“Oh, yes! That feels so good.” The moans and groans coming from behind the door were driving Sean crazy as he sat scratching his arms, legs and crotch like a million bugs were feasting on him. He had that dope itch and he needed a hit real bad, but he was preoccupied with what was happening on the other side of the door. The sound of “Sexual Healing” by Marvin Gaye played from an old CD player sitting next to him and as bad as he wanted to smash the radio to drown out the song, the CD player was the last of his belongings that he hadn't sold.
“Yeah, that's it,” Sunny's voice filtered through the makeshift door. “Ahh yeah.” Sean curled up his fists and pounded on his knees, silently praying that the music would drown out his sorrow as a lone tear made its way down his face. Images of Sunny's face, twisted with a look of lust and ecstasy flashed in Sean's mind and the music just seemed to make his imagination run wild even worse. That was his and Sunny's song back in the days, when things were right with them. He closed his eyes now, picturing how fine Sunny was when he first met herâher long silky hair, her beautiful face with its delicate features, and her striking green eyesâhad all captured him then and never let go of their hold on him.
Now he sat listening to his woman sucking and slurping and moaning with another man. Sean bent over, cradled his head in his hands and hit himself in the head trying to get the visions to stop. What had he done to her? What had he allowed her to do to him?
Finally tired of sitting like a lame duck waiting to be fed, Sean jumped up from the filthy, threadbare couch he had been holding down inside of the drug haven he once owned. It had once been one of his most lucrative traps, but it was far from that now. Now, it was what they called a shooting gallery for fiends from all over the city. The darkened railroad flat had fiends in every corner shooting up, smoking, or sniffing their poison of choice. Sean jumped when he heard a scream coming from behind him. Two fiends were fighting over a pipe, the dude lifted his foot over and over again and stomped the woman mercilessly until her face was covered in blood.
Sean's legs were weak, he needed the package or else he was going to be sick in a minute. He jumped around trying to keep the monkey from crawling up on his back. From the sounds of it, Sunny was going to come out on top with the job she was doing and they would be able to get high. It seemed like an eternity that she had been behind that door with the young dope boy that had agreed to give Sunny two packs of heroin in exchange for sex.
Doubt was setting in on Sean and he was regretting the suggestion he'd made that Sunny get their package this time. He would usually take the lead with scoring, even if he had to stick up a store or snatch a purse or two, but tonight he was too sick to pull it off. Sunny and Sean had run out of scams since everybody knew them as mere fiends looking to score now. Sean had run out of favors on the streets and his name was mud with all the street cats that he used to deal with and even the ones that used to work for him. His reign at the top of the game didn't mean anything anymore.
Sean had to kick away empty beer bottles, empty crack vials and used needles to make a pathway to walk. The stench of garbage, shit, vomit and burning crack didn't bother Sean when he was high, but now, the odors were working his stomach. Either that or the sickness of needing a hit was getting the best of him.
“Ouch! Watch where you goin', nigga!” a butt-naked fiend screeched. Sean stumbled as she pushed him. He looked down at her strangely. She was laid out on the floor, pussy bare trying to feel for a vein on her inner thigh to hit. Her titties were shriveled like prunes and her hair was gone in patches. He remembered when she was a striking beauty that frequented his many establishments back in the days. Sean's eyes were wide and sweat dripped down the sides of his face. He hated when the memories of better times flooded his brain, making it harder for him to forget how much he had lost.
It was surreal how fast things could change. Sean whirled around and looked out on the entire room. The floor could barely be seen; every inch was covered with either a body or garbage or drug paraphernalia. Old food containers were scattered around with mold inches thick growing on them. There were flies buzzing all over because of the random piles of human feces that littered the floor. It wasn't strange for a fiend to pull their pants down and relieve themselves right in the room rather than risk leaving and losing their spot or worse someone stealing their drugs.
Sean averted his eyes to a line of dudes on the wall opposite from where he stood all in different stages of taking a hitâone was sucking the end of a glass pipe; one had the end of a belt in his mouth and a needle jammed in the crack of his arm; and one was sniffing a newly crushed pile of crystal meth. He scanned the room some more and his heart broke when he noticed a pregnant chick lying on a dirty foam mattress letting three dudes take turns having their way with her. Thoughts of Sunny popped into his mind.
Sean turned and went to knock on the door to get Sunny out of the room, but he paused when he heard her giggling and groaning like she was having the time of her life. He felt like someone had stabbed him in the heart as he listened to her.
“Oh, baby. Yeah, fuck me, baby. Yeah, daddy.” Sunny moaned, sounding like she was in heaven. Those were words Sean had thought he'd only ever hear her say to him. His chest heaved now, but the aching inside of him for the drugs wouldn't allow him to bust in the room and grab his woman. He put his back up against the raggedy wall and slid down to the floor. With his radio on his lap, he turned up the music and let the tears roll down his face as he waited for Sunny.
After what seemed like an eternity, the graffiti-covered door creaked open. Sean got to his feet swiftly, his jaw was rocking feverishly and he clenched his fists at his side. Sean watched the young dope boy bop out of the room smiling with sweat glistening on his face and chest. His pants were still unbuttoned and halfway off his waist where the butt of his gun peeked out. He eyed Sean up and down with a smirk and then laughed at him. Sean looked at the kid with his thick gold Cuban link chains dangling around his neck and his slick True Religion jeans and Louboutin sneakers fitting him perfectly. Sean remembered when he was on that side of the game, wearing nothing but the best clothes, shoes and jewels. He felt ashamed now, standing there in his dirty, faded jeans, beat-down Nike Air Force Ones and a fitted cap so dirty the team name was barely visible anymore.
“That's a sweet piece of pussy you got there. I can only imagine how much sweeter it was before the whole town ran up in those guts,” the young boy said to Sean snidely. Sean lifted his fists, but quickly but them back down when he thought about what would happen to him if he bucked on the young kid. Sean was once one of the most feared men on the streets but that had changed too.
“I guess you ain't king no more, huh? King Sean,” the kid taunted, waiting for Sean to react so he could clap on him and make a name for himself.
Sean's chest rose and fell rapidly. His radio went crashing to the floor and he bit down into his jaw. The young boy stopped in front of him and pulled his weapon. He sat it on Sean's shoulder in a bold show of bravado.
“Remember when I worked for you and you beat my ass within a inch of my life that time?” the kid asked, then he lifted his gun and cracked it across Sean's head.
“Ahh.” Sean winced crumpling to the floor in a heap. The kid stood over him and laughed.
“Damn, now I got your bitch working her jaws for me and ain't shit you can do . . . fucking fiend-ass nigga. You wasn't never no king in my eyes,” the kid said viciously. Then he bopped away, leaving Sean scrambling up off of the floor with his pride and manhood crushed.
Sunny stumbled out of the room with her lipstick smeared, her hair an untamed mess and her cat green eyes wild. She refused to hold eye contact with Sean as she dug into her purse for the tiny bottle of mouthwash she had stolen from the drugstore earlier. Finally locating the bottle, she popped it open, took a swig of the mouthwash, gargled it and spit it right on the floor of the dilapidated house. It was all she could do to wash the taste of another man from her lips.
“You ready? I got a twenty for that and I'm hitting more than half for all of my hard work,” Sunny smacked her lips and said with a disrespectful tone. It had been hard for her to maintain her respect for Sean and even harder for her to hide it. Sean got to his feet and pushed her back into the room. He snatched the bundle of heroin from her.
“You ain't doing shit unless I say you doing it,” he growled, grabbing her collar forcefully. “You enjoyed that shit right? Right?” Sean barked in Sunny's face.
“Don't do that, Sean! Give it back to me! I worked for that!” Sunny whined like a baby, being real careful with her words. She knew how he could get when it came to sharing the drugs and with his already-bruised ego rearing its ugly head, Sunny knew Sean could be violently unpredictable.
“You get what the fuck I give you,” Sean spat, squeezing the packs in his hand like he never wanted to let them go. Sunny burst into tears, something she knew would tug at Sean's heart. She had been working that trick on him since they were kids.
“But since you worked for it like you like to remind me, I'ma let you hit first,” he relented, softening his tone.
Sunny hurriedly pulled out her works and with shaky hands she tied the belt around her arm. Sean pulled it for her so she could feel the best vein since the room was too dimly lit to see that well. He tossed one of the little black balls of heroin into the spoon and lit the bottom of it. Sunny was salivating as she watched him cook the drugs with a hawk's eye.
When it was ready Sean loaded Sunny's needle and touched the fattest vein in her arm. She looked at him, her once-flawless face finally showing the signs of her addiction. Sean turned his eyes away from her face, it was too painful to see her looking like she did now.
“Do it, baby, hurry up,” Sunny whispered in her deepest sex kitten voice. Sean sniffled back the snot threatening to drip from his nose and plunged the needle into her arm easing the poison into her vein.
“Ssss.” Sunny winced, her body relaxing against the chair. Her head fell back and her eyes rolled up into her head until only the whites were visible. Sean pulled the belt loose so the drugs could move through her system with ease.
“That shit must be real good,” he said as he watched her head roll back forward and her chin fall to her chest.
“Yo, I'm next so c'mon,” he demanded anxiously. Sean started cooking his portion of the heroin as his mouth watered waiting for the hit.
“A'ight you ready to hit me?” he asked without looking at Sunny. All of a sudden Sunny's legs did something funny that startled him.
“What the fuck?” he whispered. “You almost made me drop my shit. Stop the shit and get up and help me hit this shit. Don't be so fucking selfish all of the time,” Sean growled at her. Then Sunny's body jerked like she had been hit with a bolt of lightning and she fell off the chair. Sean dropped the drugs, let go of the belt around his arm and fell down at Sunny's side.
“Baby! Sunny! Wake up!” Sean yelled, grabbing her into his arms. Sunny's body began convulsing and her eyes were completely white. Her legs flopped around like she was being electrocuted.
“Sunny! No! C'mon!” he yelled, slapping her face vigorously. White foam was spilling from her mouth and her body bucked so wildly even he couldn't hold on to her.
“Help me! Somebody, help me! Help me!” Sean screamed frantically. But there was no one in that house that would care enough to call an ambulance. No one would dare call 911 and risk having the cops bust up in there and break up their getting high.
“Help me . . . God, help me,” Sean whispered through tears as he held Sunny's face up against his. He could feel her starting to get cold.
Finally Sunny's body went still. Sean laid her head down and looked down into her face. He couldn't stop the tears from falling as his body jerked with sobs. He hadn't cried like that since his mother had died.
“Sunny!!” he screamed at the top of his lungs. “You can't leave me! I need you!” he hollered some more. He lay his head on her chest and there was no sound. The heart he had fallen in love with so many years earlier was no longer beating.
“I did this to you. I did this to you,” Sean said, his voice trailing off and his mind reeling backward.