See previous episode here.
Way forward: Signs and Pacts
It is certain that you feel something for Sogo. Not just any kind of something, but a strong something—mentally, physically, emotionally, bodily; yet you cannot decide if all of it is a product of love or lust. Pastor Johnson on the other hand, you think that he is a fine man by all standards, and he is a man of God, so maybe he can help you quiet your wanton sexual desires and bring you closer to God. But you don’t know, you just don’t know.
You cannot possibly see both men for Lunch at the same time tomorrow, so you desperately ask God to your rescue. You make a pact with Him: that if He would just decide for you, you promise to abide truthfully, completely, and faithfully—whatever the outcome; and you promise not to touch yourself again. You know it is going to be hard, but you promise. You ask for a sign then that something holds Sogo back from travelling to see you tomorrow, if he is not the one for you; so that you see Pastor Johnson instead. You say this prayer with half a heart, because the other half of your heart, and indeed your body, is rooting for Sogo; but that is that. You pick yourself up from the bathroom floor now. Cleaned up, feeling a little brand new. You do not think any further about tomorrow. You just go to sleep and decide that you would let fate take its course.
The day after the day after
You wake up to no messages or calls from Sogo, which is a tad weird and disappointing. Mama has sent you a message, though, asking you to remember to look your best for your lunch date with Pastor John. She even suggests a dress, saying: “remember that blue gown you wore to Sola’s wedding? It looks good on you. I think you should put it on. And find some nice shoes to match. Don’t wear gbemiga o (Don’t wear stilettos!). LOL! Talk to you soon darling. Love you! XoXo.” LOL? XoXo? Who is teaching Mama these things?! You shake your head and sigh deeply, in suppressed amusement. You shrug the message and its content off and get ready for Church with half-a-praying, and half-a-wishing heart, as you don one of your favourite Sunday wears. An ivory pleated dress with a short elbow- length jacket, and your black and white stripped Manolo Pumps.
Traffic is light, as you course through to Church, listening to some Kirk Franklin and Kenny K’ore and Hillsong. Service itself is great; well, almost great. The Pastor, Pastor Johnson, talks about finding Soul mates and Marriages. He talks about many things you do not listen to, because somehow you think he could not have chosen a better day to market himself to you, or indirectly pose reasons why he thinks you both could not be any more compatible. Time ticks away and you grow a little impatient. It is some minutes past 11:00am, nearing the end of Service, and you have not heard from Sogo. You remember your pact with God, but you remain hopeful. Watchful. Wait-full.
Something around 11:30, Sogo’s first message drops in, as he informs you that he has begun his one hour plus drive to Lagos to see you. You smile your first real smile then, with purpose; and let out a loud sigh in reverence of the longest wait of your life yet. You notice how awkward you look with the silly lone grin plastered on your face, when you begin to feel the stare of the elderly woman beside you bore holes into your temple. You ignore her, and shut Pastor Johnson’s voice out even farther, as you begin fervent prayers that Sogo arrives safely to Lagos. Once Service is done, you wait outside to see Pastor Johnson– analysing the various ways to turn a man of God down, in the most polite way. He joins you in five minutes.
“Omolara,” he beams at you, his eyes full of Sunday cheer and light; his square face hosting a massive one- sided dimple you failed to notice yesterday. You smile back. He is gorgeous actually, you reckon again. He is wearing a black Shirt in a fitted Grey suit, with its matching snug pants. His black shoes mirror the glow of the afternoon Sun. You admire his gait, the way he appears in control of his steps and everything around him. He looks quality. He reeks of control. He would definitely fit into someone’s prospects of a perfect man, but maybe not yours. For you, he seems a little too perfect in ways that do not matter as much.
“Err Pas– Johnson, about Lunch. I–“
“Oh that. Yes, I was going to give you a call to ask if you have any preferences but–“
You hate when a man does that; cuts you short. So you cut him short too, this one time. His has been too un-few, too soon. “Johnson, please allow me finish.”
“Oh, I– I am sorry” You reckon his embarrassment. You are sorry you cannot be sorry too. A man who is ready for marriage, should be readier to listen; to “his” woman, and any woman for that matter.
“No problem Johnson. I was going to tell you I cannot do Lunch today. Something came up. I am sorry about that. Maybe–“
“That’s fine.” he cuts in, curtly. You notice a flicker of what seems like anger in his eyes. You would have thought it was disappointment; but it seemed a shade darker, a tinge more forceful. His brows have furrowed together now, leaving a distinct squeeze a-bare on his forehead.
“I’m not done, Johnson” you reply, getting thoroughly impatient with his rudeness! “If you want, maybe we could fix another date. If I have a few days notice, I would be able to work it into my Schedule nicely.”
He wears a bored expression now; the light in his eyes, far gone. “Let me know when you are ready Omolara, since you are the busy one.” You are not sure what you feel towards him anymore, but it is something a little too unpleasant for someone you have not known too well, too long.
“No problem then. Again, ‘m sorry for any inconveniences” you finish off. He does not say anything in reply, so you bid him farewell and head to your car, resuming your prayers for Sogo’s safe arrival. You forget about Pastor Johnson and his shenanigans just as soon as you walk away from him. No memory space in your head for people with uncouth behaviour!
You head back home now, to change into something less Churchy, and more relaxing. You settle for a blue sleeveless Eva dress, and black Gladiators. You make your hair into a bun, add a touch of Mascara to your eyes, and a film of red lipstick to your cupid-shaped lips. Your excitement builds with each second, as you await Sogo’s call.
© The Short Black Girl, 2016.