By Raymond Ogah
Looking at her, she didn’t look like she lost weight so I believed she had fully recovered. Before she opened her mouth to say anything, I held her hands, looked straight into her eyes. ”I’m so sorry my dear for everything I put you through. Please find it in your heart to forgive me. I know I really hurt you, please my dear.” She spoke up, “Oh Adeoluwa! You beg like a small child. I’ve long forgiven you, in fact, I’m almost forgetting all about it. I’ve moved on. God is really good to me because I don’t know where I got the strength from but I’m fine now. Can’t you see that I’m shining?” “You’re really shining my dear, I must confess,” was my reply to her.
We spoke for very long time, she told me that she was willing to meet my son and her mother, and I told her that all she had to do was to pick a day and time and I would come take her to meet them. We laughed and shared a lot of nice memories. She said, “Thank God I did not let you have my most priced possession; I’m still saving it for my rightful husband.” I laughed really hard and said, “You’re lucky I’m a gentleman and never disturbed you for it; and I was this tiny weenie close to having that treasure!”
It was a happy day for me. After spending some hours with her, she decided I should come pick her up by Saturday morning to go meet Tope and Junior. It was a nice meeting between the two ladies and I was happy peace was reigning. One business was still left unfinished…
It was not so long, Tope had her Jamb exam and she passed excellently. This time around, getting a higher score of 278 than the last time. I was really happy for her. I took her to a nice restaurant to celebrate the success. Weeks later, she had the post-UTME and was given admission to study Applied Biochemistry and Biotechnology in Lagos State University.
The night she was given admission, I took her out to one nice restaurant, alongside my mum and Junior. Junior was now calling me daddy. In the presence of my mum, I popped the question to Tope “Will you marry me?” Of course, Yes was her answer and she was so happy that tears rolled down her cheeks. My mum took her from me and consoled her, wiping her tears and assuring her that everything was OK.
I dropped my mum off before taking Tope and Junior back to their apartment. Junior slept off in the car before we could get home and on reaching home, I carried him up to his room. Getting to Tope’s room, she was already undressing. She dragged me into the bathroom and we showered together. It was a splendid night! We made love like it was going to be our last. Slowly and passionately, we allowed ourselves drown into each other’s desires. We’ve never lasted that long with each other before in just one round.
As we lay on the bed, she lay on my chest and after about five minutes of silence, I asked her, “What about your mum and siblings?” There was no reply. I waited for her to talk but no reply for about two minutes. Then I raised her face and noticed she was sobbing quietly. She then said, “I miss them so much! I didn’t intend to be a disappointment to my mum.” I consoled her and told her that she was never a disappointment. I assured her that she would see them again and holding her close and cuddly to me like a baby, she slept off.
Lagos to Kogi is ten hours and as early as 6 am on Saturday, we set off to go see her Mother. We went directly to the pastor’s house where Tope once stayed and they gave us the address to Tope’s mother’s house. On getting there, we saw Tope’s mother outside (picking beans) and when we got out of the car, she stood up in shock, pouring her beans on the floor and immediately, Tope ran to her and hugged her. The two of them burst into tears and I just stood by carrying Junior. After the crying and hugging, Tope came and took Junior from my hands and gave him to her mother. She hugged him tightly and cried the more. Finally, we all went inside and Tope’s mother apologized for having chased her daughter away. She said she couldn’t reach her because there was no way she could and she also explained how terribly things had been for her since Tope left. Her restaurant had been shut down and coping with Tope’s sister was hellish.
Tope’s sister came back that afternoon from hawking and was so happy to see us. We spent the night there and gave them the foodstuff we brought for them. The next day, I gave her mum three hundred and fifty thousand naira to settle her debts and get back on her feet. We promised we would keep in touch and by 10 am the following day, we were on our way back to Lagos.
About two years later, Ella got married and I was invited. I went with my mum, Tope, Junior and a gift of a brand new Kia Piccanto car. I felt very happy for her and her family was very happy to welcome us all at the wedding ceremony. Two years later, while Tope was in final year, I walked her down the aisle…
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