Love Literati Contest: ‘Budding Friendship’ by Onakoya Toluwanimi

Love literati contest - elsieisy blog

                             The First Few Pages of a Love Story

I could see that everyone was asleep. I snuck out of the house. My eyes were blind but my feet could see. I was too adept to walking this path in the comfort of the night. I could see the sparkling light that stood by the water tank.

The water tank in the presence of the sunlight was nothing beautiful. Grey and green moss laced its edges. But this night nothing could be more beautiful and comforting.

I found the ladder and made my way up. As I climbed higher, I could feel the breeze, twirling my clothes.

As soon as I got up, I threw my back pack unto the top of the tank. I took my seat and then I breathed in.

Everything looked serene this night just like it was meant to be. I mused if I was meant to be part of something so perfect. I was better off an onlooker. An image of Uncle Bode and his protruding belly sifted into my head. I could imagine hearing his snores floating through the air to me. The thought tickled my belly as I chuckled.

Then other thoughts began to float into my head. I lay down on the rusted water tank and settled into the memory of today. Today was particularly beautiful because I met someone – someone new.

I remember seeing him. Who wouldn’t? He sat, leaning on the tree trunk with such peace. He seemed rather out of place in the scene. He flashed a smile at me. He could see me too. I stood still – very still. And then I walked, taking miniature steps towards him. The bench lay underneath the tree, enjoying the shade. It was an old, dusty, brown bench with marks and writings all over it. He was also brown, a fine caramel brown, like the colour of the chocolate sweets my mother brought back from her trips to the market.

I smiled at him too. He tapped at the bench, indicating I should sit beside him. I sauntered over. Immediately I sat down, I looked over at him. He seemed much taller up close. I felt like he was hovering over me but he wasn’t looking at me.  His neck was long – very long. I instinctively reached out to feel my neck; definitely longer than mine. Without warning, he turned to look at me. I pushed my head away, forcing myself to focus on the chaotic scene that we were in.

Little boys were pouring sand on each other. Little girls were making sand castles and swinging. Noise filtered into the air; almost urging me on to speak.

‘Hi’ his deep voice resonated

‘Hey’ I quaked in response

‘What are you doing here?’ he asked

‘My sister’ I said, pointing to the little girl with her hair packed into a bun, sitting on a swing.

‘Oh’ he whispered

‘You?’ I asked, seemingly uncomfortable

What could he be doing here? Such a dashing confident boy – in a park, not on tour or on the front cover of an ovation magazine.

‘Sometimes I like to come here…to look’ he ended with a chortle

I didn’t expect anything less. He had to be mysterious and brooding.

‘Wanna be friends?’ he asked looking at me again

Catching me off guard, I laugh; an awkward laughter. Brooding boys don’t ask that.

‘Is that why you motioned for me to sit here? To ask that?’ I asked

‘No. Maybe. There really was nowhere else for you to sit.’ He stuttered

He stuttered. Brooding boys don’t stutter.

‘Well Sure. I’m Rose ‘I said, gaining a bit of confidence

‘Jack. I’m Jack Jacobs. People call me JJ’ he said

‘Jack’ I say, tasting the words.’ Jack Jacobs is fine’

Seeming to run out of things to say, we both looked away

‘Do you go…’

‘Do you like…’

We both said together and burst into laughter

A bird squawked in the distance, drawing me back into the present. That immediately reminded me that I had little time. And so, I headed down. My heart filled with overwhelming warmth. I couldn’t wait to see him again.


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  1. I ate the post up. In record time. The musings of a girl in love. This work deserves a more detailed analysis. But for now, well done.

  2. Tolu your use of words is always motivating. You capture the littlest moments and make it shine forth. Good job girl! We’ll wait for more.

  3. No matter how this turns out, I want you to know that you are an AWESOME writer. Keep writing.

  4. I haven’t read a piece that I’ve so badly wanted to be made into a book like this on
    The right amount of suspense in it (I.e why is she sneaking out, will she meet him ther, why was he actually on the playground, is he stalking her, is this where the story of the mysterious stranger ends, lol why am I putting so much thought into this)
    Great piece nimi
    Now I want a book

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