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Lost Souls

Lost Souls

*Six Years ago*

We were on the blacktop playing one on one. I was up by two and had the ball "Ju you're never gonna beat me" <a href="">I</a> said faking left and going right and made a lay up making the score 12-8. "game over, you suck Ju" I said sitting on the side of the court taking a swig of my gatorade. "man shut up, you know last game that fat kid fell on my leg" <a href="">he</a> said snatching my gatorade. I laughed at his sorry excuse, then heard my dad calling my name. 

"Tae! Tae! It's time to come in the house"

Ju looked at me "until next time" he said getting up and reaching his hand out to pull me up.

"until next time" I said walking off with my ball as he walked in the opposite direction

I walked in the house to see my mom and dad sitting on the couch with my baby sister.

"what's going on?" I said sitting on my ball against the wall

"shaunte' sweety your dad is being stationed in Wyoming. Sooo we're moving" my <a href="">mom</a> said 

My mouth fell open 

"I know you've made friends over the past five years, but you're young you can make new friends were ever you go" she continued

"and it's not guaranteed that we stay there. We might even end up moving back here" my <a href="">dad</a> said trying to lighten the mood

"but what about basketball, and Julius? He's my best friend"

"Tae you can play basketball anywhere. And guys can call each other or even write letters"

"okay, when do we move?"

"in one week" 

I sighed deeply "okay" and I went up to my room.


Runn It Figgy !!!!

The guys were down stairs putting the food out and playing music as me and Ayanna got dressed. I decided on <a href="">this</a> and left my hair curly and Ayanna was wearing <a href="">this</a>. 

We walked down stairs and blocked the stairs off and people began flowing in.

 The party was live, Tyler had the music right and everyone was feeling right. Some girls were giving lap dances on the wall. 

"ewww you see them girls" Ayanna pointed out "they can't twerk for s***" she said shaking her head

"come on, we're about to show them out"

"what!? Naw I'm good" I said taking a sip of my drink

"don't you wanna show Mo what I taught you" she said folding her arms 

I hesitated to answer "come on, ima get Tyler and and we're gonna show out"

Ayanna's POV

I told Tyler to play pop that by French Montana and pulled him out to the dance floor and along the way I pulled Mo too. 

I pushed Mo onto Tae and she looked at me with wide eyes. I shrugged my shoulders and began to twerk my ass on Ty.

Tae looked back at Mo and began to twerk as well. He looked at her shocked as f***. A crowd began to form as everyone watched us clap on them. Tae was moving her little ass cus Mo started to lose balance and was falling back.

"aye you seen Alexis" Julius asked Moe

"does it look like I'm looking for Alexis" Mo said pointing in front of him

Julius' watched in mesmerization "you better not let Tae catch you"

"nigga this is Tae" he said grabbing her hips

Julius' face fell " I have seen it all" he said shaking his head

The song ended and Tae pulled herself together and I high fived her laughing

"damn girl" Mo said staring at her intently

"ain't no more soda" some random person yelled

Tae grabbed Mo's hand and pulled him out the party

Shaunte's POV

I walked with Mo hand in hand to the front to get more drinks out the garage.I gave him two packs of soda and I carried one.

"so where did it all of that come from?" Mo asked

"ummm, idk" I said blushing 

"mhmm" he said grinning "aye is that Alexis? Ju been looking for her all night" he said looking in the direction of a car parked right in front of my house.

I squinted my eyes "I think so, wait is that Carter"

"yeah, wow PAUSE they in there making out"

"oh hell no, she cheating on my best friend"

I walked up to the car and knocked on the window.

Alexis rolled down her window mugging me "can I help you?"

"yeah, what the f*** is this" I said pointing at carter 

"two people minding their business"

"oh true" I said grabbing a fist full of hair and banging her head on the window. I opened the door and dragged her out by her hair and punched her in her face continuously. A crowd soon formed around us. She maneuvered her way on top of me and punched me on the face one time before I slammed her into the car getting back on top. Julius came running out in shock of what was going on.

Ju pulled me off "what the hell is going"

"that skank is cheating on you" 

"really Alexis?"

She nodded her head "yeah, you wasn't giving me what I want"

Julius looked at her disgusted "continue" he said letting me go

Julius' POV

I began walking over to Mo when I noticed Carter posted on the car laughing hysterically

"the f*** is so funny" I asked irritated

"this" he said pointing to the girls

"nigga you fake as s***"

"it's not my fault your b**** wanted to f*** me" said as I was about to walk away

I turned around with the quickness and stole him right in his jaw causing him to fall on to the curb. I got on top and started delivering blows to his face Brendan came running across the street and broke up the fight and Mo broke up Tae and Alexis.

"party's over, everybody get the f***" Brendan yelled

I walked over to Tae as everyone began to disperse and dapped her up 

Brendan walked in front of us looking us up and down "thugtastic ass best friends and s***" he said shaking his head

My parents were packing up to go visit my grandparents in Nappa Valley. My mom just finished making sandwiches for the trip. And my dad just loaded up the Lexus. 

"okay, are you sure you don't wanna come Shaunte'?" my mom asked at the door

"I'm sure mom, I have two scrimmages this weekend and I can't miss them" I lied 

She kissed my forehead "send grandma my love" 

"I will" she said closing the door

I watched them get in the car and drive off down the road. I turned around and observed my now empty house that would soon be filled with a crowd of people for the party later. 

I called Ju, Tyler and Mo over to help me set up and move furniture around.
Tyler set up his DJ equipment in a corner. We moved all of my moms fragile items upstairs in my room and made space in the basement. By the time we finished it was twelve in the afternoon.

"what else is there to do?" Ju asked 

"gotta get food" I said 

"yeah, cus niggas be hungry raiding your refrigerators and s***" Tyler said with Mo nodding in agreement

"man what, somebody ate five of  my moms lean cuisine meals at my party"

"okay, so what should I get"

"get like ten bags of chips, some buffalo wings, and sodas" Tyler said as Ju and Mo nodded in agreement

"and Brendan got the bottles right, yeah they're in the basement" 

"Iight, cool. To the grocery store" I said popping up as they all followed behind.

We got everything we needed. The guys left because they actually had practice from 3-6. I sat the chips on the counter and put the wings and drinks in the freezer. 

I laid in my bed as my phone started ringing. I dug in my bag for it. When I fished it out it was Ayanna. I answered "heyy girllllaaa." 

"what up skank!" she yelled through the phone

"nothing, been with the guys all day getting ready for the party"

"partyyyyyy!!" she yelled again "open the door"

I ran down the steps to the door and there she stood with an overnight bag. 

"are you ready for the party?"

"as ready as I'll ever be"

"ewww what kind of answer is that. You ready to twerk something on Maurice" 

"uhhhh....." I looked at her confused

"you don't know how to twerk do you?" she asked with her hands on her hips

I shook my head "no"

"oh lordy Jesus" she said throwing her hands up "welcome to Tadoww's twerk somethin' shake somethin' ass clappin 101" 

"do you have a iPod player thingy" she said waving her iPod

"my room" I said pointing upstairs

She walked up the stairs and I followed as she placed her iPod on and No hands began to play through out my room

"you got some leggings, compression or soffee shorts?"

I nodded my head and pulled out my soffee shorts "okay, put those on" she said as I did what I was told 

She kicked her shoes off and lifted her shirt up a little and began to move her butt "do as I do" 

I did as she did and began to feel the rhythm and started to do my own thing. "see girl you got clappas" she said laughing. "now keep one leg up and  put your booty on the floor" she sang as I looked at her like she was crazy.

"I'm really sorry about Alexis"

"Ju you've been apologizing all week, every time you see me and it's only Wednesday"

"I know, I'm just really sorry" he said pleading

"I forgive you all right, her on the other hand, no comment just keep her away from me"

"what if she's at your party on Saturday?"

"then she'll be there, just make sure you avoid us coming in contact"

He nodded "okay, I can do that"

Mo turned around "you not gonna apologize to me, she spilled orange soda on my moms white carpet"

"my bad brah, she won't be at any outings with us anymore"

"yeah, she causes too much drama" Mo said as I nodded my head in agreement

A few classes later I was making my way to lunch with Mo. We sat down with our lunch and started discussing the party. 

"who am I gonna get to dj?"

"Tyler has the equipment, he can do it"

"Tyler can do what?" he said sitting down

"dj my party, pleaseee" I said with my lip poked out

"yeah, I got you"

"okay, so all we need now is food and drinks right?"

"and bottles" Julius said sitting down

"how am I gonna get bottles?"

"I'll get Brendan to get them since he's home"

"Brendan is home and you didn't tell me" I said shaking my head "what type of friend are you?"

"I thought you were friends with me for me and not my brother"

"I am but I still want to see your brother"

"well I can get him to come to the court and play ball with us so you can bust his ass too"

I laughed rubbing my hands together "sounds like a plan"

"sorry, I can't make it today"

"why?" we all said in unison

"because, I have a date" he said brushing himself off

"on a wednesday. And with who?" Ju asked


Me and Mo looked at each other and snickered "my mans maybe we can double date" he said dapping Tyler up

"we would offer a triple date but that's always a messy situation" Tyler said

Ju threw his hands up "I understand"

After school instead of practice we had a scrimmage. We played some school From Orange county. Me and Ayanna both scores 20 points each. Our offense as a team was good but defense needed some work. After the game I left out with Ju and Mo to go to meet Brendan at the court.  

We walked onto the court and there Brendan stood. 
I ran over and stopped right in front of him and yelled "Bren Bren"

"Tae Tae"

I leaped into his arms and he swung me around.

"damn girl you heavy as f***" he said putting me down

"well I can't just stop growing because I moved" 

"true, so I hear you still ball better than Ju"

"yup, and every other nigga on the court" I said referring to him and Mo

He chest passed the ball to me "you still a c**ky little thing"

"I'm not c**ky I'm confident" I said passing the ball back

"well your money where you mouth is"

"you want me to beat you and take your money, sounds good to me" I said putting my hair into pony tail

"me and Ju against you and Mo"

"okay, how much we talking?"

"$100, and if you beat me I'll double it. First one to 40"

"Iight, check the ball" 

He checked the ball and the game began. The score went back and forth the entire game, 39-38 our lead. Brendan dribbled the ball half court then passed it to Ju. I was guarding Ju not letting him pass. He tried to fake left and go right but when he went left I stole the ball.

"common man what are you doing?" Brendan yelled at him

I passed the ball to Mo and moved to the three point line as Brendan was guarding him. Mo managed pass the ball to me. I got the ball and immediately shot it and from the moment it left my hands I knew it was going in SWOOSH.

"42-38, game overrrr" I said George Jefferson walking over to him

Brendan straight faced me "did you have to make a three, you couldn't have made a lay up"

"naw my father always told me to go out with a bang"

"yeah whatever, but your still the best female player I've seen and your only 16" he said shaking his head 

"on to business, my money please" I said sticking my hand out

He slapped my hand "I'll give it to you tomorrow and I'll get you the bottles for your party on saturday"

"thank you" I said jumping up and hugging him

"get your sweaty ass off me" he said pushing me off as we all laughed

Me, Ayanna, Ju, <a href="">Tyler</a> and even Alexis all gathered at Mo's house for a movie night. 

Everyone was beginning to arrive and headed downstairs as I helped Mo bring the snacks down stairs. 

"okay we have have popcorn, caramel corn, gummy bears, chips, that good?" he asked

"yeah" I said not paying attention

"what's wrong?" he asked stepping in front of me

"why did you invite Alexis?"

"because that's Ju's girl, just relax and don't worry about her" he said rubbing my shoulders

"I wont be held responsible for injuries" I said grabbing a bowl of popcorn

He laughed "chill out"

Everyone was relaxed and laid out on the couches and floor in the basement as we watched The Chronicle.

"Shaunte' I didn't know you were in this movie?" Alexis said referring to some alien looking creature

I looked at Mo and he rubbed my hand calming me down.

"chill out" Ju said mugging Alexis

"you gonna let her say that" Ayanna whispered to me

"I don't have the time for her childish ways" I whispered back and she just nodded her head

"Shaun can you pass me some gummie bears?" Alexis said giving me a devilish smirk

My nostrils flared up and I felt my blood boil

"who the f*** is Shaun?" Tyler asked truly confused 

Mo passed Alexis the gummie bears and Ju nudged her  "chill out"

Thirty more minutes into the movie Alexis got up to throw her drink away and "stumbled" and spilt it all over Shaunte'.

"oh I am so sorry Shaun"

"the f*** is wrong with you" I yelled about to get up but Mo held me back

Ayanna jumped up and got in Alexis' face "the f*** is your problem b****"

"and who are you exactly?" Alexis asked not phased

Ayanna kicked her leg up close enough to hit Alexis' face as she flinched "Tadoww b****hh!!" 

Tyler grabbed Ayanna from behind "chill out, she's not worth it"

"naw she not about to be disrespecting my girl like that" she said squirming around trying to get loose

"chill out ma"

Ju pulled  Alexis aside "why the f*** did you do that!?" 

"because I felt like it" she said dryly

"And I feel like beating your ass" Ayanna yelled

"shut your dwarf ass up" she yelled back

"Ju you better stop acting pussy whipped and handle that" Tyler spat

"pussy whipped? Haa" Alexis said sarcastically

"oh, he not hitting? Then why that gap between your legs so wide you slutty ass hoe" Ayanna spat

Everyone's eyes got wide

"Ju get Alexis out of her man" Mo said

Ju did as he was told and pulled Alexis out the back door and drove her home.

"Ughh I just wanted to chill with my girl and my friends" Mo said frustrated

Tyler and Ayanna c**ked their heads back "your girl!"

"oh yeah, surprise we're officially together now" Shaunte' said dryly wiping herself as clean as possible

"well damn, that b**** just messed up a joyous occasion"

"yo ass need to calm down" Tyler said wagging his finger 

"you can't even lie. When she almost kicked Alexis and was like "Tadoww b****hh" that s*** was funny as hell" Mo said as we all bust out laughing

"this is too much drama for me, I just wanna party!" she said getting up and twerking "someone needs to have a party"

"I can have one next weekend. My parents are taking my sister out of town." I said 

"Yesss Tae is gonna have a party" she said dancing then turning around to face Tyler "now let me get your number"

Tyler looked at her confused "huh?"

"your number, my phone"

Tyler looked at her up and down licking his lips "Naww, you give me your number" he said handing her his phone 

"my mans tryna take control" Mo said sicing it

Ayanna put her number in and came back to me dapping me up "I told you I got this" she said smirking

"ready for our date? It's gonna be fun"

"yeah" I said giggling "where are we going anyway?"

"I'm not telling you, but dress comfortable because your gonna be running"

"running? From what"

"not telling you, but be ready by 6"

I looked at the clock it was now 4:30


"Iight, I'll see you later"

"bye" I said hanging up the phone just as my mom walked in and sat on my bed.

"so you're going on your second date with Maurice tonight" she said grinning

"yeah mom"

"where are y'all going?"

"I don't know, he won't tell because it's a surprise"

She nodded her head "do you think you'll want him to be your boyfriend?"

"moooooom, stop it please"

"I'm sorry, Tae you've just always been so close to your dad because of sports. And I just want you to come to me for stuff like this"

"I know mom, and I will it's just still new to me you know" I said giving her a hug. "I have to get ready now"

"okay, sweety" she said kissing me on the cheek

I showered and did my hygiene routine and put <a href="">this</a> on. I straightened my hair and was ready just as he was calling my phone to tell me to come outside.

I Got in the car and we drove off. He turned on the radio and we rapped and sang along to every song that came on. We soon pulled up to what looked like an abandoned building.

"what is this place?" I asked

"you'll see"

I looked at him suspiciously "is this where you kill me?"

He laughed "no, come on" he said grabbing my hand

We walked in and there were kids and teenagers of all ages. Monitors on the wall with code names and scores. 

"welcome to dungeon dragons laser tagging" said the cashier

"can I have two games for the two of us"

"that will be $40"

Mo paid and we put in our codes names and we waited our turn.

"you know I'm gonna beat you in this to right" I said 

"you've beat me in basketball, hand standing. I think I've got this since I play call of duty" he said sounding sure

"my fathers in the army, it's in my nature to creep behind walls and shoot people" I said laughing 

Julius' POV

I walked the board walk with <a href="">Alexis</a> with my arm around her, sharing a stick of cotton candy. We walked along the beach lets the waves hit our feet. When soon sat in the sand and watched the sun set on the ocean. 

"babe this is beautiful"

"just like you" I said kissing her cheek

We laid there for a few more moments and then headed back to the car. 

I pulled up in front of her house and she began kissing on my neck.

"babe no ones home, don't you wanna come in" she asked in between kisses

I pushed her off "naw, I got practice in the morning"

"pleaseeee" she begged

"no Alexis, we just started dating. I want to wait" 

She sucked her teeth and rolled her eyes "fine" she said getting out the car and walking into the house as I drove off

Alexis' POV

I walked in the house, pulled out my phone and dialed his number

" tryna come over.......he's gone, he wasn't tryna give me none.....okay, I'll leave the door unlocked and I'll be waiting in my room"

Maurice's POV

After laser tagging I took Tae out for ice cream and we sat down at a table talking.

"I told you I was gonna win" she said taking a bite

"I let you win"

She laughed sarcastically "yeah, sure you did"

I laughed with her "why you gotta be so good at everything"

"because I don't believe in losing"

"your gonna have to let me win sometimes, so I can feel like a man" I said trying to stick out my chest

"put away your bird chest"

I held my chest "that hurt" 

She began laughing and I just smiled at the sight. "are you having fun?"

"yes, are you?"

"I always have fun when I'm with you" I said truthfully. "sooo on a scale of 1-10 how much do you like me?"

"8" she said blushing

"Iight, if I asked you to be my girl would you say yes?"

"yes" she said still blushing

"so I guess that makes you my girl then" I said taking a bite of my ice cream. 

She nodded "I guess so."  I smiled and kissed her on the cheek

 Julius' POV

I left Mo's house and drove to the court. I called Tyler and told him to meet me there. I really needed someone to talk to. 

I stood at the free throw line practicing when Tyler pulled up.

"wassup man" he said walking onto the court

"idk man, do you think I'm c**k blocking on Mo and Tae?"

Tyler squinted his eyes at me "what did you do?"

"I was just at Mo's house" I said putting the ball under my arm

"for what? Don't they got a study date?"

"yeah" I said nodding my head

"yeah nigga you c**k blocking. Mo told me what happened at the movies"

"of course he did" I said shooting the ball

"what's the big issue with them dating Ju?"

"idk, Tae is literally like a sister to me and I never got to see her interact with guy like that because she moved. And now that I have and it's with one of MY friends c**k blocking just comes easy"

Tyler laughed "c**k blocking comes easy" he laughed again 

"this isn't funny" I said throwing the ball at him

"well I don't know what to tell you except to chill out cus your just gonna push her away. Say she does have a problem with Mo, she going to need you since your closest to him... Or me, just saying. And you could potentially ruin your friendship with Mo."

I nodded my head in agreement taking in everything 

"you know Mo isn't a player so there is no reason to be all overly protective like he's after one thing or something. Just let them do them. If it doesn't work out then it doesn't work out. Just lay low and focus on Alexis uppity ass."

"damn son, you right" I dapped him up "this is why I keep you around. Young J.Cole over here giving me words of wisdom and s***"

"well you know" he said sicing himself 

Ju stopped "stop talking about my girl though"

"she is uppity and you know it" he said getting into his car 

"shut your Dr.Phill ass up and find your own girl"

"I'm working on it" he shouted as he drove off

I pulled up to my house and saw my brothers car in the driveway. I walked in and heard his loud voice in the kitchen talking to my mom.

"look who's home?" my mom said referring to me

I gave my mom a kiss on the check

"wassup <a href="">Brendan</a>" I said dapping up my brother "how's school?" I asked taking a seat at the table 

"schools good, I might have an internship working with YMCMB or BadBoy this summer"

"that's tight"

"yeah, so what's up with you and that big headed girl"

"why everybody always talking about my girl?" 

"because that girl is a piece of work" my mom said stirring something 

I brushed it off "we never thought you would be with someone like her"

"then who should I be with?"

"I always thought you and shaunte' would make a cute couple when y'all we're little" she said smiling

Me and Brendan looked at her sideways "that girl was a straight tom boy and probably still is" he stated

"no, she moved back and grew up quite beautifully if I do say so my self"

"word" Brendan said amazed

"yeah, she be wearing skirts and crap now AND she talk to Mo"

"Maurice?! Really?"

I nodded "yup"

"you jealous? Didn't you have a crush on her when y'all were ten" brendan said

I straight faced him "shut up"

Brendan bust out laughing as I got up to go to my room

"dinner will be finished soon so wash up" my mom shouted

I plopped down on to my bed thinking "was my c**k blocking the way I channeled my jealousy?

I heard laughing outside and looked out my window to see Mo and Tae outside her house goofing around and then he pecked her lips

"f***" I mumbled to myself.

 "who is that?" she said pointing at Tyler

"that's Ju and Mo's friend Tyler. He's cool people"

"I sure hope so cus he is fine a f***" she said primping her hair

"I can talk to him for you if you want"

"oh no, I can do it myself just give me some time." 

I chuckled "okay"

The boys practice was wrapping up and the guys were gathering their stuff. Mo came walking towards Me and Ayanna.

"here comes your boo" 

I nudged her "shut up" I said laughing as he stepped in front of us

"heyyyyy Mauriceeeee" she said smiling

"wassup tadoww" he said flipping his imaginary hair

"y'all are so extra" I said laughing

"y'all ready?" he asked

"yeah" I said grabbing my stuff as we headed out the gym

We got outside and walked to the parking lot where Ju and Tyler were already posted on their cars. Mo unlocked the doors and I threw my bag in. 

Ju and Tyler came walking towards us. "here comes your boo" I said nudging Ayanna

"shut up" she whispered as they got closer

I laughed "where y'all going" Ju asked

"Tadoww going home, and Tae coming to my house" Mo answered

"the f*** y'all gonna be doing?" he said his eyes wide 

"chill out Ju, it's just a study date" I said

"it better be more study than date" he says lightly laughing

"I know Julius" I said giving him a hug

We then all got in the car and drove off. 

I looked at Ayanna in the back "what happened back there?"

"look b**** I said give me some time" she said laughing

"Iight you got it" I said putting my hands up 

We pulled up to Ayanna'a house and dropped her off. We then drove a couple blocks up to Mo's house. He hopped out the car and went to my side to open the door as I got my bag.

We walked in the house and it was dead silent. 

"where your parents at?" I asked 

"my mom works late because she's a nurse. And my dad is somewhere being a dad to some other kid" he said shrugging it off

"oh, sorry"

"you good" 

He sat his bag down and plopped down on the couch and I sat down next to him as we both pulled out our notebooks to study.

"you ready" he said opening his book


After about twenty minutes of actually studying we got distracted and end up having a hand stand contest.

"I'm gonna stay up longer then you" he said adjusting himself on his hands

"did you forget that I am also a gymnast" I said standing perfectly still

"that don't mean anything"

"it means a lot actually" 

*boom* he fell on his head 

He laid on the floor rubbing his head. I walked over to him on my hands and stood over him face to face.

 "I told you" I said laughing 

He then leaned his head forward pecking me on the lips. I was caught off guard and fell on top of him. I rolled off of him and then he rolled on top of me and kissed my lips again. The kiss grew passionate as I wrapped my arms around his neck. The kiss was soon broken when we heard a knock at the door. Mo quickly got up and went to get the door. I peaked behind the wall and it was Julius.

"what do you want?" Mo asked

"I just wanted to know what the English homework was?" he said stepping inside seeing me sitting on the floor.

"you couldn't call for that" I said looking up at him

"I figured your phones would be off since your studying"

"well we didn't have English homework. So you can get going" Mo said 

"what's the rush?"

"remember that talk we had after the movie" I said giving him a stern look. He nodded his head "then leave Julius. I'm sure Alexis would like your company" he then turned around dapping Mo up and leaving

Mo sat next to me "you know he's just tryna protect you. Your like his little sister."

"yeah, but I don't need protecting. If I need him I'll call him" I said shrugging "now let's get back to work" 

"girl what's up with you and Mo?" Ayanna asked

I laughed "what you mean"

"I saw him pick you up after practice yesterday" she said grinning

"that was nothing"

"so you don't like him?"

"we talk...I mean yeah, we've been on a date an we're going out again on Saturday...." I said unsure of how to answer

"oh really!" she said with her eyes wide "and that's nothing to you?"

"we just started dating" I squealed 

"well y'all would be totally adorable together. And y'all both play ball,  ahhhh a match made in heaven"

I laughed at her excitement "we'll see" I said making my way to my last class

I got to French mentally preparing myself for this test and reviewing my notes.

Mo came in and sat down next to me. He leaned over looking at my desk. "what you doing?"

"reviewing for the test" I said turning the page in my notes

"there's a test today!?" I nodded my head 

He immediately pulled out his notes and started reviewing until the bell rang. We cleared our desks except for a pencil. The test was rather short and she graded them in front of us and handed them back. 

"I got a 90, what you get?"

Mo put his head down in shame then flashed his paper in my face "95!"

I looked at him in confusion "how? You didn't even know there was a test today"

"that doesn't mean I don't pay attention or take notes" he said pointing at his paper

"then that means we need to study together"

"study date" he said cheesing hard

"yes" I said giggling

"my house, after practice?"

"cool" I said as the bell rang indicating it was time to go home.

I went to my locker to get my gym bag when Ayanna came running towards me.

"wassup" I said putting in my combination 

"practice is cancelled, coach T had a family emergency"

"how you know?" I asked curiously

"gym is my last class honey bee, I saw him putting the sign on the door"

"honey bee?" I said chuckling "well you wanna stay for the boys practice with me?" I said closing my locker and walking towards the gym

"Ooooo so we can watch your boo" she said making kissy faces

"no" I said laughing "we have a study date after practice so I can't leave"

"Oooo what are y'all gonna study? Each others tonsils" she said seductively

I c**ked my head to the side "eww, girl bye" I said lightly pushing her as we walked into the gym

Shaunte' went upstairs to shower and change since she was sweaty from practice. Maurice was in Maliyah's room playing with her.

When shaunte'  finished getting dressed she peeked in Maliyah's room and saw Maurice on the floor coloring with a kings hat and cape on and Maliyah had on one of her tiaras

"What are you doing?" shaunte' asked curiously

Mo looked back "coloring hello kitty"

"can I color?"

"King Maurice can  Shaunte' color with us?" Maliyah said running towards him

"yes princess Maliyah" 

Maliyah handed shaunte a coloring book and some crayons and she began to color.

"if liyah is a princess does that make me a queen?"

"no, you're a peasant" mo said laughing

Shaunte' threw a crayon at his head 

"sike naw, you can be a queen" he said bowing down to her

"dinner is ready" my dad yelled from the bottom of the steps

"race ya" Mo said taking off with Maliyah right behind him

I walked down the steps and into the kitchen 

"you lose" maliyah said sticking her tongue out at me 

I helped my mom set the table and brought the food to the table and sat down to eat. We grabbed each others hands, bowed are heads and prayed over the meal. 

Dinner went well. We made small talk and just enjoyed each others company. After dinner we watched wheel of fortune and jeopardy except Maliyah she was knocked out on the couch. 

Mo's phone rang "hello.....i'm at a friends house......I'll be home in a minute.....Iight bye"

He hung up and looked at everyone "It was my mom, I gotta get going" he said getting 

 Shaun got up and shook his hand "it was good having you Maurice"

"it was a real pleasure having you" Linda said 

I walked with Mo outside to his car. He was leaned up against the car giving me a hug.

"your family loves me" he said grinning 

"I guess"

"don't fake like you don't love me too"

"I don't" 

"yeah whatever" he said kissing me on the cheek and getting into his car. He pulled out and waved goodbye and took off. 

As I turned around to walk in the house I looked down the street and saw Alexis and Julius swapping spit in front of his house. I frowned in disgust and ran in the house. 

 "listen up ladies, today we're not gonna be running drills. We're gonna be getting to know one another" the <a href="">coach T</a> said " how can I expect you to be a team if we don't formally introduce ourselves. Get into two lines."

We did as we were told and firmed two lines 

Our other <a href="">coach</a>, coach Aaron  came to the front of the line where me and Ayanna were face to face. He passed the ball to Ayanna. "I want you to introduce yourselves. Say your name,nick name, grade and what you love about basketball. And pass the ball in a zig zag formation.

Ayanna went first "my name is Ayanna but can call me Tadoww. I'm a junior and I love guarding and blocking since I'm so short." she said smiling and passing the ball to me

"my name is Shaunte' but you can call me Tae'. I'm a junior and I love the feeling when the ball leaves your fingertips and you know it's gonna go in" I passed the ball to the next girl 

We did that for the rest of practice and did trust exercises. Practice ended early and when I went outside Mo was waiting outside"

"what are you still doing here?" I asked slinging my bag over my shoulder

"clearly I'm waiting for you" he said opening the door for her

She got in the car and threw her bag in the backseat. Mo closed her door and got in the car and pulled off.

We pulled up in front of my house and my mom was planting some flowers.

"Hi Maurice, how are you?" my <a href="">mom</a> said waving 

"I'm good, are yourself" he said getting out the car about to walk me to the door

"I'm hot" she said laughing and wiping sweat off her forehead. "would you like to stay for dinner?"

Mo looked at me and I shrugged my shoulders. "I would love to, what's for dinner?" he shouted across the yard

"meatloaf, mash potatoes, green beans, gravy and rolls. Nothing fancy"

"that's sounds fancy to me" he said laughing

We walked in the house to find my sister laying in the middle of the living room floor coloring.

Maliyah rolled over and looked at us "I thought you said he wasn't your boyfriend"

Mo laughed and I straight faced her "because he isn't" I said walking into the kitchen

She got up and ran after us "then why is he here?"

"ask him"

She thought for a minute "what's your name?"


"Maurice, why are you here?" she asked sweetly

"your mom invited me over for dinner"

"did she invite you over because she wants you to be Tae's boyfriend?"

I coughed "Maliyah, go color"

Maliyah was about to walk out when Mo called her over and whispered something in her ear. 

"I knew it!" she yelled jumping up and down them running out the kitchen. 

It's Monday morning and I haven't talked to Ju since saturday. I got ready for school and went downstairs for breakfast and fixed myself a bowl of cereal. 

"good morning Tae, we never did talk about your date"

"moooom" I said being extra

"what? Sue me for wanting to know how my baby's first date went"

"we'll talk about it later" I said scarfing the cereal down

"promise" my mom said sticking her pinky out

"promise" I hooked my pinky with hers

I walked out of the house planing on taking the bus today. I stood at the bus stop and saw <a href="">her</a> walking to the bus stop as well

The bus came , there were a few people on the bus but not many. I took a seat near the back and put my headphones in. 

"hey" the girl said tapping my shoulder

I looked over at her "hey"

"your names Shaunte' right?"

I nodded my head "well my names Ayanna and I saw you at tryouts. You got some serious skills."

"thanks" I said turning around giving her my full attention "you made Varsity too right?"

"yeah, but most of the school knows me as Tadoww"

"Tadoww? Why?" I asked curiously

"Because as you can see I have a style all my own" she said pointing to her purple hair "so when I walk in the room it's like Tadoww I have a arrived" she said in a very perky voice. "and they used it when I was on the court. So when I make a shot, block, dunk they be like Tadoww!!"

"you, dunk? Your so small"

"yeah girl and I got big bounce" she said making an imaginary shot

I laughed "your cool people's" I said dapping her up 

We pulled up to the school and got off. Me and Ayanna walked to my locker where we saw <a href="">him</a> posted up on it. Ayanna sensed the tension between the both of us. 

"ummm I'll catch you later Shaunte'" she said leaving

I looked at Julius "your on my locker"

He moved out the way "are you gonna talk to me"

"yeah, why wouldn't I" I said hanging up my gym book and taking out my english book.

"because your mad at me" 

I closed my locker "who said I was mad at you"

Julius looked down at his feet "come on let's go to class" I said pulling him along 

"was alexis mad?"

"hell yeah, I honestly don't think our relationship is gonna last any longer"

"why you say that?"

"because all she do it b**** and complain. And I'm too chill for all that drama" he said as we walked into class

"true, well don't give up just yet. Keep trying"

"I thought you didn't like Alexis?" he said as we took our seats in the back

"I don't but I want you to be happy. And if she made you happy at some point then keep trying. Don't just give up"

Julius took in what she said and began doing his warmup. Mo walked in right before the bell rang and took his seat in front of me.

"wassup y'all" he said turning around and pulling out his notebook 

"wassup" Julius said dapping him up "Mo I just wanna apologize about Saturday"

"you good. I know you just tryna protect your best friend"

The tension suddenly disappeared 

 After the movie Mo took me out to eat at Ruby Tuesdays. I guess he could tell I was mad still so he threw a little paper ball at me.

"what was that for" I said laughing and throwing it back

"because you're still mad. Don't trip just enjoy the rest of out date" 

"I am" I said smiling

"enough, that we can go on a second date?" he asked with hopeful eyes

"yeah" I said just as our waitress sat our drinks on the table

We gave her our meal orders and she left to fulfill them.

"so how was your first week of school?" 

"it was good, I guess"

"you meet any new people yet?"

"nope, just Carter's rude self"

"he's not really rude, he just says what's on his mind. But he's cool once you get to know him"

"yeah, kinda like you"

Mo gasped "what's that suppose to mean?" 

"when I first met you, you were like "Aye do you hear this? This girl wants to play" like girls can't play or something" I said shaking my head

"well I apologize, cus you can definitely ball and you beat me and Tyler's ass"

"yeah I know I did. And I'll do it again"

he laughed "c**ky much?"  

"naw I'm not c**ky I just work hard and I just like to prove myself"

"I can respect that" he said nodding his head in agreement

Just then the waitress came back with our food. We ate talked for a little bit and headed back home. We pulled up in front of my house and he walked me to the door.

"did you have fun?" he asked

"yeah, I did. Thanks" I said smiling

"so we're gonna do this again next weekend,right?"

I nodded my head and said "yes" 

"Iight cool" he said giving me a hug. I walked in the house and he drove off.

I was laying in my bed listening to look what you've done by Drake when I felt my phone vibrate. It was a text from Mo.

The movie starts at 8 so I'll be there at 7:30

I looked at the clock and it was 5:55. I hopped up and got in the shower. I let my hair air dry while I picked out my outfit. I went and put my hair in a bun and gave myself some light makeup. I smiled and took a picture of my <a href="">final look</a>.

I heard the door bell ring and I went to grab my bag as my <a href="">sister</a> walked in. 

"your boyfriend is here" she said making faces

"he's not my boyfriend" I said sticking my tongue out at her.

I walked downstairs to see Mo talking to my parents. My mom looked at me and smiled

"Maurice here is very fine boy, and handsome too" my mom said grinning at me 

"got a good head on his shoulders. And he's play basketball, you know I taught Tae everything she knows"

"no sir I didn't. Maybe we can play a game or two sometime"

"I might just take you up on that offer" my dad said patting him on the back

<a href="">Mo</a> just smirked

"y'all go have fun, enjoy the movie" my mom said as we walked out the door and into his car.

We got to the movie theater and Mo got in line for the tickets while I got the popcorn and drinks

Mo was coming out of the line when he ran into Julius. 

"hey man, what you doing here" Ju said dapping him up

"my date, remember" 

"oh yeah, where she at maybe we can sit together"

"what y'all going to see?" 


"damn" mo said in his head. "yeah maybe if it's not too packed" and with that he walked off to meet Shaunte' in the line.

"Julius is here"  

My eyes widened "what? Where?" she said grabbing popcorn  

"he's in line getting the tickets with Alexis. He wants to sit with us" 

"what did you say? Did you tell him you were here with me?"

"no, but he's gonna find out most likely" he said as they went to the find the theater

They went up the stairs and found a row that had six open seats. The sat down leaving two open seats on both sides of them.

The lights were about to go dark when Mo's phone rang. He looked at his phone and it was Julius. 


"where you at?"

"ummm..." Mo looked at me not knowing what to say

Julius scanned the crowd looking for Mo "oh I see yo high yellow ass and your bright blonde hair" and with that he hung up and began walking towards us.

Julius sat down next to Mo with alexis on the end and I leaned back in my seat.

Julius leaned forward wanting to know who the mystery girl was about to introduce himself. 

"hey I'm Julius wh-" his eyes popped open when he saw me "Shaunte'!" Alexis leaned over and just rolled her eyes then the theater went dark.

Julius sat back in his seat pouting 

"babe I want some popcorn" Alexis said

Julius pulled out some money and handed it to her. She glared at him snatched the money out his hand and walked out the theater.

It was half way through the movie and me and Maurice were having a good time but I can't say the same for Alexis and Ju.

Mo was leaning over to put his arm around me.

"popcorn" Julius said putting the popcorn in between our faces

"naw, we got our own" Mo said pushing it towards Ju 

"gummie bears, Shaunte' loves gummie bears" he said putting them in my face

I straight faced him "No Ju I'm good" I said as we continued to watch the movie

When the movie was over we exited the theater and I pulled Ju to the side.

"what was that about!?" I said with a hint of attitude

"what you talking about"

"your massive c**k blocking"

He jerked his head "you don't need no c**k so you should be thanking me"

"Ughh I know that, that's not what I meant."

"then what do you mean" he said getting mad

"did you have to intrude on our date like that. You were all up in our faces instead of spending time with Alexis YOUR DATE. Why are you acting so weird and jealous?" 

"I uhhhh....urmm.... I don't know. I just.....your my best friend and he's my best friend too and I don't wanna have to choose if things don't work out"

"Julius! This is my first date with him and in general and you ruined it because you don't wanna choose between us." I said shaking my head "I would never ask you to choose" I said walking off and meeting Mo at the door

 I was at the court practing my cross over dribbling and my free throws. Today was the last day of tryouts and I made the cut. The coach is depending on me and I like the pressure. Practices start next week and I was excited for the season.

I was two ball dribbling while gracefully moving around the court when Mo appeared

"you play basketball 24/7 don't you wanna relax" he said sitting on a bench

"this is how I relax" he laughed

"so what are you doing this weekend?" he asked walking up and grabbing one of my balls 

"I don't know, probably just chill"

He dribbled the ball and made a shot "you wanna go to the movies tomorrow?" 

"cool, who else going?" I asked while dribbling the ball in between my legs

Mo got a little nervous "just me and you" he said pointing at himself then at me 

I stopped mid dribble and looked up "oh like a date"

"yeah" he said smiling a little "I know we just met but I'm wanna get to know you. Is that okay?"

"uh, yeah. Movies sounds good" I said smiling

Just then Tyler and Ju came running towards us.

"what are y'all doing..." Tyler said

"out here all by y'all selves" Ju finished as they both looked at us suspiciously 

Mo looked at me as I looked at him and we both looked back at them "nothing" we said in unison as we continued shooting around

"aye what y'all doing this weekend?" Tyler asked 

"I'm busy" I said

"I got a date with a Alexis" Ju said 

"what you doing Mo" he said passing the ball to him

"I got a date"

"with who?"  Tyler and Ju said in unison 

"none of y'all damn business" he said shooting the ball

"that means he got a date with his XBox like s***" Tyler said as we all laughed

"f*** you all" he says flipping us the bird.

The day was almost over and I was heading to my last class of the day. I walked into French gave my teacher my name and took a seat in the back. I took out my note book and when I looked up Mo was sitting next to me. 

"why are you in here" I said chuckling 

"what do you mean, I'm in this class" he said writing down the warmup

"why are you taking French?"

"I wanted to learn the language of love" he said smirking at me and I blushed and looked down at my paper continuing to do the warmup

The day was now over and I was mentally preparing my self for the first day of tryouts. I put my headphones in and went to my locker and got my gym bag. I was headed to the gym when I ran into Ju, Mo, Tyler, and Carter as they were headed the same way.

"you ready" Ju said putting his arm around me

"always ready" I said still focused

"that's what I like to hear. We'll see you after tryouts" he said patting my back as they went down to the boys locker room. Seconds later I was walking into the girls locker room with other females getting ready for tryouts. I got dressed and continued listening to my iPod as others were socializing and laughing. Some lady came out and said we could head to the gym and I left quickly so I could get a good stretch in.

I sat on the gym floor stretching my hamstrings and pulling my arms over my head until the coaches came in.

"listen up, we're looking for a dream team this year. The goal is to go to states. We're looking for the best of the best. If you already think you don't got what it takes then you might as well leave now cus it's only gonna get harder after tryouts." no one left and he blew his whistle

We started off doing suicides, high knees, then we did dribbling drills and shooting drills

Tryouts were over and gathered my stuff and headed to the parking lot looking for The guys. I found them goofing off talking about their tryouts

"how were tryouts" Mo said hitting my back 

I threw my stuff in the car "they were good, I think I'm making an impression on the coaches"

"Shaunte' Brooks" The coach called out running down the steps. I looked at the guys and then met the coach half way.

"hey coach, wassup?"

"YOU, you are on of the best players I've seen in a while. If you keep continuing to prove yourself you will have a definite spot on the team and you will be starting during the season" 

I couldn't help but smile "thanks coach" 

"just keep up the good work" he said patting my back

I walked back to the car and all the guys were looking at me with wide eyes. 

"well!! What did he say?" Ju said getting in my face

"I made a good impression like I said" I said smiling "he said I pretty much have a spot on the team and I'll be starting during the season I just gotta keep doing what I'm doing"

"and that playing like a mother f***ing beast!" Mo yelled as they all cheered 

 The next morning I rolled out of to get ready for school. I took a shower and let my hair air dry and decided on this <a href="">outfit</a>. I grabbed my gym bag and headed down stairs. I walked into the kitchen to my surprise <a href="">he</a> was sitting at the table

"ummm hey, what are you doing here?" I said taking a bite of some bacon

"I thought you would need some assistance on your first day" he said smiling

"okay, thanks. Well let's get going"

We headed out and got into his car and drove off to school. We got to school in about 10minutes. Mo escorted me to the office so I could get my schedule and locker. 

I walked out the office lost looking for my locker. I was so wrapped up in looking for my locker that I actually ran into someone dropping my bag and schedule

"sorry"  I said picking up my bag.

"It's all right, here" he said handing me my schedule. But when I looked up it was Julius

"Juliusss! Help me find my locker"

"no good morning, sorry for nearly knocking me down"

I sucked my teeth "good morning, an I did say sorry" 

"yeah I know, where did you go this morning? I came to your house but your mom said you left already" he said stopping at my locker

"Maurice came and picked me up" I said putting in my combination

"Mo!? The hell"

I stuffed my gym bag in my locker "awww are you jealous" I said pinching his cheek 

He swatted my hand "no, I just wanted- No! Let me see your schedule"

I chuckled and handed him my schedule

"ate you got english with me an Mo and lunch with all of us"

"does lunch include Alexis?" I asked with an irritated expression on my face

"No, but sometimes she skips her class to come to our lunch"

"that's why she so dumb now"

Ju straight faced me "really Tae"

"sorry" I said as we walking into English class.

I took a seat in the back next to Ju and Mo sat in front of us. We did out warmup. Had a little class discussion about the new novel we'll be reading. We had ten minutes left before class was over so our teacher let us talk amongst ourselves. 

"Ju you ready for basketball tryouts?" Mo said turning around 

"hell yeah" he said dapping Mo up

"I'm too pumped. I may be new but ima show out at tryouts" 

"on the real you should tryout for boys team. You better than half them guys anyway" Mo said shaking his head 

"damn, that's kinda sad. But that just means I'm gonna start. And I need all the PT I can get"

"I'm sure your gonna start every game" Ju said as Mo nodded in agreement as the bell rung. We gathered our stuff and went on to our next class. 

* a few classes later*

I walked into the cafeteria lost as ever. There had to be at least 300 students in this cafeteria. I searched the crowd of tables and found Tyler sitting at table by himself. I walked to the table and sat my books down and got in a lunch line. When I returned Mo, Ju, and <a href="">him</a>. I approached the table and the short guy looked like he was about to say something smart out his mouth.

"aye yo, you cute and all but no broads at this table" 

I looked at him like he was out his mind  sat my tray down and took my seat.

"Carter chill out that's best friend Shaunte'" Ju said as I gave Carter a fake smile.

"since when do you have a best friend?"

"Since I was 5. She moved when were 10. And now she's back...for good right" he said snapping his head in my direction

I shrugged my shoulders unsure as I ate my lunch. 

"damn nigga, you ain't act like that when I thought I was moving" Tyler said as everyone laughed 

"my bad ma" carter said

"You good" I said sticking my straw into my milk

"yeah, nigga you better apologize. And she ball better than you" Mo said

Carter c**ked his head back in disbelief " you ball?" I nodded

"yeah and she better than you" Tyler said 

"everyone balls better than you" Ju said sicing it as we all laughed

All laughter ceased again as we saw Alexis make her way to the table

"this should be interesting" I'm mumbled as she took a seat in between me and Ju.

"why are you sitting here?" she asked mugging me 

"how's your nose" I said pointing to the cut on her nose as she rolled her eyes

Julius cut his eyes at me " like I said Saturday and Sunday Alexis she's my bes tfriend and she gonna be around whether you like it or not so chill out Iight"

There was an awkward silence at the table until Carter decided to speak up. 

"so what did happen to your nose?" he asked curiously.

We all cut our eyes at him and Alexis walked off angrily.

It got deleted, so I'm putting it back up

Did I miss something? Cuz I swear there were more chapters than this...O.o

 On Sunday me and Maliyah went school shopping with our mom. Getting any new school supplies, clothes, locker stuff and whatever else we found. 

I was honestly nervous about my first day. It was the beginning of the second quarter of my junior year and basketball tryouts started this week. I never worried about fitting in Wyoming but something was taking over me now. 

We pulled into the driveway and as I got out the car I saw Mo and Tyler walking down the street with a ball in there hands.

"aye Tae you wanna play" Tyler called out 

"yeah, I'll be there in a minute"

They nodded their heads and kept walking. 

I ran in the house and changed into a sports bra and some basketball shorts and put on my concords. I grabbed a gatorade before I left and proceeded to the court.

When I got to the court Ju, Mo, Tyler and two other guys were there. We decided on a chill 3-on-3 game. It's was me, Mo, and Tyler against Ju, and the two other guys. I passed the ball to Mo then ran up court and he passed the ball to Tyler. Tyler dribbled the ball and came as close as he could to me and faked right on Ju and passed it to me and I hit a beautiful three. 

"water!!" I yelled laughing And dapping Tyler up. 

All laughing stopped when we turned around and saw Alexis and her friend walking towards the court.

I looked at Ju and he was smiling too hard "why is she here?" I asked

"because I told her to come " he said walking off and meeting her half way

They started walking towards us and  I peeped her mugging me but I ignored it.

"why is she here?" she asked rolling her neck a Julius

Mo started imitating her flipping his imaginary hair and we all started laughing 

"because she's our friend and my best friend for that matter" Ju said 
"and she plays ball" he said shrugging

"well I don't like her" she said folding her arms she then turned to me "you can leave now.

"Alexis chill out what is your problem" Tyler said

"I don't like them being so close" she said crossing her eyes at me

"she's my friend, she's like one of the guys" Ju said becoming irritated

"exactly, she a guy" she said as her friend began laughing in the background. "do you even own a skirt? Bet you wouldn't last a day as a cheerleader"

I grew irritated and Julius could tell so he gave me a head nod as an okay for what I'm about to do. 

I put the ball to the side and walked to the end of the court and did a running back handspring round off back tuck and stuck the landing. 

I walked towards her "what were you saying about not lasting a day in cheerleading?" I said as I grabbed the ball "I bet you wouldn't last a day in basketball" I said chest passing the ball to her and it hit her dead in the face and she fell back as I walked off.

Julius helped her up and looked examined her nose while the Mo and Tyler followed me.

"you know her nose could be broken" Mo said 

I shrugged my shoulders " I don't care, the b**** deserved it"

"where did all of that come from?" Tyler asked 


"all them flips and s***" he said sliming his fingers

"I've been gymnastics on the side since I was five."

"word. Well there's a gymnastics team at school" Tyler suggested

"I don't care, my focus is basketball. I'm tryna get a scholarship" I said as we reached my house

"I hear that" Mo said dapping Tyler that

Julius came running up the hill by himself and sat on my front porch with us.

"why did you do that?" he asked looking at me

"do what?" I asked looking straight ahead

"throw the ball at her Shaunte'" he said raising his voice

"I thought she was gonna catch it" I said dryly 

"you knew she wasn't gonna catch it"

"okay, so what. She deserved it. She been disrespecting me since we were 7. And it was all for your attention and now that she has it she thinks she can say anything to me." I got up and faced him. " I know she's your girlfriend and you have always stood up for me but I can't promise that I'm not gonna say anything.

He nodded his head " no girl will ever come between us, know that. I'll handle her, okay. Just don't through any more balls at her." 

"yeah cus thats your job" Mo said grabbing his balls trying to be funny. We all laughed and chilled on the porch for a couple of hours. 

 I finished my <a href="">room</a> at 6:30 and then hopped in the shower to get ready for the party. 

<a href="">I</a> straightened my hair and put on a green tank top with some shorts and some cute sandles and added some gold jewelry. Just as I was finishing my makeup there was a knock on my bedroom door.

"come in" 

Ju walked in "are you ready?"

"Yeah, do I look okay?" I said turning around

Julius' mouth dropped "oh god I look horrible"

"naw naw you look great"

We said goodbye to my parents and walked up the street to the party.

"I Alexis gonna be there?" 

"yeah, I told her I would meet her there"

We turned the corner and the party was right there. There were cars parked up and down the street and a bunch of people on the front lawn. Ju lead the way into the party saying hi to multiple people until he found Mo. 

Ju dapped Mo up and then directed his attention to Tae "Hey Shaunte' you looking good, can I get you a soda or something?" he asked

"ummm sure soda will be fine" she said shyly

Mo got her a drink and made his way back over just as <a href="">she</a> was coming in

"Julius!" she yelled as she made her to Ju, Tae and Mo

"hey babe" he said opening his arms for a hug 

"don't hey babe me. I heard you came in with some other girl" she looked over at Tae and rolled her eyes "is this her?"

"yeah, that's my best friend Shaunte'"

"Hi" Tae said waving with a smirk on her face

"shaunte' the tomboy that moved away years ago"

Ju nodded his head "well you can go back to where you came from cus we don't need you" Alexis said shooing her

"shiiii I do, I missed my bestfriend" Ju said putting his arm around Tae

Alexis mugged him and walked away with Ju following behind her like a lost puppy

Mo and Tae stood there shaking their heads at what just took place.

"damn, I'm sorry about that" Mo said

"it's all good, she never liked me because of our friendship" Tae said taking a sip of her drink. "but he doesn't deserve that"

"he don't I've been telling him to break up with her. I think he pussy whipped" 

I chuckled a bit "that's a damn shame"

"Did you have a boyfriend back in Wyoming?"

"naw, didn't have time for one" 

"didn't have time or didn't want one"

"both" I said taking another sip 

Julius was in a corner talking to Alexis and looked over and saw Mo keeping Tae company. He felt relieved that she wasn't standing by herself. 

The DJ then played a random slow song trying to lighten the mood for a bit. 

Mo cleared his throat "so do you wanna dance?"

"ummm sure"

They made there way to the dance floor and started slow dancing with her arms around his neck and his gently on her waist.

Julius and Alexis had made up and were also on the floor dancing. Ju's face was towards Mo and Tae and was caught off guard when he saw them dancing. He wasn't sure if he wanted Tae talking to Mo.

A couple hours later the party was over and everyone was heading home. Julius kissed Alexis goodbye as she drove off then walked home with Tae. 

"So what's up with you and Mo?" Julius asked

"nothing, he's cool people" 

"oh, okay" Julius said shrugging it off

They got to Tae's house said there goodbyes and Julius went on home.

 We walked in the house to hear both of our parents laughing and talking in the living room. All of their faces lite up when they saw us together.

"I see you found your way back to each other" Julius' mom Ava said giving me a hug

"yeah, I guess we're made to be friends" I said putting my arm on Ju

"I was thinking that we all could go out to dinner to catch up" my dad suggested

"that's sound great" my mom said smiling 

"actually, I just got invited to a party tonight" I said

"that's even better, catch up with old friends and make new ones" Ms.Ava said and my parents nodded in agreement 

"That's the goal" I said

"it's gonna be her first party" my mom said. I just straight faced her and gave her the really mom look. 

Maliyah ran up to me and gave me a hug "Tae he's cute" she's said making googly eyes at him

"on that note we're going upstairs" I said laughing 

We walked into his room and I plopped down onto his bed "I think my sister has a crush on you" I said turning my head towards him

"why wouldn't she, Look at me" he said strutting around the room

I laughed as I kicked off my shoes "you're Iight" 

"what!!" he yelled jumping on top of me

I gasped for air "really Ju" he then rolled off of me and laid next to me.

"why did we stop talking?" he asked

"I don't know, but it doesn't feel like we ever stopped"

"yeah, you would think that we out grown each other"

"I was actually nervous about seeing you. I thought you'd blow me for your new friends or not even remember me"

He rolled over on his side and looked at me "why would you think that?"

"we did stop talking for two years, people change" I said shrugging my shoulders

"I still have your letters" he said getting up

"really!" I said sitting up

He pulled out a box from his dresser "there all in this box. I actually reread some of them the other day" he said laughing

"you were always such a sap" I said laughing 

"and you were always such a boy" he said laughing "but not anymore, you got those" he said pointing at my boobs

I straight faced him "shut up"

"whaaat?" he said laughing "you look good, like a girl....sorta since you got on sweats"

"and you look like a pretty boy" I said mocking him

"shiiii, I know I look good"

"when did you become so c**ky?" I asked looking through his things

"I'm not c**ky I'm confident. And when all my baby fat faded away"

I chuckled a bit "soooo what time should I be ready for the party?" 

"hmm around 8"

"well its almost 6 and I still have to finish unpacking, so I'm gonna get going" I said grabbing my bag

"Iight, see you later"

I laid in my bed that night thinking "would we reunite? Are things gonna go back to the way they were?". I can't lie I do miss him and I wish we didn't fall off. But I can't change that, I can only make up for lost time. And with that I fell asleep. 

*moving day*

It's 3 am and the truck is all packed up and we're finally leaving dry ass Wyoming. When we finally drove into our old neighborhood memories started flooding my mind. Like the time Ju rode his bike in the stop sign on the corner. Or the time we stole his brothers motor scooter while he was sleep. As we pulled up to our house the day we moved and Ju chased after the car came to mind. 

I walked into the house and finally felt like I was home again. The movers set up all the beds and dressers and left the boxes for us to unpack. But we all went to sleep since it was eleven o'clock at night.

The next morning I woke up to the sound of bacon sizzling. I went down stairs to see my mom cooking and my dad unpacking plates and cups. I took a glass a cup of orange juice and started helping unpack.

"so what are you gonna do today?" my dad asked

"unpack a little and then maybe go to the basketball court for a while"

"are you gonna go visit Julius?" my mom asked

"yeah, probably not today"

"hey Linda maybe we should pay his mom....Ava a visit."

"that's a good idea Shaun" she said scrambling the eggs

The kitchen was all packed and we were now eating breakfast. After breakfast my parents  went to unpack the living room. Maliyah was doing her room and I did mine. 

It was almost three and I was half way finished so I decided to take a break and go to the black top to shoot some hoops. I change into a v-neck, some basketball shorts an my pink Lebron's. I grabbed my gym bag and put a towel, my mouth guard and a Gatorade in it and left. 

I walked down the block towards the court and saw no one outside. The closet I got I started to hear faint screams. There were some boys playing 3-on-3. I got there walked along the side of the court and sat down with my bag and waited for them to finish there game.

About ten minutes later the we're finished. Three of the guys left and the others were just standing around talking, trying to catch their breaths. I put my hair in a pony tail and walked towards them with my ball.

"aye y'all wanna play?" 

Two of them looked at me like I was crazy and the other had his back turned tying his shoe.

"aye son do you hear this? This girl wants to play ball" <a href="">he</a> said 

"what's wrong with that?" I said with a hint of attitude 

"because the only girl to ever play ball around here was Shaunte'" the guy tying his shoe answered as he stood back up. <a href="">He</a> c**ked his head back when he saw me "shaunte'?"

"Julius?" I said c**king my head back

"damn, when you move back around here?" he asked still in shock to see me

"late last night" 

"wait a minute who is this?" the tall lightskin guy said

"oh my bad, Y'all this is my best friend Shaunte'. Shaunte' this is Maurice "mo" and <a href="">Tyler</a>

"hey" I said waving "so are we gonna play or what?"

"oh most definetly" he said putting his stuff on the side. "me and Tae against y'all"

"that's an easy win cus I'm not gonna lose to a girl" Mo said wiping the bottom of his sneakers

"you say that now but Tae got skills. She use to beat me all the time" I laughed at his TRUE statement 

"that's because you some s***" Tyler said walking on the court

I dribbled the ball and yelled "check!" as I checked the ball against Tyler and started the game.

Ju and I were making shot after shot. It felt like old times. At the end of the game me and Ju won 20-15 and we started walked to his house with his friends. 

"I told you my girl got skills" he said rubbing it in their faces

"your girl! Don't let Alexis hear you saying that" Tyler said 

"who's Alexis?" I asked

"his stuck up ass girlfriend" Mo answered sticking his nose up with his finger 

"she ain't stuck up son"

"son, she is though" Mo said sounding serious

"you remember Alexis, Tae" 

"Pause, wait a minute. You go with Alexis? The same Alexis that hated me because we were best friends?"

He nodded his head looking down

"the same Alexis that made fat jokes about you?"

Mo and Tyler laughed "man why you gotta bring up old stuff. And I wasn't fat, I had baby fat"

"so what, she was the b****iest ten year old in the world"

"WAS, she not like that anymore" 

"she's worse" Mo said as him and Tyler laughed 

We got to Ju's house and stopped out front.

"aye I'm having a party tonight you wanna come Tae?" Mo asked

"sure, I'm always done for a party"

"cool, I'll scoop you up" Ju said 

We said our goodbyes and me and Ju walked into his house.


<a href="">I</a> was coming practicing my three-pointers when my dad walked in to pick me up. He was smiling unusually hard. I grabbed my gym bag and looked at him confused. He can obviously read minds because he said he'll tell everyone when we get home. 

We walked into the house and was greeted by the smell of my mom cooking spaghetti. I walked into the kitchen and kissed her check and my little sister <a href="">Maliyah's</a>.

"go wash up you two, dinner is almost ready" my mom said.

We washed up and came back to set the table. My mom served us all then we said our prayer over the meal and dug in. Half way through the meal my dad said he had an announcement to make. 

"can I have everyone's attention" he said as we all looked at him

"what is it Shaun?" my mom asked not sure of what was going on

"I have been stationed back in California"

I nearly choked on my food "are you serious!?" I said with my mouth still full of food

"eww gross" maliyah pointed into my mouth

"shaunte' swallow please" my mom said 

"yes Tae we're finally moving back" he said excitedly 

"wait we lived in California?" maliyah asked confused

"you were like two so you wouldn't remember" I responded. "what part are we moving to?"

"Back to Baldwin the same house" 

Me and my mom gasped "how did you do that?" my mom asked

"I found out no one was living in it so I requested it" 

"when are we moving?" maliyah asked

"in three days"

We all c**ked out heads back "IN THREE DAYS" 

"yeah, I got some boxes in the car so you better get to packing after dinner" 

I ran out to the car and got four boxes for my room and immediately started packing. At about eleven my mom walked in my room and started helping me pack.

"you excited huh?"

I smiled "yeah"

"maybe now you'll see your old friend Julius"

"who?" I responded quickly

"Julius, Julius Cruz. How do you not remember"

"oh, I remember him. It just through me off since I haven't spoken to him in two years."

"well maybe you guys can reunite" she said walking out

"hmmm maybe" I mumbled to myself

 For the first two months of living in Wyoming me and Ju called each other everyday. Then school started and we began writing letters.

Dear Ju, 
I don't like my new school. It's sooooo boring, they don't even have a basketball team. My dad said he's gonna put me in something called AAU. have you heard of it? The girls in my class are mean to me because I like sports and the boys in my class talk to me about it. What's up with that?? How are you? Who's your teacher and who's in your class? You know what I really miss!? The beaches. I'm like in the middle of no where here. Bye write back, love Tae

Dear Tae, 
Cali is boring with out you. I miss you mannnn. I'm gonna be in AAU too, maybe I'll see you or something. My mom said the teams sometimes travel. Those girls are wack don't worry about them. If they keep messing with I'll walk all the way there and beat them up. I'm in Mrs. Stevenson's class and all the people we despise are in my class. Donte', Alexis, Terrence, Tamlin and the list goes on. You were actually suppose to be in our class. I walk to school and home alone. When you come back the first place we're going is the beach, PROMISE. Bye JuJu

A year went by and we still talked everyday and wrote letters. Year two went by and we still talked but a little bit less. Year three went by and there were a few letters here and there. But by year four the letters stopped. 

Now we are just lost souls trying to find our way.

 *moving day* 

The movers were packing up the last of our things and me and Ju were sitting on the curb eating icecream sandwiches. 

"it's not too late to live in my closet ya know" he said looking at me seriously

"Ju, I can't live in your closet" I said taking a bite

"I know, but pinky promise me we'll always be friends" he stuck his pinky finger out 

I hooked my pinky on his "I promise"

Just then my dad called my name telling me it was time to leave. I looked at him and told him I was coming. I turned back around to see Julius with a very depressing look on his face. 

"don't cry punk" I said punching his shoulder

"I ain't crying" he said rubbing his shoulder. "I'm just gonna miss you"

"I'm gonna miss you too. I promise to call you as soon as I get there"

"Tae!" my dad called out again

"I gotta go" 

"I know, i'll walk you to the car" 

We walked to the car and said our goodbyes. I put my seatbelt on and looked out the window and Julius was still standing there waiting for us to pull off. We pulled off and Julius started chasing the car until the car got too far ahead.

When we got to Wyoming it was eight in the morning. I was tired and my butt was hurting from sitting in the car for nearly twenty hours but a promise is a promise. I took my moms cell phone and went up to my empty room. I pulled out a piece of paper with Ju's house phone on it and dialed it. A sleepy Julius answered the phone on the fifth ring.

"Hello" he said sleepily

"Julius!!" I said excitedly


"Duhh, it's me"

"it took you long enough to call"

"well Wyoming isn't exactly down the street you know. We just got here"

"really? It's eight in the morning"

"I know"

"do you like it so far?" he asked sounding sad

"the house is nice, but not better than Cali"

Just then my mom walked in asking for her phone

"Ju I gotta go. But I'll call you later"

"okay, bye Tae" and with that we hung up.

The movers put all of our furniture in there desired places. I made my bed immediately and fell asleep.

 "what do you mean you're moving at the end of next week?" Julius yelled as we walked to the black top

"I'm moving Ju" I said shaking my head 

"who am I gonna play basketball with,  and ride bikes with, and walk to school with when school starts again" he said shaking his head 

"I know, and I'm gonna be the new kid in Wyoming" 

Ju lifted pointed his finger in the air like he had an idea "maybe you can live in my closet, I'll bring you breakfast and dinner everyday! No one will know"

"I think my parents will know when I'm not in the car on the way to Wyoming"

"forget Wyoming, California is so much better. Wanna know how I know?" he said stopping right in front on the black top

"how?" I said curiously

"Because I'm here" he said laughing 

I laughed and shook my head at him "let's play horse" Ju nodded in agreement and started the game.

Julius made a shot "are you gonna forget me?" he asked 

"no, you're my best friend. I'll never forget you" I said grabbing the ball and dribbling it

"how do you know?" he asked as I made the shot and passed the ball to him 

"because we're gonna call each other everyday and write letters. My dad said we could

He made his shot "cool" he passed the ball back to me "are you gonna play ball in Wyoming?"

"yeah, my parents said I could play anywhere"

He nodded and we continued playing our horse until it was over.

"let's go to my house we have popsicles" I nodded and we walked in the direction to his house 

We walked in his house and his mom was in the kitchen making snacks.

"hey Shaunte' how are you?"

"Hi <a href="">Ms. Cruz</a>, I'm good" i said taking a seat on the counter 

"stop lying! Mommy Tae is moving. Her parents don't want us to be friends anymore" he said putting his head on the counter and fake sobbing 

"boy calm down, just because she's moving doesn't mean y'all can't be friends anymore"

"that's what I told him. My parents said we could write letters"

"that's nice, see Juju you can write Shaunte' a letter"

"yeahhhhh, but who am I gonna play basketball with" he said being dramatic

"play with your brother Brendan" his mom said setting a plate a fruit in front of us

"no, he be cheating"

Ms. Cruz just shook her head "eat y'all snake and then you can have a popsicle. Shaunte' I'm go write down our address for you" she said before she walked out the kitchen