July 27th. Winnipeg, Canada
Don’t ask me how I remember where we are. This On the Run tour tests me. It tests every move I’ve ever made, every run I’ve ever sang. Every No, no, no, no, no and all the gotdamns.
I’m everywhere and nowhere.
May 5th blew up. Elevator this, divorce that. I knew that night when all that shit was going down that things in the Bey-Rock Nation were going to change. It’s not like Solange never beat on Jay before. It’s that we slipped up. We let it out and I say we because I stood there and played my role, played this part, knowing full well y’all would still come see me. Come see us.
The Beyhive isn’t a joke. You don’t have to claim us out loud. I know you know I’m the Queen of this shit. I let you wake up like this.
But still, I felt exposed, you know? Like for a moment my brand was out of my control. I control my name, my image. Don’t believe that “Jay is the puppet master” bullshit. That’s how they strip women like me of my power. Get it?
But right now, I can’t sleep. I called her and she still hasn’t called me back. I get it. We both have men and money that we have to dodge, stack, and just plain deal with to get to what we got to do. The reality is tho that everyone calls me back. Waiting is new. Waiting for her makes me bite my lip, drawing the contours of her body in thick black lines in my mind. Like ‘girl, are you eating something with that mouth of yours’? Can I feed you, please?
She has eight minutes to get back to me.
In eight minutes, I’ll cancel the jet I ordered and have on hold to fly her out to me. In eight minutes, I’ll forget the first time we met and the way her swollen lips tasted that night without paparazzi where no one caught us. No pics, so it didn’t happen anyway right?
That’s the way to survive in this world. Drop the excess baggage. Drop the want, the hurt onto a track, onto a curb. Wherever. Just get it off the skin.
Me and her have always talked about a collabo. Her eyes — bright, wide — would light the fuck up. I’d get that tight feeling in my stomach, the one where you might black out if you don’t get to touch the radiant person in front of you. You know that feeling? Yeah, I had it. I felt it through my gut, through my thighs, and so I didn’t act. I cut her off. I went on tour. I went on the run.
No collaborations. I put the walls up fast because what do you even do with those feelings when you’re wifed up, knocked up, famous as fuck, and scared of that much beauty in another person?
Four minutes. I know G4 pilots on a first name basis.
I’ve never just called her before tonight. I might never call her again.
She has four minutes.
I’d give her more time but I’m not in the habit of of giving that away. No freebies. No free for alls. No matter how much I want to give her all of me.
My phone vibrated against the glass coffee table.
Text message: Open the door, Mrs. Carter.
I froze. No one knew I was in this suite. The top three floors belong to the tour. Shit, we practically had the entire hotel but no one knew I was here. Like in suite 9481. Goosebumps on my arms turned into a dry mouth which turned into licked wet lips and me standing at the door, breathing hard.
“Yeah. You opening or nah?”
Yes, the fuck I was opening. I wanted her mouth on my mouth. I wanted her to spit Monster-type bars on my flesh leaving no room for anyone to even breathe near me. These are my wants and yet, I called her for a Flawless remix.
I opened the door and we stared at each other. Holy Lord, the dimples on this girl kill me every time. And how is it that no one texted me that Nicki Minaj was in my hotel wearing denim cutoffs, 7″ black Louboutins, and a cutoff tank with my face on it?
I’mma fire everyone on my security team.
“I’m glad you’re here,” I said, flustered, buttoning up my buttons, trying to breathe.
Nicki pulled me in for a full body hug. Hips to hips. She smelled like red licorice and coconut oil. “Anything for you, Bey”. The minutes passed and I stood in her arms. Thighs weak, heart beating so fast, I wondered if I would have to be Beyoncé around her.
Maybe I didn’t need to be that person, maybe just Bey would be enough for her.
Cuz Onika’s enough for me.