It was my turn to say something.. I knew, but couldn’t.
Aware of what was going through my mind, he smiled.
He didn’t mind waiting…
“You must be Oyin?” it came from behind. The day Oyinola met his friends for the first time- they were few, but proved to be loyal and true- was the day she met his mother too. Not a warm but sunny day: September the 14th.
In a way it reminded Oyin of her initial contact with him and how abrupt it all- or better even, he– was. How he walked over to her table, took the liberty to sit beside her, and- without asking if it was OK, and with no “Hi’s”, “What’s your name’s” or ” Where are you from’s”- went ahead to introduce himself. Funny encounter, she thought with a silent, yet satisfactory smile; a smile one could only read through her eyes. It was an honest one.
“Yes, I am”, came the reply. “And you must be his Number 1.”
“I used to be. Not any more..” she said with a mischievous smile, and winked. Her insinuation was clear. Oyin decided to wave it off; blushing.
“I don’t think he’s planning on ever replacing you.. he better not!”, Oyin responded- half serious, half sad- while stroking her shoulder. Beautiful widow she was.
If only you knew.. his mother thought.
Oyin loved hugging him. He loved embracing her too- especially from behind.
Sometimes she pushed him away.. conscious of how some of her body-parts might appear to him. She was pretty and well aware of her beauty. Yet, ever now and then- it was a female thing- unsure of herself. They hadn’t been intimate; and although tempted at times- as all humans were- had taken the firm, yet difficult, decision to abstain from sexual intercourse until they were made One Flesh. They had even formed a short poem out of it. It helped them when one was weak. They sure complemented each other well.
He- although well aware of why she was reluctant to be close at times- pulled her all the more to his side. He derived serious satisfaction from teasing her; maybe more than could be considered normal. Oyin didn’t mind. She actually quite liked it.
One day, when fooling around on a couch at Starbucks, she bended over to pick up a paper that had dropped, and mistakenly – yes, it really was a mistake- exposed a bit of cleavage. Ashamed and embarrassed- for they bore stretch marks- she turned around, leaving for the restroom. He suddenly grabbed her arm, pulled her back on the sofa, and gently kissed her cheek.. her neck.. her cleavage. It was the most sexual touch she had received from him.. 4 months into their friendship.. and felt as intimate as anything.. ever. He looked at her, and without making a sound, told her “Oyin, you are beautiful as you are”. His eyes were speaking.
His hands were strong and bore the scars of much toil. His wide shoulders, strong back and firm legs suggested physical work, but his hands proved it. He started holding Oyin’s hand in his 3 months into their friendship. He held it tightly, yet without laying claim to it. He accepted she wasn’t his, but was not willing to see someone else hold it either. She loved his hands. They spoke little, yet said a lot. In them Oyin felt secure, safe. She felt she belonged. And as he held it, she let him lead. Oyin was both willing and ready to be his.
Not until their second month of friendship did he invite Oyin to his flat. He wanted to make sure they spent as much time as possible outdoors- getting to know each other far away from usual surroundings. As she stepped into his neat and orderly flat, she was surprised at what she found, or rather what she didn’t: there were no red roses, no candle lights, no dinner plates, not even music. He had prepared a chess board.
After letting her win 2 sets and ending the evening with winning 2 himself, he presented a silk parcel to her. Wrapped in it: a hand-carved chess set; carved on the board: her initials. Not his and hers, just hers. She loved it.
Oyin remembered their first encounter. Him standing over her, and asking..
“Excuse me, ma’am? Are you ready to place an order?”
..and there I was, getting carried away.
p.s. @kayshawykayshawy here you go!! 🙂