Forums Coolval Reality Heart, Body & Soul MY LOST LOVE (SHORT STORY) bY MACREX

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    Macrex {phunny dude}Macrex {phunny dude}
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    For there is hope of a tree, if it be cut down,
    that it will sprout again and that the tender
    branch thereof will not cease. Though the
    root thereof wax old in the earth and the
    stock thereof die in the ground; Yet through
    the scent of water it will bud, and bring forth boughs like a plant. (Job 14.7- 9 King James
    Version) She was not beautiful. Yet she had things that
    made one notice her, and notice her in the
    most civilized manner. It was her hands;
    they were the first things I noticed about her
    as we both reached for the same tape at the
    checkout counter of the home video rental club. They looked soft and fresh. Her
    manicured nails were painted a very
    ladylike pink, with just the right amount of
    chipping to discourage a verdict of
    perfection. I murmured “Ladies first” and
    she accepted graciously. I followed her hands up and past her elbow to her face. No, she was not beautiful. But she had huge,
    expressive eyes in a small elfin face with
    generous lips, as though God had fashioned
    her out of various spare parts. She had a
    magnetism that held me. Her voice was
    truly God-given; deep, cool and clear, like spring water on a hot day. The kind that
    makes the living feel electricity down the
    spine at a high note in a song.. I was alive. I
    asked her why she never thought of singing
    professionally, and she laughed it off as if I
    were a clown. As if I thought this country was America and full of opportunities. I
    remember teasing her that success was
    three parts talent and seven parts hard
    work, but she only shrugged. That was how
    she surrendered when she was losing a
    war- with a shrug. I didn’t think much of it then. But when your eyes wandered down
    to her physique, you made a mental wolf
    call. She was built like what we used to call a
    true African woman, with big soft m----s
    straining out of her chest and enormous
    nipples that seemed to have a life of their own to give, jiggling deliciously when she
    spoke. It was hard not to stare, and let the
    eyes wander down further and be
    enraptured by a flat stomach that flared into
    the most rounded hips I’d ever seen.
    She carried a great sadness with immense
    dignity. Only her eyes complained, detached
    and hurt. At first I credited her detachment
    to maturity; she was older than I was by at
    least a decade. We were of course Africans,
    and to be African is to be traditional. I was never so wrong in all my life. I met her two
    or three times after that first time in the
    video store and she always answered my
    polite nods with a smile, a casual toss of her
    head, or a petite wave of her wrist. But I soon forgot she existed. I was job
    hunting and caught up in the frenzy that was
    Abuja, rushing from one office to the next
    and telling myself that maybe the next
    application would be the successful one. This
    went on for months. My savings got leaner and my cousin, Bulus, got meaner. It was no
    fault of his; I understood his irritation.. I
    began to avoid the squalid one bedroom flat
    we shared by going for long walks in the
    evenings that left me tired and sleepy so I
    could escape conversations with him. These conversations were always filled with
    venom and complaints, and almost
    invariably ended with a question about my
    job hunt. It was on one of these lengthy,
    aimless walks that I ran into her again. I
    was lost in thought when a sharp screech brought me back to reality. I found myself in
    the middle of the road, bathed in the harsh
    headlights of a 1992 Honda Accord, the one
    Hausa men call Hala. I apologized stupidly
    and stepped back on the curb, waiting for the
    car to proceed. It did not. “Are you all right?” it was the Voice coming from the
    dark interior of the car. “Yes,” I lied, shaken. “Come in, are you headed for the club? I’ll
    drop you off.” That was how it started. Innocently, I
    believe. Her name was Tani, which was
    short for Evratanioremi. As we drove,
    pregnant clouds heralded the rain. She ran
    her own public relations firm and she knew
    how to make one laugh. I heard myself tell her I was looking for a job and that my
    ultimate dream was to win the Booker Prize.
    We had so much in common. We shared the
    same alma mater, loved the saxophonist
    Kenny G, hated heavy metal rock music, and
    lived for books. Books. That simple word never seems to convey the world of
    meaning in each book. I inherited this love
    from my father (a genuine intellectual if
    there ever was one) and Tani was a
    literature graduate. Her face visibly
    brightened when I mentioned books. “You read?” she asked. A seemingly foolish
    question, until one considers that in our busy
    lives we often forget to spice up the journey
    with distillations from another time and
    place. It wasn’t common to read in our
    culture so it was weird and a pleasant surprise to meet a soulmate. “Yes, all
    kinds,” she replied enthusiastically.
    “Danielle Steele, James Joyce, Yeats,
    Soyinka, Steinbeck, Tom Robbins, James
    Hadley Chase, anything.” Once in a lifetime, if God likes you, you will
    meet your soul mate in a fleeting moment
    that you remember for the rest of your life.
    Sometimes, you regret this moment for the
    rest of your life, because so many questions
    are left unanswered. What if? What if you had talked to him or her? What if you had
    played beautiful music together? What if you
    had shared the rest of your lives? And once in a lifetime, if God truly loves you,
    you get to be involved with your soul mate.
    I felt that way about us, that we were two
    separate halves of a whole, complimentary
    and symbiotic. The differences in our
    backgrounds, ages, and education faded to become insignificant. Tani was my soul
    mate, pure and simple. Her insight always
    left me breathless and contemplative, and
    where I had disdained many of my
    contemporaries for being shallow and light,
    she was dazzlingly intelligent.. Because I had been raised in a conservative home, the last
    thing on my mind was an intimate
    relationship with an older woman. So we
    began our relationship innocently, as friends,
    and it remained that way for a long time.
    She helped me get a job as a floor manager in a department store and we spent time
    together listening to jazz or having heated
    discussions about the contributions of Japan
    to world culture while she cooked banga
    soup. Or we would read the same book
    separately and dissect it together, seeking meaning and nuances.. I saw it coming
    though; the signs were there. There were
    times when we would brush against each
    other, exchange looks that spoke volumes,
    and fill our conversations with subliminal
    invitations. Yet we never dared to cross that line, and I never tried to penetrate the wall
    that she built around her memories. She
    never talked about the pictures of the kids
    on her mantelpiece and I never asked. It
    was not my place. Bulus, of course, was born
    a cynic and he would sneer at my denial and leer at me. He would make exaggerated
    wolf calls, his snout pointing moonward. She
    never really met my other friends and I
    only met her closest friends, as if we were
    each an embarrassment to the other, a
    shameful secret to be hidden away. She had a few close friends, such as Ekaete, a plump,
    bookish woman who wore unfashionable
    glasses and hid a passionate nature behind a
    schoolmarm façade. She ran an NGO that
    addressed women’s health issues and was
    forever fighting with someone over gender issues. It was pathetic when I ultimately
    realized she did not believe in what she
    preached. She also had a son out of wedlock.
    There was Franca, a bank executive who
    was a man-hungry, born-again Christian. She
    had been married once but her husband ran off with a nymphet nearly twenty years
    younger. Once, when Tani was not home,
    Franca turned up at the flat on the e pretext
    of forgetting something, and bored me for
    two hours until I gently threw her out,
    dismissing the flashes of thigh and cleavage she was challenging me with. I was no saint
    but decency demanded a courting ritual
    before mating. Tani’s other friend was
    Salamatu, a slim, beautiful Moslem who had
    been raped when she was thirteen and now
    seemed to want to castrate all men. I suppose it was natural, then, that none of
    these women liked me.
    One day, Tani and me were watching cable
    news in her home when a report about a
    drunken driver who careened into a
    family’s station wagon came on. Tani
    started crying, softly at first, then in loud
    sobs that wracked her whole body. I was at a loss so I just drew closer and put my arms
    around her. She was so pliant and soft. Her
    perfume stung my nostrils and I inhaled
    sharply, like a bull. It was so natural. Our
    lips and hands sought each other, and with a
    moan I finally held her breasts in my hands. Desperately, as if we needed to feed on each
    other, we discarded our clothing in the low
    light. She was a painting done in human
    pastels. I remember little else except I was
    in her and she was in me and the cosmos
    was one in our pleasure. That was how it started. Later, I found out
    from Salamatu that Tani had lost her
    husband and two kids in an automobile
    accident caused by a drunk driver. She had
    never learned to live with those memories
    until I came into her life. Looking back, I put my heart into making her happy, and I
    enjoyed those days when the world
    retreated and became lost to us. A deep,
    intimate, and very personal relationship
    developed. All the words the world uses to describe
    what we had seem so inadequate. I breathed
    and lived her, but wasafraid that this thing
    that fate entrusted me with was not going to
    last. There was desperation in my hunger
    then, like a starving man let loose on a king’s feast, yet under a hangman’s
    loose. A dream destined to be tragic. We
    never stood a chance. One night I arrived home from an out-of-
    town trip early to the flat we shared. There
    were two cars as well as Tani’s in the
    driveway. They belonged to Franca and
    Ekaete, her gossip club members. I was
    about to let myself into the house when I heard Franca’s shrill voice. “For God’s
    sake, Tani, don’t tell me you’ve fallen for
    that boy. You know how it is.” “Use them
    and dump them,” Ekaete added. “You
    don’t understand,” Tani said in her sad,
    deep voice. “This is different.” “Can you imagine the two of you walking down a
    church aisle? Or worse, taking him to that
    warlike village of yours?” Franca
    protested. “Can he even hold a candle to
    Lanre?” Tani’s silence said much. I chose
    that moment to fiddle with the door. Their silence was deafening. They knew I had
    heard. Lanre turned out to be a suitor, the
    kind any girl could do without, who doesn’t
    know the difference between persistence
    and being a nuisance. He was not the cause
    of my pain, though. I wondered why she had not stood up for me before her friends.
    When I confronted her, she only shrugged. I
    believed in her so I stayed. But the devil had
    already taken an interest in our lives. It
    became too much for us. Slowly, like a
    cancer, the pressure grew and we began to drift apart. The words we once said easily
    were now hard to come by.. I cannot boast
    that I remained exclusive and I know
    Lanre’s persistence paid off more than
    once. Eventually, I left. There was no ritual. I just came home,
    dropped her car keys in the bedroom and
    her front door keys under the doormat, It
    was better that way, without emotions or
    second-guessing, or even a note. She would
    understand. She would understand that in another world, in another place, things
    would have been different. I knew that I
    was being selfish, re-opening old wounds for
    her, but I had my own soul to think about.
    After a while, she moved to the United
    States. I hope it eased her pain. It was odd, at first, not having her around.. I would
    walk into a restaurant and halfway through
    my meal, I would absent-mindedly say
    something to her and wait for her reply, but
    she would not be there. Or I would wake up
    in the night, staring at the dark and aching inside, wondering what in the name of God
    was happening to me. I threw myself at my
    new job as a sales manager with a
    carbonated soft drink company, and as the
    months passed she became a distant
    memory, a dull ache, a ghost I no longer pursued. I tried to make new friends and get
    on with my life, but life felt bland and empty.
    The new rituals seemed immature and
    onerous. Now I live a struggle, a lie. I still
    feel her, when the night is cold or when I am
    inexplicably afraid, or when I hear our song on the radio. I feel her presence when I
    watch the movies we once shared or when
    NEPA strikes and I expect to hear her dry,
    humorous wisecrack. Somehow, now, the sadness is gone,
    swallowed by something infinitely more
    beautiful. Why do we kick against destiny?
    When you love and lose it feels as though
    there is little hope in the dawn. Perhaps she
    is free now, but I am not. Why did I not take that which the universe offered me? She did
    leave something precious behind, though:
    that there is hope, and for now that is all I
    ask. THE END.

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    #1036188 Reply
    Macrex {phunny dude}Macrex {phunny dude}
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    @COOLVAL222-2 NEW STORY


    @JUMMYBABE
    THE LIST PLS


    @VICTORIOUSCHILD
    …..UR INVITED

    And @ all coolVALLERS new story here..

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    #1036208 Reply
    KolaKrissKolaKriss
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    Nice one…… Abeg make una include me for the register o

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    #1036210 Reply
    Lonewolf05Lonewolf05
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    Always let your partner know whats on your mind, that saves a lot of things… Nice story.

    1+
    #1036214 Reply
    JerrieJerrie
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    Tragic!

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    #1036217 Reply
    ItzprinceItzprince
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    Wow. Thats a nice story

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    #1036218 Reply
    sheegokeyssheegokeys
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    what a touching story

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    #1036242 Reply
    ⓞⓝⓔⓐⓛ32ⓞⓝⓔⓐⓛ32
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    cntinue

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