That is her name. Because out of all the other names that existed in the world, her mother liked one that was Ijaw and praised the God she believed in. Tamaratare. I loved her name and I told her countless times.

“I love your name.” “I know. You always say that. Thank you.”

I would stare into her eyes as she lay beside me on the mattress. The mattress that lay bare on the carpeted floor in the room that my cheap income could only afford. She lay with me in the dark because there was no power. I couldn’t pay the bill and I couldn’t afford a generator. The last candle had been lit but she had put it off just so I could use it later when I needed to read for the CNA certificate exams. She didn’t mind that my space was so small and that I had cockroaches and rats scampering on the worn carpet at night. Or that we had to endure mosquitoes because I had to leave the window open to let in air into the cramped room. She smiled with me and I could see its genuineness with the aid of the light of the night sky as it invaded our evening while we lay in each other’s arms.

“I do not know what I would be without you.” “You’d be you. The guy who works harder than every other person. The kindest and most caring guy that walked the earth. The most humble. The most straightforward. The most gentle. The sweetest. The only man in this world that I would ever have fallen for. You’d be all of this and then more.”

I wondered if she truly believed all of that. And I felt the doubt begin to creep into me once more. How could she love me? I have given her nothing but affection in a world where materialism reigned and overshadowed everything. How could she love me when I have provided her with nothing but my words and deeds?

“How can you love me so much when I have given you nothing?” “You have given me everything.”

And she kissed me. Her lips parted mine. Searching. Her body pressed against mine. Yearning. Her voice, soft as silk as she whispered in my ear. Pleading.

“Make love to me. Make love to me like you’ve never done before.”

And like waves crashing hard against the seashore, our desires crashed against each other. Our wet bodies glistened in the skylight. Our beings became one as we began a journey to the peak of the mountain and arrived at its apex, in heated passion and cries of joy and satisfaction.

“You’ve never done that to me before. That was wonderful.”

I had nothing to offer her. Nothing to soothe her tastes in fashion and other desirable things. I could only please her with my words and my deeds. And there was still a lot of that to learn.

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