“Kiss me like you never been loved..like you never been lovedddddddd ” I sang
Twirling her in my hands, doing the waltz and dipping her sideways..
“Kiss me like you never been loved..
Am falling for your eyes, but they don’t know me yet..your head against my chest..am inlove now. Kiss me like you’ve never been loved…..” I twirl her again. Her rich laughter reaches my ears
“You are terrible singer Bruno ” she laughs
“Doesn’t matter, am still going to sing my lungs out. ..Kiss meeeeeeeee!!!” I bellowed
“You are going to ruin my ear buds” laughter fills her eyes, she shakes her head..
“I can’t help it Ama, ..and I don’t want to help it” I twirl her again, lifting her up I spun her around and let her slide slowly downwards and holds her still when her face was above mine as I look up and she looks down, smiling…
“Kiss me …” I tell her
“Do you have to even ask ?” Right before her soft lips rests against mine…
“Ouch!!” A slap behind my head
“Wakeup lover boy!!” A familiar voice interrupts my day dream
“You pouting as though someone I can’t see who is obviously invincible is about to kiss you. How is your village people, have they started playing ten-ten with your destiny??”
I turn, shaking my head, grabbing him from the shoulders and hugging him
“One that hurts and two, No. ” I pat his back twice and move away
“How are you son?”
David smiles at me, looking around..
“been good. I came asking about you and someone told me you were at the cafeteria. And I come seeing you day dreaming. You okay Bru? ”
I laugh, only David would called me Bru.
“I am fantastic..but what are you doing here. Big boys don’t come to the slums, is everything okay..?”
He nods, “Actually I was passing by and decided to stop by. Is it a crime to stop by?”
I raise both hands up, shaking my head “No oh..but, dude Erm, if it’s about the money I borrowed, I don’t have it now . But I promise I would pay you soon, just a couple of months abeg”..
David looks at me with a sad smile, maybe that’s why he came. I have been avoiding to call him for a while , what if he asked for his money… what if I couldn’t raise it in time.
“No dude. That’s not it. I know, but i am not here to collect. I know whenever you get it you would give me back. But what’s a friend for if he can’t help another when he needs it. Besides, you did a lot for me and the guys back in school, infact a whole lot when the ground you walked on was gold.. so just because it’s all grey now doesn’t me ..we that’s in a better position can’t help out every once in a while. Besides, I finished school because of you, so relax. ..”
I let out my breath, but he had more to say, the corners of his mouth was twitching..
“Actually, there is an opening at my office tho, and it’s a long shot but I don’t know if you would be able to.. ”
“Where, the bank?”
“I don’t like bank works”
“Why the hell not. It pays more than this dump you are in. Plus, the chicks are classy and of course the prestige that comes to being a banker…
Hi my name is Bruno Harrison, and I work with Central Bank of Nigeria. ” He mimicked me, I had to laugh..
“Don’t joke. It’s stressful, the targets they give and the fact that I hear you guys have to do some..Erm. .you know just to get ahead”
“Well it’s for people who wants to, if you know your way around the market, build your clientale Base and do your homework…you wouldn’t need to lay on your back and get rode just because you need to meet that target. Plus, I may have one time and the pay was fxxking beautiful. But, it’s not one of my finest moments. Infact I don’t know why you are complaining.. Bruno the Hammer, the ladies man, the original slider , you get in, get done and get gone before she realises what has happened. You used to be our mentor back then now, why you acting as though you would be bothered.?” He eyes me quizzically
“Well that’s because Bruno right here is a changed man and if I can’t merit mine on hardwork and accomplishments, I won’t be banging my way to the top. This bad boy has got some new direction and it’s summarised. . One woman! So go figure”..
He laughs at me with his eyes.. “Really, are we still hooked on that orange seller chick. I thought it was just a…Fling. Did you do her already?”
“Her name is Amara and it’s not a fling. And I don’t have to do her …but for clarity sake no. You sound like junior. She is different …and she makes me want to be different for her but most especially for me. You should try it sometime..”
“Wow!! Hmmm. You paid her fees yet? That’s what the money was for right?”
“I gave her mum, she should be all settled in school from next week I suppose ”
“Hain Bruno, you really like this girl don’t you, even without tasting the kpekus ” a slang we used in our boy days, for some reason it irritated me.
“Learn to appreciate a woman’s core David. Don’t be like Bruno of before and Junior of now. Be a better man”
I hit his shoulders
” You should meet her, you would like her”
He rubs his jaw
, ” I like this Bruno, all grown up and mature. I never thought I would see the day. But it’s good…Really proud of you son!!” He rubs my head
“What if, after all this she …doesn’t like you right back? If you say you aren’t doing all this to bring down her walls, what if she says thank you and that’s it. Doesn’t like you right back; would you be able to deal andet go? I mean you did say it has nothing to do with wanting to bang her right? So..what if?”
“I am content in being of help to another. Yes I like her and if she doesn’t like me back that would be okay too. I would be glad to have helped someone who needed it. But this is not a periquisite to be liked . Or a criteria. This is what it is..Helping. my likeness for her is secondary. But what if? I would be just fine.
He nods, changing the subject ..
“But seriously though, send me your Cv., the exams might be tricky but I can help you study for that. Give you some past questions you can work on. GMAT would suffice. You still got your Mad skills abi? Cos you would need it. So I gatto run, or if you are leaving soon I could drop you home..”
I looked at the time, 4pm. I should close in another hour but…Amara hadn’t called me,had she left, did she read the note I dropped for her? maybe I should just go home.
“Gimme a second let me grab my bag and lie about some shit to the boss, meet you at the front.”
He nods, I dash back into the office complex.
Timothy checks his time, Junior hadn’t come back..
He takes a stroll around the area,
“Where this nigga walker go?”
He cuts at a bend , walking towards the kiosk..at the junction.
“Abeg una see that my friend? Tall and dark, wearing a brown shirt and blue jeans, him pass here”?
One of the bar girls turns and looks at him, ” he was just here but he had left”
‘Please did you see the direction he went to?”
“He entered okada and went that way, but I heard him say jerubim road”
another girl answers pointing
Timothy nods walking away after mumbling a small thank you, then he stops in his tracks..
“Jerubim streets, who does he know there?” ….
Then he started to run, flagging down an okada and giving him same address
“Bruno’s house..Bruno. Amara!! Fxxk junior is going to kill me for lying” he lamented.
“Thank you Mama Amara, may God bless you eh? What would I have done if you didn’t come to help me. May God bless you. ” the lady tells her
“No its fine Mama nkechi, what are friends for..”
She was infront of her door, opening it.
“OK dear. I will see you later let me get back home. What of Amara, isn’t she home?”
She shakes her head,
” she is at a friend’s but she would be back soon.”
“OK. Great her for me oh? See you later mama amara. Let’s go Nkechi”
“You too mama nkechi, I would come and visit your people tomorrow, take care of our new baby oh,.”
“Mama, I will come later ” her mother nods.
Nkechi watches her mother leave and then turns
“Mama, which friend does Amara have aside me. Didn’t she sleep in the house? ”
“My dear, can’t Amara have another friend, must it be only you?”
Nkechi laughs, but she pressed
” No mama, am just curious. Where is she na, I am missing her. I want to show her all of my niece’s pictures. I wondered why she didn’t come around.”
“Hmmm. She wasn’t feeling too well I think and Bruno was saying wether he didn’t want her to stay home alone because. .”
She scratches her head
” I don’t remember again sef, but he was worried about her. She is at his place, but she is coming back soon. We spoke not so long ago”
Nkechi raised an eyebrow .
“At Bruno’s? The one paying her fees? Hmmm. Mama, you let Amara stay at a man’s house. What if something happens to her there?”
“Bruno is a nice boy , nothing will happen to her there. And I spoke to ama she is okay. What kind of thing would happen there eh Nkechi, ?”
“Erm.. I dunno I am just saying. ” she sounded bitter .
“Mama does Bruno like Amara?”
Amara mother straightens up from arranging her oranges in a basket.. and stares at her
“Because if he doesn’t like her he wouldn’t care abi, or even take her to keep her in his house because he is worried about her and you aren’t home.
Because he wouldn’t be paying her fees without wanting something in return abi? ”
“Nkechi, you ask to many questions. I don’t know and I have not asked and if he does what’s so bad ehn, he is a young man, has a good heart. He isn’t doing this because he wants something in return, not all men are like that. He is a nice person, God sent. But he hasn’t said anything concerning that.”
“You don’t know that mama”
“And you do, oya tell me how you know?”
“Because. ..because…men don’t do things for free it’s a give and take situation. ” Nkechi offers knowingly
“I am beginning to wonder the people you follow; is that the case with you? And I have raised my daughter to not give up her self worth for anything. So no, I refuse to believe that’s what is happening here ”
“Anyways, she doesn’t like Bruno sha, I think she calls him the devil. She seemed angry when he comes around and the last time she was very upset because you sent her to go and give him food”
Nkechi stated, nodding
Puzzled, mama Amara stares at Nkechi,
“But Amara never told me so. Are you sure? ”
“Well, like I said, Bruno has no interior motive and wether she likes him or not is not a problem. We are not talking of marriage or courtship here. Don’t you have to go home Nkechi? Your mother is waiting for you.”
She was tired she needed to rest.
“Erm…okay. Yes yes. Bye mama”
“Hmmm go well”
She stares as Nkechi leaves, wondering if she should be worried about what Nkechi said.
She remembered the way to his house, curiousity was getting the better part of her.
Didn’t Amara go like she didn’t like a Bruno so what was she doing in his house? besides she.. likes Bruno and she had told Amara that since she has no interest in him she was going to step up. So why did she agree to stay in his house.
And over night, did they become intimate.
Such a lair. !!! Can’t Amara leave Bruno for her, she didn’t want him before did she..or was she pretending all this while.
She was jealous, and she had a right to be so..
After alighting from the okada , she takes a bend and walks into the street, passing by the kiosk until she was at the gate.
Amara pauses , her heart catches in her chest, she backed away from the door, fear gripping her..
“Oh God no, not him. Not again” her body shaking , her legs going weak
” Amara? Junior fiddles with the door, finding it difficult to open it.
He could swear he heard her voice, his hands shook, his heart beating rapidly, sweat broke out on his forehead..
No, must have been hearing things.
” Amara is dead right, he must just be hearing the sounds of the wind. He stilled his hands, turned the key again but it wouldn’t bulge
“What the hell?
” this was the right key, he hadn’t changed the lock but it wouldn’t open. Or was he around
“Bruno, are you home, open up. It’s me junior. Open up Son.” He bangs on the door
Amara nearly tipped over, stepping back, she managed to stagger but not without hitting an aluminum cup by mistake, the sound was loud. .
The shadow behind the door pauses,
“Bruno? I can hear you in there. Open the damn door. Look am sorry I didn’t pick your calls nor replied. I was..Erm. . Wasnt with my phones. I forgot it and I just got back home and saw your calls.”
She wished she knew where to hide, or run to. Luckily for her the other key was in the key hole from the inside, so he couldn’t insert another key..
Junior moves from the door, going to the window and peeps in..
Amara backs away to the wall, holding her breath, her hands shaking..
“Please God. . Don’t let him see me. ” she cried.
“Bruno? Hello”! Junior peeps from the window, the curtain was half way open, no one was about, but he could swear he saw a shadow pass..
“What are you doing??” I ask, curious as to why Junior was peeping into my house
He spuns around, seeing me he smiles apologetically. ..
“Hey Bruno my man, what’s you son?”
He grabs my shoulders and gives me the shake, I wasn’t smiling. Why was he peeping into my house and what was he doing here, he should know I go to work and I don’t laze about at home.
‘What are you doing here?” I ask him,
“Hey Junior , nice to meet you too. ” He joked, I raise an eyebrow
“C’mon mehn why are you acting cold? I came to see you, and for the life of me I swear I thought you were inside and refusing to see me. I even tried opening your door with the keys under the carpet but it wouldn’t bulge like another key was inside it. Missed you men!!” He punches my shoulders ,..
“Junior always sneaky causing trouble. How long as it been? A few years already?” David had walked in through the small gate , standing behind me
“Hey hey hey, davo the iron man. My nigga! !!” They hug themselves
I had a sick feeling deep in my gut and I didn’t know why.
“How have you been son?” Junior eyes him, taking him all in.
“As you can see. Sleek AF.. and you. How is life treating you?”
“Mhen! ! We still they hustle. Where did you go to drag this my boy home eh?” He jabs me
“Office. Stopped to tell him…..”
He cuts himself..
” to say hi. Just to say hi” he smiles.
He didn’t want to mention it so that junior doesn’t stay on his neck and asking for an in into the bank too. Bruno he liked, Junior. …has always been creepy. . He didn’t want a dent to his fine reputation.
“What happened to you, been calling you and you ignored my calls. What’s up with that. Do you know if it was an emergency and I needed help.” I tell him, he laughs nervously
“Sorry dude, I was out of town for a bit but I forget my darn phone, or didn’t remember where I dropped it. Plus I ran into Timothy and we have been together for bit. Sorry . Naim make you dey frown as though cat shit for your food?”
I shake my head, someone walks through the small gate, he ran in infact,
He sees us, and then slows down, pacing, calming himself.
Why are they here??
“Hey David!!!!” He throws his self on David who had to stagger backwards to keep his balance..
David laughs patting his back..
“Timothy, what’s up Bro? ”
“Been good good. Look at you looking so fresh and so clean like the fresh prince of Bel’Air!”
“I am Will Smith, he is just my doppelganger ” we laughed. .. Junior wasn’t.
“What are you doing here Timothy? ”
“What are you doing here Junior?”
They eye themselves.
What the Fxxk was going on..
“Why, una they follow each other. Don’t tell me…You guys gay now?” He covers his mouth, eyes open in suprise
“My junior is made for the soft walls of a females core . Not some hard butt hole of a man’s. Quit saying nonsense David. You like to tease”
“And you don’t know how to take a joke”
“How do you know I was here tho..” junior turns to Timothy who avoided the question like a plague..
“Anything for the boys?” Timothy touches David’s pocket, he hits his hands away
“Nope. You guys aren’t birds, I don’t leave crumbs. ” He winked.
“Can you guys tell me what’s going on here? I come home to find Junior peeping through my house and next thing Timothy shows up out of the blue, as though knowing he would be here… what’s going on?”
I didn’t like it one bit. What if Amara was somehow indecent and was padding about with little cloths on seeing am not around, he would have seen her. I wasn’t comfortable with anyone seeing her like that..I wasn’t. Not without cloths on. For some reason I felt I had a right to “Only” .
“Erm..I came to look for you”
“–I go to work Junior”
“I came to look for you!”
“—again I go to work Timothy ”
“Something fishy is smelling ” David holds his nose; laughter in his eyes
“Quit playing David. ” I warn
“Good afternoon ” Someone says, we turn
Isn’t this Amara’s friend?
“Good afternoon ” we reply, she walks in, coming up to me, smiling
“Good afternoon Bruno, how are you?”
“I am fine…. how are you?”
“I am good . Infact I am.better”
“Nkechi is it? Won’t you say hello to me?”
Junior grabs her hands, she looks at her then redraws he smiles.
But something wasn’t right. Amara had died, Bruno seemed cold but not sad and here was Amara’s friend., definitely not sad. If anything she seemed happy, too happy infact to see Bruno or has she been the one consoling him in the “Other room”? He laughs shaking his head
“Helo junior ” she says, looking around. Amara wasn’t in sight. Just the four of them standing outside and talking. Maybe Amara had left for home already and they missed each other on the way. Even better, she could spend some time with Bruno. .
She touches her throat ..
“Oh dear lord, I am so patched, I wonder do you have water ? I need something cold to drink. The sun is so hot!!’
She fans herself.
She was a fairly pretty girl, I noticed Timothy smiling at her, but her eyes doesn’t leave my face.
I sigh nodding,
I wanted to come home and be alone, hopefully with Amara if she was still around, finding junior here wasn’t nice one bit. What was he doing here? And then Timothy unannounced too?
Later, I would find out later. I might as well give them beers since they are all here..
“Sure. You guys want anything.?”
David looks at his time, ” I could spare another five minutes. Sure. Heineken would be fine.”
He follows behind me, Nkechi runs to myside and Junior and Timothy follow me behind.
I reach my door, and try inserting my key. It wouldn’t bulge.
My heart leaped of happiness..
My Amara was still around, my face relaxed and a smile broke out …
“What is it Bruno, your door won’t open?”
“I told you it refused to”
“I am so thirsty!”
I heard them say..
But all my thought was of Amara.
I knock once, and then twice..and then twice..
She had curled herself up at the corner, praying that some sort of miracle happens, and he doesn’t find away in.
She had cried, shaking, vivid visions of that day as he had tried to force her, closing her mouth and causing her to stay without breaths before she fainted..
Of those days he had snuck up behind her or pushed her to the wall and touch her in places. ..
“Oh God help me” !! She cried.
Then the fiddling with the door stops, the shadow moves away. ..and she heard his voice
“What are you doing?”
And she knew Bruno had come. Bruno had come to save her so she waited, curled up..refusing to move. She laughed with tears running down her cheeks
She wanted to rush out and throw her arms around him, for coming home too soon. Junior wouldn’t hurt her again.
So she waited until he came to the door, noticing there were more than two people now.
Knock knock! !
Knock knock. Knock!!!
She gets up, cleaning her eyes, and rush to the door, her heart beating. .
She turns the key and opens it, stepping away from the door.
“Bruno says he would protect me. Bruno would never let anything happen to me. Bruno would keep junior away from me. Bruno would protect me.” She whispers, she opens the door wide
There is something that happens to me when I see her face, angelic, beautiful , innocent .
I can’t stop my face from breaking into a warm smile and my heart from pounding fast.
But there was something wrong with her eyes today.. they were red, watery red..
I move in towards her and without warning she falls into me, wrapping her hands around me, tight. She was shaking
My throat closed up. I hug her tightly back,..
“AMARA!!” I heard junior breath, saw him stagger back, as though he was dazed with shock, or seen a ghost
“Junior!!” Timothy and David grab onto him..
‘She ..she is..she is..dea—” he trails off
“Whats that now?”
“Amara, why are you hugging Bruno like that. Are you okay?” She sounded pissed and angry. She though she had gone home. She touches her hands and tries to unhook her from my back but Amara held on tightly,..
There was a commotion with Junior but I didn’t pay attention, I was worried.
“Amara, what’s wrong.. talk to me. Are you okay, you are shaking..”
I bend, leaning into her face, speaking softly into her ears..
She shakes her head, then nods, then shakes her head and nods…
I let her hold on to me for another couple of minutes. Then I felt her loosen up, stepping away..
I turn to face them..
“Whats wrong with him..?” I ask David and Timothy. David shrugs, Timothy looked as though he had something to say but Junior speaks..
“Erm.. Erm. . Nothing. Nothing. ”
He gathers himself. Shock making him weak. He says at Amara and at junior. So she didn’t die. She is alife. And if Bruno had come back for her that day he would have been the one who saved her. If he wasn’t beating through breaths out of him at the moment then…just maybe, innocent Amara hadn’t spilled who tried to rape her that day and has been harassing on other days.
Get your act together Junior boy.
You are still in the game.
“Nothing Bruno. . Nothing. Let go of me mehn am good. Was just being silly.” He shakes them off him, standing and adjusting his cloths, he looks at Timothy who seemed to avoid his eyes..
Later man! He promised him.
I nod, turning to Amara ” Nkechi is here, “I step away for her to see her, be right back let me get my friends something to drink.”
I touch her jaw, and go to the kitchen.
Junior wasn’t comfortable, he kept staring at Amara as she sat at the corner with her friend. He finishes his first beer and grabs the second.
“So Amara, I hope My boy here as been nice to you tho?”
David throws the question to her, she looks up, then at me and back to David. She nods.
She was pretty. No, she was beautiful. Her fair skin, her curves.. Her…innocence. . he realised why Bruno was taken with her. She was a nice choice. If he wasn’t such a nice guy he would have been jealous. But he wasn’t. .
If she was the reason why Bruno had turned a new and better leave. . Then she was good for him. He smiled at her shyness..
“Leave the girl alone, she doesn’t talk to strangers ” I tease
Why doesn’t junior stop staring at her, Timothy kept looking at him too
Why does that negative vibe I feel all of a sudden start blaring . I blink.
“He is one of my very good friends Ama, His name is David. Used to trouble me in school back then. And that’s Timothy , aka Mr Tims. The bombomclat men of Uniben”
I laughed..introducing them to her
She looks up and smiles ; but it doesn’t reach her eyes, I noticed her hands were shaking still.
“Nice to meet you”
“And I am Nkechi, Amara’s best friend.!” She butts in
Junior sneers silently .
Amara didn’t blink when he called her Ama. She would normally retort “Don’t call me Ama. Only my mother calls me that.”
It was 6 pm, we had more drinks. More talks and reminisced on the past.
Amara was quiet, too quiet.
I needed to take her home but I didn’t want to.
“Nice catching up with you fellas, but the ladies have to start leaving..”
David offers to drop them off after I mentioned where they were headed.
Nkechi jumps into the car excitedly , positioning at the front.
I open the back door for Amara, she quietly enters.
“Guy be like you go drop me off after you drop them abi?”
Junior enters, Timothy joins him..
“its almost the same route sha”
“Me too” Timothy coughs
“Erm okay” David enters into his car..
Shaking his head.
“See you later champ”
he waves me.
Amara opens the door and gets down, she comes to me, ..
“He would take me home
she links her fingers with me.
Why did that warm me up. I didn’t realise I was smiling.
Has she already started trusting me..too much.
It felt good..
‘You know what, why don’t I just follow you all then okay?”
I open the front door,
“Nkechi dear do you mind going to the back please?”
She didnt like it but her smile came up. She Steps down and goes back.
‘I hope your car can accommodate all of us though” I tell him,
She enters the front and I slid in beside her..
“Thankfully I can sacrifice all of you and get me a bugatti and a house in the Bahamas. ”
He winks starting the car and puts in on drive.
I lace my fingers to hers, the fact that she doesn’t pull away again makes me …Happy.
Twenty minutes later..
“Here we are” he turns off the dark.. Nkechi alights and comes to the front..
“Amara let’s go. ” she says
I come out , opening the door for her to step out.
“Okay Bruno bye bye. And David and Timothy and Junior”
Nkechi states. Waving
I nod, but I don’t stop staring at her.
I felt incomplete.
“Thank you,” she murmurs to David who nods ”
My pleasure. A friend of Bruno’s is my friend. ”
She stands infront of me, Nkechi was pulling her hand but she ignores.
She felt safe, all too sudden safe knowing that he was near her.
I wonder why she was staring at me that way..
“‘Take care of you Amara, I would see you soon. ”
I touch her cheeks, wishing that wishes were really made of horses and I could ride on it, into the sunset with her holding on tight behind me
She nods, turning away. .
A kiss wouldn’t have been so bad. I mused. I missed not kissing her again. I watched her walk away towards her house and Nkechi waving at me, smiling.. too smiley
I didn’t know why I stood there longer,
“Gatto go bro” David taps his horn
I sigh, looking away..
I hear her angelic voice behind me, I turn around to find her standing there. .
“Thank you” she says, before I could blink she leans in and hugs me,.
Pulling away slowly she kisses me, full on the mouth.
I smile into her mouth..then I kiss her back.
“I swear are you a mind reader”
I whispered when she pulls away.. she smiles at me, it reaches her eyes. She walks away leaving me breathless
There.. That’s the Amara I want so bad… to be happy. To be free. To be her.
“Gatto go lover boy!!” He laughs..
I slid into the car dreamily.. placing my hands to my heart.
“I swear my heart stopped beating a second ago. I died and went to heaven David”
David shakes his head laughing, he puts the car on drive.
Timothy slaps my back..
Junior sits quietly. .
Boiling in anger.. Red.
“Damn you Bruno. Damn you!!”
“Amara. .I swear the next time you aren’t getting away from me. You kissed Bruno. You must have let him bang you too. You are going give me what i want.I swear ..I swear it .!!!.
He shook with Red anger, eyeing Bruno’s head and wishing he had something sharp .
“Fxxk !!” He cursed.
#sweetness #StephanieEgberike #writes #thesweetperspectives #Wordporn-series #thismadnesscalledlove #chp.34