If that boy asks me to go to church with him one more time, I think I’ll scream, Rhya fumed as she thought about yet another text message that she’d gotten from Jabari. It wasn’t that she didn’t see the benefit of going to church, at least for him, but it just wasn’t for her. She’d tried it in the past when her grandma used to make them go back in the day, dressed up in her Sunday best that she couldn’t wait to get out of. She grimaced at the thought. That was another reason that she was excited about attending college away from her family; she could make her own choices. Like hanging out with Kira, or going to the club or a house party, heck even drinking, even though she considered herself a lightweight compared to most of her classmates. It wasn’t that she even liked those sorts of things. It really was more about her being able to assert some independence while boosting her self esteem, despite it sometimes taking her out of her typical character. But regardless, she thought stubbornly, it was her choice and she wasn’t about to change up how she was doing things for some man, let alone some youngster who was still wet behind the ears. With that thought in mind, she picked up her phone to call Kira, “Hey girl, whatchadoing?” “What’s up boo? Nothin, just trying to figure out what to get into.” “Aight, bet, you wanna hang? I need a mental break,” Rhya sighed as she looked through her small closet for a “get ‘em” dress. “Guuurrrll,” Kira came back with a southern drawl, “you know I’m always down for a night out!”
The club they went to was bumping, with good music and fine guys. If it was one thing Rhya appreciated about finally turning 21 was being able to go out and see real men; she was over college boys with no game and even less money. As she was mulling over all the reasons why she was ready to graduate and move on with the next chapter in her life, she felt someone brush up against her arm. I mean, it’s crowded but not that crowded, she thought to herself as she whipped around, prepared to tell whoever it was to back up. But instead, when she fully turned, she caught her breath as she looked into the deepest brown eyes, swimming in the most handsome brown face, of the finest brown brother she had ever had the pleasure to lay eyes on. “Oh, I’m sorry,” he said in a voice that came from deep within his chest, “I didn’t mean to hit you.” “Ummm well, yeah, no it’s fine. You’re fine, I mean, I’m fine,” Rhya could have slapped herself. Taking a moment to regain her composure, she smiled, “It’s really no problem.” “That may be the case, but let me buy you a drink to make up for it,” this awesome specimen offered. As he got the bartender’s attention, he looked over and smiled, “My name’s Mel. What’s yours?” Once Rhya shared her name, they found an empty table and spent the rest of the night getting to know each other. At one point, she got a text from Kira, “soooooo, Jabari?” was all it said. In that moment, Rhya realized she hadn’t thought of him once, and that, in itself, was telling.
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