Love Knows No Colorbybwwm4me©
It all started innocently enough, with a random comment on my profile on my page on a social media site.
My name is Jefferson Waite, though most people know me by my nickname Jason. I am mostly Scottish American, with a touch of Seneca that is most evident in my high cheekbones. I stand about 5-10, have a slim build weighing about 140. I have expressive eyes that change colors with my mood. Mostly they are blue or gray, occasionally green. I wear my long brown hair pulled back in a tail, partly in homage to my heritage.
I have an avid interest in the outdoors, especially mountains, and I had customized my profile by using one of my photographs as a background. Under the "about me" section I had included a rather long description on my philosophy on life. It all boiled down to, turn off the TV and get out and have your own adventures. Life is too short for it to be boring.
I get comments a lot on my page. Most of them, the ones that are not spambots anyway, tell me how much they liked either the background photo or the about me section. Usually, if they have mentioned something specifically on my profile I will respond with a "thank you, I'm glad you liked it" message, after checking out their profile to get a feel for who they are.
This message was from a Mz Shavonda. She told me how much she liked the background photo and wanted to know where it was taken. She also asked how I could personalize my page like that. I was about to send her the standard "thank you" message, but when I pulled up her profile, I was impressed. Her photos showed a rather nice looking ebony lady with straight hair, with an obvious flair for the artistic and an enjoyment of the outdoors. There were photos of her riding bicycle on a trail in the woods, art she'd evidently produced (it was very good if you ask me) and a whole host of personal details found intriguing.
So, I messaged her back, commenting that her profile was not bad either, and that we apparently had some common interests. I also offered to send her detailed instructions on how I added my background photo, which was of Nickajack Lake in Tennessee, if she'd send me her email address.
A few minutes later, I got a message on my messenger from her. So we chatted for a while, while I directed her step-by-step through updating her profile. When we were done, she invited me to take a look at the updated profile. That's when I noticed she lived not far from me. It was getting late by that time, and my job has a predawn start time so I bid her goodnight.
I was intrigued enough by her profile that I messaged her a couple days later, asking her if she was getting any comments on the new profile (she was) and soon we were chatting about other things. I found her easy to chat with, and we had a lot in common. Soon, we were chatting almost every night. We discussed music and I found her taste to be as eclectic as mine. We started recommending music for the other to listen to, and giving each other feedback on those artists.
We also discussed our shared love of reading. I told her of my favorites including Kim Stanley Robinson's Mars trilogy. She told me of her favorites as well, and I soon found myself reading Toni Morrison.
But what floored me was one evening when she asked out of the blue what I thought of Huckleberry Finn. My take on the book was that once you got past the racial epithets, the story itself was an inspiring tale of racial harmony, in that Finn was helping the runaway slave Jim to freedom. They obviously loved and respected one another, in an era where slaves were considered inferior Finn treated Jim as equal.
"Finally," she wrote back, "somebody else GETS that."
I told her that my people, I am part Seneca, were considered inferior as well, and that my Scottish ancestors were also second class citizens in merry olde England.
A couple of months in, the letter came in the mail. My ex-wife was begging me to come back to her. I was somewhat confused because of what had transpired during the divorce. Shavonda sensed my unease when I mentioned it to her, and messaged back "I am here if you want to talk about it." She also gave me her phone number. Feeling somewhat down and confused I called her to get her input on my situation.
She seemed happy I called, and after some small talk, I laid out the background situation and my dilemma. Rose and I had married young, right after I had moved to Pittsburgh from the mountains where I was raised. I had worked as a printer while she went to school for a Degree in Computer Science. After 4 years and a bachelor's degree, she went to work while I went to school for Civil Engineering. After another 2 years, I had to quit school when she became pregnant. Needing a decent paying job, I got my CDL, and began working as an over the road trucker. It was a lonely job, but it kept us afloat while she stayed home with our daughter, Brittany. The next year, she was pregnant again with our son Ethan. So much for getting off the road anytime soon.
Eight months later, a couple of weeks before Ethan's birth, Rose told me not to bother coming home, that she'd moved back in with her mother, and that if I was going to be away from home all the time to just stay away. Welfare was a better provider for her.
I had been devastated. This was the woman I had vowed to spend the rest of my life with. I found a job driving regional runs, home every night, and attempted to get her to come back to me. Instead, I got "I'll think about it." Eventually, the divorce papers arrived. She had filed an indigent divorce, in which she gave up all rights to alimony or division of property in exchange for a divorce decree. The state paid all costs. Except for child support for two children I was a free man. Saving my money, I was able to buy a modest house in a quiet neighborhood, and I slowly got my life back together. Now, after 3 years, I was finally in a good place in my life.
Shavonda asked, "Jason do you love her?"
"Not really, not anymore. More importantly, I don't trust her," I replied.
"Why do you think she wants you back? Why now?" she asked.
I told her that I thought maybe Rose realized she had left with nothing, and now that she was working intended to get me to marry her again so that this time she could get the house and alimony in another divorce settlement.
"Do you want to go back with Rose?" Shavonda asked in that sweet voice of hers. I loved the way she stressed certain words and syllables in a way different than me.
"I don't trust her, the only reason I'd take her back would be for the kids."
"That's admirable, Jason, but you do see them, now don't you?" Shavonda asked. "I mean you do have a strong fatherly relationship with them, right?"
"Yes. Shavonda," I replied, loving the way her name sounded when I said it. "They mean the world to me. At 4 and 3 they don't understand what's going on, and I don't want them hurt."
"Well, don't you think that your current situation, and eventually finding a woman who will love and cherish them as her own, is better than going back to a failed marriage to a woman you don't love or trust?"
I had to admit she had a point. Feeling a lot better, I thanked her for her insight. "I'm just glad I could help a good friend. Let me know what you decide. Now get some sleep, you have to work in the morning," she said. "Remember I am here for you anytime you want to talk. You are a sweet man, and you have such a sweet accent and sexy voice."
"Goodnight and thank you, Shavonda. I really do feel better. And you have a sweet voice as well."
After that night, something had fundamentally changed in our friendship. With each other's phone numbers, our messaging all but stopped in favor of phone calls. We would talk almost every day, with her calling me on the days I didn't call her first. Our conversations became more personal. We were discussing things like our frustration with the dating scene. I had had a few hookups since my divorce, but they were little more than one night stands. I had yet to meet anybody I was interested in for more than a quick lay, and had no interest in them afterwards. It was somewhat painful trying to extricate myself from somebody's bed afterward, but it would have been worse to lay there feeling bored and empty, leading them on.
Shavonda was different. Even though we had never met in person, I could relate to her in a way I couldn't with anybody else, and she was slowly filling that empty space in my life. This was something more than friendship developing. But I was sure I was not her type.
About a month after, the elephant in the room finally came up when Shavonda asked straight out, "Jason, do you like black women?"
I told her of my first crush in high school, a girl named Tamika Pritchard. Tamika was one of the few black students in my school, and the only one in my class. I remember wondering if there was something wrong with me. In our rural part of West Virginia, interracial relationships were frowned upon. You'd see them in some of the larger towns, a white woman with a mixed child, or with a black man. These women were ostracized, called nigger lover or whore, or worse. I always felt bad for them, that they couldn't be with who they loved without being harassed. I was not taught to hate other people, and was never a part of that harassment. But I witnessed it firsthand several times. But the one thing I never saw, until I moved to the city, was a black woman with a white man. And so, I never pursued my crush on Tamika, content to gaze at her from afar.
"So why have you never asked a black woman out if you like them?" she asked. These questions were starting to get uncomfortable. But Shavonda had a way of asking things that forced you to confront your fears, and work out your solution for yourself. She got you thinking, which was one of the things I loved and respected about her.
The truth is, I'd never actually considered an interracial relationship as a possibility. I just didn't think anybody would be interested in me.
"I don't think they'd be interested in a white boy like me," I replied.
She answered, "You know, Jefferson, it would be a shame if you lost your queen because you didn't think she was interested in having you as her king." She'd never called me by my given name before, and it surprised me because I'd forgotten that I had told her about it.
"Are you trying to tell me something, Shavonda?"
Really? Do I have a chance? Does she want me as more than just a friend? Throwing caution to the wind, I asked her, "Would you like to go out with me on Friday after work? Dinner at least?"
"I thought you'd never ask," she replied in that sexy voice. "What took you so long?"
We made plans to meet at a local diner famous for great home style food, we'd meet at 7pm.
Friday took forever to come. I found myself thinking about our impending date while on the road, and enjoyed wonderfully personal conversations with Shavonda during the evenings. After work on Friday, I found myself singing, Singing! in the shower as I got ready for our date. I don't sing. I can't sing! But there I was lathered up in Axe, scaring the neighborhood cats. I dressed in a pair of khakis, slip on dress shoes, and a white button down shirt. I liberally sprayed myself with Dark Temptation, hoping that I wouldn't sweat too much in my nervousness, and laughing at the irony of wearing Dark Temptation to meet an ebony lady.
As an afterthought, I took the SD card out of my camera, and on the way to the diner stopped at Target and had about 2 dozen of my favorite photos printed out as 8x10s. I placed them in a manila envelope that I took with me into the diner.
I found a booth near the window and sat down nervously to wait. I ordered a sweet tea to try and calm my nerves but it didn't help.
A few minutes later she walked in, a stunning dark-skinned woman with her hair in an afro, and gold hoop earrings. She was wearing a red sleeveless dress with a v cut showing some nice cleavage. I guessed her to be about 140 lbs. with nice curves, and about a c cup breast. The dress was thigh length over a pair of wide hips, revealing shapely legs. She wore a matching set of open heels with the red straps contrasting nicely with her dark skin. No, that couldn't be her, could it? She has straight hair! I watched as she looked around the small diner. Her eyes lit on me, and she strolled over with a big smile on her face.
"Jason?" she inquired as she slid into the booth across from me. "I am so glad to finally meet you! You weren't kidding when you said you were part Indian. All you need is a headband and a feather!"
Tongue tied for a minute, I could only nod as I looked into the most beautiful doe like eyes I'd ever seen. They were a rich brown that contrasted nicely with the whites. She had a cute wide nose and full lips made up in purple lipstick. Other than penciled in eyebrows, that was the only makeup she wore. Her scent was captivating, a scent that I'd always associated with black women's hair. To this day I have no idea what it is, though I'd always loved that smell. She also wore a nice perfume that mingled wonderfully with the scent of her hair.
"Shavonda? You are gorgeous!" I gushed, "But I almost didn't recognize you. You look so different in person!"
"Oh, the hair," she laughed. "I thought I'd wear it natural. You said you were looking for something real. This is as real as it gets," she said. "That doesn't bother you, does it? If it does I can grab a wig out of the car."
"No, please. I love it. You look so much better in person than you do in your photos. Not that I don't like your photos. Would I be out of line if I called you a goddess?"
"Boy you better stop it or I won't be able to eat!"
We ordered and ate our meal. I could see she had a sparkle in her eyes, and a flirtatious personality. We shared a nice conversation, peppered with sexual innuendoes. She loved doing and saying things to see how I'd react. My heart was beating a mile a minute, and I watched her every move totally fascinated. She must have known she had me, because she looked me in the eyes and said, "Is there a problem?"
"No," I stammered, turning red in the face.
"Good, because I would hate not to look into those beautiful blue eyes. You have such beautiful eyes; they make me melt."
I think at this point I knew where the night was heading, but I was still a bit unsure of myself. What was OK to say, and what was out of bounds? I didn't want to say something to scare her away and lose the friendship. She'd quickly become one of the most important people in my life, and that empty space Rose left inside me was being partially filled. I think at some point I realized I was falling or had fallen for this woman. Hard.
I paid the bill, left the waitress a nice tip, and we decided to go for a walk in the park. It was still light out, the park was nearby, and we found a nice bench to sit on overlooking the river. she sat right next to me, her leg right up against mine and our shoulders touching, I was in heaven.
"Jason, what's in that envelope?" she asked. Smiling, I pulled out the photos to show her. They were of various subjects, all outdoors.
"I brought these to show you, Shavonda. I know you've looked at what I have posted online, but they look so much better in your hand than on the screen."
"My close friends call me Von," she said, snuggling closer. I put my arm around her shoulder as she took the photos out of the envelope and looked at them. She gasped, "Jason, these are beautiful! Have you ever tried to sell them? I think we can sell these!"
Shavonda owned a shop, Shavonda's Creations, that specialized in various artistic pieces, figurines, photographs, paintings, handmade jewelry, and other assorted knickknacks. Most of them were produced by local artists. The shop had done well enough that now, several years later, she had two employees and plans to open a second location once she found an appropriate spot. It was something we had discussed in passing during one of our many phone conversations.
She proceeded to ask me about each of the photos, not just where they were taken, but the back story behind each of them. When you live the life off the beaten path like I have every photo has a story that most people never hear, because they never bother to ask.
So, I gave her the back story on each of them.
"That one of the photographer standing on the rocks. I never got her name. I was up on Dolly Sods taking photos of the view when she just showed up. I never got her name, though I talked to her for quite a while. This next one, looking down through that other mountain at the town off in the distance, that it what she was shooting. That mountain gorge through the ridge is 2000 feet deep. We are looking down on it from 1000 feet higher in elevation. The town in the distance is Petersburg, and it's about 3000 feet lower and about 15 miles away. Luckily I had a clear day with no haze. You can't tell from the photo, but I think I was actually able to see the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia that day."
"We could definitely sell these, in a nice frame. Especially with the back story on each one printed on the back." She looked at the next one, of a train entering a tunnel.
"That one is Ray Tunnel, about 2 miles from my parent's house. That was where I fell in love with trains. This one was a heavy iron ore train, it's climbing a rather steep mountain. I don't normally take photos of them going into the sun, but in this because of the angle looking into the sun, you can see all the sand, smoke and dust of hard working diesels pushed to their limits. It was all this train could do to make 10 mph up that mountain."
"I love trains!" she exclaimed, adding flirtatiously, "Especially trains entering tunnels." She snuggled a little closer.
I was trying not to look down her dress but she'd moved herself into a position where I had an excellent view. Was that a nipple I saw poking through her dress?
"You have to take me to these places. I'd love to see them in person."
"You can't really get the full experience from a photograph. I would love to show you my world," I replied.
We watched the sun set over the hills, then I asked her if she'd like some ice cream. It was a warm evening in mid-May, and the ice cream stand had just opened for the season.
"I'd love to, "she purred.
We ended up both being flirtatious in our choices. When she ordered chocolate vanilla swirl, I couldn't resist ordering chocolate myself.
"Is that in honor of me?" she asked.
"Maybe," I replied in a deep seductive voice. We both laughed as we found ourselves a booth inside the shop.
I watched enraptured as she swirled her tongue around the ice cream, then took it between her full lips and slowly pulled it out, sucking at the ice cream. I was glad we were in a booth because she was really turning me on by this time. My dick was stirring in my pants, and I am not small. If I had to get up it was going to be embarrassing because there was no way I could hide it.
Finishing her cone, she got up and said, "I need to freshen up a little. I'll be right back."
Sitting there finishing my rapidly melting cone, I watched her sway off to the ladies' room. I had never been an ass man, the white ladies I'd previously been with were a bit flat in that department regardless of their weight. But watching her swing those wide hips and heart shaped booty I vowed that would have to change. I wondered what my hands would feel like on her bare bottom. Down, boy, down!
After what seemed like an eternity, she returned, freshly applied purple on her full lips. She slid into the booth across from me and looked me in the eye. Her nipples were definitely poking through the thin fabric of her dress; it was unmistakable now. Maybe I could get her interested in a movie, the theater was only a couple of blocks away.