Time Reese has lived the good life for as long as her memory can recollect. Time’s undeniable beauty and affluent family background are merely masks for her promiscuous, abrasive and “out for myself” mentality. She makes for a great match with cold-hearted kingpin Trell; and together the two go on to operate one of the most merciless drug enterprises Memphis has ever seen. But when a familiar face resurfaces, and digs up the demons of her painful past, Time finds herself at a crossroads that may force her to make the ultimate choice. Tearney Richards is struggling to raise her two kids, both from different men, on government assistance. A chance encounter puts her in the crosshairs of Ethan Kish, a big time record label Exec who gives her the one thing she’s always dreamed of- a record deal. Her life begins to change dramatically and the girl who once had nothing now has everything. But, at what cost? Brena Sheldon went from waiting tables to living in the suburbs with a successful attorney. After his jaw dropping secret life is revealed, Brena gets an attitude makeover, moves out of state and embraces a new life. She soon becomes engaged to hoop star Darrell, and believes she has met her Prince Charming finally. Is he who he proclaims to be or is it all just smoke and mirrors?
Take a ride with these three friends as they face the harsh reality that, The Game Ain’t Always Fair.
I never was the one to cry over spilled milk. And why should I? I mean, once the milk was out of the glass and on the floor, what good was it to me then? Actually I probably shouldn’t say that because here I am, headed down I-55 to do what? Yep you guessed it, clean up spilled milk.
The usual 3 hour drive from Memphis had been cut in half. I guess adrenaline makes you drive faster. I took the exit that led to Byram, MS. It had been three weeks since my boyfriend Trell and I had sparked a deadly drug war against our rival competitors. This drug war was so ruthless, and so without mercy. But, it was effective. Like any war, sometimes the blood shed comes from that of one you love. I had lost my best friend in the midst of our fight to keep our reign as the king and queen of the Memphis drug game. But, that’s not what I was about to get revenge for. That had been handled. The execution I was about to deliver was personal for different reasons.
Once I saw the three mile long white fence come into view, I knew I had reached the ranch. I approached the front gates as they opened slowly, remembering all the times Trell and I had shown up here with our 18 wheelers moving weight in and out. A white 745 BMW was parked at the front entrance with its headlights on high beam. I let down the driver side window and watched as William Garrett, or Mississippi Willie as he was affectionately called him, got out of the Beamer and made his way over to my car.
“You sure you don’t want me to take care of it?” Willie leaned into my window. I saw his sharp eyes do a sweep of the vehicle. I could smell the scent of Black and Mild on his breath as he spoke.
I shook my head. “Nah. I got this.”
He nodded. “What that nigga did was the ultimate disrespect. I know deadin’ him won’t resolve what you feel on the inside but at least he won’t get the chance to do it no more. I just don’t get why you wouldn’t tell Trell about this?”
I gave him a look that let him know to leave it alone. The less we talked about it, the better.
“Aight, now everything locked down, nothin comin’ in or leaving’ out. You got it from here?” he asked as he backed away from the car.
“Yeah. It’s not like I never done this before.” I reminded him. I gave him one last glance before putting the car in drive and taking off.
I breezed down the long gravel road until it ran out. The black SAAB that Willie’s aunt had rented for me, came to an abrupt halt as I reached my destination. I hated driving low budget cars, but times such as these called for me to be as low key as possible. I climbed out of the vehicle, decked out in all black–the ensemble of a true boss. I looked up at the six thousand square foot plantation style home. I shook my head at the realization that after tonight, it would be nothing more than a pile of useless ashes.
I used Trell’s key to unlock the front door and walked across the marble floors that led to the staircase. I could smell the faint aura of Pine Sol, like someone had just done a thorough cleaning of the place. I placed my foot on the first step of the staircase and it made a creaking noise upon impact. I passed the open sitting area and tried not to look at the large oil painting of Trell, his mother, and Rayshawn that sat in plain view above the double doors that led to Rayshawn’s sleeping quarters. Could I really do this? Could I really murder my man’s brother in cold blood?, I asked myself. I opened the doors quietly and immediately knew the answer to my question once I saw Rayshawn sleeping peacefully in bed. I moved closer. His face was as beautiful as a summer in Costa Rica even with the scar on his eyelid. To look at him, a person wouldn’t even believe the horror he was capable of. I reached for my .45 and cocked it back, triggering a slight noise. Rayshawn shot up in his sleep, and opened his eyes. His fair complexion turned even paler.
“What the….- BLAOW! I sent a bullet through his right kneecap. He wailed out in pain, reminiscent of a woman pushing a baby through the birth canal without an epidural.
I cocked my head to the side and raised the gun higher.
“Did I say you could talk?” I asked.
He held his wounded knee and grimaced. “Time how you get in here? Why you doin’ this shit?” he shouted.
“Why did you do what you did to me? Huh? I’m askin’ the questions today…get that understood!”
“I thought you was feelin’ me! Everybody ‘round the way said you was a freak and you liked it rough so I went for it! It wasn’t personal!”
That did it. Damn him for trying to justify what he did to me. I snapped, and for a moment I was no longer in the bedroom, but back in the barbershop on the cold floor. I could feel the cool air hitting the torn skin of my vagina as he violently forced himself on me. I thought about the two STDS I had contracted in the process. The lustful look of satisfaction on his face, bought it on home. I retrieved the silencer from my jacket pocket, screwed it on and released bullets until his bloody image replaced not only the agony of the rape but all the horrifying demons that haunted me daily. All the memories I couldn’t bear to remember. I shot until they were no more.
I stared into his now lifeless eyes and spoke in a pained whisper, “It was ALL personal to me.”
I dashed out of the house and back into the night. I went around the back of the house to ensure that the bomb was in place. Everything was trained and ready, just like Willie had promised. I walked back to the car, and got in. I put the car in reverse and backed up further down the road and turned into a driveway that led to an open field, used for rodeos. From this spot, I could watch the show easily. Burn in hell.
I closed my eyes for a few seconds and rested against the headrest. I was ready for this to be over. I was tired. I opened my eyes and caught sight of a black Mercedes SUV coming to a stop in front of Rayshawn’s house. How did that car get in here? What kinda watchmen does Willie have? A pack of royal dumbasses! They’re all good as dead. I put on my high tech binoculars. I was all set to let whoever was occupying the car go up in flames until the driver got out. It was Tearney. My heart began to beat loudly in my chest. I felt nauseous and light as a feather, like even the slightest wind could blow me over. The feeling escalated when I saw chubby Ishmael resting on Tearney’s left hip. My hands shook violently as I started the car and floored the pedal, veering in the direction of the house. I felt as though the car was not getting me there quick enough, so I got out and sprinted forward, yelling out to Tearney.
“Tearney get away from the house!” I screamed waving my arms over my head.
Tearney turned around and when Ishamel saw me, he immediately scooted out of her arms and began trotting in my direction. Tearney ran behind him.
“Come on Ishy! Come to Teetee Time baby! Come here!” I yelled running towards him with my arms outstretched. He smiled brightly at me, totally oblivious to what was going on. Tears streamed down my face, and in that moment everything that had happened earlier seemed so small. In fact, nothing mattered except his safety. Strangely my father’s last words came to me, “That unforgiving spirit of yours is going to be the death of you, and when you finally realize it, life will have passed you by completely.” I wept openly as I briskly swept Ishmael into my arms and took off running without a thought. I looked behind me, and watched Tearney sprinting behind us.
“Time! Time! What the hell are you doing here? Stop running!” she exclaimed.
I wanted to tell her I that stopping was not an option. I wanted to tell her our lives were flashing before us. But, I couldn’t. There was simply no time. I glanced back again, and for the first time I noticed Tearney’s protruding belly. She was pregnant. Oh God, what had I done? The emotions that I had buried my entire life, had finally burst to the surface. Compassion, humility, regard for human life, sympathy, and love for someone other than myself. But, these feelings had all come far too late. Seconds later, the bomb exploded.
Camille Sanders is a native of Coldwater, MS. She attended Tougaloo College after high school for two years, and went on to attain her Bachelors Degree from the University of Memphis in 2012. Camille discovered her love for writing in the 4th grade, when she and a group of classmates compiled a series of short stories that they dreamed would one day be made into a movie. Camille became engrossed in Urban Literature when she was 13 after reading, ‘The Coldest Winter Ever’ by Sister Souljah. After carefully researching the publishing industry, she was inspired to start her own publishing company, Madam Millie Productions. The ‘Millie’ in the name of her company is in memory of her maternal grandmother Millie, a woman whom she never had the honor or pleasure of knowing. Camille currently resides in Northern Mississippi with her daughter, Addison and often times, her darling niece Madeline Grace.
Get to know Camille:
1. When did you first begin writing?
I started writing short stories in elementary school with a group of friends. I’ve always been an introverted person, so I used writing to express myself.
2. What inspired you to write your first book?
My father inspired me to take my writing to the next level. He loved to read my poems and short stories. I read my last poem I wrote for him at his bedside, two days before he slipped into a coma. He told me to promise him that I would “do something” with my writing. So, completing and publishing my first book was keeping my promise to him in a way.
3. Tell us about your new book, The Game Ain’t Always Fair.
TGAAF is an urban tale with an original storyline about three young women. It’s a coming of age tale with a lot of twist and turns. What I love about this book is there is something for everyone. From romance to drama to tragedy to sisterhood, it’s all there.
4. Do you write from personal experience?
Yes and No. Some of the things in my book, are based on personal experiences and some are not. For example, one of the girls is a single parent, and I found myself venting some of my frustrations I had towards the whole “deadbeat dad” thing through the character. On the other hand, one of the characters is very cold and unfeeling, and can kill a man and not think twice about it. I’ve never done that. (laughs)
5. What new authors have caught your eye and/or gained your interest with a new release?
Although her book came out a few months back, and has been out a while, I loved Love Lee’s Already Taken. I have been antsy for the sequel since I read it.
6. What kind of advice would you give someone looking to break into the literary industry?
I would say do your research and seek counsel from productive sources. If you are interested in self-publishing I recommend reading manuals and how-to books that offer guidance. There are plenty of them out there, and remember Google is your friend. Life Changing Books also offers an online boot camp for those authors who are interested in self-publishing. No matter which route, you take never give up and stay the course. You will get discouraged at times, and hear a lot of “No’s” before you see any results. No matter what, is this is what you desire to pursue, keep pushing against all odds.
7. How can readers contact you and where can your book be purchased?
I can be contacted or reached at:
My books can be purchased at: Amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, Smashwords, or iBooks.