“I am sorry about your daddy’s demise Etta,” Bobby said huskily. He had taken her into his car and handed her a white kerchief. She just sighed and disposed of it.
“I want to cry for my daddy, he was only sixty-one,” she shivered.
“I know. You won’t cry all these tears today, don’t get yourself sick. You have to be strong for your mom and kid sister.”
He held her hands tight. This was the moment she needed him most. And it was time to prove that she was his best friend. She had been there since from secondary school, writing exams and test for him when he fell sick, giving her blood to save his life when he was sick on so many occasions.
Bobby Udosen was always sick. At a point his parents had to check his genotype to be sure he wasn’t one of the sickle cell anaemia children who was born to frustrate their lives.
His sicknesses ended immediately he graduated from boarding school. His mom, Lady Bianca had once joked about his ill health, and told him that if not for Etta, he would be dead by now.
When Bobby was admitted into Harvard business school, she was just gaining admission into the Igbinedion university. They called and texted each other almost everyday. And during holidays when they were home, they hung out together most of the time.
Everyone thought Bobby and Etta were dating, but they’d never kissed. They were childhood friends and they were both loyal to each other.
He told her of all the women he dated. And she told him no guy met up to her taste.
“You have to make a choice now, or you might end up marrying me,” he would say. She hit him hard on chest, “ouch!” he yelled.
“I can’t marry you, you’re my brother,” she once said.
Bobby didn’t know if his heart accepted that she is his sister. He has sisters, and Etta was too special, more than a million sisters. She was his true friend, the only woman who would tarry the night to place wet clothes on his feverish body to make him well. Who would spend hours with him over the phone and tell him everything that happened in a day. She was worth more than a sister to him, and he adored her so much.
Bobby had spent a few hours with her and her family. Consolers trooped in and out, and before nightfall, Etta’s mother, Mrs Affiong had ordered the security man to lock the gate and not let anyone in anymore.
Bobby spent the evening with Etta in their sitting room, they were all awake till morning.
The next morning, as soon as Bobby got down from his car, his mom began to yell at him.
“You have done so well for yourself young man!”
She was wearing a shimmering spaghetti hand night wear, tattoos of all her children’s name boldly written on her left hand in italics.
“Etta lost her dad yesterday,” Bobby said calmly.
“Oh my God, you mean the Chief Judge is dead?” his mother asked.
“Mom where have you been? The news is everywhere,” he said boldly and was about walking away when his mom said;
“Didi has been calling me. She was so bothered that you weren’t picking her calls. I had to try your line and it was switched off.”
“I wasn’t in a good mood to talk to anyone mom. My best friend lost the most important person in her life, and it wasn’t just a good time to talk on phone with anyone,” he walked away from his mom.