“Crime Never Pays” was written by Medhansh, who is in my 2016 “Ace Your Writing” class. An interesting account of a youth who went astray, destroying his own future.
Crime Never Pays
“You are under arrest for possession of drugs!” the police officer says grimly, as cold metallic handcuffs find their place around my wrists. I am filled with deep regret as I recall everything that has led to this fateful day.
The dismissal bell brought an end to a mundane, routine school day. Everyone made a beeline for the school gates. As usual, I was alone. My classmates gave me the nickname of ‘Nerdy Loner’ as I liked to keep to myself. I had no friends in all my three years in this secondary school. At home too, I was alone as my parents were always busy with their careers.
As I trudged home listlessly, I walked past a group of youths. They were acting suspiciously, huddling in a corner at the void deck of a block of flats. This was their usual haunt. I often saw them there. One of them whispered, “Let’s start our routine as the coast is clear.” Catching sight of me staring at them, one of the bigger boys, whom the others called Beng, called out, “Hey, you! Come over!”
I walked towards Beng hesitantly. “Do you want to join our gang? You would be awesome and stop being the nerd you are, and everyone will like you!” Beng persuaded. The other boys in the gang sniggered.
Beng shoved a can of strong-smelling substance under my nose and urged, “Try it! This is truly stupendous and you will start feeling exultant!”
“Is…is it dangerous? Will it…it… cause… death? Is it legal?” I stammered.
“Just shut up!” The chief miscreant interrupted me and let out a string of expletives, making a rude gesture at me.
“You are such a sissy!” one of the boys jeered and the rest of the group chuckled in a facetious manner.
They started to corner me and I had no way to escape. I gave in reluctantly. Part of me screamed ‘run’, yet another part of me longed to have friends, to finally be ‘accepted’. One of the boys forced me to sniff a can of glue as part of the ‘ritual’ of being a member of their gang. Very soon, I was addicted to this habit. I would hang out with my new-found friends every day after school. I even picked up smoking as they assured me holding a cigarette in my hand made me look ‘cool’ and suave.
A few weeks later, at our usual get-together, Beng drew me aside and stealthily showed me a pinkish pill. He called it ‘Pilly Strawberry Pink’, or ‘PSP’ in short. He told me it was a ‘medicated candy’ that would make me feel really good. He assured me that PSP was safe to consume and would not make me sick. “Try it,” he urged, pushing one into my hand. “You will love it!”
Beng told us to help him sell PSP to our schoolmates, and in return, he would give us a ‘commission’. Our distribution plan went well until one fateful day, the police fell in upon us and caught us red-handed in the midst of our ‘transactions’.
The cold handcuffs are a stark reminder of the ghastly few months when I allowed myself to be led astray. I regret everything I have done. Not only have I put my health on the line but I have annihilated my own future. I have also brought mortification to my family. How I wish I can turn back the clock to that mundane, routine school day as the dismissal bell rang.
Crime certainly does not pay.