~>The story written below is purely fictional. Not a fraction of truth is riddled between these words nor does the author imply that there should be. Most of the events in the pages to follow are created in the author's mind and thus should not be taken as fact in any way. He takes no responsibility for any illegal activity such as underage reading because it is done without his knowledge or sanction. The story's solitary intention is that of entertainment and nothing beyond.
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50 Cent does not see or speak to his best friend in almost a week. He is busily helping Young Buck finish his album and becoming closer and closer to Olivia but he knows something is not right. He tries to talk to his girlfriend about it but does not know how to express himself because he is not sure how he feels and it gets him nowhere. Her kisses do manage to take their mind off things and he is really starting to fall for her. The buff rapper is in the studio late one night with Young Buck and he isn't even sure if Lloyd Banks is still in New York. He cannot concentrate so the night is cut short, but adequate work is put toward the album. The pair of G-Unit members hug and say goodbye to each other as 50 stays back for a minute before putting on his hat and walking out of the recording studio. Their relationship is definitely not what it used to be and no amount of denying it will change that. His hotel room is quiet when he enters and immediately heads for his bed so his exhausted body and mind can relax themselves. It is needed. Their new friendship scares him.
Days go by and his superstar life is demanding more from him than he can give but he somehow manages to do all that is required of him, all while only getting three hours of sleep each night at the most. It helps though because when 50 is in his business mindset, everything else becomes insignificant and unable to hurt him, if only for a little while. Both he and Young Buck become frustrated when some of his new material is leaked onto the internet and although it gets a great response from the general audience, the have to put new material on the album so the three leaked songs are scratched from production and writing begins immediately on their replacements. Buck takes it in stride and just does it because he wants his album over and out with as soon as it can happen. 50 Cent returns to his hotel at around ten at night and quickly showers and gets himself something to eat before searching for his phone in his bedroom. Outside is still and he gets caught up in it for an eternity before his mind shakes him free and he continues on with his life.
"Hey cutie," the buff rapper says as his son's voice comes on the line.
"Hi daddy! What's up?"
"It's late Tré . Why aren't you in bed son? Oh wait," 50 catches himself. "It's Friday. I just remembered."
The innocent boy giggles. "I think you're working too hard daddy."
"Yea well, it's all for you baby boy. How's school? Everything okay with your mom?"
"School's good. I got an award for perfect attendance and for good grades. Mom's good too. She's in the shower."
"I'm so proud of you. You such a good boy."
"I gotta be. Don't wanna let you or mom down."
"The only way you can do that is if you stop trying son. That's all I want from you, to try your best."
"Even when I mess up?"
"Yea. It's the only way you're gonna learn baby. You have to make mistakes. Everyone does," the superstar tells the six-year-old. The conversation is teaching him more than it is teaching Marquise.
"Daddy what's wrong? Why do you sound so sad?"
"I'm just having some problems at work buddy."
"Just some stuff I gotta deal with." He feels guilty about lying to his son and hopes that he isn't caught because he cannot explain what he is feeling about Lloyd Banks to his young son. He does not even know how to explain it to himself.
"Why don't you take a break? You sound really sad daddy. I'm worried about you."
"No no. Don't be lil' man. I'm good. It's small, stupid things."
"So why does it have you sounding so down?" Marquise knows his father is lying to him and he wants to help him in any way he can.
"It's difficult Tré . But don't worry about me. Really."
"I always worry about you dad. You're my best friend remember?"
"Yep. Never forget it. I won't."
"Good. Oh, how is Chris? I saw him on TV performing. He was so good daddy!"
The rapper does not know how to feel hearing that name come out of his son's mouth. "Did you like it?" he meekly manages to ask.
"Yea! He did really good. Tell him I said he was awesome," Marquise excitedly says.
He smiles and replies, "Okay. Will do buddy."
"Banks was awesome!"
"Okay okay. Calm down baby boy."
"Everything is gonna work out at work daddy. You're gonna be good."
"Thanks a lot buddy."
"The talk. I needed to hear all the things you said to me."
"Hey, what are best friends for?" the little boy cutely responds.
"I love you Tré . I've never loved anyone as much as I love you."
"I know. It feels good to hear it."
"Felt good to say it. I mean it."
"I love you a lot too daddy. You're a great guy. I don't care what anyone else says. They don't know you like I do."
An overwhelming calm resides in the rapper and for that moment in time, nothing matters to him but his son. "Let's hope you're right."
"I know I am."
"It's getting late. You should be sleeping young man."
"I'm going I'm going," he whines and pouts. "I love you. Bye."
"Bye buddy. I love you."
The superstar rapper's insides shine brightly because of his conversation with his young son. The boy is very mature for his age and 50 is so proud of him. The night's sky is as black and cold as ever as he turns off the lights and gets into his bed. Minimal light makes its presence known in the suite as he stares outside through the drawn curtains and then up at the ceiling. His little boy makes him feel so much better about himself and what he is doing but he also wants things to be better with Lloyd Banks. For them to be on the same page they were on before that whole tragic night happened. Olivia is in Miami to see a few relatives and they spoke earlier today. Things are great between them and the buff rapper is happy with that aspect of his life. 50 Cent's phone goes off, informing him that he has a new text message, but he ignores it because work is already taking up all of his time. He needs time by himself to get everything into perspective and to try and figure out a way to salvage his drowning relationship with his fellow G-Unit member and friend.
It is around nine in the morning when ebony rapper is startled awake by his phone's loud ringing. He feels over to the nightstand and picks it up before finally opening his eyes to see who it is. "What up Curtis boy?" he hears when he flips it open.
"What time is it?" he incoherently asks Lloyd Banks.
"Around nine. What's up? You sick?"
"Naw. Just tired." He sits up on the bed as his voice becomes more alive because of who he is talking to.
"Tonight's the night! The album release party. And then it'll be out on Tuesday."
"Hell yea! I can taste it so damn bad."
"You still on the east coast?"
"Yea. Why haven't you called me?" 50 Cent questions his friend.
"Been busy C. Real busy. I've been promoting the hell out this record."
"Why, something happen?"
"Naw. I was just wonderin' why I haven't spoken to my best friend in so long."
"You could've called me man," Banks fires back in an attempt to defend himself.
"Let's not fight about this stupid shit. You busy, I'm busy. It's cool."
"Yea whatever. What time you gonna be there tonight?"
"I dunno. A little late because I got a meeting at seven."
"Oh. Tré told me to tell you that you were awesome at the VMAs."
"Word? The squirt saw me?" The G-Unit rapper swears he is blushing.
"Yea. He said you did great."
"Damn. I'm gonna have to get him something," he laughs.
"Do what you gotta do."
"Ay, you think you can bring him?"
"Tonight?" he asks, taken aback.
The parent in 50 Cent speaks for him. "Naw kid."
"Why not? I haven't seen him in a good minute. He can catch up with his Uncle Banks," he says as he laughs again.
"His mother would kill me. And you ain't his uncle nigga."
"Come on. Try and convince her. Plus it's Saturday so he doesn't have school tomorrow. He'll have a great time."
"I dunno." The ebony rapper is uncertain. It would be cool to have his son with him at the party tonight though.
"Please. For me C. I really wanna see the squirt."
"Aight aight. I'll try but I ain't promising anything."
"Thanks man. It'll mean a lot to me to have him there."
"Because I haven't seen him lately. And I know he's gonna look just like his daddy. I gotta chill with my boy."
"Don't get your hopes up. He and his mother might already have plans. This is last minute."
"Hopefully they don't. But ay, call me later and let me know what she says. I gotta go handle some things."
As soon as their conversation ends, he immediate calls Marquise's mother to discuss their son coming to Lloyd Banks' album release party tonight. As 50 Cent predicted, his former girlfriend is completely against taking their son to an industry party. In her mind, a wild and crazy industry party is one with lots of alcohol, smoking, and loose women. She does not want her only child around any of that mess. After a great deal of convincing, pleading, and bargaining, the buff rapper finally wins her over to his side and when he tells Marquise that they will be hanging out tonight, the boy is ecstatic. He cannot hide his excitement as 50 hears him thanking his mother while they are still on the phone. The G-Unit member informs her that he will be by to pick him up at around eight and she gives him the usual talk about being mindful and carefully watching him. He will hear it again when he goes to pick his little boy up but does not mind because he knows he will have to be careful. When the call ends, he begins his day by brushing his teeth and eating.
The ebony rapper eats a full lunch with his two bodyguards Caleb and Danny after an endorsement meeting because they are going to the gym and he needs the extra energy. Another meeting that is supposed to take place in the afternoon is postponed at the last minute and he does not mind this at all. It just means that 50 will have some time to spend with his son, who he cannot wait to see. The gym session steals all three men's energy but their bodies feel invigorated and refreshed as they all shower and leave. It is around three in the afternoon when the G-Unit rapper gets back to his hotel. It is best if he gets dressed now and relaxes with Marquise until they are ready to go to the Cheeta Club for Banks' album party so he does that. 50 Cent dresses in a pair of blue jean shorts, a light blue polo shirt, and a black pair of Nikes before tying a black du-rag over his head and gathering a light blue NY hat to complete his look. With his phone and wallet in their respective places, he leaves his suite to meet up with his son. He is excited. The night has to be perfect.
Marquise Jackson hops into his father's arms and kisses him when he enters their house. His past flame informs him that since their son will be with him tonight, she made plans to go out with her girlfriends. 50 is happy about this because he knows having a child is a fulltime responsibility and he is happy to assume that responsibility while she goes out and relaxes with her friends, at least for a night. The boys play and laugh together on the sofa as the TV is on but not being watched. The superstar rapper starts to have second thoughts about exposing his young, pure son to the world he's trying so hard to not let him see but concludes that the party will not be as bad as he is making it out to be. 50 Cent second guesses everything when it comes to his little boy because he wants to protect him from every bad thing in the world. At around eight, both of the boy's parents help him get dressed for the big party. Marquise looks adorable in a pair of black jeans, a white, short-sleeved button up shirt, and a pair of black Timbaland boots. He is so precious.
"Curtis please be careful with him," she says after her son is ready.
"I know. I will."
"Watch him okay? Never take your eyes off him."
"Yea. You're in good hands with me aren't you Tré ?"
"Yep!" the six-year-old wastes no time in responding.
"Behave yourself okay Marquise Jackson."
"Okay mom. I love you."
"I love you too sweetheart. Bye."
"Bye," both guys cutely say together before leaving the house and jumping into the SUV that is parked on the curb.
"You excited buddy?"
"We gonna have a good time."
"I know. We always do daddy."
The exclusive Cheeta Club is already packed with people when the superstar rapper and his son pass by. The driver swerves into an alley and the pair get out and is ushered into the club through a secret back entrance, this way 50 does not have to deal with the mob at the front door. Aside from the members of G-Unit, Dr. Dré , and Eminem, he does not know who to expect at the party. He grips on to Marquise's hand tightly as they walk to the grand floor of the huge club, where many people are already celebrating. At the bar, he gets a beer for himself and a soda for his son as he picks him up and they walk to the V.I.P. section, which is sectioned off by purple velvet rope. 50 Cent does not expect to see anyone there yet but is surprised when he sees Jay-Z sitting at a table and talking away on his cell phone. There are also other musicians, actors, and celebrities relaxing and enjoying themselves in the V.I.P. section. He and Jay-Z shake hands; the iconic rapper gives Marquise a high five, and they begin talking to each other about the game.
It isn't long before Olivia shows up with Young Buck and the make their way to the V.I.P. section as well. Everyone greets each other and talk and drink and laugh while they all wait for the man of the night. He cannot wait to see Banks though he does not know why. Although 50 Cent and Olivia are in a relationship, when he introduces her to his son, he leaves that out because this is neither the time nor the place to tell the boy that information. Olivia understands completely and starts talking to Marquise. He is so cute and she smiles at his father. She takes him on the dance floor and they dance while the buff rapper catches up with Young Buck and continue speaking to Jay-Z. He does keep an eye on his little man from time to time as he is dancing with the first lady of G-Unit. The six-year-old likes her; he can tell. He can also see that his son is already enjoying himself and he is happy. Gradually, the V.I.P. and the rest of the club become fuller with people, including Dr. Dré and Eminem. They all shake hands to greet each other and start to enjoy the night.
It is around eleven when Lloyd Banks finally walks through the front doors of the Cheeta Club; fans are screaming everywhere and begging him to let them into the club. He smiles and poses for a few pictures, both for his fans and the paparazzi, before walking to the bar and getting himself a soda. He does not want to drink today because it is not about that and he also knows Marquise is here. An aggressive woman pulls him out onto the dance floor and they dance two dances before he is finally free of her. The G-Unit rapper appreciates it all though and gives her a sweet kiss on the cheek as a consolation prize. Every female is now jealous and wants a piece of him and he disappears up to where all his celebrity friends are before he is ripped to shreds. Once in the company of his fellow famous people, Banks shakes hands and gives out kisses because it is all about him and the album he worked so hard to produce. Dr. Dré pats his back and congratulates him on a job well done as they hug for a moment. He and Eminem's hands catch in a shake.
50 Cent and Young Buck are on the side talking to each other as he walks up to them. "What up boys?"
"Damn nigga. Late as always. You coming just like Fifty," Young Buck snaps.
"You gonna yell at me on my night kid?"
"Hell yea! You ain't special. But tight work though. That album's sounding hot Banks."
"Thanks." The two friends smile and hug each other. He feels a strong sense of accomplishment because praise is coming from his fellow rapper and friend. "Let's hope the fans are gonna like it."
Buck assures him, "Don't sweat it. You good."
"Don't say what's good to ya boy C?" Banks aims his question at the buff rapper. He looks good, like he always does.
"Forget you," 50 says. "`Bout time you showed up to yo own shit."
"Yea yea. Where's the squirt?"
"He's over there dancing with Olivia," 50 points to the pair through the crowd. They are so cute together.
"Let me go holla at my boy," Lloyd Banks excitedly says.
The two members of G-Unit continue to talk after Lloyd Banks walks away from their group and toward the youngest person in the Cheeta Club. "What up girl?"
"Banks!" Marquise excitedly screams as he leaves Olivia and runs up to the rapper. Banks ruffles his short hair.
"Chris! Hey. Congratulations on the album and everything."
"Thanks." They hug. "Mind if I borrow this lil' guy from you?"
"No no. Go right ahead. I'll catch up with you later Marquise," she says as she waves to him.
"Bye. Thanks for the dance," the six-year-old cutely says.
"You workin' the ladies already squirt?" the G-Unit rapper asks as he picks 50 Cent's son up. He looks just like his father.
He laughs as he says, "No."
"Look how much you've grown lil' boy. You look just like your daddy."
"I missed you Banks. How we used to hang out," the young boy says as he hugs the rapper tightly.
"Hey hey. Remember the last time I saw you?"
"What did I say?"
"Um," Marquise thinks real hard. "That I'm a good boy."
"Uhuh. And what else?"
"To behave myself and do good in school."
"And one more thing," Banks continues to probing.
"Oh! You told me to call you Chris."
"I did. So what's up with Banks then?"
"I dunno. I'm just happy to see you."
"Me too squirt. I missed my lil' soldier. The honorary member of G-Unit," the younger rapper still has the six-year-old in his hands. He loves him. "How's everything buddy? School?" The two grab a table and sit next to each other.
"You got a girlfriend yet?"
"Chris! No. I'm too small."
"You're never too small to start out short stuff. You look so smooth is your shirt and pants. I like your boots."
"You're silly," he giggles.
"Who you callin' silly punk?" Lloyd Banks roams his fingers all over the small body next to him, tickling it in frenzy for a minute before the boy pleads for him to stop. "I thought so."
"Who got you that ID band?"
"Daddy. You like it?" he shows off the expensive piece of jewelry dangling around his wrist.
"So everything's cool with you shorty?"
"Yea. Can I ask you something?"
"Yea, what?" The G-Unit member looks at him. It is hard to hear because of the blasting music so he puts his ear closer to the six-year-old.
"Are you mad at daddy?"
"No lil' man. Why would you think that?" It suddenly feels as if they are the only two people in the club. All the music and the party are gone.
"I know something's making him sad but he won't tell me."
"He told you that?"
"No. He always says that everything is okay but I know he's lying."
"Maybe he's stressed out---" Lloyd Banks does not know what to think or if he should jump to the conclusion that the night they spent together is weighing down heavily on his best friend more that he is letting on.
"I dunno. I'm worried about him Chris," Marquise says as tears start sliding down his cheek. "I just want him to be happy."
Seeing the precious child starting to cry hurts Lloyd Banks. "No Marquise. No buddy. Don't cry. Come here," he says as 50's son crawls into his arms and lets it all out. Everyone around is too busy to notice or care but he is grateful because he does not want the buff rapper to see his son this way. It is breaking him so he can only imagine what it will do to the boy's father.
"I love him so much. He's my best friend and I dunno---"
"It's okay baby boy. Let it all out."
"Why is he lying to me?"
"I don't know if he is Marquise."
"I know he is."
"You trust your dad right?"
The six-year-old looks up at him; the tears are slowing but still there. "Yes."
"And you believe in him?"
"Just believe him when he tells you he is okay buddy."
"But I know he's not."
"Just let him work out whatever he's going through by himself. I know its hard squirt but you gotta let him do it on his own. He can find the answers he's looking for."
"Why doesn't he talk to me?"
Lloyd Banks finds this conversation hard because he is almost positive that 50 Cent is still confused and upset about them and the new relationship they now share. But why? "He will when he's ready. Just give him time to sort everything out by himself. Can you try that for me Marquise?"
"Yea. I'll try. For him."
"Dry your eyes okay. I never wanna see you crying baby boy. Smile for me. This is a party and we gonna have a good time."
The six-year-old has a hard time smiling again but he eventually does. Lloyd Banks knows it is not his true smile but he is trying and that is all he can ask for. "This party is crazy."
"Oh yea. If your mom came here right now she'd never let your dad take you anywhere again. Don't worry though lil' man. You got a lot of people that got your back."
"Especially me kid. You got mine too right?"
"Yep. You're my second best friend Chris."
Lights from every visible spectrum flicker wickedly and music flare with a passion as the nightclub becomes more and more packed with people. 50 finishes talking to Young Buck and sees Eminem dancing with a female so he leaves him alone. Dr. Dré approaches him and they discuss a few business aspects before he leaves to get another drink. He and Olivia dance to a couple of songs before she disappears to the bathroom. The superstar rapper is temporarily left alone so he goes in search of his son. 50 Cent makes his way through a crowded and cramped V.I.P. section to the private table where his son and his best friend are sitting and catching up with one another. His eyes have been on the pair of and on every available chance because the moment is so cute. Two of the most trusted people in his life talking and playing around. The feeling he experiences while looking at them from afar is unexplainable and scares him to no end. He hates it but there is nothing he can do to prevent the feelings that are stirring in him. He does not understand.
"What you boys talkin' about? Tré ? What's wrong son?" he asks, worry in his voice. He notices that his son's eyes are slightly red and that he is sniffling.
"Nothing dad. I'm a little tired."
"You wanna go home buddy?"
"Nope. I'm having fun."
"He's a good boy. Just talking to his Uncle Chris," Banks widely grins.
The buff rapper knows something is not right with his son and, for some reason, feels completely naked and defenseless when he and Banks' eyes connect for a brief moment. Marquise whispers a quick thank you into the younger rapper's ear before leaving with his father. He looks at the father and son pair while they walk away. They are his two men. When he finally manages to tuck all those discriminating feelings away so no one could ever find them, he goes and enjoys the rest of his party. Lloyd Banks finds Jay-Z and they talk for a long while about everything before he goes down to the bar to get another soda. While on the first floor of the Cheeta Club, the G-Unit rapper bumps into LL Cool J and they too catch up before the extremely muscled rapper is pulled out onto the dance floor by an exquisitely beautiful woman. He praises him on the album before being swept away into the madness. After collecting a bottle of water this time around, he is on his way back upstairs until someone catches his eyes at the door. It is Ludacris. His heart swiftly drops.
"What you doing here? I thought you was in GA?" the G-Unit rapper asks as he walks up to his man. They are careful because it is a public place.
"Caught a quick flight up here. Couldn't miss your party man. Congrats on the album kid," Ludacris comments as they hug for a short moment.
"Thanks. Means a lot to me than you came." They speak in as low a voice as they possibly can. No one can here them.
"Wouldn't miss it for the world Banks man. This party is off the hook. Where you gonna be?"
"Go get something to drink and come chill in the V.I.P. section with the rest of us."
"Straight. I'll be up in a few. Not to arouse suspicion."
"Yea." A warm feeling gushes throughout the young rapper. He feels special that someone thinks to do something like this for him. It is sweet.
As the G-Unit rapper makes his way back upstairs, he catches a glimpse of 50 Cent and Olivia dancing together. It bothers him a little but he knows that it should not because the pair on the dance floor are just friends and he does not have a committed relationship with the man. It does make him feel slightly sick though but he tunes it out of his mind because tonight is still all about him and the album he worked so hard with so many people on to produce and get out there. Marquise is sitting in a booth with Dr. Dré and Eminem looking after him, they are playfully teasing and messing with the six-year-old, as Banks walks up to them and looks on as 50's son laughs and enjoys himself. It is good to see that their hard talk earlier is not affecting him as much as it did before. His smile and laughter are genuine as the white rapper and massive producer tickle and playfully wrestle with him. Ludacris finally ends up on the other side of the velvet rope and Lloyd Banks leaves the trio of men and walks over to him. It is hard to concentrate now because of him.
"How's it seeing that?" the southern rapper asks off the bat, referring to 50 Cent and Olivia dancing on the dance floor.
"Not bothering me. Nothing's gonna ruin my night. Especially since you here now," Lloyd Banks admits honestly.
"You know we can't hang out like that right?"
"Of course. But we not gonna hang out like that. We just two rappers that are friends right now."
"Straight. We can't get caught in this shit."
The G-Unit member looks at him before saying, "We'll talk about it later kid. I got someone I want you to meet. Come on."