One to Remember
by R. Fitzgerald, Copyright 2007 Bloggers Delight Vol 1
Giving of one’s heart is never an easy thing to do, especially for a man. In fact, most men would rather opt for a life of sex than to truly give their heart over to a woman and have it broken into pieces. But, sometimes, love is spontaneous, and the heart doesn’t forewarn you of its intentions; it simply succumbs. Everett knew this all too well. The moment he saw Samaya James, his heart stopped. She was the one. Everything within him confirmed it. Yet, here it was, nearly thirty-six hours since Samaya left Atlanta for her return trip home, and he couldn’t fathom why she hadn’t called. All sorts of questions began racing through Everett’s mind.
Does she feel the same way I do about her? Maybe she hasn’t called because she is studying for her finals? Or, maybe she’s there with “them,” laughing at me. Maybe, this was all some big joke. A way to get back at me for all the dirt I’ve done in the past. Nah, that couldn’t be it. She’s not that type of girl. She would never do something like that.
His mind kept vacillating until he made a conscious effort to reassure himself that all was well. Besides, his playing days were behind him. He had to be out of karma’s reach by now, or, at least he hoped so. Their time together had been genuine; Everett refused to believe anything less.
Regardless of whether it was coincidental or intentional, Ms. James hadn’t called, and it was beginning to bother him. Everett wrestled within himself on whether he should leave yet another message; he was already up to three. He wanted to be cool but also caring. If she wasn’t feeling the same way about him -- there he was, doubting himself again -- he wanted to restrain his emotions. The problem: he already played his hand. It was too late to renege. He could feel love rising inside of him, and it was about to spill over. Anticipating the return of her love had him open. All she had to do was say the word, and he was hers -- forever.
Samaya managed to accomplish in a matter of weeks what some had worked months to achieve, but to no avail. Maybe it was timing, or, maybe it was the newness of love; but, whatever it was, Everett was sick over her. Literally. His body was filled with angst. He was sure the warm radiance of love didn’t feel like this. This sensation was more akin to a sickening, creeping feeling; an evasive nervousness that caused his heart to engage in rhythmic abandon. Panic, no doubt. He could feel it closing in like a speeding car in a rearview mirror, and, as the hours since her departure continued to escalate, he became a ball of nerves. He needed to hear her voice. He needed to know she was free from harm. He needed her to dishevel the thoughts that consumed him. He needed to know… that she, too…was falling in love.
The eve of conception – summer of 93’
“Yo, Everett! Yo, Derrick!” Rob yelled from the asphalt parking lot. He was trotting in the direction of his “boyz,” Everett Goins and Derrick Roberts. The two friends had wandered onto the turf-covered field just off the Norman Hall parking lot. They were on the campus of University of Florida, Everett’s alma mater, catching up on old times now that the frat party held in Norman Gym was letting out. Everett and Derrick turned to see Rob Jenkins jogging in their direction while throwing up his hand, motioning to them to wait up.
“What’s up fellas?” Rob said as he extended his hand to Everett for a “pound”: their fists connected top and bottom in a duplicitous motion followed by the tapping of knuckles to the middle. Rob repeated the same greeting with Derrick as they exchanged the brotherly greetings of “whatup dawg” and “good to see you”. The guys had known each other since Everett’s sophomore year, when they all lived in Broward Hall.
“So, what’s going on man?” Rob said.
“Nothing much…just catching up with Derrick. What’s been up with you?”
“Same ole, same ole: just working, kicking it, and trying to get up on a few of these ladies in the process. So, what brings you to town?”
“I’m just here taking care of a little Army Reserve business, but, now that I have that out the way, I figured I’d take a stroll on campus.”
“Well, you should have come a little earlier because you missed a good party. The honeys were out in mass tonight.”
“Yeah, well, I just wanted to see a few faces. I’m not into partying as much as I used to be,” Everett responded.
“That’s hard to believe. I figured with you being in Atlanta, you’d be kicking it nonstop. I guess a couple years out of school make a big difference,” Derrick added.
“Well, if you remember correctly, I started making my descent before I left Gainesville. I still get out, but now, it’s in the form of concerts, festivals and plays. You know…adult fun.”
“I can dig that, but we don’t get much of that here…so I guess we’ll have to settle for chasing hoes,” Derrick said engaging them in a hearty laugh.
“So, check it: What are the ladies like in Atlanta? I hear it’s eleven to one. Those are some nice odds,” Rob said.
“It’s probably higher than that, but for real, you couldn’t tell; it’s still hard to find a good woman. There are a lot of fine chicks in Atlanta, but a lot of them are looking for a sponsor; and I’m not looking to take on baggage. I work too hard for my money.”
“I hear you on that, but does that mean you ain’t tapping nothing?” Rob inquired.
“Come on now. This is Everett you’re talking to. I can run ‘em with the best of ‘em, but I’m tired of macking. I’m looking to settle down.”
“I feel you on that,” Derrick responded “I’d like to find my better half as well, but that’s easier said than done.”
“Man, we’re still young. Ya’ll better do like me and get all you can, while you can,” Rob said.
“Been there; done that, dawg. I’ve had enough for you, me and the next man. Sooner or later, we all have to grow up. It’s more to life than just chasing.”