Just as I walked past the signboard on which “mass communication department” was boldly written, I sighted her from afar. Oh my dear God, She looked super gorgeous in her little black dress with bits of shining diamond stones on it, red sandals and red beret, she had a captivating smile on her face which arrested my heart and my heart leapt for joy at the sight of such damsel.
She seemed to be in a hurry as her footsteps were a bit quicker than regular.
“Walk up to her” something said within me. As I looked on trying to build up enough confidence within myself, just then a guy sprang up, stopped her and they started chatting.
‘You’ve ruined everything you coward’ another voice said within my brain, that guy must be doing what you should have done. At first they talked like total strangers but the guy must be saying funny things because she giggled regularly as they talked, at last it happened, she brought out her phone and they surely did exchange pins/number (which ever one it might have been) as he typed it down on his phone simultaneously.
She left him at the spot and kept walking towards my direction.
“Doesn’t she ever stop smiling,” I thought as within myself for a brisk second as she kept smiling still and with a more captivating one, she walked up to me. “James” she woke me from my thoughts,
“oh! How u doing?”
“Am fine” she replied quickly. “Come I heard there is a lecturer coming by 2o’clock” she quickly added. I checked my watch and we still had 13 minutes more
“Ok, lets get going” I said and we both walked in silence back to her department.
“Will I be able to tell her my feelings?” I kept thinking as we walked towards our lecture hall
“You such a coward!” Tony said mocking me as I narrated what happened today,
“You will never be able to get her if you continue with your cowardice” he added, “now more seriously. You have to build up your confidence, from within you and besides I don’t know what you scared of, there’s no big deal in telling her”
“I don’t know if she would accept, I don’t also know if she has another guy, I don’t …..”
“You don’t know anything!” Tony interrupted me
“I thought you said she has never told you of any other guy in her life since both of you have been friends, so I personally don’t think there’s another guy. So kick out of it and go tell her” he advised, actually trying to help me build my confidence.
I smiled at him. I thanked God silently that I had an understanding friend like Tony, his latest advised helped boost my morale and happy was I. “I will be back shortly’, I announced and walked boldly towards the door.
I got to Juliet’s house at around 7:21 pm, her house wasn’t too far from mine, our houses were on the same street. We had to rent apartments outside the school fence as the school is yet to provide us with hostel facilities. I gave two sharp knocks on her door and she opened and smiled at sighting me. “Oh, James!” She called out with a little tone of surprise. Honestly, as close as we have been, I have never visited her at this time.
“Hope no problem?” she asked in astonishment with a broad smile on her face
“Hum, hum” (oh dam it, can’t believe am stammering again)
I was about to give a reply when suddenly my brain switched off (again).
“Hum, I came to borrow your dictionary” I finally said
“Huh” she asked, now confused “James, you have the 7th edition of oxford English dictionary which I know of very well and besides there’s a dictionary app on your phone so want do you want to lend mine for”
I stood there confused, (she as just busted my balloon)
“Am just kidding with you” I finally said coming out of my confused mindset and built up a smile to cover up my flop, and she returned the smile more beautifully.
“Hum, would you come in and join me for dinner?” she asked, I quickly thought of it and refused her gesture although I could see a bit of disappointment in her eyes as I refused her offer but she kept smiling at me. “Oh no, don’t worry about that, I just came to have a goodnight check on you ….. So goodnight” I quickly spoke out.
“Oh how sweet of you, thanks so much darling” she remarked me
“Alright, I’d be taking my leave now” I said as turned around almost immediately and started walking away.
“Goodnight” I replied without turning back
“Can’t believe you again bro” Tony commented as I narrated my visit to Juliet’s place. He had guessed that I was heading to her place due to the momentum with which I left the house with and had expected a positive result. I just stood there speechless, sat lazily on the couch.
“But well its not too bad, at least a your good night check idea was ok” He added Just then, my phone beeped twice, it was a text and it was from Juliet. I read it, smiled and passed it to Tony to read.
Tony read it out loud “Thanks for checking on me, so sweet of you. Goodnight”
“You see, she appreciates you, not like my Bola who can’t even flash me except please call me back text anytime she wants to hear my voice, you are a very lucky guy o, just sell out your cowardice and instantly you’ve got it” He said.
Bola is his girlfriend, they love each other dearly although they get themselves annoyed regularly, fights every now and then but their love for each other is inevitable they understand each other perfectly
“Good morning James, thanks for last night” Juliet greeted me as we met at the doorway into the lecture hall, “so sweet of you” she added and almost immediately, planted a light kiss on my cheek. (Whooooosh! My soul travelled through the seven glorious heavens and back.)
“Oh! It’s nothing dear’” I said with a broad smile on my face, happy with myself. “Hum Juliet” I called her back quickly as she seemed to be in a hurry to get to somewhere.
“I hope you don’t mind going out for Lunch with me today?” I asked with a worried look hoping she doesn’t decline.
“Sure, no problem,’ she said and glad was I that she did.
I quickly messaged Tony about the recent development and he replied happily and commending my effort. I quickly checked my purse just to make sure I had enough cash to handle the bill as so that everything could go according to plan. I began thinking of a standard eatery where I could take her that she would be delighted.
We all had a long day in class as lecturers kept coming to lecture us and hardly did anyone of us go out to have lunch so we decided to make it dinner.
“I shall not be around for the next three weeks, so read ahead for you to meet up with my examination standards” Mr. Kenneth announced and left the hall, he was the last lecturer of the day. We were all very happy but I seemed to be the most happiest.
I closed my book and stood up from my seat with my best smile on my face, Juliet was still sitting in her seat chatting with some friends. I approached her;
“Give me a minute James, let me quickly pack up” she said, she quickly figured it was time to go for our lunch turned dinner.
As I waited, I thought I heard one of he friends ask her where we were both going to but I didn’t hear reply. (Maybe I wasn’t listening enough)
I took her to a nice eatery; she went straight to a table while I went to order for our food. I asked her what she wanted before going to order and she said “anything you order is fine by me”.
I got 2 plates of rice, salad and beef plus a pack of fruit juice to go with it. We ate in silence.
“Uhumm, Juliet!” I called her, breaking the silence in between us.
“There’s something I have being willing to tell you,” I said and she put on an interested face placing the glass cup in hand on the table.
“Ok, go on am hearing” she said.
“Have been noticing some few things about myself lately and…” I said timidly then paused placing a question look on my face.
“Things like what, James, hope you aren’t sick?’ she asked jokingly.
I laughed “oh no, not that. Its just that I have been trying hard to tell you … what ... I. feel like... telling you” My sentence was broken but I manage and for a second there, confusion got hold of me as I was unsure how she would take it as she just kept staring at me, her smile was still there but I also look at her more boldly, just then, she dropped down her head, her elbow on the table she smiled, my face turn paled as I was unsure of how she had taken it.
“James James James” she called me still facing the table and also nodding her head simultaneously “I know what you want but am sorry”
I sank into my sit, my face clearly showed sadness and full disappointment. I felt hot tears pouring through my heart. My heart broke into a billion tiny pieces. Then she laughed silently but with her face still directed at the table, I got confused
“Is she mocking me?” I questioned myself within
“Look at you, so you didn’t know I had someone?” She asked raising her gaze to me
“No, how am I supposed to know?” I replied silently in disappointment
“Are you kidding me?” She asked with laughter in her tone “So you mean to say that you don’t know am in a relationship?” She added.
I looked on in confusion and stupidity “how could I have known, not like you’ve talked about him to me before and besides, who is he?”
“Actually, he is a good friend of yours,” she explained
“A friend of mine …?”
“Yes, he’s tall like you, smart like you, handsome and caring like you, he is just identical of you” she further said.
Tony’s name popped into my head first but it can’t definitely be him. No!, Tony is far from identical to me and besides Tony is way shorter than me, not even close… or could it be …… oh shit, no names came into my head, Tony is the only close friend I have off and on campus after Juliet.
“Could you please just tell me who he is?” I asked, curiosity has added to my disappointment and it was easily noticeable.
She sat there staring at me, looking like “like seriously, you want to know?” But she remained silent still with the same look for like minutes. She didn’t even move a millimeter and the smile was still on her face. At this, I was getting more angered and curious but I was trying really hard not to show it.
“Come, I will tell you as we walk home” she said and rose up first. I personally was getting more impatient as my curiosity had grown higher, she only smiled at me as she gestured that I should also let’s get going.
We got out of the eatery building and started walking up the street. Our street was just 3rd turning to it so we could trek but my mind was only still set on knowing who the person was. (If I could not get the prize, at least I should be allowed to know who the person was.)
We both walked slowly like real lovers in the dark street lighted up by various lights from commercial buildings.
“Hey, could you please tell me who he is?” I said breaking the silence between us, she gently held my hand in a romantic way, looked at me and said. “Why are you in a hurry better don’t kill yourself because of another guy’s woman, why do you want to know him anyway?”
The question ran through my brain, I searched, searched and searched my brain for a suitable answer t her question but I couldn’t find a suitable answer, all ideas that came to me seem dumb “I don’t know, I just feel like knowing who got your heart before mine” I replied her, expecting her to consider me and just give me the answer I needed but
“NO” she said. “Try giving me a better answer and I’d give you the information you need” she added and this statement sent a boil of anger through my veins (is she trying to put me in suspense? Well, is she is, then she is doing a good job and I was not in anyway liking it.) The waters in my body grew 100°c. I thought of removing my hands from hers in anger but it was futile. She’s got it locked in.
“Why are you getting angry?” she asked (she must have noticed from my reaction that I was.)
As we were approaching the first turning, we were to cross the road and continue straight ahead.
Just as we got to the middle of the break I was a bit in front. (I didn’t know why but must have been my anger that put me in front.) When out of nowhere a motorcycle sped past right through our middle, our hands quickly separated. He brushed past Juliet and next I knew she was unconscious on the ground. (OMG!) I tried catching up with the culprit but he sped away, I immediately took Juliet to a nearby hospital via the help of a Samaritan who offered me a lift in his car after witnessing what happened.
“Urgggh, where am I?” Juliet finally spoke the next day.
“Oh, Juliet, how you feeling now” I asked with curiosity and bit of happiness.
“Oh, James, what happened?, why am I here?’ she asked with urgency
“That’s not the question for now, you just get better and you’d be back home in no time” I quickly said to calm her down.
Luckily for us, she didn’t sustain any major injury just the shock that got her hospitalized and a few pains around but she would be there for the about 2 days for proper checks by the doctor. Just after few minutes, she drifted back into sleep and I quickly sent a silent prayer of thanks to God.
The door opened and it was Tony and the doctor who came in.
“Hey bro, how you doing?” Tony asked and I just gave a positive nod. My mood was now a bit ore relived after she spoke.
“I don’t know how I can explain bro, it just happened all of a sudden and ……..we ended up here” I explained to Tony. The doctor ran some more checks on her.
“She should be ready to go home by the time she wakes.” He announced
I was indeed happy hear those words.
“I will prescribe a few drugs that she would use for about two days and that’s all, she would be all round active’ He added and my joy added
“Thank you very much doctor” Tony said.
“You welcome” The doctor replied and left the ward.
Tony took responsibility of clearing the bill.
I and Tony decided to go home so I could refresh myself, I was reluctant at first but he persuaded me.
We returned to the hospital at about 4:00pm and she was all smiles to see us, she was discharged. The doctor had explained everything to her. I got her to her house while Tony branched at the eatery to get some food.
“Oh, thanks dear, you such a sweetheart” she thanked me with another smile and my happiness further increased as I saw her affectionate smile.
“Oh, it’s no problem, just thank God it’s nothing serious” I quickly replied. Tony didn’t keep us waiting with the food; we spent about three hours with her before leaving for our house.
That week dashed passed and like in a twinkle of an eye we were witnessing yet another Friday. I stepped into the class room early and as it happened as the previous Friday Juliet was first to greet me, “how you, big boy?” She said, probably teasing me
“Wait! Did you just call me ‘big boy’? I said and she giggled
“James” she called me as she ended her laugh. “Do you mind going out with me for dinner today?” She requested and I became like dumb struck. I didn’t know what to say, I recollected what had happen last Friday and I wasn’t even prepared for it but I also did not want to break her heart as her face showed excitement all over, her captivating smile took the words from my mouth, so I couldn’t refuse her before I knew it we were at the same eatery sitting opposite.
We had a quite dinner at first nod after consuming all we requested for.
“James, there is something I want to tell you” She silently said, breaking the silence within our midst.
“Ok, go on” I replied sitting upright with both hands on the table.
“First I want to apologize for what happened last week but I want you to know that I already have someone that I’m currently dating” she said. I sat there dumb. I was not surprised at what I was hearing as she had said it previously and all I wanted was most interested in was to know who she was he was. I tried to wait if she would burst into laughter like she did the previous or she would just say that she was joking but it didn’t come. I readjusted my sitting position, folded my hands and stared at her in anxiety but I tried not to show it.
“But” She said and paused
“But what?” I asked
“He is yet to formally ask me out?”
“Wait, you mean you dating a guy who hasn’t said he wants to date you?” I asked
“Yes” she said and smiled happily at me
All I could do was laugh; she has totally surprised and confused me.
“But Juliet isn’t that weird?” I queried
“Weird? How is it weird?”
“Weird as in, you are not even sure if he is interested in you and I can see that you must be head over heels in love with him.”
“Well you can say that again but he is that one causing the hold up.”
“Causing the hold up and you prepared to wait till he is ready to make way, huh?” I asked
“Well I am ready”
“But don’t you think its kind off unfair?”
“I mean, I asked first and you turned me down all because you want to wait in the hold up” I said and she laughed loud. I still looked on in astonishment as everything seems to be turning out.
“Look here James, I know what is holding him from asking me but believe me, I know what he feels for me is real and strong and believe me, I feel the same for him too”
“Yeah I know and I also know that you would wait till eternity when he would be ready” I said, now feeling rather uncomfortable (but well we can say am feeling jealous)
“Hahahahahahahahahahah, you can say that again.”
“Are you sure about this?”
“Sweetie am absolutely sure about this.”
“Wait a minute, what is actually the cause of his hold up?” I asked curiously
“Well, it’s nothing big just that he is a coward.” She replied and I was surprised. (Seems her crush is a coward like I am) I laughed at myself.
“Why are you laughing” She asked
“Well you know something, Tony used to call me that name and ….”
“And it’s also Tony that he is a coward” she said interrupting me and I laughed but in my thoughts, I was thinking how Tony would have told her that her crush was a coward just then, it dawn on me.
“Wait, did you just say Tony?”
“Yeah” she said confirming it
I could hear Tony’s voice in my head, I could recollect a very strong sentence he once used to describe me, “You are the only coward amongst all the friends I have.” I quickly figured where everything was heading to.
“Wait, describe this your guy for me? Specifically his look” I asked, she smiled and gave a little laugh
“Well, he is tall, handsome, loves reading and eating, talks to me a lot and so on and so on”
“What does he do?” I asked again
“He is a student”
“In which school?”
“In which department?”
“Our department” She answered happily with a smile
I took a deep breath after that, I stretched forth my hands, took hers in mine, looked deep into her eyes and I could feel goose bumps all over me.
“Juliet” I quietly called
“I love you”
“I love you too” she replied.
I could feel her holding my hands more tightly, her eyes showed extreme happiness, I could feel her coming closer to me, I followed suit, just then a guy showed up, it was one of the eatery attendants.
“Excuse me please”
“Yes” I replied him
“Please, we noticed you guys have being here for a long period now and you have finished your meal but please, we don’t mean to be rude but we would like you to step out or order for something else”
“Do you guys have champagne?” I asked without thinking, perhaps my happiness had gotten over me
“Champagne?” Juliet and the attendant both chorused
I looked like a dummy but made a funny face too the attendant as he spoke with uncertainty. I should have known they don’t sell champagne but Juliet spoke with astonishment.
“James lets get going, time is already far spent” she said taking a glance at her wrist watch
“Ok, let’s go” THE END…