So… I participated in the BLP short story anthology this time around. If you haven’t read it, here’s the Amazon link. These characters have been calling my name! I’m thinking about creating a full length novel out of it, but I’m not 100% sure. Either way, here’s my short. I hope you enjoy :)
For forever… or just another day
Quite frankly, Kelise would have rather been anywhere else but here. Stuck in this crowded ass living room with people on all sides of her. People that she swore she was done hanging with. Because that’s how it usually works when you break up with someone, right? You cut off all contact with their family and friends.
Well, that wasn’t the case when she broke up with Jeremih.
Okay, when Jeremih broke up with her.
For a year straight, she hadn’t been able to rid herself of his family and friends.
And boy, did she want to.
Not because they weren’t cool people, because they were, but because every time she interacted with them her mind took her straight to thoughts of Jeremih.
Except, he wasn’t hers anymore… no matter how much Kelise wanted him to be.
Kelise released a sigh as she looked down at the last sip of Hunch Punch in her red plastic cup. She’d promised Major, Jeremih’s younger sister, that she would stay at her birthday set long enough to have one drink. Major filled her cup to the hilt, and Kelise was just about done with it.
Even that made her mind fill with thoughts of Jeremih. He was the first person to ever fix her a cup. Jeremih warned her that even though it tasted like juice with no alcohol, it would sneak up on her and ger her drunk. Kelise didn’t listen, and after consuming three cups, she’d had the time of her life… that she couldn’t remember on her own to this day. Had their night not been recorded, Kelise would have absolutely no memories of it.
She smiled softly before closing her eyes and allowing the now room temperature liquid to slide down her throat. When she was done, Kelise wiped her mouth and searched the room for Major. With Major nowhere in sight, Kelise slid her phone in her pocket and stood to find her.
Her body shifted from side to side as she slid through small gaps of openings between people. Kelise let out a sigh of relief when she finally made it to the clear hallway. The kitchen, though crowded, wasn’t as full as the living room. Major was nowhere in sight. Walking down the hall, the thought of Major being outside crossed Kelise’s mind. Before she could turn around to head out to the patio, a large arm wrapped around her stomach as the owners body pressed into the back of hers. His hand covered her mouth, and Kelise’s anxiety shot through the roof.
He led her into the room on the left as Kelise covered his hand with hers in an attempt to push his arm down. But then… it hit her. The familiarity of his grip, the tattoo on his hand, the scent of his cologne.
Kelise relaxed against him, releasing the breath that had caught within her chest. She felt a ripple of excitement pass through her the moment the door closed behind them. Her heart began to hammer wildly within her chest as Jeremih’s hand dropped from her mouth. Closing her eyes, Kelise gripped the sides of his jeans to keep him close. To keep him behind her. Away from her eyes. Because if she saw him… this moment would be real, not just a fantasy, and it would soon be over then.
Jeremih placed a soft, full kiss to her neck as his hands cupped her breasts. Seemed as if her heart rushed to every place he touched – wanting, needing, to stay close to him. To its life source. Kelise waited until the quickened pulse of her heart subsided to open her mouth and question him, but that became impossible when his right hand slid between her dress. Between her thighs.
He pressed his body into the wall with a groan, pulling her into him deeply. His closeness was overwhelming. Had always been. Jeremih projected an energy and power that undeniably drew her to him. With quickened, soft force, Jeremih turned her in his arms, hands keeping her cheeks steady as he devoured her lips with his. The mere touch of his lips against hers sent a shiver through her. And when Jeremih’s tongue slipped between her lips, Kelise sighed into his mouth and relaxed fully against him.
Their tongues warred with each other, passionately making up for lost time. Jeremih cruelly ravished her with his mouth, punished her – as if shewas the one that called things off between them and let a year pass since their last intimate moment together. The swiftness of his kisses slowed down, remaining just as intense as he palmed two handfuls of her ass and squeezed.
The strokes of his tongue became slow, drugging, paralyzing even. Making it hard for Kelise to do anything butsurrender to his control.
With roughly gentle force, Jeremih removed her from his lips and pressed the front of her body into the wall. Kelise’s breathing came out hard before she smiled and bit down on her bottom lip, pleasure intensifying as he handled her just the way she fucking liked. Her eyes closed at the sound of his pants unzipping. Holding her breath in anticipation, Kelise tried to steady her palpitating heart unsuccessfully.
Jeremih pushed her panties to the side, pressed his body against hers, and teased her folds – coating his head with her wetness. Not in the mood to be teased, Kelise pressed her ass against him and arched her back, begging silently to be put out of the pleasurable misery his caressing had caused. Slowly, Jeremih entered her, seared her, filling her with enough fire to rebrand her pussy as his all over again. Fuck that. When wasn’t it his? Her pussy tightened against him, gripping him as he filled her completely.
Lifting her hands, Jeremih pressed them into the wall as he pushed and pulled, dug himself a new, even deeper hole to her heart through her pussy. The sounds of heavy breathing and her wetness coating him as he slowly stroked her with his hardness filled the room. Kelise licked her lips and bit down on the bottom one to avoid moaning as her legs began to weaken. It had only taken five strokes, and she was already avoiding pulsing against him.
Jeremih took a handful of her hair and pulled as he commanded, “Come home to me tonight… yea?”
Her lips trembled as his free hand went to her clit. The sound of his voice affected her deeply, bringing tears to her eyes. They were as wet as her pussy as her orgasm threatened to consume her.
“Yes,” she agreed with no hesitation, but she regretted it as soon as she did because Jeremih pulled out of her and pressed his front into her back to keep her from looking at him.
Regulating her breathing, Kelise inhaled a deep one as she closed her eyes. Jeremih’s body disconnected from hers. He lowered her dress, then left. For a while, all Kelise could do was stand there in an attempt to gather herself.
To come to grips with the fact that Jeremih… her Jere… was here. Was inside. Of her. And he’d left just as quickly as he’d bombarded her with his presence and his penis. But that was Jeremih’s style. And Kelise would be damned if it didn’t still drive her crazy. When she was composed, Kelise left the room allowing a giddy sense of happiness to show through her expression. Not that she really had any control of it anyway. Her eyes went to the door, to the back of Jeremih’s frame. He stopped, as if he felt her eyes on the back of him. But he didn’t turn around and face her. He simply tilted his head and bobbed it once before walking out of the door and leaving.
Kelise used the key she thought she’d never use again to let herself inside of Jeremih’s home. A place she’d spent many days and nights. As soon as she entered her body weakened as her mind was consumed with memories. Running her fingers through her hair, she blinked back tears as she took her heels off. Kelise made her way down the hall, avoiding the pictures of them that still hung on the wall.
It was different – their breakup.
It hadn’t happened because either of them had done something wrong; it happened because their love was too damn right. And as much as they showed each other that love through their actions, loyalty, and commitment, Jeremih wouldn’t allow them to actually say the words. For a while, Kelise was okay with that. Because she actually had him. But when his father died and Jeremih began to shut down on her… not even his loving actions were enough.
“Jere?” she called out, sitting on the charcoal gray couch that they’d picked out together. Because when Jeremih purchased this home, he wanted her to move in, but she wouldn’t. Said she couldn’t play house with a man who refused to marry her. So Jeremih asked her to help him decorate his entire home. Said it was stilljust as much hers as it was his.
Kelise exhaled a deep breath as she ran her hands across her thighs. She felt him before he entered the living room. Her eyes shifted to the right, seconds later, Jeremih appeared. He’d always been light on his feet, able to scare her in any room at any time, just to pull her into his arms and comfort her as they both laughed. Kelise smiled at the thought. She hated it then, but it toughened her.
Gave her nothing to fear.
And if something did worry or scare her… Jeremih was alwaysthere to comfort her.
He sat next to her, hand gripping her thigh instantly. Kelise placed hers on top of his, noting the difference in their skin tones. Both had sandy brown skin, but Kelise’s held a yellow undertone compared to Jeremih’s red one. His hands, arms, chest, neck, and even the top of his right eyebrow was covered in tattoos… but he dressed in suits every day.
Jeremih was one of the toughest men she knew. Only a true act of God had the ability to destroy him. Kelise cupped his cheek and caressed it, staring into his syrupy brown eyes. He’d gone against the grain and beard trend, keeping the mustache goatee that he’d been rocking since he was twenty. Ten years later, it still looked just as good on him.
“What is this about?” Kelise asked before swallowing hard.
If Jeremih was demanding her presence… it was definitely for a reason.
“A nigga can’t just miss you?” he grumbled gruffly, looking over her face intently. Kelise smiled, lowering her head as she blushed, but his finger quickly lifted her chin. “Don’t fuck up my view.”
Wrapping her hand around his wrist, Kelise lowered it from her chin as she gave him her almond shaped, dark eyes. Jeremih had his fill of her visually. As if he was storing up this image of her to last him for another long while. His eyes lowered to her full lips. Tattooed, revealed shoulders. Big breasts. Up to her curly, tapered afro. But as usual, his eyes returned to the beauty mark that was just under her right eye.
His finger caressed it before Jeremih took her hand into his and kissed it.
“How you been?” he asked, genuine concern coating his voice.
“Spare me the small talk, Jeremih. Why am I here?”
Jeremih sat back in his seat as he loosened his tie. He had never been one to bullshit, barely speaking unless he really had something to say. That was something that drove Kelise crazy in the beginning, but eventually, she not only respected but loved and appreciated it as well. It left no room for broken promises, lies, or manipulation just to get his way.
“I want you to have my baby.”
Kelise sat up in her seat and looked at him as she chuckled. When his expression remained serious, she laughed even harder.
The men in Jeremih’s family had been cursed with a host of health issues including but not limited to enlarged hearts and kidney failure. His great grandfather died from it. His grandfather died from it. And two years ago, his father died from it. At a young age, too. No one expected heart failure to claim him at forty-seven, but it did, and it changed Jeremih completely.
Slowly, he began to detach himself from family and friends. The already unapproachable, unfuckwithable presence that he had intensified. But Kelise stuck around.
It wasn’t until a year after his father’s death that Jeremih had his first spell. He’d been having symptoms for quite some time, but he ignored them. Shook the shortness of breath, palpitations, chest pains, irregular heartbeats, and instances of his heart stopping altogether off. When he finally did go to the doctor and heard that he’d inherited their enlarged heart too, it took a little life out of him just to tell Kelise the news.
Because it made sense then. Their baby had just been born, only to have died two days later, because of an enlarged heart. Had that not happened, Jeremih wouldn’t have made the effort to go and see about himself. And it was then, when she needed him most, that Jeremih began to pull away. Sure, he stayed around for them to grieve together, but the moment he thought it was safe to do so… he removed himself from Kelise’s life completely… swearing she’d be better off with anyone but him.
Who wanted to bury their husband while they both still had life to live?
Who wanted to conceive and carry children that they weren’t sure would leave the hospital?
Kelise told him that he was proof, and so was Major, that it could be done, but in that moment, that was the last thing Jeremih wanted to hear.
So as he sat here and told Kelise that he wanted her to have his baby… she was convinced that it was a joke.
“I’m serious, Kelise.”
Kelise tried to reign her laugh in, letting it simmer into a chuckle as she shook her head. “You can’t be, because you broke up with me a year ago, remember?”
Jeremih sucked his teeth and stood, dismissing her with a wave of his hand. In typical fashion, he was done with the conversation since it wasn’t going his way. If she was anyone else, she would have been forced into submission, but Kelise was just about the only person outside of his mother and sister that he didn’t try to control. It was in his nature to be the boss, the most powerful, the protector. It was his profession to be the leader – a feared one at that.
But with Kelise?
He’d always been putty in her hands.
Fighting her giggle, Kelise gave Jeremih time to make it to his room before she stood and went after him. Truth of the matter was, she’d give him a baby and whatever else he wanted just as long as he did right by her. But this wasn’t something that would come easy. There would be no point in them discussing the past or even the pain she sustained from their breakup. But what they would have to discuss was their future… together.
Kelise knocked on the door gently with a smile, waiting patiently for Jeremih to let her in. He opened the door and looked down at her, jaw clenched. Face stone. When she first saw him, the tear tattoos under his eye alarmed her. And the fact that he was a known gang member with his set tatted right above his brow didn’t make it any better.
But that was never the side of him Kelise saw – unless someone got out of line and disrespected them while they were together, and that hardly ever happened because… who had the balls to fuck with Jeremih “Havoc” Smith? Hell, people started treating Kelise like a Queen when they found out she was attached to him out of respect, and they still did, even though they’d parted ways.
“Can I come in, Jere?”
“Depends,” was all he offered, staring at her deeply.
“Can I cum in you?”
Kelise laughed with a shake of her head and tried to walk away, but Jeremiah grabbed her and pulled her inside of his room.
“You are crazy as hell if you think I’m going to just… give you a baby!”
Jeremih ran his hand down his face as he looked her over intently. “I don’t want you to give me a baby; I want you to have and raise one with me.”
Kelise’s stance softened, but she was nowhere near ready to vocally give in yet.
“Where is this even coming from?” she asked softly, scratching her scalp through her curls.
Jeremih took her hand into his and led her over to his bed. They sat on the edge of it, and Kelise’s entire frame froze. Before they broke up, they’d posed for a painting. She was eight months pregnant, standing in a field of sunflowers with Jeremih right by her side. Not having seen the picture before, the sight of it through the mirror, hanging over the bed, immediately broke Kelise down.
Her tears instantly began to pour, and Jeremih wasted no time wiping them from her eyes and kissing them from her cheeks. It wasn’t until she’d calmed down and her tears stopped flowing did he almost whisper, “That’s why.”
Okay. This wasn’t the way this was supposed to play out. Kelise was supposed to be getting him to open up, not the other way around. She tried to push his hands down from her face but Jeremih held on.
“Because I thought it would be easier to live my life in these streets if I was going to die soon anyway.” Her shoulders dropped at his confession. Heart skipped a whole beat. “I thought…” Jeremih licked his lips as his head shook. “You would be better off with a man who could promise you forever and actually live to see that shit. Ain’t no guarantees with me, Lee. And I…”
Jeremih’s hands dropped. Head hung.
“You what?” she pleaded, praying this was the moment she’d been waiting on since they first met. First got together. First sealed their hearts together. First tied their souls together.
Just… say you love me…she thought, covering his hand with hers.
“You what, Jere?”
Slowly, his head lifted, eyes reconnected with hers. “I loved you too much to do that to you. To make you suffer like that. To marry you and give you a baby that you’d have to raise yourself.”
“So what changed your mind?”
Jeremih’s head tilted as he flipped his hand and entangled his fingers with hers. “Because I don’t want to live without you anymore. Whether it’s for forever… or just another day… I need you to be mine, Kelise. I love you, baby.”
Her eyes watered as she giggled, pulling his face to hers.
“I love you too,” she confessed before finalizing their declarations with a kiss.
Jeremih lowered her body to the bed as her tears began to fall. A part of her mind told her to make him wait. Make him beg. Make him suffer for leaving her for a year… even if it was because he thought it was what was best for her. But as Jeremih covered her body with his, there was no doubt in Kelise’s mind that they’d already wasted enough time.
Life was too short, and love was too important to waste either being angry over things you no longer had control over or access to.
Whether it was for forever… or just another day… Kelise would love Jeremih and be loved deeply by him… until God called them both home. And even then, her spirit would be so attached to him, that she’d love him, even in the afterlife.
Kelise looked from one twin to the other, still in disbelief that she’d just given birth two beautiful babies. They named their baby boy Emmanuel Forever, after and in memory of Jeremih’s father, and their baby girl Anaday. Convinced he finally had something worth living for – a wife and his children – Jeremih had been actively doing everything he could to live a healthy life.
Unlike the men of his family past, Jeremih had gone in and gotten a handle on his issue quickly. Between his diet, exercise, and cutting out things like smoking and stress, his doctor assured Jeremih that he could live a long, prosperous, and healthy life. And even if he did begin to have issues at an older age, there were several options available to him that weren’t available when the illness first began to plague his family.
He placed a kiss to Kelise’s forehead before doing the same to the twins, and all Kelise could do was silently thank God because they had their very own permanent, physical blessings of forever anda day.
We will see…