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The Unforgiving Minute

Reflections And Remorse In A Gangsters Final Minute

By Kenneth cruzPublished 29 days ago 6 min read

3:59 am

The burning in my gut and chest feels like satan himself stabbed me with his flaming hot pitch fork. He might as well, this is where I die. Shit I never thought Donald Goeins Never Die Alone would hit so close to home.

Every breath labored and painful, I guess I know what giving birth is like. I’m on my back now and it feels like I’m floating in a sea of blood. I struggle to sit-up or turn on my side, only instead of moving my whole body feels like it’s being crushed by the heaviest of weights and slow baked at the same time.

The crazy thing is the physical pain and burning that’s fills my upper torso from where I ate those gun shots doesn’t even compare to the pain in my soul. My nostrils flare up, the smell of gun powder still burns their insides. My eyes are are match flames. Even my watery tears won’t put them out. It’s as if i had just stared into a welding machine or solar eclipse. I wonder if the blurry vision is from the muzzle flash, or if I’m just fading fast. In the distance I hear a cacophony of cars and sirens but they are not for me. No one would find me in this back alley.

You can’t die here I keep whispering to myself. Not yet, your life’s incomplete. You can’t go out like this. A writer, a hustler, a gangster, a father and even a husband for a short while. Now I’m here bleeding out like a speared fish. I can’t move. My cellphones dead, and from the blood I’m coughing up I figure I’m about to join it. My kids, my manuscript finally complete, and a father I had yet to make proud. So many things left undone.

I should have never hit that lick against the Kim brothers. Koreans may not be the best drivers, but they sure don’t play around. The money was supposed get my book out there, get a lawyer so I could see my daughter, and hold me over. How’d i know that my supposed best friend would snitch on himself and me. I guess i underestimated the Kim brother’s detective and torture skills.

When my only other friends Jose and Johnny broke in the private poker game and broke my nose i swore we had pulled off the perfect heist. Fast forward two weeks till Johnny gets caught and the Kim brothers have him sing like a canary.

Within a week Jose goes missing. Days after the only remnants of the big burly man that was like my brother are his two beefy legs found barbed wired together bruised and mutilated. His mom has to Identify him by the tattoos on his leg, and when I receive the call from the broken elderly woman i want to fall off the face of the earth.

I split up with mother of my kids eight months before all this, ever since life had been in a free-fall. No focus, no money, no motivation. When Tony Kim invited me to his monthly big game my dumb ass thought I came up with the perfect plan. Have my friends rob the game and assault me and a couple of other lads, catching everyone off guard and looking like a victim.

I mean I was desperate. Eileen hadn’t let me see my daughter, who had been with me like a swallowed piece of chewing gum up to that point. I needed a lawyer and to catch up on back rent. Robbing Kim’s game seemed like the best way to get back on my feet.

Then I’d show Eileen the man I was. Sure I cheated on her in the past, but that was years ago, and at the end of the day it was her fault for mistreating my son and never appreciating the life we had. When I had finally gone legit, she would act up the most. It was always like that when I was trying to be a good person.

I had a new job at a loan brokers office and the 10 hours days were about to pay off, but no she couldn’t even hold it down a two months until I became manager of my own team. The little text she found with my co worker was strictly playful. Since my new job she had shut down and was being a total bitch. I had done nothing until she started taking off and acting funny. I knew this time she was cheating. The marks on her were one thing but the text she sent after our first split were too much. How could she show me text messages from another man saying how he loved making her cum. I should have killed them both, but no instead I turned into a ghost, vowing my evolution and legit vengeance.

They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Perhaps it was true, or once the devil had someone in his grasp he didn’t let go. I mean the first time I watched Scarface and Goodfellas with my dad or when I saw him slipping items for me into another box before paying, I became enamored with the lifestyle. It wasn’t until I got older and just wanted to settle down that I wanted to get out this bitter game. When I was closest to fulfilling that or finding true love, life always found a way of kicking the shit out of me and dragging me back in.

The depression that set in after Eileen left with my baby girl was like a demon possessing me. The moments of fleeting happiness were artificial and short lived. Same when I tried to move on or date. The only escape I had was in my overdramatized novel depicting my life and vengeance upon the woman. That was therapy, and a potential best seller, but then came the need for money.

So when Tony a smug but loyal friend invited me to the big game, in an effort to cheer me up and bring back the old me who had made him tons of money there was no backing out. Johnny and Jose always in need of funds, ate up the opportunity like a Muslims first meal after Ramadan. I still see them rushing in shot guns hoisted high like flags. They broke three noses that night, and I was one of them, I mean everything played out like a picture perfect movies scene.

If not for Johnnys dumb habits and stupid spending we may have gotten away with it. While I was home finishing up a gangster noir master piece this idiot was buying cars and enough glass to furnish an automobile company. He had a plan to use half for his habit and selling the rest to offset his spending. If that wasn’t dumb enough, he buys from Korean gangs. I reckon he paid the price, because he was never found unlike Jose’s legs who were intentionally left behind.

By the time I got off the phone with his mom I use my money to get a new car and split town. I don’t make it far. After a day of driving my legs feel mummified so I pull off in Philadelphia, where I went to college. I find a local watering hole, and maybe it’s the familiarity of the city, but I feel safe.

It’s not till after the second beer when the world starts to waver and melt, that I know something’s wrong. Every breath I take feels like I’m lifting a 45 pound dumbbell and while I’ve only had two beers the world’s slanting, moving back and fourth like a carnival attraction.

I’m stumbling to the door, when I see the black bmw pull up and three Koreans hop out. My feet are lead, and my coordination that of a toddler. Only sheer determination sees me through the back door.

As I stumble down the steps with a feeling of exuberant accomplishment my victory is short lived. I see the three Korean faces behind me. One pulls an iPhone, the other a shot gun. The iPhone is a FaceTime from Tony. “You really rob from me a friend and think you’d get away it with it, chobo scum. I’m sorry for your kids but you deserve this!” His spit hits the screen before uttering some words in Korean.

That’s when my world flashes, red then black. The barrage of pellets tear my flesh like a school of piranhas. At first I feel nothing and fade to darkness. My wristwatch says it’s 3:59 when I come to my senses. They say right before you die you see your life flash before your eyes, for me it’s just a slide show of regrets ending in my daughters face. Just as my watch hits 4am I feel life slip away and I breath my last breath.

thrillerShort StoryPsychological

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  • Dharrsheena Raja Segarran29 days ago

    Oh wow, they both cheated on each other. But I did feel sad for him though. Loved your story!

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