She struck his mind eye like an unusual mermaid temporarily exploring and enjoying things that aren’t present in her marine realm.
It was not an apparition, she was real. There she was; physically on the dance floor, rocking those beads like a scientist whose hypothesis has just been approved globally.
Effortlessly, with so much passion, she swayed her waist like a periwinkle by the river bank. Countless times as she sought after, her wrists would follow. And as she danced, Femi watched vividly from across the crowd where he was seated.
With much satisfaction in his heart, he thought and concluded; that it’d be foolish if he were to ever let her go without a piece offering.
She was not a dancer, but she was a happy soul, full of life and joy inside. She had a flair for good music and whenever she got drowned in those beautiful rhythms, her feet would carry her wherever. It was that same disciple of hers that conveyed her to the village square.
An evening for the age group ceremonial dance. It is one of the most anticipated event in that community, which occurs once every four years. And most maidens wait long enough for it.
Some girls were dressed in the most expensive wrappers, and accompanied with it were marvelously styled beads. Some of them appeared larger than the usually styled beads we have ravaging our local markets; while others were simply petite but appeared magnificent when seated on the shoulders or waistline.
Some maidens would dress naked come this occasion every four (4) years; and they’ll design their skin with all manner of temporary artistic tattoos anyone could draw.
Their body literally becomes a temple where they are designed magnificently by those who gushes over them. It was a showdown for the ones who’re truly endowed with beauty; be it artistic, physical or spiritual.
And as Shade grew, she blossomed like a flower planted beside a stream, soaked with fertilizer and warmth. She was indeed beautiful. Born into a family of three (3), by a literate mother from Edo State and a renowned Carpenter for a father, who hails from Ondo State……… Hence the name “shade”……
Shade was not the regular light skinned girl, her skin color seemed hazel-like under the sun and at sundown, she’d appear pale brown. She was a mixture of this-and-that, unusual yet subtle and well-learned. She was every man’s dream girl and some parents would wish occasionally that she were their child.
And as she danced that night, moving swirly like the whirl wind, Femi’s eyes accompanied her through. He watched closely as though he didn’t want to lose sight of her, and after just about a reasonable amount of time, he got off his wooden chair and danced towards her.
I like the way you dance, he uttered! I must say, you got me on the edge of my seat this whole time, and I feel like my legs can do just about anything to wear this beautiful countenance that has overshadowed your face.
Their first encounter
Ah, he flatters! Flattery doesn’t suit you though; you come off as a gentle man who ought to have been a priest by succession. But! Thank you, nonetheless! Dancing is a bodily expression of a heartfelt display of joy and extreme happiness. You should indulge quite often! But as for me, it’s more like a habit; and an avenue to express myself, I must say!
Femi interrupted by attempting to hold Shade’s left wrist; she quickly shoved off his hand by pulling her arm backwards. She doesn’t like people touching her, but in this case, she wasn’t displeased by his touch; it was just an uncomfortable situation for her.
Femi paused and looked at her as though there was something on her forehead. And then, he muttered under his breath; can we go someplace quiet to talk? Shade shook her head in agreement, and they both proceeded to the little hut just by the rear view of the town square.
There, in the hut, they talked and laughed at each other’s jokes. It was a swell time for them both; nobody was looking for them because it was a ceremonial day.
They felt comfortable revealing some private information about themselves, and as they continued, the night drifted closer to dawn. It was amazing how without hesitation, they both listened to their hearts. At least, life harbors all feelings; and we, mostly let ourselves enjoy the ones we can handle.
Femi buried shade in his arms like a mother hen would her week old chic. An unplanned meeting upon which an opportunity was soughed after; they both exchange their intentions as their lips melted in one.
They made love without second thoughts; it was Shade’s first time and Femi pampered her like a queen. It was apparent to them both, that the tides could change for the sailor headed south at dawn; yet they halt not.
As midnight drew closer, they tidied themselves up and bid each other farewell. A book was intended to be written; but a few pages it has yet revealed.
They left each other that night, temporarily, to meet again as their feelings were to grow independently. Fortunately for Shade, it was not the night of her full moon.
Though a flower was plucked; but notwithstanding, the littered seeds sometimes bear more fruits than we perceive it ever could.
Inspired by The age group ceremony of the People of Edo State.
To be continued………….