I Was Born for This
Because saying Jowan like that, like it’s a magic spell, like it’s the name of an entire country – there is only one thing that she could mean.
‘You’re joking,’ I say.
She simply thrusts the phone at me.
On screen is a news article.
THE ARK’S JIMMY KAGA-RICCI AND ROWAN OMONDI CAUGHT SLEEPING TOGETHER AT LONDON APARTMENT
My heart starts to hammer. My palms start sweating.
I scroll down.
While their fandom’s theories concerning a relationship between The Ark’s Jimmy Kaga-Ricci and Rowan Omondi have previously been considered nought but the sexual fantasies of fourteen-year-old girls, a new piece of interesting evidence has emerged from the depths of the internet.
We’ve acquired a photograph appearing to show Jimmy and Rowan sleeping next to each other in a bed. They appear to be inside their SW3 apartment (in which Jimmy, Rowan and Lister live), as a London skyline can be clearly seen through the large window next to them.
Is this fandom conspiracy real? You decide! Jimmy and Rowan look pretty cosy to us!
The photo does indeed show Jimmy and Rowan sleeping next to each other on a bed. Rowan is on his front, one arm slung over Jimmy’s chest. Jimmy’s head is tilted ever so slightly towards Rowan.
It’s like it’s been Photoshopped.
It’s better than any piece of fan art I have ever seen.
‘I have died and gone to heaven,’ I say. I put the phone down on the bed and turn to Juliet. ‘What is happening right now?’
Juliet has both of her hands on her face. ‘I’m dying,’ she says.
‘You don’t think – I mean – the title of the article was kind of misleading, but—’
‘Look at them. Look at them. They’re cuddling.’
I look at the photo again. They are sort of almost nearly cuddling.
‘They’re cuddling,’ I say.
Juliet flops down onto the bed.
‘This is the beginning,’ she says, ‘isn’t it?’
Of course it’s the beginning. It’s the beginning of everything we ever dreamed of. Jimmy and Rowan standing up and showing everyone that love is real. That even amidst all the shit, there is some pure goodness in the world.
Juliet suddenly flings herself out of bed. ‘I need to tell Mac.’
Having forgotten that Mac exists for the past few minutes, I am suddenly sprung back to reality.
‘Oh yeah. Don’t bring him in here, though.’
Juliet gives me a confused look until I point at my scarf-less head, and then she gives me a thumbs-up and leaves the room.
Once she’s gone, I load up the image on my own phone. When did this happen? There was nothing about this when I checked Twitter after I got up to pray earlier this morning. Amazing how everything can change within the space of a few hours.
I stare at it. It’s beautiful. God. It’s so beautiful. Jimmy is so beautiful. Rowan is so beautiful. They love each other so much. I want to cry. Nobody will ever love me like that. Doesn’t matter. Jowan exists. There’s something good in the world. There’s a point to being alive.
Every single day I wish I knew the full story. I wish I knew how they met. I wish I knew the things they say to each other. Who’s louder. Who’s the joker. I wish someone had recorded their every interaction and I could sit down and watch them all from start to finish.
I’ll never know, though. But at least we have this.
Enough to make me believe.
When Juliet calls ‘Angel, do you want breakfast?’ through the door, I realise I have been sitting in bed looking at the photo for over ten minutes.
Please don’t let me die in a plane crash. Please. I mean, I’m on a plane every other day so if it’s going to be anyone, it’s going to be me. Can you imagine dying in a plane crash? All those people screaming in an oversized tin can. Knowing they’re gonna die. Can’t even call your grandad on the phone. Sounds like something that would happen to me.
I’m curled up in my first-class seat, clutching my cross necklace, counting down the minutes until we land safely back in London and the chance of me dying a fiery metallic death is back to ‘relatively low’. I know the chance is low anyway. I know that. But I can’t stop thinking about it, and the more I do, the faster my heart beats and the harder I find it to take a full breath. At this rate, I’ll flood the plane with my own sweat. Create a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Suddenly, Rowan yanks up the blind that shields my seat from the rest of the cabin. He looks furious, but then his expression drops into something softer, and he says, ‘Jesus. You all right?’
I release my necklace and wipe my hand on my joggers.
‘Planes,’ I say.
‘Oh, yeah.’ Rowan opens the compartment door and sits down on the table next to my seat. ‘You know you’re more likely to—’
‘To die in a car crash, to get struck by lightning or to get eaten by a shark than to die in a plane crash. I know.’
There’s a pause. My breathing has calmed down.
‘Anyway,’ I say. ‘What’s up?’
He sighs, then glances around the cabin. There are a few people staring at us, which isn’t unusual. I’ve already caught two people taking photos of us when they thought we weren’t looking. Not that I confronted them about it.
Rowan shuffles further inside my compartment, shuts the door, then pulls up the blind so no one can see or hear us. He drops his iPad into my lap and touches his fingertips to his lips.
I look at it, confused. ‘Did you get stuck on Candy Crush again?’
He gestures at the iPad and doesn’t say anything. The expression on his face suggests that this is not a Candy Crush-related issue.
I pick up the iPad and look at it.
On screen is a picture of me and Rowan sleeping in my bed in our London apartment.