Sitting in a bar and enjoying the comfort of anonymity and yet the life around you. I was sitting at the end of the bar; I knew I would be getting the call shortly. My feet bouncing nervously as I wait. This isn’t the wait of eagerness, or anticipation but the nervous wait. The kind of waiting that sits in the bottom of your stomach and nests there. The time shows 11:46, and it continues ticking on in its normal fashion. I am running out of money, I notice as I pull about 28 dollars from my pocket. I look down to my backpack that holds everything I own. I am homeless, tired, and alone. Sometimes the things I do for survival can only be chalked up to that. Survival.
When the ring came it shocked me, and the gruff fellow next to me as I quickly flipped open the phone. “Hello?” I asked. “The car is waiting outside.” Was the response, deep and confident, it was the man I worked for. I just was running errands, drop this off or pick this up. Go here. Do this. You ever get the feeling like something bad is about to happen but you don’t know what. Your every step feels heavy and it feels like you just drank a bottle of strychnine. This is how I felt, the dread of things to come and the weight of the alcohol I consumed. I sipped one last sip of my rum and coke. Then walked outside to see a cream colored sedan sitting there beneath the street light. I almost ran into some people on my way to the car, and being lost in thought of what I was getting into.
I got into the car and it drove me away from the bar, and away from the streets, away from comforts. I looked at my bag again, I was okay with this, I can survive. I survived this long. I let the car continue out of town and to a part of town that was desolate and made more for warehouses and diesel trucks. The car parks near a door, and above the door was a green-lit sign displaying “Exit”. Ironic that I would enter the exit, but I continued down the long hallway with various things stacked along the wall. I noticed strange things, like broken broom, a hammer with something on it that I didn’t venture to guess. I wasn’t very curious at this time. A long time ago I learned the rule, “I will not touch things that aren’t mine.”
I came around the corner, and saw my boss standing there, a worktable was set up and saw dust was scattered everywhere. What caught my attention next will shock you. A large overweight man was chained up upside down. He had his belly sagging down to his ribs. His face was turning purple by now. I walked over to my boss who stood waiting. He put the cold hard grip of a pistol in my hand. I felt the barrel of another gun press against the back of my skull. My boss spoke clearly, “One.” I felt panic, I felt fear, I felt like pissing myself, but I didn’t.
I won’t tell you what happened. I will tell you that what I do and did, I have done to survive. Sometimes we can’t always see what that may mean. Sometimes it isn’t called into question. But, sometimes, the ways of the world, or fate, whatever will ask, “What will you do to survive?” I look back at this event with dread and still feeling the same feelings, but over time things dull away, but I know that I will survive.