Part 1 of the first chapter of my book, Sassassins.
I should’ve known that I would get jumped on the way home. I was mostly content on hanging out with my new friends I had made during my freshman year. But you have to expect crime in a big city. It’s a tough world out there. If you have to resort to being a low-life thief, then so be it.
Doesn’t mean I won’t get mad as hell.
I didn’t notice the man walking behind me. I just kept staring at the empty darkness in front of me. The only light came from the moon, the streetlights, and the occasional car or two. It was stupid of my mother to not allow me to carry my knife. “Those are too dangerous for you to handle, Kai. I can’t afford to bail you out if you get caught with it.”
I had bought it with my own money, knowing the rules for handling a carving knife. One look at it, though, and you won’t think it’s a carving knife. It looks like a freaking combat knife; a bit larger then a pocket journal at full length. I knew how to handle it, but my parents wouldn’t listen.
So I immediately blamed them when I felt a hand come over my mouth and another start punching the crap out of me. It felt like a sledgehammer was crashing into the side of my head repeatedly. I started to see double, then triple. I finally got the sense to jerk my elbow into the hood, hoping to catch the mugger off guard.
It didn’t. I must have not hit him hard enough because all he did was punch the side of my head. It was getting very annoying. Suddenly, he released me and tossed me away. I spun around to face him only to see him grabbing a wooden board on the ground. I settled into a fighting stance. I had tried to teach myself martial arts, watching countless fighting programs, but now was the only time I could truly test it out.
I could tell by the way he was holding the board that he was going to try to knock me out. I countered the board before it hit my face and tried to punch him in the stomach. He spun and put me in a headlock. I managed to scream a chain of foul words before he clamped a beefy hand over my mouth again. “No more playing around. Gimme yer money, boy, or you’ll be as red as Santa Clause.”
I rolled my eyes. Some threat. I bit his arm and twisted his wrist, pleased at the loud crack I heard. He screamed in pain, clutching his wrist. A car rolled by and I could briefly see his features.
He was wearing a gray jacket that looked like he came across a tiger. Pieces of his clothing were hanging from his dark skin. His face was messy; bits of dirt were clinging to him. His eyes were bloodshot, full of hatred and murder. I had never seen a homeless person so bent on death, but I knew now that he had a good reason to rob me.
But I’m not really a caring person.
I took the opportunity and punched his face with all I had. Still clutching his wrist, he staggered backwards, giving me a chance to find a sharp piece of metal and slice the back of his knees. Blood sputtered onto the cold ground. The metal gleamed in the light of a car. I realized it was a police car. Two policemen were holding flashlights staring at me and the mugger, hands on their guns. “What’s going on here?”
The homeless man looked up. “This punk teenager attacked me without warning. I was just sitting here trying to eat a meal, and he comes and slices the back of my knees!” I ignore him. “Pardon me, gentlemen, but I can explain the whole thing. I was walking home after watching a movie with my friends, and this man came up behind me and tried to mug me. If you need proof, you can examine my arm, where he smacked me with a board.”
The policemen pulled up my sleeve and revealed a red imprint of a board. They then looked around the alley. “I see no meal, old man. If he attacked you, where’s the food?”
He said nothing. Finally, the policeman turned to his partner. “Cuff him. This should teach bastards like him not to attack innocent kids.”
The other policeman helped the man up and put police cuffs on his hands. The man kept protesting and swearing. I ignored it; it was a regular day in my opinion.
*** *** ***
I awoke from a long needed rest. It had been two days since the mugging, and I was still recovering from the beating he gave my face. When I had returned home, my mother broke down sobbing. “I knew you shouldn’t have gone out! Now look at you!”
I cringed when she said that. If it was up to her, I would go out with pillows strapped to my entire body. She made me swear to keep my phone on with the volume at high. I also had to call or text her whenever it was possible. I felt my blood pressure boil inside of me. It was enough she made me carry a crappy phone, but to use it to do something impossible to do in front of my friends?
H to the E to the double L NO!
One day I would be rid of my parents. I’m not saying I don’t love them, and I don’t care if they’re supposed to embarrass you. It’s still annoying as heck. I’m only 17, so I can’t get away just yet. Still, I know that I wouldn’t be here without them, so I guess I can thank them for that.
Now, I grabbed my shoes and walked out the door. I was going to visit my friend Hawk. His real name is Kenneth Jones, but I always called him Hawk because he was unbelievably accurate with just about anything. If you set up a target about the size of a small ring, he wouldn’t just hit the center; he would do it before your eyes could even blink. Whether it be a pencil, spitball, or a bow and arrow, Hawk was the guy you wanted for hunting trips.
In fact, he had invited me the day before.
The sun was just appearing, so the sky looked beautiful with an orange haze. I liked sunsets; they were really relaxing. I stopped to look at it, then continued walking to Hawk’s house. He didn’t live too far away. It was only about a mile.
He was already packing the orange Toyota his father had given him. He had gotten his license only two weeks ago, but he drove like a pro. He turned and smiled when he saw me. “Hey there, Kai. C’mon up. I could use your help with the stuff.”
I nodded. I jumped onto the truck and tossed in whatever Hawk passed me. There were a couple bows and four arrow quivers. I noticed there was some .22 ammo in the front. “Hey Hawk? We taking a gun?”
“Nah. That’s just some extra ammo from me and my dad’s last hunting trip.”
“So no gun?”
I frowned, disappointed. I loved guns; the feeling that you get when you shoot one is exhilarating. I probably would never shoot someone unless I absolutely had to. Even then, I would hesitate to do it (Except if they were going to kill me). My old friends would disagree, though, back when I lived in Antioch, California.
We had moved once my fourth sibling was born. Our house was just too small for a family of seven. I had not been happy when my mother announced the move. Neither were my friends Allie, Alexis, and Ava when I told them. Allie’s real name was Alexandra Gray, but she looked more like an Allie. It stuck. I had met her in the 3rd grade. I didn’t really bother with her then, but when I met her again in middle school, I found that I had a huge crush on her. She knew it too; she could see it in my eyes. She didn’t mind. On the contrary, she liked it. However, she told me she wasn’t ready to date again after her boyfriend dumped her.
I knew she didn’t like me the same way.
Alexis was Allie’s big sister, a couple years older than Hawk. She was one cool cat. Since she’s constantly working, she couldn’t spend much time with Allie, so she was pretty happy when she found out that I was hanging out with her. Of course, she thought it was something more than friendship, but I never asked how many times she teased Allie on it.
It wasn’t important at the moment anyway.
“Hey Kai? You should stop daydreaming and help me out here.”
I awoke from a daze and found myself in a deer blind. I forgot; we had been sitting here, waiting for a deer. So much time had passed that no dear had come. But now, there was one only about 10 feet away. “Okay, Kai. I’m going to shoot it near its tail. You shoot it in the stomach, and we’ll have ourselves a deer.”
I nodded, ready for action. Hawk slowly rose and drew his bow. The deer’s ears shot upwards. Hawk froze. It looked around, looking for danger, but it found none since we were camouflaged. Hawk and I released the bowstring at about the same time.