I wish this was the point in the story where I could tell you that I turned my life around, and changed everything for the better, but it’s not, it’s where I got worse. You see, by a few days later, everyone in the neighborhood knew what had happened, who had did it and who they did it to, and if we didn’t do something about it then our fates were sealed. Everyone would know that Dos Fatales was an easy mark. I hated the situation, because I didn’t want to do anything about it. I wanted to forget it happened, be glad it didn’t happen to me, and be one of the kids that would sit in the cafeteria all lunch trying to be unnoticed. But I still had my walk home from school, and I would be an even bigger target than before.
When our group stood in the halls, or out in the yard at school, we could sense the other groups watching us, gauging whether or not we were going to be weak, or strong. And waiting for the opportunity to be first in line to take advantage if we proved to be the former. We mad many discussions that day, whether we were going to retaliate, what we should do and with three against two now, how we could come out on top in a way that would keep them from just coming back again later with that gun. That one gun counted as an easy dozen of us, but without being able to get a hold of it, we had no chance of coming out on top if we weren’t willing to meet them on the same terms they would come to us.
We had one vote for jumping them and breaking a few fingers to teach a lesson, and we had another for leaving the situation completely and trying our best to survive the school year. My vote was the tie breaking vote, which made me hate the situation even more, but all I could think of was what the remainder of our year would be like, how much more pain we would have to endure, and not just emotional, but the physical pain that everyone would inflict on us because they knew they could get away with it. My choice to stay quiet didn’t earn me any points, it simply kept me from going into the red.
On the walk home, we had two groups following us this time. The usual block over crew, and the two from the event days before. That same look was on their face, but I noticed a small difference, a little less confidence, which made me think that this time they didn’t have the sure fire means of victory in the form of a firearm. As we rounded the corner to a walking path that cut between the back yards of two streets of houses, the two followed us, just as I hoped they would.