Summary: Separately they were a jokester, a dreamer, a ladies'-man, a guardian, a car mechanic, an abused teen, and a convicted criminal. Together, they were a family. The thoughts, emotions, and trials that occurred after the Curtis parents' death but before the novel. The unwritten events that made them all more than the average gang. Rated T for language, violence, and suggested themes.

The Eastside Gang

Chapter 1: Bail Money

Dallas

"Winston, how many times I've gotta tell ya man…the answer is no," Buck declares stubbornly. Damn the little prick doesn't normally last this long. He doesn't decide to grow balls often, but every now and then he learns how to stick up for himself. I should really do something about that.

"Buck man…it's fifty bucks. I mean it's not like I'm askin' for a lot. 'Sides it's for a good cause," I reason smoothly. I figure there's really no reason to get all upset since I know I'll eventually get it out of him. Sylvia slides her arms around my waist from behind, smelling like weed and cheap alcohol.

"Bustin' Tim outta jail for the fifth time in the past three months is hardly a good cause. I'm fuckin' sick of it. The bastard still owes me a hundred dollars for the last time I bailed his ass out," Buck complains. Sylvia bites my ear, trying to get my attention.

"Syl, Babe, tell Bucky here that bailin' ole Tim outta jail is a good cause," I order slyly. If I can just get Sylvia to tempt him for me…well Buck's one hell of a pushover when it comes to women. She takes the hint, sliding from me to him seductively, and wraps her arms around his neck.

"Bucky…bailing Tim out of the cooler is a good cause. And ya know…there might be something in for it for you," She whispers. I can see him breaking under her intoxicated flirting.

"Ah man…you owe me big time for this Winston. And I mean big," He complains, grabbing the bills from his pocket and shoving them into my hand. "And you can tell Tim too, that if he, or that good-for-nothing brother of his gets locked up again…"

"Yeah, yeah…you aint bailing him out," I answer for him, grabbing my girl and heading towards the door. She waves to him flirtatiously as she stumbles along behind me.

"Where are we going….doll?" She slurs drunkenly. She falls into the stolen Cadillac I'm driving and pulls me in with her. "You wanna have some fun?" She implies. I look back towards Buck's place and shrug.

"Hell yeah," I answer. "Tim can wait"

Two-Bit

"And then she said that if I didn't go with her…well, then, she'd look like a fool to her ex-boyfriend and all the other girls at school. I couldn't just let her be humiliated babe," I explain rapidly. Karen gives me her I-know-you're-lying look. I've never been a good liar.

"Okay Keith…even if I believed you're little 'girl without a prom date' story, it wouldn't explain why I found the two of you behind the school dumpster, making out, three days before prom," She answers angrily. Damn…I didn't think about that. She slaps me, hard, and walks to her car furiously.

"Karen…c'mon….we can work this out," I reason. Please don't laugh, please don't laugh, I beg myself.

"Oh yeah, work this out Keith Matthews!" She exclaims, flipping me off. Then she shoves herself into the car and drives away.

"Man…and I thought it was such a good story," I say out loud. "Oh well, she'll get over it."

"Hey Two-bit, what was all that about?" Curly calls from his place in the famous 'make-out' spot. I laugh to myself again and stroll over to Curly casually.

"Karen caught me cheatin. Really, I had a good reason, but she wouldn't listen to me," I explain. Curly looks at me understandingly then tosses a glance to the girl in the passenger seat of the car.

"Women," He mutters. "Hop in. I'll drop this chick off and then we can catch some action." I follow his request, always in the mood to steal something, break something, or do something. The girl tosses me an annoyed look as I climb into the back if the car.

"You steal this?" I ask Curly, already knowing the answer.

"Hell, yeah," He answers proudly. "Dallas and I stole a bunch of them a few nights ago. Sellin' em' soon, but for now…" He starts up the car and races off, paying little attention to the road.

"I didn't know you could drive," I say to myself more than to him. He gives me an amused look through the review mirror.

"I can't," He admits, speeding up a good ten miles per hour. He lets the girl off at some government housing projects, and speeds away without saying goodbye. I crawl into the front seat clumsily.

"Where is Dallas tonight anyways?" I wonder aloud. Curly gives me a knowing look.

"With Sylvia…again," He answers, turning too quickly. He runs a red light, ignoring the honking horns.

"He bailin' Tim out again?" I ask, though I already know the answer. He came to me asking for money for the 'cause'. Curly nods distractively and passes me a mischievous look.

"Aint that Officer Wages' car?" He asks. I look over at the car that most defiantly belongs to the cop that locked Tim up for underage drinking. I smirk and nod.

"That's the one," I agree. He stops the car and stares at it dangerously.

"Wanna see how fast it'll go?" He tempts, already getting out of the car. I move over to the driver's seat and put the car into gear.

"I'll race ya," I answer smugly.

Johnny

Steve and Soda ram into the coffee table, dumping the pile of cards on the floor. Pony gives me an exasperated look, since this isn't the first time this has happened…in the last five minutes.

"Guys…cut it out!" Darry hollers from the kitchen. This is the third times he's yelled at them, producing no effect.

"I will beat you, Curtis," Steve declares, flipping Soda onto his back. Pony smirks at Steve's failed attempts to 'beat' his brother. Soda almost always wins with all the energy he has.

"You wanna go outside where we can hear ourselves think?" Pony asks me. I shrug and stand up, pulling my jacket on. I'm used to fighting and yelling, but Pony values quietness more than I do.

"Darry, Johnny and I are going to take a walk!" Pony calls from the front door. Darry comes to the edge of the kitchen, surveying the scene, and nods.

"Alright, but don't go far and not too long. We're eating soon," He answers. The two of us head to the lot, my home away from home, in silence.

"It's weird to think of all the people who could be looking at these same stars right now," Pony mutters, pulling his jacket tighter around him. I plop down on the grass beside him and stare up at the sky.

"Yeah," I answer. I wonder where Dally is.

Continue? This story will focus on all the gang, but it will include points of view from all the characters in The Outsiders. No new characters either. Please read and review.