Authors: KC Mills
“Daddy, can we go to the mall?”
Zora ran into the living room and jumped in my lap, catching me off guard. I had been spending more time at home, trying to prove to Rahjah that I wasn't all talk. That I really was trying to do better and be here for her like I needed to be. So far, things were better, and I felt like we were back in a good place but there were times when Rah kinda kept to herself.
The first night after we left her sister’s house, we talked about the baby and she promised that she would keep it. That was funny as hell to me because it wasn't like I was having it any other way. It was ours, we created it together out of love, so she wasn't killing it, no matter what she thought. Even if I had to take care of the baby all by myself, that baby was coming.
“Go to the mall for what, Zee? You don't need anything.” I smiled at my daughter while she twisted up her mouth like she was thinking hard about what she needed from the mall.
“But I need new shoes, then we can go get ice cream at that place Mommy likes, and you can buy us some jewelry. Mommy likes when you buy her jewelry, and so do I.” Zora smiled at me with those damn big brown eyes of hers.
She knew how to play me, which I guess technically wasn't really playing me because she could have anything she wanted. We both knew that.
“Where’s your mom?”
“In your room on the phone with Auntie Jaryah.”
Just hearing her name had me heated. Every time Zora said that shit, I wanted to tell her that wasn't her got damn auntie. That all she had was uncle Keys and Yetti, but Zora was too young for me to tell her shit like that. She’d figure out Jaryah was shit the older she got, so I didn't need to tell her.
“Aight, find something on TV to watch and let me go talk to your mom for a minute.”
Zora placed her tiny hands on the sides of my face and then pecked me on the lips. I kissed both her cheeks before I lifted her off my lap, lowered her onto the sofa, and handed her the remotes. She searched the DVR and went straight to that damn princess movie, and then was glued to the TV. She could watch that shit a million times and never get tired. I personally was over it, but if anytime she wanted me to watch it with her, I was down. Like I said, my baby girl could get anything. No exceptions.
I strolled through my house until I made it to our bedroom. Rah was stretched out on her stomach with her feet in the air ankles crossed. My girl was fine as fuck, and I loved every inch of her. Rah had caramel skin that was flawless, a fat ass that her mama blessed her with, accented by nice thick thighs, small waist and flat stomach. She wasn't sporting wash board abs or anything, but her shit was on point. Rah kept her body tight, and I loved that about her.
You would never know that she got big as hell carrying our daughter because looking at her now, she was fucking perfect. I was constantly checking niggas for looking at her fine ass, and it pissed me off but made me proud.
That was one reason why I never cheated. I didn't have to. My girl was all I needed, and not just in a physical way. Rah was cool as fuck. She was like my best friend. We could kick it with video games or switch it up and get classy as fuck with fancy dinners and shit, but no matter what, she was always down. Rah had my back, and I knew I could trust her with my life and my deepest secrets because she was taking them shits to the grave.
Rah knew me, she knew about my past, my fucked up family, and why I was so screwed in the head, but she never judged me. She just supported, loved and gave me what I needed, which was why I would always be loyal. No one would ever love me like she loves me, and a nigga knew that and respected that.
When Rah felt me enter the room, she looked back over her shoulder and ended her call. She knew I wasn't fucking with her sister like that, and didn't want me to say some foul shit, which I was damn sure about to do.
I chuckled before I sat down next to her. “Why you hang up?”
“You know why I hung up, Hayes? What do you want?” She rolled her damn eyes at me.
See, this that shit that’s been annoying me lately. Like she keeps hanging onto that shit. We can't move forward if she won't let it go. Instead of dwelling on it, I gave her a pass. I didn't want to argue, especially not while Zora was up.
“Should you be laying on your stomach like that?” I knew I was about to start some shit, when I just said I didn't want to argue, but I didn't need her squishing our baby.
“It’s fine, damn. I’m not even showing yet.”
“Yo, bring that down to about a two. I’m just asking. When you go back to the doctor anyway? I want to go.”
I was a little pissed that she went without me the first time since she was hiding shit, but I was trying. I just needed her to try too.
“I’m not sure. I’ll let you know.”
“Fuck you mean you’re not sure, Rah? They didn't tell you?”
“No, they didn't because I didn't know what I was gonna do, Hayes.” She sat up and folded her arms, scowling at me.
I pinched the bridge of my nose before I spoke again. “Look, I know you’re not thrilled about this and I get it, but I need you to get on board with this, Rah. That’s our child you’re carrying. How can you not be happy about that? How can you look at Zora and not think about what this baby will be like? Come on, Rah, I know it's not what you planned, shit I didn't either, but I need you to be happy about this.”
I looked at her lost, because it was fucking me up that she really didn't want this baby. I just couldn't handle that.
“I’m happy, Hayes. I just don't want this to be all that I am. I need you to understand that.”
“Shit, baby, I do. I promise I do. You can do whatever you want. You name it and I’ll make that happen for you. I just need to know that you’re in this, that our family matters to you. That this baby matters to you.”
I placed my hand under her shirt and inhaled. Rah scooted closer to me and laid her head on my shoulder.
“It does.” Her voice was low, barely audible, but I took that. As long as she was trying, I was good.
“Your daughter wants to go to mall. You down?”
Rah bursts out laughing. “She does, for what?”
“Shit, I don't know, shoes or something like that. You got her like that. Three years old and she be shopping like a grown ass woman.”
“No, Hayes, that’s all you, but yeah, I’m down. Let me change real quick.
“Can I watch?” I grinned at Rah and she sucked her teeth.
“Hell no or we won't be going anywhere.”
“Fuck it then, you got me tonight, right? I ain't been in you for a few days, Rah. I miss that shit.”
“Maybe, we’ll see how you behave at the mall.” Rah jumped up and laughed.
“Fuck outta here with that. You’re giving me some pussy tonight, Rah, and I mean that shit. And it ain't got a damn thing to do with what I buy you at this got damn mall.” I stood up and waved her off. I laughed to myself because I knew she was about to shut shit down, just because I said that. Her and Zora both, but it was all good. My girls could buy whatever the fuck they wanted. If I had it, they could spend it, and I would never complain about that.
We hit the mall, and as expected, my girls did their thing. Zora had more shit than a little bit and Rah was doing it too. I loved seeing my girls happy. It was what I lived for. Why work hard if you not gon’ spend it on the ones you cherish the most.
“Daddy, can I make a build a bear, pleeeeeaaassseee?” Zora clasped her hands together in front of me begging. Those damn eyes of hers had me sold. I was gonna say yes right away, but I had to check with Rah. Zora had a million of those things. She made one every time we came to the mall and that was a lot.
Rah rolled her eyes and I knew what that meant. “Come on Zee, you have everyone they make. They’re all over the house, baby girl.
“But Daddy, not all of them. Not that one, or that one.” She started pointing to the glass display outside of the store. I shouldn't have even said that shit.
“Fine, but only one, and hurry up. We need to go eat.” Just as I finished, Zora jumped up and down and Rah gave me a death stare, which was funny as hell but I couldn't say anything because my phone went off.
“Yo, take her, I’ll be there in a minute. I need to get this, it's Yetti.”
“Really Hayes? You need to do this with her. You’re the one that told her yes. You know she be doing the most in there.” Rah sucked her teeth and peered at me. Zora was standing in the entrance lane waiting.
“I’m coming, baby. Give me a minute to see what’s up with Yetti. Just let her pick it and I’ll come do it with her. I promise.” I kissed her on the cheek.
Again, Rah, rolled her eyes before she dropped the shit load of bags she was holding next to my feet. I already had too many, but it was cool. She stormed off like the spoiled brat she was, which was cute, grabbed Zora’s hand and entered the store. The second they were inside; Zora broke away going ham. I smiled because I knew Rah was pissed.
“What’s up, Yetti?”
“Shit, just checking on you. What's good with the fam?”
“We’re straight, at the mall, and Zora and Rah are blacking out. You know how they do.” I chuckled.
“Yeah I do, but they deserve it, so it’s all good.”
“Not really. Rah mad as fuck cause Zora wanted to go to Build a Bear. We were on our way in and you called. I’m happy as fuck cause I don't want to do that shit with her.”
Yetti laughed because he knew how Zora was. She’d caught his ass a few times with Build a Bear. “Aww, damn, she gon’ make you pay for that shit, Hayes.”
“Yeah, I know, but she’ll be good when I put this dick in her later. Besides, she just spent a day’s worth of bank, so she can't say shit.”
“Yeah, aight. Let me hear you say that around her, nigga.”
I chuckled because I wouldn't. She would go in on my ass and I knew it.
“What's up, Hayes, with your sexy ass. You got something in one of those bags for me?”
I looked up as some fine ass chick and her friend started moving my way. I glanced at the store and Rah and Zora had their backs to me.
“Who the fuck is that, Hayes?” Yetti asked.
I ignored both of them, but they didn't move.
“Yeah aight, don't let Rah fuck you up out there. You know she don't play that shit, bruh.”
“Nigga, I ain't worried ’bout these hoes and you know it, so Rah ain't gon’ do shit.”
I looked right at them when I told Yetti that, and one of them frowned. The other one snickered.
“See, I told you his ass faithful. He ain't checking for nobody but that bit…”
“Yo, say it and I’ll fuck you up! Now get the hell outta my face before you come up missing later.”
I pointed at old girl and she looked like she was about to shit her damn pants. I didn't play that name calling shit with Rah. I looked up again and Rah had her eyes on me, but she turned away and went to stand next to Zora. Fuck. Last thing I needed was some shit like this messing up our vibe.
“Hayes, you good?” Yetti’s voice brought my attention back to him.
“Yeah, I’m good. These dumb bitches still standing here though. They must not understand English.”
I glared at them and the one that originally spoke sucked her teeth and then they walked off. I started grabbing the bags that Rah left me with and took my ass in the store with my daughter and girl, but I stood off to the side to finish my call with Yetti.
“Yo, go handle that. I just wanted to check in. Keys said we need to meet up later. Can you get away or Rah still in your shit?” Yetti laughed.
“Yeah, I can do that. But I don't want to be gone long. I’m trying to do right so she won't flip the fuck out anymore. At least not until she has this baby.
“Cool. I’ll let you know when. Go do the family thing nigga, and I’ll hit you later.”
I ended my call and slid my phone in my pocket, just as Zora came running over to me.
“Daddy look.” She shoved a Panda at me.
“I like it Zee, hurry up so we can go though.”
“Okay Daddy, but, I need to get her some clothes. Can I get a lot?”
“Two outfits, Zee. You already got plenty at home.”
“Okay.” She took off running and Rah walked up.
“Your little fan club?” She turned up the corners of her mouth and then rolled her eyes.
“Them hoes ain't my anything. All I see is you and you know that. They can kiss my ass.”
“That’s what they want anyway, /” She said sucking her teeth.
“Rah come on. I can't control what they do. Only what I do, and I ain't doing shit unless it's with you. You already know that, so fuck them.” I dropped the bags I was holding and pulled her into my body, trailing kisses on her neck.
“You better not cheat on me, Hayes. I know those bitches will take whatever you give. They don't give a fuck about our family.”
Rah looked like she was damn near pouting but I knew she meant it. She would fuck me and them up if she even thought I was cheating. That was another thing I loved about her. She wasn't weak. She’d let it be known that she’ll cut a bitch over me. She wasn't the one to stand for disrespect. I could fuck around if I wanted to, but Rah was the type to cut your dick off while you’re sleeping.