Chapter 2- Ace
Sunday Night, South Burlow Heights. The Black Lion.
Loud muffled dancing music comes from the wall that I’m pinned against by a beautiful girl named Corah. We were making out on the side of the Black Lion building as the sounds of laughter and city life clashed in the distance. Corah was a black human woman with soft chocolate brown skin. She had a slimmed body that carried matching beautiful hips which gave her some extra curve. What first caught my eye was the way she swung them when she walked pass me making my eyes travel down to her ass. She always caught me looking, but I never hid the fact that I was. She would smile at me knowingly then went about whatever she was doing.
Corah was a new Black Lion bartender and likely got warned by the other women she worked with to stay away from me. They pretended to despise me as a group but the second I showed any of them some individual attention, they dropped the charade.
For the two weekends that I was here, she played the “hard to get.” roll that some girls try to pull, but that never lasted. Especially after I performed on stage, I made it a point to pay her no mind tonight for that reason alone. It was her first time seeing me sing and like any other woman she was fixated. After I walked off stage through the back, she was the one who sought me out. All night long she was hanging with me and my friends. She was practically pushing the other women away by constantly being in my lap or dancing with me. It was all a complete 180 compared to her pretending she wasn’t interested. At one point tonight I left for the bathroom and when I walked out, she was waiting for me and led me to where we were now. Corah had a work shift but apparently after I performed, she said fuck it and spent her shift with me. The girl is going to get herself fired if she keeps it up.
My name is Ace and I’m a human who lives in South Burlow Heights. From what I was told by my uncle Clyde, my parents were big gamblers which explains why they named me what they did. I have somewhat dominant Persian roots with a half mixture of Nigerian in my blood. I have dark tanned skin with jet black hair which makes my bright green eyes that much more noticeable. My hair was cut and styled in a temple fade cut. Long hair at the top with my sides trimmed and fading shorter and shorter as it made its way down the sides of my head. The longer hair at the top of my head had a few strands known to hang over my right eye.
I had bright colorful tattoos on my skin, but the most noticeable one climbed my back and up to my neck. From my neck the tattoos stretch out to the right side of my skull behind my ear. It was the reason why I always wore my hair short on the sides.
Yea, I’m a tall enough man standing at 6′1. I have broad shoulders with a fit body due to the fact that I worked out a few times a week. It was a need for my line of work not to let your body go, well at least in my opinion it was. As for what I do, I’ll get into that later.
Earlier I said that I performed on stage. I can sing and I know how to dance, but it was by no means my job. I just did it for fun and to get some extra cash every now and then.I guess if I had to describe my style, it was an Urban mixed with a grunge biker thing I had going on. What can I say? I own the chopper style motorcycle to match me.
Besides red, I wore a lot of dark colors. I wasn’t trying to play the typical masculine role or anything. Its just what I’m attracted to. Grays, browns, black jackets and boots. On a few of my clothes, I had a customized red glowing effect of my signature initials AM for Ace Martin. One was on my right boot near the heel and another was glowing red on the back of my black hooded leather jacket. To everyone, not only was I good looking, but I was also good with my voice, good with my lyrics, and with women specifically I’m good in bed.
Funny thing is, people thought I slept around a lot, but in reality I was picky about who I took to bed. Half of the women that people see hovering around me, I don’t even sleep with. Not all women can handle a man like me and I mean that in the most sincere way possible, not just to applaud myself. Corah on the other hand I was still feeling out. So far, she was just a girl who was playing pretend until she couldn’t keep up the act anymore.
At the moment Corah ran her hands under my shirt gliding her fingers over my ab’s and my chest. Our mouths never left one another’s as my hands also explored her body. I switch up the power of control spinning us and pinning her against the muffled wall that had a performer on the other side of it.
The Black Lion was a performance club venue where anyone could perform whatever they wanted. As long as they had the cash to buy a spot along with having popular enough ratings it was a show. I didn’t always have the money to buy a spot but when I did, it was always a promising night. When you perform, people in the audience judged you in cash. The better the performance the more cash was thrown in your hat. Not in a literal sense but with the Lion hat cash app. I always made hundreds of more dollars than I spent for a slot. That was typically the gamble people took. I usually performed one to two times a month when my weekends were free.
The Black Lion was open from 12 pm to 4 am with minute slots up for grabs to performers. You could purchase five minutes, ten minutes, an hour or even more, but nothing less than five minutes. Every five minutes was 200 bucks, so it was rare for a performer to try to be greedy and buy up a lot of time. You’d also have to be confident enough in your own shit to think you’ll be able to make even more back then what you spend. Buying a lot of time isn’t always the smartest move.
With the way things were now, it was hard to make it big without raw talent anymore. Back in the much earlier years on planet Earth there was a time when being attractive and being a partially good singer or rapper was enough, not anymore. If you want to get paid for being good looking then you’re in the wrong line of work. Being attractive does help, but its mostly just a cherry on top of your talent. If you want to get paid for your looks It would be easy to tell you to try and become a model. Too bad these days companies just buy robots with the appearance of a beautiful Ringer human. Corah told me earlier tonight that she was currently chasing her dream to become a vixen. The girl definitely decided to go the tougher route for an attractive human woman.
Still currently kissing Corah, I begin to run my hands down her waist. She was wearing some sort of halter top exposing her belly button, so I glided the back of my fingers across her stomach until the tips of my fingers found the top of her leather pants. I gently pulled at them as if any moment I was going to slide my fingers inside, but instead I just teased her as if I was which was driving her crazy. My other hand ran down her hips then I took a full grab of her ass. I pulled our hips together which without a shadow of doubt gave her a good feel of me.
Suddenly we’re both interrupted by the sound of my friend Grayson’s voice from the other end of the alley.
“Yo Ace! We’re all heading out to Monstrous Slice!”
I pull back from the kiss and look his direction.
“Alright I’ll be out front in a minute!”
Grayson nods and disappears back around the corner.
“Wait what? You’re leaving?”
Asked Corah with a confused pout. I smirk slightly then run my thumb across her soft bottom lip. After I lift her chin I lean in and give her a soft kiss, then another to distract her questioning. Before I knew it the question was forgotten and we were back to making out again. I move my lips to her cheek then kiss her jaw line making my way down to her neck giving it light kisses that slowly began to get more intimate. I start flicking my tongue over the skin of her neck and begin sucking and devouring it as my hands roamed her body. I was planning on leaving a large hickey on her neck as a reminder of me every time she saw it in the mirror.
I could tell from the rhythm of her breathing along with the movement of her hips and how tight she held me, that she was about to lose it. Any moment now it seemed like she was ready to just let me fuck her against the wall. With my face buried in her neck, I suck on her skin like a vampire draining her of every drop. She grinds her hips against my full grown bulge as she curses under her breath.
Finally, and slowly, I release her neck from my mouth and lightly kiss where the hickey will form before pulling away. I look her in her eyes with our lip’s inches apart and finally speak to her in a low gruff voice.
“I gotta get going sweetheart.”
Still dazed, Corah bites her lower lip.
“Blow those plans off so that you can get blown off.”
I let out a surprised deep chuckle at her uncensored comment causing her to react with a sultry smile. I lean in again and give her lips a quick kiss.
“I promise we can do this another time.”
I then begin to back away from her.
“You can’t be serious.”
She says with an annoyed look on her face. I shrug.
“Hanging out with you tonight wasn’t really in my plans, I already have somewhere I’m expected to be, but there’s always next weekend.”
She asked as she lets out a slightly annoyed chuckle.
She says with a rising attitude while folding her arms.
It wasn’t that I didn’t want to take Corah home, it was just my way of getting back at her for playing hard to get in the first place, now it was her turn to wait for me. I’ve got nothing against a girl making me wait, I applauded it when it was sincere, but most women who were attracted to me were too transparent to pull it off, including Corah. I could tell she really wanted me from the moment we first locked eyes, she was never fooling anyone. I lift my wrist then tap behind my ear.
“I got your Reo info sweetheart.”
I say with a devilish smirk as I walk backwards looking her body up and down. I wink at her before finally turning and walking off toward the corner that Grayson disappeared behind. After a moment I hear Corah spitefully chuckle to herself before she reentered the side entrance of The Black Lion. I knew she had to probably be completely taken off guard right now. The rest of her night was about to be distracting as hell.
I turn the corner and walk through the busy crowd of dressed up people in front of The Black Lion. People either dressed crazy with an art to it or dressed like they were here to impress and hopefully take someone home. A lot of humans and Ringers drove by just to see what everyone had on.
As I continued walking through the crowd, people were as usual standing around talking while others were standing in line waiting to get in. I finally cut through to find my three friends all sitting on their bikes. The bikes were loud and hovering as they illuminated the ground beneath them with customized colors. A few other people were talking to them and laughing. Grayson had some chick on the back of his bike and so did my other friend Terrence. Sammi was talking and laughing with the girl on the back of Grayson’s bike. Sammi was the only girl in our group, but she was still just one of the guys.
“Hey Wassup Ace! Good job in there by the way.”
Said a guy walking by me. I give him a head nod.
As I walk pass the bouncer, we give each other a knuckle dab. I finally get to my chopper that was parked next to my friends. Unsurprisingly a girl was standing near my bike waiting for me. She was damn near half naked wearing a short skirt and a glowing red outlined bustier top with matching glowing red high heel boots. I take it this was her way of getting my attention sense red was kind of my thing.
Damn, she was sexy. Now that I think about it, I’ve seen her around a few times giving me looks. She had long jet-black hair and full puckered lips. If I had to guess her ethnicity it was likely Hispanic.
“I love your bike.”
She says in a thick Spanish accent as she runs her hand lightly across it. Looks like I guessed correctly, her or her family had to be from Earth. Usually anyone with any kind of accent had recent family ancestors from Earth sense that’s where most accents were born.
“You got any plans after this?”
She says as she slowly chews on the gum in her mouth as her eyes never leave mine.
“Why do you need to know?”
I say half teasingly.
“Because now you have plans to take me for a ride.”
I raise my eyebrows with a smirk.
“What’s your name sweetheart?”
I ask as I swing my leg over and sit on my chopper. I then wave my wrist across the panel and it starts up making a loud roar. My bike then hovers slightly above the ground with red illuminating underneath. The woman steps closer and speaks low and soft while looking from my mouth to my eyes.
“My names Candice but people call me Candy.”
I internally shrug. Not original, but who cares she was fine as hell. From the corner of my eye I could tell I was being watched by multiple people including my friends, especially other women. I was use to all of this after a show.
I say in a matter of fact tone as I sensor my wrist on the side of my chopper. A small hatch slides up revealing my helmet. I remove it but before I could put it on, I feel a different hand on my back that slides down my arm on the opposite side of me. I turn to find a Ringer named Lionna that hung out with me last weekend. She was a pretty black girl who was maybe a shade lighter than Corah. Her hair was French braided into a high ponytail that had long single braids hanging over her shoulders. Within her French braids were gold strings braided into them matching her outfit. She wore a gold and black crop top sweater showing off a belly button ring and blue Jean’s. On her feet, were gold and black space boots that had colorful light up logos. Her way of dressing compared to Candy’s was almost a night and day difference.
Lionna looked from the girl then to me with an almost believable unbothered smile on her face.
“Can I go for a ride with you guys tonight?”
She asked with a hint of flirtation. Candy looked at Lionna like a beast ready to rip her throat out. So far Lionna was decent company to have around. She was a bit of a quite girl when around others, but when alone she talked up a storm. Her boldness tonight was usually how the shy ones eventually acted when they wanted to mark me as territory. I don’t belong to anyone for the record, but it’s entertaining to see them think I do sometimes.
Ringer women were gorgeous and Lionna was the perfect example. Having sex with a Ringer of course had its differences, but it was a good difference. One could bring to the table what the other couldn’t, but I’m not about to get into specifics about it.
Yea I do some playing around, I’m a 28-year-old man after all. Yet according to half the population I’m supposedly at that age where I need to start being on the lookout for a girl to love. Instead of entertaining bimbos I’m supposed to be starting a family soon, but that just wasn’t the case for me or my friends.
I’ve only had one girl that has ever sparked my interest enough to make me even consider she was the one. Her name was Marsha and it’s been a few months sense she up and left out of nowhere. We weren’t together or anything so her ghosting me shouldn’t have been a big deal. What bothered me was the fact that I allowed myself to be the one who got ghosted. For months I’d randomly think of that chick which annoyed the hell out of me. I guess I can admittedly say I’m a little pretentious. Besides, most women just liked me for my looks, my talent, and what they heard about me. Which was only fair sense I only liked majority of them for my own shallow reasons. Of course some women are cool and sexy too but who cares? Just being a cool person doesn’t qualify for, “love of my life.” I don’t even believe in being in love, I believe in a cluster of lucky coincidences. Yea I’m one of those pessimistic people on the subject. Love is basically two people who luckily come across one another at the right time, at the right place, with similar mindsets during the same era in both of their lives. Of fucking course those people will fit together so effortlessly, its common sense. But, if those same two people met a year or two prior, they wouldn’t get that far with each other because they were different people in different aligned situations which made them a different person.
That exact reason is why people get divorced; they aren’t the same people they were when they met. We aren’t just a black and white species we’re forever growing in different shades of different colors. Two people who thought they were in love in one era of their growth usually begin to want different things as the months or years pass, which is natural. It’s why I don’t believe there is that one for me, so I just instead enjoy the damn ride. Whoever comes, comes, whoever goes, goes. There are however women who have thought they were genuinely in love with me but it’s all fantasy. I’m confident enough to know I can be an unforgettable man in more ways than one, so false love comes with it.
Still sitting on my motorcycle, I began to casually look at my surroundings, I noticed that some people were looking at Lionna and Candy with even more peaked interest. I was ready to end this, so I chuckle then finally grin at Lionna. With a slight nod of my head at the space behind me I granted her permission to sit. Everyone who was watching make slight cackling noises and surprised comments to one another.
Lionna puts both of her hands on my shoulders to balance herself as she swings her leg over and sits behind me.
“You might want to back away hun he’s about to pull off.”
Says Lionna to Candy while shooing her away with her hand. Candy’s mouth drops then she puts her attention back on me.
“Ok how about this, when your done messing with the bitches that can’t measure up, I’ll be waiting.”
More people start laughing as she then struts off.
“Hey baby I’ll take his place!”
Shouts some guy who went running after her.
I hold my wrist over another latch on my chopper near Lionna’s leg revealing a second helmet that she grabs and puts on. Women tend to think that the more skin they show me the more likely they are to catch my attention. Yea, it worked sometimes I’m a man after all. But this was just one of those times that it didn’t work enough for me.
I put on my helmet and Lionna wraps her arms around my waist as I Reeve my engine, my friends all start reeving their engines as a signal that we were all ready to go.
“Alright looks like lover boy made his pick!”
Shouts Sammi over the sound of our engines. Sammi takes off first and I take off second followed by Terrence and Grayson.
Grayson Reeves his bike engine then turns up his music before speeding pass all of us. The girl on the back of his bike dances to the hip hop coming from his bike speakers.
Grayson has been my best friend sense high school. He’s 28 and mixed with too much shit, but his most dominant features were from his Cuban and black side. He was Light skinned with curly short hair and about two inches taller than me. Grayson was a big guy and it was what he was known for. As for his style, he was a little on the hoody and jeans side with a nice pair of sneakers. If he didn’t have on his hoody, then he had on a graphic designed T shirt. He wore gold rimmed seeing glasses with a design that added to his signature style matched with a neatly trimmed chin goatee. He wasn’t much of a gym rat, but he was naturally a big broad-shouldered husky guy.
In high school we started off hating each other and even fought at one point, just a bunch of teenage hot heads. But eventually we ended up learning that we had more in common than we thought. We were both poor kids just trying to get by with the illusion that everything was fine. I caught him crying one day in an area of the school that he thought nobody would see him. Come to find out he was crying about his family kicking him out, so he had nowhere else to go. Of course naturally he didn’t give up that information without a fight. He was pissed that I had even caught him with tears in his eyes let alone opening up to me.
I myself was homeless for a while until I was discovered by my distant great aunt Deonna. She was from my father’s Nigerian side of the family and learned about me secretly living in a treehouse in my girlfriend’s backyard. So, I knew the feeling.
I was five when my parents supposedly died. For some reason I don’t remember my life with them at all. It was always odd to me because it wasn’t an age where you didn’t remember shit. We retain some memories from those short years, but I had nothing. So as far as I knew at the time, my uncle Clyde was always my parent. My actual parents apparently got killed for cheating at the wrong card game. It was how they made their money on some Bonnie and Clyde type of shit. No pun intended to my uncle Clyde. He said my mom used to joke that she was with the wrong brother sense he had the right name.
After my parents died my Uncle Clyde took custody of me up until I was 14, then he got thrown in prison for murder. He didn’t even kill for a slime ball reason, he told me he was protecting someone he knew from harm. That didn’t matter though, because in the laws eyes he took it too far. His criminal history didn’t help his case either.
For a few months I was able to live on my own at his place. During the majority of my childhood, the Saturn law never even knew I existed. According to Uncle Clyde, my parents wanted it that way just in case something happened to them. Sense my family was full of criminals, they knew I wouldn’t go to my uncle if they died. My parents really wanted me to stay with family even if they were law breakers. Family is family, I guess.
While uncle Clyde was in prison, I stayed in his place on my own. He was still able to take care of me financially in illegal ways even from prison for a few months. But eventually, someone killed him in his chambers so the money stopped. Which is how I ended up living in a girlfriend’s backyard.
After my girlfriend’s parents discovered me one day, they turned me in. I was registered as a Saturn Citizen and was in the beginning process of belonging to Saturn’s Minor systems. Once my great aunt heard about me through the grapevine, she acted. I had never even knew of my great aunt up until that point so I didnt know what to think her.
Staying with my great aunt Deonna was a different experience. In the beginning she had to fight hard to get granted custody of me. I had learned that she had her own criminal history as a Hopper in her younger years which is how I assume she heard about me, but she never exactly admitted it. Hoppers are people and Ringers who illegally provide the same services at Marco Vital. She served her time and retired from it as soon as she went to prison but the charges pressed on her still haunted her for many years. The only reason she was granted custody was because the lawyers made it a point that her Hopper life was from the past and it didn’t reflect on who she currently was. Her new job was a cook at a restaurant called Swans Eatery. She loved that job and it was enough to support the both of us in her small two-bedroom apartment. What they didn’t know was that she had a secret small stash of money from her Hopper years that also helped her survive, but she faked the system claiming she made more money from working overtime.
After me and Grayson stopped hating each other, I convinced Aunt Deonna to take him in too. We all became a happy little family until she died of old age a year and a half after we graduated High School. It was almost as if she was hanging on until we were both old enough to start our own lives. She spent the remainder of her years looking after us, she didn’t have kids of her own so we became her kids.
Unfortunately, criminals aren’t allowed to become Ringers or get their Sense Of Self chip put in FP world. So we were again left on our own, but she left me a small lump of money that bought me my apartment and gave me time to figure out my finances. My Family life as a kid was heartbreaking, but that was all a long time ago. Ever sense then me and Grayson have remained close and became the best of friends.
Grayson now works as a cook at Swans Eatery just like Aunt Deonna did. It didn’t pay a lot but it paid enough for him to take care of himself. He became passionate about food because of her and is locally popular for his specialties. Currently he was renting out a small guest house in the back of some older guys house. It was a Swans Eatery customer who grew to like him a lot so he offered the space up to him. For a while Grayson was staying with me in my tiny ass apartment sleeping on my couch. He didn’t spend too much time their sense he was always at work trying to save up to move out. Sense I work at home, he wanted to give me space to do my work in peace when needed.
As for Me, Sammi and Terrence, we met by complete coincidence six years ago. We all had to attend traffic school for receiving too many speeding tickets. Long story short we walked out of the building that day with plans to hang out. With that, the rest was history. After the first few times that I hung out with Terrence I learned he was somewhat of an idiot. Not in the sense of being dumb, but in the sense that he was a fuck the consequences kind of guy. If something seemed dangerous or was a bad idea he was the first to volunteer. The walking daredevil who didn’t know how to sit still. Terrence was the youngest in our group at age 25. He’s a black man who stood at around the same height as me with his signature look of short dreads that he kept cut into a short fohawk style. He was always into wearing his baggy overalls or baggy jumpsuits with Quarter size spacers in both of his ears. I also can’t forget to mention the nose stud and gold fangs that he likes to wear in his mouth sometimes. His fangs glowed a neon green on the tips whenever he opened his mouth wide enough. Usually it was on a day he was performing. He was also known for his huge smile and contagious laugh. Everyone loved Terrence, it was hard to hate the guy. Men wanted to be his friend and women either wanted him in their bed or wished he was their brother.
Before being our friend, Terrence used to live on earth in a city called Oakland in California. The second he graduated high school he left his parents and went backpacking around earth. He finally decided to get a job to save money so he could move to Saturn. It wasn’t easy, but he got the money from hard work and from his parents. Plus, those who knew him even donated money and threw big parties to help raise money for him. When I say the guy was easily liked, I wasn’t joking.
When he got here, he had nothing except a few bucks, a backpack and the clothes on his back. That’s when he came across the Black Lion and now makes his money as a rapper called Feral, and as a bartender part time. He was the one who introduced me to the Black Lion. I always knew about the place, but I was never the kind of guy who performed or anything. Singing use to be the type of thing I did when I was alone and listening to music.
Back in the present, we all zip our bikes pass a group of cars full of people playing loud music. They were yelling and cheering at us while holding sparkler sticks having a good time. They were clearly drunk and were heading somewhere to get even more drunk. Sammi grabs a sparkler as she passes by them and holds it up before laughing and letting it go.
At age 27, Sammi was a 5′2, thick, and Mocha skin toned black girl with dreads. Her dark brown dreads went just pass her shoulders and faded to white tips on the ends. What I noticed first about her were her big dark brown eyes that made her look like a cute little innocent cartoon princess. But on the contrary, she acted nothing like one. She was silly and an all-around wise and chill girl. She didn’t give a fuck about what people thought of her, so she was the type to happily burp and let whatever thought she had fly out of her mouth around complete strangers. She never really sweats the small stuff. Although, she’s still happy to call people out on their bullshit. To top it off, she did it with a smile on her face. Anyone who called themselves trying to get a rise out of her, simply got laughed at.
As for her job, Sammi was an artist but not the performance type. She did a lot of cool mouth dropping paintings. People paid her to paint Muriel’s or draw things and even bought her art. She was pretty successful these days and even recently moved to North Burlow heights into a better neighborhood. Back when our friendship was new, I remember when I learned that Sammi had a girlfriend. OK, I won’t lie and say I wasn’t a little disappointed because truthfully me being who I am I was initially plotting to get her. She’s a cute girl what can I say. But I quickly chopped it up with a shrug and just considered her a friend. Then a week later she broke up with her girlfriend and I caught her making out with a guy at a party that she invited me and Terrence to. That was the day that I learned Sammi was Bi.
Some guys call me an idiot for not getting with her. Unknown to anyone on a drunken night last year. Me and her ended up making out in her kitchen. How we got to that point I still can’t remember. One minute we’re laughing and making fun of each other, then the next minute our lips were locked. My hands were all over her as she held me tight and ran her fingers through my hair. It was like we both had pint up sexual frustration for one another and it finally came to the surface out of left field. I was ready to take her right there in that kitchen. I picked her up and sat her on her counter top while not once removing my mouth from hers. But as I began to run my hands up her skirt to remove her panties, she stopped me. After a few silent moments of just looking at each other through the thick of our heat, she finally spoke up. She told me that we were such good friends and that having sex was not the type of relationship she wanted with me. After another moment, I too realized that I didn’t want to ruin our long friendship with bullshit we didn’t even need from each other either. Long story short, we ended up laughing it off and decided to keep the incident to ourselves.