We Had Dreams By Glory Ada

We fell in love a long time ago,  maybe twenty years back or twenty -one ,  I have lost count but we fell in love anyway and love held us bound.  I remember the night we met.  I was thirteen,  young and naive.  I had seen her running the street over and over,  a girl who was physically fit,  she looked like she played football or basketball,  she was definitely involved in sporting activities .
"Don't stare at me in that manner,  I just moved into this neighborhood,  be nice and say hi " She said without stopping.
"Hi,  I am Gabriel " I smiled, it seemed I was finally going to have a friend.  " I moved in last month,  I have no friends around here yet" I joined her in running the streets.
"I like your name,  my name is Fola,  I love to run,  I run for my school,  I run for my church parish too. " she increased her speed.
"Slow down,  I don't run too good,  I am asthmatic " I suddenly stopped to catch my breath .
" You should not run then, just wait here , I would come back and talk with you,  new friend!" she smiled and ran on.
That was my first principle of attraction , she didn't think to treat me differently now that she knew I was sick. All my life I have had people change attitude the moment they realize I was sick but here,  she acted like my sickness was normal,  part of life,  part of living.  This was the first principle of attraction. 
"Do you have your inhaler here?  I might bring up the dust when I run past you " she hit my hands and smiled,  a beautiful smile. 
"I don't go everywhere with my inhaler " I laughed,  "it's not my life " .
" It could save you " she held my hand. "Want to see my house? "
"sure" I followed her without asking questions.
That day,  that first day was like every other day but magical in a way I couldn't explain.  This was all I ever wanted in a friend,  in a best friend I couldn't find.  So I had asked...
"would you be my best friend? "
"we just met" she laughed.
" I know but,  I never had a best friend.  I was thinking you could be my best friend before someone else made you theirs "
" I would be your best friend.  I never had a best friend too"
And so we entered into the covenant of bestfriendship. We became best friends forever . We made our own personal sign that night and I returned home feeling different,  alive,  awakened.  Somehow,  for the first time in forever I had a life.  Someone wasn't treating me like I was different simply because I was asthmatic,  someone was going to hold me close and laugh with me.  I had parents and a little sister but I had no friend in my family.  Fola was my first friend in thirteen years and she was my best friend even.  Best friend forever. This was the beginning of the most beautiful thing that ever happened,  the most beautiful story ever told. 
A few days after our first meeting,  she invited me to her house,  it was her mother's birthday,  I came as her bestfriend,  did stuffs with the family,  ate the cake and sang songs.  After the party,  her mother wanted to know what school I attended,  she wanted Fola to join me in my school,  she felt the school her children used to attend was now a little too far from the house. I told her everything about my school,  stressing the fact that sports was perfect in my school and this I was sure was what convinced her,  Fola became my class mate and in fact,  seat partner.  We read together,  talked about stuffs,  spent time together,  visited each other,  took so many pictures one of which I am holding right now.  Fola was beautiful,  very beautiful and amazingly fit,  too fit for a skinny guy like me maybe that was why when I fell in love with her,  I didn't think to tell her,  I was fine as her best friend but something happened when we got to final year in high school,   Joshua,   a regular school boy started to have eyes for Fola.  He would come to our seat and stay a while,  he would visit Fola's home,  sometimes,  he would take her out,  he was slowly stealing my best friend away.
The day of our high school graduation,  Joshua had finally gathered enough strength to ask Fola to be his girlfriend and she had come to me seeking help on her best response.  I was a weak guy,  I had told her to do what makes her happy  and Fola had accepted to date him.  I was wounded,  broken,  torn and pained, my Fola belonged to someone else.  I knew Joshua realized that I was in love with Fola,  so he did all be could to keep Fola away from me and he did succeed because Fola was suddenly too busy but I couldn't be too busy,  I couldn't help this love.  Several times I would go to her house,  get the news that she was out with her boyfriend but I would sit outside and wait for her return just so I could see her face. 
This was the very way I waited outside the night Fola came with the news of admission,  she had been admitted into a school in northern Nigeria,  far away from the west where we lived.  I was happy for her,  my best friend was now about to become an undergraduate.  I didn't apply to the University,  this was because my parents felt I should learn to master a trade first before going further in my education and so,  I was going to be working with a shoe maker close to my house, mom said it was for my good,  for the future.  So I cooperated.
Fola left soon after and I had to live with a broken heart.

Written by Duruem Gory Ada