Song 32 ♪ Supermassive A** Hole

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That was not the kind of thing I expected to hear at a party full of white people. Yet, it had never really happened at parties in my barrio. Although a few of those had turned out rowdier than was acceptable, it seemed like nobody had given enough of a damn to call the cops. Years of living among people who didn't have all their papers, skirted a fine line between what was legal and not, or simply had skin that was considered too dark to be innocent, had trained me to keep my head and hair under the radar. I had a lot more riding on being well behaved than probably anybody else in this room. Except Quinn.

He and I looked at each other, the same type of horror written on his face.

I jumped to action. I grabbed Ash's hand and tugged at him. Thank goodness he followed without resisting. I screamed for Leti and DeAndre and was glad when they appeared with Addy. I looked around me and saw that Ayrton was just behind us, with Link and Madison. That was all the people I cared about together.


But then there was a stream of people stumbling over each other to make it out of the single door at the entrance of the house. Just behind where we'd been playing there was a huge window. "Follow me," I told them.

They dashed to it behind me. We pulled it open and jumped out of it, falling on the other side onto the grass in a single heap. I saw a couple run by us, a tall dark haired boy pushing a redhead girl in front of him, as if he didn't dare lose sight of her for a second.

I felt somebody pull me up and saw DeAndre. If we got caught, he could also lose his promising modeling career.

"We have to get the hell out of dodge," he said.

"What about your instruments?" Addy asked, eyes wide like she couldn't believe what was happening.

"We're more important," Ashton said. He grabbed my hand, even though his eyes were trained on DeAndre's face. "I'll take care of her."

My friend's lips pulled back into a snarl. "I'm sure you will, white boy. You're invisible to the cops."

I gasped.

"Okay, we don't have time for this shit." Leti pushed them away from each other. "We need to fucking run."

So run we did, straight out into the street. I clenched my hand tight around Ashton's and was glad that he didn't let me go. We all veered left, away from the house following Ayr. He'd parked the van by himself after we'd off loaded the instruments into the house. I tried to focus on his back as he ran ahead of us, not on the instruments we'd left behind that surely cost more money than what my ma made in a year, or on what could happen.

We almost crashed into each other, braking into a halt. A scream escaped my throat as Ayrton narrowly avoided being ran over by a patrol car that suddenly appeared in front of us, blocking our path.

In a panic, Ayrton turned around, screaming at us to run, but we were blocked on the other side by a policeman in a motorcycle.

The latter screamed at us, "Freeze right there. Put your hands up in the air!"

Oh shit.

I froze and seemed unable to follow instructions. I just couldn't believe this was happening. He repeated his demand and I was only able to comply when Ashton let my hand go and whispered at me to do as he said.

My heart broke as I saw Quinn and DeAndre ahead of me, their hands raised higher than the rest of us, their large, muscled limbs trembling as their hearts pumped terror directly into their veins. I prayed for us, prayed true like I had never.

Hindsight was 20/20, and in retrospective I could see that we were so lucky that all that happened was that we got patted down and bundled into police cars. It could've been so much worse. Especially for the boys.

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