Chapter 36

As underclassmen we were too busy trying to be seen with the older kids. We thought we needed them but should have been more loyal to each other.

Those older kids were like Mob captains we had give a percentage to. Everything we had, they took a piece. But with their graduation came liberation from that oppression. It was at that ceremony were I first decided to make a change.

Freshman, freshman, sophomore, senior. That was the trajectory of my High School career. I was held back after the first year and didn’t catch up until the last. Before my senior year, the idea of me graduating didn’t seem realistic.

But sitting there watching them graduate, I knew I had to be there next year.

They didn’t have online courses back then, so that summer I took several by mail. I also did community service, which I was given school credit for.

Well okay, I cheated on my community service. The owner of the community center was family friend who lied for me. She said I worked way more hours than I did. I went sometimes but when I did, I just made out in the backroom with other girls who worked there.

I did some actual work but not much community service. I would do my courses by mail there. I completed a whole course in one day. That’s when my suspicions were confirmed. School is bullshit and they were wasting my time. When left to my own device, I was finishing entire classes in a day and acing them.

Since that drug bust happened weed temporarily evaporated. Therefore that summer was very productive. I caught up and when school started I was actually a senior. I’d eventually go on to graduate… miraculously.

I also finally got my driver’s license, something I was a year behind on getting. Plus I wasn’t a virgin anymore.

It was a new me. My Squad was a new squad. The school was ours now.


It started small. Me and this dude we called JarHead would drive around in his 89’ Accord smoking weed listening to Jay Z’s Dynasty album. Between the two of us, we knew everyone, so we went everywhere.

Before we knew it we amassed a following. It spread like religion. We called ourselves the Dynasty, modeled after the Jay album. We had several of the most influential kids in our clique; even the girls, even the hot ones, even the smart ones. We wore our jerseys backwards and our coats half off to signify allegiance. We formed our hands in the shapes of diamonds to throw up our sign. We even had the host of the announcements throwing it up on-air during morning broadcasts.

Of course competing factions arose as well. The ‘Franchise’ for example tried to create their own thing, but they were RC Cola to our Pepsi. We were on top.

Girls would take their clothes off to be in the Dynasty, as part of their initiation. Everything was lovely. Parties were every weekend. Somebody’s parents would always be somewhere, and that’s where we went.

The cops were still up our ass. You’d think they were in love with us. Everywhere we went, they’d follow. It seemed like every weekend one of us was getting an underage consumption or DUI.

We didn’t let that stop us though.

Chapter 37

There was this huge party so deep in the woods I couldn’t find it now if I tried. We had no idea how to get home, it didn’t matter. We were too preoccupied with living in the moment. There was no social media, no pictures to post. This chapter is the only evidence it ever happened.

The party was in honor of the kids who got arrested in that bust. They were currently in jail.

I had just started to get really drunk and really flirty with some girl when the cops came and everyone took off. I didn’t ask any questions. I just ran.

Eventually the rest of us who weren’t apprehended congregated and plotted on how to get home. We were miles away in the middle of nowhere with no vehicle, no cellphones, and police were looking for us.

Dozens of us running up a mountain with only moonlight. I saw a girl completely submerged in a pond. She gasped for air then just kept running.

We miraculously found a friend with a truck. He’d already gotten a citation for being there and was leaving. We hopped in the back and he drove us home.

The next day I sat at the kitchen table with my mom who read the paper. She was reading an article about the police raid I just escaped from.

“Did you know all those kids got in trouble last night, Arthur?”

”How bout that. That’s crazy” I replied.

“It sure is…why are your arms scratched up like that?”

She knew but she didn’t. It didn’t matter. My alibi was airtight. There was no way I was snitching on myself. Well, I guess I just did though huh? Sorry Mom, it’s too late to ground me now.

Chapter 38

I’ve never told anybody this, but…

When George was on house arrest he asked me to take his girlfriend to Sadie Hawkins. He thought I was safe.

Was I safe because we were friends, or was I safe because he knew girls didn’t really like me? I can’t be sure. Maybe it was both.

Was my motivation to prove him wrong, or was it because I was wanted his girl? I can’t be sure. Maybe it was both.

But at that dance, I was running all types of game on her. It’s worth noting that George and this girl were in an open relationship, if you can believe it. They were progressive and way head of their time, right? Her other boyfriend back then, is actually her husband now, but I digress.

When she dropped me off, I gave her this line about her body being so nice I wanted to keep it in captivity. It somehow worked because she kissed me. That was like my third kiss ever, again with an older woman. Maybe that’s why I have thing for them. I can’t be sure.

Eventually George found out, at least that I was running game, because he clowned me over that captivity line. I’m not sure if he knew she kissed me. I’ve since learned that women tend to leave out incriminating portions of stories.

I’ve seen that girl a few times in adult life. She always gives me the look, like we’re still sharing an inside joke. Impressions are fascinating. It’s funny how a pivotal moment can forever shape how you feel about something, or someone.

Outro

Eventually those older kids who already graduated caught wind of what we were doing. They didn’t understand that the Dynasty was satire. To be fair, they probably still don’t know what satire means. They were secretly but obviously jealous. They made fun of it and tried to sabotage our events. Why they cared when they weren’t even in high school anymore was beyond me. But that was a testament to the power of our movement. Some people loved it and others hated it. We forced you to feel something. That’s always the goal, even now with these chapters. And say what you will about the Dynasty, but everyone around then still remembers it, and I bet they always will. As silly as it was, it’s immortalized.

And you know something? Those were the only friends I ever had.

One of the most memorable parties would come to be known as the Dynasty Party. This was peek Dynasty. Girls would take me in rooms and lift their shirts up to be in the Dynasty. It was everything I’d been waiting for.

It was my moment. I went from being unnoticed to making out with the hottest girls. It’s juvenile maybe, but it’s how I know I can accomplish anything. No one would’ve ever believed I could’ve pulled that off. But there I was, with their tits in my hands.

I wasn’t in complete control of this newfound power though. I was of course, still a sucker for love. I inevitably fell again, for one of the girls who showed me her tits. We’ll call her Maddie.

It’s tough being friends with a beautiful girl, then having a glimpse of what it might be like being more. I wasn’t equipped to blur those lines. I fell deep. I still wasn’t experienced enough. And although I was admired throughout the school, I still wasn’t considered a serious contender for a boyfriend.

Because Maddie was my friend, she told me who she did have a crush on. It was a friend of mine. I was devastated. I wanted to die. I felt so alone in that moment.

I wrote a suicide note and had rat poison in my back pocket. I called Craig and burst into tears.

He told me:

”Nigga stop giving a fuck about these bitches who don’t give a fuck about you. That’s why they don’t give a fuck about you, because you give a fuck about them. As soon as you stop caring, watch them come back around.”

Sound advice, I must admit. Even now.

Me liking a girl has been proven to be the biggest deterrent from finding love. Me in love is seemingly the most unattractive characteristic I possess. Women are not into the AJ who likes them.

Now the AJ that doesn’t give a fuck about them, they love that AJ. That’s their favorite AJ. As self-defeating as that may seem, I can’t argue with the results.

Since I’m a student of the game, I learned to play it. Who am I to disagree?

I wonder if it’s just me, or is the whole world is like this? Does every husband not truly like their wife because they can’t? Did those wives pass on who really loved them because his vulnerability turned them off?

I said I played the game, I never said I made the rules. I just report them.

That’s actually why I write. Because 1, I get to speak my mind and you can’t talk back. And 2, I feel there’s something coming I need to express.

It’s not that Paul Revere thought he was special. He just saw something important and wanted to let people know. His way was screaming on a horse in the middle of the night. My way is writing a book.

In Season 4, you might say, the redcoats are coming…