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Breaking Hickory- channel 9 has confirmed Douglas Wilson is charged with murdering the 7-year old along Tate Blvd. Catawba County dispatchers received a call just after 11 p. When police got to the scene they found 7-year-old Zakylen, who had been shot in the neck. He was rushed to Catawba Valley Medical Center where he later died.

Years old 48
What is my ethnicity: Scottish
What is the color of my hair: Gray
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When it initially crept around the wall of her cubicle, Nella was too busy filing a stack of s at her desk, aligning each and every one so that the manuscript was perfectly flush.

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She was so intent on completing this task—Vera Parini needed everything to be flush, always—that she had the nerve to ignore the smell. Only when it inched up her nostrils and latched onto a deep part of her brain did she stop what she was doing and lift her head with sudden interest.

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Nella Rogers was used to all kinds of uninvited smells creeping into her cubicle—usually terrible ones. Since she was merely an editorial assistant at Wagner Books, she had no private office, and therefore no walls or windows.

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She and the other open-space assistants were at the mercy of a hardboiled egg or the passing of gas; they were often left to suffer the consequences for what felt like an hour afterward. After about three months of failed self-training, she had broken down and purchased a lavender reed diffuser that had the words just breathe scrawled across its front in gold cursive letters.

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Its home was the far corner of her desk, where it sat just beneath the first edition of Kindred that Owen had given her shortly after they started dating. Nella eyed the gold foil letters and frowned. Could it have been the lavender diffuser she smelled? She inhaled again, craning her neck upward so that all she could see were the gray and white tiles that lined the ceiling.

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It was Brown Buttah, her favorite brand of hair grease. Nella looked around. Once she was sure the coast was clear, she stuck her hand into her thick black hair and pulled a piece of it as close to her nose as she could.

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What she was smelling was fresh, a coat applied within the last hour or so, she guessed. This meant one of two things: One of her white colleagues had started using Brown Buttah. Or—more likely, since she was pretty sure none of them had accidentally stumbled into the natural hair care aisle— there was another Black girl on the thirteenth floor. Had it finally happened? Had all of her campaigning for more diversity at Wagner finally paid off? Her thoughts were cut short by the loud, familiar cackle of Maisy Glendower, a squirrelly editor who appreciated modulation only when someone else was practicing it.

Nella combed through the bray, listening hard for the hushed voice that had made Maisy laugh.

Man charged with fatally shooting 7-year-old boy riding in car with mom, brothers

Did it belong to a person of a darker hue? Startled, Nella looked up from her desk. But it was just Sophie standing above her, arms wrapped snugly around the side of her cubicle wall, eyes as wide and green as cucumbers. How are you? Kimberly had edited her first and last bestseller inbut because this bestseller had not been just a bestseller—it had been adapted into a television show, a blockbuster film, a graphic novel, an adult film, a musical, a podcast, a miniseries, and another blockbuster film in 4DX —she was granted a pass on every non-bestseller that followed.

Celebrating a life

Royalties were nothing to laugh at. Now nearing the end of her long career, Kimberly spent most of her time out of the office, and Nella suspected Sophie spent most of her time waiting for Kimberly to kindly retire already so that she could take her place.

But for now, Sophie hung on naively, just as every single one of her predecessors had. Sophie rolled her eyes.

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She probably dropped more on that than we make here in a month. By the way, did you see. I even use it sometimes. Another Black girl at Wagner? You must be so excited! Yes, it would be great to have another Black girl working at Wagner, but she was hesitant to do a celebratory Electric Slide sequence just yet. Nella looked up from her desktop at Sophie, who happened to be one of these Very Specific People, and who was still chattering on.

Remember that piece? I mean, that would be something. Remember how hard it was just to get people talking about diversity in one place? Those meetings were painful. She had more important things to pursue. Like how to get rid of Sophie. Is it already ten fifteen?

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I actually need to make a very important phone call. But things between them lately had been, for the lack of a better word, weird. Their anniversary check-in a few days earlier had ended on a less-than-savory note. The company basketball team, the papermaking club— those were extracurriculars. Her endeavors to develop a diversity committee were not.

That was where she believed any dreams of letting her Black Girl Flag fly free would have to remain.

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Genuine, Nella could tell, as brief as it was. Realizing that they would have to walk by her own cube to get there, Nella looked up. Through the small crack in her partition, she spotted the swath of dark locs, the flash of a brown hand.

There was another Black person on her floor. Which meant in the next few weeks, a Black person could quite possibly be sitting in the cube directly across from Nella. Breathing the same air. Helping her fend off all the Sophies of the Wagner office. Nella wanted to put a victorious fist in the air, Olympics—style. Instead, she made a mental note to text Malaika this latest Wagner update the earliest chance she got. Nella sat up straighter.

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She also noted—with reverence and not a little bit of envy—how confident the girl sounded, especially when Nella recalled her own anxiety-inducing interview with Vera. The footsteps were only inches away now. Almost instantly, Maisy and her prospective dreadlocked assistant made their way into her periphery, and the full picture came into view.

The girl had a wide, symmetrical face, and two almond-colored eyes perfectly spaced between a Lena Horne nose and a generous forehead. And her locs—every one as thick as a bubble-tea straw and longer than her arms—started out as a deep brown, then turned honey-blonde as they continued past her ears. Below that, a pair of red patent leather high-heeled ankle boots that Nella would have broken her neck just trying to get into.

Of course. A mouthful indeed. Harlem is such a great neighborhood. Its history is just so rich. Wagner held an event at the Schomburg earlier this year—February I think it was—for one of our authors. It was very well received. Nella fought back a snort. Just the mention of Williamsburg, despite its Apple Store, Whole Foods, and devastating selection of deer boutiques, caused Maisy to recoil as though someone had just asked to see the inside of her vagina.

The other black girl

Created by Grove Atlantic and Electric Literature. The following is excerpted from Zakiya Dalila Harris's debut novel, The Other Black Girlabout the tension that unfurls when two young Black women meet against the starkly white backdrop of New York City book publishing. Her essays and book reviews have appeared in Guernica and The Rumpus. She lives in Brooklyn. More Story.