‘Orobo runner! The only chubby athlete in Naija! Stop dodging me na! Why do you keep running away, when do i get to see your beautiful self?’
‘Young Man, I promise… soon.’
She replies with a sad smile on her face.
‘This your soon don dey be like Jesus own o! Pretty please, let’s make this definite. I want a date. I’ll love to hold your hand while I look into your eyes and tell you how you make me feel, perhaps you’ll believe me when you see the sincerity in my eyes.’
‘Hehe! Na so, wash of life’
She replies as her mind drifts to another place in time…
His hands held hers as he told her beautiful words that introduced her to a whole new self. He made her feel like a successful runway model in her size 18 frame.
He never called her “flabby” or complained that she occupied too much space. Every other person including her parents and siblings treated her like she was less human, but not her Pedro. She was his queen, his “only Nigerian belle” and with him, she blossomed to a confident plus size hottie and loved every minute of it.
She went potty in his arms and never hesitated when it was time to give him her ultimate gift she had kept for twenty five years. A gift she kept partly ‘cos she was never brave enough to undress before any man or let them get too close to touch her “Michelin rolls”.
Every moment with him brought her to a higher plane in d heavens. And then, the various illnesses began intermittently with her worrying for him and taking days off from work to care for him. They realised self medication wasn’t working and she dropped him off at d hospital on a day things turned for worse with hopes of him getting better. She got back to check up on him and he broke the news…
Then her world came crashing down like d legendary London Bridge of kid’s rhymes.
‘beautiful one, don’t be this way na. Haba! It’s been 3 months since I got your contact and I’ve called you everyday, asking for a date. Why do you tease me with thoughts of seeing you again. Please tell me you’ll have a date with me this time love, pleeeaaaaaaaassssssseeeee’
He says, bringing her out of her reverie. Another sweet talker.
‘Bibi, are you there?’ He asks
‘yeah, I am. Is next weekend good enough?’
‘Perfect pretty, thanks a lot. I promise you’ll never want to leave my side by the time I give you my kobnomi’
She bursts into laughter. He joins in, thinking his attempt at humour paid off.
She shakes her head, the beauty of phone calls. He has no idea of the smirk on her face.
It’s been 13months and two sizes less since Pedro dropped the bombshell. 3 months of pain and anger towards the world for the injustice meted out to her and to him for stealing her life away albeit unknowingly, two months of regrets,grief and guilt for not forgiving him, the Love of her life, till it was too late.
The remaining 8 months she spent, rebuilding her self and restoring the other gifts he left her during his lifetime. She vowed to make the best of what was left of her life because she owed it to herself and him. He taught her to be d best of herself.
With the restoration in progress, a lot of the menfolk who ignored her before there was Pedro began to trail behind her, begging for her attention. Something she couldn’t give.
She only needs to share the news of the gift Pedro gave her for he and his “kobnomi” to flee miles away from her, just like the others. She’s not afraid to tell so she’ll give him a chance to learn from her mistake, She’ll add him to her list of aware young men with the knowledge of protective measures for casual sex.
She only has to tell him she’s HIV+ and wait to see if he still thinks of her as beautiful.
‘We’ll see about that Kunle, we’ll see’