Francis fought and kicked hard to free himself but Derek seemed to have been stronger than he was. He took out handcuff from his pocket and cuffed him the same way he did to my dad.
Derek: “You are under arrest Francis Umuodiah for the murder of Miss Ahunli Onyejekwe. It will be in your best interest to be silent since anything you say will be used against you in the court of law” he said hurling him up on his feet. His hand was cuffed behind his back.
One of the guys walked over and untied us, looking at us pitifully. Derek handed him to one of the officers and he was led away with the officers surrounding him.
Derek: “I am sorry ladies. I am very very sorry, It was my fault” he said hugging us both at the same time. He was weeping silently.
Anita: “Yes it was your fault. You shouldn’t have left, learn to listen to your woman sometimes” she was obviously relieved but pretending otherwise.
Derek: “Lesson learnt ma’am. Will never be disobedient again. Hope you two are not hurt anywhere?”
Anita: “We are fine. Rose hope you aren’t hurt?” she bent down to check every single part of my body and when she was satisfied that I wasn’t hurt, she hugged me then.
Rose: “I am fine Annie” I said hugging her back. The two dangerous men who were after me had been taken into custody. I was more than relieved. I felt alive and ready to heal, to grow into adulthood even though I was still uncertain as to where to go after then. Maybe I was going to go home to my grandparents, I wondered how they were going to take it knowing my own dad had caused their daughter’s death. Weren’t they going to carry out that aggression on me? I felt like I didn’t belong with them, I wouldn’t be welcomed there.
The next day when she was still asleep, I decided to talk to Derek about what I have been thinking about. I led him outside out of her earshot.
Derek: “What is it sunshine? Am I going to get reprimanded for yesterday again?” he asked holding me tightly by the waist.
Anita: “Not at all even though you deserve to be berated for the rest of your life. That reminds me, how did you know to come back sef?”
Derek: “I was half-way to the place he told me about when I decided to check the CCTV which I had connected to my phone and saw him inside swinging that scary looking axe. God! I felt fooled and useless at that moment. I had to call my assistant to meet me in front of my house with the rest of the team. And I dunno why it took them so long to reach here too since we met at the junction. My neighbour also called on my way here to confirm that someone was in here trying to hurt you guys. I had to tell him to hang around to tell me all of his movement since there was no camera outside here”
Anita: “So he was the one lurking around in the shadow then?”
Derek: “Yeah I guess and honey, I am extremely sorry. Will never leave you vulnerable like that again. I am sorry” he said looking straight into my eyes, the sun reflecting in his handsome face.
Anita: “It’s okay though. I’m just glad you are always on time. And what I wanted to tell you was that I want to adopt Rose”
Derek: “What? How about her grand-parents? I don’t think that is a good idea Annie” he looked away.
Anita: “I called to ask them if I could yesterday and they said it was okay by them as long as she will continue being their grand daughter and I wouldn’t stop them from seeing her whenever they want”
Derek: “So how were you able to convince her grandparents? I’m not saying I will agree to that yet o”
Anita: “Well it wasn’t easy actually but when I told them all she had been through and the fact that she had met them just once before and wouldn’t even recognise them and the fact that she needed stability and I was willing to provide that for her. I could be a mother and you, a father to her. I was the one told them they will continue being her family and will even have more access to her now than they did before”
Derek: “Hmmmmmm…you are worded mehn! And you are a good woman Annie. I am the luckiest man on earth right now. How did you come about this idea of
yours though? I wouldn’t have been able to think of it myself” he was full of admiration for me, making my head swell uncontrollably.
Anita: “I just don’t want her being sad all her life. I don’t want her to go back to living on edge. And she is already getting used to me. I really like her. I like her very very much I don’t want her out of my reach”
Derek: “Okay sweetie. Know I am support of whatever you decide to do. We are in this together and we will surely give her the best, help heal those scars in her heart and her body. We will try all we can” he said, holding me against his chest. I could hear his heart pimping aggressively. We were alive, and we were making this decision together. I felt on top of the world, blessed and graced. What patience can do.
I couldn’t help but overhear their discussion. I could not believe my luck. I who had always gotten rejected, I who had always been mocked and used is now being loved to this extent. I couldn’t contain my joy, I ran out and joined in their embrace even though I was not up to their height.
Rose: “Thanks Annie. No! thanks mum, I will call you two mum and dad from now on” I said excitedly and they both laughed.
Anita: “We are more than glad to have you in our lives baby”
Derek: “I guess we just had a child out of wedlock. Honey please marry me before we become the talk of the town” he said and went on his knees, brought out a ring from his pocket and held it in front of her. “I was going to this later today in a five
star hotel but I just can’t postpone it anymore. What better time than now in front of our daughter? Will you marry me Annie?”
The two of us were dumbfounded…
Anita and I: “Yes yes yes” we said jumping up. I felt like I was the one being proposed to, I was extremely happy I didn’t know when I said yes yes yes. He slipped the ring into her third finger, I turned away when they started to kiss.
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