Blacklane

For these guys I’d run down from the other end of the country, literally, if they ever needed me. These were the only guys I ever knew (and maybe who I’d ever know) who would put everything on the line for the people they gave a damn about and even those who they never knew.

I sat across K at the KFC located as always in the basement of shopping centers here. We were intrigued by the froyo that would eventually become a relative mainstay on KFC’s menus but decided against giving it a shot. The F stood for fried not froyo after all. The things corporations would do to stay relevant. Maybe it did taste good after all, on hindsight.

“That’s a lot of money for one night.”

“Not every night is going to be tonight though.”

“That’s true.”

Ever the smarter one, K knew when I didn’t. But above that, he was a dedicated friend, and his sense of brotherhood knew no bounds even when it fell outside the sense of logic.

He trusted me to pay him back the money. I did have the cash on hand, with whatever meager sum that I was earning while serving. When you have shelter, food and water, there is a tendency to splurge on anything else that you could afford with the limited freedom you had. I just didn’t have the card, which he did.

It was only one night but I was going to make it count. She would be gone in the morning of the new month and I hoped to make the evening a memorable one for her. I was naive, and didn’t know better and couldn’t see the signs that the wheels on this friendship was coming off. It was my fault but when you’re blindsided by a reckless hope, these things lose their significance.

“Okay I selected the limo type ah but they don’t let me see which model it’ll be. I hope it turns out alright.”

“Should be okay ba! Let me key in the card number for you.”

An Uber today would have cost me half of what he paid and what I signed off on, but we were in technological primacy, by today’s standards. One thing that hasn’t changed though is how easy it is for someone to take your money away – a few clicks of a button, an OTP and voila.

But it was going to be money well spent. I was sure of it.

Oh how the wheels fell that night even before that black SUV strolled into that foyer. For a moment I thought Samuel L Jackson was waiting on the inside. I really wished to be an Avenger.

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