We were collectively startled, turning around toward the corridor, facing the guestroom from where the shout had come. There was the sound of a mild scuffle, before the same voice shrieked again, “You’re a bastard, Paschal! How can you do this to me? Is this what I came all the way here for?”
Then we heard the muted rumble of Paschal’s voice as he, no doubt, tried to cajole what seemed to be his enraged sex partner.
“What has he done to the poor boy, I wonder,” Ekene mused out loud.
“Given him piles perhaps?” Jonathan suggested, his lips twitching.
Yinka and Adebola chuckled as Biola said with a faintly cross look, “I hope that drama doesn’t lead to anyone breaking any of my things in there o.”
“Why, Biola, I think you might already be regretting your benevolence,” I gibed.
Our laughter at that was cut short when the guestroom door was banged open, and a young guy stormed out to the corridor, followed closely by Paschal. The boy was of average height, but had an impression of being much taller due to his willowy frame, that skinny body type that is all the rage amongst youngsters in the gaybourhood. He had a small school-bag slung over his shoulder, and his face was contorted with a mixture of anger and misery. While he was already fully-dressed, Paschal was just clad in his boxers and singlet, and trailed after the boy, seeming in no particular hurry to stop him from his headlong departure from the apartment.
“Hey, hey, Andre,” Biola cooed, stretching out his hand to stop the boy from barreling past him as he made for the front door, “what is the problem? What happened in there?”
The boy took a deep breath, looking like he was of the mind to simply shove past Biola without answering him. Then, he dug his hand into his pocket and whipped out a very thin wad of cash, which he brandished in Biola’s face as he began railing, “Your asshole of a friend fucked me from yesterday to today, pounded me relentlessly with that NEPA pole” – he jabbed a finger in the direction of Paschal’s crotch – “he calls a dick, made me sit on it, suck it, deep-throat it, time and time again, because he said he likes me to give it my all. And I did! Because of course, I’m good like that. And he loved it – every moment of what I did in there. And what do I get for it? TWO THOUSAND NAIRA!” He waved the four pieces of five hundred naira notes in his hand in Biola’s face, outrage etched on his face.
“Calm down, Andre –”
“Do you have any idea how much pain I had to endure for his pleasure?” Andre spat out, cutting across Biola’s conciliatory words. “And I don’t even want to talk about how this paltry sum does not even begin to cover my transport fare back to school in Benin, let alone, cover all my expenses that this trip to Lagos has cost me!”
“Did you two talk about him reimbursing you when you get here?” Adebola cut in, drawing Andre’s irate gaze around to focus on him.
“I told that broke-ass nigger” – the boy pointed at Paschal again – “that I wasn’t bucks-ed-up enough to come to Lagos, and he told me not to worry, that I’ll be taken care of. And this” – he brandished the money again – “is supposed to be me getting taken care of? THIS?!”
“Okay, how much do you need?” Biola said, rooting inside his pocket for his wallet.
Paschal immediately interjected, “Biola, you don’t have to –”
“I wasn’t talking to you,” Biola snapped coldly at him, before turning to Andre. “How much will take care of your trip back to Benin?”
“Never mind, Biola,” the younger guy said. “I’ll be fine. I need to learn my lesson from this. I’ve never had to travel out so far to see any runs before. This was a real eye-opener.” And then he turned to face Paschal with an expression filled with such naked dislike, that I found it hard to believe they’d been lovers just moments ago, and he spat at him, “I have played the fool to you this once. It won’t happen again, because I will never forget this. I will never! Remember that.”
And he whirled around and stomped past Biola, wrenched the front door open and slammed it shut behind him in a punctuation of his declaration.
There was a bit of a pause in the wake of his departure, which was broken when Ekene said, “You fucked up, Paschal, you know that, right?”
“Abeg, abeg, don’t get on my case now,” he returned curtly.
“He’s right,” Adebola said. “Clearly, you led him to believe that he didn’t have anything to worry about concerning his expenses, and yet, you didn’t hold up your own end of the deal.”
“You make it sound like all this was a business deal,” Paschal growled. “And that Andre is a prostitute.”
“It is a business deal!” Biola interjected cuttingly. “And Andre prostituted himself to you. When you invite someone from another state to come and see you, for sex, the understanding is that you fuck him, you pay for his time. You know, for someone who gets paid for sex, you just said one of the most clueless things I’ve ever heard.”
“Or perhaps, he was just being clever, and feels like he’s played a fast one on the poor boy,” I added.
“I beg your pardon,” Paschal said, oscillating his glare toward me.
I stared back at him. Like the others, I didn’t approve of how he’d played this Andre boy, and I wasn’t going to be cowed from telling him my mind. “You heard me. I think you know what you did. And I think you’d always known that this is what you’d do. Lure the boy over here, fuck him, and then give him what you can, and let him go to hell. Thing is, you forget that gay guys can be more vindictive than even scorned women. He told you to remember what you’ve done, that sounded like a threat to me.”
“Oh please…” He waved a dismissive hand in the air. “What can he do? He’s a mere student in UniBen. He should come here and try nonsense, I’ll crush him. Lagos is my city.” And before anyone could utter a rebuttal, he turned to George and said with a bright smile, “Well, look who’s here! George Emoefe, what, in the devil’s nuts, are you doing back here, away from Sunday School?”