Cassandra: ‘’Yes oo, he came into my room as soon as you left. I tried talking some sense into him but it turned into a fight. He grabbed my bag, searched it and took all the money you gave me. I don’t just know what to do right now. I’m finished’’ she cried over the phone.
David: ‘’calm down. I will call you later. I’m still driving’’ I stammered and hung up, shaking with rage as i managed to control my car which i really had a hard time driving as my mind was now occupied with many thoughts.
I really just didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t even think properly.
David: ‘’surely the little rascal is pushing me. But what exactly do I do to stop him. What do I do?. Gosh’’ I wondered miserably.
It really was with a confused heart that I sought out Chinedu’s help later in the day when he showed up at my shop. As a university graduate I felt he had the experience and knowledge to guide me in dealing with the campus rascal. I hid nothing as i told him everything.
Chinedu: ‘’seriously, this is a hard nut to crack . Dealing with a cultist isn’t an easy thing and I just can’t advice you to leave Cassandra because of the threat. What makes you a man then?’’ he breathed while I nodded in agreement.
Chinedu: ‘’it’s not as if I’m fully in support of your relationship with Cassandra but as a friend I have to support your decision. You chose Cassandra and I respect that. So I believe we are in this together’’ he added softly.
Chinedu: ‘’but to be truthful I think there is nothing much you can do to that boy. You cant arrest him with the police because you live very far from the school and getting to him will be very hard, moreover guys like him are good at disappearing. The only solution I can see is to get Cassandra to report him to the school security but I doubt if she can do it because we really don’t know how sincere she is or even if she has the courage to do it’’ he said intelligently.
David: ‘’the dude even threatened to deal with my sister, can you imagine’’ I added sadly.
Chinedu: ‘’well I really don’t think he will go that far. No he won’t risk it. You are lucky you are not a student. That guy would have dealt with you in his hostel’’ he retorted with a short laugh while I shrugged.
David: ‘’so what do I do ?’’ I asked one more time. Chinedu shook his head and stared at me for some seconds.
Chinedu: ‘’I’m sorry but I really can’t come up with any solution right now. Give me some time to think about it’’ he answered slowly, shook hands with me and left for his shop. I scratched my head as I desperately tried to come up with something but nothing seemed to come forward.
I was still battling with my thoughts when he walked back into my shop. I hopefully stared at him, thinking he finally came up with something but I was disappointed because he came to talk about Nora.
Chinedu: ‘’I really forgot telling you about something I noticed lately’’ he breathed, sitting on the chair he vacated minutes ago. I looked at him curiously.
Chinedu: ‘’you know this is a small world and in this part of the country or should I say in Africa, people tend to take their neighbor’s problem seriously’’ he said softly, watching my reaction.
Chinedu: ‘’you see there are lots of gossips going round town about you. Many people now talk behind your back. Your story is now the talk of the town, especially in restaurants and within the market community . People say you abandoned your wife for a campus girl. The story even has many versions. Some say you are under the influence of love charm. Some say you are under the influence of your own stupidity. Others say you are just too ambitious and greedy. You know Nora is a popular lady around here and her shop is the meeting place for all types of ladies. So her pregnancy is really generating a lot of reactions and sympathy’’’ he slowly said, never leaving his eyes on me. I breathed deeply, so shaken with the revelation. As a business man, i knew how harmful such public reaction could be to me. Yes of course I knew all he said was true because I already have noticed how people looked at me whenever I strolled around.
David: ‘’this is a free world. Everyone has the right to think whatever he wants’’ I finally muttered with a faint smile while my friend shrugged.
Chinedu: ‘’yes you are right but as a business man you are not supposed to live a life of controversy. It wont take much from you to at least make peace with Nora.’’ he pushed on.
David: ‘’you know I have always wanted to reach a compromise with Nora but she just refused to be accommodating. What do I do?’’ I poured out with desperation.
Chinedu: ‘’try one more time brother. Pay her another visit. ‘’ he said with a serious smile while I nodded in agreement..
David: ‘’one more time. Yes one more time’’ I breathed, wondering when all these would come to an end.
Wednesday evening, I found myself in Nora’s new apartment.
Getting the courage to visit Nora really wasn’t an easy task. Firstly I definitely had nothing more to say to her than the things I told her in the past. Secondly I knew nothing much would be achieved with it but I had no choice than to drag myself one more time to her house in other to appease my conscience..
Nora: ‘’why are you here?. What is it that you want to say this time?’’ were the exact questions Nora asked the moment she opened her door to see me standing with a nervous smile on my face. I swallowed hard as I studied her for some seconds before answering.
David: ‘’I came to see you. I came to see how you are faring’’ I breathed, waiting for her to let me into the apartment but it looked as if it was the last thing on her mind because she blocked the door with her body as her eyes searched me curiously.
Nora: ‘’I’m not dead yet. You can leave now’’ she answered coldly, forcing me to draw closer to her.
David: ‘’please let me in. There are some things I also wish to tell you’’ I begged solemnly, trying my best to look innocent. She hesitated for some seconds before making way for me to come in.
David: ‘’thanks’’ I breathed as I slowly made my way into the apartment, but Instead of sitting down, I turned and faced her, holding her right hand with a quick reflex which surprised her.
David: ‘’Nora’’ I breathed, looking into her eyes. My action kind of took her by surprise. She blushed, looked down for some seconds before raising her beautiful eyes to meet my gaze.
David: ‘’you know whenever you look at me this way; my heart always overflows with happiness. You look like a morning rose smiling to the sun’’ I confessed, making her very uncomfortable with my words. I couldn’t help but see hope in her eyes. Not only hope but wishes. There was this fire of want and desire in her eyes that engulfed me for some seconds. I couldn’t help but imagine what she was thinking that moment.
David: ‘’I really don’t want us to live like enemies or hate each other because of our misunderstandings. No matter what happens, you will still be the mother of my first son. The mother of my first child . It means a lot to me. Yes I’m very serious about it’’ I breathed, feeling her stomach with my left hand. She breathed deeply, her eyes melting with tears.
David: ‘’allow me to support you. Allow me to play the role of a father to my child. Allow me to be by your side’’ I prayed solemnly. She nervously looked at me waiting for more words.
David: ‘’we can start all over as friends. Let’s just be happy with each other. Please for the sake of this little baby’’ I begged, caressing her stomach with great care.
Nora: ‘’But you are still with Cassandra?’’ she quietly asked while I nodded in agreement.
Nora: ‘’you always torture me whenever you visit. You always wound me with all these things you do. Please let me be. Allow me to heal my wounds and move on with my life. You know I can never be happy seeing you with another woman. As long as you are still with your Cassandra don’t ever come here to disturb my peace. Let me be. I can’t just act as if I’m fine with what you are doing. So please just go. Leave me alone. I’m hurting’’ she poured out, pushed me backwards and made to walk away but I quickly grabbed her, drawing her to my body and hugging her tightly as I breathed in the scent of her hair.
David: ‘’I know. Yes I do understand but what can I do?. My heart is with Cassandra but I equally feel something for you. We have something in common which you know. We are also having a baby together and I believe things happen for a reason. Perhaps I don’t just know what I want but the last thing on my mind is letting you bear the pain of having this child alone’’ I whispered to her, deeply shaken with emotions. Yes I really felt something for her but it wasn’t as strong as what I felt for my Cassandra, nevertheless I had a duty to play in my child’s life. I equally knew Nora would be a great mother.
Nora: ‘’how about Cassandra, does she know about my pregnancy?’’ she suddenly asked.
David: ‘’no she doesn’t know yet, but I will definitely tell her at the right time’’ I answered.
Nora: ‘’this isn’t just the life I wished for myself. This just isn’t the life I want for my child. I can’t bear seeing you living with another woman and coming here every day to see my son’’ she cried, her body shook with great grieve. I held unto her strongly, not risking setting her free in that state. I just didn’t know what to say to sooth her and I couldn’t even tell if my visit did more harm than good to her.
Just that moment, her little sister walked in and froze with surprise as she saw us holding each other. She stared at us with disbelief before smiling.
Nora’s Sister: ‘’dear big sister, this is the time to fight for your man. You can’t just let another woman win over your happiness. You have to fight’’ she bravely said without reservation while Nora broke free from me, wiped her eyes and stared at her sister with a deeply colored face.
As I headed to my car minutes later, Nora’s sister ran after me, beckoning me to stop. I stopped and stared at her curiously while the events of the past few minutes played back in my head.
Yes it really was with a strong heart that I managed to get away from the emotional scene my presence created in Nora’s apartment coupled with the unexpected advice the little girl gave to her sister in my presence, I virtually ran out of the house to avoid further confusion.
There was no denying I had feelings for Nora but then it was nothing compared to what I felt for Cassandra. Perhaps it was because I had always suppressed my feelings for Nora, perhaps it was my guilt that made my feelings towards her a little bit stronger than it used to be. Perhaps it was because of my child she was carrying, or maybe it was the confusion in my head that made it seem as if I really felt something for her.
David: ‘’dear Lord I want to be with Cassandra but I don’t know what is happening to me. I really don’t know what is happening to my mind. I’m slowly losing it. Help me’’ I prayed as I stared at the young girl who faced me with both hands on her waist.
Nora’s Sister: ‘’why do you like playing God?, why do you like playing God to my sister?. Why do you derive so much joy in toying with her emotions?. Are you waiting for her to kneel before you will do the right thing?’’ she asked with fire in her eyes, breathing deeply as she poured out her heart to me.
David: ‘’your sister and I understand each other perfectly well. You are still a young girl. There are things you don’t yet understand about love’’ I said softly, forcing out a smile.
Nora’s Sister: ‘’love love love. What the hell is love in the first instance?. What you are doing isn’t good and you know it. What is this fuss about your Cassandra?, tell me in which area is she better than my sister?. I guess in living a fake lifestyle like most campus girls. Do you even for a moment think that such girl will marry you in the end, huh?’’ she asked, leaving me extremely surprised with her outburst.
Nora’s Sister: ‘’yes don’t act so surprised, I have seen your so called Cassandra and I know her type very well. She is going to suck you dry and then find an excuse to leave you in the end . Do you for a minute even think such sophisticated girl with fake hair, eye lashes and behavior will marry someone like you in the end?. If not for my sister’s happiness I would have kept all I just told you to myself and watch you get fed with your own medicine. Yes she will reject you the way you are now rejecting my sister and you wont even have a penny left in your account to start a new life’’ she screamed with all her energy, turned and ran back to their apartment , leaving me extremely shaken and worried. It was almost the same thing my sister said about Cassandra that the young girl just said to me and deep down I knew both of them could never be wrong at the same time.
As I drove back to my house that fateful evening, I slowly replayed in my head how I met Cassandra, how much I had spent on her and what I had gained so far. I resolved in my mind never to spend excessively on Cassandra again but as for my relationship with her, nothing was going to stop me from continuing with it.
However on Friday evening, Cassandra paid me an unexpected visit which left me extremely surprised because we had no plans of meeting each other, neither did I invite her. Moreover she always showed up whenever I requested for her visit but this time around she came without being invited and as we hugged each other I couldn’t help but sense that she was very tensed up. I knew she came for something.
David: ‘’I hope she isn’t here for another birthday money because I have nothing to give out’’ I reasoned as we hugged each other tightly.
David: ‘’I really can’t believe you are here. What a surprise. You know, I couldn’t believe my ears when you told me you were on your way to my house’’ I breathed as we held each other.
Cassandra: ‘’aren’t you happy to see me?’’ she asked softly.
David: ‘’of course I’m very delighted. I will do anything to have you here with me every minute’’ I answered sharply.
Cassandra: ‘’really?, so I guess our weekend is going to be fun then?’’ she asked with a short laugh while I held her tightly as if my life depended on it.
Many questions however crept up in my mind, most especially about Edwin and the money he allegedly stole but I held back myself and left it all for another day.
We ended up making great love all through the night. She gave her body to me with all her mind and I enjoyed every bit of it. Cassandra really knew how to make a man very happy and oh yes I was extremely satisfied because she took me to the extreme with her sexual energy.
David: ‘’oh Cassandra you are something else’’ I breathed with admiration as I pulled away from her sweet body, licking my lips with great satisfaction while my eyes still devoured her naked body. Yes she was the kind of lady who always gets a man asking for more. She just was splendid and awesome. The way she moves her body when making love can suck up everything in you under a minute.
Cassandra: ‘’so how do you feel right now?’’ she asked, sitting up slowly. I shook my head and breathed deeply.
David: ‘’I’m so satisfied and happy. I just feel like wedding you right now’’’ I answered truthfully.
Cassandra: ‘’really?’’ she asked, drawing close to touch my cheek. I blew a kiss on her hand, before leaving another kiss on her lips.
David: ‘’oh Cassandra’’ I breathed once again.
Unfortunately for me, the fun and excitement of the night quickly disappeared from my head when my sister called to tell me that our mother was on her way to the city to see me. At first I couldn’t believe my ears because the news looked so awkward and unreal but then I knew my sister couldn’t just call very early in the day for a silly prank.
David: ‘’what do you mean she is coming to see me?. When was the time mum came to the city?. Why was I not informed on time?. What is she even coming to see me for?. She could have asked me to come home instead”” I poured out angrily as my heart boiled furiously.
Just like I told my sister, I really didn’t see the reason for my old woman coming to the city instead of sending for me. I couldn’t believe dad would allow her to make such journey.
David: ‘’for what?, For what?’’ I asked myself over and over.
David’s Sister: ‘’there isn’t any need getting worried or worked up. Mum knows her way around the city. Simply relax okay. You will find out the reason she took such risk when she arrives’’ my sister said softly, annoying more with the calmness of her voice.
David: ‘’ I know you have something to do with this. I know you. You probably have told them something at home. Is it about….??’’ I almost called out Nora’s name , stopping myself just on time before the name was able to escape my lips. Cassandra was lying by my side and I knew she was listening to the call even though her eyes were closed.
David’s Sister: ‘’I have to go now. Mum will be there in the next few minutes by God’s grace’’ my sister added and hung up while I dropped my phone with panic.
David: ‘’if actually mum is coming here to talk about Nora then I really need to find a way to stop her. I can’t let her bring up such topic before Cassandra. What do I do?. What do I do now?’’ I wondered miserably, feeling Cassandra’s touch as she slowly played with my left hand.
Cassandra: ‘’what is it?. Your mum is coming over right?’’ she asked curiously. I silently nodded like a school boy.
Cassandra: ‘’your family don’t like me. Your sister really did a good job on that. It’s well’’ she kind of sulked, leaving me with a greater confusion as I turned my attention to her, wondering what exactly to say to her.
David: ‘’I’m the one to marry you and not my family. Moreover why are you reasoning in such direction?. My sister and I just argued over another thing and you simply made up things for no reason. My mum is coming over for a reason I know nothing about, so we have to get ready for her’’ I softly said, kissed her hair and headed to the bathroom where I continued with my thoughts.
Mum has never visited me for once and I definitely knew something big was up.
David: ‘’What did my naïve sister tell them at home?’’ I wondered as I took my bath, trying so hard to come up with something. To come up with an idea.
But what exactly did I come up with??. I came up with absolutely nothing and By 9:44AM that fateful day mum arrived at my house looking very serious and uptight. It surely was a very strange visit. Yes very strange. All thanks to my obnoxious sister who instead of watching my back was playing a very unusual role.
David: ‘’good morning mother. What a surprise to see you here’’ I greeted as I hugged my dear mother. Cassandra stood a distance away and watched us with a faint smile. There wasn’t any doubt she was very uncomfortable with my mother’s presence. I equally felt the same but there was nothing we could do about it.
David’s Mom: ‘’yes you know I’m good with surprises’’ my mother answered a bit coldly, turning her gaze to Cassandra who quickly blushed as she greeted my old woman.
David’s Mom: ‘’I wasn’t expecting to see you here. Hope you guys haven’t started living together?. it’s a big sin against God’’ she preached with a smile. I threw my hand around her neck and laughed.
David: ‘’no mum she just came to spend the weekend with me. We are not living together’’ I explained nervously, quickly dragging her to my room before she could say another word.
On getting to my room, I shut the door and faced her curiously. My heart virtually stopped as I got ready to hear the reason for her visit.
David: ‘’tell me mother. What is the matter?. Why are you here?’’ I asked with great energy.
David’s Mom: ‘’I came to see you. I also came to see Nora’’ she answered softly, throwing me back with the answer.
David: ‘’Nora?. Why?, who told you about her?’’ I asked nervously while she shrugged.
David’s Mom: ‘’just take me to the girl that’s all I ask for’’ she insisted softly, leaving me extremely worried and alarmed.
Oh gracious me!’’ I exclaimed with frustration.
David: ‘’I don’t know what is happening to everyone. I’m not a kid. I’m the first child of the family. I’m the pillar of the family. I have been the one offhandedly carrying the family all these while. What’s wrong with everyone. Why now are you all trying to run my life for me. This is totally unacceptable’’ I breathed angrily.
David’s Mom: ‘’you are just wasting your time my boy. It’s either you take me to her or I will go myself. It seems like you have forgotten how you were raised. It seems like you have forgotten your family history and tradition. No child of the family has ever been raised without the recognition and support of the family. You can ask your uncles. Even if you reject the mother, the child remains ours, whether a girl or a boy. So why are you now trying to keep such thing a secret?. why didn’t you tell us you got a girl pregnant?’’ she yelled at me.
David: ‘’mum this is my life. I chose my own path and I don’t care about family tradition. In fact let’s go, let’s get out of here. I wont want Cassandra to hear all you are saying’’ I stammered , grabbed my car keys and headed to the kitchen where Cassandra was busy preparing a meal for my mother. I drew close and held her by the waist.
David: ‘’my dear, I’m going out with mum. She wants me to take her to somewhere. I will explain when we get back’’ I nervously stammered. She shrugged saying nothing, even though I knew she had lots of questions to ask.
My mum and I left the house in my car, saying nothing to each other as i drove a few kilometers down the street. I really wasn’t happy with the direction things were heading. I equally wasn’t happy with the way mum was pushing me like a kid. My mind was really heavy as I drove and when I got to a less busy street, I parked my car and killed the engine while mum stared at me curiously.
David’s Mom: ‘’where did you stop in the middle of nowhere?’’ she asked.
David: ‘’mum come on, you don’t expect me to take you to Nora just like that. I’m not a child. I’m a man’’ I protested once again.
David’s Mom: ‘’listen my son, I know what I’m doing. You don’t expect me to fold my hands and watch your first son who might even be my first grand child to be raised without my support. Your sister told me a lot of things that touched me. As a woman and a mother I cant just sit and do nothing after all she told me. Please take me to Nora’’ she insisted with a very soft voice that left me with no choice than to do her bidding.
I reluctantly took my mother to Nora’s shop which was where I knew she would be by that hour but surprisingly we met the shop under lock and key, which left me with no choice than to ask about Nora from a neighbor.
Neighbor: ‘’hmmm you haven’t heard?. Nora was rushed to the hospital. She fainted in her shop early this morning”” the plump woman answered, leaving me totally shocked.
David: ”oh not again” i could help but exclaim.
…. Stay tuned to Episode 29