In Atlanta XXXVII… Chapter 37

It’s going on 1 a.m.  Mother Grand has taken to her room and Joan has fallen asleep on the sofa.  I find myself needing a hit of something… Anything for that matter.  All I have on me are my cigarettes.  I have snorted all of the cocaine that I had in my vial from earlier.  In the back yard, Mother Grand has the lights on around and in her pool.  It is majestic.  I go to the deck.  I light up a cigarette and I allow the smoke to flow throughout my lungs and into the night air.  I hear the back door open behind me and I don’t bother to turn around.  I already know that Big Daddy is coming to join me.  I really needed a moment to myself.  I guess that is not going to happen any time soon.  I hear a lighter go off behind me and then the smell of a Cuban cigar fills the air.  Big Daddy has changed from his fancy suit and is now in his robe and pajamas.

“Julianna, I know that you have a lot on your mind.  However, I really need you to start thinking about who was at your house.  I need any names that you can come up with.”  I have been wrecking my brain with trying to understand this myself.  I finally turn to face Big Daddy.  He can see the tears that have been rolling down my face for some time now.  “Big Daddy, I swear I really don’t know who all was there.  Pocket had some of the guys from the ILA there.  You know him being a long shore man and all.  He had ‘clients’ buying from him.  I guess my place became more than just a store front for him.   I swear I didn’t mean for anything to happen to those kids.  I love them.  I know that I have a problem. I just can’t help myself. ”  I shake my head and the smoke from the cigar still blows silently over the pool.  “Guys from the ILA…  That’s all I needed to know.”  He puts his half smoked cigar out.  He comes and places a good night kiss on my head and he goes back into the house.

Big Daddy’s last statement only adds fuel to the fire.  I hate that I even have to get anyone in my family involved in my mess.  I already know that when Mother Grand an Big Daddy get involved, there will only be hell to pay in Virginia.  Big Daddy is by far a gangster.  It is no way in hell my kids will be in the streets and they not find out about their whereabouts.   Pocket is going to be pissed if Big Daddy is out asking about what happened at my house.  He is going to think that it is a bad look for business.  More tears fall from my face.  I go from worried and sad to full blown scared and paranoid.  I go back into the house and I call Pocket.   For some reason or another I feel as though I am in trouble with him and at this point I need a hit.  Pinky answers that phone and when she hears my voice on the line, her pleasantries are out of the window.  “He ain’t here!”  I know she is lying and before I can say so, there is a bit of noise that is on the phone.  Finally, Pocket gets on the line.  He has probably snatched the phone from Pinky.  “Who is this?”  I am scared.  It is as if I can’t speak.  I don’t know what to say to him.  I don’t want him to hang the phone up, so I get the nerve to let some words come out of my mouth.  “Pocket, it’s Julianna.  Can you come get me from Mother Grand’s?  I need a hit.”  With that he doesn’t say goodbye,  He just hangs up the phone.  I hope that this means that he is on his way.

We have been sitting here for hours.  Denise has actually fallen asleep in the waiting room chair beside me.  I can’t sleep in this kind of environment.  Let alone, this situation has me wide awake.  What have I gotten myself into?  This is definitely not how I planned to spend my day or evening for that matter.  There is a vending machine in the waiting room that sells coffee.  I go to get a cup and as I am waiting for the machine to finish, the social worker comes up the hallway.  She doesn’t have the kids with her.  “Ms Garrett, the doctors have finished with their examination.  Both children are dehydrated and some what malnourished.  Both are receiving an IV and will be monitored in the children’s ward of the hospital.  At this time, due to their neglect, I will not be able to release the children over to you.  I suggest you and your daughter go home to get some rest.  These kids will be here until the doctors are satisfied with their medical conditions.”  My heart sinks.  I thank the social worker and she leaves.  This has pissed me off some kind of bad.

Across from the vending machines is a pay phone.  Denise is still in her slumber on the other side of the room.  I dig in my purse to find a dime.  I dial the one number that I haven’t dialed in maybe ever.  The phone rings three times and just as I thought, I hear the deep raspy voice of my ex-husband.  “It’s Mignon.  I just want you to know that I am sick and tired of cleaning up your mess!!!”  He tries to cut me off and ask, “Wait a minute.  Hold on.  Is there something wrong with Denise?!!”  The fact that he is laying next to woman with no heart is only pissing me off even more.  “No fool!!  Ms. Burris called me today and asked if I could come to Julianna’s.  Julianna left her kids in a closet by themselves.  Your sweet and grandmother of a wife didn’t want anything to do with the kids, so Ms. Burris called me.  I have been down at Virginia Beach General for hours with a social worker trying to get these kids checked out.  For the first time in your life, act like you have some sort of decency and compassion about yourself.  Wake that bitch up and tell her what is going on!!!”  I hang up the phone before I could even hear a response from him.  I go over to Denise and I gently wake her up.  She looks around and is confused as to where we are.  She finally gets her bearings and asks about the kids.  I tell her what the social worker said and she is now crying her little heart out.  I tell her that there is nothing else that we could do for them right now.  We have to go home and we will be back in the morning to make sure that the kids were ok.

Sur La Table

I have never been the one to sleep if there was work to be done.  I can’t go back to the hotel.  I am no good there.  I decide to start cleaning up Joseph’s house.  I start in the kid’s room.  The smell in the closet is unbearable.  If I know my child, he has taken after me and he has a stock pile of bleach somewhere.  I go to the garage and find a bucket.  I start the process of putting trash into a trash bag and then I start to scrub the floor.  I scrub as hard as I can.  I am back and forth between the scrub brush and the bucket of soap and bleachy water.  I finally sit on the back of my knees and I weep.  How in the hell could you do somebody like this.  I am hurt for my Joseph.  I am hurt for my grandbabies.  Most of all I am hurt by Julianna.  I need answers and I need my family back in order.  I go to the kitchen and I decide to call home.  I need my kids on standby.

I hear the sound of a horn blowing and I feel relieved.  I look out of the front window and I see Pocket’s El Dorado out front.  I grab my purse and I am out the door in a flash.  The minute I am in the car, he speeds off.   I don’t see Big Daddy looking at us from the upstairs window.  I am just glad that I am with Pocket.   I don’t even bother telling him that I wasn’t able to find the kids.  He already knows why I am here.  He passes me a vial of coke and I place two bumps on the side of my hand.  The high that I receive immediately calms me down.  I don’t know where we are going and I don’t care.  All I care about is floating away from here.  Whoever has my kids must be ok.  At least for now.

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