Gavin Blanco was a lieutenant commander in the United States Navy who had a reputation for causing trouble and pushing back against authority figures. Many people who knew him thought he could’ve been a Captain by now if he followed the rules. But Gavin wasn’t that type of person.
He Needed Somewhere to Live
Gavin hated his current living arrangement. He was roommates with a fellow lieutenant commander that he could not stand. Everything his roommate did annoyed him. They fought constantly, usually about stuff Gavin didn’t care about, like how many dishes were in the sink. Gavin needed a change as soon as possible.
He Was a Movie Lover
Gavin had always been a huge movie lover, especially the film Top Gun. That movie had been part of the reason he enlisted with the Navy. He thought the Navy was by far the coolest branch of the armed forces. He idolized Maverick, Tom Cruise’s character from the film. They were both rebels.
He Tried to Make Fantasy a Reality
Gavin of course had to see the Top Gun sequel Top Gun: Maverick on opening night. He was beyond excited. The movie did not disappoint. Gavin thought it was even better than the original. His favorite part of the movie might’ve been Maverick’s living space, which was an aircraft hangar.
Gavin Launches a Scheme
The more Gavin thought about it, the more he thought it would be awesome if he could live in an aircraft hangar, just like Maverick in the movie. So he devised a plan: he would convert an old aircraft hangar into an apartment, then move out of his current apartment.
He Puts His Plan Into Motion
The more he thought about it, the more he loved this idea. He could be free of his annoying roommate and live like his movie hero in an aircraft hangar. So he started doing some research to see if he could actually make this happen. It turned out, it was going to be really difficult.
Gavin Pursues His Dream
But Gavin wasn’t deterred. He had always liked a challenge and needed a change in his life. So he decided to hell with the rules, he was going to do this whether it was allowed or not. That decision, in the end, would totally derail his life. But Gavin didn’t care, he was a rebel through and through.
Gavin Looks for an Aircraft Hangar
So Gavin began looking for an old aircraft hangar he could buy. It took him a while, but eventually he found one on an old, small private airport that hadn’t had a plane land there in nearly 30 years. The owner of the property was willing to sell it to Gavin.
Gavin Pays Up
Gavin realized that the aircraft hangar was pretty old and out of shape, but where else was he going to find one for sale? He figured no one would come looking for him at this old airport because hardly anyone knew it even existed. So Gavin emptied his savings account and bought the property.
Gavin Starts Fixing Up the Hangar
Slowly but surely, Gavin started fixing up the aircraft hangar. He’d never done something like this before so he spent a lot of time researching. But eventually he got the hang of it. He started buying some old furniture. He planned to figure out how to insulate the hangar so it wasn’t too cold at night.
Gavin’s Plan is Working
So far, Gavin’s plan was working. Nobody really looked too much into what he was up to and his roommate was glad to have him out of the apartment most of the time. Gavin began to love fixing up the hangar. He had a blast working on it and building furniture.
Gavin Was Having the Time of His Life
Gavin was spending pretty much of all his free time at the hangar, blasting music, drinking beer, and building his dream home. He was having the time of his life. What a great decision, Gavin thought, and nobody will ever catch me. Boy, was he about to be proven wrong.
Gavin Thinks Nobody is On to Him
Gavin thought nobody knew or cared what he was up to, but he was wrong. His annoying roommate was a stickler for rules. He suspected Gavin was up to something. So one day, when Gavin left the apartment, the roommate followed him. The roommate felt a little weird following Gavin but he needed to know what Gavin was up to.
Gavin is Followed
The roommate tailed Gavin all the way to Gavin’s new hangar. The roommate watched Gavin go in and could hear Gavin building something inside. The roommate spotted furniture and a fridge inside the hangar. He knew what Gavin was up to. He also knew that what Gavin was doing was against the rules.
The Roommate Investigates
Gavin’s roommate knew that what Gavin was doing was illegal. He knew that aircraft hangars couldn’t be used as a permanent residence. But he needed to find the exact rule. So he researched the Federal Aviation Administration’s rules. He found what he was looking for: a rule that stated clearly that what Gavin was doing was illegal.
Gavin Was Violating the Law
As the roommate learned, aircraft hangars could only have temporary places for pilots to rest. They could not be permanent homes. So the roommate knew he had Gavin nailed. He could call up Gavin’s superior and rat him out. But first, he had a plan. A plan to get revenge on Gavin.
The Roommate's Plan
Gavin’s roommate had never liked Gavin or Gavin’s rebellious ways. He had become Gavin’s roommate only because he was desperate for a place to live. He planned to move out as soon as he could. But now that he knew what Gavin was up to, he formed a new plan.
The Roommate Strikes
Gavin’s roommate sat down next to Gavin one night at their apartment. He had formed a plan in his head. He was ready to get back at Gavin. Gavin was already annoyed that the roommate was talking to him but what the roommate said next absolutely shocked him to his core.
Gavin is Blindsided
The roommate told Gavin that he knew about Gavin’s aircraft hanger and that he also knew that what Gavin was doing was illegal. Gavin was annoyed. Why did his roomate care what he did? Did this roommate have nothing better to do? Gavin became more angry as he slowly realized that his roommate was trying to ruin his dream.
The Roommate Had Long Detested Gavin
The roommate had a grudge against Gavin going back many years. Gavin just figured they didn’t get along but didn’t realize the extent of the roommate’s hatred. The roommate thought Gavin was bad for the Navy and should’ve been kicked out a long time ago. Now he had a plan to do just that.
The Roommate Unveils His Plan
The roommate told Gavin that Gavin had two options: either leave the Navy or pay for the roommate's silence. Gavin was shocked. Was his roommate really trying to extort him? This was blackmail, Gavin thought. But at the same time, he couldn’t deny the roommate had dirt on him.
Gavin Considers His Next Move
Gavin thought hard about what to do next. He was surprised the roommate was trying to blackmail him but wondered if maybe paying off his roommate was the easiest option. If the roommate reported Gavin, there was no telling what Gavin’s superior might do. He might kick Gavin out of the Navy entirely.
“OK,” Gavin replied to the roommate. “How much?” The roommate was surprised. He thought Gavin would just leave the Navy. That’s what the roommate wanted. The roommate figured he’d give Gavin a price he knew Gavin couldn’t afford. Then, Gavin would either leave the Navy voluntarily or get kicked out by his superior.
The Roommate Blackmails Gavin
“$100,000,” the roommate replied. Gavin was furious. There was no way he could afford that. He’d just emptied his savings account to buy the airport hangar. Now he was living paycheck to paycheck. He barely had enough money for rent, never mind $100,000. Gavin knew he couldn’t pay his roommate’s blackmail.
Gavin Storms Out
“You know I can’t afford that,” Gavin angrily replied. “Go ahead and tell my superior then, I guess. I’m not giving in to your blackmail.” Gavin got up and stormed out of the apartment. He went to the airport hangar. He figured if he was going to lose his job, he might as well get in a few more nights at the hangar.
Gavin’s New Home Wasn’t Ready Yet
The worst thing was the aircraft hangar wasn’t ready yet. Gavin hadn’t had time yet to make the space warm enough for cold winter nights. If he was going to live there permanently, he’d be freezing at night. He had planned to save up and make the hangar a normal living space but hadn’t finished it yet.
The Stakes Are High
So Gavin sat in his hangar totally dejected. If he couldn’t finish renovating the hangar, he couldn’t live there. If he was kicked out of the Navy, he wasn’t sure if he could find a job that would pay well enough for him to quickly finish renovating the hangar. He was in a tough spot.
Gavin Was Still Furious
Mostly, though, Gavin was furious at his roommate. Why did this person care so much about Gavin’s hangar? Why did he hate Gavin so much? Why did he want Gavin kicked out of the Navy? Gavin didn’t get it but became angrier and angrier the more he thought about it.
Gavin Considers His Options
Gavin considered his options. He couldn’t pay the roommate’s price. He couldn’t afford to finish renovating the hangar. Was there any way out of this? Gavin couldn’t see a solution. He figured his best bet was to come clean to his superior about everything and hope the punishment wasn’t too bad.
Gavin Meets With His Superior
Gavin scheduled a meeting with his superior the next afternoon. He was going to come clean, admit he’d done something illegal and accept whatever punishment came his way. He hoped maybe he would just be suspended. Then he could eventually fix up the hangar one day. But if he was kicked out of the Navy, who knows what would happen.
Gavin Goes to the Meeting
Gavin walked into his superior’s office. He was nervous. He thought this very well could be the end of his career in the Navy. But he had no choice but to come clean before his roommate ratted him out. This was his only hope of staying in the Navy.
Gavin Admits Everything
Gavin told his superior the whole story. He said he had planned to live out of the hangar, knew it probably wasn’t legal, but did it anyway. He knew this could bring serious consequences but he had always followed his heart. He loved the Navy and hated his current apartment. He just wanted a fun new place to live.
The Superior Reveals Something Shocking
Gavin’s superior listened to everything Gavin had to say. Then he revealed something shocking: Gavin’s roommate had already been there. Gavin's superior knew all about Gavin’s hangar before Gavin even walked through the office doors. Gavin was shocked. His roommate had beaten him to the punch. What would the superior do now?
Gavin Expects the Worst
Gavin braced himself for the worst. And it happened. The superior officer told Gavin he was suspended without pay indefinitely, pending review. Gavin thought at least he had a chance of coming back to the Navy after the review process. So it could’ve been worse. But it was still pretty awful news.
Gavin Moves Out
With this news, Gavin headed back to his apartment. His roommate was at work, thankfully, so they didn't have an encounter. Gavin quickly packed up his belongings and left the apartment. He threw everything into his car and drove to his hangar. He had nowhere else to stay.
Gavin Moves In to the Hangar
Gavin brought all his stuff inside the hangar. He figured it would still be warm enough to sleep there for a while but it would still be pretty cold at night. He set up his belongings. He layered up a sleeping bag with a lot of blankets so he could remain somewhat comfortable at night. Then he heard a knock at the door of his hangar.
Gavin’s Life Gets Even Worse
Gavin answered the door. At the door was an official representative of the Federal Aviation Administration. The official told Gavin he was illegally living in a hangar and would need to vacate the premises. Gavin figured his roommate had ratted him out to the FAA as well. Gavin wondered if his situation could get any worse.
Gavin Becomes Homeless
Gavin pleaded with the official to let him stay a little while longer until he could find a new place to live. The official apologized but said Gavin needed to vacate. It wasn’t legal to live in a hangar and the official’s hands were tied. Gavin pleaded again but it didn’t work. He had to go.
Gavin Seeks Shelter
This had been the worst day of Gavin’s life. He might’ve lost his job. He had to leave his apartment. Now he had to leave the hangar, his one big source of joy for the past few months. He had nowhere to go. His family was all far away. He had nowhere to sleep that night.
Gavin Checks in to a Motel
Gavin didn’t have much money but he had a little. So he checked into a cheap motel nearby. It was the best he could do for now. He didn’t know how long the Navy’s review process would take. His whole life was now up in the air. All because of his roommate.
Gavin Cries Himself to Sleep
Gavin was so anxious about his future and sad about losing the hangar that he cried himself to sleep that night. It was, without a doubt, the lowest point of his life thus far. He had no idea what the future would hold. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn’t cheer himself up.
Gavin Devises a Plan
But the next morning, Gavin had an idea. He wasn’t sure if it would work. But he had to try. He had to try something. He thought all morning about his plan and decided he would act on it. It might be his last chance to put his life back together. It was his only hope.
Gavin’s Last Hope
Gavin called his roommate. He said he wanted to talk to him in person. He said he wanted to apologize and see if it would be possible to move back into the apartment. The roommate didn’t want to meet with Gavin but Gavin pleaded. Eventually, the roommate agreed to meet.
Gavin Meets with the Roomate
Gavin met with his old roommate at a diner near the apartment they used to share. The roommate seemed skeptical of Gavin and told him to make it quick. So Gavin asked the roommate one simple question: why had he blackmailed him? Why did he hate him so much? Why did he try to ruin Gavin’s life?
The Roommate Explodes
The roommate became furious at this question. He angrily told Gavin that Gavin wasn’t fit to serve in the Navy. He said he hated Gavin because Gavin always broke the rules. He hated that Gavin did whatever he wanted while everyone else did what they were supposed to. He said he blackmailed Gavin to get him out of the Navy.
Gavin Surprises the Roommate
Gavin remained surprisingly calm as the roommate berated him. Gavin simply nodded along and let the roommate speak. Gavin thought the roommate was overreacting. Sure, Gavin was rebellious, but never in a way that hurt anyone. Gavin loved the Navy and had devoted his life to it. But he didn’t say any of this to the roommate.
The Roommate is Stunned
After the roommate had finished his tirade, Gavin simply got up and left. The roommate was stunned. He thought Gavin would beg to come back to the apartment. He thought Gavin would beg for forgiveness. But Gavin simply left without saying a word. The roommate couldn’t understand Gavin’s behavior.
The roommate went back to work the next day. Suddenly, he received word that his superior officer wanted to see him. The roommate figured it must be about Gavin but didn’t know what else he and the officer had to talk about. He headed to the officer’s office and shut the door behind him. What happened next absolutely shocked him.
The Officer Clears the Air
The officer then said something that would change the roommate’s life forever. He told the roommate that Gavin had recorded their conversation at the diner. Gavin played the recording for the officer. The roommate had admitted on the recording to blackmailing Gavin. The officer said because of this, the roommate was hereby suspended indefinitely without pay and Gavin would be reinstated. The roommate was stunned but realized there was nothing he could do. He had indeed blackmailed Gavin and he’d gotten caught.
Gavin Moves Back to the Hangar
Gavin received word that his suspension had been lifted and his old roommate was now suspended instead. He was elated. His plan had worked. Gavin moved back into his aircraft hangar, determined to finish renovating it. He didn’t think the FAA official would be back any time soon. He had won, the hangar was his. His dream would come true. He would live just like his hero Maverick and serve honorably in his beloved Navy.
The events of this story are entirely fictional and are products of the author’s imagination. Images included are meant for illustration purposes only. Any resemblance to actual events, places or persons, living or dead, are entirely coincidental.