« How come we dont even talk no more
And you dont even call no more
We dont barely keep in touch at all
And I dont even feel the same love when we hug no more
And I heard it through the grape vine we even beefin now
After all the years we been down
Aint no way no how, this bullshit can’t be true
We family and aint a damn thing changed, unless it’s you… »
(D12, How Come)
One could easily apply D12’s chorus to the story of Jay and Tawn. Both cousins were very close. They used to stick up for each other and Tawn even saved Jay’s life from a rival gang member’s madness at his friend Tina‘s house. They were even so close that they happened to share the same girl, Regina.
Jealousy is a destructive emotion that can poison one’s life. It can alter and destroy the strongest and the most beautiful friendships.
Contel Bradford’’ s third story is written differently from his two preceding stories. Several times, you will be able to jump from the future to past events.
The third chapter describes the changes that occurred in Jay and Twan’s lives.
5 years later after the incident between Jay and Jody (one of the rival gang members) that could have cost Jay his life, Jay has become a rap star.
Instead of being happy and proud of his cousin, Jay’s overwhelming success after being signed at Hydro Records and the abuse of drugs have made an angry and bitter man of Twan, who now lives with Tamera, Jay’s former groupie. The fact that he even questions the fatherhood of Tamera’s baby increases the tensions between the young couple. Also, Twan wasn’t really prepared to be a daddy : he is only 23 years old.
Twan’s mind is full of envy, his mind is haunted with his cousin’s image all the time.
Did Jay change after being signed to Hydro Records? Not at all.
So what has really changed in both men’s relationship
He feels Jay’s friendship with Rex, another gifted rapper and Jay‘s collaborator, like a betrayal.
«’ Best friends’ » introduces you backstage, in the world of the music industry.
It will also make you discover drug addicted behaviors like Eric’s (Twan’s friend from Royal Oak, Michigan) who gets slowly destroyed by a acid, mushrooms and heroin.
It clearly describes the atmosphere behind the scene and also pictures Twan in an embarrassing position, obviously provoking some beef, with a non hidden intention to harm, putting himself into trouble with Hydro’s CEO Tommy Dreamer and Jay’s friend Rex. As Rex hits and breaks his nose and Tawn gets physically mastered, he feels humiliated in front of his best friend.
His increasing jealousy will lead to a bloody drama. Following Rex and his producer to his grandparents’ home, Tawn kills both men with his gun. His friend Eric witnesses the tragic event.
The news of Rex’ death hits Jay like a knife. Several calls seem to confirm Jay what he actually fears: Tawn is more than involved in Rex’ death. Craig from Hydro Records has eye witnessed the scene and there is no doubt about Tawn’s guiltiness.
But Jay wants to make it sure and when Tawn calls him on the phone and suggests his cousin to both meet. Jay is prepared to the worst and wears his bulletproof vest. Craig will save Jay’s life as Tawn prepares himself to shoot his cousin: he will shoot Tawn right in the head.
After losing Tawn and his mom, who died from cancer, Jay needs to restart his life on a new basis and he decides to fully take care of his 14 years old brother.
Jay has now more time to focus on his family, after Tommy Dreamer sent him free from the label with five thousand dollars in cash- for obvious reasons that Jay fully understood.
«’ Best Friends’ » is a captivating story that won’t leave you indifferent. Many people can relate to friendships that have turned wrong through envy and jealousy. Contel will manage to captivate you from the beginning to the end and make you penetrate into his character’s skin with his impressing writing talent.