The story so far:
“When people look at economics from the macro level, without also paying much attention to the micro-economics of any state, it only means sometime in the future there is going to be an economic implosion….”
It was all a boring drawl to Nike. Crap she was sure she wouldn’t need in the real world that awaited her. Who cares about what happened at micro or macro economics levels? She tried to concentrate on the lecturer as he continued to speak in a dull monotone that made her eyes to soon begin to water and her ears invaded by a shrill tone that refused to go away. She found it hard to concentrate and focus her mind. It was very strange, and yet quite stimulating to her that she could have her thoughts totally invaded by one boy’s face.
The face had just refused to go away, in spite of her best efforts to dispel it from her mind.
It was not a feeling she was accustomed to, but it was one she found rather overwhelming.She must see him again. It was like a drug that she needed badly to cure herself of an unnamed ailment. She tried to convince herself that she had to see him in order to redeem her reputation. But, in her heart she knew that she wanted to see him again for a totally different reason.
Unfortunately, she didn’t know his name or his department.
All night she had gone through the school’s website trying to identify the face from the photos of each student posted on there. It was not fun going through each face, one by one trying to figure out which one was that of her boy. Plus, there were some really ugly faces in there. Out of her vain sense of pride, she had checked out her own picture and found it was not totally a sad representation of her true self.
Others though, she found didn’t take as much trouble to look good for the shots that were posted against their names on the website. Her search had yielded little result, probably because she didn’t finish – it was not easy-going through more than ten thousand faces in a night or a week even.
She had given up after a few hours of fruitless labour and endurance scanning brutishly ugly faces, some with wicked tribal marks that almost made her wonder what crime the owners of such faces committed as babies to warrant such punishment.
So, here she was in her class unable to concentrate on the words coming out of from a human body which now carried a cockroach head standing in front of the classroom. She was damned to waiting and having her mind and thoughts infested by the thought of a face she knew she would never forget.
She had hoped though. If he was a student, they are sure to meet again.
His game plan had worked perfectly. He was confident he had his prey where he wanted her. She was too easy even. The fact he had shown her little attention as he bumped her almost to the ground had riled her as he had hoped. He had also made sure she saw his face, so she could remember it when next he made an appearance. But, he had been thrown an unexpected and unplanned bonus. She had come after him, credit to her bravado for not backing down when offended. But, in her bid to confront him for his misdemeanor he had been handed a smoking gun as a weapon – he saw in her eyes as soon as she came before him that she was already taken to him.
He had her now. She was firmly enmeshed in his snare.
He looked at her where she sat at the far end of the library. She was beautiful no doubt, with rich long hair he knew was natural and a glowing skin. She was going to be one of his most prized kills, he could see. She was very well put together for a student.
He began to walk towards her, going in for the first strike.
“Hi there, fancy seeing you again,” he sat before he was invited and looked her dead in the eye. He savoured her momentary gasp for breath on seeing who it was who had spoken to her. “I saw you from across the room and thought I recognized you. I couldn’t be sure though, as I couldn’t confirm if you were limping since you are seated,” he flashed her one of his very cute smiles.
“Hmmm, I see,” she was not cross that much he could tell, “Thank God nothing was broken. Or would you rather I catwalk to the end of the room for you to confirm for yourself you did no damage to me?”
More credit to her. Her recovery rate from momentary setback was fast. It was also good that she was not speaking with anger, but rather a friendly jibe at him. That was good for him. Not good for her though.
“There is no need for you to display your fine figure for the world to see,” he could almost spill his guts in laughter as he watched her face go through the many phases of emotion as she tried to decide what he meant.
She seemed to be struggling to determine if he had meant the words as a joke or if he was being mean as per his usual self. To help her out of the dilemma, he smiled. That should take the edge and bite off his words. However, they had achieved their purpose – she was not in control of this conversation.
He was and he could now take it anywhere he wanted.
“I was just around the corner and when I saw you, I wanted to come over and say hi and also see how you were doing,” still he wasn’t offering any apologies. He made sure he was looking straight at her face every time. It made her uneasy he could see and that was exactly what he hoped for.
“Thank you, I am fine and still in one piece.”
“Great news,” he stood up and left her without offering any formal introduction or any form of apology. His movements quick, so as not to afford her enough time to think and before she could get herself together to ask, he was out of her sight line and the library.
‘I don’t know what to do with myself,’ Nike felt positive she was going crazy. If she was now talking to her mirror on account of a boy she barely knew and whose face was the only thing she could remember about him, then she was definitely going crazy.
She moved away from the mirror and picked up her purse and keys. Maybe if she was out of her room and among her friends, she would be able to dispel the thought of him from her mind. For a few hours at least, till when she came back here.
“Hi,” she almost jumped out of her skin. She recognized the voice before she even saw the person to whom it belonged. Standing across her room was the guy. She couldn’t believe what was before her eyes, so she did what anybody in her position would do – She stepped back in her room and stood with her back against the door.
What was he doing here and how did he find her?
She paced her breath and then tried again. Maybe it was just her mind playing tricks on her. She stepped out of the door again and there he was, his back rested against the stone railing, wearing a dodgers cap and a white Nike loafers on black jeans and black t-shirt. His general appearance was very cool and he oozed confidence the way he stood there just waiting for her to come back out.
“And there she is again, the lady of the manor.”
This time she made it past her threshold and stood looking at him. She smiled and waved him away.
“How did you find my room?”
“It’s amazing how easy it is to find the most beautiful girl on campus,” he still hadn’t made a move and seemed like he was not ready to any time soon. He was more than confident, it was like the place was his and she was the one who was in unfamiliar territory.
“Ha! Ha! Quit joking and faffing around,” she found herself already mellowing to this unexpected charm. Who would have thought he had it in him to be this friendly, sociable and charming?
She moved closer and got another good look at his divinely beautiful face. It was the face that belonged to a magazine model. He was light complexioned, with full set of white teeth that beamed every time he smiled. His eyes were deep-set, very serious and hinting at secrets untold. Now, as she stood close to him she saw that he had a small scar at the top of his right eye brow. It wasn’t very noticeable from a distance. But, it was there and quite distinctive up close. She wondered how he had gotten the cut, to make such a scar on his almost perfect face.
“So, what do I owe this august visit? Even if I am still stumped on how you got to know where my room is.”
“I came to see how you were faring. Leg and all,” he was smiling again. It seemed he was always smiling, like he knew what his greatest weapon was and was ready to use it to maximum effect to dismantle all form of obstacles put up by feminine companions. Every time he smiled, it lit up his eyes and gave them a certain sheen and hue that was as captivating and hypnotic as any cheap opiate.
“Ah! I am touched. You that didn’t take a second look to be sure I was not in pieces on the floor last week when you got me crashing to the floor. By the way, tell me your name,” she was not letting him get away this time without having a name. Just in case he decided to do one of his disappearing acts.
He moved away from the railing, and to her surprise took her arm at the elbows and started turning her around to inspect her. That totally threw her off-balance, his touch sending tingles and spikes up her arm.
“Yeah, I can see you are in a good state. Every thing is where and as it should be,” he let go of her arm. He stood only inches away from her face and she could smell his perfume. As far as she could tell it was Brut and it was strong. She liked it and she felt even more attracted to this dude standing several inches above her, even in her high-heeled shoes.
“Well, I will save you the trouble. I am wearing Brut, the one that is labelled – Double The Man In You. And my name is Timi, but most of my friends call me Shai,” he stepped back then and offered his hand for a handshake.
Nike took the offered hand and felt the warmth and strength in the squeeze he gave it. It sent the tingles and spikes which had spread to the tips of her fingers racing back up her forearm and into her shoulders and up her spine into her brain.
OMG! She was going to be totally lost to this boy – Timi. She liked Shai much better. It was a counter-point to his general manners, this guy wasn’t shy in any bit. If anything he was brazen, direct and fucking sexy.
“Truth though, I followed you back to your department last week after our collision,” she gave him a sharp look of remonstration. He stopped short as her eyebrows arced upwards every in a show of disapproval at his choice of words, “OK, after I bumped you in the hall,” he smiled at her as he rephrased and then went on, “and so I asked one of your course mates for your name. From there it was not difficult. I checked the school website and voilà, there you were in all your beautiful glory.”
“Ok, that figures.” It threw her mind back to her own failed attempts to find him on the internet. So, all the while someone was also doing the finding. Wonderful! That told her one thing, he wanted to know her and meet her again.
“Ok. So that explains two of my questions. I know your name and how you got here. Now, tell me what you want?”
She has to quickly establish the codes of engagement here, before she found herself totally lost to him in this battle for turf. The rules of engagement had to be set in place to ensure they both knew who was holding the high stakes in this game. She hoped her tone of voice presented the same effect she wanted it to on him.
She was not going to be easy.
“I wanted to ask you out.”
She was reeling in her mind. Which guy does this?
The brazenness and frontal assault was epic. This dude took no prisoners and was not one to beat around the bush much. She found she couldn’t speak as she just stood before him, her eyes glued moronically to his face.
“I want to take you out, apologize and then ask you out. In that order,” he took her arm again and she was powerless in preventing him from touching her. As a matter of fact, all she wanted was for him to touch her. She had not come across a guy like him, who talked and acted like he did. And it was intriguing and thoroughly incapacitating – even if it all went against her self-styled creed.
His approach tore all the form books on girl-boy ice-breaking techniques and tactics.
She allowed him to lead her down the corridor, like a sheep being led to the slaughter-house.