SIX – 8

SIX – 8

“No, you didn’t,” I said before laughing out loud.

“I did o,” Kareem maintained. “I excused myself from the locker room and jogged to the parking lot reserved for players and deflated his tyres.”

“And no one saw you?”

“Truthfully, I wasn’t bothered. I just wanted to get back at him for calling me a big baby.”

“Yet you proved him right anyway.” I smirked before taking a sip of my water.

“Right then, I just didn’t give a damn. I realise I was petty.”

“Point of correction, you’re always petty.”

“No, I’m not. I’m always nice.” When he saw the look on my face, he conceded. “Okay, okay. I’m always petty. Sheesh!”

I chuckled.

Kareem had called me that morning of our meet to confirm that I hadn’t changed my mind and decided I was no longer going to meet up with him. I’d assured him that we were still a go. He reminded me of the hotel he was staying at and I promised to be on time.

I got to Southern Sun, Ikoyi, in my uber with just fifteen minutes to spare. Derin had advised me to look very casual while Faramade had declined with vehemence. She wanted me to dress to kill. In the end, I settled for nice-looking baggy shorts I’d gotten from a bend-down-select patron at Ikeja Underbridge, a black T-shirt I bought when I travelled to Ghana and a pair of Toms.

Upon alighting from the taxi, I saw Kareem walk up to me with a grin.

“How’d you know I was already here?” I asked when he got to where I was standing.

“I’m psychic.” I rolled my eyes and he chuckled before saying, “I’d been waiting in my car about thirty minutes.”

“Why? Was there a fire?” I swept a quick puzzled look over the imposing façade of the hotel building. When I looked back at him, he wouldn’t meet my eyes. He suddenly seemed embarrassed about whatever his answer was going to be. “You know you’ll have to answer me one way or another, right?” I said, lifting my singular mobile eyebrow.

“I was scared you mightn’t show up,” he said after he gave another chuckle. He shrugged, looking abashed. “I guess I was just anxious.”

“But I told you I’d be here. If I couldn’t make it, I’d have given you a call or sent a text to let you know.”

“I know. I know. I was just anxious.” He finally met my gaze and his eyes were sparkling with that familiar mirth.

I met and held his gaze for some seconds, feeling the intensity in those dark depths do some things to my insides, and then I looked away.

“Okay, out with it,” Kareem said.

“Out with what?” I queried.

“What’s on your mind? I know you want to say something.”

He was right. I wasn’t sure how he’d take it though.

“Well,” I began as he steered me in the direction of his parked car, “it seems you don’t particularly like to take rejection.”

“What makes you say that?” We were walking slowly, like we were taking a stroll.

I looked around before I spoke just to be certain there wasn’t anyone within earshot. “Well, at the party, when we kissed, you were upset that I wouldn’t have sex with you. Then when you called the other day to ask me out –”

“I didn’t ask you out. I only called –”

“Are you gay?”

The question obviously took him by surprise because he stopped and pinned on me a quizzical look that seemed to ask what that had to do with anything.

“Are you?” I asked again.

He scratched his head and looked down sheepishly. The first time he did it moments ago, it’d been cute. It was still cute.

“Yeah…” he finally breathed out and looked up to meet my stare. “Yeah, I am.”

“Then you know you called to ask me out,” I said. “You sounded nervous on the phone and you even told me to pretend you were the one that would cook dinner and I’m sure you know not many straight folks call their gay friends to say, ‘How about dinner?’ Which was specifically what you said when I said no to drinks… Or whatever it was you suggested at first.”

“Damn!” He gave a loud laugh. “You just had to analyze everything though.”

“You can’t blame me. It’s not every day I’m kissed silly –”

“So I kissed you silly –”

“–and then asked out two days after,” I barreled past his cocky demand for confirmation. I stopped. When he didn’t say anything, I asked, “So am I right?”

“About kissing you silly?” He flashed that grin of devilry at me.

“About you not taking rejection well,” I snapped, stifling the responsive spurt of laughter that bubbled up inside me.

We had gotten to his car by this time. It was a sleek black Mercedes Benz convertible.

“Yeah. I’m scared of rejection.” He had moved to the driver’s side of the car and was focused on opening the door.

“Don’t be, okay?” My tone was soft and it arrested his attention instantly. He looked at me and then nodded.

Something quick and transcendental had just occurred between us, and I wasn’t even sure what it was.

He didn’t put down the top on his car. I was hoping I would enjoy the full privileges that came with my first convertible ride. When he drove out of the hotel premises, I asked where we were headed.

“You’ll see,” he simply said.

He drove towards Falomo Bridge, down Checkpoint bus stop, till we got to a pier very close to Civic Center. The pier was deserted, save for a man that approached us when Kareem killed the ignition.

“Good evening, sir,” the man said.

“Good evening, Salau. How you dey?” Kareem offered his hand.

“I’m well, sir.” He took Kareem’s hand in a quick handshake.

“This is my friend and colleague, Peka. Peka, this is Salau.”

Friend? Colleague, yes – but friend?

“Good evening, Salau.” I gave the man a smile.

“Good evening, sir.”

“Is the boat ready?” Kareem asked.

Boat? BOAT??!!! My eyes suddenly grew wide.

“Yes, it is,” Salau said before turning and leading the way to where a big beautiful boat stood, swaying on the water.

I quickly caught up with Kareem and pulled his hand. “You didn’t say anything about a boat.”

“No, I didn’t. I specifically said ‘You’ll see.’”

“Why didn’t you say anything?”

“Because I wanted it to be a surprise.” His expression became one of amusement. “What is it?”

“I’ve never been on a boat before.”

He laughed. “Is that why you’re panicking?”

“I’m not panicking. I’m just…shook.”

“What’s the difference?”

I lifted my hand and gave the back of his head an upside smack.

“Ow! What was that for?”

“For you being such a smart-ass.”

“I can’t help it. It’s not my fault you’re not smart.”

“Nye, nye, nye,” I mocked with an eye-roll.

He laughed softly. “I didn’t say anything because I wanted to impress you.” He looked away. “It was what I was aiming for – your surprise.” Then as if he’d remembered something, he asked, “Can you swim?”

“You’ll get served if we go head to head in a pool.”

“Head to head, huh?” He smirked and wiggled his brows.

It took me a moment to realise he was talking about the 69 sexual position. “My God! You’re disgusting.” I walked away from him to where Salau was standing, his laughter trailing after me.

“Thank you, Salau,” Kareem said to the attendant. “I take it everything is in the boat?”

“Yes, sir.”

“What about Wax?”

“He’s being attended to, sir.” There was no name etched on the side of the boat like I’d seen in the movies. But the vessel was beautiful and impressive. I saw Kareem give Salau a handsome tip.

“You can leave now,” he was saying to the man. “I’ll drop the key at the usual place.”

The man bade us good night and walked away.

“Wax?” I promptly enquired.

“Wax is my dog. Do you like dogs?”

“I do actually. I had one that died years ago. I’ve vowed never to get another one.”

“Aww… What was his name?”

Her. Female. Prada was her name,” I answered as I took in the magnificent sight of at the rays of the fading sun bouncing and sparkling off the water. It was so beautiful and so soothing to watch.

“Prada?” Kareem’s tone was incredulous. “Who names a dog after a fashion brand?”

“Well, me. Not my fault though. A few minutes after I brought her home, Prada tore a Prada shirt given to me by my friend, Derin. I called her Prada so I’d always remember her first transgression.”

“What breed?”

“An Alsatian.”

I climbed onto the boat and watched as he untied the rope that held it to the pier before climbing in also.

“Really? That’s my dog’s breed too.”

“Is he here?”

“No. He’s too hyper so I had Salau take him home.”

“Home?”

“My house is in Ikoyi.”

“So why stay in a hotel?”

“Because I can.”

I wanted to say something, but instead I let out a small sigh.

“By the way,” he said, “there’s something I’ve been meaning to do.”

I turned to look at him. Kareem walked up to me and pulled me farther into the boat. Then he gave me a long kiss, our intimate moment shielded from whatever prying eyes there might be by the boat’s compartment.

He broke the kiss and said, “I’ve wanted to do that since I saw you come down from the cab.”

I smiled and held on to him. “Kiss me again.”

And he did. His breath tasted of coffee. We kissed for a long time when in truth, it was only a couple of minutes.

When we broke apart, I said mischievously, “I don’t think this is a date at all.”

He caught on, smiled and said, “I don’t think it is. I think it is the beginning of something more.”

I wasn’t sure how to respond to that, so I chose instead to say nothing. I simply pulled his head closer to mine and kissed him again.

Written by Vhar

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6 Comments

  1. Miles
    June 05, 09:25 Reply

    The way this story is going… I’m scared😭😭😭

  2. Chii Assure
    June 05, 09:29 Reply

    Osheyyyyyyy!!!!!

    All these sugary love 😍 you are dropping this fine morning eh, If diarrhea doesn’t kee me, then diabetes would! Chai!!!! 🙌 🙌 🙌 🙌

    Love sweet oh, but with money it is sweeter ojare!

    • BRYAN PETER
      June 05, 17:18 Reply

      As in ehn. Pls I need my own fairy tale boat romance biko

  3. Ria
    June 06, 01:51 Reply

    See set up o. Vhar is over here giving us love and romance and smiles and tons of cheese and at the same time we constantly have it at the back of our minds that the heartbreak will come and it will be bloody. Mtchew. And people wonder why I have trust issues 😒😒😒

  4. dammi
    June 09, 16:00 Reply

    six…..one of the reasons I bought a new phone

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