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Memories [A Story Of Fading Lovers]

Author:  Ajagbe Ayodeji
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Prologue

In less than eight minutes, I was outside the humid and dark weather. The once blue sky was now filled with grey clouds. It was suffocating with the dark clouds moving as fast as they could, pressing in as if to crush you, and then pressing the point with a sudden flash of lightening and thunder rumbling like an hungry beast. Some minutes later, it was a different view entirely, the sky sprawled, dark and heavy, dreary and dreadful like a tombstone. Even though the sky seemed scary and terrifying, I saw a gigantic doorway to new opportunities, adventures and dreams. The sky, I believe is a large magical surrounding full of light and darkness, life and and death. Thinking about all of that reminded me of something Bukky told me.

It was a a stormy day just like this one and I was scared of the dark sky. I didn't think something so beautiful and breathtaking could become something so mysterious and so terrifying.

Bukky had said, "Ascending abyss, that's what the sky is. Ayodeji, the sky is a reflection of our very being and it serves as a lens for the ying and yang in all of us. The sky is a gateway to afterlife which we instinctively perceive when staring at it. The sky is mysterious, unknown and beautiful. The sky is beautiful, yet deadly. Ayodeji, it can be as bright as your wildest dreams but dark as a nightmare. It can set you free or put you in bondage that confine and leave you heavy with depression." Back then, we were just young, high school lovers, so immature and insecure. I had no idea of what she was talking about. But now that I think of it, I wonder what she meant by 'the ying and the yang in all of us.' Till now, it still doesn't make sense to me.
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Chapter One

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"You guys are making me sick to be very honest." Tumininu said placing her fork on her plate.

I was having lunch with Bukky and Tumininu. Bukky and I seemed more interested in feeding each other than ourselves. Bukky had just given me a bit of her food and that's the sixth time we've done that since we sat down eight minutes ago. I guess that happens when you're in love.

"Oh please Tumininu," Bukky said while taking a bite from her doughnut snack.

"I've seen your public display of affection and it's weak compared to those I've seen so far." Tumininu said taking a bite from her turkey sandwich.

Well, I couldn't argue with Tumininu on that one, but for some reasons best known to me, feeding someone seemed more intimate and romantic than making out. But I didn't want to admit she was right so I started eating my doughnut again.

"Besides, Ayodeji" she paused for a while and then continued "I had always thought you're one unromantic guy."

"Yeah I am, but I don't pass my boundaries." I reminded her.

"I've had a thing with enough guys to know that whatever expectations you have before going into a relationship are probably too high and you are bound to be disappointed and even ashamed of yourself most times. I've also come to realise that most guys of my age bracket are way more interested to know what's inside my bra rather than what's inside my heart. Most, not all." Tumininu stressed the last word. "And it would be a mission to find one hopefully without meeting sons of Pharaoh first." She cleared her throat seeming quite lost in the girl talk. Not that I could blame her but I was quite uncomfortable myself.
"So, how did you guys get to meet?"

"We met....." My voice trailed off as my hand brushed through my neatly packed Afro hairstyle searching for the right word to use. "Normally."

It was quite a simple answer but far from the truth, because I knew if I told Tumininu the truth, the discussion wouldn't end anytime soon. She will ask more and more questions but I still felt the urge to tell her the truth.

"You met normally? Sounds ridiculous."

Bukky offered me another bite from her doughnut, filling up the blank space. "Glorious?"

Bukky and Tumininu exchanged glance and started laughing. It then occured to me that Bukky might have told her about us.

"So do you care to tell me how glorious the day you met was?" She asked, packing her hair in the usual doughnut style.

"We met..... in high school, when we were still in Nigeria." I finally admitted biting my index finger in an attempt to cut the long fingernail. I waited for her to express a look of relief but instead, it was a look of curiosity.

"You met in high school, so tell me about how it all began." Tumininu said expressing a curious look.

Bukky reached over and shrugged her shoulders trying to join the discussion.

I glanced over her shoulder, avoiding her cute blue eyes. "Uhm, you didn't know? I assumed Bukky told you about everything since you are her roommate."

"How will I tell her about us when she didn't even ask me?" Bukky asked rhetorically.

I looked back at her and saw her shaking her head.

"No, I didn't mention anything about us to Tumininu." Bukky said gently as she pulled out her phone.

"So was it fun?" Tumininu asked as she cleared her throat again.

Bukky stopped chatting for a while and punched Tumininu playfully on the shoulder "I can't believe you're asking Ayodeji that."

"Oh, come on Bukky." I said turning her face so I could kiss her on the forehead. "It's not as bad as you think. We've even discussed it in class before the...." I paused glancing over at Tumininu. Her face had turned pink. Lecturer was in.

I could see the lovesick in Tumininu's eyes. It was boldly written there but I guess it could have been worse.

I smiled gracefully at Tumininu before I continued my story.

"This is going to sound romantic, but there's going to be a twist and you'll find that it wasn't necessarily romantic.

So…

We met in high school when we were in SS2. I actually hardly spoke a word to her then because I had pretty low self esteem and I was pretty shy, especially around girls. I was the best writer in school then and I made my stories readily available on the school notice board and that's where I got the recognition from. I had a friend Tella who was taller, funnier, more muscular, and better looking than me and he always do the talking.

She ended up asking for his number. So they could chat on WhatsApp, I asked her if she wanted mine as well which she accepted.

We started texting each other one night, and pretty much every day after that. We just kind of clicked, and we got along very well. After only about 2 or 3 weeks, I found out she's a lover of art, so we started writing poems together.

After about four month, I was wondering if I should ask her to be my girlfriend or not, and actually my friend I mentioned earlier, Tella said I should go ahead and do so. So I did and she accepted my proposal almost instantly." I concluded my story and pressed Bukky's palm into mine.

"And how did both of you get to California?" Tumininu quizzed again.

"We applied for a scholarship together when we were in SS3 and funny enough, both of us were picked by the scholarship board. I had the highest score in Science class while Ayodeji had the highest score in Art class." Bukky added and blushed slightly.

"Wow, that's a wonderful story of love." Tumininu concluded.

"Yeah," I muttered to myself as I searched my bag looking for the key to my locker. I reminded myself perhaps for the one hundredth time to attach the key to the key holder instead of just having it loose in my bag. I had way too much books in my bag and there was no way I could ask for extra key from the hostel captain.

After we were done having lunch, I walked Bukky and Tumininu back to their hostel before beginning the long way to my hostel.

                                   ★

I turned the door knob pulling it as if that will help open the locker. Not to mention, I'm sure Carl, my roommate will be more mad at me for misplacing the key to our locker.

"You are not trying to break in, are you?" A female voice asked.

I turned my head sideways to see who had just spoken. My eyes met a light skinned girl and I let go of the door knob.

"No, I'm just looking for my keys and....." I said trying to move close to her panicking.

"Well that's good, cos I'd have reported you if you're doing otherwise." 

I laughed and looked her over, she had almost the same height as me with a slender waist, whistling down from her bust, as smoothly as the water from a waterfall, the bends of her hips, so voluptuous that you feel as if it has been carved out by the creator who sculpted out of care and feel just like a potter sculpts a vessel from raw clay. The bends of her hips and the fullness of her bosom, reminiscent of the idea of perfection. As she was fixing her hair, with those long slender arms, her navel naked for the world to view, her sari draped so holistically, that the carves of her body become prominent by the red and black sari which complements her lucid cream based color. The glistening skin and the color of cream, almost that of milk chocolate, infused with a hint of cocoa, strikingly balancing the redness of her sari, was enough to give heart aches to any of the passers by, as it surely caused my heart to skip a few beats. 

Now I was out of my panic mode and I realized that she's kind of cute. 

"I'm Sophia by the way. I am also in your department, English and Literary Studies and I live in the room adjacent yours." She said gesturing towards the direction of her room.

"I'm Ayodeji." I said 

"You've got a nice name. So, what are you doing here? I mean the rest of the guys are having their training on the field." Sophia added.

"Thanks. Yes, I'm just tryna open this damn locker... Misplaced my key" I said.

"Ohh... Sorry about that, I think I like you, you should know." Sophia with her gaze never leaving mine.

"Huh? You like me? I don't understand. I don't even know you." I protested 

"Uhm... I see you a lot in class, the way you answer questions, the way you ask brilliant questions and the things you write about. You're really bright and I like that about you. I'm impressed and I think we should be friends." Sophia blushed

"Oh, thanks for that. So, what type of friendship are you looking at here?" I teased her

"Something close, something not so close. Depending on how much you're ready to go from this. What's just very  necessary is that I learn from you and you from me. I just have to be noticeable in the department also and brighter." Sophia winked as she rested her back on the locker.

"Okay, I will think about it." I concluded.

"You're really cute, I must admit." She said nodding at me. "I'll be seeing you around Ayodeji!" She smiled and waved.

I opened the door to my room and walked in.

... 
[Story continues next week, watch out]


Memories [A Story Of Fading Lovers]  

© 2021 Ajagbe Ayodeji. All Rights Reserved

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