Tuesday, 25 September 2018

A heart of an Eye (Episode 3)

A HEART FOR AN EYE (part 3) Amanda came down at me with how I was just a fresher and was already all over the place kissing 'men' at the level. She threatened she would report me to DOSA (Dean of Students Affairs) and I would lose my bed space. I apologised for my indecency and when I was about to go to my room from hers, where the castigation had taken place, she added: 'Don't get your hopes up. Jeremy is a player. He will hurt you just like he hurt my friend last year. He's a smooth operator, gets you hooked to him and then leaves you hanging from a thread. He's crooked.' I acted like I believed her and got the details of her so-called friend whom I managed to find the following day. Mazuba and I talked over sharwama by the New Rez. She was a very beautiful lady with a model's figure. I learnt she was actually former Miss UNZA. What a beautiful face with a beautiful heart. She didn't laugh at me when I messed myself with the 'soup' (sauce) in the sharwama. In stead, she tipped me on how to eat one. That's how you know a lady is REALLY refined. All diva's might look the same but you can tell the real ones apart by interaction. To think I had thought Amanda was a real queen! I learnt from Mazuba that she and Amanda were no longer friends because of Amanda's and Jeremy's treachery. So Amanda had been her bestfriend since fresher. Whenever Jeremy and Mazuba had had a fight, she had been the go-between. But what Mazuba hadn't known was that she also had eyes for Jeremy. She told me she had found messages, suggesting romantic involvements between them, basically initiated by Amanda. Confronted, Jeremy admitted having caressed with Amanda but he blamed it on the beer. They had gone drinking together at Kalahari and something almost happened between them. Truth is Jeremy couldn't exactly remember what transpired that night. It was possible he had slept with Amanda. Mazuba broke up with him immediately. She refused to have anything to do with him or Amanda anymore. Even if Jeremy promised never to drink again, she couldn't let him back in but she admitted it was the last time he had ever handled a bottle. Mazuba warned me about Amanda. She was a kill-joy, she alleged. She told me Jeremy had had a few unstable moments in the past but he seemed changed these days. It relieved me but I was upset that Amanda had had something with my Jeremy. I knew whatever it was, she wasn't over it and she would stay in my hair and in my ear to make me feel bad. I hate petty competitions. On my way to the lib (library), I asked myself what I had really come to the University for. Everyone in my village was counting on me. How would they feel if they learnt I had gone on exclude because I was too busy competing for men and getting hurt in the process? I am only eighteen, it's better I concentrate on school. First things first. I collected my assignment results after the lib. I wasn't the highest but I had an A. It lifted my mood. I had a new determination with a whole new direction. Screw Jeremy and all the drama that comes with him. I walked solo to the Goma lakes and sat on the lover's seat with my books. It was refreshing out there. I made calls back home and talked to whoever was present. They were glad to hear from me and to hear about my performance. I shed a joyful tear. I ignored all of Jeremy's calls and texts for the day and refused to go out when he came at night. My friends didn't understand; they thought I was being arrogant for nothing. Who says no to a man like him? But that was the point! I never wanted a man who's everywhere, doing everything with everyone. I wasn't wealthy I know but it's not wealth that defines a person's worth. If who you are is defined by what you have, then who are you when what you have has been taken from you? I stood in front of the mirror when all the girls were out one day. I took off all my clothes and had a good look at my rich dark body and long natural hair. I didn't need validation, I was beautiful. I had the intellect that so few beauties had. You know God and how he portions blessings; he never gives it all to one person but he had given me! I had the ability to generate my own income. I didn't need pizza that I had to pay for using my beautiful body. So I went into the kitchen and started frying mitesa again. I had received my BC but had used it for more important things and had saved some for eventualities. When the monks started shooting, hell I shot back that day. My Bemba wasn't fluent but they understood what I said: 'Fuma apa chi monku!! Waba ama ng'a!! Wafuma kwa Kaputa wafika pano uletuka umunani wabanoko ati majombo? Waba ukubutuluka!! Kasambe iwe, chibe chobe ulenunsha temunani wandi!! Waba ifiko!! (Get out, boy! Mind your cracked feet! You're from Kaputa and yet you have the audacity to insult the relish your mother cooks? You now call it gumboots? Take a bath! It's your sweat you're smelling not my relish, you dirty being!!!)' I opened the windows and stood by the doorway so that they could hear me clearly. All my chains were broken, I could face the world. I didn't need the protection of a union veep or a politician's son. I was enough! More voices of monks shouted when I retaliated, others peeped to see who it was; a fresher that had the audacity to respond. I was too busy shouting back to realise Jeremy had arrived with a friend. They were amused. His friend helped me shouting: 'Iwe chimonku iwe, muleke umwaiche! Wapona ama kosi (course) elo ulefwaya utinye umwaiche. Kabelenge opo taulaya pa exclude!...' I felt so happy and kind of liked Jeremy's friend. At least I knew him, he was UNZASEDA president. I knew him because I was one foot in the school of Education and another in the school of Humanities; LIS and DS. I invited Noel in but he said he couldn't go in because the veep was allergic to fish. Even just being near it made him fall sick. It was then that I learnt it hadn't been malaria the other time he had been hospitalised. My mitesa had made him sick! These mayadi boys though...so fragile! I greeted him when Noel excused us. Just like I had thought, he demanded to know why I was avoiding him. 'I don't want a cheat, Jeremy,' I told him point-blank. 'I don't want drama or trauma. You slept with your girlfriend's best friend and now you're here to sleep with me? Well, I am not cheap like some level reps who can open their legs for their best friend's man. I don't want you in my life. Do you understand?' 'Wow.' He clapped his hands. 'You will judge me for something that happened in my previous relationship a year and several months ago? I am a different person! I don't even know if I really slept with her. We were drunk. Anyway, I don't know why I try so hard. It's clear you don't like me. I will leave you alone. I wish you well.' A hollow sat in my stomach when Jeremy left. Somehow I thought he was right. It's not fair to judge a person based on their past. People change. Life goes on. Who am I to remain stuck in someone's forgotten past? I sought him and sought his forgiveness. He emptied his past to me so that if I hear it out there, I already know. It wasn't ugly at all. Maybe it's because I know how scandalous rich kids could be. We had Ice-cream at Milky Lane and he got me a few dresses and shoes in Woolworths. He has great taste in clothing. I didn't know my body was even more beautiful than I could imagine. I had always hidden it in oversize clothes. So Jeremy and I were officially together, much to Amanda's chagrin. She stopped talking to me and bought every new article of clothing that came in Mud boutique just to show me she too had swag. She put herself in a competition with me and yet she was the only competitor. I don't compete with shallow girls who think life is all about looks. Her transcript looked pretty pathetic with all those C's and C+'s. I heard she would graduate with a silent. Why should it shock anybody? She was nothing beyond make-up and new clothes. How dare she assumes everyone is in a contest of make-up and dress up. Shallow girl. The next several months were the happiest months of my life. I couldn't believe I actually enjoyed the spotlight. I met so many people through Jeremy and had so much fun but I always remembered the key reason I was there. I never forgot my books. Plus my Pa Mano loved school too so we jobbed (studied) together, did most things together. I actually saw us together in the future; we were old and successful with many children and grandchildren. What I liked most about Jeremy is that he respected me. We had kissed and smooched on many occasions but I was still a virgin. My friends didn't believe me but it's okay. Truth is stranger than fiction. It was heaven on earth until the day he wrote his final exam and decided to introduce me to his mother. Oh my God...I will never forget that day!!!

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