“On no account should my wife leave this compound, and no one is allowed to come in to visit unless I give you the go ahead, I should be back shortly and feel free to call me when you need clarification”
“Chris let’s go”
Chris followed him back to the car, holding
back all the questions he would have loved to get answers to immediately.
When he made the turning to his house,
Tokunbo’s phone rang
“Hello Mum, I am fine and she is fine too, sleeping in the house…yes, okay, yeah, I am out of the house for a little while… I should be back shortly mum, the security guard is there and see, I can’t be there every time to prevent her from running away. I know, yeah…thanks, alright.”
With a heavy sigh, he dropped the phone
back on the space between them and rested his head back. One would expect his mood would have improved since yesterday when his wife was found, but he looked bitter and sadder than he was the week before.
Chris maneuvered the car to the tiny space left for him in his compound and waited for Tokunbo to alight before packing in the tiny space.
Tokunbo went into the house ahead of
him and stopped at the door when he realized Chris has the key to the apartment he was hurrying into.
“Guy, what exactly is the problem? This your mood is scaring the sh*t out of me
“Open the door first” he said with a faint smile.
When they entered his apartment, the heat almost blew them back.
“Spill it out bro, I am curious and I hate the way you are scowling and ready to pounce”
“She wants a divorce”
“She does, when her parents asked what the reason for running away was, she said she no longer wishes to be married to me.”
“So she actually ran away?”
“Yea she did and the reason from what I can gather from the nonsense she was saying this morning is that my past action ruined someone’s life.”
“Who’s life and what was that action of yours?”
“The person’s whose life I ruined I still don’t know, but can you believe she thinks I raped someone? Me raped…?” He was now on his
feet, beating his chest as if he could not
believe what he heard. Chris sat back in his chair and looked at his friend well, digesting all he just heard and still could not put them together to form a coherent flow of thought.
“I am lost”
“So am I”
“But you should have made her explain what she meant with that accusation. That is too serious to throw around carelessly”
“You think I did not try? She went crazy
asking if I would rape her too and she started hitting me. Guy, I have never seen a thing like that in my entire life. I liked this babe like…”
“Calm down, we need to take this from the top”
“I already thought about everything and I just don’t know what piece I missed to solve this whole puzzle. I am burnt out!”
“Let’s still think about it together. Could it be she met your former girlfriend or someone who has personal interest in you or what?”
“Who else have I dated in Nigeria since I
came back 4 years ago aside Susan and she is married with a kid now. Every other girl I dated would be in the United States and we were clear on what the relationship was.
The last girl I dated before meeting her was Debby and we ended everything months before I met Chinwe and we remain friends”
“Still, could it be any of them said something like that to her or what do you think?”
“I doubt that, she said it as if this person is well known to her”
“What about girls you dated before traveling out
“I dated just Susan and you know it, she was even the one that broke off with me”
“But can I ask you in all honesty?”
“If you ask me if I ever raped or molested any girl in my life then I need to ask if you know me at all, Chris?”
“I am not the enemy here; we are just trying to reason through this whole thing together”
“I have never in my life, molested a lady or come close to doing so. You should know me; we have been together for how long now, Chris?”
“I know, but what do you want to do?”
“If she said she found someone else and
would like to be with him, I might be able to live with that, but she is claiming I raped someone, then I have to see the proof and the person. This will not end with me keeping quiet about this.”
“That is exactly my stand on this, and she might just be using that to unsettle you. Could be she already has someone else?”
“Yeah, but why go through with the wedding in the first place? Why go through all that stress when I could have easily let her go and be happy with whatever decision she made?”
I agree with you on that guy, this is
“I thought the nightmare ended when I heard she was returning home, but I never planned for this”
“Don’t worry, God is in control”
“God, did you just say God?”
“Yes now, who else?”
“Chinwe is in control”
They sat for about 2 hours talking about other issues, trying as much as possible to distract themselves from the obvious staring them in the face. When Chris’ sister returned from church, they all ate together before they drove Tokunbo to his house
“You know what came to my mind now? I should just get home and find out she ran away again”
“Stop thinking that way, she would not.”
“I hear you.”
Chinwe chewed slowly on the sliced bread
from her plate, she felt terrible for not coming to say hi to Chris when he came in the morning.
She always liked him and has
nothing against him. She just was in no state to be courteous at that time. Her anger was practically making her vibrate and being courteous wouldn’t have been possible at that time.
She scrolled on her Facebook page and could not but laugh when she saw so many Facebook updates tagging her and thanking God for her safe return from the hands of the kidnappers. She just finished with her mother too, who said some people from the church returned home with her to thank God on her behalf and asked if she could make time for a
proper thanksgiving the following Sunday.
The arrival of a car at the gate drew her
attention away from her phone. She had
checked earlier and found Tokunbo’s car at the garage, obviously his friend drove him down.
She weighed her options running inside the room and avoid him again or just face him and get it over with. Considering how close the two are, she is sure Tokunbo told him everything already. How long can she hide anyway?
As the door to the sitting room opened,
Tokunbo who was in front, followed by Chris’ sister . Chris was taken back at seeing her at the dining table. She liked the look of surprise on his face and would have laughed if things
“Hi Chris, welcome everyone” Chinwe greeted them brightly. Chris did not know what to make of the greeting as he glanced between his friend and his wife. He expected hostility or her absence again, but definitely not her warm greeting, especially since she looked so
“Hi Chinwe, it is good to have you back”Chris crossed to her side and gave her a hug, staring at Tokunbo as he did.
“That must be your sister, you guys look alike,
Hi, I am Chinwe, please sit down”
“Thanks ma, welcome back. We are happy to have you back” Nkiru, Chris’ sister replied nervously.
“Thanks, what would you like to have?”
“Anything would be fine”
“Please, wait while I get you something”
Tokunbo could not believe the new Chinwe in front of his friends, she was playing the lovely host when he knows full well that she would love to be out of here because she hates him for sins he does not have an idea
He sat down on one of the chairs, feeling like the guest instead of the owner of the house as his wife returns from the kitchen with a tray containing a pack of juice and 4 cups, yes 4;
Tokunbo counted again to be sure. When she placed it down on the centre table, he saw that there was a plate containing biscuits too.
Tokunbo watched as she poured out the juice into the cups and handed it to his friends, giving to him last. He wanted to catch her eyes to be sure she knows who she was serving last. Tokunbo thanked her politely and placed the cup on the small round coffee table beside him as he watched his friend try to make conversation.
They all soon fell quiet when there was
nothing left to say that would not go back to the real thing they would like to talk about.
Tokunbo stood up and put on the TV, making extra efforts to skip the local stations while he looked for a suitable station that would fill in the silence.
“Leave it there, that should be Wednesday’s match, you did not watch it” Chris said suddenly
“Let your sister talk, at least you already watched the match”
“She loves football too”
“Nkiru, do you want me to change the
“Yes, take it to 21, there is a comedy show airing at this time”
Chris gave a playful shove on his sister’s
head, as Tokunbo obliged her
Tokunbo took the seat he vacated, looking at his wife from the corner of his eyes as she took a sip from the cup she had in her hand, watching the comedy with her shoulder shaking slightly from the laugh she tried holding in.
Chinwe stood up and went to the kitchen; she decided to step up her game of shocking Tokunbo and his friends. If there should be anyone hanging his head in shame, it should be him not her, so she made a mental decision to be as free as she could be with his friends and family. For all she cared, she already told him what she wanted to say, he
either deals with or not.
Chinwe earlier found some plantain in the
kitchen, probably from what he had left after that morning’s cooking. She heated up the rice and stew, fried fresh plantain and before long, the aroma already got to the sitting room.
Tokunbo watched in surprise as she set
the table for 4, yes 4 and seeing her try to
handle different things at once, Nkiru stood up to help her, between the 2 of them the table was set; rice, stew and fresh plantain for the 4 of them.
Tokunbo looked at his friend’s face and he shrugged as if to tell him, what choice do we have as he stood up to join them at the table,
stopping beside his friend to tap
encouragingly on the shoulder.
They ate with very little said. Pass that please, take this was all they said throughout the meal and when they finished, Nkiru helped in the kitchen to clean up. For a while, Tokunbo felt he would be nice to have his friend stay
with him forever, if it would make the entire nightmare and the drama of the morning stay away.
When Nkiru returned from the kitchen, Chris announced they were ready to and Tokunbo almost begged them to stay a little while, but he did not. He stood up and accompanied his friend and his sister and was surprised to see Chinwe follow them. When he got to his car,
Chris turned to Chinwe and said…
“Chinwe, whatever it is, God is in control, just trust in him and take care of my friend. He is a good person, believe me.”That said, he joined his sister in the car and Tokunbo waved to them as the car drove away,
wondering what he said to Chinwe.
They walked back inside the house together looking like normal couple to the ordinary eyes even though they were not holding hands not talking as they walked in, but they look good together.