I can’t remember the last time I felt completely safe. Security seemed more like a luxury to me, reserved for those who were fortunate enough to have picture perfect childhoods. For those who didn’t bear the ugly scars that keep me bound in constant, debilitating fear. I’ve run from that fear my entire life. But when I met him, for once, I couldn’t run anymore.
He scared the hell out of me in a way that excited every fiber of my being. It wasn’t the tattoos or the piercings. It wasn’t the warmth that seemed to radiate from his frame and blanket me whenever he was near. It was just…him. The scary beautiful man that threatened to alter 23 years of routine and rituals, and make me face my crippling fear.
My name is Kami and I am constantly afraid. And the thing that scares me the most is the very thing I want.
***Inspired by true events***
It’s a warm Summer Day in Charlotte, NC and I am making my way over to DIVE to interview Kami. As I walk in, a devastatingly handsome, tattooed Adonis is wiping down the bar while talking to a customer sitting across from him. As I walk towards him he greets me with a bright smile.
“Hey there” as he nods at me, “Is there something I can get you?” The guy he is talking to takes a look at me, from head to toe and I instantly get the creeps about this guy.
“Um…yeah. First can you tell your friend here to stop undressing me with his eyes” I stare him down as the bartender slaps his hand towel at the guy – who retreats back with a devilish smile “and secondly, I am here for an interview with Kami”.
“Oh Hell! Are you interviewing to work here? If so, you’re hired!” the knuckle head sitting next to me again blurts out. I stare at him with a gapping mouth and disbelief as the bartender talks. “You’ll have to excuse my cousin CJ here. He doesn’t have any decorum and doesn’t know how to act in public. I’m sorry, I’m Blaine” *as he extends his hand “And owner of the bar. Sorry but I don’t think we are hiring right now, unless Kami decided to add more people to the schedule.” *scratching his head
“Oh, I’m not here for that kind of interview” I interject “I am actually here for an interview about the biography that is coming out about her.”
“I’m sorry…yes, she told me you would be coming by today. Are you Becca?”
“Well when you are done with Kami, if you would like to interview me I would be more than happy to let you know all you want about Kami and Blaine here from my point of view plus give you an in-depth interview of my own” CJ pipes in. *I flash my wedding ring at him “Sorry dude, but there is only one man in my life that gets the in-depth interviews with me and it sure as hell isn’t you!”
Blaine laughs and motions for me to follow him.
“I’ll be right back CJ, I’m going to take Becca back to the office.”
As we walk to the back, “I’m really sorry about CJ, he’s really a nice guy”
“No worries” I say with a laugh. As Blaine ushers me into the office, his eyes lock on Kami and you can actually feel the energy in the room shift. Wow these two have got that connection that is palpable and thick. *Sigh
“Baby, this is Becca, she is here for the interview” Blaine motions to a seat as I reach out to shake Kami’s hand. Kami grabs my hand as she smiles over at Blaine
“Sorry I lost track of time, I should have been out there to greet you! Thank you for meeting me here.”
“No problem at all – I like to travel and it gets me out of the house and away from my computer, so I was happy to do it.”
Blaine slides behind the desk to give Kami a peck before leaving us to our interview. “When you’re done with the interview, make sure to stick around. It’s open mic night and it’s always a good time.” He flashes us another smile, then leaves closing the door behind him.
Becca: *with a big smile I look to Kami – I may just take him up on his offer. I have been known to belt out a tune or two.
Kami: Oh, please do! He’ll be positively giddy! We always have fun, even though Blaine never performs. I think he just enjoys watching us all make fools of ourselves. Just be glad you missed CJ’s performance from last week. I’ll never be able to listen to “Sexy And I Know It” again. I need bleach for my brain to wipe it from memory.
Becca: YIKES! *I laugh at the grimace on Kami’s face. I know you are a little nervous about this and I really appreciate you taking the time to sit down and talk with me. I really think your story will touch a lot of people. *giving her a big smile Well, let’s get this started so we can get back out front and relax a little. First off tell me about your relationship with Angel and Dom, you say they are your family, why is that?
Kami: Well… what is the definition of family? The people that love you? Support you? Always there, no matter what, no matter how bad things get? The ones that do everything in their power to ensure your happiness and safety? That’s what Dom and Angel are for me. Even with all the mistakes I’ve made, they never judged me. Never turned their backs on me. And I would do the same for them. Yeah, our friendship is a little more unorthodox than some. But so are we. Most people are lucky enough to never have to feel the pain and rejection we have. We aren’t…normal…compared to others. Our relationship shouldn’t be either.
Becca: I totally understand that. You’re so lucky to have found that in them. *winking at Kami What do you think is was about Blaine that helped you to stop running?
Kami: He is relentless! That man is the most stubborn, bullheaded, patient, persistent man I have ever met! He made it known that he wasn’t giving up on me. He truly didn’t want to leave me. But when he did… I realized how much I needed him. Just like Dom and Angel, Blaine had become my family. He became a part of me. The best part.
Becca: I know there have been a lot of changes over the past two months. How are you handling them? Do you still have your jar of stars?
Kami: It’s a slow, sensitive transition. But knowing that I am responsible for something so much bigger than me, something that has given me purpose and joy…it makes it so much easier to accept this new life of mine. And I have Blaine to hold my hand every step of the way. That alone puts me at ease.
Becca: I know that Dom had talked to you about helping out others by counseling younger kids that are going through similar problems. Has that been something that you have considered?
Kami: It has and I have actually been volunteering a bit at the center he works at. I know what it feels like to be alone and unwanted. I don’t want another child going through that. So if there is something I can do to help, I’ll do it. Plus, it is a bit therapeutic.
Becca: Ok no more of the heavy questions *grinning at Kami So my husband is Filipino and we eat a lot of Lumpia in our house. Have you started to teach Blaine how to cook some of your favorites? Or are y’all still eating a lot of breakfast food around the house?
Kami: *laughs I do most of the cooking, but he likes to help! He may look damn near perfect on the outside but a cook he is not. But I have to give it to him- he does try. On the nights he decides to flex his puny culinary muscles, yes, we eat breakfast food. Or grilled cheese. That’s about the extent of his skills.
Becca: *laughing Well bless his heart, he tries huh? What are some of your favorite things to do with Blaine? Have you been able to conquered anymore of your fears?
Kami: Well, we have made it back to the lake and it does bring back fond memories. And when he’s with me…it’s easier to block out the anxiety and insecurity. I mean, they’re still there, but when he’s around…there’s just no room for anything else. He’s all I see.
Becca: So do you feel like performing again tonight? *letting out a laugh from the expression on Kami’s face
Kami: Um, I wasn’t planning on it. I think I’ll sit this one out. *laughs
Becca: Ok so no performing for you, but I think I just might give it a try. Who would pass up the opportunity to perform with the infamous Angel Cassidy? Not me! Seriously though, thank you Kami for taking the time to talk to me. I really wish you the best.
Thank you so much, Becca. It really was a pleasure. Stick around… tequila shots on the house.
WOW! Where to even begin with this book? Now to begin with, this book is a heavy book. It’s not all sunshine and roses (which I tend to read 75% of the time) but there was something about this book that I just could not put it down.
Kami is unloveable, unworthy and crazy (in her own words). She is running. Running from fear, running from friendships, running from life and most importantly running from love. Then something happened. She actually felt something for the first time in her life and she didn’t know how to handle it. Even with the support of her best friends Angel and Dom, she was on a spiral spin to despair and loneliness. Blaine, he wanted to change all of that. The electricity and the connection he had with Kami was palpable. He had to be with her, no matter the cost. But Blaine had his own demons to work on, ones that would end up flaming the fires of disbelief for Kami. Was Blaine with her for the right reason or was he trying to use her to make up for the failures of his past.
I was fixated with Kami and her problems. I wanted to wrap my arms around her and tell her she would be ok. I so wanted to be in her inner circle of friends and help her through the worst parts of her life. I understood her and her demons but wanted to shake her to wake her up. Blaine was…sigh…so desirable. His love unwavering for Kami. Persistent, understanding, gentle and unyielding in his devotion and love for Kami. But how long can one be pushed? Is there anyway to get over the pains of our past.
Kami’s friend Angel and Dom plus Blaine’s cousin CJ give comic relief at times to this heavy story. And all though it takes on subjects that are painful and hard to talk about Syreeta takes you on a journey of self discovery, unwavering love and friendship and shows you that love can conquer all when you open yourself up to it.
Most known for her starring role in a popular sitcom as a child, S.L. Jennings went on to earn her law degree from Harvard at the young age of 16. While studying for the bar exam and recording her debut hit album, she also won the Nobel Prize for her ground breaking invention of calorie-free wine. When she isn’t conquering the seas in her yacht or flying her Gulfstream, she likes to spin elaborate webs of lies and has even documented a few of these said falsehoods.
Some of S.L.’s devious lies:
FEAR OF FALLING- July 18th, 2013
THE DARK LIGHT SERIES
~ Dark Light
~ The Dark Prince
~ Nikolai (Fall 2013)
~ Light Shadows (End of 2013/ Early 2014)
Fear Of Falling Blog Tour Page http://thesubclubbooks.com/?page_id=14371
The Dark Light Series FB Page http://thesubclubbooks.com/www.facebook.com/darklightseries