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Authors: Mary B. Morrison

Baby, You're the Best

BOOK: Baby, You're the Best
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Also by Mary B. Morrison
If I Can’t Have You series
If I Can’t Have You
I’d Rather Be With You
If You Don’t Know Me
 
Soulmates Dissipate Series
Soulmates Dissipate
Never Again Once More
He’s Just a Friend
Somebody’s Gotta Be on Top
Nothing Has Ever Felt Like This
When Somebody Loves You Back
Darius Jones
 
The Honey Diaries
Sweeter Than Honey
Who’s Loving You
Unconditionally Single
Darius Jones
 
She Ain’t the One
(coauthored with Carl Weber)
Maneater
(anthology with Noire)
The Eternal Engagement
Justice Just Us Just Me
Who’s Making Love
 
Mary B. Morrison, writing as HoneyB
Sexcapades
Single Husbands
Married on Mondays
The Rich Girls Club
 
Presented by Mary B. Morrison
Diverse Stories: From the Imaginations of Sixth Graders
(an anthology of fiction written by thirty-three sixth graders)
Baby, You’re The Best
MARY B. MORRISON
Kensington Publishing Corp.
http://www.kensingtonbooks.com
All copyrighted material within is Attributor Protected.
Heavenly “Forever34” Hillton, I will always love you.
Acknowledgments
Life, like love, should be a continuance of experiences, not a series of encounters. Encounters are easily forgotten. Experiences are long remembered.
Thankfully, I can testify that I’ve utilized some of the gifts God has bestowed upon me for a greater humanitarian purpose. There are a few more talents I’m preparing to unleash to entertain my audience before this book is in print. God willing, we shall see!
Individually and collectively each of you, my readers, are blessings. I appreciate your continued support. Where would I be without you? I never want to know.
Since my previous publication of
If You Don’t Know Me
, major things have happened. I’ve relocated from Oakland, California, to Atlanta, Georgia. I was peachy already. Now I’m truly ripe, y’all. I’m in a new and exciting space. I’ve penned two nonfiction books, produced my stage play,
Single Husbands,
and starred in a reality show. Okay, I’m speaking all of this into existence.
Believing no man is an island, I have several people who have stood by me throughout my life. I’ll mention them as I continue, but right now I’d like to say, “I’m proud of my son, Jesse Byrd, Jr.” He’s completed his first novel,
Oiseau: The King Catcher
. He’s closer to standing at the altar to exchange wedding vows with his beautiful fiancée, Emaan Abbass. I pray all great things for them and other couples—irrespective of gender—uniting in matrimony. Everybody deserves love and happiness.
Family, friends, fans, and faith are the unbreakable bond that sustains my literary career, which is stronger than ever. You guys make me feel amazing!
ATL welcomed me into the open arms of concert promoter Jeremy Hill, radio personality Missy E. the Partydoll, Realtor Dianna Crawford, journalist Michelle Gipson (and her mother Mary), my sisters Regina Morrison and Margie Rickerson, author friends Marissa Monteilh, Stephanie Perry Moore, and Tamika Newhouse, my friends Vanessa Ibanitoru, Shannette Slaughter, Marlon Hamilton, June Grant, and Marcus Darlin. Each of you helped me settle into my new environment. Your loyalty is priceless and appreciated.
My unmarried husband, Richard C. Montgomery, tricked out my new loft crib. He was my co-executive producer extraordinaire for my stage play,
Single Husbands
. I couldn’t have done it without you! Divorce is not an option for us. I love you, man!
A special shout-out goes to Roland Morrison, my nephew who is also my personal assistant and trainer. You are amazing! To my cuz, Edward Allen. You are the smoothest dude I know. To Ed’s wife, Tasha Allen, you’re the greatest. Through your marriage, I’ve witnessed the unconditional love you have for one another and your son, EJ. That’s my boy. Carroll Hawkins, thanks cuz for always keeping in touch with the fam. You’re solid C, and for real, you deserve the Father of the Year award, every year.
Daniel Markell, VP of Development at Sirens Media, you’re the classiest act ever, man! Thanks for the opportunities! You have to star me in
Literary Divas
reality show.
Kendall Minter, no entertainment lawyer reps like you and I’m blessed to be your client and friend. You support me on levels that I can never repay you for.
Everything must change but the constants in my life are my siblings. Wayne, Andrea, Derrick, and Regina Morrison, Margie Rickerson, and Debra Noel, I love you guys.
This chick here is incredibly supportive. Author Lisa Renee Johnson, I love you and I’m going to miss your husband’s gumbo. I might have to make it back to Cali for y’all’z Christmas party.
I have a friend who has the gift to read. One day we were sitting in my room at the Twelve Hotel in Atlanta and she asked me to place my hands in hers. When she connected with my parents and told me things I’d never revealed to her, she closed a void in my life. It was burden-lifting to understand how my mother, Elester Noel, loved not only me but all my siblings equally. My father, Joseph Henry Morrison . . . was far more abusive than I’d imagined. My friend helped me to comprehend why my mother committed suicide. I’ll leave it at that. Thanks, Shannette!
To Natalie Nervis, I appreciate your gift, insight, and countless prayers.
Boss bitch, Christal Jordan, owner of Enchanted PR, put me on the map in the ATL. From promoting
Single Husbands
to launching my Google Hangouts to getting me on Foxie 105 FM as the relationship sexpert, you’re top notch. A shout out goes to Cathy Hughes and Radio One for embracing me early in my literary career and now. My fam at Foxie 105 FM are truly number one. BabyJ and Georgia drive-time on-air with you guys is a rush.
What’s life without social media, baby (pumping both palms toward the sky)! I can never have enough Facebook fans, Twitter, Tumblr, and Instagram followers, and McDonogh 35 Senior High alumni supporters, but I can say, “I love you for checking me out!”
Much heartfelt appreciation to my editor and friend, Selena James at Kensington Publishing Corporation. At Kensington, I’m family. Undying praises to Steven Zacharius, Adam Zacharius, Karen Auerbach, Adeola Saul, and everyone else at Kensington for growing my literary career since 1999.
Laurie Parkin, I hope you’re enjoying your retirement. Lesleigh Irish-Underwood, I pray for continued success in your new career. Carol Hill Mackey and Karen R. Thomas, your efforts in elevating my literary works will never be forgotten.
Latoya Smith, muah! You’re an incredibly talented editor.
Single Husbands
stage play was a huge hit in part to Grand Central Publishing’s support.
Behind the scenes, I have scintillating agents and attorneys. Andrew Stuart and Claudia Menza, Kenneth P. Norwick, Esq., and Kendall Minter, Esq., I appreciate each of you.
My thirtysomethings are a blessing beyond measure. Heavenly Hillton, Dominique McClellan, Marlon Hamilton, and Bryan “BWats” Watson, you are truly unique.
Wishing each of my readers peace and prosperity in abundance. Visit me online at
www.MaryMorrison.com
. Sign up and invite your peeps to do the same for my HoneyBuzz newsletter. Join my fan page on Facebook at TheRealMaryB, follow me on Twitter at marybmorrison, Instagram at maryhoneybmorrison, and Tumblr at HoneyBMorrison.
This is novel #1 in The Crystal series
PROLOGUE
Alexis
 
 
 
“T
hanks for everything. I enjoyed serving you.”
You? You?
Not this shit again! That bitch waited on us for two hours. I’d kept my mouth shut when the “What would
you
like to drink” was directed toward my man only. I had to interrupt with my request for a mai tai.
We’d adhered to their protocol by writing our orders on the restaurant’s request forms meaning there was no need to ask what we wanted to eat. The repeat for confirmation, “So you’re having the fried wings, rice and gravy, and steamed cabbage and the vegetable plate with double collard greens, and fried okra?” was asked of my man as though he was going to eat it all by himself.
Now that the check was here I was still invisible?
Aw, hell no!
I pushed back my chair, stood tall on the red-bottom stilettoes my man had bought. The hem of my purple halter mini dress was wedged between the crack of my sweet chocolate ass but I didn’t give a damn. That working-for-tips trick was about to come up short.
I leaned over the table, pointed at the waiter, then said loud enough for all the people on our side of the restaurant to hear, “My man is not interested in you!”
James held my hips, pulled me toward my seat. Refusing to sit, I sprang to my feet, then told him, “No, babe.”
Nothing was holding me back from the inconsiderate asshole that obviously needed customer service training. I stepped into the aisle. The only thing separating us was air.
“Not today, Alexis. Please stop,” James pleaded.
I extended my middle finger alongside my pointing finger, and my nails stopped inches from the waiter’s face when my man reached over the table and grabbed my wrist. I was about to put both of that dude’s eyes out.
He posed, one foot slightly in front the other, tilted his head sideways, put his hand on his hip with a bitch-I-dare-you attitude.
The room was cold. I was heated. The guests became quiet. A woman scrambled for her purse, picked up her toddler, then rushed toward the exit. I didn’t give a damn if everybody got the hell out!
“One of these days, sweetheart, I’m not going to be around to intervene,” James said. He handed the waiter a hundred dollar bill.
I snatched it. “Give his ass whatever is on the bill and not a penny more.”
James handed that jerk another hundred. This time the waiter got to the money before I did. He stuffed the cash in his black apron pocket, rolled his eyes at me, scanned my guy head to toe, then said, “Thanks. You can come anytime you’d like. Let me get your change.”
He stepped back. I moved forward. I didn’t have a problem slapping a bitch that deserved it. I swung to lay a palm to the left side of his face. His ass leaned back like he was auditioning for a role in the next
Matrix
movie.
“Don’t duck, bitch, you bold. If you feeling some type of way express yourself.” I shoved my hand into my purse.
He screamed, “Manager! Manager!”
I didn’t care if he called Jesus. “Say something else to my man. I dare you.” If I lifted my gun and put my finger on the trigger, I swear he wouldn’t live to disrespect another woman.
James swiftly pulled my arm and purse to his side, then told the waiter, “Sorry, man. Keep the change.”
The waiter stared at the guests. “Y’all excuse my sister, she forgot to take her meds.” A few people laughed.
“Take your lame-ass jokes to Improv Comedy Club for open mic, bitch. You weren’t trying to be center stage before my man tipped you.”
“I got you, boo.” He pulled out his cell, started pressing on the pad. “You so bad. Stay turnt up until the po-po comes.” He turned then switched his ass away.
James begged, “Sweetheart, let’s go.”
Some round short guy with a sagging gut dressed in a white button-down shirt and cheap black pants hurried in our direction. “Ma’am. Sir. You need to leave now.”
The old lady seated next to our table said, “Honey, you’re outnumbered in this town. You gon’ wear yourself out.”
I told my guy, “Walk in front of me.”
Shaking his head, James said, “You a trip,” then laughed. “You go first. I have to keep an eye on you.”
That was the other way around. Atlanta was a tough place to meet a straight man who cared about being faithful. The ugly guys had a solid five-to-fifteen females willing to do damn near anything to and for them. The attractive ones had triple those options. The successful good-looking men with big egos and small dicks were assholes not worth my fucking with. But these dudes boldly disrespecting me by hitting on my man, they were the worst.
“It’s not funny, James. I’m sick of this shit.”
I knew it wasn’t my guy’s fault that James was blessed eighty inches toward heaven, one hundred and eighty pounds on the ground with a radiant cinnamon-chocolate complexion that attracted men and women.
James opened the door of his electric-blue Tesla Roadster, waited until I was settled in the passenger seat. He got in, then drove west on Ponce de Leon.
As he merged onto the I-85, he said, “Just because you have the right to bear arms, sweetheart, doesn’t mean you should. I keep telling you to leave the forty at home,” he said laughing. “I’m glad you like my ass.”
“Nothing’s funny. I don’t understand how men hitting on you don’t bother you.”
“The way you be all up on my ass, what the hell I need a dude for? Soon as you finish your dissertation, I’m signing you up for an anger management course,” he said. “You can’t keep flashing on men because your father is the ultimate asshole. Let it go, sweetheart.”
“That’s easy for you to say. Your parents are still happily married. I bet if your dad disowned you, you wouldn’t say, ‘Let it go.’ ”
I was still pissed at that waiter. I had to check his ass. I was fed up with dicks disrespecting females. I’d seen my mother give all she had to offer and the only engagement ring ever put on Blake Crystal’s finger was the one she’d bought herself.
James held my hand. “You’re right, sweetheart. I know how much he’s hurt you.”
My father, whoever and wherever the fuck he was, was the first male disappointment in my life. Some kids cried because their daddy promised to show up but didn’t. Mine never promised. Before I had a first boyfriend, my heart was already shattered into pieces by my dad. Staring out the window, I refused to shed another tear.
Continuing north on Interstate 85, James bypassed exit 86 to my house. “I know how to cheer you up. I’m taking you to Perimeter Mall.”
“Thanks, babe,” was all I’d said.
I was twenty-six years old and I’d never met my father. My birth certificate listed the father as unknown. Hell yeah, I was angry. My mama didn’t fuck herself but in a way she had.
My way of coping with my daddy issues was to not allow any man to penetrate my heart or disrespect me. Every man I dated had to like me more. The second a woman liked a man more than he liked her, she was fucked and screwed.
“Sweetheart, I have a question.”
“Don’t start that shit with me today, James. Don’t go there.”
He let go of my hand. “If you answer, I promise, no more questions.”
I knew he was lying. He always said that shit and didn’t mean it. “What, James?”
“Have you had any other men in your house other than me?”
I could lie. Tell him what he wanted to hear. Or I could tell the truth. Either way it didn’t fucking matter! My blood pressure escalated. “I’m not answering that.”
He exited the freeway, parked by Maggiano’s. “Cool, then I’m not paying your rent this month.”
That’s why a bitch kept backup.
BOOK: Baby, You're the Best
9.8Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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