​If there was a right word to describe what Amma went through with Daniel, it would be strange.

The experience was really thrilling; talking to someone new and not getting beaten or slapped or yelled at before ending the conversation, it was really different and for the first time in her life, she liked it.

The feeling was different, it was somewhat exciting and it left tight knots in her belly. There was something exciting about Daniel. She didn’t know it yet, but Daniel was about to be the best thing that would ever happen to her.

She never believed she could meet someone like that, a guy to say the least. He was really funny and brutally honest. She bit her lower lip, remembering how he confronted her about her attitude. She never really thought her attitude was whack – as he stated. 

Hesitantly, she admitted that she is not the most outspoken and nicest girl in the school but she wondered quietly if her attitude was really ‘’whack’’.

She knew she would love to see him again, but she didn’t want to concur to the feeling of wanting to see him again. She glanced at her wrist watch; her next class would start soon. She had nothing important to do, she thought about going back to the lake. Perhaps Daniel would still be there.

She laughed at herself for a while and suddenly, her phone began to ring.


Her heart fell out of her chest. She starred at her phone for a few seconds and contemplated on whether to pick the call or not. But she knew the consequence of not picking his call. She squeezed her face and picked it.

‘’I want you at home right now!’’ His husky voice said. 

‘’But I have a class’’ she muttered.

‘’Listen Bayie, you may be in that school on scholarship but who is your sole provider?’’ he glowered.

She shook her head and fought back a tear. Was this how her fate was written?

‘’You’’ she said slowly.

‘’Good, then if you know what is good for you, catch the next bus and get  here in the next fifteen minutes’’ he said authoritatively and hung up.

She walked away from the road leading to the theatre and sat on a concrete bench in a secluded place under a tree. She was living under a lunatic’s roof. She was fed up but it had never seemed like she had a choice . She could run away but there was nowhere to go, no one to stay with. 

She buried her face in her palms and fought back the rushing tears as hard she could. She jolted as she felt a hand touch her. It was Daniel. He looked puzzled and worried. She wiped her tears quickly with her hands. 

‘’Here’’ he said gently, offering her a white handkerchief. 

She breathed heavily and stood up with force. This is exactly what she had been avoiding, getting pity from strangers who knew nothing about her, about her struggles.

‘’Okay, you have to stop showing up everywhere I go’’ she said with fury.

‘’Call it coincidence, I was on my way to class and I saw you here, are you okay?’’ he said gently.

Only if he knew what she goes through every day. But she promised herself not to breakdown in his presence.

‘’Yes, I am fine. I just had something in my eyes. I will see you later, I have to go’’ she said hastily, grabbing her cross-bag and walking away. She didn’t want him to see that part of her life. No one has to know or at least pretend they care about her.

‘’Wait, Amma!’’ he said, stopping her on her tracks. He walked towards her and faced her squarely with a worried look on his face.  She stared down on her sneakers to avoid his piercing gaze. 

‘’I know you consider me as an intruder and someone you think wouldn’t understand even if you try to explain what is going on with you. But, I am here if you need me. But please don’t shut me out’’ he said with worry buried on his forehead as she looked up to his face. His eyes were black charcoal in color, piercing deep into hers like they could see right through her.

Right now, she just wanted to break down on his chest and cry out all her tears. Tell him everything she has been going through and he would be the hero and do something to change her life and they would both live happily ever after. But fairytales don’t work where there are real people with real pains in real life.

So she shook her head and released her hands from his and she ran as fast as her legs could take her… away from him and back to her personal hell.  




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