The day was growing dark and yet he had not come. Tunde, the love of her life, her soul mate, the one she dreamt of, every night. She glanced at the clock for the umpteenth time and sighed in worry, it was already seven o’clock and her parents would be home soon.
“Tunde why? Tunde please call me, I love you.” She whispered and sobbed silently as she hugged her pillow.
Tunde was Queen’s childhood crush; he had been the best friend of her elder brother while they both were in secondary school, then, she was still a young girl of twelve. He used to nickname her, ‘my wife’, and secretly she had fantasied over marrying him.
After secondary school, he had moved on as he lost contact with her brother owing to the fact that his family relocated to Ibadan. It was indeed a pleasant surprise to have seen him at the stadium last week Saturday. After exchanging pleasantries, he had promised to pay her a visit and they both exchanged phone numbers, he also gave her his new address as he said that he had rented a mini flat, not far from the stadium. Queen extracted a promise from him to come over to her family’s home on Monday at five pm, he agreed and she was elated.
Taking Chioma to the mall was an avenue to let time fly as she couldn’t wait to see him again. That day, Tunde did not show up or pick up her calls, she cried herself to sleep. The next morning, she called him over and over again but he still didn’t pick, Monday was three days ago and she still couldn’t reach him. Seeing Tunde again awakened a new feeling deep within her and she made up her mind that she would make him love her. Lying to Chioma about having a boyfriend was an attempt to make the young girl realize that she was a big girl and definitely not her league besides, ‘being Chioma’s friend was just her way of doing her a favour’ she thought.
Queen hurdled herself into a ball as she lay on her bed and kept dialing his number, she could hear the phone ring but he still wasn’t picking up, she looked at the clock again, it was fifteen minutes past seven. Drying her tears with a handkerchief, she rose and walked towards her full length mirror, giving herself a long look, she made up her mind. Picking up her powder case, she dabbed her cheeks, cleaned the smudged make up on her face and reapplied a fresh one, using a light fragrance on her body, she left her home.
The night was brightened by street lights, Queen hurried to the next street, hailed a bike man and told him her destination, the bike man nodded- which meant that he knew the place- she mounted the bike and they zoomed off.
She alighted at a house which bore the same address as the one she had memorized and walked into the compound, there was no power supply as the sound of generators filled the air in a noisy buzz. She was confused, there were so many mini flats in one huge compound, she looked at the address again and confirmed that she wasn’t in the wrong place. She saw a middle aged man coming out of one of the mini flats and walked up to him.
“Good evening sir”
“Hello dear, how can I help you?”
“I am looking for my friend, his name is Tunde.”
“Tunde! Did I hear you right?” The man asked in a loud voice.
“Yes…sir…are you a relative of his?” She answered, sounding scared.
“Over my dead body…I can’t be related to that useless young man.”
“Useless? Please sir, do not insult him, he is a good guy, I don’t believe you know him.”
“Young girl, what are you doing here at this time? That boy is no good.”
“Abeg! I approached you to ask for the directions to his flat and not to receive lectures.” Retorted Queen, clearly upset over the man’s remarks.
“You are very rude. Anyway, his flat is at the back…goodnight.”
Queen didn’t bother replying, she followed the man’s direction and was there in no time, the door was slightly ajar and the music coming from the room was loud enough to deafen a human being. She pushed the door open and saw three guys lying on the floor, they were clad in boxer shorts and around them lay cigarettes and empty bottles of beer. She stepped into the room and called out Tunde’s name, he didn’t hear at first as he was still sprawled on the ground carelessly and the noise from the sound system drowned her voice. She walked up to him and touched his leg, he startled as he turned to stare at the unexpected visitor, the other young men also turned to look at her, one of them whistled appreciatively, Queen smiled shyly as Tunde’s gaze met hers. A clearly surprised Tunde rose and gave her a hug.
“Where have you been? You promised to pay me a visit on Monday.” She asked worriedly.
“Baby I’m so sorry, I got caught up with work…”
Queen silently rejoiced at the pet name ‘Baby’, she smiled and said;
“I can’t stay long, I just wanted to check up on you, my parents are not back yet but they will be back soon. Are you working already? Samson hasn’t graduated ooo.” Said Queen, speaking of her elder brother.
“Well…I’m on my industrial attachment programme for now, I still have some months left before returning to school. Stay a little longer…it’s been long you know? We haven’t chatted well enough. Just look at how big and beautiful you are, you even have lovely curves, my little wife of yesterday is a woman already.”
“Oh…stop it Tunde.” She said, blushing terribly.
“When will you visit me again?”
“Tomorrow, if you want.”
“Shit…that’s going to be a tough day for me at work, could you possibly come on Saturday?”
“Okay…just call me before you come.”
They both held hands as they left his flat. At the gate, Queen mounted a bike and Tunde paid the fee, they waved to each other as the bike rode off. Queen hummed in joy, today was indeed the happiest day of her life!