More Than A Friend – Episode 2

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© Olasunkanmi Opeyemi Ajibola

Deborah and I were done eating, like two hours after the bell was jingled, the school was not that crowded, the principal advised us on how to choose the department that would fit us, and ******fast forward******.

The 3rd day, we were already in different classrooms, I was happy to be in the same department with most of my friends, (David, Saheed, Quazeem, Kayode, Felix, etc). We were new to some subjects like Chemistry, Physics, Biology, Geography, and few others. The first class we had was Chemistry class, taken by Mr Ajibode which was just an introduction to the subject (Chemistry), the man appeared nice and friendly to us but what I noticed was that he sounded strict at the same time. After the Chemistry class which I listened very attentively so as not to miss anything, I started thinking about how I was going to adapt;

“Hmmmmmmm I need to be very serious indeed, and how do I cope and maintain my brilliancy with these new subjects? I pray it’s not as difficult as I’m thinking, thank God they won’t even show our positions, but upon that I still need to amaze my sister…” I was still in thought on my seat (the first seat at the middle roll in Science Class).

Three students walked into the class, Kayode who joined us from JS3 ran to meet them grinning, Kayode was a lousy and ‘semi-smart’ boy (don’t mind my description, that’s exactly who he was), the three students were two females and a male, they were shown where to sit, the two females (Bukola and Damilola) sat on the same seat while the 3rd one (Joel) chose to sit among Kayode, Saheed and other close friends to them, I was just looking like one cool boy, observing the new students, all I could notice within few minutes was that Joel increased the noise standard in the class very fast and conveniently, the boy supposed to have got award for noise maker. Bukola could laugh to even the most dry joke on earth while Damilola was kind of cool but I concluded in me that she was still pretending.

I was about to stand up to go and meet Deborah and her friends on their seats for the necessary ‘gossips’ concerning the new students when I heard Taiwo’s voice abusing Kayode, I looked back; “These ones again! They no dey tire? From JS3, Haba! Kayode is too stubborn self, and Taiwo too won’t ignore small thing. Awon ode (the fools)” I commented, not too audible. I stood up and approached Deborah’s seat, they’d always be in group, (Deborah, Salamot, Roliat, Mistura, Sitirat, Mary and Rachael), as they saw me coming they were like suspending what they were discussing because they knew I had got one interesting gist (amebo) for them, all of them were smiling, I greeted them and touched Deborah’s cheek, then rested on their desk with my elbows:

“Errmmmm… have you guys seen the new ladies who recently joined us?” I asked smiling.

“Like I’ve known! I said it!” Mary responded and hit the desk before her, others cleared their throats and about three of them including Deborah chorused; “Henry! are you sure you’re a male?” I just laughed and turned round on the same spot;

“I knew that’s what he was coming to discuss, amebo!” Rachael said which I ignored.

“I hope they are singles and not spoilt like… like… like you guys” I said and ran away when Salamot wanted to hit my shoulder.

David was in commercial class with other friends (Akeem and Azeez) causing noise and creating problems for the whole class, David could be too troublesome, I was kind of missing his troubles that was when I noticed his absence, “who can have textbooks ooooooo” I thought for a while and stood up, I went to Taiwo’s seat;

“Hello Taye” I uttered.

“Oh, Henry, what’s up jare?” She responded trying to change mood when she realized I was the one.

“I’m fine. You and Kayode again this session” I commented and laughed not too broad.

“See me o Henry, I don’t know the guy’s problem, he has been abusing my parents for no reason since, can you imagine that” She let out aggressively.

“I actually heard your conversation, that was very bad of him, but you too, you’re too stingy, since JS3, you should have given him what he wants.” I joked then gave a lusty wink. She laughed then continued;

“You’re not serious, what’s the stupid thing he wants? Don’t worry, I think he wants suspension because by the time I report to the principal, he’ll realise that dead body stinks more than faeces.” She responded with fake frown.

“Ah! Pity him o, just try and learn how to ignore him, he’ll start to doubt if he truly exists.” I pleaded on Kayode’s behalf then continued with my mission on her seat;

“Anyway, errrmmmm…” I stammered for a while; “I’ve even forgotten why I came here, shift let me sit please.” She shifted a bit as I sat; “OK, did you bring any Chemistry textbook?” I asked knowing fully well that she brought.

“Let me check my bag.” She responded and proceeded to check her bag. As she opened bag;

“Chai!!! See textbooks! It’s good to be omo-baba-olowo (the child of rich man), anyway, I go buy my own too, na time” I said in my mind. She brought out a brand new New-School Chemistry textbook and gave it to me;

“Ensure it doesn’t get torn please” she warned while I responded jokingly; “It won’t tear that much”.

Off to my seat. I was busy checking the pictures and the graphics on the textbook pages, I saw the Ewekoro cement factory, some beautiful pictures of the space, and towards ending was a picture of the first man in the moon (Neil Armstrong), I was still wondering how I would get the IUPAC nomenclature of those chemical compounds when they jingled the bell for long break.

I closed the text book using two fingers to demarcate the page I was as I was watching the surprising and rough manners by which students were exiting the classroom, some jumped the window like Jachie Chan, some ran and slid out with their sandals making annoying sounds on the floor, some, including David, walked on the whole desks before going out excluding my desk and Joe’s desk, they knew that Joe would not talk but he may kill you if you step on his toe, the class was remaining like ten students, I wanted to continue checking my dear Chemistry textbook when I saw Deborah walking towards my seat with her smiling face as usual;

“Wow! It seems this girl gets more beautiful every five minutes. She no go kill person with smile self” I commented in my mind as I was smiling innocently as well.

___

“Why are you now smiling like…?” She queried as she was moving closer.

“Your smile is the cause of my happiness, which resulted to my smile.” I responded poetically.

“What is so special about my smiling face sir?” She asked rolling her eyes.

“If I can’t return this your wall-melting smile with beautiful smile too, that means something is emotionally wrong with me. So, to prove that I’m emotionally active, that’s the reason am smiling ma.” I dropped another line.

“Hehehe Opeeee…” She calls me Ope just like my mom and my sister; “you will always have what to say in response. Sugarcoated mouth.” Deborah.

“Come on! Do you think any guy can lack response when he’s around you? That’s not possible my dear, ordinary your presence has a thousand of words that need response, so tell me where the silence will emerge from.” I.

“Hmmmmmmm it’s in your blood, guys and sweet mouth since 190BC, anyway, na you sabi.” She gave up.

“Haha… Ladies counting guys’ words as deceit since 200BC.” I countered and laughed.

“Mr serious student, which one is this you’re holding?” She asked.

“I just carried the textbook to check some pictures ni since I hardly understand some terms in it, abi what do you think?” I responded.

“That’s good sir, and make sure you come first this term o.” She joked as we both laughed.

“Lest I forget, where are your girlfriends? Because you, being alone like this can be rare.” She rolled her eyes.

“Did I tell you am alone? See Neil Armstrong here keeping me company” I opened the page then she smiled.

“Were you asking of Iswat and Mariam? Oh! Mariam has gone to continue her SSS in another school and Iswat is in commercial department.

Deb: Eeya……. (laughing)

I: (laughs) Which one is eeya? Did I tell you I was or I’m dating any of them? Abegi! No “kobalise” (implicate) me o. I’m as single as that flag pole (pointing to the school flag pole)

Deb: If I hear. Anyway, we just said we should come and greet you on your seat ni (she said, rolling her eyes)

I: You’re always welcome ma, what should we offer you? (smiling) Oh! That reminds me, we’re on break time, won’t you go and eat?

Deb: OK, let’s go.

I searched for my MTN wallet in my bag, and remember I gave it to David to help me hold it when I was arranging, dusting and cleaning my seat this morning. “Oh my God! Where will I find this David now!” I said while Deborah asked, “is your money with him?” I managed to say yes, “let’s check commercial class or field” I said. As we went out of the class, David just ran out of the commercial class with full speed and he was laughing at the same time, Azeez followed him immediately, pursuing him with serious determination and laughter too. “Chai! This mad boy is already causing big hazard in this commercial class” I said, not too loud. Later Azeez went back, demonstrating hand like (I’ll catch you later). (Divide!) I shouted, he was coming towards our direction and we were moving closer as well, like 20meters between us on d field in front of our classrooms, “two of you again! Henry the gentle lion!” He said, jokingly. “(Frowning my face) which one is gentle lion now? I don’t like it o, as if I fit kill even mosquito” I ended, smiling, “give me my wallets abi you want to do change of ownership ni?” I asked.

“Ah!” David shouted while searching his pockets as if he has lost the wallet. “Oh, here it is, God saved you I found it, I’ve even forgotten that you gave me anything” he concluded.

David: (gives the wallet to me) are you taking her to Mr Biggs? (He asked, licking his lips)

I: No, I’m taking her to toilet, (Deborah hit me lightly and was smiling)

David: Yepa!!! Mad boy, mey una go with belle, come back with pikin o.

Deb and I: Na you know.

We were off to the canteen while David sneaked back to commercial class, we finished eating and went back to class, chitchatted eachother for a while and break was over, everybody came back to the class, Deborah went back to her seat and the class was set, waiting for Geography master to come. Finally he came, introduced the subject and it was good, he was telling us about some natural existences and that made the class lovely and lively. Later, Agric mistress came in, the subject was not new to us, she asked who class captain was and nobody answered, she asked who we would like to make the class captain, and 80% of the class echoed “Henry” while some shouted “Kayode!”. “Henry and Kayode should stand up” the mistress ordered, immediately, I raised my hand, “ma, I don’t want to be the class captain,” “why?” She questioned, “ma, I don’t like to be one” and truly, I have been avoiding being the class captain right from JS1, I could see Kayode smiling already, the mistress ordered me to sit. “Who wants to be the assistant?” She asked, David did not only raise his hand, he also jumped up while 70% of the class shouted “Noooooo! We don’t want him!” The mistress demonstrated hand for David to sit down, “we want a female this time around” she said. Later, she assigned Mary to the post and the class went fine.

The closing bell was jingled, “time to go home” I said, arranging my books and counting them, I returned Taiwo’s textbook and carried my big bag, out of the class, I saw Deborah, we were both walking to the assembly ground, “why did you reject the class captain offer when I exclaimed your name with the loudest voice?” Deborah queried me politely, “Oh! Am sorry, I just don’t like it at all, it is not as easy as students think it is, and also I don’t want to be known by any prefect” I responded in the same manner…… we continued chatting till we got to the assembly ground, the prayer was said by the senior prefect boy and some information were passed to us by Mr Togbe chief Geography teacher) and school dismissed. Deborah and I located eachother and continued our chat including David because we used to go home together, sometimes David would contribute, sometimes he would just keep mute as Deborah and I were holding hands, she got got to where she would branch and we departed for that day. David and I continued discussing on another topic till he got to his junction too, in the next three minutes, I got home and my mom announced to me that my sister has gone back to school I felt sad and happy at the same time which I can’t explain why, ******fast forward******, the day ended.

…to be continued

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