Jade trudged her way down the rose colored aisle. She had made it halfway before she reconsidered the situation and retreated to the back. This whole scene was uncomfortable. You see, it had been several years since Jade graced the sanctuary with her presence. Who would have thought it would have taken Mother Tate’s transition to bring Jade back to where it all began? As she made herself comfortable in her seat, Jade began to view the projector screen where all of Mother Tate’s memories were being displayed. In the medley of remembrances, Jade was surprised that she appeared in several of the photos. Tears began to emerge underneath her Louis Vuitton’s. She reminisced on all the times she shared with the woman she considered a second mother. Jade remembered the soul food Sunday dinners. She remembered the wisdom imparted to her. And even when Jade left the church, Mother Tate would always call and check on her once a month. This past year however, Jade stopped accepting her calls. She didn’t want to be reminded of anything associated with him.
After the pastor gave the order of service, a familiar face emerged from the far end of the congregation. It was Princeton! As much as Jade tried to avoid running into or acknowledging him, she had no choice but to submit at this hour. Princeton walked up the steps to the stage, stood behind the book board, and took hold of the mic as the choir stood at the ready. As Princeton’s Lutheresque vocals began to saturate the air, Jade was reminded of the all the days and nights he sang in her ear as he touched the deepest parts of her soul. She began to think back on the night where they consummated their love affair on rose petals scattered throughout his house. How they went from one room to the next without letting go. She remembered how he touched her soul to the point where oceans came forth from her being. And each time after, Princeton made it feel like the first time. Now two years later, Jade still hadn’t found anyone like him.
As Princeton made his way through the song, Jade found it burdensome to sit still. Her legs continued to shake as he matriculated through the verse. Although his hair was more grey than black now, Princeton was still as beautiful as the first day they met. Jade’s repressed feelings wouldn’t permit her to sit still any longer. She discreetly made her way toward the exit door leading to the vestibule. Jade’s eyes could no longer imprison the emotion felt as she cried entering the powder room. It had been two years and somehow Princeton could still command her feelings as if he were embedded in her soul.
Despite her yearning for him, Jade couldn’t renounce how foolish she felt. On that calamitous spring afternoon, she discovered that she wasn’t the only one holding Princeton’s interest. When he sent Jade a text that was obviously meant for another woman, her world crumbled! The situation was only made worse when Princeton tried to say it was meant for a male friend! At that moment, one thing was abundantly clear; Princeton was a liar! The sixth month love affair had dissipated in a matter of moments! Even though Jade was in the middle of a divorce and entertaining several guys herself (which she never disclosed by the way), Princeton was the lying asshole in this arrangement that could never be trusted again. “Damn you, Princeton!”, she mumbled cleaning her face. “I will not let you get the best of me again!” Jade polished her lips, put on her big girl panties, and managed her way back to her seat.
As the good minister reminisced about Mother Tate and how she would be missed, Jade’s mind began to reflect on her own actions. In the past year, she had cut off anyone that reminded her of Princeton. Now if he could disrespect her, then anyone associated with him could do the same! This was the justification Jade used when she stopped accepting Mother Tate’s calls. Mother Tate loved Princeton and Jade equally. When Jade announced that she and her beloved had parted ways, the good mother attempted to be the voice of reason. Mother Tate reminded Jade that she had faults as well. Mother Tate told Jade that it was wrong to expect total honesty of someone when she was incapable of doing it herself. Instead of listening to the wisdom, Jade cursed her out and walked away! Indeed she had become the cold and bitter soul that her biological mother had always been . . . . . . .
As the service ended and the family exited the doors, Jade attempted to walk out without saying anything to anyone. Although she was masked by her dark shades, people still recognized their favorite choir director. After she managed to say a few hellos, Jade made her way to the car. As she reached her destination, that familiar voice echoed in her ear. . . . .
“I know you are not going to leave without saying hello?”
Princeton quicken his steps as Jade stood by her car door. Jade attempted to play off the fact that she wasn’t excited to see him but her body stated otherwise. Her hands began to tremble as her chest projected through her clerical shirt. She gave a quick smile as he was now standing in front of her. Before Jade could make an excuse, Princeton interjected:
“Jade, I’ve missed you. I miss my friend. I know that you don’t care for me anymore but I want you to know that I haven’t stopped thinking about you. I haven’t stopped loving you. Even if you dismiss me, I had to take this chance to let you know how I truly feel. All the songs that I have written on the radio are about you and what we had. I want to be your man and I’m willing to do whatever it takes to get back to your heart. Please take this and if you feel the same, call me”
Jade nodded as Princeton handed her the note and began to walk away. She couldn’t wait to read his words but had to be sure that he was out of sight. Jade sat in her car and read the letter. Princeton poured out his heart in the correspondence. He talked about his transgression and how much he had changed. He wanted another chance as he felt that Jade completed him. He didn’t want to waste time dating anyone else. He wanted to build forever with her despite her insecurities and flaws. He wanted to work through them all with her. At the end of the letter was his cell number that Jade had erased from her contacts. Jade felt her emotions building up again in her eyes. She didn’t want to love him because he was a liar. What if he lied to her again? What if the friendship was all a facade?
Should Jade give Princeton another chance? With Jade having issues with trust, should Princeton even want to be with a woman like that? After all, she lied too . . . . . . .
Written by Michael Dock, Founder of The Wednesday Gentleman and Author of the Forthcoming Novel “Addicted to Chaos”