Hey y’all! Tomorrow, S. Rêver makes her literary debut with “Journey to You.”
What happens when one eventful night turns friends into lovers?
JaZelle is a recent graduate trying to figure her life out. One eventful night during her high school graduation trip changes her friendship with her long-time best friend into more. Fast forward five years, she finally graduates college, and it seems as though history is repeating itself. This time, it causes JaZelle to run for the hills.
Trey Clarkson, a football player at Prairie View University, is JaZelle’s best friend. He’s secretly been in love with her since he met her his sophomore year of high school in Spanish class. One event after the next pulls them closer together, but what happens when things move too fast causing friction in a once unbreakable bond?
Follow these two as we find out if the Journey to You is worth it.
*Knock Knock Knock*
Walking over to the door to open it, I was surprised to see my other best friend, Trey. Shocked is an understatement. I hadn’t seen him since spring break, and he didn’t tell me he was coming home.
“Ahhhhh!” I screamed as I jumped into his arms. “When did you get here? Why didn’t you tell me you were coming?”
“I wanted to surprise you,” he said as he hugged me back.
I met Trey my freshman year in high school. He was a sophomore at the time. At the end of my sophomore year, he transferred schools because his family moved. Once he graduated, Trey moved to Texas because he got a football scholarship. Last I checked, he was still there because he was doing a summer training camp. When I got down, I heard someone clear their throat. Thinking it was Laysia, I turned around, but when I did, I realized it wasn’t Malaysia; it was Jerzey.
“Hey, bae,” I said as I checked my outfit. All he did was stare. Coming out the door, Malaysia greeted Trey, and when she noticed Jerzey she grabbed Trey’s hand so they could give us some privacy.
Before Trey walked off, he looked back at me, silently asking if I was good. When I nodded my head yeah, he turned around and glared at Jerzey and walked away with Malaysia. When they got downstairs, Jerzey walked up on me and got in my face. Taking a few steps back to allow some space between us, I stared at him.
“JaZelle, what the hell was that? I know I told you to cut off communication with him! I swear, you don’t fucking listen!” he yelled through gritted teeth. Granted, he did tell me to cut off communication, but my mama always told me never cut your friends off over a nigga, and even if I tried to, Trey wasn’t having that.
“Jerzey, calm down. I didn’t even know he was coming. I got excited, my bad,” I said trying to walk away. Before I got too far, he pulled me back with the same hand he grabbed me with. He started to squeeze my hand and move it around. I hated when he did that because it hurt. Before things got out of hand, I heard a door open, which caused him to let my hand go. Silently thanking God for the distraction, I turn to see who it was.
“What’s up, Jerzey? What you doing up here with my sister?” Jadore asked, leaning up against the wall outside her bedroom door. I don’t know if she has a sixth sense or what, but this is the second time today she almost found out how Jerzey really was.
“Nothing, I just came up here to see if she was ready to come downstairs,” he quickly said while taking a few steps away from me.
Jadore looked between the both us and I discreetly looked at my hand, making sure I didn’t have a bruise. I swear he gets on my damn nerves doing that shit.
“Yeah, I bet,” she said. “JaZelle, I have something for you. Come meet me in my room.”
“Alright, here I come. Jerzey, head downstairs. I’ll be down in a second,” I told him.
“Alright, bae. I’ll be down there.” Jerzey gave me a kiss and headed downstairs.
As I walked to Jadore’s room, I didn’t know what to expect. I kept wondering if she saw something and if she was about to cuss me out. When I finally got to her door, I hesitated.
“JaZelle, get your ass in here. I know you’re there.” Walking into her room, I realized she had a gift bag on her lap. “JaZelle, I know something’s going on, and I want you to know you don’t have to hide anything from me. I’m going to always be here, and I will never judge you.”
“Jadore, I don’t know what you’re talking about. We just got into a heated conversation because he saw me hugging Trey,” I told her while looking down.
Jadore shifted the bag and moved closer to me. She wrapped her arms around me and said, “Baby girl don’t ever put your head down. We raised you to be a queen, and queens never let their crowns fall. Jerzey is just insecure. Now, pick your head up and open your gift.” Handing me the bag, I ripped it open revealing a black box. As I opened the box, tears started to cloud my vision. Inside the box was a heart pendant with blue stones along with a bracelet that had Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” engraved on the back. Putting the box down, I reached over and hugged my older sister. She has always been the one in my corner, good or bad, and I will always love her for that.
As we pulled apart, Justin came busting inside the room. “Oh, hell naw. Why the hell y’all in here crying? Who I gotta fuck up?”
We both looked at him and shook our heads. This damn nut.
“No one, Justin. I just opened the gift I got from Jadore and was thanking her. Why are you always trying to fight someone?” I grabbed my stuff.
“Because I am and hurry up. Pop pop looking for his ‘baby girl’,” he said in a mocking tone.
“Shut up. Don’t be a hater because pop pop is here to see me and only me,” I said as I stuck my tongue out at him and ran downstairs.
When I finally got downstairs, I saw my pop pop in the kitchen talking to Trey. He was trying to get season tickets for the next school year like he’s actually going to get on a plane to see every game.
“Now, Pop Pop, you know you’re not going to travel that far, but we have a game against Central this year, and I’ll be sure to get you a ticket,” he told him.
“Ima hold you to that, young man.”
While he was talking, I made sure to walk up behind him and cover his eyes.
“Is that my ladybug?” He asked while grabbing my hands and pulling me around.
“Hey, Pop Pop,” I said and sat on his lap. Say what you want, but I will never be too big to sit on my pop pop’s lap. I remember growing up, anytime I was feeling down or I wanted some attention, I went and sat on his lap. He never complained once.
“I’m sooo proud of you, ladybug. I know you’re going to be something amazing.”
“Thanks, Pop Pop,” I said while hugging him.
“Alright, now get up so I can grab my billfold.”
All I could do was shake my head and laugh because not too many people still called their wallets that. When he finally got it out, he pulled out five one-hundred-dollar bills for both me and Malaysia and told us this was for us to have a good time at Senior Beach Week, which starts the Sunday after graduation and ends the following Sunday. High school students from all over the county go down to the beach and turn up. I’m talking drinking, partying, smoking… hell, everything you can think of. I’m looking forward to it because my brother got us a three-bedroom condo on the beach for the week.
“Thanks, Pop Pop,” Malaysia and I said while giving him a hug.
“Girl, the turn up is about to be real,” she whispered—well, tried to whisper, but my mom overheard her.
“Now, JaZelle Denise, and, Malaysia Ariel, do not play with me. Don’t take y’all asses down there acting up and getting into trouble! Let me find out some shit, and I promise you’re gonna hate me!” She yelled while pointing her finger at us.
“Yes, ma’am,” we both said and turned around to hide our laughs.
“I don’t trust y’all so Trey pack a bag. You’re going with them,” she said in a matter-of-fact tone.
“What!” Jerzey yelled out of nowhere, causing everyone to turn to him.
“Um, Jerzey, baby, is everything OK?” my mom asked with her eyebrows raised.
“Uh, ye—yes, ma’am. I was just thrown for a loop. You know I’ll be down there with my boys, so I can look out for them.”
“I’m sure you can, sweetheart, but like I said, Trey will be going with them.”
“You heard what she said!” Justin yelled from the living room, causing everyone to fall out laughing at his nutty ass.
“Well, Trey, since my mom forced you on our trip, we’re leaving tomorrow morning at 8:00 a.m. Be ready or get left.”
“I’ll be ready by then, Zelle.”
For the rest of the night we chilled, ate food, and made sure we had everything we needed for our trip. Around midnight, everything started winding down and people started leaving. I swear I was so ready for Jerzey to leave. All he did was sit around with an attitude and follow me around everywhere. That shit was annoying.
I know all of you are thinking if he’s doing all these things, why are you still with him? Well, it all comes down to the fact that no matter what I still love him. It’s not always bad, and sadly, the good overshadows things that need to be in the light.
Jerzey finally decided to head home. He claimed his boys were coming over to stay because they were leaving sometime tomorrow for beach week.
“JaZelle, can I speak with you, honey?” my mom asked once I walked Jerzey out.
“Uh, yeah, Ma. I’m coming.”
“Baby, I saw the way Jerzey was acting. Please promise me when you get down to the beach that you won’t allow his jealousy and foolishness to ruin your trip. Go down there and as you young folks say, ‘turn up’,” she said while doing an air quote.
“I got you, Mama. I love you. I’ll see you in the morning,” I said while laughing at her.
“OK, baby. Goodnight.”
Hope you’re ready for tomorrow!