Chapter 1: Tia
Love can be a wonderful thing. It can also be dangerous. I knew the pain it would cause, that’s why I stayed away from it for so long. Just the thought of having that wonderful feeling and then having it ripped away can be disturbing and also sad.
I knew what I was getting into when I put myself out there to the person I really loved. The person I wanted to be with. But instead of him returning my love, he trampled over it, making me re-evaluate the meaning of it and never wanting to relive it again.
I had everything under control, or so I thought. But instead of putting the truth out there, it backfired on me — big time.
Now, as I stand outside the front of Ashton Gardens, an event venue in Houston, I have to figure out my next move. Should I continue to shield myself from the notion of love, or go for it full force? Over the past four weeks that I have spent with him, I realized that I didn't want the feelings I had to go away.
Now, I know that I have a chance at love. I just hope he feels the same way.
Four weeks ago…..
“Thanks so much for coming,” Camille Anderson said as she gave me a hug.
I returned the hug and gave my best friend a huge smile. She looked extremely happy, pushing her long, dark brown hair off her shoulders. She smoothed down her black lace dress, giving a happy expression through her pretty chocolate eyes.
Throughout the time we’d known each other, Eric and I never thought about getting together (mainly because of the fact that he was with Camille). We did become friends, which later became more after the bachelor/ bachelorette party for Trevor and his ex-fiancée, Chelsea Parker.
Since I got Camille’s blessing to date Eric, the two of us have been inseparable. We haven’t done anything without the other in the six months we’ve been together. Since Eric is a consultant for a major publishing company, one of the requirements is traveling, so he has taken me along on his occasional weekend trips.
Being with Eric is truly wonderful. He’s the first real relationship I’ve had in a long time, so I really want things to work out between us. Not only is he a true gentleman, he cares about my thoughts and feelings. I couldn’t have asked for anything more. He is perfect.
I stared at him, his smooth coffee brown skin, light brown eyes shining brightly at me; the way he filled out his black suit gave me thoughts of ripping it off of him. As much as the thought was creeping into my head, I had to refocus my mind since there was a surprise coming for Camille.
She smiled at us as Trevor came over, all smiles.
“Is it okay to steal my beautiful girlfriend for a second?” he asked and kissed the side of her neck.
My smile grew even wider at the two. The moment had finally come, and I was too eager to witness it. Trevor informed me of the big surprise earlier that week. While I was glad my friend told me the news, it was hard to keep the secret from my girl.
“Of course,” I said as I gave Trevor a wink.
He gave me a look that read stop it as he took Camille’s hand. Before she could respond to Trevor’s look at me, he led her towards the front, near the stage.
“What was that?” Eric asked as he looked at me.
“You’ll see in a second,” I said.
I turned to him, putting my arms around him.
“Did you ever think you would be at an event for your ex-girlfriend?”
Eric smiled and put his lips towards my neck, giving me a slight nuzzle as he breathed in my perfume.
“No. In fact, it doesn’t even bother me.”
“Why is that?” I whispered.
“Because I’m here with the most gorgeous girl in the room,” he whispered back.
He leaned his lips towards mine, giving me a kiss so powerful that I wanted to quickly end this night and go back to my place. This man definitely takes me away with his kisses, making me instantly wet.
As our kiss deepened, there was a loud feedback from the microphone as Trevor stood near the stage looking at Camille. He seemed nervous, which automatically made my eyes fill with tears. This was a long time coming, and I was so proud to be a part of it.
“Seventeen years ago, we met outside of our parents’ homes,” Trevor began. “I was just moving into the area, while you were standing outside, wondering about the new family moving next door. I remember that day as if it were yesterday. You were wearing a dark green dress that was kind of heinous, but you made it look beautiful. You had your hair in a ponytail and an expression on your face that was shy but intrigued. As soon as you noticed I was wearing a Hakeem Olajuwon jersey, you asked if I was a Rockets fan. I said, 'Of course.' You gave the biggest smile, and I remember thinking it could light up the entire city. That, and the fact that we talked about video games, let me know we would be instant friends.”
Camille smiled. “Of course, even though you pointed out several times how much I suck at Halo.”
“That’s because you do, baby, but I still love you.”
Several partygoers smiled at the two, which made me smile even more.
“Throughout our friendship, I knew something was there, but I was too stupid to tell you. Now that we’re together, I want us to stay that way, not only as friends, but as husband and wife.”
He slowly pulled out a burgundy ring box from his suit pocket and opened it. He got down on one knee, giving Camille a serious look.
“Camille Shanice Anderson, will you marry me?”
I looked at them, remembering the day Trevor asked me to go with him to pick out an engagement ring for Camille. I didn’t think he would want me to help pick out something so intimate, but he told me that she and I are family, so he wanted me to be a part of this special moment.
I glanced over at my second parents, Keith and Claire Anderson and saw Camille’s mother in tears. Yes, I considered her parents my own since I was practically at their house every day through middle and high school. My parents passed away three years apart from each other while I was attending college, so the Andersons took me in as their own, which I will always appreciate.
“It’s about damn time,” Keith said with a smile.
The crowd started to laugh as Trevor looked over at him and shook his head.
Camille looked at her parents and then at Trevor with tears in her eyes. She looked at the ring and at Trevor again, unable to speak.
“So, what’s your answer, baby?”
“Of course, Tre. Yes!”
Trevor pulled Camille into his arms and lifted her off the ground. As the crowd began to clap and cheer for the couple, I sucked in a deep breath as the tears began to flow down my cheeks.
Eric looked at me as he gently wiped my tears.
I nodded my head.
“I’m fine. I’m just so happy for them, that’s all.”
“Let’s go congratulate the two,” Eric said.
“You go ahead. I’ll be there in a second.”
He looked at me, then gave me a kiss on the cheek. He walked over to the crowd surrounding the newly engaged couple, offering their congratulations.
I looked at the scene, completely emotional at the moment. I was happy for my two friends, but I had to wonder if I would experience that moment when someone would literally sweep me off my feet. Will I ever be so in love that I couldn’t imagine my life without him?
Even though I’m with Eric now, I have to wonder if my relationship with him will be just another fling or the real deal.
I sighed as I walked over to the crowd and hug my best friends. I’m not sure where my relationship with Eric is going, I just hope it will eventually be towards my happily ever after.
Tia Simmons has been happily dating Eric Taylor for the past 6 months, and could possibly see a future with him. He’s everything Tia wants in a man- smart, funny, and extremely sexy, but she feels something is missing in the relationship. Until she finds what she’s looking for, she’ll be with Eric as long as she can.
Charles Robinson always dated women without the concept of falling in love. He doesn’t even want to think about the word considering he was at one point in his life. When his ex arrives claiming she wants another chance with him, he starts to rethink the notion that love is not a bad thing.
While the two are living their lives, they both are centered around their best friends, Camille Anderson and Trevor Williams, who are madly in love. Seeing the two together put their own lives in prospective and wonder if their lives are where they should be; but there is one problem that have plagued them both.
Tia and Charles have known each other since high school. They were actually good friends, until one night changed their relationship forever. After that night, the two have been distanced, causing them to snip at each other any chance they got. But when a new merger unexpectedly puts Tia and Charles in the same company, the two have to come together not only for a big account, but also to settle their differences before both are out of a job.
Through a string of events, including a drunken night out, a game of strip Twister, and a wedding, the two realize that love can come when they least expect it.
(A Chance At Love is the sequel to In Love With My Best Friend, but the book is considered a standalone and can be read separately.)
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Genre - Fiction / Young Adult / New Adult
Rating – R
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