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Home  ›  Romance  ›  Love's Beginning
Love's Beginning
by Nkem Akin   (Author)
Read First Three Chapters

CHAPTER ONE

Benin City. July 15, 1999.

After posting the visa documents, Efe Sagay arrived at the lecture hall just in time because right behind her, strolled in the Business 102 lecturer. Dr. Eboche was a law unto himself, coming to class only when he liked. The only favor he did them was to give the course outline, a reading list and his lecture notes. Efe ran to sit where Nneka beckoned as the lecturer dropped his books and walked to the blackboard. The red coral beads around his wrist jangled as he wrote out the title of his course and the topic for the day.
“Entrepreneurship… the topic at the heart of business…” He turned back to the class. “How many of you have read ahead on this topic?” Dr. Eboche adjusted his black dashiki and wiped the sweat from his bald head, hairy arms and bearded chin. More coral swung around his neck. He was thickset, over six feet tall, and reminded Efe of a bear with his deep voice, an intimidating undertone in his every word.
Nobody spoke, so he went into a long tirade, calling the students lazy and foolish, and promising they would all fail his course with their unserious attitude. Efe felt a wave of tiredness wash over her and by the time he started on the real lecture, she had to fight to keep her eyes open. The bustle in the hall faded into the background.
“You! Tell me what I just said now,” Dr. Eboche shouted.
Startled, Efe looked up, but she didn’t understand his anger till Nneka pinched her. She turned to see Dr. Eboche staring at her under glowering brows.
“Young lady, what did I just say?” he repeated.
All sleep fled her eyes and Efe stood up, feeling like a dim-wit. “Ehm... Sir, ehm...”
“Yes?” The sarcasm in his voice made her wilt.
“You talked about a sole entrepreneur, sir, and you said...”
Before she could complete the sentence, a loud sneeze cut through the tension. The whole class erupted in wolf whistles and catcalls. Some of the boys shouted “rendered homeless” while others stamped their feet and slapped their desks.
“What’s happening?” Dr. Eboche asked, with suspicion bold across his face.
At the rear of the class, a popular noise-maker stood, and several other students shouted his name. “O-jo, O-jo, O-jo…”
“Sir, millions of bacteria have just been rendered homeless,” Ojo said. “We want to exterminate them before they contaminate us.”
“You are all sick,” Dr. Eboche declared with an air of irritation, and then he smirked, “Well... since I don’t want to be infected too, I beg to take my leave.”
This last statement was made with the air of someone who’d just had his request handed over on a platter of gold. Dr. Eboche packed up his books and left the class. Some of the backbenchers continued whistling, but Efe guessed it was in protest of the lecturer’s exit. Since it was their last lecture, they joined the rest of the students in packing up their bags.
“That man is a truant,” Nneka complained as they left the building. “Imagine; he left the class for such a silly thing.”
“Please leave that side. Don’t you realize I was just let off the hook? I have no power for Eboche’s wahala.” Efe wiped her nose. This was the first time she would fall asleep in class, and she was ashamed of herself. Was this how she would cope in America?
Nneka stopped walking. “But Efe, what happened?”
“You know I had to finish filling those visa forms last night?” Efe asked, and Nneka nodded, laughing when a wide yawn interrupted Efe. “When you left the library, Ovie persuaded me to read till daybreak. And while she fell asleep at midnight and didn’t stir till morning, I couldn’t fall asleep.”
Nneka shook her head, “I don’t think I can do TDB sha.”
Efe shrugged; it had been worth a try. TDB was fine when one read through the night, but it had disadvantages too. She’d woken up late and also fallen asleep during a lecture, but at least she’d sent off the completed visa lottery forms to her parents. Now, when she got to her room, it was straight to bed for a long siesta. America dreaming…

Benin City. July 15, 1999. 5pm

Kevwe and his close pal, Wale, sat under the shade of an umbrella in front of Omega Café, one of the popular joints on campus, both cradling chilled bottles of beer. A sales girl wiped down the empty tabletops but a passing car raised more of the red dust that coated every surface in the vicinity.
The sun blazed and Kevwe wiped his face, taking a long sip from his drink. Everyone waited for the next rain, but it was July and the skies had also dried up from the heat.
“Who’s that girl?” Kevwe nudged his friend with a foot under the table. Two laughing girls walking along the street had caught his attention.
“Which one?” Wale asked as they admired the two girls passing. “The light skinned, tall and beautiful one, yeah? Curved in all the right places, face like a goddess...”
“Easy now,” Kevwe laughed. “I mean the slim milk chocolate one. Don’t you think she’s just right for me?”
“JJC like you, yeah?” Wale sneered.
Kevwe remained aloof at his friend’s teasing. Wale often displayed a strange sense of humor, having been born in London. His parents moved back to Nigeria when he was thirteen, but he was yet to lose his British accent because he spent all his vacations in the United Kingdom. He added ‘yeah’ with an inflection into every other sentence he made, and said ‘cull’ instead of ‘call’. Sometimes this got on Kevwe’s nerves, but he would ignore it now, because he wanted information.
“What do you mean?” Kevwe asked, still following the girls with his gaze.
“They’re hard to get,” Wale said, “They’re real ladies, yeah? Not like the many ajebutter for mouth, and back for ground in this Ugbowo.”
They laughed uproariously and slapped each other’s knees. Kevwe remembered why they were flat mates; Wale always cracked jokes and could be so down to earth too.
“Oh God, you kill me,” Kevwe said holding his sides. “But fill me in, man, talk to me.”
“That particular babe is in her first year,” Wale replied, “The gist is that she still doesn’t have a beau, though it hasn’t been for lack of guys trying their luck. Come and see how guys rushed her when they were admitted in October last year. Let me tell you a story. You know we call them Jambites when they first get in, yeah? A good friend of mine tried his luck on your babe then, and do you know what she said?”
Kevwe gestured for him to continue.
Wale spoke in a high falsetto, “I am too young to have a boyfriend. I want to concentrate on my books and make my parents proud.”
Kevwe smiled. That was a good attitude, but he could bet she was past that stage now. It was almost a year, and she’d be more used to the freedom of university now.
“And don’t think guys have gone off on such a hot babe since then o.” Wale said. “I know some friends of friends, and guess what the grapevine reported? She told one guy just a few weeks ago that she didn’t want to raise his hopes or break his heart.”
“She has already broken mine,” Kevwe said, clutching his chest with a moan. He was attracted to the girl, and would give it a go.
“Yeah…” Wale said with a straight face, “you and half the guys on campus.”
Kevwe laughed, sitting back to take a long swallow from his drink, which had become warm from the heat. “Mmm... I think I may have an edge, being a new face and all.”
“Don’t forget to mention a mysterious history too,” Wale said, “Girls won’t fail to fall for your bad boy charms, yeah? Rumor has it you’re a cult guy, expelled from UniLag…”
“That’s not true.” Kevwe wasn’t surprised at the question. He’d completed his transfer to the University of Benin just three weeks ago in June. He’d come to UniBen because he wanted to change departments, and he hadn’t been able to do that in Lagos. However, the timing couldn’t have been worse. Since the new president had been sworn in two months ago, the country had been abuzz with anti-cultism slogans. Students had been rusticated from several universities, and many more had been suspended.
“You see why I didn’t go to that school?” Wale interrupted him with a sniff. “I hear the vice chancellor sponsors the cults to maintain an upper hand. Is that true?” He did not wait for Kevwe’s reply, “I know someone was killed last year by cultists here in UniBen, but at least there’s an anti-cult group here. You know five Student Union Government officials were recently hacked down in Ife, and nothing has been done? I hear they target people whose parents are loaded to harass, so I have to be careful. You have to be too; I hear your parents are one of those that own Benin…”
Kevwe shook his head. “Wale, I hear you.”

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Product Details
Author: Nkem Akin
Publisher: NS Publishing
Publication date: 2011
Pages: 111
Product dimensions: 422 x 600
More About This eBook
Overview
In her first year in University, Efe Sagay meets the love of her life, her soul mate, the person she wants to spend the rest of her life with...Kevwe Mukoro. And the feelings were mutual as Kevwe goes out of his way to woo her and make her his. The plan was that as soon as Efe graduated, they would get married. This was the dream and this was the goal for the young lovers. But real life doesn't always see things the way we do. For some people, Kevwe and Efe's love is taboo, and they will do whatever it takes to see them break up. Who are these people?

Love's Beginning is a touching and emotional book that looks at life and love through the prism of university education including the influence of secret cults, inter-tribal conflict and parental interference.
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About Author
Nkem was born and raised in Enugu, Nigeria, where she spent most of her time, studying, reading and daydreaming or climbing trees and playing with the boys. She has a Master’s degree in Public Health Research but has now returned to her childhood dream of spinning stories. She writes and blogs full-time, and believes in the use of the internet and social media to promote the book industry and literacy levels in the country. Nkem is also the founder and managing editor of www.NaijaStories.com, for those that read, write or publish Nigerian stories.

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