The Last Smile – Episode 9
By Adeola Nissi
Raymond stepped out of the room. He had never been so breathless in his life. He walked silently with Doctor Tunde to his office, and after sitting down, they both stared silently. Ray was too preoccupied with his thoughts.
“So, what are you going to do Ray? Are you going to follow her wishes?” ray was lost. Even the question made him feel weirder. He would not incur any damage or problem if he decides to go against Brenda’s wishes but he had been forced to promise. He does not go back on his words. It is the only thing that has not really changed in his life. On the other hand, doing what she wanted might lead him to a lot of problems.
Some minutes ago…
Raymond sat where he was, in front of Brenda. When he heard that name, he was stunned. Not by the name which he had heard countless number of times, but by the voice of the bearer. Her voice was like a whisper, cool, feminine and also commanding. He knew she had to be a spectacular person to be able to gather all those attributes to herself. He wanted her to rest but he also wanted to find out who she was so that he could locate her people. He had no doubt that they must be going through a series of horrifying ultimate search, in search of a light-skinned goddess. Personally, if he was somehow related to this lady, he would search the wh0le earth and proceed to the heavens if he does not find her.
“I am so happy that you are alive. You don’t know just how happy I am” he said slowly and quietly. “Where are you from? Who did this to you? We need to contact your people or go to the police”
He would gladly take laws into his hands if he sees the b****** that stabbed her. She became very uneasy and restless and they had to calm her down. He was worried he had said too much. The experience must be a terrifying one. Something flashed to his mind: what if she stabbed herself? No. she couldn’t have. She could not have stabbed herself, put herself in a sack and lay in the rain where she could die. After they had been able to stabilize her, Doctor Tunde said he would sedate her and he fully agreed. She is not well enough to withstand the torture of an interrogation. He stood up and waited for Tunde to perform his duty. He felt for her. If there is something he hates so much in hospitals, it is their ability to make you sleep, whether you want to or not. Ray saw Brenda’s l-ips moving and he instinctively moved closer. Her voice had become too low, probably due to the effect of the drugs being administered through the drip. She was trying to say something.
When he was close enough, she whispered again. “Please, don’t contact anybody, not even the police. Please, promise me”. Raymond was stunned. Why would she not like anyone to know her whereabouts? The vague thought of suicide returned and he shrugged it off. Or could it be someone in her family? Maybe her family wants her dead? Why would they? Wait, does she have a family? All these thought kept bugging him and he could not even make meaning of any of them.
He saw her struggling with the administered drug, trying to keep her eyes open. “Promise?” she said, barely audible. He quickly nodded. “Promise”. She relaxed and slept. He wondered if she knew anything about his inability to break promises. He stood up gently and gazed at Tunde who had been standing by them the wh0le time. He needed no seer to tell him that the Doctor had heard all that was discussed. He wondered how he could hear something so low when he needed to bend to hear her. Maybe his ear needs a check up, he thought mentally.
Ray sat opposite Tunde, still tied down by his thoughts. He hadn’t given Tunde the answer to the question he was asked. “Ray… I said, what are you going to do?”
Raymond exhaled slowly. “I made a promise Tunde. I don’t break my promises” he said.
Tunde sighed knowingly. He shouldn’t have asked because he knew the answer to expect. “You know I am risking a lot. None of her relations know of her presence in my hospital, I know nothing about her except her name; not even her full name; what if something happens to her?” Tunde asked, becoming more aware of the risk involved.
Ray stood sluggishly. “Then, you have to make sure nothing happens to her” he said about to leave.
“You also have to do the same” Tunde said, referring to Tinuke. Ray paused, gazed at Tunde as his thoughts took in everything he had heard. He nodded and left the office. He entered his car and headed home.
How could Tinuke descend so low as to attempt murder? Of everything that he imagined her doing, murder was not one of them. He wondered why he did not feel terribly hurt. He felt rage, enough to take on a battalion of Tinukes if she ever tried something so terrible, but he did not feel that heartfelt pain he usually feels whenever she does something to hurt him. Just months ago, he had been so sure that he would die if Tinuke leaves him, but now, he feels like Tinuke would send him to an early grave if he doesn’t leave her.
As he drove on, Bose crossed his mind and his heart skipped a beat. Since Tinuke started her rebellious acts and Bose had stood by him through it all, he had been trying to see her in a different light. He had wanted to love her the way a man loves a woman but the only feelings he had for her were platonic. She is like a sister and a friend. He had seen some signs to show that she had extra feelings for him but he hadn’t thought much of it. Bose is a very beautiful girl, with a very inviting body structure, and that gave Tinuke more reasons to pressurize him into firing her. He however had never felt s€×ually attracted towards Bose, and he wondered why. He had left her at home without talking about her love confession and he was scared that he would not be able to look her in the eye and tell her he had no feelings for her.
His phone rang and he looked at the name on it. He mentally kicked himself as he pressed answer and put the phone on speaker in order to focus on his driving without being caught by the police.
“Hey… Duke, what’s up now” he said to no physical being.
“You are not serious. You have not called me for the past four days and you are there asking me what’s up. What else would be up?” Duke angrily yelled over the phone. Of all the friends that surrounded Raymond, Duke is the closest to him.
“Hey, why are you angry? I am angry too. You did not hear from me and you did not call me. What if I was dead?”
“C’mon shut the crap. I know you can’t die, we already said that our children would marry themselves, so tell me: where are you going to when you have not fulfilled your promise?” Duke ranted. They both laughed out. People driving by in the small traffic assumed that Raymond was having a moment of madness and put a little space between their cars. Ray smiled at their stares.
“But why did you leave the club without telling us now?”
Ray sighed. “Leave that jare, I am glad I did. I was able to save someone from death”
“What? Who?” Duke’s voice filled the car.
“Long story” Ray replied.
“Why not come over to the club tonight, you can narrate the story over there”
Ray thought for a second and realized it would be a good idea. Get home, explain everything in his mind to Bose and go to the club to drink away any guilt that he might feel afterwards.
“You are the man” Ray smiled and pressed the red button.
Fred was not happy with the way he treated Chris. The guy had wanted to help him with his problems but little did he know that the situation is already beyond remedy. He had forcefully pushed him out two days ago, arousing suspicions. Every time he stepped out of the house to either buy some things or settle things, he walks like someone who is being chased, looking over his shoulder at the slightest sound. His life has transformed to a nightmare just because of a stupid act.
He sat on the bed in his room, drinking a bottle of beer. Lucy had been so beautiful that night and the jealousy of the fact that she dressed up for another man had added to his anger. He did not have any right to be angry but the mere fact that she could accept someone else when she did not accept him made him too furious. He opened his HP laptop and powered it. After letting it booth for some minutes, he connected to the internet. If he wants to come out of this mess, someone else would have to be found responsible for the Luciana’s death. Sooner or later, her body would be found and the case would move from a kidnap case to a murder case. He swallowed, opened his bag and took out a small jotter where he wrote the name of his worst enemy. Since someone else needs to be implicated, he knows the best person to implicate. How he would achieve his aim was still unknown to him. He stared at the name. “If God helps me to find a way, I promise you; you would be spending the rest of your miserable life in jail” he said.
Raymond arrived home to meet something really shocking. Of all the things that coerced through his mind as he drove home, the movie playing before him was not included.
“What is going on Bose? Where are you going with the luggage” he yelled, as he approached her.
Bose wiped her tears as she swallowed painfully. “I can’t stay here anymore sir” she choked.
Tinuke had made her life a living hell ever since she stormed the house, about two hours ago. Bose knew that Tinuke was there to stay, due to the heavy bags she brought with her and she could not imagine another day with Tinuke in the house. She also would not be able to cope with seeing Ray and Tinuke play the loving duo while she suffered from the love that can never be returned.
Raymond stared at Bose with his mouth agape. He could not fathom why she was doing this. “It has not reached this level Bose. Come in,side, let us talk about this”.
“No sir” Bose said, shaking her head in denial. “I am sorry sir; I never wanted this to happen. Why would I want to leave this house when you have treated me so kindly? Thanks to you and your generous siblings, I am somebody today” she sniffed. “I have enough money to start a small business, I am educated and I also have self confidence. You have been so kind to me. You treated me like your sister. What more can I ask for?” She paused, allowing everything she had said to sink in.
“But I fear, I would not be able to stay any longer. I never wanted to confess my feelings today”
“And I am sorry I made you do so” Ray cut in
“Yes sir, I understand. But I am not leaving because of you; I am doing this for me. I know you don’t love me. If I stay here, I would become bitter. Please let me go sir” she pleaded.
Ray was deflated. Going to the club tonight would definitely be a brilliant idea. He never imagined that Bose would cry because of him. He did not want to let her go but, making her stay would be very unfair. She deserves to move on with her life, forsake the lowly life of a servant and be an independent woman. If she would also be able to forget him, she needs space. That very minute, he saw a woman – a very beautiful woman that can sweep the heart of any man; but why can’t he see her that way?
“I would miss you” he said softly, from his heart. “Who would prepare those delicious meals? Who would keep me company in this boring house? Who would advise me when I am lost? Tell me?”
“Your fiancée would do all that. Bye Sir” she quickly said. She wiped her face and picked up her bags.
“But where are you going this night? At least stay till tomorrow morning and let me drop you.” She looked thoughtful for some seconds, glanced at the building and shook her head.
“I have called a cab to convey me to my friend’s house. Your food is in,side the cooler, in case you are hungry. Bye sir. Thanks for everything” she said as fresh tears rolled down her cheeks.
Raymond stood still as Bose stepped out of the house. He could not explain the pain he felt at that moment. Why did he ask her that question? If he hadn’t asked, she would still be in the house now. He walked in,side slowly with the intention of changing his clothes and storming the club. The quilt he was feeling could only be relieved in a club where he would drink himself to stupor. He entered his bedroom and met the second horror of the day. What the hell! He swore. “Tinuke… What are you doing here?”
…To be continued
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