A FEW CASUALTIES SO WHAT

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Chapter 17

Both windows in the living room were cracked open to help combat the breath from hell. It was

late in the afternoon and White was still in his room. Drinking forty ounces of malt liquor and

hitting the jive sticks could make you sleep like the dead. Krasko put on some coffee hoping

it would act like a Pied Piper bringing White out of his deep sleep. It worked, a creaking door

was followed by a long yawn and White made a beeline to the kitchen.

Krasko grabbed some Febreeze and spayed the room. He had on a jacket to fight off the

chill from the cracked windows. White entered the living room with his steaming cup of

coffee. He sniffed then glared at Krasko.

“You farted?” asked White.

“Hell no, motherfucker!” Krasko returned the glare. Was this fool’s nose blind to his own

breath? Even if he farted, it would smell better than that breath.

White sipped his coffee the displayed a decayed toothy smile when he saw the bag.

“It came.” He sat down in front of the bag putting his coffee on the table and opened the bag.

Wrapped money fell out. Krasko acted like a kid on Christmas day.

“What the hell? You knew about this?” asked Krasko.

White ignored Krasko. He was aware that his nonchalant act irritated his probono partner. It

was his way of letting Krasko know who’s in charge. He had the cell and spoke to the man; he

had the keys to the S-10 and he had the power to come and go as he pleases where-as Krasko

had a reminder of being in prison with-out the bars. An insect came to White’s mind, not a fly

but the worst insect he ever saw during the summer time of his youth living in Rock Hill. This

particular insect he considered dumb as hell. It’s attraction to pig shit made it real dumb because

after all the creature like fly seemed to need shit. On those hot, sweaty I can’t get comfortable

summers when the fans blew out hot humid air making it worse, you place the fan in the window

at night hoping to attract cool air to no avail. A Mosquito disturbing your sleep with their

indescribable sound in your ear letting you know they wanted to take a bite out of your ass

which they eventually did, but the Mosquito was not dumb, it attack you at night like a vampire

desiring you blood. In fact White sort of admired the the insect for it’s vampire ways and ninja tactics

attacking it’s potential victims at night while they are asleep, but most importantly it wanted nothing to

do with shit. Yeah, summer nights were like hell in the dark. He remembered as a boy in school the

teacher showed a film about the cruelty of-the desert. The narrator said that during the day, the desert

would roast you to a crisp, but at night freeze your ass off, the narrator didn’t say that in so many

words, but you get the picture. Apparently, the man never visited Rock Hill in the summer because it

was hot as hell during the night as it was during the day. In any case what insect bothered him more

than the fly and went to shit and your eye like a magnet was not the Mosquito. What White hated this

insect mainly for was that it wanted to get inside your eye and why the insect wanted to get inside the

human eye was a mystery to him. To White, that was what made it so dumb (beside wanting shit), even

though some people have beautiful clear eyes that make you stare and admire it, it has fluid to keep it

moist and what that insect don’t realize once inside the eye it will irritate it for the moment, but the

dumb ass will realize too late that it can’t swim and will drown and eventually be removed by a twisted

rolled up tissue. He saw Krasko as a Gnat.

Those uncomfortable irritating summer days were gone thanks to the Great Meteor turning Rock

Hill into it’s name-sake.

“Easy.” White gathered the money.” The man was upset that the job didn’t get done. So

I convinced him that we need more Benjamin’s to hire better help.”

“What’re you talkin’ about? The kids are dead.”

White shook his head. “You dumb ass cracka.”

Krasko glared. He was tempted to drop the N-bomb, but knew blacks were more sensitive

than whites when it came to racial slurs.

“Did you really think it would be that easy?” White shook his head. “Naw … there’s still

work to be done and whether you like it or not we done shit and stepped in it.”

“Time to be straight with me, if this ain’t a pay off then what the fuck is this?” asked Krasko.

White took a sip of coffee and swallowed hard. “We got two strikes.”

Krasko strode around the room. “I know we from different sides of the tracks … speaking

slang what not, but I’m in the dark.”

“He wants us to take out Pone.”

“What the fuck? Chubby Pone. Thought we were suppose to do in a couple of kids and

split. What’s this shit?”

“Turns out that was just the appetizer.”

“If that was the appetizer then I doubt if I can swallow the main course!”

White pull out a jive stick and lit it. “You need to chill,”

“You telling me to calm down and you the one going steady with Mary Jane.”

“Want One?”

Krasko shook his head. “Need to keep a clear head. Didn’t figure this shit.”

“We’re just keys on the piano,” said White releasing a slow puff from his nostrils.

“Yeah, I get it I’m white, and your ass is black, and I’m tired of being played on,

but Chubby Pone ain’t no joke. There’s a reason why they call him leave ’im alone Pone.”

White nodded and thanks to the marijuana he was as high as a kite. “He put down

two of my family members.”

Krasko marched over to White. “You got your family involved. Are you crazy?”

White reached in his pocket tossing the cell to Krasko.

“What the hell am I supposed to do?” asked Krasko

“Batter up.”

“I’d should have stayed in the bucket.”

White took a long drag from the jive stick. “Ain’t no going back to prison. You wanna

get in good with the man, you step to the plate and hit a home run.”

“I ain’t involving my family.”

“This ain’t no monkey see, monkey do.”

Krasko stared at the bag. “Look at all that money,”

“Way ahead of you. If yo man fucks up then yeah split the loot and get out of dodge.”

“Now you talkin’, agitate the gravel,” said Krasko.

White frowned. “Speak fucking English.”

“Take the money and run.”

White nodded. “Only if yo boy or whoever you get fails.”

“I’ll get on it.” Krasko stared at the money. “How much is that?”

“Don’t know. The man must be desperate and being desperate makes you stupid.”

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