Cheryl's Song is a contemporary, Christian fiction romance about the relationship between two college seniors caught in the web of fraternity and sorority pledging and hazing during the late 1970's. Cheryl, the heroine, tells her story of coming to faith in Jesus while helping a young friend pledge her boyfriend, Mike's, predominately African-American fraternity, Kappa Alpha Omega.
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Can a new Christian stay true to her faith in the world of Greek fraternity and sorority rituals, secrets, parties, and high-profile, high-fashion showmanship? Cheryl Fields and Mike Johnson are the most popular Delta and Kappa on campus. Their rock-solid romance and chemistry are the envy of admirer and enemy alike.
Mike and Cheryl’s passionate love lasts freshman to senior year. When Perry, a young, charismatic Christian leads Cheryl to faith in Christ, Cheryl’s new views on sex, marriage, and Perry challenge Cheryl and Mike to question everything they've believed. When Perry decides to pledge, Cheryl agrees to help him survive the Kappa's notoriously violent pledge program.
Perry’s Bible studies have led Cheryl to understand God’s love for his daughters and to question the way men and women treat one another. As her faith deepens, Cheryl becomes determined to do things God’s way, still holding to her dream of marrying the man she loves.
Cheryl decides to help Perry, even infiltrating the Kappa’s sacred pledge session. Cheryl is certain Perry and his Line brothers will be seriously hurt or worse when they are kidnapped because of Cheryl’s fight with Mike. She goes through extreme measures to save Perry and his Line brothers before they fall into the clutches of Kappa’s most feared hazers: “The Beasts.”
In the end, the one enemy Cheryl never suspected is determined to forever hide the secret she uncovers.
Chapter 4: FIRST FIELDS
Some people describe me as a younger version of my mother, those who knew her. I’m tall and athletic like her, and my hair would be down to my waist if I let it grow. I did let it grow as a young girl because God knows I would not have wanted to go out of the house with hair my daddy had to figure out.
I have a husky, low voice. People, especially men, talk about, “that sexy voice of yours.” Everyone seems to like it, so I thank God for the gift.
Children of Black and White unions are some of the most misunderstood of all America’s minorities. I feel a rush of anger when decent people are hated or deceived into believing they’re liked just because they’re White. I also hate the way some Whites and even other lighter-skinned Blacks look down on our dark brothers and sisters.
Why would anyone not acknowledge we all have the same DNA and little separates us? If one of us is a, "porch monkey," all of us are less than human. Some people think it's all in fun. I understand that racism has happened everywhere in every culture in every age.
I still hate it.
She died when I was five. I remember Mom vaguely, mostly from pictures. She was pretty—bright eyes, a thin face. She had a wry smile that seemed to say she was easy to get to know, but hard to fool. Her hair was golden blond and came down to her waist. When she held me, my arms fit perfectly around her neck.
My father loved walking down the street with us.
He told a man one day, “This is the most beautiful woman on earth, man. The little one’s in training.”
I love my dad almost as much as she loved him. She used to leave a different flower and a poem in his other set of boots after he left for work every day. She read them to me sometimes. I haven’t been able to bring myself to do that for Mike yet. I have so much more love inside.
I used to take care of my dad. The alcohol abuse went unchecked when Mom died. There was no one around who was strong enough and loved Dad enough to check it.
I used to be scared of Dad when I was little. From the time my mother died, I would have his dinner prepared when he got home, whenever that was, the house cleaned, and his clothes ready for the next day. Most days that was enough, but some nights he could be mean.
I don’t like to think about that because, like I said, most days he was my favorite person on earth. We would read the paper together, usually after he washed the dishes and I dried. Then Dad would read my schoolbooks and help me with homework.
We sat in the living room chairs when it was reading time. He’d read the daily paper before turning to Soldier of Fortune magazine, his favorite. I read library books, usually romance.
I love my dad. I decided when I was 13 that I had to be that woman to love him enough to make his choice.
“Daddy,” I said, “you’re killing yourself. You keep telling me you want me to go to college, ‘a Fields in college.’ I am not going to stand on my high school or college stage and cry because my daddy drank himself to death or killed somebody in a car crash. I packed my bags, Daddy. There’s nothing in this world I love more than you. It would break my heart to spend every night at Auntie’s on my knees praying for you to stop drinking. You have to stop, Daddy. Be at my college graduation, Daddy.”
That’s when I broke down. I fell on my knees and stained his Navy white shoes with the tears.
“Please stop drinking, Daddy. I...please. Please.”
He picked me up, looked me in my eyes, and said, “You love me like she loved. I’ll stop. You have my word as a naval petty officer. My last drop dried in those tears. You have my word, Cheryl.”
He drew me up into his arms slowly, running his fingers through my hair.
“My baby. You’ll always be that little, hairy, perfect girl your mama had to make me hold. You were so tiny, so easy to break. You pray me through right here in this house. I don’t know...I’m just saying, it’s, there’s...you keep praying, OK? When you graduate, this soldier will find you, and I’ll be stone, cold sober from here on. You look just like your mama, baby.”
He poured all his liquor out, called his friends, and told them about our conversation.
That night, before I went to bed, as I was in my room reading, there was a knock at my door. At my fearful, “Come in,”—I thought he'd changed his mind—my daddy opened the door, walked past my bed, picked up the empty suitcase next to my dresser drawers, and said, “This is what I’ll see when I want a drink. You won’t need this until it’s time to go off to school.”
I felt guilty when it was time to leave and go to Maryland State, but he held his part of the bargain. The only part of my dad’s promise he didn’t keep was the suitcase. He couldn’t give it back. He gave the one they used on their honeymoon.