Black Coffee and Mocha: Ivy’s League?

Greg is a dark-skinned, philosophical model who is the perfect gentleman… every naïve girl’s worst nightmare. Thelma is an ambitious bad-ass combining school with running her own bistro… every unserious guy’s worst nightmare. Together they form a dynamic duo never failing to get caught up in one adventure or the other… especially when they don’t even try!!!

Another chapter of Black Coffee and Mocha is up… faster than I thought (maybe because it’s flash fiction or because the inspirations for this story still keep coming up with so much to write about… hahaha). Big shout out to Tega Oteve for her support on this… much love!!!

 

CHAPTER TWO

“Hello?”

“Thelma.”

The familiar husky voice came out in a sort of a whisper from the speaker of her phone. Thelma rolled her eyes.

“Sweet… sweet… Thelma.”

“What do you want Greg?”

“Mood killer. I wanted to ask you what time my babysitting session is.”

“Babysitting session?”

Thelma raised her eyebrows even though he couldn’t see it.

“Yeah.. the date you asked me to accompany you on. That babysitting session.”

“Whatever. My date is 6pm.” Thelma said though gritted teeth, apparently in no mood to argue. “Why did you ask.”

“Well, I was just about to pop into the shower, and I intend to marinate in coconut oil afterwards. So I’ll be at your apartment by 6:30pm.”

“Why 6:30pm? I said 6!”

“I know… but its 3pm now and you girls need like eight hours to get the right outfit and do your makeup.”

“Why do you girls even like you? You’re so mean! Even Ivy is rolling her eyes here.”

“Wait… I’m on loudspeaker? And Ivy is there?! What’s up Ivy?!!”

You lost me on coconut oil.” Ivy said, rolling her eyes again.

“When I’m done with my shower I’ll be downstairs so you can help me put some on my back.”

“I’ll be gone before then” Ivy said wide-eyed. “Thelma can help with that in my place.”

“Thelma? She’d just scratch my back with her long nails, and not in the kinky way.”

“How do you cope with this guy?” Ivy said, shaking her head slowly.

“She loves me that way— for better, for worse… right Thelma?”

“I divorced you years ago… but you keep coming back.” Thelma answered with a laugh. “You’re just a gigolo.”

“No I’m not…”

“Yes you are… Isn’t that right Ivy?”

Before Ivy could answer Greg hung up, and there was a knock on the door.

“I’ll get it.” Ivy offered, opening the door to find herself standing in front of Greg, who had only a towel on, with a set of clothes hung over one arm and a bottle of coconut oil in his other hand. She stared at him, dumbfounded.

“Hey… you said you were leaving soon.” he said with a shrug. “I wasn’t gonna let you leave without saying goodbye. Just put your arms around me and maybe… just maybe I’ll forgive you for attempting to leave without seeing me.”

Thelma came up to the door, her hands on her hips. “Seriously? You came out of your apartment like this? You’ve got to be kidding me.”

“Wouldn’t be the first time. Quit acting like this hasn’t happened before.”

“I was sparing you some dignity, for the sake of your reputation with Ivy.”

“Trust me Ivy, if you weren’t here it’d be an entirely different thing she’d be saying.” Greg said with a wink as he let himself in. “That’s the advantage of having a best friend like me living right upstairs.”

“Oh please… like anything would have happened if Ivy wasn’t here.” Thelma said, being the one to roll her eyes this time.

“Okay… this is getting awkward.” Ivy chipped in before Greg could speak any further. “You guys need a room… like pronto.”

“We’re in a room.” Thelma and Greg said at the same time.

“Okay, I’m leaving.”

Greg tossed the coconut oil to Thelma and grabbed Ivy by the waist with his now free hand. “Where do you think you’re going? I’ll be out of the shower real quick, so you and Thelma can take turns laying the coconut oil on me.”

Thelma looked at the bottle she had caught deftly, wishing it had dropped before she did and muttered under her breath. “He thinks he’s so slick.”

“We should have pulled off your towel and locked you out.” Ivy said with a groan, rolling her eyes as she struggled to break free.

“I love it when you do that.”

With that he pulled off his towel, revealing a pair of shorts underneath. Thelma burst into a fit of laughter.

“Seriously?” Ivy said in shock.

“I’d love to do a little tease here, but Thelma refuses to put up a pole in her living room. Maybe when I’m done with the shower I’ll put on a little show… that is, if you girls massage me with the oil well enough.”

The two girls didn’t say a word until they heard the water running and his voice from the bathroom.

“Thelma! Still got that soap I like?”

Ivy shook her head and looked at her friend. “Definitely a gigolo.”

 

 

 

 

 

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Black Coffee and Mocha

Greg is a dark-skinned, philosophical model who is the perfect gentleman… every naïve girl’s worst nightmare. Thelma is an ambitious bad-ass combining school with running her own bistro… every unserious guy’s worst nightmare. Together they form a dynamic duo never failing to get caught up in one adventure or the other… especially when they don’t even try!!!

 

 

Fifteen Seconds.

He only had fifteen seconds left till she figured out where he was.

Other girls probably wouldn’t find him out at the back seat of some other girl’s car, but she knew how to fish him out— she was smart like that.

But this girl whose car he was in… she was something else. It had been quite a while since he came across her type; and she had such an innocent face too… right before they got into the car. She flashed him a mischievous grin and tugged hard at his shirt right before she… frowned.

Greg followed her eyes only to see his worst fears materialized into frantic tapping against the window of the car. He rolled his eyes and opened the car door.

“Where have you been? Who is she?” Thelma said, giving him a once over.

“Hey… Thelma.” Greg said nervously through gritted teeth. “Meet…”

He couldn’t remember her name. He didn’t even remember if they had even taken the time to introduce themselves. They probably didn’t, because she didn’t seem to be offended.

“Its Nancy. My name is Nancy.” She said, flipping her long human hair weave and giving Thelma a haughty look.

Thelma was unfazed. Her eyes were on Greg, who was feeling a little uncomfortable being in this kind of awkward situation.

“What?” he had to ask.

“Your fly’s down.” She said impassively. Greg quickly pulled up his zip and glared at her.

“You didn’t do anything with her… did you?”

“Just a little over-the-clothes action… nothing t—”

“We’re leaving.” Thelma said, holding up a palm to interrupt him. “I didn’t take you clubbing with me so you could hook up with Nancy.”

Greg raised an eyebrow at her.

“These heels are killing me, and my dress is too short for me to be standing in the night air.”

Greg heaved a big sigh and got out of the car without speaking. He turned to give a furious Nancy and apologetic look. “Call me.”

Nancy narrowed her eyes “I don’t even have your number!!!”

Before Greg could reply Thelma had dragged him all the way to his car.

“Heard from some guys back there that she’d make you scratch and sniff.” Thelma said with a chuckle before Greg could express his annoyance. He stared at her, dumbfounded from shock.

“You can thank me tomorrow… you’re going with me on a date.”

“On a date?” Greg said, as he opened the car for Thelma to get in.

“Yeah… I’m going on a date with some dude tomorrow. I need you to help me assess him in case he’s a serial killer or something.”

 

Blogspot Lovers can catch this new series Tega Otevwe’s Blog!!! Enjoy!!!

 

 

Mirror, Lady on the Wall…

Okay so I haven’t written probed in quite a while (I can explain… work first) but I refuse to stay irrelevant! I decided to share with you a dark piece I wrote quite a while back. I hope you like it!!!

It’s a combination of poetry and prose that talks about being depressed over something you wish you were or weren’t, or wanting something you feel you can’t have so badly it drives you to the state of madness. But remember that sometimes what we are or aren’t may be the only thing that has saved us from ourselves… or even that side you envy isn’t always as rosy as you’re made to believe. I mean, who would have believed that Robin Williams (RIP) who lit our screens and hearts would commit suicide out of depression? It broke my heart, and it still does… 

 

 

The mirror shows a bit of who I am

But in ways that are hard to describe

While it ought to display my physical features

It only projects a part of me.

 

When I look at the mirror-

It’s reflection not displaying what it should

It shows me something else

Something no other mirror could.

 

It shows a reflection of her-

A reflection of my alter ego:

With her long brown hair,

Her rosy skin and pink lips

And bright green eyes that seem to bore into my soul-

An image that sends shivers to my bones.

 

No one can see Olivia

For she is not really there

She’s merely a projection

Of everything I’ve always longed for

Just a reflection-

Of what I can never be.

 

The mirror is indeed a strange one-

Stranger than one can imagine.

It projects her sounds; as audible as if

She was standing next to me.

I can hear her cool, clear voice,

And her laughter that remains in my head

Even when we have to part.

 

I only smile when she does

And when we both touch the mirror-

I swear I feel her warmth.

But I know I’m just making things up

For Olivia is not real- she never was.

 

 

 

But I didn’t care about that. I pushed away my sanity just to find a sort of comfort that I couldn’t give myself. But I was a fool, for the relief that my aching heart desired ended as soon as I departed from the warmth of the mirror to the coldness of reality.

Olivia was my relief, but the mirror was my torture. The mirror was a barrier, a cold reminder that I could never be close to her. I could never do anything to prove how much I loved her. She haunted my dreams, and I fell deeper with each passing day.

 

One day I could not look her in the eye, and she asked me what was wrong.

I professed my love to her without a second thought. And for the first time, she didn’t put a smile on my face for she didn’t have a smile on hers.

She looked at me, her lips pressed in a thin line.

I should have given up at that moment. Olivia was beautiful, and I was nobody.

“I can never love you, for we are of two worlds.”

Tears rolled down my eyes as I resisted the urge to slam my fists on the glass. The mirror must not shatter; for I feared my heart  would do the same. I stood there trembling visibly, choking on my tears and her eyes swept over my image, taking in my pathetic sight.

“Olivia love is never wrong.”

She bit her lip. It was one of her nervous habits; one of the reasons I got attracted to her.

 

“I think you should let me go.” she said in a cold voice.

She could have given me a hot slap at the moment and the pain inflicted would have been less than what I felt on hearing those words. I was in so much pain that I soon became numb.

So many emotions raced in my head and pounded against my heart, but none of them registered in my being. Tears welled up in my eyes slowly as she appeared oblivious to the way I was feeling, though it was quite obvious.

“But Olivia…”

She shook her head, a non-verbal indication that I should stop speaking. Her wish was my command.

“I do not say this for my sake, but yours.”

On hearing this I begin to absorb all the emotions my heart had ignored all the while. The pain was unbearable, and soon it coursed through my veins in the form of anger.

“What do you mean this is for my sake? You’re my life!” I screamed at her.

“Without you…” I hang my head at this point. “I’m no better than a corpse.”

 

Olivia chuckled, and the sound sent a shiver down my spine. There was something different about it- something that seemed to generate fear in me. Olivia has always had the ability to radiate comfort with her actions in ways I could never explain. She never failed to expel every negative emotion in me. But this time her actions ironically reflected the sadness I seemed to be feeling (even though I knew she could never understand my pain- for she did not love me). It was as if she was absorbing my emotions and projecting them back at me.

I swallowed loudly, and the action seemed to hurt my throat. My chest felt constricted, and it was as if I couldn’t breathe.  I started to tremble violently.

“Olivia… ” I said her name in a voice I could barely recognize as my own.

She smiled at me, but in a sinister way that could only be identified on the face of a psychotic murderer who has a helpless victim in his mercy.

I clutched my chest as I spoke, my eyes pleading as I make a second attempt at expressing my feelings. “You’re the one that keeps me from going insane.”

 

“Did you say I keep you sane?” She asked haughtily, fixing her cold green eyes at me.

I nodded like an idiot, stupefied by the way her features seemed to distort into something dark and evil.

Just as my feelings had been projected in the mirror to form the lady I had grown to love, the mirror had projected my fear and uncertainty and transformed Olivia right before my very eyes. I fought aside this uncertainty and reached for the last ounce of courage in me. Maybe Olivia didn’t want me because of how pathetic I make myself to her. She would want someone bold and brave- something I wasn’t, but I could learn to be.

 

Just as I had embraced that resolve her rosy skin began to grow pale, and her features appeared rather gaunt.Her lips became blue and chapped, her full healthy hair began to fall off and I could see her scalp clearly from what was left. Her green eyes became dull and clouded, and her entire figure began to shrivel and shrink.

I was frozen on the spot; fear and shock overwhelming me.

But the worst was yet to come.

 

She bit her lips, and it drew blood.

I almost winced at the sight.

How can an action take a massive turn from attraction to repulsion all at once?

Well blood was an element that could make that a possibility.

She looked at her features and screamed-

An evil piercing scream that would have made me faint if I had been in control of my senses. But at that moment I didn’t do anything, because I was still frozen. I just stared at her, amazed and at the same time appalled by her transformation.

 

“Look at me” she said in a cold raspy voice.

I frowned at her statement- I had not taken my eyes off her since (and I wasn’t like I was enjoying the view, I just couldn’t ).

“Are you happy now?”

I did not understand why she was blaming me. I had nothing to do with what was happening.

“Olivia-”

I began to find my voice at last.

She began to cry, and blood streamed from her eyes. But even as the tears flowed, her mouth curved into an evil smile.

“You wanted me- and so you shall have me.”

“No…” I said in a voice barely above a whisper.

“Oh… you do not love me anymore?” she said in a taunting voice.

Tears filled my eyes.

 

I didn’t love Olivia anymore, and surprisingly it wasn’t just about the change. It was because it began to dawn on me that Olivia wasn’t the person who I thought her to be- kind, warm and loving. Instead she was full on deception, and selfishness.

It was also about what she had said to me.

When she was beautiful, she claimed we were of two worlds- and that we could never be together.

Now she was desperate for a lover, and she intended to force herself on me; for she knew she no longer had a chance with another in her present state.

It sickened me to no end to know that she was like the rest.

And all this while I thought she was different.

 

If Olivia had returned my love, I would have followed her freely.

I would have agreed to a life of danger.

She knew that as long as I craved for her, I would be depressed, insecure and needy- and she could feed off that and be beautiful and healthy, while I sink lower in depression… until there’s nothing left of my sanity.

When I think about it now, I realize that the longing I felt for her drove me into a state of depression whenever I leave the mirror.

And she was always more beautiful when I went to her again.

Wow…. I felt very worthless at that moment. I was reduced to nothing but common feed.

 

Immediately the thought popped in my head, I noticed that a little more life returned to her hand.

That confirmed my suspicions… and my fears.

She was surprised at this. Then she realized what was fueling her up, and she tried that resort.

“You’re pathetic… you know that?” she says, wearing a sly grin.

“I’m not…” I say through gritted teeth; trembling slightly.

“But you are…” she said, her teasing voice holding as much effort as a sharp razor slashed across the wrist. “Loving a mere reflection… because you know you’re not capable of -”

“I do not love you anymore” I said, cutting her short as the tears that welled up in my eyes obscured my vision, giving me a moment’s break from her appalling sight before they ran down my face.

“Do you think I care about that?” she snapped her knuckles, making a cracking sound as she balled her hands into fists.

“This is all your fault… so you can’t leave me like this”

 

“Did you just say this is my fault?” I asked angrily.

“I don’t see how it isn’t.” she said with a sneer, exposing a pair of blackened teeth. “It’s your fault I’m like this- and you’d have to make amends, whether you like it or not.”

I stared at the figure that seemed to be disintegrating with every second.

What did she mean by that? How on earth was I supposed to make amends?

Even if I could, I don’t think I would- she didn’t deserve it; and besides I wasn’t at fault, no matter what she said.

 

As if to answer my question she stretched forth her hand, and I gasped in fear and surprise as her gnarled, twisted hands passed through the mirror.

“I cannot survive in your world.” she said, her face twisted into an evil sadistic grin.

“But then again, neither can you.”

I immediately understood what she was talking about. She planned to take my life permanently to create one for herself.

 

Both her arms were already out of the mirror, but she dared not bring her whole body out for she wouldn’t be able to return aback into the mirror. And we both knew by now that crossing into another world had fatal consequences.

I took advantage of that limitation and moved backwards, not taking my eyes of her as I made myself out of reach.

Suddenly my leg bumped into something. It was a small three legged stool I sometimes sat on when I talked to Olivia. I didn’t even remember it was there until now.

 

She looked at me and withdrew her arms, her eyes widening in fear as I picked up the chair. Gripping it tightly with both hands, I ran to the mirror, with the intention of doing what I needed to before she faded off.

“Goodbye Olivia.” I said, my voice shaking as I slammed the chair into the mirror.

 

The mirror shattered into thousands of shards; covering me as Olivia’s blood curdling scream rippled through the room, sending me hurling across the room with the wall breaking my fall.

Before I blacked out, I saw the shards had disappeared, leaving only the gold colored frame that once held the full length mirror.

 

So that was how Olivia finally faded from my sight.

But never from my mind.

 

Picture Credit: “Once Upon a Time” by Luis Delgado

P.S: If you think I’m a good writer, then please support me by voting for my upcoming novel “Bounds” via Something Or the Other Publishing (if you haven’t already…. and for those who have, God bless you!!!). I have two sample chapters up if you’d like to read, and a third coming up real soon. Just click here:

Thanks Again!!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

One More Try

I’m going help people and do great things.

I’m going to look great and have flawless skin.

Our brand is going to have awesome outlets and make crazy money

I’m going to get a new phone

I’m going to be a famous writer.

I’m going to stop being insecure.

 

I’m going to do all these things one day… maybe tomorrow. Maybe next week.

Maybe ten years.

I really want to do it tomorrow. All these things. I want to do them right now.

But more than procrastination, I’m scared.

 

When I saw that image I featured, it made me wonder “If I had this book, I probably would have dealt with things better “. Hahaha who knows.

A book would have helped.

Ever since I was a teenager I have always been so hard on myself and it makes it so hard to enjoy life. I never find myself feeling like I’m good at anything, even Christianity. But because I’m not as good as I want, not as interesting as i would like to be, or have as many followers as I would like… or as devoted in Christianity as I should be… I trample on myself constantly.

Do you ever feel not good enough? Do you ever trample on yourself for not being not good enough?

I feel a change coming… a change that doesn’t seem like would be possible anytime soon.

But who cares? Who cares if I do not get it right tomorrow?

The most important thing is to make an effort. Start.

Crawl till I learn to walk. Pick myself up when I stumble.

And one day, I’ll probably not even remember the day I started to walk…

Cause I’ll be too busy running.

Just wait and see.

 

Oh Yeah!!!

Could you be a darling and vote for my upcoming novel?

“Bounds” is a fantasy fiction that opens our mind to the beauty of breaking out of the mold life puts us in… like a caterpillar. 

But the story is not about a caterpillar. You can check chapters one and two if you don’t believe me. Haha.

Please vote HEREThanks!!!

 

 

 

 

 

Chapter Twenty-Eight: The First Party

“Probed” is a science fiction concept with a Nigerian setting about five extraordinary children trying to live ordinary lives. I hope you enjoy reading the story as much as I love writing it!

Hello!!!

Thank you all for supporting Probed and my upcoming novel. For those that haven’t heard about this novel or voted, please read the first and the second chapter of the novel “Bounds” and vote!!!. I need a total of 5000 votes to get published with Something Or the Other Publishing. Trust me, it’s a about a world you’ve never seen before.

 

CHAPTER TWENTY-EIGHT

“I’m dreaming… I’m totally dreaming.”

Sade was hyperventilating.  “I must have been thinking about this day too much… that’s why I’m dreaming it all up. I didn’t know I had an insane enough imagination to think up such—”

“Sade. Please calm down.”

“How can I be calm? How can I be calm when you—”

Mustapha hastily clamped a hand over her mouth. “You’re raising your voice.”

Sade bit into his palm, making him withdraw his hand. “What just happened? I don’t understand!!!”

Mustapha put a finger to her lips and spoke in a gentle voice he had never used on her before.

“No one can know about this.”

“I’m not dreaming?”

There was no use lying. “Got a minute?”

Sade nodded nervously, and all she saw next was clothes falling from thin air and the wardrobe opening and closing. Mustapha was back exactly one minute later, with his hair wet and wearing different clothes. What he had on previously lay scattered around them.

“Wow.” That was the only thing Sade could say. Mustapha smiled warmly at her, and she felt uneasy.

“What?”

Muyiwa couldn’t stop smiling. He had never felt this liberated before in his life, nothing like his parents knowing— a far more exhilarating feeling. Now he understood how Muyiwa must be feeling.

“You never smile like this. It’s actually scary to look at.”

Mustapha raised an eyebrow at her, his smile lessening. “You prefer my usual face?”

“Err… let’s just say I’ve grown used to it.”

“About the story… still wanna hear it?”

Sade nodded, her heart thumping at the prospect of an unimaginable secret.

 

“Hello… did you just get here?”

“Good day ma.” He greeted, smiling at Aisha’s mother and big sister, as well as another lady he had never met. “Yes ma we just got here.”

“We?”

“Yes ma… my sister and I.”

“Ah… Sade?” Nneka said excitedly. “She’s probably with Mustapha.”

“I wonder where.” Lillian said, frowning slightly.

“I made her get me something to wear.” Aisha called from the stairs, coming down with Mustapha and Sade, who looked a little dazed. “I’m afraid I was caught unaware when they walked in and I was still in my pajamas.”

Ronke and Nneka looked at each other uneasily. They weren’t wearing nightgowns but they were far from dressed from the party, just like their mother.

“I’m afraid we weren’t expecting anyone at this time.” Lillian said with a laugh. “But since Mustapha and Aisha are dressed they can keep their guests company. Let’s go girls.”

Aisha narrowed her eyes at Banji as soon as the others left, and he looked at the ground.

“Wanna see my books?” Aisha asked with an uneasy smile. Banji’s eyes widened in surprise.

“Um… sure.”

As soon as they went to her room Sade turned to Mustapha and poked his chest, but Mustapha cut her short before she could speak.

“If my parents find out I told you I’d be in so much trouble.” Mustapha said in a low voice, and a lump grew in Sade’s chest at that moment.

“What about your siblings?”

“They’d be angry no doubt, but since my brother just told his girlfriend about his abilities I wouldn’t be in that much trouble.” Mustapha said with a passive shrug. “No one else knows about us and no one can… you understand that right?”

Sade snorted. “We’re Nigerians. Who’d believe me if I told them that kind of thing? But even with that, I promise that your secret is safe with me.”

Mustapha felt himself tempted to smile the way he did earlier, but he refrained from doing so.

“We still need to talk. All you did was talk about how you and your siblings were different and what special abilities each of you have, but you didn’t go into details.”

“That’s because this is not the right place and time for that.”

“But you promise to tell me later?”

“Sure. I mean, why hold back now?”

“One quick question though… was this the way you were born?”

Mustapha shook his head. “That’s a long story… definitely for another day.”

Sade’s eyes gasped in realization. “That’s why you’re this way.”

Mustapha frowned deeply. “Like how?”

Sade stretched her hand to touch his face. “This… hardened.”

Mustapha gasped as Sade began to cry. “What did they do to you?”

Mustapha did not know what to say. He didn’t expect Sade to be able to read anyone so deeply, let alone him. He grabbed the hand on her face and squeezed it gently before finally breaking away from her gaze. Could she really care? Or was she just being her usual dramatic self?

“You know I hate to see girls cry… don’t play that card.” Mustapha said, offering her a comforting smile as he wiped her tears. “I promise to tell you everything okay?”

Sade nodded, a small smile tugging at the corner of her lips. “Who knew Mustapha could be so… romantic.”

Mustapha started and frowned, though playfully. “Trust Sade to ruin a moment. I’m not romantic anything abeg.”

Sade burst out laughing, and at that moment Muyiwa and Michael appeared at the staircase from the back door, sweaty from working out.

“Hey Sade! You’re here already.” Muyiwa said, grinning at her.

“Happy Birthday Muyiwa.”

“Thanks dear. I hope Mustapha is behaving himself.”

Mustapha scowled at the mischievous looks on the two older guys’ faces. “Abeg two of you go baff.”

 

Nneka had barely returned from freshening up when she heard the doorbell rang. A familiar scent hit her nose as Mustapha opened the door and her stomach did a thousand flips.

“Welcome to our home Folarin.” Muyiwa said with a drawl as he moved aside for the nervous teenager to enter. Nneka refrained herself from running back into her room. Just then Muyiwa brushed past her with Ronke stopping right behind Nneka with concern and him at the foot of the stairs, his eyes scrutinizing the new visitor.

“Hey Muyiwa… meet Folarin.” Mustapha chuckled, shoving the terrified boy forward. The oldest brother didn’t have the fierce expression the other boy carried, but he looked like he could snap him like a twig without a second thought. He was leaned muscled, but Folarin suspected he was a lot stronger than he looked. The older boy looked at him like he was a vermin in need of extermination for even knowing his sister existed, let alone having the audacity to date her. He could fully understand more than ever before Nneka’s concern about her parents knowing about their relationship.

The older brother was about to say something, but suddenly Nneka wrapped both hands around him from behind and muttered something like “you promised”, and his entire threatening demeanor vanished.

“Hey Folarin! Finally we get to meet.” Muyiwa said, stretching out his hand to Folarin as soon as Nneka let go of him. “I’m glad you could share this day with me.”

“Good afternoon sir.” Folarin said shakily, and everyone in the room snickered. Muyiwa’s grip was like steel. “I’m glad I was invited.”

Muyiwa drew him up close and spoke in a low voice, which of course, his siblings could hear. “Sorry I get a little overprotective when it comes to my sister… no one messes with her and goes unpunished.”

Folarin had to swallow the hard lump that had formed in his throat in order to reply. “I understand perfectly— I wouldn’t have it any other way.”

Suddenly the door opened again, and Abiye walked in with Julian and his mother.

“Dad just got back!” he said excitedly, pumping his fist into the air as Richard walked in with two plastic bags full of drinks. Unconsciously, Folarin lunged for the back along with the two brothers, getting his hands on one of them before Muyiwa could.

“There are more drinks in the car with Fredrick Muyiwa.” Richard said, looking impressively at Folarin. “You’re Mustapha’s friend right?”

Mustapha snickered before he could stop himself and Richard turned in his direction. That was when his eyes caught Sade.

“Nneka… did you invite Sade?” he asked slowly, and Nneka swallowed silently. It was at that time that Lillian walked in.

“Oh no dear it was Mustapha… this friendship of his with Sade should be monitored o.” she said in her joking voice that the kids knew better than to take for granted.  It was when she set her eyes on Folarin.

“Hello there.” She said, her face plastics with a wary smile. Folarin bowed nervously in greeting.

“Good afternoon ma.”

“Good afternoon dear.” She said, turning to Nneka. “This is the schoolmate you were talking about shey?”

Nneka hung her head and answered quietly. “Yes ma.”

“Okay then.” Richard said curtly, clearing his throat. “You’re welcome to our home errr… what’s your name?”

“Folabi Adetunji sir.” The young boy said, bowing again.

Richard turned to the other guests in the room. “Thank you all for honoring our invitation.”

 

 

“Mrs. Ogunbade you have to be the best cook to ever exist, I must admit.” Mrs. Olisa said halfway through the meal, while Mustapha was already pining for a second helping.  They were all seated in the living room while a delicious spread lay out on the dining table— fried turkey and fish soaked in peppered sauce, jollof and fried rice, and coleslaw.

“I didn’t cook alone… my girls helped out, along with Muyiwa’s girlfriend.”

“How wonderful!” Mrs. Olisa said with a smile before taking another bite.

“I can’t take it anymore…  I need another plate of food.” Mustapha suddenly muttered to Sade.

“Then just go get it and stop whining.” She whispered back.

“No one likes me eating too much in front of visitors.”

“I think everyone here is used to you incessant eating, so don’t you think?”

“Not Mrs. Olisa, Banji or even Folarin.”

“Just go abeg.”

“Let me just eat from your own naa… I know you won’t finish it.”

“Who says I won’t?”

“I know how you eat. If not that mummy had served you herself you wouldn’t have taken this much.”

“But I don’t like food wasting… so I will finish it.”

“Let me just he—”

“Mustapha what are you doing?” Lillian asked her son, narrowing her eyes at him. His spoon was in Sade’s plate, and at that moment he looked like a child that had been caught stealing from a cookie jar. “There’s more food for you to help yourself with— stop harassing Sade.”

“It’s not like that ma.” Sade said, almost blushing. “I was actually begging him to help me finish my food, and you know Mustapha can never refuse such.”

“I just didn’t want the food to waste.” He muttered stubbornly and everyone laughed.

“So Folarin… are you in Nneka’s class?” Lillian said, trying to make conversation with the boy. She had plans to talk about him much later, but there was no use bringing it up at the party. Nneka was going to be nineteen and definitely old enough, but she was always wary about the children becoming too exposed when she was in a position to prevent that. Especially with Nneka, being female and laden with the Naiad complex— she needed extra care.

“No ma… I am in commercial class.”

“How old are you?” Richard had to ask. Folarin was getting uncomfortable, but he held his own. He knew that he was going to be interrogated on the long run, and her parents were kind enough to at least not be all up in his face, even if it was for the sake of the party and other guests.

“I’ll be eighteen in June sir.”

Lillian and Richard exchanged glances. Nneka was a year older than he was.

Her siblings stared at her. They had not known before now.

Nneka stared at her feet. There had never been a need to say it to her siblings; no one had ever asked of his age. Even Folarin thought they were the same age.

“So Sade how is the family?” Lillian said, deliberately shifting focus. “Aisha tells me Banji beat her in first position this time— keep it up dear.”

“No one got me a birthday gift.” Muyiwa suddenly said, trying to shift the focus completely from the guests before Michael gets probed. “Am I too old for that?”

“Guy… I’m helping out with your party tomorrow— for free.” Michael said, nudging him. “That’s worth something…. Could I have some more rice please?”

“I’ll get you some.” Nneka said, reaching out for his plate to get him a second helping. Their fingers briefly touched and a course of electricity ran through him. He looked straight at her in surprise, and she moved swiftly to the dining room. Muyiwa shoved him to keep him from staring at her retreating figure.

“Guy that’s not enough o.” He said with a laugh that Ronke could sense was forced. “You gotta have a little something for your boy.”

“Well… your family does.” Richard said with a laugh. “Stop forcing people to get you presents.”

“Really? Wow dad you shouldn’t have.” Muyiwa said in surprise. He really didn’t expect any gift from his parents, not after all they had arranged for him.

His parents exchanged a mischievous glance with Mrs. Olisa, who giggled. “It’s at our neighbor’s place.”

“Wow mum, dad… could we check it out now?” Muyiwa asked excitedly, and Richard nodded. Muyiwa jumped up and rushed out of the house to Mrs. Olisa’s place, with his family and guests trailing behind him. He stopped at her gate, and turned to his neighbor for permission to enter.

“Underneath the sheet!” she called out as he opened the smaller gate. By the time everyone had gotten in he had removed the sheet. The brand new Tundra pickup stood in front of him. He put a fist to his mouth briefly, before running to prostrate in front of his parents.

“Daddy… mummy… thank you.” Muyiwa said, glad his face was down where he lay outstretched so Michael couldn’t see him tearing up. Richard helped him up to his feet.

“We’re proud of you son.” Richard said, giving him an encouraging smile.

“And we know you will never disappoint us.” Lillian said, tearing up as soon as she saw the tears in her son’s eyes.

 

The adults decided to head back to the house while the children looked over the car. Richard let the women pass through the small gate before heading out with Fredrick, only for them to find the last person he and his PA expected to see standing in front of their gate with an obviously plastic grin.

 

 

PLEASE DON’T FORGET TO VOTE!!!! 

Bounds (Chapter Two): Please Vote!!!

Hello there! I am supposed to put up the next chapter of Bounds, but I am having trouble figuring out the extra spice that it needs to make it well, POP! haha

It’s been quite a week, and I assure you that it’s gonna be a very awesome couple of months. I have so many opportunities I am trying to build up on, hence my slow writing despite the fact that I am not working full time and I am done with service.

Recently I published the first chapter of my novel “Bounds” with Something Or the Other Publishing (SOOP), who followed me on twitter after I posted my first chapter of Bounds. Not sure they read it, but I’m glad I put it up anyway!!!

You can read it HERE if you havent so you can understand this present chapter. I also have a post on the how the character ALY is pretty much no different from the regular girl (or even guy) we know, if not us.

I have received a lot of love and support from family and friends (and their friends) on getting my votes, and I’m still a long way off the first mark, though I am optimistic. I need to get a total of 5000 votes to get published, but the first hurdle to get a contract is 2000 votes.

Help my dream come true by voting HERE!!! I appreciate the support. But while we press towards the 5000 mark, enjoy this next chapter of my future novel. Too bad I only have one left to post.

 

 

CHAPTER TWO

As soon as Aly walked out of the house she pulled out the baseball cap from her backpack and headed for school. If her mum knew she wore a baseball cap she would complain about it, but besides the fact that it helped her hide her ears it was useful for other things. It was about eight-thirty already, and she had to be in school by nine. This meant she couldn’t take her usual route through the park. This made her a bit down because the park was her favourite place in the area, and she loved taking the long route especially when she wanted to clear her head.

The park reminded her of the forests at home, probably because almost everything was still in its untamed state. As the morning breeze moved towards her, it brought along a variety of smells with it: the smell of burnt toast and black coffee, various types of cereal (she loved the smell of the ones with fruit in it) and a lot of other things. She could smell the good, the bad and the ugly (dog poop cannot be considered pretty, either way). It was the perfect weather for flying, but she would get in a lot of trouble for flying in the daytime. It was against the rules for magical creatures of the air to use certain powers outside in the daytime. Even though it was allowed at night, it must not be used in the view of humans.

As she walked to school she thought about how much it hurt that her parents didn’t believe in her. So what if she was just a rookie? She wasn’t the only new generation creature that existed, but she felt like the only underrated one. Lance, the Aviater her parents were talking about got more praises from them than she did, and he was only a few decades older than she was.

When she got to the front steps of the school at exactly eight-fifty she sighed and shook her head. School to her, had not changed over the centuries. Even with the advanced technology of the modern world and the new learning systems, school still involved one thing that makes it what it is today: struggle. Students struggled in one way or the other— to be noticed, to be unnoticed, to be the best, or to just live through the day. School struggle had more pressing needs than the world to teenagers because the world is a big place- it’s easy to get lost in it. But a school setting is like compressing the world into a smaller ball: you literally feel the pressure.

For Aly, she just wanted to live through the days until they have to leave that town for another. She never struggled to get good grades (being a bookworm helped, along with years of acquired knowledge) and she didn’t struggle to be noticed, for that involved what she hated the most— attracting attention. For someone who wanted to stay a teenager, she never seemed to like what most teenagers did. She was more of a loner, and she never believed in going for what attracted most people.

Aly walked in to the hallway with one hand in her pocket and the other gripping her backpack firmly. It was crowded with students and teachers, both magical creatures and unsuspecting humans. Bormans, Acromidites and Aviaters weren’t the only magical creatures living in the human world. Some venture into the human world out of curiosity or as a result of being exiled from their realms.

She walked to her locker, put her backpack on the floor beside her and began her daily routine of looking at the creatures in the school with high hopes of spotting the Borman. Bowing her head low and using the cap as a shield for her eyes, she concentrated and slowly her eyes turned from brown to their real crystal blue colour.

She looked at the magical creatures hanging around the corridor. There was a Bulvarian (magical creatures that lived on treetops) playing a video game at the corner. At the end of the hallway a bunch of jocks and cheerleaders were talking with some students on the track team. She could see that some of the athletes were Azians. These were magical creatures of the earth with both a human and an animal form. They were very flexible and agile in nature, and possessed every quality of the perfect athlete. They are rarely found outside the earth kingdom, but whenever they settle outside their home they tend to stand out in any athletic sport they partake in there (they are naturally very competitive when it comes to sports). An Azian famous in human world for long distance races once got the gold medal for four consecutive games in the Olympics before he finally went back to his kingdom. And all that time he had to slow his pace so as to blend in with the others. The weirdest thing about Azians was that they did not possess super speed, yet they can run just as fast as creatures with such powers.

Eric, a popular guy in the senior year was coming down the hallway with his girlfriend Vanessa. She was really pretty, if you weren’t looking at her real form. Aly wondered what Eric would do if he found out his girlfriend was really an Octavian, a sea creature with squid-like heads ( tentacles and all) on a well structured human body that was blue green in color. Vanessa glared at her as they passed, which didn’t come as a surprise to Aly. Octavians resented Acromidites a lot because of their devotion to the Bormans. Aly tried to avoid Vanessa as much as she could, but even on the rare occasions they made contact, the Octavian always tried to get under her skin. She didn’t let Vanessa get to her— she was at least fifty years older than she or her any of her Octavian friends. She knew that even if she wasn’t so good in combat, she could beat Vanessa up if she wanted to. That alone was enough to make her smile on rare occasions. Although Aly sometimes wondered if the Octavians in school knew there was a Borman around she was convinced they didn’t, because if they did they would have been all over him by now. Too bad Eric was human. He’ll never see Vanessa for the crazy, Borman-loving squid that she really was.  Aly took her mind off the Octavians as she looked at the Zylorians (Creatures that lived in tree trunks and could reduce their size at will) talking to some Aviaters and a Murfle (short fire creatures that looked like giant turtles with spines on their shells) chasing a human girl. Even in a human form, he still looked kind of like his real self; short, slouched and mischievous looking— and it didn’t help that he was scruffy and that he smelled a lot. And like all Murfles, he liked to annoy people and play tricks.

Just then an Aviater picked him up and dumped him in the nearest trash bin without saying a word. Even as the Aviater closed the lid, it was clear that no one felt sorry for him. Nobody liked Murfles, especially in human form, when they have fingers and better legs to cause more mischief.  Just then the Aviater looked away from the bin and scanned the students in the hallway carefully. Before Aly could turn away, he smiled and waved at her. She groaned inwardly and waved back. She just hoped he wasn’t going to come over and try and strike a conversation like he usually did.

Lance was her neighbor and classmate, and the same Aviater her parents had high hopes in. He had a huge crush on her, and he believed she ought to go out with him because (as he put it) they had a lot in common.

Aviaters and Acromidites weren’t all that alike, in Aly’s opinion. Aviaters had wings while Acromidites did not (Acromidites were still better fliers). Aviaters had this golden tint in their amber colored hair when exposed to sunlight that made it different from the silvery-white hair of the Acromidites that shimmered in the moon. Their eyes were wider and hazel in color and they weren’t as civilized as the Acromidites. They were into small settlements and the simple life revolving around nature (Aly envied that part of their life— it was less complicated and it was easy to keep up with) as well as other things Aly could go on and on about.  But their difference wasn’t an issue to Aly. She wasn’t just into guys like Lance— he was too full of himself. But even if he was as calm as his older brother Brandon, she still doubted ever falling for him, though she couldn’t deny that he was strong and attractive, with his human chocolate-brown eyes and short wavy black hair and charming personality that won the other girls over. Aly didn’t even get why he bothered. He could get any other girl he wanted— heck; the girl the Murfle had been chasing was still drooling from the distance even as he walked towards her. Aly knew it was all about pride— he had never been turned down by a girl before. Just then the school bell for first period went off and she bent over to pick up her backpack, ensuring that she clear from making eye contact with Lance.

That was when she caught the scent. It was very strong, an indication that the Borman was very powerful. It choked her as she stood straight, sending a shiver down her spine. She stood there frozen, unsure whether it was going to attack her. The hallway was getting deserted as students hurried to their classes, and she was as good as paralyzed. The sweat that broke out from her forehead tickled her as it moved slowly down her cheek, but she was too dazed to brush it off.

Then the scent died off completely, like it was never there. The Borman had left.

Aly felt herself gain control of her senses and she exhaled slowly to keep herself from falling to the ground.

“Hey Aly.”

“Aaargh!”

Aly kept screaming till Lance clamped a hand over her mouth.

“Shut up.” He said to her calmly, and she did. Aviaters had a gift of persuasion that worked to a certain extent, especially when you are vulnerable creature or (on rare occasions in the case of invulnerable creatures) caught in a moment of weakness.

“Did you catch the scent too?” Aly asked, too scared to realize that Lance had just told her to shut up, let alone fight about it.

“What scent?” Lance asked her, raising an eyebrow.

Aly dragged his collar until his ear was close enough for her to whisper into it,

“The Borman.”

Lance started, moving away from her.

“Here?”

“Yeah.”

“You sure?”

“Are you implying that I do not recognize the scent of a Borman?” Aly said, angry she told Lance in the first place. She didn’t know why she did it (it wasn’t something she would normally do) but she was so scared at what had happened that she had to talk to someone.

“I’m not saying that.” Lance said, folding his hands. “It’s just that… you’re the only one that caught the scent.”

Aly glared at him, her hands on her hips.

“Hello! Acromidite here!” she said, pointing a finger at herself.

“Hey just because you guys hunt these things doesn’t mean you’re the ones with a better sense of smell.” Lance protested. “You guys are always up in the air… that’s enough to mess your nose up.”

“I don’t have time to argue with you.” Aly said through gritted teeth. “I still have to come up with a plan to—”

“Hey you two! Get to class!”

Aly resisted the urge to glare at the teacher who had interrupted her by letting out a frustrated sigh.

“I’m heading to class.” Lance said, waving to her a little as he sprinted off. “We’ll talk about this later.”

“Whatever.” Aly mumbled as she trudged off to her own class.

She never planned to talk about it again with him.

 

Through her classes Aly thought of ways to identify the Borman. No one else seemed to have seen the Borman, so she couldn’t get any useful information on its whereabouts. That morning was the first and last time she caught his scent, so she had no lead to work with. By lunch she came up with the perfect plan: get herself in the gym the swim team used. It was the surest deal; as Bormans were excellent as water sports and tremendous show-offs. He was definitely a member of the swim team, probably the lead.

The coach bought her school volunteer work lie and agreed to let her help out clean the gym after school, and for the first time things seemed to be going her way.

She was confident of her plan until she stepped into the gym; which was when she remembered how territorial sea creatures were— it wasn’t just a Borman thing. Though it was an artificial body of water, they were still likely to claim she was intruding on their element (which was weird in her opinion).

Her job for the day was to dispose of the used towels around the gym (apparently the swim team didn’t like to pick after themselves) and clean the girls’ locker room. When she was through with the locker room (she did that first because the students were still hanging around the pool) she checked if the gym was empty. The glares she got from Vanessa and the other Octavians the time she entered the gym was enough for her to know that things wasn’t going to be perfect as it seemed earlier. She took a deep breath and clenched her fists. If the Octavians want a fight, they were going to get it— if that’s what it took.

She stepped out of the locker room cautiously and started to pick up the towels farthest from the pool, where the Octavians were watching her. She worked fast, avoiding eye contact as she monitored them with the corner of her eye. She hadn’t caught the scent of the Borman since she got in, and she groaned at the thought of having to come back again until she was able to identify the Borman.

She got distracted for a brief moment thinking about how the male and female Octavians don’t really hang out when all of a sudden she found herself surrounded by the Octavians in a tight circle. She was taken aback but composed herself immediately so as not to give the impression that she was scared of them. They were always very good at taking advantage of a moment of weakness.

 

“What are you doing here?” Vanessa asked, narrowing her eyes at Aly.

“Um… working?”

Aly wished she could think of a retort but she couldn’t come up with anything. Her reply gave the same impression she was trying hard not to make.

“Who gave you the right to trespass on our territory?” a tall male Octavian spoke. Aly wished this was one of those times the guys weren’t hanging with the girls. She was beginning to worry about Jordan if this should turn into a fight, because she was feeling quite outnumbered.

“We know what you’re looking for.” A female Octavian spoke this time. “It’s quite obvious.”

“You Acromidites are so dim-witted and transparent.” Vanessa spat.

“Like we’d let you find him before we do.” The female spoke again as if it has not been interrupted.

Aly resisted the urge to gasp. Were they implying they didn’t know the location of the Borman?

“We advice you get out before you get hurt.” Another male Octavian spoke.

Aly let out a short laugh before she could stop herself. They all glared at her.

“I had no idea Octavians had a sense of humour.” She said, still chuckling before breaking out of the circle of Octavians and picking up a nearby towel.

“As you can see… I’ve got work to do.” She said, holding up the towel.

Vanessa let out a low growl and narrowed her eyes. She wished she could read their minds, but she couldn’t concentrate. Another circle was being formed around her, and it was gradually becoming smaller as they slowly closed in on her.  She was already feeling choked even though they were still a few feet away. Air creatures were claustrophobic so she knew she would panic when they eventually closed in on her.

“We have the greater advantage, and you know it.” Vanessa said, flashing a mischievous smile at her. The tentacles around their heads were growing longer, an indication that she was getting ready to attack. Sea creatures were known for super speed, the same way earth creatures were known for endurance, fire creatures for strength and Acromidites for flight. Earth creatures were instinctive and Fire creatures were manipulative; but the impulsive Sea creatures were the complete opposite of the calculating creatures of the Air. It was a clear case of brains versus brawn, and presently her mind was in disarray so she had the short end of the stick. Also, the Acromidites have rules restricting their powers that gave Bormans the upper hand in certain cases, since they do not abide by rules. They are not allowed to fly in the day time, but you were excused if you’re flying indoors, and outside the view of humans. With her flight she could catch up with any sea creature or Azian, giving her a sort of advantage in this fight even though she was outnumbered. Acromidites literally lived by the book, as almost every event is recorded. They never joked with the rules either, even though they’re known to bend it whenever they could. Bormans on the other hand believed that Law resided in belief and tradition, and it was the only form of order they knew— and many other sea creatures adopted this belief. There was no written law, so there was no sense of obligation or compulsion to break them; but you didn’t need Law to know who to attack, what not to eat, who could be tolerated.  If any action was found to be debatable, it was taken before the Council for deliberation.

Just then she heard the lock of the gym door click shut behind her, and she smiled. Perfect.

Acromidites were not the only creatures that abide by the rules of using powers outside the view of humans. It was a universal rule abided by even Bormans. It was unwritten law that was created by forces higher than any authority all four regions. It was an absurd feat though, to expose magic to humans, and you didn’t need anyone to tell you that. If it was okay for humans to know about magic they would have been born with the natural ability to sense magic and magical creatures would not need to be born with a non-magical form that helps them blend and be seen by humans. Though they do not have the capacity to see or sense magic, no one is sure to be oblivious to the sight of a flying or super fast human.

The Octavian that locked the door sped back and together they circle in on her again. Once they were dangerously close, Aly steadied herself and prepared to jump. Just as she jumped above arms reach she steadied herself in the air and kicked two of the Octavians in the chest. The little disruption gave her enough room to fly to the gym door without resistance. But just as she unlocked the gym door and prepared to escape she felt some constrictions around her ankles and found herself being spun around and dragged across the dirty gym floor to the circle of Octavians again.

The tentacles that had dragged her in retracted back to its normal length as Vanessa peered down at her with a triumphant grin on her face.

The smell of chlorine was stronger than usual, and it wasn’t coming off Vanessa. Aly turned her neck to find herself at the edge of the pool. She gulped and got off the floor slowly, her head spinning more from the chlorine than the attack.

The Octavians didn’t try to stop her, but they didn’t break the semi-circle they formed around her either. She was between the Octavians and the pool, and was trying hard not to panic. She didn’t think trying to fly again was the best option so she took a stance and prepared to fight, all the while trying to ignore the artificial body of water behind her.

“What’s the problem? Can’t handle the water?” one of the girls asked, with her grin widening as she spoke. Aly didn’t reply.

“I think you missed a towel.” Vanessa said. “I’ll go get it for you.”

She was back with the towel in less than a second and held it over the pool. Aly stared wide eyed as she let go of the towel and fall into the water.

“Oops!” Vanessa said with a chuckle. “Now you have to go in and get it.”

Then she pushed Aly into the water.

 

Scott was leaning on the wall beside the gym. He didn’t want to go in there again. He wasn’t sure how he survived the day before but he wasn’t sure how if he could hold out for long: just looking at the pool made him want to puke.

Naturally he wouldn’t be working in the gym in the first place if his father had not pressurized him to join the swim team. His father always talked about how his people ruled the waters (he wasn’t still sure if his dad’s people were fishermen or pirates, and he never had the guts to ask) so he knew his father detested the fact that he was hydrophobic, and had hopes that joining the swim team would help with the fear. He never really got to see his dad growing up, so he didn’t want to lose the only grip of interest his dad seemed to have. If all they could talk about was water and he had to go throw up in between conversations, it was still better than nothing.

His dad always made his people feel more like actual fishes than even pirates or fishermen. He knew his dad had left his people to purse a better life, but he didn’t really understand it. His dad wouldn’t say more than that about it either.

He didn’t think his dad’s people were famous though, because his dad liked to show off, and would have at least said something about it. Once he asked why if any of Dad’s people took part in the Olympics (it was a sarcastic question though) and his dad said that they were into bigger things, or something along that line.

He was at least able to secure a job in the gym, and he didn’t even think that would be possible. Ever since he moved into the town to live with his dad about a month ago he kept to himself, trying to study his new environment. He hadn’t even made friends yet. Getting this job was the biggest thing he’d done so far and he wasn’t about to give up now. This experience might even kill his fear of water— though he doubted it.

He didn’t know why he was so scared of the water. From soaking in the tub to kiddie pools— he hated them all. The only thing he regrets about his fear of water is the fact that he could never go fishing with his grandfather. After puking the first couple of times he resigned to staying at home and waiting for the fish.

He loved fish. He loved cooking and eating fish. He liked sushi best though.

He tried to open the gym door and check if it was empty. The day before he had only met the coach of the swim team and she had instructed him to mop to floor and clean the boys’ locker room. It wasn’t as bad as he thought it would be, though he got dizzy from hanging around the poolside afterwards. He preferred to work in the absence of everyone— he was that shy. And the swim team had a bunch of mean looking people— their glares were paralyzing.

To his surprise, the gym door was locked. Then suddenly he heard a big splash and he jumped and backed away from the door. It sounded like someone had fallen into the pool. Just then a bunch of students came out of the gym laughing, oblivious to his presence. Immediately they had gone a little distance he rushed in to check.

 

Struggling with the water had made Aly weak. The more she tried to get to the surface, the more she sank deeper, and the smell of chlorine was burning her nose.

Great… I have to die in something this unnatural… At least Jordan will be alright.

As she made a force field around her to conserve her oxygen she wondered silently what attracted Octavians to the pool. With seas and lake, there was this natural brilliance that tempted air creatures to consider swimming (only few have tried it— not all survived; especially those with wings that got them clogged in the water). But with the pool, it was so artificial that she was surprised water creatures swim in it, let alone claim it as their territory. Ponds were better; no one puts chemicals in those. She couldn’t dream of swimming in a pool (at least not at her own will) and it was definitely not where she would want to die. But the force field wasn’t very strong, and was going weaker just as she was. She didn’t even have the strength to push her way to the surface. Just then she saw the towel Vanessa had dropped into the pool.

“At least I’m doing one good thing today.” She thought as she allowed herself to sink deeper into the pool. Immediately she picked it up (it was heavy from being soaked, but because she was weak, it didn’t feel as light as it normally would) she realised for the first time that she was at the deep end of the pool.

For the first time since she was pushed into the pool, she panicked. Her force field was thinning out, and even if she forced her way to the top with what was left of her strength, she might not make it. This wasn’t the way she imagined that her life would end. She had always imagined it as something somewhat heroic, like with Cornelia in the epic battle. She used to imagine being struck by a Borman or some other creature while trying to save her brother or Lance (she always wished she would save Lance one day from something he couldn’t get out of— that way he would know who was stronger than the other). She even imagined her mum shouting and weeping over her dead body for not staying in the less heated part of the battle. At least she would have proven her worth to her parents, even if it had cost her life. She could even imagine Jordan putting sunflowers by at body at her burial, just to spite their mum.

Instead she was going to die in a pool— nothing dramatic or heroic about that. And with her clumsiness everyone might just conclude that she fell in, especially when they find out she was in the gym at her own volition.

As her force field began to dim she stared to regret her decision. She didn’t even find the Borman. She started to wish she wasn’t so different, or at least she did things to please people— at least they’d have like her more and there would be more pleasant memories of her when they are reminded of her. She wished she never liked sunflowers; or history over art. She even wished she had given Lance a chance.

This was the dumbest idea she had ever come up with.

Just then she heard something break through the water. She moved her head slightly and saw what looked like a ladder. Someone had come to save her!

Suddenly the energy she thought was gone came surging through her, and she pushed her way to the ladder, just as the force field disappeared completely. She grabbed at it and held it tightly, supporting the person helping her out by kicking to the top.

Immediately her head broke out of the water she saw an outstretched hand and she held on to it and let herself be dragged out of the water. Immediately she felt the tiled floor she fell on to it and coughed. She hoped the person would not notice that she had not swallowed a lot of water, considering how long she had been under there.

“Are you alright? Thank goodness I wasn’t too late. If you hadn’t grabbed the swimming pool ladder I would have had to call someone to come in after you.”

She looked at the guy who had saved her life. He was on one knee in front of her, looking really worried. He was tall and lean, with short wavy brown hair and clear aqua-blue eyes. He was also a little built, but had a soft face.

“I’m fine.” She managed to say, trying to stand on her feet. He too started to stand up with arms outstretched in case she needed support. She was still too weak, and she tripped before she could stand up straight. He leaned in to catch her, and she fell into his arms. And that was when she caught it.

Dry grass: the scent of the Bormans.

She looked up at the boy, unable to conceal her fear. He smiled at her, chuckling a bit.

“You really should be more careful.” he said “You’re not likely to be coordinated for a while, after what happened. You should probably sit down— or do you want me to carry you?”

She moved away from him a little too quickly, narrowing her eyes and moving backwards until her back hit the wall. She pressed against it, not taking her eyes off the Borman for even a second.

A second. That was all he needed to take her life if he wanted to.

 

If that left your blood pumping, please vote and share to your loved ones to support me too. The best thing about SOOP is you can vote for more than one author, so you don’t have to feel torn if you have a loved one registered with them as well.

Also, a big shout out to TEGA OTEVWE for her support and sharing my voting link on her blog. Please check out her banging blog that keeps you up to date!!! Just click on her name and you’re there!!!

 

 

 

The “Aly” in Us

I recently put up a chapter of my latest completed novel “Bounds” where the protagonist Aly is a misfit from a world of perfectionists. Her mother is never satisfied with her choices, though you would notice there were nothing bordering the immoral. Her father seems to be on the same plane of thought with her mother, but is less intense and vocal about it. Her awesome big brother Jordan is her only support.

 

Let’s take a pause and reflect on our lives. We all know that one person who isn’t a bad person, but he or she is just not It.

Not smart enough to be in that class, not pretty enough to be on that show, not trendy enough to be a part of that clique, not buff enough to have gym buddies. But they are there, and they are not having fun. They are clearly standing out like that annoying strand of hair that never wants to stay down.

They already know they don’t fit in there, and don’t need to be reminded by your snide remarks and stares. Really… they get it.

But who are we to say they don’t fit in there? I mean really… all our notions are only as a result of the trying to squeeze into the mold society has already formed for us… and guess what happens when we don’t fit.

Many of us can admit to that one thing that makes us odd… that one thing our friends can do or are good at that we can’t do. For some of us it is as weird as not being able to scarf down junk as much as our bestie because we would end up with all the zits and pounds, while she stays hot and flawless. For some it’s not being able to play video games during that exam with your friend because he has a photographic memory and you don’t. Don’t you get mad when he passes you that game pad? I mean, he knows!

For some of us we have grown past those irregularities and swept them well under the rug. Maybe it’s the reason why we are so insensitive to the struggles of others.

If you can’t admit that you are imperfect in one way or the other, try not to be a pain in the neck to those who you’re perfect in comparison to.

It’s okay to be Aly. Take a peek into her story HERE.