THE PROMISE - Episode 1

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Nigeria's leading fictional story blog - PhD in Biochemistry, University in London UK, lips, I may kiss you, Regent’s Park in London, love.

“If that is love, then I want all of it,” Lydia said with an audacity that left Everest somewhat surprised. Lydia was not the talking type, and here she is discussing matters of the heart with vigor and confidence. “But the truth remains that what we both have described is not love…it is nothing short of utter consternation,” Everest remarked. “And who said love is meant to be crystal clear?” Lydia shot back at him maintaining her new-found will and unblinking confidence. Everest and Lydia had been neighbors in the Postgraduate office at their University in London, UK where they were both pursuing a PhD in Biochemistry. They had barely said much to each other over the last two years until lately.

Somehow, they began to spend lunch breaks together, casually discussing politics, history, geography, pop culture and sports. “If love were bright and clear, then there’d be no need for faith. Everything you wanted in the other person would be perfectly laid out for you to see…and in some cases, even far ahead. You’d be able to predict what they’d and how they’d respond to your actions and quirks. Truth is, love is not like that. It is like the thick rain forest with mighty branches and leaves forming a dense mesh that blurs your vision. You must trust with all your heart against all odds to step in and attempt to break through the barriers that stand in your way. Mind you, it won’t be easy,” Lydia philosophized.

“I never knew you had a bit of philosophy in your repertoire,” Everest replied jokingly. “You have a good point Lydia, but love is not entirely a matter of the heart. The head comes into play as well. Here, my head tells me that you and I cannot possibly date each other. On the other hand, my hearts is dying for you. My hands are itching to stretch forth and touch your immaculately beautiful face. Each time I behold your face…your full lips, your richly dark skin dark, your bold and beautiful eyebrows; your glistening eyes, and long, straight Indian hair, I want to grab you and press you firmly against my chest. I cannot tell you enough how much I have hungered to reach out and plant my lips on yours. I can tell your presence from a mile away, Lydia. Your rich, radiant and unique perfume fills my lungs with life and warmth each time you walk by. I have watched you for a long time, wondering what it would be like to just feel your luscious skin against mine. To me, you are an epitome of beauty.”

Lydia’s chest rose and dropped back down, and then rose yet again before heading back down in a rhythmic flow that depicted the earthquake of feelings that were running riot in her heart. She closed her eyes momentarily, biting her lips as though she wanted to grab hold of something – something very precious. Then she opened her eyes and said rather abruptly, “Then do it Everest. Take me in your arms and wrap your big strong arms around me. What stops you from doing it right now if you love me that much…even just a little bit!” “No, I can’t” “Why? Why must you raise my blood pressure with words that I have hungered for over the past two years sitting beside you and dreaming of you at night when I am in another man’s arms? You have me standing before you and I offer up myself to you...all of me. Take me in your arms and kiss me, Everest.” “You said it yourself Lydia. I may kiss you for all I care or hold you with the strength of a lion but at the end of the day, you will return to another man. You have been with him for years now and you have told me that you don’t even know how to end the relationship, yet you want me to hold you. Besides, I am African and you are Indian. I know how those things work. In the end, you’d end up with him, leaving me emotionally shattered and bruised. I’d rather keep to myself and see you as a friend. That is what my head tells me.”

“Years from now, you will look back on this moment and wish you took me in your arms.” “To what end Lydia? To what end my friend?” Everest asked raising his voice in frustration. A part of him wanted to grab her and forget about what his head muttered to him.  “Do you have to be very rational about everything?” She asked moving closer to him. “Not always, but as much as I can,” he replied. “But I don’t love him anymore. I have dreamt of you for several months. You live in my heart. When I eat, I think of you. When I sleep, I dream of you. When I am walking the streets or working, you are in my thoughts. I want you Everest. It does not matter where we come from. I want you by all means.” “I want you too, and I believe that it does not matter where we come from, but truth is, it does when you are with another guy. One that you live with; one that is from your part of the world. I hate to be mean to him, but the only way for us to be together is if he is no longer in your life. I will not be a party to anything that goes on while you are still with him.”

Lydia moved a bit closer to him. He could see her chest rising and falling just as his was falling and rising too. He stared at her closely and her beauty swept him off his feet.  Her eyes were becoming misty. Her lips were succulent and her scent filled his lungs, mesmerizing his senses. She pushed even closer, placing her soft tender hand on his chest. He felt a wave dash frenziedly through him. He could hear songs that his grandfather used to sing to him as a child… Lydia’s touch was taking him to a different world. She moved her hand over his chest and then moved it to his biceps that bulged mightily under his shirt, making their presence clearly felt. She placed a second hand on his other bicep and moved both hands around gently. She almost lost her breathe as she felt the tightness of his muscles. She reached for his lips with hers, pressing harder towards him. Everest stood like a general whose battalion had lost a war. Like a helpless mendicant, he stared futilely at her. His defenses had been breached with pinpoint accuracy.

They were standing near the rose garden at the famous Regent’s Park in London. It was a beautiful November afternoon. Winter was beginning to announce its presence...slowly but surely. The trees had shed their leaves and the flowers were long gone. Squirrels summersaulted in the trees as they made last minute efforts to gather their last supplies before the cold hands of winter gripped the land. Everest looked up and a squirrel stared at him and nodded as though it actually had a connection with Everest. It was as if the little creature was asking him what he was waiting for. Across the garden was another couple kissing as though tomorrow was never coming. Finally, Everest gave up. He grabbed Lydia and planted his lips on hers. They could both hear their hearts pounding excitedly.

Their hands ransacked each other’s skin while their lips wondered without limits. They stopped, stared at each other as though neither of them could believe what was going on. Then, they went back to kissing and cuddling. After what seemed like eternity, they held hands and walked along the park, stopping every few minutes to repeat the same thing – a passionate kiss. “I have longed for this from the moment I set my eyes on you,” Lydia said. “When was that?” Everest asked him. “I remember it vividly as though it were yesterday. We were in our first year PhD and we had to attend an orientation program in Professor Williams’ office. You wore a pair of black jeans, a blue T-shirt with a white stripe across the front and a pair of brown sneakers with blue stripes to match. And, you wore your wonderful perfume too, which left me sniffing at the air for more of you.” “You actually remember it?” He asked. “I remember it vividly. I have played that very moment in my head over and over again for the past two years. You smiled as if you had just fallen from heaven. There was a peace…a joyous peace about you. I doubt that you remember anything about that day.”

Everest smiled and said, “I remember it all. You wore a pair of black jeans too and a grey top with white and blue flowery patterns. You had a pair of flat brown shoes and a brown purse too.” “You actually noticed?” “Yes, I did. I have always noticed you.” “Please kiss me again,” she said. They stopped under a tree and began to kiss as though their lives depended on the kiss. Then, a piece of dry stem dropped from the tree and fell on Lydia’s shoulder. A squirrel had broken it off as if to warn them off its territory. They smiled at the stem and then at the squirrel that climbed further up the tree to take cover. Arm in arm, they strolled into Baker Street as the weak November sun disappeared quickly behind thick clouds heralding nightfall.

As though they had no cares in the world, they walked to Lydia’s doorstep holding hands, laughing loudly and stopping intermittently to stare into each other’s eyes. Then, all of a sudden a gloomy feeling came upon them. “So, what next?” He asked “Please don’t tell me your rational side will walk away from me. I can’t even breathe without you,” Lydia replied. There was an urgency to her voice – a tone of anxiety. “But tonight, you will be sleeping in his arms while I will lie in my apartment wondering what he is doing with you.” “He is not going to do anything with me. Just give me some time, Everest. Please, I need you so badly. I have hungered for love as strong as this all my life. You are my prince, my warrior…the man I have craved all these years. Please promise me you will not leave me.” “I have to be with you first before we can talk about leaving you my dear. For now, you are still someone else’s.” “It won’t be long. I will end this and you and I can be together.” “I will be waiting.” Lydia opened the glass door and entered the six storey building. Everest watched her through the glass doors as she walked away…beautifully. All of a sudden, she ran back towards him, opened the door and jumped into his arms. They began to kiss with intense passion all over again.

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THE PROMISE - Episode 1
Nigeria's leading fictional story blog - PhD in Biochemistry, University in London UK, lips, I may kiss you, Regent’s Park in London, love. An African Literary Blog
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