further and pulls me in. He grabs my hands in a drunken motion and puts it on his dick. He moves it up and down against the dick.
“Yuri...you're drunk. I'm not trying to take advantage of you.”
“I want you to take advantage of me. What don’t you like dick? Do you want this? Is this what you want?”
At that moment Yuri grabs my hands and puts it on his ass. I can tell this is the first time he probably has been intimate with a boy because he doesn't understand the concept of what versatile really is. He's guiding me to squeeze his ass and he leans over to kiss me more. His tongue goes down my throat. He leans me back and starts kissing me on my neck.
Suddenly the door opens!
“Sorry---someone told me you were out here. I wasn't trying to disturb...”
“Fuck...fuck fuck fuck,” Yuri is saying.
Yuri's reaction is right. Zion goes back into the house. I can tell he looks a little upset even though he doesn't show it. I don't blame him. Zion is headed towards the door clearly leaving. I'm at his back and Yuri is at mine.
Zion turns around, “What?”
Yuri is standing right there, “You didn't see what you thought you saw. We were just...fucking around. I mean...joking around...”
Yuri is drunk. He isn't even a good liar. Zion turns to me seeing that he's clearly drunk.
“You saw what you saw,” I tell Zion confirming it.
Zion takes a deep breath, “So you're...”
Yuri shakes his head, “Of course not. Don't joke about shit like that rookie...”
“Yuri you aren't helping can I have a second?” I ask him.
Suddenly I see someone storm pass. It's Ashley. My eyes follow her completely. I turn around and Zion is no where in sight. He's gone and I feel like shit. Why the fuck would I kiss Yuri when I invited Zion to the party? I just feel stupid. I mean I'm single...well kind of if you don't count Tanya. But still...I actually liked Zion. I actually wanted to get to know him. I had a fucking crush on him. The boy I had a crush on saw me kissing someone else. That's not a good look!
Ashley runs out the opposite way from where I came from. Tears are in her eyes.
It a matter of seconds Rami is behind her.
“We have a problem...” Rami tells Yuri and I.
“What the fuck is going on?” I ask.
“She won't do it,” Rami explains, “She won't take the money.”'
Fuck. This was the worst case scenario.
“We need to talk to her. We need to convince her...”
“Follow her and don't let her leave,” I tell them.
“What about you?” Yuri asks.
“I have to deal with something...”
Yuri grabs my hand, “You can't be serious...”
I shake him off me. He knows what I am talking about. I'm going to run after Zion. That is the only thing I can think to do at this point. I find myself doing that too. I run after Zion leaving out of the front door.
I let them go chase Ashley and then I go out to find Zion.
The street is completely except for a group of people drinking out front. The party is getting a little crazy. It's only a matter of time before they shut it down. The front lawn is littered with beer bottles and cans and a lot of other shit.
I look at my phone and call Zion a few times. He's not picking up.
“There you are...” a voice says.
I turn to see Tanya.
“Great...” I say rolling my eyes.
I can't even hold it back anymore. I want Zion but instead I got her. She's super annoying as she leans over and attempts to hug me.
“Listen I know things have been bad with us since your accident.”
“Bad? Things have been NON-EXISTENT with us since my accident,” I tell her, “Listen. I don't want to break this to you like this but I have to. It's over Tanya. I don't want to be with you.”
Tanya looks at me as though she is really surprised. That is the weird part. She really thinks that I wanted to be with her after continually ignoring her calls. I barely talked to her and she really thinks that I want to be with her. I just look at her at expression change and I'm in shock that she is so naive.
“It's someone else isn't it?” she asks me.
“Yes. I'm interested in someone else.”
Tears. This girl is truly crying for me. It blows my fucking mind.
“It's Shayla isn't it?”
Luckily Yuri walks out.
“Thank you for saving me from this chick,” I tell him.
“James. James...something's happened...”
“I think you should come see for yourself...”
My heart drops in my throat. I follow Yuri through the house. By the look of people's faces I can tell something has happened. Some people are crying. Some people are on the phone. What the fuck is going on. The majority of people have accumulated to the back of the house.
As I get to the back of the house I see it.
I see a body at the bottom of an empty pool. I don't know who it is but there's blood everywhere. There is blood all over the pool. The person isn't moving. No one's descended into the pool to see if the person was really dead. They are just crying. Someone is screaming. To my right I see Rami standing there.
“We just came out. I swear,” he says, “We just came out and saw her like that...”
He's in a state of shock. No one is helping the person at the bottom of the pool. I get up and go. I'm running. I'm running as fast as I can.
And when I get to the bottom of the pool I realize the person is dead.
And the person is Ashley.
To read the next chapter go to www.crushedcrown.com