“So….” she started ,looking at my notebook but not me “will you be able to write my interscience note for me today? Im not feeling too well”. I staredat her in the face, she was still not looking at me, I kept my gaze fixed on her. She looked up, smiled shily and looked at my maths text book again. Haba! abi was this not the not the same babe I saw with Fash,I was begining to doubt my own intelligence. The girl was obviously hiding something, and we all know what it is. Wow! I didnt know I looked that stupid. I didnt want to ask, I honestly didnt know if I should, that would mean my expression of love to a girl that was inlove with another guy, (or another devil) to be candid, I wanted the friendship, at least its better than nothing. So after class I and Tolu were left in class, me writing her notes while she ,well, laid on a bench(those short benches in secondary school,I loved squeezing myself between two girl on those benches that were made for two,advantage of being portable,hehehe). She actually seemed sick, ywell, a little sick, cus she wasnt shivering or running a temperature or anything like that. Anyway, I still decided to dismiss her just to prove to her what a nice guy I was. “Go to your hostel,I will get this done and give you tomorrow”
“Really?” She asked sleepily “but dont you want me to keep you company?”.
“No no, please go get some rest” I said, plastering the sweetest smile to my face.
“You know what?” She says smiling and giving me a look that was so tender I thought I would cry,I felt like she was gonna propose to me
” You’re a really good friend” she said, smiling.
I didnt like that, at all, but I still smiled. I felt something stir in me, it must have been my “friend zone” detector, but I didnt know what it was then.
“Thanks” I managed to respond.
“Let me get you a Mirinda”she got up and was on her way to the tuck shop.
“No,dont stress yourself” I was forming gentle man.
“Haba let me go get something for someone who deserves it”
“I deserve your heart and soul and body as well, not just a Mirinda” I actually thought those words,I never said them. What I actually said was “okay,thanks”.
Tolu didnt only bring Mirinda, she brought a snack and,well,…Fash! Yup, the same Fash I was supposed to see today, after class!
Fash had a semi-shocked look on his face,then it metamophosed into anger in his eyes, then a deadly smile on his face, right there and then,I knew it was gonna be a really interesting evening.
Fash totally ignored me while,he and Tolu talked and tickled each other. Now I figured what he was up to,he wanted to give me a psychological punishment and not a physical one. As they played Romeo and Juliet(I choose Romeo and Juliet becuase I hoped they would both just die). See me, classic “Mugun” of Africa,writing notes for a girl who claims to be sick while she was busy smooching away with a guy who probably wanted me dead. Isnt life just hilariously pitchy. I finished the notes and jetted off,I didnt leave my mirinda and snack(I no fit carry last to that point naa). I was through with Tolu, at least as a potential suitor,she didnt know what she was missing out on,all my love and affection.
That same night, I was sleeping on my bed,when a sharp pain on my leg sprung me rudely to wake. I frowned,thinking it was one of my friends and room mates. I opened my eyes,the light was still off,I was trying to register if I was still awake or asleep,and if what woke me up was what I thought it was.
“Now who be that na!?” I asked angrily. I think my voice gave me away,if I had known what was going to happen next I would have kept my mouth shut.
The next sound I heard was a deep voice shout “Obeche!!!”. You see,that word implies two things for whoever is on the recieving end: One.you’re about to get the crap beaten out of you. Two.You are gonna be beaten by at least 4-5 guys,if you’re lucky. So before I could say my last prayer, the beating in the dark commenced. Man did I get a beating,it lasted for a few seconds, but it doesnt matter when there are 5-7 pairs of hands and other weapons like belt and bamboo canes dealing with you. All my “yeeh!-yeeh” couldnt save me. When the beating was over ,the guys rushed out of my room. I ran after them to see where they were coming from,I was about to run down the stairs behinde them when I stepped in a puddle of water and slipped,I would have tumbled over if I had not held on to the railing. By the time I got up,they were gone. I limped back to my room and found that my left shoulder was hurting,my left rib cage felt like it was cracked, my back was on fire from belt lashes, and my right ankle was bruised. I turned on the light,the room was empty, non of my 7 roommates were in. I sat on the the bed,and reached for a cup of water(a brother’s got the drink water ontop the beating he don chop). I wondered what was happening. I thought of what could have warranted my beating…my birthday was not that day, and I hadnt beaten anyone ,well,not recently. Then it dawned on me,Fash!
I was going to confront Tolu,to hell with the Mirinda, to hell with the love and Yes,to Heeeell with Fash!(though I didnt dear to say it out loud). I didnt go to class the next day. I was brutally wounded,well, maybe not brutally wounded but I was in pain man. I took a hot bath and massaged myself with chinese balm and limped around the hostel. It was a friday,so I would be better by monday and then I would deal with Tolu,as for Fash,I would report him to Samto,he was a proffessional at cursing. The dude was bad,even over the slightest thing as a card game,if anything was looking shady,without thinking he would jump on top of the table, pants down and ,he would pluck a strand of his premature pubic hair,put it on his tongue and start cursing,of course everyone would run out of the hostel,leaving only Samto and his dangling penis in the room. Yup,so Samto would curse Fash for me. As for Tolu hmmmn…I just held my peace.
I was chilling on my bed in the afternoon, when a JS1 kid came along(listen to me,a JS1 kid,as if I was much holder,at least I had started puberty,okay,I’ll just stop now) and told me there was a girl looking for me downstairs. I wasnt sure if it was any of my many class mates. I looked out and saw Tolu, well,guess the lamb came to the wolf. I put on my I-have-been-beaten-to-pulp look, and limped down the stairs. The shock expression on Tolu’s face was satisfactory enough.
“What happened?” She asked.
“Nothing serious,I’ll be fine” I said.
She gave me hug,and held me tight. I thought for a second my heart would become feather,and I would take flight,she had come because she missed my presence in class. I was feeling energised already,there was yet some hope for our love.
“So are you feeling better now?” She asked smiling.
“I feel good now” I said beaming with all my 64 teeth. Then like magic, she whipped out her large Social studies note,grinning.
“So will you be able to write my Social Studies note for me over the weekend? I would totally appreciate it”. I was dumb found,my heart sank so low, like all the way past my stomach to my butt. I opened my mouth to protest but she had hugged me and put the note in my hand and skipped off like a jolly baby monkey. As I walked up the stairs to the hostel slowly I thought of how the house master’s belt hit my butt and how I recieved serious beating bearly 2 days after, all for what?(dont you dare say Mirinda).As I walked on,I stepped into a puddle of water again and slipped AGAIN,using my hand to break my fall,I winced in pain at the aches in my shoulder and rib cage. And like a little twig,I snapped. That was it,I was through with the crap,love and girls and Fash, and notes and all. I was through. I dropped Tolu’s note on the table beside my bed,where it gathered dust over the weekend and a few palmoil stains. I gave Fash’s name to Samto(I m not sure if the curses ever actually took effect).
On monday,I gave Tolu back her note just the way she gave it to me. Well,not exactly the way she gave it to me,a few drops of oil,a litttle tear here and there and a lot of dust.
“Sorry,I dont think I can write your notes for you anymore,Im sure your hands are working just fine and you have a good hand writting”
The shocked look on her face was priceless,like those action films,or those drama episodes. Ah! In your face, traitor and heart breaker Tolu. She ranted alot of things about the fact that I should have told her if I didnt want to help her,something about the oil and something about Mirinda but I just walked out,we never really talked again after that day.
So, thats the end of my story with Tolu,the first heartbreak among many to come….pray for me as you enjoy yourself.
As told to Doyin by “Him”