Friday Before Valentine |Chapter 17|

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“Now I miss him. Your description of my husband is him. I want him, I want him to stroke my hair and sing to me,” Titilope says as tears flicker in her eyes.

“I was still nursing Sowore our second son when he died. He used to make up songs, silly nonsense songs with meandering tunes,” she giggles. 

“Titilayo my love, Titilayo my love, you’re my sugar baby oh, I want to feel your lips, I want to hold your fine hands and we dance Awilo together o.” 

She pauses and laughs so hard, then she turns to me;

“Dada and I had a fight on the day he died. We quarreled over the telephone when he said he was going to stop by at Ibadan to see Fela Kuti’s show with his lawyer friend Ade. You know, I never even believed my husband would go like that. He had come to take me and the boys to America. He had just gotten a job at the hospital then and we were all so happy we were finally going to be together.” 

She weeps for a while. I stare at her face and there were emotions I couldn’t tell. 

“He married me by proxy, I’d just graduated from Teachers College when his mother came to meet my mom. I doubt if he truly loved me at first.” 

I chuckle. 

“Do you believe that I met with Dada? I met him, we made love several times on his couch in America. He looked at me straight in the eye to tell me how much he loved me each time he ejaculated,” I say softly as I stare at Titilayo. There was no glimpse of jealousy that I could catch. 

“My mother-in-law thinks you’re possessed,” she said as she holds my hands firmly, “but I know you’re not. Right now, as I sit here, I know that he is watching over us. I can perceive him. I can feel him around me. I feel him around the boys too. I know that he saw how much I and the boys have suffered, that is why he sent you to bring us his will. Now, we could finally go to America and acquire all what he’d toiled and saved for us.” 

She lowers her gaze. 

“You know, I never believed in ghosts. But now, I wish it were me he’d appeared to, so I could just touch his face for the last time.” She paused, “What did it feel like, when he kissed you?” she asks. I stare at her all-back weaved hair, then her pretty face. 

“Like heaven. He was a great kisser,” I said calmly. 

“We kissed thrice. He never seemed to like it that much. His favorite meal used to be amala and ewedu.” 

“He never told me that,” I say. 

Titilope shrugs. “Maybe he changed,” she says.

——————————

It is 11:00pm as I walk into your father’s sitting room. It smells of skin and sweat. It’s too hot. 

“Dinner is ready,” your mother says.

“I am not hungry,” I reply calmly as I hold the sofa. 

“We have read the will. It seems you were very special to my son,” your mother says. 

She walks to me and pats my shoulders; “He put you in the will too. And he says we should give you this envelope.”  She hands me a brown envelope. “For the woman who brought this, her name is Ikakke.” 

I stare at the envelope for long moments. As I lower myself on the chair, it creaks loudly. 

I couldn’t open it to read. I was afraid. 

I waited for a new dawn, to forget everything that had happened on this day. 

I will call Marilyn and tell her of today, but she won’t believe me. She would laugh and think of me as a joker. But she will at the end.

Next Chapter: |Chapter 18|

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|