Kamille and Malcom watched Taylor play on her living room floor with lego's while Malcom listened to the tape. As soon as Kamille called him, and told him she had a recorded conversation with Paul malcom rushed over.
"He's a bastard." Malcom mumbled before pressing stop.
"Tell me about it." Kamille said shaking her head from side to side.
"So has he called or anything?" Malcom asked before taking off his black framed glasses, and rubbing his eyes.
"No." Kamille answered.
"Well he's definantly up to something." Malcom said. "Now let's discuss this whole working sinuation."
Kamille turned to face him curious to hear what he had to say. She was having no luck finding a job on her own that payed enough to maintain her bills. She was now living off her savings at that was beginning to fizzle.
"I know you need a job that will pay you well, but given that you don't have a steady work history companies will be reluctant to hire you." He said before digging into his brief case.
She watched him shuffle around papers, and pull out a few.
"Mommy can I have some juice?" Taylor asked.
"There's a capri sun in the fridge baby." Kamille answered.
She watched her daughter long curly mane bounce as she skipped into the kitchen.
"I've come up with the perfect job for you." Malcom said handing her the papers. "At first I was going to hire you as my assitant but I think that will look bad in court. So my brother has a position open for a secretary. He just started his own web design business."
Kamille looked through papers with the business logo, and information on it.
"Daniel?" Kamille quizzed.
"No Dereck." He said causing Kamille to roll her eyes.
She did not want to work with Derek, he rubbed her the wrong way, and she wanted nothing to do with him. She knew she would have to suck it up for Taylor's sake.
"What's wrong?" Malcom asked.
"Nothing!" Kamille said with a pretend smile on her face. "I will do anything to keep Taylor. Did you tell him my sinuation?"
Kamille prayed that Malcom hadn't shared her story with his brother.
"Ofcourse not!" Malcom said. "I just told him you were looking for a new job and he agreed to hire you."
Kamille was so happy to have Malcom in her life. She couldn't believe genuine people like him still exsisted.
"Malcom I could never repay you for what your doing for me." Kamille said grabbing his hand.
"Yes you can." He said with a smile across his face. "My mother is having a barbecue tonight and I need you to go with me."
"But what about Taylor?" Kamille asked.
"She can come too." He said.
The backyard of Malcom's mother's house was beautiful in the daylight. She had flowers planted around the outskirts of the yard, two ponds with fishes swimming around, and the amount of space was any home owners dream.
"Glad you could make it." Bernadette said before kissing Kamille's cheek.
"Glad I was invited." Kamille said while holding Taylor's hand.
"And who is this?" Bernadette asked looking down at Taylor.
Taylor was dressed to perfection in a beautiful sun dress Kamille had brought her. The front of her hair had been pushed back by a head band, while the rest of her curly hair flowed freely.
"This is my daughter Taylor." Kamille said proudly.
After Bernadette shook Taylor's hand she whisked her away, and toward the picnic table where the rest of the family was sitting.
Kamille was suprised to see Dereck alone this time around, she expected to see another woman with him. They briefly made eye contact before she sat down.
"Hello Dereck." She said in a pleasent tone.
She figured since he was going to be her boss soon she had better play nice.
"Hey." He responded. "Is that your kid?" He asked pointing in Taylor's direction.
Kamille looked over at Taylor who was soaking up all the attention Bernadette was giving her.
"Yes her name's Taylor." She answered. "Thanks for the job by the way."
He nodded his head before getting up from the table.
"I need to talk to you about that." He said. "Mind going inside for a minute?"
After excusing herself Kamille followed Dereck inside the house, and watched him lean against the kitchen counter.
"I'm sorry for the way I acted last time I saw you." He said.
"It's okay." Kamille said happy he had apologized.
"It's just that I know Malcom's gay." Dereck said catching Kamille off guard. "So I know your not really his girlfriend."
"What makes you think he's gay?" Kamille asked trying to act clueless.
"Everyone knows it." He said. "We've known for years. My mother might be in denial about it but she knows."
Malcom walked into the kitchen causing Kamille to feel akward.
"Where does mom keep the liquor?" He asked Dereck.
Dereck pointed to a cabinet, and Malcom headed that way. Kamille remained quiet unsure of what to say or do.
Malcom looked at Kamille suspiciously. She could feel him trying to read her mind.
"Is everything okay?" Malcom finally asked looking from Kamille to Dereck.
"Yes." Kamille lied.
"No." Dereck cut in.
Kamille's heart began to race, as she looked at Dereck who was staring at Malcom.
"Well what's going on?" Malcom asked.
"I know your little secret." Dereck said.
"What are you talking about?" Malcom said clearly trying to shrug it off.
Malcom busied himself with grabbing beer bottles from out of the cabinet.
"Do you want Corona or Heinekan?" Malcom asked Dereck.
"I know she's not your girlfriend Malcom." Dereck said while shaking his head from side to side. "And I know your gay."
Malcom looked at Kamille with widened eyes.
"You told him!" Malcom yelled pointing at Kamille.
Before Kamille could respond Malcom stormed out of the kitchen, and into the backyard.
"Thanks alot genuis!" Kamille snapped before following Malcom.
Malcom was standing at the head of the picnic table with his fist balled, and planted at his sides. She could tell he was upset, and she didn't know what he was about to.
"Listen up everyone!" He yelled getting everyone's attention.
Dereck had finally made his way to the backyard, and was standing close to Kamille, so close that she stepped away.
"Boy what is wrong with you!?!" Bernadette asked.
"I'm gay!" He yelled. "And I don't care if you hate me for it. I've never been with a woman before and I never will be!"
The backyard fell quiet, as everyone stared at Malcom in shock. Some shifted in their seats while other's mouth's hung open wide enough for flies to get in. The only movement was from Taylor who was quietly eating.
"Well then who are you?" Tony asked looking at Kamille. "If my brother's gay then you can't be his girlfriend."
All the attention shifted to Kamille making her feel uncomfortable. She didn't know what to say or how to explain her and Malcom's arrangement.
"I hired her." Malcom said looking at Kamille with hurtful eyes.
"Hired her." Bernadette repeated with raised eyebrows.
"Like an escort?" Tony asked with a big smile on his face.
"Something like that." Malcom said before turning his back to his family and heading towards Kamille. "Looks like I'm not the only one with a secret."
"Now you know how it feels to have someone tell something personal." He said before leaving.
Kamille couldn't have been more embarrassed. She stood there wanting to clear things up, wishing Malcom had known that she didn't tell Dereck anything. She felt like she betrayed Malcom even though she honestly didn't. She could imagine how he felt after all he had done for her.
She realized he had left, and he was her ride.
"Come on Taylor." She said quickly picking her daughter up from the picnic table.
"What's a gay?" Taylor asked causing everyone to look their way.
Children had a way of making akward moments even more akward.
"I will explain later." Kamille said softly.
"Let me take you home." Dereck said pulling his car keys out of his pocket.
"So wait... your an escort?" Tony interrupted.
Kamille looked at him as her bottom lip began to tremble, while tears formed in her eyes. She was so ashamed.
"Boy shut your mouth!" Bernadette scorned. "Kamille get in the kitchen now!" She demanded before heading into the house. "And you to Dereck!"
Kamille and Dereck did as they were told, and followed Bernadette into the kitchen. Taylor sat with Tony and picked off his plate.
"What in sam hell is going on here?" Bernadette asked with one hand on her hip. "And Dereck I know you had something to do with it! Everything was fine before you two came in this kitchen."
"Ma all I did was tell Malcom I knew the truth." Dereck said calmly.
"And what exactly is the truth?" Bernadette asked.
"The truth is Kamille isn't his girlfriend, and he's gay." Dereck answered.
"Who even asked you to get involved with that!?!" Bernadette yelled. "I already knew Kamille wasn't his girlfriend...and I also knew my son was gay. But I was going to let him tell me in his own time!"
"Ms. Bernadette I am so sorry." Kamille said.
"Chile save it!" Bernadette said holding her hand up. "Can't nobody fool me especially not in my own home."
"So what's this about you being an escort?" Dereck asked looking at Kamille.
"See there you go again not minding your own business!" Bernadette said looking at her son.
"Maybe I should just go." Kamille said heading for the door.
"Let me take you home." Dereck said.
"No!" Kamille snapped. "Because of you Malcom thinks I betrayed him and I didn't! You just stay away from me...I think you've done enough!"
"Well Tony will take you and Taylor home then." Bernadette said before leaving the kitchen and going outside.
"I didn't mean to cause you any trouble with Malcom." Dereck said.
Kamille shook her head from side to side, and went out back.
"You can start Monday!" Dereck yelled after her. "Meet me at 2738 NorthShore at nine a.m."
Kamille ignored him as she took her daughters hand, and followed Tony to his car. She couldn't believe the events that had transpired, and wanted to get away as quickly as possible.
"Things aren't always as they seem." Kamille said to Tony after a few minutes of silence.
"Tell me about it." He chuckled. "Can I ask you something?"
She nodded her head in agreeance.
"What made a pretty girl like you become an escort?" He asked.
Kamille knew he was going to ask her that. She looked back at Taylor who had drifted off to sleep.
"I'm not an escort." She said. "I'm a prostitute."
The words that flowed from her mouth made her cringe. The fact that she had given her body away to so many men, made her want to jump off of the highest building.
"A prostitute." He repeated.
She nodded her head, and stared out the window for a moment.
"I don't stand on corners and sell myself for a few dollars...I'm more high end as if that makes it any better." She said while shaking her head in shame. "My ex husband created me. Taylor's father."
Tony listened to every word that came out of Kamille's mouth. He was much like Malcom in that regard, and never judged her. He listened as she explained how her life had changed drastically, and spun out of control.
He pulled into her driveway, and looked at her for a moment.
"I don't hate you or look at you any different." He said. "And Dereck can be kind of a jerk so you really have to ignore him sometimes. I will call Malcom myself and tell him you didn't tell Dereck anything. And if you need anything you can always call me."
Kamille watched him scribble his number down on an old recipt he found, and hand it to her.
"Well thankyou." She said before getting out of the car.
She carried her sleeping child into the house, and layed her in the guest bedroom. She layed in the bed next to her daughter, and stared at her sleeping child. She could never lose her again...she wouldn't.