Trying so hard to fight this tears
I’m crazy worried
Messing with my head this fear
I am so sorry
You know you got to get it out
I can’t take it
That’s what being friend’s about,
Leomanade Mouth (determinate)
Tobi watched as she walked towards him. She was
wearing a short white designer gown a little above her
knee. Her hair was left unpacked as she flipped it to
her sides like a runway model tucking a strand that
fell onto her face neatly behind her left ear and
pouting her lips in the process. A brown coloured bag
with long straps clung to her sides like they were
meant to be there while she took careful, short, and
elegant strides in the brown coloured wedged shoes
she wore. Her eyes locked with his and she gave him
a soft infectious smile…
Okay, scratch that.
All that was just his imagination slash expectation.
Tori wasn’t wearing any white gorgeous designer
gown like he had pictured her in his head. Instead, she
was wearing a big white chiffon shirt which ended a
few inches below her knee over a pair of black
Her hair wasn’t even left flowing talk more of her
flipping it sideways in a model-like manner. Instead,
she had it packed into her habitual decent ponytail.
The only part of her dressing he got right was the
brown bag and the shoe.
Her choice of clothes always look boring, drab and dull
and definitely nothing like the fancy dresses every
average, NORMAL girl will wear. Something ‘Jo-ish’….
Yet, it always befit her small stature. It makes her
look much more innocent and cuter.
Even though he would like to see her try one of those
fancy and exquisite dresses, he doesn’t really have
any problem with her wardrobe choices.
Anything that suits her is fine…
Tobi wondered why couldn’t really lay his fingers on
the exact thing that attracted him to her.
Maybe her simplicity and cuteness? Or is it her sense
of humour and innocence?
He wouldn’t stake on any of that though.
He just seemed to like her without really having a
A wise blogger once said the purest of love is the one
without condition, attribute nor reason because when
love is based on reason or condition, second thoughts
and doubts set in when those attributes and
Yeah… He had been visiting some blogs for dating
So, where were we?
Tobi was leaning before his car in the hospital parking
lot while waiting for Tori who got put of the hospital
premises a while ago and was now a few miles away
from him. She wasn’t even looking up nor does it look
she noticed him. Everything about her, starting from
the almost staggering walking style she suddenly
adopted to the feet dragging with her gaze fixed on
the ground like she was searching for something that
wasn’t there all suggested how dejected and
disturbed she looked.
Tobi was wearing his grey suit even though he wasn’t
as excited about it as he was earlier this morning, he
still felt much more confident and most importantly,
the suit was a thousand times more comfortable than
the white one his mum chose for him this morning.
He seemed rather nervous as his fingers twitched at
the sight of her. His insides formed a knot and it was
then he knew he wasn’t ready.
Or was he?
‘Tori?’ Her name came out of his mouth sounding so
much like he was trying to confirm if it was really her.
He really was trying to ensure she really didn’t see
him when she went past his cars to waiting cabs a
few metres away from where he parked.
Tori raised her gaze to look at him with a blank and
sad expression. And that did the magic of unknotting
the knot in his stomach. There was really something
wrong with her. She staggered to his car after
minutes of standing mute and rooted to a spot. It
was more than obvious she was avoiding eye contact
‘Hey.’ She said rather too meekly.
Like she wasn’t excited to see him. Tobi could feel an
imaginary knife slice through his heart but he didn’t
let it show in his countenance.
She didn’t even call him to let him know the exact
time she would be getting off work.
He had been driving around town with no particular
destination and finally ended up in the hospital to wait
for her when he wasn’t at peace with himself just
lying on his bed at home.
‘Come on! It’s just been a day and you miss me this
much!’ He said gaily while he twisted his lips into a
lopsided grin. His idea was to amuse her but his
‘never dissapointing’ magic happened not to work
here as Tori only pouted her lips like she was about
to cry at his supposedly funny punchline.
‘Get in the car. Let’s talk on the way home.’ Tobi said
as he held her by the shoulder, leading her to the seat
beside the driver’s seat, making sure his palms linger
longer than usual on her shoulder.
Tobi wondered what could have caused the sudden
recession in mood while he drove. She was fine this
morning when they talked making it puzzling for the
change in mood.
Was the ‘almost kissing’ episode of them yesterday
somewhat too squeamish for her to handle that she
resorted into some sort of foul mood?
He needs to clear the air and ensure everything is fine
to make things less complicated for him.
‘Is it about yesterday? Thinking I was going to kiss
you?’ Tobi faked a huff to show how impossible that
sounds. ‘Don’t be delusional, I wouldn’t kiss you for a
million dollar!’ And his attempt at humour to cheer her
up crumbled once again as she only kept mute. Which
rather is very unusual especially when he talks like
that. On a normal day, he would be warming up for
her reply now.
Tobi took his eyes off the road for the first time since
they got inside the car to glance at her. Her eyes
seemed to have welled up with tears and it felt like
she was going to break down…
Okay, a tear just fell of her left eye…
Now, the right eye…
She was sobbing. Her face scrunched up in distress
as she struggled to wipe the tears off her face with
This is really bad. Tobi felt rather lost on what to do.
Did he aggravate the situation with his small talks?
‘Were you upset by what happened yesterday? I’m
‘I lost a patient today!’ She blurted out trying to keep
her voice steady while she still sobbed.
Tobi was at first relieved. Relieved he wasn’t the
reason behind her moodiness but it suddenly dawned
on him she just announced someone’s death to him.
This isn’t the time to jubilate.
But he couldn’t help wondering why she felt this bad
about losing a patient. Yeah, she was supposed to
feel bad but not to the extent of sobbing and feeling
all depressed like she just murdered someone.
She is a doctor for goodness sake and things like this
were bound to happen. Besides, doctors were meant
to be cruel.
Okay, taking that back. Doctors are cruel!
‘You shouldn’t beat yourself over something you can’t
possibly change. What’s the use of crying over spilt
milk? She is a patient, fine. Her death is sad but why
cry like you are responsible for it when I’m pretty sure
as hell you were only trying to save her? I don’t know
how you are going to handle further possible deaths if
you are like this everytime someone dies…’ Tobi
counselled feeling more anger than compassion. Anger
he almost blamed himself.
‘You won’t understand!’ She said keeping her voice
barely audible as her sobbing died down.
‘Then make me!’
‘She is Richard’s wife!’ Tori snapped. ‘She WAS
Richard’s wife.’ She said keeping her voice low like
the dead would hear her.
‘She was going to have her baby prematurely and we
lost her. I feel bad. I feel responsible. I feel like I was
careless and made an untraceable mistake which led
to her death. I wasn’t expecting Richard’s wife to be
the lady I was going to deliver her baby and when I
saw it was her, I was taken by surprise. Maybe I
fidgeted and made a horrible mistake due to my
unreadiness.’ She said every word hurriedly like she
was ordered to. Fright, guilt, and self blame was all
written all over as she sobbed.
Tobi understands now.
Tobi pulled over by the roadside while he rested his
on her shoulder to calm her. She kept sobbing into her
‘Do you take the grudge you had against him to his
wife’s labour room?’ He asked gently while he patted
her back soothingly. The process was more like
calming a child than flirtatious.
‘I forgot everything about our grudge immediately I
set my eyes on her. I swear all I was concerned about
was saving her because she was in so much pain. But
it’s weird right? I feel something weird. Something like
I unconsciously made a mistake that ended up killing
her…’ She explained sniffing at intervals.
‘Were you the only one there?’ He asked still patting
‘Did the others blame themselves?’ Tobi asked
interjecting her statement to make his point.
‘No but..’ She tried to explain further but Tobi cuts in.
‘Then forget about. I don’t know what kind of
conscience you have but this is just so simple. You
have nothing to do with her death and I can vouch for
you on that.’ He assured.
Tori wasn’t really comforted by that.
‘That’s the exact thing Dr Kamal said. He said I
shouldn’t blame myself about it. But, I really don’t
know. Richard had no idea I was in the hospital talk
more of delivering his wife’s baby. I saw him alright
but he didn’t see me. He was all tensed up until Dr
Kamal asked him to go get some made up things just
to get him out of the hospital to reduce his
nervousness. I hadn’t seen him ever since then. He
might end up finding out I was on the team and I’m
sure as hell he wouldn’t take it easy with me.’ Tori
said. ‘I’m scared!’ The glint in her eyes and the
goosebumps forming on her skin asserted her
‘Screw that! You shouldn’t worry about him. You
didn’t kill his wife and also, what’s this about Dr.
Kamal? He knows you dated Richard?’ He asked
ensuring he heard her right.
‘He is a consultant. He saw me crying after she died
and inquired why I was like that. I told him and he
promised to keep it a secret. He told me not to beat
myself about it…’
‘See. Everything is fine. Stop thinking about it. You’ll
be a lot happier if you care less about what Richard
would think.’ Tobi said smiling at her and Tori replied
with a faked, sad smile.
Tobi knew now is not the time to talk about his
That can wait.
Tori splashed water on her face and let her palm stay
still there. She was in the bathroom with a big towel
wrapped around her. It appeared she just finished
bathing but the bags under her eye which seemed to
have appeared overnight only eased a bit with her
The big bags under eye are only proofs of how hard
she had cried coupled with the sleepless night she
had due to the fact that she kept hallucinating. She
had this feeling Richard’s wife was watching her all
through the night and as a result, she couldn’t sleep.
She wished her conscience would just free her of this
guilt. When she eventually did find sleep, she had that
Yeah, she did have that dream again and it was a lot
scarier. Like for a moment, she had thought it really
happened. It was so much like reality that she was so
scared she actually died!
What is the big meaning attached to this dream?
And why the frequent reoccurrence.
Tori got some water from the tap and washed her
face with it. A close scrutiny of the eyebags from the
mirror showed how much it had eased. Satisfied with
her ‘not-so-good-not-so-bad’ looks, she went back
inside her room.
She got dressed for work and let her mind rove to
different stuffs while she was at it. Wondering how
Richard would react if he eventually found out about
her. She shrugged off the thought as it gave her the
‘You didn’t do anything. You were not holding any
grudges.’ Tori silently comforted herself even though
she wasn’t convinced.
Maybe emotions had taken a better part of her and
she had made a mistake without her knowing. It
sounded plausible yet she couldn’t help blaming
But she really wasn’t even thinking about James. In
fact, Tobi’s presence quickened the pace at which she
forgot him. She was too busy playing a character in
Tobi’s book of humour and playfulness to have
anything (by anything, she meant Richard) occupying
her thoughts aside work and of course, Tobi.
She really has to admit. She was nervous, scared and
unsure when she saw Richard’s wife. She was scared
of being in that situation. Scared of being one of the
people that would decide whether Richard’s wife
would live or die and she really tried to work towards
her living. She really did.
Instead of the anger she felt towards Richard some
months ago, she now feels pity and something else
she couldn’t comprehend. Fear possibly but she was
sure it isn’t only fear. He lost his wife and that is bad
enough but what was worse is Tori was there when
she stopped breathing.
‘Ready for work?’ Ebiere asked when Tori went to
meet her in the kitchen to say her goodbyes. Ebiere
was packing a plastic plate of rice inside a red
polythene bag. Tori nodded in reply to Ebiere’s
‘Is there something bothering you? Something you
want to share?’ Ebiere asked giving Tori’s face a
‘I’m fine.’ Tori forced a smile and Ebiere smiled back
while she moved to the big fridge in the kitchen. She
took a bottle of water from the fridge and dropped the
bottle inside the red bag before handing the bag to
‘Here, eat this at work.’ She said nudging Tori’s
shoulder. Tori took the bag gratefully and at that
moment, she caught a glimpse of Jo walk inside the
kitchen. She walked straight to the dispenser with a
Tori mummured a goodbye to Ebiere before making for
the door only to be stopped by Ebiere.
‘Tori,’ Ebiere called. ‘Johanna, you two should come
home for dinner. We have something very important
Tori nodded her comprehension and Jo only brought
the cup of water to her lips to hide her stiffness. Tori
exited before Ebiere says something else.
‘Would you please stop following me around!’ Tori
snapped at Marcus who parked his car a few
distances away to trail after Tori when the latter
refused to join him for a ride. Tori was now facing him
beside the road. She was exhausted after the day’s
work and she had a lot going through her mind and
that had been the reason why she walked to the main
road. She was walking to gather her thoughts. She
really doesn’t need Marcus to add to her many
‘I’m just so worried. You stopped picking my calls
and I checked up on you at your place but I only had
the chance to meet Tife….’ He seemed offended by
her snapping but still explained coolly. When it
appeared she wasn’t listening to him, he decided to
go straight to the point.
‘I really have to tell you this. It’s been on my mind
and I think it’s time I let you know about it. Tori, I..’
Tori didn’t let him finish his statement.
‘Marcus,’ Tori started slowly, making sure she wasn’t
raising her voice. ‘I’m sorry but whatever you have in
mind about us. About me, is not the same here. I’m
sorry but I’m not interested in you. Not like you are
anyway. I have a lot on my mind right now and you
wouldn’t want to make things worse for me by being
one of them. Please, try to stop seeing me if it’s
possible. I just need a break and it would be great if
you’d grant that….’ She paused to blink back the
tears welling up in her eyes. ‘Just grant that one
request.’ She said then turned to walk away from
him. She breathed out loudly while she sniffed when
she was sure she was far away from him.
She would just continue brooding about her life while
But just as soon as that came to mind, a car pulled
‘Marcus! You….’ Her words got caught up in her
throat when she saw who the driver was.
It was Dr. Jo and Tori wished she hadn’t said the first
‘Get in!’ Dr Jo ordered sternly still not taking her eyes
of the road.