Girl Next Door


Guy Next Door By: J.Ifeme Elo
“Chris De Burgh, he is a beautiful singer.” She feels such an expansion in her soul that she is almost bursting. What I’m I, some sort of a music connoisseur? She knows it not the music. “Have you heard this?”


Dennis makes a face. Before he has the time to say a word she snatches the remote and flips to a track she thinks he should know by now, after all she’s been playing that long enough for him to notice.


“So, this is….”
“‘Lady in red’, great song, I think this is his best,” she steals a look at him, “by me though,” and giggles like some one just slipped a block of ice in her armpit. “You’ve heard it, right?”
“Nice song.” He doesn’t seem relaxed; he doesn’t seem to be listening to her.


She overlooks that. No guy ever is truly relaxed at a first visit to a neighbor’s, especially if she is a young pretty lady, all by herself; but he is no saint, at least I know…
One thing she has not yet told him is that a fifth of the songs here were bought within the these months he moved in, and that she has prayed daily ever since that he just might take notice, just hear the words, and that finally he has. She decides to let that be for now till they are closer, or lovers.
She cringes at that thought, and smiles inward. But he is not bad “You know what I love most in a song?”
“No?” His eyes are at the door.
God, what is he thinking of? Not one of those silly looking girls that come to look for him. Does he really take them serious? “What do you love in a song?”


She hates it when he gets such visits. Sometimes she stays awake just listening and hoping they don’t do anything; that the girl will just stay over and sleep like a bear in hibernation till the next, and pack her sorry ass to wherever they came from the next morning. And when she heard things she would angrily turn on her music player. The next day she would wake up and spend considerable time in front of her mirror and wonder if men are really that blind. Then she wouldn’t respond to his greetings for a couple of days, but when she couldn’t bear the thought of totally losing him totally, she would return to her musical antics. Some times she would sing along aloud.


He is just not here, or is he so dry? “I mean, what touches you most?” she rephrases
“I don’t think I’d ever…” he blabbers.
“The lyrics? I love the lyrics…”
“I see. That is interesting. I like lyrics too.” He says.
Why is he lying? But it doesn’t matter, does it? “I love it, it draws you into the song, and, you know, it sort of unites you with the beats, the writer; there is a psychological…”
“Yes, the psychology. It improves the psychology.”
“Yes.” Ouch! But at least he is talking. “I don’t care much about beats.”
“I don’t care about beats either.” There is something rather honest about this but she misses it.
“So, do you have any favorites?”
“Mm, well, I just like music in general. I don’t keep names, memorize verses and all that. I just…”
“Love music as a whole.” She is passionate now.
“Exactly, I…”
“Oh, that is cute. When I play these songs, I kind of wonder if there is anyone out there with an ear at least.”
She doesn’t see him flinch.
“I am sure there is”
They laugh it off.
It’s all so wonderful to her now, because she had often thought it only existed in her in her many imaginations. Now she knows Dennis listens to her music, and is probably charmed. What else could she want? She has just found that perfect man, no, he has been that perfect man all along; from the way he walks to the way he talks. He has that perfect height for her, dark and strong. He has the charm, too. She never knew all that could come in one guy.
“When is you birthday, Dennis?” God, where did that come from? But, hell, yes. When is your birthday?


There is a brief silence. The set turns on Chris De Burgh’s ‘the head and the heart’.
What’s wrong with that question? She simply loathes silence, especially from a guy, but she would take anything from Dennis. For Christ sake’s this is eight months, how can he not expect a neighbor to ask that?

He seems a little bemused and not conceals his surprise.
“It has passed for this year.” He says indifferently.
“You mean you celebrated your birthday here I and never cared to inform me? That is not cool,” she tries to make it sound light but it hurts her more than she would want to admit.
“It just wasn’t celebrated. I worked all through the day; it was a couple of days ago.”
Just confess you celebrated with one of those funny girls that are all over you like fleas. “What a day it must have been for you” she says tenderly. “So what are you going to do about it now?”
“Nothing. I guess I will just wait for another year, it not as I will die tonight,” he laughs.
Eighteenth February; that should be his next surprise. This is not funny. She laughs hard. He is so much of all she wants in a man that she can not bear him slipping though her fingers, she thinks he is just be a hard nut, but shouldn’t be so hard after all.
“So how old were you a couple of day ago?” she asks curiously.
“Thirty.”
Wow. That too is perfect. “Thirty. That is cool, only that you don’t look it, but that is cool too. Staying young is nice.”
She is twenty-five. Her dream has always been to get married to a guy who is five years older. That is romantic. How could she let him now? She expects him inquire her age, at least, get a little personal, but he doesn’t.
“That is what everyone says.” he says as if that an insult he is now used to.
Who is everyone? Just doesn’t want him discussing any of those girls; he just doesn’t see how they don’t fit him. Annoying: I have to change that quick. “It took you eight months to knock on my door, Dennis; you must be a strange one, what do you even do all by yourself in that room, there is hardly a sound coming out of there in months?”
He finds that very amusing and laughs out loud, without replying.
Come, is that so funny? “It’s so funny. But it is true.”
“At least I knocked. Isn’t that better than not?”
“Well,” she likes this, it becoming interesting, “it is.”
He strolls to her shelve, peers at her collection of books for a while.
“You must be the reads-too-much type, all these books in a life time?” he converses.


What does his room look like? I need to know how he lives. “Yeah, my dad read a lot. I’m glad to take after him. What do you say?
“Good for you. So, have you read all these?”
“Yeah, reading more and still buying even more.”
“I have never finished a book in this life time.” He says matter of factly.
Know you are lying. Why does he seem so honest, but I think he lies? Or is he just being humble? She simply admires him, everything about him, everything.
“You can not be that non reading type next door to me, it is simply not acceptable.” She is laughs. He finds that funny too. And she likes it. He is even more striking when he laughs.
“Thanks for you time, Chika, I think I should leaving now.” He heads for the door, a little anxious.


Oh no, not now. There is nothing to run away from… “Sorry I couldn’t offer you any drink, my fridge is empty; so busy at the office I couldn’t go out to buy things, but it was nice of you to have dropped by.”
“Never mind, I’m just fine, besides you are just next door.”
“I wouldn’t if I didn’t know you well, maybe another eight months from now,” she says amusingly.
He says nothing to that, he strolls to the door, turns the knob.
“Well, there will be other times; meanwhile, keep listening to the music.”
“Actually, Chika, I would prefer you turn down the music when you play, I get sick of it. Have a good night.” He says her and walks out.

What? So this is why he came here in the first place, not because of he? He must have nerves. To hell with him! She feels like just going after him and snuffing life of him that instance. If only she has a gun. She plays out the scene in her mind, a scene fury, rage, and bang, bang, bang! She would drop the gun like they do in the movies, step on him just as he spasms the last breath and off, like nothing happened.
No, even if she got the gun from him, she would just drop it on the floor and melt into his arm; that is all she is strong enough to do to him.
She listens as his door closes. She pushes hers gentle close, and turns off the music set. It is suddenly hot in the room. She turns on her air conditioner. She may be a romantic but she is not the teddy bear type. She lies down gently; nothing has ever been gentler than her bed. She feels secure here, sometimes pampered, really cared for.


She has been in this dream for so long that is now a reality, but it is finally time to awake. She has been a one winged bird, always waiting for that prince charming that would come and help her grow her in-grown wing, so they would together fly away to happily married. She has always waited for that. All through her university days he did not come. What time could be better than now? But now she suddenly feels it time to do that which no one could do for her, unhook the wings, put them behind and fly away. It is time to open up to someone who will not be her air supply, some one who will not be all that she is so afraid to lose.

Comments

  1. really liked the part where he asked her to turn down her music volume. It was priceless.

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is a nice story. I like ...

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hee hee hee...talk of building castles in the air...glad she woke up to smell the coffee

    ReplyDelete
  4. ol, you are soo mean!!!

    ReplyDelete

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