Who Is U? (Amani) Part I

Pushing my thick, black frames back for the third time as I sat inside my car, waiting on my sisters, my mind kept bringing up stills of the woman BJ had housed up. She was gorgeous and it pained me to admit this. Not that I was a hater because that wasn't even my style. I couldn't bring myself to start unnecessary drama with other people and disliking a person based on something they couldn't control, like their looks... Was unnecessary drama. Still, there was this innate disdain for her and I knew why it was there. My love for BJ had grown since he came back from Indy and I'd been wondering if he felt the spark between us. We smoked, as we always did, I still had the keys to his crib... And the only thing that changed was the night I let him between my legs.

"Thanks--Have a great night!" I giggled as I grabbed the bags of food I couldn't wait to tear into. 

BJ was going to be pissed but I wanted Portillo's and he'd just have to deal with it. Swerving into the turning lane as I dug into the bag for a couple fries, I burned my fingertips and lips trying to munch on-the-go. Ain't no fries hitting like Portillo's so it's worth the risk. Trying to pace myself because I did plan on baking then eating, I was halfway through my carton of fries when I pulled in front of BJ's complex. Shutting off the engine, I grabbed my bags and keys and headed to his front door. 

It's been two weeks since he's been back from Nap and we've been oddly distant. BJ wouldn't talk to me about why he left and he didn't tell me what happened while he was gone. It was like that chapter in his life was closed and he wouldn't even give me access to skim over a couple pages, first. Pretty unusual considering the nature of our relationship. There were no secrets which left little to no room for awkwardness. Sighing as I put his key into the deadbolt, I could hear talking coming from the other side. Being nosey in nature, I pressed my ear to the door and listened. Squinting my eyes as I strained to hear, I could only make out a couple words. It sounded like he was trying to move out of the city permanently. Pulling back, I quickly unlocked the door and burst through the doors, causing BJ to drop his phone in fear.

"Mani--I thought..." he exhaled, bringing his hand to his chest before bending down to retrieve his phone. "Cuzzo, I'll call you later," he ended the call just as his eyes landed on my Portillo's. "Why?"

"Because I wanna bake first then eat my hotdogs," I shrugged walking through the hall like I normally did to get to his couch. 

Battling with myself internally, on whether or not to bring up what I heard, I reached for his psychedelic bong, instead. Placing my bags on the table, BJ disappeared into his bedroom and I prepped for our first session. Analyzing his liquor selection underneath his coffee table, it killed me that he indulged in so much Ciroc. Not that I wasn't partial when smoking but BJ drank this stuff on the regular and I just couldn't. Dark liquor was my go-to and I wasn't talking Henny either. The lightest drink I've ever had and liked was the V-Clear Remy. It just paired so smoothly with the cranberry juice, I couldn't help myself. 

"Hold on," BJ startled me as I clutched his bong in fear of dropping it. "I gotchu something!" he smirked while keeping his hands behind his back. 

"What is it?" I couldn't control the smile on my face as he pulled his hands around, a bottle of V-clear. "Get outta here!" I giggled uncontrollably as Brandon reached for the bong in my hand. 

"I tried it last week," he admitted as I nodded knowingly. "I'll never smoke another bowl without it," he grinned as I clasped my hands together. 

"Well done my good and faithful servant..." I cracked as he laughed. 

Scooting to give him a spot to sit, BJ and I sat quietly while he prepared the bong. Pouring in the liquor first, adjusting the levels, then checking the stem then adding his premium stash to the bowl. Running my tongue over my lips as he offered me the first light, I was ecstatic. This was so much more than a sanctuary for me. Lighting I watched the liquor bowl into bubbles and took the first hit. Pulling the stem from the bong I inhaled all the vapors. Holding it in, I repeated the same steps twice more then handed the bong over to Brandon. My eyes were so low, I could finally slouch into the couch with my food and chill. 

"This is new?" I wondered, not too sure on the peculiar stench this weed gave off. 

BJ nodded as he inhaled. Not really waiting on his response, I was already stuffing my face. Lost in my food, I couldn't even think straight. That's how I liked things. Blowing through four bowls together and killing three Chicago dogs, a large fry and my Dr. Pepper, I was ready to hit the sack.

"I'm not even mad at you for this," Brandon told me about the Portillo's as I grinned and shrugged. "I should start listening to you more," he spoke more to himself as I snorted getting him to cut his eyes in my direction. "I said I should--"
"You should've already been... But I forgive you," I teased as his head hung jokingly. 

Normally, after a few rounds, we'd be content in silence but I couldn't shake what I'd heard by the front door.  If BJ was really plotting to leave me I didn't know what I would do. He's been my safe haven for a while now and his absence showed me just how much I couldn't live in the city without him. Everybody had somebody and I was still by myself. And even though my mama was toxic and unfit, when she was alive... I still had a piece of somebody to hold onto. Tucking my knees into my chest as I thought about where I would go if BJ left me, I felt a cold grip my left foot. 

"You okay?" Brandon's eyes were as low and red as mine. 

"Yeah..." I lied as he smirked and shook his head. 

Of course, my only trusted confidant would know when I was lying. Inhaling as I dropped my legs, I released the trapped air while twisting my lips. BJ was the only person I felt comfortable around enough to ask and tell him anything... But this time, I wasn't so sure. 

"Spill it--"

"I am... I am..." I braced myself first. "Who were you on the phone with when I came in?"

I heard him call the person "cuzzo" but having him repeat it would ensure he was telling the truth. 

"My cousin, why?" 

"Are you leaving?" I just came right out with it as BJ turned away from me, clenching his jaws and fists together. 

"Only for a little while--
"Why?" I scooted closer to the edge of the couch. "You just came back--"
"I got accepted into LSU--My daddy talked me into it, ya know--Since he moved back," he smiled and I could tell he was genuinely happy about it. "Their science department is a force to be reckoned with," he told me and I wanted to be happy for him but I couldn't. "I'm still gonna keep my pad and I'll be back and forth because my mama is here--" 

"But you're still gonna go..." I sighed, not even wanting to continue with this conversation. 

It felt like my heart had been forcefully pulled through my esophagus. Granted the cotton mouth I was experiencing right now, could've played a bigger part in this feeling... I was upset, nonetheless. The high I had was blown and I just wanted to go home. 

"Amani, I'm not relocating permanently--"
"Brandon, it's fine," I cut his speech short. 

Whether he went for a semester or two, I'd still be blue. Because I didn't know how to function without him and that was my fault. Co-dependency is a hell of a drug and I should've been more careful. 

"I should've just listened to Salimah--" 

"Really?" BJ scoffed as I lifted myself up from the couch. "Amani, where is this coming from?"

"Nowhere, BJ... I shouldn't have put too much into our friendship--" 

"What are you talking about?" BJ quickly jumped up from his spot to grab me. "Why would me moving change our friendship?" BJ was so close to me and I couldn't resist my urges. 

Pushing my body up by the tips of my toes, I pressed my lips to his and released all my pent up, sexually tension I've been holding onto for him since we've known each other. Pecking first, then tossing my arms around his neck and losing myself...

Damn, I thought as I broke my own memory. Gazing out the window, I was too tense for this. I need to smoke. Popping my knuckles as I thought about the risk of shifting our relationship, ironically I didn't regret it. There was always this underlined pull BJ and I both had over each other and that night pretty much solidified it. If anything, it proved to me that we weren't just meant to be friends. We had the potential to be solid lovers but BJ couldn't seem to come to that conclusion.  The sex made him emotional inept--Or emotional disconnect from me. And that's why I was so bothered by this new girl's presence. But more so, because I'd been going through this phase where I wanted to make myself more appealing to him. Running my fingers through my hair, I snorted at the ideals Salimah tried to implement on me. Fatima too. I foolishly allowed both my little sisters to talk me into a makeover. Fatima calling in a home stylist and Salimah heading the entire project. Giving the direction as to how my hair should look from the cut to the color. And Fatima added a few pointers herself... Telling me contacts were my friend. I played into their wants and immediately got the attention I didn't want from other men. Pulling my glasses from my face as I squinted at my reflection through the rearview mirror before I pulled my contact holder from my pocket and put them in. Regardless of how silly I thought Fatima was, I did look better without the black frames. Okay, now I can smoke.

Lifting the armrest, I had two spares left and the corners of my mouth were turning in delight. Sparking up, I had to hotbox solo if I was going to go through with my plans. I've never had to fight anybody in my life and I'm not saying nobody tried--Because I used to have to run home from school in the summer time. Or run into Salimah whose bark was just as big as her bite and pray she didn't make fun of me for choosing not to fight. She would... Only after she knocked a couple girls out for me. Inhaling as I chuckled at my cowardice ways, I caught a glimpse of myself in the rearview mirror and frowned. Staring long and hard I wondered what it was about me that kept BJ from committing. I didn't think I was ugly but I didn't think I was cute, either. Out of all my siblings, I resembled my mama in ways Salimah could only imagine. Yes, she was shorter, like Jewel, but her chin was square and she was way skinnier than any of us... Fatima included. I had her complexion, soft, wavy hair, and quirky mannerisms. I think out of all my siblings, Fatima and Salimah resembled their fathers. And I didn't know who Salimah's daddy was but they called him Royce.

"Hello?" I said into my phone as I pulled from my blunt.

"Where the fuck you at?" Salimah blared into my ear as Tyler wailed in the background.

"I'm waiting for y'all outside BJ's--"

"Bitch, you didn't get my text?" she sighed as I heard her fumbling with her baby. "I told you she was gone be sittin' outside his crib," Salimah snorted as Armeeshia voice picked up in the background. "We almost there--"

"Why is Armeeshia coming?" It sounded rude but I was asking a serious question.

"Uh-uh, bitch--I'm helpin' yo ass out--"

"Meeshia, relax, pooh," Salimah giggled. "I'on think she meant it like that."

"I didn't," I clarified for them. "I don't wanna hurt her--"

"You can't have it both ways, Amani," Salimah told me as I coughed a little from the gas I was inhaling. "You smoking?"

"Yeah..." I giggled with them. "My nerves are bad right now--"

"Why you so jumpy when it come to fighting?" Salimah groaned as Armeeshia continued to laugh at me.

"Issa cancer thing--"

"No, the fuck it ain't!" Fatima spoke over both of them.

"Aside from Lil Torin--Issa cancer thing," Armeeshia continued to tease us as my sisters giggled.

Hearing a bass booming from behind, I peeked out my rearview mirror to see Salimah's car pulling in behind me. Groaning at how obvious she was being, I knew backing out of this wasn't an option anymore.

"Okay, we here now--"

"Obviously," I ended the call, inhaling the last of my blunt before ashing it and tossing it into my tray with the rest of the roaches I kept for a rainy day.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

Salimah impatiently pecked on my window as I frowned at the sight of her standing with my niece glued to her hip. Pushing my door open, I fixed my clothes and hair and closed my door.

"You look cute," Salimah complimented me as I nodded with gratitude.

"Why'd you bring Tyler--And thanks."

"Because Ty sent her to Fatima's over some bullshit and I couldn't drop her back off without explaining why I couldn't keep her with me."

Knowing my sister and her baby daddy's track record, I decided to leave this one alone. They were probably into it and I didn't need anymore sob stories weighing me down.

"That's why Meeshia here--She gon' stay in the car with Tyler and we gon' drag this bitch out--"

"Don't say it like that," I sighed as Fatima smiled over at me.

"Is she dating him?" Fatima asked me as I shrugged.

"It don't matter--She's there, he's acting funny and I need to release some pent up aggression," Salimah spoke over both of us, handing her daughter over to her best friend so she could cross the street. "Let's fucking go! I'on need this shit getting back to Ty cuz we just got back on track--"

"So y'all not gettin' a divorce?" Armeeshia blurted out as me and Fatima caught each other's gaze.

"What?" Fatima spit out. "You and Ty got married?" her question had a hint of envy sprinkled over it but she masked it well enough for Salimah not to notice.

"Yes--Thank you, Motormouth Maybelle," Salimah groaned at her best friend. "It's a long story--That I'll tell y'all after we beat this bitches ass!"

Stomping across the street, Tyler started back with her crying and Fatima and I followed her mama.

"Put her in my car and just give her a bottle!" Salimah called out over her shoulder as Armeeshia did as she was told. Reaching his door, Salimah didn't even wait for me to pull out my key.

BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!

"BRANDON, TELL YO HOE TO COME OUTSIDE!" Salimah sang as Fatima mashed herself in between me and Salimah, knocking me to the back.

BOOM! BOOM! BOOM!

"YOU KNOW I'LL KICK THIS BITCH DOWN IF I HAVE TO!" 

Hearing the locks click, Brandon pulled his door back slightly, pushing his head out of it. Looking at the three of us standing here, BJ's gaze ended on me.

"Amani, you can't be serious, right now--"

"And why can't I?" I countered as BJ cracked up laughing. "What's so funny?"

"You!" He exhaled, trying to calm himself down because, at this point, he was the only one laughing.

"You straight?" We heard behind him as Salimah pushed the door in knocking BJ back.

Standing behind him with her arms crossed over her chest was the same misty-eyed woman I ran into yesterday. Swallowing my mind picked apart every beautiful aspect about her, Salimah charged forward but was immediately apprehended by BJ.

"Nigga you got my sister fucked up--" she huffed as Fatima lurched towards them to pull our sister away from him. "You been stringing Mani along and whole time you gotta bitch--"

"I'm not his bitch--

"She isn't my girlfriend..." BJ pointed at the misty-eyed woman beside him.

"Who is you?" Salimah's glare mimicked the one on the mystery woman's face as she stepped back into the fighting stance. "Aww--Okay bitch..."



To Be Continued... (Thursday)

COMMENTS

BLOGGER: 8
  1. Don't forget to comment!

  2. I can't wait for Thursday!

  3. You are a captivating writer! I am looking forward to reading more of your books!

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Characters Welcomed!: Who Is U? (Amani) Part I
Who Is U? (Amani) Part I
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Characters Welcomed!
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