“Oh this is niceeeee,” I sang with a pop of my gum as we turned down a wooded street to eye the houses. “Babe slow down so we can house hunt for the future,” tapping Travis arm. His car with the obvious oversized rims, and tires on the hood classic car looked out of place, and if I were to be honest, Travis himself looked out of place. His black snow cap sat on top of his head with a single diamond stud earring in one ear. His winter white skin only made his colorful tattoos pop as he ducked his head, looking from left to right at the row of homes.
“Indie look how nice these are,” I said, glancing in the back seat at my cousin dressed in leggings, and a christmas sweater. She couldn’t hide her ivory white hair under that baseball cap if she tried.
“She just closed yesterday so she probably hasn’t even moved in yet. I can’t believe she went on and married him,” Indie said with pity. “And now this.”
“Which is why we have to get her out of that house. Her birthday weekend. She doesn’t deserve to be stuck with his ass. Oooo, girl!” I growled through my teeth. “Delilah kept telling me to be quiet Lu. Just be quiet on the whole thing, and let it play out. How the hell am I supposed to keep watching my bestfran take L after L with this L nigga?!” I popped. “Every time I call her, she’s not happy. She’s just doing whatever she can to get by.”
“So why don’t she leave then? That simple,” Travis said, speaking as if he was called to do so in the first place. I stared at him with twitchy brows, blinking twice before glancing back at Indigo who rolled her eyes.
“It's that simple huh?” I repeated. “You think so?”
“If somebody was treating me that badly. If I wasn’t happy with somebody, why I gotta feel obligated to stay in the relationship? Don’t make no sense.”
“Nigga you don’t make no sense!” I retorted in a mocking tone with my gold nails clicking and clipping together in the air at him. “You talking like I’m not right here in this seat going through the same thing---.”
“I don’t make you happy when we’re together? When we’re on good terms? You not happy with me?” He asked, coming to a complete stop in the middle of the two way street as he threw his arm over the steering wheel. Mouth hung open like a slow farm boy with eyes light pink from his high, Travis looked me up and down like he was about to do something. “I don’t make you happy?”
“Obviously we have our moments.”
“Moments?” Indigo mumbled to herself. “Is that what you call cheating and verbal abuse? Moments?”
“Indie,” I warned, knowing she was trying to stick up for me. Travis wasn’t fazed in the least. Just stared at me. Licking his dark pink lips together as he waited for my response.
“I tell you to leave any time if you feel like this ain’t what you want Lu.”
“Leave?!” I shrieked. “You’ll follow me! You end up stalking my every move if I leave yo ass! Every time!”
“Here we go…” Indie muttered with a sigh.
“I mean I can’t be crazy about yo ass?” He asked, pushing for in the car as he rolled the window down to toss out a gum wrapper. “That don’t mean you can’t leave! You wanna break up with me then cool. I might follow you a lil bit. See what you up to. What other white boy gon come around tryna catch yo eye,” he mocked with playful blinks as I laughed.
“Why he gotta be white Travis? You don’t think a strong black King would take yo spot?”
Indigo, and Travis both laughed as I glared at her before hitting him in the arm. The running joke of me never being seen with a black man.
“Oh you was serious?” He let out, looking at me before rubbing his chin playfully. “I’m not worried about no man coming for you girl. I’on care what color they are. Anybody that see you? Will always see I stay two steps behind you with a toolly tucked.”
“Toxic. I mean, bottom of the barrel toxic,” Indigo gagged as I smiled, biting down on my lower lip. No doubt, turned on like a fool.
“Turn left,” the GPS on his phone said as I looked out the window. We were turning into Jasmine’s new subdivision.
Glenwood Chase Homes.
“Ooooo! Best fran! We’re almost here! I’m coming bestie! Don’t worry! We finna steal you away from that monster!” I yelled out, so excited to see Jasmine. I haven’t been able to hang like I wanted to but this time around, I was going to be staying until New Years with Delilah offering me her spare bedroom. Travis would come down on the weekends after work to stay. My list of clients were starting to expand and grow so I wanted to capitalize off of that. People tend to get emotional over lost loved ones during the holidays so I was thankfully in the right head space to do so this year.
“I wonder if he’s going to force her to stay at the house,” Indigo let out.
“I wonder they’re even talking at this point.”
“It can’t be that bad,” my boyfriend groaned. “Yall making him out to be---.”
“He talks down on her,” I counted on my fingers as we made another turn. “He dismisses her completely. Slept with her best friend for years. He openly cheats on her and doesn’t care how she feels or what it does to their relationship because he doesn’t like her. He doesn’t want to be with her, and neither does she with him---.”
“So why stay?” He asked. “If it's that bad, why stay?”
“Because,” I threw up with my hands in the air before settling back in the seat. “I don’t know why she stays or why he won’t leave. Comfort I guess… They’re used to one another. I don’t know what the hell Delilah was thinking when she said these two were meant for one another. Soul ties in the worst way possible.”
“Destination on the left.”
I looked out of Travis’s window seeing the beautiful white house with the green vines creeping up the house as my mouth dropped.
“Oh my God!” I gawked. “My bestie living in her own white house though! Why her house look betta than everybody else?!” Boasting her up as we pulled alongside the curb, seeing the movers parked in the driveway as they began to unload boxes. There were a few cars parked that I didn’t recognize but Travis practically rolled up on the curve, almost hitting their mailbox before shutting the car off.
I stepped out of the car, whipping my straightened hair back from my face as I slipped my Fouis Fuitton on my arm. Gold hooped earrings the size of a baseball with a matching red two piece set, and a black bubble vest to match my man who got out the car in all black. Stretching his long limbs since we’ve been driving nonstop from Indigo’s house.
“Pop the trunk open,” I demanded, digging into my purse. Realizing I couldn’t even step foot in her house with a fake bag.
“We’re here to kidnap Jasmine, and take her out to celebrate her birthday,” I reminded Indigo as we stepped over the grass to get to the driveway pavement. “Travis will be our silent driver that don’t say shit while the girls play.”
“Look at how beautiful this is,” Indigo murmured, taking a picture of the home as we walked through the packed garage full of boxes. I could hear Percy yelling at one of the movers.
“Yeah if you want a fucking tip, you need to be careful with my shit! Don’t just toss it!” He snapped as I looked back at my boyfriend.
“You see what type of man he is. We need to save her from this,” I whispered as Travis patted my behind to coax me to step into the massive house.
“Bessssst fraaaaan!” I called out, looking around at the open kitchen, and dining room space seeing boxes stacked everywhere.
“Birthday girl!” Indie let out, getting into the mood as we stepped all the way inside. Suddenly, a beautiful chocolate fresh faced woman poked her head around the corner with a curly messy bun sitting on top of her head. We both let out a loud scream as we met each other halfway for a hug.
“What are you doing here?!” She laughed as she wrapped her arms around my neck. The moment her body hit mine, I felt it. I was almost hit with her energy as I pulled back to look her over.
“It’s your birthday best fran. You didn’t think I was coming here to steal you away?” I laughed as my eyes scanned her body like a nigga tryna see something. Something was off about her, but I couldn’t place it. Couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but there was something very different about her. She wore a frumpy black robe with plaid red pajama bottoms and furry socks as she hugged Indigo and gave a nod towards my boyfriend who kept his eyes on the house like he was casing the place.
“How much this house running yall?” He asked, looking around with greed. “This gotta be a cool five hunnid. Easily---.”
I whipped around and pointed towards the opened front door.
“Wait in the car for us please---.”
“What I do?”
“You being ghetto, wait in the car,” I snapped. “Now.”
He sucked his teeth as he turned to walk out of the house with his fingers lightly touching the paint like it was made of gold.
“Niggas,” I muttered with disgust before flipping my hair back to my main boo. “Jasmine?! I’ma need you to get ready so we can go out and do some bald headed shit for yo birthday.”
“Some, what?” She laughed just as I watched Percy limp around the corner of the dining room with his crutches, wearing nothing but a pair of long basketball shorts and white t-shirt. His black glasses stayed just on the tip of his nose when he pushed them up against his face to squint at me.
Yeah nigga. You know my face ol lame ass nigga. Ol baby carrot dick. You remember. Bitch ass. That’s why you got jumped.
“Percy! Hey brother in law!” I greeted instead. “I was in the process of stealing my best fran away for her birthday.”
“I have to be back in time to get ready for an event tonight,” Jasmine said as she walked into the kitchen. Even her walk was different. She started talking about whatever she had planned for tonight but my ears tuned into what wasn’t being said as I watched her every move. “Really should be staying here to help unpack everything.”
“Do you have an idea on how you’re going to decorate it?” Indigo asked as she walked around the open space in front of the kitchen. Her eyes linked with mine, giving me that knowing stare before I looked back at Jasmine who focused on making a fresh thing of coffee.
“I don’t even know where to begin honestly,” she laughed, tucking a loose curl from her bun behind her ear.
“You got all year to unpack. Birthdays only fall on weekends once every few years so we need to celebrate. Right Percy? Your wife should go out and celebrate. Do some bald headed shit with us. Encourage her. You can handle the unpacking.”
“Well we have somewhere to be tonight,” he stated promptly as he swung his bum leg over towards her with one limp after another. “Whatever this… bald whatever thing can wait until tomorrow I’m sure.”
Indigo started talking, being the mature adult and talking about the process of buying a home while I peeped the bubbling energy and aura surrounding Jasmine and Percy. The crutches were resting against the island counter top while he stood by Jasmine’s side as she took a sip of her coffee. Eyes peering over the rim of the mug with a nod towards Indigo. She laughed. I don’t know what she laughed at but it made her put the mug down as her, and Indie spoke. Percy on the other hand looked hesitant at me with a nervous knot that traveled down his throat.
What are you tryna tell me fool? Hmmm?
Something was definitely off, but then Jasmine leaned forward. Resting her elbows on the counter as she, and Indie carried on, and that’s when I noticed the lack of space between her, and Percy.
“Oh?” I popped softly to myself, licking my lips to keep from grinning. His side was pressed against her hip like glue. “Interesting…”
“Best fran?!” I suddenly yelled out. “I wanna see what the outside looks like. Where we’re gonna be throwing our kickbacks?”
“Oh lord,” she laughed as she sat up from the counter. “Come on. Careful not to track anything back into the house.”
We followed her out of the kitchen as Percy hung back in the kitchen as I followed Jasmine out back to the fenced in space.
“I don’t know if we’ll do much entertaining since the balcony is above us,” she pointed to the deck over us. “But this is it.”
“I love it. You should have a girls night. We can do so many drum circles, and hot coco nights. Get a fire going in the middle with some warm blankets---.”
“I would love that Indie!” Jasmine beamed. “I don’t know if enough women that would participate, but we can certainly plan it. Be one with nature, kind of thing.”
“Mmm hmm,” I added, looking back into the house as the movers moved about until Percy brought his limping behind outside. Like I knew he would. Struggling with the sliding door while holding the crutches in place before he came hobbling out with black socks on as he stepped on the slab of concrete. Jasmine, and Indigo were casing the space of the backyard, talking about whatever as I just sat back, and peeped vibes, and frequencies. Jasmine was loving the idea of having her own home to maintain as she stood in the center of the yard with Indie, exchanging ideas.
“You um…” I started, breaking his gaze on Jasmine. “Been on your best behavior little foot?”
Percy turned his twisted mouth towards me as I smiled in return.
“I just wanna make sure it's not a problem with my sister is all. You know how I get down, and apparently you found out the hard way about how my family gets down. Just wanna make sure you’re treating her right. It’s her birthday weekend. Let her get away from you for a bit if yall are gonna play house… at least let her get a break from you for a few hours without you complaining.”
Percy looked back at Jasmine, and for once? It wasn’t a look of hate or jealousy that I was used to seeing come from him. He just stared at her. Taking in her every move until she, and Indie made their way back up towards us.
“Indigo has finally convinced me to get out for a bit… If we can go home decor shopping,” she beamed, looking at me with a pouty face. “Please?”
“Best fran it's yo world. We’re just living in it for the day. Go get dressed, and hurry up.”
She rushed back into the house excited as Percy started to follow behind when the sliding door opened again, and out stepped this tall, almost regal woman with jet black hair falling in waves against her shoulders. Makeup was a bit cracked, and her dark lemon shaped eyes were sunken in. Almost could smell the alcohol on her breath, and out of her pores but she smiled. Showing all pearly whites.
“Percy introduce me. How rude of you,” she said with her hand already extended out for me to shake.
“Mother these are Jasmine’s friends,” he said dryly, not bothering to waste his time to say my name.
“I’m Indigo Skye,” Indie said, taking her hand as his mother’s eyes lit up at the last name.
“Skye? Why am I hearing that name everywhere these days… You wouldn’t happen to be related to a Hampton or Horace Skye?”
“Homer,” I corrected, catching the tone. She was trying to be funny, but I peeped her drunk ass energy. “That’s our cousin. I’m Tallulah Skye.”
I started to take her hand in mind when I suddenly felt that rush of depression, cold, and bitterness hit my body like a bad headache. I closed my eyes briefly, letting the chills tickle my skin before I smiled like a cheshire cat. My mind immediately switched gears like flip that just turned on.
“Are you familiar about the Skye family?” I asked, keeping her hand in mine.
“Oh no,” Indigo muttered with a groan, knowing the mood I was in.
“I’m not familiar actually,” Mrs. Milton said, attempting to pull her hand back until I clasped it in place with my other hand.
“Well I’m a medium by profession---.”
“Mother can you please go in the house?” Percy suggested with irritation. “The movers need to be---.”
“I talk to those who have passed on from this world, but still linger on wanting to communicate with people like you, and I. So I’m like a telephone for the dead. I hear and see things others can’t---.”
“Really?” She drawled out, clearly not buying any of this, but it didn’t matter.
“It’s true,” I smiled, turning on the charm as her hand shifted between mine as another chill curled down my spine like a dose of high that decided to hit my body. “I’ve also been blessed to feel energy, and yours is very forthcoming. Very strong. Very dark. He says I’m attracted to dark energy, broken people, and helpless spirits because I’m constantly trying to fix everything and your energy is…. enticing,” I smiled as Percy shook his head, trying to break our hands apart.
“Not in my house. You need to leave----.”
“I don’t know what’s going on with you, but I can definitely help cleanse you of whatever is festering in your body before it begins to take a toll on those around you. Your body is sick,” I said, looking her over as I slowly began to rub her hand.
“Tallulah, we need to leave,” Indigo gritted through her teeth. “Now is not the time to---.”
“Get her out of my house!”
“She can’t help it. TRAVIS?!” Indigo yelled as she walked further into the yard.
“If I just close my eyes,” I said in a low, dark tone with my lids folding over. I clamped her hand tight, feeling her pull back as I listened. Letting myself slip further into the darkness, smelling the alcohol. Everything was an echo, even my own thoughts which told me she was lonely. I brought her closed hand towards my face for a smell, ignoring Percy’s screams and his mother panic as my eyes fluttered open, blinking like blinding lights as my head leaned back. I let out a low vibrating hum until I felt cold clammy hands clasp my face hard. Gripping my jaw tight with a hard jerk as my eyes flew open in panic. Seeing my boyfriend hovering over me with a death grip on my face. I started to cough as he turned me around, letting me hack up and spit until I was able to breathe again.
“Who’ I’m talking to right now? Niabi or Lu?” He demanded as I smeared my wrist against my mouth to wipe clean.
“Tallulah,” I coughed. “Always been me.”
“What’s going on?” Jasmine rushed out as my boyfriend practically dragged me out of the house with the help of Indie. “What did I just miss?”
I was packed away in Travis’s car so fast that they almost started to leave without Jasmine just to get away from the home until she rushed out with her bag, and jumped into the back seat. Indigo ended up having to go back inside to smooth things over as I laid my head against the door trying to collect myself.
“What happened?” Jasmine asked softly. “His mother looks freaked out, and Percy is acting like he saw a ghost.”
“Nah, they just got a dose of Niabi,” Travis said as he pressed the back of his hand against my forehead. “Baby I told you that shit be the main reason why you stay breaking out.”
“What do you mean Niabi?” Jasmine pressed as she leaned forward between the seats to get a good look at me. “You have his mother in there panicking like crazy. What did you do to her?”
“Niabi… She ain’t tell you she was adopted?” Travis went on as I glared at him, and his big mouth. “Yeah she’s adopted. Cursed when she was born---.”
“I wasn’t cursed nigga---.”
“You was something. You was something them Indians didn’t wanna fuck with. When she get like that… You know, be ready to suck the soul outta somebody, feeding off that shit.. I call that side of her Niabi. Her middle name. Her Indian name. She did that to me for the first time? First time we had sex, she pulled that shit on me. I almost knocked her ass out. You can usually tell when she finna get like that so I know how to stop it before it starts. Get all excited and start touching on people. Then she start cutting up, and chanting. Whole other woman come outta her. People pay her money, big money for that shit but she cure em. She do what she said she was gonna do.”
“And you did that to his Mother?” Jasmine gasped before letting out a slow curling smile. “Oh my God, she is probably crying right now,” she laughed before sighing thoughtfully. “I love that we’re friends Tallulah. No matter how weird you are. Just next time? Wait until I get there so I can see it.”
“Both of yall sick as fuck out chea’,” Travis muttered as Jasmine, and I laughed. “There go Indie,” he nudged towards the window as I looked back at the house, seeing my cousin walk out with a small thumbs up.
“Percy said bring him back something to eat if you can,” she let out as she slid into the back seat with a slam of the door.
“Are they okay?” Jasmine asked. “Did they say anything about not letting Lu back in the house or---.”
“They don’t remember a thing,” Indigo cut in as she crossed one leg over the other. “Let’s go.”