"Hey, Pigeon. Want to do something new?" Justin asked as soon as I answered the phone. "I can't. I actually should be asleep." I said. "I have to wake up for church early tomorrow."
"Sneak out- duh!" He said, then quickly adding, "I'll be there in seven minutes. Dress casually." And then he hung up.
I didn't really get to argue with him. I thought about calling him back, but I wasn't falling asleep anytime soon, so I decided to go ahead and change out of my pajama shorts and t-shirt.
At eleven-thirty, the roar of Justin's motorbike could be heard. I opened the window a minute later to make sure the coast was clear.
I opened the window and stuck my head out. "Oh Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou?" I recited Shakespeare in a whispery tone.
I heard a chuckle behind me. I was close to screaming, but a hand covered my mouth and pulled me close to their body. "Don't scream or you parents will hear." Justin's gruff voice whispered in my ear. I relaxed- sort of.
He dropped his hand from my mouth, but held me to him. He rested his head in the crook of my neck. "You smell good." He muttered into my hair.
I laughed softly and removed his hands from me.
He looked disappointed for a second, but the look disappeared as quickly as it had come. "We're going to be late if you don't hurry!" He scurried to the door.
He opened the balcony door for me; we both passed through. "You should really lock these." He closed the doors silently. "Someone could just barge into your room at any given time."
"You mean someone like you?" I pointed a finger at him.
"Exactly," he grinned. "Now just follow me."
I followed him as he climbed over the railing and slowly landed onto the wooden canopy we had outside. We gingerly walked across it to the side that was free of any part of the house.
Justin let his feet dangle and then turned onto his stomach. He dangled on the edge for a second before hanging from his arms. The muscles through his shirt were illuminated by the moonlight. It'd be a lie to say that he didn't look sexy in his jeans, sweatshirt, and messy hairdo.
He met my gaze and smirked. "Take a picture; it'll last longer."
I blushed for a second but the heat in my cheeks left quickly. "Why would I want a picture of your ugly face on my phone?"
"You'd love a picture of my face on your phone, don't lie." He grinned, finally letting go of the wooden beam after a few seconds more.
"Your turn." He said.
"I don't want to break my ankles." I said. We were about ten feet up in the air. And I was only about 5'4. The difference between my dangling body and the ground would be about 5 feet. I didn't want to risk it. Maybe he would, but I didn't want to. "Is there another way?" I looked around.
"Just jump. I'll catch you. I promise." Justin said.
"I don't know..."
"I'm leaving if you don't get your ass down here in ten seconds. One... Two... Three... Four... Five..." He started counting.
"You better catch me." I finally said. I could see him grin.
I took a breath, and then a leap.
In seconds I was in his arms. He caught me with a grunt. "Fuck," he groaned when he almost fell. He shook it off and let me stand. "I told you I would catch you." He puffed up his chest.
"Well, that might be, but guess what?" Justin paused. "The stupid guy got you to sneak out at almost midnight, so what does that make you?"
I paused to think. "I don't know. What does it make me?"
He stepped closer and leaned in. "More stupid," He whispered.
I laughed and pushed him back. "Whatever."
He shook his head, chuckling, and hauled me over to his ride.
He watched impatiently as I put the helmet over my head. He kicked the stand up and waited for me to latch onto him. Once I did, Justin didn't hesitate and was off in just seconds.
As far as I could see, Justin was breaking a few laws: passing stop signs, MAJOR speeding, and passing red lights (at least the ones that didn't have cameras or a cop near by).
We parked in a College lot. "What are we here for?" I asked. "I thought I'd finally show you how I make my money." He answered plainly.
Oh, this will be interesting.
"Just follow me," He said. I followed closely behind Justin as he led me through the grass and around the corner of a building.
"Jefferson Hall," I read the name engraved into the stone of the building. "Yep," Justin bent down and opened a window that was close to the ground. He dropped down flat on his stomach and scooted back. I heard his feet land on the concrete.
When he was on the other side he called to me. "Come in feet first, and when you get to your stomach, fall. Don't jump or you'll hit your head. If you fall, you should land on your feet."
Okay. Easy enough.
I did just as Justin did and lied on my stomach.
Justin's hands guided my feet and as I slid through the window, his hands went up. I froze when his hands touched my thighs.
When the window sill dug into my ribs, I fell ever so gracefully... Onto my ass.
"Well done, Grace." Justin helped hoist me up to my feet. "Thank you. Your advice just really helped." I glared at him.
"Whatever," he said.
"Is there not an easier way to get in here?" I asked.
"Hey! This is the VIP entrance. You should see how the others get in here." He grabbed my wrist and pulled me through what I suspected were corridors.
As we got walked, the yelling that I had heard earlier through the phone grew louder. I honestly didn't even know how Justin was walking in the dark. I could barely see with the extremely dim lights about every fifteen feet.
Finally, at the end of a hallway, there was light. I could actually see the silhouettes of people through the white curtain hanging in front of the entrance.
"I'm going to take you to Mark, my... Manager?... Yeah, I guess that's the right word.... You have to stay with him. Luke should be there too."
"Good. Stick with him like glue because it can get pretty hectic in there; I can't imagine what I'd do if something happened to you." He looked down at his feet when he said that last part.
I didn't know what to say so I just smiled at him. He pushed the curtain aside and we walked through a huge crowd. We found his cousin near the makeshift ring.
"This shouldn't take too long. I'll get us out of here as soon as possible. This is just part one of tonight." He kissed my forehead. I would've enjoyed the kiss if it weren't for stares I was getting from all the girls around us.
"Don't you fucking leave Luke's side." He grumbled against my skin.
"I know. You told me already." I giggled. "Just making sure," He said pulling away.
"Luke," Justin looked over my shoulder, "don't lose her."
"I got you, cousin. Now get out there and win!" He pushed Justin forward into the ring.
He sat in one corner with a guy that I assumed was his "manager". A few minutes later, Justin took his shirt off, and then his pants. He had shorts on underneath, thankfully.
You could almost hear all the college girls swoon at the sight of his body. Justin was shirtless, had on sneakers, and his shorts hung low revealing his v-line.
I, along with most of the girls, was starry-eyed. How could you not be?
"So you're the pigeon Justin is always talking about?" Mark, I assumed, studied me. He wasn't bad looking. He was probably 25 years old. His hair was dyed a nice color of grey that really suited his green eyes. I pulled out two Benjamins out of my pocket and slapped them into his hand.
"You're not the kind of girl I imagined." He chuckled.
"Yeah, well, I'm full of surprises."
Justin better win, or I'm out two-hundred dollars.
They called Justin's opponent to the ring: Matthew Braxton.
They bumped fists in the center of the "ring". A bell rang, and Matthew attacked.
He swung to hit Justin's face but it caught air. Again, he threw his fist to Justin's side, but Justin side-stepped, blocking what would've been a very painful blow to his ribcage.
Justin finally threw a punch to his opponent's throat and struck when Matthew was weak. His knee collided with Matt's face.
The volume of the crowd hit an all-time high. I couldn't even hear myself.
Braxton stood up, stumbling a little, but nonetheless stood. He sluggishly threw his fist to Justin's face. He missed again. But to my surprise, Matthew finally got Justin in his left side and another to his face.
I think it might have even surprised Justin because the look in his face was one of bewilderment. Matthew decided to test his luck, and swung again. He missed.
Justin landed a shot right in Braxton's jaw and down he went.
3 blows of a whistle.
Mark went to the center of the room, threw a red fabric square onto Matthew's beaten face, and then declared Justin the winner.
I watched as he disappeared into the crowd again. "C'mon," Luke grabbed my arm and started pushing me through the already congested room. "So, why my cousin?" Luke asked.
"Why did you choose him?"
"I don't know what you're talking about." I looked down at my shoes. "Of course you don't," He rolled his eyes. We stopped at the exit. I slipped behind the curtain. "Stay here. Justin will be here very soon." He exasperated. I stood in place and watched the shadows of people dance on the curtain.
Five minutes passed and no one came by. I pulled my phone out and turned the flashlight on.
Why didn't I do this before?
I turned on my heels and made a few steps. But then I stopped. I didn't know my way back.
"Farrah?" I recognized Justin's voice call into the darkness. "I'm here." I say and walk back slowly. "Jesus," he sighed a breath of relief. "I didn't see you and thought something might've happened..."
"Well, Justin, I'm here." I said finally standing in front of Justin. He tilted his head down- his lips pretty close to mine-his hands on my waist, and whispered, "Good."
He was close to pressing his lips against mine but Mark pushed the curtain aside.
"Justin, we have to talk."
"Go ahead," Justin slowly let his hands fall from my torso. "You can say whatever you have to say in front of her." He checked his phone for the time.
Mark nodded. "What the fuck were you doing out there?" I was surprised by his sudden outburst.
"What do you mean?" Justin was tapping his foot. "That was not a fight." Marked poked Justin's shoulder.
"Okay" was all Justin said. He took my hand in his. "I have to go," Justin pulled me back into the darkness. "Wait! Uh, Pigeon!" Mark called. I stopped. He pulled out a wad of cash. He put my winnings into my held out hand.
"You put in?" Justin looked at me. "Thought I'd get the whole experience." I shrugged. He chuckled. "I'll make it up to you, Mark. I promise."
"You better," was the final thing we heard Mark say as we walked away.
We climbed back out the small window and to the motorbike.
"Are you okay?" I asked, finally seeing that Justin had a busted lip but nothing major. "Yeah, it barely hurt on impact anyways." Justin straddled his bike as I examined his face.
"He wouldn't have even touched me if I hadn't looked up. Before he swings-"
"He takes a step forward. I noticed." I smiled smugly. "He also clenches then unclenches his fist."
"Someone's very observant." He pinches my cheeks. I roll my eyes and sit behind him.
He revs the engine a few times before we officially take off.
"Where are we going now?" I ask when we come to a red light.
"We're going..." He holds his hand against mine. "somewhere." He finishes.
I narrow my eyes at him even though he can't see. "I hate you."
"You wish you could," he laughs. The light turns green and we're off again.
Everywhere I go with him has to be a mystery.