Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 7.3

Unaware that Cami was so close by or that she’d even just been admiring his house from afar, Millsap walked through his new home with a wide grin on his face. It had taken a whole year, but everything was exactly how he wanted it. Now he was actually walking around in his dream house. And it felt so good.

This home in the country was Millsap’s refuge from Enfield and all its woes. Job woes, legal woes, romantic woes, and even family woes. The biggest woe of them all right now was his materialistic mother.

Bonnie wanted yet another ten grand from Millsap. This time to go to Atlantic City to gamble.

Millsap outright told his mother no. He’d paid Bonnie’s house note and utilities. He’d paid her car note and filled her tank up with premium gas. Even bought her a new wardrobe. But Millsap was not going to pay for Bonnie to go on a gambling spree. Especially since he suspected she was becoming just as addicted as Franco recently confessed that he was to gambling.

And what ever happened to the three grand he gave her just last week for an allowance? Not to mention all the money Bonnie earned from being a bail bondsman and managing a small group of boosters (local thieves who stole retail merchandise and sold it hot on the streets)? Where did all that money go so fast?

Suddenly Millsap’s cell phone vibrated against him. He frowned when he looked down. It was his mother calling again. She just wouldn’t take no for an answer. This time she was giving him the 911 signal.

I’m not falling for that either, Mama, Millsap mused, convinced that his mother was trying to fake an emergency in order to get him to pick up the line or call her right back. This wouldn’t be the first time she’d done that.

After sending a do-not-disturb text message to both of the other generals, Millsap turned his phone off completely. He was determined to enjoy his new house to the full tonight…without distraction.

Unfortunately for Millsap, daylight would bring Mike-Mike to his front door with the message that his mother had suffered a stroke last night. Suddenly having his dream house wasn’t all that important anymore.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

Millsap's House in the Country

This is a picture of Millsap’s home in the country:

Photo link and credit:

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 7.2

Later that night, Cami pulled out the letter Delia sent her last week and read it again. With it being past lights out time, she had to read by the dim light streaming in from the hallway of the Georgia prison she resided in. The same prison that had been her home for the last three years and three months behind that narcotics charge she incurred the night E-Blade died.

The more Cami read the apologies contained within Delia’s letter, the madder she became. In her opinion, Delia hadn’t apologized for nearly enough stuff yet.

Yes, Delia apologized for coming over to Cami’s apartment unannounced that fateful January night. Yes, she apologized for trying to beat Cami to a pulp while she was there. But Delia didn’t issue a word of apology about stealing the heart of Cami’s one and only son, Little Man. Yet it was that very thing that made Cami’s heart secretly grow cold towards Delia.

At first Cami didn’t mind Little Man gravitating to Delia more than to her. She enjoyed having all those breaks while they lived together. There was a certain amount of freedom in being childless if only for a little while.

Yet when her son started calling Delia ‘Mama’, Cami realized that things had gone too far. Powerless to undo the damage that had been done with Little Man, a secretly bitter Cami concentrated on stealing Delia’s big man.

Cami found it fairly easy to seduce E-Blade. Almost too easy. A notorious cheater, he had already shown enough interest in her by that time to warrant a tryst. Plus, E-Blade was still sexually frustrated due to Delia’s dysfunctions in the bedroom area.

Though Cami had been unsuccessful in using her body to get what she wanted with Bonz, her tactics worked like a charm with E-Blade. Especially the night she overplayed the victim role behind Aisha’s beat down.

Soon Cami got what she wanted on multiple levels. Through E-Blade, she exacted revenge upon Delia and gained access to another wealthy man’s wallet.

It never dawned on Cami that it was her own fault that Little Man was so fond of her cousin. That her son had gone where he was celebrated instead of just tolerated. That it had only been natural for him to grow attached to his primary caregiver.

To this day, Cami was nowhere near sorry for what she’d done to her cousin on any level. She didn’t regret snatching Little Man from Delia’s care during her imprisonment and sending him to live with her father in Washington, even though he wasn’t doing as well in school now. She certainly didn’t regret sleeping with E-Blade, despite her initial twinges of remorse when he was killed.

Cami’s only regret now was in not making E-Blade leave his illegal package in the car while he showered and changed in her apartment that fateful night. Then she could be free to marry a rich man, too, like her father recently told her Delia had done after her cousin’s secret nuptials were finally announced.

She’s lucky I’m not out yet. Otherwise, I’d take her new man, too, Cami mused conceitedly, erroneously assuming that Delia was still at a sexual disadvantage.

Sadly, though Cami wished evil upon Delia, the object of her hatred was kneeling at the foot of her bed at this very moment in prayer on her behalf.

As for Cami’s own spirituality…well, she didn’t have much use for God these days. Or rather, she didn’t think He had much use for her. In fact, Cami was convinced that God stopped caring about her a long time ago. At the age of thirteen to be exact.

Age thirteen was when Cami’s mother made her give her virginity away to one of her adult boyfriends. She was Ian’s consolation prize for being cheated on by her mother. It was also a way for them to remain in the wealthy man’s favor a little while longer. There were even ropes involved and everything.

Ropes!

Cami never told anyone about that incident. Not her military father, who’d been overseas at the time. Not any of her other relatives on either side of the family. Not even the prison counselor who seemed more interested in being nosy than actually helping the inmates with the emotional wounds of their pasts.

No, that secret had been bottled up and buried deep. If Cami had her way, it would never see the light of day again. She didn’t even want to think about it now.

Twenty more months, Cami mused, pushing away all negative thoughts as she once again counted down the time she had left on her sentence. Twenty more months, then I’ll be free to get my son back, free to live my life the way I want to again. She could hardly wait.

Feeling restless after reading that letter, Cami left the bottom bunk of her cell and went over to the small window. She looked out through the bars at the night sky.

Stars were twinkling. The moon was bright and full.

Cami’s eyes lowered to the earth, looking right, straight ahead and then to the left. On the left in the far distance were more twinkling lights. Or rather the lights seemed to be twinkling from where she stood.

I guess that place is finally finished, Cami mused, concerning a house that she watched go up brick by brick over the last year.

She didn’t know who owned that large Texas ranch styled house, but they sure took their time getting it just right. Now it looked like the owner had finally moved in as evident by the fact that every light was on in every room.

One day I’m gonna have a house just like that, Cami thought, unaware that the owner was none other than Millsap Monroe.

Returning to her bunk, she forced her mind to empty into nothingness so that sleep would come sooner. Cami needed her sleep. She had a long day of kitchen duty tomorrow.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 7.1

April

Add a few inches to his height and put some colored contacts in his eyes and that brotha could be Millsap’s twin, Cami mused, referring to the actor Michael Jai White, who was currently on the large movie screen at the front of the prison’s recreation room.

If only this was an X-rated movie, Cami thought lustfully, willing to settle for an R-rated one at this point. Anything to see more of Michael Jai White’s muscular body.

But R and X-rated films were prohibited at the Village Square Correctional Institution. The ladies couldn’t watch anything beyond PG-13, which is one reason they were viewing Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married? Another reason was because this movie had so many fine black men in it. Sadly, few of them were watching it for the life lessons to be learned therein.

Cami was among the I-want-to-see-some-fine-black-men group. This was her third time watching this particular movie. Each time she watched it she thought about Millsap. Each time she wondered how differently her life would have been if she had slept with him that December night instead of E-Blade.

If I had hooked up with him, I might be a general’s main squeeze right now. I would definitely still be free, Cami thought, having heard about Millsap’s promotion even in prison.

She heard a few more things about him, particularly how Millsap and Mike-Mike nipped a rebellion in the bud when two captains protested Mike-Mike’s promotion over them. How those same captains ended up dead soon thereafter.

That’s probably just a rumor though, Cami thought, unwilling to think of Millsap as a murderer, despite the fact that violence often came along with the drug game.

Cami would much rather think of Millsap as a lover. A dark chocolate lover with muscles galore. Without realizing it, she moaned aloud at the thought of Millsap in his birthday suit…for her eyes and her pleasure alone.

“Girl, that Michael Jai White got me churning, too,” whispered Navina, Cami’s cellmate.

Together they were among the few females that hadn’t turned bisexual or gay in this prison. Both women were determined to stay heterosexual for the remainder of their time. It was their way of proving that not all inmates changed their sexual preferences just because they were locked up. That some inmates retained their sexual orientations quite well even under this kind of pressure.

Besides, if the pressure got to be too much they could always seduce one of the male guards. Navina did that on the regular. Cami hadn’t done it yet. When she had sex again, she wanted it to be as a free woman.

“Actually, I was thinking about another muscle-bound dude just now,” Cami whispered back to her cellmate as they sat on the back row of the recreation room. “A dude I once dated in Enfield, who happens to look a lot like the fine Mr. White up there.” She pointed towards the screen that they and the rest of the females from their cellblock were looking at.

“Was he mmm...mmm good in bed?” Navina asked, turning from the movie altogether now in search of steamy details from somebody’s real life adventures.

Cami chuckled softly at her friend’s antics. “I wouldn’t know. I got locked up before we ever got to that point.”

“Too bad. Maybe you can look him up when you get out. Get him to do some pushups on you, some crunches, some—”

“Quiet in the back, ladies!” a female guard interrupted in a harsh tone.

Cami and Navina collectively rolled their eyes upwards. They both blew out breaths of frustration at being treated like children. At being denied even the smallest of privileges. Especially when they weren’t even talking that loud in the first place.

Twenty more months, Cami mused, counting down the time she had left on her sentence before forcing her attention back to today’s movie.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 6.4

Millsap and Mike-Mike headed back to Enfield without their intended package. They had to cancel today’s purchase on account of all the publicity they’d gotten at the track. Before the old generals retired they’d laid on a bit of sage advice to the new generals.

1. All strangers are the police.

2. All phones are bugged.

3. Never write anything down that can be used against you later.

4. If you get caught, you don’t know anything and can’t recognize anybody.

5. Stay off all public audio and visual recordings. Private audio/visuals should be regular family stuff with nothing criminal included.

Due to the incident at the track, Millsap and Mike-Mike were unable to adhere to the last piece of advice. They had been filmed thoroughly today. This meant their whereabouts could likely be traced to a drug buy in the future. They couldn’t have that. Especially not with all the busts that had been going on lately in the two-state area. Thus a new appointment would have to be made.

We need to set up another gig ASAP, Millsap mused, thinking about all the customers they had. About all the money they stood to lose if they lost those customers due to delays. And one thing Millsap didn’t play with was his money supply.

But like the wise general he’d replaced, he knew that timing was everything. Patience, man. Patience, Millsap told himself.

* * *

Later that night, Millsap thought about something he hadn’t thought about in a long time – college. He’d already completed two years of his Bachelor’s degree before he fully immersed himself in the drug game, rising from part-time street dealer to full-time drug lord. Now he was thinking about finally completing that degree.

For years, Millsap rebelled against finishing his college education because his mother convinced him that too much formal education could weaken a man. Bonita ‘Bonnie’ Monroe used his father as a prime example since Millsap Sr. was a PhD nerd with no backbone whatsoever.

But after being around Royal, Millsap saw that he could expand his education and still be strong. Not to forget the example of Bonz, who still had his street cred even though he was now a licensed pharmacist.

If they can get all that education and not get soft, then I can, too, Millsap decided, ready to call a few admissions offices first thing tomorrow morning. He might even go back to the college his father worked for since children of employees were eligible for free tuition. Anything to keep more money in Millsap’s pocket.

Incidentally, Bonnie said the same thing about religion’s ability to weaken a man. Though Millsap could also see that religion hadn’t weakened Bonz, Racker, or Royal, he would not dabble in that yet. Especially since it stood to interfere with his accumulation of fast wealth among other things.

Interestingly enough, when Delia and Royal mentioned putting Millsap and his crew on their prayer list before saying goodbye today, he hadn’t refused. Nor would he ever. Millsap might be a sinner, but he wasn’t stupid.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 6.3

Millsap waited until the crowd dispersed to talk to Royal privately. There were things that he just had to say before they went their separate ways.

“I just want to thank you again for saving my life, man. It takes a lot of guts to do that for a friend. Even more for a man that was tryna steal yo’ woman,” Millsap said, revealing sincere gratitude in those words.

Royal chuckled. “So we agree, huh? You were trying to take my woman from me.”

Millsap grinned sheepishly. “Yeah, man. Sorry ‘bout that, too. It’s just that I been crushing on Dee for awhile now. Thought I saw a chance to finally get her, so I went for it.”

“I can’t blame you.” Royal looked over at Delia, who was busy talking to Mike-Mike by the black Mercedes they rented today. “She is something special.”

“Always was. E-Blade just didn’t know what he had,” Millsap replied in reflection.

E-Blade’s infidelities had been well-known in the Enfield area. So much so that no one was surprised when Delia finally took his life. Some people actually sighed with relief when they heard the news, for out of all the former generals, E-Blade was the most hated and feared.

Bonz was the most loved and respected of the ex-generals. His respect level and street credibility rose even higher after he survived E-Blade’s assassination attempt and made it out of that wheelchair after being shot in the back and dragged behind a car.

“The fact that you was willing to go toe-to-toe with a brotha like me tells me that you ain’t no punk and that you know exactly what you got with Dee,” Millsap continued. “I can’t help but respect a dude like that.” He extended a genuine hand of friendship towards Royal.

“Thanks, man. That means a lot coming from you.” Royal smiled, heartily shaking the hand offered him before releasing it. “By the way, if you know Delia and E-Blade, then you probably know my Enfield cousins, too. Their names are Greg and Aisha Forsyth. Greg also goes by the name Bonz.”

Millsap’s eyes bucked. “Bonz is your cousin?!” he said, starting to look nervous all of a sudden.

“Yes, by his marriage to Aisha,” Royal replied.

“Which means I dodged an even bigger bullet today,” Millsap said more to himself than anyone else.

Although Bonz was the favorite among the ex-generals, people still feared crossing him. Even Millsap was reluctant to come against him unless by extreme necessity.

“What happened between us today is between us. No need to get anyone else involved,” Royal said, letting Millsap know that he wouldn’t bring either cousin in on today’s altercation.

“I ‘preciate you saying that and all, but with all the cameras in yo’ face today and with Dee being so close to Alexis and Aisha, Bonz is bound to hear about what happened at the track from somebody,” Millsap replied, blinking away any fear he’d felt as he straightened his posture like the man that he deemed himself to be. Unlike his father, he was no punk. “When he does, just let him know that we squashed any beef between us, a’ight?”

“Done,” Royal agreed, extending his hand this time. Then after they shook on it, they parted ways as unexpected friends.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 6.2

Dee, is that you?” asked Millsap, interrupting Delia and the olive-skinned man she was kissing.

Reluctantly putting their kiss on pause, Delia withdrew from Royal and turned to address the two men from her past. “Yeah, it’s me,” she said, giving them a genuine smile, despite her slight irritation at being interrupted from what promised to be the smooch of a lifetime.

“I thought that was you, girl. What’s up?” Millsap replied, grabbing hold of that smile like he’d just been given a million bucks.

That secret crush he’d had on Delia for years gained even more energy within him. It refused to be suppressed any longer. Especially with all signs pointing to her heart being completely healed now. Unfortunately, it looked like another man had already put dibs on Delia’s heart.

Not for long if I have anything to say about it, Millsap thought, determined to finally lay claim to someone that he deemed to be a hustler’s ideal woman. The kind of woman that understood the game and knew what it took to be with a man in a high risk environment.

“I’ve been up to a little bit of everything. How y’all doing?” Delia looked from Millsap to Mike-Mike in turn as she spoke. No need to ask what they were doing in Florida. A veteran of the drug game, Delia already knew the answer to that question.

“We keepin’ it popping. You know how we do.” Millsap grinned, plucking the collar of the expensive black jacket he had on with emphasis.

“Boy, you still crazy.” Delia chuckled at his animated reaction. “Listen, I want y’all to meet my…new man, Royal,” she said, stumbling over her introduction for some reason.

Unknown to Millsap, that stumbling was caused by one thing and one thing only - a secret. That secret: Delia and Royal were married. Had been for months now. Unfortunately, they weren’t at liberty to announce it yet due to lingering opposition from her eldest son.

“Royal, this is Millsap and Mike-Mike, old friends of mine from Enfield,” Delia continued with the introductions as she pushed her secret to the back of her mind.

“Nice to meet you,” Royal said, courteously extending his hand towards the more talkative man first.

Millsap’s eyes narrowed at Royal. “What’s up, playa?” His handshake was reluctant.

“Nothing much,” Royal replied, moving on to Mike-Mike, whose handshake was a lot more willing. “We’re just here to watch the show.”

Dee, you should have told me you were into drag racing. I would’ve been brought you down here.” Millsap turned his attention back to Delia, basically ignoring Royal now.

“I didn’t know I liked drag racing myself until Royal brought me today,” Delia replied, suddenly realizing something she’d overlooked before – Millsap was interested in her!

No wonder he hadn’t responded well to her attempts to match him up with Cami. No wonder he was looking at her with so much open interest right now.

“Now I love it,” Delia added, affectionately putting her arms about Royal’s waist to show that she loved him, too.

Millsap shrugged off the obvious and then continued to subtly try to woo her away. “How them kids doing? I heard you had one more after you left. A little girl. I bet she’s pretty just like her mama.”

“They’re all fine,” Delia replied, ignoring his compliment. “My daughter’s name is Tess. In fact, Royal here delivered her.” She gazed lovingly up into her man’s eyes when she said that last part.

Millsap bristled at that amorous look. Jealousy singed his heart. Why couldn’t she look at him that way?

“You a doctor, man?” Mike-Mike asked, speaking up for the first time, though he’d been watching the interactions very closely.

“Yes, an OB/GYN,” Royal replied, addressing the more affable man.

Millsap’s eyes narrowed again as he realized it was going to be even harder to woo Delia now. Before she’d been with one of the top three generals in Enfield’s drug game while Millsap was just a captain. Now she was with a bonafide doctor while Millsap still only issued out prescriptions of the street pharmaceutical kind. Was this woman forever going to be out of his reach?

“Cool,” Mike-Mike said, looking impressed by Delia’s ability to snag a man like Royal. Especially with her past. Did the good doctor even know about her past?

As if he was thinking along the same lines as his partner in crime, Millsap said, “We miss you in Enfield, Dee…you and E-Blade.” That last part was one of the biggest lies he’d ever told. Hardly anyone missed hot-headed E-Blade. Most were glad that he was dead.

Delia’s cheeks colored at that particular reminder of her past. Beside her, Royal stiffened as the tension within their little group rose.

“I guess Delia needed a change from Enfield and all the bad things that went on there,” Royal countered, letting his rival know that he knew all about her past and still accepted her.

“Naw, what Dee needs is to get back among her own crew. Among folks she understands. Among folks that understand her,” Millsap retorted, looking for any excuse to attack Royal verbally or physically.

“Maybe these folks don’t understand Delia as much as they think. Maybe they never did. Otherwise they’d know that she and her kids needed a new life after that tragedy with E-Blade,” Royal countered again, standing his ground.

“Fellas, ain’t no need for all this,” Delia tried to intervene, looking anxious.

“Oh, there is definitely a need for all this and a little bit more,” Millsap replied, giving Royal a menacing look.

Since Millsap wouldn’t listen to reason, Delia turned pleading eyes towards Royal. “Baby, listen. Let’s just go.”

“Go? Why? The show isn’t over yet,” Royal replied with forced calmness, keeping steady eyes upon his enemy.

Fortunately Mike-Mike had chosen to remain neutral in this testosterone struggle over a female, so it was still a one-on-one situation. Had this been about a drug deal where buyers were usually outnumbered and outgunned by their suppliers, he would have quickly rallied on the side of his partner.

“Baby, this ain’t a guy you want to mess with,” Delia cautioned.

“I could care less who he is…” Royal’s voice trailed off as something greater than their argument suddenly caught his attention.

Sailing right for the back of Millsap’s head was the wayward wheel of a purple Mustang from the track directly behind them. It had somehow snapped loose from all the rubber the driver had burned during take-off.

Making the only decision he could, Royal pushed Delia aside for her own safety, then lunged for his rival. Fortunately, he knocked Millsap down just in time to avoid the man’s head being flattened from the impact of the propelling tire. He even pulled Mike-Mike down, too, though the other man had not been in any immediate danger.

With wide eyes, Delia watched Royal save the life of the man who’d practically threatened his life. If she hadn’t already been in love with him, she definitely would be now.

At first Millsap thought he was being attacked and so tried to push Royal off him immediately. However, when he saw that tire fly past where he’d been standing only seconds before, he knew that he’d just been saved.

Millsap also knew that the good doctor was a better man than him. He would have let the tire hit Royal, ensuring himself a place in Delia’s life as her new man once and for all. Now he felt ashamed of himself. Very ashamed.

“Everybody all right?” Royal asked, staring directly at Delia when he said that. She was his biggest concern. He had pushed her to the ground pretty hard a few seconds ago and needed to know that she was okay.

“I…I’m fine, baby,” Delia replied, giving Royal a ravenous gaze, as if she was actually turned on by his heroism.

For some reason that amorous look didn’t bother Millsap at all this time. Maybe he’d been changed by this near-death experience. Either way, he finally accepted the obvious and inevitable truth – Delia just wasn’t meant for him. She was meant for the good doctor. And Millsap was suddenly all right with that.

Royal seemed to almost forget what he was about to say next at Delia’s ardent look. He blinked rapidly and refocused. “You all right, man?” he asked Millsap, finally withdrawing from him.

“I’m cool,” Millsap replied, looking exactly how he felt - ashamed. “Thanks for looking out for a brotha.”

“No problem,” Royal told him with forgiving eyes. Then he turned to Mike-Mike. “What about you, man? Everything’s cool with you, too?”

“Yeah, I’m cool, too.” Mike-Mike grinned, moving to stand upright again. “What are you, the black Clark Kent or something?” he added, referring to Superman’s alter ego.

Royal chuckled and stood to his feet, as well. “No, I’m just a regular guy.” He quickly moved to help Delia upon her feet again as concerned people started to come their way.

“Don’t believe him, y’all,” Delia said, putting her arms about Royal’s torso. “This man is my very own superhero.” She moved even closer to him.

“I believe you.” Though shaken, Millsap finally rose to his feet. A new level of respect for Royal was in his eyes and tone now.

That was the last the foursome got to say to each other for a while as more people surrounded them, wanting to know if they were all without injury. Many wanted to talk to the man whose quick thinking and fast actions had saved at least one life today. Royal was even interviewed by a local television crew, which meant many more people would know what Millsap now did - that modern day heroes really did exist.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

Monday, September 29, 2008

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 6.1

Three years later - February

A lot of changes occurred after that E-Blade and Cami fiasco. Bonz and Racker recovered from their injuries. They both got married, became bonafide family men, and fully legitimate in all of their business endeavors. They were even Christians now, going to church on the regular.

Bonz’s wife was none other than Aisha, despite the fact that she plotted revenge on him due to misguided information about her deceased brother Dominic. Because her love for him proved to be genuine after all, Bonz forgave Aisha for entering his life under false pretenses and married her anyway. He even forgave her for blowing up the old lab, which was the second secret he discovered about her, but still hadn’t shared with anyone. Not even with Racker.

Delia did not do any hard time. E-Blade’s dying words were able to save her from any prolonged jail time. It was a good thing, too, since she was discovered to be pregnant with his third child shortly after his death.

Unfortunately for Millsap, Delia left the state of Georgia altogether and moved to Florida with her mother and children. He might have pursued her even then, but after Alexis told him that Delia had sworn off romance forever, Millsap decided to just let the woman be. It was clear that E-Blade had done irreparable damage to Delia’s heart. As a result, it was quite possible that she might need a lifetime to get over it.

As for Cami, she was still in jail. Her son used to be in Delia’s care, but was now living with her father up in Seattle, Washington.

Meanwhile, the new crew at the top of Enfield’s drug game, Millsap, Mike-Mike, and Franco (who eventually took E-Blade’s spot), were keeping things under control in the city by any means necessary. They were prospering while doing so.

Right now, Millsap and Mike-Mike were in Florida preparing to make another drug buy. In an effort to waste time before the transaction was scheduled to occur, the two generals went to a local race track and hung out. Franco was missing from their presence today on account of his latest girlfriend going into labor over the last twenty-four hours.

Franco was very popular with the ladies, which was why he had so many baby-mamas. Which was also just one of the reasons he stayed so broke. In fact, Franco owed Millsap a few grand now, but he wasn’t holding it over his head. Especially since he always paid him back eventually.

Is that Dee? Millsap mused, suddenly spotting a woman that looked just like Delia Valentine.

The woman in question wore a brown and tan outfit which consisted of a pullover sweater and wide-legged pants that looked more like a free-flowing skirt than trousers. Whoever this woman was, she looked prosperous and happy. She also looked preoccupied…with a man!

If that is Dee, then her heart has clearly healed, Millsap mused, straining his eyes to make sure he wasn’t seeing things.

“Mike-Mike, don’t that look like Dee Valentine to you?” Millsap said, trying to get a second opinion as he pointed to the elegantly dressed woman across the field.

“Yep,” Mike-Mike replied. “Wonder who’s that dude she’s with,” he added, noting the tall olive-skinned man with her.

“Let’s go find out,” Millsap suggested, leading the way.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier

* * *

Book giveaway question for this post is in the comment section. The first one to answer it correctly wins a free E-Book of his/her choice. Previous winners don’t qualify.

Miss Opportunity - Ch. 5

“Police are still looking into last week’s near fatal shootings of two local businessmen,” the perky anchorwoman said. “Anyone with any information in this case, please call the number on the screen.”

“The man who shot them is dead and buried,” Millsap said to the television as he sat brooding in his newly furnished apartment. “I went to the funeral just yesterday.”

Unlike the police, everyone in the drug game knew exactly who was responsible for Bonz and Racker’s shootings. Though none of them would ever break code and tell the authorities, they all knew that E-Blade betrayed his friends that fateful night he ended up dying himself. He’d been betraying them for years by constantly diluting the product to increase his own profits. And this was despite the fact that he received the greatest street percentage among the generals anyway.

Did the other generals know about E-Blade’s monetary betrayals?

Bonz knew about some of them since he usually kept his ear to the streets. Millsap knew about them all because he’d worked directly under E-Blade for years. He’d been just about to work directly under Bonz as a general-in-training when the drug lab blew up.

“In other news, local and state authorities have ruled out terrorism as the cause of last week’s explosion on Old Savannah Road. Rather they attribute that isolated incident as the work of anti-drug radicals who sought to make a bigger dent in Enfield’s war on drugs. Area residents are praising those responsible for destroying the secret drug lab, which had been cleverly nestled underground beneath several rows of abandoned houses.”

“You won’t hear no praises from me!” Millsap shouted at the television. That one incident stopped him from rising among the ranks and he was very bitter about it. Thus all the ranting at the anchorwoman on the TV screen.

“Furthermore, even Police Chief Wyman couldn’t help but agree that the loss of that secret lab made his job amazingly easier this past week,” the anchorwoman continued. “In fact, the crime rate in Enfield dropped 40% over the last seven days. That is a significant reduction worthy of noting. Now our Channel 3 viewer question of the day includes: Do you think the person(s) responsible for this explosion should be found and persecuted? Or left alone and commended?”

“Found and persecuted to the fullest extent of the law!” Millsap shouted, ready to put a hit out on the person responsible for his lost opportunity and loss in profits.

Suddenly his cell phone rang. The Lil Wayne Stunning Like My Daddy ringtone revealed that it was a text message from one of the generals. Millsap scrambled to view the message. The anchorwoman on the television was long forgotten now.

The message read: “Tag. You’re it, young general. PS. Let the lab go. ALL of it. More later.” Then a large animated bone dressed in a general’s uniform appeared on the screen, gave him a military salute, and then waved goodbye before exiting the screen again.

Millsap whooped loudly and jumped excitedly in the air.

Was he happy that Bonz and Racker survived that attack from E-Blade?

Yes.

But he was even happier about that clandestine message Bonz just sent him. Especially since it meant that Bonz had given him that intended promotion anyway.

That message meant a few other things, as well. One, that Bonz wanted him to let the lab thing drop completely, which meant he likely knew who destroyed it and was handling the situation himself. Two, that Bonz had officially retired from the game and would contact him later with more vital information like detailed locations of their minor labs, which were still operational.

The phone call Millsap received from Racker soon thereafter confirmed what Bonz had communicated by text. The only addition was the fact that Racker was retiring from the game, too, and that Mike-Mike was his replacement.

Millsap was completely shocked now and yet thrilled at the same time by this unexpected turn of events. It was inconceivable that both generals would retire in one day.

The fact that Bonz and Racker appointed replacements instead of just stepping aside quietly proved just how worthy they’d been of their ranks. They knew that Millsap and Mike-Mike would have challengers to their newfound power and thus needed a certain stamp of approval to keep order among the street force. In short, this was Bonz and Racker’s way of keeping the body count down.

The first thing I’m gonna do is build another lab, Millsap mused after hanging up with Racker. Except this time the main lab would be built in a more rural area. This way, they could better monitor the comings and goings of visitors and employees alike, and hopefully avoid another bomb threat.

When the euphoria from his recent promotion subsided a little, Millsap’s thoughts finally returned to Delia. He’d been thinking about her a lot more lately. His heart grieved for her.

Millsap hated that E-Blade’s infidelities had finally driven Delia over the edge, causing her to take E-Blade’s life the same night he tried to take the life of his longtime friends. He hated Cami even more for helping to send Delia over that edge.

I knew she was no good, Millsap thought, glad that Cami was locked up on a drug charge stemming from all the narcotics the police found in her apartment that fateful night. The fact that her case was an open and shut matter made for quicker processing and sentencing.

Had Millsap known that Cami was waiting down the road with the car lights off while E-Blade exacted revenge upon his friends in another car, he would have despised her even more. Had the authorities known she was at the scene of yet another crime, they might have given her more time behind bars instead of just under five years.

Millsap just hoped Delia beat her manslaughter charge since shooting E-Blade had been deemed accidental by even him before he died. Millsap also hoped that Delia’s heart would heal from all this trauma. That maybe one day she’d be emotionally ready to love again.

And when she is, I’m gonna be ready to love her back, Millsap vowed, undeterred by Delia’s violent tendencies. Especially since he deemed them purely a product of her tainted romantic environment. In fact, he was convinced that if Delia had a faithful man, she wouldn’t be violent at all.

I’m gonna be that faithful man, Millsap promised himself, willing to turn in his playa’s card for a quality woman like Delia. He was even willing to help her finish raising E-Blade’s kids.

In the meantime, he was going to stay away from nasty women who were unworthy of being faithful to. In particular Paris, the woman that caused Millsap to have to get a shot of penicillin and be on antibiotics for two weeks straight.

A brotha is double bagging it from now on, he vowed, making yet another promise to himself.

© 2008 by Suprina Frazier