opposites attract

Juicy Robinson was the color of sweet black licorice, of a charcoal briquette soaked in lighter fluid and no one was going to make her feel like she wasn’t the sexiest thing around—not the white people that her mother had taught her to distrust and certainly not the homeless white man that has been watching her from the alley.

This interracial love journey is the tale of Juicy who had spent much of her adolescence being bullied because of her dark skin and weight, until circumstances forced her to stand up for herself. And Troy, whose mental illness forced him onto the streets.

Now, as an adult, Juicy has grown into a woman that is filled with anger and a distrust of whites instilled in her by her mother. After an altercation, Juicy finds herself rescued by an unlikely individual; a white, homeless man that she has thoughtlessly nick-named; ‘Mr. Cracker.’ After exploring mutual stereotypes and attempting to understand their differences, Juicy and Troy find themselves drawn to each other. Out of a sense of loneliness and true friendship the two outcasts finally find something deeper than friendship and their journey to self discovery begins. Adult content including language and descriptive sex.

Juicy is created by Pepper Pace, an EGlobal Creative Publishing signed author.

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Chapter 1: Rage
Juicy was in a rage. She couldn't remember ever being so mad...well, actually, she could. Her rages were a frequent occurrence. But not like this. This time they had messed with the wrong sista. The damned homeless guy had jinxed her. She was convinced that if not for his comments everything would have turned out differently. Maybe it was superstitious, but she knew that people crossed their fingers, and said their prayers and made the sign of the evil eye in order to avoid bad mojo. Well for Juicy it was conflict that had to be avoided. Conflict would take over; sink its claws in deep then leave its permeance, its taint in place of all her good intentions. She had cut through the alley to get to the bank so that she could take care of her business before her next bus was due. If she missed this bus there would not be another for two hours. She had meant to get here earlier but had messed around too long in the mirror trying to look both business-professional and sexy. It had taken Juicy many years to accept herself; to be able to find beauty in what others had made into the brunt of their jokes. 'Juicy, you so black…Juicy, your hair so short…' Now, at thirty-one, she didn't let other people's ignorance define her. That's why the comments of the dirty homeless bum had really pissed her off. She had struggled all of her life, had been poor, bullied—and no one saw her sitting in an alley looking like she was coming off a crack high. She had been hurrying so fast that the strap on her high-heeled sandal had slipped. She had stopped long enough to adjust it before she heard the low voice. Juicy remembered then that this was an alley in an economically depressed area of the inner city. She did need to be careful of her surroundings. She looked around and caught sight of a man sitting in the boarded up doorway of one of the abandoned buildings. His chin was resting listlessly on his chest as if he had been trying to sleep. She didn't know what he had said previously but he was staring at her hard. She followed him warily with her eyes as she resumed walking, quickening her step. "What are you looking at?" She finally bit out annoyed when he made no attempt to disguise his open interest. "I think..." and then it did seem as if he was deep in thought, "...a whore." Juicy had been so taken back that she had stopped in her tracks. She'd never been called a whore...everything else under the sun...but not that; and by someone like him! She couldn't see much of the culprit beyond his old, baggy clothes and the baseball cap pulled down low over his long hair. What she did see was that he was just another, in a long list of people, who thought he could look down his nose at her...even though his view of her was from the gutter. How dare him! As soon as she got to the bank she was going to call the cops and report that some man in the alley had accosted her. He could spend some time in jail then let's see who the w***e is. Juicy turned and stormed out of the alley. He didn't know who he was messing with. She'd say...that he tried to grab her purse and that he made lewd suggestions...and that he--he even exposed himself. Yeah! He could spend months in jail for all she cared. Hell, she would probably be doing him a favor. Juicy reached the bank and tried to put the incident out of her mind. As soon as she stepped through the door, instead feeling at ease she felt on pins and needles. It seemed that all eyes were on her. What the hell were they looking at? She glared at anyone that met her eyes until they quickly looked away. Some of these people looked straight up tacky so why weren't people staring at the old lady with the twisted wig and plastic white clunky heeled sandals? Juicy knew she looked good. Her dreadlocks had been done up in twists and corkscrews that decorated her scalp. She had applied the gold dye herself and knew that it looked slamming. If Juicy knew anything she knew how to do hair. That's why she was here. It was time for her to evolve from doing the hair of her friends in the back room of her little apartment to owning her own shop. Juicy had gone to cosmetology school but had been fired more than once from her spot in other people's salons because of her ill temper. 'You got issues, girl,' is what they always said. Juicy sucked the air through her teeth. Then she sat down in one of the waiting chairs outside of the loan officer's cubicle. After five minutes with no one coming out to help her, she began staring into the cubicle of the only person presently not assisting anyone. He knew he saw her waiting. Juicy's foot began to tap in irritation. He wasn't doing anything but hoping that she would just go away. If she was a skinny white woman then she wouldn't be sitting out here like this looking stupid. Because she was black she was used to this. She didn't mean African American either, she meant BLACK. Juicy was the color of sweet black licorice, of a charcoal briquette soaked in lighter fluid. And Juicy wasn't just her god given name; it was also a description of what she looked like. She was tall—not quite six feet, she was voluptuous and she wore her hair in dreadlocks. Yeah, the sight of her often took white people back. Good! The idea of it would make her Momma proud. Her Momma had hated white people. Her momma had hated everybody, though, but white people topped the list. After another five minutes the man in the cubicle finally stood and came to the waiting area and asked if anyone was helping her--which he could clearly see that no one was. Juicy looked around. It was on the tip of her tongue to respond that nobody was helping her but the invisible man currently giving her a pedicure. Instead, she remembered that she wanted a loan from this bank and had spent too much of her hard earned money on her business outfit to mess this up by having 'issues'. She shook her head keeping her lips clamped shut and followed him into the cubicle. "How can I help you today?" He asked politely. She noticed that he hadn't bothered to introduce himself. She read the nameplate sitting on his desk. Jason Chadwick. "Mr. Chadwick, I'm Juicy Robinson..." and it had gone downhill from there. Fifteen minutes later she was back on the sidewalk cursing up a storm. The security guard had escorted her out after the argument with Jason Chadwick had become loud enough for the other customers to hear. "Take your hands off of me!" She yelled bitterly. The security guard had given her a warning look and then shut the glass door of the bank firmly in her face. "I'm calling Corporate and FDA or whoever-but I'm calling somebody! They can pull the tapes—YOU DON'T TREAT PEOPLE LIKE THIS! I'm going to have your job Jason Chadwick!" She screeched. Tears of frustration began to blur her vision as she walked away, cutting through the alley to get to the bus stop on the other side of the block. "Bastards..." She said, walking rapidly, barely realizing that she was talking aloud. "Bastards! "Who are you talking to?"

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