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Excerpt from "How To Love" -Smash & Dash-


My hair was all over my head, spread out across a stranger’s silk pillow case like weeds, vines, and other shit that people got rid of. I couldn’t even feel my legs. Really wasn’t sure I still had any after having them spread so far apart and draped over his tatted shoulders while he pounded into me like he was searching for something inside my pussy—something I was certain he wouldn’t find, and wouldn’t be able to ask me for if he did, because he didn’t know my name, nor did I know his. Names seemed less than important after the third, fourth, or fifth shot. It was hard to keep count with the music being so loud, and his hands being so warm against the small of my back, running the red light that was my slinky black dress, finding a spot that would render me defenseless to his touch, and applying pressure.

So much pressure.

I could still hear him breathing in my ear, breath minty, and fresh, and more intoxicating than the fireballs he’d ordered from my best friend’s mobile bar at the party I was working and he was attending. I couldn’t remember if he’d even drank anything, but if the throbbing between my legs was any indication, he’d either drank enough to turn into a bull, or stayed sober enough to remain the bull he already was. Either way, it was time for me to get out of his bed. Late mornings only led to niggas falling in love, and that wasn’t what I’d stumbled in here for. I came to get fucked out of my mind, and he’d done that at least five times between three a.m. and whatever time it was now.

I blinked my eyes open wide enough to catch a glimpse of my shiny, black clutch sitting on a mirrored nightstand on “my” side of the bed. I’d heard a buzzing noise for the few minutes that I’d been awake, but it didn’t occur to me that it might’ve been my own phone. I rolled over on my side, naked breast falling against the inside of my arm, and reached over to grab my purse and retrieve my vibrating cell.

“Ness?” I slid the green icon and answered the call.

“Bitch, are you answering from Heaven or Hell? I’ve been calling you all morning!” My best and oldest friend had probably sent out an APB by now, seeing as she was the worrier of the two of us.

I sat up straight, pressing my back against the king-sized leather, tufted headboard, bringing a hand to my throbbing head. 

“Neither.” I groaned. “Actually, it could be either. What time is it?” I didn’t even have the wherewithal to look at my own damn phone screen.

“It’s noon! Did you just wake up? Where the hell are you?” Ness fussed. I could hear her keys jingling in the background and knew right away she was gonna try to come pick me up.

Problem with that was, I had no idea where I was. And of course, I couldn’t tell her that cause like I said, she was a worrier. 

“I’m at a friend’s.” I lied. “I’ll be home in an hour.”

“Unless your antisocial ass has up and gotten social in the past twenty-four hours, I’m the only damn friend you have. Now tell me where you are!”

I took my eyes on a trip around the spacious bedroom that had been my chamber of lust for the last eight or so hours. Thick black drapes hung from the ceiling to the floor, pulled closed and blocking out the light so well I couldn’t believe the sun was up on the other side of them. A long leather upholstered chase sat at the foot of the bed facing a tall sturdy armoire that was pushed against a far wall. Oil paintings of human silhouettes hung from all four walls, giving an almost eerie feel to the room that for some reason comforted me instead of making me feel scared. And it smelled new. Almost as if the paint on the walls had just dried.

Once my eyes adjusted enough to locate my dress hanging from the corner of one of the open doors on the armoire, I scooted to the edge of the bed, moaning as I tried to stand, slowed down by the soreness between my legs.

“Jo, what the fuck?” Ness’s voice startled me. So caught up in canvasing the room, I’d forgotten she was on the phone.

“My bad, Ness. I was—” I paused, words interrupted by a slither of light entering the bedroom as the door crept open. The smell of bacon and maple syrup swam up into my nostrils like the sweetest gift I’d ever received without asking for it.

“Ness, lemme call you right right back.” I said, eyes widening as the door pushed open further.

“Oh, so you right rightin’ me now? You shole ri—”

My thumb involuntarily pressed the end button as the phone slipped from my hand and fell back on to the mattress that was taking all my strength to leave. He stood there in the doorway, the picture of fucking perfection, wearing a pair of Houston Rockets pajama bottoms and a white T shirt that I prayed he’d let me take home, because he smelled so damned good.

He must’ve noticed the drunken starvation in my eyes, because he didn’t even bother to ask if I was hungry. Just walked in, sat the tray in the middle of the bed, then took a seat next to me, flipped his feet up on the bed, and pulled the tray up on his lap. A chest that chiseled and arms that ripped weren’t reserved for a girl like me. I could barely handle looking at this shit, let alone fucking with it sober. And despite the fact that my stomach was turning flips, I needed to ignore the meal—hell, both meals—displayed before me, and climb my ass outta this man’s bed before I started something I couldn’t finish.

“What’s wrong, you don’t eat pork?” He asked, voice smooth like honey, dark brown eyes enveloping me like a warm blanket.

I could very well have been shivering from the slight timber in his tone touching my skin like a digit. I wanted to taste his tongue so bad—almost as bad as I wanted that bacon. Lord, I should’ve just jumped out the damn window when I had the chance.

“It’s cool. I wouldn’t wanna eat food from a stranger either.” He started to put the tray back down.

But, “No!” I stopped him with a hand to his forearm. “It’s just... I. What are you gonna eat?” I raised my eyes to meet his, taking in the smoothness of his chocolate, inked skin, heat pooling between my legs like it had been on the ride over in the backseat of his chauffeured SUV, when he slipped a single, thick finger into my pussy and made me cum like a fucking waterfall.

“I already ate.” He pressed his back against the headboard. “I came in earlier so we could eat together but you were still passed out. Did you know you snore?” He squinted, forehead wrinkling under a perfectly lined edge-up.

“I do not!” I shrieked.

“Like a bear, man!” He returned with a chuckle. “It’s all good, though. Snoring’s cute as long as you wait til I’m asleep first.”

Wait, what? What the hell made him think I’d be around the next time he fell asleep or the time after that? See, this is why you gotta pull the old smash and dash. You wake up in a nigga’s bed two minutes past sunset and he’s ready to make plans for all your future sleep.

“I’m sorry...” I drew a blank where his name went.

“Scobie.” He filled in the blank. “And don’t be sorry. Just eat this food. Cause if I throw it away, my grandma’s probably gonna find out, and neither of us wants that to happen!” He grinned, sending a dimple sinking deep into one of his cheeks, just above the crisp edge of his beard. I’d vividly remembered sinking my fingers into it while his head was between my legs, and I’ll be damned if I didn’t shutter at the thought.

“You cold? Lemme grab you a shirt.” He hopped out of the bed and retrieved a crisp white T shirt that matched the one he had on, from a chest of drawers on the opposite side of the room. I’d almost forgotten I was naked. Not that I was ever self-conscious about it. I just felt so... so covered in his presence.

And why was he being so nice? He’d literally met and fucked me the same night, yet he was treating me like we’d been dating, or at least like he wanted us to.

“I don’t need it.” I put a hand up as he extended the T shirt. “I gotta go.” I flipped my legs off the side of the bed, feet meeting the warmest hardwood floors.

And why were his floors warm? Was it cold outside? We were well into November , but that meant nothing in Houston. It was at least eighty-five degrees out the night before.

“Sorry for the snoring.” I footed over to my dress, reaching up to slide it off the hanger and dropping it over my head. “And whatever else I might’ve done to disturb your sleep.” I continued, searching for my heels.

“No need.” He stood from the bed, six-foot-something of delicious black man. “None of it was against my will.” He bent over beside the nightstand, raising up with an easy smile on his face, and my shoes dangling from the tips of his fingers. “Looking for these?” He knowingly asked, taking two slow steps toward me.

“Thank you.” I took a step forward, grabbing the back straps of my shoes and looking up into his eyes when he didn’t release them.

“Can we not do this?” I asked, using all the strength I had not to surrender to his scent, his face, and the undeniable churning in my pelvis in response to the fullness of his lips.

“Do what?” He looked down at me. And my eyes were glossed with exhaustion because he had worked me the fuck out.

“Give me my shoes, Scobie, so I can go home.” I kept one hand on my shoes and propped the other on my hip.

“My friends call me Bee.” His grip tightened, a smirk parting his lips that had cocky written all over it.

“And I’ll call you Scobie. Now, unass my shoes.” I snapped.

“And then what?”

“And then I’ll never call you anything again, because that’s how these types of things work.”

He shook his head, rolling his eyes up to the ceiling, probably trying to figure out what to say to get me to stay.

But he’d find nothing.

Because once I made up my mind, there was nothing anyone could do to un-make it.

“When can I see you again?” Was what he came up with.

So much for creativity.

“I’m late for work.” I quickly replied.

“And you’ll be later if you don’t answer my question.” He suggested.

“Never!” I almost yelled, frustrated by the fact that he wasn’t taking the hint and I was running short on resistance. “Now gimme my damn shoes before I call the police!”

“Fine.” He released my shoes as I snatched them from his big hands and brushed past him en route to his open bedroom door.

Before I made it too far, having no idea where the front, back, or side door was, my stomach growled loud enough for him to hear it. I stood there, stricken with embarrassment, wishing like hell I’d grabbed the bacon off that plate. How the hell was I gonna play this off? I could’ve starved to death in the next five minutes.

“Take the plate.” He said, brushing past me in the doorway as I wiggled my feet into my shoes. “Front door’s to your left. Driver’s waiting downstairs to take you home. It was a pleasure meeting you, Joletta."

He said my name like he’d had the right, when anybody who knew me knew that the only person who’d ever called me that name had died when I was six-years-old. I ignored him, knowing he couldn’t’ve known that, and apparently had looked in my damn purse and saw my driver's license. Then I rushed back into the room like a starving kitten, snatched that bacon off the plate along with a slice of toast, and clacked my way through the walk of shame straight down to the waiting truck.

I might not even put this shit in my journal. 

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