The grey Lexus jeep drove out of the expansive compound. The driver looked to the left and to the right before turning towards the express way. Just as the car was about to hit the express, a man on a power bike parked at the end of the street whipped out his mobile phone from the pocket of his pants and placed a call. He adjusted the ear piece in his left ear as he spoke. He nodded as he put the phone back into his pocket and kicked the engine. He put on his helmet and followed after the car keeping a safe distance.
The driver kept his speed limit at forty kilometres even though the road was free. The car turned into a hospital off the expressway and the driver parked the car. He got out and rushed to open the boot. He brought out a motorized wheel chair, shut the boot and rolled the chair towards the back door on the right hand side of the car. He opened the door to reveal a bulky handsome man. His eyes were tired even though he masked it with a smile. He was greying at the temple and his hair looked like a comb had just passed through it. He was wearing a blue collared T-shirt on brown corduroy pants. The pair of canvas on his feet spoke volumes about his taste.
The driver held on to the wheel chair while the bulky man hoisted himself into it. Once he was settled in, he placed his hand on the joystick and powered the chair while his driver tagged behind him.
The biker stopped a few metres away from the hospital and placed another call. “Yes, he is in.” He waited to get a response before replying. “Okay, I am waiting.” He put his right hand under his jacket, felt for what he had kept in there and smiled to himself.
The bulky man drove himself into the reception of Rainbow Physio centre. The receptionist seated facing the glass doors immediately looked up from the laptop in front of her when the door chimed. “Good afternoon, Mr. Giwa. How are you doing today, sir?” She asked cheerily.
“I’m fine, thank you Atinuke. I have an appointment with Dr. Okechukwu for 1.00p.m”
Atinuke’s fingers hit the keyboard of her laptop as they moved quickly. She paused as she looked up at Mr. Giwa. “1.00pm today?”
“Yes today.” Mr. Giwa replied.
“I’m sorry sir. There must have been a mistake. Your appointment is not for today. It is scheduled for 1.00pm tomorrow.”
“Oh my! Really? I thought…..” Mr. Giwa was saying before he paused. He put his right hand on his chin. “I am sure the appointment is for today.”
“It is right here sir.” Atinuke said; tapping her forefinger on the screen of her laptop. “Dr. Okechukwu’s calendar is blocked for you tomorrow, Thursday at 1.00pm.” She continued.
“Okay dear. I hope I’m not beginning to……”
Atinuke looked up from her laptop. “Sir?”
“Never mind dear. I was talking to myself. I’ll be here tomorrow then.” He said as he turned his wheel chair towards the door.
“Have a good day, sir.” Atinuke called out as the automatic doors opened.
Mr. Giwa replied with a wave of his hand.
The driver rushed to open the door of the car while Mr. Giwa helped himself in. The wheel chair was rolled back and lifted into the back of the SUV.
“We are going back home, Leke.” Mr. Giwa said when his driver eased into the car.
“He’s leaving the hospital. Are you ready?” The biker spoke into his phone. He waited for a response.
“Yes, there is a bit of traffic. Maybe twenty minutes.” He continued.
“Okay, that is fine.” He concluded as he rubbed his gloved palms together and put his helmet back on.
The trip back home took longer than twenty minutes. About hundred metres away from Mr. Giwa’s residence, the biker trailing him sped up and blocked the way just as the driver was about to get to the gate.
“What is going on?” Mr. Giwa said; his voice shaky.
“I don’t know, sir.” Leke responded and tried to maneuver his way but the biker was already walking towards them.
Mr. Giwa checked the doors to see if they were locked. The biker knocked on the driver’s window. Leke shakily put his hand on the window button and rolled it down. He lifted up his hands immediately. “Please don’t kill me. I will give you whatever you want.” He shouted; his voice unsteady.
The biker looked at him. “I’m not hurting you. I want to see Mr. Giwa.”
The driver looked at the rear-view mirror to look at Mr. Giwa’s face. “Sir?”
“I have a message for him.” The biker said.
Mr. Giwa looked at the driver’s eyes which were still on the rear-view mirror. He raised his hand to signal to the driver. The driver took the cue and nodded to the back.
The biker walked to the other side of the car and Mr. Giwa wound down his window with a button. The biker put his right hand under his jacket and Mr. Giwa froze. The biker’s gloved hand revealed a tablet and he pressed on a button before he handed it over to Mr. Giwa.
Mr. Giwa hesitated but the biker pushed the tablet into his hands.
As Mr. Giwa took the tablet, he saw the faces of his grandchildren smiling at him. Someone was recording them and they all chorused “Happy 70th birthday grandpa. We love you.”
Mr. Giwa’s countenance changed instantly as a smile spread across his face and he looked at the man who had delivered the tablet.
“Happy birthday sir.” The biker said as he nodded and took a step backward. He turned to walk towards his power bike which still blocked the entrance to Mr. Giwa’s residence. He picked up the power bike, climbed on it and zoomed off while Mr. Giwa and Leke watched in amazement.
Leke put his hand on his chest as he took a deep breath. He put the gear in drive and moved closer to the Giwa’s residence. He honked and the gateman rolled the gate open. As the car drove in, Mr. Giwa looked around him in shock. There was a huge canopy erected inside his compound. A flurry of activities lay to the left and to the right. A band was playing at the far end of his compound singing solemn praises to God. Rows of chafing dishes lined every corner and waiters stood behind them. A different set of waiters were serving cocktails to guests; some were seated while some were standing and exchanging pleasantries. Mr. Giwa could not believe what was happening around him.
Leke parked the car and retrieved the chair from the boot as he assisted Mr. Giwa in getting settled into it.
“Hello, Mr. Giwa.” Dr. Okechukwu said as he walked towards his patient who had powered the chair and was already moving towards the activities.
“Doc? You were part of this?” Mr. Giwa asked astonished.
“Of course. I wouldn’t allow my patient miss his 70th birthday party because of an appointment, would I? The doctor said as he smiled.
The band noticed Mr. Giwa and started singing a happy birthday song for the celebrant. All the guests who were seated stood up and joined the birthday chorus.
As the chorus ended, Mr. Giwa’s grandchildren and children all hugged him one by one as they wished him a happy birthday. Mrs. Giwa stood behind her last child and as her husband got his last hug, he smiled at his wife. She looked beautifully wrinkled and her eyes twinkled with love. She walked up to her husband and bent down to plant a passionate kiss on his lips.
“I love you darling.” Mr. Giwa whispered.
“I hope I didn’t give you a scare.” Mrs. Giwa asked.
“Oh, you definitely did.” Mr. Giwa said taking a deep breath.
“I’m sorry darling. Please relax and be calm, it’s your party.”
Mr. Giwa looked at his wife as he held on to her hand and smiled.
“You deserve the best. Happy birthday, my love.” Mrs. Giwa said.
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