He managed to pull himself from the ground and headed for a wash as she trailed him, wiping her face with the back of her palms, feeling so sorry for him and what she had just put him through. She whispered to herself “oh my! I thought I had lost him moments ago, I’m sorry Jed, I will always love you.”
It was a Saturday morning and Jed had a routine of going to train at the Festac basketball court with a couple of friends. The Lad quickly packed his training bag with his kits and water neatly fixed in it and with a light kiss planted on her forehead, he bade her goodbye and gestured that he will be back before long.
He walked down to the pitch since it was a pretty short distance from the house. Down the road, he met his two best friends Kennedy and Bryan also strolling down to the pitch to play basketball with the others.
“Hey, bro! Good morning, how far na? Questioned Bryan in his usual playful tone.
“Mehn, I just dey oh, sup with you two na? why una no come call me? Queried Jed who actually expected them to drop by the house as usual so all three could go train together.
“haa, na wa for you oh. How you expect us to come around? You want make we cause obstruction as your Barney dey around?” Retorted Kennedy, and all three busted out in a hearty laughter.
They all had their fair share of the laughter and before long, they were all standing in front of the basketball court. They headed for the changing room and quickly slid into their jerseys, shorts and boots without ado and the next minute, they were out and ready for the games proper.
It was a heated, friendly tournament as both teams played their best and struggled through to the end with ‘The Tigers’ (Jed’s team) emerging as victors over the ‘Phat Bulls’. It was actually a narrow escape for the Tigers as they led with just three (3) points, having the Phat Bulls trail them with 57 points.
The trio went to take a shower and changed again to their normal home clothes they came in, looking refreshed and better after the sweaty and exhausting game.
“But Jed, you know you haven’t really told us anything about your girlfriend, what’s up with you two? Asked Bryan.
“Well, I’m sorry I didn’t inform you guys earlier that she’ll be coming over. The thing is, I didn’t really know if what I felt for her was love or if it was a mere illusion or infatuation.
“I wanted to be sure about my feelings for her before introducing her to you two and right now, there’s even a bigger challenge.” His face dropped as he said this as a result of the emotions that ran through him and the painful thoughts associated with the things he was about to say.
“What challenge? Queried Kennedy whose attention was all fixed on Jed now.
“Yes Jed, what challenge? What is the matter just now? Kennedy asked with a concerned look on his face as he quickly motioned at Jed.
“I’m in a terrible fix right now, I’m just at crossroads. Finally I found someone who complements me so well, fits into the role of a girlfriend and potential wife, is all I ever dreamed of and loves me just as much, But…” he couldn’t continue as he felt his throat swell up in an attempt to choke him.
“But what? Asked Kennedy who was becoming more impatient with the whole story.
“But…” the pain in his eyes and forehead was so much that his head ached and he cursed under his breath.
“Can we not talk about this now, please? I can’t continue with the story right now but I promise to tell you all you need to know. I’ve got to go now, she’s home alone and will be expecting me soon. See you guys around.” This he said and dashed out, leaving them perplexed and awed all at once.
Bryan could not fathom why Jed acted the way he did and worst still, could not believe he walked out on them in that manner.
“Wow! You mean Jed left us hanging because of a girl? This is more serious than I thought. Bryan Soliloquized.
“Dude must really be in love with this girl because i have really not seen him in the mood before, this is all alien to me i must say. But again, it seems to me that something is not right between them, maybe they are having issues already or there’s more to the girl that we are yet to find out” replied Kennedy, heaving a sigh and shrugging.
“Well, that’s not my headache anyway, I just hope he’s fine and settle whatever issues it is he is having at the moment” Said Bryan. With this they both parted ways and headed for their respective homes.
Back home, Jae was all in thoughts, lying on the soft cushion when Jed rang the door bell which alerted her and she jerked out of the piece of furniture and headed for the door.
He got in and they hugged long enough to make each of them snap out of their moods and live in the moment. It was like they both knew they needed that hug to stay alive and as well relieve them of some of the tension and heaviness they felt.
“Everything is going to be alright baby, trust me.” Jed planted a kiss on her forehead as he said that and petted her forehead too, strong some strands of hairs on her head and leading her back into the living room.
“I’m going to miss you greatly when you eventually leave for Port Harcourt tomorrow. I just wish you could stay a little longer or best still, stay with me forever. I love you Jae” said Jed in a teary and somewhat broken tone.
With this, a tear escaped Jae’s eye as she raised her face and looked deep into his ever-assuring eyes.