Itunu remained sitting on the bike as her dress stuck to her body like a leotard. She did not know what to do. The bikeman was talking, but she could not hear what he was saying. It was like her whole enviroment was on mute. Purely soundless. She got down from the bike, first leg out and second leg after. Normally, she would change it for the man. As in scatter it, call the whole world and shout, but not today. She got down from the bike gently. It was hard enough that her dress was figure hugging; the wetness was a pain multiplier.
“God bless you.” She muttered under her breath as she walked away from the bikeman. Sometimes you need energy to curse and she did not have that. As each raindrop fell on her already wet body, it felt like little pins dropping unto her skin. The Itunu on the inside and the Itunu on the outside were both tired of the day.
“God bless you. ” she heard him say and speed off as her mute was turned off. She did not look back at him, but walked on. The walk to Samuel’s house was a sojourn of another kind. She wanted to cry.
“Big girls don’t cry. ” she told herself.
When she got to the gate, she took in a five second deep breath and braced herself for people to look at her mockingly. She opened the gate and was suprised to see almost everyone running around in wet clothes and girls screaming. She fit right in.
As she entered the living room; Samuel handed her a towel and said “better luck next time. ”
Better luck with what? Itunu wondered… With running away? With finding food? Or with the ground opening up to swallow her?
It was later that she understood that just before her arrival, they had been playing a game and it involved the losers getting dropped into water with their clothes on in a baptism of some sort and then standing outside in the rain till their group won and the losing group did not win once till the end of the game.
She felt awkwardly wet.
The game was a plot by the boys to target all the goody shoe girls who had refused to swim and so, most people had changed into swimming trunks; she was the only person in the room with her dress dripping wet and wrapping the towel.
It was as though Samuel saw her distress.
Sam walked up to her and said. ” Follow me. “
It was very unlike him to give orders and unlike her to obey orders, but she did. He led her out to a room upstairs and took a bag out of the wardrobe It contained some clothes. ” I am not sure if the clothes would fit, but they should.” He said
“Whose clothes? ” She wanted to ask, but did not want to seem proud. She was cold and tired.
“Choose one. “He said.
She surfed through them with a straight face trying not to seem too excited as though she was shopping. It was a loose dress with African prints.
He packed all the rest back into the wardrobe and closed it and took her to another room and said ” change. “
She was waiting for him to leave; so she could change. But he sat down on the bed.She clutched the dress to her chest and peered at him. Samuel laughed.
She dropped the dress on the bed and took the towel off her body. She took off her shoes that had been making sqeaky sounds all day. She hoped that her feigned attempt to change in front of him would scare him out of the room, but he seemed to be enjoying the show. She looked at him gloringly.
“What? ” He asked. “You’re not gonna change? ” he said.
“Obviously, I want to, but you are here. ” she said.
“Errr.” Sam began with the darndest expression on his face. ” You are to change in the bathroom.Not here. Except of course, you insist. I would never turn down the offer.” He said with a straight face.
She hissed jokingly and entered the bathroom. If the first room was his room, this was definitely a woman’s room because where she was, was definitely a female’s bathroom as most products there were pink and feminine.
She locked the door and peeled her dress off her body and further dried her hair. Upon catching her reflection in the mirror, she was shocked as to how good her make up still remained. She was grateful for good products. With some slight patting, she looked brand new.
As she put on the dress, she discovered that the tag was still there. It was new. It smelt it. It looked it. She did not yank it off. It was not hers to remove. The dress was a perfect fit. She remembered her resolution about enjoying the day. It could not get any worse and it seemed to be getting better. She just needed Gloria to show up.
When she was done in the bathroom, Sam was not outside; but he left his tab on the bed and it was in the note app. It read:
“Hey IT… So, I had to leave. PLEASE, please, please, drop your wet clothes in the bathroom. Come downstairs soon. Wear slippers and REMOVE THE TAG!!! IT’S YOURS. ”
Reluctantly, she folded her dress and obeyed the instructions, dropping it in the bathroom carrying her purse, phone and tab; she came downstairs.
Determined to enjoy the party, she walked back to her seat beside the punch bowl. She took a big cup and gulped it down and served herself another cup. She continued lip synching to the music playing. She was not sure; but the punch tasted better now than it did before… She served herself some more and drank. “Today is a great day. ” She said as she started feeling funny.
She lifted the cup of punch and peered into it. She turned to some guy standing near the punch bowl and asked “Sorry, do you know if this is spiked?” He laughed and said “No, it is not spiked. How would the bowl of punch be spiked? It is absolutely fine.” and laughed again.
She suspected that he was lying to her and asked again. This time he replied her saying “What’s up now ? Are you like in secondary school or something? The drink is not spiked. You only say something is spiked when people are not meant to know it contains alcohol. This is not spiked; blackcurrant is what was added to the cocktail as a base. Everything else is alcohol. Can’t you smell? ”
He walked away from her shaking his head. The worst had happened and this time and Itunu was confident that the day could not get any worse. She dropped the cup that had been her only form of solace and moved far away from the punch bowl.
She picked up her phone and dialed Gloria’s number. If what the guy said was true, then she had consumed an awful amount of alcohol, so she had to get out of this place and get back to her room before she did something very stupid. She kept dialing her number, but it was not reachable. Network was really poor.
The rain suddenly got heavier, so people started coming back into the house and leaving the pool area. Some guys carried the speakers into the room and they continued playing music inside. Some people remained outside playing another stupid game. She put her phone back in her bag and closed her eyes. This was the worst day ever; she concluded in her mind as she reclined into the cushion and yes the worst had happened.
Thank you so much for reading.
Final episode of the birthday party is coming up very soon… Stay tuned.