The night was quiet again as I threw stones at her window. It was one of those nights where the moon was bright and everywhere was as clear as daybreak. I threw the third stone and saw a shadow behind her cotton. I was afraid but also happy. It was just like the American movies I watched, and to pull that move in Nigeria was something that rarely happens—time stood still as the shadow looked more prominent than her. The thought that it could be her dad gripped my heart, and for a moment, I could feel my heartbeat and the sweat on my skin at once. Why was I even sweating? It’s an evening with no sight of the sun.

Her dad Mr Okafor was well known, if not for anything than the way he irons his military uniform, looking sharp every day. I have seen a comedy skit on soldiers punishing civilians who step on them. I did not step on him but threw stones at his window.  At that moment, I would have preferred stepping on him. It wasn’t him by the window. I believe I almost screamed, “It’s not him”. 

There she was, beautiful as ever. She looked kind: like the picture of Mona Lisa, I have always found her looking kind. I believed I was in love with her. If not, why would I be throwing stones at the window of a military man at night? I couldn’t hear her, so I tried reading her lips.

“what are you doing here,” she said, or as I have noted earlier, I read from her lips.

“You were not responding to my messages”, I muttered back.

I picked out my phone from my pocket and texted her.

“You look so beautiful, Beatrice. No wonder the moon shines so bright.” 

“Aww, you came to see me,” she said, or instead, I read from her lips.

I got a text back. ‘Really. ‘

“look at you, looking all kind. You look like a Disney princess locked in a castle. I can be your mighty knight”, I replied.

She went back in, but I got a reply. ‘where are you?’

‘outside your window, silly. ‘

Beatrice was back with a board. She could draw the first time I asked her out in SS2. She drew a beautiful no and gave me. I had to persuade her, and now look at me getting a drawing of a love-shaped heart, wait! What! It wasn’t a love-shaped heart. It was written in bold.

“MY DAD IS WITH MY PHONE. GO HOME”

A light flashed at me. This time, I knew who it was, Mr Okafor,  apparently the person I had been chatting with. I knew it was him not from his ironed uniform but his height.

“Come here, Mr Knight, come and go and save her,” he said. He was pointing the way with his torch.

At that moment, all the comedy skits I had watched missed a part. When your body becomes heavy, you instantly question your life choices while feeling your heartbeat and how furious you can sweat.

“Good evening General” All the words came out, shaking from my lips.

He had a grip on me and pulled me to walk. It was apparent that the worst had happened because even my body was shocked. However, he did call me Mr Knight. Does that mean he thought I was referring to his house as a prison? What made me even type that? Is he going to punish me? Those were the type of thoughts that crossed my mind.

He opened the double door to his house, and I walked in. It will interest you to know I went home limping, and what happened behind the double door stayed there, and now I know why.

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