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Two Sides of a Coin
by James McClellan
03/20/06
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“Mi amigo, sorry to hear ‘bout Abuela. You survivin’?” asked Victor, or V, as he had become known on the street.

“I’m scared. I don’t know how I’m going to live. I don’t think my six fifty an hour job is going to pay the bills.”

“You want to score some benjamins? I’m your man.” V boasted as he produced a roll of hundred dollar bills and waved it enticingly.

A nod from Andres sealed the deal. He knew V could deliver, though it was probably not through anything legal. “You got to do, what you got to do,” he thought to himself.

V smiled and wrapped his arm around his old friend’s shoulders. “I thought I lost you forever to that crackpot Padre from St. Mary’s. It’s good to know where your loyalties lie.

“Man, my loyalties lie in my roots! We had some good times when we was kids. I only went to Padre Marcell ‘cause Abuela asked me to. If the Padre’s God were real my grandmother would still be with me.”

It felt great to be back in his one time best friend’s good graces. “So business is good, huh?”

That evening, three young men entered the Seven Eleven, just as they had planned. Lewis, the third party, burst through the door, pistol drawn and demanded the money.

The man behind the counter popped the drawer like he was going to comply. He told them he didn’t want any trouble.

The blast startled Andres into action. He reached for his piece and brought it out with a trembling hand as he watched Lewis’s form crumple to the ground. The attendant turned the shotgun in his direction.

A second shot sounded and the clerk fell to the floor, dropping his weapon. V’s gun was still smoking when he screamed at Andres, “Let’s get out of here!”

Knowing that they had to split quickly, Andres grabbed the cash from the open drawer, and bolted catching up with his companion.

“You cool, man? It wasn’t supposed to go down like that.” V stated.

Still shaking the new recruit replied, “I’m straight,” as he puked out the window. A loud screech came from the tires as the robbers sped off into the night.

The next evening, Victor threw open the door of Abuela’s house wielding his 9mm. “5-0’s crawlin all over this place. They raided my crib, lookin for me! Word is you squealed! I thought we was homies!”

“We are, man! I’m sorry, I was scared. The cops told me I’d spend the rest of my life in jail. They told me you made a statement, saying I was the triggerman. They lied and made me cut a deal. It wasn’t my fault. It doesn’t have to be this way.”

Andres felt the cold steel of the muzzle press into his temple.

“Please V, forgive me!”

****

“Mi amigo, sorry to hear ‘bout Abuela. You survivin’?” asked Victor or V as he had become known on the street.

“I’m a little nervous about payin’ the bills, but everything will be fine. I’ll find the cash somewhere.”

“You want to score some benjamins? I’m your man.” Victor boasted as he produced a roll of hundred dollar bills and waved it enticingly.

“Na, I’m straight. Thanks though,” Andres replied.

Victor stood there. “I never thought I’d lose you to that crackpot Padre, from St. Mary’s. I hope you know where your loyalties lie.”

“You ain’t lost me, Victor; I’m still your boy. Padre Marcell is cool. His God is real and I believe him. Abuela believed in Christ too, she died with such peace. Check it out. She was the one who was dying and givin’ me comfort. This stuff gives me hope ya know. She’s in heaven, and no longer hurtin. My loyalties lie with Christ.”

“We’ll see about that.” Victor sneered. “When you change your mind you know where to find me.”

That evening, three young men entered the Seven Eleven, just as they had planned. One of them burst through the door, pistol drawn and demanded all the money.

The man behind the counter popped the drawer like he was going to comply. He told them he didn’t want any trouble.

The blast startled Andres into action. His soda dropped to the floor as Andres dived onto the floor. He knew these guys. Victor, Lewis and Ramon were robbing the store. He watched Lewis’s form crumple to the ground, as the attendant turned the shotgun toward Ramon.

A second shot sounded and the clerk fell to the floor, dropping his weapon.
Victor’s gun was still smoking when he screamed, “Let’s get out of here!”

Ramon grabbed the cash from the open drawer and headed for the door, with Victor close on his heels.

Victor suddenly noticed Andres near the slushie machine. “We tight?” Victor asked Andres. It was more of a threat than a question as he pointed his gun.

“Yeah, we’re tight,” was the reluctant reply. The two armed men ran for the door. After checking the fallen, Andres dialed 911. He heard the loud screech from the tires as the, robbers sped off into the night.

The next evening, Victor threw open the door of Abuela’s house wielding his 9mm. “5-0’s crawlin’ all over this place. They raided my crib, lookin’ for me, man! Word is you squealed! I thought we was tight!”

“Man, we are, I still care about you, and so does Christ, but you killed a man. I couldn’t lie about it when they questioned me. It doesn’t’ have to be this way.”

Andres felt the cold steel of the muzzle press into his temple.

“Victor, I forgive you.”

If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW

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