Your Brief Bio:
Ezenwa is a vibrant and creative individual with an interesting personality. A penultimate student of University of Benin, he can't help being ambitious. He possesses a blend of outstanding qualities which distinguishes him as a youth living in this present day society. Known for his great sense of humor, he connects with people. He is free-spirited, passionate about writing, art and poetry, interested in sports and fuels an undying love for books.
Tweet-Style Story Summary:
A Friday night turn up with the guys gone wrong. A one night stand triggering a slippery slope of unpredictable and grave events.
NEPA decided to be angels and restored power that morning. The sharp brightness emanating from the bulb right above him pierced deep into his sealed eyelids. Shielding his eyes, he squirmed under the sheets, slowly drifting back to consciousness. Opening his baby brown eyes, he could only see an undefined blur. Struggling to sit up, he carelessly let out a yawn and outstretched his lean frame. Raising his left hand to his eyeline, he peered at his Black Edifice Two Tone watch and he still couldn't make out the time.
Yawning again, he felt a mild pounding resume on his temples and a tinging sensation buzzing in his ears.
"Goddamn! Another Hangover!" He cursed. He threw aside the rumpled sheets and prodded up on wobbly feet. Still rubbing his crusty eyes, he managed to make the trip to the bathroom without a scratch. A steady gush of water oozed out of the washbasin's tap as he twisted the head and bent over to wash his face. The warm water felt like stings upon touching his face.
Straightening back up, he twisted the tap again, killing it this time, and stared at the mirror right in front of him. A pixelated picture of his shirtless, skinny, mocha-toned reflection was all his brain could register. Suddenly trickling into his head were bits and flashes of his wild revelry and brazeness some hours earlier. He turned to the door and dragged down what he knew to be his soft towel.
"Phew!!!" He whooped as he stepped out of the loo, with his blue towel veiling his sight as he wiped his wet washed morning face. Dragging his feet lazily on the carpeted floor, his left foot caught something. Something taut like an elastic and upon further feeling, he noted it had this foamy texture.
What could that be? he wondered with his face still buried in the towel. Uncloaking his face, his eyes darted to this entangled foot. It was a black blur. Bending over, he picked up this "thing" with his left and felt it again. Foamy with a lacy material.
No. No way. It can't be. He denied in his head as a wild thought crept into his mind. He wiped his eyes vigorously with his free and looked at this object again. He certainly had to be seeing wrong. His denial was downplayed as he still saw the same thing. It wasn't his blurry vision playing tricks on him. He was actually holding a bra - a black, sexy, lacy cup.
How on earth did this get here? I mean, what's a bra doing on my floor? was the query on his now troubled mind.
Instinctively, his eyes roved about the room of his self-contained apartment and met a not-so-pleasant sight. Everything was thrown about in a big mess. His red shirt from last night was lying on the floor twined with his singlet. His Jean trousers was on the edge of the plastic table. His shoes were in another corner. But that wasn't just all. It wasn't just his clothes littering the place. He saw that his 32 inches flat screen TV was partly veiled by a red dress.
"What the hell?" He spat in confusion, as he walked towards the TV. Unveiling his tv, he looked at the dress with a frown. He gasped loudly as another wild thought hit him.
"Slow down. Hold up a second," he muttered as he tried to work it all out rationally. He woke up with hangover - solid proof of him being definitely high last night after all the shots he downed. The room was a mess. He was holding a bra and a dress. So, a drunk him, a scattered room plus the bra and dress equalled ...... He trailed off.
"Hell no!" He shook his head vigorously in negation, not wanting to concur with his drunk skull's analogy.
"Only one way to find out..." He thought. Taking a deep breath, he slowly spun around with his heart thudding like spontaneous booms from an Ak-47 rifle. The bed slowly came into full view and he stopped dead. His eyes bulged. His jaws dropped. His knees jerked out of control. Goosebumps materialized all over his skin, although the fan was not causing enough chills. And his deepest fear was confirmed. What he deeply wished was only an illusion. He knew that was what it was but still couldn't help but wish it was all a mirage.
Right there on his bed, the conspicuous curvy outline of a female's 8 snuggled under the sheets was undeniable. With her curly perm scattered about, she lay peacefully asleep with her face to the wall and her round ass to his face.
But no part of his flashes and memories of last night included him bringing a girl home. So.....
He snapped out of that realm of thought when he realised that she was also naked underneath the sheets. A naked girl in his bed? Did he just have sex with some random girl from the club he just met? He wondered. At the thought of this, he felt his gorge rise.
Good God! He wanted to scream but no sounds escaped his agape mouth. Nervous and nauseous, he was pacing about the large room, lost in his pool of thoughts.
"Who could she be? What if she's someone I know? Maybe I a stranger? What if we didn't have sex?" His head was certainly going to explode from all those thoughts running through. His footsteps were now becoming loud enough as she stirred unconsciously and tossed around, bringing her face into full view. At this point, he nearly passed out. His sub-conscious whispered, "Well-done, Boy. You just had sex with some strange chic from the club."
He was still dealing with that shock when an even bigger one hit him. What if they didn't use a condom?
"No, No. No freaking way! Hell nah! It couldn't possibly be!"
"Hey, Denzel," a slurred throaty voice called with some urgency. "Your yell woke me up. Are you alright??" she queried, squinting at the figure backing her. She struggled to sit up with one hand clutching the sheets to her chest while the other served as support. A startled Denzel sharply spun to see the face of his one night stand. Good Lord! She was pretty! Her face was like a masterpiece of art - like Day Vinci's Mona Lisa. Her charming brown eyes, perfectly chiselled nose and titillating little Cupid's Bow lips all in one visage. Damn! She was adorable!
But Denzel was blind to all that beauty, he didn't notice. He didn't even care at the moment. With eyes wailing of anxiety, desperation and fear, he gazed deep into hers. Heaving heavy breaths, he took a step forward, advancing towards her. Finally finding his voice which was now cracked by despair, he asked, "Please, tell me we used a condom."
Scratching her eyes with one, she covered her mouth with the other as she yawned. "Good morning to you too," she sounded sarcastic.
"Now is not the time for pleasantries. Tell me, did we use a rubber last night?," he pressed on.
"That's supposed to be your call. You're the one to wear the condom, remember?" she was now getting tipped off.
"Please. Don't evade. I'm the last person you want to play smart with right now." He was sweating now.
"Denzel, What's your problem? Why are you acting up this morning?"
"You know my name?" He couldn't hold back his amazement.
"Seriously?" She scoffed.
"Who, in God's name, are you?" He finally asked, scratching his head and looking all dumb.
"I am the girl whose name you were screaming the whole night," she said with sass. "You don't remember, do you?" one could now note the hurt in her voice.
"Perhaps, I had too much to drink," he said with regret.
"And you don't remember a thing?"
"I remember some things. I just don't remember you or bringing you home or having sex or anything," he fessed up.
"Seriously?" She scoffed, rolling her eyes. "Typical. Very typical."
"So we had the time of our lives and you don't even remember? Do you even remember my name?" She questioned sternly.
"Just tell me we used protection."
"No, we didn't. You were too high to get the rubber on. The moment was all too steamy for any lagging so you just went ahead anyways."
"Eeeehn? You mean we hit it raw??" He couldn't believe his ears.
"Mhmm hmm," she affirmed.
"I think you should leave," he stated plainly, handing her the dress.
"Oh, yes. I plan to. Can't be with a guy who blames the alcohol for everything," she spat as she snatched her clothes from his hand and started getting dressed. He watched her get dressed, silent and dumbfounded. In a matter of seconds, she was done. Climbing down the bed, she picked up her bag and shoes.
"Uhmmm," trying not to sound off, "So, what's your name?" Denzel asked. No response. "Hey, I didn't mean to ......"
"Denzel, stop," she cut him off. "Let's not make things much more awkward than they already are," she said, still with sass.
Sighing, he knew he had messed up. "I could get you an Uber."
"Never mind, I know my way around," she refused.
"And I refuse. Never mind," she shot back.
His silence was the response she needed. Buckling the last strap of her heels, she walked out the door without another word.
Denzel was still rooted in the a same spot as it all unfolded like a movie right before his eyes. Picking phone, Denzel dialled a number. After a couple of rings, the connection went live.
"Denzel!" The other Husky voice hailed.
"Yo, Faust! Wargwan?" Denzel responded.
"You no dey sleep?? You're disturbing my sleep o. What is it?"
"Its past 11 in the morning. Faust, we need to talk."
Faust broke out in a giggle. Denzel grew hot. "I'm serious.*
"What about last night?"
"What were we up to last night?"
"We went for night vigil at Redemption Camp," Faust shot back, stifling a laugh.
"I'm being serious nau!"
"What exactly are you talking about?"
"Did I take some girl home from the club?"
Now, there was full blown laughter on the other side. "You were the champion last night. You went home with the trophy."
"No ooo. Make I call you back abeg," he said in pidgin.
"Later now. Sofrii o." He hung up. Jesus! So he actually did bring home a girl from the club and smashed without the rubber. Immediately, he sent a group text to the squad, telling all 5 of them to meet up at the spot at 1 PM. He threw his phone on the bed and collapsed in the plastic chair. Staring at his ceiling, he was blank. His stomach churned loudly. Damn, he was hungry.
"Yo, Tony!" Denzel called. "Pass me the lighter." Tony immediately tossed the lighter towards him and Denzel sharply caught it in the mid air with his left hand. He raised it to his lips and shielded it with his right hand. Just one flick with his left and a little orange flame with blue base jumped out. Guiding the flame to the tip of his rolled blunt lodges between his lips, he successfully lit his blunt. Swirls of smoke danced off the burning tip into the hazy air. Puffing hard, Denzel reclined in his chair and took the joint from his lips as thick white clouds oozed from his nostrils and parted mouth.
"Abu, pass me the Benylin, Biko," he hollered at another of his friends in the corner.
"Denzel, slow down o. That's like your third wrap. You've had one bottle of Lin already. Easy, man!" Abu warned.
"Are you sure you're fine? This one you're acting pregnant," Tony jeered at him.
"E clear sey Na the weed dey do you abi?" Denzel shot at Tony.
Finally speaking, Faust said, "Alright, people. Denzel, what is it? You called this gathering. We're here because of you. So what couldn't wait?"
"Nothing really, bro. I just needed the company," you could tell he was lying. "So who had fun last night?," He threw the question, trying to subtly get answers to the bigger question bugging his carefree mind. Faust saw this and decided to stay mute, quietly sipping his own glass of Hennessy and Lin mixture. Tony whooped.
"Last night was mad real!!" Tony jumped right in. "Mad, bruh! We certainly killed it yesterday!"
"Dude, I can't even explain. It was lit as hell. That DJ was killing me the whole time!" Abu picked up too. "We were just popping bottles and downing liquor. Then this mad man here," he was pointing at Faust, "took it to a whole different level and ordered a full casket! You dey craze o!!"
Faust stifled a chuckle. "What to do nau? Denzel's own business was the shisha. The guy was just sucking the thing like it was breast milk." Everyone, even Denzel, laughed at this as he remembered that part.
"What? You can't blame me. The flavour was too good!" Denzel justified.
"And the girls were all over you eehn! All of them were just drooling over you as though you had chocolate dripping from your body."
"Seriously o! You were stealing everyone's shine yesterday," Abu seconded.
"Can't blame me for being a fine boy," Denzel winked.
"Idiot! Why didn't you take all of them home with you na," Voke shouted from behind, just coming out of the toilet.
"Hope you flushed that toilet well?" Denzel teased.
"You can come and check o. Fool!" Voke clapped back. Another bout of laughter.
"In the end, after all the fine boy shakara, was it not only one girl you took home?" Faust finally struck the chord looking deep into Denzel's eyes.
"I couldn't take all home. I'm not a Hilux pick-up truck," he tried to maintain composure.
"So how was it?"
"It was good, I guess."
"So I'm guessing you won't be forgetting her name anytime soon."
"Now that's where there's a problem. I don't remember," he fessed up.
"Its no biggie if you don't remember her name. I mean it was just a hit and run thing," Tony stated.
"No. Not that. I don't remember anything. Like I don't remember shit from last night."
"What??!" Faust couldn't be hearing right.
"I blacked out"
"Hell nah!" Voke squealed.
"No freaking way!" that was Abu's.
"Hold up! You took home the hottest girl in the club last night and you don't remember what happened afterwards," this was Voke being rational.
"Exactly. I just woke up and saw her in bed with no clothes on," he explained, taking another puff of the weed.
"You definitely hit it," Tony wouldn't stop. Maybe Denzel was right about him being high afterall.
"But you used a condom, right?" Voke asked.
"Are you deaf or just a numbskull? I don't remember!" He was sweating again. "She said it was raw."
"No way!" They gasped.
Faust was silent the whole time, sipping his mixture and watching the drama with such amazement. Not as much as a cough did he let out.
"So, what did you do?"
"What was I supposed to do? I showed her the door in panic," Denzel was not even holding back bits of gory details.
"That ain't right," the rational Voke said. "You should call her."
"With which number? Ehn? I don't even remember her name."
"Denzel, chill," Faust finally spoke, stroking his beard. "I think you should get tested."
"What for?" Denzel didn't want to believe it was what he thought.
"HIV. Herpes. Hepatitis. You name it," Faust listed.
"Hell No! No freaking way I've got all that from one careless night," he defended.
"Well, hate to break it to you, baby boy but once is enough," Faust reminded him. "Just get tested."
"Besides, when was the last time you got tested," Voke asked.
"Not anytime this year?" he said shrugging.
"What the hell??! Dude, its July already and you ain't even tested??"
"Never saw a reason to till now," he sounded grim.
"The Deadly Denzel!" Tony hailed. "If woman no kill you, you'll live forever."
"Something must kill a man," he responded with a smile, puffing another cloud out of his nostrils.
Nenye settled into one of the seats at the bar, right in front of the bartender. Ever enchanting, she blew the poor dude away with her smile.
"I'd have a martini, please," she ordered.
"Classy!! A martini coming right up," he concurred and disappeared behind the table only to reappear moments later with the lady's requested drink.
"Thanks," she winked. He flashed a smile and walked away, not taking up her light for a quick flirtation. She smiled at the thought of this. She hadn't even taken the first sip when her phone rang. Looking at the screen, there was no caller ID. That's strange, she thought as her finger slid through the screen.
"Hello?" Nenye picked the call from the unknown number and saluted, but the other end of the phone remained quiet.
"Hello? Anyone??" She tried again.
"Hi," a husky voice finally came through.
"Hello there. Sorry, who am I on to?"
"Nenye, you need to get tested,"
"Tested? What are you talking about?"
"Yes, tested. You know what I mean, Nenye."
"And who are you to tell me that?" She was visibly pissed now.
"Its me, Alex. Remember?"
"Huh?? Alex??" Her frown dissolved into a gaping expression of shock.
"Yes, Alex. I know I promised to stay out of your life and I know it might not be a good time, but I certainly had to tell you. Go get tested." He hung up.
"Uhm, Alex??" The response she got was a static beep signalling the dead connection. She couldn't feel her face. Why would Alex tell her to get a tested? What is this happening to her? Why's her life taking such wrong turns? She couldn't help but ponder. First, it was an unprotected one night stand with some random queer guy some weeks ago. Now, a call from her estranged ex who she ditched months ago that she needed to get tested for HIV. "God! Where's my life headed," she cried within. "Could things get any worse?" She just sat still in that same spot for unaccountable moments.
Finally, she picked up her phone and ordered an Uber. Destination? General Hospital, Ikoyi. She couldn't believe she was actually going to take the test because he just told her to, but she knew she had to. Moments later, her black "chariot" pulled up outside the bar and she downed her drink in one gulp and left a generous tip on the table before heading out. Getting into the Uber, she was dead quiet with her face to the window. So lost was she that she didn't notice when the 15 minute drive was over as they rolled into the Hospital premises.
"Madam, we're here," the driver alerted.
"Oh." she said, snapping back into reality. "How much is my fare?"
Pulling out two one thousand naira notes, she handed them to the driver, "keep the change."
"Thank you madam," the driver cheered but she was already out and headed towards the front door. Walking in, she ignored the smell of drugs and aura of sickness.
"Hello, Good afternoon. I'm here for my HIV test," she said at the front desk.
"Go to the Counselling Room. Last room on your right," the male nurse directed.
"Thank You." With every step she took towards the Counselling Room, she could hear that little voice telling her to just turn around and go back home. Stubborn as a wild mule, she knocked twice on the door, turned the knob and walked in.
Some minutes later, she stepped out with a piece of paper and headed to the lab where she met a grave, unsmiling woman who took the slip from her and offered her a seat. Seconds later, a little needle pricked the tip of her thumb and droplets of her gore were taken on a piece of glass. She was told to wait at the lobby for her results. Just as she stood to leave, she felt nauseous. Her gorge was rising. She was going to throw up. Covering her mouth and holding her stomach was her futile attempt to stop it from coming. The unsmiling woman immediately gave her a deep iron bucket and in a second, she filled it with her vomit. It was a seemingly endless stream of throwing up. Spitting out the residue on her tongue, she wiped her mouth and looked up at the unemotional woman.
"Thank you ma," she was really grateful. Gesturing at the bucket of mess, she asked "Where do I take care this?"
"Don't worry about it. Just drop it and wait outside for your results," was the reply.
"Thank you, ma," she repeated and was about to leave when the woman said, "You should do a pregnancy test too."
She stepped out of the hospital a whole different person. She was now unusually conscious. She now savoured each breath, she felt aware of every step. Everything became brighter and much more alive. Or is this what dying feels like? She had seen movies and read books of how terminally ill and dying persons happened to see life differently from a deeper perspective and how they happened to suddenly be fascinated by the little things.
Both tests had turned out positive. HIV and Pregnancy. She just had a pronouncement of her death sentence. To complicate issues, there's a life in her. Men are scum, she thought. How foolish she was to believe Playboy Alex would stay faithful and let him hit it without protection. Virus has been there for some months now - about a year, the doctor said. But what about the Pregnancy? 3 weeks old. And the last time she had sex was exactly 3 weeks ago. She gasped loudly at the thought of this. 3 weeks ago, she had an unprotected one night stand and now she's 3 weeks heavy. "Goodness, Nenye. Why do you have to be so stupid?" she kept on asking. Getting another Uber, she zoomed off to her destination. Climbing up the short flight of stairs, she walked up to the door. She suddenly stood still. Taking deep breaths, she tried to maintain her composure. Finally, she knocked hard on the wooden door. She listened but there was no response. She knocked again. And again. And again. Till a voice called from the other side, "Hold on a second." Her heart skipped a beat at the sound of that voice. Her hands were now fiddling.
The sounds of the door being unlocked were like bullets to her head. The door slid open and Denzel came into view. Denzel could not help the bulging of his large eyes. What is she doing here?, he thought.
"Hi," she finally said.
"Hello," he said, surprised he could talk.
"Uhmm, can I come in?"
Denzel stepped aside and opened the door a little bit more for her entrance. Walking in, she noticed the apartment was neater.
"Please sit," he gestured.
"Thank you," she said, lowering herself into the chair.
"So what can I get you?"
"Nothing. Water should do,"
"Water coming right up. One second," he excused himself to the kitchen.
"Relax, Nenye. Relax," she thought. "You'll just tell him like you were told too."
He reappeared with a bottle of water and a glass which he set right before her.
Sitting down on his bed, he waited until she had drunk a reasonable amount of water before he spoke. "So, to what do I owe this visit?"
"Denzel, we need to talk," she said after a deep breath, setting down her glass.
"About the other night. We didn't use protection and......." she trailed off.
"So?" he shrugged.
"Denzel, I'm 3 weeks pregnant," she finally let it out.
His face squeezed in a frown. "OK, cool," he stoically said.
"No. You don't get it. I'm 3 weeks pregnant for you," she stated a lot more plainly.
She nodded her head.
"How is that even possible? I don't even know your name," a dazzled Denzel queried.
"We had sex, remember?? Its been 3 weeks since that night."
He stood up from the bed and stepped away from her. "Who gets pregnant from a one night stand? I mean, who does that?"
"Once is enough, Denzel." She was unusually calm and her voice was still as she handed him the test results.
"Wrong guy! You've definitely gotten the wrong guy," there was certainly no way the child was his. I mean, he certainly isn't ready for that kind of responsibility. Besides, how sure is it that it was even his? He definitely isn't the only one hitting that, he thought.
"Listen up, uhhh,"
"Nenye," she helped him out.
"Oh, Nenye. Nice name, by the way," he gave flattery a shot. "Listen up, you might be pregnant. But that life in your stomach is certainly not mine. I'm sure there's a boyfriend somewhere responsible for it and not that little incident of ours. Besides, that night was a mistake. So, Please, for the love of God, I'd appreciate it if you just cut this out. I really can't take this bullshit," he said with emphasis looking deep into her eyes as each word cut her deep.
"I think you should leave," he walked up to the door and dragged it open.
*Sending me out again? Very typical," she fought back a sob.
"This time, you'll leave and never return. Erase every bit of me from your thoughts and memories. Because the next time you're 100 yards close to the door, I'd make you see the devil in all his glory. Now, out!" He thundered.
Sniffing, she stood up and smoothened her braids. She walked up to him at the door with the prowl of a tiger and stood toe to toe with him even if he was 2 feet taller.
"I didn't just do a pregnancy test. I didn't even plan to do a pregnancy test," she smirked. "You should get tested, Denzel." And she walked out, giving him one last view of her provocatively alternating hips.
The dark outline sharply contrasting her fair skin drew down both cheeks. She had been crying - again. Streams of tears washing off her mascara guzzled down, leaving indelible impressions. Her eyes were lucid. Lucid, hard and dry. Her face was an expressionless mask - blank with clinical cynicism. Heaving rhythmically, her chest told of the steady breaths she took.
This outward calmness was a lie - a deep betrayal to her visceral chaos and conflict. Her eyelids blinked reflexively in quick flaps. Maybe as a reaction to the harsh wind raising up the dust and bellowing across the city especially at this altitude of over 700 feet above the ground. The view from this height was breathtaking. Lagos looked beautiful that night. The roads were lit by solar streetlights, headlamps and brake lights of zooming cars like electrum. The other skyreaching structures and bright lights, all reflected by the still waters underneath the Lekki Link Bridge. But she was blind to the city's beauty, too numb to be enchanted by its electrifying vibes. Too lost to even notice the school of bats that just flew overhead. She was buried deep in the anarchy of her troubled soul.
She let out a long sigh and took a step forward. A step closer to the edge. Her dry eyes looked straight ahead of her, hard with resolve. She took another step, pushing stones and dirt off the concrete edge. Conflicting voices were clanging like cymbals. Another step. She let out one deep, long breath and spread out her arms like an eagle about to take flight. She closed her eyes, savouring the chilly air and let go of everything. Through her parted lips, she spat, "Its over now, Nenye. Its over."