“𝐀𝐯𝐨𝐢𝐝 𝐬𝐥𝐨𝐭𝐡, 𝐛𝐚𝐝 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐚𝐧𝐲, 𝐝𝐚𝐧𝐠𝐞𝐫𝐨𝐮𝐬 𝐜𝐨𝐧𝐯𝐞𝐫𝐬𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬, 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐠𝐚𝐦𝐞𝐬; 𝐫𝐞𝐦𝐞𝐦𝐛𝐞𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐭𝐢𝐦𝐞 𝐩𝐚𝐬𝐬𝐞𝐬 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐧𝐞𝐯𝐞𝐫 𝐫𝐞𝐭𝐮𝐫𝐧𝐬, 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐚 𝐬𝐨𝐮𝐥, 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐢𝐟 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐥𝐨𝐬𝐞 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐬𝐨𝐮𝐥, 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐥𝐨𝐬𝐞 𝐚𝐥𝐥.”
-𝐋𝐞𝐨𝐧𝐚𝐫𝐝 𝐨𝐟 𝐏𝐨𝐫𝐭 𝐌𝐚𝐮𝐫𝐢𝐜𝐞
“So let me get this straight. ” Ian clasped his hands together angrily as he spoke his words slowly. “You went to Keith’s party right?”
“And instead of finding the video about Dre, you slept with Keith”
My leg slung over the other hoping to convey pure confidence and ‘I don’t care’ persona for Ian to see.
“Do you realize how idiotic you are?”
Truth was I woke up this morning with a soreness between my legs alongside a torn underwear and hickeys underneath my boobs. I didn’t even want to focus on the mysterious stains on my bra. I was ashamed to say the least about what went down. The fact that I allowed myself to fall so low in my actions made me feel as if I had hit rock bottom. The only comfort I was allowing myself was that if it wasn’t for me being high on whatever was in that water bottle, I wouldn’t have consciously made those actions as I had last night.
Without notice Ian shoved my leg out of the way to stand on the other side of his room and threw his hands up in the air.
“What the hell Mikita! While I went buck wild down to the motel you was getting diseases and drunk! Or God knows what else. ”
I sat shocked to my seat at the audacity of this boy.
“What happened to the plan? Do you not care about this?”
My shitty temperament adding together with his insulting attitude was not making me feel any better. I stood up in disbelief. “First of all, I didn’t ask to be included in your idiotic Nancy Drew act. I don’t give a fuck, say it with me now, a fuck about Dre and his disappearing ass. I’ve been hear for about one goddamn year, none of this shit has anything to do with me. Leave me the hell alone.”
With that I grabbed my shit and left his house making sure to slam the door hard enough for him to hear. A part of me was blaming him for getting me into this mess. After all if it wasn’t for him and those pictures I would have never have lost my virginity to a dirty dick like Keith.
I wandered around aimlessly not quite sure what to do. I ended up wandering into Cecile’s neighborhood. It was the richer part of the community that had gates up and a security guard to check you. Everyone around here was basically middle class, but there were a few that sought solace in guarded areas. Damon once joked the only people that ever went to live in the gated were the racist bastards that couldn’t handle seeing people of color on the streets.
I would like to hope that wasn’t the truth.
But if it was it would be ironic since not only is the security guard a black man but the gates have been broken for several months now and no one is bothering to fix them. It wouldn’t be much of an escape from anything.
“Taj!” I screamed towards the booth. I had learned his name by chance from the one time I came to Cecile’s house. She wasn’t big on having company in her private space as she put it.
“I’m not deaf ya know.” Taj had a big grin on his face. The way his mustache furrowed around his lips reminded me of Paul Bart. I think that was why I liked him so much.
“With how loud you keep that music, I’m honestly surprised.” He let out a hearty laugh that put a smile on to my own face. He was one of those people who I sincerely wished the best for simply because of the good energy he brought with him.
“What got you around this place ? I know Cecile already has company over but I never thought they would be your type to hang with.”
I furrowed my eyebrows. “Damon and Princesa?”
“No not those scrooges. One of the girls always looks like she got a stick up her ass. I even said that to her once and she just made this constipated sound. The other always looks like he is one breath away from passing away. Don’t know how she talks to them.”
“Oh, yea I didn’t know. ” I said as I leaned in with a whisper. “But thanks for the heads up. Now if I walk in and smell shit I know who it is.”
Taj’s laughter followed me all the way to Cecile’s house. I wasn’t quite sure what I would do, but I knew I wouldn’t be knocking. So instead I rounded the corner crouching up towards a window. Her family always left one open to have fresh air circulate the place.
The window was a jarred just as I had hoped. I stood up making sure no one was in the room before pulling it up higher. With the most awkward angle the soreness between my thighs would allow, I climbed through into their kitchen.
I could already begin to hear where Cecile was from the sound of her angry shout from in the living room. I crouched through the other side of the kitchen pressing myself against the wall. The opening to the kitchen from the living room would easily give me away if anyone was to pass by. My only way in not being found was hiding behind the movable pantry they had. It never was able to fully fit, it was convenient, albeit a tight fit, to hide behind.
I could hear them clearer as I finally fit myself through the small space.
“What are we going to do Clarissa?”
“We? What the hell am I suppose to do. It’s not like I made your mess.” Clarissa who I could only assume was the constipation girl Taj was talking about sounded annoyed.
“I kept telling you Cece. Stop fucking with him, but you never fucking listen.”
A rough voice then spoke up saying, “Jesus, calm down”. There was a pause before he continued. ” Maybe we can figure this out. Think about it Cecile, she doesn’t know anything. She probably just saw him in an article or something, his anniversary of being missing was just a few weeks ago. It’s not out of the ordinary.”
I realized then that they were talking about me. Cecile was worried about me knowing about Dre.
I heard someone moving before Cecile spoke again. “None of you understand. It’s not just Dre she knows about. I could care less if she knew about him, nothing would be traced back to me just because we use to date. The thing is, she knows about the other thing.”
I easily recognized Clarissa’s shrill voice as it rang through the house. “I fucking told you! I told you Jack, didn’t I fucking say her whore ass would get caught one day.”
“Chill the fuck out, damn.” Jack, was either the calmer of the two or someone who could care less about whatever shit Cecile had going on. “What did she say when you confronted her?”
“I don’t remember. It went down so fast. I was so scared, I just wasn’t expecting anyone to walk in.”
I had never heard Cecile so vulnerable before. She was like a whole other person. I also noted how she was the most inferior out of the other two. It was the complete opposite of how she was in our group.
I didn’t like it.
“Jack? What do you think I should do?”
His words startled me into forgetting my current predicament. I accidentally pushed the pantry leading to a loud skid across the floor.
As quickly as I could I bounded out the space just in time to hear them question the noise. I was out the window faster than they could make their way into the kitchen. I wasn’t taking any chances if Jack was serious about what he said.
As I ran towards Taj’s booth, I realized I left the window wider than it was before. I had about a few minutes before they put it together that someone was inside.
“Taj!” I yelled out of breath.
“You’re back.” Automatically the smile was placed on to his face.
“I have no time to talk, if anyone asks, I was not here. Do you hear me?”
I looked back behind me to see the door to Cecile’s house had opened.
“I was not here!”
I ran as hard and as fast as I could. I had no idea where I was going or what I was going to do. But I was scared shitless with paranoia taking over me. What if they knew it was me? They would go to my house immediately. They might kill my mother too, stage it like some freak burglary.
I kept running as I felt my throat closing up and the beginning of a panic attack sneaking up on me. The air outside was poison and my mind was coaxing me into dangerous thoughts. I didn’t like this at all.
I pulled my phone out realizing I was far enough away from Cecile that even if they were chasing after me they would have given up by now.
I took a deep breath before pulling out my phone.
He answered on the first ring before I realized what I had done. “Mickey?”
“Hey, um are you busy?”
“Listen Damon, I know things haven’t been good-”
“Don’t say anything, just come over.” I hung up my feet taking me in the direction of a mistake while my thoughts confirmed my fears.
Without a doubt, I was sure now, that Cecile had something to do with Dre’s death and right now I was going to the house of someone who could also have helped her do it.
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