Minutes after discovering the shirt, I picked up my
phone and dialled Daniel’s number. He lived in the
male dormitory which was on the other side of
campus. After briefly narrating what happened, he
sounded worried and confused at the same time.
“Dami, are you sure about this?”
“I’m telling you it’s the exact same shirt and the
oil stain is a sure confirmation that it’s the guy I
bumped into at the restaurant.”
“And you’ve never met this guy before, except
“Yes, why won’t you-“
I turned sharply when I heard footsteps approach
the door. My heart felt like it was about to leave
“Th-there’s someone coming.” I stuttered.
“Please tell me you locked the door, Dami.”
My mind raced. Did I? Oh God, why couldn’t I
I felt paralysed until his voice snapped me out of
my silent panic.
“Go and check Dami, hurry up!”
I’d barely taken two steps before the handle turned
and the door flew open. My phone crashed
helplessly to the floor and I heard it come apart at
“Why are you staring at me like that?” Chioma
snapped as she tossed her bag unto her bed.
I felt torn between two decisions at that moment. I
didn’t know whether to slap her silly for scaring
me like that or to hug her for well… being her.
“You wouldn’t understand.” I sighed.
She gave me a strange look and shrugged before
grabbing her towel and going to the bathroom. I
quickly assembled my phone and called Daniel.
“Dami, are you okay? What happened? Why did the
line go off like that?” He fired all three questions in
“I’m fine. It was just Chioma, my roommate.”
I heard him take a deep breath and release it
“You scared me for a moment there. I thought I
was about to witness a murder over the phone.”
“It was a false alarm.” I said, letting out a small
laugh of relief.
I finally felt like I could breathe again.
“False alarm or not, just take care of yourself
okay? And be careful. Call me if anything happens
and stick within groups as much as possible.”
He rattled off more instructions and I was
surprised he seemed to know so much.
“Daniel, calm down. It’s probably not as terrible as
“I know what I’m talking about.” He replied quietly.
“Just promise you’ll follow my advice.”
“Okay, I will. Bye.”
It wasn’t until several hours late into the night that
a thought hit me. If the man left his shirt, does
that mean he plans on coming back for it?
The following morning, I woke up tense and
paranoid. My nerves were frazzled from getting up
several times at night and staring at the door.
Chioma once caught me awake and for the first
time since we met, she looked concerned.
“Are you sure everything is okay?” She asked as
she picked up her bag to leave for the day.
Only God knows when she’ll be back this time.
“Everything is fine.” I smiled.
“Okay then.” She nodded and turned to leave.
“Um wait, do you mind if we walk together?” I
thought I sounded absurd. Never in my life had I
felt scared to leave the room by myself.
She frowned before shrugging a single shoulder
“If you want to tag along, then okay.”
Tag along. She made me feel like an unwanted kid
sister. All the same, I grabbed my purse and we
left the room together. The whole situation was
beyond awkward and neither of us exchanged a
word except when we parted ways with murmured
farewells. I braved the rest of the walk on campus
without any incident and arrived safely at work.
During our lunch break, Daniel led me to a quiet
corner to talk.
“Any news about who this guy is?”
“No, I’ve only seen him once in my life and I don’t
even remember what he looks like.”
“Did you do what I asked you?”
“Yes, I even walked with Chioma this morning.”
“Good. If anything strange happens, let me know.”
“What do you plan to do about it?” I asked in
curiosity, but he didn’t even answer.
“I’m serious Dami.” He said before turning to
As I watched him leave, I couldn’t help but feel
there was something he wasn’t telling me. After
work, Toyin called to remind me about the dress
fitting today. I was to be part of the bridal party,
yet I’d put off this part of my duties for as long as
“I’ll text you the venue, just remember to show up
early. Or shall I come and pick you up?” She
“No, I can get there easily from work since it’s on
the Island. I might need a ride back though.”
“See you soon.” I said before ending the call.
I turned sharply to find Kevin standing behind me.
“When did you get here?”
“Not too long ago.” He shrugged.
“Well, did you have to sneak up on me like that?” I
snapped. The effects of yesterday’s events still
made me wary of being watched.
“What’s up with you?” He chuckled, looking
“Nothing.” I mumbled and walked past him.
On the way out, I spotted Daniel with his bike in
the parking lot. I was about to ask him for a ride
but changed my mind when I saw him repairing
something in it. I sighed and continued towards
the main road to get a cab. Maybe I should treat
myself to a little comfort once in a while even if it
comes at an expense.
I arrived at the boutique around 4:30pm and made
my way into the shop to look for Toyin. The AC
was on full blast and I immediately felt better.
“For once in your life, you’re early.”
I smiled and gave my sister a big hug.
“How could I resist? You promised me a free ride
and free food afterwards.”
Toyin shook her head and led me to where the
other bridesmaids were. Her maid-of-honour was
Hadiza, her best friend since secondary school.
After introducing myself to the ladies, Toyin got
right down to business and instructed the shop
attendant to bring out the dress. Frankly speaking,
I was intimidated at first sight.
“Please, tell me there are more options available.”
“There are no options available. We’re sticking
with that colour.”
“What? There’s nothing wrong with that dress.”
I stared at it again in disbelief. It was a deep pink,
pink! The other bridesmaids smiled encouragingly
at me but what I knew, that they didn’t know is
that I couldn’t possibly look reasonable in a dress
“Just try it on.” Hadiza said.
I grudgingly accepted the dress and went into the
changing room. When I stood before the mirror, I
just didn’t see the girl that type of dress was made
“So, what do you think?” I asked the ladies.
There were mixed reactions. Toyin managed a
strained smile, Hadiza wrinkled her forehead, and
Sarah who was one of the bridesmaids, said
“It’s beautiful! You look absolutely gorgeous.” We
all turned to look at the shop attendant who was
Toyin and I gave her a sharp look which silenced
her and she quietly retreated to another side of the
store. I scoffed as she hurried past me. These
people will tell you that anything looks good as
long as they get to sell it.
“Take it off, we’ll find something else later.” Toyin
sighed, but I could tell she was barely holding in
The pink monstrosity was a floor length gown with
a side slit that started at my knee. The mass of
ruffles on the neck was enough to create a new
dress altogether and let’s not even get started on
the legion of sequins that made me look like a
human disco ball.
After that epic fail, the girls split up leaving Toyin
and I to head to the restaurant.
“So, when do I get to meet Bello?” I asked when
we found somewhere to seat.
Bello Yakubu is the groom. I don’t know much
about him except that he’s an investment banker
in his mid-thirties who’s rolling in cash.
“Soon, I’m thinking of inviting him over to the
house this weekend. He’s already met mom and
“Okay, let me know so I can come over.”
Soon after, while Toyin was in the ladies’ room I
felt my phone vibrate in my pocket followed by the
message alert tone.
5:46pm, Sweet Sensation. White short-sleeve T-
shirt and denim skirt. It was a pleasure seeing
At first I was confused. But when the words
registered, I felt my blood run cold. It was a
perfect description of my outfit and the time was
5:46pm. He was here and he was watching me.
“Are you ready to leave?”
I was startled when Toyin returned.
“What’s wrong with you?”
“Nothing.” I forced a strained smile and gathered
my things to leave.
My eyes constantly scanned the restaurant for any
sign of him. I didn’t even think I would recognise
him if I saw him but I couldn’t help but look
closely at everyone we passed by. I didn’t feel
relaxed; not even when we were safely in the car.
And I especially didn’t feel safe when I arrived at
my dorm to find another package waiting for me.
As I pushed the door open and stepped into the
room, I heard paper crinkle under my feet. I looked
down to find a brown envelope lying on the floor. It
was close enough to the entrance to tell that
someone slid it underneath the door. I felt a tiny
bit of relief at that. It meant whoever this person
was, didn’t have access into my room. Although, I
didn’t know how long things would stay that way.
I dropped my purse on the bed and ripped the
envelope open. A picture fell out and landed right
side up at my feet. I scanned it quickly and
realised it was taken today while Toyin and I were
at the restaurant. Behind it was a short message
saying, “Next time, it would be me sitting next to
“Oh God, what do I do?” I whispered, dropping the
picture into my purse.
I wish I was never at work on Monday. I wish I
truly fell ill and couldn’t make it and most of all, I
wish I’d never spilled food on his shirt. I would
never have gotten myself into this situation
otherwise. I knew nothing about this person. I
didn’t know if he was truly dangerous or if it was
a fleeting thing that will pass soon. And why was I
the target? Surely, his shirt wasn’t that important.
Do I report this to someone? Even if I wanted to,
who do I go to?
All these thoughts were beginning to give me a
headache and staying alone in this room was
beginning to feel like a bad idea. I picked up my
purse and locked the room as I went out. Even if it
was for a few hours, at least I would be
surrounded by people or maybe I should visit
Daniel instead I thought. I decided to stop at an
eatery to pick up some food. I was starving and
knew from experience that Daniel almost never had
any food. After several years of friendship, I knew
him that well.
As I was standing in line to order, I felt movement
behind me as someone brushed me from behind. I
turned sharply, already scared of who I might find
“I’m sorry. I wasn’t looking.” He said.
I nodded and faced forward as the lady at the
counter called my attention. As I waited impatiently
for her to pack up the food, the guy behind me
cleared his throat. I didn’t turn around. I just
wanted to get out of there as soon as possible and
go somewhere I felt was safe.