I met Tinu when I was a student at the Auchi Polytechnic. I had gone to Lagos during the second semester of my first year to visit my uncle and that was when I met her. It was the valentine season and I had hit Lagos bubbling with life and ready for any action. When I got there, I went to see Toma, a long standing friend of mine, whose parents had lost their lives the previous year in a plane crash. Toma was then working with a construction firm and was taking care of the only younger sister he had, who was a student of the Anglican Girls’ College in Abeokuta. When I met Toma, he was getting ready to go to Abeokuta on that day and he said I should go with him to see the sister, Vivian. Since I had nothing to do, I decided to go with him. Toma was always a good company. As this was the visiting day, we had no trouble in getting into the school. When we inquired about Vivian, we were told she was ill and had been rushed to the sickbay earlier that day. We were directed to the clinic by the Matron who knew Toma very well. When we went into the sick bay, Vivian was sleeping and there was a girl sitting, backing the door. She was in the blue check dress which was their compound wear. When she heard the door opening, she turned and when I saw her, I was catapulted to the land where cupid and venus reside. Before I came back, she was speaking to Toma in a cool voice that could break the molten Olumo rock. It was such that would make Whitney Houston rush to the studio for more voice training. Butterflies clearly fluttered in my tummy and I moved away from Toma for fear he would hear the distinct beat of my heart.
That girl was doing things to me. She was not the prettiest girl I had ever seen but she was cool in a kind of melancholic way which made her irresistible. She had this chocolate brown skin which had never been talented by bleaching creams. She had these sexy eyes that could make a priest shivers and forget his vow of celibacy. Her hips were set in such a way that she seemed to be smiling. When she got up, I noticed she was of average height and could not have been more than 18 but she was in full bloom, well rounded hips, full and pointed breasts, shapely legs and all that makes a woman complete.
“Bro. T, thank God you’ve come oh. Vivi is very sick. The doctor says it’s typhoid” she explained. Toma stood there tongue tied and examined his sister in shock. He was so much attached to the sister who was always a lively chatter box. I was affected too but more by the girl. The girl then gave Toma a list of drugs and things to buy. Toma decided to go into town and get the things needed and even collected some money from me. He then suggested that I stay around. I was more than glad at this suggestion. Nothing would have gladdened my heart the most than a chance to talk to that enchanting princess who was making me lose my concentration.
Immediately Toma left, I decided to chat up the girl. But I was at a loss as to how to start and this surprised me. I was known as a terror in school but standing in front of this angel, I became tongue tied. But she bailed me out by asking me to sit down and offering me the only armchair in the room but I was trying to play the perfect gentleman and allowed her to sit. I then decided to light up.
“So you are the great friend of Vivi,” I tried to make conversation.
“Yes. We have been friends right from our first day here and we also happened to live in the same area in Lagos,” She said in impeccable English.
“You mean you live in the same area? I asked, “How come I haven’t seen you before?”
“Do you stay in Lagos too?” she asked.
“Of course. But I spend most time out of Lagos but whenever I’m in town, I call to see Vivi and Toma. Their parents were quite close to mine.” We chatted about this and that for some time before I decided to put her on the line.
“So Tinu,” she had told me her name.
“What will you make of it if I say I have fallen in love with you and I find you irresistible?” If I had put a hot plate on her skin, she would not have reacted so. She was looking at me but then her eyes fell and she only looked at me through the blur of her well-trimmed eyes lashes. She had blushed deeply and looked as if she wished the ground will open and swallow her up. I took this to be a sign of victory. I pressed home my supposed advantage for over 10 minutes and was expecting her to rush into my arms. But I was disappointed for after about a minute of silence, she looked me full in the face and shook her head softly from side to side and said,
“Bayo, I have heard what you said but I need time to think about your proposal.”
“But what is there to think about?” I asked deflated.
“You see, you’ve just only met me and it will look as if…”
“As if what?” I asked when she stopped.
“Nothing, just let’s leave it at that and see what I will come up with.
“Look Tinu, in a relationship, it’s not how long you’ve known someone but how well the chemistry clicks. It’s just that I find myself falling hopelessly in love with you and a rejection by you will mean casting me off the surface of this earth. You might take my sudden approach as a shock but to carry on in life, we must learn to do some of the most shocking things.” I went on and on reeling one philosopher’s work after the other but at the end of it all, it was an emphatic no. In fact, I felt stupid but I decided to take it as a man. That actually made me resolve to get that girl for myself because I felt the tougher they come, thicker they will stick when they fall. I was about to launch another monologue attack when Toma came in. After delivering the things he bought to the Matron, we left. I was not myself all through our journey back to Lagos. Toma was quick to notice this as he commented on my moody attitude, I had to tell him but he just laughed at me.
“Boy, if you don’t want to hurt yourself, forget that babe. She is as tough as a nail at her age. I knew you will fall for her but forget her. She will only frustrate you,” But such advice made me more determined to have her for myself.
When I got back to school, I put all machinery in place, called and mailed her every month, sending cards and gifts, not minding if she replied and I also paid her visits whenever I was in Lagos. All these while, she would play the perfect friend and whenever my friends were around, she would behave in a way as not to make me lose face before my friends but when we were together, she always reminded me we were just friends. I was satisfied as it were and I had the hope she will break one day.
By the time she was getting ready to write her JAMB, I was already serving in Port Harcourt but I was always in Lagos every month end we would go out to the beach, clubs and generally enjoy ourselves but that was where it ended. I never mentioned the issue of an affair again but I was letting time take its toll. She had now gained admission into the University of Calabar where she was studying Theatre Arts. She was more mature, rounder and even prettier and more attractive than she was three years earlier. Then on her 20th birthday celebration, things took a different turn. After the party at Jaccuzi, I took her to a popular beach resort at about 2 a.m. Since I was known there, I had no trouble gaining entrance.
To Be Continued…