Chapter 16 The Jameson’s
It was Friday. Manny just wanted to get through this day and get to the weekend. He had the weekend off. He planned on going to visit his Aunt. He could use a dose of comfort food. Everything felt wrong this morning. He felt annoyed and easily distracted. He knew he should have been over the moon, with that ass beating he gave Chance and his rat pack the other day, but he couldn’t get over not having his girl back. He had finally gotten up the courage to call her last night. She didn’t answer. He tried an hour later. No response. Not even so much as a fucking text message. He left it alone after that because, by that point, he was mad and that’s not how he wanted to come at her. So he went to bed on the wrong side of the bed and woke up there.
Mrs. Lemon’s nails repetitively tapping on her desk were making the hairs on Manny’s neck stand up. Finally, she quieted her hand and acknowledged his presence with a smile. A ray of sunlight through the window bounced off her gold tooth making it glimmer. Manny squinted.
“Good morning, Mr. Wright. I have some great news for you this morning,” Mrs. Lemon said.
Sure you do, Manny thought sarcastically. He smiled at her, but no dimples appeared.
“I was able to get Dr. Jameson to free his schedule up this morning to allow you to do a home visit. The doctor is one of our more propertied residents. He owns homes here in Westerlynne, as well as in other states, and countries. He is very well-traveled. I feel he would be the perfect candidate to show you what is all attainable for a bright, aspiring, young black man such as yourself, Emmanuel,” Mrs. Lemon said.
Manny smiled, this time the dimples were here for it.
“Thank you,” he said.
God, please let Khia be there, he thought.
“It is casual home visit but you should probably still be well-dressed. The Jameson’s are a very distinguished family. However, I do not think you will find that a problem. Lately, I have found you to be in full feather, quite dapper, if I do say so myself. Have you been using the change from your daily stipend?” she paused and awaited his answer. Manny was stuck. His last swallow stuck hard in his throat.
“Um…” he started to say, but Mrs. Lemon’s cackle of a laugh stopped him dead in his murmur.
“It’s perfectly fine, Emmanuel and rather resourceful, may I add. That’s what I like to see. Previous interns refused to spend their change. They would save it, stash it, or whatever. I am glad to see you have found a way to use it so that it helps you within your internship. Very good,” She said clapping her hands together. She was in a delightful mood.
“Alright, well, if you don’t have any questions then your driver will be here in an hour.”
Mrs. Lemon delightful mood was spreading. Manny left her office feeling, at least, better. At most, hopeful.
When he returned to his suite there was a package propped against the door. Manny looked around but saw no one. He picked up the brown box and carefully carried it into room 314.
Manny was coming to realize that Westerlynne was a mix of all sorts of homes and black people. To get into the community, there was a monetary benchmark but once in, there was not a ceiling in sight. Thus, the houses started at amazing, then went on to outlandish, and retired at now-that-just-don’t-make-no-fucking-sense. The Jameson family was laid up in the latter of these homes.
The home sat behind its own gate inside the gated community. The cursive iron monogram on the gate made the home look aristocratic it also told Manny he was at the right house. Someone must have been looking out for him because the gate opened without hesitance. Ritz drove on. Dr. Jameson came out the front doors before Manny could even leave the car. Manny stood out of the car, then turned and looked at his driver. Ritz nodded at Manny and completed the circle out of the driveway.
“Good afternoon, Son,” Dr. Jameson held out his hand. Manny shook it and followed the man into the house leaving his shoes at the door.
“It’s nice to see a young brother, like yourself, take control over your future like you’re doing, Emmanuel. Not many of us are willing to sacrifice to have the finer things life has to offer. Everybody, nowadays, wants something for nothing. That’s not how it works and I can tell you understand that,” Dr. Jameson said. He was rambling on while leading the way into his office.
“Aileen sent me a copy of your essay, son. I see why you were chosen.”
“Aileen?” Manny questioned.
“I’m sorry. Mrs. Lemon,” Dr. Jameson clarified.
“Ah,” Manny said.
The doctor opened the double glass doors. Where the room lacked in size, it made up for, in character. The rich American Walnut paneled walls gleamed from the natural light brought in from a huge window, the only window in the room, and out of it a rustic garden of trees stood for viewing. An oak desk set in the corner. On it sat a gold lamp with a white pleated shade and an open cigar box. Behind the desk, on a wall, hung Dr. Jameson’s many degrees and accolades. On the wall opposite, was a built-in fireplace, outlined in dark gray marble. It offered an array of books at each side. Above the wood mantle was a large framed photo of The Dr. and his wife. The beauty Manny had seen at the welcome party but this time, without her beast. In the picture, they both presented well-practiced smiles. Manny wondered what was behind the doctor’s, he already seen behind Yasmine’s.
“She’s a dime piece, huh?” The doctor teased Manny with his elbow and laughed.
“Go on, I won’t be mad at you for saying it.” Again, an elbow poked at Manny’s side. Not knowing what to say, Manny let out a sheepish laugh.
“An angel she is,” Dr. Jameson said, looking at the photo. His hands sat at his waste, his lungs filled up with pride.
This guy is fucking clueless, Manny thought!
“Is she a doctor also?” he asked. Anything to avoid saying what was on his mind.
“Noooo, Yasmine’s a homemaker,” The doc answered. His chest still pumped to the sky.
You mean homewrecker.
“Ahhh. Okay.” Manny hoped his fake wonderment sounded sincere.
“Emmanuel, let me show you around. Introduce you to my family. Then, afterwords, we will come back in here for the interview.
Manny swallowed hard as he followed the doctor up a spiraling set of stairs.
Please let her be here, he thought.
Khia was in her room with the door open. She couldn’t have staged it better if she tried. She wore a gold leotard that fit like a second skin. Her silky black hair was pulled up in a high bun, big curls framed her neck. Standing on a yoga mat, she rocked from side to side, with her hands on her hips, slow and sensual.
“Khia!” Dr. Jameson yelled. Angry eyes glared at Khia in her new gold skin, then at Manny, and then back at her. She continued her dance. Dr. Jameson stormed in the room and pulled the pink gummy earphones from her ears.
“Dad?” she squealed. Dr. Jameson pointed towards the door.
“We have a guest,” he said.
With a fake smile and sassy eyes, Khia waved at Manny. In that attire, he would take it however she threw it at him. He waved back and produced his best set of puppy dog eyes. She stuffed her ear buds back in her ears.
Dr. Jameson walked out. The door slammed closed from the inside.
Down the hall of the second floor was another door. This one was closed. Dr. Jameson knocked and then opened the door without waiting for an answer. Yasmine’s beast laid across a bed, texting on his I-phone, eating salted cashews from a can.
“What’s up,” He said to his father while looking curiously at Manny. He flipped his phone, face down, onto the bed.
“T.J., I want to introduce you to this year’s intern, Emmanuel Wright. Now here’s a young brother that’s going somewhere. He has ambition. Goals,” Dr. Jameson bragged. Manny was beginning to think it may have been what he did best. T.J. chewed slowly, looking Manny over curiously. He stood up from the bed and walked to the doorway where Manny stood. His top was bare, only wearing a white pair of sweat pants. His chest was chiseled and made him look older than he was. The tribal necklace, that had danced its own jig while he pounded away at his stepmother during the welcome party, still around his neck.
They were almost the same height. Manny stood just a smidgeon taller. TJ’s was more brawn. He wiped his hand on his pants to remove any salt and then offered it to Manny. Manny accepted.
“Nice to meet you Emmanuel,” TJ said. If Khia hadn’t have told Manny of their Ethiopian heritage, TJ’s slight accent would have gone unnoticed to him.
“Same to you, T.J.,” Manny said respectfully.
“I saw you at the party, you looked lost,” T.J. chuckled.
Shit! He seen me. Manny thought feeling awkward.
“Yea, I saw you trying to spit game at my sister. You looked lost. I might be able to teach you some things about the ladies,” T.J. said.
Bruh, Manny thought. He exhaled.
“I’m sure you could,” Manny replied.
Dr. Jameson was looking wildly at Manny, “You were spitting what at Khia?”
“This guy,” TJ said shaking his head at his father. “He wasn’t spitting anything at her.”
“You kids change your slang like Yasmine changes her nose,” Dr. Jameson was relieved. He poked his elbow into Manny’s side “I thought I was going to have to box your damn head off, spitting on my baby.” Dr. Jameson laughed.
I did just slob her down the other night tho, thought Manny.
“Come on now, Pops. You know I wouldn’t let nothing happen to my sister,” T.J. sneered looking directly into Manny’s eyes. Manny understood code.
“I’m a gentleman. No need to worry,” Manny offered peace.
“We will see,” T.J. replied.
A buzzing at Dr. Jameson’s pocket stopped Manny’s cup of awkward moments from bubbling over. The doctor pulled out his phone and answered.
“Jameson here…No, not scheduled…Well, look at my calendar and tell me if I have tomorrow free, please,” Dr. Jameson looked at Manny with apologizing eyes and held up his finger to tell him to hold on. He walked back downstairs. As soon as the glass doors to his office shut, Manny’s eyes met T.J.’s.
“Nice shoes,” T.J. pointed down at Manny’s Jordan 11’s. The shoes Manny had waited weeks for. The shoes he almost cried tears of joy for when they were delivered to his room this morning. That he thought may be too much for the events on today’s agenda but couldn’t not wear once he opened the shoe box and seen the shiny black patent leather against the white mesh fabric. He tried to hide them under a pair of pants but they would not go unnoticed to those who knew better.
“For a broke boy from the west side, you sure have good taste,” T.J. added. Manny knew that there was more insult than compliment in the young man’s words.
“They were a gift,” Manny lied. He didn’t know why he did.
“Damn, Boy! You must have some good friends and high places, because those shoes are hard to come by this long after they’ve dropped.” T.J. sucked cashew remnants from his teeth and then continued on with his compliments. “Those babies are bad, tho.”
“Thanks,” Manny responded. T.J. seemed to be waiting on more explanation. Manny was finished. He turned around and left T.J. at the doorway. A few steps down the hall and he heard T.J. call his name. Manny turned around.
“Be careful accepting gifts. Ain’t shit free. Not even from friends and definitely not out in these parts.” T.J. went back into his room and the door closed behind him. Manny wasn’t sure if T.J. was offering advice or dishing out threats.
Manny walked back towards Khia’s room. Soft music was coming from the other side of the door. He tried the handle but the door was locked. He heard feet walking, then the music quieted. He tapped gently on the door.
“Khia, open the door,” he whispered. The music started back up. His own cell phone buzzed in his pocket.
Get the fuck away from my door, the message read.
Manny walked downstairs to find Dr. Jameson. As he neared the office he heard talking. More like begging coming from the slightly opened glass doors. Manny walked closer, leaned up against the adjacent wall like a ninja and peeked in.
“Sheer perfection,” Dr. Jameson said while Yasmine slowly twirled around in front of him in the black two-piece lace lingerie.
“What you think, baby” she asked, grinning sexily?
Dr. Jameson grabbed her and pressed himself against her.
“What does it feel like I think?” he asked.
“Oh, yeah,” Yasmine whispered flirtatiously “You like it.”
“I love it,” Jameson said as he stepped back and admired the amazing job he had done on her body.
Everything sat exactly as it should. Perky tits, not in the least bit uneven, led down to washboard abs and an unnaturally small waist. Behind her, a taught round ass, proportionate to her small muscular thighs and toned legs. Not a flaw. She was his masterpiece, a real-life Barbie doll.
Yasmine stepped back and looked in to Jameson’s face. She knew by the lustful look in his eyes it was the perfect time to ask him for what had been on her mind all week. She had his undivided eye gazing, jaw dropping, and mouthwatering attention. Unbeknownst to her, she had Manny’s, as well.
“Baby?” She said softly moving back in closer to him and rubbing her mouth against his ear.
“Hhmm?” Jameson moaned in response to both her question and her teasing. Yasmine was now biting softly on the lobe of his ear.
“Remember how we were talking about sending Khia to her mother’s for the rest of the year?”
“Yeah, baby. I’m not sure that’s such a good idea,” Jameson said praying she wouldn’t stop the nibbling.
Yasmine was like a professional brat. It was obvious she always got what she asked for. She wasn’t too proud to beg either.
“Oh, baby,” she said pouting, “You know that girl doesn’t really care for me and now that she’s a grown woman the friction between us is worse. It’s really getting to be hard on me.” She started massaging his back and neck.
“You ladies are going to have to learn to get along. You two are my favorite women and I hate it that you can’t be civil,” Dr. Jameson cried trying to be stronger than the urge in his pants.
“I know but it’s not like it used to be, Terrence. I was your number one and only one. You’d come in from work and fuck me in every room of the house,” Yasmine pretended to be orgasmic by just taking the trip down memory lane and let out an “Mmmm,” while touching herself. Dr. Jameson watched, wide-eyed as her hands traveled over the black lace covering her perfect breasts, down her smooth caramel colored stomach and further down into her panties.
“Jesus Christ,” Jameson cried grabbing himself. Yasmine knew he was falling into her trap.
“T.J. would still be here? It’s not like we’d have the house to ourselves,” Dr. Jameson said now sounding worried that he’d never get to have Yasmine in every room like he used to. Yasmine pulled her wet fingers out of her panties and fed them to the doctor.
“Yes but T.J. works. He’s not a problem.” Yasmine convinced the Dr.
Nah, he’s the answer, a peeping Manny thought.
“Khia’s always here. I really think it would do her some good to be with her mother at this crucial point in her life.” Yasmine said sounding sincere. Her fingers poisoning the doctors mind with every swallow.
“I mean she doesn’t have to stay forever, baby. We have our issues but I couldn’t be away from her for too long, myself.” That was lie. Truthfully, Yasmine wished Khia would move back in with her mother but there was no pussy good enough to make Jameson part with that child support check. Yasmine would have to work with what she had.
“You know I have issues sharing you Terrence and I miss having you all to myself.” At the end of her sentence, on cue, as if she was an actress in some porno, Yasmine had completely laid herself back on the love-seat in front of the lit fireplace and started moving her hand up and down inside the lacy thong.
Dr. Jameson could hardly hear her words through the sounds her fingers were making as they were smacking all the spots he wanted to be hitting.
“Damn, it’s like that?” He said moving closer to his wife. “You’ve been missing Big Daddy, huh?”
He was now done playing games. He needed to pull that lingerie off immediately. Jameson walked towards where Yasmine was laying on the love-seat. Her eyes were closed but she knew he was exactly where she wanted him. She sat up towards him and smiled but she didn’t stop moving her fingers in and out and making the wet sounds that were now completely consuming Jameson’s infected mind. He could no longer think clearly. Could no longer separate lust from reality. It seemed pertinent to fuck Yasmine at this very moment. It was flat out necessary and every bit of significant. Yasmine unbuckled the belt on her husband’s pants and freed the monster that had been relentlessly trying to get out. She could smell the warm manly scent coming from his briefs and it made her mouth salivate. Even though, it started out as just a put-on to get what she wanted, she was now feeling a little hot herself. Hell, why not kill two birds with one stone. Yasmine sucked her man until he could no longer hold back, and right before he exploded, she stopped. She stood up and used both her hands to pull the soaking wet thong down her legs.
She then looked Jameson dead in the eyes and said, “Send the girl to her mamma’s, Terrence.”
He nodded hurriedly to assure her he would. She grinned then turned around and let him kill the other bird from behind.
Manny quietly walked away from the door. He wasn’t usually into voyeurism but he could use a cold shower.
Manny looked around for a bathroom. He walked through the kitchen and peered into a room off to the side of it. It was a huge master bedroom. The TV was on. Some housewives reality show. The bedding was dismantled yet luxurious.
Why didn’t they just come in here and lock the door, Manny thought.
As if he’d forgotten all about where it had gotten the cat, Manny let his curiosity walk him further into the room. There was a huge walk in closet across from the bed. Rows of suits hung neatly. Purses and high heels were all over. An open doorway lead to bathroom with his and her vanities. Although Manny decided against going in there it did remind him of his actual destination. He turned around and started out of the room.
Manny jumped at the high pitched sound. Like he wasn’t raised any better, he went on snooping, looking for the source of the noise. On the bed, laid a glossy pink cell phone. He pushed a button and the screen lit up. It wasn’t locked. The notifications screen popped up. Manny used his finger to glide to the next screen. A slew of messages popped up:
Her: I want more
Black Congo: We’re never alone
Her:I can change that
Black Congo: How
Her: I have my ways 😉
Feet from upstairs made a sound over Manny’s head. He rushed to click the same button he had before to put the phone back in sleep mode. He threw the phone back onto the bed.
He slid himself out of the room and walked into a living room. Cream furniture was on display. It looked like it had never been used. A couple of medical journals sat on the coffee table. Across the living room, Manny could see another hallway and a door.
That has got to be a bathroom.
Sure enough, it was. Manny locked the door behind him. He splashed cold water on his face and stared at himself into the golden framed mirror. His dreadlocks were pulled back into a bun. He sucked the water from his lips and took a deep breath. He stared at his reflection for answers, who looked back at him just as puzzled. Manny opened the door and flicked off the light, simultaneously. Khia stood staring back at him. Her eyes sad and angry. She still wore her messy bun on top of her head but now she had changed into an over-sized Ohio State sweatshirt and a red pair of Nike Dri-fit basketball shorts. Her small feet were covered with thick gray socks. Her father would have been proud.
“What did you want,” she asked Manny. Attitude running all through her tone.
“I wanted to apologize,” Manny began. “For the other night,” he reached for her hand.
Khia shook her head. “You hurt my feelings, Manny,” she said, drawing her hands up to her chest and crossing them.
“I’m so sorry, Khia. I promise I won’t ever come at you like that again,” Manny pleaded and reminded himself of begging ass Yasmine. He straightened his form.
“You know Brandon and Dominique made up? They’ve already been on another date,” Manny updated Khia with the good news.
“Yes, I know,” Khia answered. “and exactly what’s that supposed to mean for us? If they’re good, we’re good? If they’re arguing then we’re beefing, too?” she asked. Her lips made a straight line. Her hands were now holding on to her hips.
“That’s not what I meant, Khia” Manny said.
“Well, what did you mean, Manny? Because that’s sure how it seems,” Khia asked.
“I missed you,” he said.
Khia closed her eyes and shook her head. Manny grabbed for her hand and this time she didn’t stop him. Her eyes were begging him again. The feelings he had just washed off in the bathroom were coming back with a vengeance. Manny pulled her into him and hugged her. He looked down on her bun and spoke easier into it since it wasn’t glaring back at him with angry eyes.
“I’m sorry, Khia. I was just too caught up in my feelings. I thought ya’ll were clowning us for not being like ya’ll. I thought you and your girl, were looking down on us, and well, shit, it had me feeling fucked up,” Manny spilled out.
Khia did the same, she spoke softly into his chest, “I wouldn’t do that to you, Manny. I just wasn’t going to sit back and let Brandon disrespect my girl, but me and you, I thought we were good.”
“We are good, always,” Manny said.
Khia looked up at him and smiled. He bent down and pecked her lips. She wanted more and so did he but the risk was too much. Between her father and brother, Manny didn’t see him living to see tomorrow if he was caught with Khia in their living room. Khia must have been on the same page.
“Let’s go somewhere,” Khia said. “Wait here,” Khia took off, headed back up to her room. When she came back down she had put on a large pair of hoop earrings, swapped the sweatshirt out for a tank top, covered it with a long sleeved flannel and traded the basketball shorts in for denim cutoffs.
“Come on,” She said to Manny as she grabbed a set of keys hanging in the kitchen.
Copyright © 2017 by Aja Brown Crowder