Kickoff written by VagabondLee

Walking Principles

Three different worlds one one common denominator

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"Good morning Mother and Father." Corliss beams, getting their attention.

"Good morning Corliss." Branson says in a booming yet elegant non-rhotic northern Mississippi accent, lowering his newspaper.

"Good morning darling," Faith says warmly in a Western Virginia accent before some sausage in her mouth.

"How are you guys this morning?" Corliss asks going to sit at the tail of the table.

"Excited, it's your first day of your senior year of high school!" Faith beams clasping her hands together.

"It's also the first day of the rest of your life. What you've accomplished from your sophomore year until now will count greatly against you moving forward. You also need to start thinking about your academic future. Colleges have been scouting your potential for the past two years. Do you know what you want to do with your life, Corliss?"

Corliss' lips curve into a big smile.

"I want to own a hotel chain. I love hospitality and what better way to provide that than through a
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hotel. I have my eyes set on Faun Forest Business School." Corliss explains while placing her napkin in her lap.

Faith looks on proudly while Branson looks apprehensive.

"Why don't you do something more practical like becoming a doctor, lawyer, or pediatrician?"

"Those occupations are typical, and I want to do something that I want to do. Besides I'm African American which is already a strike against me in this white-dominated world. I'm already fighting for a seat at the elite table, I don't need or want to add to that unnecessarily." Corliss explains before biting into her biscuit.

"Your mother and I have fought for our seats as well as yours at the elite table. You don't know the first thing about fighting for anything. If anything, you're living a privileged life and you need to seize the opportunities that you're being afforded."

Corliss sighs heavily looking into her father's eyes. The remainder of breakfast is eaten in silence. When Corliss finishes her food, their
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maid Georgia Conwell enters the dining room. Georgia is fifty-one years old. She has fair skin with shoulder-length black hair that's pulled back into a bun. On the edges of her head are shades of gray. Her green eyes are filled with warmth and happiness. She is wearing a black short-sleeve button-down dress, a white apron, and black dress shoes.

"Georgia, we're done with breakfast. You can clear the table now." Branson says before closing his newspaper and standing up.

"Right away Mr. Amberwood," Georgia says formally in a West Tennessee accent.

Corliss is outside sitting in her car. Corliss' car is a 1960 champagne gold coupe with chrome trim, chrome handles, and a white leather roof. The interior consists of a chocolate brown dashboard, a radio system, a chrome column shifter, and white leather bench-style seats. Corliss buckles up and starts the engine. She looks at her father's house before putting the car in drive and pulling off.

It's thirty-five minutes to seven and Elissia
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Lonehard is returning to her townhouse community from her morning jog with her leashed two dogs, Gray and Allison. Elissia is sixteen years old with fair skin and thick shoulder-length wavy ginger hair. Her hair is currently pulled back into a low ponytail. She is wearing a gray tracksuit with white tennis shoes. Her first dog Gray is an American Pit Bull Terrier. He has a muscular build, gray coat, red nose, and ice-blue eyes. Her second dog Allison, nicknamed Ally, is a Siberian Husky. Ally has white and red fur, a black nose, and heterochromia. Her right iris is blue while her left is amber.

"That was a good run guys, now let's get you fed." Elissia pants in a northeast Georgia accent before unlocking the front door.

Upon entering the foyer, Elissia's female Bengal cat named Countess approaches the trio. Elissia's townhouse has two bedrooms and two full bathrooms. Upon entering her townhouse Elissia closes the door and removes Gray's and Ally's leashes. The two dogs
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