The first thought that jumped into my mind at the sight of the woman standing in front of me was a name.

Chioma Ajunwa.

I couldn’t tell why the former Nigerian athlete’s name popped into my mind, seeing as Nene looked nothing like her. Then a quick kaleidoscope of images ran through my mind – images of a TV show, when I watched Ajunwa sprinting across the race track. Her long lean legs pounded the tarmac with punishing fury, and her sinewy arms, crooked at the elbows, scythed back and forth on her sides. Her whipcord length moved with a grace that was almost beguiling.

And it was that muscle tone, I realized then, duplicated in Nene’s form, that brought the athlete’s name to my cognizance. Nene was athletically-built, with just enough lissomness in her figure to soften the hard edges. And she was dressed to accentuate all that. The sleeveless top was snug and showed off the slight swell of her bosom and well-toned arms, and her dungarees stopped just below her knees, leaving unconcealed the powerful length of her calves.

This one looks like she won’t scratch in a fight, the Voice said. No, she’d make use of her fists and beat the daylights out of her opponent, male or female.

Frances, how could you? I thought wrathfully as I stood and involuntarily reached t pull out the chair on the other side of the table. The woman, however, was also reaching for the chair, and our heads bumped against each other as we bent forward at the same time.



I drew back, rubbing my forehead, at the point of the impact. She pulled the chair out all the way, not rubbing her own forehead. I scowled, self-consciously withdrawing my hand at once, and took my seat. She sat as well.

“Have you ordered?” she asked. Her voice was strangely soft and almost musical, an incongruity with her appearance. It was also slightly accented, a Western twang that sounded diminished by the dominant environment.

“No, I was waiting for you,” I answered. A coin-dropping sound came from my phone, signifying the receipt of a BBM message. “Excuse me just a second,” I said a microsecond after reflexively picking up my phone.

The message was from Paschal. It read: So it’s safe to say she’ll be the one wearing the drawers in your marriage, right?

Fuck you! I typed back, and refocused on Nene. “Are you hungry?”


“What will you have?” I asked, half standing.

“Don’t worry, I’ll come along with you.”

We made our way to the food counter, and within moments, made our orders of chips, chicken and bottles of soft drink. As the sales girl placed the trays on the marble-topped counter, I began rooting my wallet out of my back-pocket. Mid-maneuver, I paused and looked at Nene, my brows raised in silent question.

She nodded her understanding, gave a small shrug and said, “I’m a lesbian, not a feminist. So you can ahead and be the gentleman.”

I began to chuckle at her witticism, but when she stared blandly back, the snort of amusement was squelched out of existence.

What is this girl’s deal? I wondered irritably.

We picked up our trays and walked back to our table. We settled down. I began opening my Coke bottle to take a quick gulp. She unceremoniously stuffed a small wedge of chips into her mouth and chomped down on it while glancing disinterestedly around.

“So,” I began as I set my bottle back on the table, “do you always dress like that?” The moment the words left the security of my vocal chords, I shut my eyes briefly and mouthed ‘Fuck’. I hadn’t thought before speaking.

Well, it’s out there now. I opened my eyes to see her giving me a flat look.

“What is that supposed to mean?” she questioned coolly.

“Well, I’m trying to get a feel of your person,” I plodded on, “to know if you constantly live your life in such brazen defiance of societal norm, or if you’re the kind to compromise when the situation calls for it.”

“And why would I want to compromise?”

“Because I wouldn’t want my family catching on that I’m perhaps marrying a lesbian?” I said, smiling to indicate that my response was an attempt at jest.

Her features remained unaffected by my humour. She chewed on her chips some more, and then swallowed before saying, “Do you always reveal the sissy in you like that?”

“I beg your pardon?” I bridled instantly.

“You know, like this.” She lifted a limp-wristed hand before me. “I’ve noticed you make a few flamboyant gestures like that, and I’d just like to know if it’s habit…you know, because I wouldn’t want my family catching on that I’m perhaps marrying a homosexual.”

I stiffened in annoyance and took a breath to snap at her, but I caught myself before I said anything. I exhaled, and with the expiration came a chuckle. I shook my head, and wry amusement marinated my voice as I said, “I suppose we got off on the wrong foot, eh?”

“Any further and we both would have limped out of here, wrong feet and all.”

My chuckle turned into a laugh. This time, she joined in. our mirth lasted a few seconds.

“Frances didn’t prepare you for me, did she?” Nene asked.

“Nope. Not at all.” I was shaking my head as I spoke. “She simply said you are nice and pretty, and that we’d get along just fine.”

“Nice and pretty?” She appeared revolted by the qualifications. “That bitch!”

“Yup, total bitch,” I concurred.

“Hey, hey, I’m the only one who’s allowed to cuss her out like that,” Nene countered with a smile.

A synapse fired off in my brain and understanding dawned. I stared at her. “You two are together, aren’t you?”

She gave a small shrug of admission. “I’d like us to be in every sense of the word. God knows I’ve got enough connections to get us out of this country to someplace where we wouldn’t have to skulk and hide. And get into pretend marriages.” She waved a hand at me.

I smiled, relaxing some more, starting to warm up to my companion. “I’d never even given this a thought before I met Kema and then Frances, and got to know about their arrangement. I mean, I’d heard about such marriages of convenience, but it all seemed like those things you watch on Hollywood movies, like vampires and cancer.”

“Cancer is a Nigerian reality too, you know.”

“As is a lesbian getting married to a homosexual, it would seem. Because – well, here we are.” I opened my arms in an encompassing gesture.

“Indeed. Here we are.”

The short silence that ensued was embracing, like a cool bed sheet thrown over us, casting the boisterousness of the eatery into the background.

I leaned forward in my seat and asked, “Why won’t Frances seize the opportunity to leave the country with you?”

“Because she cares too much about her family. She’s daddy’s girl. Her mother once nabbed her with a lover she had when she was in the university, and the woman told her expressly that she’d be disowned and disinherited if she ever brought shame to the family. Frances believed her, and has since then determined not to step out of line.” Nene gave another one of her small shrugs. It was starting to seem like an idiosyncrasy of hers. “So here I am, stuck in love with a woman who doesn’t want to be free.”

My heart constricted at the wealth of melancholy I heard in that last statement. “Do you have family?”

“Mum’s in the States. Dad divorced her when I was ten, and she didn’t fight him for full custody of me. He relocated with me back to Nigeria, got remarried and started another family.” Another shrug.

“You never fit in with your step family?”

She started to answer, shut her mouth and cocked her head at me. “Don’t try to psychoanalyze me, Declan.”

I grinned. “I honestly wasn’t trying to. I was simply trying to –”

“Get a feel of your potential wife-to-be?”

I rumpled my mouth into a moue of protest. “Come on.”

She smiled. “I know, I know. Forgive me. Being different all of my life has made me practiced at being on the offensive all the time.”

“Being different instills in us all coping mechanisms.”

“What’s your coping mechanism, Declan?”

“I believe. I cope my believing. Believing that when people say you should always do the right thing, that sometimes, there is no right thing. And then, you just have to pick the wrong thing you can live with.”

“The wrong thing by the standards of these people?” she said.

“The wrong thing by the standards of these people,” I reiterated.

Nene smiled. There was something radiant about her smile, I’d come to notice. It came so suddenly and passed so quickly, and yet seemed so genuine in its short span.

“I like you, Declan,” she finally said.

“Does that mean we can now go shopping for an engagement ring?”

She gave a short laugh. “You don’t really want to marry me, do you?”

I expelled a breath. “Honestly? I feel like if we do this, I’d always be looking over my shoulder to check if the charade is still on fleek.”

“What, you don’t think you’ve got a little bit of Ramsey Nouah in you to fake it till death do us part?”

“I auditioned for that film – you know, the Lifetime Original Movie, When A Gay Man Said ‘I Do’ To A Lesbian. I didn’t get the part.”

“You’re funny,” she said, chuckling.

“I like you too, Nene.”

She eyed me. “Is this the part where you drop on a bended knee and propose?”

“Men only risk that for women they’ve slept with at least once.”

She chuckled again, and then sobered up quickly. Her voice was solemn as she began speaking, “Here’s the thing, Declan. Growing up, I never really fit into any one category or group. It’s something that I’ve learned to enjoy, as I’m able to comfortably fuse into many different situations. However, never completely belonging and being somewhat of an outsider can be taxing. And initially, I always felt the need to explain myself, to have others understand me. I lived under that pressure for a long time.

“All that changed when at age twenty, I watched my father – a man I admire a lot – fight for his life with an illness that I still don’t entirely understand. Watching him struggle was truly life-altering. When you see someone you love slowly die, you realize how precious time really is. My father is my reminder to not live a life that just goes through the motions. Instead, I’ committed to living a life that is full, whole and happy. My dad made it. He’s still alive. So I have that reminder glaring in my face every time I see him, or we speak on the phone. It’s there. It’s constant. And it helps me solidify my foundation as a person.

“I’ve learned that I don’t fit in, and I probably never will. I’ve learned that it’s the best thing in the world to stand out in the crowd, to chart your own course, to understand that I’ll never be able to please everyone. So if I can be happy with myself, with the interactions I enjoy daily, then that is alright by me.”

She paused, as though to let her words settle inside me like the Harmattan mist on the world outside. She contemplated me and said, “I suspect you know most of what I’m talking about, that you share some of my ideals. I suspect you got shaken out of it when you observed how easy it is for Frances and Kema. But that is their lives, you see. Not yours. You have to find your own definition and stick to it.”

Long moments passed before I spoke, moments during which I organized my thoughts. Then I turned my mouth into a rueful smile. “We are never getting back together, are we?”

Nene gave a short gust of laughter. Then she stood from her seat, simultaneously leaning toward me. I didn’t know her intent – didn’t even suspect it – until her mouth was scant inches from mine. I was permitted an instant to perceive the lightly scented freshness of her hair, before she placed her lips on mine.

The kiss startled me. It also startled some of the diners around us; I was aware of the muted buzz of curiosity that suddenly began to swell around our table. The kiss was gentle, a mere teasing of lips.

Then Nene broke away. Her breath fanned my face as she asked, “Anything?”

“Nope,” I replied.

“Well, there you go, There’s your answer.” She gave me that brief radiant smile again and straightened up. “I’ll see you around, Declan.”

“I’ll see you around, Nene,” I said.

She turned and began a loose-limbed walk out of the eatery.

What a woman, I thought as I watched her go.

I didn’t realize I was still staring after her until a stir at my table roused me from my preoccupation. Paschal was seated on the chair Nene had just vacated. His gaze was wide and filled with salacious delight.

“She kissed you,” he gushed.


“She’s not marrying you, is she?”

“I’m not marrying her either.”

“So we’re back to looking for Mr. Right for you? Or another lesbian perhaps?”

I gave a short laugh. “No. You are going home, and I’m back to finding my definition and sticking to it.”

Paschal’s stare became quizzical, before he asked, “Something Nene said?”

“Yes, something Nene said,” I echoed.

Written by Pink Panther

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  1. Dennis Macaulay
    September 14, 07:08 Reply


    I love this Nene girl, can she be my best friend already?

    This gay/lesbian pretend marriage eh? I will never be able to do it, besides it being yet another lie it will be very exhausting living out that charade! Constantly checking to see if we are all good? I cannot do that!

    PP I love how you use this series to shove your values and opinions up our arses! Jisie Ike, God is watching you

      • Dennis Macaulay
        September 14, 07:21 Reply

        You evil man, don’t put words in my mouth or things up my arse!

        • Pink Panther
          September 14, 07:25 Reply

          Hahahahahahahaa! Just saying. *inspecting my manicure*

  2. KryxxX
    September 14, 07:29 Reply


    Moral of d story: To each his own!

    What works for you won’t most definitely work for everybody nd d earlier a lot of ppl realize that(some r in here), the better for them/us! Your ideals can’t be everybody’s.

    But that Frances is a bitch shaa oh nd I think Nene might b worse! She had to bring a lez that has masculine trait all over her for a full blown gay guy who identifies as a bottom! Seriously?! Her type might use a strapped-on dildo on Dee! Their cover would even blow @ the alter self b4 d priest asks d “hold your peace” question! I’d rather have a very feminine lez as a beard, seeing that my predicament won’t help matters! Thank you!

    And pinky, this time gap shaa btw d episodes of LSTC! Behave oh! Its like waiting for Keri Hilson to drop a hit since her last!

  3. Silver Cat
    September 14, 07:31 Reply

    1) Pinky why was there no entry yday?
    2) Why is Declan allowing Nene walk away?
    Pinky, I deteghi nke a. Mba!
    Declan should call her back as she gets to the door, drops on his knees as he chants “I hope U don’t mind…” from Elton John’s Your Song and propose. And they live faux happily ever after.

  4. Mitch
    September 14, 07:36 Reply

    God! Pink Panther, if you didn’t know before, just know now that I freaking love you man. #EarlyMorningBraingasm

    • Dennis Macaulay
      September 14, 07:44 Reply

      I thought it was me you loved? Where is the loyalty?


      • Mitch
        September 14, 10:09 Reply

        Awwww! Denny booboo, you know me loves you too. **plants wet kiss on your lips**

  5. kacee
    September 14, 08:31 Reply

    no no no A butch + A bottom that’s a weird combination ( and i like it ) Nice one uncle PP *smiles*

  6. Mandy
    September 14, 08:43 Reply

    Lifetime original move… We’re never getting back together. lol. This Declan sef, pikin is both a fan of Victoria Chase and a Swiftie.

  7. Django
    September 14, 09:07 Reply

    Ah! Finally! Love me some Nene mannerism. But wait o @PP, omg! I love what you did with this episode! I love you, I love you, I love..

    *grabs kacee and places wet kisses on her li…*

    Errmm, excuse me people, I was talking about PP not Kacee. Like I said, I’m loving L.A.S.I.C because of the Nene character.

    *sashays out of thread*

    • Brian Collins
      September 14, 21:47 Reply

      Ehn Django, which of the lips? I apologise for being crude, but i believe a lesbian has two lips.

      • Django
        September 14, 22:11 Reply

        Her lips, on her luscious mouth, not her nether lips, you spoilt man!


          • Django
            September 14, 23:55 Reply

            If the Coflin is some hot, wet, slippery and colourless juice from a woman’s honey-pot, why not? By all means, give me all the Coflin I need!

  8. Ace
    September 14, 09:13 Reply

    Wow! Bravo PP! The witty dialogue is everything! I wish this could be an actual visual series, maybe just on the web, cos no Nigerian TV station would air anything that “promotes the evil of homosexuality”

  9. Andrevn
    September 14, 09:50 Reply

    Panther be giving someone literari-gasm since the 15th century.
    Boo you overdid yourself in this one and #iliked. Hope to see more of Nene tho. (Make the hiatus btw this and next episode longer than necessary. And I’ll kill off the whole of Declans’ gang. *except Biola of cos*)

  10. Peak
    September 14, 12:27 Reply

    Today’s episode was short but packed enough punch
    There were so many parts of the short exchange that is worth highlighting. So so many.

    Great job.

  11. Richard Moore
    September 14, 12:53 Reply

    Pinky nwa m… when are we seeing Nene again? Sweetheart touched my heart in a million ways.

    • Pink Panther
      September 14, 15:08 Reply

      She was supposed to be a waka pass character o. But with everyone loving her like so…

  12. pete
    September 14, 14:49 Reply

    “You have to find your own definition and stick to it.”

    Putting this on my wardrobe door. Nice one,Pinky.

  13. drizzle
    September 14, 16:27 Reply

    This episode is up there with the best.. Pinky Well done..

    September 14, 18:02 Reply

    Pinky, two weeks no entry and like you know am ready to tear off that your designers bra, you dropped a bomb in this episode!… Nice work sweety

    • Pink Panther
      September 14, 18:50 Reply

      Hehehehehee. Jojo, I just didn’t want to mess with you. Plus my designer bra is expensive. If you tear them off, no money to buy another one o

  15. Rev; Hot
    September 14, 18:04 Reply

    finally settled down to read this…..

    And I have just three words for Pinkie


  16. Kester
    September 14, 18:54 Reply

    Well……. You just had to let us enjoy other series then you stage a Mariah Carey come back. This was awesome. And why do I have this feeling nene is a real person? Just too real. Please let us have more of her.

  17. Enigmous
    September 14, 20:34 Reply


    Where should I kiss you? This episode is proof that so much can happen in so little a space.

    “You have to find your own definition and stick to it”. I’m so flying with this.

    Thanks, Pinky.

  18. JustMe
    September 16, 17:42 Reply

    You have to find your
    own definition and stick to it . ”
    exactly what I needed to hear right now
    thanks pinky

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