Author: BTR'slovesong PM
"I sought my soul, but my soul I could not see. I sought my God, but my God eluded me. I sought my brother and I found all three."-Unknown. AU fic in which the boys are all orphans, lost and alone with only each other to escape the abuse of a strict orphanage, survive the rough streets of 1920's Harlem, and battle personal demons of the past.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Adventure - Kendall - Chapters: 7 - Words: 13,417 - Reviews: 81 - Favs: 20 - Follows: 29 - Updated: 11-06-12 - Published: 09-07-12 - id: 8506124
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
A/N Thanks for all of the reviews! I love you guys! I don't know too much of New York. I researched some, but since this is fiction, some of it is a fragment of my imagination. So anybody who lives in New York, sorry if it's not accurate, but I'm making some stuff up as I go along!
I bet ya'll thought Logan was next… Teehee! ;)
January 15th, 1923
If you lived in one of the luxurious houses or apartments on the Fordham Road-Grand concourse, The Bronx, New York was a great place to live. You could visit the zoo, or the beautiful botanical gardens. The lifestyle was rich over on that particular intersection. But several miles north was where you would find ruthless, drunken gangs of Irishman and poverty-stricken immigrants. It was the worst end of town, where violence and crime ran rampant when the sun went down.
Kendall Knight, a tall, lanky blonde boy, whose family came from Poland, dreamt of leaving the gang-ridden town one day. He wanted to live somewhere beautiful and bustling, where good jobs were offered. His family was very poor. He, his mother and little sister all lived in a tiny, skinny brick building on a street corner. There was no heat save for the pot-belly stove over in the middle of the room, and they all slept on mattress' surrounding their only source of warmth from the bitter, New York cold.
They never used to live like this.
Growing up, the Knights were a middle class family. Kendall's dad used to paint superstructures and flagpoles atop some of the tallest buildings in New York. It was a high paying job, and with the proper safety gear, it was relatively safe.
One day, when Kendall was just 10, something went wrong. He wasn't sure what, because he was too young to really understand, but his father's exhilarating career took his life, leaving his young family alone. They were kicked out of their apartment, unable to pay bills any longer, and were forced to move to The Bronx, where rent was cheaper but jobs were hard to come by. Mrs. Knight made bread to sell while she took care of her little daughter, and Kendall did odd jobs around the neighborhood. But since World War One, most families couldn't afford to hire Kendall to trim their lawn or paint their fence. Money was scarce. Kendall, who was the man of his family now, was unable to care for his family anymore.
Kendall was a troublemaker of sorts. He had a group of friends who weren't the best influences, and he learned to be tough growing up as a teen boy in The Bronx. His heart and skin both hardened, and really the only love he showed was to his mother and sister, whom he adored very much. Although he was tough, Kendall was a hard worker in school. He longed to get his diploma and get a good job so he could move his family to a better place, but no matter how hard he worked in school, The Bronx seemed to always have a way to bring him down.
"Hey, get back here!"
Kendall glanced back at the two police officers chasing him while jumping over a barrel of pickled beets owned by street sellers, a bag of stolen good clutched tightly in his fists as he ran. The ruffian panted in the frigid air and nearly slipped on a patch of ice, but he forced his burning legs to continue to run. He could outrun these fat coppers, he was sure of it.
Just as Kendall was about to turn a corner and hop a fence, he slipped on another patch of slick white ice and fell to the sidewalk hard, right on his hip.
"Ow!" He groaned, but struggled to scramble to his feet before the police could gain on him. It was too late though. The biggest cop pulled the scraggly blonde to his feet and held his hands behind his back.
"Gotcha!" The cop growled in his ear. Kendall squirmed, trying to fight the big lug off, but it was useless. He was a skinny 16 year old and the cop was a thick and trained grown men.
"Hey, loosen up! Easy on the goods!" Kendall hissed.
The cop loosened his hold just a bit, which was a mistake. Kendall may have been a young boy, but he worked out, too, and had been in his fair share of fights. The teenager whipped around and knee'd the cop in his gut, causing him to double over, but the other cop immediately shoved Kendall to the ground and wrapped his wrists in handcuffs.
"Ugh! Alright, you caught me!" Kendall groaned against the concrete. He gestured to the bag of goods on the ground next to him. "You can take it back and let me go now!"
"Not this time kid," the cop said, pulling Kendall to his feet again. Kendall blew a strand of hair out of his eyes and scowled, trying to cover the sinking feeling of doom he felt in his stomach. He knew the consequences of stealing. He knew that the cops have pretty much let him get away with it for far too long now. "We told you next time we catch ya stealing, you're going to the boy's home."
"Look cops, ya gotta understand! My sister has pneumonia and I can't find any jobs that's worth more than a few eggs or an apple! I haven't made a dollar in months!" Kendall said. "The food isn't for me, it's for my sister. She's just a little girl. She's dyin' for crying out loud!"
"It's rough times, kid. And it's not just the stealing. You and those boys you hang with are causing too much trouble 'round here. I've broken up dozens too many fights and they all seem to involve you just in the past couple of weeks! This is the last straw. We're taking you home for the last time. You'll pack your things and come with us."
Kendall suddenly felt more scared and vulnerable than he ever had in his life. The thought of his mother and little sister forced to fend for their own sent his stomach into a fit. They would never survive! They needed him! And he needed them!
"Please, don't take me away from my family. They won't even be able to eat without me!"
"We gave you your chances, kid," The cop said, yanking him towards his home. Kendall's throat formed a huge lump and he blinked tears away with his snowflake-covered eyelashes. They stomped through the snow to his apartment, which wasn't much warmer inside than it was outside. All eyes of the tenants were on him and the cops as they barged through the door.
"Kendall?" Mrs. Knight asked. 10 year old Katie was nestled in her arm, as fragile and tiny as a pale toddler.
"I'm sorry, Ma," Kendall choked out. One cop thrust Kendall's few belongings into his arms while the other explained to his mother what happened.
"We caught Kendall stealing again from a street merchant. As we have warned before, he will have to stay at the Harlem Hebrew Orphanage until the age of 18," he said. Kendall stared at the dirt floor guiltily. He couldn't look his mama in the eyes. She had pleaded with him not to cause any more trouble after the last time he was caught acting rambunctious. They had taken the boy to court, and she had agreed to the boy's home. It was either that or jail, and jail was no place for a young boy to grow up.
Kendall avoided looking at his heartbroken mama as he quickly through the few items of clothing that he owned into a sack. He placed a quick, chaste kiss to his little sister's forehead and looked into her huge, sick, scared brown eyes.
"Kendall?" She asked, confused as to what was going on. She coughed and Kendall patted her back gently.
"I'll come back for you Katie," he promised. He chanced a look at his mom, who brought Kendall into her arms for a warm hug.
"You listen to me Kendall," she said sternly. "Don't you worry about us here. You'll have it so much better where you're going. A better education, a warm bed, food every day."
"I'd rather starve than not be able to take care of you and Katie," Kendall whispered.
With that, the cops pulled Kendall away from his home and family.
A/N Tricked ya'll! Logan will come in later! Sorry for the delay, I will update some more asap. I am actually at work right now haha. Also, I leave for an 8-day Disney Cruise on Friday so I will try to get at least one more chapter up by then! Reviews are appreciated, if you have time. I love hearing what you guys think xoxo!