Chapter 30

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I drove around the city with no destination in mind. I just wanted to get up and go. Get out of the house and be on my way. No engagements are planned for the next couple of weeks. Shayla is still on the road, I've got time to myself and the whole world in the palm of my hand. How did I get so lucky? How did I get so blessed? Although I went through what I went through as a child, thank God for Joseph, because had it not been for him, I wouldn't have gotten the start that I did. He was right about that one for sure. If it weren't for him, I wouldn't have gotten that start. But if it weren't for me wanting to push myself further, I wouldn't be where I am today. Now here I am, the greatest entertainer in the entire world. Everyone loves me. I have a beautiful talented wife. All we have to do is start our family.


The familiar tone of my phone ringing came on and I quickly answered it without checking the ID, "hello?"


"Michael, it's June," June answered the phone.


"Hey! How are you and your family?"


"Oh, they're doing great. I haven't talked to you in a while. Um... Dave brought to my attention how ungrateful I might have come off the last time we were with you and I just wanted to apologize to you for that. That was completely uncalled for. When you said we were going to Universal, I was elated. I just thought my kids were gonna pick something else, ya know..."


No. I don't know. But okay. "I accept your apology, June. Think nothing of it. I'm glad you had fun."


"Well, it's been on my mind a lot. Dave actually uh," she cleared her throat. "He wouldn't let me talk to you again unless I apologized. I know that probably sounds juvenile... But no. He really didn't like the fact that I sounded ungrateful, considering all you've done for us thus far."


"Think nothing of it," I shook my head. Juvenile isn't the word. It's the fact that June didn't feel the need to apologize until her husband told her too. That's the wild part.


"Thank you, Michael..." There was a slight moment of awkward silence. "Congratulations on your Grammy win!"


"Thank you," I nodded.


"Is it okay to say that you and Janet looked absolutely beautiful on the Grammys? Your parents made such beautiful children."


"Thank you... How is Dave doing?" I changed the subject. I'm beginning to feel like June is starting to come on to me. I don't understand it either. She's married. I'm married. Why would she come on to me like this? She's an attractive woman, but I'm not even remotely attracted to her. Plus, I'd never do that to Shayla. So what is her angle here?


"Dave is well. He's been raving about how cool it was to maneuver backstage at Universal."


"Well, I'm glad to hear that he enjoyed himself."


"Yeah... Is your wife back yet? I was wondering if you had told her about that lunch."


"She's still on her book tour. She should be back soon though. I told her about the lunch proposal."


"Really?" She gasped excitedly. "What'd she say?"


"Um..." I looked around to find the right words to say. Shayla didn't even respond to the lunch proposal. When I asked her about it, she almost sounded offended that I had even asked. How do I say this as nice as possible? "She's looking into it."


"I can't wait! You know when you all came into the store, I had a feeling your wife didn't like me for some reason. I don't know why. But I like her a lot. I admire her actually." That's the second time someone has said they felt like Shayla doesn't like them. If Shayla doesn't like someone, she just won't talk to them. Now... she doesn't exactly feel great about June, but I won't say she doesn't like her. She's just trying to figure her out and what her angle is with trying to get so close to us. Now, Shana? Shayla loves Shana, so I'm trying to figure out why Shana would even utter those words to me.


"That's kind that you admire her. I'll pass that message to her."


"Thank you, Michael. I would love if she knew that. Jordie can't wait to visit again."


"Send him my well wishes." I almost feel like June is pushing Jordie on me. Jordie is a kid. He only does what his parents tell him. He's genuine as most children are, but I feel like June is forcing him to be around me. I've never had this happen before. I don't understand it either. Jordie is just thankful that he's able to visit the ranch and the small things I've done for them. Then he's back to having fun. But June? She goes from thanking me every five seconds to telling me about their personal life as if that's supposed to manipulate me into doing something for her and her family...


"I will. He talks about you every day." As I'm sure the other kids that have been to Neverland do as well. Why does she feel the need to tell me this?


"That's kind."


"Yeah..." she happily sighed. "I'm so glad I set this up... Well, don't let me take up too much of your time. I just called to say thank you for everything."


"You're very welcome. Tell everyone I said hello."


"Will do. Bye, Michael," she hung up. I feel bad for lying to June about the lunch proposal with my wife, but I'd much rather June know my wife is a sweet woman, rather than a rude angry black woman. A common stereotype that all too many black women fall under because racism won't allow them to be emotional or express their feelings without it seeming like their aggressive. A stereotype that I absolutely hate. A stereotype that I will not allow another woman to think of my wife just because Shayla said no.

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