My friends were in a band. They shared a house in a bad part of town in a neighborhood that was riddled with gangs. In fact, my cousin’s boyfriend was the son of one the biggest gang leaders known. They lived near the house of my friends. Along with them, my father’s father had a house nearby, just one street down.
The neighborhood was old style America. Big houses made of wood panels. Being a Latino neighborhood, the houses were all sorts of funky or bright colors.
Living in a city of one of the Chicago suburbs led me to have pretty thick skin. I wouldn’t call myself fearless. Maybe I was lacking common sense. I have heard that everyone has this fear serum in their brains. Of course, some more than others. I think this is the fluid that gives one good judgement.
Maybe this is what I was lacking. One night my best friend Kate, my sister and I went to watch the guys in the band practice. The band room was in the attic. The space was quite tight with all their gear set up. It was around 9:00pm.
My father, being well familiar with this side of town, forbid us to ever go there. Throughout my life, my father never forbid much. We were strictly told hanging around this part of town was a no-no. My parents were divorced and my sister and I lived with my mom. This made it pretty difficult for my father to enforce any of his rules. My mother would not care if we were at the house.
So, we were at the house. By city ordinance, the guys had to be quiet after 10:00pm. This was pretty early for musicians living La Vida Loca. Even so, they minded the ordinance. We all were trying to enjoying the hour or so of music we had. Peeling off one song right after another, I get the standard of being the usual load and obnoxious one of the bunch.
I was quite clever and creative, too.
In between songs we heard a knock at the door. Us groupees were the closest to the stairs and were given the task to make our way down while the guys waited for our report.
Being in the front, I was the first to see a flashlight and someone all dressed in black looking in the window of the side door. Instantly, my eyes grew round and my heart began to race. Quickly, I glanced around the living room to see if anything looked suspicious.
I backed up and whispered loudly, “Someone’s trying to get in!”
“No,” said my sister in disbelief. She was always the more logical one.
Then collectively the three of us saw and heard the brass doorknob wiggle.
To be Continued…