“There is nothing you can say that’ll change my mind anymore. I already told you that the Great FC would defeat the Lions” Ness said very loudly as soon as he entered the room where a handful of boys were arguing noisily.
Everybody kept calm abruptly, all eyes traveled in Ness’ direction, perhaps there was something strange about what he was saying or because his voice had overshadowed theirs.
“I’m serious about it, I can bet my life on it. See, the match was too easy for my boys. The first goal was great, then the second goal was stunning and when the third goal came in. . . Oh My Goodness. . . I have never seen anything like it in my entire life. If there – ”
“Ness” One of the tallest boys in the room whispered aloud.
“Hey Thompson, you just shush your mouth and let me talk. Don’t ‘ness’ me now. I told you all, but you were all against me. Lions can’t stand The Great FC! Not now, not ever, not. . .”
“Ness?” Another boy in the room joined the first boy to chorus the name in unison.
“I said don’t you ‘Ness’ me now. That is it, when you loose, you try to pacify me by calling my name softly with your yeye bedroom voice – ‘Nessss’ – Sorry, I can’t be fooled. Mumu”
“Ness!” All the boys in the room chorused at once, disorientating the young man who was already gesticulating exaggeratedly.
“What?” He shouted, reviving from his bewilderment.
“The Lions defeated The Great FC.” Thompson said very quietly, as all the boys in the room stared at Ness’ face to catch a glimpse of the first embarrassing wrinkle that would cross it. No one dared the honor of attempting the first smirk because Ness was older, bigger and stronger than them all.
“Ohhh!” Ness swallowed hard, Ekene (from whom he had made inquiries) must have deceived him deliberately. Ness told his room mates that he would watch the match, but rather than watching with them in the hostel, Ness complained that the heat was much in the lounge and so he was going somewhere else to see the match, but he had gone to see Antonia instead – a girl in the same school who he was hoping would accept his offer of love.
Ness had risked everything in the world to see Antonia that Sunday evening, but the mission had been unsuccessful because the Potters on duty who were guarding the Girl’s hostel had adhered strictly to the laws not to open the gate for any boy after six pm. So, Ness lurked around the gate side and told every girl he saw going in to please get to Room G5 and tell Antonia that someone special was waiting for her at the gate. Unfortunately, none of the girls Ness sent brought feed back, so it was obvious that Antonia wasn’t willing to see him. Ness was not surprised that she wasn’t willing – she had never willed.
“So, Ness, you did not watch the math abi?”
“Oh, Rancho. I actually watched the match” There was a very obvious surprise on all the faces of the young boys, Ness believed he was good at this, and didn’t want to be disgraced in front of most of these boys who were his junior, “But I only watched the first half, and you know as at then The Great FC were leading with three goals to none.” A very dead giggle crossed Ness face to summon more courage to keep going, as he stared at the blank faces of his listeners for encouragement.
“Ness, tell us where you went to, the match ended with five goals to none. The Great didn’t score any goal at all” Temilolu was the speaker.
Ness winced at the short devil, even if he was wrong, must he be told by the shortest one.
“Well. . . actually. . . maybe Mama Ike’s television is faulty. I watched the match at her side and it was ‘three – nill’ in the first half”. Ness swallowed his lie.
All eyes were still on Ness, and he felt the ground should open and swallow him up, because he was really fumbling with what he was doing, there was silence at first, it was obvious that the boys were trying hard to digest another Ness hilarious claim which was no longer new to them.
“Where did you go after the match?” Temilolu inquired further.
Ness smiled a plastic smile, “Guess?”
“Antonia’s hostel!” Two of the youngest teenagers in the room shouted excitedly, they knew his account of the match was a total lie but the skeleton in his wardrobe – the reason why he wasn’t confessing could be a very delicious gist to them.
“Yes, your noses are definitely working right. You got that right at once because you can perceive her body spay on me.”
Some boys in the other rooms had already materialized around them to catch the hot ‘girls’ hostel gist’. Everyone of them squeezed and strained their noses to perceive the perfume, what they could perceive instead was the strong body odor that was oozing malodorously from Ness sweaty body, but they all pretended to be deceived, and Ness had a good reason to keep on.
“Ness, please gist me, please” Temilolu pleaded, “there must really have been a – ”
“You don’t have to guess further, Antonia and I did everything you could ever imagine!”
“Yes,” Ness said with a firm look, “I was reluctant to go into her hostel at first, but she begged and begged until I had no choice.”
“Didn’t the potters stop you?” one of the crowd said
“They tried to, but Antonia begged them to allow me and she even gave them some money”
“Heeeen?” The listeners were by now ignited with extreme suspense.
“When I got to her room, she told all her room mates to excuse us both, and we did everything doable on her bed!”
The crowds all stared at the young man has he made mouth. Most of them knew it was another stark lie, but there was nothing they all enjoyed more than Ness’ ways of describing things.
“So, how were you able to leave her side?”
“When, we were done, of course, she was very very reluctant to leave me, but I begged and begged, until she released me. But she followed me almost to the gate of this boys’ hostel before she turned back to leave”
“Ohhh, you should have told her to come in and say ‘hi’ to us all.” Temi was obviously mesmerized in the tale.
“She wanted to, but I didn’t want her to walk alone to her hostel this dark night, so I just told her not to. Maybe tomorrow, she’d come in”
“Nessss” Thompson mocked, he was also enjoying the story, but he knew more than the rest of the boys that Ness was just a big fat liar, “Did she say anything about letter?”
“Letter? . . . Letter? . . . Letter?. . . Oh! Yes, she said she wished. . .or, ohhh, she said she would send me lots of letters during the holidays. Why did you ask?”
“Letters during the holiday, huh?”
Four of the older boys burst into wild laughter, and for a moment, the whole gathering seemed bewildered. Thompson tried to explain why they were laughing, but his laughter would not allow him to talk, and so Mikel decided to, “Ness, I’m happy that you went to girls hostel and you had a very nice time, but I don’t understand how you and Antonia had a nice time after she was here already to drop a letter for you earlier today. ”
“Letter?” The suspense climaxed.
Thompson revived from his mad laughter, retrieved a white envelope from his pocket, showed it to the crowd, so that they could see Antonia’s name and signature. Then he unfolded it.
“Yes, Antonia herself brought this letter earlier today – this morning, but then Ness had gone to bath, so the four of us in the room read it urgently and it reads”
‘Ness, this is the nineteenth time you would be writing me, and it is getting extremely unbearable! Nineteen letters without reply and you still aren’t giving up.
What da’ heck! What is wrong with you? I have told you verbally several times that I am totally not interested in anything that has to do with you and you still don’t want to listen.
Here is the deal, you had better stop sending me those unreasonable letters otherwise be prepared for a great consequence. And stop sending Tofunmi to me, she is just as dumb as you are and there is nothing you both can get from me!
In your own interest, NEVER WRITE ME AGAIN!
With the last word, Thompson handed over the letter to some of the boys who were already stretching their hands to clarify, but most of the other boys shifted their gazes at Ness; the letter read was a total smack down for him, and obviously there was nothing he could say to regain the crowd.
“Hahahaha” Ness laughed like the devil himself, “That letter. . . that letter.”
“What about it?”
“Antonia told me that her room mate wrote it against me and dared her to bring it to this hostel today. It was just a bet between them – Nothing more. She pleaded and pleaded over it today when I went to see her and I forgave her. In fact, I didn’t even know that it’s content was this light and polite. In her account, she exaggerated the things in it and begged and begged. Trust me, I never lie.”
The crowds gradually left, but they all had double mind, no one was sure of whose side of the story to believe. There was something awfully funny about Ness, whenever he told a lie, you knew at once that it is a complete lie, but if you give the big fat liar a chance, he would say something awfully convincing.