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Kwame & Kyhanna

By:Chante Amor

Kwame & Kyhanna
Chante Amor

       A Youngstown Love Story

Chapter 1

"What the fuck man," I said underneath my breath as I stepped off the  WRTA bus that let me off directly in front of the mall. I spotted the  white security guard who I didn't fuck with standing outside of Macy's  smoking a cigarette and irritating my last nerve. I absolutely hated  when he worked because I almost always had some drama when it came to  doing my thing inside of the store. I had been dealing with him on and  off throughout the years of coming to the mall and he was the type of  dude that lived to find you doing wrong. Don't get me wrong, I was  definitely on top of my game for sure but I just wasn't in the mood for  all that bullshit. I draped my empty, oversized, Gucci bag over my arm  as I walked in the entrance of Macy's. My knockoff purse was old as hell  but it still got the job done and at this point I was on a mission.

"Hello Ms. Kyhanna. I see you're back for more. You better not give me a  reason to escort you into my office," he said as he held the large  steel door open for me. I honestly felt deep down inside that this fool  was a pervert or on some peeping tom type shit. He always wanted to  suggest that I come to his wack ass office, but he definitely wouldn't  catch me slipping. He wouldn't catch me slipping because I was too on  point to ever be caught.

"Yeah whatever," I answered and walked away leaving his ass right there  in the door. I didn't know why this motherfucker always wanted to start  some shit with me but I guess his mission on earth was to intentionally  fuck with me. I looked down and checked my watch and knew I had to stick  to my tight schedule to make shit happen so I could get the fuck out of  the store as fast as I could. What I didn't plan on happening was  falling in love.

You never plan on actually falling in love until it sneaks up on your  ass and totally catches you slipping. That's exactly what happened to me  the day Kwame' Patterson walked into my life. I walked into the store  and did my usual routine. I walked in a few areas and looked briefly and  then I ended up in the section that I'd really come for … the junior's  section. I usually cased a few of the surrounding areas to check and see  how many staff members they had on deck because that gave me an idea of  how I needed to do my thing. To my surprise, there wasn't anyone  assigned to the junior's section which was great for me because I could  slip in and slip out undetected. I was smack dab in the middle of my  area helping myself to whatever I wanted via my five finger discount and  we literally bumped right into each other.

"Yo what's up love?" he asked. I looked up momentarily to respond with, "Hey."

Okay so rule number one when stealing you definitely don't have time to  engage in small talk or anything that can potentially slow you down. So I  wasn't trying to be a bitch, I just didn't have time for the cute and  fluffy shit that most bitches craved.

"What's a pretty, young thing like you doing helping herself in a store like this? This store has heavy security."

I knew what he was saying had been true but I was fifteen years old and I  had been stealing shit since I was about seven years old. I had this  shit down to a science. I looked over at him and rolled my eyes. I  wasn't new to this I was true to this.

"Why is it any of your fucking business?"

"Cuz I don't want to see a young shawty like you get caught up in the  fucked up system we call the law that's why. Once yo ass get caught up  it's hard as hell to get out. Besides, if I was your man there's no way  I'd have you out here like that." He whispered low enough to not draw  attention to our situation but loud enough for me to hear everything he  was saying. I had been momentarily grateful that he hadn't blown down on  my crime in progress. I was so glad his ass wasn't a snitch otherwise I  would've had to cause a scene just so that I could get the hell up out  of there.

"Well you're not my man now are you? What's your name anyway?" I asked  clearly pissed the fuck off that this complete stranger had been  occupying all my time. I didn't have time to play chit chat with this  fool. I was on a mission. A mission that didn't involve talking to his  annoying ass. It was picture day at my high school tomorrow and I wanted  to have a new outfit to take pictures in.

"My name is Kwame. Your name is Kyhanna right?"

I raised my eyebrows in surprise.

"Excuse me, how did you know my name?"

"You don't remember me? I used to hang with your brother Tremaine back in the day when we were in high school."

I stepped back and took a good look at him and realized he did look familiar.

"Oh yeah you did used to hang with my brother. Y'all were in high school  together right? And you have two brothers. I think their names are  Khamani and Khyree."

"Yeah we were in the same grade until he got locked up. And those are my brothers."

My brother Tremaine had been locked up for the last three years. They  ended up doing a drug raid while my brother was in one of his stash  houses and there was enough money and drugs in there to put him away for  a lot of years. The judge had been trying to lock my brother away every  chance he got but never had anything on him to be able to do it so when  Tremaine's fresh case came across his desk he jumped at the opportunity  to put him away. They ended up giving him five years which when you  compared it to a life sentence that amount of time wasn't shit. So my  brother decided to eat the charge and do what he had to do in order to  complete his bid.

"Bro, what you mean you got five years? You ain't do nothin'. This shit is ridiculous. And that's a long ass time."

"I know it's fucked up sis but I was looking at way more time than what they gave me so I'm just thankful it's only five."

"That's still a long ass time. What is Tahj and I supposed to do? Brenda  don't have her shit together. She was barely covering the bills when  you were out and now that you're in here you know shit is mad tight  bro."

"I know and that's what kills me about being up in this bitch but you  strong Kyhanna and you got what it takes to make it. Remember you're  just like me. You and Tahj gonna be cool. I can't say the say the same  for Brenda. But y'all gon' be a'ight. I promise that. I'm gon' make sure  my dudes come through and make sure y'all straight and I'll be out  before you know it."

My thoughts always took me back to that conversation that Tremaine and I  had and honestly thought he would only be gone a few weeks. I never  envisioned he'd be gone for going on three years. I felt within my heart  that he had been set up but his sorry ass public defender made it seem  like he was guiltiest person up in that jail.

"You okay Ma?" Kwame asked, snapping me back from my fleeting thoughts  and putting me back into reality. Having him telling me that he used to  run the streets with Tremaine just made me think of my brother and how  much I missed him. I couldn't believe that he had been down for that  long and I'd been literally been fending for myself and my little  brother ever since.

"I'm cool. Hey look. It's been nice seeing you again but I gotta go," I  announced. I started to walk off so I could go to the bathroom and pop  tags and sensors off the stuff I'd taken. I walked in the woman's  bathroom that was located on the second floor of the store and realized I  was in there alone which was cool because that meant I could do what I  needed to do and be gone in no time. I had already been in Macy's five  minutes too long anyway and I needed to get the hell out of dodge before  my ass got caught. It took me an entire three minutes to rid my new  clothes of the evidence and conceal them in my purse and under my  clothes.

When I came out of the bathroom, my plan had been very simple: walk to  the nearest exit and not draw attention to myself in the process. I  never expected Kwame to be standing directly outside the bathroom. I  almost jumped out of my skin when I saw him standing there waiting on  me.

"Oh my God what the hell are you doing following me?" I asked annoyed as fuck that he had now resorted to stalking me.

"Kyhanna, I'm not following you. I just wanted to see if you needed a ride home."

I shook my head.

"Naw, I'm straight. I already have a ride anyway." I lied. I knew good  and damn well that my black ass didn't have a ride. I just had a hard  time accepting things from people. One thing for sure I definitely  wasn't about to let him take me the sorry place we called home. Since  Tremaine had been down the way we lived had changed drastically. We went  from living in a decent house to living in a place that should be  condemned by the city.

"Are you sure?" He asked. I could tell from the look in his eyes that he  didn't totally believe me but I didn't care. As far as I was concerned  he could kiss my ass for being so damn intrusive.