Matt (Part 2 by Warrior)
Warrior - Serving fourteen years for kidnapping and aggravated assault. Half Hispanic and Scottish-Irish with family still in Mexico. Brought up by a family steeped in drug commerce. He writes some of the best prison-fight stories on the Internet.
This story is a continuation of Warrior’s previous blog that you can read by clicking here.
“What the hell you doin’ here?” Matt exclaimed.
“What the hell you doin’ here?” I replied.
“Ah, man. Long story. Domestic violence. In fact, it happened around when you stopped comin’ around. What happened to ya anyway?” I kept callin’ ya cell, leavin’ messages. You jus’ vanished on me.”
“Yeah, I got caught up. Now here I am,” I lied, telling Matt I was arrested earlier than I was.
“How much time you got?”
Matt’s eyes opened wide as he let out a whistle. “For doin’ business?”
“Nah, an assault. Long story.”
“Oh, by the way, name’s not Gilbert. It’s Alex.
Matt rasped out a chuckle. “I ain’t good wit’ names, so I’ll stick wit Gilbert.”
We spent the next forty minutes catching up. His family was well. He ended getting into a fight with the boyfriend of one of his daughter’s. The police came, and both were arrested for domestic violence. Matt was put on probation, but unfortunately couldn’t stay clean, so he had to do a year in prison.
Crack! The door opened, and a short prune-faced officer with glasses and a cap squinted at a clipboard and read some names. He called out for Mike and Bill, who both stood up, and exited the holding cell. Bill was heading back to the yard, Mike to see the dentist. The door slammed closed.
“How long you been down?” I asked Matt.
“Jus’ a coupla months.”
“How you blending in?” I could tell by the look on his face that he wasn’t doing too well.
“Awww, I’m hangin’.”
“What’s the matter? Some drama? You’re not fuckin’ with the dope are you? That shit’s serious in here, Matt.”
“Nah, nah. I know better. I’m too old to deal with that shit here. I’m trying to stay clean, and get to my family. I ain’t cut out for this life no more.”
“Well, maybe comin’ to prison is a good thing. You can clean up. You got a good family, Matt, you just needed to get off that shit, and get some clarity. Your old lady loves the shit out of you, man.”
“I know,” Matt said, his head hanging low.
“Is someone fuckin’ with you?” I felt the need to find out what was eating at Matt. I guess because all I’d done in the past, especially with him, I was looking to right my wrongs. After all the shit I’ve done, I often tell myself, I’ll be happy just to break even and end up in purgatory.
“There’s jus’ sorry motherfuckers round here. Ya know. No class.”
“I agree. So who is it?”
“Ah, jus’ some piece of shit named Midget I ain’t getting’ along with. It ain’t no thing though.”
Midget was some junkie deadbeat always borrowing and running up debts he never paid back. He was the excuse king, and life’s victim. Ask him, and he’d make you think he was someone life happens to, life never happened for him. He was quick to prey on those less fortunate or fearful enough to let him get away with it. And if you saw through him, he’d look for some vindictive way to get one on over on you. I couldn’t stand him. I wasn’t surprised to hear that Matt was having problems with Midget.
“Don’t sweat it, Matt. I’ll send word over there about him. A few boys owe me a few favors.”
“Nah, it’s cool, man. I ain’t no coward. I can handle my own problems.”
I had to give it to Matt, he still had his prison pride from the convict code.
“Look, man, don’t worry. I’ll deal with it for you. No one will know or ever speak of it to you or anyone else. It won’t be anything too serious, just an ass kicking, so he’ll relocate. You just promise me you’ll keep your nose clean, and get back to that beautiful family. If I hear of you fuckin’ with drugs or anything else in here, that’s your ass. Deal?”
Looking at me hesitatingly, Matt nibbled his lower lip. It looked as if he were listening to a devil and angel on either shoulder battling it out. “Alright, Alex.” Matt put out his hand and we shook.
Crack! Crack! The door racked open and my name was called. It was my turn to see the dentist. I went and had my routine, and was heading back down the hall. The fluorescent bulbs overhead were radiating an odd yellow that reflected off the linoleum tiled floor. Oddly, it made the hallway trip back seem longer than before. As I came around the bend, the escorting officer told me to wait a second as he had to drop some paperwork off. He disappeared into a door. I stood in front of the intake desk, where an officer was usually posted. With all of the staff shortages, the escorting officer was doing two jobs. Behind an old masonite desk was a dry erase board that held all of the ID’s for all of the inmates scheduled for that day. I glanced down the line, and saw Midget was scheduled, except he was in a different holding cell, for those scheduled for blood work. I immediately snatched Midget’s ID, and relocated it under the heading “Psych Line,” which was for the criminally insane and guys playing crazy. These individuals were placed in separate cells due to their propensity to act out and be violent to inmates as well as staff. By the time the officer came back, I could have rearranged every name on that board if I had wanted. We went back to the original holding cell. Matt was still there. I entered.
“You two are done. Stand by as I call transport to send you both back,” the officer said.
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Shaun P. Attwood