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Aisha

Commiting suicide is next on my list. Please don’t stop me.

Standing with arms stretched like a consumptive abandoned lover, I watched her silhouette disappear into the sea of heads.

Love has been cruel once again that it left me with a terrible feeling.

A feeling that simple logic could have averted.

********

A hot afternoon it was in the outskirts of Abuja as the birds chirped in the trees. I stood in a greenish field, panting as the sun fried me with her scorching heat. I had just arrived from Lagos to Abuja Orientation Camp as a corp member for my service.

I walked, admiring the atmosphere while observing the activities of fellow comrades. I strolled to the registry and I ticked myself present.

On my way back to settle in properly an incident happened, a few metres from the registry. I strolled like a lone ranger seeking for acquaintances. Little did I know what fate awaited me.

At the canteen, fellow corp members were staring in my direction as I walked in. I didn’t understand the reason for the stare until I felt a touch on the shoulder. I turned my head, and behold a goddess of beauty, an epitome of elegance, a lady on a khaki fitted trousers, a simple white tee and sandals, no tats, no piercing, small tits, stood before me. Her sun-drenched hair was tied in a ponytail and her shades were fetchingly perched on her head. She wore no make-up save for a touch of lipstick. She tied her jacket round her waist. She stood right there extending a handshake, a broad smile sitting on her face.

“Hi, I’m Aisha from Nassarawa state.”

My system was overwhelmed by the beauty it beheld, my lips quivered as it let out the words,

“Hello, I’m Frank.”

We exchanged a handshake, her palm was as soft as Mama Bisi’s hot amala. She held unto my hand for what seemed like an hour while a sea of eyes suffocated us.

“I love your composure, Frank. The way you carry yourself beats me. Can we be friends?” she said.

Choi! Who am I to refuse such an offer? How could she be this bold? What breed of woman was this? I was lost in wonderland, oblivious of the fact that I hadn’t given a response.

“Mmmm?” her voice came, jolting me back to reality.

“Friends we are! Aisha,” I let the last vowel linger on my lips.

She took me by the hand like a sheep led to its slaughter and walked me into the canteen. We ordered our meal, and while eating, the conversation flowed seamlessly. Charmed by her witty remarks, lively chats and understanding of issues, our friendly chatters moved to something deeper.

We seemed to understand each other, and talked like we’ve known each other for aeons. I think I fell for her—hard. The meal of jollof rice smeared with veggies and other ingredients was a delight to consume. As we wiped our hands, she paid her bills while I paid mine. That singular gesture got me bewildered.

One thing led to another, phone numbers were exchanged, a meeting place and time was mapped out by my strategic self as we left the canteen, hands interwined like new lovebirds.

Mƴ first day in camp was adventurous and interesting. The succeeding days went by as our affections grew more intense. I was convinced she was the one for me.

So I popped the question.

Yes, I proposed, as I intended to take our relationship to a higher level. She was quick with an answer, an answer that gave our relationship a name.
Prior to this, I had always envisaged that my seventh intimate relationship would lead to marriage, and coincidentally Aisha’s happened to be the seventh after six heartbreaks.

“Oh! Aisha, my love. You’ve made me a happy man.” The glee on my face was unwavering.

Days later, my friends in the hostel started calling her ‘wifee’ whenever she visited. It also got to a time when her neighbours and room mates called me ‘husby’ wherever they see me.

It’s been fifteen days in camp. The stressful and drudgery experience I had expected has turned to a blissful experience. All thanks to Aisha.

Aisha and I sat under the mahogany tree, at the centre of the field after our morning exercise. Her head was resting on my laps, our shirts drenched with perspiration. I flipped out my phone and called mother. Our conversation centered on the goodnews.

I passed the phone to Aisha for a brief introduction with my mum, but no, the brief introduction turned out to be a long conversation that was full of of girly stuff.

Mother sounded very excited even with the name.

“First time you’ll introduce a lady to me. I’m solidly behind you son,” she’d said.

The statement from mother meant support and it really elated me.

Things went on smoothly as I silently prayed we get posted to the same workplace or at worst, same neighbourhood.

I woke up on the twenty first day, the last day of camp with mixed feeling. It was a feeling I couldn’t explain.

As I hummed along to the melody of ‘There’s a Fire‘ by Bez Idakula playing in my head, I packed my bags, placed a call to Aisha to inform her we would be going together to check out our various destination. She agreed.

Minutes later, like penguins we sauntered together to the notice board to know our fate. I searched mine while she searched her’s. At last I found mine: ‘Golden Light College, Bariwa’.

I aided her to search but all to no avail. I took a step in eagerness to help. I was headed for Coordinator’s office but she drew me back.

“Why?” I asked.

Her shiny face turned gloomy in seconds. “It’s all over, Frank. I chose you because of your confidence. I chose you to scare away advances. I’m happily married with a child and I have been reposted to Nasarawa.” She gauged my visage with a remorseful look.

“You’re a darling. I pray you find a better wife.” She reached to touch me.

My mouth hung open but words were gone with the wind. All those kisses, hugs and groping were—

“Aisha.” I screamed. “This isn’t happening!”

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