"He tries to explain, elliptically, why it upset him to see Wilson with his son, and why it's a topic he wants to avoid going forward. "It's something that'll take more time for me. It ain't even about [him] playing daddy. I don't even want to think about it. That's my son forever. My son is going to be able to read this. He's going to be able to look at those pictures. He's going to be able to have a judgment for himself, and have a conversation with me man-to-man. That's my blood. He is me. I am him. We is one."
Future lives in a $2 million mansion that still smells of fresh paint, tucked away in a gated community that is itself ensconced in an upscale Atlanta suburb. The ceilings are high enough that there's a regulation-height basketball hoop on a great-room wall. It's immaculately clean, but for all the pictures of his kids on the walls, the house seems underdecorated, slightly impersonal, like he barely spends time there. We head to the house one night after another long day in the studio, which had been interrupted only by a trip to a Zegna store in an upscale mall to pick out his outfit for the Met Gala in May. As usual, his videographer and photographer follow him home, where they'll hang out until he goes to sleep.
The mansion is a 50-minute drive from Kirkwood, on Atlanta's east side, where Future grew up. He was born Nayvadius Wilburn – the last name is his mother's; his dad was in and out of his life, and wasn't even on Future's birth certificate. His childhood nickname was Meathead, because "everybody was making fun of him as a kid, saying he had a big-ass head," says Rico Wade. (Nayvadius recorded as Meathead early in his career, but soon thought better of it. Wade thinks "Future" came from a song idea the producers had, while others suggest it came from Dungeon habitués continuously calling him "the future of rap.")"
""You come to this world and you make two lives," Future tells her, raising his voice over his own music. "You got to make the most of your second life. I was born Nayvadius, but now I'm Future. Should I dwell on what Nayvadius was supposed to be? I get a chance to experience life as something else. I wasn't supposed to be like this."
"What do you look for in life," she asks, "since you have all this success?"
"I'm just looking for stability and longevity," Future tells her. "I'm really doing it for stability for my kids."
She asks what he prays for. "Don't ask for a million dollars," he says. "Ask for the stuff that'll get you a million dollars – your health, your brain, your sanity, wisdom. Prepare me for when I do get that million. Make sure I don't go crazy, make sure I help my family. You don't want to ask for a big-ass house and you burn the bitch down, and then you say, 'God, give it to me again.'"
He pauses, and for a moment allows himself to embody the voice of God. "'You begged for it,'" he says, "'and you don't know how to handle it.'" Lessons imparted, Future gets Aimee's and Vivian's numbers and heads out to his Ferrari. The studio awaits."
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