Cheryl Fields learns that the secret world of Greek sororities and fraternities is a mystical, wonderful and sometimes deadly place. Her world is shaken when a new pledge to her boyfriend Mike's fraternity leads Cheryl to the Lord.
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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 and Mike are the most popular Delta and Kappa on campus. When Perry, a young, charismatic Christian, leads Cheryl to faith in Jesus, Cheryl’s new views on sex, marriage, and the lack of respect shown women, drive a wedge between Cheryl and Mike.
When Perry decides to pledge Mike’s fraternity, Cheryl agrees to help him survive the Kappas’ notoriously violent pledge program. After a frantic phone call alerts Cheryl that Perry and his inexperienced fellow pledges have been kidnapped by Kappa’s most feared hazers, “The Beasts,” Cheryl takes the unprecedented step of sneaking into the Kappa’s sacred pledge “session.”
In the end, Cheryl uncovers a secret that threatens her relationship with Mike and her own life.
Cheryl's Song is the first of a five-book series.
Some people describe me as “sensuous,” whatever that means. Mike says I have “bedroom eyes,” and everybody seems to like my voice. I think it’s too husky, but people, especially men, are always talking about “that sexy voice of yours.”
And my behind. I have the blessing and curse of so many black women: a big, round behind. My hips aren’t big like most black women though. I guess my mother’s responsible for that. She’s white, French Canadian. We have some Creole and some Indian blood on her side I’m told, but I haven’t had much contact with that side of the family.
You wouldn’t know I’m mixed to look at me. Mixed. I hate that word. It sounds like confusion. I have my mother’s features sure enough, except for the lips and behind. My nose is long and narrow like hers, and I have her slim frame. I have her hazel eyes too, but my skin, like my father’s, is dark.
They say that mixed black children are some of the prettiest people on earth. Maybe that’s because God knew all the rejection we would have to go through in this life. Like I said, my mother’s side of the family didn’t have much to do with Dad or I after she died.
I remember her vaguely, mostly from pictures. She was pretty: bright eyes, a thin face. She had a kind of wry smile like she was easy to get along with, but hard to fool. I hear she was both. Long, blond hair, brown at the roots. My Dad always compared every woman he met to her. “She ain’t your momma, but she’s nice looking.” I love my Dad, but he can be a hard man to get along with. Like I say, no one was ever good enough for him after my momma died. Sometimes I wish he had found someone.
My father drank a lot, too much, and he would swear and curse at me when he drank. I used to be scared of him when I was little. From the time I was six or seven, I would have 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 really mean to me. I don’t like to think about that now because, like I said, most days he was really nice. I would read his paper with him after dinner, and then he would read my schoolbooks and help me with my homework.
We used to sit in the living room in the two big chairs, reading. I love my dad, but I had to stand up to him one day. He used to call me “girl,” and yell at me when he was drunk about how I didn’t care about him or try hard enough to keep the house spic and span. Most of the time I felt guilty and started to cry, but this day, when I was thirteen, I couldn’t stand it anymore.
I stood up to him and said, “Daddy, this is the life we have. We are here today. Momma is gone, and I am all you have. Now if that is not enough for you, then I can walk out that door right now, and you can have this house to yourself, because that seems to be what you want. If you want me gone, then I’m gone.”
And I sat back down in my chair. He didn’t say anything for a while, but then he came over to me and gave me a hug and said, “I’m sorry, baby. You do so much around here. I guess I’m driving you away because I need you so much, and I hate to need somebody like that.”
I was shocked. I said, “It’s OK, Daddy. I want you to know that I’m here for you and I’m going to help you. No matter what happens, we’re going to be together. I’m not going to leave you, Daddy.”
“I know, girl. I know.”
“My name is Cheryl. Cheryl, Daddy. Not girl.”
“OK, Cheryl. I love you, gi—, Cheryl.”
“I love you too, Daddy. Now go clean up for dinner. I made your favorite today.”
“That’s my girl.”
I felt so guilty leaving Chicago to come to college, but he made me go. I worry about him all the time.
I never let Mike drink around me. That’s another reason Vernon hates me. I can’t stand liquor, and he drinks like a fish. I can’t stand the smell of liquor. I wouldn’t know what it tastes like because I’ve never let it touch my mouth, but I’m sure I would hate the taste also. I hate everything to do with alcohol and Mike knows it. I know he drinks when I’m not around, but he’s a man. I can’t make him stop drinking altogether, but he’s going to respect me when I’m around.
Vermin. Where do I start to tell you about that cockroach? He’s plain angry most of the time, though he hides it behind jokes. Some things aren’t funny, and Vermin is always picking on people or poking fun or trying to make himself look good at somebody else’s expense. And the frustrating part is that sometimes, I’m the only one who seems to see how phony he is. “Hey, Cheryl, let me tell you about the hoes that were begging for me last night. I had to choose one. That’s the hard part of my life, choosing which ho is going to get the pleasure of a turn with Vern’s ‘magic monster’ tonight.”
Most people think he believes that trash. I’ve talked with a few of the girls who’ve had their “turn,” and they say it’s less than desirable. As a matter of fact, I know a few girls who are scared of him.
That’s what bothers me about him. He gets aggressive when he’s drunk, and nobody can calm him down but Mike. That’s why he wants Mike around all the time. He’s like Vermin’s conscience, always keeping him out of trouble and taking his hand out of the fire before he goes too far.
I used to think Mike was tired of Vermin’s mess, but they keep going along. He’ll call, and Mike will answer. I hate that he’s using Mike. One day he’ll wake up and see that Vermin is no friend. Hopefully, that day won’t be too late.