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A Story written by Durodola OLAWALE YUSUPH (Durodolad9ty7@gmail.com +2348166920449, www.penprimus.com Info@penprimus.com)

She watched in horror as her father went to the recycle bin and all the pictures involving every member of her family, including the one taken in group were swimming in the bin. “Serena, how much worse can this get?” “Am sorry daddy.” She had dropped to her knees. “Are you saying this boy is more important tha n your family members?” “No sir, he is just a friend.” She replied. “You know I don’t like beating you, don’t make me change my mind. The only friend I know you have is that girl who just left now, and to my suprise, you don’t have any of her pictures.” Sh e watched as her father operated he computer like a wizard. She knew she was in for a double treat. One for Jake’s picture and their relationship and the other trouble would be about her having a boyfriend. “How old are you if I may ask. “Eighteen sir.” Sh e replied. “Which means you are an adult and you can have boyfriends right?” He asked. She could only shake her head. “And I think I overheard one of you saying he studies in America.” “Yes sir.” she replied, thinking it would soften her father’s heart bec see him as a boy with a bright future. ause he would “Do you know I have the money to sponsor you education in America?” He asked. She nodded. “l am not. going out with him because he studies in America.” She defended. “So, why are you going out with him?” Anita stood transfixed in front of her in friend.law, her boyfriend and her boyfriend r s “Can someone tell me the exact thing that is going on?” Patrick asked as he moved to stand beside Uncle James. “Anita came to me that she needed to rent an apartmen t, so I decided to bring her to my friend James.” Olu replied confidently, even though one could see the fear in his eyes, but as grown up man who is nearing the age of fifty, he should be able to defend himself, afterall, he is a lawyer. Patrick stood sti ll and exchanged look with James who felt withdrawn, because the last thing he wanted to be involved in was the issue as trivial as this which could lead to the family breaking up. “Olu, so tell me why James introduced you two as couples?” Patrick asked. O IL] gave a hearty laugh as he looked from the helpless and ashamed Anita to the indifferent James and cool Patrick. “Uncle Patrick, you can play pranks, I swear. Anita is my wife, she is your wife. Is she not Oluwole’s wife? Our custom speaks volume.” Jame s nodded his head in agreement with what Olu just said. Since he was very familiar with Patrick and his younger ones(Oluwole, Jane and Collins) he had no idea that they could be in anyway related to Barrister Olu. And moresor the last time he saw Oluwole w as when he finished from the University, he wasn’t opportuned to attend his wedding and by the time he felt it right to visit the couples, Patrick had already relocated to the states. And the only way you could access a king is through his chiefs.

l concu r with what ‘The law’ just said. I mean, you guys are related, he can decide to call any of your wives his wife. ” James added “James, its like you don’t understand. Anita here just divorced with Oluwole some few weeks back, And since Olu here is a lawyer , he is always in charge of her law suits. Which narrowed down to the fact that he handled the divorce case. So, why is he acting all ignorant here?” Patrick said as he moved towards Olu who moved backwards a little bit and bowed his head “Olu, do you kno w the number of years I spent with your father as a young boy learning the ropes of business? I have been with him even befOre you were born.” Patrick began “l never for once looked at his women twice. We all know how much women you father keeps outside h is marriage. They are all girls of my age, but what is due to the elders is due to them. Even though Wole is a few years older than you, plus he has divorced his wife. Whatever your brother has dropped to the ground, probably because he was tired of it, on no account should you pick his leftover without him giving you his word.” That was all Anita needed to hear as she grabbed her bag and walked out of the compound. Even at forty nine, she was being considered a leftover. How much worse can it get? “You mea n she has mothered three children?” James asked as he sat down with Patrick, while Olu remained on his feet “Not only thre children. Her first child should be twenty five or thereabout.” “Woman!!!” James exclaimed “Don’t blame herr blame the randy man her pointing at Olu. e who couldn’t hold himself.” Patrick said “Do you realise the dangers that comes with you fðllowing boys around at this age?” Oluwole asked his daughter who by now was crying her eyes out as she begged her father. “Daddy, am very sorry sir. I was just a little be too naive and couldn’t differentiate from what is right and what is wrong.” She cried. “Naive you said? No you are not. You know the right thing, but you just loved doing the wrong thing. Remember this is what cost your mother h er place in this house.” The reply hit her hard in the heart and she could feel a piece break from the organ. “You have even started kissing boys. At eighteen, when you ought to be planning on what your future should look like even without men. Or do you t hink you can’t make it without a man in your life? That’s a wrong notion.” It hurts more when rather than be flogged with a cane, one is being flogged with words. “Daddy, please forgive me’ “You didn’t offend me.” He replied as he handed the laptop over t the door. o her and made for “You dissapointed me.” Was the last thing he said before he walked in. “Serena, sorry o.” The gateman called from his post and she felt embarrassed that moment. “Idiot” She screamed at him before walking into the house. Taking time to study the philosopy behind the existense of heaven, earth and the things that dwell in them, one would realise that everything created by God is in pairs. While the created heaven, he created earth and both places are dweliing places.

While he crea ted the animals on air, he created the ones on land, while he created man, he added the woman to make the equation complete, an act that brought about pocreation and reproduction. While he created the good, he created the bad, while he created the saviour of the world, at a point, one of his creations became the agent of destruction. And it is in nature for man at a point to keep making efforts and in the end, have nothing to show for it, while some set of people put little or no efforts at all and in the e nd, things tends to work their way. But as nature is no respecter of anybody, a day or time will come when the always successful man will hit his low and fail, while the man who has never tasted success will at a point make it big and looking back, he will feel like he had never suffered in his life. Serena tried to cast her mind back to the time everything was rosy between her parents and happiness runing through the family. She realised that there was never a time to pick because her present predicament s eemed to have beclouded her sense of reasoning. And just like a popular writer, J K Rowling once said in one of her books, “‘these creatures are out to suck out the happiness in ones life and the only way to foil their attempt is to think of sad moments in your life.” And nature sometimes plays trick on us, because at the time when one tries to think of sad moments, happy moments keep springing up, thereby empowering the creatures. Serena after her father had walked out on her three days ago, she has been u nable to face him. She had skipped meals and eaten in the comfort of her room. Skipped going to church by either going on her own or going to any of the branches nearby. She remembered the last conversation she had with Davies, how he had adviced her like the big brother he was and she could not help but agree with everything he said. The doorbell rang bringing her out of her reverie, as she stood up and walked towards the frontdoor to meet Jake who had already forfeited his flight schedule all in the name of love. “Hi.” He said She ignored him and let him into the house. Her heart pumped faster, being her first time of inviting a boy home without Stephanie beside her, “Thanks for allowing me to come. At least I will be able to explain myself “Shhhh ” You don’t need that. Am cool with you.” She replied and could see his eyes lit up in happiness. “But I still don’t see sense in why you have refused to return to school.” “There is enough sense in it. I am working on my transfer already.” He replied “And you had no problem convincing dad and mum?” she asked “Dad was okay with it, afterall, he was never in support of my living alone in the states, but mum, she took me to three churches, before she was sure that I am not possessed.” He replied with a short laug h and Serena could not help but smile too. “Sorry don’t mind my manners. What do I offer you?” She asked “Your heart and the love that comes with it.” He replied. She looked at him like he was acting or playing a prank, but the serious and expectant look on his face told her all she needed to know. That was when she realised that she wasn’t ready to discuss things with him before she allowed him to visit. Now, she couldn’t decline his request and also couldn’t accept it. “Fine, I’ll just get you a pack of fruit juice.” She said as she walked into the where she had to sit down to think. “Are you okay?” Ae asked five minutes later when she hadn’t returned. “Yeah. Am fine.” she replied as she got up on her feet and approached the fridge, but he preven kitchen ted her from doing so. “Baby, what’s going to happen to us, now that I have decided to stay?” He asked. “l don’t know o.” She replied “Are you saying despite all my pleading, you still find it hard to forgive me?

To Be Continued…

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