Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Chapter 6

After the call from Jeremy, Charlotte was wide awake and floating on air. She didn’t care that they had some serious relationship issues to talk about, that she was dreading, but she was just so happy to be able to say that, for now, she had Jeremy back in her life. She couldn’t be happier.

She rolled over and was just about to get out of bed when her phone rang again. Feeling a sense of déjà vu, this time she looked at the caller ID. It was Damien. How he seemed to call her directly after each of her calls with Jeremy was a mystery to her. She didn’t care, though. Nothing could bring her down.

“Hey babe, what’s up?” she casually said into the phone.

“Wow, you’re up early, and chipper at that. What’s going on on?” he asked, warily. “You are not usually a morning person. What’ up? You got a job today?”

“No, sweetie, I’m just up. I do have some errands to run today, but I’m good. Did you have fun last night? How is Rhonda?” she asked him. She didn’t really care what he did last night. She was still mentally preparing for her “date” with Jeremy.

“Yeah, it was cool. I could’ve stayed at home with you, though. Look Char, I was hoping that you had time to fit me into your busy schedule today. I haven’t seen you since yesterday and I really need you. It’s been two days and you know how I get when I haven’t have any in a long time. You gotta stop holding out on me. You know I need it on a regular. So are you coming over here or do you want me to come over there?”

Charlotte almost dropped the phone. Listening to him, at first, she thought he missed her and wanted to see her to spend some quality time with her, but that wasn’t the case at all. This wasn’t the first time that he called her up to ask her for sex. Yes, he is her boyfriend, BUT she thought she was more than just sex to him.

“Are you serious? Are you seriously calling me at 7 o’ clock in the morning to ask me for sex?! Please, somebody pinch me and tell me I’m dreaming!” Her tone was rising, as well as her temper.

“You know, this is not the first time that you’ve pulled this stunt. Is that all I’m worth to you, just a piece of ass? Well, I’ve got news for you…”

She stopped talking and contemplated this whole thing. Why was she putting up with him. He was a lousy boyfriend. He never took her out, he was always with his friends, and if he did talk to her about taking her out it was always last minute, which made her think that he didn’t really want to do it. Like when he told her about the party last night. She was just tired of putting up with him and his antics. It’s been too long.

“You know what, Damien. I’m so over this and I’m so over you. I’m done. Please don’t call me anymore.”

And with that, she hung up the phone. They’d only been together for about a year but she wasn’t sure if you could count the whole thing. This was their first breakup, but it seemed like she was single a lot of the time. She wasn’t one of those people who did the “on again, off again” relationships. It was either all or nothing, and with Damien, it was nothing. She felt like she was devoting all that time to someone who was not on her level. At all.

When they first met, he was great. He spent time with her, wanted to be around her, introduced her to his friends and family. And she, in turn, did the same. Then, the second half of the relationship turned to shit. He was never there when she needed him, he was forgetful, he only cared about her when he wanted sex and they never did anything together.

Why she didn’t let him go long before now was still a mystery to her.

She got up, went to the bathroom to do her morning routine and walked down the hall to her kitchen. Just as she opened the refrigerator, she heard the phone ring. Thinking that it was Damien, she let it go to voicemail.

After fixing and eating breakfast, she went back to her room to get dressed. She sat down on the bed, picked up her phone and dialed her voicemail. She put the call on speaker and then put the phone down. She was in her walk-in closet when the talking started.

“Charlotte, that was foul breaking up with me over the phone. But its all good anyway. I don’t know why I put up with your frigid ass in the first place. But you know what? I got news for you! YOU wasn’t nothing but my side HO anyway. So who’s done with who, huh? Oh, by the way, have a good day!”

When the message ended, Charlotte thought that she’d be mad, but she wasn’t. She found herself laughing, really laughing, at the situation. She couldn’t help but feel sorry for Damien. She had no way of knowing if he was lying or not, but she was glad that she didn’t sleep with him as often as he wanted if he was telling the truth. But at this point she didn’t care.

She pulled out her undergarments and then went into the bathroom and jumped in the shower. She stayed in a while to try to wash away the drama that she’d encountered this early in the morning. It was barely 8 o’ clock in the morning. She wondered what else she’d have to deal with over the course of the rest of the day.

After straightening up around her house and getting dressed, Charlotte decided to go and do some window shopping before her meeting. She stopped at a mall that was on the way to meet Jeremy. She had a little time to kill, so what better way to do that than by doing a little shopping.

She knew that this meeting with Jeremy wasn’t a real date, but she couldn’t help but wonder “what if”. She knew, though, that she had to stop that. The man was married!!!

She walked into a clothing store and decided to look around. She immediately grabbed a few pieces that she liked and headed back to the dressing room. On her way to her stall, she noticed a woman frantically crawling around on the floor.

“Excuse me, Miss, is something wrong?” she asked the lady.

“Damnit!” she hissed. “I can’t believe this. My husband is going to kill me!!!”

She woman stood up and turned towards Charlotte.

“I’m sorry, that wasn’t directed at you. I lost something and I can’t find it. I was trying not to be too obvious, but I guess I’m starting to lose my cool. If I don’t find it, my husband is going to have my head!”

Charlotte looked at the woman warily. She was talking, but not making a lot of sense.

“Is there something I can help you look for?” she asked the woman. She looked so lost and sad and, for lack of a better word, pathetic.

The woman walks close to Charlotte and whispers in her ear. “I’m looking for a medium sized white envelope. It has $5,000 cash in it. Please help me. I was supposed to take it to the bank first thing, but I got sidetracked when I saw the sale here. You can understand, right?” The lady dropped her head in her hands. “I just don’t know what I’m going to do if I don’t find it.”

Charlotte looked at the lady in disbelief. If she had $5,000 cash money on her person, she would not be walking around a mall with it in her purse. Hell, her husband would be a smart one to drop it off himself. Not to say that he shouldn’t trust her with it, but who knows what kind of crazies would decide to attack a woman going to the bank alone?

“I’ll help you look for it. Are you sure you had it in here? What about the main floor of the store. Did you report it to the clerks?” Charlotte didn’t want to make the woman even more uncomfortable, but this was a big store and most people who find things, especially money, won’t return it.

“I told the dressing room clerk and asked her to discreetly tell the other clerks, but I don’t think she believed me. Please, will you help me find it?”

The lady was pleading now. Charlotte saw that she was crying and it looked like she was about to turn hysterical.

“Okay, have a seat right here. I’m going to backtrack in here and see if we missed anything,” she said, trying to calm the lady down. She didn’t want to ask anymore questions because it seemed she was at her breaking point.

Charlotte pushed open all the stall doors and searched each room. She came to one stall that had a purse and a couple of dresses in it. She assumed that was the stall the lady had been in before she started looking for the envelope. She picked up the purse and brought it back to the lady.

“Please check your purse again. Hopefully you just overlooked it,” she said to the lady.

Charlotte then went back out on the main floor. She then tried to find the racks that held the dresses she had in hand. It was a good thing the store was boutique-like and small because otherwise it would’ve been hard to spot.

She walked over to the first rack and looked all around it, under it and on top, where there was a bin of belts. She didn’t find anything.

She walked to the second rack and did the same thing she did at the first, but this time, she hit the jackpot. On top of the rack, there was a bin of brooches and pins. The same ones that were on the dress matched the rack of dresses. She figured that the lady must’ve put her purse on top of the rack to do something with the dress and the envelope fell out. It was a good thing no one else was looking on that rack.

Charlotte raced back to the dressing room where the lady was shakily drinking a cup of water one of the clerks got for her. When Charlotte came into view, the woman’s eyes got bright and wide. She noticed the envelope right off in Charlotte’s hands. She jumped up and hugged Charlotte before she could even make it back to the dressing room.

“How can I ever repay you?! You don’t know how much this means to me. I can’t believe you found it. Where was it?! I can’t believe this! You are a lifesaver!” The woman was all over the place.

Charlotte couldn’t help but smile from ear to ear. She was proud of herself and she proud that she could help someone in need.

“Ma, ma, where are you?” someone said from behind all the commotion.

A woman, about Charlotte’s age, walked up to the woman who’d lost the envelope. The younger woman hugged the older woman.

“Mom, what’s wrong? Are you okay? I got your message and you sounded terrified. What’s wrong?” The younger woman looked really concerned. Charlotte stepped back to give them some room.

“I’m fine now, dear. This young lady,” she motioned to Charlotte, “helped me find it. I’d lost the envelope your father gave me this morning to deposit and she searched high and low until she found it for me. I don’t know what to say. I’m eternally thankful.”

The younger woman turned to Charlotte.

“Thank you so much for helping my mother. I don’t know what she was thinking coming in here with that in her purse, but I really appreciate you helping her. Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t catch your name.”

“Oh, my bad, I’m Charlotte, Charlotte Roberts.” Charlotte held out her hand for the woman to shake.

The woman shook her hand and told Charlotte her name. “Nice to meet you Charlotte. I’m Robin Johnson.”

Charlotte racked her brain to try and figure out where she knew that name from. She couldn’t think of anything and figured eventually it would come to her.

“How can we repay you for what you’ve done for us? We have to give you some kind of reward or something,” the older lady told Charlotte.

“No, no reward is necessary. I’m just glad I could help you out.” Charlotte looked down at her watch. She had about thirty minutes before she was supposed to meet up with Jeremy.

“I know how you can repay me. I’m an Event Planner, so if you or anybody you know is ever in the need of one, make sure I’m the first one they think about. If you can do that for me, we’re even.”

Robin took the business cards and handed one to her mother. The two ladies looked at each other and then back at Charlotte. “As a matter of fact, I think we could use your services. This money,” she said while holding up the envelope,”was to serve as a deposit for our 35th wedding anniversary in two months. We want to go all out and I think it would be fantastic if you would help us.”

Robin chimed in. “Yeah, that would be great and a weight off me. Would you be able to do it?”

“I’ll tell you what,” Charlotte said, “why don’t you call me later on and I’ll take a look at my calendar and we’ll see what we come up with. I would be honored to take on such an important event. How does that sound?”

“Sounds like a plan,” the older woman said. “Again, thank you so much!”

“You’re welcome. I’ve gotta run now. Take care.” And Charlotte waved at the two women as she went to pay for her items, that she never got to try on, and left the store.

When she thought about what else could happen today, finding a woman’s missing envelope containing $5,000 was NOT on the agenda.

She could only hope that her meeting with Jeremy was just as interesting…

Monday, September 28, 2009

Chapter 5

The next morning, Charlotte woke to her phone ringing. She turned over and looked at the clock first. 6:27 a.m.

“Whoever this is calling me this early better be dead,” she said out loud.

She clicked “talk” on her phone, not caring to look at the caller ID.

“Hello!” she barked into the phone. Whoever it was going to know right away that she was not happy having to wake up that early on a Saturday. She didn’t even have an event planned for that day.

“Hey, Char! Oh, did I wake you up? I’m sorry. I’m so used to getting up this early I didn’t even realize what time it was. I’m so sorry. Hey, I’ll let you go back to sleep. We can talk later,” the male voice spoke without stopping to let her get a word in.

But she didn’t care. It was Jeremy. He could wake her up any time, any where and any way he wanted to.

“Jeremy, slow down,” she said calmly, letting all the anger she had before she answered the phone melt away with the sound of his voice. “It’s okay, I needed to get up anyway. I have to, um, run an errand. Anyway, what’s up?”

“Oh, nothing much. I just wanted to call you, like I said I would yesterday, and see if we can hook up today, maybe grab a quick bite, and, you know, talk… and stuff.”

It sounded so cool in his head, he just didn’t think it came off that way vocally. “Get it together, Jeremy!!!” he scolded himself. Why was he acting like a lovesick kid again? This was just Charlotte. I used to talk to her about everything. I should be able to pick up right where I left off with her. I need to talk about Robin, my wife.

“I don’t want to talk about Robin,” he said, out loud. He stopped pouring the juice he putting in a cup for Mikey, shocked at what he’d just said. He didn’t mean to say it out loud, he just wanted to tell his conscience that.

“Okay, we don’t have to talk about her, not that we were, but it’s all good,” Charlotte said.

She couldn’t help but smile to herself. After all these years, the old Jeremy was still in there, and she could read the old Jeremy like a book. He was flustered, but she didn’t know why.

SHE was always the one with the crush, the one who said things out of place or who rambled on in the weirdest situations. SHE was the one that wanted to tell him so bad how she felt, but didn’t want to lose her best friend because he didn’t feel the same way. SHE was the one who loved him, and has loved him since the first day they met.

So what was wrong with him?

“I’m sorry, Lady. I don’t know why I said that. I have so much on my mind right now, I guess I was having a conversation with you as well as a conversation in my head. Can we strike all this and start over? I would love you forever.”

And then he said it. He used to tell her that all the time to get her to give in to him, to do whatever he asked of her. Most times, whatever it was, she would’ve done right off the bat. But there were times where she did need an incentive, and he found the right one.

Her hearing that did nothing for her mindset, though. Hearing that just pulled her back to all those times she had to watch him with another girl, a girl who wasn’t her. She didn’t want to keep doing that to herself, especially since the girl in this instance wasn’t just a girlfriend. He had a wife and he was happily married.

She needed to get over him.

“Jeremy, I have to tell you something.”

“Wow, it must really be serious for you to use my real name. What is it? I’m listening.”

Did she really want to do this like this, over the phone? That wouldn’t solve anything. No, she couldn’t do it like this.

“I think we shouldgo ahead and meet for lunch, today, to get this ten years in the making meeting out of the way."

She didn’t realize that she was holding her breath until she felt herself release it at his words.

“Cool, okay. That’s what’s up. I was thinking around noon? Lil Man should be back home by then and then I’m free for the whole day. Is that okay with you?”

She felt a wave of relief wash over her. He wasn’t going to push her about the serious tone she had. Maybe he didn’t catch it.

“Yeah, that works for me. Where?”

“Well, I think it should be somewhere in the middle of where we live. How about Meyerland Plaza. You’ve always loved La Madeleine. We can go eat there.”

“I can’t believe you remember that,” she said excitedly. “I can’t even get Damien to remember that.”

He felt like the wind was knocked out of him. Who is Damien, he wanted to ask.

“Wow! See, I knew there was a reason you were my best friend.”

She went on talking like nothing happened.

“Yeah. Okay, then. 11 am at La Madeleine. I can’t wait,” he said, changing the subject back to the matter at hand.

“Cool. I guess I’ll see you then. Later, Remy,” she said.

“Alright, ma, see you in a bit,” he said, hanging up the phone.

He didn’t want to get into who this Damien guy was because he didn’t want to get upset. He had no right getting upset, so it didn’t matter.

He couldn’t believe he never entertained the idea of her having a boyfriend, or even worse, a husband. He couldn’t remember that coming up in the conversation they had yesterday. That much, he wouldn’t forget.

But, it was only natural that she would be in a relationship, though. She was one who was never without one or two guys at a time. Now, don’t get her wrong, she was never a “cheater”, the guys knew that they weren’t exclusive, she just never gave any of them her undivided attention.

Except for Jeremy.

He started thinking back to the conversation they’d just had. He wondered what she really wanted to tell him because she knew what he said wasn’t really it. He figured whatever it was would come out eventually, hopefully sooner than later.

He had something to tell her, too. He prayed that she would be understanding to him having to get this off his chest, as well as he hoped he would be with her.

The only option would be to wait and see what happens. Today was the day…

Friday, September 25, 2009

Just A Short Word...

I just wanted to thank all of you who have passed through to read my story. As I said before, I wrote this story some years ago, but it was in a play format. I'm also trying to bring it up to date and I'm finding out that some years ago, I was a HORRIBLE typist. I have my work cut out for me, so please bear with me on the posting. I don't want to set a posting schedule because I don't want to limit myself to uncertain terms.

I do really appreciate you stopping by to read my story and hope you (continue) to enjoy it!


Chapter 4

After their shower, Jeremy and Robin climbed in bed and just talked. They were being silly and reminiscing about the past. It got Jeremy thinking about why he loved Robin so much. In the back of his mind, though, he couldn’t help but think there was something missing.

He’d had a girlfriend most of the time he was in high school and then he met Robin in college. He couldn’t remember the last time he was single.

But he also knew that wasn’t it. He had a sinking feeling that he knew exactly what the problem was. And it didn’t help that she’d come back into his life only a few hours ago.

Charlotte had always been a permanent figure in his life. From his first day of Pre-K, when she told him that he was going to be her best friend whether he wanted to be or not and him refusing her because she was a girl, to the day they graduated. He never meant to let that day be the last time they saw each other, but Bianca had put her foot down about their relationship. It didn’t help that he spent most of his time over the summer visiting his cousin who was already in college. He was known at the school before he was even officially a student, especially with the girls.

After he broke up with Bianca, he dated around while in college. It wasn’t that he’d forgotten about Charlotte, but he wanted to move on fromhigh school, to finally become a man and leave behind the kid that was. And that included high school crushes, too.

He dove head first into the sea of women on campus and met Robin. She was the girl that was driving all the guys in his frat crazy, and the bonus was that she really seemed to be into him. She flirted with all the guys, but still kept them at a distance. Jeremy seemed to be the only one she let really get close to her. He liked that about her.

They dated for his four years in school and then he married her two years after they graduated. By then, he felt like it was the only thing left to do. He loved her enough to do it, but he wasn’t sure that he was in love with her still.

David, his friend who he met while still in college, told him marrying Robin was not the right move for him. His own mother didn’t even like her. She never came by to visit or invited the two of them over. She would always call and ask Jeremy, specifically, to come over. He knew his mother’s position on him marrying Robin, but he just felt like it was the right thing to do.

In the almost four years they’d been married, he still felt a certain emptiness when it came to Robin. He just didn't know what to do about it now.

Jeremy fell into a restless sleep. When he woke up in the middle of the night, he saw a small figure standing over his bed.

“Uncle J, can I have something to drink?” Mikey was asking.

Jeremy was relieved. He’d forgotten that Mikey was there.

“Sure, lil man. Let’s go downstairs so we don’t wake up Auntie Robin,” he responded.

He climbed out of the bed and picked up Mikey. He figured these are the good years, when you’re still needed and depended on by the kids. He wanted to enjoy every moment of it before Mikey hit puberty and didn’t want to be around him anymore.

Back at Charlotte’s house, she spent some time talking to her sister. Samantha didn’t make it to the party but still wanted to go out. Charlotte wasn’t really in the mood to go to a club and watch her sister make a fool of herself. Something crazy always happened when they got together. It wasn’t so much Charlotte, but her sister’s friend Candice.

Candice was trouble from head to toe and whenever the three of them would hang out, something was bound to go wrong.

“How come all you and Candy ever do is club hop? Don’t you ever want to do anything productive with yourselves?” Charlotte asked. She knew she was beating a dead horse, but it was still fun to watch her sister squirm.

“Dang, you sound just like mama. I’m young and want to have some fun. I can’t help it if you old fogies don’t want to have any fun. You need to loosen up. I know Damien is out tonight, you need to get out too,” she retorted.

Charlotte knew she was caught. And Samantha was right. Her own boyfriend told her the same thing just the other day. But she couldn’t help it. She was a certified homebody. That was how she got her kicks in. She knew that you didn’t have to go out and have drinks when you had a full service bar in your own home. She wasn’t going out to meet anybody because she already had a man, and so did her sister and her friend.

She just didn’t understand the point of it. You’re out with total strangers and nothing ever goes right. Where was the fun in that?

But she also knew that she would give in to her sister. She was still young, too. She like to get into a little trouble every now and then, as long as she stayed out of jail.

“Okay, I’ll go, but I’m driving and we leave when I say I’m ready,” she stated. If she got her way with this, then she could control how the night went.

“Done! Get dressed, Candy and I will be there in an hour!” her sister excitedly stated. “It’s on tonight!”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah. I swear if you and Candy make me regret this night I will kill you both and hide the bodies.”

The two of them talked for a few more minutes and then hung up. She did want to have fun tonight and hoped that that was all that was going to happen. But sometimes, with her sister, you never knew what you were going to get.

Either way, she was ready to get the night over with.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Chapter 3

By the time Jeremy got Mikey home, he was dead to the world. He’d fallen asleep pretty much mid-sentence in the car. All the excitement probably wore him out.

Jeremy took Mikey to his bedroom upstairs and down the hall from his bedroom. As he passed by his bedroom door, he noticed the light was on. Robin was home.

He went ahead and dropped Mikey off in his bed, then quietly made his way back to his room and peeked through the crack in the door. He could see Robin sitting on the bed reading a book her cousin bought her. He hated that book. Every time she read it, she compared Jeremy to the guy in the book.

When he pushed the door open, she immediately gave him that “he’s a man and they’re all the same but he better think twice before playing me” look she did so well. He gave her a weak smile, walked over to his side of the bed and sat down on the very edge.

“Hey bae, your god-son is in there,” he told her, trying to lighten the mood. He knew it was a long shot.

“Mm-hmm…” was her only response.

“Rhonda and David said to tell you hello,” he tried again with friendly, light conversation. “Rhonda was asking how we were doing.”

“Humph. And what did you tell her nosy behind? Why is she always in OUR business? Always asking about “us” and how “we” are doing. She need to pay attention to her own relationship and keep her own man from wandering to every single girl. She needs to mind her own business!”

Jeremy looked at her dumbstruck. He had absolutely no idea what to make of that.

“Baby, now what would make you say that?” he asked calmly, even though it was making him mad that she reacted that way. “That girl has done nothing but be nice to you. Why are you acting like this?”

“See, I knew you would take her side. I knew the two of you had something going on,” she said.

Next thing Jeremy knew, Robin was up and pacing the floor and mumbling to herself. Jeremy listened to try to make out what she was saying, but there was really nothing else he could say. Robin seemed to be playing out the role of one of the characters she was reading about in that book. That was the only explanation for what he was watching her go through at that moment.

After watching her for another half a minute or so, he walked to her side of the bed and stood in her path. She stopped walking and looked at him intently.

“Whatever you have to say, I don’t want to hear it,” she scolded him. “I knew something was going on with you and her for the longest time. The way she would always laugh at your corny jokes, the way she would always joke and play with you when she thought I wasn’t looking. It all makes sense now.”

Jeremy put his head in his hands and tried to shake away her words. He couldn’t believe that she was being serious right then. He peeked at her through his fingers, hoping that she would say “aw, babe, you know I’m just playing”. But instead she just fumed more.

“Baby,” he started, “I can guarantee you that there is nothing going on with Rho and I. I have absolutely no interest in that girl. She’s like a little sister to me, period and point blank.” He stared at her hard to see is his words were getting through to her. She just looked at him blankly.

He was becoming frustrated with her now. He couldn’t help it, but he started to raise his voice at her.

“I don’t know what is going on with you tonight, but I am NOT that man in that story. All this animosity you’re feeling right now, either YOU are feeling guilty about something or you are stressing over something else and taking it out on me. You know damn well that Rhonda, nor I have EVER given you a reason to doubt our platonic relationship. Direct your insecurities somewhere else because I’m not in the mood to deal with your made up drama tonight!”

He then went over to his dresser, grabbed some clothes, walked in the bathroom and slammed the door. Robin jumped at that. She hadn’t seen him that mad in a long time.

She knew, though, that every word he spoke was the truth. She knew in her heart that Jeremy and Rhonda were only as close as a sister and brother could be. And Rhonda, who had never been anything but nice and kind to her, would never do that. Although they weren’t best friends, Robin did think of Rhonda as someone she could turn to in a time of need.

It only took her a quick second to realize that he was right and that she needed to make it up to him.

She walked over to the bathroom door and listened. She could only hear the water in the shower running. She pushed the door open and walked in. She tripped naked and then climbed into the shower from the back. Jeremy never acknowledged her, but kept his head placed against the wall directly underneath the showerhead.

Robin walked up behind him and wrapped her arms around him. He tensed up at first but when she started softly stroking his chest, he let his body relax.

She reached over on the wall mount and grabbed the soap. She lather it up in her hands and began to rub her hands all over him, working and kneading out the tenseness she felt in his muscles, knowing that some it was there because of her.

“I’m so sorry, J. I don’t know what got into me. Do you forgive me?” she asked in a quiet tone.

Jerome turned his entire body around in her arms. When he did, she felt his manhood against her leg. She knew then that she was forgiven.

“I guess I’m forgiv…”

Before she could finish her sentence, Jeremy was already showing her just how much he forgave her.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Chapter 2

Charlotte walked over to her closet and started going through her clothes to figure out what she would wear to wow! Jeremy. She laughed to herself because she realized that this is ten years later and anything she has in her closet has been unseen by him. But she still wanted to be dressed to the nines, no matter what. She pulled out her favorite outfit, that hugged her in all the right places, and set it aside to be sent to the cleaners.

Just as she laid the clothes across her bed, the phone rang. She didn't bother to look at the caller ID because she just assumed it was Jeremy.

"Hello?" she nonchalantly said into the phone. "Hey baby! What's going on over there that's got you sounding so sexy?" I wasn't Jeremy, sadly, but her own boyfriend, Damien Howard.

"Oh, nothing. Just going through my closet. What's up, babe?" she asked, not really caring. She thought back to her conversation with Jeremy to try and remember if she'd mention Damien to him. She couldn't remember his name coming up at all.

"I was just calling to tell you that I'm going over to David and Rhonda's tonight. You wouldn't happen to want to go with me, would you?" he asked.

She knew that when he asked the question like that that he really didn't want her to go with him. She was also getting tired of him always waiting to the last minute to ask her to do something with or for him. It was getting exhausting. But she pretended to think about it for a moment.

"No, I think I'll stay in tonight," she said. "Besides, you know David and I don't get along. Just tell them I said hello and if you see Samantha there, ask her to call me please."

Sam was Charlotte's younger sister and also best friends to David's girlfriend, Rhonda. David and Damien are good friends but Damien has a problem. He can't seem to keep his hands (as well as other personal body parts) to himself. Everytime Charlotte was around him he would flirt with her. Damien always told her that was just how he was, playful like, but there is a certain line that you should draw with your friend's girlfriend. And Rhonda was no better. He cheated on her left and right and she takes him back everytime. Its so sad.

But anyway, Damien and Charlotte talk a bit more before they hang up. Since she didn't have anything to do that night, she thought she'd go ahead and drop her clothes at the cleaners to pass some time.


On the other side of town, Jeremy picked up his cell phone and stuck his wallet in his back pocket. He jumped in his car and rode down the highway until he came to his exit. He'd made this trek so many times he could probably do it in his sleep.

He rode down until he got to David and Rhonda's street. Cars were double-parked all the way down the entire street. He slowly drove down the street until he got to the house where all the loud music was coming from. Surprisingly, there were no cars in the driveway, so he pulled in and turned off the ignition. He walked up to the front door and into the house. He was greeted by a very pretty young girl.

"Hey, Rhonda, how you doing?" Jeremy asked the girl as he hugged her.

"I'm fine. What's been going on with you lately? How're things with you and Robin? You two okay?" she asked.

That was Rhonda for you. When she had it in her mind to talk to you about something, she was goint to get it out in the open before you even have a chance to really react to it.

"Yes, Rho, things are better now. I mean we still have our little arguments, but we're working them out, you know." Jeremy tried to answer her question without really giving up too much information.

"Well, that's good. Oh, and let me say again how much I appreciate you doing this for David and I. I really want him to be able to have fun and enjoy himself tonight with no distractions."

She looks at Jeremy, cocks her head to the side and squints.

"Speaking of distractions," she says to him as she pointing at him, "I have this funny feeling somethings going on with you. Got any idea about what I'm saying?"

He had a feeling this was coming. He could tell by the look in her eyes. He smirked at her and told her that nothing was going on, at least nothing with him. He trusted her when she talked like this, though, of course, he would never admit it to her. She was dead on most times. He wasn't sure if it was because of Louisiana background or if it was something else. Whatever it was, he was on the defensive now.

"Rhonda, everything is good. Let it go." He was ready for this conversation to end. Now.

She knew that that was her cue to back off. Plus, she didn't want to make him mad and he left before taking her son.

"Okay, Jeremy. I'll leave it alone, for now. I'm gonna go get Mikeyfor you. He's been so excited all day long." She starts to walk towards the back of the house. "Oh, and David's in the kitchen, you can go on in."

Jeremy walked to the kitchen to find David. They did that man-hug thing that guys do and started talking.

"Man, how come you're not staying? We could've asked Rho's mom to watch Mikey," David mentioned. Jeremy was going to babysit David's son for the night while they partied away. Jeremy never did understand why David and Rhonda partied so much. It's wasn't like they were celebrating anything. Jeremy was hoping that the next party would be a reception, but that didn't seem even remotely likely to happen any time soon. And why should he mind if Rhonda didn't?

"Naw, man, its all good. That's my godson, so its not an issue. Besides, I love that little boy." And he meant every word of that. David was his daddy, but Jeremy was like a father to Mikey. David drank and smoked whatever, whenever, whereever, regardless of whether or not Mikey was there. Jeremy wanted to present a good example for him. And, when the time was right, he hoped to have a little boy, or girl, just like Mikey.

"Plus," Jeremy added, "Me and him need to catch up." He'll be starting school soon and I gotta teach him about little girls." David and Jeremy laughed.

"Man, me and you need to catch up. You and Robin run around in your own little world and ya'll forget about us little people. We haven't kicked in months," David said matter-of-factly.

"So we'll get together and do something soon. It'll be cool." Jeremy was ready to go. As much as he loved his friend who was like a little brother to him, he hated some of his habits. One of them was smoking, which David was just about to do right then. Mikey was still in the house.

Jeremy was just about to say something about it when he heard his name being called.

"Uncle J! Uncle J!" Mikey yelled as he ran to Jeremy and jumped on him.

"Hey lil' man! You ready to go?" Jeremy wanted to get Mikey out of there as soon as possible. He was only four and was very much the copy-cat.

"Yep! Bye Daddy, bye mama, by D!" Mikey waved at everyone in the room. "See you tomorrow!"

Jeremy and Mikey started walking to the door when David started talking again.

"D, my bad, man," David said to the guy that was standing next to him. "Jeremy, this is my boy Damien. D, this is my brother, Jeremy, the one I was telling you about earlier." Damien and Jeremy do that man-hug thing.

"D," Jeremy says, "it was nice meeting you. Dave, Rhonda, I'll check in with ya'll in the morning. Ya'll have good, clean fun tonight, you heard."

They all laugh as Jeremy turns to go. On his way to the door he scoops up Mikey in his arms and walks out to his car.

Once there, Mikey starts asking tons of questions, as usual. Jeremy was only half listening, though. His mind was on what Rhonda was telling him. He had to admit, things with him and Robin had been really bad. She always had these crazy mood swings. One minute she was all over him, wanting to be loving and caring, and then within seconds, she would be yelling at him, throwing things and storming out, sometimes not coming home until the next morning.

But as far as he knew, things were finally settling down and getting better for a change. It had been a while since they'd had a major blowup. He still wondered, though, what could possibly be about to happen now?

Monday, September 21, 2009

Chapter 1

Charlotte was looking through her old High School yearbook when she came across the signature pages. She smiled to herself as she ran her hand across the words of her old classmates. But her eyes were directed to a very small message written very near to the spine of the book:
To a very special Lady,
Someone I feel I've known my entire lifetime. Knowing you has meant the world to me and a great deal of happiness. I hope you never change or stop being who you are because "I Love You" for it. I know you are going to do well in whatever you do and hope that you don't forget me. Look out for us little people because I know you are going to make it big. Please stay in touch because without you, my world would be lost. You'll forever be my Lady...
Love always,

She'd never noticed the small words before. It had been ten long years since her high school days. She thought about all the times she'd read and reread her book over and over when she got bored or just wanted to reminisce about her school days. But she's never noticed Jeremy's message before, and he'd never mentioned it to her. Then she started thinking back to the last day of classed when everybody was getting their books signed.

1999, the last day of school

"Hey, Remy. I know you have some words for your girl on the last day, right?" Charlotte asked her longtime friend, Jeremy. "Lady," he called out, using the nickname he gave her back in kindergarten, "you know I got you. I've been looking for you all day. I do have something to write to you, but I don't want you to read it right away, promise?" He gave her that smile that always melted her heart. She could never say no to him. She handed him her book and reassured him that she would remain a Lady of her word and wouldn't read it til after graduation the next day.

Later, Jeremy signed the book and gave it back to her. Charlotte wanted so bad to take a peek, but remained loyal to her best friend. She went on with the rest of the day and after cleaning out her locked that afternoon, forgot all about Jeremy and the book. The next time she saw him was at graduation and neither of them spoke about it. That was the last time they saw each other.

Charlotte started flipping back through the pages of the book again. Everyone that signed the book should have also signed the page for the addresses and other personal information. She found the page and, written in the same ink as the message, was Jeremy's address and phone number. She hesitated on whether or not to call the number because throughout their entire high school career, Jeremy always had a girlfriend. She figured now would probably be the same, if he wasn't already married. There was just no way, she thought, that he was interested in her then, let alone now. But, she couldn't believe what she was about to do. She picked up the phone and dialed the number she had for him.

"Hello," came a voice she recognized, but barely. "Hello, um is Jeremy there?" Charlotte asked nervously. "Jeremy? No, sweetie," came back the voice. "I can't believe this boy gave some chick my phone number. Sweetheart, Jeremy does not live here, but I will get a message to him if you want to leave one.

Charlotte kicked herself. Of course, he doesn't live there anymore. He's a grown man now. What was she thinking?

"Hello, are you still there?" The voice on the other end of the phone was starting to sound impatient now. After all, she was daydreaming during the call. "Oh, yes, I'm sorry. I'm still here, just kicking myself for thinking that Remy would still live there. This is Charlotte, Charlotte Roberts. I didn't mean to..." She was cut off by the voice yelling. "Oh my goodness, Lady, is that really you!? I can't believe it. I didn't think I would ever hear from you again." "I'm sorry, who am I speaking to?" She didn't want to sound rude, but the woman obviously knew who she was, so she felt she should be able to ask who the woman was.

"This is Jeremy's mother, Ms. J." She started rambling on after that about how good it was to hear from me and how she hasn't seen me in ten years and asking what I was up to, just tons of questions. She told me that I absolutely had to come by and see her soon. She would have it no other way.

After catching up for what seemed like forever, Charlotte hesitantly asked Ms. J to give her Jeremy's number. She was happy to oblige, but not before stating how sad she was that Jeremy and I never got together or that I didn't keep in touch. "I thought you would've eventually turned out to be my daughter-in-law instead of that... you know what? Never mind. I'm going to let you go to call that son of mine. Don't forget to come by, and that invitation is open for anytime. I'll talk to you later, okay." Charlotte basically only had time to say a short goodbye before Jeremy's mother hung up the phone.

Charlotte started preparing herself for her next phone call. She was still curious as to what his mother was going to say but didn't finish. She figured who better to ask than Jeremy himself, so she picked up the phone again and started dialing.

"Hello," came a very unfamiliar male voice. She was hoping that she didn't dial the wrong number. "Hi, um, is Jeremy there, and if so, may I speak with him?" She wanted to sound formal to whoever he was, but not to formal. "This is Jeremy. Who is this?" And there it was. The voice that used to melt her heart every time he would speak, even in a whisper.

"Is that how you treat old friends, Remy?" She wanted him to know who she was without actually coming out and saying it. She was the only person who called him Remy and he was the only person, other than his mother, that called her Lady. That was the way it was then and that was the way it would always be.

But to her surprise, the line went quiet for quite a bit of time. If it wasn't for her being able to barely hear him breathing, she would've thought he'd hung up on her.

"Lady? Is that you?" He asked that question like he was shocked and surprised and worried all at the same time.

Charlotte couldn't help but giggle at the way things were going. She was just as surprised as he was, but to her, it was a happy surprise. She could only hope that he felt the same way.

"It's been like, what, ten years? How did you get this number? I mean, don't get me wrong, I'm loving the fact that its you and all, but I haven't seen you in forever. How are you?" His questions were coming so fast she didn't know which one to answer first. She couldn't help but find it super adorable. She knew, though, that she had to cut in somewhere, otherwise she might not get a chance to say anything.

"Yes, Remy, its me. I know its been a long time and I hate that its like that. But to answer your question, I called the number I had for you and your mother answered the phone. She hasn't changed a bit. Oh, and she made me promise to tell you that you need to come see her really soon. She said you don't visit like you used to. Oh, and I'm doing great, how about yourself?" She could hear him laughing on his end, which was a good sign to her.

"I'm good, Lady Luck. You know, I've missed talking to you. I needed this today, too. Things have just been so crazy, she... you know what? I'm going to enjoy my conversation with you, so tell me, what's been going on with you for the past ten years?

And just like that, two old friends started to rebuild the friendship that got put on the back burner. But Charlotte knew him better than anyone, probably better than he knew himself, no matter how much time had passed. She knew something was wrong, seriously wrong. First his mother, and now him? She didn't want to push him, after all, they hadn't talked in ten years, but she knew the time would come and she would be the friend she'd always been, the one that he could always count on.

They talked for about an hour, just catching up, when Charlotte got serious.

"Are you and Bianca still together?" Charlotte was asking about the girlfriend that Jeremy had when they graduated. Bianca did not like Charlotte one bit. She was very jealous of their friendship.

Jeremy laughed hard at that question. "Wow, I hadn't thought about that girl in years! No, we broke up a few months after graduation. It's amazing... my mama hated her too." He said that last part very quietly, almost to himself.

"I'm sorry to hear that, Remy," Charlotte said, smiling brightly to herself.

"Naw, its okay. If I hadn't of broken up with her, I wouldn't have met my wife, Robin. Lady, I would love for you to meet her, you would really like her."

Although she was crushed to hear that news, she did as she always did when it came to Jeremy and his girls. "You know, I was just about to say something about getting together. I've been wanting a reason to throw a party and what better time to get the old crew back together." She knew she was putting on, but she hoped he couldn't read it. She wanted so bad to scream that that girl should've been her, but, she figured it was all over now.

"I'll tell you what. Why don't we meet for lunch and talk about this some more because I would really like to see you. We could talk some more, you know, catch up." He seemed really hopeful and I really did want to see him, too, even if it meant that I had to keep my distance. "That sounds really good, Remy. It'll be good to see you, too, after all this time."

"Good, then we'll talk tomorrow about details and stuff. But check it, I got to run and pick up my godson. I'll talk to you later, right?" She knew then that that was hopefulness in his voice.

"Yes, Jeremy, I'll talk to you soon. Bye." "Bye, Lady Luck."

Charlotte laid back on her bed and stared at the ceiling thinking she was still in love with someone who she felt not only did not feel the same way about her that she felt about him, but that also now it was too late to even see if there was ever anything there. She was starting to feel like she was back in high school all over again, with the girls chasing Jeremy and her being the friend he could complain about the girls to. Only this time, it wasn't just any girl, it was his wife! She knew instantly that she couldn't compete with a wife. He married her for a reason and from the way he enthusiastically told her she had to meet Robin, he must've been happy.

But all of a sudden, she could kick herself. She realized she never did ask him about the message. Not that it would even matter now, she still wanted to know, for her own sake. She figured she would ask him about it the next time they talked.

And, she thought, it wouldn't hurt looking good while she talked to him about it, would it?

The Beginning

I wrote this story about 6 years ago and decided to revamp it and put it out to get some feedback. I LOVE to write, but, sadly, have lots of unfinished stories. This one, however, is completed and just needs to be put out into the world. I don't care if anyone reads it, I'm doing this for me, first and foremost. It started out 6 years ago as a fanfiction writing and I loved the way it turned out so much that I wanted to keep it as just a regular story.

If you're reading this, I hope you enjoy it.