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3 yrs ago
Don't leave me, baby! Middle of winter, I'm freezin' baby! - It's cold, and Gucci Mane lyrics work for most any context when slightly edited.


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this hot let me get Blade
all good

Sun digested the Harlow’s usual raucous. In its place was thick heat that burned the lungs and soggy towels atop heads that couldn’t stop sweating. Kids from around the neighborhood ran barefoot in red clay roads. With just a tanktop and boxers on, Alphonse stepped outside. He leaned on the wood railing of the front porch near the dilapidated steps and from behind him the screen door swung open. Out came a woman whose rollers were still in her hair and whose cigarette was already lit and in hand.

“Mama say call her soon.” Minnie revealed dry,
“Tell her call Walter.” Alphonse returned,
“She don’t want Walter. She want you.” a drag, a savor, then an exhale,
“She say what she want?” Al took the towel and wiped his face and neck,
“Something ab-” she was interrupted by her husband’s raised voice,
“Y’all be careful out there, na! I done told y’all bout bein so rough!” one of the older kids slung a lithe child many pounds smaller than himself face first in the dirt; there were no tears from the victim, only a continuation of play,
“Somethin about some white man come asking her for 20 percent.” Minnie, too, kept on unphased,
“White man or a white man?” Alphonse looked sideways at his love who had taken her position at the top of the stairs center on the porch,
White man.” she met his eyes with prescience boding.

Country Al cussed under his breath.

“Want me to call Blood?” Minnie ashed her cigarette on the porch railing,
“Naw, this ain’t that. ‘Sides they ain’t comin this part of town no time soon. They go see Black Jack before they bother with us.”
“Seem like they botherin already.” Minnie began taking her rollers out unceremoniously,
“We worry when we got to worry.” Alphonse cast off. Minnie dug hazel orbs into her husband, quiet dissent lapsed into worry and then a made-up mind,
“You know how them men is, Al. You know what they do.” madam Harlow spoke, finally,
“We do the same thang.” pride marched fervent underneath his rebuttal,
“Not like them.” she met with a roadblock’s surety,

Maybe it was the heat or the borderline delirium of another slow day in a sloth city with nothing to offer anybody--especially not no damn twenty percent--anything, that made Al see light. Maybe it was Minnie’s always being right; either way, Al let an uncomfortable sigh pass through his lips,

“Call Walter, tell em put a line out to Hawkins.”
“She don’t strike me as the fightin type.”
“Be surprised what a white woman do when you tell her she gotta do somethin she don’t want.” Minnie smiled and let out a small laugh; Alphonse joined her,
“And what you gone do?”
“I’m bout to eat breakfast and take my ass to sleep.”
“Well I be damned! Since when I become your secretary?”
“Since you made me build this house and put all them nice clothes on you.” she didn’t find his boast funny and muffed his head with her hand,
“Keep playin they gone find yo black ass in one of them swamps.” Al couldn’t tell if she was joking or not, the hint of playfulness only indicative of how serious she was. She came from a line of women who, it was rumored, had killed their husbands with their brothers’ help and no one was the wiser,
“Reckon I’mma have a lot of talking to do come the next few days. Need my energy.”

“Mhm.” she was half-ignoring him now, her attention drawn to the kids whose numbers had grown significantly. The tensions between them had arisen and plateaued and rose again; they chased one another with sticks, and before long, the festivities had become another squabble between the older kid and the smaller one who still had clay on his face,
“Hey! Maurice Terell Jackson! If you don’t leave that boy alone, I’mma make you, hear? And then I’mma call yo mama! Is that what you want?” all the kids froze. Sticks dropped one after the other, some stopped breathing in hopes of turning invisibile,
N-no ma’m!”
“Pardon?” Minnie’s raised eyebrow accessorized the authoritative hand on her hip,
”I say no ma’am!”
“Alright then. Play nice or don’t play at all!” all the boys nodded slowly and out of tune, but the energy was gone. Groans and irritation reared,
“Y’all thirsty? Want some lemonade?” Minnie called out to them all. Faces lit up and cheers were abundant.

Alphonse mood lightened, he rose and threw the towel over his shoulder while the children rushed the porch,
“Ho, ho! One at a time. Act like y’all don’t got no home training.” Al’s reprimand made them slow to fast-walking; he watched the last of them traipse in and Minnie went to follow the last of them inside. Before she did, she paused and turned to her husband,
“Al. We gone be alright, hear?” Alphonse gave a limp nod, half-ignoring her with eyes focused on the treeline ahead. Minnie didn’t press, she had business to attend and she got to it.

Her words echoed and stuck. Their intended re-assurance did not.

the Outfit said the price of the brick going up

oh this hot

organization cs coming soon
i might have to bow out
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