Cos if I want you
And I want you babe
Ain’t going backwards
Won’t ask for space
Cos space was just a word made up by someone
who’s afraid to get too
Nick Jonas (Close)
It was pretty awkward being amidst a family when
they were having a fight. Tori couldn’t even
concentrate on the soap opera on the TV because of
the tenseness in the room. Everybody in the sitting
room has a couch to him/herself with different
thoughts on each minds and their eyes sternly fixed to
the screen of the big flat screen TV.
She had been so bored that she had completely
surveyed the sitting room like ten times and when she
realised there was nothing new to see, she had had
her gaze fixed on the TV screen.
Tori glanced at Tobi at intervals and not once did he
relax the frown masking is face a bit. Whatever his
mum had said really put him in a bad shape. Tori
couldn’t help wondering what his dad had to do that
the mentioning of his name stirs so much anger.
His mum had this ‘I shouldn’t have told him’ look on
her face. Weirdly, Tori used the opportunity to assess
his mum’s feature. She was pretty young to be Tobi’s
mum. In looks, she could easily pass for his elder
sister. With her petite and miniature stature nobody
would argue with her if she claims someone in her
At what age did she even have Tobi?
And sitting quietly directly opposite Tobi was Tife. Tori
could see the confusion in her eyes. It was obvious
she had no idea what was going on between her mum
and her brother. She seemed rather lost.
Tori could sense their wish in the atmosphere. The
only wish those three had going through their minds
that ryhmed was for her to leave.
Of course, she would be glad to leave. She was
actually the one tormented by the silence. She was
the one who was most uncomfortable in this situation
but there was nothing she could do. The rain has
refused to stop and she had to sit with her buttocks
glued to the seat and watch her host-family give one
another the silent treatment.
The worst part of it was, she had something stuck in
her throat and she couldn’t even cough it out because
she thought she was going to draw unnecessary
attention to herself and that would be very bad. So all
she did was swallow the saliva to avoid coughing.
She raised her gaze to the big wall clock on the wall
and the time read 8:45
‘It’s getting late already. You should get going.’ Tobi
said rising. Tori could sense the urgency in his voice
and she just stood up without saying anything about
the rain which seemed to have become more
aggressive. She stood up like a wooden toy that just
had its strings pulled.
‘But it’s still raining…’ His mum protested.
‘I know.’ He half shouted. ‘That’s why I’m going to
drive her home.’ He closed his eyes as he tried to
control his anger. Graping the car key on the centre
table, he walked out with Tori trotting silently behind
him. Tori said her goodbyes to the females in the
house who in turn reply her with faked smiles after
which Tife rose and followed them. She went straight
to opening the gate and she waited to close it after
they were gone.
The first thing Tori did was cough when she got
outside then let her lungs inhale a whole amount of
moist oxygen. Rain fell on her nose and trickled down
her chin in the process. Tobi was already inside the
car by the time she was done. Noticing this, she ran
to sit on the passenger’s seat beside him. She didn’t
want to aggravate his anger.
Tori waved at Tife as they went past her through the
gate. She looked back to see her close the gate. It
was a better view compared to this stone cold guy
sitting beside her.
‘You didn’t even ask where I was staying.’ Tori tried
to start a conversation.
‘Where are you staying?’ He concentrated on the road
as he asked rather too straightforward.
She told him. And they drove in silence again. For
Until Tori tried her luck again.
‘So…’ She had no idea what to say. She just let the
‘so’ trailed off expevting him to add something which
he oddly didn’t do.
Tori didn’t know why she cared if he talked or not.
Amazingly, she was missing his egoistical talks and
cockiness. She felt like a fool after saying that two
letter word which ended up being meaningless. She
made up her mind not to say a word again.
She was talking again!
Is her mouth dumb or something?
‘…do you want to talk about it?’ She completed it this
time and it sounded so wrong she fought the idea of
shutting her eyes in disgrace.
‘You are much of a talkative for someone who was
only heartbroken yesterday.’ He said and the frown on
his face seemed to have vanished. He had this
expressionless face which was all on the road.
‘Well, I wouldn’t say I’m happy. But the truth is, I’m
not sad about it. It had been a while since I already
thought we weren’t together anymore. Yesterday just
summed my doubts all up. Besides, there are a few
number of people I have to be strong for and dwelling
in the past and finding it difficult to move on is a sign
of weakness which would be against my proclaimed
strenght.’ She said those words as if she memorised
it. Staring blankly at the road. ‘I’m not letting
anything or anybody drag me down. It’s my new
motto. To not be drag down during difficult times
because no one would pull me up when I refuse to get
up. ‘ She added looking at him.
He had been staring at her while she was saying her
thoughts. The smile and look of a proud a motherhen
on his face. Even though the look made her feel odd,
she was proud too.
Proud she made him smile.
He looked away the moment he saw she was back to
staring at him.
‘But don’t you think ‘To not be dragged down during
difficult times because no one will help me up when I
refuse to get up’ is kinda too long for a motto. Using
the initials alone would add up to 18 letters or so.
TNBDDDD…. Who does that?’
Tori didn’t know bringing him back to being himself
really has to start with him using her as a victim of
‘Like you have a better idea.’ She scoffed looking out
the window in faked annoyance.
‘I do. Emperor Tobi to the rescue. To be happy is
simply the summary.’
Surprisingly he made sense.
For the first time though.
Tori was silent as she thought about what he said.
‘I’m happy for you on your new found confidence.
Congrats. That means you wouldn’t have to cry me to
‘Seriously? I was only sniffing when I called you. You
shouldn’t make things up.’
‘I don’t make things up. You must have cried so bad
your sniffing sounded so much like weeping then.’
‘Enough about me crying. Do you want to talk about
what happened back at your home?’
The silence told her he doesn’t want to.
‘You can cry on my shoulder if you want to. I have a
big hankie here too and I won’t mind giving it to you
if you’ll need it.’
‘Well, I don’t want to talk about it.’ He was back to
‘I told you about my relationship with Richard when
you asked me to. That’s like my greatest secret. Why
are you being secretive? I thought we had a secrecy
‘I didn’t push you to tell me. You told me because you
needed to talk to someone about it.’
‘So, what you are saying is, you don’t need to talk to
anyone about it?’
He hesitated for a while.
‘No.’ He finally said ‘and if you don’t mind I want to
focus on driving.’
‘Are you indirectly shutting me up?’
‘I’m not shutting you up. I’m just asking you to stop
‘That is a fancy statement for shut up.’
‘I am ASKING you! not COMMANDING you! ‘Shut up’
is a command.’
‘Now you are bragging you know grammar…’
‘Really? Fine you win, you can talk me to death!’
Tori smiled and looked out the window to hide her
She was almost home.
‘You’d turn at this junction.’ She directed, pointing.
A few minutes and they were in front of her place.
‘Thanks for the ride.’ She said smiling when she
stepped out closing the door after her. She walked to
the door of her appartment a little bit wet as the rain
slightly drenched her. She tried to unlock the door but
the key won’t even pass through the lock. She tried it
again and it was obvious the lock had been changed.
She was going to try putting the key inside the lock
again when she sighted her stuffs on the ground
beside the door. Her eyes trailed to some of her stuffs
littered on the ground all dirty and muddy showing
how heavily they had been battered by the rain.
She had been evicted without notice.
She folded her arms across her chest as she leaned
against the door. Depressed.
This was more than a disaster. She had her things
thrown out while it was raining and it was late yet
she has nowhere to stay.
She was depressed. So depressed she didn’t want to
pack the stuffs littered on the ground as rain battered
them the more.
Even if she did pack them, where would she go?
‘You surely are someone who doesn’t stick to your
own vows, aren’t you?’ It was Tobi’s voice. She
turned around and he was standing behind her.
Hand’s in pants pockets.
‘What happened to ‘To not be dragged down during
difficult times because no one will help me up when I
refuse to get up?’
Tori couldn’t utter a word as he shook his head then
bent down to pick her wet luggage and bag. She
watched as he packed her littered stuff into one of the
polythene bag on the ground then made abruptly for
his car. She watched him dropped everything in the
trunk of his car and clap the sand off his hand after
shutting the truck.
‘What are you doing?’ She asked, looking down at her
feet as she came towards him.
You don’t need a soothsayer to tell you how
embarrassed she was.
‘My mum and sis would be glad you’d be staying with
He said then entered the car and started the engine
pretending he didn’t see her stay rooted to a spot
To be continued