“Come with me my love and our fates we will cheat. Come to this enchanted place where the sea and sky meet.”
Ariyike turns around with a smile. It has been almost a month since she’s hoped to run into him again. Since the last time she didn’t meet him where she left him. She thinks she recognizes that voice. And she is right. It is him; her ‘unconcealed desire’.
“She smiles”, he declares, holding his hand over his chest in that way that reveals how relieved he is that she welcomes him this time.
“I am known to have a beautiful smile, if I do say so myself”, she says, grinning even wider.
“I do not contend that. I’m Chris”, he says.
“Ariyike”, she stretches out her hand to shake him.
He takes her hand. “Ariyike! Never heard that before. What does it mean?” he asks, not leaving her hand.
“To care for”, she says.
He looks lost.
“It’s what Yorubas call oriki name”.
He smiles and almost like they’ve known each other for more than that minute, he gently pulls her close. “I want to have you to care for”.
She looks into his eyes and a feeling she’s never felt before overpowered her. She felt sick in her stomach and weak in her knees. His eyes were in hers and she could see hers’ in his’. The way she slightly tilts her face up to look into them is something she’s never experienced before. That confident smile on her face slowly dwindles and she is lost in the moment, at least for a moment.
“I don’t even know you”, she whispers.
“I’m flattered you want to”, he responds. “I’m Igbo”.
“Is that a definition of who you are?” she asks under his breathe. “It’s Chris I want to know”.
He smiles. “Then come with me, my love, to this enchanted place where the creations unfurl.”
Ariyike squints as she says, “I’ve never done this before.”
“I’ve never been here before”, he says too.
Suddenly conscious of the wondering eyes around them, she pulls away; and also to get away from his enchanting eyes.
“How can this be?” she wonders inaudibly.
But he catches her words and responds, “Because the journey of forever starts on such a day as this”.
To be continued …
If you missed the previous series, you can read it here