I was temporarily
distracted from hitting the print icon by the sight of two undergrads coming my
way, holding hands and laughing loudly. That used to be me and Beatrice, I
thought and felt a pang of pain in my chest. I examined the hall of the
university’s library. Some people looked engrossed with their computers, others
chatted animatedly, and some searched for vacant computers. Everyone seemed
alright. I wasn’t. The blend of thrill and bliss that was the expected feeling
of someone who had completed his thesis just wasn’t there. 
In fact, I was
unhappy that the major project was over. Working on it had been a major part of
coping, or for that matter, not coping with Beatrice’s demise. It had been two
months now and I hadn’t found a way around the grief and guilt, the latter
stronger than the former. Honestly, trying had been too painful so I had
adopted an avoidance technique that involved embracing other distractions which
included taking as many shifts as possible at my night job, night clubbing and
shagging random sexual partners. 
Self-made online
experts said smoking calmed the soul so I gave it a shot but my abhorrence for
the taste and smell reinforced the embargo I once placed on it. On one clubbing
night, when the guilt was particularly unbearable, I had resorted to downing a
variety of alcoholic beverages.
The following
morning, I had woken up in my briefs and a massive hangover under a tree in a
public park. The unhealthy popularity and tales of my drunken escapades I had
received from strangers deterred me from going drunken master ever since.
Now I needed another
distraction or distractions to fill in the void once occupied by working on my
thesis. Getting another job wasn’t an option as I was constrained to twenty
hours of work as an international student – even though I was now doing ten
extra illegal hours. It struck me that I had always wanted to learn how to
swim. This would only take a mere hour or two daily but it was a start. I
clicked on the print icon and proceeded to the printer stand. 
My fingers combed my
tousled hair as I rose reluctantly to a sitting position on my bed. ‘Another dud dream,’ I said to myself. I
had had a dream but it had absolutely nothing to do with the dream: something
about balloons, a green park, airplanes and telephone conversations with some
high-end client. The frequency of the dream had dulled to an infinitesimal once
every week. This saddened me because I had form a bond with it like some
blockbuster movie that I couldn’t seem to get enough of. To rub pepper on a
fresh flesh wound, there was no indication of it coming to pass. I had been to
three fun-fair carnivals, my radar searching for any sign of a reality re-occurrence of the dream. No Mr. Right, No wailing kid, No nothing. Sometimes,
I had wondered if it was just a big fat joke played on me by my
subconscious.  I had spoken to Edna about
it and she had said: ‘Patience, it will
happen at the appropriate time.
’ In truth, I found my yearning for this
manifestation surprising since my life had been quite comfortable before the
dream. It had awoken a need that I didn’t know existed. An exhale escaped my
mouth. At least, my performance at work hasn’t been affected…yet. But at this
rate, how long would that last?
Time to prepare for
work. I got out of bed.  

is a budding Nigerian writer with a flair for fiction. Writing for him
began sometime in secondary school where he dabbled in poetry and plays.
He has authored two self-published short novels.
He is a banker and lives in Surulere.

Oluwole Olusanya
Oluwole Olusanya is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of one of the fastest-growing lifestyle and entertainment website in the country. He is a banker, writer, blogger, public affairs analyst and a tax consultant. He anchors Trending Topics on SHEFFA where he shares his thoughts and opinions on trending issues. He is currently studying for a Master’s Degree in Business Administration at the University of South Wales, Wales, United Kingdom. He has diplomas in Banking and Finance, Investigative Journalism, Creative Writing, and Linguistics from Lagos State Polytechnic, Isolo, Lagos, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland and The Open University, Milton Keynes, United Kingdom.