Raven met Franklin and fell in love. They got married and had a child. Their lives seemed to be ideal, and Raven's faith in God grew as did her relationship with her husband. Yet, things are not always as they seem. Soon, it became apparent that Franklin was no longer the man she married; he was an adulterer, a liar, and he began to drink liquor heavy.
Things deteriorated rapidly, and Franklin even turned Raven's own daughter against her. When he ended up facing criminal charges, he pulled Raven into the mess. It seemed like things could not get any worse, yet Raven still had faith in a loving creator. Through the tribulations of a broken relationship, she learned it was impossible to build a marriage without God; it was impossible, even, to build a life without Him.
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A MARRIAGE ROOTED in EVIL, LUST, LIES, and MONEY
By RAVEN KANE
iUniverse LLCCopyright © 2013 Raven Kane
All rights reserved.
I lived in a small development in Staten Island, New York. This was managed by a City Agency. I had one daughter and two sons. I was married at one point and then divorce. I was raising my children as a single parent. You would always see me by myself or with my children. Sometimes I would take them to the park and let them play on the monkey bars. I would also allow them to run through the sprinkler system if the water was on inside the park. Or just sit outside on the bench in front of the building as they played. I kept much to myself; you could say I was a loner. I stayed to myself but, always would greet and spoke to the older women in passing saying hello or goodbye. I rarely dealt with the younger people in the community. Although I had children there were a few guys that always tried to get my attention. I would see them when myself and children went to do the laundry, training my kids early how to do their own clothing. Sometimes they would see me as we waited for the bus going to Sunday service. There was a popular spot in front of the grocery store, where all the young men stood outside and would shoot the breeze. It was very close to the liquor store and an after hour club. The liquor store was next to the grocery store. As you made your exit out of the store there would be a group of young men standing in front hissing and making all kinds of sounds to get my attention. I paid them no attention that store was on the other side of the complex. This would occur when I had my children with me as well. No one had ever disrespected me, because I always carried myself as a respectable young lady with kids. I was so delighted when I notice another grocery store under construction right down the block from my home. That would eliminate me having to make my way through the crowd of guys that would stand in front of the liquor store. What a relief I felt inside. One day while coming outside my apartment building I notice a set of different bright color banner flags hanging down in front of the store, and a sign that read open for business. I was so excited and started to walk in the direction of our new neighborhood grocery store. As I was half way into the block out of the corner of my eye I notice this car slowing down as if it was keeping the same pace as I was walking. He was driving a really nice big white car it was a 1976 Chrysler Cordoba, the person inside called out to me from his car, He leaned over so far toward the middle passenger side of the car. Hello what's your name? I replied. Why? I was very hesitant I said Raven; He said they call me Chilly Willie and this is the ghost. He had a nickname for his car too! I chuckled this dude is crazy. Well I've been watching you for some time, slow down and let me talk to you he requested. I always used to ignore him because I seen him driving around closed to the store where the other guys hung out at. I keep walking, it seemed like he was right on time to catch me whenever I was heading to the store. I'm not sure if he was lurking around or his timing was right, he never failed. Until one day I stop and spoke to him. Figuring if I gave him the time of day that would end it and he will leave me alone. He wouldn't stop trying to harass me into talking to him. So I stop and listen to what he had to say.
He asked me would I like to attend a party with him. He heard that an acquaintance of his, girlfriend is throwing him a birthday party. You don't have to worry, you're in good hands. There's not going to be any foul play on his behalf or anyone else's you are safe with me. He began to say I always see you by yourself or with your kids making your way to or from the supermarket. Sometimes I notice you in the laundry mat. He made sure to tell me his mother lives out here; I guess that was his way of giving me some peace and security towards him. That's the reason why we see each other so much. I agreed to go to the party with him. We started dating a little while after that, he was a sweet guy very funny and always made me laugh, with the phases' he would say and his silly dance move's. He enjoyed spending time with my and children I. He lived in his own place and I lived in mine. He also had a son that didn't live with him but, was close in age with my youngest son. Eventually he took me to meet his son who resided with his grandmother in Brentwood N.Y. We would take our kids to Coney Island. Next stop was to meet his Dad who lived downtown Brooklyn in the Cobber heights area. We did so many things together with our boys enjoying Saturday picnics out of the area in a park on the other side of town. Eventually he took me to meet his mother and his siblings thereafter. He asked me to marry him "I said yes". Chilly was so proud to have me on his arm and I guess to let all the guys in the area know I was his lady. We were making plans as to where we were going to get married at. How many people we would invite, and what location we were going to live in after the marriage. I really enjoyed the fact that he loved to entertain at my home. He would invite his friend Goldie and favorite cousin Ricky over from time to time. We even found ourselves at Ricky's house they allowed me to nicknamed is youngest daughter screaming me-me. To everyone's surprise he fell sick including me. I was trying to reach him but, never got in contact with him. I didn't know what was wrong until I got a call from his mother. She told me that he was hospitalized and I should get there as soon as possible. The hospital was very close to my home. I couldn't imagine what was wrong or what happened to him. The one thing I did know was that he liked to drink a lot of beer. I was wondering what caused him to be in the hospital. When I did arrive I had so many questions like: when did he get admitted, how long was he there and what was the cause of his illness? Things just started to spiral out of control so fast. That relationship abruptly ended in his demise. I was shock, hurt and confused. I felt as if I was living a nightmare; this couldn't be true I would say to myself. Still to this day I'm very close to his son, siblings and extended family. I found myself without companionship. Even with a broken heart I had to push forward. I had my children and oh! did they help me keep my sanity. I was occupied with homework, award ceremonies and class trips. It was a couple months down the road. After the funeral services and repass was over, things did quiet down some. I was trying to recoup and get things in my home back to normal for my children and me. From time to time I would still go to his mom's house to check on her and his brother. Just to see if she needed my assistance with food shopping or running some errands for her. Most of the time when I visited her she would be watching her favorite soap operas. I would listen to her get very excited about what was taking place at that moment. Filling me in on what role each actor played.
A few months later my mourning process began to ease up a little bit. One day I was home alone doing my motherly chores. All of Sudden I hear this knock on my door. I was thinking who it could be because I wasn't expecting any company. I went to the door and looked through the peek hole. I see a dark skinned gentleman standing about 5'8, medium build with a full beard and mustache. He was wearing metal framed glasses. What I noticed most of all was that he was wearing the same uniform that my fiancé once wore. I opened the door, wondering was he knocking because of some type of repair in my home. To my surprise it was the guy that we went to his birthday party a few months back. His name was Franklin as I recalled. This was some time ago, and I didn't even know he remembered who I was, how did he know where I lived? I couldn't remember who was at my fiancée funeral to tell you the truth. I thought he was sincere and honest in his intentions to console me. At that point it didn't dawn on me, what his intentions truly were. Against my better judgment I allowed him to befriend me, because I needed someone to talk to. He said "I thought I would come upstairs to check on you". He claimed he wanted to see how the kids and I were coming along. He said if there's anything I can do please let me know. Franklin asked me if he could come in for a little while. We proceeded to my living room which wasn't far from the front door, to have a seat. He had a brown bag in his hand and stated "do you mind if I eat these chicken wings I have here". It's my lunch break I got these from the Chinese restaurant. I said "sure you can I'll get you a plate". We began to reminisce about my fiancé and his untimely passing. The time came for him to return to work. He turned and said "if you don't mine I would like to come by and check on you every now and again". Maybe I can sit with you when you bring the kids outside. Oh! Ok that would be nice I stated. I did question myself? When did he see me outside sitting with my kids? I asked myself this because I never noticed him before. It was clearly obvious that he saw me before. He would stop by periodically or see me outside in passing and speak. One day he called me on my intercom. Franklin asked "would you like to take a stroll with me in the city?" I said YES! I surely could use that to get me out the house. I told Franklin by the way that day is perfect because my children are going away for the weekend no sense in me staying in the house. We went to the city he took me to a well known steak house. As we got closer to the eatery you could smell the aroma in the air. It was coming from the grilled orders placed by other patrons, either steaks or burgers. We got on line and ordered our food from the menu on the board overhead. You had a choice of what type of steak you wanted to order and how you wanted it cooked. They had every type of steak from t-bone, potter house, 3/4 pound steaks and so on. It came with a bake potato and salad if you desired such. We ordered our beverages and choose not to have dessert. We talked and laughed, it was a very enjoyable evening. There were so many people outside from all nationalities. People were at the curb side doing magic tricks with cards, and people placing bets for a game called three card molly. I saw something out of the ordinary I paid close attention to two guys in the crowd. Their role was to pretend like they were bidding on which card would be the diamond, to get people in the crowd to play because it appeared they were winners. People were singing, break dancing with a bucket close to them so on lookers can throw currency inside it for their performance. Police officers were on horse's riding down the streets patrolling and some on foot. As we held hands and strolled through the city we came upon a table. It was lined with beautiful stuff animals of all types. I noticed a small beautiful white lion, it was well put together and it kind of resembled Franklin. This was because of the fullness of his facial hair and beard. He was like a protector that evening making sure I was positioned on the inside of the pavement. He didn't allow me to walk on the outside close to the curb near traffic. He was portioned just the way I preferred thick strong muscular legs. I guess it's because he rode a bike to work every day. That was his way of staying in shape and keeping his body fit. I started enjoying spending time with him, and I loved his company too. Soon it became a habit of us wanting to be in each other's company. We would go to the movie theater when something new came out. We did this often, because the theater was fairly close to my home. He and I would eat out occasionally at very nice restaurants'. Many times we found ourselves at the beach. Franklin grew to know that I loved water and it bought me great peace and serenity. We would just walk on the boardwalk or sit on the sand by the shore line. Our conversations weren't focused but, more about random topics. I was truly falling for Franklin and I think he knew it. Franklin enjoyed coming over to my house watching movies and cuddling together. I had a major question to ask, but did I really want to know the answer? I had to get it out of my system, I asked him are you in a relationship with someone, or are you married? He said no I'm just living with someone but, we seem to be going our separate ways. We've been talking about splitting up lately. She likes to hang-out with her friends after work and I'm by myself on many occasions. My thoughts were maybe that's why he is around me so much? He stated to me "by the way our parents are good friends" they put us together. I thought to myself that's kind of an arranged relationship. Franklin goes on to say, she has plans on moving out it's just not working between us.
I remember you from the party I attended with my new found friend (Chilly Willie). The celebration was for your birthday hosted by "your girlfriend". I didn't put any pieces to this puzzle together. I thought it just was a girlfriend giving her guy a party. I didn't question anything because I was out with my friend. Truth is told if I would have known certain things that night, I wouldn't be sharing this story.
That conversation never came up again, he told me she moved out. I knew this to be true because I would visit with my sister and her husband. From time to time he would take my son's to his home. There were no signs of a woman residing there with him. I was noticing he's around my kid's and me way too much. I finally knew why "he was a single man". At least I thought so! Was I in for a major surprise? He is really getting to know my kids at this point. The holiday season is approaching Christmas time is coming. I can't recollect what he brought the kids, but he made sure that they were age appropriate. I remember my gift it was a 3 tri-color gold entwined bracelet and it was in a small reddish color pouch. Now comes the time when the lies start coming out and the truth are manifesting. He calls me within his apartment his "girlfriend" must have come to visit or still had a key. She had been ease dropping from behind their bedroom door. She heard the entire conversation an argument erupts and I hear yelling over the phone. He said to me "I have to go because she is going off about something" I'll call you back. He acted as if her presence was a surprise. It surly' was a surprise to me too being that the relationship was supposed to be over. I believe she put two and two together; you're busted now I thought to myself. The very next day he calls me and says he can't stop by he has some errands to run. My mind told me he going to chill around the house until things cool down between him and her.
When we finally reconnected I asked him where did you hide the kids and my gifts. Low and behold he told her that a group of co-workers were getting together. Everyone was buying gifts to bring to the job for less fortunate kids. These gifts were being placed in a donation box at work. That was a lie from the PIT of hell. For awhile no more recklessness or problems came up. Then bam! My house phone rings ... I answer it, hello is this Raven? I said yes to the woman on the other end of the phone she asked are you aware that the man you are dating is my HUSBAND. I "said Franklin? Really his Wife! He said "you were just a female he was living with". I told her "Franklin said you guys broke up and you've moved out". I would like to come over and meet you she asked. I said ok but, for what reason? She said she wanted to find out exactly what was going on.
Well you just told me you knew what was happening I stated to her. You can come if you like so we can discuss this matter. I got a second call that she changed her mind; she claimed she was done with the whole situation and him. He insisted that the relationship was done and please don't break it off with him I'm going to get a divorce because you are who I want to be with. Well he wanted his ice cream and cake too. He was very sneaky and cunning all the while. He was inviting her back and forth to the marital home where they both lived. She became pregnant; I was very unaware of this. One day, a friend of his stopped me on the street and said, you know, your guy just had a beautiful baby boy". I went to the hospital which was close by, to see him for myself. I didn't show the shock and pain on the outside but I felt every bit of it on the inside. At that point I knew that he knew he was telling me something I didn't know. I knew she moved out but, eventually it came to my knowledge that she moved home with her parents'.
Excerpted from A MARRIAGE ROOTED in EVIL, LUST, LIES, and MONEY by RAVEN KANE. Copyright © 2013 Raven Kane. Excerpted by permission of iUniverse LLC.
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