She had often been accused of lacking a heart. While her haters and detractors had never gone as far calling her heartless, even they had to agree that she was kind and a little selfless but they agreed that she was incapable of being straightforward in the affairs of the heart. It puzzled her that they all said the same thing of her, they didn’t even know each other, the fuckers.
One of them had only yesterday told her, “you don’t have a heart woman, all you have is a pump that supplies blood to all the parts of your body.” It shouldn’t have hurt as much as it did, after all, it wasn’t as painful as the consensus by a group of people who at various times had told her,
“na kpomo dey ya chest, heart ke? You like this so? Abeg crack another joke and maybe even enter comedy, since na so so epic jokes you dey produce.”
Sometimes, she suspected they were right even though she knew she had buried the yeye heart in a vault in the middle of the Sahara. Sometimes, the thing came out for air from time to time. It had a weakness for the forbidden, for glasses and tiny beards with silver threads running through, for the slightly arrogant and closed. it delighted in breaking walls just before it went back to hiding, perhaps the heart was quite the sociopath. She was tired of the pesky thing that refused to stay buried.
“Do you like Dogs” she asked him on WhatsApp.
“No Ma” he replied.
Sometimes she despaired because he still called her Ma, was he trying to create some distance?
“Cats kwanu?” she asked again.
“Even worse” was his answer.
“Why are you asking?” he typed and she gave the answer.
But her friend Common Sense, wouldn’t let her rest.
“Woman you did not ask that question because of that ugly, hairless cat you saw on Instagram.”
“But I did!” she replied, “that’s why I remembered in the first place na.”
“You’re beginning to like him,” it accused.
“I like him na, he’s my friend and I like all my friends”
“Friends kor, ngwanu how many of your friends have you asked if they like the animals you hate?
She kept quiet, Common Sense wisely stayed silent too.
She listened to the voice note for the tenth time. When her finger reached for the play icon for the eleventh time, the part of her mind whose nickname was “Hard Guy”, snorted.
“Wetin na, I’m listening to be sure of the information the Bobo sent on the voice note” she whined.
Hard Guy snorted again and began to laugh, “Na who you dey deceive this geh?”
“Ok, I admit I like his voice and that joke he started with, is truly hilarious.”
“Leave the joke matter, it’s his voice that is doing you. Even though I don’t even know what you like about the voice sef, scratchy voice like that”.
It amazed her how much she wanted to scratch out Hard Guy’s cheeks for slandering the voice she liked, it was perhaps one of the things she liked the most about the fine Bobo- that bit of sandpaper in his voice, like the scratch on the throat that accompanies premium whiskey.
“Well it’s the information on the voice note that is making me listen several times, I want to be sure that I don’t miss anything.”
Hard Guy clapped her hands together and turned them as she clapped, her lips pursed in derision.
“Wetin I no go see for ya hand, this geh?”
“No be the same information for the voice note wey the Bobo type under the voice note.”
“Yes o, what an organised Bobo!” The geh cooed and Hard Guy rolled her eyes and raised her open palms to heaven.
“And you, what a disorganised Sisi. If the guy could see how scattered you are, he would run.”
“He likes me like that,” the geh snapped and shut her mouth in trepidation. Hard guy would not let this slide.
“Ah! you’re now liking each other abi? Maybe we should start getting ready for Asoebi. Snake green and potopoto brown as the colours of the day, enough small chops to feed the Iguobazuwa army! Let me sharpen my belle for Jollof rice and Dodo, hope they’ll be cubed dodo or we go just riot.” Hard Guy mused.
“I’m never getting married, as a true feminist getting married would be subscribing to patriarchal ideals and pandering to societal mores. I am the quintessential free-spirit! Unbound by legal entanglements and the expectations of performing boring societal rituals as mundane as marriage. I mean marriage of all things! Ugh!!!” she sputtered as Hard Guy watched with a sneer.
“This geh, I na akogheri. Simple question, are you liking each other and you’re speaking too much English. The lady doth protest too much, methinks”. Hard Guy finished with a flourish.
“And Hard Guy quotes Shakespeare, the matter don pass garri be that.” The geh teased.
“Ask that your Bobo if he don go Stratford-upon-Avon, tell am say make he try go there – if he never go.”
“I no go ask am anything, until you apologise for insinuating that Odogwu akataka, Immovable Rock, like me is liking an ordinary man.”
“Ngwanu, sorry,” Hard Guy said in a small voice.
The geh felt stirrings of remorse, Hard Guy loved literature and William Shakespare was her god. She stopped listening to the voice notes and went about her day. Later that afternoon, she had a sudden urge to listen to Clean Bandit’s Rather Be. She smiled as she selected it on her playlist. It had been the ringtone of someone very dear to her, listening to it always reminded her of him. He was perhaps her closest friend, the one who knew her most and when Hard Guy had emerged a few years ago, she had been an incarnation of him. The song had almost ended when she realized that she hadn’t thought about her friend once, it was the other guy with the scratchy voice she thought about. To her shock, she was even smiling.
She was smiling!!!
What The Actual Flipping Fuck!!!!!!
“Hard Guy, come out o. Wahala dey!” she whispered.
PS: My brother threatened my very life if I didn’t complete the story in 24 hours. For my own safety, I promise to try and finish this. But what if the story dinnor want to end?