The Presbyterian Boys’ Secondary School – the threshold of vibrant academia, inspirational leadership, seasoned theology, and mastery of the craft of gentlemanliness… true. Yet life, in that boarding house, without contrasting variety, would simply have been boring!
Kusovo and Mulato were the noisiest pair in the dormitories of House Nine ; from pillow fights to water bombs; from skipping class to formation dancing without music; from weekend cadet drills for newbies to…you name it. The two pranksters boasted of the highest success rate for breaking bounds from the boarding house. They were notorious, and they loved it. They often spoke of knowing all sixteen escape routes out of the school, and were soon to release a manual on how to successfully break bounds and never get caught. Yes, they were crazy, even by adolescent standards.
But beneath the pomp was an uneasy friendship, a lurking discomfort: Kusovo owed Mulato almost nine hundred cedis, accumulated over their three years in the secondary school. How? Mulato was the one always paying for their meals at eateries, each time they broke bounds.
But Kusovo flatly and bluntly refused to pay. Why should he pay, when he had always been the mastermind behind their operations, and Mulato a mere financier? Wherein lay the thrill of the escape to food-land if it was not for free? He even threatened to spill some beans if Mulato didn’t shut his trap about the money he owed.
Yet, anytime Mulato was ready to eat out, Kusovo would follow. The impudence!
This got Mulato wondering. To think that this low life scumbag could hoodwink him, and someday live to boast of it made him feel very stupid. He felt cheated. Now he not only wanted his money back, but he also wanted to prove himself. For a long time, even as he had fun with his comrade, he schemed; schemed fruitlessly, until he met Julia.
Julia was the forty-something year old manageress at the famous eatery they frequented. After finishing a meal one evening, she approached the young Mulato and made a queer request…
She wanted Kusovo. She said she loved Kusovo, and she knew he loved her too. She could tell from the glances he cast at her, the way he ate her food and the signals he left behind soon after eating her meals. She loved the way Kusovo walked, the accent he used in the local parlance, and how thrilled she felt at the mere thought of him.
She was disappointed that Mulato had been coming alone in the last fortnight… that she often dreamt about her Mr Right…Kusovo, alone in bed without her for comfort. She finally waived off Mulato’s bill for the day, and asked him to bring Kusovo along to the next dinner, for her Christmas special.
Mulato’s surprise was soon replaced with excitement. In an instant, he had a brainwave. His prayers had been answered. He quickly made Julia an offer she couldn’t refuse; juicier than she could possibly have bargained for.
The following weekend Mulato gladly informed Kusovo of his plans to eat at their usual. Kusovo dropped whatever he was studying and followed his friend in deed.
The two spent almost two hours at the base… Kusovo won’t stop eating! He kept ordering, and eating, and ordering. Mulato chatted knowingly with his friend… until the bills arrived.
There were two separate bills. Mulato paid his in full, wiped his lips noisily and walked away. Kusovo hadn’t even carried enough to pay for water. He was about to follow his buddy, when a macho man held him firmly at the shoulder from behind. No explanation to the security man could absolve him of this financial iniquity.
A customer, unable to pay his bills, was led to the kitchen, away from comfort and from other clients…to wash dishes. Now, this may seem to you like a piece of cake, until the mountains of plates and kitchenware are brought before you in an unending sequence. Kusovo was doomed!
After about an hour of exhausting dish washing, Julia made her entry. She began by wiping his brows, and cleaning the sweat about his neck. Then, upon wiping his back, followed it up with a hearty embrace.
Soon her hands were underneath his shirt, as she motioned him to shush.
“I know you love me as much as I love you. My baby, my sweetheart, I’m all yours…” she began.
Kusovo couldn’t believe what was happening.
“Kiss me darling!”, she forced his lips on to hers, all the while with his hands immersed in dishwater. Then she strum her fingers down his shorts!
It was at that material moment that it dawned on Kusovo that Mulato had really meant business. Surely, this prank dwarfed them all! There was no escape: a guard at the only exit, and teams of customers making their rounds and minding their own business. Moreover, he was still illegally out of school. He couldn’t risk an uproar. He stood on his feet for four long hours, perplexed and inundated, enduring this execution of unilateral erotism, as Julia whispered the rarest profanities, and touched him in ways he only previously hoped he’d experience in wet dreams. No, this was a nightmare!
He left the eatery at midnight, hungrier than he came, feeling less of a don and more of a stooge. He feared the stage of jackals that might be waiting at the dorm, for surely, there was no redeemable recovery to even save face. He’d been subdued. In the art of pranks, the ultimate fool was he who knew not when to concede.
When Mulato woke up the following morning, nine hundred cedis had been tucked under his pillow. He smiled. Now who had the last laugh? Now who was the genius?
– Sentimental Solutions
– A Case of Erotomania.
– Inspired by a True Story.