Tears And Roses

Just like the queen of the night oozes its fragrance at night time, reminding it of a day that was beautiful and giving it hope of another beautiful tomorrow, so is this story of mine. A story of two young minds, finding a common understanding and appreciating the value of friendship, togetherness and love.

Even though the forces of nature sometimes destroy the beauty of the world, we still appreciate the times that we were happy and thank God for giving us the good old memories to muse over and merry in.

In retrospect….

The age was seven and the class was primary two. Significant things, difficult to forget happened that year. It was the first and only time I topped the class, it was the first and only time I won a prize and it was the first and only time I had an almost perfect friend and lost her.

Her name was CHIDINMA.

She was my classmate, new in the school, fair in complexion and I thought she had behavioural problems because she was really slow with everything she did, both academically, in movement and in speech. Everyone in class saw her as a ‘dollard’ who could not comprehend a thing and struggled to be a step ahead of the least. I didn’t see her that way. Maybe I was biased. Why shouldn’t I be? She was beautiful and always had that look in her eyes like the looks I saw in the eyes of the hollywood actresses. She reminded me of the movie ‘ANNIE’ whenever I looked at her.

My likeness for Chidinma grew and I was always happy going to school every morning. My mum thought I had suddenly fallen in love with school. It wasn’t school mum, it was Chidinma. I shared my biscuits with her on one of her lonely breaks and from that day, we became friends. Only then did I discover she wasn’t the ‘isi aki’ everyone thought she was. We grew from class mates to friends and from friends to close friends. She neglected the girls when they called her ‘spoilt’ for preffering the company of the opposite sex during break and I neglected the boys when they called me ‘woman wrapper’ for choosing Chidinma instead of playing ‘police and thief’ with them.

Soon, my Chidinma began to bloom academically, proving my instincts right and proving the other pupils wrong. She must have needed time to settle in properly which I guess was the reason for her initial poor scores. I liked her even more after her breakthrough.

We used to walk home together, holding her younger ones and sharing tales we wouldn’t tell the others at school. She became my best friend as we fondly called it back then. We shared biscuits, talked about things appropriate for our ages, and sometimes, I resisted the urge to do those things I saw people do in movies to her. Yea, I resisted the urge to kiss her.

During the Christmas holidays, I volunteered to follow my aunty whenever she was going to the market because I knew we would always pass her house along the route. I used to peep in and wave if I saw her but if not, I’ll just go to the market feeling the pains of an unfulfilled mission. This I did until she travelled to her village to spend the new year. I waited patiently. Built up my courage and rehearsed a scene on how I’ll kiss her when she returns. I didn’t know much about love, I was too young to know but the feelings I had for her was next to love if it wasn’t love.

Then…

The day of resumption… Three days…. One week…. Two weeks…. Absence.
Then an obituary…

Her fair face, smiling in black and white with her mother and siblings. The siblings I used to hold. It was her, involved in a ghastly motor accident, burnt beyond recognition. Number plates, tooth and other little clues were used to identify them. Her family was wiped and I couldn’t hold back as hot tears filled my eyes. I knew what death was at seven and it meant I’ll never see her or her little ones again. I’ll never get to kiss her.

And I went to school everyday, looking at her vacant seat, wishing she could come back so that we can walk home together like we always did but it never happened. I walked home alone, lonely and sad. Memories of our three months old friendship flooded my head each time I walked home and tears were forced to fall sometimes.

Back to present…

That is how I remember it. Thanks to childhood innocence, I wasn’t depressed for so long even though my academic performance that term was a little below my usual performance and I lost that zeal for school that mummy loved. I still remember her every now and then. Even till this day, the memories flood back sometimes and each time I remember her, I feel happy for the opportunity to have had that kind of friend. Soft spoken and strong, intelligent and wonderful and lest I forget, beautiful. Now, she’s not a major thought as Biola *my girlfriend and maybe my future wife* has stolen my heart but she will always remain in my memories till I die.

She was my first love.



43 thoughts on “Tears And Roses” by Akalugwu Chinyere (@gooseberry)

  1. Splendid. Perhaps you were a child but you still remember her and that’s what counts. This piece of yours reminds me of a girl who befriended me at a time I played deaf. She gave me back my voice. I hope one day soon, I could honour her memory as you have Chidimma’s.

    Thanks for bringing back the memories…….

    1. I’m glad you relate with this. You really should honour her memory someday. Thanks.

  2. Awww..Goosie this is hauntingly beautiful..What is it with all NS writers these days?..you all are playing so well with our emotions..
    It is a beautiful story albeit sad..
    Well done…

  3. Lol…Did I just create a website 4 U?..hehehe..well d story deserves it..

    1. @sibblywhyte, guess it has something to do with the valentine season… All that mushy mushy stuff… Hehehehhe, but this is different sha. Na biola get all the attention now.

      …And, I’m lost on the website thingy. Please, help me out.

      1. Sorry Goose..the part where i typed ‘Awww..goosie’, appears as a website Url on my phone..hence dat statement..but no mind me jor…I was carried away by ur story

        1. Oooookkkkk. I get now. Thanks for finding my lost self. Thanks once again.

  4. Lovely. Almost a poem. Prosetry! (I’m off to the patent office to copyright that word right now!)

    1. Lol. please yourself but as the inspiration, I could use it sometimes *winks*. Hope you won’t charge me for breaking copyright laws.

      Thankyou.

  5. This is beautiful. However…

    ‘dollard’ should have been ‘dullard’

    and then ‘likeness’ means something else entirely. The word in there should be ‘liking’ as in ‘my liking for her’…

    Except of course, I didn’t get the context in which it was used.

    Well done sha. Haunting memories. Well illustrated.

    1. *palm on forehead*should I slap myself for this? Well, you are soooo correct. I meant liking, not likeness. And the ‘dollard’ stuff was the player shaging me again.

      Eshe gan. I appreciate.

    2. @seun, *palm on forehead*should I slap myself for this? Well, you are soooo correct. I meant liking, not likeness. And the ‘dollard’ stuff was the player shaging me again.

      Eshe gan. I appreciate.

  6. Chai!You capture this memory well.Those innocent thoughts cn never leave you for life!

    1. @sambright. Lol. Its fiction o. All the same, such memories never die sha.

      Thanks a lot.

  7. The memory was well captured. I like this. It made me remember one of my numerous pry school hussies.

    1. @babyada, I’m glad you like it. Lol, so you were a child player huh? Heehehehehehe

      Thanks a lot.

      1. Why not? When I always got the chance to be ‘dashed’ one husband or the other. But when I see this particular one, I don’t know what would happen. Maybe I’ll be writing about ‘Sex at first sight.’ Hehehe

        1. Hahahahahaaha. Enough dashing. But I’m guessing this special one wasn’t dashed, it was honest. And, I hope the sex at first sight would be just about the writing o. Heheehe

          1. Nothing do us. He used to be my side mate then and I always liked talking so much about him at home.

          2. Nothing do us. He used to be my seat mate then and I always liked talking so much about him at home.

  8. Really nice one.
    Am glad Chidnmma lives on.

  9. Nice story. 7yrs- thinking about kissing, no be today you spoil..hehe! And following the subsequent development the MC is doing well.
    Yes at times we need to reminisce on our childhood memories, it’s healthy to the spirit…

    1. Heheheheh. At the end of the day, he no still get the kiss. I agree with you on the childhood memories stuff.

      Thanks dear.

  10. For me, this was EXQUISITE.

    1. @teewah, that you thought it was exquisite made me feel really happy. Thanks a lot.

  11. Had friend like that. He came back from USA. We were five years old then. We went for break one day and he ran inside the bush and screamed and I never saw him again.

    That sounded like a horror film, lol. He just got injured by a bottle. Think his parents got pissed with the school and either sent him back to USA or another school.

    I can’t remember his name. He was my best friend then though.

    But this is a nice piece. The story has that deep honest friendship thing, the soul of prose. I love it.

    You could have portrayed the MC as a genius for remembering things this vividly. Would have related better to the character that way.
    Keep writing goosie mama.

    1. @jaywriter, lol. That could be the premise for a really cool suspense/thriller story o. Remembering things that happened at 7 is ok na. I remember my nursery two husbands name and he happens to be chidinma too. *wont call his surname incase he somehow reads this one day*.

      Me is happy that you love the story. Thankyou.

      … And, try to remember your ‘5 years old’ best friends name o. Maybe you guys can still meet through social networking sites and all that.

      1. @gooseberry I remember the name of the girl I had a crush on in nursery 2. Like I remember the events somehow.

        My first gf at 6, I remember her first name, her dad’s car was peugeot 405.

        So I do remember the females very well.

        So you are right. Maybe it’s easier to remember the opposite sex well.

        Well done my goosie mama. And you could start the thriller na. Just credit me if it sells like Harry Potter.

  12. Your story started and caught me along with the recounting of innocent young love and treasured friendship. I felt the warmth and penting emotions…the I was struck by the horror of her demise…especially the nature of the death.

    lovely story…most especially because it was to the memory of Chidinma.

    But this is fiction I believe? Because the writer is female…and it can’t be non-fiction…unless its not yours.

    overall…you got me with the story!

    1. @afronuts, awwwww. I’m so glad that you felt it. It is fiction although, it was inspired by a true life experience. Memories like this never dies.

      Thanks a lot afronuts.

  13. @gooseberry, I found this a very sweet and touching story, both because of the way you portrayed the friendship between the MC and Chidinma, and the loss that the MC felt.

    Typos notwithstanding, this deserves points – please accept 15.

    1. Awwww. Thanks a million @tola. I really appreciate this and I’m happy you found it sweet.

      Thanks a lot. I’m grateful.

  14. This was lovely and touching, thanks for sharing.

  15. Waow, I’m dazed, this is just too good!!! Lovely!!!

  16. I loved it, it was simple, yet very real and sad, but i really enjoyed it! :)

  17. it’s belated, but i’ll post nonetheless. you’ve got a gift, and i hope you grow into applying it more and more. nice portrayal

    1. I will try my best @drzhivago. Thanks a lot.

  18. Chichi (@GOOSEBERRY)
    this is superb…………love it………..

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