Torn: A fictional love story, by Shubricca L Bell (Part 1)

He was such a good man, but he was mysterious at the same time. What did he do for a living? He was very private in that way. He’d told her in the past, that he was in the sales industry, but he never said exactly what he did. Was he a marketing manager, a sales rep, an insurance agent, a telemarketer? What exactly did he do? There was no doubt that the two of them shared a deep strong connection, but the fact that he kept where he worked at a secret, made her wonder what else he was hiding. “Girl, he could be a secret agent,” her best friend Tonya said, while stirring her cocktail. “Tonya, you’ve been looking at too many action movies. He’s definitely not a secret agent, but he is hiding something,” Brenda said. “How do you know he’s not a secret agent? Just because he has dreads and wears Timberland boots?” Tonya mouth hung open, “Ah, do you think he sells drugs?” she said. “No, just because he looks a certain way, doesn’t mean that’s who he is, Tonya. He’s not the drug dealing type. He’s really sweet, and sensitive to my needs. He doesn’t go around acting like he has something to prove to the world. He’s really chill, and easy to talk to,” Brenda said. “Sounds a lot like Eric,” Tonya said. “Well, the old Eric anyway, before you start spitting out his kids, and he got a little too comfortable.” “Yeah, no. He’s definitely nothing like Eric, so please don’t compare them. At least you did know about Eric’s job,” Tonya said, making quotations with her fingers. Brenda rolled her eyes. “Okay, okay, I’m going to leave it alone,” Tonya said. “But, clearly you can’t, best friend,” she said gulping down the last bit of her martini. Tonya was right. It was bothering Brenda, but what was a girl to do. Cut things off with a good man, all because he kept his job a secret. “Yes,” her own thoughts said. “Because, what if whatever he does for a living, begins to affect you,” her thoughts spoke again. “But he’s so good not only to me, but he’s good with my children as well,” Brenda said, trying to convince her own thoughts. The next day was Brenda’s four year old twins birthday. “Daddy,” her twelve and ten year old daughters screamed with excitement as they ran to the door to greet him, then the twin boys ran behind them. “Daddy, you came to our party,” they both said. “Yes, you know I wouldn’t miss it for the world,” Eric said. Brenda wanted to be petty, seeing that Eric missed all the kids two previous birthdays, Christmas and everything else that was important, but today wasn’t about being angry or petty. Today was her little boys birthday and she wanted it to be perfect. Eric didn’t bring his girlfriend with him this time, maybe because Brenda’s entire family was there and they were a handful. None of them had a filter, and he knew it would be a mistake bringing her along, because there’s no telling what they’d say, especially since he had been trying to secretly get back with Brenda. “Thank God that Marcus has to work. Wherever that is,” Brenda thought to herself. Although Marcus knew that Eric had been trying to get Brenda back, he seemed unbothered, but Eric was definitely bothered that another man was now in Brenda’s life. It didn’t matter that he had a whole fiancé, he wanted her to remain single and available to him. Not this time. Brenda was tired of the on and off thing with Eric. She had done that for over a decade, and the only thing she gained was becoming his baby momma, but now he was engaged to the woman he’s been with since Brenda broke things off for good, two years ago. Eric was ghost for a while, until Brenda and Marcus began dating, then all of a sudden he wanted Brenda back. It’s like he felt that Brenda was finally moving forward, and now he’s back, only to see if he still has a way in. He’s not leaving his fiancé and she would be heartbroken and disappointed to find out that Eric still had a thing for Brenda. It clearly wasn’t love, but it was some-thing. Brenda didn’t quite know what her and Marcus had either though. They’d been dating for six months and they were strictly friends, but now, the both of them are beginning to feel something more. Later on that night after the twins party, Eric called Brenda, trying to sweet talk her. “Where is your fiancé?” she asked. “Her flight doesn’t get here for at least another hour. Why do you keep asking about her? I’m trying to discuss me and you,” Eric said. “You sound crazy,” Brenda said. “So, this is what you do when your fiancé goes to visit her family?You’re trifling. I hope you know that.” Just then, there was a knock on the door. It was Marcus. One of the twins let him in. Brenda was still on the phone with Eric. “Hey you,” she said, walking up to him. She put the phone by her side, then hugged and kissed him on the lips. “Hey you,” he said, giving her a peck back and hugging her tight. “The kids father,” she mouthed silently with irritation, while pointing to the phone. Marcus nodded. He knew what that meant, but Eric wasn’t getting Brenda back… not if he could help it. “Marcus, can you take us to our friends house for a sleepover?” one of the girls asked. “Mom was going to take us, but now she’s tired. Please, Marcus, please,” both girls pleaded. “Okay, grab your things. Let’s go,” he said. “Can we ride?” the twins asked. “Of course,” the more, the merrier,” Marcus said. They all headed to his car. “Oh, babe, can I use your car, I think that I may have ran over something and I need a new tire. I’ll put the spare on and go get a new one in the morning.” “Sure,” Brenda said. “We’re going in your mom’s car, kids,” Marcus yelled. Brenda was still on the phone with Eric, and she could tell Marcus felt some type of way, but he didn’t say anything. She didn’t want him to leave, feeling disrespected or confused. “Wait a minute,” she said to Marcus as she stood beside the drivers door. “Come here.” Marcus got out the car. She hugged him tight. The hug said I love you, but she couldn’t bring her mouth to say the words. “I don’t know where we stand,” she said, looking up at him. He pulled her close while looking deeply into her eyes, and capturing her soul, then he said, “I’m standing right here. I’ve been here. There is nobody else. Only you and me.” She looked down at her phone and Eric was still there, listening… like a creep. She didn’t care what Eric had heard. She hung up the phone and this time, there was no going back. She loved this man and neither she or Eric, was about to mess this up. “You know, since your tire is messed up, why don’t you sleep over tonight?” she said. “Whaaat? Oh, it’s getting real,” Marcus said. “It’s been real, baby.” She kissed him on the lips again and said, “I’ll see you, when you get back.”

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