Category Archives: Fiction

Short Stories, Novella, & Other Chapters

Until We Die – A Virtual Reality Short Story

“Is he still in there,” Director Laura Stiles walking into the room, stilettos clicking on the marble floors. Her thick brown hair was drawn back into a ponytail. The assistant director Charles Flint was checking the candidates stats at the medical station. He wrote a few numbers down and join Laura at the viewing glass. There, behind thick glass, a man laid on a gurney with a slight incline to keep him from swallowing his tongue. Leather straps held him in place.

“His heart rate spikes every few minutes before returning to normal. Other than the fact he’s been under for 18 hours, he’s doing fine,” Charles explained.

“We’ll need to get in on an IV, maybe even a feeding tube. Is there a next of kin who’d be able to sign off on this,” Laura has never seen this before. 18 hours in VR stasis was unprecedented.

“He has no next of kin listed and no has sign complete control of his physical well being into our hands,” Charles said.

“Brave,” Laura said.

“And maybe a little strange. I get the feeling he’s not just a thrill seeker. This guy is on his last dime. This might be his way out of a situation,” Charles said, sounding concerned. “Laura,” he said quietly. “I don’t know about this.”

“We need to see what’s going on in there,” ignoring Charles all together. Charles is always so careful. There is risk in progress, she’d told him before. “What’s the word on getting an observer in there.”

“We haven’t been able to get the observer to work properly. We get a few slight images but that’s it.”

“Oh come on. Aren’t we the ones controlling the VR world? We project the images directly into the ocular receptors in the candidates eyes and all him to use his nervous system as a controller to move around. Simply tap into the feedback system so that we can monitor what our voyager is doing in there. What program are we running?” Laura began to sound annoyed.

“It’s the garden program.”

“The garden program. You mean our guy over there has been prancing with the lilies and smelling roses for 18 hours.”

“He’s not like the rest, Laura. There is something distinctly different about this candidate. We were able to few the others, though the VR strain sent them running, we saw them. After the first 45 minutes we’d lost contact with this guy. Laura something isn’t right” Charles hated when she got like this. Laura was entirely too passionate about her work.

“Something, Charles? That’s all you have is something? Charles, we need results. The garden is for beginners. Okay, let’s pull him out and see if he will jack into another program,” she said ignoring him.

“Laura, we’ve tried that,” Charles said more forcefully, getting her attention, but also drawing the attention of the laboratory personnel. “We tried that,” lower now. “when we initiate the disconnect, it is refused.”

“Well, hell, force him out!”

“We can’t do that without severe mental, psychological damage,” he said. Charles knew he had to breech the subject with her, but he didn’t know how. He just had to come out and say it. “We don’t know how to get him out.” Laura’s eyes bulged.


“We’ve tried…”

“We have to get in there. We have to see what’s going on. This is unprecedented. This is huge!” excitement written all over her face.

“This is huge.”

Charles stared back with a blank look on his face. He didn’t know what to make of her reaction.

“You know what. I want to go in there. I’m rested and ready to go right now.” Laura started towards her office. The lab coat was already in her hands.

“But Laura!”

“Right now Charles. Get me in there,” she said as she closed the door to her office. Moments later Laura emerged in scrubs and barefooted. She walked with determined steps to the gurney bed and laid herself down. Charles was still getting everything ready and the other little bees in the lab were fluttering all over the place. Laura started attaching cables and wires to her own head. She had no time to waste. This guy might wake up any second. She might never know what really happened in there.

“C’mon Charles let’s go,” she said impatiently. Charles walked into the room. Laura’s gurney was next to Jack’s. All their male candidates were Jacks and females Jills. All the cables were already connect. He placed a VR helmet over Laura’s head. “Count me down.”

“Director are you sure about this,” Charles had gone formal. Reminder her that she was head of this department by stating her title. Nice one Charles, she thought.

“Count me down,” she said calmly, betraying the excitement she really felt inside. Charles pulled a syringe and injected a sedative into Lara’s forearm.

“You won’t have as much control as our friend here, but you’ll be able to explore the world with him. If you find him, you’ll be able to speak with him also. Okay Laura, here we go.10..9..8..7..6..5..4..3..2..and..1”

Laura felt her head swim. The light emitted by the VR helmet seemed to go black. Then, like waking up from a nap, Laura’s eyes opened. She was laying on her back staring into thick stormy grey skies. Strange, she thought Charles said the garden simulation. There should be perpetual golden sunshine and blue skies. The flowers had all wilted. There was a broken down old house off in the distance. That looks so familiar.

“Hello, Mr Woods,” Laura shouted, eyes fastened on the house. There are no houses in the garden simulation. No houses like that in any simulation. The garden was there, but the flowers were dead.

“What the…?”

“Do you like what I’ve done with the place?” A man appeared next Laura.

“Oh my god, you scared me,” Laura hand to heart. “You did this?”

“You like?”

“Why,” she asked confused. “Why change it to look like this.”

“Why? You mean you don’t like it,” his voice crestfallen. “Laura I thought you’d recognize the place.”

Laura swiveled her head towards him. How did he know my name, she thought. “How?”

“This place, I’ve turned into my art work. It’s beautiful. It’s wondrous. I spent hours putting it all together just for you. And to think I didn’t even get a thank you,” Jack said.

Laura was speechless.

“I don’t know what you’re getting at but…”

“Well you didn’t like all my other artwork. So I figured if I recreate your childhood home you’d at least appreciate that. But not even a thank you. I’m so disappointed, ” Jack shouted the last word.

Images from newspapers. Magazines clippings in the mail. Weird phone calls in the dead of night all from burner phones.

“A restraining order Laura, a restraining order?”

“Charles pull me out. Charles, pull me out now.” voice sounding desperate now.

“He can’t hear you. I’ve changed the code of your little world. It was so easy. I just had to crash the code of a single flower and I was in. Laura, we can finally be together. Just you and me, until we die.”

This story was inspired by a writing prompt on Reddit:

For more about me, check out my Youtube Channel: A Novel Escape

Metus Chapter 3: The Girl

“Really, no really. Can’t you cut me some slack,” Joshua roared in anger at nothing in particular. The universe maybe? Or whatever god was available to listen to his angry pleads. Joshua walked to the block his mom had dropped him. If he could only get his hand on a cell phone then he could call his mom to pick him up. That’s as good a plan as any. There were small shops up ahead, he should be able to borrow a cell-phone. Josh came across an antique store towards the entrance of the Plaza. He’d not remembered seeing the shop before. He’d driven through this section of town quite a few times. The store must’ve just opened, he thought. Maybe he’d just not noticed. Mom was always complaining that he was in his own world. Nothing wrong with that. His own world didn’t include bullies and a student body laughing at his abuse. Funny, he remembered going to that same pizza parlor next door to the antique store. But for some reason hadn’t noticed the creepy looking place. The closer he got the more his skin crawled.

Josh was strangely attracted to creepy places and creepy things. Living in Jax, short for Jacksonville, he’d had pet frogs. His mom hated the idea of a snake in the house, so he was forbidden. The frog was bad enough, she’d said. What others thought as creepy, he always considered with a different perspective. His taste was simply more peculiar? Yes, peculiar was the right word. Another word might be unique, like a gentleman sipping a 50-year-old whiskey while watching over his killer sharks from the comfort of his living room. Something he’d seen on TV. That was not creepy at all. Just a matter of perspective. What was really creepy, not to mention scary, was going to those school dances and flopping around like a jellyfish. Do they even dance at those things? Kids probably just stand around in their tuxedos looking like a bunch of penguins.

Either way, he needed a cell phone and he needed it quick before the rain began. The closer Josh got to the store the more the hairs danced around on his arms. There was something definitely creepy about this place, he thought. For a brief moment, he forgot his troubles. He became entranced by the mystical place he was about to walk into. His pace slowed. He became weary of his environment. It was as if someone or something was watching him. Must be his imagination. He’d recently sneaked watching the Stephen King movie ‘IT.’ Josh half expected a demon clown to poke its head up from the manhole. Something impossible for a regular human being, but totally possible for ‘IT,’ Pennywise or whatever ‘IT’ was. Josh had never before felt like this. He thought of going to another store. The pizza shop next door seemed a far safer prospect, but his curiosity was piqued. Joshua set his face into firm determination, strode up to the door, and kept walking hoping no one saw him make a fool of himself. He couldn’t go through with it. His logic overrode his curiosity. “Stupid, I am so dumb,” Joshua said to himself disgusted at his own cowardice. There was nothing to be scared of, but he was afraid. The creep factor was way off the charts for that store. He’d find a cell phone somewhere else.

A voice called out behind him, freezing him in place, “Hey, hey you!” It was the voice of a girl. A sweet voice. It was kinda melodic, as though she about broke out into song and dance. It frightened Josh. Had she seen him walk up to the store, reach for the handle only to shy away in complete horror? Joshua’s thoughts escaped him. Turn around. No, don’t turn around. He felt his head might split in two from the sheer embarrassment. He knew this was foolish. But after literally bearing his soul to 15 of his classmates, he wasn’t quite ready for anymore socializing. He knew he should at least respond, as that would be the polite thing to do. A reasonable response was as far as a kite stuck in a tall tree. Adrenaline, run and hide, fight or flight; or just keep walking, pretend he didn’t hear her. But then he remembered how he tried running and hiding all day and what that got him; deep sea diving in the boy’s toilet. He has to make a stand, here and now. No turning back. A girl is not a runaway train you fool, he thought. What is he so afraid of? He heard footsteps, the approach of a dangerous female tiger. No, not dangerous, just a girl. He could imagine the great cats on the plains of the Sahara. His tongue instantly cleaved to the top of his mouth. If it’s just a girl, why was he so nervous? He became instantly parched. Of course, this would happen when he needed his voice the most.

“Hi, I saw you walk up to the store just now. Was there something that caught your attention? Maybe I could show it to you,” Josh turned, locked eyes, and nearly gave up the ghost. She was gorgeous. She smiled sweetly at him; perfect teeth and the cutest dimples. Josh’s heart melted in his chest. This is not happening.

“I, I, I, just, just, ahh” words, were are the words. Oh no, he thought, I’m making a complete fool of myself. The pretty girl chuckled. Josh’s heart broke. Great now, she’s was laughing at him. A small fire welled up within him, “what are you laughing at?” Josh spoke more solid, the anger sparking his courage. She must’ve seen the look on his face. Her own face echoed the horror.

“Please, I wasn’t making fun,” she said, hands raised with a slight look of embarrassment. She smiled and Josh’s belly did backflips. “I just thought you were kinda cute.” Stunned! Totally stunned! All thoughts escaped him. Her smile wide, warm, reaching her eyes. She was amused by his total bewilderment. It melted Josh’s icy fears to mere puddles.

“I was only looking to borrow a phone,” he tried explaining. His words came out jagged. He wondered if he made any sense.

“Oh okay, sure, my cell phone is in the shop,” the pretty girl turned and started towards the shop’s entrance. She turned and looked back at him. “Are you coming?” Her words were like a spell releasing Josh from his cursed stupor. He trotted after her, nerves bubbling, heart pounding.

Metus Chapter 2: Flush

Josh had only a block’s walk to school. As soon as the car was out of sight he went in his bag, pulled out a hoodie, and slipped it over his head. He placed the hood low, shading his face. He couldn’t keep the hood up during his classes, but that was not his concern.

Thankfully, the day rolled on without a hitch. Josh’s plan to remain inconspicuous had worked. He had to stay out of the cafeteria and going on a forced fast was a small price to pay for his life. The day was almost done. His nerves had finally lifted when he walked into a solid wall of muscle.

“Hey, watch where you’re going,” the muscle said, it was a voice Josh knew all too well. It was the very voice he’d been avoiding all day. It was the voice of the one who would bring about his untimely death. It was Ronnie. Ronnie, the six feet six inches, 235 pounds, big man for the school basketball team, Ronnie. Oh crap, it’s Ronnie, who has a 3.5 GPA because he beats up on other kids smaller and smarter than himself to do his school work. You mean Ronnie, the person for whom Joshua had not finished the term paper due last Friday. It is more than likely that Ronnie will suffer a debilitating blow to his grade in his English class. Yup, it was certainly Ronnie, Josh’s future murderer. Joshua’s heart sank.

“Oh, ahh, sorry,” Josh did an about-face without looking and ran into another wall of muscle. Funny, that second wall wasn’t there before. This one more wiry but musclebound nonetheless. Crap, he’s in deep. It’s official, the crap is rolling downhill. No, not rolling. It’s a freaking avalanche crashing down on his head.

“Hey guys, look it’s Joshua Patterson,” the wiry wall of muscle known as Mikey said. This is not going to end well.

“Oh, what a pleasant surprise, Joshua Patterson,” Ronnie said with a crooked smile plastered to his face.

“Hi guys,” Josh said, giving a little wave; unable to hide the tremble in his voice.

“Funny, I’ve been looking for you all day. Thought I’d see you in the cafeteria and for a while, I thought you’d be out again, but to my surprise, here you are,” Mikey gave a little chuckle at this.

“Yeah, here I am,” the words dry on Josh’s lips.

“Now, I distinctly remember my English paper being due last Friday,” Ronnie spoke as though Josh wasn’t even there “I showed up to class fully expecting an award-winning essay. And you know what I had guys?” He was just having a casual conversation about the weather. “I had nothing. This jerk off didn’t show,” Ronnie’s voice slowly grew, sounding more and more pissed.

Every word from Ronnie’s lips sent blobs of spittle sprinkling Josh’s face. Eeck, one got on his bottom lip. It took everything he had not to try to wipe it away. He didn’t want to geode the muscle-brain into thinking he was trying to make a move. This is really not going to end well.

Josh had gotten food poisoning, probably from a bad pack of ramen or something. Not that it would matter to Ronnie and his goons. They only wanted an ‘A’ in English so they could keep playing basketball.

“You know guys, a funny thing happened,” Josh started.

“Oh please, tell us all about it,” Ronnie retorted, suddenly very interested in everything Josh had to say. “Yes, let us hear the amazing tale of heroism and crap you had to go through why I don’t have my term paper which has now landed me a lowsey C plus in Ms. Trotterfields class.” To Josh’s horror, he realized no excuse would do. He was sure Ronnie stood at a comfortable B and this paper, if done well, would have put him at a B plus. With a few more completed assignments, Ronnie would have been well on his way to an A. But all that was gone. He could probably get back to a B, but an A seems out of the question. It was all Josh’s fault. He screwed up big time.

“Well…there was this bad package of ramen and…I puked all over the floor,” Josh stuttered.

“Yes…yes, go on. Please, feed us all the bull we can stomach,” Ronnie splayed his arms which highlighted a growing crowd.

“I was sick…yeah, I was sick,” Josh finally got the words out.

“Sick huh? So sick you couldn’t email it you dick weed,” Ronnie said through gritted teeth. His pale white freckled skin went red. This is going to be bad. Josh felt as though he’d be sick right now. His heart pounded so hard, he fully expected it to protrude from his chest.

“Guys what should we do to this little dick weed,” Ronnie turned slightly, addressing the growing crowd.

“Atomic wedgie,” one kid shouted.

“Yeah and take his wallet as payment,” someone else said.

“No,” a pretty young blond strode up to Ronnie. “I know what you should do.” She whispered in his ear and Ronnie’s eyes lit up.

Moments later Joshua’s head was being flushed down the toilet of the middle stall in the boy’s restroom. Josh must’ve had particularly good luck, there were no floaters or used toilet paper in the bowl, and much to Ronnie’s disappointment. To make up for this obvious failure, the boys took the opportunity to relieve themselves in the same bowl Josh would eventually be baptized head first. And for good measure, they took his clothes. Joshua was left naked and afraid.

The walls of the restroom were blue and white subway tiles. Varying students had taken the opportunity to illustrate colorful words, declarations of love, and cartoon drawings of penises. His skin was no barrier to the cold which crept into the restroom. “What did I do to deserve this,” Josh said to no one in particular. Not loud enough for anyone to overhear. He had to be careful not to slip up again. Someone might overhear and report it back to Ronnie which would land him in even more trouble. “I hate those guys. I sincerely hate those idiots.” He thought of telling his mom. She would more than likely get him out of this crap school and put him somewhere the student body wasn’t complete buffoons. He hated them all. No one had even offered to help. No one said a word. They all stood there, phones out recording him being dunked into piss stink water. No one cared enough to do anything to help him. The welts on his forehead burned. He’d hit his head a few times against the porcelain.

He was alone in the boy’s restroom with an hour before the end of school. Josh knew at this point that he wouldn’t make it to its final class. He was so dumb to get caught by a bunch of monkeys with the IQ of goats. He would find some way to get back at them. He was tired of running and hiding. It did him no good to hide. Being the fly on the wall was only an invitation to being smacked. But no more. He would die before he’d hide again. For now, he would keep his peace and pine away in the middle stall of the boys’ restroom. But this will never happen again, he assured himself.

It wasn’t until 45 minutes after the final bell rang when Joshua felt safe to exit his fortress of solitude. He walked the halls, bag tightly covering his privates, quietly praying no one would see him. The halls were empty. Joshua sneaked into the boy’s locker room, found his gym clothes neatly tucked away. He donned a pair of sweatpants, a jacket, and sneakers. Without a moment to lose, he dashed out the front doors of the school. He’d missed the school bus and would have to catch a city bus to get home. He cursed at the thought. All his money was in his other pants and who knows where those douche-bags put those. It’s probably apart of their secret stash of boys clothes they use to get aroused, Josh mused. Images of Ronnie taking deep whiffs of his pants flashed through his mind. His cell phone was gone too. Now what, this day couldn’t get any worse. As if some strange fate was out for spite, Josh heard a rumble in the sky. The sun was gone and there was nothing but gray skies. Rain clouds drew to him like flies towards a half-eaten honey bun.

Metus – Chapter 1 (short story series)

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“Honey, you look so nice,” Joshua’s mom said as she looked him over. Her eyes approving the job he’d done getting himself dressed. He knew she would approve and her approval meant he’d be flying below her radar.

“Thanks mom,” he replied with a smile which didn’t quite reach his eyes.

“Well, breakfast is on the table and when you’re ready I can take you to school okay?” She said before heading to her room and pulling the door behind her.

“Hey mom, you really don’t have to. I can totally take the bus. It’s completely okay,” Joshua replied trying not to overdo it.

“Well I have to go in early today, so it is not a problem,” she said shouting from behind the partially closed door of her bedroom. The door opened again, her voice resuming its normal volume, “plus, I feel like such a bad mom making you ride that bus every day.” She often said the bad mom line as though she needed to justify doing something a normal mom would do. Maybe she felt she was intruding some on some sacred ritual of high school teenagers and doing so would be punishable by the gods. Who knows why moms do what they do. They are strange creatures, minds unyielding and far too complex for teenage boys to understand.

Joshua kept his eyes low, locked in a penetrating staring contest with his eggs and waffles. I have to come up with a new plan, he thought. His mother was a naturally suspicious woman. Pushing the issue would only set off alarms in her head. Josh could already hear the sirens, red lights, and a panicked voice over an intercom signaling impending meltdown moments from happening. And like an agent for the CDC dressed in a hazmat suit, mom would swoop in, quarantine his room and place him under surveillance until the threat was neutralized. Josh would hate for her to get involved.

The ride to school was smooth enough, mom kept going on and on about her new job and how great things are going to be. This was her ongoing argument since we packed all our stuff in the middle of the night and left Jacksonville and my dad behind. This was her argument as we slept in cheap motels and ate ramen on the floor of the new apartment. Josh didn’t really think mom had ever been out on her own. She’d gotten together with dad right after high school. Mom had left her home to live with dad in Jacksonville, Florida. Not long after, Josh came along and things must’ve gotten complicated with a baby in the mix. She didn’t talk about it much. But to her credit, things have slowly gotten better. Though at times it seemed as if mom was stumbling through a dark room attempting to find her way. She’d stumbled into a few dead-end jobs. She’d accepted help from the wrong people. Then finally she wised up and went back to grandma and grandpa for help.

Josh understood her reluctance. He felt bad when grandma finally came out said, “I knew you shouldn’t have married that good for nothing man.” Mom said nothing in reply. It was probably best to suffer her embarrassment in silence. But mom would go and work in grandpa’s grocery store.
“You’ll have to work your way to the top like everyone else,” grandpa said. But he’d slipped his little girl enough money for rent for a few months.
Things were still rough and Josh knew she felt far more pressure than she was letting on. Not to mention the pressure she placed on herself. So Josh would’ve totally believed her if it didn’t sound like she was trying to convince herself.

“You know what mom,” Joshua spoke up attempting to sound concerned and supportive. No, not panicked because his stomach was not doing backflips. He was being supportive. “You can just drop me on the corner and keep going.” His Mom’s eyes narrowed and he knew instantly that she would disagree. “It would be easier for you to hop back on the highway, instead of going through the school zone driving 15 miles an hour.” Joshua paused and an awkward silence filled the space. He was being supportive. He was not hiding anything from her. As long as he kept telling himself that, his emotions might very well pick up on the cue to calm the hell down. Did she suspect something? Crap, he’d sounded too desperate. Great, now she’s going to start asking questions. Would he tell her the truth? Josh hated lying to his mom. He looked over at her, with a mask of cool concern. If he hid his face she would know for sure. She peered over at him briefly. Joshua was sure that his mother could see past his illusions.

“Alright Josh, your mother can take a hint,” she said. Josh swallowed his heart. Her eyes were back on the road again. “I’d hoped the day would never come where you would be ashamed of being seen with your dear mother. But I guess it can’t be helped. They grow up so fast,” she continued wiping mock tears from her eyes.

“Whatever mom,” Josh said taking his eyes away from her. He breathed a quiet sigh of relief. “You know that’s not what it is.”

“You know, when your mom was in high school she was a total knock out,” she continued.


“I’m sure I can still turn a few heads,” she said sounding serious.

“Mom really. C’mon! I’ll see you later.”

“Sure,” she said with obvious sarcasm. The car slowed and came to stop on the corner. Josh made to get out the car, “aren’t you going to kiss your poor lonely bewildered mother goodbye?” Her face was in a screw. Eyebrows knotted.

“Really mom? You’re holding up traffic.” Josh replied whining and face equally a screw. A small bit of payback for her sarcasm. “Fine!” He leaned over and kissed her on the cheek. “Love you mom,” he whispered in her ear, meaning it. They said their farewells and he was on his way to hell.



[Short Story] In The Beginning

In the beginning is the first chapter of my book “In Fullness of Glory,” a non-fiction Christian inspirational work. I often use short stories to express ideas which can only be understood when deeply felt. Enjoy and thank you for reading.

Everyone grew silent. No one stirred. No one moved. Something great was about to happen and the anticipation was growing thick in the air. The angels watched intently as the Creator began his work. God, three in one, took center stage. And like a symphony, before it begins, preparations were made. God had a plan, a piece of music to be played. But of course, all the angels knew that when God steps out like this, it is going to be an amazing sight.

Then he spoke, “Let the show begin. I will build for myself a temple.”

“A temple, what’s a temple?” they all whispered amongst themselves.

“A place where my presence will dwell,” God proclaimed quite boldly.

All the angels looked at each other a bit confused. They thought that the current space they lived in was already God’s dwelling place. So what was this temple He spoke of? God lifted up His hands and his Spirit went forth. And this would prove to truly be an amazing adventure for the angels; because this is the first time they were ever to witness the creation of a whole new world. When they were created, the current world they lived in was already in existence. So this was quite a sight to behold.

The Spirit of the Lord rose up like a great and mighty wind, shaking everything in His path. The trees swayed back and forth. The waters of heaven synchronized. And what seemed completely discombobulating became symphonic. God’s Spirit filled the atmosphere in a different way. It was as if He hovered, just waiting for the first command. All chatter had ceased and everyone’s eyes were focused on God. They awaited the revelation of the Creator’s great plan.

The power of God began to intensify as though preparing to do something big. Finally, everyone was in his place. The wind, brass, string, and percussion instruments were all ready. The Creator had not yet given a command. Not long after, He opened His mouth, lifted both His hands and spoke, “Let there be light,” in a thunderous voice. No sooner than when the words escaped His lips, the most beautiful music arose. Everyone played together in one beautiful harmonic voice. God’s Spirit lit up the sky. It was almost as if the entire atmosphere was on fire. Yet it was not in any way harmful to the multitude of spectators.

This was the beginning of a new atmosphere where the physical realm would exist. This new atmosphere was completely different than any other the angels had ever witnessed. The complexity of physical science was formed, expressing the beauty of the Creator’s heart in a new way. And though the bodies of the angels had been enveloped in this creation process, they were certainly aware that their feet had not left heaven. These two realities where somehow overlapping.

God spoke again and His Spirit moved and the earth was formed. The entire congregation of angels gasped at the sight. Then God uttered another command, “Let there be light.” And there it was. But this light was not like the first light. This light seemed like a great smoke at first, and then it became dense and eventually formed what is now the sun. These physical things were certainly not of the same bodies as the angels, yet they declared the glory of God loudly.

The Creator created many planets in many different varieties and forms. He set them all in their orbit around their sun. There was one particular planet called Earth, God allowed His Spirit to hover over its waters. Then He meticulously formed and created the land and the sea. He created vegetation, seed-bearing plants, and trees that bore fruit. Then there was one particular area on the planet the Creator called Eden. And in Eden, he planted a beautiful garden. He allowed his Spirit to flourish that garden and when it was all complete, he inspected the work himself and made sure everything was good.

The angels know what it is like to serve the true and living God. They know what it is like to be directed by Him. They know what it was like to go where He bids them to go and come where He commands them to come. And it has always been their pleasure to execute the will of Almighty God. After all, it was for that purpose they were created.

But when God stepped down on planet earth and he formed man with his very hands. When God breathed the breath of life into man, He made man in the image of himself. The angels wondered with great amazement: what is man that you are mindful of him. What is man that you crown him with glory and honor? What is man that you give him free will? What is man that you give him your creation to have dominion? What is man that you love him?

“It is my nature to love,” God replied. Well, it all makes sense now. Humanity is the offspring of God. They are the beloved children of God. He wants a class of creatures who would love Him by their own free will. “Yes, and though the world they are living in is completely unruly, I have placed my Spirit within them and have given them my power to subdue it,” God looked around with a bright smile on his face. “Oh, how wonderful it will be when they realize their full potential within me.”

“These men and women are my children. They are my image on this earth and I have given them the fullness of my glory. When the rest of creation sees them, it will be as if they are seeing me because my glory will be upon them. And though evil ones arise from among you,” a gasp of surprise came from the entire crowd.  “Yes, many of you will betray me. Evil ones from among you will tempt many of my children away from me. They will dishonor me by corrupting my divine image in my creation. The mind of men will become clouded with sin, their spirit corrupted with darkness and they will lose sight of me their Father. As a result, many of my children will lose sight of who they are. But many of them will come looking for me. I made them to have intimate relations with me. So when they hunger, when they are sad, when they feel pain, it will be a reminder that they were made for intimacy with their Father, Lover, King, and Friend. Their true purpose can only be found in me. And when they come, I will hold them in the safety of my arms.”

The Lord turned towards the entire congregation of heaven. “I am sending my word, my eternal power that brought everything into existence. His name will be Jesus. He is my unique Son, the radiance of my glory, and the exact representation of my being. Even though my glory cannot dwell with sinful man, I will not leave man without an image of me in the earth. Jesus will be their roadmap back to me. He will be the blueprint for their lives. He will be the lighthouse for those who are lost at sea. He will show them the way to my presence and introduce the Holy Spirit to dwell within them. He will show them the fullness of my glory, the way, the truth, and the life. He is the King of Glory”


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[Short Story] Needed to be Loved

This story has inspired so many people to see love differently. This story is a fresh taste of love told in an unconventional way.


She looked into his eyes and became lost in his eternity. Her heart fluttered like a thousand little butterflies in the bright of spring. “My love,” she whispered. But not a word came out of his mouth. Yet she knew how he felt. He loved her and it was all in his eyes. Her eyes immediately filled up with tears, as her heart overflowed with a joy that was unspeakable. She stepped in closer to him and wrapped her arms around him, holding him tightly. He could not escape her grasp, but he did not want to. Tears were running down her face and her ears were pressed firmly against his chest. His warmth was radiating and his heart was racing. His arms closed in around her, saturating her with his love. She had never been so happy to see her husband, lover, and friend. She felt closer to him than ever before.

And without a thought or effort, without a trace, all her pain was washed away. All the people who used her, in an instant, did not matter. The bitterness of being lied to and disappointed suddenly disappeared. She did not have to do anything but accept his love. There were no other obligations but just to allow her husband to really love her. And though it was an initial struggle for her, his true intentions were apparent when he came to her rescue. And who would have thought to rescue a whore? Who would have thought to listen to the heart’s cry and prayers of a woman broken in spirit? There was no innocence in her. Her virginity was taken long ago. She was used and unwanted. Yet when she called out, “I just want somebody to love me,” he answered and came running.

He was a respectable man in the community. He had done many things in the name of our Lord and is seen as a righteous and holy man. People often looked to him for counsel and advice; he was held in high esteem. Yet, that meant nothing when compared to his love for her. So what pain he must have felt when he found out where his wife was. She was back in the arms of her former lovers; those who paid to use her. She was caught up in the web of lies her mother bore her into. This depraved life was her only truth and he knew that. He knew her struggles and still, he loved her. He knew her shame and yet he held her close. He knew her affections had a split personality. Sometimes she wanted him and other times she felt the pull back to the life of the Red Light District. Yet his mind was exclusively on her and her alone. He grabbed his leather trench coat and hit the streets; his destination, the Red Light District. He wanted his wife back and he was prepared to fight to get her.

On his way there, the people who knew him recognized him and the chatter began. The rumors flew, “Isn’t he married? Why is he heading to the Red Light District?” Those who knew him personally and the predicament he was in advised him, “Please don’t do this. You can easily get a quiet divorce and be done with her. There are better women out there.” Others started to say, “His wife is a whore.” And others chimed to confirm, “I knew there was something wrong with him. No one is that perfect.” It got out over the social media and grapevines and his reputation took a steep decline. But matter the price, no matter the consequences, his love would not say no.

He sought her in the storefronts where she would be on display. He walked quickly, looking for that familiar face and figure. But she was nowhere to be found. He pulled a picture out of his wallet and started to ask questions, “Have you seen this woman? Have you seen this woman? She is my wife, have you seen her? I know she is around here somewhere.” Then finally a man stepped out of one of the stores. He was quite big in stature. He was about 6’5” and had a rather large stomach. When he stepped out he had a handkerchief he was using to wipe the sweat from his forehead. The husband stepped quickly towards the man and showed him the picture of his wife, “did you see this woman in that store?” The man with a big grin on his face replied, “I was just with her.”

Anger and jealousy rose up within him and he stepped past the man almost knocking him out of the way and ran into the store. To the first person, he saw he said, “I want this girl.” The attendant pointed towards room number eight. He stepped into the room, closed the door behind him, and walked in slowly. The room was very shabby, as though there was no effort in putting it together. There was a double bed off to the side and it had a red veil as a canopy. There was a woman lying in the bed with her arms out wide as though she was tired and resting, just like his wife would do when she was tired. The woman became startled as though she fell asleep and was awaken suddenly. His wife was always a light sleeper. The woman spoke slowly as though she was drunk, “please, just allow me 10 minutes to freshen up. You can have a seat.

“Marie? Is that you?” her husband asked.

“John?” she replied with a shocked sound in her voice. She grabbed one end of the sheet and tried to cover herself. He walked over to the bed and pulled the veil and there was his wife completely naked and bruised. She had dark circles beneath her eyes. And though the sheets were pink and red, he could clearly see that there was blood on them.

The pain of seeing his beloved in this way set off in him what seemed like an eternal pain. Marie could not look at him; she tried to hide her face as the shame of her activities finally made itself apparent. She started to breathe heavily and she cried out, “John I am so sorry.” John took off his leather trench coat, reached out to his wife and picked her up by the hand. He used his trench coat and wrapped it around her. He picked her up and started to carry her out of the store.

But as he was walking out, there came a rustling from the back. Word had gotten to the owner that one of his workers was leaving before her contracted time. “Where do you think you are going? She has a contract with me,” the owner exclaimed.

John replied, “She is my wife and I am taking her out of this God-forsaken place.”

“Well you must first satisfy the contract, or else I will call the authorities.”

“How much,” John angrily replied.

“Well, she has three years of service left in her contract, and she averages 36k per year, so you do the math” the owner nastily said.

John gingerly put his wife down to sit on a chair near the exit. He pulled out his cell phone and called his assistant, “I want you to transfer 108 thousand dollars to this account.” He passed the phone to the store owner, “give him your account number.” The store owner gave John’s assistant the numbers, the call ended, and the store owner handed him the phone back. “And if you come near my wife or anyone in my family for that matter, you will be sorry.” John turned and picked up his wife, “You’re going to pay for everything you did to her.”

“I felt as though I had nowhere to go. I just could not escape,” the tears started running down Marie’s face again.

“I know baby, but you are safe now.” John got his cell phone again and called his assistant, “get me a car, at the entrance of the Red Light District, I want to go to the hospital.”

At the worst time in her life, he still loved her. Though she was not faithful he still paid her ransom. He took her, washed and cleaned her wounds, and loved her the way she needed to be loved.

Chp 5 Like Mother, Like Daughter – DYTYMWLM

These are the first 5 chapters of my first novel, Do You Think Your Mother Would Like? which you can read online completely FREE!

Chapter 5: Like Mother, Like Daughter

“Ma,” Sylvia looked sheepishly over to her passenger seat where she could see the gray starting to slowly litter her mother’s hair. Her mother, Sophia Ramirez, was beautiful. But it would seem with every passing year, that beauty was fading a lot quicker than she had seen in women her age. She was a tough woman, able to take the world’s burden on her shoulders. But even the strongest beasts of burden eventually get tired. Sofia was certainly tiring.

“Why did you come? I didn’t even call you,” Mom said in a tone which sounded more than a little displeased.

“Well if you didn’t want me to come then why did you get in the car?” Sylvia rebutted.

“Don’t you dare talk to me like that. I raised you all by myself, with no help from your worthless father. So don’t you ever dare think I need your help,” Mom said.

“Ma really? Why do we have to go through this every single time I see you,” Sylvia said with anger bubbling inside.

“If my car wasn’t in the shop, I wouldn’t be sitting here right now.

“The fact is ma, your car is in the shop and because I came by, you don’t have to walk nor take the bus home. Can’t you just be grateful for that?”

“I’ll be grateful when you don’t come and pick me up in a slut mobile. You’re putting that sweet boy of yours in, in, in…” her voice stuttered with anger.

“In what ma, in with what,” Sylvia’s voice climbed.

“You’re a disgrace,” Mom finished with a final blow. Sylvia rolled eyes, dismissing her mother’s words. She knew her mother to be a bitter woman, but that did not stop her words from stinging. She placed the car in reverse and started pulling out of the parking lot of the Bank of America where Mom worked.

“Too bad I didn’t have a mom to teach me how not to be a disgrace,” Sylvia muttered under her breath, actually hoping her mother didn’t hear it. There were already too many hurtful words. Under any other circumstance, if it were anyone else, Sylvia would not have stood for it. But her mother reminded her of Joshua. Her little Josh, who at first she couldn’t have cared less about; though she wanted to. Looking back now, she felt as though she did not have the capacity to love anything or anyone back then. She felt incapable of giving love and also unable to receive it. She had made so many mistakes and Josh bore the brunt of it. He was practically an orphan. Sylvia didn’t even know who his father was. That truth held her tongue; instead she would take the lashes her Mom dished out. The truth held her still, because kicking this seething cesspool of bitterness, aka Sofia Ramirez, out of her car might actually endanger the safe haven she’d created for Josh. The reality is Sophia, mother of Sylvia Garnet, was more of a mother to Josh than she had been. She was always out doing her thing, making that money, financially supporting Josh, by fattening the pocket of this aging greedy insufferable woman. Sylvia’s knuckles went white as her grip on the steering wheel tightened. She understood that Josh and Sofia, and everyone else had full right to hate her. After all she was a no good slut, a whore, a body for hire.

“Ma, I know you hate me and that’s fine. So I’ll figure out a way to take Josh full time,” Sylvia calm resolve took over.

“I don’t hate you,” Sofia snapped back. Hate might have been too strong a word. After all, a good Catholic woman like Sofia doesn’t hate. How dare she even consider Sophia, her mother, of all women, with such harsh discontent. “I just hate the demon in you.”

“Mom, I haven’t heard the words ‘I love you’ in God knows how long,” Sylvia’s voice pleaded. First time for everything she thought to herself. This was never a subject these two were prone to discuss.

“Oh stop, what difference does it make anyways,” Mom again snapped. Her face was in a pout as she looked out the passenger side window.

“What do you mean what difference does it make? You’re my mom. You are my mother, doesn’t that mean anything?” Sylvia replied, voice cracking. The jumbled thoughts irritated her tear ducks, causing them to burn.

“What difference does it make when all you do is go and find love in some other man’s bed,” Sofia said in a softer voice. “I never intended for you to turn out this way. Even though your father left me, I had you all for myself. You were mine. You were always mine. Mine to protect and to keep safe. I prayed to God that you wouldn’t fall into the same crap I fell into when I was your age. But you just ended up in worse,” Sofia said then sighed. “He needs you Sylvia. That boy, Joshua, really needs you. Not your money and not a new toy or video or computer. He needs his mother.”

“I’ve been trying my best to provide for him,” Sylvia’s words felt inadequate. At this point, she was like a horse running on heart. No physical strength to go on, there was only pride. “He doesn’t even want me around.”

“He is your son, you’re not allowed to give up on your son,” Sofia said, the words catching in her throat. Sylvia noticed the profound revelation in Sofia’s eyes. She had given up on Sylvia. The night she got the call from the Miami-Dade Police Department was probably one of the worst nights in Sofia’s life. The MDPD had called and asked if she knew this 5 feet 2 inches female with black hair. Sofia knew her daughter to be the rebellious thrill seeker, much like she had been, so she expected this call. Sofia never imagined that Sylvia would have ended up in the hospital. At the time Sofia worked nights at Walmart so she would be able to drop Sylvia to school and pick her up. But Sylvia had gotten mixed up with the wrong crowd and was now failing high school. Sofia was so angry. Sofia worked so many hours to provide, thinking that Sylvia would be a good girl and do what she’s supposed to. The call from the MDPD sent Sofia rushing to the hospital. Her heart was in her mouth as she saw her 15 year old girl, hooked up to tubes. The doctors told her that Sylvia’s heart had stopped and they had to use a defibrillator multiple times to get it going again. Sofia thought that maybe this would be the wake up call Sylvia needed. She thought this would get Sylvia on the straight and narrow. She had hoped and thought for certain that this was a sign from God for her daughter to be the good girl she was meant to be, but to her surprise, Sylvia was pregnant. Sylvia, the immature, lack luster, fun seeking, back talking, angry, and rebellious child of hers is bringing another human being into the world. Another mouth to feed, Sofia had thought. Here comes another person to take care of. To make matters worse, Sylvia started hanging with the same crowd that got her into this mess to begin with and Sofia was left to pick up the pieces. But she was tired of picking up the pieces. She was tired of always being the old lady everyone took for granted. Tired of shouldering the burdens. And now she had allowed her spoiled rotten daughter to run over her and take advantage of her love. If she wanted to go wreck her life, Sofia would stand aside and let her. Sofia had given up and she knew that she was in no position to say otherwise. “He needs you, be there for him,” Sofia said and again turned her head towards the window feeling the conviction of her own choices.

This has been the fifth chapter of “Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?” I Hope you’ve enjoyed these chapters. The story only gets better from here. Get the the full book completely free below.

or go back and read Chapter 4: The Plan

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Chp 4 The Plan – Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?

These are the first 5 chapters of my first novel, Do You Think Your Mother Would Like? which you can read online completely FREE!

Chapter 4: The Plan

“Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention please,” the voice over the speaker was recognized by everyone, causing all the heads in the room to rise almost simultaneously. There were a few whispers behind where Marcus was seated. It was certainly a beautiful day. A day everyone was hoping would not be devastated by heartbreak and crying.

“What is he doing here?” one voice said, attempting not to bring too much attention to the fact that he was talking while the CEO, Bobby Royal was standing right there at the front of the room with a mic in his hand and a fake smile on his face. The 30 something year old was the fairly new CEO after his father was far too old to continue running Royal Financial.

“I don’t know,” another voice replied. “I hope no one else is getting axed.” The anxiety level rose ten fold in only a matter of seconds. You could cut the tension in the room with a knife. Eyes widened as they saw him. Some started to sit up straight others shifted in their seats attempting to make it seem as though they were doing something important. It would seem that many of them stopped breathing for a few moments before catching their breath again. It was only a few weeks ago that the branch manager Mike Rolando got sacked. Nerves were to be expected, especially when Bobby was around sport that ridiculously expensive suit. He did not seem like the cocky type, but he sure did like to dress well. He was definitely type A though. Totally anal which made him ruthless. The board of trustees and investors all agreed that he was fit to run the company. But no one hardly saw him, unless it was a big event like firing the branch manager. What Mike did, placed the entire company under heavy scrutiny by the government. The IRS started doing investigations and it did not take long before Mike was found funneling money into off shore accounts in addition to messing with interest rates.

“I’ve never seen him this many times in a month, hell in a year. What the heck is going on,” a third voice whispered.

“Yeah what now?” the first voice questioned. “Was there someone else involved in the scandal.”

“No need to be alarmed,” he said with a smile and a drawl in his voice which left an uneasy feeling in everyone’s gut. “I am simply here to announce some amazing news,” emphasis on news. “One of your very own has shown exemplary performance during his time here at Royal Financial and has been selected as new branch manager. So everyone please raise your glasses for Marcus Warren, our new branch manager.” Marcus was already sitting at the front of the room. The anxiety in the room changed instantly to confusion. Marcus was one of the newest members to the team. Apart from Becky, Brandon, and Justin, who had left the company and returned, Marcus was only hired about eight months ago. How could he possibly be the new branch manager. There were murmurs swirling around in the room. “I know, I know, you guys are so excited to finally have a new branch manager, in only what, two weeks? And I want to personally thank you for your patience in this selection process. But we believe that Marcus has what it takes to run the Atlanta office of Royal financial. Well Marcus, is there anything you would like to say?” Bobby literally shoved the mic in his hand and took one step away.

“Well, ahh, thank you so much Mr. Royal for this amazing opportunity,” he turned to Bobby gave him a slight nod then turned his attention back to the rest of the room. “It is indeed an honor to be branch manager here at Royal financial. I promise you that I will do my absolute best not to let anyone here down. I know that I’ve been here only a mere eight or nine months, but I believe this and my previous experience at other financial institutions have prepared me for this position.” His voice started to rise, as he felt his wind coming. “And…”

“Well thank you Marcus for that arousing speech,” Bobby stepped forward again and took the mic from this hand before he could even start the next sentence. “Everyone please put your hands together for your new branch manager Marcus Warren,” there were more murmurs throughout the room mixed with a few people clapping. “Marcus will begin his new position in the coming month, as he will be going through training with us in New York to become more familiarized with his position.” Bobby dropped to the microphone from his mouth and whispered, “and you better not screw this up.” He placed the microphone to his mouth one more time, “thank you everyone, have a great rest of your day.” And with that Bobby put the microphone back in its stand and walked out the room leaving him standing there looking into the wide eyes of his other coworkers.

“Well, I’m glad we got that out of the way,” he awkwardly said while attempting to put a smile on his face. And with that he walked over to his desk sat down and continued working. The sheer shock and surprise of what just transpired left the room quiet for a few minutes. But the murmurs would not stop. What sounded like curiosity and surprise was becoming jealous anger.

“Who do you think he slept with to get that position?” Some of them weren’t even trying to hide the the fact that they were talking badly behind his back. Hell he was still in the room, “this is pure bull. Who are they kidding.” A female voice spoke, “this is so not fair to any of us.”

It was not long before he got frustrated, picked up his things and left the office. As soon as he was outside the building, he picked up his phone and called his best friend. The other voice on the line answered, “did it work?”

“I suppose it did,” his smile shining through the phone. “I don’t think the other people in the office are too happy with me, but don’t hate the player in the game.”

“Yo, we have to celebrate. Tonight Uncle Louie’s, we are going to drink our brains out,” his friend insisted.

“Simon, you are one crazy piece of you know what. How did you know something like that would work,” Marcus replied.

“Trust me, all those big shots have something to hide and we’re just here to reap the benefits. Alright I’ll see you tonight, I got some fine honeys at the crib who need some attention if you know what I mean,” the phone went dead before Marcus could even say goodbye. He was right, Bobby did have something to hide. During the time he’d visited the Atlanta office, he’d consistently been having sex with the office manager. Marcus walked in on the two in the mail room one afternoon. Simon had advised Marcus to follow Bobby closely. Marcus finally found out where he had disappeared to and caught the whole thing on his iPhone’s camera. Now it wouldn’t have been so bad if he were single. But too bad for Bobby, because he is married with kids and is worth some 25 million dollars. And that was before his promotion to CEO some 9 months ago. So it was either give Marcus a promotion to Branch Manager or face a messy divorce. Thankfully, a messy divorce was not in Bobby’s best interest. Their plan had worked and Marcus was on his way to a new tax bracket. It was time to celebrate.

Marcus wasted no time in calling his parents and letting them in on the amazing news. How he secured the position was not that important to their conversation, but he was excited to update them on the latest development in his world. His parents, especially his mother, were happy to hear that he’d got a promotion and he was slowly moving up. He was probably more happy to tell them than they were happy to hear it. They had hinted at him taking over the family business if this finance thing didn’t work out, but producing and selling wine was far from what he wanted to do for the rest of his life.

“But baby you’re a free spirit, you shouldn’t be couped up in a lousy office,” Martha, Marcus’ mother said in her best attempt at dissuading him. They were the proud owners of Warren Vineyards, the producers of award-winning dry, semi sweet, and sparkling wines. The vineyard was the love child of his parents. And they sincerely wanted the business to stay in the family, something that Marcus had considered. But the whole idea of simply taking over from his parents did not appeal to him. He wanted to test himself. He wanted to see if he could really go out on his own and make something of himself. He supposed some of his thirst for adventure was a result of his sister.

She was determined to go her own route, never looking back. She was the wild child who was there when the Warrens were attempting to first get the vineyard going. Of course, like any other business / love children, they require time and attention. All the time spent with the business was time away from an attention hungry little girl. Emilia resented the vineyard for that reason. For her, it was the thing which stole her parents and consequently her childhood. Emilia was quite adamant about leaving the vineyard to never return. Mom and dad probably felt guilty and agreed to allow her to go to any school she wanted, which they had no problems paying for. Emilia moved to the city and attended UCLA and studied to become a veterinarian.

Uncle Louie’s was one of those bars that had been around for over 20 years. It was a staple in the community and in that city. About seven years ago the owner died and his son took over. And from that moment the bar took on new life. It went from being your neighborhood hole in the wall fantastic place to hang out to this upscale venue for all the bigwigs in town. Not really the type of place you want to be if you’re trying to lay low for a while, but if you are trying to meet the right people, it was the perfect place.

Simon was already at Uncle Louie’s when Marcus arrived. Simon probably saw him step out of the cab, because he met him at the door with two bottles of Corona Light in tow, “here you go Buddy. We’re on our way up,” Simon said with a huge smile on his face and swinging one of his huge musclebound arms around his neck. Marcus took the drink and they clinked their bottles together.


“Come on, I have two friends I’d like you to meet.” There were two tall blond girls standing at the bar staring in their direction. They were both in super high heels, short black dresses and they both had cocktails in their hands, “you know I like em in pairs.” Simon nudged him in the side with his free hand.

It was only 7PM and the bar was bustling with local patrons. Young business men and women on their way from work stopped by to unwind from their busy day. The bar had the feel of a old Irish pub, modernized to fit the busy metropolitan. Lots of wood and bronze colored metals. Wine glasses hung from the ceiling behind the bartender, flanked by floor to ceiling bottles of wine. All of which are back lit for effect. Marcus took in the scene and his attention drew to the television as breaking news flew around the screen in catchy bold letters. “The police are working on a missing person’s case tonight. 25 year old Nicole Sinclare was last seen after leaving work at the Pink Pony Gentleman’s Club on Monday. Mangers of the club said ‘she was suppose to show up to work on Tuesday’ but went missing. Sinclare’s black mustang was parked in the back corner of the parking lot outside the club. The cameras show a man approaching her, he gets in the car, and they drive out of view. Concerned friends and family have not heard from Sinclare in over 36 hours. If you, our viewers, have information concerning this missing persons case, please call the Atlanta crime stoppers at: 770-555-0055.” Marcus shook his head in sad disbelief. The missing girl was beautiful; she had long blonde hair, piercing blue eyes, and thin pink lips. Wouldn’t be surprised if her stage name was Barbie because she could sure pass as one, Marcus thought.

“All right big Baller, I see how you roll,” Marcus said enthusiastically as his attention returned to Simon and the ladies he entertained. He was so giddy from the excitement he could barely contain himself. Both men started to walk over to the ladies, but Simon dropped his head as though to whisper something in Marcus’s ear.

“You know what bro, I’ve been thinking of a little getaway vacation celebration. I got this new investment property down on Miami Beach and I don’t have a renter for it yet. I’m thinking we should go take a little trip to Miami and have ourselves a good old time. Now what do you say to that,” he spoke with an air of confidence which bordered on arrogance. Any spectators, seated at any location in the bar could clearly tell that Simon was a little more into himself than the normal man should be. He made such big to-do about the simplest things. He was the type who would laugh for days about crazy talking bird videos on YouTube. Based on personality alone, no one would take him serious. But Simon did have a knack for real estate and a truly special gift for negotiations. One can easily say that Beethoven was born to play the piano and write music. In the same way, Simon was born to sell and buy real estate. He always seemed to know a good property when he sees one. Something natural that could not have been taught. Some say he got lucky choosing the right properties during the market crash some years back. Of course, he attributes it to a gut feeling. Or it could be that he just hid his true knowledge and outsmarted them all.

“Man, you are crazy. Of course I’m down,” Marcus laughed, ecstatic at the idea. Marcus paused for a second, “Next week Bobby is trying to get me to New York to do this ridiculous company training, so I can only stay for the weekend.”

“Don’t sweat it, we can leave tomorrow and party all weekend,” Simon said again with an assured confidence in his voice.

“Alright let’s do it,” Marcus replied with little hesitation. Marcus always wondered how Simon is able to just pick up and go. When did he find time to work when he was always playing. Marcus could almost hear his friend say the words, life is easy when play is your work and work is your play, in that smug voice he uses when attempting to sound intellectual. Simon and Marcus grew up together in Sonoma Valley, California. Their parents knew each other and were very close. And despite their varied personalities, Marcus the more quiet computer nerd and Simon the adventurer, they got along quite fine. Simon was an only child and Marcus, though he had a sister, was the only boy; it was safe to say they were like brothers and they felt as such. They helped each other in tough times, they fought each other, they got in trouble together, everything a good brother could be Simon was it. Marcus trusted the word of his brother over any other girl and only dated the ones who had Simon’s blessings. They did not attend the same University. Simon went to UCLA and Marcus at Georgia Tech University, but Simon moved to Atlanta after graduation. He’d visited Marcus and liked the city. Now Marcus was about to step into his new role as Branch Manager at an investment firm, while Simon was a Real Estate Broker and Investor at Keller Williams Realty.

The next morning Marcus felt rays of sun shine beaming through the window of their high rise apartment. Marcus awoke to a headache and a foot jabbing him in the side. He looked over to his right and saw the source of his discomfort who just happened to be the joy of his night. Was that Becky or Julie, who knows. His surroundings seemed familiar but not quite his, this was Simon’s apartment. Nice, he really knows how to live, the thoughts ran through his mind. I’ll be in Miami today. The sun, beaches, and beautiful ladies was a welcomed change before being dragged to New York for company training. And last night, what happened last night? He looked over to his left where there was a glass table with some white powder. Wild parties were a norm with Simon, a little blow was to be expected. The woman whose foot was firmly planted in his side began to stir. He tried to move quickly but the after-effects of last night’s late night was like a ball and chain on his arms and legs. His movements stirred another feeling in the lower part of his stomach and nature could not be denied. So he rolled out of bed, made his way to his feet and as quickly as he could headed for the restroom.

“Is that you Marcus,” Simon’s voice echoed from the living room. It was now apparent that he was in the kitchen doing something. He was not known for his cooking, so breakfast was out of the question.

“Yeah,” Marcus tiredly replied. His voice sounded like a creaky old door.

“Bro, come to the kitchen to get some coffee, we got to get going,” Simon spoke as though absolutely nothing happened last night. This was sort of a normal routine for him, the way he started and ended every single day. Moments later he walked into the room and pulled the sheets off the naked woman laying there and firmly said, “wake up! Get your stuff and go. Come on, wake up. Get your stuff and leave now.” Marcus quite stunned by the remarks peeked out from the bathroom into the face of the girl now sitting up. She was cute, more cute than he remembered. She looks young, more young than he remembered. He wondered, 21 years old maybe. Whatever the age was, she was far too young to be living this type of lifestyle. But nowadays what is too young. The girl hazily tried to gather her things. Marcus saw a few articles of clothing littered throughout the room and proceeded to help her get it together.

“Can I get you a glass of water,” he asked.

“Yeah, that would be nice,” the girl replied.

“All right stay here I’ll be right back,” Marcus stepped out of the room and went to the kitchen. The other girl that was with them last night was already at the kitchen table having a cup of coffee. Marcus grabbed two mugs, filled them with coffee and a bottle water from the refrigerator door. Simon was never out of bottled water. He quickly returned to the room with water and coffee. “I wasn’t sure which one would be better. How are you feeling?”

“I’ll be fine. I’ll just go,” she said with a sad made up smile.

“Please let me walk you downstairs and get you a cab,” Marcus pleaded. Once she was finally dressed they went out the room together and about 10 minutes later he returned alone. By the time he was back in the room the other woman had already left, he probably missed her on the elevator.

“Alright bro, we’ve got a flight leaving out of ATL 2 PM. You better get home and get ready for this. This is going to be on another level,” Simon said as soon as he walked through the door.

“Let’s do it!”


This has been the fourth chapter of “Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?” Read Chapter 5 – The Plan (coming soon)

or go back and read Chapter 3: Teacher’s Note

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Chp 3 Black Rubber Ball – Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?

These are the first 5 chapters of my first novel, Do You Think Your Mother Would Like? which you can read online completely FREE!

Chapter 3: Black Rubber Ball

The lunchroom was noisy, loud, and bustling. There were kids everywhere picking up trays getting their food, sitting down, having loud conversations, laughing, and jeering. All this social interaction was far too tiring for him. Joshua found a seat in the corner of the lunchroom to sit by himself. This was one of those days that he did not want to be bothered. Of course, not wanting to be bothered was like most days. The events from this morning with his mom picking him up and with Ms. Anders giving him a talk and with Brian being a jerk had already worn him out for the day. The troubles of mere mortals, he sometimes felt were far beneath him and he had no time to deal with these insignificant things. “Mexican pizza, I guess it’s Thursday,” he said to himself.

“Are you talking to yourself,” Rena stood there in front of the table where Joshua was seated. His eyes slowly crept up to meet hers. The freckles on her cheek gave her this unique type of beauty. She had light brunette hair, which today was in a bun. She wore a green t-shirt with what seemed like a few pixels on it. Gamer girl possibly? No, undercover gamer girl. No matter, she looked good in her fitted jeans and high top sneakers. He hadn’t realized how cute she was. She was a sophomore and he a junior so they had not shared many classes, but he had seen her around.

“Sometimes I need someone intelligent to talk to,” he said with a somewhat serious look on his face.

“Well I have come to your rescue,” she said without a hitch.

“Well please, have a seat kind lady. To what do I owe the pleasure of your company,” again sounding as proper as he possibly could, not sure why, he wasn’t talking to Ms. Anders. This was maybe a trend he did with girls he was attracted to or maybe he was just intimidated.

A smile adorned her face, “I was just in the neighborhood and I figured I’d stop by.” That smile made Joshua nervous. It was that smile that broke his defensive wall. There might be room for at least one more social interaction before implosion. “I am having a party on Saturday night and I wanted to extend a personal invitation. Can you make it?” Joshua stared at her for a few seconds without saying a word. “Really, is our basketball star so busy he can’t come out on a Saturday night. It’s my birthday you have to come. I’m having a DJ and lots of food. You know what maybe this was a mistake, forget it Mr Bradley,” her monologue was so quick that Joshua barely had time to come up with proper responses. He wanted to flirt, but the words just wouldn’t come.

“No, wait,” he said with alarm. He could hear her breathe in. “Please don’t go, I mean I want to go, but I don’t know if my mom would allow it.” Rena’s attention turned back to him as she slowly released the breath she had been holding. It was a suitable lie to stop the downward spiral of this conversation.

“Well if you don’t come on Saturday, you will have to make it up to me,” she said quite sternly attempting to regain her composure. You could tell she was a little embarrassed but it was too late for that now. “And don’t forget to bring a gift,” she smiled, pulled a piece of paper from her pocket and quickly placed it on his lunch tray. “Here is your official invitation, it has my address and phone number on it. Let’s just say it is the only one of its kind. So don’t lose it,” and with that she walked away.

“That was a bit awkward,” Josh said to himself but he was still happy for it.

As luck would have it, Brian and Chad came prancing through the doors just in time to see her heading away from Joshua’s table. They looked at each other with stupid grins on their faces and hurried over to Joshua. They threw themselves down in the chairs facing him and began the interrogation process, “Bro, what just happened? I want to know everything,” Brian emphasized.

“Dude everything,” Chad backed him up.

“It was nothing really,” Joshua said rather unimpressed.

“Are you kidding me,” Brian replied.

“He’s lying. Look at that face, he is lying,” Chad said.

“Bro, I can’t believe you would actually hold out on us. I thought we were friends. I thought we were best buds. After this I just don’t know,” Brian said in his regular sarcastic tone.

“We were never friends,” Josh replied.

“Ouch,” Brian said loudly.

“Come on bro, what’s the big secret,” Chad again reinforced.

“Since you have to know, she invited me to the party on Saturday and that’s it,” Joshua said it with a sigh in his voice as though it was no big deal.

Chad’s eyes wandered down to the lunch tray and saw the piece of paper. “Oh hello, what’s this,” with the sound of interest in his voice.

Joshua remembered the piece of paper quickly grabbed it and pulled it from their sight, then slowly pushed it into his pocket. “It’s nothing and if you would please excuse me I would like to finish my Mexican pizza,” he said with an attitude.

Brian looked him in the face, “you’re such a jerk.”

“Look who’s talking,” Joshua said. “I’m sure you received the same invitation.”

“Anyways, are you still coming over after practice?” Chad questioned. All three of them played for their school’s basketball team, of which Brian was their star player and captain. Joshua and Chad knew never to utter his average points per game, lest a single number tip the scale and cause his already bulbous head to explode. “I just picked up Call of Duty Black Ops yesterday, and that freaking game is amazing. You have to check it out. It even came with a special edition controller. Of course I had to spend a little extra on that but it is totally worth it. So what will it be man are you coming over or what.”

“I’ll sure be there,” Brian throwing in his two cents.

“At this point, anything I can do to keep me out that house,” Joshua replied. “Will your folks be home?”

“My dad is out of town and my mom will be working late, so no worries. We have the house all to ourselves,” Chad said with a devious smile.

“Well then it is settled, gentlemen we will reconvene after school at Chad’s place,” Brian announced. “And may the games be ever in your favor.” He always had some Hunger Games quote to finish off his conversations. The two looked at him with disbelief.

“You’re such a nerd,” Chad said and Joshua nodded.

They pulled up to Chad’s house in the drop-top Ford Mustang. Chad’s brother, who was a freshman at the University of Miami, had just received this hot new ride as a graduation present. Chad was only a sophomore though so he still had a few more years before his parents would agree for him to have a car. Their home was beautiful. It had a large circular driveway with a small fountain in the middle. The driveway was nicely paved in terra-cotta stone. Once they got out the car there was a single walkway leading up to the door. The doors were by far one of the most beautiful things Joshua had ever seen. Who would’ve thought anyone would actually spend money, real money on a set of double doors. They were tall probably 9 feet, with semi-opaque glass. This was not the first time Joshua and Brian had been to Chad’s house, but it amazed them every single time. The house was right on the inter-coastal and had a curb appeal among the best in that section of Coral Gables. Though the home was amazing it seemed like Chad’s parents were never home to enjoy it. It was always Chad and his brother Mike. Once you walk through the grand doors you could see all the way through to the inter-coastal. Or at least to the less-than-modest boat that was docked out back. Chad’s dad was a boating fanatic. One of the reasons he bought this house to begin with. From the foyer were stairways on either side leading to the second floor. Chad’s brother went off to the left, while Chad led the boys to the right stairwell. There was a game room on the second floor, which had a loft style feel to it.  There was a large brown leather sofa facing what must have been a 70’ inch flat screen television.

“Holy…you’ve got to be kidding me,” Brian said, eyes bright and mouth open.

“Guys you have to check this out,” Chad said while picking up the remote and flipping on the TV. “My dad just got Playboy channel.”

“Are you kidding, my mom would never allow my dad to get something like that,” Brian said with excitement in his voice.

“Guys, really I’m not up for watching smut on TV,” Joshua said with a tired sigh.

“Are you kidding, I want to see,” Brian said while turning his attention to the television.

Josh shook his head as naked figures started to emerge onto the television. “I can’t believe this.”

“You’re acting like such a fag right now,” Brian said in a mocking voice.

“Hey, you’ve got to check this out,” Chad motioned towards a computer sitting to the left of the leathers chairs.

“Where’s your kitchen, I want something to eat?” Joshua questioned, wanting to escape what he knew was about to come.

“Dude, you’re acting so gay right now. The kitchen is downstairs, come join the real men when you’re done,” Chad said. Joshua paused and turned his attention to the TV, wanting to prove that he was no fag nor was he some squeamish kid who didn’t know what sex looked like. Check this out, Chad led the boys to his bedroom and awoke his computer for its slumber. “There are some crazy stuff online, check this out. I usually just do a Google search,” Chad continued with his demonstration. “Sexy, girls, whip,” he said, speaking and pausing as he typed the words into the search engine. “Then I go as far down into the search as I can. And sometimes I’ll come up with some crazy stuff. I’m sure half these things are illegal.” Chad continued, skipping all the way to page 46 in the Google search engine. He pulled up a site with naked women in all sorts of insufferable positions. They were being tortured and whipped.

“Wow,” Brian said, ecstatic at their find. “How did you know where to look for all this stuff?” Brian spoke like a child amazed at a brand new discovery.

“Ahh,” Chad struggled to explain the origin of his knowledge. “Well,” he paused again. “I caught my dad looking up this stuff. And it’s pretty easy to track if you’re not careful. I mean, all I had to do was check the history and cookies and that was it.” It was obvious that he was embarrassed at the prospect that his father enjoyed porn. After all, Chad’s parents had been married for some time now. It ludicrous to Joshua that someone with a beautiful woman at his side would subject himself to the frustration of another woman on a screen. Why, when you have the real thing next to you and sleeping in your bed, Joshua thought.

“Yeah, my dad’s got a whole box full of crap under his bed. He’s very proud of his collection. He has them all neatly stacked away. There’s stuff in their from the 80’s. Girl’s back then clearly didn’t believe in shaving. I saw some bush as big as the amazon.” The boys laughed as Brian attempted to act out what the Amazonian rain forest would look like growing from his crotch.

Chad went from site to site, not bothering to pause, but he skimmed and stopped only at images which he said looked interesting and what Joshua thought to be gruesome.

Joshua leaned away from the screen feeling disgusted, but just then caught something. “Guys,” Joshua said in a disbelieving tone. Chad was slowly scrolling through another site and Joshua thought he saw a familiar face.

“What, you’re going to run away now fag,” Brian said but both boys laughed.

“Wait, scroll back up,” Joshua said in alarm.

“What?” Brian said.

“What is it?” Chad questioned. Both boys looked at Joshua before looking back at the screen.

“Holy…,” Brian was speechless.

“Is that your mom?” Chad questioned. “Well let’s find out.” Chad was about to click on the thumbnail leading to the video, but Joshua reached over his shoulder and pressed Alt+F4 on the keyboard closing the entire window. “Hey, what are you doing. Don’t you want to find out.”

“No I don’t,” Joshua said firmly.

“Well, hell I do,” Brian said. “Pull it up again.”

Joshua pushed Brian to one side by the shoulder. Brian looked surprised. Joshua had always been the calm level headed one of the group. “What the hell do you think you’re doing,” Joshua’s anger rose hot. His eyes were wild and mad, something no one had ever witnessed in him before. He turned shook his head, attempting to subdue the true nature of his feelings and he made his way down the stairs. “That’s pure bull shit. Why the hell would you want to see that again,” he said. His anger was like a caged animal, clawing at the bars, wanting to get out. The shock of what he had just seen and the possibility of it swelled within him. He knew what his mother did for a living. He knew how she had come by that shiny new Mercedes and the vast amounts of cash she carried around in her purse, but did she go this far? Had she gone this deep; kinky sex on a low grade porn website? He did not want to believe, but Sylvia’s track record did not leave much hope.

“Alright, alright fine we won’t look,” Brian said, his voice shaky from being pushed so suddenly.

“Alright, come back, I swear we won’t look” Chad continued. Joshua made his way into the kitchen opened the fridge and found a soda. Joshua slammed the door to the refrigerator. His mind began to race, random thoughts rushing in and out of his head. It all seemed like a terrible coincidence. His mother kneeling naked on a bare concrete floor. Her hands and feet bound with a black rubber ball in her mouth. “I can’t believe this,” Joshua said and slammed the soda down on the counter, denting the can. Brian and Chad walked into the kitchen.

“Hey, look bro, it’s screwed up, don’t even sweat it,” Brian said. “No one has to know, alright.”

“Yeah, this stays between us,” Chad confirmed.


This has been the third chapter of “Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?” Read Chapter 4 – The Plan

or go back and read Chapter 2: Teacher’s Note

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Chp 2 Teacher’s Note – Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?

These are the first 5 chapters of my first novel, Do You Think Your Mother Would Like? which you can read online completely FREE!

Chapter 2: Teacher’s Note

FREE ebookHe walked through the door and waited until it was shut before looking back. He peered through a shatterproof window, the wires that ran through them, obscured his vision. He could still see the black Mercedes-Benz parked to the side. Sylvia was still sitting inside and for a full 30 seconds she did not move. Her head was against the steering wheel. He could not help but be a bit worried for her. And though he did not want to be near her, he pitied her tortured existence. Finally he saw her reach for her bag and pull out what looked like her cell phone. She placed it to her ear and with her other arm turned the steering wheel and drove off. Joshua let out a big sigh, turned and headed off towards his first period class. On the way, he stopped by his locker, quickly put in his combination, flung the door open and shoved his school bag inside. He pulled out his English book, closed the locker door and sped off to class. The entrance to the class was towards the back of the room. If he was quiet enough, he could easily sneak in without the Ms. Anders noticing. His assigned seat was towards the back but all the way at the other end of the classroom. He peeked into the window and saw that the teacher’s back was turned. So he slowly open the door and tried his best the tippy toe across the hard concrete floor. Just as he was halfway across the classroom, Brian noticed him, raised his hand and said, “Ms. Anders, I have a question.” Joshua’s eyes brightened almost popping out of his head. He should not have be surprised that Brian would do something so brazen to give him away. Joshua’s surprise quickly turned to anger. He turned his face towards Brian and shot a fierce look. Ms. Anders, without turning her head said, “yes Brian what is it.”

“Ahhh… actually never mind Ms. Anders, I believe I found the answer to my problem,” he said sarcastically. By that time Joshua had found his seat.

“So good of you to join us Mr. Bradley,” she said again without turning her head. “I’m so glad you made it into class today, albeit a little late. But you know what they say, better late than never.”

“I am very sorry Ms. Anders, my mom,” he barely stumbled out the words before Ms. Anders cut him off.

“No worries Mr. Bradley, we will certainly speak about this incident and your mom after class,” she said, without a trace of sarcasm. The comment made the class go “Oohhh.”

Joshua again looked over to Brian who was staring straight ahead with a stupid grin on his face. “What a jerk,” Joshua said under his breath.

The bell rang and he stayed seated as the other kids stood up and walked out of the classroom. Once they were all gone, he stepped towards Ms. Anders’ desk. She was obviously very young. The rumor was she was about 23 years old and had recently broken up with her boyfriend. With thick flowing brown hair and cheek bones that made her look like a Victoria Secret model had lost her way and somehow ended up at this school; and those legs. It is probably not lawful for a teacher to be this hot. The boys in the class could not stop staring every time she wore a skirt. “Miss Anders, that was a great lesson today by the way. I thought the one last week Wednesday was truly enlightening but today’s lesson beats them all,” Joshua said without a blink and in his most cheery voice. Miss Anders now moving back in her chair folded her arms and looked at him with an unimpressed smirk. Not a word nor sound came from her, but only a singular penetrating look. “And about this morning, I assure you that this small mishap will never happen again. I mean, I was only about 5 minutes late.”

“As a matter of fact, you were 10 minutes late for the third time this month. Another tardy and it will have an unexcused absence.,” Ms. Anders said in as stern a voice as a Victoria Secret model could manage. “I would like to meet your parents Mr Bradley,” she said again. She reached into her desk drawer and pulled out a letter. “Please give this letter to your parents and we will have to setup a meeting for all of us to sit down and talk. Plus, I didn’t get a chance to meet them at the parent teachers conference.”

“That sounds really good Ms. Anders, but really, a note?” Joshua said in a tone which suggested that she had gone way too far.

“What? I have to make it look realistic,” Ms. Anders said, she got up from her chair and moved closer to Josh. The classroom was finally empty and they were alone. “I wouldn’t want anyone thinking that I’m giving you preferential treatment, now do it?” Ms Anders said in a sarcastically implied tone. She grabbed his belt buckle and pulled him towards a supply closet. Her heels made her only a few inches short of Joshua’s six feet two inches basketball frame. “I missed you,” she said softly and kissed him. Joshua’s hands studied her slender body, traveling down the low of her back. His arms where trained and strong. He knew what she would like. He grabbed her by the waist and lifted. The two figures, still attached by the lips, and her head bowed to meet his. But there came a sound, setting off alarms in their minds. He lowered her back to the ground. “Call me,” she said softly. Joshua was left speechless like many other times before. She liked the rush. The feeling of almost being caught, but he didn’t.

“I would be more than happy to pass this note along to my mother. But see the thing is my mother can be a very busy woman,” Joshua said, speaking loudly and attempting to sound as mature and educated as he could. He peeked through cracks in the closet door, but the other students where still standing outside.

“Then what about your father,” she replied. “Your girlfriend will be one lucky girl,” she added in a whisper. Whenever she said that, it always left him confused. One thing was for certain, she did not consider herself his girlfriend.

“Well, I would have to send out a search party to locate that dead beat,” he said so matter of fact that Ms Anders could not help but smile in amusement. “What are you talking about!” Joshua replied in like whisper.

“Well, try your best Mr. Bradley. Please see what you can do in getting your mom to meet with me,” Ms Anders said before sitting back in her chair.

“I’ll try Ms. Anders,” he reluctantly agreed. With that he smiled, picked up his English book and walked towards the exit of the classroom. As he reached the door, he slowed his pace and looked back to find her brown eyes meeting his. He quickly looked ahead as though he was caught doing something he should not have done and stepped out the class.

“I’ll try Ms. Anders,” Brian standing outside the door said in a condescending voice. “I am very sorry Ms. Anders,” he continued mocking him. “I love you Ms. Anders, I want to have your babies Ms. Anders.”

“Dude, you’re such a jerk. Really…why do you have to be such a jerk?” Joshua said briefly looking at Brian before walking away.

“Oh please, you know you want to have her babies. She is by far the hottest teacher in this entire school, and she asked you to stay after class.” The thought had entered Joshua’s mind many times throughout the class period, but it would be quickly dismissed, because what is the possibility anyways? That look, the time their eyes met. No, that was probably nothing.

“Yeah, all because you wanted to be a jerk and raise your hand just to get me in trouble. Now I have a note from the teacher to my mom.” Brian took a few quick steps attempting to catch up to Josh’s pace.

“Your mom is pretty hot too, what I wouldn’t give to have your mom and Ms Anders,” Brian replied, licking his lips.

“Seriously, you’re sick. You need some serious help,” Joshua said shaking his head attempting to rid himself of the thought.s

“Hey, I was just helping a brother out,” Brian said raising an eyebrow and throwing one arm around Josh’s shoulder.

“Yeah, that’s what you said about Denise,” Josh replied in a tone of disbelief.

“Well I can’t help that she liked me better. I mean I am the cute one. Or at least that’s what I’ve heard,” he said with a self assured look on his face. Brian was cocky but it was not just talk. He did catch the eye of many of the girls in their class. He had the reputation of a big time flirt and he was equally disliked because of that. Irrespective, his short blond hair and blue eyes would always make some other girl lose her speech mid-sentence.

“Please, someone send for the bomb squad, Bryan’s head is about to explode,” Joshua said while rolling his eyes. “You’re full it.”

It did not help that as soon as they got to the lockers Britney and Ren were staring at him. “I’ll be right back, my adoring fans await,” he nudged Joshua with his elbow before stepping over to the two girls.

Joshua opened his locker and exchanged his English book for math. He opened his school bag and pulled out a calculator, some pencils, and his notebook before closing the locker again. As soon as the door to the locker closed, there was Brian’s blue eyes staring right at him. “Rena wants you bad, and I mean really bad,” Brian said with a bright look on his face. “Bro this is your time to shine.” Joshua turned the combination lock on his locker and walked away without a word. “Bro really?” Brian stood there with his palms open and arms out. “Oh come on, you can’t seriously be going to class at a time like this.”

“See you later Brian, I’m going to be late,” Joshua said as he walked towards his next class.


This has been the second chapter of “Do You Think Your Mother Would Like Me?” Read Chapter 3 – Black Rubber Ball.

or go back and read Chapter 1: Say Sorry

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