Ever wondered where the expression “..and one thing led to another and before I knew it..” came from? Here’s one scenario. I have to add a disclaimer. While the conversation pattern sounds a lot like me, it’s not. When it comes to dialogue it’s easier to narrate in first person.
Was just busy minding my own business when a call comes in. It’s my long time friend. Let’s call her “W”.
“Hello to you too! Just checking up on you, been a minute”
“I know, right?! “
“Umenitupa sana(You’ve ignored[?]) me for long)! What’s up?”
“You know, the usual, new job keeping me busy”
“Ah, liar, it’s that new girl of yours keeping you busy”
“Nah, it’s not like that. Plus we’ve been dating for almost a year, not that new”
“Really? Anyway, how are you?”
“I’m easy, enjoying life and all”
“We should meet over coffee and catch up”
“Yeah, sounds like a good idea. I’m free Thursday”
“Cool. See you then. It’s really good to talk to you after so long”
“Same here. [short pause] Anyway, I’ll call you Thursday… To confirm where”
In case you’re lost, every other line starting with the first is me.
Thursday comes and we agree to meet at around 5:30 pm, after work, at a certain coffee place. I get a text. It’s her.
“Hey, I’m gonna run a little late, probably till around 7ish. Do you mind waiting?”
7pm. Another text,”On my way. Can we meet at club X…I need something stronger than coffee right now”
At around 7:15 I go to the club and as expected, she hasn’t arrived yet. Women and being fashionably late! I find my way to the balcony that overlooks a busy street and order a beer. The nice waitress sees it fit to bring two beers. They look enticing, especially because of the condensation on the bottles. From the correct angle they look just like they do in the advert. I send a short text to my friend telling her where I’m seated.
She comes in at around 7:30 in a flurry of designer perfume, panting, looking as beautiful as always.
“Hey! Sorry for being late. Traffic” [Hugs and perfume]
She looks at the beer. One is already halfway gone.
“I see you’ve already started without me”
“Yeah, couldn’t just sit without taking anything”
After taking a seat she beckons to the nice waitress, ” I’ll have a cocktail”
She reaches into her bag but I interrupt her,”I’ll pay, don’t worry”
“No! I came in late, I insist. Today is on me,” she turns to the nice waitress, “and two more beers”. She turns to me, “Cold?”
“…and two more beers, cold,” she finishes.
I look at the cars passing below then turn back to her, “I thought you needed something stronger than coffee”
“Nah, changed my mind, plus I have an early meeting kesho. I’ll just have a smoke or two to get the buzz going”
I finish the first beer, and indicate to a passing waitress to open the other one. As she does it, the nice waitress comes with the rest of the drinks.
“You’re not talking much today, are you?” she asks.
“Haha. Sorry, my mind was on something else. Anyway, how are you?”
“Good. Care to share?”
“Not really, it’s a work thing, you wouldn’t understand”
“Knocked up a workmate, you dog you” [She laughs]
“Haha, where did that come from?”
I take two swigs.
She looks at the bottles, “If you continue like that you’ll be drunk in thirty minutes. Not that I’m complaining though….in fact, I want that”
“Huh? Anyway this is how I take my alcohol, you know that. Nursing is for pussies!”
She giggles, then reaches into her bag and takes out menthol cigarettes. She lights one.
I wave my hand. “Nope”
I finish the second beer.
“Slow down cowboy”
She inches her seat closer till it’s touching mine. She stares at the street below, “looks beautiful, doesn’t it? Feels like old times, you know”
“Yeah, I’d also missed this, just hanging out”
“You look good…you’ve lost weight”
“Haha, thanks. Isn’t it the man who is supposed to say that to the woman?”
“We’re empowered nowadays, haha. We get to do everything you guys do”
“Except peeing standing up”
She laughs and slaps my thigh gently, “You’re silly! I’d missed that too. Your stupidity”
“Aww. But you are the one that got a guy then forgot about her friends” [Feigns sadness]
“Me? No! I never avoided anyone. It’s you and that girl of yours. How is she by the way?”
“She’s good. Your guy?”
“I don’t know. We broke up a few weeks ago”
“Sorry for what? I’m free to do what I want, no more relationship complications”
“Happy for you”
She turns with a serious expression on her face and looks at me intensely, “what do you see in her?”
“Eh? That’s a random question”
“I’m serious. I just want to know. Indulge me”
“Ok. She just makes me happy. I’ve never been with anyone like her. She is…”
She interrupts me, “You’ve stopped drinking”
“Oh, didn’t notice”
“Well? Drink up”
“Hahaha. Are you trying to get me drunk, W?”
“Where were we?”
“I’m just tired of men. They’re so annoying!”[she sighs loudly]
“Haha, careful now, remember you’re talking to one”
She turns back to me with that intense look again.
“Why can’t all men be like you?”
“Yeah, you’re one of the nicest guys I know. Plus you’re faithful. She’s lucky”
“Yeah? ‘nice’ gets you friend-zoned. I think I’m the one who’s lucky”
“Maybe I’m having second thoughts about doing it to you”
“Haha. Isn’t it a bit late for that?”
“Is it really?” she says thoughtfully, “can I tell you something?”
I take several swigs, though the first beers had already gotten me more than tipsy. Lightweight.
“It’s something really personal”
Little alarm bells go off in my head. But I’m drunk, can’t hear them that clearly.
“I already know most things about you. Shoot,” I say.
“That’s part of it, we already know everything about each other, right?”
“And I trust you”
“I’m serious, K(my name)”
The hand on my thigh moves in a rubbing motion. Funny. I’d forgotten that was there. Feels good. Alarm bells go off in my head. Can’t really hear them over the sound of blood rushing to my head. I finish the third beer and get started on the fourth. A gentle touch on my hand hints that I should put it down for now.
I look at her. I already knew she looks beautiful. But now she looks ravishingly beautiful. She’s looking at me. Her lips look soft and enticing. I remember my girlfriend.
“No,” the words come out hesitatingly, “I can’t.”
“Why?” It’s a soft whisper next to my ear. I can feel her warm breathe… menthol. I don’t want to turn. I think of my girl. I can’t.
She leans back. I can turn now. I look at her beautiful brown eyes. I can’t. I shouldn’t.
She leans forward. Our eyes are a few inches from each other, foreheads are touching.
“I love you”
“No…” I say feebly.
“I love you”
“I love you too, but not like that…” I taper off, “…like a sister”
“But we’re not related”
“This is wrong…”
Her lips pout, she leans in with her eyes closed, I turn my head to avoid what’s coming. Her lips brush against the side of my mouth and end up on my cheek. So soft.
“You should be with me,” the words come like a breeze in my ear.
“I have a girl”
“She not here”
“It doesn’t matter…it’s still wrong…”
“Feels right to me”
“I have a girl”
“I don’t care…”
As I turn, her lips are waiting. So soft. Tastes minty. No alarm bells.
A few days later I’m on the sofa watching a movie, my girlfriend’s head on my lap. The phone rings. I look at it then press ignore.
“Who is it, babe?”
“Nobody. Just this annoying client. They don’t know boundaries. It’s a weekend for Christ’s sake!” I say.
“Oh. OK”, she turns her head back towards the TV.
I look at my phone. I feel horrible about myself. I type a quick text:”My girlfriend’s here” then put my phone back down.
“I love you” The words escape my lips.
“Love you too, babe”
We go back to watching the movie.