Loving Lola- Ch. 46

Secrets and Lies.

“Hey, you alright in here?” Giselle is sitting on the toilet with pieces of tissue in her hands. “I’ve been trying so hard not to break us up since mom died, and all I’ve managed to do was push us further and further away from each other.” “That’s not true,” Jhené says walking into the bathroom, “I’m still here, and you can’t push me away even if you wanted to.” “You know what I mean,” Giselle says blowing her nose, “I’ve made a lot of stupid mistakes in the past, but I finally started to feel like we were getting back to where we used to be.” Lola goes to look for them. “Listen, all that stuff that happened with Sam, Lola, and the company was probably going to happen even if you hadn’t-” “hadn’t what?” Lola says walking into the bathroom. Giselle hops from the toilet, “even if you hadn’t what?” “Oh, no Lola I was just saying that-” Jhené tries to explain. Lola’s looks at Giselle, “G? What is she talking about?” Giselle stands there in silence, with tears rushing down her face, “Lola, please,” Jhené says pleading with her, “No Jhené, I want her to tell me what she did, I need to hear her say it…” she says as her eyes begin to water. Giselle’s eyes grow wide as she looks at Lola, “did, did you know?” “I always thought it was dad who convinced one of his devout chairman to run him away to try and keep me there, but it wasn’t, was it?” “Lola…” Giselle reaches out for her, “why?” Lola says backing away from her, “Lola please let me explain,” “then explain, why would you do that to me? You of all people knew I was unhappy there, but Sam… he made being stuck there bearable for me and you knew that… so why would you send him away from me?” “Lola, I- I didn’t have a choice,” Giselle says to her crying, “our father saw Sam as a threat to the company. He saw how close you were getting and the conversations you’d have about leaving the company… he was infuriated,” “so what? He sent you of all people to get rid of him?” Lola says with tears in her eyes, “…yes.” “How could you?” “I didn’t want to do it Lola I swear!” “But you did, didn’t you?” “Please,” “So what did he offer you in return? More money? A higher position?” Lola’s eyes widen, “he made you president, didn’t he?” “Lola PLEASE!” “Ugh, wow, so much for family huh… And you know, the fucked up part is that I’m not even mad about Sam, I mean yeah I was hurt when he left, but the fact that it was my family who’d stop at nothing to rip away any piece of happiness we had because of fabricated feelings they had toward an artist! Yes, I did talk to Sam about leaving and pursuing a career in art, but all I thought was how I could never leave you guys or break the pact we made… but after everything happened, I realized dad didn’t care about what made us happy, he only cared about that damn company, and that’s when I realized I could no longer stay there. I hoped that you guys would find solace outside of that place and we all could be free of him, but I guess that was naïve of me huh. Lola, “always the dreamer”, isn’t that what dad would say? Somethings never change, even though people do… You guys can just let yourselves out.” She walks out their way so they can leave, Giselle wipes her nose and the tears from her eyes, “Jhené?” Lola calls out to her, “…how long have you known?” Jhené turns and looks at her, “I just found out.” Lola turns around and wipes the tears from her eyes, “but that doesn’t make me any less guilty, so if you’re going to hate her, then hate us both.” Jhené gathers their things and walks with Giselle out of the room. Once they reach the front door Giselle calls out to Lola, “I am so, so sorry, but please don’t hate Jhené, she had nothing to do with this,” Lola walks to her bedroom door, “I would never hate either of you… please lock the bottom lock on your way out,” she says closing her bedroom door.

Loving Lola- Ch. 44

Diamonds in the rough.

“Great job guys, the display looks amazing!” Lola says as Stephanie adds the finishing touches. “Miss thang, this display is going to be the star of the showcase,” “yeah, this really came out beautifully.” “Thanks guys, I couldn’t have done any of this without you,” Lola smiles, pulling them in for a hug. Timothy glances at the time, “oop, alright my loves, I have got to get going,” he says grabbing his things, “and where are you off to in such a hurry?” Lola says with her arms folded, “well If you must know, I have a date with Enrique tonight, and I have to go get fine!” Lola and Stephanie look at each other, “Who is Enrique, what happened to Jacob?” Lola asks, “girl please, Jacob is a thing of the past, Enrique is the new flavor of the week; he’s my spicy Latino,” Timothy says swooning. “Awe, but I really liked Jacob,” Lola says pouting, “yeah, Jacob liked everyone else to,” says Timothy rolling his eyes, “but it’s alright, I laughed, I loved, and I found someone new!” “Well I still hate you guys ended on bad terms,” “I’m not, sometimes we have to go through the rough to find our Diamonds,” “aww, well I’m happy for you boo,” “thank you honey, but don’t think this means you’re off the hook, I have not forgotten about mister dove chocolate,” “hahaha, his name is Eric.” “Oh, was that the guy you went out to lunch with?” Stephanie asks, “girl you saw him to?” Timothy interjects. “Yall are too nosey for your own good, but yes that was him.” “Ugh! I have to go, do not spill any tea without me!” “Hahaha, alright fine. I have to get going myself, thank you again Stephanie, the display looks amazing,” Lola says giving her a hug, “n-no problem, it was all your idea anyway,” “still, I couldn’t have brought it to life without you guys, I’ll see you tomorrow, have a good night.” Lola goes back to her office to grab her things. When she opens her drawer to get her phone, she sees that she has a text message from Eric.

“Andrew, make sure your team is ready to present their findings at tomorrows board meeting, we must secure the Keis position as soon as possible, so closing that deal is top priority. Alright everyone, that’s enough for today, we will reconvene at 10am.” When everyone gets up to leave, Jhené stays behind to help clean up. “You didn’t have to stay you know,” Giselle says collecting the files from the table, “yeah I know, but I figured you could use an extra hand anyway,” “thank you, but I’m fine, this isn’t my first conference you know,” Jhené rolls her eyes and starts collecting the papers from around the table, “I’m not helping you out of pity, you’re my ride and you know how Lola gets whenever we’re late,” Giselle smirks and continues compiling the papers. “… asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, you don’t have to keep carrying everything on your own, it is okay to rely on others sometimes you know,” “oh really? And what do you think people will say if they hear that the president of the company is asking for assistance? Nonetheless, what do you think our father will say?” “I’m sure no one would say anything bad, if anything, they will see you as a person just like them,” Giselle slams the papers down on the table, “No Jhené, they won’t! These people don’t want to help me, if I showed any sign that I could not do this on my own, they will use that as leverage to try and rip this position right from under me… I may seem mean and distant, but it’s because I have to be, nothing is given to us for free; if I have never taught you anything, I’m teaching you that, it’ll save you a lot of disappointment in the long run.” Giselle gets up and takes the papers from Jhené, “meet me at the car, I’ll be down in a minute,” just before leaving the room she stops and turns to Jhené, “thank you… for staying behind,” “girl you’re insane” Jhené says shaking her head, Giselle smiles and leaves the room.

Hey, I just want to apologize for the way I acted today. Your business is your business and it was very childish of me for to get upset like that. I had no right to feel obligated to know what’s going on in your life and for that I am sorry.” Oh, yea that’s good, I’ll say that… right after I get out of the shower… and eat dinner… oh and I still have to meet Giselle and Jhené… I’ll just call him tomorrow. Ring, ring, ring, Lola looks at the phone and sees Eric’s name, SHIT!!! She paces back and forth, and before she realizes, “Hello?”

Loving Lola- Ch. 43


“Timothy, can you at least hide next time you want to spy on me?” Lola says as she enters her office. Timothy peeks his head around the corner, “oh, so you saw me huh?” Lola stops and looks at him, “well then, next time I’ll be a little more sneaky, but I don’t know how when the whole front of the gallery is made of glass,” he says throwing himself into the chair. Lola quietly places her things ono the floor next to her desk. “You didn’t look too happy leaving that tall dark and lovely piece of dove chocolate, I hope there isn’t any trouble in paradise,” he says side eyeing her. “Timothy, can you go get Stephanie so we can start setting up this display for the showcase please?” She says ignoring him, “fine, but we will have this conversation miss thang,” he says leaving her office. Lola slumps down into her chair, why did I even get upset… I should just call him and apologize. Lola takes out her phone and scrolls through her contacts for Eric’s number. She finds his name but pauses before pressing the call button. She places her head on her desk and locks her phone then starts to groan. Ms. Allard walks by and peers in at Lola, she smirks and shakes her head going into her office closing the door behind her. Alright, pull yourself together girl, you have a bomb ass display to create, you can self loathe later! Stephanie comes and knocks on the door, “um, Lola?” “Yes?” she answers with her head still placed on the desk, “we need your assistance on placing the Dorothy Lewrant…” Stephanie says bashfully. Lola lifts her head and pulls herself together, “okay, I’ll be right there,” she says putting on a smile. She puts her phone in the drawer and goes to meet Stephanie and Timothy on the floor.

­­­On her way back from lunch, Jhené decides to give Giselle a surprise visit at her office. When she arrives, she knocks on the door and doesn’t receive an answer. She tries to go inside, but the door is locked. She peers in the window and notices all the lights are off; I know this is her lunch time. Somewhat perplexed, she pulls out her phone and decides to call Giselle and see where she is. When the phone begins to ring, she hears a sound coming from her office, oh wow, this girl locked her phone in her office. As she starts to walk away, Giselle answers the phone.

“Hello?” “What the hell? Did you not hear me out here knocking on your door?!” Giselle takes a deep sigh, “yeah…” “Yeah?! What’s going on with you? You’ve been MIA all day. I wanted to go to lunch together, but they said you weren’t on the premises, where did you go?” “I went to go see Sam.” Jhené looks up and places her hand on her head, “can you please open the door, I don’t think this conversation should be had out in the open, plus I feel crazy talking to your door like this.”

Giselle hangs up and unlocks the door. “Smh really,” she says opening the door, “you didn’t want to open it or at least say something?” “Sorry…” Giselle says laying on her couch. “I don’t like this… what the hell happened with Sam?” “… He said he wasn’t going to tell Lola anything.” “So, you went down there to see if he was going to tell her what happened all those years ago?” “… I also went to apologize.” “Did you?” “Yes. But he didn’t accept it. He said it was a bullshit apology and he felt sorry for me, then asked me to leave.” Jhené stands there quietly for a moment then goes to sit down next to her. “…well that was harsh. Although you messed up their relationship and convinced Lola to stay here when you knew she was unhappy…” Giselle looks at her, “although you did those things, I’m really proud of you for trying to fix your mistakes. He may not be too happy with you right now, but I’m sure it’s mostly because he thought you would never own up to your actions, but I think he will come around eventually.” “And if he doesn’t?” Giselle asks softly, “then, that’s okay. Even if he never forgives you, that’s not something for you to burden. You took the most important step and apologized, but now you have to deal with whatever comes from that and accept the consequences of your actions.” Giselle rolls over and hugs Jhené, “thank you for loving me Jhené.”

Loving Lola- Ch. 42


Lola chuckles as she watches Eric scrape the last bit of sauced up chicken in the corner of the bowl with a torn piece of tortilla. “So, how was it?” she asks laughing. He looks at her with a napkin in his hand and can’t help but to laugh. “That shit was fire I’m not even going to lie,” he says wiping his face. “Hahaha, oh I know it was. The moment you started scraping up the crumbs with that lil’ piece of tortilla I knew it was a wrap.” “No food left behind!” He blurts out excitedly. “Hahaha, you are a fool!” She says, both laugh hysterically. Eric sits back in his chair and stares at Lola with a slight grin. She looks at him and smiles, “what?” she asks fluffing her hair, “nothing, just enjoying the moment” he says. She blushes and then looks away. “So how long is your break?” She asks trying to change the subject, “oh, you ready to get rid of me already?” he asks mockingly. Lola smirks, “yes actually,” she replies. “Wow, and here I thought you were enjoying my company,” Lola laughs, “stop being so dramatic,” she says rolling her eyes. Eric chuckles then checks his watch, “I still have 15 minutes left; I have an hour lunch. I’m not going to get you into trouble, am I?” Lola smacks her teeth, “no, I was just making sure I wasn’t getting you into any.” “Oh, well thanks for your consideration Ms. Spears, but I’m grown” he says with a grin. “Alright, alright calm down,” “hahaha, what? I’m just saying.” Lola smiles and looks away.

“So, are you calmed down now?” “What do you mean?” she asks looking confused. “When you came out to the car, you looked a little estranged, you said that you’d just spoken with your boss and that you needed to calm down some, is it fair to say you’re calmer now?” “Oh! Yes, very much.” “Good, good.” Lola raises her eyebrows and looks at Eric, he smiles and looks back at her, “what?” “Are you not going to ask why I needed to calm down?” she says. “No. I figured if you wanted me to know, you’d tell me. I presume it’s something important and you probably want to discuss it with your sisters first, that is why you texted them right?” “…I mean yeah, but I can still discuss it with you,” “well, I’d love to hear all about it, I just didn’t want to pry or overstep. I want you to want to tell me things, and I am prepared to wait until you are comfortable enough to do so.” Lola looks at him and smiles, “You know, you’re sweet when you want to be,” she says rolling her eyes. “Don’t get used to this now, it’s just early,” he says with a smirk. “Oop, alright that’s fine,” she says with a grin. Ring, ring, ring, “oh, excuse me for a moment,” he says getting up from the table. “Sims… No, I closed on that this morning… The paperwork is on my desk, but he has one more payment until I can fully lock it in… Yes sir… But… He has until the end of the month… We’ve been trying to close on this studio for months… I did what I had to do, and it worked… Yes… Thank you sir.” Eric hangs up and lets out a big sigh, “is everything alright? That seemed a bit hectic.” Lola asks, “yeah, naw everything’s fine. Work stuff, you know how that goes.” “Yeah.” Lola starts gathering her things abruptly, “It’s time for me to head back, we should go,” she says. “Alright,” Eric says also gathering his belongings.

Once in the car, there is a forced silence. Eric arrives at the gallery and Lola immediately gets out of the car. “Hey, hey, are you okay?” Eric asks jumping out of the car. “Yes, I’m fine. Thank you for a lovely lunch, I hope everything works out for you at work. I have to get back and finish my display for the showcase coming up.” She says as she starts to walk away. Eric grabs her hand gently to stop her, “did I, did I do something wrong? Because I don’t feel like you’re very happy with me right now,” he asks with concern. “It’s nothing, I’ll get over it. I guess I’ll have to wait until you’re more comfortable with me to share things as well. You enjoy the rest of your day Eric.” She says lightly pulling her hand away walking into the building. Confused, he gets back into the car and heads back to work.

Loving Lola- Ch. 40

Getting to know you.

“Just a heads up, this place doesn’t really have private parking, so we’ll have to find a spot somewhere close to it.” Eric looks at her and laughs, “what kind of place is this exactly?” “Hahaha, it’s really good I promise. Oh, there’s one!” Lola says pointing to a parking spot across the street. While walking toward the building, Eric notices there is no inside dining. Lola looks at him and starts to laugh, “you must be used to five-star dining for lunch?” Eric chuckles, “not necessarily five star, but at least a decent place to sit.” “Hey now, this is a jewel amongst other places, don’t judge it just yet.” “Well what’s good here then?” “Like I said, I love the grilled chicken wraps, but they have all sorts of stuff. They make everything fresh to order, so whatever you can think of, they’ll make it for you.” “So, it’s like a bootleg hibachi huh?” Eric says sarcastically. “WOW!” Lola says laughing. “Don’t do my spot like that! But I think they could hook you up with some fried rice for real hahaha.” Eric starts laughing, “they may be onto something now.” While waiting in line, Lola texts the sister’s group chat about the news she received from her boss:

L: Hey guys, I have some really exciting news! Meeting at my house, 7pm? J: Okay, what happened? L: I’ll tell you tonight! J: Is it bad? L: No, why would bad news be exciting? J: Going to jail is exciting but that’s bad. L: Who is excited to go to jail?! J: I don’t know. L: BYE! G: Yall are stupid. 7 is fine. L: Okay, see yall later.

Lola put her hand on her face in disbelief, and laughs. “Are you okay?” Eric asks. “Yeah, my sisters are just… Do you have any siblings?” she asks. “Nope. Just me. Oh, it’s our turn to order, you know what you want?” Eric asks, “yes, the grilled chicken wrap supreme please. Hey, I’m going to find us somewhere to sit okay?” “Okay, I’ll come find you.” Lola finds a table not too far from the front. When Eric gets the receipt, he starts scanning the area for her. Their eyes meet and Lola smiles and waves to him calling him over to the table. He smiles back and makes his way over to her. “What number are we?” She asks, “37” he says. “32!” The man yells, “this may take a while” Eric says chuckling, “no, they move fast I promise.” “I hope so, whatever he was cooking while I was placing the order smelt so good, I need to eat something now.” “Oh, so you done talking crap about my “bootleg hibachi” spot?” “Hahaha, for now; I have to see what the food tastes like first.” They both laugh.

Lola looks at Eric for a moment, “what’s up?” he says looking back at her. “What’s your name?” She asks. “Hahaha, what?” “What’s your name?” she repeats. “Um, Eric?” Answering back confused. “Eric what?” She says looking seriously at him. “Eric Sims.” He says back with a serious tone. Lola smiles and holds out her hand for a handshake, “Hello Eric Sims, my name is Lola Spears, nice to meet you.” Eric smiles, “nice to meet you to” gently shaking her head back. “So, you’re not going to tell me what that was about?” says Eric. “It bothered me that I didn’t know your last name.” she says. Eric stares at her silently, and then bursts out laughing, “you did all of that just to know my last name? Why didn’t you just ask me?” “It wouldn’t have been the same, now, we are officially acquainted with one another.” She says to him. “Hahaha, so even though we went on a whole date, a handshake is what sealed the deal?” he asks mocking her. “Hahaha, shut up!” “37!” the man calls out, “come on let’s eat, I am starving,” “I got it,” Eric says as he goes and picks up the food.

Loving Lola- Ch. 36

New Start.

Eric and Sam walks over to the counter and each take a seat. “Alright Mr. Guevara, we discussed many payment options for renting out this studio yesterday, and as I recall, you chose to pay the entire 6 months at once correct?” “Uh, yes, yes sir.” “Okay great. So, the total amount, plus the $300.00 down payment brought you to $4000.00. However, we agreed that you pay only $2,300 today, and the remaining $1,700 one month from today. Are we on the same page so far?” “Yes sir.” “Great. Now, that we got all the numbers situated, lets sign some papers. I have a few forms here that I need you to sign, one of which is just stating that you acknowledge the terms and conditions of the payment plans, the other is a privacy policy, and this one here is a form stating that you acknowledge the consequences of nonpayment.” “Actually, I wanted to ask about that, what would happen if I couldn’t get the money up in time?” “Well, we will remove your name from this property and you will no longer be able to occupy this space. It will go back on the market, and we will cease any property needed to cover the remaining balance.” “Whoa, whoa, whoa, you never said anything about taking my property to pay anything!” “I understand your concerns, but this also why we are discussing the terms of nonpayment now. However, I was also under the impression that we would not have to cross that bridge anyhow. You agreed to a deal you said you could handle financially, so what’s the problem?” Eric begins to look more serious. “Nothing, I just wish I was aware of that beforehand.” “Hmm, and now that you are aware, does that change anything?” Eric asks. “No. I am going to do whatever’s necessary to keep this studio, I cannot afford to lose this opportunity.” Eric looks at Sam intrigued. “Alright then, let’s get this process started.”

Eric explains to Sam everything he needs to know about the studio and the obligations of the lease. Sam lets him know that he understands and is ready to sign. “Alright, Mr. Guevara, how are we paying today? We accept cash, card, and or check.” Sam takes out his wallet and pulls out his debit card, “Card is fine.” “Alright.” Eric hands him the lease agreement and takes his debit card. “Sign here, here, and initial here for me and I will be right back with your receipt.” Sam looks at the form for a moment, no turning back now. He lets out a deep sigh and signs his name on the dotted line. Eric returns with his card and the receipt. “Congratulations Mr. Guevara, it’s all yours! Remember, one month from today, you must pay the remaining $1,700. You can also pay it early, whatever works for you. Here are your keys.” Sam takes the keys and looks around the studio not able to contain his excitement. “Thank you,” he grabs Eric’s hand. “You don’t know what this means for me.” “Hey, I’m glad I can help. Whatever you been through, things are definitely going to get better.” “Thanks man, I really appreciate that.” Eric grabs his things and begins walking towards the door, just before he leaves, he stops and turns around, “if you don’t mind me asking, what are you going to use this place for?” Sam turns and looks at him, “I’m an artist. And this is going to be my art studio.” “Well, you’re definitely in the right area. There’s a gallery right down the street, they are always looking for new talent to showcase. I know one of the curators who work there, if you’re good, maybe I could introduce you.” “Yes! That would be amazing.” “Well, you got my contact information, call me if you have any questions. Good luck.” Eric waves goodbye and takes his leave. Sam looks around one last time in disbelief. He walks to the door clinching the keys in his hands, he then locks up the studio and heads back home.

Loving Lola- Ch. 31

Apologies, apologies.

Lola stands up and rushes out of the restaurant. As the phone is ringing, she contemplates on whether she should answer or not. What do I say to him…? Should I even answer…? Without further hesitation, she answers the phone; “Hello?” Sam observed Lola’s abrupt leave. He glanced at Giselle and Jhené and they both look back at him, they all exchange expressions then look away. Trisha watches Sam’s face as he frowns up with concern. She grabs his hand and asks if he is ready to leave, he nods, and gently moves his hand away calling the waiter over for the check. Trisha takes out her mirror to check herself, but while doing so, she looks behind her to see what has happened. She notices Lola’s absence and flashes a slight smirk. Without knowing, Jhené and Giselle catches her spying on them from the table. She meets their eyes in the mirror and quickly removes it from her face. After the waiter comes back to drop off Sam’s card, Sam and Trisha begin to gather their things to leave. As they stand and begin to walk to the front, Sam signals a slight farewell to the sisters as they walk by. Trisha looks at them out of the side of her eye and keeps walking. Giselle and Jhené look at one another then resume eating their meals.

Eric looks at the phone in disbelief, “He-hello?” Lola is quiet for a moment, “Hi Eric.” Eric is happily surprised. “I didn’t expect you to answer, particularly because you haven’t been lately…” Lola doesn’t say anything. “But it’s all good, I actually want to apologize for blowing you up like that, that’s usually not me. I wanted to give you some space really.” There is a moment of silence on the phone. “Lola, I don’t know what happened, if I said anything to offend you, I am really sorry. You are truly a beautiful person inside and out. I didn’t want to go without letting you know that I am happy to have been the one to take your picture that night.” Lola chuckles, “even though it was supposed to be a group photo?” “Hahaha, you not gone let me slide on that one huh?” “Not a chance.” Eric laughs, “okay, I can take that. So-” “I’m sorry.” She interjects. Eric looks wide eyed at the phone. “You have nothing to apologize for.” “I do. I have been letting my past and my insecurities dictate my actions and I blamed you for it when you were only trying to be nice. I never wanted to let the way others treat me change how I treated others, but I began closing myself off, doubting everyone because of what I went through… I know everyone is not the same, I don’t fully understand your motives, but right now, I believe that you are not a bad guy. So, I really would like to apologize to you for acting how I did, none of this was your fault, if anything, what you said made me realize what I was doing and I thank you for that. I didn’t want to hear it, but I am glad you said it.” Eric smiles, “I appreciate the apology, and I respect you for saying that. You are truly something Miss Lola.” She blushes, “thank you. I am actually at dinner with my sisters right now, and I think it’s time for me to get back,” “oh okay, yeah, I didn’t mean to interrupt your evening,” “oh no, you didn’t, I’m… I’m glad you called,” “I’m glad you answered.” “Me too.” “Alright then, I’ll talk to you later?” “Yes, that sounds good.” “Okay. Good night Lola,” “good night Eric.” They both smile hanging up the phone. Lola grabs her face in disbelief and smiles. When she turns to go back into the restaurant, she bumps into Sam on his way out. “Oh, I’m so sorry, are you oh-” she stops realizing who he is. “Yeah, I’m fine, are you okay?” he says locking eyes with her. “Oh yes, I’m peachy” really bitch! Peachy?! “I’m sorry, I didn’t see you.” “Hahaha, you’re fine Lola.” He says fixing himself. “You guys leaving already?” Girl what? Walk away right now! “Oh yeah, I have to get home, I have an early appointment tomorrow.” “Oh okay, well you definitely have to get your rest then.” OMG please stop talking! “Did you enjoy the food?” “So far yes, this is actually my first time here so,” “Oh, well then you’re certainly going to enjoy it” Trisha interjects, “Sam, I’m ready to go” she says annoyed, “oh I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to hold you guys up. It was nice seeing you again Sam, and nice meeting you, Tisha, was it?” “TRISHA, actually.” “Well! Good night Lola, enjoy the rest of your evening.” Sam interrupts. “You too.” They both wave goodbye and go their separate ways.

Loving Lola- Ch. 29


“Lola!” Sam yells in shock. Trisha looks restlessly at Sam’s reaction, and begins to feel uneasy about their encounter. “Sam! Hey!” Lola says looking at him then at Trisha. It’s that woman. Giselle and Jhené overhears a commotion and notices Sam and Lola’s confrontation. They watch their interaction with confusion and concern. Sam stands up hastily and introduces Trisha, “Um, this is my co-worker, Trisha, and Trisha, this is my- uh, erm, Lola. We went to University together.” Trisha looks at Lola but doesn’t say anything. “Oh, we met earlier, fantastic choice on the peach margarita by the way, it’s delicious.” Lola says smiling, Trisha smirks and looks away. There is an awkward silence for a moment. “Wha-” “Well, I don’t want to intrude on your date,” Lola interjects, “it was great seeing you again Sam” Lola says gently touching his arm. “And nice to meet you as well Trisha.” Lola waves and proceeds to the bathroom. Giselle and Jhené look at Sam as he sits back down at the table. Sam looks up, and they lock eyes, he then quickly looks away and continues his meal. Lola reaches the bathroom and places her back against the door. Her palms are sweaty, and her heart is racing, and she does not understand why. She walks over to the sink and turns on the faucet to rinse her hands. She looks up at herself in the mirror and cannot shake this strange feeling in her chest. She dries her hands and goes into the stall to use the restroom. She sits there for a moment contemplating on who that woman is to Sam. He said that she was a co-worker… but the way she looked at me… She finishes and goes to wash her hands. Hahaha, what am I thinking? Just before yesterday, I had forgotten of his existence; I haven’t seen him in years…So why should I care who he’s out with? She grabs some paper towels and tries to snap herself back to reality, I don’t care! I am focusing on me! No more men, no more issues, no more! She says looking in the mirror. She stands there quietly for a moment. She opens the door, throws the paper towel away and leaves the restroom returning to her booth without acknowledging their table. With her back facing Sam, she carries on with her meal as if nothing happened.

Trisha and Sam sit in an uncomfortable silence. Trisha watches Sam as he sits there quietly eating. His mood, the vibe, it all changed drastically after he saw her, who the fuck is this woman?! “I’m sorry, for putting you in an awkward position Trish.” Sam says. Shocked, Trish looks away from him and takes a sip of her drink. “Who is she?” she asks. “Hm?” “Lola, who is she to you?” She asks not looking at him. Sam sits there quietly, pushing his food around on his plate. “Honestly, I don’t know.” Trisha glances up at him, “Up until yesterday, she was just a memory.” Sam looks in Lola’s direction, flashes a faint smile then back at his plate. Trisha squeezes her fork angrily, I knew it! Whoever she is, he’s given her his heart a long time ago. I refuse to let this bitch take him away from me.

Giselle and Jhené look at Lola as she sits there eating in silence. “Can yall please not stare at me, I literally feel the heat from your eyes burning a hole into my forehead.” “Are we really going to sit here and not talk about what just happened?” Giselle says to her. “Yes.” She replies not looking at them. They sit there quietly. “Damnit, all I wanted to do, was have a simple meal, at my favorite place, and now I can’t even enjoy it.” Jhené says folding her arms. Lola lets out a deep sigh, “can we just act like whatever happened didn’t happen?” “No, because clearly something is bothering you.” Jhené says. “Didn’t we literally just talk about this at your house?” says Giselle. Lola squints her eyes and looks at her, “wow, that’s a low blow.” “No, it’s the truth. Just talk to us and stop holding stuff in, the sooner you say what you’re feeling, the better you’d feel.” I’m not so sure about that… I don’t even know what I’m feeling… Ring, ring, ring, “So are you going to tell us what happened or not?” Jhené says impatiently. Lola rolls her eyes and grabs her phone from her purse, ring, ring, ring, “are you not going to answer that?” asks Gisselle. “It’s Eric.” Lola says staring at the phone.

Loving Lola- Ch. 28

No Misunderstandings.

“Oh wow, this place is nice Jhené” Lola exclaims. “I specifically said I don’t want to hear your opinions.” Jhené says. “Hahaha, but I gave the restaurant a compliment!” Lola says laughing. “I don’t care, keep it to yourself.” “Hahaha, this girl.” Giselle laughs. The hostess escorts them to their booth to be seated and assures them that their waiter will be with them momentarily. “So, what’s good here Jhené?” Giselle says opening her menu. “To be honest, I always get the grilled chicken. I don’t know what they do to it, but I can’t get enough.” “I want a margarita” Lola says looking at the drinks page. “Girl yes, I get the strawberry margarita every time.” “Ew why strawberry? That is my least favorite flavor.” “Didn’t I say I don’t care about your opinions” Jhené says looking at Giselle. “Damn! They have so many flavor options; there’s peach, mango, pineapple, orange-” “Hello ladies,” The waiter interjects, “my name is Jacob and I will be taking care of you this evening, can I start you off with something to drink?” “Um, I’d like an original frozen margarita, small with salt around the rim please.” Giselle says. “I would like a small strawberry margarita with sugar around the rim.” “Frozen or on the rocks?” “Frozen please.” “Alright, and for you miss?” “I really want a margarita, but I don’t know what flavor to get, which one would you suggest?” Before Jacob can answer, a lady a few tables away interjects, “Try the peach margarita, it is so good, I’m actually on my second one.” “And see I was debating between that one and the mango. Okay, well I’ll have a frozen medium peach margarita please.” “Alright, I’m going to go ahead and put those drinks in for you.” Jacob leaves to go put in the drink orders and Lola thanks the woman for her suggestion.

Justin and Damien are in the store with Eric while he picks up a few groceries. “Damien, how did we get sucked into this?” “It’s not like you’re actually helping anyway” Eric says. “Because I don’t even want to be here.” “Then leave, I’m not forcing you to help me shop. Yall stopped me remember?” “Yall can’t go two minutes without arguing. I swear yall act like an old married couple.” Damien interjects. “Why are yall in here anyway? Don’t yall have something else to do?” Eric asks annoyed “Actually yes we d-” “No. We were riding around and saw you walking” Damien says interrupting Justin. “Damn Damien! This is why I don’t go anywhere with you.” “Why lie? We weren’t doing anything and it’s just Eric.” Eric starts laughing, “and you say we fight like a married couple, oh okay.” He says. “Man whatever. Speaking of, so you gone try calling her again?” Justin asks. Damien looks at Eric. “Naw… She didn’t answer the first time and I don’t want to blow her up, seeming like I’m desperate or something.” Justin looks at him with a stale face, “You are desperate the fuck.” “No I’m not.” Eric says offended. “You are” Damien says. “Just drop it ight.” Eric says walking away. “Well at least you know she didn’t block you!” Justin says yelling down the aisle.

Sam finishes up in the bathroom and goes to wash his hands. He looks at himself in the mirror and starts to laugh, I don’t know how I get myself in these situations… Just eat and take her home, I do not need any misunderstandings. He dries his hand and leaves the bathroom. When he arrives back to the table, he sees Trisha drinking another margarita. “I see you ordered a second one after all.” “Yes, I just couldn’t resist.” She says smiling. Sam shakes his heads and begins to eat. He looks up and notices Jacob helping another table, “Yes, the restrooms are around the corner on the right” he says aloud. The woman thanks him as he walks away. She places her purse down in the seat next to her and stands up fixing her dress before proceeding to the restroom. Sam averts his eyes as she walks in his direction, but just as she is walking bye, he looks up and their eyes meet.

Loving Lola- Ch. 27

Now or Never.

Dripping wet, Lola emerges from the shower, wrapping herself in her towel. She wipes the condensation from the mirror, clearing a spot to see so she can wash her face and brush her teeth. Once she is finished, she yells to her sisters that she will be ready in a few minutes, knowing Jhené, wherever we’re going its not going to be too fancy. She walks into her closet looking for something cute, comfy, and casual. She pulls out a pair of jeweled studded sandals to go along with a multi-colored maxi dress she has been dying to wear. After she is completely dry and moisturized, she throws her hair into a high bun to complete the look. “Are you ready yet? My stomach is touching my back!” Jhené yells out to Lola. “Yes! I’m grabbing my purse right now.” Lola looks around for her keys and cellphone then finds them sitting on her dresser. She grabs both and throws them into her bag and leaves the room. “See, I told you I wasn’t going to take long” Lola says meeting her sisters in the kitchen. “Yes, yes great, now let’s go, I’m starving!” “This place better be good the way you are talking.” They all gather their things and head out the door.

Slurp, slurp, “OMG! This is so much better than I remember! I think they hired a new bartender because this is amazing!” Trisha says drinking her margarita. “Do you want to taste it?” She offers Sam, “Oh no I’m good. I’m the driver remember.” “Pfft, so? It’s just a sip, it’s not like you’re not going to get drunk off a little taste.” She says tempting him. “I don’t know, you’ve been sipping over there, and it seems like you’re feeling pretty good already.” “I’m just happy that’s all.” “Happy you got a drink?” He asks. “Well yeah, but I’m mostly happy that I get to spend some time with you outside of work.” The waiter comes back to the table, “are you guys ready to order?” “Yes!” Trisha says excitedly, “I’ll have the D3 special please with the guac and sour cream on the side.” “Okay, and for you sir?” “I’ll take the house special with extra pico.” “Alright, I’ll go put these in right away.” They hand the waiter their menus as he leaves the table. “I’m going to have to order another one of these” Trisha says stirring the ice in her drink. “Wha- you’re done already? You just got it! Sam says shocked. Shlurp, shlurpp! “Well it’s gone now.” Trish says taking a bite out of the orange slice from her drink. “You should probably wait to eat something before ordering another drink Trish, I’d hate for you to get sick.” “Aww, are you worried about me Sammy?” She says batting her eyes. “Caring and responsible, aren’t I lucky.” Sam looks at her and laughs.

Jhené pulls into the restaurants parking lot and parks the car. “This is one of my favorite places. They just renovated so it’s really nice inside, and the drinks are AMAZING!” Giselle and Lola look up at the sign, “Depasco” they say aloud. “I have never heard of this place before,” Giselle says. “Yeah, I wouldn’t expect you to, all that corporate food you eat.” Jhené say in a snarky tone. “Um don’t’ do me, it is not my fault the only places around the offices are upscale. I eat regular food to.” “Hahaha, regular food?” Lola says laughing. “What the hell is regular food?” she asks, “I’m guessing anything under $50 bucks that still gets you full.” Jhené says. “First of all, I don’t pay 50 anything for my food,” “Yeah because someone is always buying it for you” Jhené says. Giselle rolls her eyes, “anyway, I thought you were starving; can we get off of me and just go in please.” “Yall better not talk any shit about this place or I’m never taking yall anywhere again.” “Hahaha we can’t have an opinion?” “No! I didn’t ask for it, so I don’t want to hear it.” They all laugh and enter the restaurant.

“Alright, he we are,” The waiter says with their orders in hand. “Be careful the plates are hot.” He says placing the dishes on the table. “Is there anything else I can get for you?” he asks. “I’d like another margarita” Trisha insists. Sam shakes his head. “Where are the restrooms” he asks. “Around the corner on the right” the waiter directs him. “Thank you. Trish I’ll be right back.” Sam leaves the table making his way to the bathroom. Trish pulls out her mirror and checks herself, alright Trish, now is your chance, it’s now or never! In the distance she hears her waiter Jacob “Hello ladies my name is Jacob, and I will be your waiter for the evening, can I start you off with something to drink?” “I really want a margarita, but I don’t know what flavor I want” Trisha looks in her mirror behind her and she sees Jacob seating three women. She turns around and suggests the peach margarita, Lola looks at her and smiles, “Okay, well I’ll have a frozen medium peach margarita please.”