It was a Friday at last and Kevwe was glad; glad because the weekend was finally here. Work always ended early on Fridays. Her boss had travelled as he usually did every weekend leaving her and her colleagues to close when they deemed fit. She smiled as she opened the door of the house, thinking to herself the best way to spend the weekend this time. “Wouldn’t be bad to go see a movie would it”, she thought to herself. On the other hand, she could organize a nice barbecue picnic in the compound and everyone could contribute and bring friends…sounded like fun at the thought of it, then she remembered not all of them in the house were currently employed and so not all would be able to contribute. “Well, that shouldn’t stop the party” she thought optimistically.
A full week living with her new housemates was an entire new experience compared to her days in the hostel and living with Maryam off Campus. The boys could be annoying at times and they were always hungry. But it was all fun and a barbecue picnic to celebrate the first weekend sounded like much more fun to her.
“…… so when do you think I will get a feedback?” Justin was on the phone. He paused to hear what the person on the other end had to say. “I understand sir but it is taking a long time”. She waved him and walked into her room.
Tokunbo and Justin’s bond was obviously strong or maybe they just liked the extra space, they had taken the master bedroom leaving everyone else to have a room to themselves with an extra room to spare. They were in the process of turning it into a laundry room. They were just waiting for the washing machine Maryam said she would get. She enjoyed the setting of the house because her room was downstairs and the kitchen was spacious. She had always wanted to run a 5-star restaurant and now, she had her very own practice field. She had always loved to cook, one of the things Maryam loved about her back in school, as Maryam didn’t always have to bother about cooking. Kevwe thought of herself as a cuisine freak who was always eager to try her hands on new recipes; as it was, she had about three new recipes in mind that she had been dying to have a go at.
She dropped her things on her bed telling herself she would fix up the room later and went back to the living room where Justin had ended his call and was watching a tech documentary on DSTV.
“How far?” Kevwe hailed him
“Hey, how you dey?” Justin replied. It was such a normal thing to answer a question with another question.
“You bring better come?” Justin asked her. That was one of his numerous ploys in letting anyone know that he was hungry. Kevwe knew this, and wasn’t exactly in the mood to play “mummy” at the moment.
“Today is Friday now. I don’t go to the restaurant, I am mainly in the office. Besides can’t you cook for us for once?” Kevwe asked him. She was somewhat angry at the fact that Justin who was unemployed, chose not to help with cooking since he was at home more than anyone, instead, he chose to wait till some chef with a good heart at that time chose to sacrifice time in the kitchen to fill bellies.
“You want everyone to purge abi?” Justin answered her. Justin had never been one to cook, couldn’t even boil rice or yam without burning it. He never minded being teased about being such a terrible cook, as far as he was concerned, he was made on earth to be fed and not to do the feeding. She shook her head at him.
“I heard you over the phone, any luck?” She asked him.
Justin sighed. “Nothing” he sounded deflated. “The man said the interview was only two weeks ago, that they are still processing it”.
“All that one na grammar” Kevwe said in pidgin, “dem don know who dem want, make dem no dey form ‘process’”.
Justin was the only one in the house without a job. Tokunbo and Maryam resumed their new jobs on Monday, Matthew had been working for a year now before meeting the group and Kevwe retained her job she had during NYSC. It had been four months since he finished service and still he was unemployed. He was beginning to get really frustrated.
“Don’t worry dear, something will come up” Kevwe tried to encourage him. As annoying as he was, she still liked him.
“I hear you, make I go soak garri” Justin got up heading to the kitchen giving her a ‘pity me’ face.
“Aren’t you tired of garri? And don’t give me that face, I will only cook dinner.” Kevwe said smiling at his childishness. Even though she had decided not to play mummy today, she couldn’t help but feel for him.
“Better than nothing” Justin said happily. There was a knock on the door which Kevwe stood up to get.
Kevwe didn’t like that they still had no guard to man the gate. She was uncomfortable with people walking in and out of the compound like it was a public lounge. Although Tokunbo had said he was handling it, she was going to bring it up again and make sure the ‘handling’ was being effected.
“Hello” a fair, smallish lady stood as Kevwe opened the door. Behind her where three medium size luggage bags. Kevwe looked from the girl to the bags and back.
“How can I help you? Kevwe said, being deliberately impolite.
“I am Priscilla Amadi, you can call me Pris. I am moving in today” Priscilla said smiling pleasantly. She had been very excited but also anxious about this venture. She didn’t know what to expect and here was this lady not being nice. She had to sound nicer then, she was obviously a sweet type, but Kevwe was in no mood for such sweetness today, especially not from a stranger who could threaten her space in her beloved kitchen.
“Move to where?” Kevwe had a confused look. She was hoping the girl would say she had lost her way, and would ask for proper directions to wherever she needed to be at the time…anywhere but this house.
“Who is there Kevwe?” Justin asked from inside the house.
“I don’t know oh. One babe that says she moving in but I don’t know where to” Kevwe replied. “Excuse me” Priscilla said taken aback. “Who sneezed?” Kevwe asked sarcastically. She was going to have fun with this one. She could even decide to make a play-thing out of her if she chose.
“Huh?” It was now Priscilla’s turn to be confused.
“You said ‘excuse me’ and I asked who sneezed. What’s the huh for?” Kevwe replied her. By then Justin had come to the door. “Damn, she’s a pretty one” he thought.
“Hey hello” he said trying to sound pleasant. “Excuse my friend, she is not so receptive to strangers”.
“See mumu. You just see fine girl your sense don back flip go stupidity mode abi?” Kevwe hissed and left the two of them.
Priscilla was not liking any of this one bit. “Sorry but am I in the wrong house? Isn’t this where Matthew Aduku lives with a friend called Tokunbo?” She asked.
“Yeah, that’s right” Justin answered. In his mind he was wondering how Tokunbo got to know all the fine babes. What kind of luck did that guy have? He made a mental note to ask Toks for the new girl’s bio when he got back from work.
“Well Matthew told me his friends had a place with an extra bedroom and were looking for an extra housemate. I even spoke to Tokunbo who told me I could move in today, so I came” she explained.
“Oh, oh you are the new girl. Please come in
Pheew!!! Pris sighed… “I thought I was in the wrong place” she said to Justin, finally someone who was not in a hurry to cut her head off Pricilla thought. As Justin gestured to her to come in she thought to herself, “I hope that girl I met wouldn’t give me problems”.
“Seriously don’t mind Kevwe” Justin said like he had read her mind. “She is like a mother hen. Very security conscious. Not like you can harm a fly” he smiled at her. He assisted her with her things into the house. Priscilla did not expect what she saw. The house was grand. “I’m sure they are all rich” she thought to herself and as her eyes fell on Kevwe she added “….. Spoilt”.
“We were looking for another housemate but it wasn’t finalized. Here let us start afresh” Justin gestured towards Kevwe.
“Kevwe” he called. Kevwe who had been listening to every word but pretending to be engrossed in the show on TV replied “hmmmm”.
“Kevwe you owe Priscilla an apology” Justin said seriously. “She knows Matthew and had already spoken to Toks about moving in. He told her to come in today”.
“Oh really” as much ask Kevwe hated it, she knew she was in the wrong. “Babe you for start the conversation from there now”. Priscilla shook her head.
“Okay fine, sorry. You are welcome dear. Pris abi? Are you hungry? I could make something quickly” Kevwe was trying to hard.
“Ehhhhn KEVWE!!!” Justin exclaimed. “See me begging you to cook just now, you no send me now you are forming perfect host”.
“Justin stay your lane” Kevwe warned playfully. Priscilla smiled at the humor the two created. The old tension was gone.
“She smiles” Kevwe said happily, “that is a good sign. I guess the laundry room will have to go. The others will soon be home from work. Come let’s get you settled in”.
“Thank you” Priscilla said feeling shy. They both walked towards the proposed laundry room.
“Welcome to the gang” Justin called after them
****** ****** *******
Muyiwa blogs at htttp://abluntnigerian.wordpress.com
You can follow him on instagram/twitter – @mfadarated.