Pawn Takes King part 27

After fixing his elbow wound, Donny dusts himself off the next day and makes the arduous trip to Greg's store. Donny continued to run over in his mind what Buresh had divulged. It was the fact Buresh was a cop, more than anything, that convinced Donny to change.
    Donny wanted to live. There were many grievances he must atone for, but it was time to start. First, it was imperitive to get a little work thrown Donny's way.
    Donny made it to the Pawn and Payday at approximately 20 till 11am. He had only visited the pawn shop once, but immediately knew something was amiss. Donnie knew a break-in when he saw it. The front door's glass was shattered into a million pieces that spread out along the front entryway. The glass was a regular sheet, not like the plexiglass stuff that lined the door of the pharmacy Donny robbed years ago. That door hadn't held either, but it was more resilient than the plate glass Greg used. The metal door hung haphazardly, only one of it's hinges left intact.    
    Judging by the heavy skid marks wrong the front sidewalk, the crooks had hooked a vehicle to the door and put the pedal to the metal, ripping the door free.  It wasn't executed with surgical precision, but it did the trick.
    Police mill around the store. They make Donny very nervous. Greg is at the entrance, hands on his hefty hips, staring expressionless at his ruined business. Donny skirts around a section cordoned off by yellow caution tape, to get close enough to speak with Greg. Donny passes a channel 9 reporter and cameraman. Donny recognizes the perky brunette newswoman as Stacy, from the nightly news. Donny used to watch her all the time when the laundromats were still available to him. Her petite form looked even hotter in person. She was dolled up in a ladies business suit, with the blazer and all. The button-down blouse made her ta-tas protrude nicely. Donny may be socially inept, but he still sneaks a peak at her lovely T and A display. His eyes don't linger, though. No woman wants to be ogled by a bum.
    Greg is giving an inventory of what was taken. A cop scribbles on a form as they get a rundown on the thievery.
    "They drove a black van," Greg says with a disgruntled sigh, "I was upstairs when it happened. I had 6 LCD televisions that were taken, 10 DVD players, a bunch of video games, uh."
    Greg raises his head to do more calculations. A tear breaks free as Greg stares at the sky. It is a miserably cloudy day. It will storm something fierce. Despite his empathy for Greg, Donny also wonders how long he can wait outside before he must bed down tonight.
    Greg did not deserve this. Deadbeat dad or not, no one was entitled to this misery. Donny was all too familiar with the hollow space that was left once you were robbed. You never felt safe again. It was a heavy lesson, for the lighthearted Greg.
    Greg wipes his eyes savagely. It is a terror to be a male and crying in public view. Women did not know some of the stigma to letting loose their emotions. Greg was swallowing hard, rubbing his eyes with a handkerchief.
    Stacy, the newswoman, stepped forward, like a shark sensing blood in the water. When he was at his most vulnerable, Greg might be more willing to vent his disgust than when properly composed. Men must adhere rigidly to the social norms. Especially if one was a business owner, like Greg.
    "Mr. Jefferson?" Stacy inquires, with a mix of condoling tone, and impatience somehow, "I'm with Channel 9 news. Might we have a word with you?"
    "No, I can't," Greg says, clearing his sorrow-thickened throat, "I've got too much to deal with right now."
    Greg finishes his inventory with the cop. Donny eavesdrops, and the lengthy list of valuables is staggering. Donny tabulates the sums in his head and figures Greg was taken for around $5,000 worth of goods. Stacy lingers, pointing out different shots of the door that the cameraman can use as B-roll cutaways. She fiddles with the wireless microphone, wielding it like an eager swordsman does their weapon.
    Unlike Greg, the cop is more than happy to give an interview. Donny figured cops were always ready to mug for the camera. It kinda played into their whole mentality. It seemed to Donny that some cops (not all) took on the roll of police as a means to get attention, as well as authority. They may have been total losers in school, and sought the opportunity to gain a power trip.
    Donny steps up beside Greg. Greg turns jumpily towards him. The man is taut with tension.
    "hey Greg," Donny says meekly.
    "Hey Donny," Greg says emptily. They stare in desolation at Greg's livelihood. The first thing that coms to Donny's head is 'it could be worse'. No, not really. Sure, they could live in Africa, where people were sold into slavery, or killed on a daily basis, in gruesome ways. However, this was still a mighty big letdown. Could be worse? These were empty words, and overused ones, too.
    "All that money," Greg says bemusedly, "I took that small business loan, and went nuts, making deals to buy all these electronics wholesale. I spent a small fortune. Now, I have to pay it back, and get nothing out of it."
    Donny can relate to shattered dreams. They are more prevalent than aspirations coming to fruition. It was a shame. There was plenty of misfortune to go around. Donny couldn't hog it all. 
    Greg steps forward and puts a hand to his askew door. Not just the entrance is broken. The entire foundation for his endeavors is demolished.
    "Good thing I got the outside painted," Greg says sarcastically, "it really brings out the decor, wouldn't you say?"
    Suddenly, Greg grips the warped door and hurls it against the frame. The loud clatter turns the heads of the cops, who look curiously at him. Greg huffs and puffs, shaking his head.
    "I should've known better," Greg says angrily, "it was stupid enough to come all the way out here, where I don't know a single living soul. Now, I'm hemorrhaging cash, and don't know how I'm gonna live through the next few months."
    Greg says this louder than he had intended, but he was beyond caring. Stacy scribbled her notes, looking hungrily towards Greg as his tirade continues."
    "Greg," Donny says, "I'm so sorry, man."
    "I'm sorry, too, Donny. Sorry I ever bought this fucking store."
    WIth nothing further, Greg storms into the Pawn and Payday. There would be no more jobs for Donny. This was evident unto itself. Greg was distrustful now. His manner seemed to drift between extremes: either he was selfless and giving, or callous and suspicious. There was no middle-ground, no mediation. Donny turns away, making the long trek across town towards his gazebo eden.
    Donny wished Greg would recover from this.

Uploaded 12/21/2012
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