I sang ‘Deliver me oh lord’ from church to my hostel, the girls that were standing in front of the hostel sniggered as I walked past them, the thin porter that looks like an ape was on duty, she stared at me with her owl like eyes as I walked past her without greeting her, I was in my room already trying to lay the bed I scattered while rushing to church in the morning when I heard a knock on my door, it was Ese the lover girl who doesn’t joke with her Bae and she told me the porter wants to see me.
I nodded and tucked in the bedspread neatly before leaving the room, Ese was making Tamuno, her roommate’s hair when I walked past them, Tamuno waved when she saw me and I waved back, I got to the porter’s desk and she fixed me with the owl eyes again, God they look so scary, her eyes look as if someone applied very thick black eye shadow around her eyelids and forgot to stop on time, I forced myself to stare back, I don’t want her thinking I am a weakling like Dara whom she bullies every now and then, poor Dara I still can’t understand why some Nigerian parents push their babies to the university at age 14, who does that? The Porter cleared her throat and shifted in her seat, then she began to talk and talk and talk, the only sense I could make out of all she had been saying was the fact that I pass her desk without greeting her, that it is a sign of disrespect blah blah blah, well I was trying to remember what made me hate her in the first place, now I remember, she loves to kiss every Cleopatra’s ass, and she begs for things with careless abandon, yes! She was still talking when I cut her short, I told her I have very important things to do and asked her to face what she came to do!
The girls watching movie in the common room were already outside when they heard her voice, they started giggling when I told her that, I saw her mouth hanging open from shock and I continued, I told her to stop kissing everybody’s ass and she can’t kiss mine because I don’t have much and she should stop eating everything the girls bring back from their outing or she’s going to eat something laced with substance one day and tear off her clothes, the giggles turned to cackling, someone was even recording the altercation. I left her with her mouth still opened and made for my room Tamuno asked me what happened with her eyes but I just nodded, Ese removed her hands from Tamuno’s hair and ran full speed to the common room to hear the gist. I became a heroine overnight, everyone kept coming to my room to give me thumbs up, they all said they hate her overbearing attitude and the reason they don’t speak up to her is that, she has their parents numbers. I only shrugged and started looking for what to wear to class the next day.
Farida came to my room around 12:00am and met me with a mug full of coffee, fighting sleep but losing the war slowly, she was all smiles as she asked me to tell her what happened earlier, I was smiling smugly as I made for the bathroom to wash my face for the third time, I said some really incomprehensible things and sat on my bed one meaningless word led to the other and I fell asleep, I woke up the next day with a package beside my pillow and a note from Farida, I checked what was in the package and saw what looked like dry leaves, more like thyme actually, it has a funny yet distinct smell, the note only reads
‘makes you assimilate better’
I thought nothing of it, I made a mental note to ask her what the ‘herbs’ were meant for. Classes were boring, and hopeful students eyeing the SU seats have been making noises up and down every lecture theatre, I remembered the message from Dr. Fajuyi, I still wonder what he wants to see me for, we were sworn enemies, I was famished and I needed F. O. O. D to think straight, I went to Chicken and Chillies instead of Coigne, I don’t want to bump into Farhan accidentally, God knows pictures of him and his girlfriend on almost everyone’s phone still haunts me. Chicken and Chillies was unfortunately filled to the brim, I overhead some people talking about Henry Sharkfish teeth being the one responsible for the crowd, he was contesting for SU Social secretary and he is paying for everyone’s meal at Chicken and Chillies, I caught him staring at me as I listened to the girls eavesdropping about him and his pimping business, he waved and I nodded and left the overcrowded restaurant.
Coigne is the only option left now, I can’t go to Amala Republic, their amala tastes like bitterleaf and their ewedu is like dribble, the vegetable is nothing to write home about! It is like eating raw leaves mixed with water.
Coigne was serene as usual with it cool atmosphere surrounding it, I went to the counter to get some food and made my way to the empty seats beside the door. Dr Fajuyi’s number flashed on my phone screen when I was almost done with my meal, I was unbothered as I swallow every spoon of rice. I was sipping my drink when I saw my phone blink,it was a text from him saying he had been waiting for me since 11am and it would be of benefit to me if I could come. Really? I downed the rest of my drink and straightened my skirt, I was about to push the door open when I bumped into Amina, Farhan’s fiancée, she smiled at me and stepped aside for me to pass, I smiled back and walked briskly towards my department, I was able to board a Marwa to the faculty and as I alight from the Marwa, I saw Farida and Fola Scott, I waved and rushed past them before she could stop me for small chats, I got to Dr. Fajuyi’s office and released the pent up breaths before I knocked, he was sitting behind his desk shuffling through papers, he broke into a grin when he saw me and asked me to sit down, he went into the inner office for some minutes and came out with some papers which he placed in front of me, I could see 100LEVEL QUESTIONs boldly written on one of it, he gave me the go ahead to check what it was and I saw it! Question paper for the course I had been carrying for three years!!! I stared wide eyed at him and he stared back before saying
‘if you cooperate, you won’t carry this course over again’