Baby Poop, Perineum and other Motherhood Things

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Motherhood is work and errrr fun. I have had ssome really cool experiences and I have learnt more than I imagined I would. Will like to share some.

Enjoy.

 

It’s not always malaria when it feels like Malaria. I remember being quite sure I had malaria, getting an anti malaria drug and then quite characteristic of me developing cold feet about using the drug. I also remember Hubby diagnosing every ailment possible except for pregnancy. A week later, I was glad I didn’t use the drug.

 

The mirror can actually be your best friend or your worst enemy. Second trimester I was glowing, loving my skin and full hair and enjoying the comments of “pregnancy suits you”. Too late I realized I should have done a pregnancy photo shoot then because fast forward to third trimester I was looking like a Whale, carrying an extra 16kg around, a face that could scare children and discovering that getting out of bed or off a chair can be an event. And of course I avoided anything that could show my reflection.
Interesting thing is most of the weight is gone now, it went so fast it felt like I slept one night and woke up the next morning several kilograms lighter.

 

That my shoe size will increase from 37 to 39!! How come nobody ever mentioned that? Thankfully though I have my feet back.

 

That Pregnancy adds some weird words to your vocabulary. I now know some interesting words. Words I never imagined existed. Stuff like; Meconium which by the way is a fancy name for baby’s first poop (that black gelly stuff that looks like tar), Lanugo,Lochia,LineaNigra,Striae,Apgar,Apnea,Eclampsia,Episiotomy,Perineum,Vernix,Fundus and other really outlandish words.

 

Nollywood’s motto should be “mis informing the public since 19 gbogboro while that of Google should be “Best friend ever”. We all know that in Nigerian movies, the sign someone is about to give birth is the person suddenly doubles over in pain screaming about how her back and limbs no longer belong to her. Trust me reality is not that sudden, chances are you would mistake the initial pain for something else.

 

Love at first hearing is also real. I always imagined my baby would be placed in my arms immediately after birth and looking at him we would have this moment of “my sweetie, my love” with tears dripping down my eyes. In reality though, it went like this; I was lying there knowing my baby was out and wondering why I couldn’t hear him crying. I started asking why he wasn’t crying and everyone burst into laughter wondering how I couldn’t hear his cries which was threatening to bring the roof down. And then I heard it as soon as they said it. What I felt at the sound of his voice cannot be described, all I know was I was murmuring “My baby, My Love, please let me see him”

 

That the protective instinct would be immediate.
Seeing my baby placed beside me, the only thing I could think of apart from how beautiful he looked was how risky it was to place an infant on a bed which had no railings, beside a mother who couldn’t stand up to save herself. I placed an arm around my baby and ignored the nurses trying to tell me that “Newborns don’t move”

I was vindicated when I woke up to find my baby had somehow managed to curl himself up into a ball and moved his head to place his cheeks on my shoulders, I wanted to scream “Where is that shediot who said newborns don’t move”? but instead tears welled in my eyes at the sweetness of it.

 

That my breasts are actually connected to my brain.
I mean who knew? That seeing my baby burrowing his cheeks against my chest or hearing him cry will make breast milk to start dripping all over my dress.

 

That someone could give you sleepless nights and you would still think they are the best ever. Since my baby arrived I have hardly slept a cumulative of three hours a night. But I found it easy to look on the bright side and have found delight in maximising our Dstv subscription. Who knew they showed really cool movies between 1 a.m and 5 a.m.

 

That I could compose songs; My list of composed songs grow every day, everything from turning my baby’s names into a rhyme to making a song about an event as gross as my baby doing the poop.

That it would be so easy to forget the pain, it’s barely six weeks after and I can’t remember how the different kinds of pain felt like. Looking back, it looks like it wasn’t all that bad.

And then these two really weird things;
1. That I will be such an expert on baby poop. I actually Googled and committed to memory the different colours, textures and look of baby poop for every stage of development in the first year. Each diaper change sees me examining my baby poop to ascertain everything is fine. Gross shey?

2. Baby can somehow tell when Mama is eating. Every time I eat my baby cries for food, he even wakes up if he is sleeping. It sounds farfetched but it has happened too often to be just a coincidence.

Not So Happily Married ……. Episode Ten

Hi All,

We have done Ten episodes so far. I can hardly believe this. That means TEN WEEKS. Wow! Thank you for being here every week. I love you. Mwaaaah.

This Episode is dedicated to my brand new Nephew. Mobolaji Oluwadamisi Omoikudu Daniel-Bello. Aunty Toyin loves you so very much. May God always be your strength and shield. Amen.

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She walked towards me with her arms outstretched and combined with the smile on her face; you would think I was her long lost sister.

So this calls for a hug? I asked myself as she wrapped her hands around me. Still smiling she drew back and inspected me from head to toe.

She turned to Jite when she was done. He was still looking angry but she acted like she didn’t notice.

“Jite, you picked a very pretty one this time.” She said giving him what looked to me like an intimate smile.

That is it. I am done. I thought clenching my teeth. Who told her she could date my man behind my back and still act patronizing?

“Jite, I am leaving, I will see you later.” I said walking away.

I didn’t look back to see his expression but if he had called my name I would have heard.

******

You would think I was dumb. I didn’t say a word throughout the encounter, not even when Omoboye walked away. Skipper left right after Omoboye did giving me a jubilant look before she entered her car.

Is our marriage jinxed? I thought as I sat back inside the car. Why is it that every time we make some progress something happens that reverses it all? The weekend was supposed to be spent in relaxation. We were supposed to talk and sort all our issues but then Skipper decided to show up. How did she even know where we were? I wondered. Was she tailing me? It wasn’t something that was beyond her. She was psychotic enough to do worse.

Skipper! She was someone I had hoped Omoboye would never meet. She was someone I never wanted to have anything to do with. Again.

We met during my one year National Youth Service. I was determined to marry her and have three kids with her all in the first five minutes that we met. It was a classic case of Infatuation at first sight even though at that time I thought it was Love. I had been standing under the sun for hours waiting to be registered for the orientation camp and there were just about ten more people before it would be my turn when this lady walked up to me pleading with her eyes that she would like to enter the space in front of me. It wasn’t like she needed to plead, I was taken already just by looking into her eyes. Who wouldn’t? Not with her kind of looks. She had the kind of face, frame, skin and body that you get when you mix Edo, Igbo and Fulani genes.

I didn’t even think it through; I just motioned for her to get in. It didn’t matter that I had to contend with the other people on the queue especially the females. I made feeble attempts to make up a story about how she had been there before but the looks they shot me said they understood why I couldn’t say no.

I stayed glued to her even after registration. I was the dude who took her bags to the female hostel, the one who ensured that she got two buckets of clean water every day. I also took her feeding as my responsibility. She didn’t like the food served in the dining hall. She said it wasn’t up to standard, I agreed with her. She was too beautiful to eat the kind of food they served and so I took care of breakfast, lunch, dinner and the snacks and drinks she took whenever we were on the parade ground. She rewarded me with her attention; we spent almost every free time together. We wouldn’t go to our respective hostels even after the bells for lights out had been rung. We would remain entwined in one of the numerous dark corners until a Soldier chanced upon us or sleep became too hard to hold.

She wanted me to make love to her the first day we met. I declined. I believed she was too beautiful for that. I told her she was a delicious dish that one was meant to savor. She didn’t seem too happy about that and by the third day she threatened to give her attention to other guys who needed it. And so I obliged her even though I would have preferred that we do it on a regular bed. We had to make do with the parade ground and concrete floors. That first day and on subsequent days she brought a wrapper along from her hostel room which we spread on the floor or field whenever we wanted to make love. I told her how I felt, but she laughed it off saying we weren’t the only ones after all. I felt she was more beautiful and classier than all those other girls and I told her so but still it made no difference. That was when I started hearing the alarm bell that must have been ringing the moment she started pestering me for sex. What kind of girl does not mind being slept with on a parade ground? But I ignored my fears and we continued our escapades.

It wasn’t until we got posted to the same ministry and we started living together that I realized she was a sex addict. Skipper just had to have sex; nothing could stand in her way. Not menstrual periods, not fasting, not Malaria or Typhoid, not even having an audience. Nothing. I couldn’t keep up and wanted to break the relationship but I couldn’t not after she told me she had borderline personality disorder and could commit suicide if I left her. So I was stuck with her for the rest of the service year. I was ecstatic as NYSC drew to an end especially after she told me her parents wanted her to go for her Masters programme in Cyprus.

We parted on the passing out parade ground. She made me promise I was going to call her every day. I made the promise and a host of others that I had no intention of keeping. I liked her a lot, she was and is still very beautiful but she was much more than I could handle. She however wouldn’t let me be. She became my official stalker, I had to close my Facebook account and even change my email address because of her but still she always had a way to get in touch. She would use my Mom, friends and anyone else that could give her access to me. That went on for two years and then there was silence. Three years of silence. No calls, no mails. Nothing, until the day Omoboye and I got back from Zanzibar.

My heart had skipped a beat when I saw “Incoming call from Skipper” on my phone. I was never going to delete her number; I wanted to always know it was her calling so I could ignore the call. But that day I picked it and then she screamed my name saying how glad she was to have found me again. I didn’t ask why she had to call after I had given thanks to God that she was gone forever. She apologized for not keeping in touch for so long saying that after her Masters programme she took up a humanitarian job in Asia, something that had to do with educating children in remote villages. So why did you leave the needy children of Asia or did you just wake up one morning and realized there were children with greater needs in Africa? I wanted to ask her that but I didn’t instead I asked why she was calling.

“Jite that hurts me; you shouldn’t be asking me that. You are the only man I have ever loved and you know that. It wasn’t like I ever forgot you, I thought of you all the time and when I got back I wanted to call but I decided it wasn’t time yet. But then a few days ago, I was quite bored and I decided to check a blog that a friend told me about. Going through the blog, I saw a link about some popular make up artist’s wedding and when I opened the link I saw you Jite.”

She said the last few words in a pained voice. I knew what was coming even before it started.

“Why Jite? Why would you marry another woman? That should have been me you were holding Jite. We had so much promise. But anyway let’s leave all that. I think I am over it now, although I cried for hours after seeing your wedding pictures, but I am fine really. I will just like you to do me a favor. Can I meet her? I will like us to be friends.”

“Friends ke? I wouldn’t even allow you guys to meet.” I replied ending the call. But Skipper kept calling every day and her request was the same every time. She wanted to meet my wife.

I started the car deciding it was better to go look for Omoboye. I decided to go the house praying I would meet her there. I could imagine what was going through her mind. She probably thought the pregnancy Skipper was carrying was mine.

Why is it so easy for my wife to believe the worst of me? I am so not trusted. I sighed driving away from the Supermarket.

*******

Getting a cab wasn’t hard, there was a taxi park few yards from the Supermarket and I hopped into the first one I saw.

“Where?” He asked.

“Just keep driving towards Ajah.”

“Where in Ajah?”

“Just keep moving.”

“We charge 2,000 naira for anywhere in Ajah oo.”

“You talk too much o jare. Just move the car.”

I was calm. It was strange. My typical reaction would have been to cry or tear my hair out. But I was calm. I knew what I had to do. It was to get out of Lagos for a few days. I needed to be out of Jite’s reach at least for a few days and I knew just where to go. Calabar. I should have been there that weekend. There was a fashion and beauty exhibition organized by an international clothing line that was being held in Tinapa and I had been invited together with the photographer I work with. Femi.

He had been excited about us going together but I had declined thinking it would be better to spend the weekend with Jite.

Calabar is where I need to be. I decided. I gave the cab driver the directions to our house praying I would be able to pack my things before Jite would get home. I placed a call to Femi and was glad he hadn’t left. He was about leaving for the airport and I told him to get me a ticket and come pick me up on his way to the airport.

However, there was something else I needed to do before I leave. A pregnancy test. It was time to know I decided. If Skipper was pregnant then it was only fair that I should be pregnant too. Let’s see who Jite will pick between his wife and mistress. I thought.

I was glad to see Jite wasn’t around when I got home. I had a short time for everything I wanted to do. Jite could come home any minute. I had bought some Pregnancy test strips on my way to the house and grabbing three, I rushed into our bathroom.

Fifteen minutes and three used strips later, I had what had to be the result in my hand. It was negative. There is nothing in this stomach after all. I murmured. I had no idea how much I wanted to be pregnant until that moment.

“Three months and you are not pregnant. You are barren Boye.” I wailed images of several childless women that I knew flashing across my vision.

Not So Happily Married ……Episode Eight

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Some questions are not meant to be answered and most times the questioner knows the one who is being questioned does not have to answer. Some other questions however are meant to be answered and most times both the questioner and the one being questioned knows it. The latter were usually the hardest questions to answer; the type of questions whose answers stuck to the roof of one’s mouth; hard to spit out, yet harder to hold in.

Omoboye’s question had to be answered, she also expected it to be answered only I couldn’t answer not because I didn’t know the answer but because the question both enraged and hurt me. It told me in clear terms that I was neither forgiven nor trusted.  To be fair, it was only natural. I shouldn’t expect to be trusted and forgiven just like that. Omoboye wasn’t God, was she? Even God has to be beseeched to not remember one’s sins. My only wish was that she would talk to me about the bitterness or pain that might be left in her heart but it was as though there was a wall; a very thick one that stood between us.

It is funny how our roles became reversed in such a short while. I thought. Just some few weeks before, I had been the one who refused to forgive and just when I let go of my resentment and anger, Omoboye brought her own issues to fore.

She didn’t repeat the question. She didn’t even say her usual “have a nice day” when I dropped her off.

As I drove away, something told me she might have taken my silence as “Yes” and I felt like racing back to tell her the answer was no but I didn’t instead I thought of another way to answer her question. It seemed easier.

****

He didn’t answer my question.  Bisade must be pregnant. That was what I kept thinking as I walked into my make up studio. There was work to be done. My students were there waiting. They were supposed to have a practical session but I rescheduled it and locked myself up in my tiny office.

Anger coursed through my veins, I wanted so desperately to call him, vent all the anger that I felt. I wanted to curse Bisade to her face but I didn’t even know where she lived; I didn’t know where she worked. I knew next to nothing about her. I decided I could go home and rummage through some stuff and see if I would find the information I needed somewhere.

I didn’t know what exactly it was that I was looking for but I knew Jite had a box filled with papers on the top of our wardrobe. I decided to start my search from there.

The box was filled with letters, printed e-mails, photo albums, greeting cards and some notebooks.  I told myself I had a right to go through my husband’s stuff and so I began to read the letters.  The letters evoked several emotions in me and I forgot the pain I felt and the real reason for the search. Some of them made me laugh, some made me turn up my face in disgust and going through some, I felt pangs of jealousy. There were too many girls, some of them were familiar names but majority were names I had never heard of.  Jite and I had had  shared stories about exes while we were dating. He had told me there were too many to talk about but had mentioned the name of the notable ones.

I had what could pass for fun until I reached a Blue coloured envelope that had the word that had been giving me nightmares written on it in Jite’s handwriting. “SKIPPER”

I sat up immediately I saw it and began to open the envelope with shaky hands. It was filled with pictures taken in several cities of the world. Whoever you are Skipper; you are one heck of an Ajala the traveler. I murmured going over pictures with backgrounds like the Burj Al Arab, the Eiffel Tower, the statue of liberty….there were about sixteen pictures in all and Skipper looked exquisite in all of them. The pictures all had an inscription on the far right corner; “Love. Skipper”

“Who is Skipper?” I asked for what was could very well be the thousandth time?

“Why not ask Jite?” I thought

“Why ask him?”

“For your peace of mind, for your sanity, is it not better and easier to ask?”

“No, I don’t think I want to know. But still, I want to know.” I told myself sighing.

Skipper is beautiful; I had to admit that even though it was painful to admit it.  I stared at the one she took in Paris, in front of the Eiffel tower wondering why anyone could be that beautiful and why Jite had never mentioned her. Was she that special? She must be. He had even created a different envelope for her pictures. I stared at the pictures for another fifteen minutes trying to find a flaw – a crooked or broken teeth? K- leg?  dark spots?. I found nothing. There must be a flaw somewhere I concluded. No one could be this perfect.

I didn’t stop looking for faults until the words of the text message I read in Zanzibar and its implication jumped into my mind. Skipper was in Lagos and she didn’t know Jite was married, she hadn’t wished him a happy married life. I obsessed over that for a while before other thoughts set in. Those calls that he took in private and which always turned out to be from Skipper. Could it be they were already meeting? She must have told him she called and sent a message, how come he didn’t ask why they went missing on his phone? What does Skipper want from my man?

*****

Sweets,

Bisade is not pregnant, at least not for me. Like I told you earlier, we used protection. That’s not the only reason I know though. I have spoken to her after we came back from Zanzibar. I know I promised not to have anything to do with her again, but I felt like I needed to see her, I felt I needed to know there were no problems. I know how much it would hurt you if it turns out she was pregnant. I also needed to apologize to her because I feel like I used her. In case, you are wondering, we didn’t do more than talk.

She assured me I was forgiven and she wasn’t pregnant. Once again, I am sorry for this mess we are in. it was all my fault. If only I had forgiven you in the very beginning. My behavior was inexcusable. Omoboye I am sorry and I love you. Even in all this madness, I still love you. I must also add that I meant it when I said we should slow down on the pregnancy thing. I want you first before any other thing, and I mean it when I say it won’t matter if we never have children. I would still love you. We would adopt fifteen kids or whichever number you wish. Just don’t lose yourself in this mess. Let’s be happy babe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Jite

The idea of giving her a note sounded like what a coward would do and I had a feeling that Omoboye would feel the same way. Why do I find it so hard to talk to Omoboye about stuff? I wondered as I slipped the letter in my pocket. I knew it would be better to say those things to her face but I didn’t want to see the disbelief and distrust in her eyes. I could only hope that when she read it, she would think about it and believe me.

****

I wanted to burn the pictures along with Jite’s box but I felt that would be too dramatic. My mind was in turmoil and the unanswered questions kept revolving, who is Skipper and what was the urgent thing she needed to discuss with Jite. After over an hour of thinking about Skipper, I decided to leave the house. I didn’t want to face Jite not with the way I was feeling.

I also wanted him to suffer, wondering what could be going on in my mind.

I packed a bag and left for my Parents’ place. I knew Mom would want to ask why I wanted to sleep over at their place and I had a story ready. Jite was out of town.

****

Jite,

I would be at my Parents’s place. I will tell Mom you travelled. It shouldn’t be for long. I need to clear my head. We should talk when I get back. I will appreciate if you don’t come to the house or try to tell Mom what is really happening.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Take Care

I read the note for the third time and afterwards placed the one I drafted for her beside it. I wrote her a note, she wrote me a note. Only hers got delivered while mine couldn’t reach her. Are things this bad? I wondered. Why would Omoboye leave my house to clear her head in her father’s house? Did she not know how wrong that was? Every responsible and wise woman knows how wrong it is to leave her husband alone for any reason. I felt anger well up in me as I looked around the house, checking for things she might have packed to help give a clue on how long she might be gone. The wardrobe looked untouched; I could barely notice that anything was missing. That is good. I thought hopeful that it would be for a few days.

****

Being at my Parents’s place wasn’t fun, it was the reason I stopped living with them after graduating from the university. My mother was too bossy, too judgmental.

She had snorted when I told her Jite was out of town and I didn’t want to stay alone murmuring something about how the matter that a man says Baba must not hear would eventually be settled by Baba. I had ignored her, pretending I didn’t hear her words.

I stumbled on “I didn’t know I was pregnant” the day I got to my parents’ place. Mum usually slept before 9pm and that gets reduced to 8pm on days when Dad wasn’t around which was usually five days in a week given that he worked in Ibadan. After Mom slept, I saw a movie until 11pm and turned in for the night but I couldn’t sleep, I kept tossing around.

At first I thought it was because the air conditioning was too much but I later realized it was something different, something that brought tears to my eyes. I was missing my husband. It’s amazing how something you have done all your life suddenly becomes alien. Before marriage, I had slept alone without any discomfort but there I was without my husband for just one night and all I could think of was how soothing it would be to have him beside me.

After two hours of trying for sleep, I went back to the sitting room. I scanned the stations to see if there was any program that would interest me.  It was while checking through  the channels that I saw “I didn’t know I was pregnant”. The cases the program featured were a bit different from mine but it was still similar in a way. These were women who didn’t know they were pregnant until the day they started having contractions. One of the cases I watched that night was someone whose baby just dropped on the floor of their sitting room. I was excited. Perhaps I was pregnant after all. The only difference was I suspected I was pregnant while they never had a clue. anorexia

Their stomach size didn’t increase while mine was increasing. They didn’t have symptoms while I was having symptoms but still I was glad to see the programme. Perhaps my contractions would just start one day and my baby will drop too. If I was pregnant, it would be around two months. That is too early for other people to notice, isn’t it?  I thought excitedly. I slept happy after that confident that I was truly pregnant and ignoring the tiny part of me that was still in doubt.

****

I didn’t talk to Omoboye until the third day after she left the house. It wasn’t because I wanted to honor her wishes and not call. It was because I couldn’t. Her phones were switched off and I know she would be upset if I called her Mom. I knew very well how much she hated people thinking there was anything wrong with her life. When the call went through, I didn’t ask why she switched off or why she didn’t contact me, I just asked how she was doing.

She assured me she was fine and would be home soon.

“Jite, I feel much better now. She said. I should be home in two days time. There is so much we need to talk about when we see. I have some questions I need answers to.”

“How about I come to your Mum’s place?”

“No, you can’t do that. She would wonder why. She already suspects that we have issues.”

“Okay. I understand. But Boye, why don’t you just come home today. I have missed you so much. This house is empty without you.”

“I hear you Jite but I would like to stay for two more days. However, there is an option. You could come around late this night and say you had to cut short your trip. Make sure it’s really late so that we can say we would rather sleep over instead of going back to the house.”

“That’s okay with me Boye. I can do that.”

“Jite” She called in a tone that made my heart skip a beat.

“Yes love”. I answered half hoping she would say I love you.

“We would be sleeping in separate rooms and don’t ask me why.”

With that she dropped the call, I didn’t have a chance to respond, not that I would have said anything. I was still very worried about her state of mind and was prepared to do anything it would take to make her happy.

****

After Jite and I spoke, I decided it was time to talk to Boladale. Although I hadn’t deleted her contact on my Blackberry messenger and phone, I wasn’t picking her calls; neither was I acknowledging her messages.

I called her up that afternoon and informed her I would like to see her. She asked if I would like to come to her office and I said I would prefer if we met at a Sweet Sensation outlet close to her office.

She hugged me as soon as she saw me and I hugged her back. It was a bit awkward but I smiled at her. I needed her to think we were cool.

“Babe, what’s up? How is married life? I don’t even need to ask, I can see you are glowing.” She added.

Something about our friendship had changed. Before the pregnancy issue Boladale and I could talk for hours about just anything but there we were acting like two siblings who were meeting for the first time.

“I am fine Bola. I am sorry I wasn’t picking your calls, I was just so annoyed with you but I am past that now. I don’t want to sacrifice our friendship because of something so trivial.”

“Thank you Boye. Thank you. This makes me feel so better.”

“It’s okay. No problems at all.”

“Boye, I didn’t tell you everything the other day. I want to tell you now but promise me you would forgive me.”

“Bola, I can’t make a promise when I don’t know what’s involved.”

“Omoboye, please promise me.”

“Boladale I can’t promise you.”

“Hmm, either way I just have to say it. I have to lift this terrible burden off my shoulders. When I am done saying this, Boye you can kill me and I would deserve it.”

“Boladale, what is it that you have to say?” I asked in an impatient voice.

“Remember, when I said the father of my unborn baby is a married colleague, I didn’t mention that he is someone close to you. Someone very close to you.”

I shivered, a sudden cold enveloping me. It was as though a bucket of chilled water was poured on me. “Someone close to me, someone very close to me. Someone that is your colleague” I murmured.

“No, Boladale.” I shrieked, flying out of my seat as comprehension set in.

COIN……there are two sides to every story by @obasatemitope (Episode XIII)

Hey Guys,

 

It’s been thirteen weeks now, almost can’t believe it. You guys are WOW.

 

This episode isn’t just titillating, it’s also very looong. Tope decided to give you wonderful guys  a two in one Episode.

 

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Like many ‘Lasgidians’, Kogberegbe’s alarm went off at 5:00am but unlike most of them, he rolled over to turn it off and went straight back to sleep. When his eyes finally opened at 6:30am, he felt well rested and excited. He stretched, did a short devotion, fixed himself a nice cup of coffee and sent Dr. Okanlawon a reminder. Doctor responded immediately, which surprised Kogberegbe; he probably didn’t get any sleep. Feeling alive, Kogberegbe started whistling a song that didn’t exist but the melody was so good that he continued whistling as he shaved.

It took him approximately two hours to get ready and when he was done, he stood staring at himself in the mirror, wondering what on earth was wrong with him. He looked strangely good, perhaps slightly overdressed but two reasons kept him from changing his outfit: time and ironing. Kogberegbe was as hopeless with ironing as he was with women and it’d been a while that he took his clothes over for dry-cleaning. Hoping he didn’t look as stupid as he felt, Kogberegbe grabbed his keys and dashed out the door, stealing a glance at his wrist watch. The only major appointment he had was at the Okanlawon’s residence but he needed to wait for a confirmation call before heading over. However there was a stack of paperwork that he needed to catch up with in the office before going to lunch with Lucy.

Forty-five minutes later, Kogberegbe was in his office; he greeted his secretary airily and she responded with a weird look which spurred irritation in Kogberegbe for he now knew he definitely looked stupid. Inside his office, he noticed that the bin had been thrown out and lined, but his ex-wife’s framed picture lay face-down on his shelf. His irritation was gradually building and after a few minutes of continuous discomfort, he picked up his car keys and the frame and headed out, in the ante-room, he dropped the frame with the secretary.

“Bin it” he said simply.

“Yes sir” she responded.

Kogberegbe drove down to one of his favorite clothing stores around Opebi where he purchased a very simple tee shirt which he immediately changed into. He also bought a female T-shirt which was gift-wrapped for him. Feeling smug now, he headed towards Lucy’s hospital; she should be on lunch break in about an hour. He decided to while away time at a café not far from the hospital. He ordered for a bottle of soda water, brought out his writing pad and started ruminating over his findings so far.

At this point, one thing was certain; Ronke threaded some dangerous waters, lived recklessly and definitely pissed someone off along the line. Whoever it was probably wasn’t just dangerous but also well connected. The most annoying part of the puzzle was that the murderer could be anyone, and he or she could be anywhere. For instance, there was a probability that the person resided within the estate, which would explain the easy access into the house. But the mastermind behind the execution would make him strike out the guards as suspects; the seemed to gullible to effectively plan such and moreover, there was no motive. He couldn’t rule out the parents of the girl; perhaps they found out about their daughter’s disgraceful lifestyle and felt it would be damaging to their careers. But why kill the only child they had? Kogberegbe certainly knew that an average Nigerian wouldn’t be that heartless. But what if Dr. Okanlawon had other children secretly, or if he valued his political image enough to take even his own daughter’s life? Kogberegbe would need to look closely into Dr. Okanlawon’s life.

It was also possible that Ronke’s killer was one of her school mates; it was obvious that she and her friends hung out with some fearful students, or at least were being watched by some. Kogberegbe was almost certain that Fadekemi’s boyfriend for instance was a cultist and even though she was scared of him, she was doomed if she left him; Kogberegbe knew how the gig was. So what if some cultist was interested in Ronke and she gave him an attitude? A cultist, or student at the minimum would be able to carry out such carefully planned murder, and there seemed to be a motive. But he doubted that a cultist would be careless enough to leave such traces as was found at the residence; and it was rare for them to operate outside the school and its environs; except the perpetrator was a new recruit, which made him wonder if it could have been an initiation ceremony.

There was also the issue of Ronke’s pregnancy, which made Kogberegbe conclude that whoever wanted her dead was a man; and judging by the force with which her head was snapped, the killer was definitely a man. He couldn’t shake the fact that everyone seemed to believe that the only man that Ronke dated or that she could have had sex with was Dapo, but the boy denied the fact that the child was his. If the paternity test came back negative, that would corroborate Dapo’s story although it wouldn’t let him off the hook because the prosecutor could argue that the pregnancy was enough motive for Dapo to have wanted her dead. Perhaps he felt the feeling of betrayal and jealousy got the better of him and he did the act before he could come back to his senses. And unfortunately for him, he would not be able to find an alibi during the time of the murder because technically, he would have been on the road, alone. But if Dapo was telling the truth, then his story would pan out with the period that Fadekemi told her that Ronke started behaving funny. Whatever bothered her definitely had to do with sex, which was probably why she finally gave consent to Dapo, and which was finally what led to her pregnancy. The fact that she hadn’t informed any of her friends and boyfriend about the pregnancy could also mean that she had a plan to use the pregnancy to her benefit and then terminate it to get on with her life. Kogberegbe wondered if the pregnancy was how she intended to get back at the person who had intimidated her for so long, if he was to believe Fadekemi’s recount of what Ronke told her. If that was so, then it could mean blackmail and whoever was worth blackmailing was definitely wealthy or powerful. It seemed to Kogberegbe like a well thought out plan gone bad; she was going to have her escapades and still end up with an the non-the-wise Dapo.

She definitely needed more money and when she was refused by her parents, she resulted to working at the club. Or it could have been to get access to some connection, like Jack said. But why was this necessary? To get to the root of that, Kogberegbe would have to interrogate the owner of the club and then every gold and diamond member of the club. But he knew that the club would sooner fold up that give him access to its members; that’s what they paid such ridiculous amount of money for anyway.

Kogberegbe dropped his pen and rubbed his temple, thankful that it was almost one pm. He sipped his now hot soda water, smoothed out his outfit and got ready to step under the sun.

Kogberegbe greeted the nurses familiarly as the made directly for the lunch room. His heart however sank when he saw the Doctor he’d seen the previous day, seated across the unmistakable back of his girlfriend- or ex-girlfriend, he wasn’t even sure which. He hated the sight of the two of them giggling happily together, so he turned to take his leave.

“Hey Steve” Lucy called, waving him over. The Doctor must have spotted him and alerted her. Kogberegbe didn’t want to be childish so he walked over to them.

“Nice of you to stop by” The Doctor said, standing up with a tabby cat smile glued to his face and when he noticed Kogberegbe’s confused look, he added “Lucy said you’d be joining us today”

“Did she, now?” Kogberegbe responded sarcastically, shaking the Doctor’s right hand. Lucy turned her head in embarrassment.

“Good to finally meet you inspector, your job must be interesting” The Doctor said.

“Detective” Lucy corrected with a laugh. “You look sparkly.” She added, trying to look for the reason.

Kogberegbe had never felt so small “It’s just the shirt, I spilled tea on the one I wore to the office so I had to buy this impromptu”

“It’s definitely not the shirt” Lucy said, musing.

“Not the shirt” The Doctor said dumbly. Kogberegbe darted a look his way which made him shut up immediately. He wondered why Lucy would pick such a man above him.

“I wasn’t staying anyway. I was called up on something I didn’t plan for…” Kogberegbe started to say.

“Soooooo you came all the way just to say you aren’t coming? Lucy supplied with  a confused look.

“That about sums it up” Kogberegbe responded with an embarrassed smile.

“That’s unlike you, you could have just pinged”

“Well, I didn’t think of that” He said looking even more embarrassed.

“You always think…”

“Stop it please” Kogberegbe couldn’t hold the humiliation anymore “Nice meeting you Doc”

“Did you get Lucy a gift?” The Doctor rather responded, peering into the little gift bag that Kogberegbe had unthinkingly dropped on the table. Quickly, Kogberegbe scooped it up.

“You do have a big mouth you know that? Kogberegbe said angrily.

“That was uncalled for” Lucy stood up, meeting his glare.

“Just as all these were!” Kogberegbe voiced out his frustration “I’m sorry I walked into such trap; I should have known better”

“Steve” Lucy softly called after Kogberegbe as he stormed out of the hospital, junking the gift as he went. So much for trying to understand women!

Later that evening after more weird glances from his secretary and tediously trying to get his reports up to date, Kogberegbe headed for the Okanlawon’s residence. He saw Musa seated with his peers, head bowed and oblivious to the game of draft they played. It was almost as if he was forced to sit in their midst. When he caught glimpse of Kogberegbe, a tiny sparkle crept into his eyes and freeing the frocks of his jalamia which was previously gathered on his knees, he came up to meet Kogberegbe.

“Oga” He said in a simple greeting, scratching the back of his head.

“How are you holding up Musa?” Kogberegbe shut the door.

“Uhn?”

“How are you?”

“Ha!” he laughed, nodded and lifted his eyes in a funny way “Alihamdulilahi”

“Have you remembered anything since the last time I saw you?” Kogberegbe asked, taking note of how the skin around his face suddenly changed to the sad one he’d worn over days. He looked like two different people when he was sad and when he brightened up.

“Oga, no remember anything again”

“Never mind; but I see you’ve started playing with your friends again?” Kogberegbe glanced in their direction and noticed that the men had stopped playing and now focused on them as if expecting Kogberegbe to cuff Musa and take him away.

“They call, they call” Musa said now, gesturing to explain that his friends had been trying t make him loosen up “And now today, I come, I sit, them, there.”

“Ok Musa” Kogberegbe said “Did someone bring some boxes here?” Kogberegbe also gesticulated for Musa’s comprehension.

“Yes. He ufshair” Musa pointed and started leading the way. Kogberegbe cast a last look at the guards, wondering how anyone could entrust their lives to such men; dogs were definitely better in his opinion because at least they would bark at the sight of strange things or people…but then dogs couldn’t open gates, he mused.

Ronke’s personal effects were neatly packed in boxes, all placed in the living room.

“He there” Musa pointed at the boxes which Kogberegbe had already seen.

“Thanks Musa.” Kogberegbe said as a dismissal but the man stood rooted; Kogberegbe decided to let him be.

As Kogberegbe looked through the boxes, his phone rang

“Yes” Kogberegbe answered

“Inspector Abu on the line”

“Hey Abu, how now?” Kogberegbe said.

“Very well sir. I have the result of the sample you asked me to test. I want to know if you’re in the office so that I can drop it off”

Kogberegbe’s heart raced, this could be the break he needed in the case so he didn’t want to waste time with the information “Just rip it open and tell me what it is inspector”

“Alright sir” Abu said from the other end and Kogberegbe heard the sound of paper tearing, a scrambled sound  that suggested Abu had replaced the phone in his ears and then “negative sir. The samples don’t match.”

Kogberegbe’s hopes sank, he suddenly felt tired so he sat on one of the leather chairs “Thanks inspector. You can hold on to it, I will pick it up when I come around”

“Alright sir”

“Thanks for getting back to me so quick” Kogberegbe said and went off the line. After a few minutes of sitting down, he managed to get himself back together and got back to work without bothering to spare Musa as much as a glance. He knew he was still standing there trying to make sense of what was happening. This was beginning to get frustrating for Kogberegbe; even though his recent findings pointed at various suspects, the singular person he could plausibly place at the murder scene was Sabo, and evidence now showed otherwise.

Pulling himself back together, Kogberegbe resumed scanning Ronke’s stuff, catching Musa’s swaying motion from the corner of his eye but choosing to ignore it. He wasn’t in the mood.

There didn’t seem to be anything out of the ordinary in the box; just clothes, make-up things and a few cheap jewelry items. There was a key in a large key-ring, along with an I.D card that had the name of the club house on it. Kogberegbe assumed the key opened a locker within the premises, which meant he would have to make a final trip to the club after all, he thought.

He had been hoping that Ronke at least kept a diary but apparently she didn’t- or did she? Kogberegbe wondered if Ronke’s wardrobe hadn’t been tampered with once her friends realized she was no more. He knew he had to get to the club house as soon as possible because if the owners had anything to hide, they would attempt to ransack Ronke’s locker, if they hadn’t done that already. Kogberegbe neatly repacked the box and placed it in Musa’s care then dialed the DPO’s office. He requested for a warrant to search Ronke’s locker at the club because he envisaged resistance. He was assured that the warrant would be issued under the condition that armed policemen accompany him. All the better, Kogberegbe thought to himself; they then arranged for the policemen to meet him on site and then he hung up. Outside, he noticed Musa’s friends were engrossed in their game as if their lives depended on it. Kogberegbe shook his head, knowing that anything could be going on at the moment in the houses they were supposed to keep watch over. Musa appeared beside him, exposing his teeth as usual, in good tiding.

“Is this how you normally play?” Kogberegbe gestured towards his friends and Musa nodded “daily?” Kogberegbe asked further

“Gaskiya ne” Musa responded

“Hmmm” Kogberegbe said, thinking “Do you have a phone Musa?”

“Oga I tell you, I not get” Musa answered

Kogberegbe glanced at his wristwatch, thinking he could spare a few minutes “Get in the car Musa”

“uhn?” Musa said dumbly

“In-the-car” Kogberegbe stressed. He knew there was a call centre within the estate, he just hoped they sell cheap phones as well. Kogberegbe noticed the smug look on Musa’s face as he gathered his garment and entered the passenger side of the car. He also noticed that Musa’s friends stopped their game once again but this time, they stood up, arms akimbo, watching their friend. Kogberegbe couldn’t decipher whether they felt he was arresting Musa or if they envied him for getting a ride; their expression could be that confusing. However, Kogberegbe was more engrossed in the realization that Musa just got in the car without securing the house he was supposed to be guarding. Kogberegbe shook his head and motioned for him to correct this wrong act.

“Aaah” Musa said smiling “e sape, eberywhere” He added, teeth out

“Yea right” Kogberegbe said sarcastically. It was becoming apparent to him that even any stupid amateur could perpetrate evil on these guards’ watch. Anything could have happened on that fateful day, anyone could have lured Musa from his duty post while the plan was being set in motion. Kogberegbe was certain that Musa would have been as careless about the security of the home as he just did.

Musa got back in the car and they drove off. As Kogberegbe made to steer off the street, he almost bumped into a careless driver who just swerved into the street without checking to see if another car was making its way out.

“Sorry” the female driver called out in haste, but she did a double take as she saw Musa “Hey! Hey!! Musa!!!” she called out and hurriedly parked, once again without looking out to see that she was not a harm to anyone around.

Musa peered through the driver’s window and bared his teeth again “Aaah. Madam” He said and Kogberegbe gave him a weird look. Everyone seem to have just one title as far as Musa was concerned. You were either “Oga” if you were a man or “Madam” for women.

“Hi. Sorry about the rough driving” She said to Kogberegbe

“It’s ok. Is everything alright?” He asked

“Are you Kogberegbe”

Puzzled, Kogberegbe responded “Yea?”

“I need to talk to you privately please” she pleaded

Kogberegbe glanced in Musa’s direction, knowing that was as private as any meeting could be, considering Musa’s dumb nature coupled with communication problem. But then, the detective side of him cautioned him; for there was no way he could be absolutely sure that Musa was in fact dumb. This made him ponder briefly on a thought he hadn’t considered before- could Musa have been an accomplice to the murder? His instincts told him Musa didn’t commit the crime, but did he know more than he divulged? He made a mental note to have Musa’s blood sample taken.

“I’ll park properly then” Kogberegbe said to the woman. When he had parked well, he stepped out o the car and met with the woman behind his car.

“I’m Subomi. Chief’s niece” She said in a way of introduction

“Ok” Kogberegbe said

“It was I who picked up Ronke’s things from school today”

“Oh I see. Hope it wasn’t too much of a bother?:

She averted her eyes, a sure sign that she was hiding something “I think something dropped off in my car while I transported the stuff”

Kogberegbe’s eyebrow arched a notch but he chose not to press her just yet “Ok” he simply said.

She produced a small transparent care and gave it to Kogberegbe “It’s a memory card  and sim card. I thought it might be useful to the investigation so I hurried back immediately”

“Ok” Kogberegbe said, assessing the case. He then stared hard at Subomi without saying anything.

“Well, that’s it” She said  nervously

“Ok” Kogberegbe said again.

She let out a heavy sigh “Trust me, it was a mistake. Just please don’t tell my uncle about it or he would never trust me again”

“If it dropped off the box without your knowledge, I see no reason why you should be worried about Doctor having knowledge of it” Kogberegbe said

“I swear it was a mistake”

“Then why don’t I believe you?”

“You have to, it’s the truth?”

“The box was sealed- by you!” Kogberegbe finally pointed out the obvious.

She fidgeted visibly “Look, I’m very sorry about this. But please know that I had a choice, I could have just tossed it; but I realized it might be useful to the investigation. She was my cousin,  and I want the case solved like everyone else does”

“You also had a choice not to obstruct investigation” Kogberegbe countered. She just stared at the ground, so Kogberegbe continued “I assume you already saw or read something on the disc otherwise you wouldn’t have thought it would be useful to the investigation after you originally took it” He paused before continuing “so I’m gonna ask you, what else ‘fell off’ the sealed box?”

“Nothing”

“Sure?”

“Just some jewelry. They are mine, she loaned them from me when she was alive”

“Seriously?”

“I swear!”

“Well, you did before! If I find out that you took more than you are letting on, I promise you I’ll make a case against you!”

“That’s all” she said in a small voice.

“Alright then, gotta dash” Kogberegbe said and circled round her to get to his car. A few blocks down, he saw the call centre, bought a cheap Nokia phone and a sim card, fitted it in, saved his phone number on it and handed it over to Musa. He seemed excited about it, his eyes glowing.

“Musa, can you operate the phone?” Kogberegbe asked

“Oferate?” he asked, confused as usual but smiling all the way.

“Can you use the phone?”

“Aaah, Sabo my priend, he know” he replied and Kogberegbe marveled at him. He who had been in Lagos for many more years than Sabo could not operate a phone but Sabo could.

“Ok here is what I want you to do for me” Kogberegbe said “You need to be vigilant henceforth, you might remember something…or someone might come back. If anything at all happens, I want you to call me…like this” Kogberegbe showed him, demonstrating all of his words and hoping Musa understood. Musa just kept nodding like a puppet even after Kogberegbe had finished speaking. Kogberegbe dropped Musa off at his street and made his own way to the clubhouse, a plan forming in his head. He had to plant a false evidence that would lure the killer back to the apartment or at least cause him to snap. He would have to be careless with the information so that the press could catch wind of it and hope it gets to the killer.

 

It was almost midnight when Kogberegbe returned to his apartment. The club manager had been impressively cooperative, which made him suspect they had already done their cleaning up before Kogberegbe arrived. It wasn’t unlikely that they had informants within the police force, Kogberegbe thought. The only things he found in the locker were her costumes, contraceptives, a wad of cash and a cheque book. Kogberegbe wondered why she kept contraceptives and still managed to get knocked up; that definitely meant she knew what she was up to. From what he gathered about her, she was a smart girl and wouldn’t do anything without thinking it through. The club manager wouldn’t make any comments about Ronke, he claimed he didn’t mingle with the staff.

Kogberegbe notices that many leaves in the cheque book had been used, the duplicates revealing huge sums of money which obviously didn’t come from her parents. The last duplicate revealed that a payment was made to a clinic; Kogberegbe wrote out the name, he would have to visit the place. He would also have to visit the bank to get a hold of Ronke’s account statement.

Back at his apartment, he brought out the memory card and sim card which Subomi gave him.

Searching through the content of the memory card, there were basically two things: Pole dancing training and “things you should know before aborting…” kogberegbe always trusted his theory, but it was nice to know that once again, his theory about Ronke’s plans concerning the pregnancy panned out.

The sim card had a password but it wasn’t difficult to crack; it was her father’s birth date. There were series of received messages on the sim  but none that was sent. It seemed as if someone was negotiating to keep Ronke from sharing a secret, there was mention of the fellow’s “ambition” and how the secret would “tarnish” it. It seemed as if there had been a back and forth financial negotiation. The last message sounded like mockery, saying no one would link the phone number to the sender. Perhaps Ronke had threatened to go public with the SMS evidences. The message claimed that the number was a special one and that he/she never shared the original contact for fear of such.

Kogberegbe was certain that this was a politician; more often than not, they were the ones with dubious minds and schemes right from the beginning. They always are a step ahead of ordinary individuals- at least the smart ones amongst them are. He pressed the ‘dial back’ button and waited as the phone rang a couple of times but wasn’t picked. He tried again a couple of times but the phone was already switched off. A few minutes later, he received an SMS.

“You are dead” The message read. A few seconds later, a second message came in “Calling was a wrong move this line never receives calls so you obviously are a hostile. You know not what you seek. The line will now go dead, just like the girl”

Not So Happily Married …. Episode Six

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For Previous episodes, please click here

How stupid you are Omoboye, how stupid. How did you let this girl do this to you? But you have a brain right? Don’t you? You can think for yourself Omoboye, can’t you? I asked myself those questions in quick succession as I read Boladale’s messages.

She had put a crying symbol after I said she wouldn’t dare get pregnant.

“Boye, please I am sooooooooory. In fact I am dying here bits by bits.”

“Die quick bitch” I thought surprising myself. I wasn’t going to say a word to her again, I was sure of that. The rage I felt was like nothing I ever thought I could feel.

“Omoboye, my life is messed up. The guy I’m pregnant for is a colleague and he is married. We just had a one night stand and we used protection, I don’t just understand what happened.”

“Yes, bitches never understand.” I wanted to say; instead I switched off the phone.

“She must pay.” I muttered under my breath remembering how she had been the one to start it all when Mope – our other friend got pregnant. It shouldn’t have been our concern or even mine and at that moment I cursed Blackberry and the opportunity it provides for meaningless discussions to happen. She had been the one to send me a message that Mope was pregnant. I hadn’t seen anything wrong in it as long as the father was ready to marry her but she had insisted that it was wrong and selfish of Mope, that she had been too desperate and must have intentionally gotten pregnant just so the man could marry her.

I had been reluctant to judge and had simply said; it’s not a big deal as long as the guy marries her.

“No, he is not marrying her.” Bola had announced. She had added that she didn’t feel any pity for Mope and I shouldn’t also. Fool that I am, I had gone with her to Mope’s place a week later and instead of providing her with succor, I had joined in lecturing her on how it was bad to be pregnant out of wedlock. You would think I was a virgin with the way I had acted all sanctimonious delivering my lecture. I had told her how I believe a woman can decide when or when not to get pregnant and that it was such an insecure thing to trap a man with pregnancy.

As expected, it had been a big problem when I got pregnant myself, how do I face the same people and announce that I was pregnant. Wouldn’t I look like a hypocrite? And so I had decided to terminate the pregnancy. It sounded like the easy way.

Sitting there and looking at the phone in my hand, I told myself it would have been easier to apologize to my friends for being a hypocrite and let them know I was pregnant. Isn’t that what Bola is doing now? I asked myself.

“I am a joke.” I muttered ignoring the circles Jite was drawing on my shoulders. Bola’s situation was even worse, yet she is having her baby while I had aborted a baby whose father was ready to marry me.

“Baby what’s wrong; you are not looking too happy?” Jite said turning my face towards him.

“Jite, Bola is pregnant.”

“She is?” “That should be good news.” “Aren’t you happy for her?”

“I am it’s just that the father is married.”

“Oops! That’s a tricky one and wrong too but don’t forget she is a grown woman and is responsible for her decisions so that shouldn’t make you feel down.”

“Yes.” I replied absentmindedly.

I had a sudden urge to tell Jite everything but I was sure it would be a bad idea. So I decided it had to be the secret I will carry to my grave.

I resolved to concentrate on getting pregnant and at the same time look for a way to make Boladale pay.

____

We left few minutes later. I had lost interest in everything and just wanted to leave the beach and set the plan forming in my mind in motion. It was simple, give an overdue apology.

We entered the room; there was a note on the freshly made bed. “Dinner at 7” it read. I checked the time; 6.05pm. Time enough to do this I thought slipping out of my beach wear.

Jite’s back was turned to mine; he was trying to remove his wristwatch.

I went down on both knees and held this leg.

“Baby, what’s this? Why are you kneeling?” He asked turning to face me.

“Please Jite, let me remain this way. I need to be on my knees, I want to ask for your forgiveness.”

“Fine, but please stand up and put on your clothes.”

“No, Jite let me be like this. Please indulge me, please my husband.”

“Okay Omoboye, but I don’t like you kneeling like this before me; it makes me feel like I am maltreating you.”

“You are not Jite. I just want to say some things. I might sound stupid, in fact I think I would sound stupid, but allow me and please don’t laugh. Please.”

He nodded and so I began;

                                                              ” Before you, Jite,

                                                               before your blessed presence,

                                                               naked I kneel…

                                                               a prodigal…

                                                               lost in your love…”

                                                                         An aching prodigal,

                                                                        kneeling at your feet

                                                                        An aching prodigal,

                                                                 Who would make miracles

                                                               To understand the simple given

I was so afraid he would laugh, but he didn’t. He just pulled me up when I was done and hugged me hard.

“Christopher Okigbo; Heaven’s Gate.” He said simply, pulling back to look into my eyes.

I nodded. black_love_art_2~~element286

“Jite I am sorry, with all of my heart soul and body. I am sorry. I truly regret aborting that child.”

The tears were streaming down, it was easy to cry, I was feeling real pain. The anger and thirst for revenge forgotten for the moment.

****

She is so beautiful. It was the only thing I thought of as I looked into her eyes, she wasn’t looking at mine, she just kept murmuring about how sorry she was. I felt my heart ache.

“It’s okay baby. Please stop crying. I am also sorry for how I have been. Please forgive me. I shouldn’t have been that hard on you. I am sorry.”

“Jite its okay, I deserve everything that happened.”

“No, Boye you don’t. Love forgives all, I should have forgiven you and I had no excuse for cheating on you. I am so sorry about that, please forgive me. I promise to cut all ties with Bisade. I won’t even wave to her if you don’t want…”

“Sshhhhh”, she said looking into my eyes. “It’s okay Jite. I forgive you.” But I won’t forgive Bisade. I added under my breath.

I was relieved; it felt good to finally admit that I was wrong. She pressed her body to mine and I rubbed her bare back.

“Boye, we should still have some minutes before dinner right?”

She didn’t answer, she only nodded.

“How about putting that time to good use.”

“How about skipping dinner altogether.” She replied.

“Skip dinner ke, baby you would need that food oo because I intend to exercise my right as a husband this night and I must warn you it might be a bit exerting.”

“I can’t wait Jite.”

Much later, after we had made love for what seemed like the hundredth time, she asked a question;

“Jite, do you still have the condoms?”

“Baby, don’t tell me you are now addicted to those things, just when I was thinking we should get you pregnant.”

She smiled then running her fingers through my hair.

“Would you forgive me if I said I gave it out knowing this Island would hate such things?”

“No baby, I won’t forgive you I will have to punish you for that.” I added claiming her lips.

*****

He still snores, I thought with a smile as I removed his hand from where it lay possessively on my chest. I was so happy I could actually forget that I needed to deal with Boladale and Bisade, only I wasn’t going to. It didn’t matter that I did not know how to go about it or what exactly to do, I just knew I had to find a way. It’s the only way I will feel less like a fool. I ran a hand over my flat stomach wondering if I could be pregnant already. It amazed me how something that I had never bothered about was suddenly so important.

My mind went to the previous night and how the Jite I knew had re-appeared.

“Why did it take me so long to apologize?”

It was a question I found hard to answer. Perhaps I am a proud person after all I reasoned wondering why I had always seen myself as humble.

To think I kept telling God I was sorry, asking him to forgive me while neglecting the human I wronged.

My husband was here and it was major. My heart constricted with love as I remembered how during one of the bouts of sleep that we had during the night I had stood up to use the toilet. He must have woken up and realized I wasn’t there. It was his voice that brought me out of the toilet.

“Baby, Sweets where are you?”

I had been out in a flash, alarmed at his tone.

“Jite, I am here what is it?.” I asked as he wrapped me in a warm hug.

“I woke up, I didn’t see you, and I was worried.”

“Worried how? What could possibly happen to me here?” I had asked my heart glad at being so loved.

“Nothing. Baby. Nothing will happen to my wife, now let’s go back to the bed.”

I still wanted to use the toilet but I didn’t have the heart to say so. Not with the way he held me.

The shrill sound of Jite’s phone broke into my thoughts and also reminded me that my phone was still switched off.

“Baby, check who is calling”, Jite said in a very sleepy voice.

“Oga when will you stand up or we are not going out today?” I asked walking to the table where the phone was.

He mumbled something that was quite in coherent.

“The caller’s name is Skipper.” I said shrugging as I heard his snoring become renewed.

See, I am not the type of girlfriend or wife that checks her husband’s messages or go through his call history and so I would never have seen the message if Jite hadn’t installed an SMS flasher on his phone.

Just one word caught my attention before the message disappeared; “Sweetheart”. My first thought was who the heck was calling my husband sweetheart and then I went to the inbox to check the message. It was from the person that had called earlier; Skipper.

“Sweetheart, we need to talk as soon as you get back, there is a big problem on my hands here and you are the only one that can help with it. I Love you.”

“Sweetheart”, “problem”, “only one”, “Love you”; words that stuck out and brought a dull ache to my temple. “Who is Skipper?” I muttered under my breath; a memory dancing on the fringes of my mind. There was something about that word, “skipper” that was familiar only I couldn’t place it. I knew I would remember if I put my mind to it but first I deleted the message and the call record.

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