The school bell rang, and Evans promptly closed the thick, cream coloured pages of the novel he had been reading—better still, just some selected sentences. Evans had scanned the pages in search of paragraphs marked with red ink. Obviously, someone who had read it before him had taken an extra time to mark those paragraphs—all erotic. The last sentence he had read was: Her moan deepened, and his thrusts too.
Evans pulled the zip of his black school bag, and in went the novel. His shoulders felt the weight of the bag after he had secured its content.
Time to go for the kill, Evans muttered. He stood from his seat and adjusted his trouser, pulling it down, an inch below his hips. It had become a common ritual each time he stood up; a ritual he would deem complete after he pushed back the large bump that always formed at the crotch-point of his hurriedly tailored trouser. Evans, for a brief moment, observed the chaos and noise around him. The final bell for the day had been rung, and the teachers would hardly care about the noise. The perfume of different brands of cheap talcum powder filled the air.
Evans walked towards his best friend, Emeka, who stood close to the blackboard. Emeka stood still as Gladys applied white powder on his face, while Memunat held up a small mirror.
“Chap, I’m off.” Evans said when he got close to the blackboard—and after he had gotten Emeka’s attention.
“Are you sure you don’t need my help?” Emeka asked.
“I could wait for you, so we go home together.” The girls who stood by his side did not seem pleased with that comment, and it showed on their faces. It meant they had to wait too.
“Don’t worry. Just go home.” Evans said, and turned to face the exit door. He felt a hand on his shoulder after three steps.
“Are you sure you’re okay?” Emeka asked. “You look scared.”
“I’m fine.” Evans said in response. He knew he had to leave immediately, else his plan might fail. “I have to go, Mrs. Bassey would not be pleased if I show up late.”
At the mention of Mrs. Bassey, Emeka let go. “Okay. See you tomorrow.”
“But, why after school hours?” Emeka called out.
Evans just shook his head, an indication that he had no idea. He hurried out of the class, and down the stairs, until he was alone in the biology labouratory. Evans wiped his sweat off his face. He knew the weight his thoughts placed on him, more than the speed at which he had run, was responsible for the sweat. He was sure Imabong would appear soon. He found a broom at a corner of the labouratory, and started to sweep—anything to give as an excuse for his sweat when Imabong showed up. As he swept, he imagined what it would feel like to hold Imabong’s large breasts with both hands. He thought of Imabong standing close, with her large eyes staring at him, and he cringed, a bit. Emeka had described those eyes as sexy, but to him, they were just—large.
Evans raised his head just in time to see Emeka, through the slightly open window, walk past the coconut tree at the middle of the school compound, heading for the gate. Gladys by his right, and Memunat by his left. There was an addition, the shy but pretty Bimpe who walked behind the trio.
Evans resumed his self-imposed task, with the events of his first day in Michael Adeshina Comprehensive College in mind. It had also been Emeka’s first. The two new boys who were admitted rather late in the term were given a seat in front of the class, and a friendship had begun. They had become best friends after a fight and some shared secrets.
Evans heaved as he thought of a more recent event. Emeka had been the one who had conceived the idea of what he was about to do. He felt guilt run through him knowing Emeka may likely never get to know about his attempt. Evans had no doubt that Emeka believed his claim that as the newly appointed labouratory prefect, Mrs. Bassey had asked him to wait behind to assist her re-arrange the labouratory. He was also sure that Emeka had not noticed that Mrs. Bassey had left early, though the Biology labouratory had remained open. Evans was sure Imabong, Mrs. Bassey’s daughter, was also ignorant of this fact.
Evans heard footsteps and he swallowed. He turned to face Imabong standing at the door. Her face showed her surprise seeing Evans alone.
“Where’s my mother?” Imabong asked as she walked in. Her tone failed to show that Evans was a year ahead of her, and a school prefect. Imabong dropped her bag on a lab stool like it had been a burden to her.
Evans maintained a bent position when he gave a reply. “She has gone home. I’ll lock the lab once I’m done.” Then Evans stood erect, but he did not remember the usual ritual with his trouser.
She looked at Evans, and her eyes stayed a while at the lower half of his body. She moved close to him and crossed both arms just beneath her breasts. Her action reminded Evans of his thoughts. “Aside sweeping, anything else?”
“You could have selected some JSS 3 students to sweep this place.” she said. “Its a bit undignified for you to sweep.”
“I know. But I completely forgot about the task, until the bell had been rung.” Evans lied.
“Give me the broom.” Imabong said, offering to help. Assuming that Evans might decide to take his leave, she quickly added, “Since its your sole responsibility to lock the lab, you just have to wait for me till I’m done sweeping.” Imabong had been careful enough to stress the words—your, you. “Agreed?”
“Okay.” Evans said in agreement. She smiled. He smiled too—a grateful smile, and not because of her kind gesture. He was certain that Imabong had other things in mind. Even with the broom in her hand, she still remained by his side. She must have figured that another opportunity to spend time alone with him may not be forthcoming anytime soon, so the need to make the most of the moment.
Imabong grabbed Evans by his hand, and held it firm, as best as she could. “You’ve always tried to avoid me.” she started. “Why?” she asked. “Well, now we’re alone—just you and me.” Evans took in, with each breath, the perfume of the talcum powder she had applied. He knew he had to play his part well—Imabong must not sense his need. He made his hand free from her grip and took steps away from her. Imabong was surprised. His action had been unexpected, and fast too. Still, she easily caught up with Evans, and stood in front of him. And her breasts seem to grow in size with each heave of her chest.
Evans looked at her, and he remembered Emeka’s words, “Imabong looks like that kind of girl who should not be left alone with a boy, especially, one she admires—like you.” Emeka had said those words after Evans had received a surprise gift from Imabong at his last birthday. Mrs. Bassey had been the form mistress of his class, giving Imabong free access to his data.
“Are you scared someone would walk in?” she asked. She didn’t wait for an answer, before she continued, “Don’t worry. My mother has already fixed that problem—every student fears her, so no one would dare come here; and, as you must have noticed, she’s not so friendly with the other teachers.”
Imabong moved even closer, and kissed him.
The other party always initiates the kiss, he mused. Just like his first kiss had been—with Steve.