The slums were bad enough in the daylight- at night it was like walking into a death trap. Shootings, robberies, fights, drug use all occurred in broad daylight, I’m sure you can just imagine some of the shit I’ve seen when the sun went down.
There was a reason Tyler didn’t let anyone out here at night, except me and Scar.
He knew we could handle our own.
The real dangers were out here at night- no cops on patrol, gang colours everywhere, homeless people, drug addicts looking for their fix and not caring what they had to do to get it.
I saw my reflection in one of the glass windows we walked by and even now, sometimes it was hard to recognize myself.
How did I become this?
I was one of the most notorious on the streets of New York.
I was known as a murderer.
My unruly black hair was held back by a red bandana, the scar that started at my temple and ended at my jawline was staring back at me, reminding of what had happened. How I earned my stripes.
Scar walked beside me, wearing a red hat. “You ready?”
I nodded, my gun under my waistband feeling heavy. I carried two switchblades in either of my pockets, just in case I needed to use them.
There were a few strays that stopped to stare at us as we made our way to our regular spot. I recognized a couple of them.
Some Latin Kings were here tonight, watching us as we passed them.
I nodded at them and they acknowledged us. We weren’t exactly allies with the Latin King’s; but we both preferred each other over Crips.
Scar and I settled against the concrete wall, watching everyone around us.
It was like a melting pot of degenerates, the outcasts, the bad guys in society somehow coexisting around each other, which was weird as fuck.
One of our regulars, a crackhead whose name I didn’t know; came up to us first.
“Hey man, you got any?”
I nodded and he gave me a handful of twenty-dollar bills. As I counted them, he scratched at the open sores on his face.
I had no clue how some of these people came up with their money, but whatever could feed their addiction, I guess.
Scar slipped him a tiny baggie with the amount of crack he had paid for.
How fucking ironic was it that my own mother died from a drug overdose and here I was supplying junkies with the very thing that would kill them.
“Well, look what we have here.” A voice interrupted my thoughts and I looked to where two Crips were standing.
“Sorry, man. I don’t know you.” Scar said, shrugging.
I didn’t recognize them, but to be fair I’d been in prison for the last few years I didn’t remember a lot of Crips except for the OG’s, or the ones who were in jail with me.
They must have been new recruits, sent down here to see if they were cut out of this type of life. Judging by the way they came right up and confronted us, I’d say they were stupid as fuck.
The slums were neutral- everybody came out here. Latin Kings, Crips, Bloods, drug addicts, it was a melting pot of degenerates. It was common knowledge among the gangs that this was the one area of town where we could all push our drugs without consequence.
“This is neutral territory, you know that.” I said, my voice dangerously low in a warning. “I think it’s best if you boys run along before you get into some shit you can’t get out of.”
The kid grinned. “This won’t be neutral territory for long, the way we keep pushing down here. You’re Shane Voss, and the boys said to send a message: things have changed since you got locked up.”
“If your bitch-ass gang leader has somethin’ he needs to say, he can come find me. As of right now, this is neutral territory. You keep pushin’ your borders and hustlin’ in our territory though and I’ll kill all of you. No fuckin’ mercy.”
The two exchanged a glance. The bald mouthy one with tattoos swirled across his head didn’t seem to know when to shut up or was trying to hard to act the tough guy part.
“Did you know your bitch and your little sister got Brandon shot?”
Huh. That was news to me.
“Nah, but thanks for telling me man. I’ll be sure to tell them good job.”
Bald guy seemed to huff out in frustration as if his plan to shake me up and piss me off wasn’t working.
“Come on, man.” His friend said, pulling on his arm, “He’s right. Let’s head out.”
“You’d be smart to listen to your friend,” Scar chimed in, “You’re walking a dangerous line, boy.”
“If I wanted your opinion, I’d ask for it, old man.”
I almost laughed at Scar’s facial expression.
“But seriously kid,” I started when he pulled out a gun and aimed it right at my chest.
“Give us your money and the drugs. Brandon says this is our turf now.” He demanded.
“Fat fucking chance, man.”
“We told your girl that you guys had better keep a close eye on her or that her pretty face ain’t gonna be so pretty anymore.”
Instantly anger rushed through me.
Nobody threatened Nikki and got away with it.
“You never threaten my girlfriend, again. Do you understand me?” My voice was low.
The kid smirked. “You wanna know why she got that fucked up tattoo down her throat while you were locked up? I slit her throat. Almost killed her too, except she ran away on me.”
All I saw was rage. I knocked the gun out of his hand and it went rattling down the sidewalk. I picked him up with one hand and slammed him against the brick wall, landing a punch right into the middle of his nose with a satisfying crunch.
“You hurt her.”
“You pulled a knife on a girl.”
He tried to fight back but my anger was too strong and I ended up with my hand around his throat, squeezing.
“You tried to kill the love of my life and then brag to me about it,” I said, pulling one my switchblades out, “How did you think this was going to end?”
“You think that killing me is gonna help you? Then you’ll really be at war with us.”
“I can live with that.” I said, dragging the blade across his throat the same way he did to Nikki.
The blood started gushing out and his body slowly started to go limp.
His so called “friend” was long gone.
I left him slumped against the brick wall, making the letter “B” out of the blood onto his shirt. I wanted them to know who did it.
Those sick fucks tried to kill an underage girl and leave her to die just because of her association with me.
“I can’t believe that kid called me old.” Scar said, as we started walking back to the vehicle.
I laughed. “I mean, you’re easily a decade older than me so,”
Scar punched my shoulder. “Shut up, kid. Leave it to us back on our first nightshift together and you kill somebody.”
We decided to wrap up the night a bit earlier. We had sold quite a bit of what we had and a dead body would eventually draw attention there. It was best to make a clean exit, despite me being covered in blood.
The light was on in my bedroom when I pulled up to the house, and then the slight movement of a curtain and the light went off.
Well, clearly Nikki wasn’t sleeping.
I walked into my room, slipping out of my shirt and unbuckling my jeans.
She sat up in bed, leaning on her elbows, watching me undress.
“I thought you’d be asleep by now,” I said, over my shoulder.
She shook her head, her black hair falling in waves down past her shoulders. “Look Shane, about last night...”
Oh, so she wanted to have that conversation.
“You professed your undying love for me and then showed me exactly just how much you missed me. It ain’t rocket science, Nik.”
I ducked as she threw one of the pillows at my head.
“Undying love, really Shane? Don’t flatter yourself.” She snorted.
“Call it whatever you want Nick, you’re still in my bed.” I climbed in beside her.
“What took you so long tonight?”
“Had an incident, if you will.” I shrugged.
“Oh, who’d you kill?!”
“Is that what you think of me, really, Nik?” I laughed.
“Yes, Shane. When one earns the title of Hitman, that’s exactly what I think.”
“You’re not wrong.” I let my fingers splay against her pale skin.
“What happened?” She murmured as her fingers ran through my hair. No judgement in her voice.
“Crip pulled a gun on me, just to find out it was the same guy who slit your throat a few years ago.”
I felt her freeze and her hand went up to her throat, tracing the scar there that was now covered by black ink.
“You never told me they went after you because of me.” I said softly, “I would’ve done something sooner.”
“I didn’t think it’d be worth saying anything anyway.”
“Up until recently I was always the girl you left, the one you didn’t want anything to do with. You hurt me and I didn’t want you knowing that I had scars because of you.”
“Jesus Christ, Nik. You’re the love of my life, of course I’d make sure that guy never breathed again. Nobody hurts you.”
“Shane?” She murmured.
“I need you.”
Nikki never knew what it was like to be loved. Her mother didn’t want her, her father was long gone. She was one of the many of us that grew up without love. But maybe it was time for us to break that cycle.
“You need to be loved, is what you need.”
She was quiet as her fingers roamed over my body, down my stomach to where my boxers met my hip bones.
“Let me love you, Nikki.” I said as my lips found hers in the darkness.
Her fingers tangled into my hair as she pulled me closer, pushing herself against me. She was only wearing a black thong so I easily cupped her backside and she moaned against my ear.
Nikki let her one leg fall to the side as I moved to hover over her, never breaking our kiss as she grabbed my metal chain and pulled me closer.
She ran her hands down until she reached the edge of my boxers, sliding her hand beneath the fabric and my skin.
I sighed into her neck, biting down on her sensitive skin, leaving love bites as I made my way down to her collarbone and then to her breasts.
I let my tongue flick against her nipples, Nikki writhing underneath me, moaning and sighing my name.
She rolled her hips against me as I continued down past her stomach and her breathing hitched when I ran my tongue against her hipbone, pulling her panties down and kissing her.
Gasping, she gripped my hair as my tongue snaked out to rub against her clit and I used my hands to hold her hips down on the bed, picking up my pace as her cries got louder.
Her hips thrust upwards and I could feel that she was close. When I finally hit that spot inside of her I felt her legs go out from under me as she cried my name out.
I didn’t give a shit who heard us.
In one movement I was on top of her again, sliding into her and groaning. I pinned her arms down and I opened my mouth, letting her tongue play with mine.
“Fuck baby,” I murmured into her hair.
Soon enough, beads of sweat were starting to form on our bodies and I lifted her legs up so they were on my shoulders and I could go deeper.
“Shane...” Nikki whimpered and that’s what did it.
My movements became more rigid and my breathing harder before I froze over top of her, spilling my release into her and then collapsing beside her.
She reached over and ran her hand across my cheekbone, the one with the scar across it.
“You deserve to be loved too.”