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For most of my story I am the villain, which is why I’ve been reluctant to go ahead and tell it. I didn’t always know that. For a long time I felt justified in my actions. I knew my reasons and thought they outweighed the damage I did. Even as I started stalling with these little tales from my past, I thought it might help others see things from my perspective. The more I dug into my past the more easily I saw it didn’t matter. The truth is my decisions have always been about me, what I wanted, what I thought I needed. That selfishness makes me the bad guy. But for every villain or bad guy in life, there can always be a bigger and badder one. I should have began there. So here goes.

His name was Miguel. He was about ten years older than me. I had no interest in him when we first met. I actually didn’t really like him much. He had this real wannabe nice guy act he played while really he seemed cocky. He’d try to be charming and smooth, when you could tell the whole time he thought he was above everybody else. Although I guess it was partly justified, which just made it more irritating. He was extremely smart, good looking, wealthy and successful. He appeared in my life out of nowhere, suddenly he was friends with just about everybody I knew. I reluctantly accepted him as a part of my social circle. We ended up forming a antagonistic yet flirtatious friendship. His good looks kept me from being openly hostile, I’m a sucker for a pretty boy.

Eventually as I learned more about him I actually came to admire him and see how similar we were. He lost his mother in his early teens, around the same age as me. He was taken in by family, his father had never been around, but from that point on was really on his own. He’d been a drug dealer starting because it was easy money. He wasn’t the typical street corner dealer. He went to college, worked legit jobs, and seemed like a clean cut kid to most people. By the time I met him he was a totally legit business man. He started by recruiting and training personal bodyguards, later expanding into different areas of the private security industry. I know sounds a bit too good to be true, question it if you want, I do.

He had a reputation in his old neighborhood and there were lots of rumors about work he’d done for big dealers. There were also other signs that there was something not exactly right about him. By then I was in too deep and justified it. He’d done what he had to do to survive and to succeed. In fact, it was that darker side of him that really pulled me in. It wasn’t until I saw the bad guy underneath it all that I was actually attracted to him. I could never have even imagined how bad though. I have to admit now how stupid I was, I did not see that he’d been manipulating from the start. It’s actually kind of amazing and still I have to give him credit for how damn brilliant he was.