The sun came streaming through the small break in between my curtains as my phone started vibrating. Yawning, I grabbed it and hit answer.
“Hello?” I asked, sleepily.
“You are fucking late!” a voice that use to terrify me as a child came through the phone. The voice belonged to Juan. Juan is who my father use to work for and he is who I now work for. “What the fuck are you doing?”
“I am not late,” I swung myself out of the bed, knowing I really was late. I nearly knocked everything off my nightstand trying to look at the clock.
I was late by about thirty minutes. I had fifteen minutes to meet with a new supplier for Juan in the city.
“Oh really? Because the guy I sent to pick you up and be your ride says you never showed,” he was angry and I knew that I would pay for this later.
“Calm down Juan,” I fumbled into some jeans. “We will be late but I will take care of it all. Where is my driver?”
Putting on my shoes and tying them as fast as I could, still holding the phone up to my ear. I looked over at the clock, 7:47. No time to actually do anything else. I grabbed some gum, popping the wrapper off and slipping it into my mouth.
The window was my only way out because my mom would hear me if I left through an actual door. I slipped out and made the four foot drop to the ground.
“Where is he?” I asked Juan.
“Top of the hill. You better not fuck this up Maria.”
And I knew exactly what he meant by it. You fuck up the business you basically are committing suicide.
“Who is driving me? Carlos or Pablo?” I said zipping up my jacket.
“Neither,” Juan was getting annoyed with me and I would really have to pay him back for all of this soon.
“Okay?” I sighed reaching the bottom of the hill. “I’ll stop by with your shipment later ton-,” and before I could finish my sentence he had hung up on me.
“Bastard,” I mumbled glad that he could not hear me anymore.
Quickly, I jogged up to the top of the hill where I saw a black F-150 parked in the usual spot I got picked up at. I opened the door and climbed into the truck, surprised by who was looking behind the wheel.
“Next time be on time,” his smooth voice called, starting the engine. “I don’t want to get in trouble on account of you.”
Finally he turned to look at me and I was still staring at him, mouth agape.
It was Rico. The boy from the other night that had been interested in me. The boy who I actually felt something with.
“What are you doing here?” we both said in unison.
“Juan put you with me? You fucking asked! You sneaky little bastard. I knew you had to be involved in something to be at that bonfire the other night,” I rolled my eyes and shifted in the seat. “Well fucking drive before we both end up dead.”
Rico didn’t say anything but start driving in the direction we needed to go. He slowly exhaled, making a left onto the main road.
“I didn’t ask to be put with you. Carlos got shot last night. He was going to come out and do this but Juan said if something went wrong he needed someone to watch out for him. I never thought you would be mixed up in all of this,” Rico drew in another breath. “I mean, you don’t look like you would be involved.”
“Because I am a girl right? Well let me tell you something I am the best person for this job. Ask Juan. Ask anybody,” I rolled my eyes and just focused my attention out the window.
“You deserve better,” Rico mumbled, taking a right.
“I don’t okay? My whole life got fucked up a long time ago. This is the only thing I am good at and I am going to do it. I am the best pusher Juan has ever had.”
“When he told me that I would be helping out Mario’s kid I never thought it would be Mario’s daughter. I remember seeing your dad with mine,” I cut him off.
“Rule number one. Don’t talk about my dad. You drive.”
And that was the end of the conversation we had that day. Even after we picked up all the product we said nothing to each other. There was nothing that could be said. Little did I know that this was the beginning of a long working experience for the two of us.