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Dusk Before Dawn.

I sat quietly in the living room, on the floor, listening to the walls sway in our strangled apartment complex. I looked at the clock near the couch. Almost four. I should finish dinner. I stood up, and headed toward the kitchen, catching a glimpse of myself in the reflection of a photograph hanging on the wall. I stopped and stared for a moment, putting my finger to my lip. My eyes swelled, but I made the tears retreat back to their hiding places. There was no room for them here. I went into the kitchen and discovered another leak beneath the sink. I scurried to find another empty pot to catch the water. I’d tell him. But I couldn’t. He’d blame it on me. I closed the cabinet and went into the refrigerator, retrieving the steaks I’d let marinate throughout the day, while I cleaned the apartment ruthlessly. Not a speck on the carpet. I moved quickly, placing the steaks in to broil and heating up the mashed potatoes. I went to the table and put our plates down. I shined the forks and knives with my t-shirt and placed them parallel to the plates. I looked at the clock. 4:24. My heartbeat quickened. I took another look at the living room before I scurried down the hall to the bedroom to make sure that everything was in its place.

I went back into the living room, just as I heard the door click and saw the knob turn. He entered the house and his eyes fell upon mine. My breath scurried away and I smiled a little, hoping he was in a good mood. He shut the door behind him, ignoring me, and began to take off his shoes. I should say something. Ask him how his day is. Do it!

“H-how was your day, babe?” I asked.

“Dinner ready?” He responded, loosening his tie.

“The steaks are in the oven right now. Mashed potatoes and broccoli is done.” I said quickly.

He stared at me for a moment before he walked past me. I exhaled and stood there, before I felt a blow to my lower back. I fell to my knees – asking God, “Why?” the entire way down.


Run It!!

Joy!! No!!!!!!!!!! I don't want her to go, but in some weird way I understand why she needs to. Everything has been out of wack for her lately and she needs someone familiar. A friend at least.

run it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Run it

Few more runs/comments and I'll add!


PLEASE don't do it Joy!

dont go to his apartment!!!

Run It...

O my god joy girl jus go home dnt go to him jus cus u need sum dnt mean turn to him smh gt it together girl tlk to tru call him run it

run it

Run It!!

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no!!!!!!!!! why is she going to see avery!!!! she needs to stay away from him!!

run it!!!!!!!!!

If she saw them three why didn't she see Roland? She actually had sex with that nigga! And she just lost all hope and progress with me SMH Joy...why girl why??

Run it

This is some BS! I'm upset with you now :(

OKay I've been silent reading this story for a while
and I've read almost every story you've had on this board
from Jay to others...
But oh my God it's so many emotions that ran through this story
and I absolutely fell in love with it the moment I started reading it
I'm so glad that Joy left Avery because he was such a damn ass and he didn't deserve her
When she went to Saldona or I can't really spell the place right now she met Mama C and Roland and then rest
Wow... after that accident they had I thought that her and Ro were going to have something special but then he couldn't make up his mom because of Lorina
and look where that ended him...smh and they had a child and moved to Philli and then Mama C reunited them by passing.
It was so sad and I have to admit shedding a couple of tears because she loved Joy as if she was her own.
She went there to leave Avery and then returned back a different person.
She's grown soooo much and she is who I am most proud of.
Because Mama C is no longer there I'm glad she has someone like Larry to look out for her.
I hated that Ro and her couldn't come down to a common ground because I really want them together and still do.
I liked the relationship she had with Tru because for once she wasn't dealing with an ass
or someone playing with her heart and now this bulls*** happens and he can't even remember.
I really hope she isn't going back to Avery because he is the LAST person she needs to find herself at.
I was so happy for her and now... it just seems her world is falling apart.
Ro was someone who was always living for what other people thought
and I think that some how Ro and Joy can connect on that because of all of the stuff she's been through aside from him actually doing her wrong.
This story is beyond amazing

run it.
I hope that was a good enough review

Noooo you can't stop there!! Oh my gosh Joy don't do it!! Please don't go back to Avery!! I don't want her alone with him even if it's just to talk!! Don't let Joy step foot in that apartment! I hope she doesn't do something she regrets!! Ugh Tru come back and remember your relationship with Joy please!!! Wow too in my feelings right now. Can't wait for more!! RUN IT!!!

Uh oh. Enjoy ;)

The three of them – Avery, Jay and Tru – haunted me like a bad dream. At night, I lie awake with a pillow between my legs. In class, I drank water and shoved psychological theories into my head to interject oncoming images of them. I avoided Tru for the week, afraid of what I’d do. It was as if I was in heat.

The intersection of dream and reality occurred at the grocery store, one evening. I reached up, the phone against my ear, asking my mom what I needed to pick up for dinner. I grabbed some fruit loops for Bubba and left the aisle. I felt someone’s eyes on me, but I kept moving, sure that I was still battling between this place and that one. I hung up with her and headed to get some chicken when I heard his voice behind me.

“Joy.” He stated.

I shut my eyes, “It’s not real.” I mumbled to myself. “No sex on the cheese cooler.” I mumbled, moving my cart forward.

I opened my eyes then, when I felt his hand on my shoulder. I jumped, looking him in the face. He tossed his hands up.

“I’m sorry. Did I scare you? I’m so sorry.” <a href=>He</a> said.

A pair of black frames decorated his face and he was carrying as basket with food in it. My breath ran from my body and my heart fell to his feet. My first instinct overtook logic and I jumped into his arms, hugging him.

“Joy,” He said, caught off guard. “Hi...” He said softly, hugging me tightly then, the basket hanging from his hand behind my back.

I stood there, my eyes fixed ahead. I was afraid-confused-excited… I pulled back quickly and looked him in the eye.

“Wh-what are you doing here? When did you get out? Do you live here? How did…how did we end up here together?” I asked all of these questions in under 10 seconds.

He turned and grabbed a bag of rice, putting it in his basket. “I stay around the corner in a one-bedroom.” He said. “Affordable housing and…they took ex-cons.”

Avery’s eyes, colored with shame, bounced around my face. “You…look good. I thought about passing you up. I didn’t want to scare you. I just…I just had to say hello. Speak to you one more time.”

I nodded, trying to take everything in. “…I’m, glad to know that you’re doing well.” I said softly.

“You too,” He said, smiling. “I should…get going but, here’s my card if you ever need anything. I’m sure you won’t but…I can’t leave without you having that. Knowing that I tried. Okay, I’m gone.” He said, smiling. “I’m gone…”

He walked backwards, his eyes still on me. I turned, in a jerking movement and moved quickly toward the end of the aisle. Avery turned and went the other way, his heart racing. He went to checkout and paid for his food, before he went outside and put his things in the car. He went outside and opened his glove compartment. A picture of Joy sat on top of multiple pieces of mail. He pulled it out and put his lips to it. He put it back and drove out of the parking lot – hopeful that she’d call. He almost expected her to.

Inside of the grocery store, I left the cart abandoned in the middle of the meat section. I ran out to my car, my stomach in knots. I got in and exhaled, my eyes stinging with tears. Avery. Here. I started the car and began the trek home. The streetlights blurred as the tears fell. I didn’t know how to comprehend all of this and what it all meant. First these dreams, and then Avery shows up – and he looks nothing like he used to. At a red light, I bit my lip and made a U-turn, headed to the apartment he had listed on his business card.

“How Does It Feel” by D’Angelo played as I sat with my glasses perched on my nose. I looked around the emptying coffee shop and exhaled, taking off my glasses and blinking at the blurry surroundings. I didn’t have my contacts with me, so I sat, enjoying the fuzzy shapes that moved and sat still.


I turned and looked over my shoulder to find <a href=>him</a> standing there, in some jeans and a UCLA sweatshirt. A smile spread across his lips and my mouth dropped a little.

“Jay…” I said, standing then and fumbling for my glasses.

He put his hand on my waist and pulled me close to him. I stood still, confused. He pulled back then and smiled again, caressing my face.

“Your mom said I could find you here,” He said.

“Jay what are you doing in North Carolina? Why aren’t you in Atlanta?” I asked.

“I’m here for you. I wanted to bring you home. We’ve got unfinished business.” He said, running his finger across my lips.

I shook my head profusely and opened my eyes to find myself still seated at the table, with the watered down coffee in front of me. I sighed and put my glasses back on. I shut the textbook that was in front of me and ran my fingers through my hair. Jay. Images of him came running back, followed by Avery standing in the doorway, shirtless and smiling. I exhaled, my body filling with heat. The music, climaxing, sent me up against the back of my chair. My breathing got heavier and I bit my lip. The door opened, sending the chimes together. I looked up to see Tru standing there, dressed in gym clothes. He looked over at me and smiled – for a moment, Avery and Jay’s smiles came together and sat perched on Tru’s face, as he approached me. He bit his bottom lip and sat on the edge of the table.

“We never got to do that thing,” he said, smirking.

The music stopped dramatically and I jerked out of my sexual reverie. I stood up then, tossing my bags in my backpack and leaving the coffee shop. The cool air hit my face and I breathed deep. Damn.

I knocked softly on Tru’s door and waited patiently for him to come and open it. After a few minutes, he opened the door with a kitchen towel draped over his shoulder, shirtless.

“Joy, hi.” He said.

I could tell from the look on his face that he was surprised and nervous.

“…Can I come in?” I asked him.

“Yes, yes. Please.” He said, opening the door wider.

I walked in and my eyes fell on that mocha couch. I smiled a little. The dim lighting reminded me of the first night I came by to study. The house swarmed with the aroma of pasta sauce.

“Hungry?” He asked, smiling.

“A little,” I said.

I followed him into the kitchen and he grabbed a glass and poured me some wine. He handed it to me, a small smile on his face.

“Good to see you.” He said.

“Yeah you too,” I said.

Our eyes locked and he blushed and went back to the stove. “So what’s up? Why am I deserving of this visit?”

I leaned up against the counter and shrugged a little. “…I felt kind of bad about the way that I treated you the last time I saw you.” I said.

“Why?” He asked, looking over his shoulder at me. “You’re right to feel the way that you do. I’m the one that…f***ed everything up, right?”

I didn’t respond and took another sip of the wine. “…Are you and Chanel becoming serious?” I asked.

He shrugged, opening the oven and pulling out the lasagna, which had been browning.

“Having trouble relating to her.” He said, shutting the over door now. “So probably not.”

I nodded and stood quietly. He sighed and put the towel on the oven door. He came and stood next to me, up against the counter. I looked straight ahead, drinking. He turned toward me, and I looked up at him then. His eyes searched the counter, looking for some words.

“…I just, get this feeling that…I’ll grow into who I was, you know?” He said, his eyes meeting mine now. “Like with a few weeks, I’ll discover all that I’d known before. I’m beginning to see why I would’ve dropped my letters. The bruhs aren’t what I remember them being and Chanel is…still stuck on the things I’ve grown out of.”

I listened as he spoke, hoping that this was the prelude to some epiphany he’d made. Maybe he’d tell me that eventually he’d fall for me again, but the words never came. I felt it anyway. Tru – the real one – missed me, and it manifested itself in his glances and the way that he listened as I spoke that night.

When I stood up to leave, I grabbed my bag and smiled up at him.

“Thanks for the food. Maybe we can…work out together this week or something? See a movie?” I asked him.

He nodded and smiled, “I’d like that a lot, Joy.” He said softly.

“Then I’ll see you soon.” I said softly, before I turned and left his apartment.

Larry came outside and found me sitting on the grass, eating almonds and watching the sun go down. He walked toward me and sat on the grass next to me. I glanced at him, before I grabbed more almonds.

“…Tru still doesn’t remember anything, huh?” He asked.

“How do I know?” I asked him.

“I know you.” He said. “Looks like the sun left your face after that accident.”

I looked down at the ground and shrugged. “Hard to deal. Thought I figured life out, y’know? Things made sense. I just…have the worst luck, right?”

“Wrong.” He responded, studying me. “You’re still here. So is he. You didn’t lose your lives.”

“But we lost LIFE, Larry.” I said, my nose red and my cheeks swelling with tears. “We lost life. Our life together. He doesn’t…know me. He doesn’t know the sacrifices I’ve made to be with him. I mean really be with him.”

“Remind him.” Larry said.

“No.” I said, shaking my head. “No. I won’t force this.”

“Don’t force it.” Larry said. “But you have to fight for what you want, Joy. You let life beat you down too often and this time I won’t let you. Don’t run from this.”

I looked Larry in the eye and sighed, “…What if I try and it still doesn’t work? What if I get my hopes up and get let down again?”

“You might. But that’s the risk we take, in the pursuit of happiness Joy. Sometimes we get let down.” He said.

“Happiness isn’t given. It’s earned and it’s taken.” Larry said. “Take it.”

I looked at him then and sighed. I shrugged. “Okay…”

I'm still crying and I still hate you!....I can't believe this.....Tru you're feeling like that because even though you can't remember your heart does and it wants Joy.

WOW!!! This is really hurting my feelings.. RUN IT!!!

Aww Poor Joy...
Run It....

Aww dis is sad smh i wnt to cry for her jus wen it was gtn good for her it gt snatched away smh run it

RUN IT!!!!


dammit tru! joy has a very unfortunate life..something is always happening to her! as soon as she gets a tiny bit of happiness it is snayched away!..poor baby RUN IT

And where's Danielle at??