‘Pink, pink was one of my favorites. Pink signified romance, friendship and love, all three I’d found in him’
“Skye Emmanuella Evans” the vice principal called her name. Skye stood up and flashed her best friend a proud smile, she was graduating from high school today.
She looked at the clear blue skies as she walked over to the stage. “Congratulations” Mr Okoro said handing her a scroll. “Thank you” she answered.
“Ebere Juliana…..” The man continued calling out the names of her other class mates. Skye walked back to her seat “Congratulations” Olivia squealed earning them a few curious stares.
“Finally girl, I’m out of this hell hole” Skye said with a scowl on her face. Thanks to that very horrible subject, mathematics, she’d repeated two classes in high school.
She should have graduated with Olivia but her grades were too poor and her principal and teachers were convinced she would do poorly in her senior exams so they made her repeat.
“Yes! you’re out of this hell hole. You think secondary school is tough? Get into the university, it’s worse” Olivia said. Skye rolled her eyes “I don’t see you dropping out” she responded.
Olivia smirked “You know me, I love challenges. Let’s go take pictures” Olivia suggested bringing out her IPhone from her fancy Louis Vuitton bag. Unlike Skye, Olivia had a lot of money to throw around.
Her father was a corrupt politician who stored cartons of embezzled money in his house, her mother was the typical ‘ big man’s ‘ wife who did nothing but spend money, spoil her children, support her husband and spend more money.
Skye on the other hand didn’t have such luxuries, most of her prized possessions were hand me downs from her sister and Olivia. It wasn’t like she was from a poor family, her father was a silk trader. He had enough money to take care of her and her sister but he didn’t because he was a selfish man who liked to save rather than spend.
Her mother had died of Leukemia three years after she was born, she didn’t have any memories of her mother just pictures.
Her elder sister Cherry had played the role of her mother since her mother’s death, Cherry was her everything.
When she’d failed her promotional examination in senior class one, her father had stopped paying her school fees claiming he couldn’t waste money on a scatter brained female. It was Cherry who had to drop out of the University, get a job and resume that responsibility.
Cherry was her defender, her protector, her role model, her mother, father, sister, best friend, her everything. Without her elder sister, she’d be nothing. She was grateful to Cherry for everything.
“Hellooooo! earth to Skye” Olivia shouted waving her hands over Skye’s face.
“What are you thinking about? I said we should take pictures” Olivia frowned.
Skye pouted “Cherry isn’t here yet, we can’t take any pictures till she gets here” Skye said.
“Okay, let’s wait for a few minutes then” Olivia said.
“Why isn’t she here yet, she promised she’d be here on time” Skye frowned.
“Let’s give her a few minutes, she is probably busy with something important. You know your workaholic sister” Olivia shrugged.
Skye nodded and thought about her horoscope for today, ‘Expect bittersweet news today’. Yes, she was the kind of girl who believed in those kind of things.
Cherry believed it was a scam on people’s reasoning and emotions, whatever that meant. That didn’t deter Skye, she was an extremely superstitious person.
If she hit her big toe thrice on a stone, she considered it bad luck. Any black bird was considered a witchcraft, she believed in ghosts and juju too.
“Oh there she is” Olivia said breaking her out of her thoughts. Skye looked in the same direction as Olivia but it wasn’t Cherry who caught her attention, it was ‘him’.
“He’s so handsome….” Olivia gushed, Skye touched her cheek gently. “Yes, yes he is” she agreed. “If he wasn’t older and everything, you know I’d totally go for him. He’s boyfriend material” Olivia said.
Skye frowned “He’s with my sister remember?” Skye said irritated. Olivia turned sharply to look at her best friend “Skye, I’m talking about Teddy not Melvin. God, I thought you said you weren’t crushing on him anymore?” Olivia said flipping her long braided hair.
“Olivia I don’t have a crush on him” Skye said. She refrained from saying it wasn’t just a crush, that it was love. Forbidden love because the man was her sister’s first and only love, the man in question had eyes for no other woman but her sister.
“Baby!!” Cherry rushed over to her little sister and pulled her into a hug. “Mummy” Skye kissed her sister. Louisa rolled her eyes at the nicknames the girls had for each other.
“Sorry I’m late, something came up. I promise, I’ll make it up to you” Cherry said apologetically.
Skye nodded and turned to the rest of the ‘gang’. Melvin, Teddy, and Louisa, they’d all been friends since high school. Melvin and Cherry had been dating since high school, Louisa was Cherry’s best friend while Teddy was Melvin’s. One big happy family.
“You guys came!!!” Skye feigned surprise. Of course Melvin would come with her sister, Louisa would follow, it was only natural for Teddy to tag along too.
“We wouldn’t miss it for the world, our peanut is finally leaving highschool at nineteen” Louisa teased pulling Skye into a hug. “Thanks Lou Lou” Skye said appreciatively.
“And who do we have here, Livvy” Cherry pulled Olivia forward. Olivia smiled prettily “Hi….” she said her attention solely on Teddy. Teddy smirked and turned to Skye “Well, you look exceptional today. I’m proud of you Blue” Teddy said. Skye smiled warmly, he was the only who called her that.
“Guys, can we get out of here already? D--n! the sun is killing my skin” Louisa said with a scowl on her pretty face. “Do you need to do anything else?” Cherry asked her baby sister who shook her head in response.
“Okay baby, let’s go. We’re throwing an after party for you at Teddy’s place” Cherry said. Skye giggled excitedly, party meant presents. She couldn’t wait.
Teddy Wilcox had studied Aeronautic engineering in a South African university right after his highschool. A couple years later he was swimming in money, he was the richest out of the gang. He had Four airline companies outside Nigeria and two in the country.
He had various houses in Nigeria and outside the country and was known for travelling around the world with different women hanging around him. His friends often teased him about his playboy ways but that didn’t deter him.
Melvin Fadeyi on the other hand was into investment banking, he made a decent living and focused on only one woman. That was why Skye loved him more, his simplicity, his seriousness and his straight forwardness.
Cherry Evans her sister worked in an advertising firm, she too was doing quite well for herself. She used to be a personal assistant to her boss but he saw her dedication and determination and decided to reward her for her efforts. Promotions got her to where she was, she was a big shark in the Industry.
Skye smiled proudly and switched her attention to the beautiful Louisa Owode who used to be a fashion model, she had been brand ambassador for different fashion agencies till she had a tragic accident that gave her a permanent scar on her pretty legs. She lost a lot of contracts and now she ran a fashion blog and modelled makeup for cosmetic companies.
Skye already knew what she wanted to do, she loved painting. Highschool had made it clear that school life wasn’t for her so she’d made up her mind that she wouldn’t be going to the University. She hadn’t told Cherry yet but she planned to, today.
“We’re here!” Louisa announced giddily and stepped out of Teddy’s Range Rover. Skye looked out of the car and saw they were at Teddy’s bachelor pad at Victoria Island, somehow she wasn’t surprised. This was the gang’s favorite out of all his houses in Lagos.
Olivia took Skye’s hand excitedly “He’s handsome and rich. God, I love this man” Olivia whispered excitedly.
“Livvy, Isn’t he too old for you? He’s twenty seven” Skye hissed.
“Age is just a number, and may I remind you that Melvin is also twenty seven but that hasn’t stopped you from crushing on him. Hypocrite” Olivia narrowed her eyes.
“Girl shut up! I don’t have a freaking crush on him” Skye whispered hotly. Olivia rolled her eyes “Yes, and my name is not Olivia” Olivia said rolling her eyes.
“What are you two on about? come in already” Cherry said. “We’re coming” Skye called back before leaving Olivia on her own.
“So Olivia I heard you’re a student of Babcock University, how is it going for you?” Melvin asked after they’d all had lunch and refreshments.
“It’s okay , I’ll be graduating next year. That’s a relief” Olivia smiled modestly.
Skye ignored the pang of jealousy in her chest, Olivia had left school at Sixteen. If only she’d had the brains God had given Olivia or at least Cherry…..
“Good, what did you major in?” Melvin asked. “Management” Olivia answered.
“Excellent, let me know if you need a job after your youth service. We certainly need young ones like you in my company” Melvin said.
Skye refrained from saying that Olivia’s parents probably already had a job waiting for her, she probably wouldn’t need to serve. Rich kids were that lucky, there was no day she didn’t envy Olivia’s wealth.
“How about you Baby, what would you like to study in the University, What was your Jamb score? you never told me” Cherry smiled at her sister.
Skye swallowed hard and cleared her throat. “I… Uh…I didn’t take the Jamb exams” she confessed.
“What, Skye why? Baby you have no time to waste, you have to get into the university this year” Cherry said.
“I’m sure she could get into a pre degree program in Unilag. Don’t worry about it sweetie” Melvin said. Jealousy sunk it’s claws into Skye as the endearment flowed out of Melvin’s lips.
“Yes, I suppose we could do that” Cherry said rubbing her brows distractedly. Skye knew immediately that her sister was thinking about the price of everything.
“Cherry, Melvin. Have you tried asking Blue what she wants? You can’t make all the decisions for her” Teddy said studying Skye’s expression.
Skye smiled at him gratefully, it was only Teddy she’d told of her plans. He’d been very supportive, Teddy was like the elder brother she’d always wished for.
“Of course she wants to go to the University. Baby what do you want to study?” Cherry asked.
“Uh….I don’t want to go to the University mummy” Skye replied not meeting her sister’s eyes.
“What? That’s nonsense. You’re going to the University, I won’t let you ruin your life. You’re going to the university and that’s final. Why would you even say something so ridiculous?” Cherry asked furiously.
“I’ve thought about it Cherry, it’s expensive, time wasting and mentally draining” Skye said nervously.
“That’s not true, you need to go to the University Skye. Your sister didn’t get the chance to graduate, she wants you to have that opportunity” Melvin said gently.
“I appreciate it Mummy but Highschool made me miserable, the University will be worse” Skye said.
“You will endure it, like your friend Olivia. Baby you will enjoy the University with time” Cherry said.
“I want to be an artist, I’ve made up my mind that I don’t want to go to the University” Skye said.
“What nonsense is this Skye, how long have you been nursing this idea? That’s why you didn’t take highschool seriously, that’s why you didn’t register for Jamb, what’s gotten into you?” Cherry asked in a raised voice.
“Cherry enough, Cut the girl some slack. She just left highschool finally, give the girl breathing space. Skye and I have talked about this, I’m willing to send her to an Art institution in France. With your permission of course” Teddy said.
Melvin and Louisa turned to Teddy immediately. “Really, isn’t that expensive?” Melvin asked. “I can afford it, I just want Skye to be happy. It’s her life, let her live it” Teddy said.
Louisa narrowed her eyes at Teddy. “You two talk, since when?” She asked enviously.
“We talk online on facebook, and I pick her up from school sometimes. Is that a big deal?” Teddy asked.
“I thought you didn’t have time for social media” Louisa hissed.
Cherry rolled her eyes “Enough you two! Let me talk to my sister. Skye how could you make a decision without telling me first? We’re supposed to talk about everything” Cherry said.
“I know, but I knew you wouldn’t understand” Skye played with her fingers.
“I’m not happy about it but France sounds promising. I’ll think about it and I’ll speak to dad about it” Cherry said.
Skye smiled, she knew her father wouldn’t care. He hadn’t even showed up at her graduation, she hadn’t invited him but she knew Cherry must have told him.
“Thanks” Skye said gratefully. She turned to Teddy and mouthed ‘Thanks’ . Teddy smiled ‘Anytime blue’ he mouthed. Louisa watched their lips but made no comment about it.
“So can we give presents now?” Olivia who had been silent through out the whole ordeal finally spoke.
“Yes, baby we got so carried away with school talk that we forgot that we’d gotten you presents” Cherry threw her arms around her boyfriend and whispered to him.
He nodded before getting up to leave the table, Teddy followed leaving only the girls at the table. “So blue, why does he call you that?” Louisa asked immediately.
Cherry looked at Louisa as if she was dumb. “Well duh Skye is blue and Cherry is red. He calls me red sometimes, stop making a big deal out of everything Louisa” Cherry said.
“What? I’m not making a big deal out of anything. Teddy is a player, aren’t you a little scared?” Louisa asked.
“No, I’m not. Teddy knows never to touch my sister and I trust that Skye knows her right from wrong” Cherry hissed.
Skye rolled her eyes “Louisa, he’s a big brother to me” She said.
“I know but be careful girl, he’s dangerous” Louisa warned before switching back her attention to her phone.
The men arrived minutes later holding packages. “Ooooh, Finally” Skye said as they dropped the packages in front of her.
Skye picked up the present with Cherry’s name on it first . She tore the wrapping and saw a black jewelry box. “Open it” Olivia urged giddily.
Skye opened it and saw two identical lockets. “It’s beautiful” Skye said handing one of the lockets to Cherry. She opened the locket and saw a picture of She and Cherry on her fourteenth birthday.
“Thanks mummy” Skye said putting the locket around her neck. Next was Olivia’s, she’d gotten Skye her first pair of Christian Louboutin ‘red bottoms’. “Oh my God, how much are these?” Skye hugged Olivia.
“Does it matter, My best friend deserves it” Olivia said. “You’re so sweet” Skye kissed her cheek. Louisa’s present was larger, the present contained a box filled different types of cosmetics from Zaron.
“Thanks” Skye said. “It’s nothing” Louisa said dismissively. Teddy’s was next, she unwrapped it. He’d gotten her Da Vinci paint brushes, her heart swelled. He was the only one who really understood her.
“What’s that?” Louisa asked immediately.
“Da Vinci paint brushes, these are the best brushes ever and it’s freaking expensive. Thanks Teddy” Skye grinned.
Melvin’s was last, she’d saved the best for last. He’d gotten her a new phone just like Olivia’s. “Thanks” Skye muttered.
“Finally we’ve finished the boring activity, I’m going to go put on some music and get some wine” Louisa said leaving the table. Teddy followed her as she walked away.
“What’s wrong with you?” he asked once they were away from everyone. “What’s wrong with me, what’s wrong with you? How dare you flirt with her in my presence?” Louisa asked angrily.
“Are you crazy? I wasn’t flirting with her Louisa” Teddy said. “God, you’re shameless. She’s just nineteen” Louisa said.
“I haven’t done anything Louisa stop this nonsense. You act this way everytime I’m nice to any other woman except you, we’ve been over for years” Teddy sighed.
“Screw you Teddy, you’re the one who left for South Africa without telling me anything. Came back a playboy years later, your lifestyle disgusts me” Louisa hissed.
“We were not meant to be” Teddy said. “Yes we were. We still are, quit moving around with those whôres and come back to me. I love you.” Louisa said wrapping her arms around his waist.
“I can’t, I don’t love you” Teddy pushed her away. “I lost my career because of you, I almost lost my legs because of you” she said referring to that night.
“I’m sorry” Teddy said sadly. “Do you love her?” Louisa asked referring to Skye. Teddy shook his head “She’s too young” he said.
“That wasn’t the answer to that question, from the looks of it you’re willing to wait for her, take her to France, marry her and what have you? If you touch her, if you tell her about your feelings, if you even think of dating her or sleeping with her, I will tell Cherry and you know what she’ll do to you” Louisa threatened.
“Louisa, stop this nonsense before someone hears you.” Teddy pleaded. “You should know that she loves someone else, I’m sure you must have noticed how she looks at Melvin. If I were you, I’ll focus on what’s right in front of you” Louisa hissed before walked away.
If anyone noticed the tension between Louisa and Teddy when they came back, they didn’t comment on it. Teddy opened the wine while Louisa turned on some music.
“Guys, gather around. Melvin and I have news” Cherry said. Skye’s eyes sparkled “Another promotion?” she asked as Teddy passed the wine glasses around.
“Melvin and I have decided to get married!” Cherry squealed.
“What?” Skye’s heart fell, so did the glass. “Oh my God, Skye are you okay?” Olivia asked surprised.
Louisa smirked “Yes, I’m just surprised. Wow…” Skye say trying to hold back the tears. “I’ll clean up, stay put Blue. I don’t want the glasses to injure you” Teddy said gently.
Skye nodded and tried to breathe. Melvin was marrying her sister, her heart twisted in pain. So this was the bitter sweet news her horoscope had warned her about, bitter because She loved Melvin but it was obvious now that he’d never be hers and also sweet because Cherry was finally getting married.
She could feel her heart turning cold, what was she to do?