The Love Triangle
I should have queried her motives that fateful evening Onome had eventually honoured my invitation and curiously allowed me to have my way.
But I didn’t. I wasn’t even willing to. Why should I, anyway? Why let an opportunity I’ve waited for all these while be wasted? An opportunity that may never come a second time!
I remembered Onome was barely thirteen or fourteen when she was brought from her hometown somewhere in the hinterland of one of the South-South states to live with her aunt, an elderly niggling bespectacled widow who owned a bungalow on the next street from mine and who some of the neighbourhood’s busy bodies claimed worked so long in one of the state ministries in the municipality that her office resorted to writing petitions before she finally got compelled to tender her resignation.
I had practically watched Onome matured into a ravishing beauty within the three years since she came to live in our neighbourhood, and that was how long I waited before I plucked the courage to make my first move at her because I dreaded being easily labelled a cradle snatcher.
Onome had now grown tall in a graceful way like a bamboo stem and with golden-brown skin the colour of freshly made palm kernel oil. She had become supple with curves almost too pronounced for a girl her age.
I bet very few men would’ve glimpsed the young Onome sashayed passed and not be tempted to imagine sensual imageries.
And she’d always set my heart pounding recklessly every time I beheld her walked down the street to run one errand or the other for her guardian.
At first Onome was unreceptive to all the tactics I employed to woo her. In fact, she remained as evasive as a hummingbird.
“I’m still too young for a relationship. Moreover, I want to concentrate on my studies”, she’d explained diffidently each time I caught up with her in street corners.
“I don’t have any problem with that, Onome. I will wait till you feel you’re ready to be my close friend”, I’d reassured her again and again; my plan was to first gain her confidence and then warm my way into her heart.
I gave her plenty breathing space afterwards, though I kept watchful eyes; forever on the lookout to wade off the ploys of other men who may also be nursing similar ideas towards her. I guarded Onome jealously the way a mother hen was wont to protect an only chick from the ceaselessly threatening shadows of soaring hawks.
And it seemed my invested time started to pay off at last because on an evening I least anticipated, Onome suddenly showed up at my doorstep, uninvited.
I wasn’t exactly prepared for this August tryst. But as the sharp guy that I foolishly thought I was then, I quickly got my acts together and ushered her into my modest two-room self-contain apartment (not exactly bad for a primary school teacher).
I supposed I was more excited than surprised at her unannounced presence.
Anyway, I also did well to have veiled my excitement behind hastily thought-out flowery remarks about her modishness even as my mind tasked itself on how best to utilize this sudden opportunity.
“Do you know you’re more beautiful than the last time I saw you? It’s like your beauty is intensifying with each new day”, I said with a wide grin smeared on my face.
Onome smiled but said nothing.
She wore a tee shirt that clung provocatively and gave me the liberty of feeding my eyes with those outlined titillating mounds visibly heaving up and down in gentle rhythms on her chest; virgin mounds in a yet-to-be explored Garden of Eden, I thought in excitement.
Her pubescent eyes followed my exploratory stares and she shifted her weight from one foot onto the other in a seemingly uncomfortable manner.
“Please feel free to make yourself comfortable here. What soft drink do I offer you?” I asked as I literally forced my eyes from those wonderful pair of breasts that pushed firmly against the fabrics of her tee shirt.
Adrenaline was hurriedly pumped and distributed so that I was left with a heartbeat that raced faster than usual. Oh boy na your chance be dis o! An unheard inner voice whispered inside my head.
“I don’t want to sit down”, Onome replied to my question. She took time to give the interior of my room a sweeping glance from under her attractive lashes.
“Okay, at least let me get you something to drink na?” I said.
But she declined that one too.
“My aunty is not aware that I’m not in the house right now. I have to get back before she starts looking for me”, Onome said.
I told myself I got the message; she most likely came to have quick fun. And fun I was ready to give her in full dose.
One huge stride and I reduced the gap between us. Now I stood so close that I could almost hear her heartbeats.
She fidgeted with an imaginary object in her hands, her eyes trained on the spot where my trouser was beginning to form a slight bulge.
I took her elbows gently and she put up a half-hearted resistance.
“I won’t hurt you, I promise”, I said in a voice I almost swore wasn’t mine – husky with the urgency of immorality.
“I’m scared. I’ve never been with a man this close before”, she whispered.
She’s still a virgin! I screamed inside my head. That meant I was on the verge of becoming the first man to navigate her Garden of Eden.
“I want you to be assured that you’re with a complete gentle man. You won’t regret anything that happened here, I promise”, I said as I pulled her into my arms.
Surprisingly, she clung to me and raised her face towards mine.
I instinctively keyed into her body language and wasted no time as my lips took hers in a hungry kiss. I supposed it was the best kiss I ever had from a woman, young or old.
My hand found the hems of her short skirt and disappeared under. I squeezed her buttocks and Onome squirmed, pressing her hip against my bulge. My other hand encircled her breast and the nipple came alive against her shirt.
I scooped her off the floor effortlessly and went into the bedroom.
Everything happened in a fast-forward mode from that point. In fact I nearly forgot to pull a condom over my throbbing penis in the ensued frenzy.
Onome was wet down there and prepared as I first rubbed my rigid phallus against her crack. I met no resistance on my way in, but I was too overwhelmed to care whether there was resistance or not as time suddenly stopped for the next nine or ten minutes and the heavens joined with the earth and they sang sweet melodies that left every vein in my body with a wild tingle. I made love to Onome.
When the heat of passion was finally spent I was left sweating and breathing like a strayed dog that’s been chased around town by unruly juveniles.
I was still trying to catch my breath when Onome quickly stepped into her clothes and dashed out of my house.
I had lain back in bed for another thirty minutes to re-enact and savour the experience after she left; I felt very proud, like the first African to have conquered Mount Kilimanjaro unassisted.
Onome avoided me for over a week after our sex escapade. She wouldn’t pick my calls and the few text messages I sent went without any response. Somehow, she was able to ensure our paths didn’t crossed.
I told myself she was probably shy (as was usual with most girls after their first sexual experiences). But I wondered why she would be shy because on retrospect, I didn’t think Onome was a virgin; at least I remembered now that no hymen was there to obstruct penetration on that momentous evening we had gone at it like two wild rabbits.
Could it be that she was dissatisfied with my performance? I didn’t think so either; I had given my best and even had her begging for more…
Almost two weeks had gone by now. And I was yet to come in contact with Onome in the neighbourhood.
Then finally, on a clement and eventless evening, I was just leaving the small corner shop where I had taken a walk to pick a few confectionery and was on my way back home when I heard someone called my name. It was Onome.
My heart leapt but dropped almost immediately; she looked really troubled. What could be wrong?
“Are you okay, Onome?” I asked as she caught up with me.
“We need to talk”, she responded in a small frightened voice.
Alarm rang in my head. But I struggled to keep my cool. When you’re told ‘we need to talk’ by a girl then there was plenty to talk indeed.
“I hope there’s no problem? Are you okay? Did you quarrel with your aunty?” the questions chased themselves out of my mouth.
“I…I think I’m pregnant. I haven’t seen my period…” she stuttered, and I thought she would burst into tears.
“Pregini?!” it was an involuntary exclamation from me, “But how could that be?”
“Are you asking me?” Onome cried accusingly, “You’re the only man that has made love to me and…”
“But I used a condom that day na?”
“I don’t know about that. All I know is that my period has refused to come…and I’ve been feeling funny in my body”.
Fire on the mountain! I told myself. How could I have been so careless? I’ve heard people say condoms do fail sometimes. But I thought they say that it only fails when one didn’t use it properly? I was sure I used mine properly and moreover I didn’t notice any leakage when I went to flush it that evening.
“What do I do now?”Onome’s voice interrupted my thought, “I’m finished. My aunty will kill me”.
What do I do now? I asked myself. My reputation was at stake. And apart from that, I didn’t think I was prepared for the onerous responsibility of marrying a teenager like her…
“You’re not saying anything?” she cried in panic.
“Shut up and let me think!” I almost screamed back at her, “After all, I used a condom and so I can’t understand how you’re now telling me you’re pregnant”.
“Are you going to blame me now? Didn’t I tell you that day that I haven’t done it with any man before?” she challenged me.
“Let’s just hope it isn’t true that you’re pregnant. But even if it’s true, you know we can’t keep it?” I said after a deliberate pause, “You are too young to be a mother”.
“Yeh! My own is finished o”, Onome began to cry.
I looked around quickly to be sure we weren’t creating any scene.
“Crying won’t solve this matter, Onome”, I told her. “I think what will happen is that you will have to evacuate it as soon as possible”.
Onome paused from her sobbing. “What do you mean?”
“Abortion. You have to abort it…or do you have another plan?” I asked with an irritated edge to my voice.
“What if something bad happens to me?” she asked in terror.
“Nothing bad will happen to you. The pregnancy must still be in its very early stage, so injection or tablets can still flush it without any problem. Fortunately my neighbour is a trained midwife and she runs a chemist. She can handle this without any stress”, I explained to her.
It didn’t take me much time to convince Onome to follow me to my neighbour’s chemist.
So, looking like a chicken that just got dipped in cold water, she tagged along as I led the way to MAMA ARIYO MEDICINE STORE.
The only patient inside the store was just stepping out when we got there with Onome.
Mama Ariyo stood sat on the other side of the wooden counter inside – a rotund woman with a complexion as black as night.
Packets and bottles of varying shapes and sizes were neatly arranged on shelves directly behind and around her.
“Shey kosi wahala?”She asked in Yoruba after we exchanged quick greetings; surprisingly she’s got a very warm and gentle tone for a woman that huge.
I bent over the counter and explained to her my present predicament and what I expected her to do for me.
“I will like to ask her a few questions in private before we know what to do next”, Mama Ariyo said to me, jerking her head towards Onome who sat cowering on the only bench at the corner.
I whispered to Onome that she should go ahead and see the chemist while I wait.
Onome got to her feet and gave me her handset and a bunch of keys to hold.
Mama Ariyo showed her the way and they both disappeared into an inner room.
Now I cannot explain why I did it, but as soon as Onome went off with Mama Ariyo I decided to go through the contents of her handset while I waited.
My curiosity took me straight to her message and I quickly noticed there’s been a constant exchange between her and a character she’d lovingly tagged as ‘My heart’.
I settled for the one I supposed was the most recent communication between them and I was shocked at what I saw.
I’m not hapy wit u, Stev. U’v bin avoidin me since afta i told u i’m pregnant. We beta do somtin b4 my aunty notice anytin. I alone knw wot i went tru d last time it happened. Pls call me ASAP.
I glared unbelieving at the screen of the handset. Onome had been romantically involved with some other guy all along? The fraudulent little whore! I swore under my breath.
At that instant, the door that led to the inner room opened and Mama Ariyo came out, followed closely by Onome.
The liar looked so innocent and afraid in a deceitful way.
“Your bill is four thousand, seven hundred naira only”, Mama Ariyo was saying to me.
But I wasn’t even listening.
Onome stopped dead in her stride as she approached me. Her gaze dropped to the handset in my hand. She must have sensed the brewing trouble.
I returned her gaze with fire in my eyes, breathing heavily like a vexed bull.
“Please, let me explain”, she cried as I turned to walk away.
AUTHOR’S NAME: OBANDE SUNNY JACK (Leekwid)
BIO: Writing is to me what flying is to birds; it gives me the freedom to fly to the realm of creativity and to tell my stories from my own point of view of how I perceive things.