Many years ago, a boy named Joshua lived in a small town. He was a teen quickly becoming a young man. And by the age of nineteen, he was already a Secondary School senior, a big boy in school and one of the few boys wore sandals. Joshua was making preparations to write the mock Cambridge Exam which would determine whether he would proceed to the university or go to a College of Education. Therefore, he worked hard; for he could not afford to fail. Yet inasmuch as he studied his books, this period of Joshua’s life wasn’t just about the books. He was beginning to have other interests, one of which is his interest in the opposite sex.
Joshua’s school was an all boys’ boarding school and the only time he got to see girls was on special occasions. Meanwhile, there was this pretty girl named Ngozi who had become the centre piece of his life. She was a student of Queen’s College, the only Girls Secondary school in the town. Joshua began to notice the Ngozi as she would come with the rest of her fellow female students to watch the boys’ compete at football. Such occasions were rare, and Joshua anticipated them. Every time he was always on the look-out for the school bus that usually brought the girls, but despite always spotting out the girl of his dreams from the crowd he rarely had the guts to go talk to her. For months on end this continued; his infatuation growing by the day and Ngozi knowing nothing about it.
During each of these special visits, the junior students from Queen’s College were always whisked away back to their school once the football matches were over, whereas the Senior Girls were allowed to enjoy the attention of the boys. Therefore, being a senior student herself, Ngozi always stayed back and enjoyed the boys’ attention with her girls. It was on one of those occasions as she strolled along the sandy paths leading to the school gate that she noticed Joshua come up to talk to her.
“Hello…” Joshua said to her. But she ignored him and just kept on walking, whispering something to her friends instead and they all laughed out loud. Joshua’s face was instantly flushed with shame as he quickly looked around to ensure nobody had noticed the little drama. And just as he was about to walk away dejectedly, Ngozi pleasantly surprised him.
“I never knew you could speak” she said.
“What?” Joshua asked, unsure about whether she was actually talking to him.
“I thought you would never talk to me” Ngozi said, lowering her pace and allowing her girlfriends to move ahead of her while maintaining the same pace with Fortune. “I always saw you sneaking glances at me. I thought that was cute…” She smiled while staring briefly at Fortune. “Are you going to say something or should I give you more time to find your courage?”
“Pardon me… I’m just a little shy.” Fortune said. They both smiled, and for a while, they strolled silently. “My name is Joshua; what’s yours?”
“I am Ngozi.”
“Oh…so you are Igbo!” he noted pleasantly.
“Yes I am. What about you?”
“I am Igbo too. I am from Agbor…”
And that was how it all began, the love story that would last forever…