No sooner had Siisi sat on the sofa than the phone rang again. “He wants to threaten me again?” he thought. He got up and started towards the TV stand with his eyes fixated on the new 55-inch LG OLED TV set which sat atop the stand. He was yet to get the installer to come mount it firmly on the wall. “Ouch! He screamed when he hit his knee against the glass centre table. He cussed as he sat on the sofa again wincing in pain. He examined the knee if a contusion had formed at the affected part. He rubbed it. The Whatsapp tone beeped not long after the call had ended. Limping and grimacing in pain with each step taken, he reached the phone and saw the missed call and message, both from Tina.
“So Whatsapp tells me you have actually ‘read’ my message and refused to get back to me. Something doesn’t feel right about how the day went today. I feel there’s more to your reaction. It was quite strange. Please talk to me.”
Contemplating whether to call or send a message in response, Siisi’s attention was diverted by an incoming call from Mike. Like Tina, he also wanted to know the rationale behind Siisi’s behaviour back at the pub. The latter was granted audience.
“So that be the matter oo…” Siisi concluded after telling Mike everything.
“Oh…my guy. Abi this no be any issue?”
“Hw33…who tell you? Nigga threaten me and things, you say what? Stop they tell me that gibberish.”
“See, Siisi, not telling Ernestina is not going to be an issue. I fail to see how it is. It is their lives…how they choose to live it is their right. Moreover, it appears Tina decided to roll with a faggot instead of you. It’s life, my friend. We don’t always get what we want… we win some, we lose some. Take it in your stride.”
“Hmm…you don’t understand, Mike.”
“It will only be an issue if you still have a thing for her and you want to use this ‘privileged’ information to your advantage. And according to you, he sounded pretty serious when he issued the threat.”
Mike recollected Siisi’s eloquent explanation of the vital statistics of a future Mrs. Grant at the pub earlier in the day, and immediately knew his friend was in danger, if the threat actually meant something.
“Ah!...but wait oo. Do you still like her?”
There was silence from the other end of the phone.
“Uhmm…Yes and No! Yes, because you called my name and I’m responding. And No – in response to your question.”
“I no know, my guy. I conf sef. You know something?...Make I call you back wai.”
Siisi ended the call, and Mike muttered what was supposed to be an intercessory prayer in tongues – if only he knew how to pray in them. Siisi forgot to respond to the message from Tina.
Siisi’s eyes were glued to his phone as he checked the status updates of his contacts, whilst waiting in the queue to get the items he’d picked up Shoprite scanned and paid for. He didn’t realize it was his turn until the lady behind him drew his attention with a tap on the shoulder. “Sorry about that”, he said to her as he moved to the till. “You look very familiar. Do I know you somewhere?” he heard the lady say as she tapped him again. He turned and looked at her as she gave his Visa card to the cashier. “I’m not too sure”, he answered, flashing his recently polished set of white teeth. She was a slim, dark lady with big beautiful eyes, sporting a gelled short hair. One look at her supple lips, and Siisi swallowed some saliva. “Here’s your card, sir!” the cashier succeeded in bringing his mind home from wherever it had drifted to. He collected them – the card and his groceries – and passed the lady who squinted and politely asked him to wait as she paid for her items.
“Were you in Birmingham University?”
“Yes, I’m an alumnus” he answered with some pride.
She smiled, and he swallowed again. “And you can’t make me out?”
He squinted, and slowly shook his head.
“Patricia Manford?... Douper Hall? Still can’t make me out?”
His eyes widened. “Oh my God! Patricia! Wow!…You look amazing! You cut your Rapunzel-like hair?” he enquired, even when it was obvious.
“Yes oo…it is quite expensive to maintain” she joked, and they laughed.
“So when did you return?...You know what? Le’ me buy you a drink so we catch up” he added, even before she could answer. “Shall we?” he said, rather than asked, as he took the yellow polythene bag from her and led her to the food court. Outside Barcelos, they found an unoccupied table with two chairs, from where they will begin a 2-hour catch-up. He ordered a bottle of Savannah, whiles she settled on a bottle of mineral water.
They both filled each other in on what they did. They ate when they realized the conversation they had started was too good to cut short. They reminisced about their days in the UK and how menial the jobs they had to do were at the time, although they helped pay the bills. Patricia, after graduation, found a job in a firm of architects and worked there for two years before finally deciding to return to Ghana and co-found a firm with her cousin. They both seemed to be doing well – Siisi and Patricia – in their respective jobs.
Siisi asked to use the washroom and bumped into a lady when he stood and turned. “I’m very sorry” he apologised. “It’s fine, don’t worry” the lady forgave. “I know you from somewhere” she added.
He looked at Patricia and they both smirked. He looked at the other lady and joked: “I know…it’s from the TV show?” “Which show?” she asked. “The I-don’t-know-why-I’m-familiar-to-everyone-today Show” he said, as his joke failed to yield the desired effect. So his smile petered away mighty fast, leaving him with a stupefied look. “I’m sorry…that was meant to be a joke”, he apologized again. “Don’t worry…I remember you now, although the name’s escaped me. We have a mutual friend – Ewurama.”
“Who’s Ewurama?” Siisi asked, wearing a confused look.
“Uhmm…Ernestina. I was with her at Area Code last weekend.”
Siisi’s countenance changed from confused to blank.
“I’m Agyeiwaa” she added.
To be continued
P.S. If you missed the 4th Episode of The "Confession", you can read it here.