a continuing story about a young women's life
| Attorney Daniel Maxfield studied the Janet Overton estate. Apparently, she had built a fortune in five short years. Janet Overton had an uncanny intuition for making money. She knew that bigger risks had bigger payoffs, and she rarely bet wrong. She rented an office downtown and filled it with computers. She put a cot in it, and she lived there every minute of the day. She had a drive that left people puzzled. Then, with uncanny intuition, she put all her money in safe investments before she died of a heart attack. Prize real estate and blue chip stocks. She was making a nice life for somebody, but who? People could tell she had no use for others, and though they had nothing against Janet, they left her to herself. They just wondered why she was making all that money and leading a cloistered life. She had no inclination to enjoy the fruits of her own success.
Now it turned out that she had a daughter - trailer park trash. Why would she burden herself for a daughter like that? No telling what vices her daughter had. Janet Overton even bought a nice house for her daughter in the suburbs. Lawyer Daniel Maxfield would meet with Carrie Overton that morning.
Carrie was subdued - humble.
"You're mother left her affairs in order. She left explicit instructions to hand everything over to you upon your appearance. You own a house in Brennington Estates. There is a Lexus in the drive way. Here are the keys.
"Thank you Mr. Maxfield," Carrie said.
"Don't thank me. Thank your mother. Just sign this form and it is all yours," he replied.
One of the first things Carrie did was donate 500,000 dollars to the account of Liza McIntosh, anonymously. Carrie didn't think that would make up for what she did to Liza, but it would do Liza quite a bit of good. Everyone had to pay for their sins in their own way. Carrie had to live her life the best she could now.
What could she do with herself? Go to college? And study what? Get a job? She didn't need money. She could do volunteer work. She'd buy a nicer place for her dad, but he probably wouldn't be around much longer. She could get him a better situation in an assisted living program. Carrie languished around her house. She watched tv. She read trashy novels. She wondered if she should try to make money, like her mother, but Carrie didn't have Janet's talent or drive. Carrie felt a longing she didn't understand.
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John Smith contemplated the gun lying on the table in front of him. He had two choices: he could use the weapon on himself, or he could use it to hold up a bar. Holding up the Downtown Bar would be nearly the same as putting a gun to his head, because that was where people made their drug connections, and they wouldn't hesitate to kill John. But he couldn't live another minute without a shot of heroin. He put the gun inside his jacket and went outside. He notice a young, well dressed woman approaching. She was seemingly unaware of her surroundings. Maybe he could hold her up! Most of the people downtown didn't carry money, but this woman might. John Smith made a sudden decision as she approached.
"Ma'am, do you have any money you can spare?" He asked her.
Carrie smiled at him.
"This should help you out for while," she said, giving him fifty dollars.
The giving of the money to the gutter living man was a greater transaction than Janet knew.
"Oh ma'am! Thank you so much! You've done more good than you know!" John exclaimed.
"It's nothing," Carrie responded.
"Oh yes it is! You don't know how much good you've done!" John said, preparing to run to the Downtown Bar.
Carrie looked at him briefly, before he ran away. She saw the same look of surrender in his eyes that she had seen in her dad's. Here is what she could do with herself: she could go back to being the trash she really was. Carrie followed the junkie, noting where he turned off the sidewalk. Carrie could tell he just scored heroin. As he left the bar there was an urgency in his movements. Carrie tried to catch up with him, but he was walking very fast. Finally Carrie ran to overtake the desperate man.
"I can take you back to my house in my Lexus. You can shoot up there," she told him.
John looked at her with amazement. After he got into Carrie's Lexus he hurriedly pulled his greasy belt out of his pants and draped it over his knee. He took a spoon out of his pocket. He opened his packet of heroin and sprinkled it into his spoon. Carrie waited to drive away from the curb. John poured a little water he kept in an empty lighter into the spoon. He pulled a workable lighter out of his pocket and cooked the mixture. Carrie glanced furtively around the area for cop cars. Finally John sucked the mixture out of his spoon with his syringe and injected it into his arm. He fell back in the seat, feeling the sudden rush of euphoria. Carrie felt a familiar longing, seeing the syringe. She drove John towards her new home.
"What's your name?" Carrie asked.
"John," he answered, barely aware of her now.
The junkie came out of his rush. He looked at Carrie. He looked at the nice houses around him.
"Am I dreaming?" he asked.
"No. This is real," Carrie answered.
John looked around in wonder and amazement.
"Two rules, John. First, get rid of that gun you're carrying. No violence."
John pulled the gun out of his pocket and tossed it out the window.
"Next, you can bring your heroin back to my house, but no people. I want no part of your drug connections."
"I'll buy you a Honda Civic for you to drive."
"Why a Civic?"
"It's a car people don't notice. It draws no attention."
"I recomend you park it several blocks away from the Downtown Bar before you go there to score."
John brought his hand up to his head and laughed in pure amazement. Carrie smiled at him. They pulled into her driveway.
"This is it, John. This is my home."
John still had trouble believing what was happening.
"Tell me again. I'm not dreaming. I'm not hallucinating. This is real."
"This is reality, John."
Carrie had to have something in her life. She thought about doing charity work, donating money to good causes, and meeting a nice man. She didn't mind giving her money away. It made a lot more sense for her to do that, but a guy like John was what she had been bred to. She couldn't resist the pull drawing her back to a trashy life.
That night she prayed on her knees: "Jesus forgive me. I know I should donate money to charity, but this is all I know."
Just before sundown a woman walked out into the street and picked up a gun.
"Some lowlife has left a loaded gun out in the street where a kid could find it. Call the police, Dave. We're going to get this creep out of here," Mary Rackley said.
Mrs. Rackley was livid. She figured some junkie was going to do a home invasion and lost his nerve. She could not tolerate such trash anywhere near her. She didn't like seeing it downtown. Around her neighborhood junkies were scum. She would erradicate this!
The police were prompt.
"Yes, ma'am. We'll do a make on this gun. We'll find out who this creep is and lock him up," the police seargeant told Mary Rackely.
They took the gun back to the precinct.
"The gun is registered to a Mr. John Smith. The fact that we can trace this gun means that he is not a professional. He has two priors, one for possession, and one for breaking and entering. He got off with probation both times," the police secretary said.
"He's not going to get off this time. Get a warrant. We're going to lock this creep up," Seargeant Harding stated.
No one was there when the police broke into John Smith's apartment. They found a bed, some used syringes, and a couple of cans of ravioli.
"This guy is a junkie and he has to score. We'll pop him at the Downtown Bar," Seargeant Harding said vehemently.
Word got out that the police were looking to bust John Smith. Word also got out that John's situation had improved. He could still score if he had other people buy for him. He could afford it.
The police had spent two weeks looking for John.
"Look, we have go bigger problems than John Smith. We don't have the resources to hunt a two bit junkie," Steve Owens, the police leutenant said.
"Mrs Rackely will not let this go away. She is adamant that John Smith gets busted. She says we have to commit more resources to the case," Seargeant Harding answered.
"We don't have those resources. People are dealing crack openly on the street. We have to go after the bigger fish. We have to go for the suppliers," Steve said.
"This guy had a gun, Steve. He was up around Brennington Estates. Now no one really cares if a junkie or a dealer gets killed downtown, but if someone gets held up in a wealthy neighborhood, those people will not let it go away.
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"John, are the police looking for you?" Carrie asked.
"Yow. Someone found that gun I dropped out the window of your Lexus. Guns registered to junkies are a big deal in the suburbs."
"Where did you get this gun?"
"One of my dealers said I could score if I bought a gun for him. Then he said he didn't want it and I could keep it. I think he wanted me to kill a rival dealer."
"We're you going to use it?"
"I was going to hold up a dealer. I would have killed him if he didn't give me heroin. I'm all about heroin, baby."
"Wouldn't that have gotten you killed?"
"I was planning to kill myself. I wanted to be high on heroin when I did it. Don't ever trust me, baby. I would kill you for heroin."
"John, turn yourself in. I will get you a good lawyer. People will see this was all a mistake."
"People don't forget about stuff like this in the suburbs. They will hound you out of Chicago."
"At least I won't be harboring a fugitive. John, those are serious charges."
"No! We're going to do things my way!"
John pulled a knife from a kitchen drawer.
"I said I'd kill you for heroin, and I meant it! Now there are going to be people delivering Heroin to our doorstep. I'll need lots of money, because it costs more to do it this way. These people know what they are doing and they will be discreet. Now there is an ATM at the grocery store. It will be the only place you go. I will ride along with you and wait in the car. If you try to escape I will kill you."
Carrie sat down to take in the new emotional terrain she was on. She was being held prisoner in her own house! People paid for their sins, and she was paying for hers. She should have supported charities and met a nice man. She remembered how she felt when she was fired from the Burger Barn. She felt like a thing, not a person. Carrie realized she had never felt different. She looked at the tatoos on John's body. There was a skull with a dagger in it. There was a 1% mark on his shoulder. She should have known he would turn on her! How could she be so stupid?
"Now we're going downtown to score some heroin. This will be the only time you'll have to do it. Change your clothes so you look like you belong there."
"John, I'm not going to buy heroin for you!"
John punched Carrie in the eye. Carrie started to cry.
"Shut up! That black eye will make you look like you belong there. When you go there score a whole gram. Then go to Murphy's drug and buy two syringes. We're both going to shoot up."
Carrie grew comfortable in her twilight world. They always had heroin. Carrie bought it in large enough quantities that they would have to score again for weeks. She could afford it. John controlled the Heroin. That was how he controlled Carrie. He did things to let her know he was in charge. Sometimes he gave her a black eye. He often took Carrie's body against her will. Carrie didn't mind it - not any of it, because of the heroin. Always the heroin. That was what Carrie lived for now. At first John did a lot more heroin than Carrie, but she caught up. Heroin was the only thing she cared about. The fact that she was lying in a sewer didn't bother Carrie. She was barely aware of the degradation.
The police were still looking for John. There was even a blurb about it on the news. The people of Brennington Estates were not going to let this go away. Carrie was aware that she was harboring a fugitive. She understood her trespass on their fierce values, but that was okay. The people delivering the heroin were discreet. No one knew a thing. All she cared about was getting that needle in her arm.
Heroin was a different rush that crank. It was better, if that was possible. Being held prisoner by John wasn't so bad, as long as she had heroin. Carrie had enough money that they could stay at her house and shoot up until they died. John was her man because he got her the heroin. Carrie was no longer an innocent girl trying to shelter a poor junkie. She was a junkie herself. That put her on a whole different mental landscape. Then she had a dream about her mother.
"Carrie, I didn't work so hard to see you like this," Carrie's mother said.
"What can I do?"
"You have to help yourself now."
One night John was passed out on the sofa. Carrie picked up the phone and called the police.
"John Smith is in my house at 301 Chesterson Road," she told them.
The police were there in minutes.
"You cunt! You bitch!" John screamed as they took him out in handcuffs.
Carrie was bawling for one reason alone: she had cut off her own supply of heroin. She was shaking violently when the police took her to the precinct. She told them everything, exactly as it was, and in perfect detail.
"We're not going to press charges, but we are sending you to treatment. You can choose your own facility if you are willing to pay for it. Otherwise, you will go to the state run 'making amends' facility," a nice black woman told Carrie.
They had space available at the "Getting Better" facility, so that was the one Carrie picked. She spent two weeks in the hell of detox, and then they put her in with the other clients.