Like a professional swordsman, she flung the knife at him and collapsed on the floor. He had tried looking back to see how close she had caught up to him, so the knife instead of his upper back burrowed deep into his right upper arm. He flinched with pain and slumped down. When he saw her on the floor, not minding the searing pain in his arm, he managed to crawl to where she laid and cradled her head on his laps.
Tunde: “Sweetheart… wake up. Everything is alright now. Please wake up” he pleaded weakly, weeping softly not for the pain in his arm but for the woman lying motionless on his laps. Her eyelids fluttered open and she quickly sat up, flushed until she saw the blood oozing from the place the knife was still burrowed in.
Pamela: “Oh my God! You are bleeding, what on earth happened to you?” she asked ignorantly
Tunde: “I guess this is the price I have to pay for loving you” he said and blacked out.
Pamela: “Tunde! Tunde! Can you hear me?” she said shaking him vigorously but careful enough not to make the knife burrow deeper. When she realized he had passed out and was losing too much blood, she quickly dressed up and called Stanley who arrived a short while later and the two of them rushed him to the hospital. Thanks to the hospital being Stanley’s, none of his staff asked any questions, they didn’t need to fill forms before he was attended to. Stanley attended to him personally and at daybreak, the knife had been removed surgically and he was transferred to recovery room to recuperate fully before getting discharged.
Pamela, still confused as to what had happened that night, the only thing she could remember was talking to The Voice unconsciously and after that, waking up on Tunde’s laps. She tended to him with sadness and quilt while he studied her carefully. She cleaned his body with the neat hand towel the nurse had provided her with and later fed him pap. Tunde knew she had questions but wasn’t sure he was ready to answer them. He didn’t want to hurt her any more than she already was.
Tunde: “Are you okay dear? Why do you look so downcast?”
Pamela: “I should ask you that…what happened last night. What did I do to you?” she queried squeezing the water from the towel into the bowl.
Tunde: “I don’t want to talk about last night sweetheart.”
Pamela: “But I have the right to know since I was in the house with you. I have a feeling that this was my doing. Please?”
Tunde: “Okay” he said throwing his good arm to the air. ‘’I think you got possessed by that devilish thing you keep talking to from your sleep.”
Pamela: “Oh My God! Then I really did this to you?” she lamented bursting into fresh sobs.
Tunde: “You see why I didn’t want to tell you? It was not your fault sweetheart, you were not acting under your will. Besides, the way you struggled in your sleep, I deduced you tried fighting him off for my sake. Thanks dear, for standing up for me with something that evil” he said using his left hand to draw her closer to himself.
Pamela: “See where that has gotten us… I am really sorry for making you go through this. Like I said, you still have the chance to back out now, I feel the fight is not over. I mean it’s just starting.”
Tunde: “And why is everyone giving me this advice if I may ask? Is it that no one understands my heart? Not even you?” he said feeling disappointed.
Pamela: “We are only concerned about your safety. At least when I’m done with this battle, we can get back together. Please you should understand me now.”
Tunde: “So you are asking me to break up with you because of this? What do you take me for? A coward who runs away when things are not so good and comes running back when everything is settled and rosy? Is that what you want to turn me into? You, my friends and family, none of you can give me a word of encouragement? Tell me I’m doing the right thing for once?”
Pamela: “I understand how you feel dear…”
Tunde: “You don’t understand, do you think I don’t have my own doubts too? Now I’m fighting my doubts and at the same time you guys’. How long do you think I can last before I get broken? Do you think I feel good knowing the woman I fell in love with is married and is battling with unseen forces? Baby I need your understanding, I need you to let me fight this with you. Only then will I be sure of victory. Can we do that?” he asked looking up into her tear-filled eyes.
Tunde: “Shhhhh… no buts. Just tell we can”
Pamela: “Okay then. We can do that… we really can” she said cradling his head in her bosom.
Tunde: “You don’t know how blissful it feels being able to hold you like this, being able to touch you. I feel like the world belongs to just the two of us”
Pamela: “I feel the same way too. I feel so blessed having you here”
Tunde: “You are blessed of course and don’t worry, this will be over soon” he reassured her.
Pamela: “How is your hand now? Hope it’s not hurting too much?”
Tunde: “It’s not as long as you are here my love” he said winking at her.
Stanley and Kolapo stood outside listening to them, they both had tears in their eyes at the end.
Kolapo: “Mehn! Our guy is truly in love at last. See him with one hand and yet clinging to her.”
Stanley: “See I have decided to just let the two of them be. He should do whatever he wants as long as he won’t get killed.”
Kolapo: “Can’t you see he almost got killed this time? He is alive by sheer luck. I hope they both survive this. Love is a bitch.”
Stanley: “I’m telling you. When you notice I am falling in love with an Eve, please and please, use hammer to get me back to my senses. Love makes a man into a foolish homo sapien. I refuse to be Love’s foolish vagabond”
Kolapo: “Love’s foolish vagabond? Now where did you hear that one from? “He said grimacing.
Stanley: “I saw it in a poem by Kukogho Iruesiri Samson titled Diamonds and Pebbles. You should really learn to read books”
Kolapo: “I have heard you doctor. What is the title of the collection? I am sure that Diamonds and Pebbles is just one poem is a collection, right?
Stanley: “You are current buddy. The title of the book itself is ‘I Said These Words’.
Kolapo: “Okay now. Now what about Tunde’s parents? I don’t think they will ever agree for him to date this lady let alone marry her. She is married for Chrissake”
Stanley: “That is why I did not bother telling them about him being admitted in the hospital right now. They shouldn’t know all the details, they are okay with just knowing she is married and nothing else. We can still help him talk to them. They will probably listen to me since I’m their family doctor and they’ve never had any cause to doubt me before. We can make this happen for our buddy mate.” He finished optimistically.
Kolapo: “Okay then, I guess I have no option but share in your optimism. I have to leave now, you know I am a businessman”
Stanley: “Okay businessman, see ya some other time” They shook hands and went about their different businesses.
Ikenna sat in his sitting room musing over the disappearance of his wife. Her phone had been off and he didn’t know any of her friends in the office apart from the mystery guy who went calling that day. He was still thinking about where to go looking for her when he thought he saw a shadow move swiftly across the room.
Ikenna: “Who is there? Nkechi?” but he thought it couldn’t be Nkechi since she just left for the market. He relaxed but the shadow moved again, slower this time for him to catch a proper glimpse. “Please stop playing pranks on me and come out from the shadows now…”
QUESTION: Do you think someone is really playing pranks on Ikenna? If not, what do you think he is seeing?
… Stay tuned for Episode 18 (You don’t want to miss this!)
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