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Badmus tried to look through his blood shut eyes but couldn’t. he
had just been given the greatest level of beating he had ever
received. He had looked up at d hooligans hovering over him
after he was thrown to the cell & knew that he was in deep trouble. They muttered
something about welcoming him to d house & he thought it
would be a simple handshake but what he got was a boxing
session. They all tested their fists on him like he was d latest punching bag in town.
He tried to stand but could not muster enough strength to pull
up a leg so he just lay there on d floor. He swore in his heart to
get even & make Belina wish she had never been born for all
he had passed through d past few days.
“if I can get out of this place, be prepared
Belina”, he thought before he
dozed off, giving in to sleep as a consolation.
B4 I knew it, I was on my way home. I had attended to two
patients b4 leaving & I had been enjoying myself immensely
when I noticed that it was past five. I left d hospital feeling very
happy & when I got home, I found d house open. My new mom has a very large
supermarket & I was surprised that she was home already. I
entered & greeted her lovingly.
She was very interested in what happened on my first
day at work & I relayed
everything neglecting one very aspect, obviously. She also relayed her day at d supermarket to me
Prisca walked in and everything became livelier. I reverted back
to d bedroom with Prisca. Her dad wasn’t back from work yet.
“So, how was work today baby girl?” she started & I started
wondering just how far I was going to tell her.
I repeated everything I told mum also leaving out d most fascinating part of it all. Trust
prisca, she read in between d lines & noticed some loop
h0les & fired back; I did not have any other choice but to open up to her.
“Well, I met someone that looked so… I don’t know. I originally
thought he was a statue, then while I was admiring him, he
moved & I almost swallowed
my tongue in shock & wonder.
He is so good looking”, I ended my sermon when I noticed that I
had gone too far
“uhn, I can practically see stars running around in ur eyes, tell
me, what is his name” she asked smiling stylishly.
“What stars? Well I don’t know his name & I am happy I don’t.
I don’t want a man in my life.
They have all been a huge disappointment.Look, I am happy u have a good & loving dad & also Tony but
men are good to u but sis, not me. They have made my life
miserable. Everyone of them”.
She shook her head,
“sweetheart, don’t be like this”
“Really? Do u know what it is like to have d type of father I have? Well no. what of Kelvin’s betrayal? I felt like dying that day
Pric,u don’t know what it is like to be face to face with ur boyfriend & have him throw
trash in ur face. That left me totally broken. What of Tunji? He
practically made my life a living hell & u want me to think about a guy? No. I don’t have
them in my dictionary. I would only treat patients as patients & live my life as a single lady besides, God did not make it
compulsory for us to get married”. I said & wiped d tears that were already flowing
from my eyes. This was d first time that I was letting out my
feelings since last week & Prisca held on to me as I cried & whispered words of encouragements
After I had composed myself, I remembered that I had not even
checked how much I would be paid as salary & I told prisca
who laughed wondering if she could forget such a thing. I brought out d envelope in my bag & opened it. I read d
letter & when I got to d place where my salary was stated, I opened my eyes & mouth in shock.
Richærd went home with with Tony. He really needed d
company cos he had been trying to get belina out of his mind &
everything he tried did not seem to work. They got to the house
& they both collapsed on d chair. They had both eaten at the
hospital’s restaurant so hunger was out of the question. They
had both been pre-occupied towards the tail end of the day & they started wondering why people did not come throughout
until around four. They got to Tony’s
house around 8 and after about
10 mins rest, Tony put on the TV
and the first thing that was
displayed was news and from
the speaker, he was able to
grasp that they were talking
about the murder case.
“Oh my God, Richy, I forgot to tell
you; the guy that abducted Belina
was murdered on Saturday”
Richærd did not like the fact that
Belina was the topic again when
he was trying to forget her but
what he said captured him.
“Yeah, I saw the murder case but
was that the guy who abducted
her?” he asked alarmed.
He increased the volume and
when a certain picture was placed on screen, his eyes almost
popped out of its socket.
“No, it can’t be true”, he gasped,
“it can’t be”
“What can’t be” Richærd asked
very confused and worried now.
“That man there is… is Belina’s
Father”, he dropped
The blood in Richærd’s face drained instantly.
As I stared at my salary, I could
not believe my eyes. When I did the interview, I was asked how much I would like as my monthly salary & I had said, 100, 000
Naira. The place where I worked b4, I was being paid d sum of 70, 000 Naira but here I was
staring at d whooping sum of 150, 000 Naira. I closed my eyes & opened it again but d
figures hadn’t flown away. I
closed my eyes and thanked God. I saw
Prisca smiling down at me. I jumped on her & hugged her so tight & I guess she felt uncomfortable.
“Thank u darling, God has been using u to make my life a
blessing”, I said truthfully.
sure I would not be anywhere if not for God, u & ur family
“Oh, come on now, firstly, I did not do anything,at least, I am
sure u would have done d same for me. Secondly, stop
referring to my parents as my family now they are ur family
members too so they are our family, ok?
“Yeah, Yeah, I have heard u…” I
stopped when I heard a car horn.
“That’s dad” she said & we both made our way outside to open d gate for him. He drove in & we happily hugged him
like little infant children &collected his suit case. Even though he was d owner of his company, he always kept late at
work saying that ‘if u want something done properly u must monitor it urself
Dad tuned on the TV to listen to the news, we headed to our room.
We had just taken a few steps when I heard a name & I froze.
I turned around like a robot & what I saw on d screen was more than I could fathom. I stared at my father’s picture being labeled
as a murderer. They displayed him on TV without even a singlet.
All he wore was a torn trouser as his face looked beaten & battered
I expected myself to feel sorry for him or even feel sad or even
angry at him but I did not feel anything. I just stared at d TV at first in shock seeing him there & then; I did not feel anything again.
I wanted to hate him the
more but I couldn’t, I wanted to pity his condition because he is
my father but I just could not. I finally felt Prisca’s hand on my
back as a sign of comfort but all I
could do was stare blankly at d TV. Mr & Mrs Jegas was busy
expressing his views about d matter & none of them noticed that they had anyone in the
house who knew d murderer much less his daughter. Mum
turned & seeing our
expression was striken. I immediately turned & headed towards the room but I was too
late, dad had already turned in my direction
“Belina”, his bass voice rang out in the house & I turned.
He looked from me to the tv & b4 I knew what was happening, they were all by my
side consoling me like I needed consolation. I laughed slightly& said, “I am ok, I am just fine.
I should be crying but I cant bring myself to doing that” I said
with a smile & dad said
something about it being bad to cry over someone who did no
other thing but bring me pain & I smiled. I thanked everyone & left to the safety of d room.
As I laid on d bed,the reality of d news dawned on me as I
imagined myself as a murderer’s daughter & my heart did a
summersault. I pulled myself together & was determined to get over it the way I had gotten
over every other challenge I had passed through in life, besides, I did not want to be a pain in d ass in this peaceful family.
A week passed and everything had been going on well. During
the past week, I had seen almost everyone in the hospital & was
surprised that they were all young people within d age of
35 & below. Patients were coming for me on a daily basis & I particularly enjoyed my
sessions with Deji. He hadn’t fully recovered his memory but be
had remembered three names,though he did not know who those names belonged to, he
mentioned the names & when I asked his parents, I found out
that there were people in his life with such names. His
improvement was a great thing to me & I always looked
forward to our sessions together
because he is a very interesting
person to have around.
I had just finished my session
with Deji and was back to my
office when my secretary called
over the intercom. With my
observation, I should be within
the same age with Joke, my
secretary and I took her as a
“Miss Belina, there is someone
here to see you but he won’t give
his name”, she said
“Hmmm, is he with a gun?” I
asked half jokingly and half
Her voice held a smile when she
said, “God forbid bad thing”
“Alright, once you are sure there
is no cause for alarm, send him
in”, I said and hung up. Few
seconds later, I heard a knock
and I said a low but firm, “come
in”, the door opened and for one
second I thought I would be
seeing the guy from last week
but I couldn’t have been more
I sprang up from my seat,
are you doing here Kelvin?
Richærd sat down on his seat fighting an inner battle. He had
avoided d second floor
throughout last week like a plague when all he wanted to do was go there even if it would be just for a minute. He hadn’t thought about Tonia at all throughout last week. His attention had been seriously divided last week &
Tony had noticed &
commented on it but he had made up excuses. He had promised Tonia not to have anything to do with d opposite s€× but here he was having his thoughts bugged by one woman as if she had bewitched him. His
eyes went to the roof imagining what was in d next floor & what might be going on there
& they next thing he knew was that he was already at d door
heading towards the place he had been avoiding.
The court appearance of Mr Badmus was two days away &yet he had not admitted to being
guilty. He had been tortured terribly but he kept on repeating
“I am innocent”. The police station still remained d same
with five police men at d counter waiting desperately for
someone to come with one complaint or the other. They looked hungry & even though
the “police is ur friend” slogan was typed boldly on an A4 paper & was pasted on d wall
behind d counter, no one seemed to be visiting their ‘friend’ today, but all of a sudden,a tattered looking man who
looked like a candidate for d prison cell walked into d police station & asked d police men,
“can I see d police?”
One of d police men
answered annoyingly, “you dey craze? The people wey u dey
see so no resemble police?
“Oh, sorry, I wan drop one evidence o,d evidence show d person wey kill Deputy Governor pikin”
The police men laughed him to scorn, “what do u know about that? You don’t even know that
the murderer has been found.
Abeg leave this place & let better human beings come in jare”, another officer said.
Just then, inspector Sule came out of one of the offices &asked what was happening.
“oga, no mind this idiot o, hin talk sey he get evidence for Tunji
“Just shut up there” he said &faced d guy, “sorry for that,
where is the evidence?” he asked
The guy brought out his
phone & gave it to him. He led the guy to a quiet room & he
played d video recording on d phone. The conversation was
between he & Tolu who had been drunk enough to spill d beans.
It so happened that Tolu had gone to d bar to celebrate & after he had ordered drinks
for everyone in the bar at his expense, he had drank &drank enough alcohol that his mouth was all over d place. His
friend, d guy with inspector Sule, knowing d way his friend
normally was whenever he was drunk, positioned his phone
somewhere which could capture both his face & his words. He wanted to use it to make jest of him after he was sober as was their normal custom but when he started saying things about
Nigerian police being stupid &how they had escaped him &taken someone else for a crime he committed, he knew the recording would be an asset.
“Wooow”,d inspector said when d recording ended. “Can u lead us to d place he stays?
The guy grinned, “Yes, if I would get something in return, free lunch no dey anywhere o”
The inspector got the message,
“No problem, I assure u that u would be rewarded by Mr
James himself”, he said.
“Ok, but make una no use that una siren o & u go follow me enter d house but no wear
uniform o” he said standing up
Everything was made ready & within 5mins, they were on d road.
“I said, what are u doing in my
office?” I yelled d 2nd time at Kelvin who stood speechless
“I… I came to see y… u”.
I laughed sarcastically, “Yeah right & how did u know that I work here in the first place?” I
asked trying all I can to calm my nerves.
“I made some findings”, he said.
I clapped, “that is good of u,now, leave my office” I said icily
“No please, I came to beg u for all I have done, I… I am so sorry. I
was so stupid. My friends pushed
me into doing what I did that-”
“Hey, would u just save it?” I cut in. “I am not interested in ur fairy tale so pls spare me d trouble of gazing at ur
irritating sight. Leave” I said pointing at d door.
He went on his knees,
I have not been able to live a meaningful life since that day.
You are d only one who could make my life meaningful again
pls…” he was saying but I was beyond hearing as my anger was
beginning to rise to a dangerous level.
I left my place behind d table,stood b4 him & pointed at the door, “leave now” but he
would not stand up from d floor.
“I said leave now, leave me
alone”, I yelled & just then, d door opened & there stood d guy from last week & my
secretary, looking from me to d man on his knees.
What is going on here”, he asked
“Pls… tell this man to leave” I hadn’t noticed that I was crying
until then & I wiped my face dry & glared at the bastard in front of me
“Hello man, please leave now”,the guy said looking as if he
would plough him to death if he refused to obey.
“Leave now”,Richærd said &without waiting for him to stand up, he pulled him up with a hand & pulled him until he was out of d door. He shot d door behind him & I was in,side with my secretary. She wanted to say something but I waved her away & I was alone within seconds. I did not know why I cried but d tears just came flowing down unhindered. I did not love him again but d
memory of d humiliation of that day brought more tears to
my eyes. I did not know when that guy came in but d next thing I knew was that he was
there & I cleaned my eyes with my hand in a hurry.
“You don’t have to hide ur tears from me”, he said very quietly. I don’t know if his words
made me cry d more or not but I just could not keep d tears from flowing.
“Please leave me alone sir,I said turning my back against him. I hate having people pity me or try to console me &
I also don’t like people seeing my tears & having this guy see me
like that was d worst thing I could imagine. I heard his footsteps but instead of it going
farther, it was coming closer. I turned back to re-emphasize my words but was shocked to find
him right in front of me. I found his closeness very disturbing &
I moved some steps backwards.
He seemed to be made with magnet & I felt very tense.
leave sir, I… I need some privacy”,
I said quickly but not with as much force as I should.
He moved closer & my breath was stolen away but I refused to
step back again. I stood there & faced him squarely as I
continuously robbed at my dripping eyes. He took out his hankie & tried my tears before
he silently said, “My name is Richærd, Miss Belina, I would check on u in one hours time.
Take care”. B4 I could
protest, he was gone leaving d hankie on my table which I picked.
I forced d tears back forcefully,wentto d toilet to wash my
face & I went back to my seat to calm down abit.
30mins after d incident,
I was already my normal self I music related researches in order to remain calm. Just for d notice, try out music whenever u are angry or tense, believe me, u would practically see d
anger seeping out of u. I checked out d latest songs from CeCe Winans, J. Moss &
Kim Burrell who were my inspiration musically & noted them down to be scored during
my spare time. Just when everything became perfect like I
hadn’t been crying minutes ago,my intercom rang out.
“Miss Belina, Mr Richærd is here to see u”, my secretary said.
My heart skipped several beats,
“send him in pls”, I said &unconsciously checked my eyes to be sure I was not showing
any sign of weakness. Within a flash, I heard a knock & I said
‘come in. He entered
& d atmosphere in the office changed, I could almost swear that even d air I breathed
changed instantly. He had a presence that could make u feel testy. I turned on my
professional side & smiled confidently. Whether he was
surprised to see me stable & back to normal, I did not know
cos, if there is someone that I knew I would find difficulty reading, it would be him.
He stood b4 me standing straight with male arrogance &
“You are ok”, he said as a statement but it still sounded as
a question so I answered,
am. Thanks for everything sir, I
am grateful, especially for taking that guy out of here”.
I remembered that he had given me his hankie & I started searching for it but I was so
surprised when I found myself holding it so tight with my left
hand & I was alarmed when I noticed that I had not dropped it
since I picked it up about an hour ago. I hid my embarrassment but he seemed to notice everything cos
those blue piercing eyes could almost see into a man’s soul.
I offered him his hankie,
“Thank u for this sir & sorry for the
state u saw me then, it was just a moment of weakness”. I
said. He smiled but did not take the hankie, infact, he had been
smiling all along.
“I told u b4, my name is
Richærd & I would like u to call me by my name, miss”, he said.
“If u would call me Belina”, I said
He smiled, “Yes, I definitely would. Now, can u tell me what that was all about?” he
asked referring to the past hour.
I had been hoping he would not
refer to it but he did anyway,
is nothing, I prefer not to talk
about it”, I said feigning a look of
He smiled widely this time and
my beating heart started running
beyond measure, “when you
know me very well, you would
know that it is not that easy to
make me quit. I know you
present a strong woman on the
outside with people present but I
know that there is a tender and
flower like woman on the in,side
that hurts deeply”.
I felt very uncomfortable but I
presented a front that said, ‘I
don’t know what you are talking
about’. I knew from his stance
that he would pursue it so I
changed the subject by attacking
him with my own curiosity, “You
have foreign blood in you right?”
I asked without warning.
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