|Sunrise in New York
Author: Angelbaby63 PM
It had been two long years since I had visited my hometown. I'm glad I came alone, plus no one would ever let me come here if they knew what I was up to. I walked over the bridge into Brooklyn.Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance/Drama - Spot C. & Jack K. - Chapters: 30 - Words: 82,973 - Reviews: 132 - Favs: 28 - Follows: 37 - Updated: 05-16-13 - Published: 12-15-11 - id: 7639070
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Later that night I was getting ready for bed and all I could think of was that ridiculous party tomorrow night. These parties used to be careless fun and excitement, now I felt that there was so much pressure attached to this party. 1. I have to see Spot who, at the moment, I have mixed feelings about. At first he was just Spot, my best friend's self-absorbed brother, then he became this nice guy offering me his bed to sleep in, and now? I'm just confused. 2. I will be seeing Match, Spot's attractive/mysterious second-in-command, who I also have had mixed feelings about. 3. I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR.
"Rachel?" I asked as we were combing out our hair, trying to get it as dry as possible before we went to bed. "I have nothing to wear for the party." I said with a child-like sadness to my voice.
She scoffed. "You have a dress." She continued brushing through her burgundy hair.
I rolled my eyes. "Yes, I have a dress and it's ugly, dirty, and torn." This was the only dress I had and it was this awful yellow/off-white color with long puffy sleeves and it was extremely heavy.
She shook her head. "Relax Riley, we'll go see Medda tomorrow. She's got tons of dresses there that she'll let you wear. She might let us borrow some actual make-up too." The only make-up Rachel and I had was some Talcum Powder and rouge that Medda gave us once which we deemed too disgusting to put on our faces. Susie told us once that she heard that some women would bite their lips to make it appear as if they were wearing lipstick but we never went that far with it.
"Good." I said, mentally checking off something on my worry list.
Rachel looked at me accusingly and laughed.
"What?" I asked, automatically feeling to see if I had something on my face.
She chuckled through her words. "My hair is practically dry and yours is still dripping!"
I glared at her and whined, "Shut up!" She started giggling and I did too, it was pretty funny. Her hair was thinner and lighter, and I have this mass of long, curly, uncooperative hair that refuses to dry.
"RACHEL AND RILEY, SOME PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO SLEEP!" Jack yelled at us from his room. He was right though, pretty much everyone was asleep.
We instantly froze and held back our laughs. We both thought it was funny to make Jack mad, it was extra fun to make him yell.
I brushed out my hair one last time before bed, getting all of the knots out before I went to sleep. Rachel and I finished up in the washroom and walked out to our bunks and got into bed.
I was having a hard time falling asleep, I kept tossing and turning. So many things were going through my head; I couldn't believe that just last night I was sleeping in Spot Conlon's bed, just yesterday I had decided to go to Brooklyn to find Spot. I was obviously drifting off into unconsciousness and random memories kept going through my head, the two Queens boys threatening Spot, the eerie feeling I had when I was around Match, the cold wet ground as I ran barefoot through the streets of Brooklyn, the voice beckoning me to him, the hard grasp of the man holding me down against him, and the raspy whisper of his voice to my ear…
I gasped as I jolted upright from my sleep. I practically jumped off of my bed. It felt like one of those dreams when you're falling and right before you hit the ground, you wake up. I wiped cold sweat from my forehead and looked around me. I must have just fallen asleep because I heard one boy's bed squeak from my right as he got into bed. I turned and saw Rachel in her bunk slightly snoring next to me. I turned to my other side and saw Racetrack's back, I also could hear Mush snoring loudly from the bed above mine. I sighed and got up. I walked out to the window in front of the fire escape and looked out at the night sky. It was pitch black and very quiet. Some nights were louder than others, but tonight I couldn't hear anything. I did clearly heard footsteps behind me though, and I figured it was Racetrack because he was such a light sleeper. I felt a hand on my shoulder and turned around to see someone much taller, Jack.
"What are you doing up?" I asked Jack as he tiredly rubbed his eyes and yawned. He looked exhausted; his eyes were drooping and red.
"I was about to ask you the same thing." Jack said quietly in a lethargic voice, careful not to wake anyone up.
I sighed and turned back to the window to continued staring. "I just can't shake this nightmare, it's driving me insane." I said with slight frustration. I was looking out at the sky, squinting trying to see stars.
Jack quietly cleared his throat.
"Racetrack told me what you told him about it." Jack said, speaking softly right behind my ear. "He told me everything."
I simply nodded, Jack continued. "I want you to know that I'm watchin' out for you. I know that this isn't normal for you the dream, that is, and I want you to know that I won't let anythin' happen to you. No one is going to get you. You've got all of Manhattan watchin' out for you, and I'm pretty sure Spot's got all of Brooklyn watchin' out for you too."
I felt a little ridiculous. I knew no one was out to get me, but still a tiny voice in the back of my head was telling me that this was not a dream but more of a premonition. But, I had no proof that it was so I was left to my own conclusions.
I turned around to face Jack. He and I both needed sleep, we had to be up early to sell, and I knew I wasn't going to get much sleep the next night. "I'm gonna try sleeping again, goodnight Jack and thanks." He looked at me, concerned and pulled me into a hug.
"Goodnight." Jack whispered in my ear, he let me go and quietly walked back into his room and shut the door. I walked back to my bunk and decided to give up and crawl into Racetrack's bed, he didn't seem to mind. He mumbled goodnight to me and held me as I forced my eyes to shut so I could slowly drift to sleep.
I woke up tired, which is never a pleasant feeling.
I turned to see that Racetrack was still snoring away, when pretty much everyone was already awake and getting ready for the day.
I turned myself around to face Racetrack and I started shaking him lightly. "Race wake up, we gotta get ready." I said loudly after I got no response from the shaking.
"No thanks." He words slurred with sleepiness. I chuckled and continued shaking until he got up. I do this almost every morning but it never ceases to be entertaining.
"Alright, alright I'm awake, Riley. Would ya stop shakin' me?" Racetrack yawned.
I chuckled as he slowly climbed out of bed and I followed close behind to the washroom.
The boys were taking turns with the straight razors and combing their hair in the old dirty mirrors. Mornings in the lodging house were always pure chaos. I squeezed myself in between Skittery and Kid Blink to try to get some mirror space. I took a look at myself to see that I looked better this morning than I did yesterday. I was clean and my hair wasn't such a big mess, it was soft today with big waves instead of small tangled ringlets. I was glad that doing my hair for tonight wasn't going to take as much effort as I thought. I washed my face and grabbed some clothes to change into.
Once all of the newsies were ready we made our way to the distribution center. I caught up with Rachel on the way there.
"Hey so after we sell, can we go see Medda?" I asked Rachel, hoping she would go with me.
She nodded while staring off without paying any attention to me. I followed her stare to Mike talking with Racetrack and Crutchy a few feet in front of us.
I sighed dramatically. "Hello? Rachel?" I said it loud enough to snap her out of her day-dream.
She shook her head and turned to me with a guilty smile. "Sorry Ry, he's just so…. yummy." She said practically drooling.
I gave her a disgusted look and spoke quietly so Mike couldn't hear me. "So what exactly is going on between you two? Are you dating? Are you boyfriend/girlfriend? Do you even like him? Does he even like you?"
She scrunched her face and gave my questions some thought before she answered. "I don't know, we're just fooling around for now, I doubt it'll get serious." She said casually.
I shook my head at her, displeased. "Rachel please don't do anything you are going to regret. As your best friend I have to watch out for you, and give you my opinion. And my feeling is that he wants to get you into bed, and that's it." I felt bad for saying it but someone needs to bring Rachel to reality sometimes and that person is usually me.
Her face dropped a little. "Yeah, I don't know Riley. I don't know what I want but I know I don't want to be known as the 'village wench' or anything." She said with a chuckle, but continued more seriously. "Maybe I should start to consider the possibility of looking for someone more reliable. You know? I should try to find someone who I actually like for more than their looks, although, I'm not really a relationship type of girl."
I understood because I've been in her place before, when you're with someone but there's no commitment and you start wondering why you were with this person in the first place.
"Rachel you aren't the 'village wench' (I could think of a few people who do fit that description though), you just don't know exactly what you want. And that's completely normal. Hell, I have no clue what I want either." I said with a chuckle.
She smiled. "Thanks Riley."
We were waiting in the long line for papers and Rachel suddenly and a devilish look on her face. "So Riley, are you excited to see this Match guy tonight?" She asked me and winked.
I suppressed a laugh. "I don't know, I don't even really know him. Why?"
She rolled her eyes at me. "You told me he was cute!" She said that like it meant that I had to like him just because he wasn't bad to look at.
"Yeah he was cute, but he was a little odd. I don't know I just felt on edge around him. He was very… mysterious." I said trying to put into words the feeling I had when I met Match.
She smiled and giggled. "Riley, that's a good thing! I'll bet that makes him even hotter. I can't wait to see him but don't worry he's all yours, I promise!" She was way too excited, it was almost embarrassing.
Rachel was next in line to get her papers and she only grabbed fifty papers so I figured I'd do the same.
I walked up to Weasel, my head far away thinking about tonight.
"So if it isn't little miss Riley?" I looked up to see Weasel smirking at me.
I gave him a strange look. "Uh yeah, anyways… so I'll have fifty today." This was different, he never greeted me in any way like this before.
He looked back at Oscar who was smiling at me with his arms crossed, like he was up to something.
"So I have been informed that you owe us some money, something around $1.15?" I stared at him in shock. My mind was blank, I'd totally forgotten about the debt I was in.
I turned to glare at Oscar who was smiling intently at me. "You know I don't have enough Weasel." I spoke quietly. "It'll take me at least a week's savings to pay it off. Can you just give me a cutoff date for now so I can save up?" And by save up, I mean starve to death.
He shook his head. "How about this, I give you twenty-five papers and you pay for fifty today, and if I don't have that money in three days, I'll find some other way for you to work it off." He chuckled and winked at Oscar and Morris.
That disgusting old man, I thought to myself. I shoved the money at him and took half of my papers and turned to Oscar. "Can a talk to you a moment?" I said in a harsh monotone voice. He high-fived Morris and walked out.
He walked out smiling, but I wasn't. I was not happy. I walked a ways away from the crowd so no one could hear me scream at him.
I walked over to a small alley-way and stopped. Oscar looked at me like he was expecting something else.
I took a deep breath and unleashed a side of myself that is rarely seen: Anrgy Riley
"What the hell is your problem? Do you get your kicks by making other people's lives a living hell? Do you know how hard I work to be able to feed myself and pay rent so I can have a place to sleep at night? I know you like messing with me but that was a shitty thing to do! So you think you can fuck with me? Think again dumbass, because I have every single Manhattan newsie on my side and they aren't going to be too pleased to hear that the Delancey brothers are responsible for me being in debt with your perverted uncle!" I let myself fume while I waited for his response.
He scoffed at me and got up in my face. "You are so stupid Riley, you think you scare me? A tiny little nobody like you? I don't think so. The only reason I mess with you is 'cause I think you would be a. And you think the newsies scare me? Yeah they might be able to hurt me, but I can always go to the bulls and tell them about you refusing to pay off a debt." He stepped back to examine my aggravated appearance.
My voice was shaking with anger. "You wouldn't."
He came close to my face and smiled. "I offered you a deal, but you refused." He said shrugging.
I was so sick of him. He had so much power over me and the rest of the newsies. It wasn't right. "What the hell do you want from me?" I screamed and threw my arms to my head with frustration.
"It's simple Riley, just one little date and I'll make this little debt go away." He said slowly, smiling at me.
I didn't have to even think about it. "Sorry Oscar but I'd rather starve to death than to let you touch me." I said honestly.
He lowered his face to mine. I was starting to feel fear in the pit of my stomach. He had a furious look on his face and I automatically backed away from him, and started trying to remember the little self-defense moves some of the boys taught me. "Maybe you won't have a choice whether I touch you or not. I can do whatever I want to you. There's nothing you can do. You may be able to talk tough, but if you accidently ran into me in a dark alley there would be nothing you could do to stop me."
I gulped. I usually roll my eyes at anyone who threatens me but this time I was afraid. I actually was scared that he would try to hurt me.
Oscar smiled at my frightened expression and walked away.
It took me a second to pull myself together to go back to the streets to start selling. I was definitely not going to tell anyone about this. This was the last thing anyone needed to worry about, except me. You need to be independent and stop relying on others to fix your problems, I told myself. This time I was going to have to figure this one out on my own.
YES, I AM ALIVE!
Life has been… crazy. Relating closely to a soap opera… but I have not forgotten about this story! Writing is an outlet for me, a way of stress relief and I do NOT plan on giving up on this story. I hope some of you out there are still reading! :)
Reviews are always encouraged and welcome!