Matured Stories

THE RUNAWAY BRIDE – Season 1 – Episode 2

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As she sat there, almost lost in her thoughts, the flight to Uyo was announced, the announcement startled her as she moved quickly and caused the phone of the man beside her to fall to the floor, he reacted by trying frantically to save it but it was an unsuccessful effort.


“What the hell?”
he almost shouted at her


“I am sorry,”
Chinwe said as she quickly picked up his phone and tried to see if no permanent damage was done to it, he snatched the phone out of her hand as if she wanted to contaminate it.
“Watch yourself lady,” he hissed as he took a good look at his phone before advancing to
the exit door for the boarding pass, but not before giving a hateful look at the
perpetrator.

Chinwe almost poked her tongue at him as she followed him to the exit door. She waited in line till she got to the lady attending to them, who did a quick body search on her and asked her to proceed to the aircraft, at the entrance, Chinwe was met by a very attractive lady who gave her a genuine smile and directed her to her seat after taking a
look at the perforated boarding pass.
“8A ma” pointing to the right side of the aisle

“Thank you”

As she walked down the aisle, she saw that someone was at the row already and she moved closer, she discovered the person to be the Yanni guy, whose phone she accidentally
knocked off his hands.

Chinwe decided to ignore him as she put her back pack in the locker closer to her; she sat down beside him and rested her head back.

Finally, she thought, finally, she is escaping
the life that would drown her if she stayed.

She heard and listened faintly to the safety briefing before takeoff and as the engine of the aircraft revved, she took a deep swallow and dug her hand frantically in her jeans
pocket to see if she could possibly find a gum;
none, she would have to wait for the
refreshments to be served and endure the
fullness in her ears due to altitude changes.

The aircraft ran along the airway and she
watched through the window at the distance they leave behind, and before long, they were airborne. Chinwe watched as her seat
“companion” put his prized phone on the seat in between them.

When she saw it, she took a better look at the phone and almost hissed, the phone was cheaper compared with the one she left behind. She looked straight ahead and before long, refreshment was served.

She consumed the snacks ravenously because she had little
to eat earlier; her friends had mocked her of having knotted stomach because of the events and because of what would happen later in the night. Little did they know she was all strung up because of what her plans were and
the fear of it not working out had left her all knotted up inside.

After eating her snacks, she opened the single candy in the pack and plopped it into her mouth. All the while she was eating; she did not notice the man beside her looking closely at her.

He was acknowledging her for the first
time since he bumped into her at the
departure waiting room.

Taking a closer look at her now that her cap is off, she looked to be around 24 or 26, her hair was shiny and very lady like as if she was going for a stage event that would attract lots of audience. Her ear ring seemed very small as if it would go well with a larger piece if
she likes. Her nails were well painted too; her feet were covered to the toes with a pair of sandals well embellished in bright white stones. She looked like royalty if one could separate her from the jacket and the white top and a faded pair of jeans and even at that,
her face stands out.

She has a small pointed nose well placed at the center of her face, her lips are well
proportioned not too full and not too thin
either, her eyes are big but not
overshadowing or reducing her beauty, every feature on her seem to compliment the face and yes, she is a looker.
Davis wondered why he never noticed her
earlier, she was having a cap on, yes and she appeared to be in a hurry even while she was seated there. Her mind was miles away he could tell, although he noticed her tapping her foot along with the rhythm of the song he was listening to, but he did not care for her
interest in music. Who could blame him, he
was also miles away, fuming silently and
hoping the flight would be announced soon.

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He arrived angry and listening to music was the only way he would not be sitting there scowling and scaring people away. He did not know how long he stared at her, but she
seemed to be falling asleep, Davis had never been known to be able to fall asleep on flights, he was always scared of missing the opportunity for escape if there was an emergency.

The flight continued beautifully but on some other occasions, he would have been admiring the clouds out his window, he never got tired
of looking at them especially on a bright
sunny day as this, but the beauty beside him was taking all his attention. He wondered what her name would be, he found himself giving her different names in his head. Sylvia,
Joy, Mercy, Glory, Sandra, Princess, yes,
princess seems more suitable.

His Princess slightly moved her head from
side to side, she was coming out of her beauty sleep, but she settled in again and resumed her sleep, she must be very tired to be able to sleep soundly on a plane or she is a good air traveler. Davis wondered how many times she must have taken air trips in her young
beautiful live.

After some enchanting moments, the pilot’s voice broke into his thoughts and announced the weather and that they would be arriving Uyo airport in 15 minutes. Davis simply re-
seated himself well so as not to startle the
princess beside him, who was waking up to the announcement. He wondered if he could chat with her as they were preparing to land in Uyo, or if he could charm her to take a ride with him to the city. Who knows if a convoy is awaiting her at the airport, he thought to
himself.

Looking away from her only made him dwell on the thoughts he had been planning to postpone, but there is no getting away from it,
his parents were at it again and he will not give in to them this time. He will finish his Master’s degree and advance to do his PhD in any state or part of the world he wants, he is an only son, but he is a full grown man with a mind of his own and they should release their
hold on him. He can’t stay with them forever.

As things went on in the plane with the
hostesses walking to collect the paper cups and nylons of the snacks, his princess passed hers to them and resumed looking out the window,
Davis wished he could look into her
eyes and see the color of her eyes, but he was sure it would be brown, brown not black, black would make her intense, brown would make her…, he stopped musing, he must be going crazy defining her eye color or whatever it was he was doing.

He should be concentrating on his problems,

on how he would survive and make money, prove to his parents that he is grown and that he could take good decisions. He is 27 for
God’s sake; he would not continue to work there with his father and made to believe he knows what he’s doing when he knows well
they are tolerating him because he’s the
CEO’s son, besides, sitting in the room and talking money is not his thing.
His decision to have his Master’s degree was not because he wanted to study but because he needed to be free.

Chinwe woke up and gathered herself into a sitting position, her mind was clearer than it was before she fell asleep, she hoped Clara
would be available when she gets to Uyo
airport. She found the annoying guy staring at her but she chose to ignore him.

She, however, looked from the corner of her eyes to see if she had not mistakenly gathered his stuff with hers in the seat in between them.

She knows he does not recognize her from anywhere; she has always kept a low profile.

It is too soon for her pictures to be flying over the internet.

When the announcement to buckle up for
landing came, she felt he was still looking at her so she faced him and she caught him off guard because he almost wanted to look away but must have decided against it, instead of a scowl on his face, he kept staring at her as if
he had something to say. Chinwe was also
staring at him as if she wanted to bite his
head off but continued to look at him also.

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A hostess suddenly appeared beside him and asked him to buckle up and put his seat in an upright position, which must have broken the spell that was over him because he awkwardly sat up and adjusted his seat.

When the hostess walked away, he turned to her and said;

“How could you manage to sleep through the entire flight?”

“Did my snore bother you?” she asked rudely


“No, of course not, I only meant it is a good gift to be able to… you know, and no you did not snore?”

“Hmm” Chinwe said and turned to look out the window,

The view was getting bigger and becoming clearer, but her mind was on the lady that promised to take her in, her friend from the University days. As they got off the flight, Chinwe was moving quickly and towards the
taxi section, she had no bag to claim at the conveyor, so she did not notice Davis rushing and almost pushing a woman to the floor in order to catch up with her.


“Hey, wait up”
he said as he rushed after her

“Uni-Uyo” Chinwe was already bargaining with a driver

On hearing Uni-uyo, Davis was ecstatic, he
was heading the same way to meet with his friend he would be staying with and proceed from there to get an apartment.


‘’Yes, Uni-Uyo gate, the new campus”

The driver mentioned an outrageous price,
that gave Davis the opportunity to cut in, he was going the same way and today would make it the 3 time he would be going by taxi, he knows the driver was asking for almost twice the price.


“You can’t be serious, the price is half of that,
if you would take us say so now before my regular driver comes out”
he has no regular customer of course.

On the other side, Chinwe was asking him
with anger


“Which ‘Us’ are you referring too?”

“Are you two together?”

“No”

“Yes” they both answered at the same time,


“Ok, I understand, oga I will carry you both at that price, but e be like say you don offend your woman o”

“Don’t worry about us, just bring your car around”

The driver on hearing this hurried off to get the car,


“I am not taking a cab with you mister”

“Davis. Why? It would be cheaper we could split the fare if you don’t feel comfortable about me paying”

“I don’t want to share a vehicle with you”

“Ok, but I would love you to, so I can
apologize for my behavior back in Lagos, and sharing with me would reduce the money for me too, I don’t have enough to pay for the trip. Please”

While he was talking, the driver pulled up
beside them, Chinwe looked at him and
opened the door and took her seat, and Davis clapped his hands excitedly and got in beside her
“What can I call you please?”
“Nothing”
“Wow,that’s an odd name, nothing?”

Chinwe picked her phone and dialed Clara’s number, the number was switched off, she was scared already, that was the only contact
person she has in Uyo, she does not know if she could get a room for the night with the N15,500 with her, and she still has to pay for the driver
Davis must have noticed her panic. She dialed again and it was the same response, so she sent a message quickly to her hoping she would put on her phone and call her back
before they arrive at the Uni-uyo gate. She
does not know how long the ride would be for, but was scared to ask the person beside her.

Davis also dialed his friend’s number to know his fate; he broke into a wide smile as he heard his friend’s voice at the second ring,


“Guy, how far. I am on my way to the gate
we should be there in the next 30 minutes”

On hearing 30 minutes, Chinwe dialed again and was disappointed to hear it was still switched off.


“The number’s not going through?”

“No”

“Do you know where she stays; we could ask to locate the hostel”

She’s not staying in the hostel; we only
agreed to meet there”

Ok, do you know anyone apart from this
person?”

No”
Ah”
“She will call as soon as she puts on her
phone”
she said as prayers
As they both sat at the back of the car, the driver was looking at them with curious eyes,
wondering if he could drive her to someplace safe, boys this age and looks cannot be trusted
and the lady looked like she needed
protection, although he doesn’t mind offering her a place in his arms, he smiled to himself.

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As they drove on, Chinwe kept dialing the
number, but the replies were the same;
”switched off.”

“I think you need to stop dialing the number in order to save your battery life, in case she sees your message and decides to call, don’t
run out the battery before then.”

As their driver took them through the road,
Chinwe’s mind was worlds apart; fear gripped her heart at the thought of Clara not putting on her phone.

At the end of their journey, Chinwe counted half of the money they agreed to pay the driver and handed it over to Davis who added his also, and then gave the notes to the driver.

“Sister, if her number is not going, I know a place that is cheap that you can stay”

The look in the drivers eyes made Davis stand protectively beside Chinwe and told the driver in no words to be careful;
“She is fine oga, we have paid you”

“I can give you my number in case you need me to pick you up later”

The driver ignored Davis as he scribbled his number on a piece of paper he got from his car, Chinwe took it and thanked him, and she shoved the paper at the back of her jeans and
pulled her backpack on her shoulders.

“See, my name is davis and it seems my friend is running late, can we go somewhere and have something to eat while we wait?”

“Ebere, where can we wait?”

Davis remembered a small shop he got an
envelope from the last time he came to Uyo, he pointed in the direction of the shop and they both walked to the entrance of the University, looking like what the driver initially thought them to be.

Davis asked her to follow him to the snacks joint to the side of the gate, when they sat he placed a call to Joseph, his friend who promised to be out soon to pick him up.

He decided not to mention Ebere yet, in case her friend showed up and took her away before Joseph himself arrives.

As they sat, Davis asked for some biscuits and drinks for the 2 of them, Chinwe collected them gratefully and opened them to eat slowly; she was worried and calculating how she would spend the night if Clara’s number
never got through.

She did not know for how long they sat there waiting for either a call from Clara or from Davis’ friend, but it was beginning to look
late, a glance at her cellphone confirmed it
was few minutes before 4 pm,
Some minutes later, a car came and packed in front of the shop where they sat and a man came out, looking like a DJ, as soon as he saw
Davis, he gave a shout.


“Rabbi”
Davis shouted as they enveloped themselves in a big hugs full of claps and punches to the shoulder, Chinwe almost winced on their behalf.


“You must have been sitting for long, no vex”

“No problem, meet my friend, we arrived
together and it seems her friend is also
running late”

“Oh, Ebere, how are things?” she greeted him they shook hand as his eyes grazed over her from the head to the toes and back again.


So what’s happening, can we leave now or…”

he said as he looked back at where Chinwe stood


“I don’t know if we can wait for her friend”

Joseph looked his friend over and they started talking about lots of things, they did that for about 30 minutes before the owner of the shop started clearing the goods from outside
the shop.

“Why not come with us to my place, not too far from here and when your friend calls, I could drive you back to meet with her.

You guys must be tired and to be sincere, I am
too”
he said to Chinwe in particular. Chinwe
looked at Davis and he shrugged at her as if
the decision was left to her.
She stood up and picked up her back pack,
Davis eagerly took it from her and dropped it at the back of the car for her; all the while,

“Rabbi”
was looking at his friend. He was so sure he was smitten by the beautiful lady

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