The Reunion Show
Hell House was down to three people who had something to prove. Sylvia had been voted out of the house because of her fakeness, Prince had been kicked out for fighting, and Chase had walked out on her own free will. She’d gotten what she needed—sex.
My fate was now in the hands of Jada and Roc, only because Jeff felt as if I had broken the rules when I invited Brashaney to come inside. I couldn’t believe this bullshit. If he ordered me to leave, I had already concocted another plan for my unfortunate situation.
I narrowed my eyes and moistened my dry lips with my tongue as I waited to hear Jada and Roc’s verdict on me leaving the house. Jada made a ticking sound with her mouth. She searched me from head to toe while scratching her head.
“Dang, Jaylin, I don’t know what to do. I hate to be put into a preditment like this. We have had so much fun around here, haven’t we?”
“A lot of fun, and we’ve learned some valuable things that we need to apply to our everyday lives. The word, however, is predicament, not preditment.”
She shot me a dirty look. “Thank you for that tad bit of information, but at a time like this, I preferred for you not to go there. Boo, you think my decision shouldn’t be hard, but it is. While you know I ain’t got nothin’ but love for you, this is a challenge that I really and truly want to win. As only you know, we got this li’l thang goin’ on between us, and I’m not sure if you gon’ follow through.” She paused and continued in thought.
I assumed she was thinking about the money I had offered her. She could forget it if she made the decision to throw me out over some bullshit.
“Okay,” she said, smacking. “What I’m hopin’ is that you’re a man of your word like you say you are. And that you’ll be happy for me if I win.” She paused to touch her chest. “With all of that bein’ said, my dear, sweet, loveable friend, I’ve enjoyed your company soooo much, and I don’t know what I’mma do without you around here. But you did break the rules. Therefore, you need to go pack yo bags and get yo highly-educated self out of here.”
I almost couldn’t believe her decision. Then again, yes I could. I said not one word. Nothing but silence soaked the room as I looked over her shoulder at Roc. The ball was in his court. He damn sure better know how to play it. If not, he was going to be fucked!
Roc smirked and massaged his hands together. He licked his lips, and without giving it much more thought, hopped up from his seat and came over to me. I suspected how this was going to turn out, especially by the smirk on his face.
“Peace, bro, you got to go.” He saluted me and then turned to Jeff. “The rules must be followed. This is what happens when you play by your own rules.”
Jeff looked at me with glee in his eyes. I guess he thought I was going to act a fool and get my clown on, but I surprised everyone when I stood and casually walked over to Jada.
“Give me a hug,” I said, opening my arms.
At first, she hesitated but then she stood to embrace me. “You ain’t mad at me, are you?” she asked.
“Not at all. This is a challenge and everybody must play to win.”
I let go of her and then turned to Roc. I slapped my hand against his, but I didn’t say one word. I did, however, have more to say to Jeff. I asked him to meet me in the backyard, so no one could hear our conversation.
“What’s up, Jaylin?” he asked. “What’s on your mind?”
“A whole lot. For starters, I’mma need for you to come clean about some things.”
“Things like what? What are you referring to?”
This was total speculation on my part, but I went for it. I figured that Jeff was somehow or someway involved in what was transpiring behind the scenes, even though I didn’t know the exact details.
“I’m referring to a flash drive that shows some sexual activities taking place in this house. That flash drive was in the hands of someone who shouldn’t have had it. I question who gave it to her. My answer would be you or Chase. I also know there are some pictures floating around here that shouldn’t be. And to be honest with you, Jada told me some things in private that maybe she should’ve have said. So, I know more than you think I know. And from what I do know, it’s enough to shut down Hell House right now.”
I lied my ass off, but he seemed nervous enough to let me know that he was in on something. Plus, he hadn’t denied anything yet, so I figured I was on to something.
I poked at his chest with my finger. “Here’s what you need to know. And once I’m done telling you, you can sigh from relief and wipe some of the sweat from your forehead. The specific details of what is transpiring between you and the ladies, I don’t want to know about it. As long as it doesn’t involve me, I’m good. I’m already on my way out, but here’s the deal. If I’m being asked to leave, then there needs to be a legitimate reason for me to exit. You know that bullshit with Brashaney was a setup, and I know it, too. So, I’m going to stay here for one more night and invite the woman of my choice over here. Then there will be no questions about me breaking the rules. There will be no hard feelings, and by tomorrow afternoon, I’ll be out of here and out of your way.”
He pondered for a while, figuring that I had the capability of causing this whole thing to come crashing down. He certainly didn’t want that to happen, so he slowly nodded.
“Tomorrow. No more delays, Jaylin, I want you to leave. I don’t want you to discuss anything with Roc or Jada about your assumptions, and believe me when I say you don’t have all of the facts.”
“I repeat…I don’t care about the facts. As long as they don’t involve me. So, do we have a deal or not?”
“Deal,” Jeff said, nodding. “Now, I’m going back inside to tell Jada and Roc that you’ll be leaving tomorrow. I don’t know how they’ll feel about it, but again, I need for you to keep quiet about my involvement in any of this.”
“My lips are sealed. Before we go back inside, though, I’ll need my phone. I’m sure that since you suspected I’d be leaving today, you have it on you.”
He reached into his pocket and tossed my cell phone to me. Afterward, we went back inside. Jada and Roc were sitting on the couch laughing and talking. Jeff cleared his throat and scratched his head.
“Instead of leaving right away, Jaylin will be leaving by tomorrow afternoon. After a long discussion, and because I’m not completely convinced that he invited Brashaney into this house, I’m allowing him to stay for one more day. After that, he’s out and the two of you can start doing whatever you guys need to do to win this challenge.”
“You mean to tell me that we gotta stay one more day in this house with that fool?” Jada spoke in a joking manner. “I guess that’s okay. It ain’t no big deal.”
“I’m good, too.” Roc stood and stretched. “Tomorrow it is.”
“Thank you both for understanding,” Jeff said. “This was an unfortunate situation, but I’m glad that we’re on the same page and that everything got resolved.” He turned to me. “Jaylin, I’ll see you tomorrow. Don’t forget what we discussed.”
I didn’t bother to reply. He jetted and Roc walked off to the bedroom. Jada remained on the couch. Her eyes bugged when she saw me pull out my cell phone to use it.
“Uh, excuse me. What are you doin’? You ain’t supposed to be usin’ that phone.”
I relaxed on the couch and punched in my four-digit code to listen to my messages. “Mind your business. Just in case you forgot, I don’t have to play by the rules anymore. This challenge is over for me. You voted to throw me out of here, remember?”
She pouted and sat silently. I had several messages, but the most recent one was from Chase. How she’d gotten my cell phone number, I didn’t know.
Jaylin Rogers, where have you been all of my life? I’m sitting here in the privacy of my home, sipping on wine, watching TV, and thinking about you. I have no idea how much longer you’re going to be in that stupid house, but whenever you embark upon some free time, why don’t you make it your business to come see me.
She left her address and phone number for me to contact her. I stroked the hair on my chin, contemplating if I should make that move or not. The more I thought about it, it didn’t seem like a bad move to make, considering Jeff’s change of heart. I wanted additional details about what was going on around here.
Jada was paying close attention to me, but I ignored her and made another call. When she heard me say Nokea’s name, she slapped her leg and laughed.
“Oooo, is that Nokea? If so, let me talk to her. I got a few things that I need to tell her. Does she have any idea what you’ve been doing up in here? I’m sure you won’t be tellin’ her what went down, but then again, she probably already knows you a ho’.”
I turned my back to her and continued my conversation with Nokea. “I’ll be home tomorrow. Kiss my babies for me and tell them I’ll see them soon.”
“I’m sure they’ll be happy to hear that,” Nokea said. “I’m sorry you didn’t win, but I’m glad you’ll be coming home. It hasn’t been the same without you.”
I didn’t bother to reply. I preferred to keep my conversation short with Nokea. She knew I was still on edge about her relationship with Tyrese. I told her I would holler later, and instead of contacting my best friend, Shane, I decided to wait until tomorrow. I was sure he would have plenty of questions about why I didn’t win. I didn’t feel like answering them, even though I was really the big winner in all of this.
To relax for a minute, I laid my cell phone on the table and placed my hands behind my head. I propped my feet on the table and stared at the TV. Jada was trying to distract me with her puzzling looks.
“I’m glad you’re stayin’ here for one more night,” she whispered and then looked over her shoulder. “I don’t know what I’m gon’ do around here with Roc’s ol’ borin’ self, and I’m sholl gon’ miss you.”
I nodded and straightened my trimmed goatee with the tips of my fingers. “Jada, just so you know, I’m not giving you one penny. If you win this challenge, and I suspect that you will, it won’t be because you played fair and square. It’s obvious that you’ve been doing some sneaky shit.”
She opened her mouth wide, as if she were shocked by my accusation.
From a distance, I looked inside of her mouth. “I didn’t know your mouth could get that wide. Is it stuck or what?”
“You darn right it is. How dare you claim to be a man of your word and then renigga on givin’ me the money? I am gon’ to win this challenge fair and square, so you will have to pay up.”
“Renege or renigga? Whatever renigga means, I’m not paying you anything.”
“It means that you done made a nigga move by tryin’ to run and not pay up. Boy, I tell you, some men ain’t shit.”
I couldn’t believe she was actually sitting there upset with me. Other than Jeff, I wanted no one to know that I had the flash drive. It took everything that I had not to tell Jada, but she kept going on and on about the deal I reniggad on. I was forced to silence her. I removed the flash drive from my pocket and waved it in front of her eyes.
“Weren’t you looking for this?”
Her mouth clamped shut. She scratched between her thick cornrows that were braided straight back.
“Yeah, that’s what I thought,” I said. “I suspect that Chase knows something about this too, and if I wanted to end this today, I could. But I’m not going to because it doesn’t seem to be in my best interest. So for the record, you fucked up our deal with the money thing, not me.”
She reached out to snatch the flash drive, but I was too quick for her. I put it back into my pocket. There was no way she was getting it.
“Okay then, keep the darn thing. I don’t care. It ain’t nothin’ important on there anyway.”
“Important? No. Damaging? Yes. Chase may be more familiar with what I’m talking about. Maybe I should give her a call, so we can discuss what’s on the flash drive.”
I reached for my cell phone and punched in Chase’s number. Jada sat speechless. That let me know that she was concerned about what Chase would say. After a few rings, she answered.
“This is Jaylin,” I announced. “I got your message, and it was good hearing from you. The purpose for my call is to invite you to come see me tonight.”
“Where are you? At home?”
“No, I’m still at Hell House. I’ll be leaving tomorrow, but I need to get at you about a few things. Can you make it here within the hour?”
She paused for a few seconds before answering. “Maybe within a couple of hours or so I can. I was in the middle of something. But before I make any moves, tell me what this is about.”
“It’s about us. I wanted to see you again. You rushed out of here so quickly that I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye like I wanted to.”
She hesitated again, but finally said she would come.
“That’s what’s up,” I said, winking at Jada. “Holla soon.”
She shook her head. “Why are you invitin’ that heifer back into this house? You breakin’ all the rules. Does Jeff approve of you doin’ all of this?”
“I can do whatever I want to around here. Don’t concern yourself with me. I’m curious as to why you’re poking your nose in my business, especially when you should be out there partying with Roc. He’s chilling by the pool, and I’m sure he may want your company.”
She rolled her eyes and threw her hand back. “Forget Roc. I want to know what you’re up to.”
“No more than what you’ve been up to. As a reminder to you, in case you forgot, we’re all being watched. Be careful who you trust, all right? Don’t say that I didn’t warn you. I just did.”
I stood and left the living room, leaving Jada confused and in deep thought like I wanted her to be.