by Izundu Santos Amanze
Some girl once said that I was in touch with my feminine side. That combined with my good looks and the irresistible suave I had cultivated over the years, I was a ladies’ man. I knew who to pick over who, what to say in any condition, and most importantly, whom to leave alone.
Yemi handed me the voucher packed with male deodorants, body spray and other toiletries to hold while she bent down to examine the cards which were displayed on the lowest rung and which yelled out Valentine greetings in brightly coloured letters.
As she bent over, her panties was outlined on her flimsy leggings in a V-shape, and I couldn’t help as my eyes strayed hungrily over her buttocks which was supple and generous in its curvature. She reached up to compare two cards which she had picked up from the display and I immediately turned around, embarrassed to be caught in open admiration and pretended to be engrossed in the section I was standing in – which turned out to be cleaning materials and totally unsuited as Valentine gift for Yemi.
I was born into a family of six children and I was the only boy. And so I grew up with girls. I came to understand and appreciate them. So while other boys keep complaining about feminine wiles and how girls were unpredictable and frustrating and fickle and yet endearing, I had no problems with them. I considered myself an expert in issues that were girl-related. Some girl once said that I was in touch with my feminine side. That combined with my good looks and the irresistible suave I had cultivated over the years, I was a ladies’ man. I knew who to pick over who, what to say in any condition, and most importantly, whom to leave alone.
All that stopped the moment I met Yemi. I had gone to Obafemi hostel to welcome my little cousin who just got admitted into the University. My Auntie told me that she was new in Lagos and that she knew no one in the school and that it was in fact the first time she travelled out of home. My Auntie lived in Anambra state, she was one of those conservative people who never left her state and since my father’s business rarely allowed him holidays, we never got to meet her and her family very much. The last time I saw her daughter, she was nine years old and I was eleven. She instructed me to go to room 201 in the Obafemi hall and gave me her phone number to call.
I had called her to come downstairs and was waiting outside, dreading meeting this naive cousin who would have many needs and problems that I might not be able to solve, when another walked out of the door. For a while it felt like I was in a movie script. The air stalled around me, and all I saw was her. Her round eyes. Her full lips. the dimples that flashed as she gave me a quick smile in a greeting sort of way. But it was her eyes that captivated and kept me enthralled, they were so dark, yet burning. By God, she was beautiful. I made a mental note to ask for her afterwards and for want of something to do I started to call my cousin’s phone again, and in front of me, the girl’s phone began to ring.
“Sweetie would you like chocolates to go with those?” she pointed the voucher I was clutching, “I have bought the cards for Emeka and Stanley. Those ye-ye boys had better bought my own gifts o. So I wouldn’t look like a desperate girl”
Laughing, she sauntered off to the Chocolate/ dairy section and I followed mutely behind her. How could anyone ever see her as desperate. Couldn’t she see that she was so pretty? I realised my gaze was once more on her rear and I stopped mid-step and headed to the novel section. I had to buy her something too, in the spirit of the season, in the spirit of love.
Surely Yemi could see the unabashed affection in my eyes. Sometimes when I stared at her intensely, she would gently stop talking and change whatever topic was on. But she never said anything about my light flirting. I never went beyond admiring and being nice too, I wasn’t stupid. Even though I did not know much about what the love of one’s life was supposed to be like, I knew that she wasn’t supposed to be your cousin.
Izundu Santos Amanze is a student of the University of Nigeria, Nsukka. He likes to read and does lots of writing.