Relief washed over me and a smile split my lips as I listened to the phone ring.
I had been trying to reach Cynthia for three weeks and I finally got through.
My voice caught in my throat. A familiar warmth coursed through me at the sound of her voice.
“Hello, who is this?”
Ice crushed my heart, confirming what I had started to suspect. Last week, after two weeks of trying to reach her on the phone and via bbm, it hit me that there were other social media. That was when I found Cynthia had un-friended me on Facebook. Instagram and Twitter were the same: blocked and padlocked.
I tried to put a rational spin on things.
Maybe she lost her phone.
Maybe her accounts got hacked and she took measures to protect herself.
Maybe her phone got stolen.
“Last I checked,” I said into the phone, “my name’s Bobo.”
“Oh.” And she burst into laughter.
But I didn’t.
She finally stopped laughing long enough to say, “I am driving at the moment. Let me call you back when I park.”
“Maybe she’s still driving nau.” Scar said when I told them about it two days later.
I threw him a dirty look.
“But on the real,” Sly chimed in, “did you try calling her back?”
“What kind of nonsense question is that?”
Phantom don vex o.
“You’re here asking him to call her back despite the way she posted him, meanwhile in Eritrea it’s illegal to marry only one wife.”
“Please stop spreading rubbish information,” Wale said. “You do realise that news was false, right?”
“We no dey try for Naija sha. Even established media houses carried the news.” Sly said.
“But it would’ve been wonderful if it were true. Imagine me rolling with more than one girl and backed by law…”
“This is Wale,” Phantom said. “Wale will date you and date your sister. Wale will date your sister’s friend and your friend’s sister. When Wale is done, he will break their hearts. Wale is a Yoruba demon. Be like Wale.”
This threw us into laughter.
When I left Wale’s that night, my resolve was firm. I deleted Cynthia’s number from my phone and deleted her pictures.
At home I peeled two oranges and cut them in half, this reminded me of Cynthia. I preferred my oranges cut open closer to the top, but she called me selfish and unwilling to share so I started cutting them in half so we could each have one half of an orange before moving on to the next.
I set the knife down, the oranges forgotten, and returned to the room. I collapsed into the bed, my nose sinking into the pillow she preferred to use whenever she visited. My memory assured me I could still smell the flowery notes that were her scent.
I set the pillow down and reached for my phone, pausing just before my hand made contact. I shrugged and picked it up, punching in digits I didn’t think I remembered.
“Hello? Is that you Bobo?”
My throat constricted and I panicked. I cut the call. My heart beat fast, and faster still when my phone came alive in my hand. I almost dropped it.
“Hey Cynthia,” I tried for a light voice, but I was sure she could hear the tremor. “How are you?”
“I’m good. You?”
“I’m good too.”
So, are you still driving? You promised to call me back. What did I do wrong? Did I do anything wrong?
“I called earlier to check up on you, but the call wasn’t connecting.” I lied.
“Oh, it connected. I just couldn’t hear anything. I’m good though. Work has been crazy.”
“I can imagine.”
Have you eaten? Do you miss me? I miss you.
“Alright then Bobo,” she yawned. “Excuse me. Let me turn in for the night. Talk to you in the A.M?”
Are you bouncing me off the phone?
“Pele. Oya rest. We’ll talk in the morn…”
Click. Dial tone.
I held my phone out in front of me like it had sprung fangs. My chest hurt, my head throbbed, heat rose up my neck.
“We’re done bitch,” I snarled.