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  • Writer's pictureLynnette René Doby

The Unknowing Part Two: The Voice

Updated: Dec 29, 2023

Author's Note: This installment picks up with Gigi standing face-to-face with a mysterious character who she only knows as, "The Voice."

-The Voice-

I understood why my girl was friends with this strange creature standing in front of me. It was her eyes. They had this child-like quality to them. There was something there that many adults lose as they get older: innocence. It was as if she had never cursed, took a drink, or skipped class in high school.

Her eyes were bright and filled with wonder. As she stood in front of me staring, I could tell she was as mystified by my presence as I was of hers. Then it dawned on me why. We'd never truly met. It's strange the alternate reality that exists around mutual friendships. Here we were, two strangers who'd undoubtedly heard about each other from our mutual connection, Ricki, yet we had never met. Then my thoughts began to swirl. How much did GiGi know about me? What had Ricki told her? I guess I would soon find out.

Gigi's face looked as if she wanted to say something but couldn't. I understood. I sighed as I shifted uneasily. It's not easy being a black man that was above average height. Standing at six foot four, I found myself always trying to blend in. I tried to make it my business to take up as little space as I could, in an attempt to not to scare or make anyone uncomfortable. But that was the thing. GiGi was not scared by my presence, or intimidated. She was curious.

Black man standing in the shadows.

After what seemed like a good forty-five minutes, she spoke, "Wow."

It took everything in me not to laugh at her goofiness. It was a cool goofy, like a little sister kind of cool.

I didn't know what to say to that, so I pretended it didn't happen. "Sorry, I'm late, you must be GiGi."

She opened her mouth to answer, but nothing came out. I kept going.

"I'm Ricki's boyfriend, Stefan."

She then cocked her head as if she was confused. Then I understood. I'd heard a lot about her, but evidently she had heard little or nothing about me. I brushed off feelings of insecurity and focused my energy at the moment at hand. Sensing my uneasiness about the issue at hand, she spoke. It was quick and rushed, as if she was out of breath from running.

"Oh, she told me she was seeing someone, but just didn't tell me your name."

I'm not sure if she thought that saying that would make me feel better. It didn't. We weren't here to discuss me and Rickey's occasional relationship issues. I mean, everyone in a relationship has their share of issues from time-to-time don't they?

Ok, let me get back to GiGi. Her voice was soft but betrayed the innocence in her eyes. She wasn't some young, naïve, childlike character as I had initially thought. There was experience in her voice. She was grown.

"I'm GiGi," she continued.

"I know. She, uhm RickiRicki, talked about you all the time. She loved you."

"Loved? Is there a reason you used the past tense?"

Damn. The whole aim of this was to not make me look guilty, and I wasn't doing a good job. I mean, I wasn't... guilty.

"Well, I mean she is not here right now, so.... look, I messed up," I confessed. "I make questionable word choices when I'm nervous."

She came right back with the typical response. "Why would you be nervous?"

I groaned, deep inside my chest. This was going from bad to worse.

"Imagine being in a romantic relationship with someone who is now missing, and being a black male? It's not the best recipe for innocence."

She looked into my eyes and sensed my sincerity."Good point," she said as she inhaled deeply."So, why am I here, Stefan?"

I sighed and exhaled my emotions into the cold winter air. I honestly didn't know where to start. Again, sensing my awkwardness, GiGi jumped in and moved the conversation forward.

"Tell me what you know, and why you think that my best friend is in danger or worse, and why she's been missing for nearly a week and you are just telling me."

I got an uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach.

"What do you mean, I'm just telling you? I got a call from a woman who I assumed was you, telling me to meet you here at the park early as hell, so I can find out what happened to Rickey."

She shifted uneasily, as I had not even five minutes ago.

"Stefan," she started steadily, "If what you're saying is true, I have a very bad feeling about this."

I didn't tell her, but I'd have a bad feeling for weeks now. I didn't know what was going on and what was going down, but I knew we were in for a ride.

Thanks so much for reading.

Tune in next week for part three.

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