Loyal To A Flaw


Jerome DeVonni Wilson © 2018

A Brother Tormented By His Own Decisions

Loyal. . .

He was a penitentiary and college grad, respectively. He held a 9 to 5 at Eli Lilly and hustled on the side though sometimes Queen, his baby’s mama, felt that his time in the street deemed his 9 to 5 his side hustle.

Queen was on maternity leave, pregnant with their second child.

He was mobbin’ east on 29th Street right there where it’s all bumpy. Da’Mark, his so-called, had been home from the pen for a week and they were ridin’ and rappin’ about a bunch of heavy street stuff that amounted to nothing in the eyes of a square.

Catching up on old times. Before the penitentiary.

Before college.

Before having a baby mama and all the accouterments that accompany responsibility.

Yeah, before all that. . .

Loyal hit the strong and passed it to Da’Mark who took a long toke before discarding it from the ride. Just when he did, a cop was turning off of Central Avenue right as a rebellious smokey ghost escaped the window.

“Damn!” Loyal spat as his passenger shrank in his seat, “You think he saw all that smoke?”

“I don’t know, but he might smell it ‘cause his windows were cracked,” Da’Mark responded. “Are you dirty?”

“Nah, I’m Gucci. What about you?”

Nervously, Da’Mark replied, “Damn G, I got a ounce of work on me.”

With hands on ten and two o’clock on the steering wheel and trying his best to look. . . uh, as natural as a Black man could (which is still the wrong impression, right?) Loyal kept sneaking peeks at the uniformed threat closing in on his vehicle.

He unsealed all four windows just enough to let the vapor dissipate. Right when Da’Mark said, “Look, if he pulls us over –”

Old times had caught up with them. After the penitentiary.

After college.

After having a baby mama and all the accouterments that accompany responsibility.

Yeah, after all that. . .

The cop’s disco lights came on.

“Damn G, where can I put this” Da’Mark asked while reaching into his pants frantically.

“Where can you put it?” Loyal asked incredulously. “Leave it where you got it ‘cause one of two things are about to happen,” he activated his right turn signal. “He’s gone check my license and let us go or he’s going to smell that gas and use it as probably cause to search the ride.”

“Man, I can’t fade another dope case,” Da’Mark whined, barely shaking his lowered head.

“No doubt. Me neither, that’s why I don’t have no dope on me or in my ride,” he said pointedly. Loyal’s horns had went up, not liking what he detected in his so-called’s desperation.

He pulled over and sealed the window on his side as the cop exited the slave ship. Both men handed over their identification. After the expressionless officer walked back to his cruiser, Da’Mark said, “Man, you told me you still hustle on the side, so what do you mean you don’t keep dope on you or in your ride?”

“I do hustle on the side. I drive for Uber, dude. I have a child and one on the way now, so why would I still be throwing rocks at the penitentiary by sellin’ drugs?!” He countered with his own question.

Loyal sympathized with Da’Mark Flawson who was the youngest of three brothers the hood called the “Flaws,” but stashing dope in his car was no option. “Look, if he asks for permission to search the ride and I don’t let ‘em, he’s going to call for a K-9

unit,” he paused for effect. “If that happens, it’s curtains. But, if I let him search it, maybe he won’t call for the dog and you make it through with it on you.”

With a clear look of uncertainty, Da’Mark nodded and said, “That’s a bet G.”

After another cruiser pulled up, Loyal was removed, cuffed and placed in the first officer’s cruiser. Shortly after, Da’Mark was procedurally placed in the second. As assumed, Loyal was asked for consent to search his vehicle in which he consented.

And then relented.

And then repented.

“What the — ” he lost his voice somewhere in the backseat of the slave ship in that reserved space between his ears. The cop had came out of the front seat of his ride with a bag full of raw heartache and pain.

The cop stood between the two cruisers and asked, while looking back and forth from one to the other, “Are one of you going to own up to possessing this?”

Loyal stared at Da’Mark with a mug mired in pure disgust and bereft of any understanding. Da’Mark just dropped his head. . .

* * *

He looked up to see his ex standing there with their two sons.

Not Da’Mark, Loyal. See, you have to pay attention because in real life things can go from real sweet to real salty real fast.

In real life your missteps can cause you to be sandwiched between two

unfashionable ultimatums. The Game God will keep his big eye on you and if you make the wrong move, your queen could be taken by another piece on the board. (But on the low if that happens, she didn’t get taken; you gave her away!)

[Six Years Earlier]

“. . .collect call from. . .Loyal.” Queen pressed one, anxious to see how Loyal’s attorney visit went.

“Hi baby.”

“Hey sweetheart,” he responded dryly.

She knew it was a bad sign but she still dove into the convo with sleeves rolled up. “What’s wrong, what did your lawyer say?” she asked.

“He said the same thing. If Da’Mark don’t claim the dope, then it’s mine ‘cause the car is in my name and the dope was in a common area between the driver and passenger seats.”

“But babe, I thought you said that since the officer seen Da’Mark throw something from the car and was the last person in the car, that if you told them that it was his, your lawyer could get you out?”

“Queen, I can’t tell them people that dope was his,” he said, actually sounding offended.

“Okay Loyal,” she paused, “if you cant’ tell them it’s his, explain what you’re tellin’ me?”

Someone released a loud and aggravated exhale. Someone.

Someone else remained silent as the other joined in, and sank in that same quietude. That vacant lot where the explanation to the Sphinx’ riddle was supposed to be being erected with words of logic, promise and solace.

That explanation that never came to fruition.

See, Da’Mark basically planted that dope on Loyal but like so many other street cats, he had been indoctrinated to believe that to speak up for himself would be a transgression towards the game.

So he played hisself. Silly boy.

While he allowed the game to hold him to a certain standard, he failed to realize he was facilitating his own dilemma. He wasn’t holdin’ the game to its own laws! He was wise enough to exit the game in a condition most dudes don’t: With both life and freedom, yet he was suspended in a realm of gamedom, and even that wasn’t calibrated for optimum performance.

He could only lose, but by him enforcing the G-Code, he could greatly improve his chances. See, a G is to always stand up and be accounted for. So, the stunt that Da’Mark pulled proved he wasn’t a G, and at that point instead of Loyal letting the game lean on him, he could’ve leaned on the game.

Now, in a poll I conducted right here on this plantation among the rank and file of those married to and blinded by the game, the consensus was that if put in the same position as Loyal, basically one would be at the mercy of Da’mark, this, because the doctrine of the streets mandates that they function with clipped logic. I call this illness

“Dysfunctional Game Syndrome”.

To illustrate my premise I asked every single person I polled the same questions I pose here:


The unanimous answer was police/pigs/cops.


The overwhelming response was #Z&@ NO!

These two dudes didn’t commit a crime together and Loyal didn’t commit a crime period. On the contrary, he was framed for a crime by someone who gave no #%@ about him or the way his children would grow up without a father. But he gave the rook a

play. . .

When you have one foot in the game and one foot out, if you slip and err on the game side, when you fall, the game swallows you whole.

If you’re not a pawn in THEIR game, you implement your own courses of action and rules; for example: Never juxtapose, juggle or commingle family with forces that fundamentally jeopardize FAMILY!

To a grown man with things called responsibilities, priorities, and half a brain, you have to be a special kind of fool to let a mark play you out of your freedom and family.

The mark was Da’Mark Flawson. The fool was Loyal. . . to a Flaw. And that’s on everything I love!

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