“Guy, you’re making this thing too much of a big deal. Lola adores you; I’m sure she’ll come around.”
Bola sighed, for what seemed to be the fiftieth time that afternoon. He had asked his four closest friends to meet with him to discuss some final details of the party arrangements—and also to calm his frayed nerves. They were all seated in the living room of the eldest amongst them, Eseosa, who’d offered his home as the meeting place because he thought Bola needed a change of environment.
“And you know that how, Kole?”
Eseosa looked up from the event programme he was studying and chuckled. “How does he know what Bola? That she adores you or that she’ll come around?”
“Help me ask am oh. Abi you don begin dey doubt your smally, ehn my guy?” Nedu laughed heartily before refocusing his attention back on the football game he was playing with himself.
Bola frowned, none too pleased at being laughed at. “Come, you I don’t even know your usefulness in this meeting oh! Since we came na so so play play, mumu mumu you don dey do since. You think say this thing na joke?”
Kole knocked on the dining table, were he was seated with Eseosa and Bola, to get the latter’s attention. “Guy, calm down. You know he’s just trying to keep the mood light. Relax, I’ve told you Lola will come around.”
“Kole, no offence, but you’ve been saying that since last week. I’ve started losing faith in your gift of prophecy. I don’t even see where your confidence in this her loyalty is coming from, unless you and Lola have gisted between then and now and it’s me who’s playing the mugu here.”
Kole laughed. “Naaah, dude it’s nothing like that. I just really know Lola that’s all.”
Eseosa glanced sharply at Kole but only when Bola said nothing for a full minute, eyeing him suspiciously, did the implication of his last statement sink in.
“I’m sorry, what?!”
Just then the last member of the group, Tobe, walked in from the call he’d been taking. “Alright oh, the fellow I’m borrowing the drum set from said he can help me get it to your place the day before the gig. Shey wahala no dey?” He was looking at Bola who hardly spared him a glance.
“Yeah, that’s perfect Tobe. Thanks men.” He wouldn’t take his gaze off Kole.
Tobe, oblivious to all the tension at the table pointed to Eseosa. “You, your madam don come. Shey we go chop before we comot here?”
Nedu’s ear picked up ‘chop’ and he paused his game, turning to look in their direction. “Chow dey?!”
Eseosa laughed at them as he got up from his seat. “See these hounds. I told you my wife married me to feed you abi? Huger will deal with you both today.”
Nedu’s expression became somber. “Haba na, bros Esos. No do your boys like this.” He jumped up from where he was seated in front of the television screen. “In fact, make I go help that my sister Oge carry the load wey she from market bring come.” He arranged his clothes and gestured to his fellow hungry man. “Tobe, don’t dull, let’s move.”
With that, they both fled the living room with Eseosa, barely able to contain his amusement, trailing behind them. “You guys are unwell.”
After they left, the silence in the room became heavier by tons.
Kole felt like slicing his mouth off.
“Kole, I don’t want it to seem like I’m the one reading meanings into things here but please, what exactly is that statement supposed to mean?”
“Look Bola, it’s no big deal really. That came out wrong, I just meant that from what I’ve observed and what I know of her, she wouldn’t play you like that.”
“How do you know what you know of her?”
Kole laughed then. “See question. Isn’t it you who used to sing her praises 24/7 when we were in Uni?”
“Yeah but you never joined in my chorus then.”
“I didn’t know her then.”
“So when did you get to know her so well Kole?”
Eseosa and his wife entered the living room at that moment, both laughing at Nedu’s antics while Tobe stayed outside to receive another call.
Kole could hear all the activity from where they were seated at the dining table. He also knew Bola would never make a scene in Oge’s presence so he felt it was relatively safer to tell him now and then tackle his fury when they were all alone later and the other guys could defend him.
“Uhm, when we dated.”