Candy Licker

Candy Licker by Noire

Book: Candy Licker by Noire Read Free Book Online
Authors: Noire
running partners still lived. The manager at Mama's old job had showed up, and so had my girl Lulu from computer school along with her mother. Lulu had gotten her shit out of my apartment and ran straight home after the murders. She saw what Greasy had gotten for hanging with Mama, and she wasscared the same thing might happen to her if she stayed too close to me.
    A few of Caramel's friends from high school came out too. They had been visiting Caramel in the hospital pretty often, and now they sat sniffling in the back row by themselves. Caramel's music teacher had really liked Mama. She thought Mama had the most amazing voice, and looking at Mama's casket she cried so hard she got hysterical. “What a damn shame,” she kept moaning over and over again. “Such an amazing waste of talent. That lady had promise! She could have been somebody! She could have been somebody….”
    The funeral director held her in his arms and led her out the room, but aside from Vonnie and Dom, there was no one in the world to hold me, and my tears just wouldn't stop falling as I realized that the last physical reminder of my mother was laying there in that cheap wooden box.
    I was crying even harder on the inside than on the outside because I felt guilty and I shoulda known better. Instead of chasing some damn recording contract I should have been out there on my business. Nicky had been right. I'd put Mama in a situation that she couldn't handle, knowing full well how weak she was when it came to drugs and quick money. Mama's past behavior should have been a clue that she couldn't resist that much cash, especially when she had a niggah talking in her ear. And Caramel. My baby sister. She'd been right there to see it all, and there was no doubt that she would keep seeing it in her mind for the rest of her life. I'd done a bad job on my own family, and the fact that I'd thrown everybody's life away for a chance to sing in front of Hurricane Jackson messed me up most of all.
    Dominica and Vonnie helped me get through the funeraland were down for me 100 percent. They were flying back to New York later in the afternoon, but they had begged me to go back with them.
    “Candy” Dominica said when we were back at my apartment and she was packing her bag. “Girl, I got a funny feeling in my nose. Why'ont you grab your gear and hop on this bird with us. C'mon. Caramel got a guard, but you ain't got shit. I ain't trying to leave you sitting like a duck in no death trap all by yourself. ”
    I shook my head.
    “Well what in the fuck is keeping you here?” Vonnie wanted to know.
    I shook my head again. Vonnie couldn't help it. She just didn't understand what it was like to love somebody more than you loved yourself. She didn't know shit about how I loved my sister. She hadn't seen or heard from her little brother since her mother OD'd and they got sent to foster care, but Mama hadn't raised me and Caramel like that. I'd die before I left Caramel stranded in some hospital way out in L.A. by herself. That shit just wasn't happening. “My sister is keeping me here, Vonnie,” I said. “My baby sister.”
    “Well,” Vonnie said, styling her hair in the mirror. She turned around and peered at her plump ass to make sure it still looked good. “Before we left New York I got with Hurricane and put him down on what happened to you. He's got mad connections out here in L.A. and said if you needed anything to just call.”
    Yeah. Okay. Picture that shit.
    That night after Dom and Vonnie had gone, I laid on the floor by my bed staring at a small snapshot of me, Mama, andCaramel and wondering how the fuck my life had ended up so empty and what I could do to get it back on track. I could see Mama smoking a blunt and yelling, “Damn my doll baby can sang! Work that stage, Candy Raye! Work that whole mutha-fuckin’ stage!”
    Fuck singing
, I thought. I didn't care if I never sang again.
    And then I thought about the message Hurricane had sent by Vonzelle.

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