Created by Diane Brown, Buena Beach is an online soap opera, giving up all the juicy details of some of the hottest guys and gals of Buena Beach, a small town in Southern California. Check back everyday for a new episode here on HelloBeautiful.com.
With Veronica absent from work today and Brandon not picking up his cell phone, I’m a little concerned that he might not be at his shop as we’d discussed for me to drop off Veronica’s engagement ring. With all the drama that happened yesterday, I wouldn’t be surprised if Veronica packed up her stuff and moved to Canada. That’s where I’d go if the Buena Beach Sundial opened my closet and told the whole world (or at least a very small city) about all my skeletons.
I’m definitely worried about how Veronica’s faring with all this, but also nervous about myself – that somehow, she’ll get the idea in her head that I was the one who lit the match, setting off all of yesterday’s explosions. I don’t think I did, but I can’t say for sure that I didn’t. I mean, I DID order a background investigation on the girl when she first started, but I certainly didn’t tell anyone about…
Sandy! Ooohh – that little skank. She’s supposed to be my girl, so I really, really, REALLY hope, for her sake, that she didn’t read the file on Veronica when I asked her to hide it for me. I don’t recall seeing her in the office all day today; she was out in the field according to the board. But maybe she just wanted to avoid me?
Well, I can’t worry about that now. I have other business to take care of. Getting this ring over to Brandon at the bike shop; hurrying home to let my sister take me out for dinner (she sounded all serious over the phone, telling me she had to talk to me about something); going to Jonathan’s after that to hang out and watch a movie. I’m a busy lady.
So I’m quite annoyed when I make it over to the shop (in these ridiculously high heels) to find the CLOSED sign posted in the window. Hopefully he didn’t take off, too. Buena Beach needs all the Black-owned businesses it can get. Besides, although I’m sprung on Jonathan once again, Brandon’s still pretty easy on the eyes.
Well, since he breached his part of the deal, I’m going to head home to meet Jina so we can get out to eat – I’m famished. But as soon as I make it back to my car, I hear my phone ring and am just able to find it in my oversized bag just before it goes to voicemail. “Hello?”
“Hey, Diane. It’s Brandon.”
“Hi. Where are you? I just came from the shop.”
“I know. I’m sorry. I…I just didn’t feel like going in today.”
He sounds horrible. I guess that means he read the article in the Sundial too? “Oh.”
“Would you mind bringing the ring over to my place? It’s not too far from the shop.”
Damn! I wanna eat. “Sure – no problem.” I write the address on a receipt I find in the passenger’s seat and take off towards his apartment, which sounds like it’s in a pretty nice area.
And it is, I soon discover – although it wasn’t all that close. I make my way to unit #10 and knock, ignoring my growling stomach and hoping traffic on the way home won’t be so bad.
Then I nearly faint when he answers the door in boxers. Only boxers. This is too good for real life.
He manages a smile for me, although it’s clear that he’s not his usual chipper self. I accept his offer to come inside, and quickly locate the ring (also located in my big bag) so I can get the heck out of here. Between my appetite and his bare chest all up in my face, I’m worried I might bite him or something. Now I truly understand the term sexual chocolate.
“You want something to drink? Water? Vitamin water?”
“Oh, no. No, thank you. I’m about to go have dinner with my sister.”
I’m about to tell him I’ll see him later and to have a nice weekend, but he looks so down…so sad. “You okay?”
He stares down at the floor. “Actually, no. I’m…I’m gonna take the ring back.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, remember what I told you last week? About not being able to wait until tonight to ask her, which is why I gave you the ring to hold for me in the first place?”
“Last night – I don’t know. It just felt like the time was right. So when she came home from work, I…I did it. I asked her to marry me right when she walked in the door.”
Oh, shoot! I guess he didn’t read the article.
“And do you know what she did? She cried, and then ran into our room. I started banging on the door, asking her to let me in. Finally, I just kicked it down…”
I look behind him and notice a splintered wooden door on the floor. Dang!
“…but she was gone. She crawled out the window. She…”
Oh, gosh. It looks as if he’s about to…yes, he’s crying. This grown, hot, half-naked man is crying. Not crazy wimpy crying or anything. But a strong, man-cry – just a few tears accumulating in the eyes and a sniffle.
Unsure what to say, I walk over to him and take one of his hands, which he squeezes. Then somehow, I find myself fully embracing him (and his rock hard pecs), telling him softly that it will be okay.
“Well, isn’t this sweet.”
The two of us instinctively jump apart from one another to find Veronica standing in the open doorway. I have to admit, based on her past, I’m slightly frightened when she glares at me, making her way towards us.
“Veronica, really, girl…”
“Get the hell up out of here.”
Okay, now. She didn’t have to go there. Really, it’s a total misunderstanding. Sure, I used to want her man at one point. But these days, I’m fine with just looking at him.
And, okay – he feels pretty good too.
But rather than try to explain myself, I take my big bag and leave. I’ll save my speech for another day. Looks like the two of them need to have a long talk. And according to Jina, I’ll be having a pretty intense talk of my own. I still have no idea what this chat of ours is concerning. Probably something about our mom or her living with me or something petty that she’s getting overly frazzled about. Anyway, I’m on top of the world right now. I’ve got the best boyfriend in the history of boyfriends, so there’s no news that could stress me today.
Procrastination is really not my style. To me, on time is five minutes early, and on time is late. At least when it comes to business. My personal life is different. I’ve been meaning to talk to Cynthia all week to tell her I was leaving. With a signed lease dated today at a nearby apartment complex, I’m ready to move out tonight. And I’m also looking forward to staying over at Sandy’s this weekend. ALL night, for once…letting her make me pancakes (or just some toaster waffles) in the morning. I won’t, on the other hand, be inviting Sandy to stay at my place. Wouldn’t want her to pick up the habit of showing up unannounced or getting ideas about moving in. To be sure, I’ve made the decision to furnish my one-bedroom with just an air mattress, a mini-refrigerator, a microwave oven, and a flat-screen t.v. I’ll also have to buy a small desk for my laptop and speakers and a comfortable chair for one (and only one). I plan on christening it the anti-bachelor pad.
I told Cynthia I’d come by the Café for coffee after I left the office. She usually didn’t work Fridays, but with Alice and Chris getting arrested earlier in the week, she’d been asked to put in some extra hours. I still can’t believe those two got caught. No word yet on Jen – I hope she’s okay. Wouldn’t want to lose my weed connection. Last I’d heard, they were both out on bail, but neither had made it back in to the restaurant. The place had, however, been temporarily ordered to cease the preparation of food (aside from coffee), only able to sell wholesale items such as packaged salads and sandwiches, and baked goods from other vendors. So I was gonna have to break the news to Cynthia without the benefit of a sugar rush from one of their monster peanut butter cookies.
“Hey, babe. What do you want?”
“Uhhh, give me a triple mocha,” I tell her, making sure I have cash in my pocket. Doesn’t quite feel right, letting her comp my drink when I’m here to talk separation. I drop the cash in the tip jar, knowing she’ll refuse payment, and walk over to find a table.
Once I sit down, I start having second thoughts, wondering if this is the right time, the right place. It’s not, but there’s really no right time or place. So, as soon as she sits down, I’m just gonna spit it out without any hesitation.
“Here you go,” she says, placing my drink on the small table and taking the chair next to me. “I was surprised that you wanted to meet me for my break – we haven’t exactly been talking much lately.”
“And I need to talk to you about something too, but you go ahead and go first.”
Fine. “I’m moving out.”
All of the color falls out of her face, and she looks like she wants to kick me. I suppose that I shouldn’t be surprised. “Say that again.”
“I’m sorry, Cyn. I think we need to separate. For a while. I just need some time away.”
She swallows hard and nods, looking at something in the distance. Then she asks if me if I want to know her news. Wow. I figured she’d ask where I was going or how long I thought I might need to be away or why now. But she’s not even getting teary-eyed. Well, maybe she’s just in shock. “Sure,” I say.
“I’m pregnant. Asshole.”
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