BROKEN HEDGE (Part 29&30) – TOYIN TAIWO
On our way home, Oba and I started talking about the event of the day.
“Let’s stop at the restaurant close to my house” I said.
“Let me just take you straight home. You need to rest, you know the condition of your hand”
“I’m not tired, I’m fine. You guys all worry too much about me but I’m fine”
“Okay if you insist” he shrugged.
We settled down at the restaurant and placed our orders.
“You know, we never talked about your salary”
“Don’t worry, your dad said he’ll handle it”
“You really like my dad and he likes you too. Sometimes I get jealous you know”
“Huh…. don’t be. You know the condition at which we met brought us closer. He had no one then except me until he found you and your mum” he explained.
“I understand perfectly well, you don’t have to explain yourself. By the way why did you involve my mum” I asked with a smile plastered on my face because I already knew what he had at the back of his mind.
“You know why already Crystal, do you still want me to spell it out!”
“Hmmm….yes” I said still smiling.
“Don’t you want those two back together. We have to make them be involved in each other’s lives. I already pictured your mum living in that house with your dad”
My smile widened. “Oba, you are a very sensitive person. I know you know my mum still loves my dad. You almost bursted her the first day you stepped into our house”
“Oh! How else can we explained how a beautiful woman like that never got married. No other man’s love can matches the love she has for your Dad”
“You are right but what about the family he left behind in Enugu?”
“You survived for years without a father, they’ll survive too. More so, I don’t think his children even noticed or feels his absence”
“From what Dad said about them, I’m sure they are happy he left. But you know Dad is an influential person, soon people will find out he left them for us”
“Who cares! Crystal, that man deserves to be happy after all this years. I mean his memory of you and your mum was locked for over two decades”
“I know but…..
“Don’t worry, things will fall into place itself”
“I hope so” I said and sighed. “Thank you so much”
“What are you thanking me for this time?”
“For everything Oba, it’s like we’ve known you for ages”
“Same here, and I really love the three of you like my own family. I see you all back together as one family again by God’s grace”
“I pray so too, but….
“No but, let’s just be hopeful”
I held his hands. “Your woman is the most lucky woman on earth. You know”
He smiled. If you say so but there’s no lucky woman for now”
“You are not in a relationship?” I questioned.
“Don’t act surprised, cos you are not dating too” he countered.
“You know my story nau… I just want to take my time”
“But you know that guy loves you right?” He said referring to Soma.
“Don’t change the subject. Why are you not dating”
“I’m a very busy person, you know the nature of my work. I leave home early and come back late in the night except Sundays” he defended.
“That’s not an excuse. You know. Guys who are in relationship are not idle they are busy too”
“I know, let’s just say….
“You’ve not found the right person” I cut in.
“Something like that” He smirked.
“Thank God you admitted’ I said raising my drink at him.
“Now let’s stop talking about me. You have to call your friend and make sure they start work as soon as possible. I want Daddy Afam to move in soonest”
“Ok, let me call her now” I said and called Hauwa, we agreed to meet the following week to choose the theme for the decor. I ended the call and told Oba that she promised to do a fast job.
Oba’s phone rang too.
“It’s your dad” He informed. “I think we should leave now, I’m sure he wants to know if you are home already”
“Pick his call then we’ll leave”
“What will I tell him, I should have taken you straight home and not here”
“I don’t know” I said frankly. I know my dad won’t like the fact that I’m not home by now.
“Kai, you just ditched me” he said and picked the call when the call came in again. He placed it on speaker.
“Where are you?”
“Ehm…we stop over on our way to the house but we are very close to the house sir”
“Oba, she should be home resting by now. It’s almost night fall” He said with a firm tone, I knew he won’t like the idea that his daughter is not yet home.
“I’m sorry sir” he said but I didn’t say a word.
I wondered what would have happened if I grow up with him when I was a teenager. I would have gotten a lot of grounding.
“Call me when you get home” he said and disconnected the call.
“Now let’s go madam” he said and helped me up by pulling the unaffected hand.
“All this because of Daddy! I haven’t finish my drink nau..” I protested.
“Seriously we shouldn’t be here this long”
I feigned anger as we leave the restaurant. Some minutes later we entered into my estate.
He stopped at the gate and I alighted.
“You don’t want to come in?” I asked
“Maybe some other time. My regards to Mummy. Good night”
“Ok, good night” I said and waved as he sped off.
I got home a bit disturbed. I don’t know if I’m passing my boundaries. I’m sure Daddy Afam didn’t like the fact that I was with his daughter for those few hours. He didn’t sound as if he bothers though. But I felt a little not comfortable that he called to find out about his daughter and she was still with me.
While I was thinking, I heard a knock. It’s obvious who is at the door. I opened the door.
“Hi, good evening”
“How was your day?”
“You came back early today”
“You look tired” she said. I quickly take a cue from her statement.
“Yes, I’m very tired. I’d like to be alone so I can rest. Can you come back some other time”
“Sure, rest well. You need it. Good night”
“Thanks, sleep well. Good night” I said and bolted the door when she stepped out.
I pounced on my bed and slept off almost immediately.
I woke up around 11pm. I put on my data. I had some WhatsApp messages. I got a message from Crystal too which I read first. It reads:
‘Thanks for today. I’ve a lovely night rest’
I replied her message immediately and typed ‘You are welcome. Anything for my second family’ I sent the message and she replied.
‘Second Family! Hmm!’ her message read. Then I replied surprised that she was still awake. That was how the chatting started.
‘You are still awake!’’
‘Yes. And you, why are you still up?’
‘I slept earlier, I just woke up’
‘Why it’s just 11:09pm?’
‘Don’t know, I just have some things on my mind’
‘I noticed that when you drop me off. Care to share?’
‘Ehm….no. it’s nothing really’
‘Oba I thought we are friends’
‘And I’m so glad to have a wonderful lady like you as a friend’
‘Now that you see me as one. Do you care to share?’
‘Let me call you’
‘Don’t worry I’ll call you’
I switched off my data sighed heavily before placing the call.
She picked at once. “So what’s eating you up” I heard her speak.
“Can we please not talk about it” I tried to wave the matter.
“Oba, you promised to tell me. I thought you would be open to me the way I did to you. You know everything about me and my past” She said sounding disappointed.
“Hmm….see emotional blackmail”
“I’m sorry if it sounds like that. It’s just that….
“I sense it’s a matter of the heart” She guessed.
“Mm… you are right”
“Let’s hear it, a sister can help”
“I’m liking someone I’m not suppose to like” I said and she coughed.
“O…kay, but it’s there someone who is not worth liking!”
“That’s not what I imply. It’s just that I doubt if I can have her” I corrected.
“Why! If you love her, talk to her”
“We are world’s apart” I confessed.
“You still have to tell her. Then it’s her loss if she allow her class come between you”
“Yes, her loss. To me you are every woman’s dream forget about money. You have ambitions. Life is about finding happiness. Once you have someone that can make you happy. Why allow class come between you” She stated.
“Some ladies don’t think that way, you know”
“I know. So who is the girl?”
“Crystal, please don’t ask!”
“It’s just a simple question that needs an honest answer”
“I’ll tell you about her later. I promise Thanks for giving me a listening ear. I should let you sleep now. Good night, see you on Monday” I said hurriedly.
“Seriously! You are discharging me!”
“You know what, I give you 48hours to get your act together. And tell the girl in question how you feel about her. Stop torturing yourself. Good night” she said and disconnected the call before I could even respond.
I shut my eyes after ending the call and try to think.
“Who is this girl?” I asked myself and I heard a voice from no where.
“Are you still wondering who the girl is?”
I opened my eyes and blinked.
“Do I know who the person is? I asked myself too.
I closed my eyes again but I heard nothing again. I switched off my phone and retired to sleep.
On Monday morning, I dressed up to work and joined Oba in the car.
“Good morning” I said with a smile as I take the front seat.
“Good morning. Hope you slept well?” He replied.
“Yes I did and you?”
“Yeah, thanks. Shall we?”
Yea, we are stopping at the clinic first” I informed.
“I know… I know you are getting the cast off today” he said and turned on the ignition. He honked and the gate man open the gate.
We got to the hospital, I was attended to. First we took another x-ray. The doctor checked it and gave me a note the pop room to remove the cast.
I was so happy, I went to the pop room, where the cast was removed. I was giving a sling to wear on the arm. It’s a shoulder immobilizer which I paid for.
I went back to the doctor’s office he checked it out and wrote me a referral letter to physiotherapy so I could start exercising the hand. Oba and I thanked the doctor and went to the physiotherapy department. I registered and paid for the sections.
I was assigned to a physiotherapist who attended to me briefly and asking me to come back the next day to start the therapy.
We left the hospital for work. He dropped me off and left.
He came back to pick me up but I was so busy at the office. We didn’t leave until 8pm.
The drive home was quiet. And that’s how Oba has been since morning that he picked me up at home. I was quiet too because I was so tired. I wanted to ask him about the mysterious girl but given by his cold attitude, I decided to let him be.
He parked in front of the house since he’s taking the car with him. I picked my bag and other things I kept on the back seat.
“Good night” I said and alighted. I stood in front of the gate about to knock but I stopped. I thought a good friend should not ignore a friend who has been behaving strangely since morning. I looked back, he was still there waiting for me to go in before leaving.
I went back to the car, I walk up to the driver’s side opened the door. I tilted my head a bit so I could hold his gaze.
“What’s with this attitude Oba” I said calmly, looking straight into his eyes and his gaze met mine. He didn’t say a word.
“Who is this lady you are not suppose to like, Oba?”
He held my face in his hands and brought it close to his face. He made to k!ss me, I involuntarily closed my eyes. Then I felt his lips on my cheek.
“Gracious God! That was so closed” I said in my mind and opened my eyes. I took his hands off my face and closed the door. He drove off immediately. I watched as he drove into the night until the car disappeared.
I rushed into my room and lay lazily on my bed. It was a k!ss on the cheek but it revived something in me. It’s non explainable. The peck was like a key that unlock my heart that was closed for a very long time.
All along I thought it was just friendship but the peck triggered the feeling that was buried inside of me. Now I had to admit that I had feelings for him. So I’m really the mystery girl.
That night I couldn’t sleep. How will this work. Oba still has a long way to go, he won’t settle down until he achieve his goals. He once told me that.
He sent me a text. I guessed he couldn’t sleep too and I called him back.
I know everything is over, my friendship with Crystal and the love her parents have for me is all over, I just ruined everything.
I wonder what will happen if she tells her parent that I took advantage of her. I was assigned to drive her and not her feelings. I wish I could reverse what I did. What will happen to the father-son relationship I have with Daddy Afam.
I was doing a lot of serious thinking on my bed infact I skipped dinner that night.
I don’t know what possessed me, I wish she never came back to the car. When she looked straight into my eyes, I lost it completely. I couldn’t hide the feelings any longer.
I picked my phone and started texting. It reads:
‘I’m sorry about tonight. I’m so ashamed of myself right now. And for this I’m resigning as your driver as I can’t face you tomorrow. I’ll send a friend over to bring the car and drive you to work till you arrange for another driver. I’m truly sorry I didn’t mean to take advantage of our friendship’
After typing I sent the message. Two minutes later, Crystal’s call came through. I didn’t pick it till it disconnected. She calls back again and I summoned courage to pick the call.
“Oba, I want you here tomorrow morning. Don’t you dare send anyone to my house. Remember I’m starting physio tomorrow and you promised to stay with me all through the healing process of my hand. The least you can do is to keep your promise. I’ll see you tomorrow. Good night” She said and ended the call.
I looked at my phone again and scratched my head. She didn’t even want to hear me talk. I don’t know what’s on her mind. I can’t place her emotions, I don’t even know if she’s angry with me or not. I hope tomorrow won’t come on time cos I don’t even know how to face her.
Fine, I know I shouldn’t have express my feelings. We are not even in the same league for Christ sake obviously she’s someone I can’t have.
The next day, I headed to her house in her car. She was already downstairs by the time I drove into the compound. She hopped into the car with a straight face.
“Good morning” she said
“Good morning” I replied. “I’m sorry about….
“Oba we are getting late” she said, interrupting me.
I turned on the ignition and hit the road.
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God bless you