Mercy's life is changed forever on her seventh birthday when her father is brutally murdered. Having shared a close bond with her father, Mercy cannot rid herself of a feeling of guilt for her father's death. Rather than paying off his bookie, Mercy's father spent his money on a blowout birthday bash for his daughter, which inadverently led to his death when he couldn't pay up. The gangsters who murder her father then add insult to injury by showing up at the funeral and riddling her father's body with bullets, then lighting a match to his body. Mercy says that if she ever lays eyes on these men, she will murder them herself in order to avenge her father's death. After her father's demise, Mercy's life is in a shambles as her mother deserts her children in order to run after a man. Although Mercy's numerous siblings are sent to foster care, Mercy is taken in by her father's brother, Uncle Roland. Although Uncle Roland does his best to care for Mercy, his criminal lifestyle eventually lands Mercy in the foster care system. In the foster care system Mercy is subjected to neglect and attempted molestation. When Mercy petitions the courts for legal emancipation, she is overjoyed to earn her independence. Mercy begins working in the hotel industry and soon learns that not everyone in the world wants her to succeed. Although a ruthless co-worker manages to get Mercy fired, Mercy comes away from the experience realizing that she knows how to work a hustle. For weeks Mercy had been pocketing money from the hotel after renting out unavailable rooms. When Mercy's drug addicted sister abandons her child, Mercy steps in and takes in her young niece, Deonie. When a good looking, wealthy drug dealer named Chocolate Smooth takes an interest in Mercy, she finds her life on the upswing. Chocolate Smooth introduces Mercy to the good life...gucci bags, top of the line furniture, nice restaurants and a fancy new car. All this comes at a price as Chocolate Smooth recruits Mercy as a drug runner, running a route on I-95 from Miami to New York. As Mercy becomes embroiled in a criminal world, she is forced to come to terms with what matters in her life as she struggles to leave her dangerous world behind and start anew.
This report prepared by Sandra Calhoune