Paid Dues (Novel – Part 1)

Below is a story that I had started at a young age. If you like it, give it a like/repost, and I will continue posting parts every so often for you to enjoy. It is called “Paid Dues” – a story about a young boy who grew up in a rough-to-live town, battling the struggles of taking care of his family, friends, and giving himself and those he loves a better way of living – but there’s one group in particular that seems out to stop him, because of what his deceased brother has done before him, and he must decide between the friends he holds dear, and his family.


The constant thud as my sneakers smashed against the cities pavement deafened me. I could hear little over the rhythmic thumping of my screaming heart as it ricocheted across my entire body. My shoulders and lungs ached as I panted, tearing across the familiar campus courtyard. Dim sounds of a police car’s siren grew nearer. The tall college buildings loomed over me, it’s scattered windows shining their light down as if exposing me, singling me out on the center stage. I ran steady around a corner of the college as I glanced behind me to see a policeman chasing me on foot; I picked up the pace as my legs cried out in protest. I vaguely made out the muffled voices of the various college students as they shuffled out of the way and I was hearing the policeman’s shouts as if he were miles away. As I tore around another corner, the grocery bags I had in my hand bounced off the walls, forcing me to do a tiny spin before taking off again at full speed. I wanted so badly to abandon the bags, drop it out of my hands, but it was the sole reason I’ve got this officer chasing me. I clutched it tightly and mustered the last of my strength, leaping and quickly sliding over the steel fence, dropping down off of the college’s property to the apartment buildings ahead. Ducking into an alleyway, I knelt down beside a lone dumpster. I clenched the rosary I always had slung around my neck while I held my breath for a few dozen silent prayers. I let out the biggest sigh of relief as footsteps thudded past. I closed my eyes, slumped to the ground, and laid on the cold pavement for what felt like hours to catch my breath.

“Oh good, just put them there on the counter,” my mom, a tall, brown haired, brown eyed woman in a ragged, hand-me-down tee and slacks ushered to an empty space on the otherwise cluttered counter.

“Jimmy, what’s any of this?” she muttered desperately, fishing around in the bags. “No bread, no milk, no Chondroi– Jimmy, your father needs that medicine, he’s in a lot–”

“I know, I forgot, I’ll get it tomorrow,” I cut her off, trying my best to avoid another useless bitch-nag from her. “Can’t you just use the shit I got?”

“I can’t use the shit you got, no, what am I supposed to do? Did you even read the list I gave you–” she continued as I rushed out of our small kitchen to the bathroom, quickly slamming the door behind me.

The faint lights flickered on as I flipped its switch. I was greeted by the familiar musty air of the small bathroom accompanied by a clutter of clothes, brushes, hair products and wet towels on the floors and counter. I found a grizzly- short-haired boy staring back at me through the mirror. I’ve got the brown hair and brown eyes to match my mothers’, though at the moment mine had tears forming in them. I heard my mother’s dulled voice in the kitchen still. Squeaking the dirty knob on our faucet on, I splashed my face with cold water, hoping that it would effectively cleanse my mind of my most recent memories leading up to the hour. Once more, I clutched my rosary with a wet hand, looking back at the grizzly-haired boy with resentment in his eyes. You should’ve just used the money your mother gave you, he said.

Slinging my over-sized jacket off of me, I thumped on to my bed, a single, one-person mattress that lay bare on a carpeted floor. I pushed off the various textbooks and papers of homework that was due weeks ago. I had stopped caring to clean the mess of my room – I wasn’t home half the time, and it always seemed to find itself messy no matter what anyway. For a while, I stared up at my ceiling and walls, examining the random posters I had put up over the years. Mostly bands I haven’t listened to for a long while and, of course, a photo of Jessica Alba in a two-piece. I had dark curtains pulled over my window, masking the room in black, with only a single ceiling lightbulb to illuminate the room. My white ceiling slanted into the brown paneling of my walls. Pulling my laptop up to my lap, I opened it with a small creak and began typing on it’s tattered keyboard.



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