Written by Princess Juliet
Writer’s POV( Princess Juliet)
The atmosphere not only looked gloomy but felt gloomy, even for Ademilade .Every where he looked there were no smiles;it reminded him of his own mother’s burial ——depressing.
I hate this sh*t, why did Obianuju mum have to die?he thought momentarily before he took his seat at the front.
Even the seats weren’t comfortable.He had to re-position his rear end a few times before he could sit properly. And to top it all off ,seated right beside him was no other person but Chidi
holy sh*t! he cursed silently and then forced a smile
“Chidi”. he called, tugging at the little boy short sleeves .
The little boy didn’t seem to hear , he didn’t even notice the pull on his shirt, his gaze was fixed on the happenings right in front of him.
What is going on? why is everyone crying?why are they putting the “long box” into the pit? where is my mummy? he wondered
“Chidi!” he heard a voice call beside him
He slowly turned his head in the direction and saw his newest friend.
“Brother Demi”. he called ,but his voice was barely audible
“where is my mum?” he asked and began to cry
Ademilade was taken aback by the kid’s question , he was gobsmacked
What will he tell the crying kid?
he ruffled his curly hair and looked around in confusion and to his upmost relief , he noticed a fair elderly woman coming in their direction ….
“Yay! Grandma is coming”. he told the boy , hoping it would cheer him up and it worked , the boy looked in the direction of the woman and his face split into a wide smile
Ademilade leaned back on the seat , his whole attention fixed on the drop dead gorgeous elderly woman now standing in front of Chidi.
his girlfriend, Obianuju was the exact replica of the woman.
“Good afternoon ma”. he greeted the woman
The woman looked at him and smiled sadly.
“Demi, how are you?”
I am Fine ma”. Ademilade replied.
but was he really fine? hell no!
The woman continued. “but why didn’t you come early today ?my granddaughter almost went crazy waiting for you”
“Oh”. Ademilade exclaimed breathlessly .
He looked towards Obianuju and saw her jumping and crying in front of her mother’s grave and could have enter if not for Obiora’s strong arms around her
“See to it that she never cries like this again”. the woman whispered
For a moment , it felt like it was Obianuju mum talking
The woman smiled and leaned forward to Chidi , reaching her hand out towards his face
“Come Chidi, Let’s us go pour sand”
“Pour sand ?” Chidi asked , clearly confused
“Yes”.The woman answered and with that , she picked Chidi up , holding him on her right hips as she hurried away to the grave side .
Ademilade closed his eyes and tears ran down his face . A finger touched his cheeks. “don’t cry , man.” . Ademilade smiled lightly, his friends were already here. He opened his misty eyes and found Kewe looking down at him .
“Hey! When did you get here?”his voice was a croaky whisper
“Not quite long”. Kewe sighed softly. “It was one hell of a journey but we had to be here for you and obianuju”
Ademilade continued . “What about Tobi?”
“He is standing at the gate with two girls like that”. Kewe replied shrugging
“Two girls?” Ademilade arched his eyebrow
he was surprised , his friends didn’t tell him they would be coming with girls
“Yes ooo, they showed up at Tobi’s door….Kewe stopped mid- sentence, his eyes fixed ahead
“They are already coming”
Ademilade followed his eyes and saw Tobi bouncing towards them , Funmi and Shakirat following behind him
“Obianuju friends”. he told Kewe and quickly wiped away his tears.
“I can’t let them see me like this”!!
Obianuju stood there beside the grave , her hands on her head as she cried more profusely
She was finding it hard to believe that the corpse inside the glass coffin was her mother , that her beautiful mother would soon be covered up with sand…
“pour soil on the coffin”. she heard voices say but she was too dumbstruck to understand a thing, her wide, terrified eyes was on the dug up grave
“Uju, please pour the soil”. Obiora who was holding her tightly whispered into her ears and her brain clicked
She slowly bent down and poured three scoop of sands into the grave..
“ashes to ashes , dust to dust”. the pastor loud voice rang out .
Her body trembled and her chest heaved heavily widely beneath her chiffon top, she couldn’t take it any longer, she wanted to leave the grave side as quickly as possible.
She squeezed her way out of the closed gathering and rushed blindly toward the set-up canopies ; then she collapsed on the floor and began scratching her hair, shutting her ears out to all of the hush whisperings.
“Mummy”. She screamed, kicking her legs out and was about to remove the wig on her head when a hand held her from behind, pulling her into a loose hug . The familiar cologne filled up her nostrils and she became calm in an instant.
“Demi!”She snuffled, looking up at him . “why did you come late?”
Ademilade kissed her softly and placed a hand gently on her cheek ,caressing it with his thumb
“I had to stay back in the hotel room to give my friends direction”
“Direction?” Obianuju repeated not understanding what he meant
“Yes”. Ademilade nodded . “the direction to your home”
Obianuju eyes grew wide in surprise. “are you friends here?”she asked to be sure
“Yes”. Ademilade nudged her to face forward and when she did , she saw Tobi , Kewe , Shakirat and Funmi seated under a canopy, watching her silently.
“They are here because they care for you”. he whispered into her ears
“what about you?” She asked .
she wanted him to assure her of his love ,that he will keep on loving her no matter what happens.
“I am here because I love you”. Ademilade said softly . “and I will keep on loving you till the end of my life”
Exactly what she wanted to hear!
She smiled inwardly and looked up at the sky
“Mum, you left us beautiful memories,your love is still our guide , although we cannot see you , you are always by our side”.
A few days has passed since my mother’s burial ceremony , and we all tried to keep up the pretence that everything was fine ..well! except for Chidi who goes around telling anyone willing to listen that his mum travelled to America . Funny, isn’t it?
Obiora went back to school yesterday and Arinze and I planned on doing the same today, separately though as I would be travelling to Ago-Iwoye with Demilade …
Sleeping peacefully in my bed , I was cradling a pillow to my chest .The sun poured through the window causing me to stir. Another day had dawned ,bringing with it new hopes and aspirations.
I groaned out of sleep when the first beam of sunlight hit my face and rubbed a hand lazily over my eyes .
Picking up my alarm clock on the low stool , I looked at the time
“Ugh, 9:20am !” I placed my clock back on the surface and slowly began to sit up .
My phone suddenly rang and I reached for it and saw the name “Bestie” flashing on the screen
oh dear !I had it in mind to call her!
Smiling , I received it
“Shakirat , how are……………..
“Guess what babe!” her loud squeals drowned my voice
“you won the “OOU miss expensive”for the month”
“OOU miss expensive!” I frowned confusedly . “what is that?”
She scoffed. “are you a student at all?don’t you check the notice board?”
“I do check it but…..
“then you should know what I am talking about”. she cut in. “your name is the first in the list as the school “miss expensive”, hope you understand me now?”
to tell the truth, I didn’t understand a thing but i just had to flow along .
“So who is the Mr expensive?” I asked
“It is Demi na”. she retorted. “why are you acting like you don’t know he is the richest in the school”
I blushed lightly , no wonder I am the miss expensive!!
She continued. ” as I am talking now, heen , a crowd has gathered in front of the notice board to checkout the update”
notice board! update!
“You in school??” I asked to be sure
“Yes, we left the hotel yesterday, sorry for not informing you”
“I should be the one saying sorry”. I sighed softly. “erm you know I didn’t check on you guys for once”
“No Jare, it is nothing”.
I smiled lightly. “Demi is all alone in the hotel room ba?”
“Nope”. she popped the p. “Tobi chose to stay with him”
so Tobi didn’t leave with the rest !
“Alright! I will be back to school today”
“Really?” she sounded surprised
“hmmm!” she exhaled deeply. “no qualms sha , I will help you mark the attendance sheet today”
“awwww! thanks bestie, I really appreciate”
“wo! that one na small thing……. ehen! lest I forget,the girl you asked me to thank has travelled oooooo
“Haaa haaaaa! Kemisola now , or have you forgotten?”
“wo! don’t mind me Jare”. I hissed silently . “where did she travel to?”
“Ibadan” She replied
“Ibadan ! to do what?” I asked curiously
“to register for her Waec”
“Oh! Okay , let me know when she is back , I want to appreciate her with a little..you .know…
“Oya now !Miss expensive”. she hailed , laughing
“Go away Jor”. I laughed and ended the phone call
what a funny girl!!
I placed the phone on the stool and crawled out of the warm bed , about to pull off my nighties when the door flew open and Chichi walked in , holding one of her big books ..
“Don’t pull it off oooo, Aunty Helen needs you in the Kitchen”
“Why?” I asked , staring intently at her
“Shuu! to assist in cooking na, or what else do they do in the kitchen”
My forehead creased into a frown . ” me I can’t assist anybody ooo, I am tired”
“I am tired”. she micmic. “what have you done since morning? If not to sleep”
“And what have you done?” I fired back at her
She smirked . ” a lot , I followed grandma to the early morning market , I bathed Chidi , I helped Arinze pack up foodstuffs and i washed the plates”. she rattled off . “all of which you were supposed to do”
I swallowed hard knowing she was right
I was the one who ought to bath Chidi, I was the one who ought to follow my grandma to the market but what did I do? I slept like an idiot and woke up like a fool ..
“erm is Arinze still at home? I asked, changing the topic
“Home kwa! someone that has gone to school tey tey”. she made a gesture of it by snapping her fingers . ” if you like don’t do fast and go”
“Alright ! ” I simply said and picked up a wrapper,tying it around my waist as I walked out of the room.
“and you better start behaving like a woman”. she called after me
For a moment, I was tempted to rush back to the room and give her a resounding knock but I changed my mind.
let me not go and injure her and make matter worst!
heaving a deep sigh, I climbed down the stairs to the sitting room and met my grandma dusting the sofa
“Good morning ma”. I greeted as she turned her head in my direction
“Morning Ada”. she smiled lightly. “how was your night?”
“It was fine ma”. I replied , looking around . “where is Chidi?”
“I am here oooo”. a tiny voice answered
I quickly turned in the direction and met his gaze , he was seated on one of the smaller sofa with his spider man toy , his tiny feet propped up on the centre table
so he is even here!
“Ehen, why are you asking of me?” he asked , a curious look on his face
“Nothing”. I answered
“Okay oooo”. he averted his gaze, looking down at his toy . “Is brother Demi coming today?”
“Yes”. I nodded . “to pick me up”
My grandma laughed. “You and brother Demi heen , don’t sha kill the boy for my granddaughter”. she winked at me, making me blush
Chidi frowned . “but I am not killing him na , I only want to play with him”
“I know”.my grandma smiled and then faced me
“but Ada, are there no igbo boys in your school, why did you choose to date a Yoruba boy?”
what is she trying to say?
“Is anything bad in it ?” I snapped at her
“No oooo”. she shook her head slightly. “I also like the boy , I am only worried that you might find it difficult adjusting to his culture and all that”
“I won’t”. I retorted in a huff
“Okay oooooo, his parent nko?” she probed on .
“They are fine”. I grunted my response
She continued. “have you met them before?”
“No”. I lied
she was quiet for a moment and then she smirked mischievously
“do you know how rich they are?”
“Grandma!” I called out in surprise
which kind of woman is this sef??
“Yes ooo, my pikin”. she answered her name. “I need to know if his family are capable of paying your bride price. she paused for a second to seize me up and down before she continued. “you are a beautiful girl na and deserve only the best”
Nawa ooo! did she want to sell me ni?
well! since she wants to know, I will tell her
“his father is the speaker to the national house of assembly”
Her eyes grew wide in an instant. “You mean San Adeoye is his father?
so she even knows him!
“hum! hum”. I nodded
“Ha! Ha! Ha!” She clapped her hands lightly . “your bride price has set”
“but I am only eighteen na”. I queried
“And so?”she retorted. “See! see! see! let me tell you , when I was your age i was already a mother of one and ………
“erm i need to go to the kitchen “. I cut in and scurried through a short passage to the kitchen..
I can’t let her kill me with her boring story!
Entering the kitchen , I was just in time to see my mum youngest sister , Aunty Helen turn off the cooking gas.
“Ha! Aunty Helen , you done cooking”. I observed, smiling inwardly
“before nko”. She retorted in a huff . “do you think I would wait for you?
“It is not my fault na”. I defended myself. “Is it not your mum that wants to marry me off at my young age”
She laughed softly. “and how is that possible when me your aunty is not even married”
“I don’t know”. I merely replied as my eyes was on the tray of fried she was holding
I swallowed hard . “can I take one?”
“Don’t try it”. she warned , looking daggers at me
“Okay ooooo”. I rolled my eyes and began walking to the entrance
“and where are you you going?” She asked
“My dad’s room “.i replied and with that, I stepped out of the kitchen and climbed up the stairs to my Dad’s room …
I needed to let him know I was leaving today.
The door to his room was wide opened so I walked in and found him seated on the bed , a lot of books scattered around him.
“Dad!” I muttered
he raised his head and looked at me , and somehow the tenderness of his face calmed
“Princess”. he smiled lightly. “how are you?”
Princess! did he just call me Princess! unbelievable !
” I am fine”. I grunted my response. “erm I am going to school today and I need …………..
“Feeding money”. he completed and I nodded
his smile deepened . “I will make the transfer before you leave for school”
“Okay!” I said and turned around, about to leave the room when he said
“I am sorry ”
I stopped in my steps , looking back at him
Did I hear right?
“I am sorry Princess”. he repeated and got off the bed , moving closer to me . “I am sorry for all the yelling , I am sorry for being inconsiderate, I am sorry for calling you …….
“shameless”. I helped him spell it out and he became sober in an instant
“you called me shameless dad”. I half yelled , tears welling in my eyes
I was already getting hysterical!
he shook his head. “I only said that because I was angry .you aren’t shameless child , you are my Princess and I will always be proud of you”
“Dad!” I called softly, gazing intently into his eyes
“so please forgive me for hurting you”
Forgive! sure! why not ! but I wanted to be sure about one thing first.
“Angela! is she erm ..are you still together?”
Together kwa! no ooooo, I cut it off with her before your mum’s burial”
“Really?” my eyes lit up and he nodded slowly
“then I have forgiven you”. I jumped, clapping my hands and excitedly
I was just too happy, he proved his love to his kids by dumping that fat fool
Smiling lightly, he brought a box out of his pocket and opened it
“Wow!” My eyes glimmered as i stared at the diamond necklace
He continued. “I bought two of this , one for you and one for Chi chi
“It is beautiful” . I remarked truthfully
“Just like your mother”. he mumbled but I heard him clearly.
A warm feeling settled over my heart . My fear, my hatred for him was over . I trusted him, completely, absolutely, totally , at last . “Can I wear it on you?”
I nodded sheepishly
“Okay”. he took the necklace out of the box and clasped it round my neck .
I touched the necklace delicately, feeling it with my fingers
“Don’t mention”. he waved it off with a snap of his finger
An awkward silence followed and then he cleared his throat
“Uhm! uhm! I know I am not meant to say this, but I have to . I like that handsome boyfriend of yours, he seems to be well- reserved”
My Jaws dropped at his words
Swears! this man just dey burst my brain !
“but that doesn’t mean you should continue doing… erm … that dirty stuff with him”. he quickly added
I laughed inwardly, he should tell that to Demi!
“I won’t sir”. I merely promised
“Good girl ! so can daddy get a hug now”. he stretched out his arm widely
gladly , I jumped into it , hugging him tightly
“I love you dad”
I love you too princess”. he whispered into my ears
Yahoo! I got my dad back !!
The sound of voice disrupted my sleep and I groaned out of it and slowly opened my eyes to see Tobi staring down at me..
“Wake up man, it is already 9;30 am”
I looked towards the huge wall , stretching and just like he said , it was 9:30.
Lazily, I sat up in the bed and that was when I noticed he was already dressed
“you going somewhere?” I asked dazedly
He nodded . “school”
“school!but I thought we were going together”. I retorted, clearly confused
“not anymore , my class rep called not quite long to inform me about a test”. he explained. “It is a compulsory course and I dare not miss it”
“Oh! I nodded in understanding. ” but how are you gonna get to school , are you gonna make use of public transport?”
he chuckled lightly. “just because I didn’t come with my car doesn’t mean I will start flying bus. Rinzy is already waiting for me at his house Junction”
“With a car?”
“Yes, with a car”
“Okay!”. I muttered and reached for phone which was at the head of the bed
I switched it on and a message from my dad popped on the screen
I clicked on it and read it
“I am still expecting the names”
I bit my lips and clenched my fists tightly
Should I go against my girlfriend’s wish and send the names? I wanted so much to see the b**tches expelled …….
“Demi!” Tobi interrupted my thoughts
“Yes”. I looked in his direction to see him combing his hair
“have you called your girlfriend this morning?”
Why is he asking?
“Why are you asking?” I threw the question to him
“erm that is erm that is because ……….
“You love her”. I butted in and he froze in shock , staring at me like I was some Zombie
I scoffed silently, does he think I don’t know?
“how …did ….you … know ?” he picked his words
“It is obvious dude , the way you treat her , stare at her , the look in your eyes when you talk to her and all that”
“Then why didn’t you rebuke me?”
“Rebuke! and why would I? you are my friend and I trust you will never do anything stupid”
“Of course I won’t”. he nodded his head. “I just want her to be happy ,I only want to see her smile”
he sure do loves her!
I sighed softly. “but Tobi this is not right, you can’t keep on harbouring feelings for my girl , She is mine and mine alone”
“I know”.he stated
“Good! then kill every feelings you have for her”
He buried his face in his hands and exhaled deeply
“I will do that , but I need time”
“Okay!”I agreed. “It shouldn’t be too long though”
“Sure”. he sling his laptop bag over his shoulder and made for the door, hesitated for a moment and then faced me
“Thanks for understanding me”
Understand him! hell no , I just don’t want no beef with anyone!
“Alright”. I simply said
he nodded his head in an apparent gesture of respect and walked out of the room banging the door shut
“see you in school”.i called after him but there was no response, I bet he didn’t hear me…
dragging myself out of the bed, I pulled off the only clothing on me , a trouser and walked into the “local” looking bathroom ; then I stepped into the bath tub and turned on the tap, there was no water ..
F**k! do they expect me to make use my spit to bath!
Frustrated, I let my gaze wandered around the bathroom and saw a half-filled bottled water on top the sink
I reached for it , opened it and used the water to brush my teeth and wash my face ; then I returned to the room, dumped the bottle into the trash , picked up the folded cloth on the low stool and hurriedly changed into it .
quickly, i put on my shoes , shoved my few clothes into a “newly bought” back pack and zipped it up.
I slung the bag over my shoulder,picked up all of my stuffs and rushed out of the room ,through a long passage to the hotel reception
“Good morning ma !” I greeted the woman seated behind the desk
She smiled. “Morning sir”
“I was the one who rented the room at the ……..
“I know”. she cut me off . “you want to check out right?”
I nodded . ” Any outstanding bill?”
“No”. she shook her head. “your friend settled that when he was leaving”
“Oh! Okay”. I nodded towards her and with that , I rushed out of the building to the side of the compound where my car was parked.
Opening the car door , I slid into the driver seat, started the car and drove out of the “old -looking hotel” to Obianuju’s house ….
Never in my life will I lodge in a cheap hotel again!!
Getting to her house, I honked the car horn twice and it was seems like forever , the gate was opened by ———Chichi
Chai! this girl that doesn’t like me !
slowly, I drove into the compound and parked out in front of the house; then I
stepped out of the car and came face with face with Chichi’s angry gaze
“You have come to steal my sister again abi”
I stared at her in surprise, not because of her words but because she talked to me…
This tiny girl just talked to me , unbelievable!
“I didn’t come to steal your sister , I came to pick her up”. I corrected
She rolled her eyes. “what is the difference?”
“Did I offend you in anyway? I was forced to ask
“Yes”. she frowned. “you stole my sister away from me, she does not have time for me any longer and the only person she talks about is you , you and you.
Like seriously! is this the reason for all her cold stares and attitude, Wow!
I heaved a deep sigh. “I am sorry”
“Sorry! her eyes lit up. “I never knew pretty boys do apologise”
“now you know”. I drawled. “am I forgiven now?”
she shrugged her shoulders lightly , staring at me with “one kind of eyes”
“hmmmmmh…. erm .. you bought spider man toy for Chidi right?”
“Yes”. I nodded slowly
“Then what about me”. she frowned again, her right hand stretched out to me
“what do you want?” I asked calmly
” techno spark 4″. she replied . “I have been saving up sinceee , but my money is still not enough”. she sighed sadly
” how much is the phone?”
“and how much have you saved ?”
“#500”. She spoke lowly
#500! she got to be kidding me!
“Fine! I will waybill the phone down to you, is that okay by you?”
“Yes! Yes! Yes!” she squealed and began jumping up excitedly
I laughed heartily. “So am I forgive now?”
“Oui monseiur ( yes sir)”. she replied
So she can speak french !
“Thanks dear”. I brushed her cheeks lightly and walked past her to the sitting room where I met her eldest brother—Uchenna watching the television, a fair lady beside him
“Good morning”. I greeted as they both turned in my direction
“Morning”. Uchenna responded. “how are you?”
“I am fine”. I replied, glancing at the fair lady beside him , Obianuju’s aunt
Why does she likes staring at me?
Uchenna continued. “you here for Uju right?”
“She is upstairs in her room , you can go to her”
He doesn’t talk much at all!
“Thanks!” I muttered and climbed up the stairs to Obianuju’s room..
Entering, I found her standing in front of the mirror
“Hey!” I greeted
“You late”she queried , staring at me in the mirror
smiling, I moved closer to her and held her waist from behind .
“Leave me alone jor”. She frowned and I chuckled ,slipping an arm around her as I drew her back against my chest
She let out a audible gasp . “Demi”
“You looking beautiful”. I remarked, my eyes roaming all over beautiful reflection. “when did you get this gown?” I asked referring to the s£xy red gown she was wearing
“You bought it for me”. her voice sank to whispers
She chuckled. “you don’t remember right?”
“Yes!” I nodded slowly. “you don’t expect me to……My gaze dropped to her neck and my brows lifted
“who gave you the necklace?”
“My dad”. she replied , smiling as she touched it
“Like seriously”. I retorted in disbelief. “have you both settled?”
She nodded . “he apologised to me this morning and promised to be a better father. he even told me he likes you”. she grinned from ear to ear
“is he around?” I asked as I was still a little bit scared of the man
“Nope, he went out with Chidi”
No wonder the house is quiet!
I continued. “and grandma?”
“She is sleeping”
“Okay!”I let go of my hold on her . “hurry up and let’s get going”
sharperly , she wore a long black wig , put on her white sandal , grabbed her white handbag and then faced me.
“help me carry me backpack please”. she pleaded looking towards the bed and when I did , we both walked out of the room, down the
stairs into the sitting room and to my relief , we met no- one
I was in no mood for greetings again!
“Where is Chichi?” Obianuju asked as we walked out of the house
“Over there”. I pointed to the little girl who was seated on a low bench, playing with her self
“a minute please”. she pleaded and ran off to chichi , bouncing those big ass of hers as she went
I leaned against my car, watching her admiringly , wondering and overwhelmed with how much I love her.
She is the woman who stole my heart right out of me before i even realised she had her hands on it and no one , I repeat no one can ever separate us ….