LAMENTATIONS OF AN UGLY GIRL (X)
“Your friend ehn” Viv started before Bola interjected.
“Dami and Liz fought”
“Na today, he’ll come back joor, that’s why you want to kill yourself,” I hissed.
“Your friend lied that she told Dami about Debo while he didn’t even know some people told him and over blew the story. Now Le lover is angry and he broke-up” Viv continued showing disgust in her gesture.
“How could I be so dumb” Liz spoke for the first time, since I came in.
“Which one is Debo?” I asked
“The dinner yellow paw-paw’”
“Are you crazy? on this campus, you of all people should know how gist goes nah” I was livid before Bola could tap me.
“Help me tell her o” Viv added.
“These things happen to the best of us, anybody can make a mistake nah”, Bola mediated, playing my role.
“Best of us, be sounding like DSTV advert there” Viv joked.
Liz never missed a chance to laugh; she left out tiny nasal breath sounding like a light chuckle.
“If you can still laugh you’d be able to buy me SNAPP for lying, in short one carton for all of us as your fine, Oya lets go joor” Bola pulled her up.
“I can’t go out like this” dipping one hand into her unmade hair and the other to catch the clothes, Bola threw at her.
“Carry your purse o” Viv added as Liz slid the blue Ralph Lauren Polo shirt she wanted to wear.
“Bola let me drive?” I asked pulling the door handle beckoning for the key.
“It is heartbreak we are treating, we don’t want head-break ooo” Bola replied in Yoruba. I retired to the back seat with Liz hoping to cheer her up. Don’t judge the book by its cover when it comes to Liz: on the front she is all hard but something as little as a bad test result can get her gloomy.
“Don’t worry, Dami would come back,” I said as I noticed her turmoil ridden face. We managed to get it off her mind that night with Bola teaching us some drinking games and with my type of friends. Laughter isn’t always far-fetched.
The following day, I dialled Dami’s phone number and after the second dial, he picked up
ME: Good, the thing is I would love to see you
Dami: If it is for Elizabeth, abeg, forget it.
ME: No, it is something else; I want you to put me through some things. Where can we meet?
Dami: Maybe at the SUG building, the canteen, four o’ clock or thereabout.
ME: okay with me.
He waved at me and pointed to seat opposite him. I quickly brought out my notebook, opened it to the centre page and passed it to him over the table. He chuckled as he read the content- an apology letter from Liz. He gave me a smile that displayed sarcasm.
“I just knew that’s what you will come for,” He said.
“She is still my friend now, I can’t just sit and watch abi” I replied
“See, it is over between me and your friend,” he shot me a serious look pushing the book back to me.
“At least you’d explain the reasons to a novice like me”
I tried to calm the tension in the air of the poorly ventilated canteen we were in.
“Like you don’t know your friend went on a date without telling me with another guy because I was away or so she thought. I came back and I am hearing all sort of things whoever she went with did with her” He paused, sipped off his drink taking out his anger on the drink. He continued, “You know the annoying thing is if it were me, your friend will chop my head off, going on and on. We even spoke that day and she lied that she was just going to sleep. Imagine the effrontery. She obviously didn’t know that news gets around” He stopped, sipped the remaining part of the drink.
“Dami, first, the name of my friend is Elizabeth and not your friend, somehow, you have to forgive her, you know that Liz’s entire attitude is just as smoke screen to her delicate nature. She was wrong and nobody can dispute that fact but that young woman practically hinges her life on you, you should see her now, she is a mess,” I said gesturing to kneel.
“I understand but I just can’t continue, she nags every other time she has the chance to, she can be a knuckle head and these (pointing to the note) just caps it all .You know if it were me, she would nag my head off and she just won’t stop. Tola, I’m sorry I can’t” he said with a painful look, waiting for me to say something. I became dumb from the look in his eyes; the one that said he had made his decision and no Jupiter could change it. He tapped my hand before putting on a plastic smile that did so poor at hiding his pain. “Tola, maybe later nah” He said leaving. I couldn’t stand up for over 30 minutes as my mind raced from how she would take the news to finding better way of salvaging the situation.
Liz was watching a movie on her laptop when I arrived. I pretended to be a tired taking my bath and trying to sleep immediately. Surprisingly, she didn’t bug me at all. After relating the scenario to Bola, we called Liz and told her. She replied rather causally and dismissed him saying she knew and she was over him. Immediately I threw Bola a puzzling look, did they talk about it while I was away? From the look of her face, she was as confused as I was.
“Liz, seriously maybe Bola can talk to him again,” I asked
“No joor, leave him, we are done” she replied plugging the earpiece to continue watching her film.
“She is going to hang herself,” I said as soon as I dragged Bola to the kitchen.
“Have you guys talked about it today?” I continued.
“No, she has been behaving like nothing happened all morning” Bola replied
“What are we going to do now?”
“Don’t know, keep a close eye on her I think”
Over the next few days, she acted like nothing happened, acting even more excited that she has always been, all this while, we were wondering what happened or rather what will happen so we took turns at looking after her since lectures had not begun. It was quite easy for everyone.
“You know this life is nothing sha, everything is vain. She said one day as we all sat together.
“Death is like the sure thing,” she continued
“And dishonour is one thing that death is sort of better than” she paused.
“That’s it” she exclaimed.
“What?” the three of us replied in symphony.
“That look you gave yourselves when I started, you guys think I will slit my wrist abi?
“I thought as much you guys come every other day, ask if I have eaten and all that nonsense”.
“Bola, you now call me every two hours, you wey be say if war dey come na ping u go ping me ooo”
Bola interjected “we were just looking out for you, the way you got over Dami was quite unlike you and we just couldn’t look nah abi”
“I am disappointed in you guys so you think I, Elizabeth, would kill myself for somebody, a guy for that matter.” She said shaking her head in dismay.
“Guy wey be say I dey manage, me, drink Hypo for Dami, I dey craze” she spat. But anyways thanks for the look-out and if you can continue, I would die if I don’t get those black pumps in Bola’s wardrobe, Bola shey you will give me?” she joked.
From that moment, it was clear to everybody that Liz was over Dami and Dami was probably “over-over” Liz, wherever he was. We welcomed Liz to the single ladies crew and she made a joke about leaving us soon.
“Kome, meet my friend Tolani, Tolani, Kome” Viv said as I exchanged pleasantries with Kome. “Nice finally meeting you, can’t wait to meet the others too” she said.
“What others” I thought to myself before I ran off to catch up with a classmate who was already signalling me to come over.
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