We are almost done. I’m so excited.
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I kick my door shut and grab a pillow. I scream into it and fling it across the room. I feel so much anger towards my neighbor and I’m feeling so vengeful right now. I want to get him so badly. The thought of what happened to me evokes this colubrine feeling in me- like I could shed my skin. I walk across the room to pick the pillow when I get distracted by Fola’s room. The music is still playing loudly. Unbelievable. I thought I turned it off. I just hope I put off the tap at least. I sigh. What have I done telling him all this stuff? I breathe deeply as another emotion slides down my spine. I certainly am having a mental walk of shame. Suddenly, his completely naked body comes into view. My eyes pop and I gasp simultaneously. He wheels to face the window, and we stare at each other over the wall, through the two windows. He doesn’t dart to the side, or squat out of sight, or do anything else that might indicate embarrassment. Instead, he smiles. I feel caught. This is Mel’s territory; she is the peeping tom not me. I draw the curtain close. He may have a hot banging body that would make a girl think hell is not so bad, but I am not falling for it. “I hate men.” There. I said it out loud. The only man I don’t hate should be helping me plan my revenge against men. Tony. I have been pretty remiss with him. He must be worried considering I have been missing in action for the past few days. Worried enough not to come visit you? My subconscious self asks. He prolly thinks I’m having a withdrawal and is giving me time. I make up an excuse for him. You still texted when you were having withdrawals. My subconscious unrelentingly reminds me. He just didn’t think enough of you to come see if you were okay. “Okay. You have got to stop.” I say to myself loudly and dress up to see Tony. I even put a little mascara and blush on.
I inform Mel that I’m going to Tony’s place. It’s been three days since I last ate. What she is cooking smells great. My tummy rumbles and I can feel myself blush to my roots. Thank God she doesn’t notice. She is still hung up on the fact that I’m going to see Tony. I don’t know what is wrong with her. When would she learn to accept him? It has been years. Which reminds me… She said her mom was calling again. Sigh. I will deal with that later.
I knock on Tony’s door repeatedly but he doesn’t answer. I don’t have a key because Tony is private. I deliberate going to wait in my car for a few seconds and give in. I’m about three steps from his doorstep when his door is flung open. I turn back immediately.
“Where have you been?” He thunders, his face looks wary and drawn like he has been drinking again.
I smile playfully at him so as to defuse the situation. I push the door the rest of the way and walk in.
“Where the hell have you been?!” He asks again. This time his voice is louder and I feel panicked even though I don’t act it.
“I…” I start to apologise when I feel a heavy slap on my cheeks. I fall from the effect of the blow and my hip hits the ground. He is rambling on but the word that comes to my mind is ‘Enough’. I have taken a lot of bullshit in my life. I bite my inner cheeks against the wave of dizziness that threatens to engulf me and stand. I don’t know where I summon the strength from as I give him five successive slaps. He looks stunned and is unmoving as I walk out his door while fishing for my car keys. My head is banging as I rev up my engine. No one can do you like you, baby girl. You have got to stand up for yourself, dear. Nobody can be there for you like yourself. You are a strong woman. No one will take care of you, sweetheart. My subconscious self is really on a roll today.
I’m shaken when I get to the front of my house again. I forcefully breathe out to still my quivering hands so I can open the gate but my effort proves abortive. Damn. I just drove several miles. What is wrong with me? I attempt to open again but no. I’m getting really frustrated. Someone taps me and I’m hoping it is Ken so I can unleash my pent up fury. I turn towards the offender, ready to lash out when I see it is Fola. I sigh and close my eyes letting some of my anger dissipate. I open my eyes and speak slowly. “What do you want?” I croak out from an attempt to hide my true emotions. I’m just glad he can’t hear me.
May I get your number? He types and shows me his phone. I read and shake my head firmly. No.
Why? Aren’t we friends?
I raise my eyebrow.
Runaway friend. He types and passes his phone to me. A very relaxed and equally gorgeous contagious smile plays against his lips. I smile tentatively in return. Something about him ‘monickering’ me feels awfully familiar. I don’t know which runaway he was referring to. I twist to reach into my bag hanging off my shoulder for my phone when I notice his grin falls a fraction. I can’t find it so I grab his and type my number in, saving it in his contact directory. He grabs my chin and turns my face sideways. His lips move like he wants to cuss or maybe break something but he bites his lips instead, his expression, inquisitive. I smile at him because I’m scared of what he sees on my face and his reaction to it. He studies my face, not looking convinced. I smile bigger to alleviate his worry. Just then, Mel reaches us and links her arm through mine. She nudges me discreetly in my ribs after a few minutes and I turn to her. She tells me with her eyes to introduce them. I speak slowly for Fola because I sense he is a bit sensitive about his condition. I can read Mel’s body language. She is totally into him. He doesn’t give her a chance though as he just smiles briefly at her and turns to me to smile more properly. I don’t know why but I feel oddly satisfied and I smile back at him. He looks at me in silent promise of full questioning of whatever happened to my face, passes my clothes to me, nods at Mel and walks away. I turn to look at her. I feel a twinge of guilt when I look at her.
“You better start speaking.” She says trying hard to smile.
“Are you sure you are ready?” I ask as I loop my arm around her shoulders. We walk into the compound, my car parked outside.
“I got raped, Mel.” I say as soon we settle on my bed. Saying it out loud to a listening ear isn’t really as helpful as I thought it would be.
“You are kidding, right?” She says nervously trying to gauge my level of seriousness by peering into my eyes. “You are not kidding.” She states.
I try to smile as tears drop from my eyes in hot pursuit.
Her eyes widen and she gasps as she finally realizes how serious the situation is. “Oh my God.” She says as she draws me near and envelopes me in a big hug. I cry my heart out for the hundredth time in a few days. “It’s Ken.” I whisper into her shirt. I didn’t have to say it twice. She jumps up from the bed, pacing angrily, indignant on my behalf. “What?!” She slams her fist into her palm. “I knew it!” She repeats like six times. “I knew there was something going on when they went from painting their daughter’s room to packing out in a few days.” She says to herself. I just recline on the bed and watch her. So, they packed out. I feel another tear in my heart. “What are we going to do about it?” She asks me from across the room. I shake my head and bite my fist, holding back the threatening whimpers. “Things will be alright.” She says and walks back to join me on the bed. She lies down behind me and pulls me close. I try to remain as still as possible wary of every contact with her. I think about my suicidal attempt but I can’t tell her.
“You were telling me about your mother.” I say instead.
“Sshhh.” She shushes me. “We can discuss that later.”
Maybe we can both honestly and openly speak about our pasts now. I didn’t ask her so much about hers because I didn’t want her asking about mine. I know she has problems with her family though I don’t even know little things like her age and we have been living together for what? Two years?
I guess we both just wanted the companionship.
This post is a day early and long. I should get a commendation, yeah? Guuuyysss??!