Guns, Guts and Glory – by: Jake

Rissa’s dad squeezed in past the door, shut us both in the bathroom and offered me a seat with a smile, pointing to the toilet. I put the lid down and sat on it with my hands between my knees. I was literally shaking. He made himself comfortable on the edge of the bathtub, pushing the shower curtain out of the way a little. I almost fell of the toilet with relief when I caught a glimpse of my clothes in a pile at the bottom of the tub. That meant my phone…and my truck keys were there too. I could smell his underarm sweat and I just shook there on the toilet.

He adjusted himself to settle in and have a nice chat with me. He said, “Son, do you know that Clarissa is 17 years old?”

FUCK. “No, sir. I did not know that. But as we are just friends it should be of no concern…to anyone, I suppose.”

“How old are you, son?”

“Twenty-two.”

“Then, I would think that it should be of concern to you, as you were sleeping in her bed in MY house.” His voice shook a little this time and I stared at a small bubble of spit that was on my knee. His breathing was getting heavier and my heart really got going.

I looked up at the window and wondered if I could somehow hop out. I clasped my hands and cleared my throat, “Rissa was just helping me out sir, because she saw I was hurt from a fight and I’m pretty far from home.” My voice changed to slight panic and I said, “We didn’t do anything I swear to God.”

“It’s funny you bring up God, son” he said, “because Rissa, my little girl, was CREATED to honor and serve and obey her future husband. Now, I have a feeling that aint going to be you, and that you are just getting in the way of God’s plan.”

“I wouldn’t do that, sir” I shook. I it was really cold in there. But he was still sweating.

“I wonder if you know this, but in Florida it is LEGAL to shoot an intruder. That means, I won’t even go to jail. Did you know that?”

“It’s the same in Georgia, sir. Guns, guts and glory is what this country is built on,” I added, remembering my Grandfather’s words right before he blew the neighbor’s cat off his truck.

He nodded. “Maybe you aint as dumb as you look, but you still aint getting away with this you stupid sonnabitch. You think you can sleep with my daughter then steel my drugs out of my bathroom and then walk on out of here like you’re just the king of the world? Well then you’ve got somethin coming to you boy.”

I could feel the fight or flight adrenaline pumping through me, but the fight was all used up and his belly was so big it was almost touching the cabinet between us. There was no running from here. Once again, I thought I was going to die here in St. Augustine. I imagined the newspaper heading: College student shot and killed in his boxers in madman’s bathroom. I could only talk my way out of this.

“I didn’t touch your daughter and…maybe we will get married someday you know. I’m in college and I’m going to get a good job and make a lot of money.”

“Are you making fun of me boy?” he looked me right in the eye.

“No sir, I wouldn’t do that…sir.” Hell, maybe I would marry her someday. He’d have some good material for the toast.

“Well,” he said getting up slowly. I clenched my swollen fist down at my side, ready to defend myself. “I’m thinking I’m going to go and have a little talk with Rissa and we will figure out together what we are going to do with you, boy. You just stay put till I get back you hear.” He looked down at me. “College student eh?”

I nodded.

“Which one? I don’t like them Gators.”

“No sir, Georgia Bulldog, sir. I was born in Macon.”

“No shit? Macon? That’s where I bought my last gun.” Then he walked out of the bathroom and shut the door. I could hear him walk away and I leapt up to get a pill out of the cabinet and washed it quickly down my throat. I grabbed a few more, closed the cabinet quietly, then practically fell into the bathtub to get my phone out of my shorts.

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