Lara: Good day!” Lara smiled as walked into the sitting room.
Tony: “Welcome.” Tony replied, he didn’t return her smile.
Lara: “How have you been? Hope I didn’t stay for too long?” she squatted beside him.
Tony: “Fine.” he looked away.
Lara: “Are you okay?” lara noticed the worried look on his face.
Tony: “I’m okay.”
Lara watched him for a while, she knew definitely this bad mood wasn’t cos of her, perhaps something went wrong.
Lara: “I heard your parents came alongside my mother while I was away…” she tried again.
Lara: “What did they come to do? I mean what did they say?” she asked.
Tony: “Nothing…they just came to say hi to us!” Tony was still avoiding her eyes.
Lara: “thats not true!” Lara knew he was lying.
Tony bit his lower lip.
Lara: “please tell me what happened.” she pleaded patting his arm.
Tony: “your mum wants this marriage to be dissolved.” he blurted out.
She laughed quitely
Lara: “So is that why you’re moody?”
Tony: “yes…she called me names…even my parents got their share of the insults!” the words seem to come out through his teeth.
Lara rubbed her forehead…her mother was impossible.
Lara: “Don’t mind her! Okay?” she tried to sound calm.
Tony: “Lara…its just that…I errm….don’t..don’t want you to leave me, you’re all I have now…please…” he squeezed her palms.
Lara: “I’m not leaving” she assured him.
Their gaze locked for what seemed like eternity, till Lara looked away.
Lara: “Lemme get you something to eat, care for some fish peppersoup? I bought fresh fish from the water side…” she tried to sound cheerful.
Tony: “I’m already salivating.” Tony rubbed his stomach.
Lara: “Now you’re joining me in the kitchen…” Lara laughed as she wheeled him towards the kitchen
Tony’s eyes followed Lara, as she walked up and down the room, trying to get his things ready for the journey. His father would be there in no time to accompany him. He sighed and sipped his heavily creamed coffee. The night had been a tough one, he was thinking all through.
He had imagined what it’ll be like if he got treated well- how life would be with Lara then. He thought of the probability that he didn’t get well, would Lara continue to stay that way…
Lara: “What are you thinking?” Lara jolted him back from his thoughts.
Tony: “Ehn?” he smiled, he had learnt that word from her.
Lara: “Your mug have been hanging halfway to your lips for a while now.” she said zipping his bag.
Lara: “Hmm.” she looked up.
Lara: “When are you coming back?” she walked to the bed side.
Tony: “I guess three weeks minimum.” he replied.
Lara: “minimum three weeks? Maximum should be one year then.” Lara’s eyes ogled out.
Tony: “No…not more than a month.” Tony laughed.
Lara: “I can’t stay here all alone…” she made a face.
Tony sighed, what was going to tell her? His worries?
Tony: “now c’mon, its just for a little while, okay? My mum would come to check on you regularly, you can even call your friend Deji to come and stay with you.” he petted her.
Lara: “Okay…” Lara sighed.
They heard a car honked!
Lara: “Your dad is here…” she helped him into his wheel chair.
Lara: “G’morning sir.” she said as her father in-law took over the wheel chair.
Tony’s Dad: “How are you?”
Lara: “Fine.” she followed them closely with Tony’s bags.
Lara: “bye and take care.” she said as they were about to drive away.
Tony: “Lara?” tony said gently. Their eyes locked. Tears filled his eyes.
Tony: “Pray for me.” he whispered.
Lara: “I will.” her voice was weak too.
Tony: “I love you Lara, and I’ll miss you.” he sniffed, before the car moved.
Lara waved at them as they left the compound, tears streaming down her face.
Lara sat, her eyes glued to the Tv. She watched the indian girls dance, she knew she was addicted to Bollywood. There was a knock on the door, she felt reluctant to open it. The knock came again sharply.
She hissed, put the Tv off, before sauntering towards the door.
Lara: “Who’s there?” she asked opening the door.
Lara’s Mom: “Can we come in?” Funke asked coldly.
Lara stood barring the door, her mother wasn’t alone, she came with an old man and three young men.
Lara’s Mom: “Lara can’t you see people are waiting? Let us in na!” her mother said again.
Lara shifted for them to get in.
Lara: “So mum who are they? And how may I help them?” she asked closing the door behind her.
Lara’s Mom: “ehen/ the old man is ermm…the younger brother to your paternal grandfather, his name is Baba Lagbaja…” Funke began her introduction
Lara’s Mom: “These ones are you father’s cousins…errm..yes…beni, this one is Soji,..this one is Dele, this one is errm Tunde…they are all from your father’s village.” Funke continued.
Lara’s Mom: “So what are they doing in my house?” Lara asked sternly.
Lara’s Mom: “Ah ahn! Lara ki lo de! Shey an ja ni! Are we quarelling? Serve them drinks first now.”
Lara: “What’s your mission” she asked the Baba Lagbaja as she served him.
Lara’s Mom: “They have come to take you!” Funke announced.
Lara: “Take me? How?” Lara laughed as she sat on a settee.
Old man: “Omolara my grand daughter…” the old man began.
Old man: “you are the only female child in our family, we value you alot.”.
“Yes!” tunde, soji and Dele chorused.
Old man: “You are the only one left to continue your father’s lineage, you can’t let your father’s name die like that.” baba Lagbaja said coughing at intervals.
Lara: “So?” Lara frowned.
…. Stay tuned to Episode 15