Yoma kept her word and took Kessina out for lunch. She was scared she would back out so she stayed in her office, using every medium to drag her into a conversation, which wasn’t very successful. Even including physically clinging to her.
During a meeting with a staff, she clung to her. It was surprising to the staff that Yoma allowed so much closeness and clinging. She was never at any gathering except conference room and avoided contact with others. They labeled her germophobic among other things.
One had to wonder how Kessina got Yoma wrapped around her finger?
Kessina stopped eating to look at her. ‘Yoma’
She hesitated. She didn’t want to ruin her mood. Her moods were unpredictable but she felt like seeing her eyes. ‘Can you take off your black glasses?’
Yoma glared at her.
‘Never mind. Won’t you eat? You want take out?’
She shook her head.
Kessina chuckled. ‘Ha, you’re such a miser’
She shrugged her shoulders. Kessina took her time. It wasn’t every day she gets to drag out her friend, she had to make good use of it.
Yoma paid the bills.
Their next stop was Garen’s office. Yoma’s frown was deeper than usual, one could see her brows creased into three lines. On days like this, she wished Kessina knew how to drive. She didn’t really get along with Kessica’s boyfriend.
Kessina chuckled. It was nice seeing her express displeasure. When she wasn’t speaking, her expressions did. She understood but just refused to cave in.
‘Don’t’ she scowled.
She roared in laughter. ‘I just wanted you to wait while I give him lunch’
Yoma didn’t glance at her though if she did, she wouldn’t know. Stepping on the accelerator, she drove fast to his office while Kessina gave directions.
Upon arrival, she called Garen. Immediately the call connected, she apologized. ‘I’m sorry I bailed out on our lunch date earlier.’
‘Your lover has returned?’
Not wanting to quarrel, she diverted his attention. ‘I brought lunch. I’m outside your office’
Kessina nodded smiling. Yoma snorted. She realized he couldn’t see her. ‘Yes. Come quickly’ she said and hung up.
‘What’s that for?’
Yoma was quiet for a while then a sinister smirk brew on her face. Cold chills enveloped Kessina, her sinister form was sinister and scary. She became uncomfortable but she had to be brave. She didn’t have time to question her action because her pale-faced boyfriend arrived.
Garen’s enthusiasm faded at the sight of the notorious black Xterra car. He didn’t need to be told who was in it with his girlfriend. As if clenching unto her most of the time wasn’t enough, she had to bring her along.
He found Yoma weird and scary. Her aura around her was powerful enough to make him shudder. Why his girlfriend didn’t shudder too was a mystery.
Kessina darted eyes between both of them. One was cowering, the other savoring in the satisfaction. ‘Quit scaring him with that look.’
‘My lunch’ he said in a quiet voice.
The sooner he got away, the better. He grabbed the lunch from her and scrambled off.
Kessina felt bad.
Her boyfriend and best friend aren’t getting along. She will always be on the spot cause she loves both. But her best friend needs her more.
Yoma is alone without family and she degrades herself. She lives lifelessly each day without hope or dreams and she doesn’t get along with people. Why won’t others realize her responsibility?
Kessina glum at her thoughts.
Dirin opened his room door and went in. His room in the hotel was barely furnished. A laptop was on top of a reading table and a chair at a corner, bed with yellow sheets on the opposite side along with a window. He collected a beer from the mini fridge beside the table. Slumping on his bed, he opened the beer and drank.
He smiled at the thought of Yoma. He was happy he saw her, he didn’t have the luxury of seeing her each day. She was pretty and radiant than the last time they met. He reminisced the first time they met five years ago.
Dirin had been into black market business. He wasn’t into drugs, arms or trafficking but he despised the law and legal system, growing his business illegally. He had gone for business far away but was betrayed by his clients, because of greed.
He had been tortured and beaten ruthlessly for days, then abandoned to die at the entrance of Alik town, late at night. He had known it was game over. How long he laid there groaning, slipping out of consciousness, he had no idea. Suddenly a silhouette appeared in his line of vision. He had struggled to keep his eyes open until he saw the figure up close.
A feminine figure stood in front of him, he saw her face properly. Beautiful – had been the first word that popped in his head.
Every story heard of being saved at the brink of death was usually a person on white thus called an angel. But he’s had black on. Or perhaps his eyes had played tricks on him.
A look at his state, she had known he was in death’s grip. Thankfully, a car approached, she flung herself right into the road. He was shocked.
He had done everything dangerous except flung himself in front of a moving car.
The driver obviously hadn’t anticipated her move stepped on the brakes hard and swerved the car to not hit her. But it wasn’t very successful.
The scene flashed in a second like lightning before him. He had sworn she was crazy. But he had also sworn he saw her caress his face and even use her clothes to wipe his face.
Dirin hadn’t been certain what happened after he saw her jump in front of the car cause his eyes refused to cooperate with his desires. He had been in and out of consciousness until the darkness finally took over him.
A couple of days later, he had regained consciousness. His eyes had met white walls and beeping monitoring machines. He had groaned in pain as he moved his body but a voice stopped him.
‘Do you have a death wish? The doctors said you couldn’t survive one more broken body part and worse, organ’ Yoma’s cold had voice echoed in the room, he tilted his head to her direction.
Dirin had gawked shamelessly. ‘You?’
‘Were you expecting a curvy beauty in a body-hugging white flowing gown with white wings?’ Yoma had sarcastically replied.
‘I saw you before-‘ his hoarse voice.
She cut him off. ‘You’re alive but not kicking yet, is a good thing. Who can babysit you? I have somewhere to be’
He had stared at her. Her coldness had not affected him. ‘Water’ he requested.
Yoma had walked out and after a couple of minutes, a doctor and a nurse walked in. The doctor had told him a few of her words in a nicer way.
‘Please lend him your phone’ he had heard Yoma plead with the nurse at the door on her way out. She turned to him. ‘Call someone to come pay the hospital bills’
He had been blown away, despite her cold and stern voice. He had given Jaya’s number, hours later he arrived.
He had been worried and scared. ‘I will find whoever did this…’
Jaya had given the usual speech a loved one gave but it was her piqued interest that had intrigued him.
Yoma hadn’t had time to inquire if the hospitalized patient knew him but from his words, he did. ‘Can you truly find anybody?’ Her voice was soft and calm.
He had been stunned by her shift in personality. Playing the white locus eh?
‘We both can’ Jaya answered.
She went closer to the bed. ‘I saved your life and sustained injuries money cannot compensate. Find a person for me and we are even’
Dirin hadn’t had the guts to refuse her. He agreed to find whoever she wanted immediately he got better. He had asked for a name.
‘Eva Nna from Alik’ Yoma replied.
He had later discovered Alik was mysterious. He learned that an incident had made Eva disappear. But couldn’t unravel the incident. He had simply searched every possible trail the name gave.
Who is Eva Nna?
Dirin couldn’t bring himself to ask her even after all the searches he did. He sighed tiredly.
Kessina stared at the Matron dumbfoundedly.
After they had left Garen office, they went to Osas foundation. Yoma sat under the tree while Kessina went to meet the Matron who sought to extract juicy information from her immediately.
‘Wipe that look off your face’ the matron a woman of fifties scolded her.
‘You didn’t offer me any seat or refreshments, your pique in my presence is to get spicy details of my friend’s love life’
She scrunched up her face. ‘Have a seat.’ She pulled her to a nearby chair.
‘How was her last date? When was it? He is interested in her right?’
Kessina folded her arms across her chest. ‘You don’t want any spicy gist eh?’ Her voice etched in sarcasm.
The elderly lady waved her hand dismissively. ‘I’m concerned about her. Last time you told me you were in a relationship, I advised you get her hooked up too cause you won’t be with her forever. You will get married, then what happens to her?’
Kessina slumped her shoulders. ‘She still doesn’t get along with others. She is so strict even at work, no room for mistake and she doesn’t give second chances or forgive. If I dare to force her in doing something, she will give me a cold shoulder or silent treatment. Her silent treatment is different from ignoring me and the former is worse’
To an extent, she understood her reasons for not trying to hook her up but still, she had to. She wouldn’t always be around for her. ‘So you didn’t hook her up?’
Kessina eyes sparkle, her lips curl into a mischievous smile. ‘She refused to go on a blind date, I decided to bring the date to her but it wasn’t easy’
The Matron’s grinned. ‘Go on…’
‘The guy refused to meet her after the first meeting. He didn’t tell me why either’ her cheerful demeanor changed to brooding.
‘Getting my hopes up for nothing’ The Matron said annoyed.
‘But I really tried.’ She protested. ‘While trying to her get to like the species called human, I have to consider her feelings if not, she would give me an angry glare or a sinister smirk. You don’t know how scary it is even with her damn glasses on’
‘Keep trying’ she couraged her. ‘It’s for her own good. No matter what had happened to put her in her current state, she has to live her life’
The Matron could only imagine what distress caused such a young lady to became distant. It certainly wasn’t anything light or simple. Her reserved fondness of children was the only soft side to her.
Yoma sat alone under the tree with a sad expression until Kessina approached. The drive home was quiet. It wasn’t an uncomfortable silence but a content one, Kessina couldn’t be happier. Spending a day with her made her elated.
They arrived home and made dinner together, they barely spoke while cooking. They had been together for so long they understood harmony in doing things together but after dinner, she refused to assist Yoma clear the plates or wash them.
Kessina was buying time. The moment she goes into the room, she will be on her laptop until she fell asleep. She walked into the kitchen and sat on the counter, watching her.
‘What happened to you Yoma?’ She started. ‘No one is born mysterious or with a dislike for people, something must have occurred to change the person drastically. You can tell, I am your friend. I won’t judge you or love you any less’
Yoma heard her words but didn’t respond.
Kessina didn’t give up. ‘Did you hear a really bad secret about someone and it made you dislike people?’
She waited a bit, no reaction from her.
‘Were you bullied as a child?’
‘You were a prime witness in a murder? Your mother left you as a child? Or was it your father? Did their death break you?’ Kessina went to her and turned her, leaving the plate in the sink. ‘Wh…where you abused?’ Her hush whisper managed to get to her ears.
She had asked her a couple of times over the years but she never responds. Each day, it was getting tedious taking care of her because she could snap and do anything especially wandering off. Her periodic lose of activity, withdrawing and not wanting to be around other people, depression, sadness, difficulty sleeping, acting differently were not exactly signs of any sort of abuse but were signs to watch for.
‘Tell me, I promise to be with you and help you seek help. I will get justice for you Yoma….please trust me’
Yoma released herself and continued washing the plate.
‘Are…you m…ma..maybe…sick…like dying?’
After Yoma was done, she spoke. ‘Goodnight’
Kessina stood there dumbfounded. Not even a reaction, how does she get to the bottom of it if she won’t talk? There has to be a way. She leaned on the counter racking her brain. Therapy was a good idea but to make her speak in one was impossible. She had made a therapist visit her at home as she had refused to go. Three months later, not a single word or reaction from her in her session. Yoma had left and didn’t return until after three months. The fear and anxiety she lived for weeks was something she couldn’t repeat. Though she had good intention, Yoma just didn’t want help.
Yoma settled on the grey couch in her room. The walls were black but shelves, rugs, curtains, couch even bedframe were different colors, complimenting the black.
She found her phone on her laptop. Kessina had kept it there for her when they arrived earlier. Though her phone wasn’t used frequently like her laptop, she didn’t want Yoma’s attention divided.
Yoma tapped her phone screen to find a message notification from one of Dirin’s men who was involved in the search. She quickly unlocked her phone.
The first four words shocked her.
Eva Nna is dead.
She was dazed for a few minutes before she screamed in agony. Pain stabbed every fiber of her body like tiny needles, her chest tightly gripped, reducing air flow. She shuddered violently. Horror filled her head. It was worse than her nightmare. It was her life being snatched away….again.
Kessina heard her scream. She sprinted to the room. She was stunned. Yoma collapsed before her eyes. Scratching and growling, she continued to scream in pain.
Kessina sat on the floor. Pulling her into her arms, she hugged her tightly. She rarely screams while crying but her agony was still felt.
Strongly revolting, disgust filled Yoma as she scratched her body leaving nail marks. A wave of bile rose up in her throat, nauseated, she ran into the bathroom.
Kessina ran after her. She gagged for a few minutes before emptying her stomach content. When she was done, she was spent. She slumped on the floor crying.
Kessina took a towel and cleaned her mouth. She gave her a cup of water but she refused it. Loud bangs on her door drew her attention, she refused to answer.
Yoma’s screams must have attracted them. She gently raised her with difficulty and brought her to the bed.
Kessina went to the door. ‘We heard screaming’
‘Not we are playing screams. Real scream for help’ another chimed in.
‘It is Yoma again right?’
As expected of her nosy neighbors. ‘Yoma is fine. Please excuse me, I need to clean up broken pieces’ she lied.
They gave her a look showing they didn’t believe her. She forced a smile and shut the door.
Kessina went back to the room. She couldn’t stop her screams or cries but she could be by her side and cry with her. Yoma’s phone on the floor caught her attention. She had seen it in her grip earlier. She tapped the screen, only to find it locked as usual. She sighed. Her phone and laptop were password protected. She had tried to open it several times but failed.
After Yoma’s voice became hoarse and cracked, she sat stiffly, quietly crying. Kessina was awake until early hours of the morning when she unintentionally fell asleep. Perhaps she had exhausted herself crying with her and was tired, she didn’t feel Yoma leaving the bed.
Yoma went to the kitchen. She collected a knife. Eva’s death echoed in her head, cramming her in guilt. With that thought, she slit her wrist. Blood gushed out ceaselessly.
‘I failed you again Eva’ she mumbled while her eyelids grew heavy as she fell.
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