SAMPLE SUNDAY: From ‘Young, Rich & Black: An Afterwards Novella’
“Didn’t I just see you last night?”
Phone up against his ear, Deuce watched from the other side of the barbershop as his father got the finishing touches on his shave. His own haircut had been done for a little while, and when he got tired of the shit-talking and sports predictions, he called Zora. Just to see what was up with her since they hadn’t talked after he dropped her off the evening before.
“Yeah. Damn. Just checking to see if you’re a’ight. Is that a problem?”
“Why wouldn’t I be alright? From what I remember, you saw me walk up my front path, unlock the door and step right into my house, didn’t you? I know, because I waved at you from the open front door.”
He smiled. He kind of liked it when she teased him; not by being coy, but by playing coy.
“I’m a gentleman. I was taught to wait until the lady was safe before pulling off. And there’s been a few home invasion robberies in Jersey so you never know.”
Zora laughed her husky yet melodious laugh. “Well, no one’s invaded my home. So I’m totally fine. But thanks for checking.”
For a few moments, there was silence between them. Across the room, the barber was wiping his father’s face clean. Soon he would take out his powder and brush and Deuce would no longer have the privacy he needed to seal this deal.
“What’re you doin’ later?”
“Nothing. The usual for when its cold as hell outside. Netflix. Chill.”
“Come do that with me.”
“Why, when I could do it right here? And not even have to change out of my PJs.”
“You haven’t changed out of your PJs?”
“Nope.” Zora made a popping noise with her lips when she pronounced the word.
She laughed. “I showered before bed.”
“Yeah. Sure you did.”
He looked up. His father was done, and beckoning for him as he doled out tips to the barber and his assistant.
“If you don’t want to come over, let me come over there then.”
“I probably should leave the house,” Zora said, almost as though talking to herself. “Whenever I try to veg out all day, it seems like a good idea, and then around seven-thirty I start feeling a little stir-crazy.”
“So … you comin’ over or …?”
Deuce stood, deliberately slow-walking toward the exit of the barbershop where his father was waiting for him. Ducking his head, and lowering his voice, he spoke deliberately softly into the phone.
“C’mon, Zee,” he said. “I really want to see you.”