I flew from my seat and darted to my cousin, but it was too late. I could hear Jessica on the other end.
“Hey baby! Is Kamiyah still upstairs? Good! Chance wants to speak with her before she leaves”
Reverend Nosey placed the receiver down and looked at me very matter of factly.
“Now you can get some closure on this issue and start living your best life”
The wheels were already set in motion. It was too late to punch the good reverend, but it didn’t stop me from letting out my frustration.
“Devin?! What the fuck man?”
“Chance, this is for your own good”
“For my own good? Are you like my father now?”
“Whoa, fam! Pump your brakes! Now, I may be a preacher, but I can still whip your ass, okay? You need to man up and take hold of the situation”
I could only shake my head as I walked back to my chair defeated. I plopped down as I contemplated what to say. What was I gonna say?!” Devin followed me over and sat back down in his leather seat. His eyes never left me as I searched for a reason to make a quick getaway.
“Fam, I know that this is hard, but it’s necessary! You and Kamiyah need to get this out in the open. What better way than to converse on a neutral field?”
“Eh. I don’t want to have this conversation with her. Not tonight”
“Bruh? Really? You act like you owe Kamiyah back child support or something! Are you current on paying her fees?”
“So this is just one more river you have to cross. You’ve already dismissed all the other situationships from your life, right?”
“And you don’t want to belong to the streets anymore do you?”
“Well, you need to close this chapter of your life and move on. For love’s sake man, move on!”
“I am, but why do I have to see her to do it? Why can’t I just ghost her and be done?”
“I guess you could, but there’s this thing: she’s your publicist. You see where I’m going?”
Brother preacher had a point. I couldn’t let her fade to the background like everyone else. It would have been better to deal with Kamiyah out of sight, out of mind. But due to this intolerable circumstance, I couldn’t.
“Devin, I’m afraid of what might happen tonight”
“Huh? You scared Kamiyah gonna put them paws on ya? I mean, I’ve been told she has a pretty good right hook, but damn! You can hold your own!”
“I’m not talking about fighting her man! I’m talking about entertaining her for too long! Like if she gives me that long hug and her ass has put me in a trance. The ‘what if’ factor is haunting me”
“Well that I can understand. Ain’t nothing worse than wondering about how it would be if certain things were in play. But you can’t let your curiosity ruin your relationship”
“So how do you do it? How do you remain faithful?”
“Wait? Is the man that is surrounded by young booty every day at the gym asking me how to stay faithful?
“Yes, I know there is a lot of scattered ass in the gym. But seriously, what keeps you from stepping out on your woman and into someone else?”
Brother preacher leaned back and placed his forefinger against his temple, glaring at me as if I had done something wrong.
“Chance, have you been listening to anything I’ve been telling you? I keep myself from temptation at all cost”
“But what if it’s just there, you know? Say you and the misses get into a verbal spat after you’ve been on the road for several weeks. You’re horny, but you have no refuge. A fine vixen enters your room for counsel. When she sees that there is no one around, she makes her move. She shows you all of her chesticles and begs you for your anointing. What do you do?”
“I go home, pull up Janet Jacme, and give myself a hand job”
“Let me tell you this one more time, and I want you to hear me clearly. I do not, under any circumstances, want to mess around on Jessica. I can’t begin to tell you the times where I truly sabotaged my future by cheating on my woman”
“Is that what happened with you and Adrianne?”
“Bruh, that marriage was so damn toxic! I was young and dumb and she was old and foolish!”
“Toxic? But you two seemed happy all the time?”
Devin grabbed the remote and turned the sound up on the flat screen.
“Before we got married, Adrianne did everything to win me over. She cooked all the time and we never fought. Sex was the best because there was no limit to the acts that we would perform”
“Wait? So you all . . .”
“Added another person into our bedroom? Yes”
“And this continued into the marriage?”
“Yes, for the first year”
“But you’ve been a preacher for . . .”
“Yeah, I know. I should have left it alone, especially since Adrianne already had insecurities. But tell me, what man is gonna pass down having two women giving him the business?”
“I feel you there, cuz”
“I thought that the sexual exploration was something that she wanted to engage in, you know, satisfy her interest. However, during one of our first fights, I found out that she was doing it all to appease me”
“So you left her because she wasn’t with the girl on girl?”
“That’s not it at all. The problem was Adrianne hated every minute of it, but she continued the farce anyway. After a few weeks, I was used to the extra body and expected to see her in my bed often. What I didn’t know was that this Jet centerfold was Adrianne’s long time friend! We were never the same after that”
“Anytime I preached a revival in another state, Adrianne swore that I was cheating”
“I continued to hear the accusations every time I turned around. After a year of repeated allegations, I had finally had enough. If I was going to be accused, it might as well be for the right reason. So I started sleeping with random women. Whenever she would accuse me of infidelity, I would simply confess, telling her the women and where. I would tell her all the positions. I would tell her how they all tasted. I would even tell her how long it lasted”
“Damn! I had no idea that you were a savage?”
“I wasn’t trying to be. It was my futile attempt at hurting her. But for some reason, I believe she liked it. She would start a fight, I would confess, and we would have amazing sex afterwards”
“That is strange”
“All the while, God was convicting me of my actions. I couldn’t be a leader of His people and knocking the bottom out of randoms in every city. How could God trust me with His word when I was living foul?”
“So now it’s starting to make sense! Is that the reason you left St. Paul?”
“Yep! I gave my resignation the day after I met with a divorce attorney. I knew that leaving Adrianne was gonna cost me. I didn’t want the church to suffer because of my bipolar union”
“I hear that”
“So when I met Jessica, all the pieces just fit, you know? We push each other and I don’t have to be someone I’m not. She loves me unconditionally and I don’t even have to question it”
“So what about you, Chance? You can’t be on the fence with Inez. She needs the opportunity to be with you without inside interference”
Before I could answer, the phone at the bar rang. Brother preacher answered it. He nodded his head and I knew that my time of reckoning was near.
“She’s on her way down. I’mma go upstairs and help Jess with our guests. Remember what I told you. Remember what Inez means to you”
Devin began his ascension up the stairs, while I sat there, searching for the right words to say. How do you tell someone that you care for that you have found safety in security in someone else? How do you tell them that they can no longer be a part of your world because you want to maintain your peace?
It wasn’t long before she made her descent down the narrow stairway.
“Damn! You’d think Devin would widen the stairway! A sista ‘bout to break her neck coming down!”
I stood up and acknowledged her.
“It’s good to see you Kamiyah”
I could see her looking me over, trying to believe what I was selling.
“Is it now?”
“Why would you say that?”
“I dunno. Normally if I send a man a picture of me totally exposed, he’ll say more than “What are we gonna use this pic for?”
“That’s what I want to talk to you about. Can we have a seat?”
“So you’re not gonna give me a hug? I mean, we haven’t seen each other in a minute”
She came to where I was and hugged me tightly. I could feel her warmth all over me. I started to imagine taking her soul on the bar. Having her spread her ass for me while I made up for those three years. I wanted to feel her body hold on for dear life while she whimpered with every thrust. I wanted to make her see the stars while I held her head against the rustic counter. I could feel myself getting excited with the thoughts. I released my grip, but she refused to let go, slowly starting to nibble on my ear.
“I can feel you, Chance. C’mon and give me what I want”