Friday Before Valentine |Chapter 14|

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Outside, the day is already breezy and dull. It’s still cold from the snowfall, but I can sense the smell of the snow, waiting. It will be a day I will have to walk around the streets in my sweaters, taking selfies for the last time in snows and making videos of myself as icy smoke flow out of my mouth. 

I lay on the bed, my cheek resting on the crook of my arm. 

After tonight, I will be spending the next night in Nigeria. It is two days to Valentine. 

Marilyn is wearing white heavy socks. Her jacket looks like an old army sleeping bag, a puffed up, shiny olive green, the color of her sister’s name. 

“I will miss you,” Marilyn says as she packs clothes in a box to send to her sister in Lagos.

I sigh; “I will miss you too.”

“Why are you sighing?” she asks.

“I have mixed emotions about going to that Lagos.” 

“Hmm. Na lie!” she says suspiciously. “You’re telling me that you’re not excited about traveling with your new bobo to see his people abi? This is just the most perfect time for you to meet Dada, near Valentine.” 

“Of course I am. I am only sad I will be leaving you and this fine country.” 

“At least, you have achieved your aim, haven’t you?” 

She threw a pair of peeled leather shoes into the box. “You’ll give this to one of my aunty’s daughters, Rachael. She should be sixteen by now, so it will size her.”

“That shoe that has finished peeling and the sole is getting off?” I ask. 

“It’s not that bad. The best shoes I have here are for my sister. And I won’t give it to no one else,” she says firmly. 

“I will be ashamed to hand over that pair of deserted nonsense to someone.” 

She paused for a while, stares at the shoe and takes it out of the box. 

“Not like her mother did anything for me after my father left. These people are ungrateful and wicked. My father sent her to school, but she couldn’t take care of me because she claimed she had her own family. Can you imagine that wicked woman?” she says in an angry tone.

“Marilyn…” 

“They all want me now because I stay in America. I won’t give them a dime this Easter. I will send money to my sister Olive.” 

She pauses and turns to me, “We will go buy beer today at the local bars,”  she says and throws the last cloth into the box. “I even have perfumes for Olive too. Perfumes, makeup and nice wigs.” 

“Almost a whole three months in America, and you haven’t taken me anywhere. Next time, I won’t come here. I will go to Dada’s place.”

She covers her mouth in wonder.  “No!” she screamed excitedly and jumps on the bed with me. “No! You won’t dare! I just said we will go have a few bottles of beer…” she covers her face. “Oh Ikakke, I am such a mannerless brat. I should have taken you to Las Vegas, I have a boyfriend who works in a club there.” 

“Oh, so you just realized?” 

“I work daily, and you know, I am such a forgetful person.” 

This evening, we talk about everything and every place I hadn’t visited yet, and I could only imagine them, think of them and plan to visit these places when I visit America again.

Next Chapter: |Chapter 15|

Complete Chapters:

|Chapter 1||Chapter 2||Chapter 3||Chapter 4||Chapter 5||Chapter 6||Chapter 7||Chapter 8||Chapter 9||Chapter 10||Chapter 11||Chapter 12||Chapter 13||Chapter 14||Chapter 15||Chapter 16||Chapter 17||Chapter 18|