A Friend In New York: Part 3
I tried to confuse them by taking abrupt turns into different alleys, but all I did was confuse myself. My legs were tiring fast and I slowed down, but I kept pushing and looking back every second or so. I prayed to myself every time I looked back that I wouldn’t be able to see the boys, but of course, I did.
I took one last turn and ran for a little longer until I had to come to an unexpected stop. I hadn’t stopped because I was tired. I stopped because I was facing a brick wall on three sides of me. I was cornered. Unfortunately, the alley had come to an abrupt end and the boys had caught up to me. Things looked grim. The sun hid behind two buildings and it was dark.
The boys all looked my age but I was outnumbered. If Nathan had been there, he and I would have a chance fighting against them, for Nathan was bigger and stronger than me.
“Look here, I don’t appreciate that you took a job from my brother,” the skinny boy said. “Our father lost his job and we need the money to survive. Why should the job go to you? It should go to an American; not a filthy immigrant.”
He spat after the last word. I was shocked! Ma would have punished me for spitting. Who did this boy think he was? He called his brother American, but his brother had just spoken in Greek to me at the shop where I was working. I was confused.
“But you’re-,”I said, trying to point this out. He just shook a finger and cut me off.
“I’ll do the talking here, immigrant trash. I don’t like that you got that job instead of my brother, so I’m going to show you just how much it hurt me when I heard.”
He stopped talking, took back his fist and pounded me hard on the side of my head. I tried to duck out of the way but his fist was too fast. I rubbed the side of my head to make the throbbing pain go away. Boy, for someone that skinny and weak, he could really hit hard. I started to cry.
“Aww, look at that. Can’t take any pain can he? Let’s say we hit him again and we get out of here. How does that sound?”
The other boys nodded and Skinny boy was about to hit me again when suddenly, his body lurched forward, straight towards me, and I jumped out of the way. The figure that emerged from behind him looked familiar.
“Brute,” the figure said. I knew that voice. Even though he was wearing different clothes and I couldn’t see clearly because of my watery eyes, I could tell it was Nathan. Nathan had come and saved me from those boys. Nathan had come. I had found him at last.
Later that same week, I was walking down the street with a paper bag filled with the day’s newspaper on my shoulder, walking next to Nathan. I was grateful to him. He had saved me from those bullies, and he had found me another job.
Ma and my sister can come to America once we get enough money. How nice it is to have a friend in New York. I owe Nathan a lot. He is a truly a great friend.