The drugs, the drugs are what I did. But when I find myself at three in the morning standing outside a gas station, contemplating suicide, homicide, and armed robbery, now that’s the kicker. That’s the byproduct of being so close to the streets for so long.

You know it’s getting close to the end, when your clientele dwindles to only the most savage and hateful people. More often than not, when you forget to even sell the shit, and become your own best customer. Completely forgo showering and eating, and just stay strung out. That’s the problem with being the junky and the dealer.

I wasn’t always like that, you know. I was a kid once, too. I was the son of my mother. My mother, the angel, my mother, couldn’t bear to see me like this anymore, my mother, in all her motherly love, kicked me out of the house, leaving me to fend for myself. I stayed at the mission, until they said, I couldn’t stay there anymore. “Friends,” stopped letting me sleep on couches. So I sold my dick for a little while. You’re not gay, if you get your dick sucked for money, everybody knows that. Made me a little money, enough to buy some bulk and hustle.

Now, I am two days away from rehab, I just need to survive until then. It’s my 6th rehab, but who’s counting. That’s been my pattern for a few years, go to rehab, stay clean for 6 months, and shoot dope, again. After that big decision to use again, it’s over.

So, there I was in Johnny the junkie’s, car waiting, always waiting, mostly for people to show up. Of course, they are never on time, forget about being early. They are forever late, one thing I’ve learned, you just gotta wait.

After 45 minutes, of waiting. Shy showed up. Shy was his dealer name, nobody uses their real names. So, Shy showed up. He came leisurely walking to the back seat of the car. When we first spot him, to the time it takes him to hop in the back seat, is always the longest wait, as if, he is walking intentionally slow, to make us wait.

“What up niggas? Whatcha need?” Asked Shy, we weren’t black, but that’s how he talked.

“I need a bundle, (10 thumb nail size bags) baby.”

“That’s 2 bills.”

“Why so much, that’s double.”

“Remember that shit I had last time?”

“Yea it was good shit.”

“Forget about that shit. This shit right HER’ this shit’s the shit.”

I sighed, I handed him the money, all of my money, he pocketed it, handed me the bags, and left.

I gave Johnny the junkie, two bags, you know, for the ride. And we shot one bag each. The warm tingling feeling swept over my body. I felt right with the world again. We drove back to the suburbs.

I sold the rest of my shit, and inevitably, I got sick again. I had only $150, not even enough to reup. I was desperate. I knew what I needed to do. So, I grabbed a pocket knife, and went to the gas station. What kind of a man robs a gas station with a pocket knife?

I stood behind the gas station pacing around, feeling more and more like death. I smoked my last cigarette, and knew what needed to be done.

I pulled my hoody hood over my head, and walked in the store. Completely forgetting about rehab, you can’t be sick, you know.

~ fin ~

Patrick Thomas new to the crime fiction game, he has some stories published in out of the gutter under a different name. He enjoys sleep more than anything. You can find him wandering the streets of Winchester, VA. Look for for future work.