by Anthony Othuke Ohminiabors
One too many times this same girl had told me she would never leave me, “never ever, no matter what happened. I’ll love you forever.”—Her exact words.
Chirping birds sounded in the distance, ushering in the new day whose rays carelessly broke through the blue curtains in shiny slats. I turned and tossed, at war with my loss. I snuggled under the blanket and shut my eyes. Her words reverberated within my head. It was a week now; still they stung like she had said them only yesterday.
“What is the matter with you Ohmston? You are hardly ever here and even when you are, the chasm between us is so wide. I cannot seem to reach you. I am fed up, tired of your constant flirting with danger. I will not be a pawn in your mad and dangerous schemes. I cannot stand it. Come to think of it, how long has it been since we…” Amber left the words hanging. For someone with such fire, she was incredibly shy when it came to matters of sex.
I looked at her with sad eyes. I took a step to be by her side. She moved away.
“Amber, I know how you feel.”
“No you don’t, if you did you would listen to me and get a safer job, spend less time snooping into businesses that don’t concern you.” She exhaled and raised her hands to her face. She walked up to me, touched my face and held my hands.
“Can’t you see?” she said, her eyes red with tears. “I sit by the phone everyday dreading the day it’ll ring and someone will tell me something terrible has happened to you. I can’t bear it anymore. Maybe you need some time to think about what it is you really want. Your job or me?”
I held her face in my hands. “Amber pleas—”
Her face hardened, her lips drawn in a thin line. “Have a good life Ohmston.”
She turned on her heels and dragging her Echolac box behind her, she headed for the door.
Maybe it was the stress of the past week, maybe it was the pain her words brought me, because as she left, I stared at her departing figure, without the slightest inclination to go after her. One too many times this same girl had told me she would never leave me, “never ever, no matter what happened. I’ll love you forever.”—Her exact words. Seeing her renege on what those words once stood for sent hot flames into my heart and I stood dumbfounded trying to fathom the sudden turn of events.
I shook my head trying to garner the willpower to move my feet and stop her. This was Amber after all, the love of my life, leaving and I couldn’t do a thing about it.
For no reason I could immediately decipher, I went blank . . . I felt nothing.
As though propelled by an unseen force, I walked to the door, turned the key in its lock, closed the shutters and collapsed on the well-worn sofa. My left hand was strewn over my face even though the room was dark as night. I tried to block the images floating around my mind; Amber leaving, Ronke’s deathly pale face, Major Taiwo and his goons. The images just kept changing. It was some time before I finally drifted off.
It must have been the screeching of the alarm clock on the three-legged stool or the shrill call by the akara hawker on the street that woke me from my reverie. Dashing into the shower, I took a hurried bath. A quick glance at the miniature clock in the bathroom told me it was 7:00am.
I had an eight o’ clock with the boss.
I wove through traffic, slipping into my spot in the parking lot of The Daily Times at exactly 7:52am. I hurried along the corridor and headed straight for the huge daunting mahogany door that stood at the end of the hall.
I rapped twice and stepped in.
The boss peered at me from the top of his thick lensed-goggles and with a motion of his bald head, asked me to sit.
The office was a large spacious room with four bouquets of scented flowers decorating its four corners. A portrait of ‘The Boss’ sat in-between a gilded frame of the Lagos State Governor and a silver-chromed frame of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
He cleared his throat and pushed the file in front of him to me.
“Our new hires,” he said, his voice thick with authority. He scratched his goatee as he regarded me. “Your performance in this organization has been very impressive, hence your new status as trainer and mentor.” His fat face creased into a warm smile.
“But sir . . .”
“Don’t you worry. It’s a great honour, and a great responsibility too, to bring the young ones up to speed on how things are done around here.”
“Thank you sir.”
My eyes wandered to the blue sky dotted by white doves, carefully depicted on canvass by Amero. It hung on the wall to the left of the huge brown desk I sat facing.
“You’ll be meeting with them tomorrow.” He took off his goggles and rubbed his eyes with the back of his hands. “That reminds me, there is a new column in the works, you think you are up for it?”
“What about sir,”
“Missing Person’s” column. Presently we are short-staffed, and there is no one good enough to take the job. What with the increase in missing persons reports filed here in Lagos alone, I wonder why we hadn’t thought about this earlier.”
“I’d look into any cases you hand me, sir.”
“Great. Results Ohmston, results are all I thrive on.”
“You will get results sir.”
”Well Mr Weth, that’ll be all for now.”
I adjusted my tie and sat up, straight as a pole.
I had reached the door, my hand on the golden knob when his voice called out to me.
“Great job Ohmston—you did great with the Coleman issue. Made me proud. Hahahahaha.”
I nodded. “Thank you sir.” I said again and exited the most revered office in all of The Daily Times building as fast as my legs could carry me.
Since I was free for the rest of the day, I decided to check up on Ronke. I had seen her four days ago and she had been in a deep sleep, still breathing with the aid of an Oxygen tank.
Within a couple of minutes, I was at St. Luke’s. Thoughts of Amber swarmed my head. I missed her; I missed her warmth, her touch, her laughter and I wish she wasn’t gone. But maybe she was right, I had no right to subject her to such uncertainty. I was still thinking about Amber when I walked into the private ward.
It was either an apparition appearing before me or I had been transported to a world of make believe, for surely as the day was bright sat Ronke looking ever serene in a stunning yellow dress.
She stood up and hurried towards me, burying her head on my chest as my arms claimed her. I could tell from the strength of the arms that circled my waist that she was almost her usual self but for the slight limp that dragged her steps.
She pulled back and stared into my eyes.
From the parted ‘V’ at the neck of her dress, I caught a glimpse of her sizeable bronze breasts rising and falling ever so slowly. Forcing my gaze from that part of her, I looked into her eyes.
I attempted cheer, “Hey Ronkiee! My, you are a sight for sore eyes! I see you are out of bed.”
Ronke regarded me calmly. “Yes I am,” she replied, a bit too quietly.
“What’s wrong?” I asked trying hard to decipher her mood.
She pulled away from me and limped back to the bed. She sat down and folded her arms across her chest.
“I have been relieved from active duty for three months and you know what that means.”
It must have been the way the tears rolled down her eyes unbidden or the way she hung her head, I was by her side in three long strides.
Cupping her chin in my hands, I tried to soothe her and tell her it was okay but she cried harder, burying her face on my neck.
“I don’t want to stay home. I’ll probably die of boredom and loneliness in three months, can’t you see?”
“Ronke calm down,” I patted her hair and wiped her tears. I pressed her to my chest and planted a kiss on her head.
Holding Ronke like this brought back a lot of memories. I knew every curve, mound and contour of her just as she did me. But that had been a long time ago.
Ronke raised her face, her lips inches from mine.
“Ohmston . . .”
Need overcame every other feeling and my lips came crashing down on hers, gently stroking her face with my fingers.
I rained kisses all over her face, down her neck and her open cleavage. I wanted to comfort her and soothe her and I knew she wanted more too as her lips desperately sought mine.
Our kiss was frenzied and it was all I could do not to rip her clothes off. I had to be gentle with her, her wounds were still fresh.
She sat on the bed, pulling me along. Her hands closed around my jacket, peeling it off my back in one fluid move. Then she loosened the tie and flung it to the wall. She circled her good leg around my back, pulling me closer to her while she undid my buttons and slowly took off my shirt.
My breath came in frenzied bursts, my eyes shiny with need.
“Ohmston, the door,” her eyes flickered seductively, her voice dripping like honey upon my ears. I hurried to the door and slid the bolt. I was beside her in a flash, pressing my lips against hers. I held the dress and pulled it from her, slowly. She groaned as slight pain coursed through her bandaged leg. She lay on her back as naked as day.
My hands found her breasts, they were soft and full like a mound of fresh earth. Her nipples pushed against my palm, inviting my lips to devour. I trailed my tongue into her ear lobes. She moaned, her fingers digging into my back. My tongue snaked down her neck and found a nipple. I closed my teeth on it gently, eliciting loud moans from her open mouth. She threw her head back and pressed my head against the feast.
Down her thighs my fingers journeyed, surfing her femininity. She threw her legs apart, accepting the probing finger.
“Ohmston . . .” she moaned. “Kiss me . . . make love to me.”
She sat up and struggled with my belt, pulling it out the way with an urgency I had almost forgotten was innate in my once vivacious Ronke. She held me, caressing me till I moaned aloud.
She lay back down and welcomed me.
“Knock knock!” A loud bang thudded on the door.
To be continued next week.
Editor’s note: Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.