WHORE Of BABYLON (Episode 22)

WHORE Of BABYLON (Episode 22)

Previously on WHORE OF BABYLON

*

I open my eyes and it is dark, impenetrably dark. There is a hand draped over my belly and the more I awaken, I can also feel the rhythmic rush of hot breath fanning the side of my neck. I tilt my head slightly to the side, and even though I cannot see anything, I know from the smell of him, the fullness of his scent, that ripe smell of maleness, that Bryan is the one lying beside me.

Too numb to move, my eyes proceed to make out what it can of my surrounding and it quickly dawns on me that I am not in Iliana’s room. I fix my eyes on the ceiling and keep the stare there.

Sage is dead.

A cataclysm of emotions rips through my system, constricting my heart, twisting my belly into knots and imploding so fiercely, I start to feel the ghost of a headache.

The realisation is jarring.

I never wanted him dead. I thought it, planned it – heck, I was this close to signing the death warrant. But ultimately, I hadn’t wanted him dead.

It is painful. After all this time, all the hurt I’d been carrying about, all the bitterness I’d cultivated in my heart, all the pleasure I’d gotten from inflicting pain on him in my mind, he is dead and I am left feeling…empty.

Dr Francis was right.

“You only think you want to have Sage killed…” I remember him saying to me. “You don’t want Sage dead. Maybe hurt, but not killed. What you want killed far surpasses some random guy who outed you to a woman who probably already knew so much but was too chicken to stand it when it hit her in the face.”

I snap my mind back from the direction those words have started rerouting my thoughts and proceed to gently pluck Bryan’s hand from my belly and placing it by his side. Slowly and deliberately, I rise, not wanting to wake anyone, swing my legs over the bed and stand on feet that do not quite feel like they belong to me. I could have been standing on prosthetic legs for all I know.

Through what feels like a foggy marshland, I guide my heavy limbs to the front door. I can hear the rumble of sonorous sounds coming from the other room where Mitch is slumbering with his boyfriend, Dennis. I unlock the door and let myself out. The short walk down the aisle between rooms feels like an eternity.

I soon get to the door of Iliana’s room and lean against it, hoping to hear the calm and consistent breathing of Iliana. But there’s no sound coming from inside.

I turn the knob on the door and it’s locked. I contemplate knocking, but something tells me that Iliana isn’t inside.

The window just after the door is a very old one. It’s corroded and doesn’t let air through because the panes are permanently shut due to the rust. But Iliana doesn’t need this window for ventilation; it serves another purpose.

I reach to it and my fingers scramble across the sill till they encounter the spare key.

A few seconds later, I am inside. I turn on the light and the illumination is such a relief from all the darkness my eyes were starting to get used to. As I predicted, Iliana isn’t back, as is evident in the perfectly made bed.

I feel a niggling of worry, which doesn’t flourish because I am still overburdened by the news of Sage’s death. It is very unlike her to not reach out and let me know where she is. I make to call her but the time on my phone is 2.34am.

I automatically lift my hand to my chest, for my bag which is usually slung across my torso, and I’m met with nothingness. I didn’t even realize until now that I wasn’t wearing my bag. Mitch must have taken it from me at sometime while I was still reeling from what he and Bryan had laid on me.

I think about sleeping and almost chuckle at what self-deceit that would be. Without contemplation, I walk straight to the cupboard, pull open the top drawer and take out my Hannah-Montana-customized diary.

It’s cold.

You know what else is? The thought pops into my head out of nowhere. Sage.

My legs are starting to feel like they will give way any second, so I reach for the lone chair in the room and plant myself on it like an eighty-year-old would.

I know it doesn’t make any sense why I am so affected by the death of someone I had loathed so much. But death, the news of it, has always brought a chill to me. There’s a finality to it that, although incomprehensible, cannot be helped. This state of helplessness is, ironically, only felt by those living. It’s so unfair that even though the victim might not have been ready to succumb to its whims, the effect of their demise is not felt by them but by those left behind.

He should have paid for what he did to me. He should have been hurt. He should have been made to see the error in his action, perhaps given an opportunity to apologize for the hurt he caused me.

But to die?

Why?

I close my eyes and my mind wanders, against my will, to that day, the time when I first met Tosin Williams.

***

I had just finished SSCE and was waiting for UNN to fix a date for the POST-UTME. There really wasn’t much to do in Enugu and my siblings’ schools were still in session. Mum was hardly ever around.

If I stayed home, I’d either run mad or commit suicide.

So I decided to go to Lagos, stay with Kenny for a while until it was time to write the POST-UTME. He had also just concluded his exams and we needed to get together after almost four years of not seeing each other.

Because it was Kenny, my mother was more than happy to okay my trip; in fact, she was so gracious with her permission, that if I didn’t know better, I would have thought she was trying to get rid of me.

People have always said Lagos is where it all happens, that it is life and the branches of it all merged in one.

But as I looked out of the window in the moving taxi Kenny chartered for our outing two days after I arrived, I could not for the life of me understand what the attraction of this city was.

There was an endless bustle of people, the constant struggle for everything. Even the hawkers expended more energy selling a produce than in the peddling of it. The outrageous and simply unbelievable traffic. Everything was aggressive, brash, loud.

Was this the life? Because I wanted none of it.

I turned to Kenny who was chattering away on his phone with a wide grin pasted on his face.

“You’re amazing company, by the way,” I snarked as I tried to snatch the phone from his hand.

But he’d always had quick reflexes. He moved the phone hand easily away from my purchase, and then blew a kiss at me, before giving me a quick indulgent tap on my head, and then returning to his call.

I rolled my eyes and sighed so loudly, the driver turned to the rearview mirror to look at me. I made a face at him and he chuckled before returning his attention to his driving.

“Lagos is the worst!” I groaned.

Kenny had just finished with his call and gasped, “Blasphemy!” His eyes were widened with exaggerated outrage. “My Lagos is not the worst, please. You people in Enugu are especially not allowed to speak ill of this city. If you were staying in Abuja, I’ll understand. You’ve been warned.”

With a flip of an imaginary sheaf of hair, he turned to his phone and began tapping away at his keypad.

I hissed loudly. “Nyeh, nyeh, nyeh! Enugu may not be that much of a city, but I sure as hell know going from my house to someplace else there doesn’t feel like a trip to Jupiter. Over here, a great portion of your waka-waka is spent on the road. How is that life? But of course, Lagosians have a stress gene.”

“Wait until you see the club I’m taking you to,” Kenny said. “I can’t wait for you to eat your words, yeye pikin.” He reached to pinch my cheek and I slapped it away, causing him to laugh.

I met Tosin in that club.

“My name is Tosin.” He said after exchanging hugs with Kenny, and then stretched out a hand to me. I shook it. “Tosin Williams. But you may call me Sage.”

He was everywhere that evening and seemed to know everyone. Kenny told me he must have fucked more than half the men in the room. Apparently, wherever there was a hangout in Lagos, Sage was there. He’d even come on to Kenny one time, but my friend’s preference for rich, older men had caused him to befriend the lothario very swiftly.

Sage was an attractive guy, very appealing that evening in his royal blue sweatshirt and dark-grey pants. He seemed into me, always circling his way back to wherever I was, flirtatious and charming, but I was here to meet men. I’d always believed guys, young guys around or close to my age bracket do not have money to give, and so sex with them is mostly charitable.

As the night wore on and my contact list grew, Sage became more aggressive in his flirtation with me. He would fondle me indiscriminately and snicker when I turn to glare at him, his eyes daring me to tell him off.

I didn’t. I couldn’t.

However much I didn’t want to like him, I knew I was attracted to him. And I couldn’t hold on to my aloofness of him much longer. For when he pinched my nipple, which was conspicuous behind the net singlet I was wearing, I grabbed his hand and dragged him all the way to the men’s convenience.

The sex we had there was hot and quick. There was no connection, just an animalistic urge to do something about the sexual tension between us.

He would bite my neck, suck on my fingers intermittently as he took me from behind in one of the stalls in the restroom. One time, he pulled out of me, leaving me gaping and empty, and just as I was about to whimper my protest, I felt his tongue in me, lapping at my puckered hole, biting lightly and sucking. I bit back the loud moan that threatened to escape my mouth and propped myself for balance on the water closet, spreading my legs farther apart to give him better access.

He ate my ass with a skill that had me wondering if I even needed his dick to finish up the job, and then, in a swift move, he replaced his tongue with his penis once more, thrusting deeply then shallowly, repeatedly until I felt my insides stir, the familiar sensations of an oncoming orgasm surging through me. When he plunged into me with a stifled groan as his own orgasm hit, I felt myself spasm, releasing spurt after spurt of jizz all over the toilet seat.

Completely spent and satiated, he turned me around and planted a quick kiss on my lips. He was sweaty and panting softly, but said nothing as he pulled up his trousers and zipped up.

I let him leave the restroom first, and then counted up to twenty in my head before leaving. And when I returned to Kenny’s side, the coy smile he had on his face told me he knew exactly what I’d been up to and with whom.

That would not be the last time Sage and I fucked.

All through my three-week stay in Lagos, Sage was a regular visitor at Kenny’s, and we made very good use of all that my best friend’s house had to offer. The kitchen. The mini verandah out in the back. The living room. The bedroom. The bathroom. The dining room. His libido was inexhaustible and I had never felt more alive.

Kenny never judged. He was mostly home during these hookups and never disturbed. With his parents out at work, Kenny was always ensconced in his room and would only surface when he wanted something.

“I hope you take contraceptives,” he remarked one time I returned to his room after seeing Sage off. “All that fucking will grow a child in there, womb or no womb.”

“Well, am I not lucky that condoms are a thing?” I sallied back, feeling the invigoration that only a good fuck can give.

“You’re such a bore,” he retorted before we proceeded to talk about other things.

Perhaps, it was the consistency of our fuck sessions that made Sage think there was something going on between us, that I was always going to be interested in his dick.

As soon as I got back to Enugu, I disabused him of that thought. His constant calls became a source of irritation and his lovey-dovey texts went unanswered. I became too busy with getting started with the next leg of my education to take him seriously. Sage became a memory.

That was until he resurfaced and turned my life upside down.

***

A knock on the door jolts me out of my reverie. My eyes dart to my phone and from the time I see there, I realize that I have been sitting and reminiscing for about two hours. The diary I’d earlier placed on the table, poised to write on, stared accusingly at me for neglecting it.

With some effort, I push myself up from the chair and walk towards the door.

“Who is it?” My voice is surprisingly strong, a sharp contrast to how my body is feeling.

“Sizi, it’s Iliana.”

Warmth immediately spreads through my chest at the sound of her voice, causing tears to sting my eyes. I unlock the door.

I cannot tell if she fell into my arms or if I grabbed her. But for some seconds, we are bound close to each other in a tight embrace.

It is only when I pull back from her to ask her very sternly what she’d been up to, that I notice someone standing behind her, looking on with a tired smile.

It is Ife, Sage’s sister.

Written by Delle

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4 Comments

  1. Mandy
    June 16, 08:14 Reply

    I like how Sizi is being affected by Sage’s death. It shows he’s not dead inside, that whatever Sage did to fuck his life up, he is still human enough to mourn the death of a person he once shared some intimacy with.

    But seriously, HOW THE FUCK DID SAGE DIE???

  2. Fred
    June 16, 09:14 Reply

    All these your “ghen-ghen” endings is becoming a torture o

    • Delle
      June 17, 07:08 Reply

      What’s life without ghen-ghenities? 😏

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