Life’s twist and turns, we never really get it until we are in the turn and the twist reformed us, opened us up… opened our eyes to see, that the plan was for our good after all
[She stands up and quietly heads towards the door]
Joel: Naadu listen, it’s not what you think, at all
[Walks towards Naadu and blocks her way]
[Shaking her head in guilt and dismay]
Joel: Don’t go, I’ll explain.
Naadu: [sighs] Joel, you don’t need to explain anything. Here is what we’ll do, I’ll leave quietly, and you’ll say nothing. You will not follow me, and in due course this awkwardness will lose color.
Joel: But I…
[Steps aside and opens the door for Naadu]
[She walks out, and halts right outside the door]
[Joel stares intensely with shameful eyes as if waiting to hear Naadu speak one last time]
Naadu: I am so sorry.
Joel: Don’t go just yet. Let me answer this. I promised you dinner, please, let me do just this one.
[He enters the room to answer the call, but she’d left when he returned]
[Back in Naadu’s room]
[She drops her bag and throws herself onto the couch]
Naadu: Stupid! Stupid! Stupid girl!!! What were you thinking? What… argh!! I’m so busted! So I was going to help him deal with his issue, then he falls in love with me, Ms. Dillis later finds out, then he stands in for me… you’re just stupid! But wait, why am I beating myself up when he placed a bet on me? In the first place, he deceived me. Was his story even true at all? Wow! That Georgette chic must’ve acted real good. Darn! I’ve been played.
[Buries her head in the pillow]
[As if the light bulb just lit above her head, she awakens with sudden oomph, wearing a mild smile on her face]
Naadu: No, I’m not stupid.
[Meanwhile in Joel’s room, still on a call with his friend]
Joel: So chale, your bro make someway paa. You still dey the African Regent der?
Afriyie: The people, dem dey worry. E catch last performance and I’m out.
Joel: Paying good?
Afriyie: I charge my worth.
Joel: Chale, I go pass by ridee. Fine chics dey?
Afriyie: Come see eh. One just entered, black dress, bodycon, below the knees, and… oush!
Afriyie: The body alone… bros, she be Ghana girl rough! She dey be. She dey be.
Joel: Make sharp eh. Make you sing Etta James AT LAST.
Afriyie: [laughs hard] You mess up! I dey wedge you.
[Joel locks up and heads downstairs, using the stairs]
[Meanwhile (I repeated ‘meanwhile’ but anyway) Naadu takes a seat at the lounge, waiting hall… something of that sort, and makes an order. She grabs her phone from her bag to reply her WhatsApp messages]
[Afriyie goes back on stage to perform his last song for the night, with his pianist]
[Naadu looks intently in his direction – “I love that song. Please make my night better”, she whispers to herself]
[Song plays in the background as Naadu fixes her gaze on her phone]
Naadu: Annoying group chats.
Waiter: Excuse me?
Naadu: Oh no, not you.
[he drops her cocktail in a glass with some fancy straw]
Naadu: Thank you.
[She opens a chat with Joel, weighing up her options of sending him a message or just staying quiet until he does]
[Naadu’s eyes still fixed on the screen]
[Afriyie steals accepted glances at Naadu]
[Joel takes a seat and opens a chat with Naadu, types in a couple of words, and presses the backspace button to delete them all]
[Afriyie sees Joel and waves at him]
[Naadu sits back, relaxed, enjoying the music. Finally, her eyes clashes with Afriyie’s]
Naadu: Wow! This dude can sing!
[Music ends and Afriyie walks over to Naadu]
Naadu: Is he coming here?? Eish.
Afriyie: You liked that song, I could tell.
Naadu: Congrats, your senses must be razor-sharp then.
Afriyie: Alone? You can join us. I’m with a friend. We can join you if you wouldn’t mind.
Naadu: What if I told you I wasn’t alone?
Afriyie: Then I’ll go sit with my friend and get in touch with you before either of us leaves. I think you’re cool too and I’ll love this coolness in my life right now. What do you say?
Naadu: “cool too”? I never said you’re cool.
Afriyie: I’m clearly trying to impress you.
Naadu: [smiles] Only that your pickup lines aren’t game, at all.
Afriyie: Teach me.
Afriyie: Wait for me. I’m bringing my friend over. He’ll be leaving soon anyway
Afriyie: Chale, you for be my wingman. This girl is the real deal. I’ve laid the foundation so…
Joel: So you’re dumping Sophie? Sophie be cool oo.
Afriyie: Sophie? Sophie is too material, my bros. Make we go eh.
[They walk towards Naadu]
[She hears Joel’s voice]
[She sees him]
[He sees her]
Naadu: No way!!
[She gets nervous and begins to play with the ends of her hair]
Joel: O c’mon!
Afriyie: Why? You know am?
Joel: [whispers to Afriyie] So you want to call it quits with Sophie because of someone you just met? What if she’s not got brains?
Afriyie: O! She get. I just spoke with her.
[Now at Naadu’s table]
Afriyie: So here’s my childhood pal, Joel. Joel, meet…
Naadu: Naadu. I didn’t mention it earlier.
Afriyie: Right! And she just saved me from one major embarrassment. Can you be any nicer?
[All three laugh under tension]
[Joel stretches his arm towards Naadu]
[She stretches hers swiftly in an awkward handshake]
Joel: Nice to meet with you.
Naadu: O! Yeah. Likewise.
…to be continued
Photography Inspiration: Adrian McDonald.