Battled from “I’m Worthy”, What his friend’s mean by definition:
Female: Any young woman of age, thirty-five years, or younger.
Young Lady: Any nice young female thirty years, or younger.
Young Woman: Any successful female they don’t know.
Woman: Someone better; older they can respect.
Bitch: Any female they cannot control.
With the heart of three men and success, Wise has a challenging time keeping his friends keep it together. With certain ones heading to the wayside and others going in other ways or caught in between, whether they get along or not, Wise is respectfully present with his friends’ sworn unmarried people. His friends succeed, others perish into the wiles, while others wilt, so Wise does his best to lend an ear to all those who needed one to hear them and listen.
While going through difficulties of his own, Wise always lets his lights shine ever so brightly, finally finds a shining star and through it all, everyone considers him, Wise, one of the best friends, anyone could have and undeniably, a good man.
“What do you mean man?”
“Exactly,” Wise said with a stiffness even he could not figure, but it was real, and he had to mean what he said.
Attus and all the other guys did not care one way or the other. Heck, their tickets were paid for whether they needed it or not. “I do not want them there, man. I do not want to see them.” Attus just wanted to be sure Wise had his wits about especially one person and he did not want to seem messy, but Wise was right about the reaction to his feelings.
“I do not blame you man,” Attus interjected with adamancy.
“I meant what I said. If she comes back and starts that with her again, I will kick his ass personally.” Wise knew Attus wasn’t kidding, but Troy wondered why he was so adamant about it. It was unlike Attus to speak that way especially since he was built close to the build of a logger. Attus’ feelings were always on point and might have thought anyone plainly knew. Well, Tory thought, maybe he was just imagining things.
Surely he would have known if Attus had a thing for Jonjou’. Heck, he probably could have made something happen a long time ago. Attus never cared for Teake, perhaps why he felt the way he did. Tory and Attus could not care less how Wise decided to place his guest list if they were invited. Wise had no beef with them, nor had they any social problems, and stopped liking Teake the moment they heard he was abusing his wife. He realized how people had a crush on her.
Attus and Tory had a crush on Jonjoui. In case she ever returned, which of the two she’d choose? Attus, if persistent and proven worthy would have more of a shot with Jonjoui than Tory because he was not her type and needed work on himself. No one ever really knew what Tory was doing, or where his mind was, about the future. He was always around, where. Chance took his lead from Butch, which proved not the best advice, but Tory was his own man.
“Yeah, man. I mean, if his woman were that bad, then why doesn’t he tell her to take a hike when she wants to? Why torment the woman, why make her feel useless for himself or anyone else if he did not want her? Because he’s messy. He thinks he’s impressing one, like King of the castle, or cave dweller to his woman. What a dumb ass.” Both men agreed as Tory listened in. Attus noticed he seemed a little too overzealous for Jonjou’ and Wise caught that eye slant he made at Tory.
“Right man,” Titus added. “I mean, she was not my type, she was pretty, but I know Butch thought she was beautiful. That guy right there,” he pointed to Butch, “Thought she was a knockout, which is why the dude went off! He knew Butch was smitten by his woman.” Teake’s vendetta only gave Butch power and with it, he did not care if he and Teake would remain close.
“She was,” Wise said, raising his head for the first time in a while.
He was studying his phone.
“She was beautiful. Truly kind, ambitious, and nice, but of course Butch would not have a chance, besides, Jonjoui is not his type either. See, it works both ways, but Teake can’t stop Butch, or any of us saying, or thinking she’s pretty.”
“That’s true,” they muttered. Keith and everyone wondered why not extending an invitation to Teake Wise should worry? Teake hadn’t been a part of the crew unless he wanted things.
He’d been a menace and an embarrassment lately and would not accept professional help. In and out of rehab could not help his personality so, fuck him.” Attus and Tory were still single. Titus always had a mass number of women floating around too until the thing finally sprouts up in his own backyard. Chance and the rest of the guys were here and there at the time of their lives when finding one right to settle down with could be tricky, while Keith recently got exactly what he wanted.
It had been years since Keith felt right about a girl and nothing, nor anyone could mess that up for him. They stood facing all the trees off Wise’s house balcony, they entered from the spiral staircase open in the back yard from the front lawn, up to his patio, just taking in the sun, chatting casually, and having beers.
He was happy his friend Teaken Willow of 86 Chestnut Street was finally coming home from the military. Wise had only seen his boyhood friend three times in eight years and those times were short stays, within 24 hours. It had been a long time and Wise was anxious. Teake was one of Wise’s best and closest friends owing up, but unlike Teake, who wasn’t sure what he wanted to do as an adult, introduced Wise to other kids when the le Cere’ bought their home.
Wise, Teake and a group of boys became friends. Now even though they are all own up; Wise was still not too keen on visiting Teake with his older sister Xi’an still living at his parent’s house. One dose of his would cause Wise a form of paralysis he could not help. He always wanted to fade into a wall, a painting, a picture when Xi’an had a thing to say. Usually, her approach was of things Teake did, said, or was going to do, to at least go and tell Ms. Willow.
Ever since they were kids, Wise shuttered in the presence of Xi’an. If ever there were two people mostly opposite, was Teake and his older sister Xi’an. Wise never wanted to say, or do any wrong in her presence, he could barely ever let out a squeak hello. Teake and Wise were like the brothers neither one of them had. Wise had two sisters, much older, and the reason Wise had mostly anything a kid growing up could have. Even when Xi’an grew into her beauty, Wise flinched.
He was a simple kid you could lead off a ship’s plank, he would believe those were not sharks circling. He trusted everyone is why to the day, Teake Willow, Attus Evergreen, and since they were all grown up, even Butch Ellerby and Titus look after him. Tory Revell would not look after himself if everyone on earth died and all their concerns are mostly about the women in Weis’ life. Although smarter than most, he was sometimes naive to the ways of friendship.
Teake, especially Butch and others taught him things like the kids on Birch Street only played with him because he had the coolest things to play with. It was a fact Wise would not say no or get angry. Growing up before he met Teake, Titus, Tory, Keith Terrain, Attus, or Butch since middle school, would not let kids bully Wise. He took hard licks and shrug them off. Pudgy, Wise had the best birthday parties in the world! There was nothing Wise would not eat.
There was nothing Wise would not try with his friends just once. He was more of a scholar than an athlete but great at tackling football where they lived and the reason he was chosen first to play on teams. He did not know what a wet dream was but won science fairs since middle school and did not start looking at girls until his senior year of high school. He did well in college, which was a different scenario for him altogether but dug into business, economics, and accounting studies.
Wise wanted to make the world a better place. In college was where he earned his reputation of being a heartbreaker. Wise went to college, mastered his craft, but wanted to be things better. He climbed the corporate ladder to lead major companies in business, economics, and finance and did quite well. Away Ivy League: Wise learned the biggest lessons life could bring. If women were concerned Wise ended up on top. Wise was in shape by the time Teake went into the military.
Attus liked Wise best. He and his brother went to college too. He was interested in business while his brother liked mechanical technology. Even though he moved to Long Island with his older brother to live with their and father. They inherited his two body shops, their house, and all its belongings. Keith went to college as well. He and Chance wanted to buy into Attus’ business one day. Butch, Titus, and Tory were busy making lives for themselves.
Wise being good-looking just took time. The demeanor of most college girls was insensitive to materialistic dreams. It was strange for the prettiest and popular campus girls could not admit a crush on him. Wise graduated, moved on, and is currently seeing Sevyn. He has a big heart with her, and her mother who has gone through unpleasant things since her father left them years ago. Sevyn would do nothing without knowing her mother was cared for.
Them having to tarry made them feel a certain way about life and the men in them, but Sevyn knew she had a good guy in Wise. He flaunted Sevyn around his family, neighbors, and friends, to help show her that love, family and tradition still exist. Even she and Xi’an met and say hello whenever they see each other. Wise lived diagonally from Teake Willow, so they were very much familiar with one another. Sevyn was always congenial and the le’ Cere’ did like and used to her.
Although Xi’an is one of the best-looking attractive girls in his class, unlike her, most of his peers went off to college. It was hard to guess which parent decided, they were not going to allow her to model, it was not considered a real career. Mr. Willow said her career could be dangerous while he was at work, with no one to go with his wife and daughter. Xi’an stayed closely at home because she hadn’t decided what she wanted to do with her life, or who it was she was supposed to be.
Xi’an was bored since life began for an above-average student. Later she took college courses, but it lacked the thing that would give her a real ambition with no dream unless it was someone’s nightmare. Xi’an shortly found the field of her choice, challenged it expertly, and began making a living before any of her, and probably had the man of his dreams imprinted in her mind. The le’Cere considered the Willow’s one of the most decent families of the street they lived.Every other house had one strange story or another. At least the Willow’s minded their own business. Outside of normal jealousy of their good looks, no one had qualms with the Willow’s. They were fun, honest, hardworking people, who were a nice family, but Wise did not know those beautiful things can turn ugly.