Read an Excerpt
EVERY THUG NEEDS A LADY
By WAHIDA CLARK
KENSINGTON PUBLISHING CORP.Copyright © 2006 Wahida Clark
All right reserved.
Chapter OneKyra showed the last of her baby shower guests to the door and thanked them again for the gifts. She closed the door and yelled, "Where my dawgs at?" She was hollering for Jaz, Angel and Roz. The three of them had already flopped down on Kyra's Italian leather furniture.
"Where on earth are you going to put all of this stuff?" Roz asked Kyra. "The baby's bedroom already seems too crowded."
"Who are you telling? I don't think I have to buy anything," Kyra said, looking around at all of the gifts.
"That's what baby showers are for, to get everything!" Angel said. "And when are you allowing us to throw yours?" She pointed at Jaz.
Jaz yawned. "I'm not sure yet. Y'all the ones giving it. Just let me know when y'all ready. Even though I'd rather wait until after I have it."
"It was supposed to be a surprise," Roz said sarcastically. "And what do you mean 'after you have it'?"
"I don't like surprises. And I haven't been in a festive mood." She turned toward the kitchen where Kyra was and yelled, "Can I have another piece of cake?"
When Kyra came out of the kitchen she was carrying a tray with a bottle of Dom, a bottle of sparkling grape juice, slices of cake, champagne glasses, and a bag of weed. "Roz, I know you got some paper," she said as sheset the tray down.
"I sure do," Roz answered, rolling over and grabbing her Chanel bag from under the coffee table.
Kyra plopped down on the couch and poured two glasses of champagne and two glasses of the non-alcoholic bubbly for the pregnant sisters. "I'd like to say a few things to y'all," she announced. "For starters, I can't thank y'all enough for the beautiful baby shower. Y'all really went all out; the gifts are all of that. I don't know where everything is gonna go, but we'll figure something out. Second, I love y'all. Y'all are the sisters I never had. And for real, if it wasn't for everyone's support-not to mention your competitiveness-I wouldn't have finished school. I wouldn't be where I am right now." She stopped and smiled at them. "Of course, y'all didn't have anything to do with this big belly."
"I would hope not!" interrupted Roz. They all laughed.
"Anywho," continued Kyra, "even though I left y'all for a couple of years and got off track, you all still let me back in, accepted me with open arms, encouraged me, and pushed me to reach my goals. We did it, y'all! We stayed on track in spite of all the obstacles. Angel, all you have to do is pass the state bar and we'll have our own corporate lawyer to handle our business. Jaz, all you have to do is walk across the stage and get that first piece of paper before going on to medical school. Roz, you tackled two majors and are now prepared to take two state exams, one for physical therapy and the other for respiratory therapy. I gotta walk across that stage and get my piece of paper on my way to graduate school to study and become a doctor of psychology. Soon we'll be four sisters with bachelor's degrees or better, straight from the hood. None of us are drug addicts or carry ourselves as hos. We're happy for the most part. Two of us are engaged to good, strong brothas, and, hopefully, the other two won't be too far behind." They all agreed with Kyra. They were proud of their success and accomplishments.
"Roz, did you roll the weed?" Angel blurted. Roz dumped the joints on the table.
"Oh yeah," Jaz said. "I'd like to make an official toast." They all took a glass and raised it in the air for Jaz's toast. "A toast to life, love, peace, and happiness. Congrats to Angel, our own corporate and entertainment attorney. Congrats to Roz, who doubled up in physical therapy and respiratory therapy! Good luck in opening your own practice and healing all of those fine, richass ball players. Congrats to me. I am now a fuckin' scientist with offers from five graduate schools. And congrats to Kyra, a future head doctor, a.k.a. psychologist. And she got accepted at six graduate schools. My sisters, I think we all did pretty damn good. Even though we are all fine and beautiful we didn't get a man to depend on for food, clothing, and shelter. We handled our shit." They put the glasses to their lips and drank continuing to congratulate themselves.
"We put us first," Kyra continued. "We can hold it down on our own if we have to. But, for real, having a good man-another half-sure makes things a lot smoother. This toast goes to us. I love y'all, my sisters forever!" They touched glasses again and finished their drinks. "Um, can you fire it up, my sister?" Angel pleaded, looking at Roz, who passed everybody a joint except for Jaz.
"Where's mine?" Jaz whined.
"I ain't messin' with you and that crazy-ass Faheem. If he found out that I gave you and his unborn child some weed I'd never hear the last of it."
"Give me the bag then. I'll roll my own."
"Nope!" Roz said, lighting her joint.
"Kyra got one and she's pregnant," Jaz whined.
"Marvin ain't gonna trip as bad as Faheem would," Roz explained.
"C'mon Roz," Jaz begged.
"Here. We'll split this one." Kyra passed Jaz her joint. "If you get busted, you on ya own!" They all started laughing.
"Thank you Kyra." She looked at Roz and stuck her tongue out at her. She took a drag. "I want to get my party on, too."
"Turn on some music," Angel ordered. Kyra picked up the remote and pointed at the stereo.
"Oooh! Turn that up! That's the shit!" Roz was bobbing her head. "How did you get here? Nobody 'sposed to be here. I tried that love thing for the last time. My heart says no, no. Nobody 'sposed to be here, but you came along and changed my mind." Roz was singing along with Debra Cox.
"What's up Roz? Who is he?" Angel probed. All eyes were now on Roz.
"You heard what I said."
"I'm too embarrassed to tell y'all," Roz answered.
"Who is he?" Angel probed again.
"His name is Trae."
"Trae! Oooh!" Jaz emphasized his name.
"You are scandalous," Kyra added.
"Who is Trae?" Angel was puzzled.
"This big-ass baller from New York," Jaz told her.
"You are scandalous!" Kyra repeated. "First of all, you know how fine Tyson Beckford is, right? Well Trae is finer than him. He has big, pretty eyes, thick eyelashes, thick, dark, eyebrows and thick, pretty lips. Second of all-this is the kicker-he's Nikayah's partna. His boy. I repeat, his boy. That is downright scandalous Roz. What is up with you? Tell me you're joking!"
"So that means he's paid then, right?" Angel was looking back and forth at Kyra and Jaz for an answer.
"Can I talk?" Roz said.
"He got a coupl'a whips," Kyra said, ignoring Roz. "He mostly be in that fly-ass black Lincoln Navigator with the chrome. He always has his hair in braids. Dayum! I'm getting excited just talkin' about him. If I didn't have Marvin I would be trying to hit that my damn self!" They all laughed.
"Kyra! Can you stop lusting and shut up? Can I talk, please?" Roz asked, relighting her joint.
"The floor is yours," Kyra said. "I gots to hear this. Inquiring minds do want to know. Go ahead."
"Shut up Kyra!" Jaz said. "Let the girl talk."
"Jaz I don't know why you frontin'. You know I'm not lying," said Kyra, refusing to give up.
"She ain't lyin', y'all. The bitch ain't never lied!" Everybody burst out laughing. "If I wasn't crazy about Faheem, I'd be wanting to hit that myself. And yes, like Jaheim said, 'it would be because of the ice I see.'" They all laughed again. "Naw, I'm playing. And for the record I said if I wasn't in love with Faheem."
"Can I talk now?" Roz made eye contact with everybody, and no one said a word. "Thank you! First of all, he's not just a baller."
"Bullshit!" Jaz interrupted. "Faheem only associates with ballers. I ain't bragging or nothing, but y'all know Faheem ain't nothing nice. He thinks he's the president of the ballers club. He knows he's the shit, and that's how he carries himself. Plus, I saw that nigga at Faheem's apartment around the time my sister fucked up her life." Jaz noticed Roz staring at her. "I'm sorry. Go ahead, Roz. I didn't mean to interrupt."
"Yes you did!" everybody yelled in unison.
"Anyway," Roz continued, "the brotha got a bachelor's degree from Long Island University. So he's not just a straight thug. And yes, the nigga is straight-up fine. I do have to give him that. His braids? I've been keeping his hair up for him. As a matter of fact, I've been doing that for the last couple of months. Did he hit it yet? Nope. Why? I know he wants to, but it's a couple of things making me hesitant. One, he's Nikayah's boy. Two, no more thugs for me. I lose too many peeps to that lifestyle. They either go six feet under or get locked down. I'm running from that shit. You want to know if I'm feeling him? Unfortunately, hell fuckin' yes! When he's around, the hair on my skin stands straight up. And he calls me by my middle name, Tash. He doesn't say Tasha. He calls me Tash."
"Dayum. It's like that?" Jaz asked.
"Yeah, baby, it's like that. He got my head spinning and it's scaring me. He got a small diamond on the tip of his tongue and I want to feel it, if you know what I mean!" She didn't mention kissing him at the club a few weeks ago.
"How much time did Nikayah get?" Angel asked.
"Twelve years. His appeal is about to get heard. At least that's what he told me."
"Dayum," everybody chimed in. They all liked Nikayah.
"So what's up with y'all? How you gonna just dog our boy out like that?" Angel asked.
"Puhleeze! Let me tell y'all about little, innocent-ass Nikayah. Y'all know we've been kickin' it for almost five years now. And for the last two of them I've been going down to that fucking prison faithfully, every weekend unless I have a semester where I have to take a Saturday class. Well, your boy apparently had my schedule screwed up. I pop up for a visit on a Saturday because I didn't have a class. I was all happy and shit at the opportunity to see him two days in a row. I go bouncing my happy ass up in there, and he's all hugged up and kissing on this other female."
"What?" yelled Kyra.
"That ain't all," added Roz, obviously choking up. "He was rubbin' her stomach. The bitch is pregnant!"
"You lyin'!" said Angel, hands covering her mouth.
"That's fucked up, dawg. I'm sorry to hear that shit," said Jaz. "So what happened?"
"First of all, it was so fucking embarrassing, mainly because everybody-the guards, the regular visitors, the inmates-know me up in there. I was wondering why it got so quiet and folks was whispering while I was walking by. I was trying to be cool and front like it wasn't no big deal. I grabbed a chair and sat right in front of them. I turned on my physical therapist voice and acted like I was interviewing a client. I got right up on her and said, 'Hello, I'm Rosalyn, and you are?' I think she said 'Simone' or something like that. Then I asked, 'Did Nikayah tell you that he has a woman, me, Roz, who has been his woman for the last five years and that I've been coming to see him in this rat hole ever since he's been here? That would be two years. I'm driving a 2000 Beamer that this nigga bought, and he pays my mortgage every month. I guess that's why he feels justified in thinking that he can act like a playa. You been kissing him, right?' She looks at me all crazy. 'Well, y'all was kissing when I walked in the door. You see that corner over there?' I pointed to where we usually get busy. 'Last Sunday he ate my pussy right over there.' The yellow bitch was turning red by now.
"Then I faced Nikayah and asked, 'Am I the other fuckin' woman, or is she? How long has she been coming down here, Nikayah?' He wouldn't answer so I pushed him. He said, 'Roz, what difference do it make? Why you trippin'? You my woman. I take care of you and she know that.' I said, 'Fuck that shit, Nikayah. Answer the fuckin' two-million-dollar question. How long you been playin' me?' So he says, 'Ain't nobody playin' nobody, Roz. She been comin' down here for a minute.'
"I screamed, 'For a minute? The bitch looks six months pregnant!' Then he says, 'Let me talk to you in private,' and grabs my arm. I fuckin' punched him in the head screaming, 'Fuck you, Nikayah. I'm outta here.' Then I punched him in the face. Then I told her, 'You can have his sorry ass and all the visits.' I looked at him one more time and told him, 'I'm glad I didn't keep your babies!' as I headed for the door. That last comment slipped out. That nigga came running behind me, and I got scared and started walking faster until the guard told him to go sit down. He kept screaming, 'You got an abortion.' And that's the last time I seen or talked to him."
"Dayum," Jaz said. "When did all of this happen?"
"It's been three months."
"Why didn't you tell anyone?"
"Too fuckin' hurt to talk about it. Plus I'd rather tell all of y'all at once instead of repeating it over and over. I'm trying to put him behind me."
"What's the matter with three-way?" Kyra asked. "We use it all the time."
"Kyra. Y'all just don't know. I didn't feel like talking about it until now-since all of us are here. I was hurt. Well, I'm still hurt but not as much. He fucked me up. I still can't get over the fact that he played me like that. I could see if I was fucking around on him, but he knew I wasn't. He got too many eyes and ears out here. Plus, he would have sensed something when he saw me. Niggas ain't stupid. So now it's fuck him! It's over. I don't accept his collect calls. I don't answer his mail. And if I didn't have so many peeps on lockdown I would have put a block on my phone. But most of them gonna have to go through so much drama if I changed the number. So I just decided to leave it."
"So tell us again how did Trae get in the picture?" Kyra wanted to know.
"Nikayah had Trae for a while bringing me money and checking on me to make sure I was okay."
"That was dumb," Jaz said.
"Obviously. But Trae is his boy-or supposed to be. So one day he stopped by to check on me and his hair was in a big-ass 'fro. He asked me if I could braid. I told him, 'yeah.' Then I hooked him up. Ever since then he's been makin' sure that I keep it up for him, using that as an excuse to come over. Of course we talk while I'm braiding. That's how I found out about his bachelor's in marketing and public relations. I like him ... but why does he have to be Nikayah's boy? And why does he have to be so deep in the drug game? I chose to get away from that lifestyle. I got caught up before. I lost my pops to it, my mom, friends, relatives, and my man of five fucking years. Now this nigga is trying to invade my space ... and it's fucked up because I like him ... a lot."
"What do you mean, you got caught up before?" Angel quizzed.
"That's a whole 'nother story."
"We got time," Kyra added.
"I'll tell y'all, but first let me throw this out there."
"Oh, gosh. Now she's gettin' ready to get all philosophical and shit," Jaz joked.
"No, check this out," Roz said, puffing on her joint. "What's up with this picture? We are all intelligent sisters, right?"
"Right," they all agreed.
"We all are fine, right?"
"Right," they all said again.
"We all got college degrees, right?"
"So why do we attract the niggas that's out there pimpin', slangin', bangin' and ballin'? You know what I mean? Why not the niggas who are professionals: doctors; lawyers; investment bankers, and niggas like that? Y'all feel me?"
Everyone was silent. They were replaying in their minds what Roz had just said. Angel puffed on her joint and looked around at everybody, "I think it's because we're young, we're fine, and the ballers ... well, that's what they chase. But I am with Roz, I am through with that lifestyle."
"You got a point," Kyra said. "But we're attracted to them just as much as they're attracted to us. Y'all know them hustlin', thuggish niggas turn us on. So don't front."
"Yeah, that's true. But at the same time if we hung out around the professional brothers, we would be attracted to them. If they hung out around us they would be attracted to us. It depends on what and who you want. It seems like most women look for the thug in every brother. Baller, hustla, slanger or professional, thug me out, baby!" Jaz drooled. "Take charge, baby!"
"Right! Right! That's what I like about Trae. He likes to run shit. Take over. I don't know about the next ho, but that shit turns me on," laughed Roz. "I know I don't want no weak-ass, pushover nigga."
"Turns you on? Look at me. I was sprung over a pimp. I was crazy about him. He was always runnin' shit. And now Bilal has been trying to push up on me, but I've been duckin' him out big time. I'm scared of that nigga. I won't even tell him where I live. Plus I'm a lawyer now, I can't be fucking with them criminal niggas anymore," Angel said.
Excerpted from EVERY THUG NEEDS A LADY by WAHIDA CLARK Copyright © 2006 by Wahida Clark. Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.