Yes that was what Ijeoma did. Read on...
The sun was beating down fiercely that day as Ijeoma was going back to the hostel with Nneka after their lectures.
“Hey,” somebody yelled, “Ifeoma wait up.”
The sun was really blinding but it seemed the person was gesticulating at them so they waited at the side of the road for him to catch up.
“Who could that be? Did he say Ifeoma or Ijeoma?” Nneka wondered aloud.
“I can't say,” Ijeoma replied and then her heart jumped into her mouth, as she made out the built of Ifeanyi in the approaching guy.
"I think I recognize him,” she whispered.
Just then the sun went behind the clouds and she fully opened her eyes to see Ifeanyi Apia standing in front of them.
“Rest awhile strained eyes, cease squinting but just for sometime. Behind the clouds is the sun still shining,” Ifeanyi misquoted jovially.
They both smiled and then Nneka looked at Ijeoma enquiringly as if to ask, “Who is this guy, do you know him?”
Ifeanyi looked at her expectantly and she sighed inwardly as she introduced them, “Nneka, this is Ifeanyi Apia and this is my friend Nneka...”
“Nneka, the pretty serpent?” Ifeanyi asked humorously extending his hand. “Oh no!” Nneka replied returning the handshake.
“Ifeoma,” he began turning to her, “ I...”
“It's not Ifeoma but Ijeoma,” Nneka put in as she corrected him.
Ijeoma felt like sinking into the ground at their feet as Ifeanyi turned accusing brown eyes in her direction but he covered up cleverly as he continued, “Oh yes, Ijeoma, I don't see you reading in that class anymore. I hope everything is alright?”
“Nothing is wrong,” Ijeoma assured him, “its just that I've been going more to the library with Nneka since then.”
“Okay, I just decided to find out anytime I saw you,” he said searching her face.
He knew she was avoiding him but this was not the time to talk about that.
“Thanks for your concern,” Ijeoma replied, “We'll see you later one of these days.”
“No doubt about that,” Ifeanyi replied confidently, letting her know he wasn't giving up on her. At least, not just yet. “See you both later.” He added as he turned away.
“Bye.” he heard both of them reply and then as they walked away, he turned back and crept after them. He heard Nneka whisper furiously, “You gave him a wrong name? Where did you meet him?”
Ijeoma laughed. “Haven't you ever done the same? I met him at the class, two weeks ago,” Ijeoma replied.
“I won't mislead a guy this fine! Wow, he's a hunk,” Nneka breathed.
“I noticed him even before he spoke to me because he's so handsome,” Ijeoma confessed.
At this point, Ifeanyi turned back and went on his way. He smiled to himself. At least she had remembered his full name, the day they had met and she considered him handsome. Thank the good Lord for small mercies, he thought as he joined his friends.
“Ifeanyi, you are looking very happy these days, Guy what's up?” Ugo asked.
Ugo and Johnson were sitting in their favourite spot in the plaza sipping drinks when he joined them. Ifeanyi greeted them with their usual handshake.
“Hey there, get me a coke,” Ifeanyi called to the bar girl as he sat beside them.
Johnson who had been sitting down, as far back as he could, drawled lazily, “Oh, don't you know he is the latest lover boy on campus?”
“What?” Ugo remarked amused, “In just one semester, that's fast men.”
“Don't mind JJ and his stories,” Ifeanyi replied laughing. “Do I look as if any babe is giving me sleepless nights?” He asked.
Sitting up Johnson queried, “I don't see you anymore nowadays, what did she say?”
“Hey man, not so fast, trust me I am a cool guy,” Ifeanyi replied in an easy mood.
“Oh so you mean this is a true business?” Ugo asked feeling left out. “Who is the girl?”
“Of course.” Johnson replied aloofly. “But you won't know the girl.”
He always tried to put Ugo down whenever Ifeanyi was around. Ifeanyi had transferred to UNEC; University of Nigeria Enugu Campus from University of Ibadan after his parents had packed down from Lagos back to Enugu. They were very rich and Johnson, quite rich in his own right was almost like a sycophant to him.
Now he spoke to Ifeanyi excluding Ugo, “What do you think we should do tonight? Should we go and visit her?”
“Since when did I start visiting her with you, if that's even any of your business?” Ifeanyi asked in an irritated voice. Turning to Ugo he said, “Do you need another bottle?”
“Yes, of course, how can I turn down an offer of a drink?” Ugo replied.
Ordering another set of drinks; Ifeanyi turned the conversation to general matters. Johnson wanting to save face, joined in animatedly.
Hard critique as usual please and if you haven't caught up, go over to Cupid's Risk series and read the latest episode by Neefemi. Don't forget to vote.