Story of my life really. I'm a bastard, born from sin, as I'm daily reminded. I'll probably die from sin, as I'm likewise daily reminded. I'm a fuckup. A "toxic influence" my old parole officer once said. Don't ask me where I've been; you don't want to know. Don't ask me what I've done; I may just tell you. There is no forgiveness for someone like me.
Anthony "Absolved" Dumas leaned his tense whipcord body against the rusted chain fence near his apartment. He glared and flicked indifferent brown hair out of his hard green eyes. It had been a hell of a day and it was only 3pm. Boss at the bodega found out about his stint in juvie and fired him. Lover found out about him being fired and dumped him. Oh yeah, and the rent for his crappy apartment was due in two days, which he would now have to pay all on his own. So he leaned and he glared at the traffic cluttering up the exhaust-heavy street.
Anthony hated them all.
So what if he'd stolen a car? So what if he dealt a little on the side? So what if he punched that bitch. He stole the car to run away from his damn stepfather when he was thirteen. He dabbled in drug dealing a little to make ends meet once his Ma' kicked him out before he could graduate high school. The manager he punched had been sexually harassing him for months and that bitch did not take "No" for an answer.
No one saw the person; they just saw the rapsheet.
I'm not a saint, people will think the worst of me, but I'll tell you this: I'm honest. He thought angrily to himself, Ask me a question? You better be fucking prepared for the answer. Got a problem with me? Well great, I've got a problem with you too. Difference is you don't have the balls to just say as much.
Was he bitter? Hell yes, you would be too if you looked around every now and again in this neighborhood. It's not just a "the grass is greener on the other side kind of thing; think more "The only green grass around here is the kind you smoke or the kind in the cemetery." That was just life. That was just his life. He hated that too.
Well no. He liked life well enough most days. Anthony was a survivor if nothing else. He would survive despite his sins, despite his crimes, despite his hollow chest.
"Promise me, Anthony." A voice had brokenly whispered through cracked lips, the dearest voice in the world to him "You survive, you hear me?"
Anthony promised, would have promised anything to keep his beloved talking. Keep them living. Like everything else Anthony wanted, wished for, fought for, it failed. Anthony's first love had died that night. Taking Anthony's heart with them. God forgive me for living while you died. God forgive me for fulfilling your last request. He had promised to survive so he would. Anything else was unacceptable.