I don’t want to, but I love that classic romance novel trope of the poor virgin and the rich man. I even wrote one with Paying For It. But I spun it a little bit in that my heroine Tunie isn’t a complete pushover. That’s part of the reason she’s able to turn my hero Charles inside out. In the end, she saves him.
In this snippet I offer you a glimpse into her past, a horrible glimpse of what helped craft her into the tough cookie my Charlie can’t live without.
“He was so puffed up after it happened, thought he was a man ‘cause he took from me what was mine to give. But what I didn’t tell you was what happened to that little nigger after he fucked me over. My eye was swelling shut, I had blood in my mouth, my lip was cut, and I had blood between my legs. But when that little prick went back to his room, presumably to crow about his actions to someone since he had the phone in his hand when I got there, I followed. And I didn’t come alone. I stopped by the kitchen and brought a cast iron skillet with me. One of those big old fashioned joints that can be real heavy, almost too heavy to lift. But that day it felt as light as an aluminum bat, and I swung it like I was hitting a homerun.”
His sucked in a shocked breath, transfixed by the almost demonic cast of her face as she told her story.
“I only got in two swings before my foster mother took that skillet away, but they were two good swings. That motherfucker had knots on his head the size of your fist, and when she took that skillet away from me I kicked him while he was down, and I knocked out all of his front teeth. I tried to put my foot through his face again, but my stepmother stopped me.
“She begged me to stop, not to throw my life away on some trifling ass low life. Then she told me she was sorry, and I spat blood in her face.”
Shocked, his mouth open, he almost fell out of his chair when she leaned in close and smiled the coldest, most dead eyed smile he’d ever seen.
“’Cause, see, the way I figure, the whole shit was her fault. I’d complained about him bothering me twice before. One time she ignored me. The second time she told me to stop teasing him. And she said it in front of him. So to me, she wasn’t shit either. In fact, she was worse than that bastard because she basically told him it was okay to abuse me when she dismissed what I was telling her as unimportant.
“So, if you’re nursing some little idea in your belly about how you saved me to assuage the guilt you feel for taking me as your mistress in the first place, don’t waste your time, baby,” she said softly. “I may be poor, black and a woman, but I ain’t no fool, and I don’t need saving. You’re paying for pussy, and that’s what you’re gonna get. Now it’s time for you to go. I think I’ll take my two days off this week. I’ve earned a rest.”