The days that followed, Nchimunya and I would talk almost everyday. Joshua being in an examination class made it rare for us to talk because his final exams where soon coming up but I told him about Nchimunya and I, he was happy for me.
Hope sent me airtime regularly and sometimes Nchimunya would send me some so communication wasn’t a problem.
I sat on my bed eating cornflakes while reading a novel when I heard noise. I wasn’t a nosy person so I ignored it and continued with my food.
“Kali kwisa kalya akali ule, kaba ubwipi (where is that prostitute and her shortness) I heard and wondered who was being referred to. Almost the whole dorm cheered and I could hear the noise getting closer.
To my surprise, a group of Sugos (12th graders) had crowded my space along with some other dorm mates of mine.
” iwe ka Chanda what’s there between you and my Tonga bull?” Asked Florence, the sports prefect.
I looked at her perplexed and speechless.
“Ba spodo (sports captain) what are you talking about?” I asked and she laughed together with her minions.
“Nchimunya! What’s there between you two? You’re lucky I went for the jets competition and I didn’t witness your romance. Nchimunya is mine! If you talk to him, stop. Pantu next time nkakuma (because next time I’ll beat you)” she said and I felt like a sharp knife had been pierced through my heart.
“But I don’t understand, he told me nothing about you. And he’s a grade lower so I can’t connect,” I said almost tearing up.
“Look at her, she doesn’t even know him well. Nchimunya is a Sugo and we’ve been together since last term. It’s just that lately he has been busy since our exams are coming up so we don’t communicate. Ask him about me, he’ll tell you. You’ve been warned,” she said and the girls cheered.
Some laughed at me and after they where all gone. I entered my guza and cried. After a while Nchimunya called but I chose not to pick up.
After he called a couple more times I finally picked.
“Babe, I’ve been calling. Is everything okay?” He asked.
“Yes everything is fine,” I said in a hoarsey voice.
“Are you crying? Baby what’s wrong?” He asked worried but I kept quiet.
“Cathy please talk to me,” he said and I let out a loud cry.
“Nchimunya why didn’t you tell me you already had a girlfriend? And a Sugo for that matter. She embarrassed me and warned me to never talk to you. I thought you said you’re all mine, and to think that I trusted you this much,” I said in between sobs.
“Babe I don’t know who you’re talking about. I’m all yours and there’s no one else,” he tried to defend himself but I was not buying it.
“And you’re a Sugo. I feel like I don’t even know you right now. So you where just waiting for the chance to use me them dump me right? Nchimunya tell me the truth, who is Florence to you?” I asked sternly.
There was some silence before he finally spoke up.
“She’s the ex that cheated on me. When I try to move on, she messes things up for me. Last time I checked she was at St.Mary’s so I didn’t think she could cause you any trouble I’m sorry. Cathy I haven’t felt this way about anyone ever and it’s not a new feeling because I’ve been into you since primary school. Hell I had the chance to use you, but did I? I know we’re young and we barely know what we are doing but I want to see where this will take us. Believe me when I say there is no one else, I’m all about you,” he said sounding sincere and I was mad at myself for making conclusions before hearing him out.
“I’m sorry for being harsh with my words,” I said as I sobbed.
“Come on whipe those tears for me, you look scary when you cry,” he said and I laughed.
‘You’ve never seen me cry,” I defended.
“I have silly. You’re forgetting the time one of our classmates said that you’re my girlfriend, you cried so hard it made me feel ugly. Like really was I that bad?” He asked and we both laughed.
“I was just childish,” I said remembering those days.
“So since your exams are soon coming up, I’ll give you space. We can chat once they’re done,” I said.
“That won’t even be necessary, I have time for everything. I can always spare some time for you so no worries,” he replied and chuckled.
“And sorry I didn’t tell you, I attempted the 9th grade exams when I was in 8th grade and I made it. That’s why I’m a grade ahead of you,” he said and I was glad he told me.
“Makes sense now. I miss you,” I said with a smile.
“I miss you more cutie. Can’t wait for schools to close so I can spend some quality time with you,” he said and that got me thinking.
Mum knows I barely have friends and I never go out except to run errands for her so what would I tell her when going to meet up with Nchimunya? This really stressed me out but then I was determined to find a way.
Time moved fast and once Nchimunya got done with his exams and went home, we started counting down til schools close.
On closing day Mum, Dad, Hope and Mwamba came to get me.
Mwamba was three years younger than me and was in 8th grade. Mum decided that she could go to a day school until senior secondary.
“I missed you so much!” Said Hope as she hugged me tightly.
“Me more. I missed you guys so much!” I replied as we hugged.
I told Nchimunya about my parents being strict and how it was nearly impossible for us to hang out. He suggested that I started tuitions in preparation for my exams and then I would see him afterwards.
That was better than not seeing him at all so I convinced Dad to convince Mum to let me go for tuitions and it was done.
After closing in Friday, I started tuitions on Monday. There where a number of my fellow classmates from school and others I met during sports who attended so I wasn’t all lost. Some other guys tried to be friendly but I wasn’t so into it and they read between the lines.
We didn’t learn that day, we where just introduced to the teachers and given the timetable so by 09:30 we where released.
I chose a center that was far from home but near Nchimunya’s place so I could be easier for us to link up.
He told me to wait up for him and he would get me from the tuition center.
“Hey there,” I heard someone say from behind and the voice was familiar.
I turned and saw Marian. Remember her? The friendly girl from St. Mary’s.
“Hai how are you?” I asked and held out my hand.
“I’m alright, I prefer hugs,” she said and we hugged.
“So we meet again huh,” she smiled.
“Yes we meet again,” I replied awkwardly, I was new to being social so I could barely keep a conversation going with someone I was not too familiar with.
“Waiting for someone?” She asked looking around.
“Yes I am,” I replied and looked at my small mtn phone.
“Me too. My elder brother said he will be here soon,” she said.
“Oh that’s nice,” I replied with a smile.
“The teachers said er should have study partners do I was wondering if you have one or not,” she said looking at me.
“I don’t have one yet actually,” I replied.
“Would you like to be my partner?” She asked with a bright smile.
“I’m so glad you asked. I had a hard time thinking of who to make my study partner,” I replied honestly.
“Alright then let me get your number then we’ll talk more,” she said taking out her touchscreen phone.
After exchanging numbers, a black BMW pulled up. The windows where tinted so you couldn’t see who was inside.
“My brothers here,” she said and I saw Nchimunya approach us. He looked good in a pair of black cargo shorts and a white T-shirt with black slides.
“Nchimunya! Long time,” said Marian.
“Marian? Good to see you again,” he said and they hugged briefly, that made me mad for some reason I didn’t know.
“How where the exams?” She asked and they talked a bit completely ignoring me.
“I guess he’s the one you where waiting for,” she said as she turned to me.
I only nodded and looked at the floor with anger but I didn’t let it show.
“Well see you around Chichi,” she said with a chuckle and he chuckled too.
“Yeh sure,” he replied and put his hands in his pockets. I frowned at that because he would always get upset with me when I called him that but here he was allowing someone else.
“Bye Chacha, we’ll talk,” she said waving her phone at me as she entered the car and they left.
“Hey baby doll,” he said turning to me.
“Hai,” I replied and started walking.
“Just hai? Is something wrong?” He asked as he caught up with me. So he even had the guts to ask?
“No,” I replied coldly and continued walking.
” Babe come on talk to me. Is it because I was talking to Marian? ” he asked and I scoffed.
“Why would I be mad because you stood there talking to some girl and ignored me, your girlfriend? Everything is fine Chichi,” I replied putting emphasis on the ‘Chichi’.
“Geez I’m really sorry about that hun. I haven’t seen her since the time we came for sports that’s all. I’m really sorry,” he replied as he held my hands in his.
“Its okay. You see me everyday so itx fine,” I replied sarcastically.
Was he even for real? He hadn’t seen me since the time they came for sports aswel, so she was more important than I was.
“Damn I’ve really messed up. I just got excited seeing her,” he replied scratching the back of his head.
“Wow, just wow! And you weren’t at all excited to see me, I understand. I have to go now, home is really far,” I said and walked away.
“Cathy I’m sorry, it won’t happen again,” he said as he followed me.
“And you let her call you Chichi? What’s the relationship between you two?” I asked as I stood and looked him in the eyes.
“She’s just a friend, nothing more,” he said as he avoided eye contact.
“And who am I to you?” I asked still staring at him.
“My girlfriend of course, why would you even ask,” he said now looking back.
“Because you made me feel like your friend and nothing more. You could have at least said hai yo me or something then continued talking to her but you did otherwise. Do you know how that made me feel? And I’m supposed to get used to such a treatment from you? That’s just so wrong. This is my first relationship but I didn’t expect to be pushed to the side like that,” I said and at that point, my tears had betrayed me.
“Cathy please don’t say that and don’t cry. I’m really sorry, what I did was wrong and I didn’t realise it until now. I haven’t dated anyone for some time now so I’m almost as new as you are to this. I promise to be considerate and prioritise you next time, please forgive me,” he pleaded as he wiped my tears away but I wasn’t having it.
“I’m starting to rethink giving you a chance so I’m not sure if there will even be a next time. I’ve realised that I wasn’t ready for the emotional stress to begin with so maybe I’m overreacting,” I said still shading tears and luckily, there were no people passing.
“No please don’t talk like that! Give me one last shot at least. I’ve never wanted to date anyone this bad and I’m willing to do whatever it takes to work this out. Please Cathy please,” he said pleadingly and I felt bad but relieved that he was sorry.
“Alright you’re getting one last shot,” I said as he wiped my tears.
“Thank you so much hun,” he said as he cupped my cheeks and kissed me briefly.
He escorted me all the way to my hood but a few houses before ours and it was nice. We made plans of me meeting his siblings and also going on a date the next weekend.
I was so happy and just couldn’t wait.
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