Laughter, Tears and Dreams by Wani.



“It didn’t have to end this way, T.” He says, “I think we’ve just grown apart.”I’m seated in the front seat of Kanmi’s Benz, after what seemed to be a fantastic dinner date. Little did I know what was to come. He’s breaking up with me. I burst out laughing.

I didn’t know what else to do but laugh. It’s the kind of laughter that is scary because nobody said anything funny.

“Come on, Tami, say what you’re really thinking.” He urges. I turn in my seat to look at him. “To be honest, I’m not thinking anything. I think I’m confused, but let’s continue. What’s the real reason for this breakup? Because I don’t think we’ve known each other long enough for us to have ‘grown apart’.” I had to emphasise that last part with air quotes because ko ye mi. I sat there staring at him, waiting for a reply.

He sighed and facepalmed. “I’m sorry T, I just can’t continue. Something is off and I don’t know what it is.” I chuckle. There’s that laughter again. “Ko buru. Thanks for dinner.” I kiss his cheeks and open the car door.

“I love you, Tami.” he bursts out.I laugh again and bang his door shut. Yeah, right. Am I angry? Sad? Relieved? To be honest, confused is the word. I know I’ll be fine, maybe I refuse to be in tune with my emotions. Am I ovulating?

I open the door and do a quick squat on my way up as a greeting to my parents. They acknowledge with a nod and keep their eyes glued to the movie on screen. They seem to be having a good time and I won’t want to ruin it with this news. Would that even ruin their night? They weren’t huge fans of Kanmi, but they didn’t hate him either.

I open my room door and find my sister on my bed. “I want to sleep, go to your room.”

“Won’t you gist me? How was dinner?”

I sigh and smile. There’s that chuckle again.

“Hmmm, that good?” she pushes.

“We broke up. I’m fine sha.”

She gets up from the bed to wrap me in her arms. “So sorry, Tami. How do you feel?”

I shrug. “I don’t know. I just want to sleep.”

She lets go to stare into my eyes. “I’m here if you ever want to talk.” She kisses my forehead and gets ready to leave.

On second thought, I won’t mind having her around. “Temi, you can stay here. I’m not sad oh, I just want you around.”

She nods and makes her way to her previous spot while I get ready to shower. “I have leftover chicken from the date,” I inform her as I head into the bathroom.


I can hear a saxophone but I pay no attention to it. I’m seated at my favourite restaurant, enjoying a good time by myself with a blissful meal of seafood pasta and a glass of wine.

The lights go dim and the saxophone gets louder. Then, there’s the violins. I must be in an alternate universe because why is Kanmi walking towards me?

We broke up, didn’t we? A chill runs down my spine.

Someone pinch me. He’s getting down on one knee. He takes my hands,

“Tamilore, how could we have grown apart? You are the best thing that ever happened to me and I want to spend my life with you. Will you marry me?”

Once again, I’m confused because I don’t know what to say. I haven’t even processed the breakup yet.

The instruments get louder, pushing me further into a confused state. What song is that? They must be playing off-key. Now, they are going too fast.

My head hurts and everything is spinning around me.

“Say yes, Tam.” He urges.

“Say yes, Tam.” “Say yes, Tam.” that’s all I hear. I can’t think. Everything is spinning.

“Say yes, Tam” echoes.

Suddenly, I’m jolted awake by the sound of my alarm. I open my eyes to meet the darkroom and the sound of Temi’s light snoring beside me.

I can’t help it. This time, I let the tears fall. The harsh reality comes crashing back down on me like a tidal wave. There was no saxophone, no proposal, no ring. Just a stark breakup. Now I’m in tune with my feelings.

Temi stirs beside me. “Tami, are you okay?”

I chuckle. Okay, maybe not so in tune with my feelings. “I’m single, Temi. 28 and single.”

She pushes closer to me and wraps me in her arms. “Oh, sis! There is nothing to be ashamed of. Forget men for now and focus on yourself. You are a brilliant accountant, making good money. What do you need a man for?”

“Well, you know…

She laughs. “I know, sis. But without him, you’re still good.”

She squeezes me tight and I prepare to fall asleep in her arms, shedding a few sobs.

I know this is the beginning of something new, and I’m ready for it. I may be single, but I’ve got my whole life ahead of me. I’ll be fine.

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Pencilmarks and Scribbles Magazine was founded in 2017 by Clara Jack to be a home for African writers, asking them to come as they are and giving them room for growth. The publication aims to give back to the Nigerian Literary scene for the things it has given us.