I stumbled out of the elevator, drunk, pissed off, and I wasn’t wanting to deal with the damn elevator! WHY! I hate this apartment building and I hate this city. I stumbled onto the floor out in the hallway and looked up only to find my father in his boxers holding his glock. It was there just in case. He never left the apartment without it.
“Have a nice night?” He asked with a grin.
“Peachy!” I answered with a bit of hatefulness. “Are you gonna help me up or what?”
He lifted me up and helped me walk to the apartment door. He then helped me into the bathroom where I sat and puked everything I ate, including my birthday cake. Frosting isn’t all that great when it’s hurled up. “You know this isn’t going to get you out of leaving tomorrow. Now off to bed, I’ll wake you in a couple of hours.” He said to me with an even larger grin.
I just glared at him. Was he actually serious! I was totally shit faced and he was still making me get up in the morning to get on a freaking bus!
“GET UP!” I heard at the crack of dawn. Holy crap, he was serious! “WAKE UP!” He bellowed again as he banged my door. “RISE AND SHINE DAVID, YOU HAVE FIFTEEN MINUTES BEFORE THE TAXI GETS HERE!”
“Alright! I’ll get up! Leave me the hell alone!” I yelled out. My head was pounding, my stomach was turning, and I was not in the mood to argue. I just wanted sleep.
“I’ll get the coffee going!” He screamed back. I could hear him laughing. I knew he thought me having a hangover was funny. I was always the one telling him he’d never find me drunk as a skunk and pissing myself.
I looked around my room one last time before I left. I didn’t have to pack. Dad said that the Marines will be giving me everything I needed. Great, I won’t own a thing of my own for the next four years. Still it was humble to look around my room. This room use to be great. My dad had put the wallpaper up when I was a toddler, it was now coming off slowly. Well room, this is it. I thought to myself. I looked at the door and I could smell the black coffee being brewed.
I had my morning coffee with my dad. I even asked if I could have a shot from his hidden flask. “Ha! You wish. You are doing this sober today.” He laughed as he poured a shot into his own mug.
“Like I’m sober. I can still feel the throbbing.” I laid my head down on the table.
“Get up!” He yelled back. I finished my coffee and he started to walk me to the door. “Well son, this is it.”
“Yup.” There was an awkward silence. I held out my hand. I didn’t know what else to do. I was a grown man and my father wasn’t Mr. Sensitive. “Well, bye pops.”
A hand wasn’t good enough though. My father took me in his arms and hugged me. “Goodbye my son. I am so proud of you.”
Gee, I wonder if that has anything to do with the fact he forced this on me. “Thanks dad. I promise I’ll do my best.”
“Write me, call me. I want to hear all about my son, the jarhead!.”
The buzzer by the door went off and we both knew that meant the taxi was here.
“Give my love to Lonni.” I told him as I walked out the door. Why was this the one day she had to work?
“Where to?” The taxi driver asked as I climbed in.
“City Hall.” I answered in reply. I stiffened up. I knew I could change my mind right now and tell him to drive off to Sunset Valley just over the hill. I had no money though, except for the twenty my dad handed me for the taxi ride.
As the taxi drove off I took one last look. This was it, I no longer had to call the dump of a building home. I was out of that joint.
I arrived at the recruiting office where five other young guys like me waited. We all stood quietly and looked at each other. Some of them I went to school with, I think. I at least remember one of them from a class, not sure which. The sergeant came in and ordered all of us on to the white bus that was waiting out back. I climbed into the bus and looked out the window, hoping that this was the right choice. I prayed that it was. I didn’t want to die before I ever got the chance to start my own farm, or to find someone to love. I wanted to wait out my four years and then start the life I wanted.