Hi everyone! In my last post, I mentioned I would be uploading chapters every Friday for Baker 6, but I decided to do it a day early! Instead of two chapters, I added on two more for fun.
Here’s the next four chapters. Enjoy!
Coming back home has always been a good feeling. Even though I love Dallas, Baker is more tranquil than the city life that Dallas brings. But when I stared into the beautiful face of my best friend, I remembered why I left. Yes, I’m glad to be back after two years of being away from my family and friends; but I left to get away from Camille. Right now, I don’t know how much longer I can stand by her without wanting to kiss those full lips of hers.
I guess I need to backtrack to when Camille and I first met. I don’t really remember the actual time, but my mom and dad always implied that I was two when we moved to Emerson Drive. My dad accepted a position as a bank manager at Baker Bank so my dad decided to move to be closer to work.
While Camille and I practically grew up together, from having play dates to developing our first bout of acne in middle school, I really started to notice her during our sophomore year of high school. Although my hormones were already on overdrive, just seeing Camille in her bedroom in her tiny nightshirts or laying by the Thomas’ pool watching her in her bikini really turned me on. With her golden caramel skin, long dark brown hair, and the sexiest body I ever lay eyes on, I had various fantasies about us being together.
There was one thing that I didn’t want to do since Camille and I were friends- and that was date her. Sounds crazy, right? Well for me, I realized I rather have my friend, who I practically grew up with and considered a sister (since we were both an only child) still be my friend than have dated her and ended up being enemies. That’s why I dated multiple girls at a time, that way I wouldn’t have to worry about getting into a relationship. I even dated our friend Rachel during our junior year of college, which probably didn’t go well with Camille, but it happened and I don’t regret it one bit.
But when I met Melissa, my issue with commitment became nonexistent. I finally gave someone a chance to be with instead of pushing her away. Well that and the fact that Camille up and married her college sweetheart Chad Anderson, which personally I can’t stand. The guy is a jerk and wonders how Camille would even give him the time of day, let alone married him.
Anyway, about Melissa, she is the perfect woman- smart, energetic, and so sexy. I knew the first time I saw her at work that I would want to date her, and among other things. But little did I know, I didn’t realize she was my boss, so of course it took some time before things between us heated up. Once we had a full blown relationship, I knew we couldn’t no longer work together, so I decided to quit my job at Preston-Wheeler and took an even better position at Press International in downtown Houston. And to this day, no one at Preston-Wheeler knows that Melissa and I are in relationship or even engaged for that matter.
The living situation couldn’t have come at a better time too since I was moving back. Since my mom passed away a year ago, my dad thought it was time to move out of our family home and move into a smaller place. To keep the house in the family, he asked me to move in, which I at first didn’t agreed to; but after much discussion (and pleading from my dad) I decided to go through it.
Now I’m staring at the one person that I wanted to leave from, but instead want so desperately to take into my arms and passionately kiss.
“So Chad is coming?” I asked while giving Camille a hostile look.
“I know you don’t like Chad, but he’s my husband, Trevor.”
“He doesn’t act like it.”
“He’s a basketball trainer. He’s never at home due to their away games.”
“I get that, but he can at least check on you. He acts like he doesn’t have a wife at home.”
“Don’t worry Tre, I’m fine with it.”
I shook my head in amazement. Leave Camille to be the understanding one. The woman can be as tough and straightforward as can be, but when it comes to Chad, she is the complete opposite. That’s another reason why I can’t stand him.
“OK, I’ll drop it. Anyway, I have to finish taking these boxes in.”
“You need any help? Or maybe company?”
“No, Gerald coming by in a little so I’m good. Besides go spend time with your mom.”
“I’ll call you with the party plans.”
As I went up to Camille, I put my arms around her to give her another hug. The way she felt press against my chest made me start to have thoughts I shouldn’t be having.
“See you,” Camille said as she started to walk to her parents’ door. She turned around and stared at me seductively as she opened the door and walked in.
I watched the door closed and gave a long sigh. I think I need to take a cold shower. Immediately.
“This is bull…”
“Don’t say it, Tamara.” Clara, my assistant warned me as I threw daggers at her.
I can’t believe my biggest client Reese Oliver, an actress who started in soap operas and now capitulated into a big star, has been arrested outside of a strip club for fighting with a patron because the girl was talking to one of the strippers she wanted to bone. I mean really! First off, why was she at a strip club trying to get with a stripper when she is what US Weekly considers one of the “Top 25 Faces to Watch This Summer,” and on top of that, was fighting another woman over the fact that she wanted to talk with a stripper. Now while I’m staring at the latest publication of The Houston Chronicle, I threw it across the room, wishing it was Reese I was slinging across the room.
I put my head in my hands and sighed.
“This could not be happening.”
“Should I get a press release started or…”
“Stay on standby. I need to call Reese’s manager to see what really happened last night. Also I need to see if anyone made bail for her. If not, I will have to.”
“I’m really sorry Tam, but you know Reese is a ticking time bomb. She could barely work with half her co-stars on Park Place, that’s why she left the show.”
“If I would have known she was a walking lawsuit, I wouldn’t have taken her on as a client. I really don’t need this right now, especially since Rach’s funeral is this weekend.”
Clara went up to me and put a hand on my shoulder.
“You sure you’re OK to return to work? I know Rachel’s death took a toll on you.”
“Thanks, Clara, but I’m fine. I needed to come in. I need the distraction.”
Clara gave a sympathetic smile as she went into her office. I leaned against the reception counter and took a long swig of my Starbuck’s Café Latte. It has been a week since Rachel’s passing and I’m still in a state of shock. I’m truly felt numb knowing my best friend is no longer here. I’m still not sure why she was on Kelly Court; it’s bad enough to drive it when it’s daylight, but Rachel was driving on the street at night, which basically has no street lights and she was going over 75 miles per hour, which was way too high a speed for that small road.
When I got the news from her mother that Rachel died, my heart literally broke in two because not only was my best friend gone, but also my sister.
Although Rachel and I were from different races, I always considered her my sister because we practically were inseparable. We met in our ninth grade English class and we instantly knew we would be friends, mainly because of our personalities. We always tried to be the life of the party- if we wasn’t, then we will make it our mission to be. And it worked every time we were at a social function. We even tried to one up each other on everything- if it wasn’t with school, it was guys. We even competed to get the attention of one of our friends Trevor (which I have to admit is too fine for words), but his interest was clearly on Rachel. To be honest, I think his interest was on our friend Camille, but that’s another story to tell.
As we graduated high school and went to University of Houston, we were roommates and even pledged to Gamma Phi. Once we graduated, I distinctly knew that I wanted to go into PR while Rachel wanted to do theatre. I mentioned to her that if I ever owned my own PR firm I would hire her as my first client. After I did an internship at Parker and Co., a huge PR firm in Houston, I decided to start my own public relations company. It was indeed a struggle, but I got through it with flying colors. I hired Rachel on and before I knew it, not only has her career taken off, but so did mine. I was able to get high profile clients while Rachel was on the hit soap Park Place and landed her first leading movie role opposite In a romantic comedy. I was so happy for her and what she was about to become; now I won’t be able to get the chance to see how much her life would transform.
I walked into my office and picked up a picture of Rachel and me at a recent event in Hollywood. I really don’t know how I’m going to make it through the funeral, but I know I will find the strength from somewhere to say one last good bye to my friend.
The door opened to the office as someone walked in. I peeked my head out of my office and noticed my brother Derrick walking in.
“How you holding up?” he asked as he gave me a warm hug.
“I’m fine; just trying to get through the day.”
“If you need anything, I’m here for you, OK.”
“Thanks. Are you going back to San Antonio soon? I need to see if you were going to check on a client that is there for a shoot.”
“Why would I do that sis”?”
“You did say if there’s anything you could do…”
“Just tell me when I need to go.”
“Thank you, bro.” I said as I went up to him and gave him another hug.
Derrick and I have a special relationship beyond the normal sibling relationship. We pretty much raised ourselves growing up, so we always leaned on each other when needed. Being the older sibling, Derrick always was there for me and I will always appreciate that.
“Will Melanie be at the funeral?” Asked Derrick.
I gave Derrick a suspicious look as he mentioned Melanie Bradshaw. Lately, he has been asking a lot about Melanie. Although she’s my friend, I don’t like the closeness of my brother and her together; mainly because she has a reputation of being a gold digger.
“Why wouldn’t she be? She was Rachel’s friend too.”
“Not from what I’ve heard.”
“What have you heard?” I replied, giving Derrick a puzzled look.
I really didn’t like how this conversation was going. I know Rachel and Melanie had their ups and downs, but they were always friends at the end of the day. If there was trouble with their friendship, I would have definitely known about it.
“It’s nothing to worry about, sis. Like I said, just let me know when you need me in San Antonio and I will go. I have to clear up some loose ends with the management company up there anyway.”
“Great. I’ll let you know after the funeral. Thanks again Derrick.”
Derrick smiled as he went up to me and kissed me on the forehead.
“I don’t know what’s going on between you and Melanie, but please just be careful.”
“Am I always?” He said while leaving out the door.
As I watched it closed, I shook my head and sighed.
“That’s what I’m afraid of.”
As I pulled up into Trevor’s driveway, a wave of nostalgia hit me as I remembered practically every memory I had with not only Trevor but with all my friends in the neighborhood. Being around the area really made me miss the middle and high school days as well as just hanging out with the “crew” as I called them.
Once I walked up to the doorstep, Trevor automatically opened the door and gave me a brotherly hug. I have to admit I missed my best friend and I’m definitely glad he’s back.
“Good to see you, man.”
“You too. Are you settling into the old place?”
“Trying to; been moving stuff in since this morning.”
“You know I was thinking all the good times we had in this house. Remember the party we had our senior year?”
Trevor shook his head and sighed. “Do I? You know I was grounded for a month for that.”
“Yeah, but you did lose your virginity to Tamika Parker.” I said while dropping down onto an armchair.
“Yes, I did.” Trevor said and began to smile at the thought.
“She’s good. She’s driving down tomorrow.”
“That’s good she’s coming down to support you. But what I meant was how things between you two. Last time we talked you were having second thoughts about the engagement.”
Trevor started to get an uneasy stance as he slumped into the seat next to me. He gave a long pause before speaking.
“Everything’s great, couldn’t be better.”
“Could have fooled me.”
“Well it is. Can we move on please?”
“No problem. I do need to know one thing. Why you never got with Camille? I see how you look at her. And don’t give me that best friend crap. That’s how majority of relationships start.”
“Don’t go there Gerald.”
“I’m just asking Trevor. It seems like you two are more than just friends even though you haven’t pursued anything.”
“And it’s going to stay that way. I love Camille like a sister, so evidently I don’t want to go that route.”
“OK, I can respect that.”
“Thank you. So how are things with you?”
“Great. I’m thinking about pursuing a new venture in my career.”
“Really, what’s that?”
“I want to branch out with my career and possibly start doing hosting spots. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do at the station, but being a correspondent with a local TV station only going to get me so far.”
“I hear you. It’s good to expand your brand. What you’re thinking about doing?”
“Maybe getting my name out there and creating a positive buzz. I also want to get my own talk show one day.”
“Wow Gerald, I’m impressed. But you always were driven.”
“Yeah, and look where it got me. I mean you’re an accountant, Camille’s a big name event planner, Tamara has a PR firm, Melanie owns a clothing boutique and Rachel was a well-known actress. I’m just a third rate media correspondent for a station no one watches.”
“Why are you selling yourself short? Didn’t you say the ratings improved when you started your segment?”
“Maybe, but I guess it’s not enough for me.”
“Speaking of Tamara, you did mention she has a PR firm. Don’t you think you need to talk to her to get your foot in the door? I’m pretty sure she knows a lot of people in the industry.”
I looked at Trevor while realizing what he just said. He’s right- I should try to get my foot in door, and what’s the best way by hiring a PR firm to expand my brand.
“I think I should talk to Tamara.”
“I think you should.” Trevor said.
As Trevor stood up to go into the kitchen, I leaned my head back on the armchair and looked at my surroundings. Maybe things will change for me, I just need to believe. Although I’m considered the voice of reason through my friends, I usually wonder who will be the voice of reason for me when I really need it.
Seeing my mom always made me feel good. She can easily take my blues away with her cheerily attitude and sound advice. But as I was headed to my home, the happy feeling I was experiencing was quickly replaced with sheer dread.
I exhaled as I noticed my husband, Chad’s Lincoln Navigator sitting in the driveway. It took everything in me to get out of my car and walk inside my front door. Even though Chad was the love of my life, I lately been wondering should I have even married him. When we first dated back in college, we were so in love. No one could of tear us apart if they wanted to.
I still remember the day we met as if it was yesterday. It was in my sophomore year and his junior year at University of Houston. We were taking a business course together and were paired in a group project to create a business plan. It took us a while to actually admit we had feelings for each other, but when we did, it was definitely magnetic. I even lost my virginity to Chad, which was more than enough for me to know that he was going to be my husband.
We later got engaged a year later, but held off the wedding until we both graduated college. My friends were less than thrilled about me marrying Chad, but they supported my decision and were all presented at our small but intimate wedding. But ever since we started our careers, we just became further apart. To be honest, it felt like we were slowly falling out of love.
As I put my key into the lock, I took another huge breath before opening the door. I looked ahead to see Chad in the kitchen making dinner.
I had to admit Chad looked ever better than the first day we met. His smooth honey colored skin and big brown eyes were always a turn on for me. Not to mention his tall athletic frame; which was a main asset for him while being on the basketball team at UofH. His dream was to be drafted into the NBA, but his career was cut short after a fatal knee injury during one of the biggest games of his college career. He loved the game so much he decided to become a trainer, in which he proudly does for the Baker Jaguars.
When Chad noticed me walking in, he flashed a thousand watt smile which made my heart flutter.
“Hey, babe.” Chad said as he went up to me and gave me a kiss on the cheek.
“Hey, sweetie. How was work?”
“It was good. Had a bunch of drills I had to do with the players, the usual stuff. How was your day?”
“It was good. I got some work done and went and visit my mom. She was asking about you.”
“Really; I’ll have to make a visit to see Claire soon.”
I smile at the thought. If he only knew…
Truthfully, my mom couldn’t stand Chad. She pretty much thought he was an egoistic jerk who only cared about himself. She was hurt when I said we were getting married. While she was hurt by my news, my father was pretty much happy considering that I was marrying someone who could give free tickets to games when needed.
The one thing my mom always mentioned was: Why couldn’t you and Trevor gained a relationship? He’s a much better catch than Chad.
If she only knew…
I never really told anyone about my feelings for Trevor- not even my mom- so it’s kind of hard to lie to everyone when I’m supposed to be happily married. But one person knows the real state of my marriage, and that’s Trevor. I can’t get anything past him, no matter how far apart we were before.
“I think she would like that”
“I know you had a long day today with work, so I just wanted to have a night catered to you before I head off on the road again. I decided to go to the Atlanta game this weekend.”
“You’re not going to the funeral?”
“Yes, baby I am. I’m leaving straight after though.”
I rolled my eyes at Chad and went into the living room in a huff. Chad is really starting to become too committed to his job. I know with being a trainer takes a lot of time away from home, but the team gave him the weekend off to attend Rachel’s funeral. Why he asked to go was definitely a mystery to me.
Chad walked into the living room and sat down on the couch opposite from me.
“Is there a problem?
“Like you don’t know? You had the weekend off. You can take some time off to attend your friend’s funeral. Not just for yourself, but for me. I need my husband there.”
“I didn’t say I wasn’t going. I will be there; I’m just going to take a flight out afterwards. Cam, I’m trying to keep a good impression on the team. I just can’t drop everything when I want to.”
“Oh please, don’t give me that bull about keeping a good impression. You’ve been with the team for five years now. You’re one of the best trainers the team ever had.”
“And I want to keep it that way; that’s why I have to make an appearance and show I’m reliable to everyone. I’m pretty sure you understand with the job you have.”
I sighed and went over to Chad. I sat beside him on the couch and took his hand. Chad looked at me and smiled.
“Listen babe, I know we’ve been having some issues lately with our jobs and not finding the time to be with each other. I know you’re frustrated and so am I, but these are the lives we chose when we decided on our careers. I’m not saying we should make time because we definitely should, but I’m not going to regret the career I chose and I wouldn’t want you to either.”
Chad does have a point. We built our careers from the ground up- him with proving to be a great trainer and me by turning a no name brand into the powerhouse it is now. I can’t knock Chad for doing his job just like me with mine. With the last event I planned, I was practically nonexistent at home, which was a strain to Chad because he was actually at home during the time since the team had a four game home stretch.
As I looked into his eyes, Chad leaned into me to give me a kiss on the lips. The kiss was so passionate; I almost forgot what we were talking about. I broke away from the trance and put a hand on his chest.
“Listen, I don’t want to stand in the way of your career, because I know you wouldn’t do that to me; but we have got to find some common ground on our marriage. I want us to be happy again, and lately I feel we haven’t.”
“I understand and I want that too. That’s why I was thinking since the season is almost over in two months that we could take a long vacation in which you can choose the place.”
A huge smile spread across my lips as I threw my arms around Chad. He started to laugh at the excited gesture.
“So, I take that as a yes.”
“Of course! I don’t have any events around that time, so that will be perfect.”
“Let me know where and I’ll make the arrangements.”
A suddenly urge came over me as I began to kiss Chad. He put his arm around me while I began to move my lips to his ear. As I was giving soft, sweet kisses to his earlobe, Chad manage a moan which made me even hornier. Even though I do have feelings for my best friend, I never said I didn’t love my husband. When the times we were together, it was electric; that’s why I wanted to feel him right at that moment.
“What about dinner?” Chad whispered.
“Dinner can wait.” I said as pulled off his shirt.
Chad started to unbutton my blouse as I lay myself on the couch.
And we started to make love right there in the living room.