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Friday, October 21, 2016

I see things others don't continuation 4 and 5

I SEE THINGS OTHERS DONT
Episode 4 and 5
“Okay, what was that all about?” Nina asked as soon as we
entered my apartment. I was a bit hurt by the question. I
was hoping to get a wow from her after taking a glance at my
place. 2bedroom flat with a sitting room and a small but
extremely neat kitchen at the side. I had arranged the
parlour with a black and green theme; two black “modern
design” chairs with lemon green headrests, one chair could
be extended to a sofa for better relaxation, lemon colored
rug with black frilled edges and two plastic green plants in
black Chinese vases. My LED TV hung between the plants like
a shrine to technology and my sound system levitated at the
sides with patch on nails attaching them to the wall. Wall
itself was painted to match the lemon on the chairs and
finishing touches from the window blinds which were almost
immaculately white with just a hint of green. The previous
landlady had suggested the colours to me and I had liked
the final outcome. I still caught her once in a while looking in
and smiling at her “handiwork” .
I was also worried with Nina’s question because try as i
might I couldn’t come up with a convincing lie. I had played
certain scenarios in my head but they all kept coming up
porous. Every once in a while I’d think of telling her the truth
but another part me would be like “eh? You dey craze? You
don see madman way get girlfriend before??” So I swept that
thought away and kept on thinking of what to say. I had
hoped she would forget the matter on our way to Ikeja.
“Well?” Nina’s voice cut through my thoughts like a knife. ” I
turned and saw her standing arms akimbo on her lovely
hour glass hips. She wore a blue hugging sleveless top and
black jeans. During the service she had covered her top with
a yellow jacket. She must have removed it when we came
into the compound. It was getting to evening, the time being
4pm but the weather was still a little hot.
I feasted my eyes on her beauty for a while longer before
answering. I tried to look as sad as possible.
“Its a personal thing.”
“Like what?” She responded. “It didn’t look like you were the
one who needed help rather it was as if you gave the help. I
saw the way you and the pastor stayed for a while and the
look of gratitude in his eyes when he finally let you go.”
“Werent you supposed to be closing your eyes?” I asked
accusingly.
She giggled. “Bros, na your eyes wide pass during prayers
oh, or you think I didn’t see you? It was as if you were even
seeing things that others could not see sef.”
I froze. Did she know? Had I let my secret slip somehow? My
heart started pounding in my chest.
She saw the look on my face and mistook shock for
embarrassment. She laughed.
“Okay, okay, never mind. Maybe one day you’ll tell me. But
hope u are not into rituals oh! This one your room is looking
tech like this…”
I laughed then, very relieved. She had agreed to let sleeping
dogs lie, for now anyway. I showed her around the place
and we settled down in the parlour to complete my
assignment. I had offered her a bottle of cognac from my
mini bar, she had politely refused and took some orange
juice instead. Gradually the time fizzled by and it was 6pm.
PHCN had restored power an hour earlier and I had put on
the air conditioning but Nina hadn’t bothered to wear her
jacket back. Not that I was complaining. her lovely arms
glistened under my room light and the fragrance from her
hair when we put our heads together was awesome. We
hadn’t really spent so much time alone together and I was
desperate to make a move that would take me out of the
friend zone.
We sat together on the sofa I had pulled out, almost
rounding up the papers.
“What would you like for dinner?”
She looked up, a little surprised.
“Its just six o clock, chuks. I’m not really hungry.”
“Well, its good I start early so you’ll have something to eat
by the time you do get hungry, yeah?”
She paused. I had no idea what she was thinking about.I
mean, just because I could see beyond normal didn’t mean I
could read people’s minds though at that time I was dying to
know her thoughts. She thought a whole longer then said,
“not tonight.”
“Not tonight?” I was a bit puzzled. “I can’t cook you dinner
tonight?”
“Yes.” She said, looking up at me. “Its my first time coming
to your place and I don’t think it would be proper -to have
dinner now.”
What the hell were we talking about?
I shrugged and sat down. The comfortable silence we had
been enjoying was now an awkward one. We were still
sitting close though and I could smell her perfume. Suddenly
I felt very very “hungry”. I needed to do something, anything
to get my mind off this situation. Where was a manifestation
when you needed one?
“How did you get this scar?” She asked pointing at my wrist. I
looked at it, a scar I had gotten when trying to jump a barb
wire fence in my primary school days. I smiled and told her.
“Hmmn. I’ve got one too” she said, showing me a scar on
her forearm. “Immunization needle went the wrong way,
and formed an abscess”.
I touched her scar. The current from her skin sent sshivers
down my spine. She didn’t say anything but watched as I
drew my fingers back and forth along her scar. Somehow my
fingers went down to her elbow and back up. She gave a sigh
and I looked into her eyes. She still didn’t say anything
though she didn’t look down either. My heart was now
thumping away like I was running a 100yard dash with usain
bolt. I drew her to me slowly and we kissed. Her lips were
soft, smooth, velvety. I felt her go warm as we embraced
and her pulse seem to be at tandem with mine. I was about
relaxing when I opened my eyes and saw my previous
landlady.
Nina felt me stiffen and opened he r eyes. She saw the look
on my face.
“What?” She asked.
“Nothing, I said and tried to draw her back to me but the
moment had passed. She stood up hurriedly and put on her
jacket. Landlady left immediately though the damage had
already been done. Nina picked up her handbag and
straightened her clothes.
“Its just one more page, I’m sure you can finish up.” She
said. I just looked at her, not knowing weather to cry or
complain or plead or…
She had reached the door when I grabbed her hand and
drew her again to me. She let me kiss her and I could have
sworn her knees buckled but again she drew away at the last
minute, smiled and said goodbye and was out the door.
“Hey, lemme escort you at least na,” I yelled moving out
after her. She laughed and came back, dragged me by the
hand to the junction where a bike man was waiting.
“Bus stop, seventy naira,” he declared, and she entered the
bike. I offered to pay but she politely refused. Just before
the bike man zoomed off I bent close to her ears and
whispered
“If I offended you in anyway…”
“No,no…” She smiled, “its just…I’m…”
“You aren’t married are you?!” I said.
“No” she said laughing, ‘its just, can we talk about it
tomorrow?”
“Now you are behaving weird”.
She laughed again and the bike man zoomed off .
I walked back to my apartment and sat down at the front
entrance. Previous landlady came up and sat down beside
me.
“I’m sorry.” She said.
“Yeah, it’s ok I guess.” I replied.
“I spoilt the moment.”
“Well, yes you kind of did.” I replied.
She paused for a while.
“You should get a car, you know” she said again. “That way,
you could have dropped her off. Why don’t you get one? Its
not as if you can’t afford it.”
“Don’t like cars.” I said “what did you want?”
“I wanted to let you know I’ll be leaving permanently soon. I
can see the bright tunnel clearly now and my daughter has
gone to reconcile with her father. Soon my soul will be at
rest. I also wanted to thank you for being a friend during
these lonely times.
“You’re welcome.” I said.
She patted me on the shoulder and smiled. ” Nice lady” she
said. “Lovely wings”
“Yes ma, they are.” I said, smiling. And then she
disappeared.
I heard that previous landlady was a mother to all around
her when she was alive. I don’t normally see ghosts, just the
ones with very strong spirits. I was happy she was finally
going through the veil, though that happiness would have
been complete if Nina had allowed me one more kiss…
Still want to be like me??
Episode 5
The next day I came to work early, hoping to have a word with
Nina. She came in a few minutes after I did, dropped her stuff
on her desk, took one glance at me and headed into the boss’s
office where she stayed for almost an hour. I watched and
waited until she finally came out. As soon as she saw me
approaching, she meandered into the secretary’s office. I was
like, what? Weren’t we going to talk about this? I went back to
my seat and waited. She came out soon after and seeing that
the coast was clear, went to her desk. I decided to leave it till
lunchtime. I just couldn’t keep my mind off her though. I had
been in relationships in the past but this was different. She
intruiged me. She was like a case I wanted to solve and didn’t
mind spending the rest of my life doing it. I knew I was in love
with her and had to find out if she had the same feelings for
me. I had seen other people before with blackened wings,
broken wings, bat-like wings even, but she…I couldn’t put my
finger on it. But I knew if I could see my own manifestation in
a mirror it would be me bursting into flames whenever she
came around me.
1pm. Lunch time.
I had avoided making eye contact with her the whole time.
Still, I had been watching her every once in a while from a
reflecting teapot. She hadn’t left her seat and seemed totally
engrossed in her work. Probably had forgotten all about me. . ,
, !
The lunch bell sounded and she got up along with everyone
else and went to the cafeteria. I followed behind her. I watched
as she took a helping of spaghetti and salad with chicken and
moved to a corner of the table. I asked for rice and pepper
stew and was about going to join her when she received a call.
As she answered it I was hit with a wave of visuals so
stunning I almost fell. A dark cloud appeared around her and
her gold chains tightened painfully around her wings, so tight
in fact, I thought I saw them bleed. Whoever was on the other
side of the phone was responsible for my nina’s misery. As the
conversation continued it was as if something dark was being
absorbed from the phone into her ears and head and I watched
as her entire demeanor became dull and miserable. I was still
looking at all of this when a co-worker bumper into me from
behind. I apologised and walked straight up to Nina who had
finished her mysterious conversation. She looked up at me
and tried to smile. I ignored the gesture.
“Who was that?” I asked sitting beside her.
“Who was who?” She replied.
“The caller on the phone?”
“Wow. That was quick. You’re not the jealous type are you? I
can’t stand having a jealous boyfriend.” She said with a smile.
“Whoever that was, was very important to you, and obviously
causes you a lot of misery. I can help.”
“No you can’t” she sighed and looked down at her plate.It was
obvious she had lost her appetite. “No one can help me.”
“Maybe I can, if you’ll just tell me.” I pleaded.
“You go first. You had something you wanted to say in your
apartment earlier. Before the assignment. Before we..kissed.”
She looked back down at her plate shyly.
“Oh, come-on, not that again. You know it has nothing to do
with…wait. Did you call me “boyfriend” just now?”
“Jealous boyfriend” she said, making a face.
“Then what’s the problem?” I asked. She became quiet again. I
took a deep breath and went for it.
“Nina, you know how I feel about you. I know you do. I don’t
like beating about the bush, so I would like to know, are you
married?”
“No I’m not.” She said.
” Fiancé?”
“Not really…”
Oh. So there was someone. It was my turn to lose my
appetite. Then again, this person wasn’t really her fiancé. Isn’t
that what she meant by her statement just now? I looked at
her and she met my eyes.
“Come back to my place, we will be able to talk more freely
there. I promise to be the perfect gentleman.” I had decided to
tell her everything. If she called me crazy and ran, so be it. But
I would do my best to help her if she let me.
She smiled again. I never got tired of that smile. It started at
the centre of her lips and parted to show small white well
shaped teeth. I longed for that smile like a kid longed for
candy.
“You have been too much of a gentleman already, ” she said.
“Ok. Your place. But tomorrow. Tonight I’m going to be kind
of…busy.”
“Busy doing what?” I said alarmed.
“Hey, you are the jealous type aren’t you?”
“Who wouldn’t be jealous over you?” I said. “That person
would have to be blind.”
“Or overly confident” she finished with a faraway look in her
eyes. I frowned but she didn’t explain further. She held my
hands and squeezed them tight. “Thanks for being so
concerned about me. You are a good friend.”
That was definitely what I was trying to avoid being to her. I
wanted more than friendship. Much more. But I smiled back
and said nothing. All I could think about now was how to help
her with whatever problem she had.
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