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The Scratch On Your Shoulder #13

“So, why did you ghost me?” Nero’s question was a right one at the wrong time. Cheta wished he had waited until much later to ask her. Not now when her parents were having a row in the next room over her love life. She wanted to be as calm as he was, but she couldn’t stop thinking about what was to come after this moment. Her plan to shock her father had not worked out as she had wanted it to go. Her mother had gone ahead of her and told him about Nero while she was still outside the reception venue, taking selfies with Nero. When the old man came out and stood at the top of the stairs, observing them, Nero saw him before Cheta did. He nudged her and she looked up, locking eyes with Julius. Nnedinma stepped out next, guilt on her face. “Meet me…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #12

Forgive my tardiness and enjoy this episode. Have a great week ahead!  Nero was out of the hotel before Cheta stirred. He didn’t expect her to be up, following the events of last night. Last he checked, she couldn’t move a leg. For him, it felt like he had been granted an express ticket to paradise when he opened his eyes this morning and found her lying beside him. She was so peaceful that he checked to see that she was breathing before he snuck out to the bathroom. He got to the office as the clock struck nine. His clients were to show up in a bit. He was tired of their indecisiveness and was ready to drop them if they moved their meeting forward one more time. Phone to his ear, speaking to Obi, Nero headed towards his office. But he stopped, just as he got to the…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #11

Having just put her granddaughters to bed, after two annoying hours of struggling with them, Hadiza craved for a glass of wine and a pill to drive away the pain in her back. She also desired to have her feet massaged. Kadiri used to be so good at it, but she had recently began to drift away from him. This wasn’t intentional. Her life as a person living in the shadows, where she had needed him the most, was ending. Yet her feelings for him persisted. He meant a lot to her, still. “Is there anything you want me to do for you?” he asked as she entered the kitchen to pour herself some wine. He had just fixed a broken knob on the gas cooker. “I’m fine. You should rest. It’s been a long day.” She got lost in the notched movements of his muscled arms as she watched…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #10

Cheta regretted parking her car within the church premises. She had enjoyed her time at the service, though, especially when Rere led the choir. She had almost forgotten how beautifully she sang. Back then, she had been Cheta’s music tutor. Cheta marveled at how much she was still dedicated to her talent and calling. But how could she still be in the same environment that covered up her abuse? “Can we not do this again?” Naza was in the front passenger’s seat, making multiple popping sounds with the bubble gum in her mouth. “Do what?” “Church. Never again. I so want to go home and sleep. It’s a bad idea to club the night before and come to church the morning after.” “I didn’t ask you to go clubbing.” “But you asked me here, and look, we’re stuck.” “Be patient, Chinaza. Ah.” Due to human and vehicular traffic outside the…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #7

Laja was in bed with her this morning. She was dreaming about him, about the time she came back to Nigeria after being away for six years. He was waiting at the airport, holding a placard that had her name on it. She laughed when she saw him and asked if he was crazy. “Just in case you’ve forgotten me and I don’t recognize you.” “I can never forget you, Large.” Lying in her bed this morning, she felt guilty for not keeping him to memory, as she ought to have done. She had had a chaotic workweek and a weekend that wasn’t any better. It was now Thursday, and she was finally getting the chance to take an entire day off. Yet, she had gotten up early, as it was her habit. She felt it was best to stay in bed and speak to Laja. “You can never forget…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #5

Her thoughts were not fully with him this evening. They were somewhere in Abuja, with Cheta. They had been there all day, as were her emotions. Her friend was mad at her, and understandably so. She had been incalculably stupid today. “What’s wrong?” Basim was looking at her through the etched mirror that was above his dressing table where she was seated. He moved closer and rested his chin on her shoulder. She loved his scent this evening. It was masculine and had that superior musk oil he sometimes used, with its unusual sexual magnetism that drove her wild. But she didn’t want him tonight. She thought it would be better if she went home. “I’m good,” Gold responded to his question. She picked her phone from the table and moved her body, making him lift his frame off her shoulder. “I have to go home.” “Any reason you’re moody?”…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #4

“I don’t understand how one would have a child, and then go ahead to treat them like shit all their lives. It makes no sense.” “Well, not everyone is your darling mother.” “I know.” Hadiza smiled at her son and placed a hand on his to stop him from his present activity. “The pepper is soft enough, Nero.” He let go of the pestle in his hand, realizing that he had been aggressive with it. This was all Cheta’s fault—she and her sad life’s story. He hadn’t been the same since she opened up to him about herself. He hadn’t spoken to her since then either. An entire month had passed. He was certain that this whole time, she might have thought him angry with her, maybe even insensitive, considering all that she had told him. But that wasn’t the case. Nero was buying time, trying to kill the resurrected…

The Scratch On Your Shoulder #2

Read the previous episode of The Scratch On Your Shoulder here Nero hated funerals. They were all the same to him. Slow and depressing.  Just like this one. Almost everyone had something to say about the person who had passed away; even though he had made it known repeatedly that he didn’t want anybody washing him with head-swelling words. “Dance in remembrance of me. Meet new people. Eat, drink, and get drunk. Then have one-night stands. All on me!” The video was out there on Twitter. It had over a million views and was massively shared on Facebook and Instagram too. Yet, people showed up for the occasion with long faces and saggy shoulders.  “Who are all these people for fuck’s sake?” Nero asked his fiancée, Joy, who was standing beside him. She hushed him. So, he chose to stare at the coffin, instead. It was black, perfectly furnished. Nero…

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