From STEP ON A CRACK:
When we were all little kids together, Bobby was the bravest. He was the first to go from one end of the Projects to the other over the rooftops. I remember following him, all of us in a line. The last jump was the worst—the wind was blowing hard and there wasn’t room to get a long running start. Bobby lit a cigarette and took a drag. Then he threw the pack over to the other side. He took another drag and snapped the cigarette over the side of the building.
“I’ll have a smoke wherever I land,” he said to us.
“It’s too far, Bobby,” Rodney said.
“I don’t care,” Bobby laughed.
You could see he didn’t. He went over the gap between the rooftops like it was nothing, soaring.
Everybody cheered. Nobody followed.
If I’d known how to voice such things then, I would have said that I loved him.
Read a short story by Andrew Vachss; ‘Step on a Crack’, from the ‘Born Bad’ collection of short…