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Nothing By Fui Can-Tamakloe

What’s the worst thing you’ve done?

I gulp as I read the text on my lit screen. My palms feel sweaty. I look up involuntarily, as if to meet the eyes of the person staring at me. Accusing me. Giving me looks of disgust and judgement. But there’s no one in my room but me. I’m suddenly made aware of the terrible quietness that has engulfed the room, broken only by the regular creaking of my old fan.

I look back at the screen.

Nothing.

I look at my reply and suddenly my chest tightens. I didn’t think this through. Nothing? Nothing! Nothing. I wanted to lie and I ended up speaking the truth.

Nothing.

When Solomon had told me about how he had found Enyo’s nude pictures on Gabah’s phone, I had laughed and asked to see. He had whipped out his phone and shown them to me. I didn’t ask how they had appeared on his phone.

Cheap girl, he spat out. Never mind the fact that Gabah and Enyo were in a relationship at the time. Or even if they weren’t, it was her body. And anyway, what was it about the situation that made her cheap, and not Gabah, who had also bragged about sending a ton of dick pics?

When Solomon ‘leaked’ the pictures to a few more of our friends we all had a good laugh. Was that really Enyo? The one who was always prim and proper and covered up well? I figa sey then she no dey do these things some oh, Steady had laughed. All girls be bad oh, make them never lie you, Bomba had countered.

We agreed. All girls be bad. So the circle got a little bigger, and a little bigger. Till one day someone forgot that Raymond was Enyo’s cousin. And that he’d flare up and try to attack Gabah. And that the floodgates would open and Enyo would have to go through an ordeal that no one should face, but lots of people do every day. Gabah’s family would have to come beg Enyo’s family to drop the matter instead of pursuing it in court. He would never understand how the nudes left his phone.

All the boys would watch Gabah battle this one out on his own. Boys boys be family, but more families no dey stay together sef. Normal.

Lmao nothing? Stop lying please. 

I laugh a short, bitter laugh.

Oh for real, nothing. I’m a good boy.

The screen goes dark and I catch my reflection looking at me.

Liar.