Previously On THOSE AWKWARD MOMENTS: Jude asks Kevin why he is gay. Kevin doesn’t give Jude an accurate answer, so Jude stops talking to him altogether. Then, Kevin and Jude bump into each other at the mall with their mutual friends, and they all just happen to be about to see the same movie (Uh-Oh). During the movie, Kevin realises he might be in love with Jude. And after the movie, Jude kisses him. Sparks fly. But not for long, because, just then, someone down the aisle screams: “IT’S A LIE!”

And that’s what you missed on Episode One.

*

Two weeks had passed since Samuel bumped into Jude and I kissing in the cinema, and things couldn’t be any more awkward. No, not because Samuel was repulsed by what he witnessed, like a large percentage of the Nigerian population would be, but because he took it well – too well, if I might add.

I didn’t complain. It felt good to have such an open-minded person for a friend. But the problem was, he started having all these questions about how gay people do it, and if Jude and I are an item. And it was all just too much. Plus, I didn’t have the answers to some of his questions, especially the bit about me and Jude being an item; because I didn’t know what Jude wanted for us.

No one took it as hard as Jude (no pun intended). For days, he stopped speaking to me, or Samuel, or any of our mutual friends, since he ran out of the cinema like some terrified thing. I was smart enough to give him space, and I told Samuel to do the same. That was probably why Mister Talks-A-Lot had been plaguing me with all his silly questions.

Where do gays do it? How do gays do it?

Aish! As if we’re a totally different species.

He wanted to visit me at my place, but I lied to him that I was at my aunt’s place in Oyo State. Which was why I was surprised when I heard someone ring the doorbell. Quickly I put on the best house-maid voice I could think of and screamed at the person on the other side of the door, “Who be that?”

“I know it’s you!” the caller screamed back in a mocking voice.

I recognised the voice immediately. It wasn’t Samuel. It was someone way better – Jude!

And just like that, my heartbeat went into overdrive. I hastened to put the house in order, as if it would make a difference, and thereafter, began contemplating how to greet him when I opened the door. And then, with a jolt, I realised that I was keeping him outside. I quickly went to the door, opening it to behold him clad in a very nice urban dressing, even though he looked uncomfortable with his mild perspiration and nervous smile.

“Hi!” he said.

“Hey. Come in.”

He came in, and sought to make himself comfortable. I caught the brief lingering look he shot in the direction of the dining room, and I interpreted the look to mean him remembering it to be the place where he confronted my – I mean, our sexuality, before ignoring me for almost a year.

“I thought I heard your house-help,” he said jokingly.

“Yeah, she just left,” I returned sarcastically.

We both laughed and before we knew it, I was on the sitting room couch, fiddling with my phone, and he was on the floor, reading the newspaper, the two of us occasionally exchanging items of gist, just like old times. Boy, how I’d missed those times.

And then out of the blue, he said, “I’m sorry I left you hanging like that at the cinema.”

“No biggie,” I replied.

“No, it’s big o!” he countered. “I can’t believe I kissed you in a cinema. With all that light! It’s not how I imagined our first kiss.”

And just like that, it was as though a wrecking ball of realisation hit me. I stared at him, speechless. Had Jude always liked me, I wondered. Did he plan the ‘coincidental’ meeting at the mall?

“You could always try again,” I found myself saying. Okay, was that me or some thirsty hoe talking?

Jude didn’t care either way, because right then, he pulled me down from the couch, pinned me to the ground, and kissed me again and again and again. Until my lips started hurting, no kidding.

We didn’t go far before someone hit the door hard three times.

I hate when people do that. I mean, what’s the doorbell for?

Quickly, we obliterated any sign of rough play, and I scampered over to open the door, without pausing a single moment check who it was first.

***

The armed robbers were swift in their operation. In two minutes, they had taken every valuable thing I had on me; same with Jude. But of course, they couldn’t leave without dropping behind their popular signature.

“Na your brother be this?” one of the masked guys asked me, while pointing his gun at the both of us as we lay flat on the floor.

I said ‘Yes’ in fear, and through the corner of my eye, I caught the puzzled look Jude shot me.

The other masked man caught the look as well, and muttered a few words to the one with the gun. That one turned back to us and snarled, “You think say I be fool. You think say I no know say na gay the two of una be?”

How they came to this very specific conclusion still baffles me.

“NO OO!” I screamed, my heart set on complete denial, hoping to scratch that thought off their minds.

All that hope however flew out the window the moment Jude added, “And so what?”

Suddenly, the atmosphere was hot, as if someone had lit the room on fire. I stabbed at Jude with the best furious expression I could muster under the circumstance. I’d always known him to be outspoken, and that turned me on. But this was just pure death-wish!

“Ehen?! So you fit admit say you be gay?” the robber hollered in a scandalized tone.

I was already praying for God and His legion of angels to make Jude shut up, to strike him with immediate dumbness if it came to that. Unfortunately, either God and His legion of angels were enjoying the situation too much to intervene, or they simply had no power over Jude’s vocal chords.

Because he didn’t shut up. He retorted instead, “Yes, what’s wrong with being gay. I’m as human as you…”

What happened thereafter came in a blur. As if Jude had said the most offensive thing in the world, the enraged robber fired off two shots.

And none of them was at me.

TO BE CONTINUED.

Written by Reverend Hot

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