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Chained angel is a tale of love but is it really about love alone? It is a narrative that highlights the betrayal, anguish, torment, defeat, and eventual truimph of those who though beaten down always strive to rise again. Chained angel is a story that promises to bring the tears cascading down your eyes like a waterfall. It is a true story shrouded in the fabrics of fiction. Chained angel tells your story for you will find a piece of yourself in finely crafted lines of this book.
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THE CHAINED ANGEL
The Demons of Love
Almighty God, for this gift of creative writing and for your love I say ‘thank you.’
Table of Contents
Table of content
The handsome young man at the podium was making a speech. He was clad in fitting navy blue pants; had black and beige loafers on, and wore an immaculately white shirt that hugged his trim body. His wife could see the adoring eyes of the ladies fixated on him as they drooled at his every word and crooned at his laughter. He was the epitome of every woman’s dream: successful, young, rich, intelligent and handsome, with his easy-going nature and engaging smile.
She smiled as she caught the envious stares of the ladies who knew they were together. Ha, if only they knew the work I had to put in to make the raw and uncut diamond to become what it is today. I could bet that none of the pretty ladies in dainty attires, presently wishing to be me, would have stayed to put in the necessary effort needed to get the result that stood beaming at us on the podium now, she mused.
She could vividly remember the day she thought she has had enough and so had lashed out at the man who was now her husband.
“I have had enough of you! Gosh, I just can’t continue living this way, I have suffered enough in your hands Brian,” She had shouted at him. “I have had enough Brian, I’m breaking out of this relationship,”
And she had walked out on him with a vow never to return. But thank God I returned, no matter how long it took, I still thank God that I returned, she thought.
“I wasn’t always this happy.”
The man at the podium was saying. His name is Brian.
Brian’s cool voice over the public address system brought her out of reverie.
“I wasn’t always this happy or contented. No, that was not how it had been at the beginning; getting out of unhappiness was a herculean task that took me many lonely nights, and many days of pain, over a multitude of suffering years to achieve. Yes, there was a time madness held me in its grip.
“There were nights when the loneliness attacked me like a horde of angry ill angels, and the walls of my room swarm around me as the cold of the night steeped their icy fingers into me, threatening to snatch my soul and shred it. Those nights, I used to whimper in fear as tears forced their ways down my eyes, gushing down my cheeks and ruining the song-scripts before me. Yes, I still wrote though I was a prisoner of insanity.
“My whispered cries of help echoed in mockery, in the chilly lonely room, and bounced off the unfriendly walls back at me. The demons of melancholy, loneliness, and agony stubbornly refused to be exorcised, as I tried many times to break out of the chains that held me bond to irascible evil that tore through my flesh, sinewy veins, bone and all, gunning for my hapless soul.
“Those nights, the voices that screamed in my head muted promises of eternal insanity as I crawled my way out of the door, lying supine out of weakness at the passageway, to gaze at the sky and wonder at the stars through the window. You belong up there, a legion voice always taunted, but we will make sure you never get there.
“Fear usually used to grip me, as the taunting laughter of these particular demons drove me huddled in a corner, with my head hidden between my legs, and my hands clawing at the empty air, in a futile attempt to wield off the screaming spirits that were resident evil inhabiting my space.
“I could see them in their ghoulish forms; I could hear them, and I could sense them, but I couldn’t touch them, and so the frustration drove me mad as I angrily attacked the wall, hitting and punching with all the might my frail form could muster until I was all bloodied, with broken knuckles and skin torn to tatters by talon like nails, from fingers made crooked by debilitating suffering of a kind experienced only by a few wretched souls.
“It was in one of these fruitless fights with invincible beings that only I could see, that I lashed out in one final lunge of frustration and quest for redemption, and passed out into a troubling darkness that enveloped me in a calming embrace. Death had finally conquered this sequestered soul of a hermitic song-writer with gaunter eyes and bones that strained against scrawny skin.
“In death, a sonorous voice haunted my being; in a mortal struggle to exorcise my soul from the clutches of ill demons that were hounding it to hell. Face your demons, the voice shouted at my receding soul; please break out of this misery; hold your ground and come back to me, it pleaded at my lost soul. Who are you? I had shouted back, please leave me alone for I belong here; I belong to this nightmare; I’m one with the spirits of torment. No, you are not, the voice had called back at me, and with a persuasion eternal in effect, it called me back from death.
“I awoke later from death to behold my redemption. She is the woman seated over there, in the front row of tables to the left, she is the one whom God used to make today possible, and so I dedicate this award to my darling wife Ada, for putting my life back together.”
Brian said, as the entire congregation rose up, in thundering applause, as he walks off the podium with his Grammy award. As he made his way, toward where she and their daughter Brenda sat, amidst cheering ovations, she could feel more eyes on her staring in unmasked envy. Ha, if only they knew, she thought.
“You are one lucky woman,” A black lady seated beside her said. She was the third woman around her that had said this to her in a space of 15 minutes.
“You ladies should wait until you read the memoirs of his life; our lives,” She said smiling, “Then you can tell me if you still think that I am lucky.”
“Do you have a copy of the memoir here?” One of the ladies sitting close to her asked.
“Yes I have a draft copy,” She replied. “It is yet to be published.”
His act wasn’t done; he was still needed at the stage to perform a song and do other presentations; he was heading off the stage to present the award to his wife before returning back to the podium.
“Can we see this draft memoir?” One of the three women asked. “We can read it and give you our take on it.”
They were seated in one of the table at the front of the hall, close to the stage, because their husbands were all presenters in the award night. Brian was the only recipient that was also a presenter. It was going to be a long night.
The ovations for him were still on as he received his award and made his way toward his wife and little girl.
Well, the ovation for Brian was well deserved but only she and Brian knew the battles they fought to rescue him from demons that haunted his past. Exorcising these demons became her life work and she did succeed though success was not easy. She still felt sad, anytime she remembers how she had deserted, and betrayed him at his most trying moment. It is true Brian didn’t make it easy but I should have stayed, maybe if I hadn’t left, I wouldn’t have come so close to losing him forever. She shuddered just at the thought that the world had almost lost this genius to the dark hands of death; humanity would have been forever deprived of his gift to make unheard melodies heard.
Well, none of the women in the hall would understand what she and her husband had gone through, during their courtship years, until they read Brian’s story as narrated in his memoirs by all the major players in that dark episode of his life.
After Brian gave her his award; kissing her and Brenda, he went back to the stage to perform his song and do his part in the presentations.
“Sure, if you want to,” She replied the woman that had asked for the memoir.
“Give it to me,” The black lady said; she was a black American. “The award night is still just starting, and it is going to be a long night; I can read the story to our small group here as the night proceeds.”
“You ladies might miss the show,” She told them.
“We have seen it all before; we are regulars here,” The woman with the red hair said.
“Yeah, for us, it’s going to be a long boring night of ovations,” The blond hair woman said. “Let her read the story; the night still has a long way ahead.
“Okay,” She said, bringing out the memoir and giving it to the black lady. The other two ladies on the table pulled their heads together. They looked like a coven of three witches, holding deliberations, as they sat, huddled together, to hear the memoir read by the black lady. She smiled at them and refocused her attention at the events on the stage.
Let them read if that is what they want, she mused. Her name is Ada.
What was I afraid of? This was a recurrent question that was usually flung at me at the end of every relationship. Sometimes it was shouted at me in anger; other times it was screamed at me in frustrations, but in few occasions, it had been asked in a soft sobbing voice. What was I scared of? I never used to answer, no matter how it was asked, or by whom; it wasn’t because I didn’t know the answer; I just couldn’t say it. How was I to make them comprehend that I was scared of a woman. The next question I would have had to answer would have been, are you afraid of me? And they would have had the right to ask that question, after all, they were women in every sense of it, but the truth was, I wasn’t scared of them. No, I was afraid of a particular woman, the one I used to see in my dreams.
It was because of this phobia that I had for her. No, not exactly, the fear wasn’t about meeting her; the fear was anchored in not finding her, or being hooked to someone else when I finally do find her, – this was my fear. I knew I was going to meet her someday, but I didn’t have a clue when or where; all I was certain of was that I would meet her someday.
I know this will seem strange, but I knew her complexion, the colour of her eyes, her height, contour, the smell of her, and above all, I knew her name. Yes, I knew her so well that I could tell what her favourite meal was, yet I had never met her before except in my dreams. Now, I have to clear this, I didn’t dream her up neither did I imagine her. No, it was none of that, I just used to see her in my dreams, starting from when I was four years old and dreamt of her birth.
Back then, I had thought I was going to have a kid sister, but none came, yet my convictions about an incoming kid sister were so strong, that I always used to tell my mom that I will be having a younger sister soon. On my tenth birthday, my mom had jokingly said,
“Brian, it seems your little sister has refused to come as you predicted.”
“Mom, her name is Ada and she will surely come,” I had replied with all the convictions a ten years old could muster.
“Oh, you even have a name for her, but how come she is bearing an Igbo name when we are not Igbo?” My mom had asked laughing.
“I don’t know mom but that’s her name,” I said.
“Okay Brian, we are still expecting her,” My mom had said still laughing.
I had wanted to tell her that Ada would be six years old now, but since my mom had no girl child, and I was the last of four boys, I decided to keep shut, before I say sometime they will use in taunting me. Though my mom never gave birth to another child after me, I kept on dreaming about Ada; back then, at the age of ten, I used to think she would be adopted by my parents as a six years old baby. Later in life though, when I discussed my dreams with my childhood best friends Chijioke, during our first year in the university, he had thought deep about it, and said that maybe my subconscious so craved for a younger sister that my mind had decided to dream up one as compensation.
“Chijioke, I don’t think so,” I said, “I’m not longing for a kid sister, I have three elder siblings that love me so I do not see any reason why my mind should dream up a kid sister for me.”
“Yet you feel you have a sister or should have a sister, right?”
“No, that’s not the way it feels; actually the more I think of it the more I realize she is more of a friend than a sister, and she is real. I now believe she is alive somewhere,” I had tried to explain.
“If that is the case,” Chijioke had said, “Then it seems you have dreamt up your wife; you know, like how we all have an idea of the perfect girl.”
“But she is not perfect, she has her flaws,” I had argued.
“Yes, but still, you like her, right? Or do you dislike her?”
“Of course not,” I had replied, “I definitely like her.”
And that was where the idea of the girl of my dream – Ada – being my wife took root. As the years went by, I had dreams of the development of Ada; of how she went to live with her aunt in the US when she was fourteen; how she graduated top of her class in Princeton, earning a bachelor degree in Applied Physics, from whence she proceeded to Yale, where she earned a Master in Nuclear Physics. I even had a dream of her return to Nigeria after a ten years sting in the US.
I had quite a happy childhood; even my teenage years were happy years, until in my first year second semester in the university, when I lost my two eldest twin brothers in a car crash. They were returning from a party, the eldest twins’ girlfriend was driving and had somehow lost control of the car; crashing into a wall. Everyone in the car died. Their death was a painful blow to the family and particularly to me because I was quite close to my siblings; I felt devastated. They had just returned from their academic sojourn overseas.
One year later, another tragedy struck my family, when my mom and dad were shot dead by unknown gunmen; leaving only my immediate elder brother and me. My parents were quite rich and had several properties, so their death did not affect our education. When some nosy relatives had wanted to lay their greedy fingers on my parent’s properties, Chijioke’s dad, who was then a Commissioner of police, helped us in making sure that they didn’t entertain the idea again after the initial attempt.
Making music had always been my passion, right from my secondary school days, so to drown the pain I felt over the sad events that had befallen my family; I dedicated my mind into making music. Chijioke also had a flare for music, and had lost his mom to cancer, so together, we wrote songs and sang away our pains.
After graduation, Chijioke and I dedicated our endeavours to advancing our musical aspirations. The pain and frustration we felt about the frailty, uncertainty, and unfairness of life inspired our lyrics. My elder brother Stanley went on to become a doctor in Australia, where he schooled, and he refused to relocate back to Nigeria after graduation; preferring to live in Australia. He said Nigeria held too many painful memories, and Stanley didn’t want to deal with the ghosts of the past.
Chijioke and I had a lot of things in common but we differed greatly when it came to relationships with the opposite sex. While Chijioke was a one girl at a time kind of guy, who believed in long term relationships, I was into numerous affairs that barely lasted beyond three months. From our freshmen days, to our graduation from the university, Chijioke had only two relationships, while within the same period, I had over twenty-nine affairs. Though I must state, that Chijioke like playacting the Casanova, but in actual sense he wasn’t one.
I wouldn’t say the ladies were the problem. No, the problem was more from me; I couldn’t get the vision of Ada out of my head; she inhabited my waking and sleeping moments, and there was this nagging fear that somehow I would pass through life without meeting her. I knew she existed but I didn’t know if I would ever see her.
Four years after graduation, Chijioke and I had gone for a show in Calabar, where we had performed our songs and had thrilled the crowd. After the show, we had decided to extend our stay in Calabar for two more days in search of thrill. It was actually my idea that we stay a little longer; the reason being that I wanted to score with the girl that had invited us for the show.
After our two days extra stay in Calabar, Inyang – the girl that had invited us for the concert – had dropped us off at the airport for our flight back to Lagos. It was while I was giving Inyang a prolonged goodbye kiss, for the wonderful time she had given me in the extra two days, was when I saw Ada and became frozen in the middle of a kiss.
There stood the girl I have been seeing in my dreams since from when I was four years old with a bemused look on her face as she watched my public display of affection for another girl. Inyang sensed my withdrawal and broke off the kiss to give me a searching look. I hurriedly said goodbye, picked up my bag and headed into the bowel of the airport with Chijioke in tow.
“Guy, what kind of a callous goodbye did you just give that poor girl?” Chijioke asked. “How could you just break off the kiss like that after you had initiated it, and then left her standing like a moron as she watched your retreating form?”
“Pally, I saw her,” I said.
“You saw who?”
“I saw Ada.”
“Who is Ada?”
“What do you mean by who is Ada?” I asked with slight annoyance, “Ada, the chic I see in my dreams.”
“Are you serious?” Chijioke asked laughing, “You saw your spirit wife while you were kissing another girl?”
“Pally this is not a laughing matter, she saw me kissing Inyang; do you know what that means? It means I have blown my chance with her even before it started,” I said, feeling sorry for myself.
“Where is she?” Chijioke had asked, “Can you point her out to me?”
I looked around but couldn’t see her, then I saw her walking at the other end of the departure lounge close to the airport shops with two other girls whom I assumed were her friends. “There she is,” I said, pointing toward the lovely trio.
“Which of them is she, or are the three damsels your Ada?” Chijioke said.
“Pally, stop joking over this please,” I said, “The light skinned one in the middle is Ada.”
“Wow, she is so cute and beautiful, are you sure that is the girl you see in your dreams?”
“Yes she is; I’m dead certain about it.”
“Chaii, man, that chic looks classy and proud; you have truly blown your chance if she actually saw you kissing a girl like Inyang with her overtly outlandish and trashy looks,” Chijioke said re-echoing my fears.
“Thanks for your supportive words,” I said storming away in anger as I went in search of a seat as we awaited our flight.
I was seething with anger; I didn’t know if it was directed against Chijioke or I was angry with myself.
Truly, I really do not know if I believe Brian’s claims of seeing me in his dreams from when he was four, but one thing I would give to him though was his abilities to guess a lot of things about me right. I would never have had anything to do with Brian if it wasn’t for his uncanny ability to know things about me that he shouldn’t have known; the curiosity of wanting to find out how he did it made me allow him become my friend.
The first day I met Brian was in Calabar airport, I had just returned to Nigeria a couple of weeks back and had gone to Calabar, on the recommendation of a colleague back in the US, for a summit on harnessing nuclear technologies to meet the Nigerian power challenges. After the three days conference, I had gone to the airport for my flight back to Lagos, in the company of two other female participants from the banking sector looking for new energy projects to finance; they had also came in from Lagos.
It was while I was waiting for the driver to unpack our luggage from the trunk of his taxi that I noticed this handsome but rascally looking young man kissing an equally beautiful but rascally looking young lady. They truly belonged to each other, I had mused in amusement; and then the young lad had caught my stare and froze. I didn’t understand why he froze, but he had a look on his face that suggested that he knew me somewhere. At seeing or recognizing me, he abruptly broke off the kiss, left the young lady standing rooted in one spot in a state of confusion, and practically ran into the departure lounge. I told my travel companions about the incident and the strange feeling of déjà vu that I felt, and then I forgot about it.
After collecting our luggage, I and the girls made for the counter to get our boarding pass where we had a little squabble with the ticketing girl over the seats they allotted to us. We had wanted to sit together but the girl gave us different seats and stuck to her guns; all entreaties from us failed to make her change the seating arrangement. We took our boarding pass and stormed off to the departure lounge.
“Ada, there is a young man at the other end of the hall pointing at you,” Omotola, one of the girls with me, said.
“We are three here so why are you singling me out as the source of his interest?” I asked.
“Because I have a feeling it’s the guy you said you saw kissing a girl outside,” She replied.
I looked and saw him walking toward a vacant seat were he sat. He had an angry expression on his face and refused to speak to his travel companion who came to sit beside him.
“Well, let him just keep his distance because if he ever attempts to strike up a chat with me, a shocker awaits him,” I said as we went to sit at the opposite end.
You can imagine my shock and chagrin when we got into our flight, and I found out that the kissing guy was my neighbour in the next seat; the most annoying part of it all was that I was juxtapose between him and his friend. I glanced at my two travel companions across the aisle, Omotola and Nengi, and noticed that they had bemused looks on their faces.
“Em, would you like to sit by the window? I think that would be more comfortable for you than sitting in the middle of two strange guys,” The kissing dude said.
I said thank you as he vacated his seat for me and took mine. I opened the novel I was holding and buried my face in the words of Robert Ludlum.
“Hi, my name is Brian Princewill,” The kissing guy said.
I mumbled sometime inaudible in reply and continued with my reading; I didn’t want to speak with him or encourage any chitchat from him. He has had his goodbye kisses from his slutty girlfriend so why was his bothering me.
“The Scorpio Illusion is a good book; I have read it,” He said again, “But I will recommend you read Cry Wolf by Leon Uri, I’m sure you will love it.”
“And why are you assuming I haven’t read it?” I replied feeling slightly annoyed.
“Oh, okay, I’m sorry to have assumed that,” He said, “But if you don’t mind, I have a vast collection of novels ranging from authors like Robert Ludlum, Jeffrey Archer, John Grisham, Fredrick Forsyth, Stephen Kings, Leon Uri, Dan Brown, Nelsen…”
“I can see that you are a male chauvinist,” I said cutting him short. “You have mentioned about over half a dozen authors and not a single female author was among them.”
“No, it’s nothing like that,” He said defensively, “I also read female authors like Danielle Steele, Jackie Collins, Juan Nelson, Becky…”
“Please, can you let me concentrate on my reading?” I said cutting him short again.
He uttered some sort of apologies again and kept shut.
“Thanks, now I can have some peace,” I said; loud enough for him to hear while thinking, I’m sure another girl will be waiting for you in Lagos with welcome kisses; I pray one of these days your kissing allies will bite off your tongue.
It was then it dawned on me that the whole kissing thing had upset me, but why was I angry that a total stranger was kissing another total stranger? I kept asking myself this question until we touched down in Lagos.
I was also worried that throughout the entire flight I was strangely aware of him and his nearness to me; anytime our skin brushed, my heartbeat quickened. I did my best to limit the occurrence.
She ignored all my attempts at striking a conversation. I felt devastated; I was sitting beside the only woman I have dreamt of from the time I was four and yet I couldn’t talk to her. All my efforts to break her icy coldness toward me were futile. A familiar fear sneaked in and seized hold of me as we flew closer to Lagos. I had this feeling that once we landed and disembarked from the plane that would be the end; she would disappear from reality and become a dream once more, and this time I had a queasy certainty that it would be forever.
Forty-seven minutes later we touched down in Lagos and left the plane.
“Paddy man, sorry if I had offended you with that snide comment back at Calabar airport but your wife is slipping away,” Chijioke said, “You have to do something fast bro.”
“I don’t know what else to do bro,” I replied with resignation of losing her, “It seems the chic hates me.”
“She doesn’t hate you man, I think she actually likes you.”
“How do you mean brother?” I asked.
“It seems to me her coldness toward you stems from that kiss she saw you giving Inyang,” Chijioke replied, “And if she is angry about it, then that means one thing; she is jealous.”
“So what do you advise I do bro?”
“Say something that would shock her; something like calling her name.”
“What if her name in real life is not Ada?”
“What harm will it do to try?”
He had a point; what harm would it do to try. As it stands, I was losing her if I hadn’t already lost her, so what harm would it do to give it one last desperate shot?
“Please hold on Ada,” I called out as we left the terminal and she made to enter a waiting car. I could see she was shocked.
“How did you know my name?” She asked turning to face me. I could see she had a puzzled look on her face. I had struck gold.
“Your name is Adamma Ikejiofor, you’re twenty-four years old,” I said.
“How did you know that? Have we met before?” She had asked with a look of incredulity.
Your last question has a yes and no answer,” I said, “But I can see you are in a hurry, give me your number, I will call you later and explain it all.”
“I don’t give my number to strangers, just answer me,” She said making to enter the car.
“You left for the US at the age of fourteen to live with your aunt,” I hurriedly said, “Your favourite meal is Coconut rice garnished with fried plantain and salad; and you were born on Friday, the 9th of August, 1985 at 9:53 pm precisely.”
Ada had paused like someone struck by lightning, “How did you know that?” She had screamed.
“Can I have the number please? I promise to explain it all later,” I said.
She reached into her bag and gave me her call card; she had a strange look on her face.
“Make sure you call me,” She said as she entered the car. “And what’s that your name again?” She had called out.
“Brian Princewill,” I shouted as they drove off.
When we alighted from our flight in Lagos, Brian had confronted me once more outside the airport as I and my friends made to enter the car that had come to pick us up. He had called my name to gain my attention and had gone ahead to tell me certain private things about me that he wasn’t supposed to know. I had wanted to press him into revealing how he came about the information but my friends were in a hurry and so I was forced to give him my number so we could talk later.
Throughout the ride home, I was disturbed; how did Brian come about such intimate information about me? I was certain I haven’t met him though there was this déjà vu feeling I had about him.
“Ada, I thought you said you were going to give him the cold treatment?” Nengi said, “So why did you give him your number?”
“I’m surprised about that,” Omotola added.
“I did give him the cold shoulder but that guy knew my name, my favourite meal, my date of birth, the exact time I was born and he knew when I travelled out of the country.”
“How did he come about such information?” Nengi asked.
“That’s why I gave him my number,” I replied, “He made it a precondition for him to tell me.”
“Are you sure you have not met him before?” Omotola asked.
“I’m certain I haven’t though there is this strange feeling of knowing him somewhere or of even being intimate with him,” I said.
“Intimate as in intimate?” Omotola asked laughing.
“Yes intimate but I’m certain I have never met him before,” I said.
“Maybe he is her spirit boyfriend or her husband in her past life,” Nengi said jokingly.
We all laughed at that but looking back today, I think she was right; maybe Brian was my husband in our past lives if not what other explanation can one give to this ability of his to know things about me that only those who were very close to me knew?
Well, as we continue to tell the story, you will understand why I said so.
I had always been convinced that Ada was real and my dreams true but having a confirmation of it was unsettling; I was thrilled yet scared at the accuracy and potency of my dreams concerning her. Chijioke was unnerved by it too.
“Man, so your dreams about this girl were actually true?” He said as we stood staring at the retreating tail-light of the car that was conveying Ada and her friends out of the airport in Lagos.
“Pally, I’m surprised about it also,” I said, “I know the dreams seemed so real but I never expected it to be this accurate.”
“So what are you planning on doing next?”
“I’ll give her a call in two days’ time and ask her to go on a lunch date with me.”
“She would definitely want to find out how you got to know the things you know about her; will you tell her you used to see her in your dreams?”
“Yes I will,” I said, “If I don’t, what else would you have me tell her?”
“I don’t know but don’t you think telling her about the dream stuffs will freak her out?”
“I strongly suspect it will but I just have to tell her,” I said.
“Well, you have her contacts now, don’t mess up this chance you’ve got,” Chijioke said.
I agreed with him; getting Ada’s contact details was not easy but I finally did after jolting her into curiosity with a little revelation of the things I knew about her. I hadn’t expected my dream information about her to be that accurate but so far it has been bull eye accurate. The experience was freaky even to me.
It took the idiot five days to call me (that was the exact way I had thought about Brian then though he is no longer an idiot to me now). You can imagine that; five whole days! The young man waited for precisely 122 hours, 36 minutes and 51 seconds to call me! After putting me in a frenzy of suspense, he leisurely waited for five days before calling me. At this point I was literally going insane with curiosity about the strange guy, and counting the hours.
I was so expectant of the call of this total stranger that I always used to rush to my phone whenever it rang. It so got to a point that I started responding in annoyance whenever the caller at the other end turned out not to be him. Thank God, for the sake of my woman pride, that I didn’t have his number; I probably would have called him when the wait became unbearable.
After our initial bonding at the conference in Calabar Nengi, Omotola and I became close friends. They were always around me during these five days at their spare hours, and they used to tease me over my reaction to Brian’s awaited call. They were also curious to find out how he got to know the stuffs he knew about me and so they used to drill me for information. Nengi and Omotola unwittingly helped in keeping the picture of Brian perpetually in my thoughts for five days. Every woman knows what happens to the mind when one thinks of a particular male consistently for a long time.
“Ada, it seems you have developed feelings for this guy,” Nengi said.
“Yeah, that’s exactly my observation,” Omotola added.
“Cut it out girls,” I said, “I have no feelings for him, I’m just curious about him and I am dying to discover how he laid hands on my bio.”
And that was how we had argued back and forth on how I felt about Brian until his call finally came through. When the call came in and I realized it was him, I had a very profound urge to antagonize him for the torturous wait he had put me through but I didn’t want him to read the wrong meanings into my anxieties over his call so I suppressed that urge though not without effort.
After the usually silly chitchats, I had come close again to unleashing my frustration on him when he still refused to divulge his source; claiming he couldn’t do it over the phone that he needed to see me. My girls were on edge, straining to catch wind of the entire conversation; they even pleaded I put it on speaker mode but I declined, enjoying their impatience for information. After trying severally and failing to get him say what I wanted to hear over the phone, I reluctantly agreed to a date. He asked for my address so he could pick me up, I told him not to bother that I would meet him at the rendezvous at the appointed time. After scheduling a place and time, I ended the call.
“What did he say?” Nengi asked immediately I got off the phone.
“He didn’t say anything,” I replied matter-of-factly.
“What do you mean by he didn’t say anything?” Nengi prodded. “So why did the call take so long?”
“We were just arguing,” I said, I knew what they wanted to hear but I wanted their minds to go on overdrive with curiosity.
“Arguing over what? Look Ada, you must spill word for word everything about that phone call,” Omotola said and we all burst out laughing.
My girls had wanted to accompany me to the date after I narrated my conversation with Brian to them. The loquacious Nengi, after I had told them of the date, had emoted.
“Yea, we are going on a date.”
“Who said you are going on any date?” I asked her.
“Are you saying we are not going to accompany you Ada?” Nengi said with incredulity.
“Cut it out Nengi,” Omotola said, “Allow her to have her date alone.”
“Please help me knock that into her brain cells Omotola,” I said laughing.
Nengi grudgingly accepted but added the caveat, “You must give us details on your return and it must be full disclosure; nothing omitted.”
“Deal,” I said.
I had wanted to call Ada two days after I got her phone number but got so busy preparing for a show that I didn’t. Well, that was the lame excuse I gave but the truth is that I was adequately occupied by some pressing coital engagements that involved intensive romping with two insatiable ladies and so I ended up calling her five days later. Ha! What a week it was but it got me into trouble much later by exhuming itself from the mass grave where I had buried it.
I got to the rendezvous exactly at the appointed time and that was a lucky strike for me because Ada was a stickler to time; she had arrived a minute earlier. Walking into the serene ambiance of the classy restaurant I had chosen for our first date, I saw her seated in a booth to the left by the glass panel. “Hey, I hope I didn’t keep you waiting?” I asked, also offering the job engagement excuse to explain why it took me a while to call her.
“Nope,” She said, “you are just approximately a minute behind me. I stick to time and I hate people who don’t.”
“Sure, I also detest people who fail to stick to schedule.” That was a big lie but she didn’t know that.
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