Today, I’m sharing an excerpt from PUSHED, a story that I plan to release next week.
It’s about a promising teen victimized by neighborhood bullies, on the streets of New York, and his battle to be a victim no more.
Sneak Peek below:
As he hit the second floor landing, Warren could hear E and the others down in the lobby.
“Shit!” he cursed his luck.
It looked like tonight would be the night after all.
The night he would die.
He stopped on the steps and listened to them for a moment.
E was talking about some girls he and a few other guys ran a train on the other day at his house. They were laughing and making a bunch of noise. E was in his early twenties and out of school, but everybody knew that he preyed on high school girls. For some reason,Warren couldn’t understand, the young girls were infatuated with E. Crystal once told him E even tried to mess with her a few times before they got together, but she said nothing ever happened.
Warren was ashamed to wonder if that was completely true now.
In order for this not to go down, he would have to get past everybody in the lobby and make it to the back door without them noticing it was him. If he walked fast enough and kept his head down, maybe he could do it.
He pulled his iPod out of one of the side pockets of his backpack. The ear buds were a tangled mess of white wires. He straightened them out, popped them into his ears, and pressed play. De-Lux, by Lush, blared into his ears. He was listening to it on the bus ride over to see Crystal, but he wasn’t in the mood for it now.
He hit next on the iPod and Ghetto Rock, by Mos Def, came on.
That would do.
He pulled the hood of his sweatshirt over his head and started down the last flight of stairs.
Mos Def spoke to him through his ear buds.
When Warren pushed through the staircase door, E and his boys were still in conversation. He turned right and headed straight for the back door. He kept his head down, but in his peripheral view, he thought he saw Ty eying him as he walked past.
Just a few more feet and he’d be out the back door. He was half expecting one of them to call his name. Who knows, maybe they did. He couldn’t really hear anything above the music’s baseline.
After another right turn, Warren was out the back door. The cold night air found its way under his hood and down his neck. Crystal was right, it was cold as hell. He turned up Van Siclen Avenue and heard the back door slam shut above the music. The B20 Bus Stop was just at the end of the block, across the street.
White flakes peppered his black uniform, and every breath he took left his mouth in puffs of vapor. The cold was biting, and his cheeks were already starting to go numb.
He thought he heard the back door slam shut a second time.
E and his boys were probably following him. Warren hoped they weren’t. He concentrated on Mos Def’s words while the heavy baseline pumped adrenaline through his veins. He was expecting to be hit or tackled any minute.
At the end of the block, he waited for a car to roll by before cutting a left across the street.
Warren made his way to the slanted pole holding a twisted sign for the B20 bus. He leaned back against the pole and chanced a backward glance.
E, Ty, and Marco were walking across the street towards him.
Shit! Okay, this is it! He took a deep breath and let it smoke from his mouth. Instincts told him to run, but he held his ground as they approached. If he ran today, they’d still be around tomorrow, and the next day, and every day after that.
He had to make a stand.
Warren pretended not to know they were coming.
What happens next, some will be able to relate to, others won’t, but either way, it’s a harrowing experience no one should have to endure.
It’s a shame that with all the adults and authority figures around, a lot of youths still feel helpless in the face of bullies. Helping hands are tied for various reasons and because of that, when pushed to a certain point, some youths needlessly endure it, hoping it will all soon pass like a bad dream, others take matters into their own hands to defend themselves, and then there are those who tragically commit suicide to get away from it all completely.
In the case of this story, concerning Warren, some say revenge is sweet, but others know better.