Tag Archives: Love

Love, Lies and Murder – Part 3

The secret affair between Taiwo and Mojirayo continued; both of them taking pleasure in themselves anytime Kehinde stepped out of the house. Mojirayo continued to fulfil her wifely duties to Baba Ibeji even though she still generated sneers from her co-wives. Taiwo and Kehinde gained admission some months after into the Lagos State Polytechnic to read Agricultural Technology and Marketing respectively. Baba Ibeji insisted he wanted them close by; therefore staying in the hostel on campus was out of the question. Taiwo smiled sheepishly on hearing his father’s instruction. As long as he went to school from home, he had unfettered access to Mojirayo. Due to the difference in their courses and lecture timing, Taiwo took full advantage of the situation and left the campus premises most times without his brother.

About eight months into their secret relationship, Mojirayo realized she had missed her period for two consecutive months and was beginning to feel sick. She had not been consistent with her birth control pills for a while and it dawned on her that she might be pregnant. She became confused as to who the father of her unborn baby was. Was it Baba Ibeji or Taiwo? She tried to do a calculation backwards to deduce who she had laid with during her most fertile period. Her mother had taught her how to check her fertile period, ensure she laid with her husband during the season and note down the date in a diary. By her calculations, she realized Taiwo could be the father of her baby. The thought gave her mixed feelings and she became more confused. She was carrying a baby for her husband’s son. She sighed as she began to think of a plan.

Taiwo came in early from school as usual. He went into his room, dropped his knapsack on his bed and faced Mojirayo’s room. He eased himself quietly into her room without knocking on the door. Mojirayo was about getting dressed when Taiwo grabbed the dress and held it away from her.

“Not so fast.” He said as he encircled his arms around her waist.

Mojirayo smiled but snatched her dress back from Taiwo. “We need to talk.” She said as she wore her dress.

Taiwo shrugged. “What’s there to talk about?” He asked smiling.

“This is serious, Taiwo. I am not joking.”

Taiwo noticed the change in her countenance and sat on her bed. “What is wrong?”

“I’m pregnant.”

“You are what?” Taiwo shouted as he stood up from her bed.

“You heard me Taiwo. I said I am pregnant.”

“So why are you telling me? Shouldn’t you be giving the news to Baba Ibeji?”

Mojirayo sighed as she blew air through her mouth. “I don’t think Baba Ibeji is the father.”

Taiwo guffawed as he looked at Mojirayo. “So who is the father?”

“You are.” Mojirayo said as she eyed Taiwo.

“You can’t be serious. No, this is a very expensive joke.” Taiwo said shaking his head as he paced round the room.

“Taiwo, do I look like I’m joking?”

“I’m not ready to be a father. Besides, you are my father’s wife.”

“Really? You didn’t think about that when you were sleeping with me.” Mojirayo said with sarcasm as she rolled her eyes.

Taiwo breathed deeply as he sat on her bed. “Okay, let’s think about this clearly. I know we are both upset. What can we do about it?”

********

Kehinde sauntered into the house tired. He went into his room and dumped his knapsack on his bed. He went to the next room to check on Taiwo and found out he wasn’t there. He wondered where he could be as he had told him he was going home. He however, noticed the knapsack on the bed. Maybe he has gone out again; he thought. He was about going to the kitchen to look for something to eat when he heard voices emanating from Mojirayo’s room. Could Baba Ibeji be back so early? He tiptoed towards Mojirayo’s room and realized he could hear a man’s voice. As he moved closer, the man’s voice became clearer and it dawned on him that it was Taiwo talking. What was he doing in Mojirayo’s room? He was about to place his hand on the door handle when he heard….

“Baba Ibeji is ready to be a father. I would tell him I am pregnant so that he thinks the child is his.”

“You will pass my child over to Baba Ibeji?” Taiwo asked.

“I thought you just said you were not ready to be a father.”

“Fine, fine. But this remains a secret between us. It must never be heard by a third party.” Taiwo warned.

“I know. Has anyone found out about us up till now?” Mojirayo sneered.

“Okay.” Taiwo said as he stood up. “I need to go to my room before the house gets full.”

Kehinde slipped away quietly towards his room. What had he just heard? Mojirayo pregnant for Taiwo? How come? Was that the reason why he never stayed back in school and was always in a hurry to go home? How long had this been going on and he never knew? He shook his head as he thought about his twin brother. Was he seduced? He remembered how much Taiwo fought for Mojirayo whenever her co-wives treated her harshly. So this was the reason? He thought about what he could do. Should he tell Baba Ibeji the truth? Mojirayo was a traitor and needed to be treated as such. He sat down on his bed and thought of a plan. Mojirayo needed to be exposed.

The next day, Kehinde told his brother he wasn’t feeling well. He told him he would not be able to make it to school and would like to rest at home. Taiwo nodded as he left the house. Immediately he stepped out, Kehinde went to Mojirayo’s room and knocked on the door. Mojirayo was surprised as she wondered who could be at the door. She knew Taiwo should have left for school. Besides, he no longer knocked on her door. She opened the door and saw Kehinde standing before her.

“Yes, Kehinde. Is there a problem?”

“Yes, there is.” Kehinde said. “Can I come in?”

“Erm….can we talk about it here or maybe in the living room? I will meet you there.” Mojirayo replied.

“It won’t take long. I promise.”

“Okay.” Mojirayo said as she stood at the door.

“I can’t talk while standing here. If it was Taiwo, you would have quickly welcomed him in with open arms.”

Mojirayo looked to the left and to the right of the hall to be sure no one was around or heard Kehinde’s statement. She stepped back immediately and let Kehinde in.

“What do you want?” She asked once Kehinde was in her room.

“You.” Kehinde smiled sheepishly as he rubbed his palms together.

“I don’t understand what you are saying.”

“Okay. Let me put it in a way you will understand. I know you are pregnant and that Taiwo is responsible. I know your plans to pass the baby off as Baba Ibeji’s. Are you following?” He asked with a wicked grin on his face.

Mojirayo looked at him without a word.

“So, if you want me to keep my mouth shut, you would play ball with me. I want to have a taste of what Taiwo has been eating.”

“You are mad. Do you realize I am your father’s wife?”

Kehinde burst out into hysterical laughter.

Mojirayo walked towards the door and shouted. “Get out of my room.”

Kehinde continued to laugh as he walked towards the door. “I will leave you to think about it. You know the way to my room when you are ready; or else, this night, Baba Ibeji would hear the truth.” He said as he slid his palm on her cheek and walked out of her room.

Mojirayo slapped his hand away and slammed the door behind him. She began pacing her room in anger. How dare he threaten her? What rubbish? She took a deep breath as she tried to calm herself down. She had heard that getting upset hurt the baby. She sat down on her bed as she thought of what to do.

A few minutes later, Mojirayo took out her phone from her beside drawer and dialed Taiwo. He picked up on the first ring. “Please come home earlier than usual today.”

“Why? What is wrong?” Taiwo asked.

“It is urgent.”

“Just give me an idea of what it is. Is it about the baby?”

“Yes, something like that.” Mojirayo said.

“Okay, I’ll be home soon.” Taiwo replied as he packed up his books and put them into his knapsack. He left the campus in a hurry, wondering what could be wrong with Mojirayo’s baby.

He got home, dropped his knapsack in his room and quickly walked down to Mojirayo’s room. He made a mental note to check on Kehinde later.

Mojirayo was lying on her bed when Taiwo walked in. She stood up immediately to hug Taiwo and he noticed she had been crying.

“What’s wrong?” Taiwo said as he searched her face. “Is anything wrong with the baby?”

Mojirayo shook her head as she sniffed.

“So why are you crying?”

“Kehinde threatened to tell Baba Ibeji the truth. He must have heard our discussion yesterday. He says I must sleep with him to keep him quiet.”

“What?” Taiwo shouted. “He said that?”

“Yes. He said he is waiting for me in his room once I make up my mind.”

“No!!!” Taiwo shouted in anger. He opened the door of Mojirayo’s room and stormed towards Kehinde’s room.

Mojirayo ran after him as she tried in vain to calm him down. “Taiwo, wait.” But Taiwo was already in front of Kehinde’s door.

********

Kehinde had headphones over his ears as he listened to music from his phone. His eyes were closed and he did not see Taiwo storm into his room. Taiwo yanked off the wrapper he had used to cover himself and realized Kehinde was stark naked. For a brief second, Taiwo was shocked. Kehinde removed the headphones and looked at Taiwo in anger.

“What is the meaning of this?” Kehinde shouted.

Taiwo threw the wrapper back at him so he could cover his nakedness. “So you were truly waiting for Mojirayo to warm your bed?”

Kehinde wrapped his lower body as he sneered. “Haven’t you been enjoying it so far? What is wrong with me having a share of it? I’m sure she would even enjoy me better.”

In an instant, Taiwo’s fist landed on Kehinde’s face and he staggered backward. Kehinde put his palm on his face, brought it to his eye-level and saw blood. His nose was bleeding. He lurched forward to hit Taiwo as Mojirayo screamed. Taiwo was faster and moved away just before Kehinde’s fist landed. Kehinde punched the wall and his hand started bleeding as well. Taiwo hit his brother in the stomach and Kehinde doubled over. Mojirayo stood as she shook wondering what she should do. Should she run out and call the neighbours? Or should she leave them alone to themselves? She was confused.

Taiwo was gaining the upper hand as they both rolled on the floor. Taiwo sat on his brother and squeezed his neck. Kehinde struggled as he tried to push his brother off him. He flailed his hands but Taiwo squeezed his neck even tighter in anger. All of a sudden, Kehinde became still and stop struggling. Mojirayo was the first to notice and she tried to pull Taiwo off his brother. Taiwo still held his brother’s neck and Mojirayo started hitting Taiwo asking him to get off Kehinde. The expression on her face was that of fright and shock as she bent down to place her hand on Kehinde’s chest. Taiwo was still fuming and heaving and Mojirayo had to call his attention. Taiwo’s countenance changed when he saw the look on Mojirayo’s face. He knelt down and tapped his brother as he called his name.

“Get up Kehinde.”

Kehinde was still and Taiwo held his hand up. Kehinde’s hand fell back on its own accord.

“Stop this. It is not funny.” Taiwo said as he shook his brother. “Kehinde, I said get up.” He said; his voice becoming a little shaky.

“He’s not breathing.” Mojirayo said as tears streamed down her cheeks.

Taiwo fell on his haunches as he looked up with a blank stare. “What have I done?” He soliloquized.

Voices began to emanate from downstairs. Taiwo and Mojirayo looked at each other. Mojirayo’s co-wives were beginning to arrive from their shops to prepare lunch for the younger kids. Taiwo put his two hands on his head. Mojirayo folded her palms under her chin as she looked around in confusion. She saw a bottle of beer sticking out from under Kehinde’s bed. She took it and looked away as she hit the bottle on the wall. It splintered and she put it in Kehinde’s limp hand. She tore the dress she was wearing at the bust and started screaming. Taiwo looked at her confused. Has she gone mad? What was she doing?

Mojirayo’s screams generated commotion downstairs and everyone ran upstairs towards Kehinde’s room. As the women burst into the room and saw Kehinde on the floor, they looked at Taiwo’s face and saw Mojirayo crying and struggling to cover up her bust. Kehinde’s mother screamed as she knelt down and lifted up her son. “Kehinde, Kehinde?” She shouted. “What did you do to my son, you wicked girl?”

“He tried to rape me.” Mojirayo said as she cried uncontrollably. “He dragged me from my room, tore my dress and tried to rape me. He also wanted to stab me with the broken bottle in his hand, so I pushed him and he fell down and didn’t stand up again.” She said all in one breath.

Taiwo was astonished. His mother looked at his face as if to confirm the story and he nodded his head. He was at a loss. His tongue was tied and he just continued to nod his head. Iya Kehinde broke out into another scream as she lamented.

The other wives shooed the younger children who were standing by the door back to the living room. The oldest wife spat towards Mojirayo’s direction while the younger wife cursed the day Baba Ibeji brought Mojirayo into their house. As the oldest wife walked out of the room, she took out her mobile phone from her waist pouch and placed a call to Baba Ibeji to find out if he was almost home. He confirmed in the affirmative. She told him to come with the police and gave him details of all that had happened. Baba Ibeji could not believe his ears. He asked his driver to move faster so he could get home on time.

********

Baba Ibeji walked into his house and met Mojirayo seated on the floor in the living room. She was still in her torn dress and everyone stayed away from her like a plague. He looked at her and asked her to tell her story. The oldest wife stood up in anger. “Baba Ibeji, so you think I would lie against her?”

“Woman, sit down.” Baba Ibeji shouted.

“Kehinde did not go to school today. He said he wasn’t feeling fine. After everyone left the house, he came to my room and wanted to sleep with me. I told him I am his father’s wife and he can’t do that.”

Baba Ibeji nodded.

“When he refused to listen to me, I told him I would call you and report him to you. He got angry and tore my dress.” Mojirayo said as she released her hand from her dress and her bust became exposed. “He dragged me to his room, locked the door and undressed. When I tried to open the door to run out, he broke a beer bottle and wanted to stab me with it. I was afraid so I pushed him. He fell down and didn’t stand up again.”

Baba Ibeji took a deep breath, closed his eyes and bent his head backwards.

“Baba Ibeji, what are you waiting for? Call the police to get this wretched woman out of our house.” Iya Kehinde shouted. “I regret the day you brought her into this house. Ah, Baba Ibeji, you have killed my son. You have killed my Kehinde.”

“Enough.” Baba Ibeji shouted her down.

“Hmm….mmmmm.” Iya Kehinde hummed and cried as she shook her feet impatiently.

Baba Ibeji called Taiwo and asked him to go down the road to call the police to make an arrest. Thereafter, he placed a call to Mojirayo’s parents to come urgently. Mojirayo’s parents arrived in a jiffy thinking there was another gift to be received. They got to Baba Ibeji’s house and noticed the tense atmosphere. They met Taiwo outside and asked him what the problem was. Taiwo pointed into the house without a word. Everything that had happened still looked like a dream to him. Mojirayo was carrying his baby. Baba Ibeji was still unaware of Mojirayo’s situation and now she was getting arrested.

He still could not comprehend the motive behind Mojirayo’s lies. Would Mojirayo reveal that she was pregnant or would she decide to terminate the pregnancy? If she decided to have the baby, what was the future of the unborn baby in detention? Would they ever find out that Mojirayo was arrested for a crime he committed?

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—————————————————- THE END ——————————————————

Love, Lies and Murder – Part 2

Baba Ibeji knew that the exams ended two weeks ago because his twin sons also wrote the same exams. He had waited patiently for Shina to bring Mojirayo to him. Six weeks ago, he started buying trendy clothes, make-up and other fashion items. He had an idea of how he wanted his trophy wife to look. He moved his youngest wife from the room closest to his and gave her another room down the hall. Every day he went out, he came back with a new item which he put in the room and locked up. That was going to be Mojirayo’s room. She needed to be close to him. The other wives had lost steam and he needed someone fresh to make his blood boil and awake all his senses. His youngest wife did not understand what was going on but her seniors did. Was that not how they were also bounced to rooms down the hall when she took over?

 

Baba Ibeji had been reminiscing on his first night with Mojirayo. He had played the night over and over in his mind. He imagined Mojirayo was a virgin because he had never seen her with those riff-raffs who lived in his face to face apartments. It was like a dream come through when Shina approached him to seek for funds for her exams. This was his opportunity and he would be foolish to make it slip off his hands.

He went back home with Shina’s promise. He dared not refuse to fulfill it. They would be thrown out of his house before they even spelt Baba. He went to bed joyful. Tomorrow night would be the night. The night he had dreamt of the past six weeks.

 

Shina fulfilled his promise and took Mojirayo to Baba Ibeji’s house. Omowunmi prepared her daughter for the life of a married woman telling her never to reject her husband’s advances. She told her never to consider family planning as having many children would stamp her authority in her husband’s house and make her a woman to be reckoned with. She reminded her that she was the youngest wife and therefore, the favourite. She told her to make the best use of her status and better the life of her family as soon as she could. Mojirayo listened to her mother with a blank stare. She had been trained to be an obedient and responsible child and so she would remain for the sake of her family.

 

Mojirayo’s first night with Baba Ibeji was painful. Her mother told her not to reject his advances; she forgot to tell her that the result of those advances would hurt her. Baba Ibeji thought he was being careful with his new wife, he had forgotten that his calloused hands from years of working on the farm would graze her skin. He was too much in a hurry to take his wife whole as his excitement had built up immediately he touched Mojirayo’s full bosom and squeezed them as if he was milking a cow. He wondered why she insisted that he turned off the lights but it didn’t matter to him. She was standing right before him and she was all his for the taking. Mojirayo bit her lips till they bled as Baba Ibeji drove into her grunting and panting like a man on a race track and in two minutes, it was all over. Baba Ibeji was well endowed and he took pride in it. He lay on Mojirayo and she had to struggle to push him over. His mouth odour slapped her face when he asked her if she enjoyed it. Since the room was dark, he failed to notice that his new wife had tears on her cheeks. Mojirayo wiped her tears as she coughed a yes. The next three nights were visiting nights for Mojirayo. It was the same routine. Baba Ibeji’s grunting, his loud snores after and Mojirayo’s crying as she hurt all over her body. She however, endured the pains anytime she remembered her family’s living conditions. She was bent on not conceiving for Baba Ibeji and she used pills everyday which she kept at the bottom of her box.

 

In nine months, the fortune of her family changed. Her father got the Toyota Camry he wanted, her siblings changed schools and her mother changed her line of business. Even the room they lived in received an upgrade and her father rented another room; making their abode a room and a parlour. Things changed for the better for her family but Mojirayo lived in misery. Her senior wives also made life a living hell for her. She however received sympathy from Baba Ibeji’s twin sons. They had taken note of her immediately they arrived from a vacation at their cousins. Their father had sent them there two days before Mojirayo’s arrival and he had asked that they stayed there for about six months. They were just two years older than Mojirayo and they found it strange that their father had taken a young girl as a new wife. Their first three months at home, they had watched Mojirayo like an eagle would watch over her young chick. Taiwo noticed every move she made and soon began to take a liking to her and tried to make small talk with her while Kehinde, even though also liked Mojirayo was indifferent towards her.

Baba Ibeji’s elder kids lived on their own while the younger kids were in school, leaving the twins and Mojirayo alone at home during the day. The three wives all had businesses they ran while Mojirayo was confined to stay at home and be beautiful.

Over the next six months, Taiwo gradually became attached to Mojirayo. He knew Baba Ibeji must never find out about his dalliance with his wife, he therefore stayed in his room once his father returned from his farm.

************

One sunny afternoon, a friend of the twins decided to pay them a visit. Mojirayo was watching a movie in the living room. She stood up to open the door for him. Adeniyi was struck by Mojirayo’s beauty and for a few seconds, he was tongue-tied.

“Hello. How may I help you?” Mojirayo asked when she noticed the guy just stood before her like someone lost in a trance.

“Erm….I want to see Taiwo and Kehinde.” Adeniyi replied almost in a stammer.

“Okay, come in.” She said as she turned her back to lead him in while Adeniyi looked at her as if she was a newly acquired statue. Mojirayo called the twins out of their room and retreated into hers. Adeniyi continued to look at Mojirayo as she walked away. Taiwo sensing what was going and uncomfortable with the way his friend gawked at Mojirayo, slapped him on his hand.

“She’s taken.” Taiwo said angrily.

“By who?” Adeniyi asked as he rubbed his hand.

“Baba Ibeji.” Kehinde responded.

Adeniyi looked at them with shock. “How can your father take such a beauty away from young boys like me?”

“What did you come here for?” Taiwo asked getting irritated.

“Haha! I came to visit you nau. Am I not welcome in your house again?” Adeniyi asked.

Kehinde shrugged while Taiwo refused to give his friend an answer.

 

Forty-five minutes later, Adeniyi stood up to take his leave and Kehinde offered to walk him out. Kehinde also mentioned to Taiwo that he needed to get to the barbing salon down the road and would be back soon. As Adeniyi and Kehinde walked out, Taiwo stormed towards the rooms upstairs and banged on Mojirayo’s door.

“Why are you banging on my door?” Mojirayo asked as she opened the door.

“Next time, please don’t open the door for Adeniyi.”

Mojirayo looked at Taiwo confused. “I don’t understand.” She said as she walked into her room.

Taiwo followed after her and closed the door behind him. “I don’t like the way he was staring at you.”

Mojirayo raised her hands and shrugged. “So, how does that affect me? He is your friend.”

“He is not my friend. He is Kehinde’s friend.”

“Well, he asked after both of you. Was I supposed to tell him you weren’t home?”

“Just don’t let him in next time.” Taiwo said angrily.

“I don’t understand why you are getting angry. If you have a problem with him, why don’t you sort it out with him or your brother? Abeg, leave my room. I want to sleep.” Mojirayo said as she walked towards the door.

Taiwo was however faster than her. He held her back and grabbed her waist as he kissed her lips roughly. Mojirayo put her hands on his chest as she resisted him by pushing him back. She slapped him on the face but Taiwo was undeterred. He pulled Mojirayo into his arms and hugged her tightly. She initially tried to struggle out of his grip but relaxed when his arms became too strong for her.

“I’m your father’s wife.” Mojirayo said as she breathed heavily.

“I know but I am in love with you.” Taiwo said as he whispered into her ears. “And I know you have the same feelings for me but would deny it.”

He was right. Mojirayo had fallen in love with her husband’s son but it was unheard of. He was totally different from his father. With him, there was always something to talk about. They shared gists about school, watched the news together and sometimes discussed his plans to go to the university in a few months. She knew her education ended in his father’s house and that there was nothing she could do about it. She had been confined to Baba Ibeji’s house. Taiwo also showed her love and care every day. In Baba Ibeji’s books, those words took a different meaning.

Taiwo kissed the nape of her neck and Mojirayo melted in his arms. They kissed passionately and in an instant, Taiwo lifted her as he placed her on her bed gently and teased her sensitive spots with kisses. Mojirayo hugged him tightly as her body throbbed with passion. She had never felt this way and Taiwo had just given her a different definition of pleasure. She gave herself wholly to him and Taiwo proved he was a man.

As Taiwo stood up to get dressed, he kissed Mojirayo’s lips. “No one must find out about us including Kehinde.”

Mojirayo smiled as she nodded. Taiwo left Mojirayo’s room and entered into his just as Kehinde walked into the house.

——
The story continues…

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Love, Lies and Murder – Part 1

This Monday, Olubukola’s Thoughts serves you another African love story broken into three parts. 

Please enjoy, drop your comments and don’t forget to use the share buttons below.

Thanks 😊

*********

 

As the police led Mojirayo away from the scene of the crime, she looked at the faces of her parents. Her mother put her hand on her head as she threw herself on the floor in lamentation. Her father who she expected to be man enough to handle the situation wasn’t any better. He was crying in broad daylight. Tears streamed down his cheeks as he looked at his first daughter. His pride, the one who was meant to take them out of the depth of poverty. The one who was meant to be the shining light to her nine younger siblings. The one he had given out in marriage at the age of sixteen because he needed to provide a better life for his family.

Mojirayo raised her head high. She wasn’t sorry for what she had done. She showed no remorse. This was not the time to be sorry. This was the time to be happy. The time to jubilate because she had finally been delivered from the hell she lived in. Yes, it was hell but her parents thought otherwise. Even though she hadn’t planned what happened, it had worked perfectly in her favour. Baba Ibeji was a pain she endured the past twenty-four months. He had a pot belly that irritated her anytime he tried to hug her. He had a terrible mouth odour that nauseated her and made her puke when he kissed her. After retching, she washed her tongue with her toothbrush vigorously so that she did not also become a victim of his terrible sickness. When he visited her room to satisfy himself, he grunted like a goat during his height of ecstasy and snored like a generator that was about to knock its engine immediately after. Most times, she picked up her pillow and went to the living room to sleep. When he awoke in the morning and asked if she enjoyed him, she faked a smile and nodded like an agama lizard. Her three senior wives would hiss and spit at her for the next three days. She was the intruder. The one who had come to reap where she did not sow. The one who had come to take advantage of their husband’s goodwill to better her own family. The selfish, bad-mannered girl who was old enough to be a daughter to them but was sleeping with their husband and keeping him away from their rooms for the most part of the month.

**********

Twenty-six months ago, Mojirayo was about to write her SSCE exams. Every day, she reminded her father about the payment for the exams but she got the same answer each time; he did not have the funds. Shina was an okada rider who lived in a one room face-to-face apartment with ten kids. His wife was a petty trader who sold Ugwu leaves for a living. Mojirayo once asked her mother why she had to give birth to many children when they could not afford to cater for them. She had received a resounding smack across her face as her response. She was told never to stop the flow of God’s blessings. Family planning had never been an option. As far as her mother was concerned, it was a sin.

But Mojirayo had overheard their neighbours making jest of them many times. They were the butt of the neighbours jokes in the building. They said Shina could barely feed himself but never ceased to get his wife pregnant. They said he was either trying to prove his virility or was too stupid to look for another form of recreation besides the bedroom.

 

When Mojirayo refused to allow her father rest, he decided to approach members of his okada riders association for a loan. He however received sad stories from everyone. They also had obligations to their various families that they couldn’t fulfill. This denial made him take a visit to Baba Ibeji’s house which was a stone throw to theirs. Baba Ibeji was their landlord. He was a big time farmer who dealt in cassava plantation, fish farming and piggery. He had a number of employees working for him and he built the face to face apartments with the proceeds from his business. Shina had pleaded with Baba Ibeji to loan him the money for his daughter’s exams. Baba Ibeji had gladly accepted to oblige him but under a condition. Shina had promised to accept whatever condition it was. He had assumed that Baba Ibeji would probably ask for a free supply of Ugwu to his family or ask for his monthly rent to be increased to cover the cost of the loan.

He was however in shock when he heard Baba Ibeji’s condition. He wanted to make Mojirayo his fourth wife. Shina had stammered and asked if Baba Ibeji was serious. Baba Ibeji had gotten upset and walked him out of his house. Shina had gone home dejected. How could Baba Ibeji want to take Mojirayo who was old enough to be his own daughter as wife? What about his other three wives? Shina had been unable to sleep that night. He had tossed and turned on his tattered mattress. Even when his wife, Omowunmi had tried to touch him, he had turned his back to her. She had been surprised as Shina never refused her advances. They always practiced Proverbs 5 verse 18 – 20 and Ecclesiastes 9 verse 9 to the letter.

 

The next morning, Mojirayo greeted her father with news. She wasn’t going to write the SSCE exams because she was yet to pay for it. She had been told in school the previous day. Shina made up his mind immediately. He went to Baba Ibeji and agreed to his conditions for the loan. Baba Ibeji smiled as Shina almost prostrated before him. He had eyed Mojirayo for a while. She was a stunning beauty and he felt she should live a happy life; away from the poverty of her parents. He gave Shina cash on the spot and asked him to bring Mojirayo to his house immediately after her exams were over. Shina nodded as he collected the cash and left Baba Ibeji’s house. Baba Ibeji smirked in a self-satisfied triumph. He touched his nether region and licked his lips. Mojirayo was going to be his trophy wife.

 

Tears streamed down Mojirayo’s cheeks when her father told her about his agreement with Baba Ibeji after her last paper. Shina had thought it wise to allow his daughter write her exams without any distractions. Mojirayo told her father that she would have rather missed writing the exams than get married to Baba Ibeji. According to her father, she needed to look at the bright side of the situation. Baba Ibeji was rich and he would offer her a better life. She would be able to have the nicer things of life which she would never have access to under his roof. She would be able to help him send her younger ones to school which he could barely afford to do at the moment. She would make all their neighbours envious and he would have the last laugh as they would all love to be in her shoes. There was nothing Mojirayo said that made sense to her father. As far as he was concerned, this was a dream come through for them. Mojirayo was their ticket to a life out of abject poverty.

 

Two weeks after Mojirayo’s exams, Shina was yet to take his daughter to Baba Ibeji’s house. He knew he was meant to fulfill his promise but he wanted to have his daughter for one more day. He told himself he would do it tomorrow but tomorrow never came. He noticed his daughter’s countenance had changed since he told her of his agreement with Baba Ibeji. She wore a sad face permanently and looked as if she was waiting to be taken to the slaughter house. Even though, he also felt bad about the agreement, he consoled himself that it was for a better life. Once she became Baba Ibeji’s fourth wife, their fortune would change. All those neighbours who taunted him would see the other side of him. He would make sure they apologized for all the insults they had heaped on him all through the years. He would stop riding an okada because Mojirayo would urge her husband to buy him a nice Toyota camry 2001 model which he would use as a taxi cab. His other nine children would change their school and move to a private school in the area. Omowunmi would stop selling Ugwu leaves and start doing supplies like Baba Ibeji’s first wife. She would rub shoulders with the big women who tied their geles like a satellite dish every Saturday. She would supply party souvenirs, canopies and chairs and maybe even start cooking for large parties. At least, she loved to cook and the aroma of her food anytime she was cooking was the reason why she was called “Ìya Mojíráyò, Ölówö síbí” by their neighbours.

He had just finished a bowl of eba and edikaikong soup as his mind played around with ideas shooting them into the goal post. He smiled and picked his teeth with a broom stick as he thought about what he would do once he became rich. A hard knock on his door jolted him out of his reverie. He wondered who could be banging his door that way at this time of the night. Another bang on the door got him upset and he stood up to accost the intruder.

He opened the door and standing before him was Baba Ibeji. He had an angry stare on his face which highlighted the tribal marks on his cheeks. Many of the kids in the compound whispered to each other whenever they saw him that he must have fought with a tiger to have such terrible marks. Shina knew the wait was over. Baba Ibeji asked him to pack his family and wretched belongings and leave his house the next morning or fulfill his promise. He pleaded with Baba Ibeji and told him Mojirayo would arrive at his house first thing the next morning.

——
The story continues…

Photo Credit: http://www.123rf.com

Blind Pact – Chapter 10

Gboyega sighs deeply as he thinks about Kofo. He wishes he could erase his past with her. She was the reason why he continuously asked God daily for forgiveness. He wasn’t proud of his past and he found it difficult to discuss it with Bola. Now that Bola was aware, he had to come out clean with her.

He smiled. Thoughts of her always brought a smile to his face. She had given him a reason to look forward to a bright future. The text message she sent last night had endeared her more to him. He loved her and he was ready to protect her from Kofo.

He gets to the bus-stop and waits for a bus that will call his destination. He remembers when he only transported through taxis. He once asked Kofo to get him a car. Her response had been that if he needed one, then he needed to steal one. He had been shocked at her response but that was the last time he ever asked her. She was satisfied with paying for his taxi trips to their rendezvous. She would cringe now if she saw him in a public bus. But that was all in the past now.

He decides to ring Bola. Right now, she was all that mattered. Bola picks up on the second ring. “Hey beautiful.” He crooned into her ears.

“Hi.” She replies groggily.

“Looks like I woke you up.” He says laughing.

“Yes, you did.”

“No lectures this morning?”

“No. Besides, I’m not on campus. I’m home.” Bola replies.

Gboyega is surprised. “Are you okay? Is there a problem?”

Bola sits up on her bed. “I’m fine. I had missed home and just wanted to see my mum.”

“How is she?” Gboyega asks smiling.

“She’s good.”

Gboyega sighs. “About Kofo?”

“Kofo?” Bola asks confused.

“Yes, the lady that came over to your hostel. I am sorry I haven’t talked about my past but it is because I am not proud of it.”

Bola listens quietly.

“I used to be her boyfriend.” Gboyega breathes deeply. “Actually, I was her toy boy. A lover who warmed her bed for pecuniary gains. I won’t say she seduced me because I made a choice to continue with the relationship. I was getting paid for laying her and I guess the pay became too attractive for me to look the other way.”

Bola sighs.

“But, I am not that man anymore. I have left my past behind. I even decided to change my mobile number so she would not be able to reach me any longer. You are everything I need now and I mean every word when I tell you that I love you.”

Bola takes a deep breath. “Thanks for trusting me enough to tell me about your past. But it is a lot to comprehend right now, Gboyega.”

“I understand. Life has not been fair. I know it is not an excuse and I accept responsibility for all my actions. I just couldn’t get myself to tell you about my sordid past. I assumed the time was never going to be right. I never wanted you to find out this way.” Gboyega says soberly.

“I just…I just wish things were different.”

“I don’t understand.” Gboyega says confused.

“We can’t toe the same path, Gboyega. We are poles apart.” Bola says as hot tears sting her eyes.

Gboyega feels like his heart is being ripped apart. “Bola, please, don’t break my heart. I love you and need you. I want to spend the rest of my days with you. I can’t change my past but I can recreate my future.”

“We can’t have a future together.” Bola says as the thought of what she just said stabs her in the heart and she breaks down into tears. She had fallen in love with Gboyega but his past was too tainted for her to ignore. She could not imagine being with him anymore. “Good bye Gboyega.” She says as she cuts the call.

Gboyega tries to call her back but she refuses to pick up. He looks around him and realizes he is still at the bus-stop. A look at his wristwatch shows that he is already behind time and he is definitely going to be late to the office today. He sighs as the next bus that approaches calls his destination. He flags it down and enters it. He tries to call Bola again but her phone rings out. “Bola, please don’t do this to me.” He begins to type. “I love you.”

He sighs deeply as he lays his head on the head rest in the public bus. Today is already turning out wrong for him. He is going to be late to work. The two ladies in his life have placed a huge burden on his heart. One he has rejected and who wants him back at all costs and another who he loves but has rejected him.

********

Bola sobs quietly after she cuts the call. Gboyega keeps calling her but she refuses to pick up his calls. She reads the text message from him and that brings more tears. She suddenly wishes she had not heard about his past. She only wants to retain sweet memories of him. Memories of them in fellowship worshipping God, memories of them sharing the word, memories of his graduation when she was the only one by his side.

blind-pact-10

She stands up from her bed and picks up her school bag lying on her reading table. She opens the bag and takes out their picture together. Tears roll down her cheeks as she looks at him. He had captured her heart. And now, she had to let him go. She lay on her bed and curled into a fetal position holding the picture to her bosom. Why did I have to fall in love with him?

She wipes her tears as she determines in her heart. This is the end of the road for Gboyega and her. Her roommate Miriam, had been right after all. He was a toy boy. It was difficult to comprehend how a lady as sophisticated as Kofo could have Gboyega as a boyfriend. He was just a student and the lady standing before them that day oozed class from every pore of her skin.

I have to let him go. But the thought of that action tore her heart into shreds and she started sobbing again until she fell asleep.

——–

Photo Credit: http://www.wikihow.com

In search of me!

When I was a child, I wanted to be a Banker. I grew older and decided I wanted to be an Architect because I loved cursive writing. I had no idea what it took to become an Architect.

Jamb made me realize I could not become an Architect. I had never done Technical Drawing. The dream died with Jamb.

Silhouette of a man in a business suit giving a shrug with a question mark

I got into the University and studied Geography and Planning. I found love in Urban and Regional Planning. My dream of doing something that involved drawing was revived. Even if it was not directly related; they were distant cousins.

I graduated from the University and another confusion set in. Did I really intend to work with my certificate?

It has been 18 years and two University certificates plus a professional one are sitting pretty in my dropbox folder. They are whipped out when it is needed to show that I attended a higher institution. But that’s about it.

What pays me a monthly package today has nothing to do with my certificates. Will I ever use them? I have no idea.

I have found what I love and it unfolds daily. I am still in search of me.

———
Photo Credit: http://www.truth4freedom.wordpress.com

To Love and to Hold – Episode 29

Chinedu had tossed and turned all through the night. Sleep had eluded him and as he lay awake on his bed; streams of sunlight peeking through the curtains; he replayed the events of the last twenty-four hours in his mind. There had to be a missing link between Fadeke’s proposed visit to Abuja and her rush back to Lagos. What could possibly have happened that he wasn’t seeing?

After he left the Peters’ residence, he had gone home. His mother had been surprised to see him. He narrated the events that had taken place to her and she had also been at a loss.

“You said she came all the way to Abuja to discuss something very important with you?”

“Yes, she did”.

“So, how come she did not wait to see you before she left?”

“That’s the part I do not understand. Her friend, Kemi said that she was really broken”.

“Could she have succumbed to pressure from her father to give up on you?”

Chinedu thought for a minute. “If she had, she wouldn’t have left Abuja in tears. She was at my house but did not wait….”

All of a sudden, it dawned on him.

“What the …” He swore.

“What is it?” His mother asked alarmed.

“Tochukwu came to my house the day before Fadeke’s trip”.

“Who is Tochukwu?”

“Don’t you remember her? The lady I told you about; Fadeke’s roommate”.

She thought. “The lady that came to congratulate you and Kunle on your graduation?”

“Yes”.

“Okay. What was she doing in your house?”

His face was grim. “Oh mum. I hope I haven’t made the greatest mistake of my life”.

“Calm down and tell me what happened”.

“She called me on Friday morning and said she was flying into Abuja that evening. She wanted to sleep over at my place and I told her it wasn’t possible”.

His mum nodded.

“She said she would have stayed over at her friend’s place but that her friend was travelling early Saturday morning. I asked her what she was doing in Abuja and she said she came for an interview”.

“Okay”.

“So she needed a place to get dressed as the interview was scheduled to hold at 10a.m. I told her it would be advisable to stay in a hotel or in the alternative fly in with the first flight at 5.30. She flew into Abuja that Saturday morning and I asked my taxi guy to pick her up from the airport. By 6.30, she was at my place. I wasn’t ready for any of her troubles that morning, so I decided to leave home earlier than I had intended”.

“If you knew she was trouble, why did you allow her in your house in the first place?”

“Good question, mum. She obviously realized I was avoiding her. On my way out, she told me she and Kunle were back together. She asked for my forgiveness over all what she had done in school and she was even shedding tears”.

“Hmm. Crocodile tears”.

“I’m used to her tears, mum. They don’t move me one bit. I told her it was okay and just told her to drop the key to my apartment with my next door neighbour”.

“You left her in your apartment?” His mother asked with surprise.

“I did not have a choice. I know Tochukwu too well to have stayed there with her. I hadn’t spoken to Kunle in a while to confirm if they were back together and I wasn’t ready to wait and watch her spill tears that were scripted”.

“So do you think Fadeke met her in your apartment?”

“I don’t know mum, I don’t know. She has refused to speak to me”.

“Then we can assume that she must have met her”.

“Possibly”. He thought for a moment. “Do you think Tochukwu could have fed her with lies? She always had this beef with her”.

“What’s that?”

“You mean beef?”

“Yes. What does it mean?”

He smiled. “It means a grouse”.

“Since Fadeke would not talk to you, you could find out from Tochukwu if they met. Then you can be rest assured that Tochukwu is behind all this”. She concluded.

*******

Chinedu stood up from the bed and stretched. He had to talk to Tochukwu. She was most likely the missing link. He picked up his phone and dialed her number. It rang out twice before she answered.

“Hi dear”. She said groggily.

“Hi. Did Fadeke meet you at my house yesterday?”

“Excuse me!”

“I asked if Fadeke met you at my place yesterday”. He said getting impatient.

“What kind of question is that? Is that the reason why you woke me up this early?”

He was quiet for a while. “I’m sorry I did not realize you were still sleeping”.

“Now you know”.

“I just wanted to know if you were at my apartment when Fadeke came. She came into Abuja to see me and left without doing so”.

“No. We did not meet”. She lied.

Chinedu sighed. “Are you sure? I mean, you did not maybe see her on your way out or something?”

“Look, if you are not sure, why don’t you give her a call and leave me alone”.

“She has refused to pick up my calls”.

Tochukwu smiled. “Well, I can’t help you”.

“Sorry, I woke you up”.

Tochukwu dropped the call and smiled. Her plan had worked. The next step was ensuring that they never came back together.

If she couldn’t have Chinedu, neither would Fadeke.

**********

By 9.00p.m, Chinedu was back in his apartment in Abuja. This weekend had been his worst ever and he felt he needed a break. He was tired both physically and emotionally. What was he supposed to do? He had run out of ideas. He had tried calling Fadeke on different occasions during the day but as usual, she had refused to pick up his call. The only option he had now was to send a text message.

“Baby, I don’t know why you are doing this to me”. He texted. “What have I done wrong? Don’t you think you should at least let me know? You came to Abuja to discuss something very important and left without even waiting to see me. My love, please talk to me. I am down and out of ideas of how to reach you”.

After waiting for five minutes without a response, he sent another text. “My love, please talk to me. You are breaking my heart”.

No response.

He went to bed two hours later dejected.

Fadeke had seen the text messages. She was still upset. He had betrayed her love and her trust so why was he trying to reach out to her now. When she read the second text message, she broke down in tears. He wasn’t the one heartbroken; she was. She had given everything she had to him; body and soul. And she had to pay the ultimate price. She thought about her father’s threat earlier in the day. How could he be advocating for an abortion? She was torn. What was she supposed to do? What if she died in the process? She had heard stories of people who never survived one. No, she wouldn’t do it. If her father wanted her out of his house, so be it.

to-love-to-hold-42

******************************************************************************************

Chinedu woke up earlier than usual on Monday morning. He hadn’t been able to sleep all through the night and he knew if he continued this way, he was probably going to break down. He got dressed early and stepped out of his apartment. The next flat was directly opposite his and as he tapped on the door, he prayed in his heart that his question wouldn’t sound silly to his neighbour.

“Hi Wale, I’m sorry to disturb you this early”.

Wale was knotting his tie as Chinedu spoke. “No problems. I hope everything is okay”.

“I just wanted to find out if you saw my girlfriend here on Saturday?”

“You asked her to drop the key to your apartment with me, didn’t you?” Wale asks.

“Erm…not exactly. I mean that’s not my girlfriend. She is just an old friend that needed a place to change; she had an interview that morning”.

“So, who else are you asking about?”

“Fadeke. Did you see any other lady come out of my apartment? I know it sounds weird but I really need to know”.

Wale thought for a few seconds and shook his head. “Nah…I don’t think so. I wasn’t taking note anyway”. He shrugged.

“Okay, thanks”.

“You are welcome. I hope no hassles. You don’t look like you’ve had any sleep”.

Chinedu rubbed his eyes. “I’m okay. Thanks”.

He walked back into his apartment and sat down on the couch. Who else could he talk to? He picked up his phone and dialed.

“Hi Chinedu”. Kemi said picking up the call on the second ring.

“I’m sorry if I woke you up”. He realized he was beginning to do that often.

“Not at all. I am getting dressed for work”.

“Quick question”.

“Okay”.

“Has Fadeke spoken to you?”

“No, she hasn’t called since she left. I tried calling her yesterday but I guess she must have been resting ‘cos she did not pick up”.

“If she calls you, could you please convince her to talk to me?”

“She hasn’t spoken to you?” Kemi asked surprised.

“No, she hasn’t. I had to fly to Lagos that evening”.

“Are you serious?”

“Yes. I went to her house but her mum walked me out. I did not get to see her”.

Kemi sighed. “I’m sorry Chinedu. I really wish I could help”.

“Just ask her to please talk to me; that’s the help you can render”.

“No problems. I will”.

“I really appreciate your help. Thanks a lot”.

“You are welcome”.

With that done, the only thing he could do now was to look forward to his leave which was just two weeks away. He had asked for a four week vacation because he needed time with Fadeke. He had also intended to use the period to see Fadeke’s father but with the turnout of events, he wasn’t sure of anything anymore. The only thing he was sure about right now was that whatever had caused the friction in their relationship had to be nipped in the bud.

And that was exactly what he was going to do.

———-

Photo Credit: http://www.shutterstock.com

Second Chances – Episode 12

Wale and Kunbi arrive back in Lagos on Sunday evening sans drama. The engagement ring still sits in Kunbi’s bag undisturbed. Both of them by an unspoken agreement steer clear of discussing her mission to Ola’s place. For Wale, she is an adult; besides, it is her life. For Kunbi, love covers all sins.

The week rolls by with Sola and Kunbi still having lunch as usual every afternoon. Kunbi decides not to wear her engagement ring as she is unsure of what Sola’s reaction would be. He is already heartbroken as a result of Tolu’s betrayal, I don’t want to hurt him as well. She resumes her weekend journey to Ibadan every Saturday and everything seems to go smoothly.

One Saturday, she forgets to put on her engagement ring before leaving for Ibadan. As she approaches Ola’s apartment, she looks at her hand and realizes the mistake. Oh goodness, how could I have forgotten?  She contemplates on what to do but then shrugs as there is nothing that can be done at the moment.

“Hello darling”. She says as she walks into Ola’s apartment. She had requested for a spare key last weekend since Ola had previously changed the locks and he had obliged her.

Ola is seated in front of the TV engrossed in a video game he is playing and barely notices her presence. Kunbi drops her weekend bag on the floor and stands akimbo. “Helloooooo”. She stresses.

Ola glances at her and smiles but goes back to playing the game without responding. Kunbi upset that she is being ignored, walks to the TV and stands before it.

Ola’s face changes all of sudden and he screams. “What do you think you are doing?”

Kunbi maintains her posture. “Did I travel all the way from Lagos to be ignored?”

“You ain’t a visitor, go ahead and make yourself comfortable”. He says. “I’m in the middle of something right now, as you can see”.

Kunbi stamps her feet on the floor refusing to budge.

“Kunbi, please don’t get me upset. We both know it is not a pretty sight when I do”.

She gives up the fight and slumps her shoulders as she heads towards the kitchen.

“Can I have a glass of water?” Ola calls as she is walking away.

She comes back to the living room with a glass of cold water and places it on the side stool beside Ola. He looks at it briefly and notices that Kunbi is not wearing her ring.

“Why are you not wearing your engagement ring? He asks as he pauses the game to look at her.

“I forgot to wear it”.

“How can you forget to wear it?”

“I just forgot, okay? She says upset.

He drops the handheld controller on the settee and looks at her critically. “I assume you forgot to wear it means that you take it off. Isn’t it meant to be on you always?”

“I don’t know why you are making this an issue”. She says. “I wear it every day but forgot to put it back on after I did some washing”. She lies.

Ola frowns giving her an angry stare.

She looks at him afraid he is going to hit her but he picks up the handheld controller and goes back to playing his video game.

She breathes out quietly and walks towards the kitchen. I wonder what was on his mind.

 

After about an hour of playing his video game, Ola walks into the kitchen, his senses assaulted by the glorious aroma of jollof rice. He stands behind Kunbi circling his arms around her waist. “When are we going to see your mum and tell her about our plans?”

Kunbi smiles. “Whenever you are ready”.

“This is March, we should plan towards a June wedding”. He says.

“June? That is three months away. Why the rush?”

“What do you mean by a rush? Don’t you want to get married?” He says taking his hands off her.

“I do. What I mean is we should take our time to plan instead of getting married in a hurry”.

“It is no hurry. Three months is enough for you to get everything planned. Pick a date when I can come see your mum and let’s get started”. He says with finality walking out of the kitchen.

Kunbi sighs. Do I really want to get married in three months’ time? Am I ready to spend a lifetime with Ola? Her mind drifts to Sola and her heart sinks. I can’t deny that I am in love with him. Oh God, please help me.

*******************************************************************************

Kunbi leaves for home four hours later. She meets her mum reading the day’s newspapers at the dining table and kneels down to greet her. “How are you, Kunbi?”

“I’m fine, mum. Can I talk to you for a moment?”

“Yes dear”. Wunmi says as she drops the newspaper on the table.

Kunbi pulls out the chair closest to her mum and sits down. “Mum, Ola wants to meet with you sometime soon”.

Wunmi looks at her daughter intently.

Kunbi expects a reaction from her mum but receives nothing. “He has proposed and I have agreed to marry him”.

Wunmi takes a deep breath. “Hmmm…..Kunbi, do you understand what you are getting into? Do you realize that marriage is a life-long commitment?

“Yes mum, I do. I love Ola”. Kunbi says.

“Love is not enough. Can you tolerate his excesses? His jealousy, his pride, his insecurities. Are you ready to deal with all that for the rest of your life?”

2nd Chances 12

“Mum, Ola loves me and is just looking out for my good. Isn’t that enough?”

“I think you should sleep over your decision. You are my only child and I want the best for you. I am your mother, I won’t deceive you”.

“Mum, can you just give me a date when Ola can come visiting?” She says beginning to get irritated.

Wunmi shrugs. “Next week Saturday”.

“Thanks mum”. Kunbi says as she stands up to leave for her room.

Her mum watches her as she walks away. How else do I make her see that disaster lurks at the corner. She looks heavenwards as she shakes her head. I can’t let my daughter make the same mistake I made. She picks up her mobile phone and dials Wale. He picks up on the first ring. “Hello mum”.

“Báwò ni Wálé?” (How are you doing, Wale?)

“Adúpé mà. Sé dada l’ëwà” (I’m fine, thank you ma. Hope you are keeping well).

“Adúpé, O seun. Mo pè é nitorí àbúrò ë ni”. (I am, thanks. I called you because of your younger sister).

“Okay ma”.

“How come you never mentioned that she is engaged to Ola?”

“What? She agreed to marry him?” Wale asks in shock.

“Nkan tó sö fúnmi ní ìròlé yìí nìyën”. (That is what she told me this evening).
I am surprised that you are not aware.

“I’m not aware, mum. She knows I can’t stand Ola, so she won’t mention it to me”.

“Jòó bàmi ba sòrò” (Please talk to her). “I don’t know why she is bent on this relationship. “Sé kò s’ókùnrin tó da ní Èkó ni”. (Aren’t there other good men in Lagos?)

“Mum, I have tried talking to her but she won’t listen”. Wale says.

“Try harder. Ègbón è lo jé (You are her elder brother). She may feel I am old school but she would listen to you”.

Wale sighs. “Okay ma. Màá tún ba sòrò“. (I will talk to her again).

“Osé ömö mi”. (Thank you, my son).

———
Photo Credit: http://www.gettyimages.com

Second Chances – Episode 7

Kunbi is lying on the settee in the living room watching the TV on Saturday afternoon. Wale comes out of his room wearing his wristwatch. He is dressed in black corduroy pants and a blue striped short sleeved shirt. He picks up his car keys from the glass centre table in front of Kunbi.

“I need to get to the mechanic workshop. I won’t be long”. He says to her.

“Okay”.

As he is about stepping out, Kunbi calls after him; “Wales hold on. Please could you get me some toiletries on your way back?”

Wale turns back and responds, “Okay. Will do”.

“Thanks dear”.

Kunbi goes back to the TV programme she is watching. About twenty minutes later, the doorbell rings and she stands up to open the door. She smiles as she sees Sola looking very handsome as always. She notices that he is wearing a different perfume as the smell wafts up her nostrils but decides not to comment about it.

“Hi. You did not mention you would be coming. Please come in”. She says as she lets him in.

“I needed to see you and be sure you’re doing well”. He answers as he walks into the living room.

“Thanks. I’m okay”.

Sola sits down as he asks, “Where’s Wale?”

“He went to the mechanic’s”.

“You should not be home alone”. Sola says with concern.

“C’mon Sola, what do you mean? I’m not a baby. I can take care of myself”. Kunbi laughs as she sits down.

“Are you sure?” Sola asks as he holds her hands.

“Yes. I am”.

“You know I am a call away if you ever need me”.

Kunbi smiles. “I know. I would get everything sorted out when I go to Ibadan next weekend”.

“Please be careful over there”.

Kunbi is embarrassed by the show of affection and stands up as she removes her hands from Sola’s.

“Ola and I will settle things amicably. What should I get you?” She says as she turns to walk towards the kitchen.

“Nothing. I’m okay. I was actually on my way to see Tolu. I want to give her a surprise visit”. He says smiling.

Kunbi feels a sudden pang of jealousy but pushes it aside immediately. “That’s very thoughtful of you. I hope to meet this babe that makes you really happy soon”. She says smiling.

“Of course. You will. I’ll introduce her to you at the right time”. He responds.

“Now get up and get going”. She says shooing him out.

Sola stands up as he laughs and does a mock salute. “Yes ma”.

“My regards to her and don’t forget to pick up some goodies for her on the way”. Kunbi says as she walks him to the door.

“I won’t forget that. Catch ya later”. He says as he walks out.

Kunbi smiles as she goes to the kitchen. If only Ola could remain the man of her dreams. She sighs as she gets a glass tumbler and retrieves a pack of juice from the refrigerator. Ola is not the man for you. She remembers Wale’s statement. I warned you about Ola. I could see traces of pride, arrogance and jealousy in him. Her mum had said. But I still love him. She says to herself.

She walks back to the living room with her glass of juice and is about to sit down to continue watching the TV when the doorbell rings. She drops the glass tumbler on the dining table and walks towards the door to open it. Could Sola have forgotten something?

As she opens the door, she asks, “Did you forget……”

The expression on her face changes to shock as the stranger at the door asks “I guess you are expecting someone”.

“What are you doing here?” She asks in annoyance.

She is suddenly pushed roughly into the sitting room as Ola holds her tight by the arm.

“Who were you expecting? Answer me”. He growls.

Kunbi grimaces under his grip. “What’s all this, Ola? Why are you here?”

“I’m here because of this”. He flings a brown envelope to her face.

Kunbi picks up the envelope as she asks, “What’s this?”

“Look at it before I pounce on you”. Ola shouts at her.

Kunbi opens the envelope, brings out some photographs and gasps. “What! Ola, how could you? You sent someone to monitor my movements with Sola? I can’t believe this”.

Ola claps his hands in mockery. “Good. Now I see. The same Sola, right?” He screams. “Answer me”.

Kunbi is startled. “I won’t answer you. Wale and my mum were right after all. You are just as jealous and insecure as my father was”.

Ola shouts as he moves towards her in anger. “You still have the guts to talk to me, you slut”.

Kunbi retreats. “Don’t come near me”.

“Don’t do what”. He reaches her in two steps and slaps her twice.

2nd Chances 7

“Ola, you’ve started again. Get out of this place”. Kunbi screams in tears and anger.

“Not until I’m through with you”. He says holding her as she struggles under his grip.

She falls back on the settee and he pounces on her beating her mercilessly. Kunbi struggles with him in vain. Ola overpowers her and she begins to loose her strength. She screams but no one comes to her rescue. Her vision begins to blur and she knows that if she doesn’t do something, Wale will probably come back to meet her dead. She looks to her side as Ola puts his hand on her neck in a bid to strangle her. A ceramic flower vase is on the side stool to her right and she picks it up and hits it hard on Ola’s head with the whole of her strength.

Ola screams in pain as blood gushes out of his head. “You bitch”. He gives her a hard punch on the face and she faints. Ola places his right hand on his head which is already dripping with blood onto his white shirt. “Shit”. He curses as he grimaces with pain and staggers out of the house.

******

Sola is parking his car outside Wale’s apartment. As he steps out of the car to walk towards the house, Wale parks beside him.

“You’re back right on time”. Sola says.

Wale steps out of his car and walks towards the boot which he had opened automatically. “Have you been here earlier?”

“Yes. I came to see you guys but met only Kunbi at home”.

“Okay”.

“You know you shouldn’t leave her alone at home. She needs you by her side now”.

“Yeah. I know”. Wale says as he picks out two shopping bags from the opened boot. “I needed to get to the mechanic and would have been back earlier but she asked me to pick up some toiletries at the supermarket”.

“She said so”.

“So why are you back or did you see me coming?” Wale says as he touches the lock button of the car remote.

“No, I must have dropped my phone in your apartment so I had to come back for it. I am going to see my babe”. He says grinning from ear to ear.

“Na wa. I go love oh. This babe of yours is really doing something to you”.

“You bet she is”. Sola answers laughing.

They walk towards the apartment together. Wale pulls out his key to open the door. Sola walks in first while Wale tries to close the door behind him. As Sola walks in, he assumes Kunbi is still watching the TV which is still switched on. “Kunbi, I forgot…..Oh my God”. He screams and rushes towards Kunbi who is unconscious on the floor and bleeding from the nose. He leans down and places his a finger over her nostrils to check if she is still breathing.

Wale drops the bag of toiletries on the floor and rushes to the living room on hearing Sola’s yell.

“What’s wrong?…. What! Who could have done this?” Wale asks no one.

Sola carries Kunbi fully in his arms and says “Wale, get the keys. She’s unconscious. We need to get her to the hospital quickly”.

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Photo Credit: http://www.123rf.com

Second Chances – Episode 5

It is a Saturday morning. Kunbi and Wale have just had breakfast. Wale helps in packing up the dishes to the kitchen while Kunbi starts cleaning up.

“Ain’t it nice to have you at home on a Saturday?” Wale teases.

“Whatever!” Kunbi answers rolling her eyes.

“English breakfast served just the way I love it”. He smiles.

2nd Chances 5b

“My dear big brother, you need a wife”.

“Soon dear, very soon”. He answers as the doorbell rings. “I’ll get it”. He says as he walks towards the door.

“My guy, how are you doing?” Sola says he is let into the house.

“That’s Sola, right?” Kunbi calls from the kitchen.

“Yep”. Wale answers.

“Na wa oh, Sola. What happened to you? You just went underground”.

Sola smiles sheepishly. “I was having a good time”.

Kunbi cleans her hands on a napkin and walks into the living room while Wale signals to Sola to sit down.

“Is that so? With who?” Wale asks.

“Hmm…Sola, two weeks? You were having a good time for two weeks?” Kunbi emphasizes as she shakes her head.

“Who were you having a good time with?” Wale asks again.

Sola just smiles as he looks at both of them questioning him.

“Are you going to answer us or what? Because you look like someone in dreamland”. Wale says.

“Have you guys have finally hit it. Is that why you disappeared?”

“Hmmm-mm”. Sola answers nodding and smiling.

“But that’s not fair. You did not even give me a call. I had to go on my lunch breaks alone. When I did not see or hear from you, I guessed this must be the reason”. Kunbi says sulking.

“I’m sorry. I should have called at least. Or are you jealous?” He asks mockingly.

“C’mon. You can’t be serious”. She says flicking her hand.

“You guys are very funny. What or who is this secret that both of you have kept from me all this while?” Wale asks in surprise.

“Oh well, now that you know, let me give you the full gist. Tolu is a colleague at work. I spent the past two weeks with her; getting to know her better. Giving her my time and attention as my able lecturer taught me”. He says gesticulating towards Kunbi.

“Interesting. Kunbi, I did not realize I could get relationship tips from you”.

“A prophet has no honour in his own domain”. Sola says laughing.

“You can say that again”. Kunbi says as she eyes Wale.

“So back to Tolu”. Wale says.

“I just dropped her off at her house about an hour ago. That’s all you need to know”.

“I really hope that’s all”. Wale says smiling.

“Get off my back, man”. Sola laughs as he faces Kunbi. “So, Kunbi, how come you are home and not in Ibadan?”

“I decided to spend the weekend with Wales”.

“My cuz had a change of heart. Saturday breakfast was English”. Wale laughs.

“And your boyfriend?” Sola asks.

“I’ll see him next weekend”.

“That’s cool. So what are you guys doing sitting down? Let’s paint the town red”.

“I’m in”. Kunbi says standing up.

“I need to rest”. Wale says as he stretches his legs and yawns.

“Get up, guy. Let me take you out. At least you’re not driving”.

“I’m going to get dressed”. Kunbi says as she walks into her room.

“Both of you should go. Three is a crowd”. Wale says.

“The crowd is welcome today”. Sola responds. “Go in and get dressed”.

Wale stands up reluctantly. “You are a pain”.

“Glad to be”. Sola answers laughing.

****************************************************************************************

The next weekend, Kunbi arrives Ibadan by noon. The traffic on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway has taken its toll on her and she is very tired. She takes out her key from her handbag to open Ola’s apartment. The key refuses to go in. She tries it again wondering what could be wrong. She looks at the key. This is the right key.

She decides to press the door bell. Ola is lying down on a settee watching the television. He stands up to open the door. As he does, Kunbi is about to walk in but he stops her.

“Where are you coming from and why were you not here last weekend?”

“Is that how you’ll welcome your sweetheart?”

She tries to pass by him but he pushes her back. “Where do you think you are going?”

“Ola, I am tired and not in the mood for this, please”. She says dropping her weekend bag.

“You will answer my question or go back to where you are coming from”. He says angrily.

“What’s your problem, Ola? I don’t understand you any longer”. Kunbi says getting upset as well.

“Where were you last weekend? Answer me, my patience is wearing thin”.

“You better let it do. What is the meaning of……? She is saying as Ola suddenly slaps her.

Kunbi is shocked as she places her right hand on her cheek. Tears sting her eyes as she speaks “Ola, you dare raise your hand on me?”

Ola looks at her in confusion. “I….I….I did not mean to. Please….” He stammers as Kunbi picks up her bag from the ground and starts to walk away leaving him at the door.

“Kunbi, Kunbi”. He calls out as he runs after her and tries to hold her hand.

“Don’t touch me”. She shouts and her voice breaks as a result of her tears.

Ola looks around to see if anyone is watching. “You are shouting”.

“And I will scream if you don’t leave me alone”. She responds.

“Please, let’s go inside and talk about it”. He pleads.

“Inside? You asked me to go back to where I am coming from. That’s exactly what I am going to do”.

“Kunbi, please. We can work this out. Don’t let people make us a laughing stock”. He says looking around.

She stops walking and looks around. “People”. She laughs mockingly. “You better get your hands off me, if you don’t want the same people to descend on you for manhandling me”.

She hisses as she walks away. Ola rubs his neck and breathes deeply. “What have I done this time?”

*************

Kunbi takes a taxi to her apartment. She is confused, tired and upset. “What have I done to deserve this?”

She pays the taxi driver and walks into her house depressed. She is surprised and startled when she sees her mum in the living room reading a magazine. She quickly wipes her eyes with her handkerchief to conceal her tears.

“Good afternoon, mummy”. She says avoiding her mum’s eyes. She heads straight inside.

Wunmi raises her head. “Good afternoon Kunbi, come and sit down. I need to talk to you”.

“Right now?” Kunbi asks unable to make eye contact.

“Yes. Now. Or are you busy?”

“Not really”. She sits beside her mum and places her bag on the floor.

Wunmi turns her daughter’s face to the left and to the right and asks, “Have you been crying?”

Kunbi feigns surprise.”Me, crying? No”. She lies.

“So why are your eyes red and moist?”

“Oh, that. I…em….something flew into my eyes as I was coming in”.

Wunmi smiles. “Adekunbi, do I look like a baby to you? Why are you lying to me?”

Kunbi bursts into tears and hugs her mum as she cries on her shoulders. “Mummy it’s Ola”.

2nd Chances 5

“What is the problem?”

Kunbi narrates to her mum the incident at Ola’s apartment. She, however refuses to mention that he had previously manhandled her. Wunmi listens attentively to her daughter nodding from time to time and at other times, she shakes her head in pity.

“Hmmm…. Kunbi, before you started this relationship, I warned you about Ola. I could see traces of pride, arrogance and jealousy in him even back then. But you insisted on dating him saying you were in love with him”. Wunmi says.

Kunbi wipes her eyes. “Yes mum. I remember”.

“I also told you that these were the same traits your father exhibited while he was alive. I couldn’t talk to any other man. The day I dare try it, I would be hospitalized. I explained all these to you but you insisted on your relationship with Ola”.

“But mummy, Ola never behaved like this before now”.

“They say what a child cannot see standing up, an elder would see sitting down. Kunbi, you are my only child and I love you very much. I can only advice you. I can’t force you to do anything you do not want to. I only pray you do not end up living in misery like I did when your father was alive”.

Kunbi looks at her mum and sighs as she stares into space.

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Photo Credit: http://www.shutterstock.com

Sibling Rivalry, Guilty Parents

“My mum never hid her preference for me. She always showed it to my siblings that I was her favourite. That happens even till date”. She said.

“So, how do your siblings feel about it?” I asked.

“Ah, they hated me when we were younger but as we grew older, they realized that I wasn’t at fault. They understood that my mum was the guilty one. I did not seek to be favoured”. She responded. “So, do you have a favourite among your kids?” She asked.

“No, I don’t. Each child has his/her own individuality and I don’t believe it should be used as a basis for judging my love for them”. I said.

Sibling Rivalry_Guilty parents

This discussion got me thinking about the extent parents go to manipulate their children; showing preference for a child and inadvertently breeding sibling rivalry. As much as I understand that it can be a difficult task not comparing child with child, I believe parents should always maintain a little restraint. Take a step back and think before talking or acting.

Children would always fight for the attention and acceptance of their parents. A wise parent will however treat each child as an individual, noting their individual temperaments and uniqueness. Each child cannot be the same. While some children are very brilliant and excel in academics, some may be poor in academics but perform excellently at handicraft. Another may be gifted in music, while another may be gifted in administration.

I applaud the siblings of this lady for rising above sibling rivalry as she stated that she still gets the preferential treatment till date; but not all cases end well. Some siblings have gone as far as hurting the favoured sibling or in some cases, living the rest of their lives hating the sibling because of a rivalry that was bred and watered by their parents.

The victim sibling begins to wonder where he/she went wrong; forgetting that the favouritism received from the parent/s had resulted in his/her becoming a victim.

Food for thought for Parents:

Why make your children become estranged from each other by fostering sibling rivalry? It is even more difficult when you are gone as you would no longer be there to bind them together as a family.

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Photo Credit: http://www.wikihow.com