Thursday, September 18, 2014

Othello The Remix in Cook County Jail (Q Brothers)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

The Rematch. January 31, 1993

Magic and my favorite sports memory of all time would occur tonight and it lasted less than a second. Madison had been on a roll ever since that first loss.

When the day finally arrives we are 7-1 and the both major dailies have now ranked us as the number “two” team in the state behind the Cape Charles Colonials. The court would contain a half dozen scholarship players, and it was classic #1, #2 state rankings. It was the type of high school game where the Big Guy would have to ask new faces hanging anywhere around our practice if they were from Cape Charles. The type of high school game that anyone connected to basketball in the state of MA talked about. We’d sell out in minutes and turn hundreds away. The Barbershops were buzzing, the school was electric and everyone was talking about our latest rivalry with the town next store. It was a town where the Big Guy’s first coaching loss occurred as a JV coach almost twenty years prior. He’d been 21-0 up until that point. And he famously once said, “And I didn’t drive through the town of Belmont for a year, I took the long way into the city.” He’d lament this fact post year two thousand reflecting how coaches tend to calm down over the year. The fight never recedes he’d say, it was just with age came some perspective. And to top it all off it was his birthday and his sister had passed away a couple days before. He was 12-0 in his birthday. I loved that stat.

It was Tuesday night, the day had finally arrived league titles you see where our birthright. And a victory tonight would even us up in that journey of such a pursuit. Forget the fact their back up center would play at Duke on scholarship, Madison had won twelve of the last fifteen league titles. And before that three D1 state titles. This was extremely personal. Usually in the mornings I’d throw on some choice New Edition stuff and proceed to have a massive concert by myself dancing wildly in the nude using my hairbrush as my microphone. I stare in the mirror and marvel at the manner in which I move my body relative to the beats. I spin, jump, gasp, throw my head up and fall dramatically to my knees. After a good Mr. Telephone Man rendering I usually require another shower. Thursday morning I was so focused on the impending game Friday that I overlooked my usual dance regiment and simply let my radio play. The station had been left on the oldies due to my mothers daily cleaning. This also taught me nothing. I never picked up for myself once. I loved the oldies because of her, so I let it ride, today was a big day and I felt captured my mood. I hear a piano roll and a dope bass beat. It’s wonderful My eyebrows rise. Finally I hear a very young but brilliant voice echo in over the rhythm. I think I might have heard this song before? I’m getting really excited I know that, I know that, what’s that voice?A moment of clarity, its Michael Jackson its the Jackson Five. I need to hear ABC.

I’m possessed and take a calculated risk, page Enrico and he meets up and agrees to take me to the mall to buy a tape as long as I buy him one which meant we needed a credit card thus begun our first true felony. It made us agree to get another credit card. ”That was for the birds.” I say after coughing some cheese It was a great day to be in school, it’s the only school day I can remember in my whole time there that I didn’t want to end. Every minute, I loved it, their was a tremendous buzz, especially after how close we came last year. And the game wasn’t even until tomorrow.

Before practice I ask Rashad permission if I can change the song we ran out to. The song that you ran out to in front of a rowdy and packed gym is crucial like New Editions love. Up until this point we have been unveiling ourselves to Cypress Hills how I just kill a man. Which was dope but… I played ‘I want You Back’ and everyone thought it was the greatest idea since jumbo laces. The day went by fast, furious, practice however hard went by even faster. The Big Guy isn’t a new era coach that believes in resting his players on the eve before a game. No, no nonsense this is a guy that works his players hardest on the day before a game or playing his seniors on seniors night. He didn’t believe in it. he’d always say, “If a senior wants playing time that’s not getting it bust a gut in practice, then I’ll say whoa, he’s going to play.” I don’t feel it though. I’m more jacked than thirty broken huge windows could ever make me, well. I’m basically just happy that the team understands that we have to run out to the Jackson Five.

The next day in school went by even quicker, shirt and tie, I was in heaven. This was what I ran all those suicides for. On Game-day school feels more like a press conference than another day in public education. It seems that teachers are even proud of us. Today I’m dapper like the rest of the team in traditional pressed khakis, white deeply starched collar shirts and for me a light blue Perry Ellis tie that I just purchased on a stolen credy yesterday. I’d hide it once again in my beanbag, she’d never check there twice.

You need a new tie for games like these. Per the usual custom the girls will play before us. The way it should be. Walking into ACE, and even though I had been in ACE all year my heart slumped walking in, this was serious business plus we’d learn the Big Guy’s sister had passed away earlier in the afternoon. I’d never heard him mention his own family once in all my years around him. Tonight was a classic number #1 vs. #2 in the state regular season match up. The Big Guy couldn’t even remember the last time Madison hosted an inter league #1 vs. #2 state ranked regular season contest but was fairly certain it had happened before, he would know.

Today in the ACE program we ordered our usual breakfast of a dozen doughnuts and any specialty items on request. I always go with the egg, bacon and cheese on a croissant. Those things get it done.

Back in the day I would order two sometimes three of them a whack with two strawberry milks. In retrospect the very worst thing about me back then was probably my eating habits. The mood in the ACE program that morning was casually reserved. I was content to be quiet. I loved not only Coach Farias and Sullivan but also the entire ACE program at that point any and everything to do with it. People were scared of the ACE program, it was great ‘Dream these fools can’t hang with you. Your fucking quicker, simply have more talent. You’re not even white!’ These are my thoughts and remarkably I felt better.

Muffin picked me up after-school. We shoot back to her house. I’m reminded yet again of how much I love this girl. The stars have aligned for me, I must pray to Jesus not to be a Jerk. A backrub, kiss and I’m out.

I arrived to the gym about two and a half-hours early. It was already a mess. I retreated deep into the Blue Room with my focused varsity brethen. By the time the ball was inbounded for the start of the girls second half the gym was walled with a growing line to jam as many in as fire regulations allowed. In the locker room we sit silent. Trying to stay relaxed. I prop up and begin kissing those that will allow a kiss on the cheek and telling them that I love em. I thought this to be a good icebreaker. We look like a college team. Everything’s Gold yo like Pony Boy told Johnny to stay. As the end of the girl’s game draws nearer I stick my head out of the door that leads to the brief runway in which we run out to. It was chaos.

Holy shit I've never seen so many fucking people in one gym before in my entire life.

There were delays. Word then comes through the wire that the fire department had shut the doors turning a huge mob of fans away. The gym is loud. It’s snowing hard outside. Chants between the two sides have already begun in a violent swing. This is high school basketball. It’s one hundred degree’s in that gym. I instantly shut the door and turn white. Right then our leader Rashad whom at this point is more of an aged father presiding over his cubs grabs me with his enormous and chiseled arms. He gives me a hug. I want to cry but its game time. “You worked hard to get here. Let’s fucking do this tonight son. Hey look at me. You’re going to help us win this shit tonight. You got it?” “Really? Nah, yeah, OK, no fucking shit.” I smile This terse speech invigorates the passion slowly stewing in my heart. Such small encouragement from someone that you’ve been trying to get the attention of since day one is enough to make me turn brass knuckled and say no way not here. Rashad Wilson, a true captain. They can’t play with me Rashad simply smiles and taps me on the butt. I have now been prepared. Right when ADD boy is about to burst the stupid girl’s game goes into double overtime, ah!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Big Guy takes us out of the locker room and into the massive, and police protected secluded field house to cool off. Nobody speaks a word, not even a tick cause he was in the stands now leading chants. Back in the field house, this close to tip off, all the hoopla, which the BG could get behind to a point was sealed off. It was just us, the team like everyday, you could only hear the squeak of our clean gym sneakers against the field houses mopped floors. Finally two police officers escort our two assistants into the gym. There’s a further delay. The gym is overflowing. To further comply with fire regulations a couple of hundred fans must exit before tip off. Finally after another twenty minutes of waiting Coach Brinklow storms back and says, “Coach, they’re ready for us.” And in his Baritone immediate retort, “let’s go.”

We bring it in like a family that has nothing but what we’re holding. The Big Guy quickly serenades us with his usual pre-game prayer and with that we make our way towards the chilly hall. There wasn’t much to say. If we weren’t up for this we’d already lost. This was the dead of January, and a public school. We form a fire line with Rashad in front. Standing on my tip toes, I can see the gym, can feel the electricity everyone is jumping. Finally the technician says that the music is ready, he gives Coach Brinklow the thumbs up and we burst from out of our locker room. The sound technician gives me wink, he’s also a custodian at the school that I sell football cards too, yes! Jackson 5, I want you back. I hear the stroll of the piano as we enter our enchanted gymnasium to a deafening volume. As I fire out of the tunnel and on to the court I look up overwhelmed. The build of the bass the sounds of the Jackson Five electrify an already synergistic, stuffed student body. Chants begin right off the bat. I feel like I have finally arrived. My first scan of the gym my first step out of our tunnel for a split second I saw something that would crystallize this game for the rest of my life. We looked up and saw students outside on the roof looking through the gyms few caged windows. Bursting out of the huddle I peer up through the gyms foggy caged window. In the snow, friends of Parkers this was awesome. Dozens of heads outside as snow fell, number #1 vs. number #2.

After a lap we burst into our tap drill. Rashad our leader and captain throws the ball up high off the glass and we each in accordance spring high and simply tap the basketball against the side of the backboard for the next cat to tap. I don’t think my hyper body has ever jumped so high in my life

The electricity, the metaphors and general hatred propels me high above the rim. I could now touch the rim and next year would be able to jump off two feet and grab the rim with two hands, which incidentally was my greatest athletic accomplishment. The final tip goes to our center Stretch who is supposed to jam it home. However, in Massachusetts’s high school basketball dunking in the lay-up lines is levied with a technical foul. Stretch grabs the ball high above the cylinder and drops it through the bucket, smooth. We break into a dynamic set of lay up lines. This is our routine. Once ABC comes on the crowd again roars its approval. It was almost time to play. The gym seemed so small due to the over flow of people.

As we jump chest to chest and bring it in I look around the gymnasium and spot every coach that I’ve ever known from mad old school camps. I see college coaches everywhere, writers and former greats. Most of the crowd serves as a who’s who in Boston public school basketball. I’m nervous

It felt like an incubator as an already steamy by nature MHS court sweats. It feels more like a Hollywood sound stage where they’re purposely trying to create a scene as legendary as humanly possible, for this level. The bodies on the floor were so big. It kinda feels like a division one-college game being played on a scrony high school court. The blue and gold banners are sparkling ever so bright throughout the gym. It felt like the Boston Garden and reminds us all exactly who the fuck we are. The horn sounds. And now my favorite part bringing it in, we can’t hear ourselves think much less the Big Guy. The starting 5 is announced and Santo is so pumped he gets us all jacked, watching the student section feed off his freedom.

“My nigga.” Spec says to me as we usually try and sit next to each other on the bench. The whole first half we dominate the number one ranked Belmont High school team who was clearly off balance. They had yet to find an answer for Rashad or our ferocious defensive legacy, home court advantage. Even though we lead at half by a point it’s still a battle and far from over. The Big Guy gives us an inspiring half time speech. We could be a great team, “why not us?”

The second half, CC has stormed back and has taken the lead. Rashad kept piling it on but we needed more. Suddenly now down by four, at the most crucial juncture of the season the Big Guy substituted an entire Young Gun lineup. Magic and I are now the backcourt checking in for Rashad and Kevin. And once Wellsy checked in, Santo and Stretch were on the floor and we’re all YG. What it would look like next year.

This is our chance to show everyone

I hustled over 2 Magic forwarding a "denk" subtle head butt the stuff of legneds of behavior nuts our confidence breeds, “let’s do this.” I say. I’m sure our mothers were all holding hands. Right away we go into Stretch who hits a turn around lefty jumper. Madison fans leap up and down fanatically. We fly right into our fabled gold press and within two-seconds I knock the ball loose from their two guard. I control possession flick a pass over to Magic who without thought fires the rock over to Wellsy who hits Santo cutting to the hoop for a deuce. Mad cohesion means the game is suddenly all tied up. Cape Charles calls for a timeout. There are only six minutes left. We did our job in a huge situation.

The Big Guy huddles us up as we’re excited beyond cloud nine. The home crowd can smell blood. The Big Guy calms and quickly checks Kevin and Rashad back in for me and Mike. “Nice jobs guy” He says as we proudly dit back. on the bench only to stand up, “Let’s go fellas! Gut check fellas!” The swollen crowd which had not sat the entire time was again reaching peak volumes. Before the ball was again in bounded the Big Guy made another substitution, and in a surprising move inserted Darren for Santo. Darren was a senior and become our dawg, he came from Burlington a year after they split the Middlesex league crown with Madison in 90-0901 when we were freshmen. Darren’s family moved to Lexington, and he came hyped. Coach Farias had gone with Santo over Darren in his senior year, Darren’s dad lived right behind me, all YG loved him. Terrance and I loved to drink 40’s with him.

Big Macs alcoholism has accelerated through the season due mainly I believe to his lack of playing time on such a tight squad. But tonight with six minutes left tie game in the biggest game ever The Big Guy has put him in, pressure. We came back out there were no less than ten scholarships to be had on the floor and benches everyone was a college player and on that night being on that floor to me meant I’d made it, fuckers. Cape Charles MVP candidate Mark Mulvey brings the ball up court and goes immediately inside to another all scholastic Ace Palmer. He turns, fakes and springs over Stretch for a two-point bank. The place goes nuts. Rashad brings the ball up he is quickly double-teamed and kicks the ball into the corner to Daren our stocky six three skilled forward. Darren turns without a man on him and softly drops in a ten-footer, swish. The joint explodes and we go right into our fabled press. Belmont comes down again and their star guard hits some big nerd in the corner who buries a twenty-footer. Nothing but net. It’s back and forth and it’s a great fucking game. Everyone in the house is on their feet sweating and screaming at the top of their lungs. Police surround the borders of the court’s end lines. They’re prepared for a riot. Again Rashad brings the ball up and this time sees an immediate triple. Again he snaps a rocket to Big Mac in the corner and Daren turns with no one on him and just buries yet another pressure cooking twenty-footer. It’s obvious he’s feeling it. We’re still tied and there are only three minutes left. The much lauded Cape Charles calls a timeout.

As our boys make there way to the huddle I’m seated at the end of the bench talking to the little ball boys about the general coolness of 2-Pac Shakur. The ball boys are the best, I love this program I constantly urge them to start a lemonade stand over the summer.

The Big Guy storms over in my direction, grabs me by the tang at the top and says “Cha.” I can’t hear him, “Chalie!!” I spring like a lightning rod over to the scorer’s table for Kevin. Another timeout is taking. In the huddle this thug is ready to boil. We bring it “Madison Defense.” Like that we’re back on the floor all tied up number one vs. number two. There are three minutes left to play. This right here is what it’s all about. Santo skies for the rebound and kicks it out to Rashad who again faces an immediate triple team lost the ball. Belmont’s Mulvey regains control of the rock and begins to setup. But before anyone knows what’s going on he zips a no look rocket between what seems like a hundred guys right under the rim to their star center Ace Palmer. Ace had a clear path for the first dunk of the game, this would be a killer as Stretch scrambles back to recover. Ace goes way up for the gorilla dunk, and in the middle of flight his body gets knotted up in some weird fashion causing him to brick a sure slam-dunk high off the rim game still tied! The crowd gasps and Stretch, like that first rebound I saw him destroy in the field house, springs high above everyone and smacks the ball against his palms for assurance. Wellsy cuts behind him and quickly lifts the ball forward to Rashad who bulls his way inside about four defenders. Somehow he hooks a circus like shot high above the reach of the many outstretched defenders and the ball, like its supposed to do, swishes through the net in perfect rotation. And he was fouled. I have never heard a sound as loud as the sound that’s made after this bucket. Everyone is alive and Rashad (jaunting backwards on defense) is thumping his chest and pointing to the banners feeding the frenzied crowd a little more raucous jubilation.

As CC comes down their star guard kicks it to his two man and the ball is kicked right back to him for an open fifteen footer, he nails it. Santo quickly grabs the ball out of the net to inbound. I fly in front of him like I’m programmed to do and take the ball like a running back takes a handoff. Jetting up the floor I shove a pass off my chest to Rashad who instinctively hits Darren wide open in the corner, who catches, squares, hones, locks, releases and buries yet another jumper. The place goes liquid. We are up by two with way under a minute left to play holy shit. The gym was mass hysteria. My teachers, friends, Ma, therapists and all the towns’ police force watch intensely. Quickly in the name of time the ball is inbounded to their much-heralded point guard and I’m defending trying to slow his pace up floor. Before he gets the ball from the inbounder I slap the floor with both of my hands and let out a jungle like scream. Once he gets the ball I can feel the crowd on its tiptoes. It feels like Africa. It’s hot. I’m saying shit to this kid chest to chest. “Be careful with that cross?” He being a legitimate high school basketball star with a storied career, laughed. Just like that he’d heard enough and accelerated by me, I picked his cross with my left. I pushed him aside in a moment scooping “Rollie” up I went the other way for an uncontested two with a left handed lay up smacking the glass for poignancy. Timeout called game over.

I turned being on the student side of things and pointed high in the direction of YG and UNLV taking their place atop of the prized Madison student section. The section went bonkers our league Pos gives me the sign. I stand motionless smiling and shaking my head like I’m just too nasty to understand. Cameras were flashing. There was short change on the clock, the horn sounded Kevin checked in for me and the Big Guy smacks me on the ass as I go to the bench. I sit next to Mike and the first thing he says, “Dude we’re going to be number one in the state!” Goose Bumps The pick 2 B my signature move.

Soon the final horn sounded, the court was flooded as scholarship offers floated in the air. We like our peeps the year before us were now the number one team in the state. The papers a week later would confirm it. It was a special night. It was the Big Guys birthday, and tonight he remained undefeated on his birthday for his entire career. 10-0. He had also just lost his sister to cancer, it was the first time I saw him shed a tear remembering her in our post game prayer.

The Big Guy came in after the game and said that this game we gave the kind of effort that you can only ever find in Madison. That’s when we brought it in screaming and begun congratulating each other. Rashad finished with thirty-five points.

After the game we head to Papa Gino’s Pizza with a convoy representative of something torn from 1960’s and not the grimy recessive era of grunge, generation X, loss, sex, drugs and violence. The manager allowed Stretch to shoot five slabs of Dough from fifty feet across the restaurant into their oven scoring the players one free large pizza with each score.

After pizza I retire home 2 shower still shook to “show” in front of the brothers in the the same style public school shower I once pimped for “choke” to other delinquents for five bucks a head no pun intended while the other main streamed “normal” students whished away to Washington DC back in Junior high so many years ago. And as I looked over the yellow stained shower floor where she knelt I suddenly realized this wasn’t as fun for her. Waiting for Magic to come scoop me up for the impending party I was king in my kitchen and for that night everything was perfect. And that was sports for us in our house like so many before wrong or right that’s just the way it was. My sister had scored A’s and solid SAT’S and assured me what I was feeling was different. Once at the party I for the first time feel a new kind of respect. This is a sort of untouchable respect. Where everyone regardless of your past differences wants to be apart of it, and this is a microcosm. Party we all get bombed. The night ended in me clearing away everyone and busting an old school nasty ass windmill that pre-cursed a tightly rolled backspin. The place went nuts and after the game in the parking lot’s cold air people were calling me a legend although I still didn’t believe it or know what it means.

Breakfast: Two eggs over medium with toast and at this point coffee, OJ, water, 10K and of course Cranberry juice. The sports page of course is the only visible piece of print within my sight. I wish I drank coffee was all’s I could think crossing my legs like an astute business man turning the Globe’s handicapper friendly sports page to the screaming Madison headline and big letters, Wilson’s 35 knock off #1 CC taking hold of states top ranking. There was a picture of Rashad being “mobbed” by his teammates with his arms high in the air swarmed by us once we were back safely in our “gold” room. The only visible mug was of course Magic’s whose mouth was wide open. A euphoric shot displayed his braces “bands” which I know the dentist said wear as much as possible but games, really? “Fuck that dudes responsible.” “What do you mean sweety?” My mother on one happy morning reasoned. “Look guy’s got his rubber bands in.” “We’’ you should be wearing them more yourself if you ever want them off you complain enough about it.” “True but games, I don’t know freaken things de derailed my rap career.” “OK, let’s go we have to get you to ACE and see the Big Guy.” “I know I can’t wait.”

We continued to win, keeping our #1 state ranking but already had a couple scares. The home scare in a game which we were heavy favorites, proved my seasons best performance. Although the circumstances under which it occurred were unfortunate. One probably affected the other. It was gambling related, and I didn’t get in trouble for anything, I wasn’t charged with anything but I was pinned in the middle of an enormous situation that had happened at the high school earlier in the day. It was such an ordeal, everyone pointed to me in the middle, which I was, and Mr. Robinson utilized the rarely used kill me button. He went right to Bob, and ACE on that one. I didn’t take bets during the season, but I had made a couple bets through some North End guys little Damon Schmidt responsible for the “you can’t hit twice on a card” rule freshmen year had been talking up. Damon never forgot that slight of card, he’d handicapped himself into a couple corners and was now my competition eroding market share.

Anyway I lost a couple hundred dollars or something like that, and Damon was using my lines on me, “Dude it’s cool, but I just saying, these guys our serious, they’ll come down here and kick your fucking ass, and I’ll be laughen kid.” “Yeah, Damon tell them to come here and see me, fucken pussy’s.” “These kids are North end kid, there no joke, this ain’t Madison Hills.” “whatever clowns. I ain’t payen you heard my bet wrong.” High school was constantly about issuing more and more threats everyone cowered at some point. It was a quick conversation, I didn’t believe Damon and or give a fuck really either. All until just an hour before the final bell, I get pulled out of class, “Dice there here, Dylan saw them pull up, three of them, bigger, older guys.” “OK, wurd, look, OK, OK, Page C, page Enrico, I’ll get Spec meet me on Crenshaw / G House I gotta find Black Knight. These dudes most be crazy coming to Madison for me on Damon’s shit.” On some level it was logical. The North End in the early 90’s, Prince street was the Italian mob’s Boston headquarters. And it had been for a hundred years. And just South down the street across from Broadway at the “triple O’s” local legend Whitey Bulger was knee deep in bringing them down playing both sides in his own motion picture. I figured they were from some grease ball section of the city just outside old north end, Revere, Winthrop both tougher places than Madison Hills, on paper but this was the big experiment Black had an axe in his locker, we had guns, drugs, medication and insanity on our side stemming from that new money, old money meets new money combination that rendered my fucks given squarely at zero. And I got people excited. I was down $1,000 a great sum of cash for a sixteen year old back in the winter of 1993. If I were them, I’d of done something anything else besides come to Madison Hills high school during school hours, dummies. “People don’t know what we have here.” The Big Guy

Within an hour I had thirty kids wound up, ready to push some freedom into an otherwise mundane Tuesday schedule of public schooling seemingly forgetting to remember, it was game day and I was now a more polished politically acceptable persona grandstanding as a back up two guard on the #1 ranked team in the state of Massachusetts.

I’d learned from the one unearthed employee Damon carried his goons were arriving at high noon, it was all so wild-west, “perfect, your good.” Agitating the gravel the lad coughed up the information on little more than a promise to forget I ever learned he was apart of the competition that had recently knifed into my monopoly.

And as we lay silently in the “cut,” waiting then gathering when a little past noon we spotted their cheesy cars that accompanied their own dysfunctional books and sucker looks. I relished the devilish drug like perk in my gums my ears movements and insanity’s choke hold on my then meager conscious. I looked at Black, check, “Yeah” and that was it. “I hate white people, lez go.” My trademark line yes I hated white people. It was a myopic, Sophomoric some said completely retarded thing to say but my brothers cracked up and love it, leave it or worse yet energize a fight against it, it was my instinct. And besides even if this was the “mob” and this was the “92 North end of Boston” and this was a “message” for a new “market” the gentry in the kings game of old money America than it should really be an easy grab, psssss.

I smiled at the Black Knight, apologized to Jesus and rolled out flooding our curvaceous student parking lot to meet these latest insurgents head on for a paper debt I never intended to pay rather squeeze my competition into realizing his balls might just be too small for this game. And “Black” with his ax led the charge knowing if things really got wired I had a “glock” stashed in Goldy’s I’d never use. “That’s him” The car parked the older “dudes” emerged as Damon’s tone and faith made me laugh. His brother would take his white genes and high SAT scores to Vegas and crumble into a gambling degenerate oh what a waste, wait his parents did get divorced, get the fuck out of my face with that shit.

I felt like a lion king, the strength behind me the adrenaline of this situation, the sun shining protecting our home turf led by Black Knight wielding an ax the contagion was palpable and it took less than a second for this powder keg to explode, a true brawl. The schools new security guard, Marge was in the middle. She pulled me out. And before police could come, or facts were leaked it was over as a dozen teachers arrived too late. And the vaunted “north end” goons were gone escaped to never come back. I of course was in class working the chains to make that a flight that never existed happen.

But Mr. Robinson clipboard and all didn’t like the smell or the sense he got from the whole thing. And as soon as I went up the BG exploded, “your in the middle of a fight?”

“What?” I had to go full denial, swear to god and dead people with my toes crossed that I had absolutely nothing to do with it. Mr. Robinson did admit he had no proof. The Big Guy said he’d withhold punishment as facts were gathered but gave a dire warning to me if I was in the middle I was done.