The calming sounds of rain softly played on Amina's phone as she slept. Her left arm under the pillow while her right was against her stomach. Out of instinct, her body tried to find the coldest areas on the bed before relaxing into it. It was something that she'd done regularly. A weird habit of hers.
Slowly, the bedroom door opened and in walked her mother; Aiyana, who was also her manager. It wasn't hard to have a professional and personal relationship with her mother. They knew the boundaries and what not to do in each separate relationship that they had. Although, it was always fun when they were together, sometimes they did disagree on certain things in Amina's career.
But no matter what they went through, Amina couldn't bring herself to let go of her mother. She couldn't express the lengths her mother went through to get her daughter where she was. The amount of times she stressed and ran around the city to make Amina's dreams come true when no one looked her way. She owed her mother.
"Mhmm." She tucked her head under the white sheets and closed her eyes tightly.
Maybe if I hide she'll go away, she thought.
"It's ten a.m and your flight is in two hours. We got to get you ready and going."
Sluggishly, Amina sat up and ran her hands over her mocha toned face. That was the longest she'd slept in so long and it still felt like it wasn't enough sleep. Throughout her life she was always told that eight hours was the best amount of sleep to get, but she could remember only getting that amount of uninterrupted sleep in the beginning of high school. Her life was completely a breeze executed with responsibility. Until she was noticed and picked up by a fashion agency at the age of seventeen. She found herself being a walking zombie.
Modelling was something that she'd always been into. Just at the age of three, Aiyana would find her daughter putting her heels on and strutting down their old cramped up hallways as if she was Naomi Campbell. Almost everyday she would have after school segments where her mother would judge her runway walk in a playful manner. It was like she was born to model with her tall figure, her beautiful long legs and abstract bone structure.
She ran her hands over her face as she slipped out of the shower and paired her velvet juicy couture tracksuit together. Sweatsuits were the perfect attires to wear for long flights and lazy days.
The pads of her fingers consisted of Vitamin E Oil before she massaged the organic serum on her face and neck. She looked out the window and smiled with content at the beautiful view of the city; Toronto. She moved to the big city that looked like a replica of New York two years after her graduation from high school. Of course, her family was in a completely different country, but she had enough money to fly there and back in one day. Amina loved the city and sort of liked the fact that she was away from her family. Sometimes she just needed a break.
"What time did you land?"
"An hour ago." Aiyana frowned as she looked at her daughter who was around the same height as her. Height ran through the family from both her mother and father's side.
"Are you sure you don't need me to take you to the airport?"
"No, I'm fine, mama. You have to do what you have to do." She stuffed her last minute clothing into her suitcase then hoisted it upright.
"Amina, I can take you. Yania's practice doesn't start until one in the afternoon. I'll have time, babe." Her mother stood behind her as she tried to help her place her things away, but was refused.
"How's she by the way?" Amina never seen nor spoke with her sister in months. Not only was she always busy so she never got seeking to see the seventeen year old, but they just weren't close. It seemed to be Amina's fault as to why her and Yania weren't close, but she'd never own up to that.
"She's— Uh, she's doing really well. She's really serious about basketball." Her mother smiled lightly at the thought of her daughter. "Your father says if she keeps practicing, then she can for sure get that scholarship for a lot of money."
Something Amina never did. Her father; Kalim was a sports junkie who played sports as a passion from a toddler to the recent age he'd reached. So, of course he was ecstatic about his second daughter going into basketball, like his older son; Sayid. Amina was the middle child, the child who caused corruption, he said.
And he was completely and utterly right. She caused corruption and she caused some sort of distance between her parents, so she decided to pull herself from the family equation. It was only right for her to do so, and it was evident that their lives were way better when she wasn't in it.
"That's good." Briefly, she checked her watch and cleared her throat to ease the awkwardness. "I'm gonna head out—"
"I made you some bagel and toast in the kitchen," Aiyana said with hope. "Something you can munch on, on your way to the airport."
Thanking her mother, Amina smiled and grabbed her belongings. "You can stay here for as long as you like. Um—tell the family I said hey or something." She tripped over her shoes and gripped onto the doorknob to regain her balance. "I love you."
"I love you, too, my love." Her mother yelled out. She watched as Amina slammed the door shut and headed away from her loft.
Aiyana plopped onto her daughters bed and looked around the room that seemed to need a clean no matter how much Amina cleaned it. She sighed heavily and began fixing the bed.
"What am I going to do with her?"
The sun seemed brighter and the breeze was cool, despite it being so hot. The smell was completely different from back home. The atmosphere smelt rich and authentic making Amian sigh with content. Jamaica was beautiful and felt like home as soon as her sandal covered feet stepped off the plane. She'd never been there before, but she felt like she had been when the rays of sunshine glittered over her brown toned face.
A portion of her family did have a Jamaican background, but they weren't so close with their roots. Americans, were just what they claimed to be.
She smiled and slipped off her glasses.
"Damn, it is so hot, my ass cheeks are sweating."
And just like that her smile was replaced with a frown. Looking behind her, she watched as her two best friends stumbled out the airport.
Leana frowned and rubbed her forehead as she looked around for a cab while Jewels fanned herself with her hands, which seemed to not be working.
Leana, Jewels and Amina went way back. They became friends from working at a shoe store together in their junior year of high school. They all came from different backgrounds and cultures, but it didn't define how in unison they were in. They'd went through the inevitable together, causing people to wonder on the outside how hey were so close and maintained a friendship despite their different lives.
"Do you have to be so loud?" Amina glared at Jewels.
"You need to get that stick out of your ass. You've been frowning all damn day," Leana shook her head as she waved for a cab.
"I just don't have the time to be on vacation. I really have a lot of work to do," Amina was a print and runway model. She already had a lot of shoots and tons of recognition, but it was hard when she wasn't as light as some of the girls or she just didn't have what they were looking for. She had the height, standing at basically 5'9, but it seemed to not be enough. Sometimes she felt like she would be further if she had the right team. She'd be further if she was white or a light skin tone.
"Work?" Jewels frowned. "You're one of the best models out here right now. Kendall Jenner, who?"
"There's always more work that needs to be done." She was a black woman, which meant that she had to work ten times more harder than the rest of the women who weren't black. Of course, it was sad, but it was the way of the industry and the way of life.
"Well, now's not the time for that. We are going to spend the few days here— Oh, yes." Leana squealed when a cab pulled over in front of them. A brown skin old man with short hair slipped out and began helping them with their luggage. Once it was all done, they made their way into the cab and buckled up .
"— so make the best of it, bitch," Leana flipped her curls behind her shoulders and looked over at Jewels, who was leaning against the window with her mouth wide open.
"Can we do a detour or something, because the air conditioning in this cab is hittin' just right." She sighed with content as she lifted her arms up. Her eyes rolled back with pleasure as she felt the cool air caress her arms.
Finally, they arrived at the five star hotel that they were going to be staying in. Grabbing their luggage's, they checked in and made their way to their suite. The rooms were all separate, but connected by just a walk in door.
Amina placed her things aside and began unpacking. She felt more secured and in order when she packed her things out. If you were staying somewhere for basically a week or more, it was suggested to pack your things out. It was something she'd learn from flying out to different countries so often.
As she continued putting away her belongings, her phone began ringing repeatedly. Hesitantly, she grabbed it and started at the contact name. Quickly, she tucked her phone away and rolled her eyes with annoyance and built up anger.
She placed her hygienic care bag into the bathroom and quickly showered. She was never one to sleep and loved to be adventurous, but she was extremely tired from the flight.
An hour later, Jewels and Leana stepped into the room with a smile. They were shorts and tanks as they stood in front of a sleeping Amina.
"Girl, wake up."
"What?" She groaned and tucked her head into the pillow. The sheets smelt so good and felt so light, she didn't want to get up. It was as if she was sleeping on clouds that just flowed through the air ever so gently.
"We said we were going out to eat," Jewels grabbed a pillow and smacked Amina's butt making her rise from the bed. She ran her hands through her hair that was elongated with the help of extensions.
Slowly, Amina stood up and pushed past the girls. She was already dressed for the occasion, but she needed an hour of rest. She'd been working so much that she never really got any sleep. With putting out her skin care line and modelling, she never got any sleep. Not only was she ambitious, but she had the drive of ten people combined together. It was instilled in her to be a go getter from her parents. Her drive was the one thing she believed she inherited from her father other than his entire face. Kalim would agree to that as well.
Everyone in her family worked hard.
Once the girls were ready, they headed out. The hotel was surrounded by many restaurants, so they decided to attend to one of them.
"Look at the view," Jewels looked out at the clear view of a beach with a light smile. She was such a city girl and always on the go that she never got the time to just sit in front of a beautiful view and thank God for what he'd given to the world. People really took a lot for granted.
The sound of the reggae music made Amina sway around to the beat. The air was thick with a beautiful smell of authentic food, the girls didn't want to leave. Her hands lightly moved around as she sang along to the music.
Leana quickly looked at the view as she scarfed down the jerk chicken and rice as if it was her last meal. She hadn't tasted anything so seasoned, real and well cooked in so long. Her taste buds were in heaven.
That was West Indian food for you.
"It's so nice out—Amina look."
"I see it," She smiled lightly and looked over at her friends. She pushed her negative thoughts towards the back of her mind where she couldn't even begin to think about them and replaced them with happy thoughts. Her friends seemed to be happy with where they were and it was only the first day.
"Cheers, to a good time, a good life, no dealings with these annoying men—"
"Preach," Both Leana and Amina agreed.
"— and many more beginnings."
"And a happy ending for you, Amina. You deserve it." Jewels looked over at Amina and smiled sadly.
She'd gone through the most to the point where they didn't know how she even made it out alive. From a long time car accident that messed with her body after time, all the way to being in an unhealthy relationship for years. She was completely torn and was in the process or re-building herself. She was so close to being at the stage she wanted-- that she craved, but so far at the same time.
A sad smile traced Amina's face, as she stared at her glass and raised it. "To new beginnings."
To a new life.