By Donald Ray Johnson

Southern Classic Publishing, LLC

Mansfield, Texas


This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Southern Classic Publishing, L.L.C.

990 Hwy 287 N Ste 106 #298

Mansfield, Texas 76063


Copyright 2014 © by Donald Ray Johnson

All rights reserved. This book, or parts thereof, may not be reproduced in any form whatsoever without permission.

Bona Fide Street Thug

1. Donald Ray Johnson, African-American, Contemporary, Urban Crime, Houston, Texas – Fiction

Chapter 1


“That’s what I do baby, I work the streets,” Cornelius said to one of his homies, as they high-capped at each other, after the guy saw a girl give him some money out of her purse. Cornelius had made a quick bet with the girl, after Larry Fitzgerald ran a 45 yard touchdown against the Pittsburgh Steelers. It was like the 2008-2009 Superbowl all over again and Cornelius was a huge Pittsburgh fan. Everyone had been on their toes, when Pittsburgh’s defense forced a fumble and recovered the ball, with only a minute left in the game. The girl had been somewhat eye-balling him already and when he and his homie made their bets, he locked eyes with her and asked if she wanted to bet too, since she so-loudly screamed in his ear, when the Cardinals scored.

The sports bar they were in was crowded. They had free crawfish and $2 dollar specials on drinks. Mostly everyone there were working people, except for maybe a few dough-boys, who were on their grind in the streets. The parking lot was full with all kinds of whips, making the valet section a real life car show.

“Hey, I didn’t mean to take your money,” Cornelius said, as he walked up to the girl he made the bet with and attempted

to give her back the $20 dollar bill she had given him.

“Oh no! A bet is a bet,” the girl said as she turned to him, surprised that he came to her.

“Hi, my name is Cornelius,” he said, waving to the bartender.

“My name is Rene,” she said, giving him her name.

“At least let me buy you a drink with this. I don’t want you to think that all I do is go around taking money from women,” he said as he smiled sarcastically.

“That’s ok. I’m gon’ get you back,” she said.

“Whatchu like to drink?” he asked, as the bartender snaps his fingers to the sound of the order she made.

“Pink Panties huh? So, is that what you have on now?” he asked as he profiled next to her.

“Maybe I do, maybe I don’t,” she said and then gave him a sarcastic smile of her own.

“Where are you from and whatchu do for a livin’,” she asked.

“I’m from right here in Houston, and I own and run my own detail shop. What about you?” he asked her back.

“I’m from Houston. I work in the medical center,” she told him.

“So, if I collapse right now, would you give me mouth-to-mouth?” Cornelius jokingly asked.

Rene smiled. Cornelius had turned her on, just as he could do almost any girl.

“I would do anything to help someone stay alive,” she said to him.

Another girl came over and stood next to Rene. She had been using the restroom and was now eye-ballin’ him like he had committed a crime.

“So who is this, one of your friends?” he asked as he looked at the girl.

“Yes, and we’re about to leave, so I’m going to give you my number. Call me ok,” Rene said as she quickly wrote down her number on a napkin, gave it to him and then she and the other girl left.

Cornelius looked at the number and smiled.

“As usual,” he said as he down-loaded the girl’s number into his cell phone.

He looked over towards the entrance and saw two Puerto Rican girls walk in.

“Daaaamn!” he said, as his face frowned at the sight of their bodies.

One of the girls looked like she came right out of a Smooth Girl Magazine and the other, a Show. Behind them stood two Latino-looking guys, who appeared to be their boyfriends. They looked over in his direction and then decided to go to the bar. Cornelius stood there, as they walked towards him and then stopped to order some drinks.

“What’s up?” Cornelius said, shortly throwing his head up, after noticing that one of the guys was checking him out.

“What’s up Homes?” the Latino guy asked.

The first guy looked sorta like Daddy Yankee. He wore a diamond necklace that looked to be worth at least a hundred grand and a diamond bracelet. He had on a pair of Marc Jacobs sun shades and a Ed Hardy hook up. The other guy was dressed almost the same, except he was taller and his hair was longer.

“Hey man, you know where I can get somethin’ to smoke?” the first guy asked him.

Cornelius gave him a sincere look.

“Whatcha lookin’ for, some Reggie Bush?” Cornelius asked, hitting him with the street talk.

“Nah man! I’m lookin’ for that George Bush,” the guy said, high -fiving the other guy as they laughed.

Cornelius didn’t sense that they were police working undercover, so he thought that he’d give’em a joog.

“Are y’all new in town or somethin’? You look like you the man. You should already be on,” he said speaking at the guy’s swag.

“Yeah, we new in town. Just got here yesterday,” he said.

“Y’all just visiting or what?” Cornelius asked.

“Nah, we here to stay. We’re about to be Houstonians,” the guy said to him.

“Ok, that’s what’s up,”Cornelius said back to him. Cornelius wore a black Roca Wear sleeveless bomber, over a white long-sleeve Roca Wear shirt and black Roca Wear denim jeans. He wore a Cartier Rolex watch and a diamond dog tag necklace, that he had Johnny Dang to design. He even had on his favorite pinky ring, that sparkled every time he took a sip of his drink, which the girls noticed whenever he moved his hand.

“You seem like a cool cat. I just might turn you on,” Cornelius said, looking at him.

The guy whispered something in Spanish to the girls they were with, then told Cornelius that he wanted to go outside.

“So what y’all ridin’ in?” Cornelius asked, as the guy pointed over to a Mercedes G550 SUV.

“Ok, I see you clean,” he told him.

These guys didn’t appear to be no scrubs, he thought. Their appearance, the girls they were with and what they were riding in told him that they were ballers.

Whatchu drive?” the guy asked Cornelius.

He pointed to a bronzed-colored Aston Martin sitting next to a Jag. His wife Chi-Chi had given him the car for his birthday, shortly after they were married. She had had the car since her brother had been killed by a ruthless drug dealer from the north-side of town, and knew that he had a serious crush on the ride. He unlocked the door, reached into the console and grabbed a sack of purple haze hydro marijuana.

“Come on, let’s go sit in my ride,” the guy said and then they walked over to the Benz G-Wagon and got in.

“So what’s your name homey?” Cornelius asked the guy.

“My name is Daniel and that’s my cousin Carlos,” Daniel said and then reached back to shake his hand.

“So what’s the deal with y’all bein‘ new in town?” Cornelius asked as he twisted up a blunt and then fired it up.

“My uncle just left me a fuckin’ cleaner’s, man. So me and my people came down from the Big Apple to see what it do, you know what I mean?” Daniel said to him.

“What happened to him?” Cornelius asked, blew out some smoke and then passed him the blunt.

“He was killed down near the border in a drug war between two different drug cartels,” said Daniel.

Daniel and his wife Sofia had lived in Brooklyn, New York ever since they first met. His mother and father had moved from Puerto Rico to Brooklyn when he was only a baby and what a time it was for him as a kid. He grew up fast, helping his dad run a restaurant when he was only a teenager. His mom had suddenly grown sick and his father needed money badly, so he and his cousin Carlos started peddling drugs in the alley behind his father’s restaurant. He had started to make way more money than his father was making, and at the age of 18, he bought himself a Lexus to satisfy his hustle. That’s when his uncle came to visit and suddenly noticed him. He gave him tips on how to strive in the game. By the time he was 21, he was getting his own shipments from someone his uncle knew out in Manhattan. That was what put him and his cousin on another level. He knew he had to take the lead in the family and just before his mom died, she’d told him that his father was starting to come down with Alzheimer and for him to take care of his 2 sisters. And so, Daniel made a promise to her that he would.

“Ok, I’m Cornelius,” he said returning his introduction.

He watched as Carlos stuck his hand in his pocket and came out with a small Zip-lock baggie. He stuck 2 fingers in the bag and pulled out a pill.

“I see you like that x homey,” Cornelius said to him.

“Yeah, I cut for them Blue Dolphins, you want one?” he asked him.

“Nah, I’m cool homey,” said Cornelius.

After they finished smoking the blunt they got out and went back inside the sports bar. Daniel’s two sisters were surrounded by a routy group of college frat brothers, and as they walked through the crowded group of people, the crowd began to break up.

“My sisters are always flirting and drawing to much attention,” Daniel said, looking at Cornelius.

“Your sisters!” Cornelius said, with a surprised look on his face.

Daniel began to introduce the girls to him.

“This is my sister Lorena and this Margarita,” he said as Cornelius looked at them.

“Hi!” they both said, giving him a short wave.

Cornelius hung out around the sports bar a lot longer than he expected, flossing and making eyes with Daniel’s sister Margarita. He had promised his wife Chi-Chi that he would come in a lot earlier than the past two nights, after he and his main man, Javoo, had done some of their own surveillance on a guy that Javoo had heard about, and one that was making major moves in the streets.

That’s when his cell phone began to ring. It was Javoo.

“Yeah, what’s up?” he said as he answered Javoo’s call.

“I just got the ok on this sucka man. It’s time for some action,” Javoo told him. Cornelius hung up the phone. He really didn’t want to leave, but he had to. “Ok fellas, I gotta burn. Y’all stay up,” Cornelius said, as he looked at Rita and began to walk away.

“Hey, hold up. Let me getcha number before you go,” Daniel said to him.

Cornelius and Daniel quickly exchanged numbers. He had some work to do and so he threw up the duce at Rita, turned and left the sports bar.



Javoo drove his new Chevy Camaro down Cullen Boulevard, as he thought about all the times he’d told his wife Tanasia, that he was going to quit the streets. His son Javon had just recently turned 10 and was now playing on a little league football team. His daughter Natasia, she was now 8 years old and had become a very good dancer to his imagination, as he smiled at the thought of her in front of him and Tanasia, trying to perform a skit Beyoncé had done during the BET Awards. That’s when his cell phone suddenly began to ring. It was Cornelius.

“What’s up?” He said as he answered.

“I had to go change cars. What’s the deal?” he asked him.

“Man, this dude we been watchin’, he owns a late night bar. I have somebody there now, keepin’ an eye on him, while we go check his spot out on I-45 and Scarsdale. He’s suppose to have a couple hundred G’s stashed in the attic. We need to get that. His 17 year old son is supposed to be the only one there, so hurry up and meet me at the sky rise,” Javoo told him. “Ok,” Cornelius said and then hung up.

Cornelius still had Chi-Chi’s old sky-rise apartment over in the Galleria area. He had given up his spot over in Holly Hall, after they had their home built out in Pearland and now used the apartment as a meeting place for whenever he and Javoo made moves. It was already around 12 o’clock midnight and Javoo had to figure out a way to get in that house. That’s when he thought about his number 2 sweetheart, Shalon.

Shalon layed dead asleep in her bed. She had worked all day and had stayed up fairly late; hoping that Javoo would come over, but he had other plans. They had been seeing each other for several years now and she was still very much in love with him. Shalon, who was now 26 years old, still looked a lot younger and could easily pass for a 19 or 20 year old, which was exactly what Javoo needed to get the young kid to open the door, without them having to kick it in.

Her phone began to ring, as she tossed and turned before answering it, trying to shake off the sleep that had her body lifeless.

“Hello,” she said finally answering the call.

“Get up. I need you right now,” Javoo said to her. “Ok, whatchu want me to do and whatchu want me to wear?” she asked as she sat up on her bed and turned on her night lamp. She had grown accustomed to Javoo’s ways and the things that he did. She had finally come to the conclusion that she was never going to get him to leave his wife, and so doing whatever he asked always turned out to be profitable in her book, especially when it came to something like this.

“I need you to wear somethin’ skimpy. Maybe a short skirt and some heels. I gotta 17 year old kid at home alone and we need to get him to answer the door. You know the routine,” Javoo said to her.

Shalon had become a very good actress as well. She done all kinds of things. She’d once pretended to be a cheerleader for the Houston Rockets and had persuaded a wealthy drug dealer into taking her home with him, only to set it up so that Javoo and Cornelius could rob him, then another time she’d pretended to be a Hurricane Katrina evacuee, needing a job and a place to stay, when a wealthy Columbian guy offered to take her in, thinking that he could get some sex, and that’s when Javoo and Cornelius came in to rob him as well.

“You know where to meet me and hurry up, we only got about a good hour to put this work in,” Javoo said and then hung up. Shalon threw on something simple, but it was also sexy. She’d thought that, the kid was only 17 so waking him out of his sleep would be like a dream to him once he saw her.

Javoo looked at his watch, wondering when Shalon was going to show up. It was a quarter to one and he wanted to have this job done before a quarter to two. “C’mon baby-girl,” he said as he and Cornelius sat in his Range Rover waiting on her.

Suddenly, they saw the headlights of her Chrysler 300 pull into the parking garage.

“Damn, it’s about time,” he said as she got out and skipped her way over to the Range Rover and got in the back seat.

“You ready?” she asked as Javoo checked out her appearance. Shalon was a very sexy dark-skinned chick. She would remind you of Chili, from the group TLC, whenever you saw her. She wore a very short Coogi denim skirt and glass bottom heels, with red leather straps that were up to her calfs. She had on a tight red short sleeve Coogi top and red lip stick. Her hair was pulled back into a ponytail and she wore a set of delicious looking loop earrings with red diamonds in them.

“I thought I said the boy was only seventeen,” Javoo said, feeling like she had overdressed.

Cornelius immediately started to laugh.

“Shut up Cornelius!” she said, as Javoo put the SUV in reverse and headed out towards Scarsdale.

It was about 1:15 am when Shalon, along with Javoo and Cornelius got out of the Range Rover across the street from the house that they wanted to invade. The neighborhood they were in was a pretty legit place. Javoo knew they couldn’t be seen doing anything that looked suspicious, for fear of any of the neighbors calling the police. But it was dark, the timing was right and the front door of the house sat back in a space between the garage and the living room, so they had no other choice but to give it a try.

Shalon rang the doorbell constantly. 10 minutes had passed and the boy still had not answered the door. Now Javoo was thinking about just kicking the door in, but the light above the door all of a sudden came on. Shalon could tell that someone was looking through the peep-hole, as she turned and looked back in Javoo’s direction. The lock on the door clicked and the door finally came open. It was the 17 year old boy.

“Yeah, what’s up?” the kid asked, rubbing his eyes with his hand.

“Um, I’m sorry if I woke you up, but my car won’t start and I’m tryin’ to get back to the southwest side. Could I use your phone to call somebody to come get me?” she asked as the boy looked at her with amazement.

He didn’t look much like a 17 year old kid at all. He was tall, standing nearly 6 ft 3 and was already growing a mustache.

“Yeah, yeah! Come on in,” the boy said.

He had opened the door up wide, so that Shalon could walk in past him, when Javoo and Cornelius ran from the darkness, pointing their guns at him.

“Get down, get down!” Javoo said, grabbing the boy and forcing him down to the floor, while Cornelius closed the door.

“Wait! Who is y’all?” the boy tried to ask, as Cornelius quickly began to duct tape him.

“Just be quiet kid and everything will be ok,” Javoo said, assuring the boy of his safety.

Javoo and Shalon walked to the hallway and headed upstairs, where they found the entrance to the attic, while Cornelius searched the bottom level of the house. Once they went into the attic, Javoo pulled a small flashlight out of his pocket and began to shine it through the attic. Over in the corner of the attic, he could see 6 boxes that were sealed with tape. Quickly, he took a fancy-looking butterfly knife from his pocket, flipped it open and jabbed one of the boxes, splitting it from side to side. He opened the cardboard lid and saw nothing but stacks of hundreds, so he grabbed the other boxes and split them open one at a time as well.

“This what I’m talkin’ bout right here,” he said nodding his head.

“But we gotta find a way to get’em to the Range without making so many trips back and forth to the house,” he quickly said. Shalon quickly turned and went down to one of the rooms in the house. She returned with a couple of bed sheets that she’d found in the hamper.

“Here, let’s pour 3 boxes in one and 3 in the other,” she said, spreading one of the sheets out over the floor.

Javoo began to dump the boxes of money out onto the sheet and then quickly tied the ends together. He took the knife, cut the other 3 boxes open and began to pour them out onto the second sheet as well. When he opened the last and final box, it came to his surprise what he saw inside. It was filled with bags of diamonds, very colorful rubies, emeralds and solid gold coins, that seemed to be from another country. He sat that box to the side and quickly tied the ends of the second sheet together.

“Let’s get back down stairs,” he said as he picked the box of jewels up, put it onto his shoulders and then reached down to grab the first sheet, while Shalon picked up the second. It didn’t take them but a few seconds to get back down to where

Cornelius was standing guard over the boy they had duct taped on the floor.“Let’s go,” he said as he handed Cornelius the sheet loaded with money. Shalon struggled with the sheet that she was carrying. She walked in a criss-cross, as the loaded sheet of money bounced around on her back nearly knocking her to the floor.

“Here girl! Carry this,” Javoo said, handing her the box. He grabbed the sheet by the knot, threw it over his shoulder, stepped over the kid and then walked out of the front door, with Cornelius and Shalon following behind him.

It was just about 2 o’clock in the morning, as they headed back down the freeway, when Cornelius’ phone suddenly began to ring.

“Hey baby!” he said as he answered.

“Where are you,” his wife Chi-Chi asked him.

“I’m out takin care of some business. I’ll be home in a little while,” he told her.

“Are you with Javoo?” she asked.

“Yes, I am, so go to bed baby. Everything’s cool,” he said to her.

Chi-Chi wasn’t going to argue that. Even though she had once asked him to stop doing what he was doing, she knew that as long as Javoo was in the picture he would be ok, especially when there was some money involved.

READ a FREE CHAPTER of TAGGER, A Novel By Kenneth West


A Novel

By Kenneth West

Southern Classic Publishing, LLC

Mansfield, Texas


This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Southern Classic Publishing, L.L.C.

990 Hwy 287 N Ste 106 #298

Mansfield, Texas 76063


Copyright 2014 ©

All rights reserved. This book, or parts thereof, may not be reproduced in any form whatsoever without permission.



  1. Unauthorized writing or drawings on a public surface
  2. The signs, symbols and art often associated with gang culture
  3. A form of art affiliated with urban blight



One who paints graffiti, usually illegally

BA — Burning America, Baltimore Alcoholics

BAD — Boys Are Down

BH —   Bounty Hunters

BNS — Bombing Never Stops

CAC —   Crazy Ass Criminals

CNS —   Checking Nuh Skills

FUH —   Fuck Ur Hood

GM—   Going AWOL, Ghetto Art, Gods at War

GB   —   Ghetto Blasters

GCS —   Graff Can Sorcery

GFM —   Great Fucking Moments

GK   —   Ghetto Kings

IBS —   International Bomb Squad

KD —   Kings Destroy

LT —   Latin Terrorist

NG —   Nitty Gritty

OBW — Only 4 Best Writers

PG — Planet Green

ROT — Reign of terror

SF   — Sticky Fella

SPL — Spray Platinum Love

TDS — The Death Squad

TKO — Taking Over, Taking Crew Out

TLV — The Latin Vandals

VIC — Vandals In Control

WDS — We Destroy Shit

WGS — We Got Style

WK — We Kings


“The rebels of one generation are the culture heroes of another.”




Chapter one

An exhaustive study published in The Journal of Human Copulation, and picked up by the LA Times for the vertical masses found that artist and creative types had more sex than the general population. Too bad for the horizontally challenged “experts”, who actually had time to study bullshit like that while the rest of the world was busy working and knocking boots.

The study didn’t say whether the right brain individuals were in monogamous relationships, married or still playing the field. That was for another group of intellectuals to ponder in between spanking the salami.

Loud thump.


Another thump.

I agreed with the study. After all, I was an artist. Just the way most writers are writers.

Broke and unpaid.

Sacrifice I made for favoring concrete over canvas.



But I did have a ton of sex, which could be attributed to the fact that I was healthy, married and had a wife that equally loved the horizontal tango. Then to the fact that I was an artist per se.



Just as politics was the rich man’s sport, sex was the poor man’s pastime, recreation, and retreat, even if it was sometimes complicated by kids. Wanted and unwanted. STDs and headaches. It was still Bally’s without the membership fee.

The particleboard headboard hit the wall again.


Besides being another struggling artist (exactly what the world needed), I was equally good at multitasking, like thinking about bullshit studies while ignoring, or at least trying to ignore, the latest addition to the symphony of percussions already filling my ears.

Then my lead Soprano had to go and add an off-key note, totally disrupting the harmony of my inner lecture/outer concert. “Facil, Papi, calmado”- Easy daddy, settle down.

With our two daughters asleep in the next room of the cardboard apartment, if they didn’t hear us, the neighbors definitely would, the way we laid in bed and snickered when we heard them, especially since the couple next door were in their early sixties. Gloria said it was impossible for her to look the sweet, grey-haired, grandmotherly Mrs. Rodriguez in the eye the next day, after having heard her husband repeatedly ask, “Whose is it,” and hearing Mrs. Rodriquez shriek his name for ten minutes in reply.

It didn’t bother me. Gloria better get hip to the Viagra age. Fast-forward forty years, that’s her butt. She better hope we’d have a house by then, so no one can hear her.

Chastened, I slowed my pace, thinking how the first thing I was gonna buy when we did get our house was a real bed, a solid oak one and bolt that sucker to the floor. I might even soundproof the walls, recording studio style. Then go off the goddam chain.

Soon as I let up, Gloria tightened the vice-like hold she had me in. Arms locked around my shoulders, legs clasped tightly behind my back, then increased her own movements, writhing and moaning, creating her own reverse thrust – revealing the wide gulf between what she said she wanted, and what she actually did. Women.

She cooed, “Ohh, aiii, mero Papi, no pares, aiii mero.” – Don’t stop, right there.

Gloria spoke Spanish the most when we made love, or when she was upset. Whenever her brain was overwhelmed by pleasure or anger, the Spanish poured from her like a faucet.

The bed hit the wall again. Gloria swore.

By now her hundred and ten pound body-lock had started feeling like a WWF hold. I flexed my muscles, broke free and folded her up into a human pretzel. I know how to bring it. She knew that.

Soon as the jackhammer came on, her eyes opened as wide as her Spanish features would allow. She moaned and squirmed, tried to scoot away up the bed, like a crab on its back.

The headboard made contact with the wall again.


But this time I heard a stir in the other room, even though it was late. Past two in the morning. To be on the safe side, I had to change plays. Reluctantly, I did before the game ended without a touchdown or even a punt.

Easing off my wife while listening for sounds from the other room; she gave me a devilish smile that said, “Won that one.”

But the game wasn’t over yet. Slowly and tenderly, I dried the sweet perspiration from her steaming skin with my tongue, continuing until I reached her moistest point.

Whereupon she quickly reestablished her vice-like grip. Only this time it was my head that she attempted to crush. “Asme eso, Papi.” – Do that shit, daddy.

Over Gloria’s attempts to sing, I heard the curtain fall. Three little taps against the door, followed by Maria’s tiny six-year-old voice, tight with fear “Mama.”

Gloria was so busy moaning and trembling, trembling and moaning from my tongue-lashing that it took her a few seconds to regain her facility for coherent speech. When she did, she sounded like a dragon spitting fire, “Vete a dormir. Lo que Te digo, estoy bien. Si no Te regresas a la cama para dormirte, Te voy a dar.” Go back to bed. What I tell you, I’m fine. You don’t get back in that bed right now and go to sleep, I’m gonna whip your butt.

I could almost see Maria with her big oval eyes and long black hair jump, see the tears forming at the corner of her dark brown eyes. “Stop hollering at her.”

“Don’t tell me what to do with my child.”

“She’s mine too.” Gloria pissed me off when she said bullshit like that.

The implication was that since Maria wasn’t my daughter as far as DNA was concerned, I had less say so concerning her. Yet I was the only father she had since she was two and she called me daddy.

Her biological father Cesare was serving a twelve to twenty in Pelican Bay for robbery and attempted murder. Not that he was much of a father when he was out.

Before me and Gloria got together and had our DNA daughter Sultana – since she wanted to be all-technical – Gloria and Maria’s father had an Ike and Tina-type relationship. With lots of fighting, hollering, cursing and calling the police, who alternated between who they took to jail.

Cesare this time. Gloria the next one.

Although Cesare was long out the picture, all the drama at such a young age had scared Maria. She slept like a feather and was subject to cry at the drop of a hat, over any- and everything. An argument, a dead bird, actors fighting on TV, any type of conflict. And after seeing Gloria with bruises and black eyes, she was extremely protective of her mother.

A major source of contention between us concerning Maria was that Gloria felt like I spoiled and babied her and Sultana too much. In her book, life was hard and our daughters needed to know that the world wasn’t going to cater to their whims, nor to Maria’s sensitive feelings.

She wanted them to know that the world and sometimes even your family would rather kick you when you down than give you a hand up. That the only time most people would reach out their hand to you was to hit you with it.

She was raised in a two-bedroom apartment with twelve brothers and sisters in Aliso Village housing projects, right in the heart of East LA, by her single mother after her father got deported when she was still little. Hence, she was used to fighting for everything she got, from her mother’s over-taxed affection to a simple slice of bread. Some people saw life as a game, but Gloria approached life as an all-out war, and believed that sensitive souls like Maria didn’t stand a chance. Especially not in the barrio of East LA that we called home.

Still I had a different worldview. I didn’t see the cup as half empty. And certainly didn’t believe that the best way to prepare your children for the harshness of the world was by being equally harsh.

The home was supposed to be a sanctuary where you could go to lick your wounds and be healed, not be reinjured. If my desire to create an oasis for my family in the middle of an urban desert meant I spoiled or over-indulged my daughters, so be it.

I slid out of bed and began pulling on my boxer shorts. Gloria grabbed my hand, “I’m sorry baby,” she said. “I’ll check on her in a minute.”

I hesitated, certain Maria was already in bed crying her eyes out. In my moment of indecision, Gloria saw the opportunity to enforce P-power, being an expert at controlling the big head via the less formidable one.

She slid to the edge of the bed and sat in front of me. Without giving me a chance to protest, she started communicating non-verbally with me.

Thirty seconds after the conversation began, I had lost all desire to protest, and couldn’t even remember why I had gotten out of bed to begin with.




By Donald Ray Johnson

Southern Classic Publishing, LLC

Mansfield, Texas


This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, events, or locales is entirely coincidental.

Southern Classic Publishing, L.L.C.

990 Hwy 287 N Ste 106 #298

Mansfield, Texas 76063


Copyright 2014 © by Donald Ray Johnson

All rights reserved. This book, or parts thereof, may not be reproduced in any form whatsoever without permission.

Bona Fide Street Thug

1. Donald Ray Johnson, African-American, Contemporary, Urban Crime, Houston, Texas – Fiction

Chapter 1

Three Years Later.

Standing 6′ foot 1″wearing an all-black Kenneth Cole shirt and pants and sporting a pair of Gucci sun shades, Javoo stood near a small indoor-outdoor cafe in the Greenway Plaza area just outside of downtown Houston. His attention was directed to a 15-story sky-rise apartment building across the street, from where he awaited a female friend who was visiting a girlfriend to gain some information on a guy named Mitchell, the female’s boy­friend. Javoo really didn’t know the guy and on the cool, he really didn’t want to. He just wanted his money. It was already understood that he was a local hustler and had been making a sub­stantial amount of cash lately.

All he needed to know was where he kept his stash. He knew that the guy didn’t live there, or at least keep anything there, after talking to his female friend, Shalon. She would always speak about how square her girlfriend Tracy was, and how Mitchell would brag about the money he was mak­ing. She had even told him about how he would always try to holla at her behind his girl’s back, which was why he’d decided to go on and get him for his money. It wasn’t that he was jealous of Mitchell or anything like that. He had plenty of his own bread.

It was just that jackin’ was his full time job, and Mitchell was one that just so happened to make his own self his newest victim.

Mitchell was a local hustler indeed, though he purchased all his drugs across town from a guy named Money Black, whom Javoo once had a confrontation with. Money Black was ruthless, notorious, did a lot of high-cappin’ and, most of all, considered himself as the King of the Northside. That was what had caused him and Javoo to get into it in the first place. He thought he could just come to any club in the south and show the Southside playaz up. That was until he bumped into Javoo and then tried to talk down on him like he was nothin’. That’s when Javoo slapped him and then dropped him in front of two of his potnas, and ever since then they had not liked each other.

Javoo, whispering to himself and thinking of how Shalon would always get caught up in the small talk, was ready to split. He didn’t want to incidentally get spotted by Mitchell and mess up his plans to hit him. Suddenly, the glass door of the building slowly opened and Shalon stepped out, locking eyes with him and saying in a low tone, “I’m comin’, I’m comin” as she crossed the street. Shalon was a 5′ foot 6″ dark-skinned chick who always wore something similar to a sundress and heels. She always carried a top name handbag, whether it was Gucci, Louis Vuitton, or a purse made by Dior or Prada. Her walk was out of this world and horns blew in appreciation of her. Not because she was in the street, but because of the way she so graciously scaled the surface over to where Javoo was standing.

“Ready to go?” Shalon asked. “Yeah, I was ready 20 minutes ago. I started to leave yo’ ass,” he said in a joking manner. “And if you would’ve … ,” Shalon said as they both walked towards the car. Javoo owned several rides, but would always purchase a rental for undercover moves he was going to make. He knew only a fool would rob somebody in his own vehicle and in Houston, Texas, that was a sure way to get your head busted. Shalon gave Javoo all the info that he needed on Mitchell as they headed towards the southwest side of town to where she lived. He’d stopped at a Timmy Chan’s restaurant so that she could pick up a bite to eat and then swiftly drove to her apartment.

“You comin’ in or what?” she asked as Javoo smiled softly.

“Not right now, lil’ mama. I’ll be back later,” he said as she smacked her lips, got out and stompishly walked to her front door. He knew she wanted to have sex with him, for she was one of his favorites, but he had robbing Mitchell on his mind and wanted to show him just how watchful the streets are. He reached for his cell phone and dialed Cornelius’s number, one of his most trusted homeys and partner in crime.

“Wud up?” Cornelius asked as soon as he answered.

“Meet me at Papadeaux on the 610 freeway. I’ll be sitting at the bar,” said Javoo.

“What’s the deal? We got business or what?” Cornelius asked him.

“I thought you knew,” said Javoo.

“Okay, see you in fifteen,” Cornelius said and then hung up.


* * *


Mitchell had two things going for him. One, he was good looking, so he always had a ring of nice looking, independent women on his team. Two, he had gained the trust of Money Black, who would always make sure that he got his product. Mitchell handled 8 to 10 kilos of cocaine, at least 5 pounds of meth, and up to 75 pounds of hydro marijuana once every two weeks. He pretty much had the Richmond/Westheimer area sewed up, and had been a smooth operator with his business.. He had a quiet and cozy looking bachelor pad just off the Richmond strip, where he didn’t allow anyone except his highest paid female friends and, sometimes, maybe a spur of the moment freak he would meet around the way. It was his hide-a-way, his place for comfort and also the nest for his product.

Stepping out of his Mercedes S550 as his garage door came shut, Mitchell walked into his condo and went to the kitchen, opened the fridge, grabbed a beer and popped the top.

“Aaahhh!” was the sound he made after taking a deep swallow. He had been thinking about his girlfriend, Tracy, and how madly in love she was with him. He had been using her account as another way to put up some of his street money and figured that someday he may marry her. But before he did, he wanted to get at her sexy ass friend, Shalon.

“Let me call this bitch,” he said as he flopped down on the couch. He searched through his cell phone, found her number and waited for her to answer.

“Hello?” Shalon said as she answered. “What it do baby? What’s happenin’ witcha?” he asked her.

“Baby! Who is this? I think you got the wrong number,” she said.

“It’s ya boy, Mitchell. You know who this is,” he said. Shalon was surprised that he had called her. She didn’t know what to think, especially after what she had just done for Javoo.

“I thought that Tracy was your baby, and how did you get my number anyway?” she asked him.

“I got it from the caller ID,” he told her.

“Ooooh! You ain’t no good, tryin’ to holla at me behind Tracy’s back,” Shalon said to him.

“Well, I didn’t call to talk to you about Tracy; I called to talk to you,” he said.

“Well, I’m about to take a bath, so you gon’ have to call me back,” said Shalon.

“Okay, I’ll call you back in about an hour,” said Mitchell.

“Bye, nigga,” Shalon said and hung up.


* * *


Javoo and Cornelius sat at the bar flirting with three of the sexiest looking women in the restaurant. They sipped on Patron and cranberry, while two of the women sipped on Grey Goose and Red Bull, and the other a Jose Cuervo Gold chill shot with salt around the rim of the glass. They had planned on discussing how they were going to rob Mitchell, but were distracted when the three beautiful ladies showed up. Their conversation was just beginning to get quite interesting when Javoo’s phone suddenly begin to ring.

“Excuse me ladies, I gotta take this call,” he said as he stepped off to the end of the bar.

“What’s up?” he said answering his phone.

“You wouldn’t believe who just called me,” said Shalon.

“I don’t know…who?” he asked.

“That nigga, Mitchell,” said Shalon.

“Whatchu mean, he just called you?” Javoo asked her.

“I told you he been tryin’ to holla at me behind Tracy’s back. He said he got my number from her caller ID,” she said. _

“Uh huh! You probably gave him your number,” said Javoo.

“I didn’t!” cried Shalon.

“Well, he callin’ you and shit. Who’s ho’ is you, mine or his?” Javoo said mean-like.

“I ain’t no ho’,” Shalon replied.

“Well, you know what I’m tryin’ to do. You trippin’ talkin’ to the nigga and shit,” Javoo said.

“That’s why I called you, cause I told him that I was about to take a bath, so he said he was gon’ call me back in an hour,” she told him.

“Okay, I’ll be over there in a few minutes,” Javoo said and then hung up. Javoo and Cornelius cut the chit-chat with the females short, got their numbers and left. They had a mission to complete, and Cor­nelius was thinkin’ numbers as he followed him over to Shalon’s apartment. “So what’s up,? Talk to me,” Cornelius said once they parked and got out. “This nigga just called Shalon sayin’ that he got her num­ber off his girl’s caller ID,” Javoo told him.

“Do he know you?” asked Cornelius.

“Nah, he don’t know who I am, but let’s talk inside,” Javoo said as they walked to Shalon’s front door. Javoo had a key to Shalon’s apartment, but before he could find it on his key ring, she had already swung the door open.

“Hey Shalon,” Cornelius said as they walked into her place. “Y’all want something to drink?” she asked, seeing that there was a certain serious look on Javoo’s face.

“Nah, we cool,” he said. When Mitchell called back, Javoo and Cornelius listened as she talked to him on the phone. They had a plan for him, and Javoo was always known to be a fast thinker, since his earlier plan would now have to be readjusted.

“Okay, this is what we gon’ do,” Javoo said once Shalon hung up the phone. He had already gotten Shalon to get the directions and the number to Mitchell’s condo. He also gave her specific orders to go on over to his place while they followed her in a rental and would be fairly unnoticeable. He just felt that Mitchell thought he was too slick for his own good by allowing Shalon, his girl’s best friend, to come to his spot on a spur. However, he also had to understand the safety of her reputation, and not let Mitchell think she knew of anything that was going to happen. He had told her to go in and talk casually as always, do a little flirting and comment on his and Tracy’s relationship to stretch out the situation but, at the same time, not let him touch her and do the things he wanted, without making him sweat.

Cornelius quickly whispered to Javoo as they sat in the car and waited for a signal from Shalon. That was the best part about the whole move. Perfection!

“This is too easy. You think the nigga that stupid?” he asked him.

“Pussy is a motherfucka, plus Shalon a bad bitch. He’ll do whatever she want him to do, as long as she ain’t tryin’ to leave,” Javoo said as a smile spread on Cornelius’s face.

Mitchell opened his door and let Shalon in. He couldn’t be­lieve he had actually gotten her to come over. He quickly offered her something to drink and then sat closely next to her, but Shalon did her best to stall him. She had to think of a way to get Javoo and Cornelius into that condo without Mitchell noticing. He had been touching and feeling all on her and, so, since she supposedly had already taken a bath, she insisted on him taking a shower before they did anything. That was all she had to say to get him out the way so that she could signal Javoo, and unbuttoning her pants had made her very persuasive. Mitchell knew it was on then, and jumped and ran upstairs to turn on the shower.

“Can I turn on some music?” Shalon yelled up to him as she heard him scramble around upstairs.

“Yeah, go ahead,” Mitchell shouted. Shalon quickly called Javoo and went and unlocked the door once the music was on. As soon as Mitchell stepped in the shower, Javoo and Cornelius eased into the condo and lightly duct-taped Shalon. She didn’t know that this was gon’ be a part of the plan and trembled as she watched Javoo creep up stairs with a ski mask on and his gun in his hand.

“You gon’ be straight. Javoo knows what he’s doin’,” Cor­nelius whispered to her. Seconds later Mitchell, with Javoo’s hand clutched tightly to a belt around his neck and a gun pointed at his head, came downstairs. Javoo caught him just as he was getting out the shower, and Mitchell was as naked as a jaybird.

“You know what time it is, playa,” Javoo said to him. Mitchell saw Shalon with her hands tied behind her back and tears coming from her eyes. A guy wearing a mask and holding a gun was standing over her and that’s when he knew what was happening.

“Get down on the floor by yo’ bitch, nigga,” Javoo said as he slammed Mitchell to the floor and pressed his gun to Mitchell’s head. Cornelius quickly came and began to duct tape him as well.

“Where that work at, nigga?” Javoo roughly asked him.

“Whatchu talkin’ bout man, what work?” asked Mitchell. Javoo kicked him in his side and then slapped him on his naked ass as he kneeled down next to him.

“Whatchu think, I’m just visiting, nigga? I’ma blow this ho’ brains all over yo’ ass if you don’t spit it out, ho’ ass nigga,” Javoo barked. Mitchell thought about what was happening. He had never been in a situation like this before. He knew he didn’t want to die, and he sure as hell didn’t want to be responsible for Shalon’s death, not in his condo. “Upstairs…upstairs in the closet,” he said as Javoo stood over him.

“Anyone of ’em move, you know what to do,” Javoo said as he headed back to the stairway. Mitchell closed his eyes and shook his head from side to side, as he thought about the money he had stashed upstairs.

“This is fucked up,” he said as he heard Shalon constantly speaking in a low tone, “Please don’t kill me, please don’t kill me.”

“Shut up, nigga!” Cornelius ordered, just as Javoo came back downstairs carrying two large duffle bags. Mitchell began to wiggle around on the floor, as if he was gon’ try to stop Javoo and Cornelius from leaving with the duffle bags. That’s when Cornelius kicked him upside his head and then kneeled down to put his gun to his head.

“Keep yo’ ho’ ass still or I’m gon’ bust you in yo’ ass, nigga. You lucky we lettin’ yo’ ass live as it is, so you just lay right here and think about that,” Cornelius said and then he and Javoo stepped out of the condo and quickly walked to the car. They drove down Richmond Avenue and then over to the 59 freeway. Cornelius had a jazzy little apartment there, in a place called Holly Hall, out on the south side of town and that’s where they went to separate their win for the day. It was just a common thing to hit a nice lick and then go chill for the rest of the evening. They had just put in a full day’s work and, thanks to Mitchell, the rest of the week wasn’t going to look too bad either.

“Let’s do this real quick, ’cause Tanasia been callin’ me all day,” Javoo said as he unzipped one of the duffle bags and then the other. Inside one of the duffle bags were five kilos of cocaine, a pound and a half of meth, and six pounds of Orange Cush hydro marijuana.

“Man, this cush smells good,” Cornelius said pressing one of the huge Zip-locks to his nose.

“Yeah, but I bet it don’t smell as good as this,” Javoo said, showing Cornelius the money inside the other duffle bag. Javoo dumped the money onto the table and after 30 minutes had passed they were at $127,000 and still counting.

“This boy been puttin’ in some work,” Javoo said after counting his last stack.

“Where you at?” he asked Cornelius.

“This twenty one Gee’s right here,” he said as he pointed at a couple stacks of money.

“Whatchu got?” he asked him back.

“I got seventeen more right here. So, that’s one sixty five altogether,” Javoo said to him. Javoo had planned to give Shalon $25,000 for her part in the scam once she got back to her apartment. He took in $90,000 since he had planned the whole thing, had the rental, and Shalon, the key to Mitchell’s condo.

Cornelius, he wasn’t trippin’ at all. He took in $50,000, three kilos of cocaine, the pound and a half of meth and three pounds of cush.

“I gotta go,” Javoo said as he tucked his two bricks and three pounds of cush in with his money, gave Cornelius some dap and walked to the door. Now, he was just hoping that Shalon would get out of Mitchell’s condo without getting hurt.

“You be careful and make sure you keep your phone on, ” he said to Cornelius, then turned and walked to his car.