I do not own anything please do not sue. This story is purely written by a fan for others and I make no profit what so ever. Huge thanks to my friend and beta FraggleDragon XXX Now on with the story.

The final straw, the one that actually broke the proverbial camels back, came not as a great epiphany but in a few simple words. Those words ended my fathers hold on me.

From early on I never had what you would call a normal life. My mother disappeared not long after my brother was born. Looking back now I can't blame her for leaving although I would love to ask her why she didn't take us with her.

My father was always an angry man, hell, it must be genetic, and with my mother gone I took the brunt of that anger protecting my baby brother, Joe, from anything he hurled at us. I learnt he was also a stickler for rules and God help me if I failed to tow the line.

One such incident springs to mind, way back when I was 15, he had me delivering packages all over the neighbourhood. The sun was beating down and all the kids were in the streets playing, eating ice cream, and I thought to hell with it and decided to take my first day off. I spent the whole day with friends just being a teenager for a change instead of a courier or protector or housemaid.

Wasn't until I walked through the front door that I remembered about the package still in my rucksack, by then it was too late and my father's fist hit me full force. I remember crawling along the floor trying to get to my room and the sanctuary it provided. Trying to dodge fists, feet and whatever else he threw at me, with little success.

The rest of that night blurred into a haze. That was the night I found out first hand what the stuff I was delivering did to somebody. My father said if I would rather goof off with my degenerate friends then I may as well do it on a high. If I was gonna fuck up I may as well be fucked up.

I woke up the following morning stiff and sore from head to toe. I don't think an inch of my body was left free of bruises. It took me almost two hours to get myself and Joe up and dressed, only because Joe wouldn't stop trying to help me which only caused more pain. Poor kid, he'd seen me take a beating before but I think the severity of this scared him witless. After promising to see a doctor I finally managed to get him to go to school.

The excuse to the ER nurse went along the same lines as normal, I got jumped and I didn't see anyone. After five hours I had a new set of broken ribs, seven to be exact, listed in my medical file along with a cracked cheekbone, two broken fingers, seven stitches above my left eye, a broken nose and bruises upon bruises.

The pain killers they prescribed did nothing to take the pain away so I went snooping around my father's "office" to find a little of what he so graciously forced on me the previous night. At the time I said it was just to take the pain away but now I'm older and wiser I know that I was just jonesing for another hit.

I was never one for needles so I stuck to snorting and snort I did. At my lowest point, in the three years I was using, I packed more into my system than I delivered on any given day. That was until the morning I came home after being out all night to find my brother lying in a pool of his own blood.

The ER doc's said he was lucky, if you can call being beaten to within an inch of your life lucky. All I could think about is how I failed him, didn't help that I was so tweaked I hadn't slept in five days. I made the choice there and then to get clean and become Joe's protector again.

I knew it wouldn't be easy but I had to for Joe, not me.

Anyways, we got out of our "family" home and got an apartment. Even after six months of being clean I still craved the high but seeing the scar across my brother's cheek was all the incentive I needed to deny the craving.

My father thought it was hilarious that I had been snorting the merchandise and took every opportunity to rub it in my face, even going so far as to keep handing me Kleenex when I walked into the room.

I couldn't protect Joe in the end. He was stabbed by the father of a boy he killed. The father didn't have much faith in the judicial system so he went and punished Joey in his own brand of justice. Needless to say we avenged my little brother by wiping out the rest of the guys family, or so I thought until Heco, one of my guys, phoned.

Hanging up, I grabbed my bag and turned to leave only to see my father's car headed towards me. He'd launched into a diatribe as soon as he got out the car, acting the big man, but the only words that I heard were "Do you know how much I gotta wipe your fucking nose?" My father picked the wrong night to try and goad me. I saw red and it wasn't just the blood that sprayed out of the exit wound.

"Thanks, Dad. I'm taking the car."

With that I took the keys, started the car and sped towards the "Office" to find out what the rest of the night had in store for me, feeling freer than I had in years.

Who would have thought it would be that easy to rid myself of my demons, hell, if I'd have known before I would have done it years ago.