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The Aftermath

    Description:

    The worse seems to be behind Brock Lane and his family as he tries to get his life back to normal. All of the key people in the heist were now in jail or dead, and Brock decides to be open with his team by scheduling a press conference with the media in order to tell the world what really happened. He also embarks on a new relationship with a young woman name Naomi Hill from college, and they share the news of their engagement with the family. Everyone in the family supports them except Brock’s sister Nikki, and this creates tension between everyone. The Aftermath is the third book of the series.

Amazon eBook Price: $3.99













    Excerpt:

    I wasn’t ready for my night to end with Naomi, so I had taken my time getting back to the house after I received Nicole’s angry text. We talked for an additional thirty minutes about us getting married and about Jasmine’s graduation party, and I then reluctantly left her apartment after we seemingly kissed for an eternity. Nicole was upset about not being informed of Dad’s kidnapping, and I felt that she had a legitimate beef. However, I was in no mood to argue with her. Nicole, on the other hand, was always ready for combat, and arguing to her was merely a way to keep her oratory skills sharp for court.

    I had stopped off at a Walgreens in the area to get a couple of toiletries I needed before heading home. The store was practically empty when I stepped inside because it was close to closing time. I knew exactly what I needed and was in line in a few minutes.

    “How are you doing tonight?” the female cashier asked.

    “I’m alright,” I answered. “And you?”

    “Great now that it’s almost time to go home.”

    “Long day?”

    “Hell yeah…I swear it seemed like every other customer in here today had a nasty attitude. It’s not my fault we’re out of stock on what they want.”

    “I was able to find everything that I needed…I didn’t have any problems.”

    “That’s great because I can’t take much more tonight,” she finished ringing up my stuff.

    “Well, keep your head up because tomorrow is a new day.”

    “Thank you…I’ll try to remember that the next time a customer goes off on me.”

    She looked at me closely after she handed me my bag and receipt and asked, “Are you Brock Lane?”

    “Yes, I am.”

    “Do you prefer the name Wolves or Trojans?”

    I smiled and answered, “I haven’t given it much thought because we had our first winning season in ten years.”

    “Well, I like the new name, and I especially like the new uniforms.”

    “Thank you…and try not to let these unruly customers get under your skin next time.”

    “Thanks.”

    “Take care, Brittany.”

    “You too, Brock.”

    She unlocked the door and let me out the store, and I continued driving westbound on 159th Street to the I-57 expressway that was several miles away. I still managed to arrive at the house in just under an hour despite driving the speed limit, and I braced myself for the bomb to explode before entering the house. I looked at the clock in the car that read twenty minutes to twelve before I turned off the engine and went inside.

    Nicole and Junior were laughing and having a good time while conversing on the living room sofa when I stepped in. I observed Nicole carefully to see if her energy had changed when they were alerted to my presence, but it didn’t.

    “Hey, Brock,” Nicole said, giving me a hug and kiss on the cheek.

    “Hey, sis,” I said. “Sorry I didn’t tell you about Dad.”

    “You got him home safely, so I’m not going to go in on you this time,” Nicole said.

    “What’s up, bro?” I asked, giving Junior some dap.

    “Everything is everything,” Junior answered.

    “Where’s Jaz and Malik?” I asked.

    “They’re still out on a date,” Nicole answered.

    “Yeah?” I asked. “That’s great.”

    “How did your date go with Naomi?” Junior asked.

    “We had a great time,” I answered.

    “Why are you back so soon?” Junior asked.

    “She has a final exam tomorrow,” I answered. “I wanted to give her some time to study.”

    “Where did you meet this girl, Brock?” Nicole asked.

    “We went to Union together, and I saw her again the other night at Chili’s,” I answered.

    “I always thought you and Autumn would get back together,” Nicole said.

    “Why would you think that?” I asked.

    “I don’t know,” Nicole answered, “I always liked her for you, I guess.”

    “She cheated on me, Nikki,” I said. “I’d be a damn fool to take her back.”

    “Everybody makes mistakes,” Nicole said.

    “Yes, they do, but I always strive to never make the same mistake twice,” I said.

    “Anybody want something to drink?” Junior asked, changing the subject.

    “Nah, I’m good,” I answered.

    “I’ll take a water,” Nicole said.

    Junior got up and went to the kitchen to grab two bottles of water, and Malik and Jasmine entered the house. They were laughing and being playful with each other and didn’t notice the three of us staring at them.

    “Well hello, you two,” Nicole greeted them. “You all had a good time, huh?”

    “We had a great time, didn’t we?” Jasmine asked Malik.

    “Yes, we did,” Malik answered.

    “Where did you all go?” I asked.

    “Malik took me to this seafood restaurant in Orland Park called Bonefish Grill,” Jasmine answered.

    Junior handed Nicole her water and asked, “How’s the food there?”

    “It was good,” Malik answered. “We’re definitely going back the next time I’m in town.”

    “You’re not going to stay for a little while longer?” Jasmine asked. “I don’t want you to go just yet.”

    “I’m not going anywhere, pretty lady,” Malik said. “I’m going to hang around until this weekend coming up at the very least and play it by ear after that. I cancelled my Saturday evening flight to New York this afternoon.”

    “Good,” Jasmine said. “I still have so much that I want to do with you while you’re still in town.”

    “You two will have plenty of time for all that, but we need to discuss some very important business before we turn in tonight,” I said. “Two of Dad’s kidnappers were caught today, but one of them is still at large.”

    “Dad was kidnapped?” Jasmine asked in shock.

    “I’m sorry that I didn’t bring you and Nikki up to speed until now, Jaz,” I said, “but I didn’t want to ruin Mother’s Day for you guys.”

    “Yeah, but that’s still no excuse, Brock,” Nicole said. “What if they killed him, huh?”

    “You’re right, Nikki, and I’m sorry,” I said.

    “Who did this?” Jasmine asked.

    “Will was the mastermind behind everything, but he had help from two of his so-called friends,” I answered.

    “Why are you still friends with him, Brock?” Jasmine asked.

    “I asked him that same question,” Junior chimed in.

    “I don’t know, Jaz, but what’s done is done,” I answered. “Trust me…I’ve beaten myself up enough about it.”

    “You know for a fact that Will set you up?” Malik asked.

    “Yeah, he’s the one who told the kidnappers when I was coming to town and where I’d be,” I answered.

    “So, what’s our next move?” Malik asked.

    “The guy who’s still at large is Terrence Chandler, and he’s very dangerous,” I answered. “The police are looking for him as we speak.”

    “What if he tries to find us?” Jasmine asked.

    “I hope he’s not that stupid,” Nicole said.

    “None of us really know what he’s capable of,” I said. “The best thing for us to do is lay low for a few days until the police catch him.”

    “You’re probably right, Brock,” Malik said.

    “If I were him, I’d be trying to skip town as soon as possible,” Junior said. “I doubt if he’d try to rob us again with his crew being locked up.”

    “You would know,” Nicole said.

    “Yes, I would, Nikki,” Junior frowned at her.

    “How long was your bid anyway?” Nicole asked.

    “My original bid was for five years, but I only have to do three because of good behavior,” Junior answered. “They had reduced my prison time to a year because I had already served eighteen months in the County.”

    “When do you get that LoJack off of your ankle?” Malik asked.

    “It comes off at the end of this month, and I can’t wait,” Junior answered. “I will be finished with my six months of house arrest by then.”

    “Where’s Dad?” Jasmine abruptly asked.

    “He left out about an hour ago,” Junior answered.

    “At this time of the night?” I asked.

    “Yep, and he didn’t say where he was going either,” Nicole answered.

    “Interesting,” I said.

    “Well, I’m gonna call it the night,” Malik said. “I’ll see you guys in the morning.”

    “Me, too,” Jasmine said. “Goodnight everyone.”

    “Goodnight, you all,” I said.

    “I’m gonna turn in, too,” Junior said. “Later.”

    “Alright, see you in the morning,” I said.

    Nicole motioned toward the staircase to go upstairs, and I said, “I need to talk to you for a minute before you go to bed.”

    “Sure, what is it?”

    “What’s up with the surprise party for Jaz on Friday?” I lowered my voice.

    “I don’t know,” she whispered back. “Based on the present circumstances, I don’t know.”

    “It’s only Monday, so let’s wait and see what happens in the next few days.”

    “Okay.”

    “Are we going to have it here or somewhere else if we decide to move forward?”

    “I think we should have it here…it’s too late to rent a place out. I would’ve needed to reserve a place at least a couple of weeks in advance.”

    “Yeah, you’re right.”

    Nicole sighed and asked, “So, you really like this Naomi, huh?”

    “Yes, I do. Why?”

    She scratched her head and answered, “I still talk to Autumn, and I sort of invited her to Jaz’s party.”

    “Come on, Nikki, you’re supposed to be loyal to me, not her. I can’t believe that you still talk to her.”

    “She’s my friend, Brock…”

    “You know, for somebody who’s supposed to be so damn smart, you say and do some things that are questionable at best, Nikki…”

    “What are you trying to say?”

    “Autumn is using you to keep tabs on me, and she really doesn’t give a damn about you.”

    “Wow, that’s low, Brock.”

    “It’s the truth, Nikki. I probably know her better than she knows herself, and trust me, Autumn is nothing but a user and an opportunist. Please do me a favor and take her name off of the guest list.”

    “I’m not going to do that. If you don’t want her here, you’re going to have to tell her yourself.”

    “Okay, let me paint a picture for you…how would you feel if I still kept in touch with Steph and invited him to a family function?”

    “That’s not the same thing…”

    “The hell it isn’t. I know that you’d feel some type of way about it, and that’s why I wouldn’t do that to you. Steph and I were great friends, and I almost bought a condo in DC because of it, Nikki. I cut off our friendship after you all’s nasty breakup and staying friends with him would’ve only complicated things.”

    “I didn’t ask you to do that.”

    “Really, Nikki? Okay, I’ll leave it alone.”

    She sighed and said, “I get what you’re saying, Brock, and I’ll call her tomorrow and tell her that the party’s off.”

    “Thank you, Nikki, I appreciate that.”

    “No problem. Goodnight.”

    “See you in the morning.”

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