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A dude is picked up by his two friends, Barry and Mario. They're going to kickback at the Glendale Galleria, a mall. They leave his house at around 8pm. For some reason, instead of going to the mall, the three teenagers took a detour and went to visit some friends. Barry and Mario get off the car, and the dude, hereafter known as Shorty, remains inside. He's tired and isn't in the mood to socialize.
An hour passes and somebody approaches the passenger window. It was BoyLoco, one of the dudes who were kickingback with Mario and Barry. BoyLoco asked Shorty to come inside and kick it with them. After several declines, Shorty gave in.
They walked into an apartment. The people inside were having beer and smoking pot. Shorty was offered some. He turned them down. Having noticed that his friend was now part of the party, Mario and Barry kept staring at him. After several stares, Mario walks up to Shorty and tells him, "if they ask you if you wanna join, whatever you say, say it with firmness." The dude had no idea what Mario was talking about. Mario walked away.
Throughout the night, Barry and Mario wouldn't get their eyes off their friend. They'd watch him closely as if expecting a message from him. Shorty would just shrug and go about his bussiness of being surrounded by unfamiliar drunks. He was there physically, but that was that. People around him would be talking endlessly and all he'd see would be the dancing of their lips. He had no idea what was going on.
All of a sudden, everyone got up. They were going somewhere. One of the women present said, "don't take him, leave him here". The dudes ignored her plead. They told Shorty that everyone was going to an alley to tag on some walls.
Shorty walked behind them. Barry approached him and told him, "they're gonna jump you". In disbelief, he smiled. A nervous smile.
They arrived. It was the "backyard" of a warehouse. Not even a block away from the place where they were kicking it. They asked shorty to go into a corner, and then they huddled away from him. The dude still did not know what was happening. They were supposedly there to tag, but none of them had a spray can. Strange.
One of the dudes approached him. Shorty was asked me to choose between Mario and Barry... he needed to fight one of them.
On one side was Mario, they were friends but not close friends. In fact, they had had a fight before. Mario was a gangmember with fighting experience, bigger than Shorty and chances are, he was going to kick his arse. On the other side was Barry, a close friend.
Shorty was given no choice. He had to fight because he had to fight. He picked Mario. They walked toward each other. Not having any freaking idea how he was going to handle this dude, Shorty put his fists up. They went at it. It was a boxing match between a dude who hadn't fought in some time versus a dude who was at the verge of falling on his own vomit. Yes, Mario was bigtime drunk. Shorty landed some shots, blocked a few, and ducked a couple. He was getting big time tired, and Mario was getting frustrated that the other dude was pretty good at dancing and avoiding hits. Not wanting to play this game no more, Shorty threw himself at the dude and got him on the ground. Once there, he had the chance to take a few shots... he did not. He thought he had made a point.
He was barely getting up when four drunk mofos come toward him ready to beat his arse. At first, Shorty hit back. He got hit a couple of times but felt no pain. Seeing how this was a battle he was going to lose, Shorty gave up and just protected his head. Barry was watching, verbally trying to get them to stop.
They stopped. They gave Shorty a hand and helped him up. They were smiling and congratulating him. He still did not know what was going on. He was just relieved that the beating was over.
They returned to the apartment. The ladies were still there. Shorty looked at them and tried to thank them, with a facial gesture, for having tried to stop them from kicking his arse.
It was around 3 or 4 am when he finally got home. He layed on his sofa and tears started dripping from his eyes. He could have felt bad for the beating he took. He could have felt bad for the fact that a close friend of his witnessed the beating and did not back him up. No, it was none of that. He was feeling bad because he felt he had betrayed his parents' trust. According to the thugs, the beating he took symbolized his joining of their gang. He had been "jumped-in" by force...