In the spirit of valentine, Cizlar brings with much love this special valentine story. One that would leave you wishing and wondering and smiling, I hope.



Aisha sat on the chair in one corner of her room, her phone pressed to her ear, her body shaking with laughter. “Your head is not correct.” She said into the phone amidst bouts of laughter. The person on the other end of the phone, Raymond, was laughing too.

“Seriously?” he asked. “Well, I am your friend so it goes to say that you are even more unserious than I am.”

And as she always replied when he brought that up, she said “Eh, you and who are friends? You are not my friend o. Tufia. I can’t be friends with a crazy person.”

He laughed at that as usual, “You are really the one whose head is not correct.” Then after a slight pause he said, “Speaking of correct heads, Ada’s own is not o. The girl has been sending me pictures of engagement rings and cute pre-wedding shoots. What’s that supposed to be?”

Aisha stretched backwards on the chair as she reached for the remote control on bed. “Hehehe. That’s the way o. you know that girl has been on your matter for years. She is only giving you a glimpse of the big picture. Shine your eyes o.”

Raymond huffed. “To see what, please? It’s actually very upsetting. We’ve only been dating three months and you know me nau. I am never in a rush, especially not when it comes to love. Besides, I am not even sure if she is the one yet. I just want to see how it goes, you know?”

“See how it goes, see how it goes, Raymond, seeing how it goes since 2009.”

The laughter was instant and loud. “You this girl… what am I going to do with you?”

Aisha grinned from ear to ear, enjoying herself a little too much, “You can help me pick out a gift for Kunle’s birthday –”

“And why will I do that?”

“Because you love me and you want to help me butter him up to receive the no-birthday-sex-or-any-other-kind-of-sex news.” Aisha was grinning when she finished talking because she knew Raymond would roll his eyes and scoff at her.

“Really Aisha? You still haven’t told him?” Raymond sounded shocked. “Na wa for you o. I thought you promised to tell him last week? Why didn’t you –” he was cut off by the automated voice informing her that she had “one minute remaining.”

“Ah, my credit has finished. Bye. Let’s talk at lunch tomorrow. You are still taking me out right?”

“Why don’t I call you back?” he asked making her shake her head. “No joor. I want to watch TV. I will see you tomorrow.” She said before ending the call and tossing her phone on the bed.


The room was dimly lit by the candles that lined the floor creating a path from the door to the bed. The smell of wild flowers filled the room and had drafted to the rest of the house from where Raymond had been tracing their scent. As he stepped further into the room, he noticed the pieces of clothing carefully placed at the foot of the bed and immediately, his eyes moved to the top of the bed to see the lady lying on it. Her body was curved and her lack of clothing, save for a pair of red lace underwear and red heeled shoes made her look like a dream. Raymond swallowed and took a few steps closer to the bed to get a better look and her full lashes fluttered open. A smile curved her lips and blood rushed to his groin. He swallowed again.

“Ada,” was all he could say.

A giggle escaped her. “You look like you’ve seen a ghost,” she said as she sat up, leaning on one hand. “I slept off waiting for you and I think I caught a chill.” She looked down at her almost naked body as she gestured with her hand. His eyes followed her movements. “Won’t you come and warm me up?” She asked, batting her lashes at him.

“I thought … were you … is today my birthday?” he asked as he moved towards her still trying to understand the situation.

Ada laughed again getting on her knees so she could put her arms around his neck. “I just wanted to surprise my baby… you are looking very handsome by the way.” With that, her lips found his.

Thirty minutes later, Ada was moving about the room, picking up the candles, blowing out the lights and throwing them in the duffel bags she held. “One thousand eight hundred naira each. One thousand eight hundred naira, that’s how much each of these scented candles cost me. And I bought them! Do you know how many I bought? Just to set the mood…”

“Ada, I am really sorry.” Raymond said from the bedside as he struggled into his trousers. “I honestly didn’t mean to upset you.”

“Oh really?” she asked, stopping to stand to her full height and face him. “Then I take it you just wanted to tell me subtly how stupid and foolish I am. My God,” she said looking up, “And to think that I thought you were not like other men. I thought you were different!” She looked straight at him before bending to resume her task.

Raymond sighed for the umpteenth time. “I am sorry Baby, please. It’s just … you are really so beautiful and seeing you like that tonight really made me lose control.” She stopped at his words after placing the last candle in the bag. When he noticed she had paused and was listening to him, he continued. “You know I love you and I would never deliberately hurt you.” He started to walk towards her and she looked away, tapping her right foot and reducing her grip on the bag. He stopped in front of her and took her free hand in one of his, “I am sorry, Aisha, please –”

The duffel bag was out of her right hand and hit the floor in the same instance that her hand hit him across the face. “How dare you? It was not enough for you to call out her name in the middle of sex; you just had to do it again while apologising didn’t you? Let go of my hand!” she said pulling her hand out of his. “So you live in denial? You are in love with her yet you claim she is your best friend?” Shaking her head and picking up her bag again, she said in a barely audible voice, “I should have known.” She turned around and walked out leaving Raymond standing there, his erection barely hidden by his trousers, wondering about what he had just done. He heard her footsteps returning and was excited that she had forgiven him until she stopped at the door and said, “I forgot my car key.” She walked into the room, picked it up from the table and walked out the way she had come. He heard the living room door slam shut a few seconds later.

“What is wrong with you Raymond?” he asked smacking his head with his right hand as he sat at the edge of the bed. “You just had to kill the mood.” He looked down at his trousers before putting his head in his hands, a heavy sigh escaping his lips.


The couple walking out of the restaurant hand in hand was smiling. The man was a head taller than the woman even with her hair combed out in a full afro that framed her head like a halo. Her hips swayed from side to side as much as her body hugging dress could allow and her hand in his didn’t make it easier, yet she held on all the way to where he had his car parked.

“I had a wonderful meal.” Aisha said smiling into his eyes. “Where did you find this place?”

“Oh. A friend of mine brought me here a few days back. The food was so good; I thought you would like it.” Kunle replied as he pulled the car door open for her to go in. she let go of his hand and placed a kiss on his cheek before sitting in the car. He was smiling when he came in through the driver’s side.

“You should let me drive when next we go out.” Aisha said half smiling. “Let me show you as e dey go.”

Kunle looked sideways at her and made a face as he started the car. “Very funny. So you can bash my car right?” Just then, someone tapped on the windshield at his side of the car. He was holding out what seemed to be printed photographs. Kunle wound down the glass and raised an eyebrow at him.

“Evening sir. I am sorry I missed you the other day. Here are the pictures Antie asked for. Eight hundred only.” He pushed the pictures at Kunle baring his teeth in a smile and then just noticing Aisha said, “Antie, good evening ma.” His forehead wrinkled in a frown when his eyes met Aisha’s, before he faced Kunle who had already reached into his pocket to pull out a one thousand naira note. He shoved it at the man and pulled back, the man’s shouts of thank-you following them out. As he pulled into the road, Aisha said, “Let me see the pictures.”

Kunle looked at her and then back at the road. “It’s nothing Aisha. It’s my friend who brought me here the other day.”

“I didn’t ask for an explanation, Kunle. I just want to see the pictures.” Aisha was smiling.

“There’s nothing to see. She’s just a random girl. She’s not even half as pretty as you are.” Kunle was looking straight ahead, occasionally looking her way.

“See me see this man o. I said show me picture, you are talking about fine. I just want to see the picture.”

Kunle paused for a long time not making a move to give the pictures to her. Then suddenly looking at her and away, said “Aisha, I just needed… I don’t know how to stay without a woman. I love you but I need sex… I am sorry.” He looked sideways at her and then back at the road. “You are quiet.”

“Stop me here.” Aisha said with a sigh, gathering her purse and phone.

“Aisha, I am sorry.” He said, still driving ahead.

“Stop the car!” Aisha said slamming her left hand on the dash board. Kunle jerked up, slamming the breaks at the same time, making the car screech to a halt. The driver coming behind him cursed him in eloquent Yoruba as Aisha opened the door and jumped out. Then she walked back the way the car had come to the taxi park she had spotted. The taxi was headed to her apartment when her phone rang. She ignored it thinking it was Kunle. On the third ring, she hissed, pulled out her phone and snapped, “What?!” Then she realized she had not answered the call when it kept ringing. As she made to swipe the phone, she saw that it was Raymond. Tears welled up in her eyes. “Raymond,”

“Hey, what’s wrong?” He asked immediately.

“Nothing… Kunle cheated on me.” She said and a lone tear rolled down her left cheek.

“My goodness. I am so sorry. Where are you?”

“I am on Herbert Macaulay road. Why?” Aisha reached into her purse to retrieve a handkerchief.

“Just to know if you are okay.”

“I will be. You don’t sound okay yourself. Is everything alright?” Aisha asked as she wiped her cheeks.

“Ada left me.”

“It’s a lie. That’s impossible. She’s crazy about you. What happened?” Aisha asked sitting up.

Raymond sighed. “I called out your name during sex.” He said without preamble. Aisha gasped and then, burst out laughing.

*** To be continued ***



So as 2016 dawned, I got thinking about a lot of things and one that was forced upon me was the headies2015, Nigeria’s famous music awards ceremony, and the drama that started with Olamide, YBNL’s boss, and ended with Don Jazzy, the boss of MAVIN Records. I mean, I had other plans for 2016, like being very time conscious and writing more often and yet, I sat wondering about something that won’t put food on my table. Not just wondering but also tweeting and retweeting.
It started with me coming into the living room and seeing that my brother was watching the awards ceremony. And I joined him, expecting it to be as much fun as the AMVCA’s which we had seen together a few days back. I was in for a surprise. Not only was the Headies2015 poorly organized, their sound system was also bad. I managed my way through the show and watched my beloved 2face(I don’t care if he wants to be called 2baba now) get the prestigious Hall of Fame award and Timi Dakolo, my heartthrob, grab three awards when I decided it was time to go to bed. My brother suggested we watched a few more minutes before going to sleep and I obliged him. Later, I was glad I did.
The nominees for the NEXT RATED ARTISTE were announced, an award that came with the gift of a car, I thought they all deserved the award but I was positive it would go to Korede Bello – hey, don’t cut my story short with your ranting! I am entitled to my opinion – because of his very famous song, Godwin, and how even some churches adopted it. But then, it was a voters’ award and Reekado Banks, his MAVIN brother, won the award. He hugged and shook hands with all his fellow nominees and went on stage to receive his award with all of them except for Kiss Daniel, who my heart went out to. So anyway, that went by and all was well and good until Adekunle Gold won his award for Best Alternative Song. Then Olamide took the mic and I am sure you know the story from there but, please allow me the pleasure of retelling it. Olamide went on to inform the present audience and those of us at home that HIS Next Rated Artiste was Lil Kesh, because “every fucking single was a hit” and he went further to add “Ko ni da fun iya anybody.” For those of you who do not speak Yoruba, that is a Yoruba phrase aimed at cursing the mother of “Anybody”.
Naturally, I was stunned, but then, it was Olamide so we laughed it off. And just when I thought the drama was over, Don Jazzy was invited to receive a SPECIAL RECOGNITION award. My brother and I had earlier been pondering about proposing an award solely for him so we were excited that some other people were thinking like us. However, we would not have anticipated in our wildest dreams what would happen when he took the microphone. After giving thanks for the award and expressing how much he did not like awards, he went on to address Olamide directly –without hiding behind the shield of the word “ANYBODY” – saying and I dare to quote, “Egbon Olamide, if you want the car, come and collect it. God bless you.” The crowd went wild as well as I did.
Now, before you begin to tell me who was right or wrong, just cool down, because that is not the purpose of my wondering. I already defended my opinion on twitter and laughed at the many jokes that arose from the situation.
The reason why I started wondering and why you have had to read all of this, came up yesterday morning when I was jejely doing laundry, and my brother told me about an instagram picture, so I went to check and low and behold, both celebrities, Don Jazzy and Olamide, the cause of the uproar on national TV and then social media two days earlier were in a picture shaking hands and true to that, there was an apology along with the picture.
I am sure I am not the only person that started wondering what I started wondering. Could we have been fooled? Was it just a prank, a joke of some sort or was it nothing but a mere publicity stunt? Hmm. Even as I thought about this, I started to think of how impossible the idea was. I mean, Don Jazzy is a very private person in my opinion; he would not pull such a stunt just for publicity… or would he? I pondered and wondered about this for a few minutes before finally coming to a more reasonable conclusion; they were both just as bored with the headies2015 as I was. I believe that sitting in that audience, Olamide Baddo was bored out of his mind and decided that everyone was probably that bored so he sent a message to Don Baba Jay to find out if he was just as bored and this is how I presume the conversation went.
Olamide Baddo: Don baba jay, dis show don tire me o. You dey feel me?
Don Baba Jay: Oh boy, no be small thing. Sleep don dey catch me sef.
Olamide Baddo: Make we spice up the show na. Are we not entertainers?
Don Baba Jay: How do you propose? I no get any idea wey go fit solve dis kain problem.
Olamide Baddo: lol. I know just the thing. You know the award Reekado just won?
I will pull a Kanye on these people. You think of something.
Don Baba Jay: Nice one. Let’s do this.
Hmm. I think that is just how it went down and Nigerians that we are, looking for the next available gist to swing around, we jumped on it and started taking sides while my brothers shook hands in the background and applauded themselves for making an otherwise boring event interesting. Of course that is how it happened. It is impossible that there was any hidden beef or that this was publicity stunt. This is the only reasonable way it could have gone down. Period.
PS: When I was writing this as well as wondering about it, I was in good health of mind and body so be rest assured that my wondering and pondering and writing, were not influenced by anything remotely associated with drugs or alcohol.



  • I want to use this medium to thank you – every single person who clicked the link to Cizlar – and everybody who dropped a comment or liked a post. I am exceedingly grateful to you. Thank you for an amazing 2015 and i wish you a magnificent 2016. I hope you keep clicking, liking and reading and I will do my best to make more amazing stories!!! Love you to bits – and I mean  it.

So, because it is that time of year again, I found myself thinking about resolutions and the big deal people make about them and all those people that won’t stop asking “what are your new year resolutions” and all the many people who will add “get married” to their resolutions when they are not even in a romantic relationship and finally, what my own resolutions will be for the coming year 2016.
As I set to write them down – all the amazing things I intended to do and not to do – to achieve and stop achieving – it occurred to me that I needed to check the resolutions I made for 2015 and how well I did. Thankfully, I had written that down somewhere that was safe and indispensable. After going through the resolutions, I was depressed and a little bit disappointed (okay, I admit it was more than a little bit) and I started to wonder if there was any point in penning down any more resolutions.
I mean, what is the point of writing down stuff, deciding to abide by them and then following a pattern for a week or two, or even a month before giving up or not keeping up? And then it occurred to me.
I wanted to hit perfection in the very beginning and so when it didn’t happen, I lost courage and stopped. Let’s take my exercise routine for example, in 2014, I resolved that in 2015, I would exercise every morning at 5:30am. I did it for a few days and then I stopped, because I didnt always wake up before that time and I thought that if I didn’t do it at 5:30am then it was not worth doing. Imagine!
This brought me to a point where I started wondering about “the point of resolutions”. Like seriously, what is the point if we cannot hit perfection from the start? After much pondering and listening to people talk about their own experiences, I concluded that the point was about getting better. Trying and failing, but still trying all the same, until the time we get it right. The reason for a new year is an opportunity to right the wrongs of the old year, a sort of second chance, like a birthday or a makeup after a breakup or a remarriage after a divorce or a chocolate cake after a red velvet cake or … I am sure you get my point.
So for this coming year, I decided to take the resolutions for 2015, that I fell back on or tried and failed and so stopped trying to achieve, and incorporate them into my 2016 resolutions and include other things I would also like to achieve in 2016. Also, from what a very good friend shared with me, I tried to include plans for each month – amendable plans, of course – and this will help me keep track each month so that I can either fall back and start again or buckle up and fire on. I am looking forward to a lot of firing on though.
Now after saying all that, I have one question for you. Have you any new year resolutions? (Because some people do not.)
NOTE TO SELF: This does not mean that you can now decide to be trying and failing anyhow o, the aim is to try and hit. Don’t comman think that you can come and go and do as you lik


A lone tear rolled down her right cheek as she stood by his grave, another one rolled down the other cheek at a slower pace. How she missed him! If only she had known, if only she had had a warning of some sort. He had died not even knowing that he meant a whole lot to her.
That day he had pleaded with her to just give him a smile, so he would feel alright. She had refused, angry as always. He left to be with his friends, to give her an hour alone, and he did not come back. His car had crashed into a parked truck and he had died instantly, the only one in the car who died. He was buried immediately and she didn’t even get a chance to say goodbye.
Now he was gone and she wished she had smiled. Maybe if she had smiled that night, he would still be smiling now. But he lay still, several feet under the ground, never to tease her again.
As memories flashed, more tears flowed, but he was gone. Lightning flashed and thunder growled but she stayed put eyes glued to the gravestone. The sky darkened and thunder threatened again but she stayed put, thinking about the many times she had treated him like he didn’t matter. As the first drop of rain hit the ground, she crumpled down on his grave and gave herself to her grief. If only she had told him.
In between heart wrenching sobs, she cried, “I love you too.” But it was a little too late.i


1. These tips are not helpful at all.
2. You want to waste money? Please shop online. You will find a lot of things you do not need that look very appealing.
3. You want a reason to cry? Go ahead and pay before delivery – for a shoe – on a site that does no refunds.
4. On second thought, never ever pay before delivery on a Nigerian site. Don’t get it twisted, I love Nigeria but their online shops, nah.
5. Shopping online is not for everybody. (Please note.)
6. Only shop online, if and only if, you know your actual body/shoe size and the difference between US, UK, EU/Chinese sizes. (except you are buying gadgets of course.)
7. Some online shops also sell substandard goods. Beware.
8. I read this article about konga. You may want to check it out:
Written by: Mama Maria*


Happy New Month to you!!! I wish you the very best of this month.


So lately, I have been thinking about a whole lot of things and marriage happens to be one of them. Not the way normal people think about it though, I was thinking about  proposals and the fuss people make about them. I was wondering why after buying a ring worth thousands of naira/dollars/pounds (or millions if he is rich enough) the man still had to go on his knees or on one knee or on any knee at all to ask her to be his wife. I mean, if he had to go through all that trouble I think he should be standing on his two feet or sitting on a chair (or a throne if the ring is worth millions) and then say “Here, have this ring and show the world that you are my queen.” Seriously.
Because I think if she would say yes if he went on his knees, she wants to be with him, so that means she would say yes however he asked her, knees or throne. The crazy thing though is the fact that these men actually look forward to going on their knees. My friend who was kind enough to answer a few questions told me, “It just seems right. He is asking her to be his wife. That is just the right way. How else would he ask?”
After wondering about the ring and the man, I started wondering why the woman had to be surprised. Really, why does she have to gasp and ooh and ah and dramatically put a hand over her mouth, and if the spirit leads her right she might even shed some tears and jump up and down? Like seriously, why should she be surprised? They have been dating for years or months (and in my opinion, a few months is enough to know if you want to spend the rest of your life with someone. Like I said, in my opinion) and she knew they would get married eventually. So why is she surprised?
Okay, I have gotten over the surprise thing, women are dramatic but really why on earth does she always say yes?  It would be a little exciting if she said no, wouldn’t it?
After all this wondering, I wonder what the ideal proposal should be. I mean since the ideal marriage is one where the man and woman are partners, lovers, equals (who am I kidding? Men and women are not equal, women are amazing), soul mates, best friends.
I think the ideal proposal should be something like this:
Woman walks into the room where man is lounging on the bed playing with his gameboy or reading a book or combing his hair. He smiles at her and says “Hey pretty.”
She laughs. “Nobody does that any more. Stop being so sweet.” She walks up to him and takes the comb from his hand (yes, I prefer the hair – combing scene) and continues combing his hair. His smile grows.
“Let’s get married.” He blurts out. She laughs and nods slowly. “When?” She asks smiling.
“Whenever you like.” He replies smiling into her eyes, leaning towards her, eyes slowly drifting closed.
I am thinking of a lot of ways to end that scene but I will let your imagination do that for you.
PS: I also noticed that the man is the one who asks the woman to marry him almost always but that is what I will wonder about tomorrow.
Now, after all is said and done, Dear Future Husband, do not think for one second that you can escape buying me a magnificent ring with a huge stone embedded in it, because I had the audacity to write this. I also love diamonds and the idea of being swept off my feet


It was one of those nights. ‘His nights’ Nights when we would walk side by side with ear phones plugged into his ears and him rapping along and nodding, and me walking mutely beside him after trying and failing to start a conversation in the first few minutes of our walk, then finally giving up and entertaining myself with my imaginations or on nights when I was pissed, I would plug in my earpiece too and hum along or just hum some song I knew. There were nights we had fun though. When we laughed and played as we walked. Those were the kind of nights I loved. ‘Our nights’

We were walking back to his class after buying our dinner of jollof rice and fried plantain with pieces of beef and boiled eggs to garnish it. I entertained myself as we walked with the thought of how great the meal would taste in my mouth and the look on the faces of his course mates when we would feed each other, even though I was not sure we would engage in such a playful act that night, it was an entertaining thought. We had our route, we would take a turn from the main road and walk through the Faculty of Engineering around the car park and through the corridors of the locked offices, where we often kissed, and then into the quadrangle then through the lobby that led to some more offices before we finally took the stairs that led up to his studio. He was a student of architecture so he often stayed in his studio overnight. On the stairs, he would often linger behind me and try to grab my butt while he said something cute and silly and erotic all at once. And I would smile sheepishly and get warm all over just before he leaned in to kiss my neck. We would both be smiling when we walked into his class. His name is Marvin and he is the cutest guy I know. I don’t care what anyone else thinks. He has that million dollar smile that would make you do anything to have him bestow it on you and small eyes to complement the smile. He has pink lips, no not pink, dark orange and he has this mad physique, abs, arms and a chest to die for. My goodness…

As we took the turn off the road that led to the university’s senate building and through the dark area around the faculty of engineering just before the car park, I spotted three guys standing and conversing in one corner. My heart skipped and I wondered why. I hastened my steps to catch up with Marvin as he was a few steps ahead of me. Just then the three guys moved to stand in my way. I wondered why but it was not unusual for guys to want to play pranks sometimes so I did not panic immediately.

“Please excuse me.” I said, my voice quivering.

The guy in the middle smiled but didn’t move. His smile scared me and so I shouted.

“Excuse me. I want to get by.” My voice was way louder now because I wanted Marvin to hear and maybe turn around and stop whatever it was that was going through the heads of these guys in front of me. But he did not hear me because he did not stop walking. I looked back at the one in the middle who had smiled earlier. He was no longer smiling.

“What do you think you are doing, screaming like that?” His tone was harsh as though he had been greatly offended and would punish me for my crime. Daddy used that voice on me when I did something really wrong. This time I was really scared and opened my mouth to let out an ear splitting scream but it never got out. With a speed I had never imagined was possible in real life, the other guys were beside me and one put his hand over my mouth trapping my scream and together they carried me up and dragged me to the corner where there was a water tank. The rest happened as though in slow motion and still very quickly. I wished I was dreaming. I struggled and tried to scream. Surely someone would take that route and rescue me. My food fell out of my hand as someone roughly pulled off my jeans. I tried to bite on the hand over my lips but it was so tight I could not even move my jaw. Hot tears stung the backs of my eyes as I heard a ripping sound. That was definitely my panties. I tried to scream but it was futile then I remembered there was a God and I prayed.

Save me. Lord, save me. Jesus help me.

The pain was fast. It shot through my mind before I knew where it had come from. My heart broke into many thousand pieces. The gift I had kept all along for the man who would call me wife had just been stolen. I didn’t know what hurt more. The pain my assailants were causing my body or the pain in my heart. I struggled some more but the pain only got worse. Tears streamed down my cheeks as the man on top of me started panting.

Marvin, I need you now!

Come to my rescue!



Jesus, Lord help me!

Mummy! Daddy!


Just then I heard footsteps, and he got off me in a mad rush. More like jumped off. He had heard the footsteps too and he and his friends were running away before a couple holding hands took the turn. They took a few more steps before I heard their gasps. The girl was the first to act. She walked towards me and squat at my side.

“Are you okay?” She asked and gasped at something she saw. “Oh my God! Baby, she was raped.”


The word shocked the reality into me. I burst into tears. Together, they got me up. She got her handkerchief and cleaned me up before pulling my jeans back on me. She offered to take me to the security unit and I declined. I made to walk away but the pain was sickening and I couldn’t move. She offered her help again and suggested I go to my hostel. I didn’t want to. I wanted to see Marvin. He would have been worried. She helped me walk there and at the foot of the stairs that led to his class, I told her I was fine. I tried to smile but I guess it did not work because she had tears in her eyes. I looked away and took the stairs, one at a time. Very slowly. I wiped my face with the backs of my hands when I got to the front of his class and then carefully made my way in. I had thought I would feel better when I saw him. But I did not. There he sat in his spot, his face knotted in a frown and concentrating on the screen of his laptop. I only had to look at his hands to see that he was gaming.

I crumpled to the ground bursting into fresh tears. He was gaming.

Someone in his class saw me and called his attention. I would have laughed at his reaction if I was not crying so much. He was at my side in seconds, gathering me up, wrapping me in his arms, asking what was wrong. He was all loving and attentive and it did not make me feel warm. My world had ended. When he asked what was wrong, I could not say it. He kept asking and finally I told him. I watched as his eyes changed from warm to cold, to angry, to frustrated, to shocked, back to angry and finally back to frustrated and then to helpless and confused. When I was done with my tale I was exhausted. He tried to hold me close but I cringed away from him.

It was his fault.

Now, a few months after that, I have become a different girl. And he seems different too. We no longer spend nights together at his studio. We stay at his apartment. And when we go out to get something, he doesn’t wear his ear phones anymore. His hand is always around my shoulder and he is bringing up topics for discussion. But I really don’t want to talk. I just want to be left alone and I really wouldn’t mind if he took his hands off me. I walk by people and do not see them. I eat food and cannot tell what it tastes like. I can’t talk to my mum or anyone else about it. Marvin talked to my parents himself. I don’t go for my therapy sessions. I don’t need that. I don’t even pick Pastor Teju’s calls. He would only tell me to talk to Jesus and look where that left me. I know what I need and I know how to get it.

Marvin is at his table working on a design. I walk out of the bathroom dripping wet. I call his name. He turns to stare at me open mouthed. He has a desperate and helpless look on his face. I know he would try to talk when I am done, like he tries to every other night. And I also know I will not say a word. I walk over to him, he is breathing fast.

“Lola we have to talk.” It is almost a whisper. A plea for me to come out of this crazy trance I was in.

I nod and reach for his shorts. He is erect just like I know he would be. I reach into his shorts and sit on his lap. I see tears in his eyes as he sighs in resignation.