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Marcus and Chris were playing a game on the TV

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Marcus and Chris were playing a game on the TV. It was Saturday night and the three of us hung in my family's rec room playing NBA Live. Naturally, Marcus was shit and Chris was beating his ass.

         "Black man can't jump!" Chris hollered as his character dunked on Marcus's.

Marcus was acting salty as he threw his controller down. "Man, whatever."

Chris wasn't letting the win go as he continued to talk shit. "Awe, what's the matter? How's it feel being my bitch? How'd it feel having my nuts hanging over ya head?"

Marcus shoved Chris as they began to laugh.

Chris shut the game off and faced me, appearing serious. "I heard Cree lost her shit yesterday in Ventura's."

I was sitting by myself on the sofa while they were on the floor in front of the TV. I was zoning in and out of their game, my thoughts consumed by something else.

"So we're talking about the C-word, huh?" I said.

Chris looked to Marcus and smirked. "So she's reduced to a letter now?"

It wasn't that deep for me. When I said I didn't want to be best friends, I thought it would loosen up our friendship. Instead, Cree completely cut everyone off. She and Troiann were still best friends, but she wouldn't step foot near one of us. And then there was Omari, he was quick to agree with her decision to eat lunch elsewhere. I guess he'd earned the smug expression on his face the day we'd all watch him lead Cree to a new table and he looked back at us. We hadn't ever been nice to begin with.

Friday during sixth period Cree had lost her shit. She never got mad at Tremaine, let alone did she ever say harsh things to him. It wasn't right, it wasn't right at all.

I filled them in on the episode.

Marcus and Chris shared some secret look before turning and facing me.

"Well, I guess I should get to the reason why I'm here," said Marcus.

"Which is?" I asked.

He looked to Chris, who nodded, and back to me. "I'm ready to tell Troy that I love her—that I'm in love with her."

It was a momentary surprise, one I sprung back from quickly as I was glad he was manning up.

"Wow, congrats," I told him.

Chris slugged Marcus's shoulder. "We all knew he was whipped. I bet he's got a Troiann tat somewhere."

Marcus rolled his eyes. "Please, if anyone's getting a tattoo it's her."

Chris seemed to agree as he gave it some thought. "I can see her getting a titty tat."

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