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*Excerpt from Chapter 9: An Introduction to Desire*

My date with Calvin was perfect until Natasha popped up on the two of us. Hearing the way he felt about me, solidified how I felt about him. He loved me so much he wrote a poem for me and brought me here to hear him perform it. That was the nicest thing a boy ever did for me. I knew I had feelings for Calvin, so when he asked me to make things official, I was elated. However, before I got to answer his question, Natasha interrupted our moment. Aside from that, it seemed like Calvin and her were avoiding each other, and I ached to know why. I felt like everybody around me knew something I didn’t know, and it made me uncomfortable. As I stood with Natasha and her friends, zoning out their idle conversation, I turned my attention to the direction Cal and I were seated, but I didn’t see him. My heart palpitated as my mind searched for the reasons why he wasn’t there anymore. I was worried coming over here with Natasha made Calvin feel some type of way, but if that were true, why would he let me go? I told him I was going to speak to Tash’s friends, giving him an opportunity to speak up if he were against it. Yet, he didn’t protest. However, as soon as I got over here, he was nowhere to be found, and it bugged me. As I inventoried the crowd of people for him, and confirmed he wasn’t there anymore, I became sad. “Are you looking for someone,” a familiar voice whispered in my ear as I searched for Calvin. I spun around quickly to face them. I was stunned to see he caught over here by me so quickly. “Hey Dex,” I greeted him with a blank face. I was disappointed he wasn’t Calvin. The club wasn’t huge, so if I couldn’t see Cal from where I was, that meant he was gone. I hoped he had the decency to at least wait for me outside. If he left me here, I didn’t think I could forgive him. “Hey yourself, beautiful! It’s been a long time since I last saw you,” he responded as he looked me up and down. I was wearing a red maxi dress that fit my body like a glove, and clear pumps that I ordered from Fashion Nova. I was still concealing my identity, so I didn’t want to wear the designer clothes I usually wore at home. I knew I looked good, but Dexter seemed too thirsty. His eyes were full of lust as he scanned my body, and it made me uneasy. “Yeah, I know. I’ve been adjusting,” I told him. “I feel you. You look good as hell… as usual,” he complimented. As usual, I thought to myself, but said, “Thank you! So do you.” He licked his lips as he continued to drill me with his jade-green eyes. “I’ve been trying to get you to come out, so I could get to know you,” he confessed. I wrinkled my brows. “What do you mean?” “Yo girl Natasha ain’t told you?” “No, she didn’t,” I replied. I knew I was right. It was him who was asking about me. The others may have known who my family was, but it wasn’t a big deal to them because most of them were from wealthy, well-known families too. “I was inviting you out, Z. You just haven’t been available because you’re too busy hanging with Thee Invisible Cal,” Natasha divulged. Then, she disappeared. I didn’t know where she came from in the first place. She kept disappearing and reappearing like a ninja. “Cal? That’s who you’ve been giving my time to,” Dexter questioned with a frown on his face. “Excuse you? Your time,” I retorted as I snapped my neck back because he had me messed up. “That’s what I said. I told you, Zuri. I am up for the challenge of getting you. You might as well stop wasting time with lame ass Calvin Clay,” he had the audacity to say. I sucked my teeth. “Don’t talk about him like that. He’s not lame. He’s a good person,” I defended. I wasn’t going to allow them to talk about Calvin the way they were. “Forget about Calvin. I want you, Zuri. You know I’m better for you anyway. You’re too beautiful for a lame like Calvin Clay. I’m who you need to be with. Don’t you want to be Dexter Malone’s girl,” he questioned like it was the best thing in the world. I scrunched up my face at him. He was attractive, but his attitude was ugly. I could never be with someone like him. “I’m good where I’m at. Goodnight Dexter,” I said as I began to walk away. He grabbed my hand before I could get too far. “I always get what I want, Zuri. You just remember that,” he warned me as his emerald eyes shot Lazer beams through me. Then, he let me go. I marched over to Calvin and my table, to make sure he wasn’t there. After that, I went outside in search of him, but I didn’t know where to look. I felt stupid for allowing Natasha to trick me. She was supposed to be my best friend, so I didn’t expect her to pull something like that on me. Dexter Malone was an asshole I didn’t want any parts of. I didn’t care what they said about Calvin. He was the one I wanted to be with. I took my bag off my shoulder and got my phone out of it so I could call Calvin. After I dialed his number, I could hear his phone ringing nearby. I swiftly inventoried the parking lot. That’s when I saw him leaning against the right side of the club. I slowly approached him as I thought of what I would say to make up for what I did. I was ashamed of myself for leaving him when he went out of his way to make this night special for me. Our gazes aligned as the wind brushed against our skin. “Cal I-” I was about to say, but he planted his soft lips on mine. I almost forgot what I wanted to say to him. Finally, we pulled away from each other. “Are you mad at me,” I asked him as I became entranced in his pretty hazel eyes. “No. I’m just happy you came back to me… Promise me, Zuri… that you won’t leave me like everyone else did,” he asked me. I felt bad for him because I could see the pain in his eyes, and all I wanted to do was take it away. “I promise I won’t, Cal,” I vowed to him as I palmed his cold cheek. He pulled me into him as I sucked on his tongue. He palmed my butt cheeks while we made out deeply and passionately. Cal slid his hands down to the slit of my dress and brought it back up once he was inside my dress. He massaged my hot spot, instantly making me wet. Then, he fingered my opening vigorously. I exhaled deeply as pleasure consumed me. “Mmmm, Calvin. I love the way you make me feel,” I moaned before sinking my teeth into my bottom lip. He sped up his pace until my juices coated his fingers. “I love you Zuri,” he whispered while he used his fingers on me like I was a bowling ball until I orgasmed again. Cal pulled his finger out of me and tasted me. This time, I got a sample of myself. We got drunk off my potion like there were drugs in it, feeding our addiction to each other. I slid my hand down his pants and massaged his erection through them. “I want to make you feel good too,” I told him after we broke away from each other. Calvin silently grabbed my hand and escorted me to his 2016 Nisan Altima. My heart was beating fast and hard. The sexual energy between us was intense. Every step I took with Calvin felt right, so I was going to submerge myself in this experience with him. He made me feel safe and free. Although I was new to all this, there was nothing I wanted more than to face my fears.

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