Normani Brooks

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Secrets

NORMANI’ S PERSPECTIVE

Saturday Morning July 21st, 10:45 am

I was always the first person up in my house. I was a firm believer in nothing comes to a sleeper but a dream. I had big dreams that required hard work, which means I was up and at it every morning. I had got dressed and headed downstairs to cook breakfast before my sisters had gotten up. When I got to the kitchen, I was surprised to see breakfast was already cooking and my older sister Erica was the one whipping it up.

“Okay, sis! I see you up early,” I said excitingly.

“You want cheese in your grits?” She asked.

“Yes, please, and why you up so early? I was coming down to cook, assuming I was the first one up,” I said while taking a seat at the table.

“I had to get up and cook because mom had to leave out in a rush this morning,” Erica explained.

“Wait...mama left already!” I gasped. “She is supposed to take me to to the DMV to take my test today.”

“Oh yeah about that...She asked Ms.Tye if her son George could take you”. Erica said, cutting the stove off.

“GEORGE,” I shouted.

My sister looked at me, crazy. I gave her an even crazier look because she would understand my outburst if she knew who George was. I slumped down in my seat, really disappointed because I honestly wanted my mom to go with me for support. The fact that she ditched me was one thing but to put me off on George Bradley was unforgivable.

“What’s the issue with George taking you,” Erica asked.

I took a deep breath and sighed, “Nothing, I guess. I just really wanted mom there.”

My sister looked at me and laughed. “The test is not that hard. All your friends have their L’s now you late in the game, baby.”

I thought to myself, all of my friends don’t have L’s, but I get what she is saying. I began to eat my food.

“Normani, you start college this year. If you want to be driving, you better pass this test. I know I have taught you well, young one, you got this,” Erica encouraged.

“Indeed you did, sis,” I said, nodding my head.

Walking through the back door was my other big sister Tasha. She was the second oldest, and I, of course, was the baby. “Yall didn’t eat up the food right,” she asked as she headed straight for the stove.

“Fat ass,” I whispered as she brushed right on past us without even a hey or good morning. She fixed her plate, then joined Erica and me at the table.

Tasha took three bites of her food before she spoke again” So Erica is it true?” she asked, staring at Erica, waiting on a reply.

“Is what true, Tasha?” Erica asked.

“I heard Marcus was back in town” Tasha smacked the food from in between her teeth.

Marcus was Erica’s high school sweetheart. When they graduated, they decided to go to the same college. He played baseball, and she was in the band. When he busted his arm up in the last year of college, he began to take all that anger out on my sister. She ended up dropping out of college to take care of him and his bruised ego. They would fight to the point where one would end up in jail, and one would be spending the night in the hospital. It was only last year that my sister decided to leave Marcus and get her life back on track. Marcus left last year to drive trucks but would come to town from time to time. Erica thought we didn’t know she was still creeping around seeing him, but we knew. Erica was a grown-ass woman. If that’s what she wanted, who was I to try and stop her? Besides, it was beyond any of us now with the little secret she was keeping.

Erica took a deep breath and sighed. “Yes, I say him already, Tasha.”

“Did you tell him?” I asked.

“No...It wasn’t the right moment to do it.” Erica stammered.

“You gotta tell him, sis, he needs to know! He got responsibilities that gone to require his immediate attention,” Tasha barked.

“Does mom know yet?” I asked.

Erica jumped up from the table. She was getting agitated with us, asking her so many questions. “No, and keep it that way,” she demanded.

I finish up my breakfast and then pick up my phone to call Shayla. I leave Tasha and Erica in the kitchen to discuss that whole Marcus situation. It was too much stress for me, and I didn’t want any part of it.

Shayla answers the phone all loud and ghetto, “Girl, I was just about to call you!”

I laughed, “What’s up? What happened?”

“So last night, when I confronted Rodney about that girl Jasmine, all his friends were over here. George, Bo, and Chris.” She giggled.

“Okay, you already told me about that, though,” I reminded her.

“Yea, but when I got off the phone with you, I went to take a shower, and right before bed, I got thirsty. I went down to the kitchen for some water. Chris ole red ass, fine ass, good kissing ass walked up on me.” she shrieked in excitement.

I gasped and damn near choked on my spit. “Did you say good kissing?”

“Yes.. okay, so boom. I’m standing in the kitchen minding my business when I hear Chris coming into the kitchen......”

I interrupt her because I know my friend, and in knowing her, I had to ask what she was wearing in this chance situation. She paused and then shrieked again.” Girl, I’m had on my sports bra and some boy shorts. I was not expecting anybody to be in the kitchen at that time of the night.”

I laugh and shake my head. “Okay, continue the story, girl,” I insist.

“He walks in, and we don’t say anything to each other at first. I’m just peeping at him, watching me, and smirking. So I ask him what’s so funny. He says, ′remember when you were little, and you had that big head, it was bigger than your body’...” girl, I just about lost it.” Shayla shrieked with excitement.

“No, he didn’t” I laughed because thinking back, Shayla did use to have a big ass head. She only recently grew into it.

“So my response, of course, was ‘Ima big girl now and everything has caught up’... I finish drinking my water, and I go to leave the kitchen, walking past him. He grabs me by my waist, pulls me in, and whispers, ′I see’...” I died right there,” she said sarcastically.

“Afterwards, he was just like you smell good and you look good. He been watching me and noticed how much I have grown up...” Shayla said.

I could not believe this girl was hooking up with Chris, Rodney’s close friend. I knew that it was going to be trouble, but she was so excited. So I didn’t say anything about it.

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