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Posts tagged “Marriage

Getting Wedded

 

 

Simple-Wedding-Cakes-Flower

 

Everybody says it’s a bad idea.

‘Don’t marry’; they say. Why would you want to do that to yourself in this day and age? You know better than most how overrated marriage is, you saw what your father did to your mother for so many years! These things don’t mean anything anymore; everything you want to go and do inside marriage you can do easily outside it! Why enslave yourself?

Why enslave myself?

I try to explain why I want to marry – especially since I was single and without prospects in March. Yet here I am in May, yakking about getting married. What changed in less than three months?

Is she pregnant???

Marriage is not the sort of thing you just rush into!! How can you go from being single last month –

It wasn’t last month. It was –

Oga leave story! What’s the difference?! It’s too soon; you don’t know what you’re doing! You’re not ready!!!

Are you sure she isn’t pregnant?!

The thing is; these people are convinced beyond all reasonable and even unreasonable doubt they know what they’re talking about. After all, since the year began we’ve watched more than a couple power couples uncouple and become single again. ‘They’ were only expressing their concern; as friends and family are wont to do when it seems as though you have no idea what you’re doing. They did the same thing when I suddenly announced I was leaving a promising career in a very lucrative industry to chase after my dreams. Some of them actually said it to my face that I was crazy.

I spent a day thinking about the ‘crazy’ bit and wondering whether to feel complimented or insulted.

I’ve always been crazy – it’s a constant source of consternation – and more than a little amusement – for my loved ones, but I cannot help but wonder why I still surprise them – or in the words of my eldest sibling; ‘disappoint them’.

Oh well.

I stopped trying to convince them about anything a long time ago. Now, I just inform them and allow them watch me do what I say I would. Perhaps I would have tried to explain further why I suddenly feel getting married is the thing to do now but I don’t have the words.

As ‘writer’ as I am, I still cannot explain happiness.

It’s not as though I met a girl and my head is full of sunbursts and Baba Blue and fish pepper soup and Orijin. Nope. While I love her with some kind of intensity that leaves me lightheaded whenever I’m around her, I am old enough and have been through enough to know that’s nothing to build anything on. First time I met her, we were talking as though we had known each other for years within moments of brushing against each other at the apple stand. A younger version of her had shown up to ask; ‘Aunty, won’t you introduce us to your boyfriend?”

And just like that, I was introduced to my in-laws. The whole family came out that Sunday to shop at Shoprite.

It’s not as though I don’t understand their fears and concerns; it’s just when one is embarking on a life-changing decision like the one I am about to get on, the last thing one needs is someone or people who reinforce your doubts. Do they think I haven’t thought about the implications of settling down and building a life with someone who I met in less than enough time it takes a pregnancy to show? Do they think I haven’t questioned my feelings and motivation? Do they think I haven’t worried about wanting to park it in just after two years like everybody does these days? Have they considered, too that I realize that most of the marriages that crumble once started like a fairytale?

However, in the midst of all those questions and queries is an unwavering conviction that this is the thing to do. I am convinced beyond doubt – in fact, not to be dramatic or anything but in the moment I met her – that moment I opened my mouth to apologize for bumping against her I knew how Adam felt; looking at the first and only woman and saying; “This is flesh of mine, bone of mine”.

I knew how he felt. I felt it too.

That day as I walked with her to where her dad parked their car I jokingly said; ‘You’ll marry me o.” Imagine my consternation when she answered with a straight face; “I’d like that very much.”

I was barely home before my phone started to ring.

I am in love; that much is obvious to anyone who has had more than a two-minute conversation with me recently, but much more than that, I have a friend. Someone I know will be with me no matter how rough the road gets, someone I can build a life with, someone I can give a hundred and ten percent to and get one hundred and fifty back.

What more could I want?

When I asked her to marry me, I who makes money on the side dreaming up romantic scenarios for other people to propose couldn’t come up with one for myself. I simply went to her office, wondering all the time what I was doing. When I stepped in hers, she took one look at me and said; ‘Yes’. I wanted to ask how she knew but she kissed me and I forgot.

And that was that.

They say it’s a bad idea but I have never been confused about anything in my life. I know this is my wife; everything around me knows it. Even my laptop does.

If I’m that sure, why wait?

We found each other; we have each other plus God. I know other people said that too, but we’re not them. I understand not replacing hard work with faith. I get it. She does too.

So.

Who wants to chop wedding rice o?


Revenge Is A Dish…

I love my wife. Don’t ever get that confused.

 

Now that’s out of the way – there are a couple of other things you need to know. They say marriage is like night market – you never actually know what you bought – till it’s the morning after. Or better still; they also say marriage is like a race in which you close one eye before you get in – and close both once you’re in.

 

I agree. To have a peaceful home, you have to master the art of looking the other way.

 

But there are some things you cannot just look away for. No sir.

 

Like this one instance.

 

Due to the nature of our jobs we leave the house as early five – latest six am. She drives off, I drive after. She works on the island, I work on the mainland. No kids yet – maybe not ever; so it’s pretty much work and us. Sometimes we cook dinner together; sometimes we eat out. It’s been a little over a year; and we’ve pretty much settled in. We still love each other very much – so we’re happy.

 

One morning however; everything changed.

 

I was wearing my shirt and waiting for her to come knot my tie as she does when suddenly; “Hey darling! take off your shirt – you’re not going to work yet.”

 

“I’m not? It’s Thursday o,” I said.

 

“When then? Take off that shirt and come here jo!”

 

It didn’t occur to me that she wanted sex; she would have asked me to take off more than my shirt. But I was curious so I did as she asked and walked to where her voice was coming from. When I arrived the living room, there was a spread of breakfast – the likes I haven’t seen in a while. It was eba and efo riro – steaming efo with ponmo, shaki and panla pieces that seemed to be winking at me.

 

Gaddem.

 

I forgot all my protestations. I forgot about the traffic – forgot everything except the rumbling in my stomach. Kissing her quickly and briefly I washed my hands in the bowl she held out and dug in. Ol’ boy, my tummy worms did a perfect rendition of Handel’s Messiah, segued into Tu Face’s E Be Like Say and finished with Fela’s Basketmouth. I was exultant.

 

Topped the whole thing with fresh, cold water – and I was on fire.

 

“Baby,” I began, standing up, the day I married you is the day I made a choice to come alive. I will love you till I die – I will never leave you. Iyawo mi, ah – what do you want? Anything – just say it and it is yours.”

 

She smiled – and when she smiles the skies acknowledge that indeed; this is a smile. “I am pleased to do for you, my love.”

 

I swear if she told me to bring her Zuma rock I would have boarded the next flight to Abuja and dug in with both hands rather than tell her I couldn’t. I kissed her and she helped me with my shirt and tie – and was knotting the tie when I realized she was still in her negligee. “Baby, what’s with the outfit? No work?”

 

She dimpled again. “No honey. Leave begins today.”

 

“Lucky you,” I said and bolted through the door.

 

I made it to work in time and the day; of course having started well was looking quite rosy. My world was perfect – until I suddenly started to feel sleepy.

 

That was unusual.

 

I actually never fell asleep at work – if you understand my job you’ll understand that it’s a luxury I cannot afford. So it was worrisome. I went to wash my face in the restroom – and that made me feel better. I went to my desk and continued to work.

 

Next thing I knew, I was woken up by the noise of my own snoring.

 

You know how you wake up – maybe in church, and you’re awake but you’ll still hide your face away because you’re embarrassed to have fallen asleep in the first place, so you maintain that same posture as though you intentionally sat like that?

 

Yeah. That was me that day at work. I thought and thought about how I could have fallen asleep – and then it occurred to me that my wife drugged me.

 

Not ‘drugged’ as in slipped me a mickey – but ‘drugged’ as in gave me eba in the morning intentionally. Right then and there I started plotting my revenge.

 

“Hello baby,” she said sweetly – a bit too sweetly. “Shey you didn’t sleep at work today?”

 

“At all,” I answered. “The eba was energizer – I couldn’t stop working. In fact, I’m on fire now sef.” To emphasize my words, I lifted her and raced into the bedroom. She was happy, I was happier.

 

But I had decided to get my own back.

 

On the day she was going to resume, I spent half the night pounding yam and cooking efo elegunsi with shaki and obokun fish. I was tired – but when I woke her up to wash that morning, I was happy. Oh, I was the gentleman! I carried her to the bathroom, washed her tenderly from head to toe – never mind what that did to me. Washed her, toweled her and rubbed cream for her. After then, I put her underwear on her and carried her to the table.

 

“A ‘welcome back to work’ something,” I said.

 

She ate with gusto – and I was happy watching her eat; despite the mischief behind it. My wife is a beautiful woman and I can watch her for hours.

 

Sha, we finished and left for work.

 

It was almost noon when a number I didn’t know called. “Hello?” I said.

 

“Yes please, is this Mr – ?”

 

I said it was.

 

“This is your wife’s boss. Could you please come to the office right away?”

 

I said I would and hung up.

 

I was a bit worried but I figured whatever it was, I’d know once I got there. I drove quickly – and when I arrived the place I was shown into one office like that. The man who called me stood from behind the desk, introduced himself and shook my hand.

 

“Mrs. – is my best staff, I must admit even though I’ve never told her. Therefore you can imagine my consternation when I got to work today and saw her sleeping.”

 

I wanted to burst into laughter for two reasons. That was the first time I’ve heard that word used in a conversation and I told him so.

 

Second reason was my revenge was now complete – but I didn’t tell him that.

 

“Where is she?” I asked, injecting the right balance of worry into my voice.

 

“Right this way,” he said and preceded me out of the office. “I even though maybe she is…you know…” I know what he meant but I wasn’t going to make it easy for him. “Sick?” I asked.

 

He shook his head. “Been having sex?”

 

The man waved his hands in front of him – as though he impregnated his wife by speaking the word. “No…ah…I mean I was wondering maybe she’s expecting…” his voice disappeared even though his mouth was still moving.

 

“Ah – if she is then God is a wonderful God. You see, I’m like the reverse Caitlyn – I used to be a woman.” I patted his back familiarly – and walked past him into my wife’s office while he stood in the passage trying not to have a heart attack. My wife was wiping sleep from her eyes, looking very sweet and innocent.

 

“Darling,” she started when she saw me. “What are you doing here?”

 

I kissed her – and then kissed her again, somewhat firmer the second time. “Well, you’re sick – due to your pregnancy so you’re taking the rest of the day off.” I smiled into her shocked eyes. “Let’s go.”

 

I half-carried her out of the office while she blinked sleep from her eyes and said goodbyes to her colleagues. The way they all followed us to the car made me marvel – and I told myself again how lucky I am to be married to her. They waited while I let her into the car – waited for me to start the engine and only then did they go back into the office.

 

“I’m so sleepy,” she mumbling, head against the seat, eyes on me. “I wonder why.”

 

I couldn’t resist. Laughter tumbled out of my belly – like lightning from heaven. Surprise lightened her features – and then it became a frown – and then the clouds cleared. The frown receded.

 

“You’re evil!” she yelled, pushing me against the side of the car. “Evil!” she said again, struggling with trying not to laugh.

 

“I learned from the best,” I said.

 

Silence from her side of the car made me search her out. Her eyes were still on mine, eyes that had a look in them that made me wish I was home with her. I floored the accelerator.

 

Shebi marriage no sweet?

 


What Does It Matter?

I lied to my wife last night,

Told her I’ll be with her for all time

Yet a few minutes before, I was in other arms

Yet I tell myself – what does it matter?

What difference does it make?

How can she or you know love without feeling hate?

100-carat diamond on her finger, yet what put it there is fake;

Still, what does it matter?


Dreaming Awake

 

 

Your silence is like a third presence in the room. It keeps my arms beside me with bands of steel when we both know they’d rather be around you.

 

But the same silence keeps me on my side of things because something in your eyes suggests that I’m much safer here than near you.

 

I wonder why.

 

I wonder about a lot of things these days. Like why you’re so bothered I won’t be around for our fifth anniversary when we live in the same house like comfortable strangers. We talk – but we’re actors rehearsing lines from a script. I know your questions, you know my responses. They’ve been the same for the past eighteen months – regular like clockwork.

 

How was your day dear?

 

Fine. Yours? You kill your boss yet?

 

Polite laughter.

 

There’s dinner in the cooler, darling.

 

Thank you.

 

We have our sides of the bed. There’s a wall in between them – a wall that cannot, must not and will not be breached. There’s nothing there visible to the bare eyes – but the Great Wall of China might as well be there.

 

You ask if we’re done. You ask if there’s nothing more to us.

 

You ask if…you ask if there’s someone else.

 

The words have a shaky feel to them. They command my attention to your expression, and I see the shimmer of something – a liquid on the surface of your eyes.

 

Tears.

 

I stand there and watch them spill over with bullet-time slowness, convinced we’re all just props on a movie set. I’m there but I’m not part of what’s happening. You ask me why I married you if I was going to allow things degenerate to this point between us.

 

That’s the issue.

 

When I married you, anything like this was the farthest thing to my mind. I married you because, in spite of everything I believed in ‘happily-ever-after’. You made me believe in that.

 

But somewhere along the line, you stopped believing and I gave up because I didn’t have enough for two.

 

I gave up on you. I gave up on us.

 

You ask if there’s someone else. Again.

 

See? We’re following a script here. Must ‘someone else’ be the ‘why’ we’re so unhappy? Must I take to drinking and come home late because I’m having issues with my wife – in my marriage? Can’t there be something else; like work for instance?

 

In a matter-of-fact tone of voice you tell me I am not going anywhere. I try to explain to you how important this trip is – how the future of our company depends on the outcome of this Abuja meeting. You ask if it’s more important than the home I always come back to.

 

There’s no difference in your voice as you tell me I’ll have to make a decision. You tell how there’s still hope for us – how we can still make it happen. The feeling of being on a movie set persists – it’s really as though I’m hearing you talk in slow motion through the curtain of tears that cascade down your face steadily.

 

I don’t have a lot of choice, do I?

 

The door opens and a two-year old version of you walks in, almost blinding me with the sun shinning in her eyes. She rushes towards me and I kneel down to gather her in my arms. A burning sensation within my chest announces itself – my heart is breaking as the volcano behind my eyes erupts in a hot shower of tears. I hug our daughter to me and I sob…

 

The tears are there when my eyes open but everything else stays behind. I sit up on my bed and hold my head in my hands. I tell myself I’m just missing you – that it’s because I’m trying to adjust to single life again. But it’s more than that.

 

It’s a lot more than that.

 

It’s been six months – six months during which I’ve moved on. Six months of which everything has been better than ever – six months of being absolutely single and, for the first time in a long while; loving it. Not because it gives me an excuse to ‘explore my options’ but because it’s been six months of getting to know me all over again.

 

It’s been six months of seeing myself for who I truly am and working towards being a better me. It’s been six months of growth and development, six months of putting things in perspective.

 

Six months of thinking about you and smiling like an idiot in the middle of Oba Akran. Six months of suddenly bursting into laughter, startling the other occupants of the BRT bus I’m riding home in.

 

Six months of letting go.

 

So the dreams are not symptoms of my heart refusing to accept that you’ve gone. I don’t doubt we’ll go on our separate ways and live lives that are undoubtedly good. But in the same vein, I can’t honestly say we don’t belong with each other.

 

Were we ‘happenstance’? Were we ‘coincidence’? Were we stray cats who bumped into each other one rainy night and shared something millions search for all their lives and only few ever truly experience?

 

Too many questions. Not enough…

 

‘Limpopo’ starts to play somewhere not too far off, providing this movie with the perfect theme song. It takes me a moment to realize it is my ringtone; meaning means my phone is ringing.

 

I grab it – and though it has been six months I know the number. I know it because it’s written on every part of my memory in letters of fire.

 

Excuse me.

 

There’s a drum beating as I take the call. And the first thing you say to me is…

 

‘Have you been dreaming about me?’

 

 

 


Coming Back Home – Epilogue

Slowly, Adaobi’s clutching fingers relax from their death grip on the soaked bed sheets. As her heaving chest slows and resumes working normally, she allows her lips slacken in a smile. Maybe it is true what they say about men – the older the better!

 

She watches as Eze; moonlight glinting off his naked behind leaves the room. It is almost impossible to imagine how they had made it here – when four years ago it was as though she was married to her son.

 

And now…

 

It would be better if I just tell him now.

 

The thought scares her more than it should, because she clearly remembers what happened the last time she’d told him the same thing.

 

And it’s been so good – I’m scared to spoil it.

 

Adaobi slowly sits up in bed and looks at the second finger of her left hand. The rock resplendent there looks like it recently swallowed a rainbow – a yellow sunburst here, a red splash there, a blue sparkle elsewhere. She blushes shyly. How did I ever become so lucky?

 

It is true what the bible says. Sorrow may last for a night –

 

“You like it, abi?” Eze speaks from the doorway.

 

Adaobi smiles in response. “Exactly. ‘Like it’ is right – I love you for it.”

 

He walks over. Now it is his belly that catches the moonlight – it looks like a well-oiled bald dome. She smiles at her own joke. Who cares for a six pack? I love this one-pack – and everything that comes with it.

 

She mutters a low ‘Thanks’ as Eze hands her the glass of cold juice and she drains it in one gulp. She sets the cup on the table beside her as the bed dips under Eze’s weight. She turns in time to catch his lips in a fiery kiss, bodies pressing against each other as though they had not just ended almost two hours of lovemaking. Eze reluctantly breaks the kiss.

 

“Chei! I for like no go work tomorrow o,” he says, idly fondling Adaobi’s limb nearest to him, which happens to be a breast.

 

“You better stop that if you really have to go to work,” she says, laughter evident in her voice. Eze moves his hand away, and then moves his face to where his hand was. Adaobi shudders.

 

“Anyway, what is it?” Eze asks, his voice sounding muffled from where he is. “There’s something you want to tell me, isn’t there?”

 

She shouldn’t be surprised but she is; by the connection they share. It almost as though they can read each other’s minds these days.

 

“I’m…um…I’m…pregnant,” she stammers.

 

She looks at the hands she had folded in her laps, remembering what happened the last she said those exact same words to him.

 

Eze’s fingers gently touch her jaw and turn her face in his direction, a somber look on his face. He can tell what is going through her mind.

 

“I’m sorry I hurt you so deeply – so much so you would still remember after all this time.” He paused, and then a smile steadily showed forth on his face. “I want a girl. One of Chika’s enough for the rest of my life.”

 

The smile becomes wider as Adaobi’s lips reciprocate and she starts laughing. “Diayen, what makes you think it’s up to you?”

 

Eze jumps off the bed theatrically and kneels down beside it. “I know na, I know it has nothing to do with me. That’s why I’m begging.”

 

Adaobi, her eyes looking like an inner sun illuminated them, says calmly. “Well, okay. You’ll get a girl.”

 

Eze jumps up and on his wife, tickling her till she’s laughing and crying all at once. And then he finds a reason to kiss her lips softly – and ‘softly’ becomes something else entirely…

 

 

You may also like: Coming Home I

Coming Home II

Coming Home III

 

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

 

Thank you for staying with me!

Have a great week too!


Coming Back Home III

 

“How was work today?” Adaobi asked as she nervously puttered around in the kitchen. Hearing no response, she turned around in time to see Eze sneak a second piece of meat into his mouth; at the same time try to replace the pot cover quietly. She burst out laughing.

 

“Oga, at the rate you’re going there won’t be anything left for your son to eat o,” she said, still laughing.

 

Eze stopped chewing and looked at his wife with mock seriousness. “Me nko? I no go chop?”

 

The humor on Adaobi’s face vanished cleanly as if wiped off with a towel. “You…you want to eat…my food?”

 

Eze looked indifferent while inside he cringed. “Why is that news? Is it strange that a man wants to eat his wife’s food after a hard day’s work?”

 

Adaobi walked over to Eze and hesitatingly, touched her palm against his forehead. Eze closed his eyes, enjoying the cool feel of her hand. It felt so soft…so warm, as it lay there.

 

It felt like a stranger’s hand.

 

Her voice penetrated his closed-eyes-created darkness and warmed him gently and softly like a lover’s caress. “Nna, are you okay? Is something wrong?”

 

She was worried. Genuinely worried.

 

Swallowing the meat he was chewing, he opened his eyes and found himself looking into hers. There were a lot of things in there – things he did not recognize. Things that looked like they were running after each other in a race they couldn’t win. Suddenly he grabbed her arms and asked, “Adaobi, what happened to you?”

Adaobi shook off his hands so violently she staggered as he involuntarily let go of her. Reaching for the cooker to steady herself, she whirled almost immediately and stared at Eze angrily.

 

“What happened to me? What happened to ME?!” she started shouting, tears springing out of her eyes making her face look like an overfull pure water sachet. “WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU?”

 

Eze looked away guiltily. “Why are you asking me that?”

 

Adaobi, her chest heaving with an emotion he couldn’t – didn’t want to identify, responded; “Are you okay? What is this – what are you doing?! You don’t eat my food, you don’t touch me – you don’t even look at me for almost…” she stopped, emotions overwhelming her. “And then suddenly…. What are you doing? Who are you?!”

 

Eze felt ashamed. What am I doing? What went wrong with us?

 

But bros – you know na. Why you dey ask Jamb kweshun?

 

Damn conscience. But it was right.

 

He knew.

 

“You never forgave me for Chika. And though I really tried to…” she stopped, quite sobs shaking her shoulders. “You said it was a mistake to marry me…” she stopped and wiped her face with the back of her hand. The gesture oddly reminded Eze of crying children – and he thought about the last time he had seen it.

 

There are no kids anymore o. They grow too fast.

 

And whose fault is that?

 

When she told him she was pregnant it was like everything became dark. He had suddenly realized how empty words like ‘I love you’ and ‘I’ll always make you happy’ were – easy to say; hardly ever meant.

 

He hadn’t been able to see that it was his fault as well as hers – in fact it was more of his fault. He refused to agree that there was a better way to have handled the whole thing. All he could see was that he had become a father overnight; a husband over the next few weeks – something he wasn’t ready for. Sure, it had cost him his job as a business manager, but they had not died, had they?

 

He thought about the cliché – that one about how loving their mother is the best gift a father can give his kids. He thought about the fact that he loved Chika, loved the boy enough to do anything to protect him. But is it fair to love the gift and not the giver?

 

He looked at her now, the mother of his son, the woman he had stood in front of before God and witnesses and promised to love, honor and obey. Even though he had spat out those words in fury – even though he had been eyeing the bridal train as he was making those vows, should he not have tried to be a better husband?

 

What kind of man am I raising my son to be?

 

Who cares? If you know say you sabi ask redundant questions, why you no go work for JAMB?

 

“Adaobi, I made a mistake…but it wasn’t by marrying you. It was by not trying. See, I blamed you so much – and it’s almost as though I needed an excuse for it not to work.” He moved closer to his wife and carefully put his arms around her. The iron rod in her back remained erect for a few seconds, and then slowly it unbent and became a human spine.

 

They held each other there, standing silently until Eze’s body started to inform him of some biological reactions. This is awkward; he thought to himself. I finally start to fix the holes in my life and this…this shameless thing just wants to plug a hole.

 

Adaobi sighed contentedly, innocently moving her hips closer to her husband’s. Eze’s sudden jerk back made her head come up from the shoulder in which it was nestled. “Is something wrong?” she asked. Eze had to clear his throat twice before he could speak. “No…nothing,” he said, heart thumping like a konga drum at work. It was enough she accepted him this much. It would be better if he did not push his luck.

 

Adaobi looked at him – Adaobi who, somehow within the past few minutes had gone from plain to being the most beautiful woman he had seen a while; smiled at him in that way that used to tickle his ears. “Nothing, shey?” she said.

 

Eze swallowed and nodded. He had no idea what was coming.

 

Adaobi suddenly wedged her left thigh between his legs and softly bumped her hips against his groin. Eze exhaled noisily and almost fell down. His wife steadied him, laughing happily.

 

“Hmmm,” she said when they were standing properly again. “Seems we have a dilemma here.”

 

“What dilemma is that?”

 

“Your body is saying it has missed mine – but your mind is saying you’re moving too fast. And you don’t know if you want to go that far all in one night; you don’t know how I feel about it.” She looked like a kid with unlimited credit in the Shoprite sweet section. “Am I right?”

 

Eze nodded. “It’s…a lot to take in at once.”

 

“Well, here’s my feedback!” Adaobi said, and grabbed her husband’s most intimate part suddenly but gently. Eze’s knees became pap in a nylon bag and he fell on the kitchen floor, Adaobi sprawling across him and laughing at the same time. He kissed her throat; slight glimpse of her azure bra strap peeking from underneath her blouse testing his control.

 

“Mummy I’m hungry,” a voice said from the doorway. The grownups scrambled off their feet hurriedly to see a sleep-infested Chika rubbing his eyes.

 

“Okay baby,” Adaobi said, hurrying to the boy and hugging him. “Let’s get you eating.”

 

As she carried him past his father, she whispered in his ear, “I’m coming back for you, honey. Don’t think you’re safe.”

 

She winked at him and kept moving. Eze swallowed and smiled.

 

He needed a drink.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

Thank you so much for staying with me.
The story’s done – but there’s a small piece remaining – a ‘three years later’ kind of thing they do in Nollywood movies.
Begging your indulgence, would you still like to read that?

 


Coming Back Home I

 

The nine year-old said “Me and Tobi have agreed. We don’t ever want to get married. Ever.’

 

The forty-two year old looked at the nine year-old, an amused expression on his face. “And why not?”

 

The nine year-old thought carefully. “Because marriage does not make people happy.”

 

The forty-two year old was shocked. “Who told you that?”

 

“Nobody. But Tobi says his parents argue and fight loudly – that his father likes breaking things and his mommy likes crying. I told him my parents don’t argue – they just don’t talk. And we both agree that both our parents are very unhappy.”

 

Eze turned back towards the road and gripped the steering wheel tighter, his face frozen in a smile. It shook him to his center to hear the words coming out of his son’s mouth – and for the first time in a long time, he looked in the mirror and was appalled at what he saw.

 

His son looked at him. “Did I make you angry, daddy?”

 

Eze rubbed the boy’s head. “No, Chike. You’ve made me think.”

 

The boy nodded and looked out of the window as the man continued driving. Out of the corner of his eye he watched the boy and wondered what today’s children were on. “My parents don’t argue – they just don’t talk.”

 

My God; he thought, what have I been teaching my son?

 

He felt ashamed to realize he hadn’t thought about his wife in a while. Adaobi. Trying to bring up her image in his head was some kind of feat; he found to his chagrin. What sort of wahala is this?

 

He felt a small surge of anger at his son. How dare he – but then, it wasn’t the boy’s fault. He was saying what he saw. He and Adaobi were strangers living in the same house.

 

A streak of cold sweat running down his back made him shudder suddenly, and irritably he pushed the AC control to max. Gritting his teeth in frustration, he pushed down the throttle.

 

Which kain wahala be dis? Which kain pikin be dis?

 

In fact, which kain afternoon be dis?

 

The plan was to get Chika from school, drop him off at home – and zoom off to the island for Champions League and Sandra’s with the boys. All of a sudden, after nine years of marriage he was having a crisis of conscience. He didn’t need that. Not now.

 

“I don’t need that now,” he said half-aloud.

 

“N..need what?” Chika asked his father. Eze looked at the boy to see him shivering. Feeling guilty, he turned off the AC.

 

“There. Is that better?”

 

“Yes. Thanks dad!”

 

Eze nodded and eased off the throttle as neared the junction to Ogudu. His turning into the road was fluid and smooth; the earmark of a professional driver – but it wasn’t smooth because he was paying attention to it. It was smooth because turning into that road had become second nature to him. He could do it with his eyes closed.

 

His mind was not on the driving.

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Hope you enjoyed that! Please check for updates on Monday!

 

Have a fantastic week!