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For Audrey, ‘wanna hang’ is a question with no good answer

Fellowship Story Showcase

For Audrey, ‘wanna hang’ is a question with no good answer

Audrey's new living situation brings tough choices.
Saturday, January 12, 2019

By Amarion Sanders, Jamie Burt and Tabares Scott

Audrey, 15, is short and has black hair, green eyes, braces and a rough attitude.

I wake to the sound of my alarm, dreading my first day of school.

I hit snooze, planting my face back into my pillow. Footsteps grow louder as someone stomps up the stairs. My older brother barges through my door with a mischievous grin on his face.

“You already woke? Lucky, I was gonna yank you off the bed,” he says as he walks back out.

I let out a deep sigh, wondering what this school year will be like. I leave my room and walk into the bathroom and begin brushing my teeth.

Staring in the mirror, I get lost in my bright green eyes.

“Wake up! I’m heading out!” My brother shouts up the stairs, causing me to jump and snag my toothbrush on my braces.

These things are parasites! At least they take the attention off my lazy eye. I take a hairbrush from the cabinet and lay it on the sink.

I should get dressed before I do anything to my hair.

Walking back into my room, my older cousin, also my guardian, walks from her room.

“Hurry up and stop leaving your dirty clothes in the hallway! You don't have maids here!” I roll my eyes and continue getting dressed.

It was never like this when I lived in Cincinnati with my parents. Only reason I’m here is because I expected too much, I suppose. I had everything a teenage girl needed and more. My disrespect and ungratefulness led me here.

Now I know what it’s like.

After pulling my long black hair into a ponytail, I head out for school. Walking down the dirty pathways of my neighborhood, called Morris Black, I hear a group of kids.

They catch my attention as they are as loud as a stampede. I trip over and unevenly elevated sidewalk and fall to the ground.

“Are you ‘ight’?” an unfamiliar voice calls out. Not sure who said it, due to there being so many kids. I nod my head. They approach me with giggles coming from the crowd.

Aye! Wanna hang?” a girl, who also has braces, asks.

Decision A

“Yeah, I’ll hang with you,” I said. “What do you like to do?”

“Oh, we like to walk around and have fun,” one of the girls says. “We also like to fight. You down, right?”

Yeah, I’ll be fine, I think to myself.

“I can fight,” I say. “Let’s go.”

Little did I know what was waiting around the corner.

We stopped at the store. Some of the girls stole some candy. I felt like we were doing something fun. What did I care?

Then we all were all running and some people come up to us, trying to start something. They started to yell, and one girl hit another and that led to the other girls jumping in and that meant me too.

My brother walked by. He wanted to yank me out of the situation. Next thing I knew I heard a loud bang and my brother’s body hit the ground.

Decision B

“No,” I say as I walk off. I feel a hard push on my back, sending me back to the ground. Laughs explode behind me. I quickly get back up, only to be pushed back down.

When I get up to get myself off the floor, I see my brother, looking directly at me, walking towards me with his friends. “Audrey! What’s goin’ on?” he asks as he approaches us.

A kid in the crowd tells him to mind his business and laughs break out again. “This is my sister and I asked her, not YOU kid.”

The kid who spoke from the crowd reveals himself. He’s wearing all black and a black beanie. He looked about the same age as my brother, who is 19.

Get out of here while we lettin’ you,” the guy says as he reaches to his side. Maybe he has a gun. The wind tickles me as this thought repeats in my head. “I’m not goin' anywhere until you apolo-” POP!

[This story was originally published by]