The Sex Opera ...Season 2

Monday, June 12, 2006

Chapter 1, part 3

Jaleesa

Jaleesa returned home to find the message light on the answering machine blinking. She dropped her purse and bag on the floor before walking across the room to the end table and pressing the ‘retrieve’ button. As the machine rewound, she went into the kitchen, grabbed a cereal bar from the countertop, and tore open the foil wrapper.

“Jaleesa, hey baby, it’s Stephanie. I need you to call me as soon as you get this message.” The woman sniffled and then blew her nose over the recorded. “As soon as possible babe.”

Surprised to hear Stephanie’s voice on her answering machine she immediately knew something was wrong. Stephanie never called. Reese and Stephanie had been seeing one another for over ten years. It wasn’t a surprise to Jaleesa when her sister announced to the family that she was gay and had been living with Stephanie right after high school.

Reese had all the tell-tell signs that she was gay but the family never recognized them. The flannel shirts, baggy pants and the hatred toward anything girly or considered feminine were proof enough. However, despite her masculine ways, Reese carried herself like a woman by remaining dainty in many ways like getting her hair and nails done on a regular basis and wearing light makeup for appearance purposes.

Immediately after hearing Stephanie’s distraught message Jaleesa called her sister’s home number but there was no answer. Jaleesa pulled her purse from her shoulder and rummaged through the contents until she found her cell phone. She scrolled down her contact list and found “Reese Home’ and pressed ‘talk’.

Thinking she would be greeted by her sister’s voice, Stephanie’s voices echoed. “Jaleesa? Is that you?” she sniffled.

“Yes. How you doin’, Steph?”

“Not so good gurl. Something terrible has happened to Reese. I can’t…I can’t…”

“Wait slow down a minute. What’s going on? Why are you crying? Was Reese in some sort of accident? Is she in a hospital or something?”

“Jaleesa, sit down.”

“I don’t wanna sit down! Why don’t you go ‘head and tell me? Please, what happened to my sister?” Jaleesa demanded with a straight face and her heart beating rapidly.

“Last night, some guy knocked on the door and…”

Jaleesa remembered the radio announcement where she heard breaking news of a fatal shooting on her sister’s street as she drove to Mark’s apartment on that fatal night. “No…don’t tell me. Was that-”

“Yes, he shot her. That cold-hearted sonofabitch stood at the door and just shot her. I didn’t know what to do. He took off running so fast that I didn’t get a chance to see him. We’re at Sinai Grace right now…”

Jaleesa hands went numb as her legs gave out and her throat closed. The phone fell from her hand as she stared blankly forward. Her chin quivered before her pain revved. She screamed at the top of her lungs as she dropped her knees and cried out loud.

That callous asshole got the last laugh, she thought as she let the tears fall onto her lap.

Jaleesa rocked as she tried to get herself together. Her cell phone chirped twice, indicating an incoming call. She crawled across the floor to the device and flipped it open. It was Brad. She flipped open the phone and mumbled a hello.

“Jaleesa, are you okay? What’s wrong? What’s going on?” he asked in a frantic tone.

Jaleesa managed to wipe away from of her streaming tears. “It’s…It’s m-my s-sister,” she stuttered as she struggled to hold the phone next to her ear. “She was killed last night, B-Brad.”

“Oh my God! Mary mother of Christ! Do you me need to come over there?”

“No. I’m on my way to the hospital. Can you meet me there?” Jaleesa struggled to stand. Her knees buckled once again forcing her to sit down on the sofa until she was capable of holding up her body weight.

“No question. What hospital?”

“Sinai Grace on Outer Drive,” she pointed in direction of the hospital as if he could see her through the phone, “and Schaefer right pass…”

“I’ll find it. I’ll be there before you know it.”

Jaleesa closed the phone with unrelenting tears soaking into her skin as she sat rocking and holding onto the arm of the sofa. Time seemed to stand still as she poured her heart out to her sister. It had been so long since she had stopped by to say hello or at least go out and enjoy dinner with her beloved. Now her last time to see her would be in the hospital morgue.