Chapter 1 : Prologue
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**July 9, 1985**
A young blonde haired, blue-eyed boy near five sat on his foam mattress in his room alert. It wasn’t a large room, and to anyone it would seem in unlivable circumstances, but it had been his home from he was born and he’d become used to it. After all, he’d been in poverty for as long as he could remember. He was thirsty and wanted some water from the sink, but knew better than to leave the room. Whenever his mother had her male “clients” over, he was to stay out of sight and silent. But still, Tyler, the young boy, could not help but feel something strange about this particular night. The doorbell had not rung when the man entered, instead a loud thud came and through the crack Tyler could see the door had been knocked down. A loud baritone voice had called out his mother’s name and she seemed frightened by its sound. Tyler had never seen so much fear in her eyes. A loud crash made him jump and Tyler crawled across the bed and over to the door, opening the crack just enough so that he could see out into the living room.
He saw the deep chocolate color of a man whom he’d seen walking down the block many times. He was wearing a tank and his jeans sagged below his waist. Tyler could see the thick piece of metal sticking out of his belt. His voice became louder as Tyler watched him back his mother into a corner.
“Bitch you think I’m stupid?!” he yelled at her as his hands grabbed her throat. Tyler wanted to scream, to run out and tell the man to stop, to let him know he was hurting her.
“I done told your trick ass ‘bout not payin me my money! I don’t give a fuck what excuse you have I want my shit and I want it now!” Tyler and his mother both winced as the man bellowed. Tyler heard his mother’s whimper and saw the faint glint of tears on her face, he knew them well for he’d seen her cry in despair many times.
“I…I…I don’t…h-have it,” she stuttered out. There was a loud smack when the dark man’s hand made contact with Tyler’s mother’s face. A lump rose in Tyler’s throat and he felt tears coming on his face. His mother seemed to be pleading, begging for forgiveness for whatever crime she’d committed.
“I’m sorry,” she said. “Please just give me one more chance,” she begged. The man snickered above her.
“Bitch please!” the man yelled laughing. “You only get three strikes”. Three loud bangs followed the man’s last sentence, and then there was no sound.
Tyler watched until the man walked back out the doorway before he opened the door all the way. He saw his mother lying in the corner and her blonde hair fell over her face. Her ice blue eyes stared at him through the strands with no life. He walked over to her and sat down. She was wearing a red shirt, but he could differentiate the color of the shirt from where the blood soaked her body. He shook her body.
“Mommy, wake up. Wake up,” he said in his light voice. He shook her lifeless body one more time and finally gave up. Tyler knew she was gone. He scooted in next to her and laid his head on her chest. And as he began to cry, his tears mixed with her still leaking blood.