Damn, this is a tough decision, I thought. Wish I had a shot of whiskey right now. Jemma looked at me with perplexity, her large, blue eyes fluttering, blinking as though in rhythm to a Busta Rhymes rap.
“What?” I questioned, wiping my eyes, ashamed that she might’ve caught me crying.
“Um…the accident is cleared.” Jemma motioned to the empty space before me.
My reality suddenly shifted back into place. The deafening car honks from vehicles behind us drilled into my head, obscenities were gestured, and croaky vocal curses taunted, “Get a f*****g move-on, jackass!”
“Oh, God.” I rang out as I drove forward; screw morals, I thought.
Jemma rubbed my shoulder sympathetically and asked, “So, you never did tell me how you know Tony.”
“Oh, it’s a really long story.”
“We got time,” she hideously laughed.
My eyes widened out of sheer fear, I then said, “You wouldn’t think very highly of me, dear, if I told you how Tony and I know each other.”
“I don’t know, can we just get there and be silent till we do? He has something I need to pick up. That’s it, Ok?”
“My lips are sealed.”
“Zip it and lock it.”
“The doors are shu—“
“Would you just?!?!”
“Sorry,” Jemma whispered, followed by that horse trot of a laugh.
We entered Brooklyn at twilight. I parked the car in between two very unhealthy looking Buicks. Come to think of it, the entire area looked unhealthy. Clichés aside, I forced myself to think. Unfortunately, a rowdy bunch of teenagers walked past us checking out my Sedan, (making me retract my inner voice’s statement.) They reeked of marijuana. Five males, one Hispanic, three Caucasian, and one African American. Two females, both Hispanic, I memorized, processing their looks, sizes, and heights just in case we’d have to fill out a police report later. Jemma put her arm around my waist, as if my puny body could’ve protected her from any one of those 300 pounders. Their laughs echoed the empty street as they passed us, dropping their doobies to the existing litter carpeting this particular Bay Ridge street.
“They’re gone,” I assured Jemma, trying to pry myself out of her grip.
In these past few weeks I’d been pinned down, suffocated too many times all thanks to her. First, it was that God-awful diet, Jemma’s constant glares if I dared to even look at a piece of meat. Then, it was my wedding tux. And now this, this thing people call human contact, affection even, but what I translate into personal terms as ‘space invasion’.
“Ok, Jem. They’re gone!”
“I see that, but I’m cold.”
I loudly sighed. “Here’s the address.” I looked at my phone’s screen and back at the building we stood before. Google’s street view matched perfectly aside from the daytime/nighttime contrast. People were all over the place during the day. Witnesses, hipsters. Where were the hipsters with their un-prescribed glasses and their nooks? Where was Starbucks? I hadn’t spotted one since we arrived. I wanted to jump into the screen, if only to be surrounded by other folks. I felt like I was about to be mugged by a bandit, taken advantage of by a transvestite, and shot by a DeNiro wannabe all in the same existing five minutes.
“Did you bring a gift?”
“Honey, we come uninvited and not even a bottle of Sherry?” Jemma gasped.
“No wine. Nothing. We just gotta go and get what we came for!” I yelled, hearing my echo yell back at me. I shuddered.
Then, as if cliché couldn’t have gotten any more generic, “Youse two lost?” a voice in the distance bellowed.
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