Everyone called Niran and me ‘five and six’ because we were always together. Whenever you see Niran and I am not with him, just look back and you will surely see me coming right behind him. He was not my first love however; he was my first true love.
I met Niran inside the luxury bus on my way back to Lagos from Kaduna where I went to attend my cousin’s wedding. We sat together and moments into the journey, we started chatting. By the time we got to Lagos, we exchanged phone numbers and email addresses to keep in touch. Before we knew it, we had started dating. We dated for close to two years. However, I broke up with him after he failed the one test I gave him which I however regretted later.
I wanted to know how much he loved me so I lied to him that I was pregnant. He told me he was not ready to become a father. In fact, he was not the father of the bastard in my womb. He insulted me and called me all sorts of names. I wept and pleaded with him not to reject me and the baby but instead he pushed me out of his house.
Standing on the doorstep, I said, “I thought you loved me?” “Julie, I do love you but I am not ready to be a father. You better go and find the father of the bastard you are carrying. Better still, go and abort that thing you call a baby in your womb,” Niran stressed. “And if I refuse?” I asked. “Well that is the end of the relationship,” he declared. “You profess your love to me everyday but now I know better, you don’t love me at all,” I sobbed.
I was so bitter and disappointed at his reaction. “So if I was really pregnant, Niran would have actually denied the pregnancy. Men are something else,” I murmured. I walked away and decided that it was the end of the relationship even though I loved him so much. Although, he was not my first love, he was my first true love. There are times I think about him and regret why I had to put him through that test which he failed woefully.
Surprisingly, we met again three years later in Enugu but in a rather strange circumstance. That day, after I left Niran’s house, I vowed that I was going to stay off relationship for at least two years. Nevertheless, about a year later, I met Ossai in Port Harcourt and he swept me off my feet. He loved and adored me so much. I loved him too but I was scared of being hurt so I didn’t give the relationship my all. About seven months later, he proposed and I accepted. A month later, he was transferred to Enugu from their head office in Port Harcourt. We were both scared that distance will put a strain on our relationship but we were able to come up with a plan that will not make us feel each other’s absence too long.
Every weekend, I travel to Enugu to spend the weekend with Ossai. However the last time I visited, Ossai informed me that his younger brother’s friend will be putting up with him for a while until he gets his own accommodation because he just got a job in Enugu.
“Julie, Jason my friend’s brother, will be spending some time with me before he gets his own apartment. He has just got a job here in Enugu and he does not know anybody here except me. I am sure you will meet him when next you come. He is a nice person,” he disclosed. “That is alright. I am sure I will see him when I come in two weeks time. At least it is not a lady that is coming,” I jokingly said.
Two weeks later, I went to visit Ossai as usual. But, I decided to surprise him. Instead of travelling to Enugu on a Saturday morning as I usually do, I took an evening flight on Friday. When I got to Ossai’s house, the gateman was even surprised to see me. When I enquired after Ossai, he said he just came back from work about two hours ago and must be resting.
I met the parlour door open, the television was left on the highest volume and everywhere was littered with cigarette and empty bottles of beer bottles. “What happened here? But Ossai does not smoke so how come this place is like this?” I muttered. I turned down the volume of the television and made straight to Ossai’s bedroom.
On getting to his bedroom, what I saw with my eyes, even in my dreams I would swear that he was not capable of doing such. The bedroom door was left ajar, I quietly pushed it open. First the room reeked of cigarette and alcohol and he was in bed with two women half nude. I was so shocked that I didn’t know when I squealed. Surprised to see me, he immediately ordered the ladies to leave the room. They jumped out of the bed, picked all their belongings on the floor and ran out.
“Ossai, so this is what you do in Enugu. In fact, when did you start ‘carrying’ women? Hmm … maybe this is the real you and you have been pretending all this while. What have I done to warrant this humiliation? I decided to come a day earlier just to surprise you but I can see you surprised me instead,” I sobbed. “Julie, what you saw is not really what it seems. I was just having fun. I don’t love any of those women,” he explained. “I thought I knew you but I now know I actually don’t. I thought you don’t smoke nor drink but I guess I was wrong,” I emphasised.
As I rushed out of Ossai’s bedroom crying, I bumped into Niran. Shocked, I looked at him from the head to toe sobbing. He held my hands and asked, “Julie, quite a long time, what are you doing here?” I removed his hand and ran to the sitting room. He came after me, so did Ossai.
Ossai tried pleading with me but I told him he was a big disgrace and disappointment. About 30 minutes later, when I had calmed down, Ossai said, “Julie, please meet Jason, my brother’s friend that I told you about.” “We have met before. I know Julie but she does not know me as Jason. She knows me as Niran,” Jason revealed. Ossai was surprised that we knew each other and was interested in knowing more about us. Niran told him all about us and how he regretted his actions, but the most painful was letting me go. In the presence of Niran, he apologised and professed his love for me. He pleaded with me to give him another chance so that he could rewrite the wrong he did to me.
At this point, Ossai was furious. “Jason you must be mad. Have you forgotten she is my fiancée? You had your chance with her and you blew it. She is mine now,” Ossai retorted. There was so much misunderstanding in the house that evening that Ossai asked Jason to leave his house. “Jason, please pack your belongings and leave my house. You cannot come between Julie and me. I will do whatever it takes to keep and marry her,” he stressed. Jason packed and left that night while I travelled back to Port Harcourt on Saturday morning because I could not stand the situation on ground. Now Ossai and Niran are fighting themselves over me and their fight is turning really dirty. I am afraid they may injure or even kill themselves. Ossai’s family is insisting that I must not leave their son while Niran is intensifying all efforts to ensure that he wins back my love. My own family has given me an ultimatum of four months to get married. They don’t care whether it is Ossai, Niran or someone else. All they know is that I must get married in four months time.
Niran is my first and only true love but do I have to marry him after what happened between us? Ossai has disappointed me beyond my imagination. Can I still trust him? Do I even really know who he is? Maybe I have to pray that someone else should come along before the ultimatum expires. I am so confused. What do I do?