THE WORLD IS A VILLAGE

THE WORLD IS A VILLAGE

2017.

To be honest, it had already been a rather dramatic year for me. There were quite a number of discoveries I made about myself. It was the year I had my first threesome (even though I ended up sharing condoms to the other two guys and was the self-appointed lube applier). It was the year I decided to play top for the first time after feeding my curious mind with different facts and opinions about this sexual preference, seeing as I had thought, prior to my first sexual experience back in 2015, that I was going to be a power bottom forever. It was the year I nearly fell in love with someone I had only known for three days simply because he loved Little Mix and spoke with a deliberateness that wowed me whenever he opened his mouth. It was also the year I graduated school with the words of my best friend, Precious Oraz – “Let your hair down” – still ringing in my head in spite of the fact that I had moved back to Lagos, a hundred of miles away from the place where the words were uttered.

I didn’t think anything more dramatic could happen, but 2017 had one more surprise for me.

It was in the spirit of letting my hair down that I accepted an invite to a house party by two lesbian friends of mine. They were simply the best, these two ladies. They were former lovers who, although struggled with the ghost of their past romantic relationship, had come to find a situationship that worked for them. They were such great hosts the first time we met, that I knew I would love to see them again. Let’s call them Rami and Loca.

But before this party was when I met him. Let’s call him Nsogbu.

Nsogbu and I met on Grindr. It was uneventful, our first conversation was as banal as your usual Grindr chatversation – you know, “Hello… Hi… Where you chatting from… What’s your role…”

But what he lacked in content, he made up for in persistence and consistency. It was like a determination to bore me with repeated messages of “Hello” and “How Are You”.

Our communication didn’t go beyond that for the longest time. I wasn’t keen on meeting him because of how lackluster our chats were, and he didn’t seem like he wanted to meet either, because he never asked. He was an agreeable young man who did not seem to mind that I only responded to his chats when I felt like it and in monosyllables, ‘and you?’ being the longest reply I’d ever given to him.

He was boring and predictable, but endearing. And perhaps, it was his handsomeness that made me not hit the block button on him. When he sent his picture to me, I viewed it with the hurried interest of a Grindr veteran, approving mentally and forgetting what he looked like the minute the timer expired. It registered long enough for me to know that I wasn’t going to take him off my contact list.

I should have paid better attention, maybe I would have noticed something. I wish I had asked more questions, developed more interest, found out useful information. But I didn’t.

When the invitation from Loca came – it was her birthday and she wanted me to twerk on her like I did the last time we met – I was excited. The two of them resided in Yaba, and incidentally, so did Nsogbu. So, I reached out and asked him if he could be my plus one. I actually needed the male company. My last visit to the girls’ place, although fun, was too female-dominated for a very gay man like me.

He accepted immediately I asked. It was almost as if he’d been waiting for me to initiate a meet. We planned on how to meet that coming Saturday, which was the day of the party.

Nsogbu was even more handsome in person. I particularly loved how he never seemed to be able to meet my eyes and would always laugh with his face turned downward.       His chocolate skin glistened where the sun met it. Although, we were of the same height, he was slightly broader. He had a cute, boyish disposition that just made you feel safe. If adorable was a word, that would be him.

The second we got into the girls’ apartment, which was already buzzing with music and fun, Loca upon sighting us exclaimed, “Delle! Your friend looks exactly like you!”

Ugh. How I hated it when people did that. In my lifetime, I have looked like a lot of people from Keiynan Lonsdale and Ray J to someone’s managing director, a cousin’s classmate and even another’s ex-boyfriend. It was tiring.

I led Nsogbu to the living room, fetched him a drink and settled down beside him on the sofa to observe the goings-on of the area.

He was very subdued. Surreptitiously, I watched him, watched as his small eyes scanned the room as though he was recording every movement, every conversation in his head to regurgitate in his private time. However, as the day wore on, he talked more, mingled a bit, and even rolled a joint or two. We kissed a couple of times, and he was such a good kisser. I knew then that at some point in the future, we’d have sex.

It was nice to see him unwind. I was relieved that my plus one didn’t seem to need me so much, so when Rami told me that Loca was having one of her episodes (she struggled with a lot of personal issues, most of them stemming from her sexuality) and asked if I could talk to her, I agreed. I told Nsogbu I’d be right back and headed off to Loca’s room.

I didn’t spend a lot of time with Loca, before she was well enough to rejoin the party. And then I came back to the living room to witness what I hadn’t expected would happen.

A girl in braids had taken my position next to Nsogbu – and they WERE KISSING!

I stared in shock at the two bodies inching closer to each other as they kissed. Gall, like magma, rose from the pits of my belly and stung the back of my throat. Emotions whirled inside me, struggling to take over the other. Anger eventually won.

This bastard!

I strode towards them, and sensing – rather than seeing – me approach, Nsogbu broke off from her and made to stand with an expression of something that looked like guilt. I couldn’t tell because my eyes and mind were overcome with anger. I couldn’t even scream even though that was what I wanted to do. I swallowed hard, tamping down on my rage, and with a calm I didn’t feel, I demanded for my phone, which I gave him before leaving him to go see Loca.

I left the party a few minutes after that. I told my hosts it was getting late, and after saying my goodbyes, I left. I didn’t even bother to let Nsogbu know I was leaving; I couldn’t bear to speak to him after I asked him for my phone. When I got home, I pulled out my phone to meet a text from Rami: “I asked your guest what happened after you left. I suggest you block the bastard. You deserve better, my love. By the way, I snatched the wine he was holding and sent him home.”

I laughed at that. And then I was infuriated all over again. Sure, we weren’t an item, but I deserved his respect while we were at an event I invited him to. And he hadn’t even bothered to lie to Rami; the fact that he’d told her what happened showed he couldn’t even pretend to be committed to me for one evening. My lesbian friends thought of gay men as cheap and fickle, and he’d become an everlasting example of that for them.

I didn’t pick his calls. I didn’t answer his texts. For three years after that incident, he would remain a WhatsApp contact that occasionally sent a hello or responded to my status with an emoji, not minding that I never deigned to respond to him, not even with a monosyllable.

And then two years ago, something changed.

***

2020.

The Christmas season was not a good one for me, especially because things were rougher than they’d been in the last couple of years for my family. The pandemic had dealt the economy a big blow and it was telling on us. I had recently left my place of work due to dissatisfaction and was desperately job hunting. The result of that was the ton of interviews I had to prepare for. So, when my family was planning to travel for the Christmas celebrations, it just didn’t appeal to me. I had interview preparations to do and the village, what with its abysmal network reception, was certainly not the place to read for tests and interviews. In light of this, I didn’t travel to the East despite the pleas from my mum because, according to her, most members of her family, even those abroad, would be coming home and would want to see me.

While my family was in the village, my brother posted a picture on his WhatsApp status. The picture had many people in it and I thumbed past it without pausing to take a good look. As though he knew I was viewing his status, my brother chatted me up about this person he met in the village who said he knew me.

As he was sending his messages to me, I got another text.

It was from Nsogbu, and it was an exclamation.

“WE ARE COUSINS!”

A litany of surprise and hand-on-the-the-head emojis followed after the words.

WHAT!!!

I sat up quickly from where I was lying down as my brain struggled to process what was being said to me.

Then my brother sent a voice note. And here’s apparently what happened.

So the mommies and daddies had asked the young men of the family to help arrange drinks for one of the very many parties they’ve been throwing in the village. This was what they were doing, when these guys – who were all related to each other in one way or another – began to talk about me after one of my siblings mentioned that I would never be caught dead participating in this kind of menial task. It is general knowledge in the family that I am very intentional about not participating in manual labour and my brothers were getting a kick out of the jokes everyone was telling about that. Nsogbu was among these young men, and wanted to know who this guy they were ribbing was. My brother showed him my picture, and that was it.

So yes, Nsogbu’s father is my mother’s uncle!

And just like that, if I hadn’t caught him kissing that girl, I would have dated my cousin.

Just imagine that!

Imagine things had gone well between us two years ago.

Imagine he hadn’t kissed that girl and we went on to talk more, to hang out more.

Imagine we’d had sex.

Imagine we connected so much, we decided to date and then get into a relationship.

Imagine we perhaps were still in a relationship when this revelation in the village happened.

Imagine this and tell me you are not screaming just as I did when I finished playing the voice note from my brother.

My relationship with Nsogbu is mostly cordial now. It was awkward at first – still is, to be honest. But we are fine. However, it irks me a little whenever he compliments my pictures on my WhatsApp status and ends with “cuz” or “cousin” – almost as though he is reminding himself that he is not allowed to be attracted to me anymore.

Written by Delle

Previous THE PROPOSAL: Two Queer Men Are Looking For Partners For Marriage
Next A NIGERIAN FROM GRINDR

About author

You might also like

Our Stories 18 Comments

That Piece About Trans Being the Flavor of the Moment

Originally published on out.com Trans people are hot right now. They’re fabulous, they’re chic, and they’re the toast of the media. Isn’t that great? What could be more swellegant than

Our Stories 22 Comments

Ten Things The Christian Learned About Gay People in Ten Years

“God, is the truth as I understand it about being gay and Christian Your truth?” Written by Kathy, and originally published on canyonwalkerconnections.com In 2001, if you had asked me,

Our Stories 18 Comments

The Busola Dakolo in All of Us

BACKSTORY: Busola Dakolo is an alumnus of my secondary school. That was where she was when she first knew Biodun Fatoyinbo. At the time, Busola was a school fellowship leader.

12 Comments

  1. PruPru
    November 15, 12:37 Reply

    Feels like I haven’t read a story in over ten years😫😫.
    Every day I come here to refresh hoping Pink will put a new story up. I’ve re-read all the stories. Please Pink, I hope everything is well? I do hope so! It will really be nice to get these stories as frequently as possible. Some of us are addicted to this blog.
    I know a few friends who say they’ve been with their cousin.

    • Mikkey
      November 15, 14:30 Reply

      Swears it’s like you read my mind…Its feels like a decade ago.This blog keeps me sane
      Pinky I can’t thank you enough for what you do.

    • Mufasa
      November 16, 13:35 Reply

      +1 to this comment. Pink, hope all is well.
      The public craves more content 🙂

    • Delle
      November 18, 10:10 Reply

      True that we must have, at one point, frolicked with a cousin. But to date your cousin, to be in love with them, jeez! I’m having serious wincing issues thinking about that

  2. Loki
    November 15, 15:39 Reply

    Pinkyyyyyyyyyy!!!!!! 😩😩😭, Finally!
    U know i actually thought something really morbid had happened to u after a full month passed with no update here. Kito diaries is where i have a community, and i felt off for months after daily disappointments anf no update.

    That aside, dis is actually one of the reasons i don’t want to have any intercourse whatsoever with someone from my tribe except u are fucking gorgeous of course and i have made sure u and i are not related in anyways.
    My first sexual experience was actually with my male cousin sha, and i think he has “grown out of it” wat with him being a father now😂. But menh i can actually imagine d pain u go through, sucks big time

    • Delle
      November 18, 10:12 Reply

      Pain? Nehh. Recall that we never really were on talking terms prior to the revelation. If anything, the discovery made what was originally a nonexistent relationship have some sort of substance. Lol

      But nehh, no hard feelings whatsoever.

  3. Mandy
    November 15, 18:29 Reply

    LOL. Phew. This was such a near-miss. Clearly the Universe didn’t want you to commit incest.

    But speaking of incest, is this really something the gay community should bother itself with, considering that the reason it is frowned upon by heterosexuals is because of the birth defects in-breeding will cause on offspring. So seeing as the gays aren’t mixing sperm and ova, should we inherit the same disgust that the heteros have for having sex with cousins? Just asking.

    Welcome back, Pinky. Hope this isn’t a once-in-a-blue-moon kind of return?

    • Delle
      November 18, 10:16 Reply

      To be honest, I would agree with you if I wanted to be logical. But what makes the topic of sleeping with cousins for a lot of us who pride ourselves as exposed isn’t the biological snag of it (cos like you said, ain’t no one mixing sperm with ovum), but the familiarity clause that dispels one from seeing his brother as attractive. Cos what?? Eewww!

      I don’t want my cousin licking me! Except it’s a cousin I have not known to be related to me and was informed after the wave of attraction (I still feel the revelation would sever the thread of attraction on my part shaa). So yeah, it has nothing to do with biology for me, and everything to do with familial clause.

  4. Francis
    November 16, 12:11 Reply

    😂😂😂😂

    Omo if that relationship had advanced well well and I was super comfortable in it, e go be oh! We die there. No be my papa or mama offspring.

    • Delle
      November 18, 10:16 Reply

      😂😂😂😂

      Oh Francis!

  5. Gbolly
    November 23, 13:18 Reply

    What if what you felt at first was not actually love?
    What if it was blood?
    Like you know the saying blood is thicker than water
    And because you both met on Grindr you feel it’s love meanwhile it blood that doing it and also because it’s maternal blood.
    I don’t know of this makes sense sha but I just feel it too.

  6. Lyon
    December 01, 23:33 Reply

    So back in 2018, me and my first cousin fell in love. I came out to him and he told me he had some gay history. Our first kiss was glorious. We kept hanging out, and telling each other, over drinks, how we couldn’t live without each other. He said no to sex shaa… but it would’ve just been a matter of time before we would be having some sweaty sex.

    But then he died early in 2019, and it still doesn’t feel real…

Leave a Reply