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Monday, 9 April 2018

Tony drove inside the Idile’s compound
as if being pursued.
We alighted from the car and ran
straight to the front door.
My heart was beating so loudly that it
didn’t need a microphone before it
would be amplified!
What would greet my eyes when I
We pressed the ring and waited shortly
before it was opened to us.
“Good afternoon” Abigail greeted us, a
faint smile on her lips.
She could still smile?
Even though the smile was faint, I was
not expecting that kind of expression
from her.
I had expected that she would be
wailing or sad or shocked especially
from her reaction on the phone the
other time.
I checked Tony’s face too and read the
same confusion.
We stepped into the sitting room and I
saw a big bowl of half-eaten popcorn
and a medium bowl of ice-cream on
the glassy stool with the cool 3D images
from the television- Barbie Series.
So, Abigail could still watch cartoon as
she munched popcorn and scooped ice-
What then was wrong?
“Where is mummy?” Tony asked and I
jolted back to reality and nodded
“She is in the second sitting room. She
is with daddy.” She explained, coyly
She saw the question in my face and
“Daddy came in the same minute I
called you. It was a coincidence” she
“But you said he wasn’t around” I
“That was what mummy and I thought”
she said, fumbling with her hands
How could even mummy think that her
husband was away while he was
Were they that distant from each
And wait!
Why was Abigail shy?
This was a girl that spoke with me with
open mind and all…
why is she being coy and shy and
irritatingly slow this afternoon?
I looked at Tony and realized that he
was sweating under his nose.
Was he feeling uncomfortable?
Was there something that I didn’t
Leaving all that aside, I cleared my
throat and faced Tony
“Can we go inside now?” I asked,
twisting my mouth to a side.
Whatever it was that was causing the
atmosphere to be this way, I didn’t
know but I obviously was not
comfortable with it.
Abigail widened her nose
“I think mummy would want only Bro.
Tony inside.” She said and I paused to
look at Tony’s face.
What was all this about?
“I think I would want her inside with
me ma!” Tony said, stressing the ‘ma’
with his eyes widened.
Abigail looked somber
What was happening between these
Exactly what?
Tony held my right hand with a sense
of authority and ownership and calmly
but strongly pulled me with him as we
left the sitting room for the other one.
I was more than dazed!
What was he doing?
Why was he behaving like that?
It felt like I was in between two lovers
Were they in a relationship and then a
problem came along the way and he
wanted to make her jealous by pulling

I started burning in my heart so
If that was the case, there was hope of
reconciliation nah!
If they reconcile, what would be my
own hope and portion dear Emmanuel?
As I moaned from inside, the heat in
my heart like volcano erupted and
burst into my face as my face became
bombarded with small balls of sweat.
I snatched my hands from his in anger.
“What is the meaning of all this?
Exactly what? Am I meant to be a
football passed from one player to the
other? Do you even know that I am a
grown woman at all? Why are you
doing all these?…” I blurted out
Did I sound jealous?
Did I sound anxious?
Were those questions enough or should
I add more?
Why were they toiling with my
Why, why, why???
I was furious and mad, closing my eyes
as I spoke bitterly.
He paused
Then he smiled
“Are you kinda jealous?” he asked with
his nose raised, his face clouded in a
funny look.
Blood rushed into my face.
“What!” I exclaimed in a husky voice.
He chuckled.
“Don’t worry. I don’t like Abigail like
that” he said, smiling.
My heart dropped
I wanted to scream loudly and clearly
into his face that “Who cares?”
But I do!
I did!
I really did care!
While I was still trying to put words
together, he opened the door leading
inside and stepped in.
He looked back and saw me still staring
into space.
He smiled and pulled me by my right
I slapped his hand off and hissed
Bad boy!
Pastor was seated on the settee when
we entered and on a closer look,
mummy pastor was asleep on his laps.
She was sleeping peacefully, both of
her hands held his knees as if her life
depended on that.
I was touched!
In that instant, I forgave the pastor all
of the ills I had against him.
He kept on brushing her low cut hair
with his hands. He did it with love and
care and my heart lept for joy.
This is how it was meant to be!
“Good evening sir” Tony greeted
“Good evening Bro Tony” he replied,
smiling broadly
“Good evening sir” I greeted too,
genuflecting respectfully
“Hmmm, our bride-to-be!” he
exclaimed laughing heartily. I smiled
I didn’t understand what he meant at
I didn’t know if it was just a cliché that
adults use or if he meant that my hands
have been searched for in my marriage
by some men.

I didn’t want my case to be like a
young pregnant woman who was being
greeted by lots of married woman as
being ‘Iya Ibeji’ and because she felt
that the people saying it must have
meant it from experience and that it
must be twins for real, went to the
market and bought her things in twos
until people told her that it was a
costly assumption as it was a norm for
most Africans to hype people that way.
I didn’t want any costly assumption and
I therefore kept mute.
I was happy that they were looking just
cool together.
“Daddy, I feel like taking a shot of both
of you together. You look so lovingly
godly together”
I didn’t even care if my adjective order
was correct. All I wanted was a way of
conveying my utmost gratitude for such
romantic representation of a beautiful
godly home.
Pastor laughed.
Oh how handsome he looked
Enjoyment galore!
“Of course you can my dear daughter”
he said and I smiled as I quickly
brought out my digital camera.
This was just good for Facebook.
I racked my brain for the umpteenth
time for the best title or post that could
match the pictures.
After getting some really good shots, I
smiled to myself and gave a thumbs up
to daddy who laughed out in response.
Tony wore a small smile as he watched
on in silence.

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