Jada tries to help her crazy-ass friend; Josiah makes a plan; Thomas gets emotional
|Elsewhere, Thomas, Grady, and London were in front of the local Starbucks, just staring at the sign like it was a precious painting.
“Should we go in?” Grady asked.
“Nah,” Thomas said, “We gotta get Monica. Starbucks just ain’t the same without her”.
“Yeah,” London chimed in, “I love when she sings about the coffee, man”.
“And she sings so good,” Thomas said, “They give us everything for free”.
“She’s like a walking coupon,” Grady added, “We have to call her”.
“Alright, let me call her up,” London said. She unlocked her phone and a pirate video immediately opened.
“Arrr, who took me boat paddle?”
Thomas and Grady’s eyes widened and their mouths dropped. London closed out the video and looked at them.
“What's the problem, guys?”
"I just never saw you as a pirate person," Thomas said
“Ugh,” she rolled her eyes, “I told you about it before”.
"I was busy!"
"You were eating chicken sandwiches!"
"They were delicious, I had to focus on them!"
London just said, "Whatever dude". Then she dialed Monica, and said, “Hello?”
“Hey, what’s up?”
“We’re at Starbucks, you know, your favorite place! You wanna tag alone, get some coffee. make the managers think we’re crazy?”
“Ah, I’m just sitting in the studio just tryna get you, baby,” she began singing, “But this song’s so damn dope, girl it’s hard not for me to blaze it”
“Damn, I understand. What do you want us to get you then?”
“Oh, just the usual peppermint mocha. And if that Jeff dude is there, tell him to stop putting his number on the side of the cup. I don’t wanna date that dude! Well I gotta go. Bye!”
London hung up the phone, and reached in her wallet.
“Crap, I only have a five. You guys have any money?”
Thomas and Grady stood dumbfounded. Then the former tried to explain.
“See, uh, we thought Monica would be coming, so we didn’t bring any money”
London turned to them and looked in disbelief.
“I guess we’ll have to get her from the studio then”.
The local studio was just down the street, so they trotted along the sidewalk until they got there. Thomas opened the door, and his jaw dropped to the floor.
Monica and Kenyelle were working in the studio, but not on a song. He was holding her tight by the wist as they shared a rough kiss.
“Hands off my girl!”
Thomas ran up and threw a sharp punch at Kenyelle, dropping him on the floor. But he wasn’t a fool. He got back and socked Thomas in the lip, sending him straight to the floor. As if that wasn’t enough, he threw some loud jabs to his face while kicking his side. Monica walked over and pushed him off.
“Stop! This is crazy!” she yelled, “Can y’all just chill?”
Kenyelle backed off alright, but not before spitting on Thomas and saying, “Stupid actor”.
Monica rushed over and got him off the ground.
“Oh my God! You okay Tommy?”
“Yes....I’m, I’m fine,” he barely struggled to get the words out.
“Let’s get you out of here,” Monica said, “And get you some air”.
While they were getting all of that straightened out, Mariah and her crew walked to the dance studio to get everything prepared for the night. But once they walked in, they were in for a surprise. The studio was a mess, with empty Minute Maid bottles, skittles glued to the ground, and the words, “Damn y’all” spray painted all across the walls. Mariah’s eyes popped up
“What the hell? Who the hell did this?”
“Well, well, well,” a voice called from the off.
“We should’ve known,” Azyrea commented.
It was none other than Leque....I mean, LaQuinta, with a spray can in her head.
Emmani walked up. “Leque....”
“LaQuinta!” She jumped up, “My name is LaQuinta! Get it right, chickens!”
“Who the hell you calling a chicken?” Azyrea said, ready to throw hands.
“I’m callin’ you a chicken, chicken,” LaQuinta said, “We can bump about it”
“Let’s fight stupid sucker,” Azyrea ran up to her and struck her right in the face. LaQuinta stumbled a back a bit.
“You done messed up now,” LaQuinta got back up but Mariah knocked her back down. She stepped on her and looked down at her wincing face.
“Get the hell off me!” LaQuinta complainted.
“Just tell why the hell you trashed our dance studio?” Mariah asked.
“Can you get your foot off me, damn,” she demanded.
Mariah rolled her eyes. “Whatever, fine”.
Mariah stepped off of her, then LaQuinta got up and dusted herself off.
“Look,” she explained, “I’mma just be honest with y’all. I just got a dance studio, and it ain’t popping at all. I tried promoting it, nobody came”
“How did you promote it?” Jada asked.
“I just slapped people in the face, don’t them they can’t dance, and told em’ I could teach em’”
“No wonder,” Emmani said.
“But I just need some help getting it started up,” LaQuinta said, “Y’all gone help me or what?”
“You messed up my whole dance studio.” Mariah said, “Get outta here”.
“I don’t know,” Jada said, “We could help her out a little”.
“This girl tried to fight me,” Azyrea said, “Bump her ugly-behind dance studio”.
“I see how y’all are,” LaQuinta lowered her eyes as she slowly walked out. “Ol 'crabby, shabby, scalawags!”
While the group looked at her in confusion, Jada was in the back laughing.
“What you laughin’ for, hoe?” Azyrea asked.
“She said scalawag!” Jada continued giggling and laughing.
Back at the mansion, I had walked back down the stairs of shame to the kitchen to finish my breakfast. Our friends were just chowing down.
“You forgot the hot sauce, bro,” Johnny said.
I just looked at them with my head hanging down. “Sorry, I’m not in the hot sauce mood right now”
“Want me to cheer you up?” Bell said, jumping out his seat.
“No, I don’t....”
“I’m a goofy goober yeah! You’re a goofy goober yeah!” Bell sung, danced around, and knocked over a can of pickles, leaving a dark green mess on the floor. As fun as that song was, it did absolutely nothing for me.
“Thanks,” I told him, “But I’m not feeling it. Also, you’re gonna have to pick those pickles up”
“Awww man,” Bell said, “Why are you sad? Did you mess up with Marriam?”
“Yes, yes I did,” I held my hands in my face.
“Oh God!” Johnny hopped out his seat. “Please tell me it was minor. For your life!”
“I don’t even know what level,” I told them, “All I know is...I really messed up”.
Johnny held his heart and fainted right on the ground.
“Don’t worry, baby!” Kimberly rushed to his side, put her hands on his chest, and kissed him hard. Johnny then rose back up
“All better!” he cheered.
“I was so worried, baby,” Kimberly said, before giving him a tight hug
“What did you do that made her mad?” Johnny asked.
“Accused her of cheating,” I told them, avoiding eye contact as much as possible.
"Oh my God, dude," Marina said, "That's like, the ultimate sin"
“This is crazy!” Johnny said, “Now, I know Marriam, and when she loves somebody, she loves them HARD. She’s loyal as hell man!”
“I know,” I looked at myself in absolute disgust, “I just let, I just let my insecurities get the best of me, I suppose. How am I gonna fix it?”
“Just start a band,” Johnny said, “Like One Di...yeah, like them”.
“That’s crazy enough to work,” I said, “We could start a band, ask her to meet me at Fubway, and play a song for her”.
“You got the right idea man!” Johnny said, “What song?”
“Um, um, um,” I shuffled through the playlist in my brain, “When Will I See You Smile Again by Bell Biv Devoe”
“That’s good, that’s good,” Johnny said, “But we need some members. A bass player! A piano man! Some groovin’ drums!”
“And all by this afternoon,” I added.
“I could play a real smooth bass line,” Jonny said, “Only problem? MY GUITAR BURNED DOWN!”
“Sorry,” Bell said, looking like a sad puppy.
“We can get you a new one from the store,” I said.
“It won’t feel the same,” he said, throwing on his pout face.
“I don’t give a damn!” Jonny said, “We got a whole band to start, and we need to do it now”
“And where the hell are you gonna find those people?” Kimberly said.
I stared in the air for a bit with my hand on my chin. “Shooooot....I don’t know”
“You know the Chinga Tu Madre mall?” Marina said.
“Well, yeah,” I replied.
“They have a Guitar Center where all the local musicians come to play,” she explained, “We can probably get one of them to play for us”
“Oh forget that,” Johnny said, “They like sacrificing chickens and crap”.
“None of us have any instruments,” I said, “If I gotta sacrifice some chickens to make her happy again, so be it!”
“Ooh, That’s how they make chicken nuggets!” Bell said.
“Yeah, kinda,” Jonny said, “Now let’s roll outta here. we got a band to start!”
Bell looked down on his plate with a frown.
“I’m not done with my food,” he said.
“Should’ve ate faster,” Jonny said, “Now let’s head out”
Monica guided Thomas out the studio and into the open air. As they left, Grady commented, “Eh, you kinda started it”. Thomas leaned on the side of the building, and Monica wiped his face off with some wet wipes.
“You okay now?” she asked him.
“Yeah,” Thomas said.
“Good, now do you wanna tell me what the hell just happened in there?”
“I don’t know,” he scratched his head, “I guess I kinda, I kinda lost control”.
“Look, Kenyelle’s pretty much all I have to make it in this business, and I can’t afford to have anyone screw it up”.
“Look, I didn’t mean to mess anything up,” Thomas said, looking down, “But love, it does funny things to do”
Monica gasped covered her heart. “Love? You...you love me?”
“Yeah,” Thomas said, “I loved you for at least two years now, but I could never find the right time to really express it. Plus, I kinda assumed we were just, you know, friends...”
“Thomas,” Monica said, “I loved you too, but I thought the same thing . I was waitin’ for you to make a move, and do something romantic, but you never did. I mean, I was kinda cool with it, but, but I always wanted more from you”.
“I guess we both got each other screwed up, huh?”. Thomas got a smile on his face.
“Yeah,” Monica said, laughing a bit. “But I don’t know, it feels like it’s too late”
“No, it’s not too late,” Thomas then took a long sigh. “I’m willing to take a chance with you, and dedicate myself to you fully. This is the perfect opportunity. I love you, Monica, and I wanna go out with you, what do you say?”
“Jeez,” she looked at him, and then at the ground, “I, I don’t know, it’s a lot to take in at once. I never really knew you had those feelings for me. I mean, I, I had my suspicions before, but now that I know that they’re true, I mean, I just, I don’t know”.
“Just know that no matter what you say, I’ll always support you”.
“Thanks,” Monica told him. “You know, deep down I love you Thomas, and I just wish that this wasn’t the situation to bring it out. It’s, It’s gonna be kinda weird going from buddies to lovers, but with a guy like you, I...I guess I could take that chance, and uh, see where it goes”.
“And I’d take that chance with an awesome girl like you,” Thomas said. “Come here”
He picked her and gave her a madly passionate French kiss while spinning her slowly around, like those romance movies. London and Grady had saw the whole ordeal through the studio corner.
“This is some soap opera stuff right here,” London said.
“Who’d knew it happen to us?” Grady added.
Thomas looked at Monica one more time with a newfound awe.
“So, uh, you still wanna do Starbucks?”
Monica grabbed his hand and said, “Hell yeah, let’s go”. Then they trotted along the way.
On the other side of town, LaQuinta sat in her gray and barren dance studio, curled up to herself, with a box of tissues.
She sung to herself, “Well I’m not gon’ cry, I’m not gon’ cry, not gon’ shed no tears”.
A beam of light appeared from the door, highlighting a figure that was entering.
"Customer? Please be a customer!" She pleaded with her hands together on the floor.
"LaQuinta, is that you?". A man in a a black and blue suit appeared in front of her, holding a clipboard full of papers.
"The one and only," she said, "What the hell you want?"
He looked at the papers and buried his face in his hands.
"You've been getting absolutely no business since you opened," he said.
"I've been getting hella business, where the hell you've been?" she claimed.
"By who? The damn flies?"
"Shut the hell up, you just mad cause your junk ain't sellin""
He looked at her with a stern look. "My junk is selling lady, yours isn't, and if it doesn't by next week, I'm shutting this place down"
"Wait!" She said, growing a sly look on her face. "You know, I'm just a young lady tryna get into the business, tryna accomplish my dreams". She got up, walked up to him, and started rubbing his shoulders.
"You don't wanna shut down my dreams, do you?"
He pulled away from her, saying, "First off, I'm married, second of all, business is business, I hate to shut you down but I'm sorry".
As he walked out, LaQuinta raised her middle finger in the air, "Forget you! You missin' out! Bet your wife don't even put it down no more!". She then shrugged and sat back in her corner, with her head hanging down.
"How the hell am I supposed get people to come here?" she asked herself, "Stupid dummies don't know what they're missin'"
However, someone else stepped in the deserted studio. LaQuinta looked at them carefully.
"And who the hell are you?"
"I'm Jada Lindsay, witch!" she said with a smile.
"I don't give a damn witch," LaQuinta said, "Go back to Mariah's losuy studio. Leave me the hell alone"
"No, I'm here to help out," Jada said. She walked over and sat right next to her.
"Why would you wanna help me?" LaQuinta asked, "I mean, I trashed your whole studio, that’s suspicious".
"I know, I know," Jada said, "But I don't like to see a black girl struggling".
LaQuinta looked at her and said, "Lies".
"Look," Jada said, "I came here to help you. If you don't want it, fine"
"No, nononono," LaQuinta shook her head and hands. "Thank..thank you for coming here"
"Alright," Jada said, "But don't tell nobody I'm doing this. They'll get so mad at me".
"Not a problem girl," she said.