Tag Archives: attraction

Omoshalewa – Episode 2

“An important visitor! Well, let’s go see who this important visitor is.” Shalewa said to herself as she walked towards her bathroom suite.

As warm water from the shower coursed down her back, she remembered how she had fallen in love with one of her neighbours when she was fifteen. He was just a year older than her. They were both young and naïve but they had loved each other. The park opposite their houses was their favourite spot. They would take walks round it holding hands and gisting. They would sit in the park and talk for hours loosing track of time. They talked about school, their parents, movies and their dreams of the future. They never ran out of what to talk about. They were in different secondary schools as boarding students but that did not deter their friendship. They exchanged letters while they were in school and looked forward to every break in the school session. Everyone in the neighborhood knew where one was, the other had to be there.

Episode 2

One afternoon during the mid-term break of their second year in the senior class, Akin Savage had come running to the park in tears. He looked flustered and was struggling to speak. Shalewa had been sitting down waiting for him. She grabbed him, shaking him as if he were a child that had been caught misbehaving. “What is it? Why are you crying?”

“My…my…my mum says I have to continue my education abroad.” He stammered as he choked on his words.

“Abroad? But why? Your school is one of the best in the country. Why do they want you to go abroad?” Shalewa had asked.

“She says that’s what my dad wants. I don’t know why. I have tried to explain to her that I don’t want to go but she would not listen. She says it has been concluded and that I am leaving in two days.”

“Does that mean I won’t see you again?” Shalewa asked; tears streaming down her cheeks.

“I don’t know.” He answered fidgeting. “Why does my dad want to separate us? Do you think he doesn’t want us to be together?”

Shalewa who was already sobbing could not utter a word. Could it be true that Akin’s dad was trying to separate them? His dad had seen them together on many occasions. Both families were friends and there had never been a complaint from Akin’s father. The two families were regarded as the closest in the neighbourhood. Akin’s father was very wealthy and had sent his son to one of the best schools in the country while Shalewa’s father on the other hand, even though not as wealthy as Akin’s father had prospects of being so. He was a hardworking man with very sharp business instincts.

For a while, both of them sat down locked in each other’s embrace as they sobbed. They could not understand the reason for the sudden movement and it looked like no one was going to give an explanation for it. They tried to talk about what they would do in each other’s absence but it only kept the tears flowing. Sitting right there in the park, they were oblivious to their environment. They just wanted to spend this moment together and cherish it. They promised each other that day to do everything they could to keep in touch and in that moment of sadness; they shared their first kiss. It had been magical even though grief hovered around them. Shalewa had laid her head on Akin’s shoulders and they sat there in silence till the sun went down.

For the next two days, as if on cue, they both avoided the park. Funke had asked her daughter on one occasion. “Shalewa, are you okay? You have not been eating well. Are you worried about something?”

Shalewa had not been sure whether to tell her mum. On second thoughts, she felt she should; maybe her mum could help her convince the Savages not to send their son abroad.

“Mum, could you and dad discuss something with Akin’s dad?” She asked fidgeting with her fingers.

“Okay, and what would that be?” Funke asked.

Shalewa was quiet and unable to look at her mother in the face. She had no idea how to present the issue to her mother.

Funke sensing that her daughter was a little uneasy, pulled her daughter into her arms. “Omoshalewa mi. I’m your mother and you can talk to me. What do you want us to discuss with Akin’s father?”

Shalewa gulped, trying hard to control the tears that were already spilling down her cheeks. “They are sending him away, mum.”

“Sending him away? What do you mean?” Funke asked searching her daughter’s face.

“Mummy, Akin is going abroad. His father doesn’t want him to see me again.” She cried.

All of a sudden, reality hit Funke. The Savages had told them about their intention to send their son to the United States to continue his education but both parents had obviously underestimated the friendship between their kids. Being the only children of both parents, they had assumed that the lack of siblings had attracted them to each other and believed that was the basis for their friendship. They never thought there was more to the walks in the park and the long hours of chatting.

“Hmm…Omoshalewa mi.” Funke said; thinking of how best to explain to her daughter without hurting her feelings. “Akin’s father loves you like his own so it is not possible that he would hurt you intentionally. It’s just that he wants Akin to continue his education abroad so that when he returns to the country, he has better prospects of getting an excellent job.”

“But won’t he get a good job here if he studies in the country?” Shalewa asked trying to figure out what her mother was saying. All she wanted was for her mother to tell Akin’s father not to send his son abroad.

“Omoshalewa…” Funke stressed. “Akin’s parents have made a decision for their only child, who am I to question it?”

“Mum…I…I…” She burst out in uncontrollable tears before she could tell her mum she loved him. Did they realize what they were doing to her? They were tearing her heart apart. She knew she liked Akin a lot but right now she realized she didn’t just like him. She loved him with every piece of her heart.

Shalewa wasn’t the only one having a difficult time; Akin was as well. However, he refused to discuss anything with his parents. They had told him their decision was final so there was no point flogging the issue. He wondered what Shalewa must be going through. He knew she wasn’t strong enough to handle the emotional trauma. He wished he could change the situation but there was nothing he could do. Tomorrow, he would leave the country for the United States.

********

As Shalewa stepped out of the shower, she said, “It’s been 15 years, Akin and I still haven’t found someone to replace the love I had for you.” She sighed as she took out a gown from her closet, wore it and went downstairs to meet her mum.

“Our guest would be coming in at 1.00p.m. I have everything all set for an early lunch. Your dad is in the study as usual.” Funke said looking up from the fashion magazine she was flipping through.

Shalewa looked towards the dining table and gasped. “Mum, who is this guest we are expecting? I can see your finest dishes all set on the table.”

“A very important guest.” She answered without looking up from the magazine.

“He or she must have a name, right? So will you tell me who this person is?” She asked flopping on the couch beside her mum.

“Omoshalewa, you don’t flop on a couch. You take a seat like a lady.” Funke scolded as she dropped the magazine on the side stool next to her.

“Mum…..” Shalewa started to say but Funke raised her hand as if to warn her daughter.

“Okay, I’m sorry.” She said sitting up.

“It is meant to be a surprise but I’ll tell you as long as you don’t squeal to your dad.”

Shalewa put her fingers to her lips making a zipped sign. She had learnt over the years to trust her mum with any issue. Her mum was her confidant and they had stayed close for years sharing secrets and emotional upheavals.

“Do you remember Tunde Williams, the first son of Mr. Williams, your father’s old time friend?”

Shalewa thought for a while. “Tunde Williams? The name rings a bell but I don’t think I remember.”

“I’m sure you would when you meet him. He arrived from South Africa two weeks ago after he lost his father. A business deal took him to your dad’s office and your dad was delighted to see him again after so many years.”

“Hmm…and now he’s coming over for lunch with dad?” Shalewa asked looking disinterested as she picked up the magazine her mum had initially dropped on the side stool.

“No, darling. He’s coming to have lunch with you; well, with us all.”

“With me?” Shalewa questioned as she dropped the magazine. “I don’t even think I remember who this Tunde guy is; so why would he want to have lunch with me?”

“I think he likes you.” Her mum said smiling and pulling her cheeks.

“Mum!” Shalewa looked at her mother curiously. “How can he like me when he hasn’t even met me?”

“Who says he hasn’t met you. He and his dad visited our home regularly years ago. He asked after you from your dad and he was invited to come over for lunch.”

“On my behalf when….” The chime from the doorbell broke their conversation.

Funke checked her watch and gasped. “It’s 1.00pm already. Wow, just right on time. He must be the one at the door. Could you get the door, darling while I go in to inform your dad? And remember to be at your best behaviour.” She said smiling and winking at her daughter.

“Yes, mum.” Shalewa said as she stood up and straightened her gown. Whoever this guy was, must have made an impression on her parents. The name did ring a bell but she couldn’t remember who he was. Her parents were obviously trying to match-make her from all indications. With the amount of broken relationships in her kitty, it did not come as a surprise to her.

Would he end up as all the others? Well, she was going to find out.

——-

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Second Chances – Episode 3

It is 6pm. Wale picks Kunbi from work as usual. She is reading a novel on her tablet while Wale drives.

“I can see you and Sola are getting real close. What are you guys up to?” He asks teasing.

“How do you mean?”

“Are you calling it quits with Ola?”

“No. I am not. Sola and I are just friends. No strings attached”. She responds trying to concentrate on her novel.

He casts her a quick glance. “But you go for lunch breaks together every day and….

“Wales, I said we are just friends”. She cuts him short.

“Well, I wouldn’t mind if both of you became serious with your friendship”.

“Meaning?”

“You know, a relationship?” He shrugs.

She drops her tablet on her laps and looks at him in annoyance. “Wales, drop the idea because it is not happening”.

“Noted. But I’m dead serious about what I just said. You know if you guys….

“Wale, can you please drop this issue. I really do not want to argue with you today. Don’t you get it?” She says irritated.

Could he read her mind? She always looked forward to her lunch dates with Sola. Every time she saw him, she felt butterflies in her stomach. His smile always made her melt and feel weak in the knees. But she was angry that he was out of her reach. If only, she could turn back the hands of time.

Wale looks at her with surprise. “Kunbi, are you upset already? You call me “Wale” only when you are mad at me…..

She gives him an angry stare.

“Okay, I’m sorry. I won’t bring this up again. I know how much you love your boyfriend”. He rolls his eyes as he says it. “Apology accepted?

“You ain’t sober about it”. She says frowning.

“Fine”. He says in absolute surrender.  “I’m sorry”. He takes one of her hands in his.

“Apology accepted”.

“Then give me a smile”. He smiles at her.

“Leave me alone, Wales”. She says faking a smile.

“Yeah, that’s better. Why should my favourite cousin be upset with me?”

She picks up her tablet to continue reading while Wale slots in a music CD and begins humming a familiar song.

****************************************************************************************

It is another lunch break and Sola and Kunbi are having lunch at a restaurant. They chat and laugh oblivious to others around them. They have eyes only for each other and could actually be considered a couple.

“What do women want in a man? Sola asks suddenly serious.

“Women have different needs from time to time. But what every woman wants is a man who is not selfish; a loving, caring and attentive man. Most importantly, a man who is committed”.

“Every woman?”

“Yes. Every woman demands attention. She wants to be assured that she’s loved and needs a man who is committed to her”.

“Really?”

“Yeah. C’mon, spit it out. Who’s she?” She hits him playfully.

“It’s a secret”. He says as he grins from ear to ear.

“What do you mean? I can’t be told secrets or what?” She says with a frown on her face.

“No, no. that’s not what I mean. Okay, I’ll tell you”.

“Better”. She answers; her frown turning into a victorious smile.

“I have a colleague at work. We just say “hello” and “good morning” to each other. I like her a lot but haven’t had the guts to say anything beyond our “hellos”.

“Go a step further when next you talk to her”.

“How?”

“Start a conversation”.

“Okay”. He says as he puts his hand under his chin.

“You were able to talk to me. So why are you finding it difficult starting a conversation with her?”

“Your case is quite different. With you, I guess I just knew what I wanted and it is to go beyond being “friends without benefits”, but you have put me in a box”. He sighs.

2nd Chances 3b

“We are discussing about your colleague”.

“I know, Kunbi”. He takes a deep breath. “I gave my word and I don’t break my promises”.

“I am glad you don’t”. She says looking away. If only she could be the other lady. She could no longer deny her feelings for him but she had given her heart to Ola and she was not going to let him down. He did not deserve it”.

“Kunbi….Kunbi” He says breaking into her thoughts.

“Yes”. She smiles and throws every thought out the window.

“What’s on your mind?” He asks.

“Are you in love with her?” She asks unsure of what his answer would be as she holds her breath waiting for his response.

“Well, I….em….actually. I can’t really say. Anytime I see her, my heart skips a beat”.

She laughs. “That is what we call L-O-V-E, love”.

“But how do I tell her that I’m in love with her when we haven’t even had a proper conversation. There has been no opportunity to sit down and talk at length the way you and I do”.

“Make out time. Probably a weekend away from the prying eyes of your colleagues. Then show your love through your actions”.

“Actions?”

“Yeah. Actions speak louder than words. Ever heard of that?” She says laughing. “C’mon Sola, don’t tell me you have not played this game before. Tall, good looking guy like you? No way”.

He shrugs. “Unfortunately, I can’t say I have had any serious relationship in the past. I keep being close friends with all the ladies but they end up getting married to someone else”.

“Why?” Kunbi asks concern written on her face.

“Sincerely, I think I’m at fault. I haven’t been able to commit to anyone. I just get scared and develop cold feet when I think of the commitment a relationship demands”.

“You are scared of commitment? Wow!” She was getting to know him better and was shocked to hear that.

Why would he be so good-looking with perfect dentition and have all the boxes checked to sweep her off her feet and be scared of commitment?

She sighs. “Okay. Let’s play it this way. One, start by giving her attention. Be interested not just in her well-being but in everything that concerns her. Since you work in the same organization, show concern about her job. Help out if you are in a position to. The bottom line is to show concern”.

“Should I get a lecture note?”

“You don’t talk in my class” She answers smiling.

He laughs. “My apologies ma’am”.

“Two, shower her with gifts. Start with little gifts that don’t mean any harm. A lunch date is a perfect example, a simple gift on her birthday or something like that”.

“Hmm…..Okay? Is that all?” He asks nodding.

“Three, send her cards, flowers, you know, be romantic.

He gasps. “Romantic?

“Yeah…..She stresses. “Romantic with a big R”.

“Hmmm….this lecture is sure interesting”.

“That way, you can be sure to win her love”. She says conclusively.

“So when do I proclaim my love for her?”

“Relax, lover boy. With all I have mentioned, she’ll already know what you are up to and then, you can do your proclaiming”. She responds with a smile.

“Are you sure?”

“Of course”. She laughs. “The three steps you took ahead would have wet the ground for you to step on”.

“Thanks a lot, Kunbi. I appreciate this”. He says as he stretches his hands across the table to hold her hands.

She is unable to look at him as she tries to stop herself from shaking.

“Oh, c’mon. What are we friends for if we can’t help ourselves? I wish you good luck and success”. She says as she removes her hands from his and refuses to make eye contact.

“You’ll be the first to know the outcome”.

“I’ll appreciate that”. She isn’t sure if she means that but all the same, she wants to be unselfish. She looks at her wristwatch. “My goodness, my lunch break is gone already”.

Sola looks at his wrist watch as well. “Let’s get going”.

———-

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