People often say that women are the ones who betray each other the most when it comes to friendships as opposed to men. Well, in my case I realized that sometimes men can also show you dust.
The moment I finished high school I informed my parents that I wanted to take a year to figure out what I wanted to do in life. If you have grown up in an African home, then you know that what followed was constant yelling. However, with time they ended up agreeing. Once my year was done, I joined campus. To get the full university experience, I opted to stay at Qwetu hostels.
Staying in a solo room was expensive so my best option was to share a room. On that very day, I met Phillip. From first impression he didn’t seem like someone I could bond with. I can always tell when someone is introverted from their behaviour and interaction.
The first few days we ended up clashing a lot, which confirmed my theory that we could never be close. Phillip was not only reserved but he also liked doing things his way. In his view, I was a messy and wild person. Given the opportunity, he would gladly live alone. Nevertheless, I tried my best to co-exist with him since neither of us had a choice. The easiest way to do this was to stay out of his way.
Weeks went by and I ended up making new friends at school and Qwetu as well. Although both cliques were different, we all loved hanging out together. We would spend weekends clubbing or engaging in other activities like bowling and swimming. During long weekends we would plan trips to different counties and follow through with them.
During one of our escapades, I met Georgina. She was not only beautiful but soft-spoken as well. Normally it would take me a while to form a bond with a woman but with her things were easy. What made things better was that we were on the same campus. By the end of the semester, almost everyone knew about my relationship with her. Being an 18-year-old guy, I didn’t know much about love, but I knew that what I felt for Georgina was special.
Our relationship went well for months and slowly she also became part of my friend group. At first, it was amazing until she ended up cheating on me with one of the guys in the group. To make matters worse, she didn’t even have a solid reason as to why she did it. You never know how painful a cheating confession is until someone tells you “It just happened,”.
Being my first serious relationship, moving on ended up being such a hard task. We shared some classes, and she was still a part of my friend group. So, to make things easier I had to cut off everyone who was associated with her. Every day after, I spent most of my free time at Qwetu and slowly ended up bonding with Phillip.
By the second year, he became like a brother to me. Spending time with him gave me a whole new perspective on life and even made it easier for me to quit drinking. Somehow, I ended up liking my new lifestyle. But it also ended up being short-lived.
As the year progressed, Phillip started picking up calls at random times and sometimes even outside. Being a man, I couldn’t ask so I just gave him time hoping he would tell me. Days turned into weeks, and he never said a word about his mysterious girlfriend.
“Hey, so do you have any plans for tomorrow?” He asked me on a random Friday which caught me off guard.
“No, I was planning to chill here and play some video games,” I replied.
“ Ohh sawa, no worries,” He said.
I knew that he wanted to ask me to find something to do but didn’t know how to phrase it. So, I picked up my phone and pretended to go through my WhatsApp.
“Actually, I won’t be around tomorrow. I’ve remembered there’s a family event I’m supposed to attend,” I lied.
“ Ohh, cool,” He replied.
The following day, I ended up packing at around 4 p.m. and left him cooking. Halfway through my commute, I realised that I left my charger. Being the only person who has a type C charger at home there was no way I would survive the weekend. There and then I stood up quickly and alighted at the nearest bus stop, crossed the road and boarded a matatu back to Qwetu.
By the time I got to our room, Phillip was in the shower, so I didn’t feel the need to disturb him. I grabbed my charger but just as I was about to leave a message popped up on my laptop. Phillip’s laptop was spoilt so I would occasionally lend him mine to use. I didn’t want to be nosey, but curiosity got the best of me.
“I’ll just check her profile photo then I’ll leave,” I thought to myself.
I clicked on the photo and ended up staring at it for a while as I tried my best to remain calm.
“Didn’t you already leave?” Phillip said as he stepped out of the bathroom.
I didn’t respond, instead, I picked up the laptop and went through their conversation.
“What are you doing? Is that my WhatsApp you are going through?” He asked in a worried tone.
I switched off the laptop, put it in my bag and left the room. During the commute home, I kept thinking about their conversation. How casually Phillip was flirting with her and how she was responding with so much enthusiasm. He even had the audacity to bad-mouth me in order to impress her.
The following week I requested a room transfer. It seemed like a long shot but luckily, they agreed since two people had recently joined the building. Phillip and I never spoke to each other after I moved out of the room. The only form of apology I got was a WhatsApp text that I ended up blue-ticking. Being betrayed by Georgina didn’t hurt me as much since she had hurt me in the past. However, with Phillip, the pain stayed with me for some time to the point that I couldn’t even attempt to befriend my new roommate.
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