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The shrieking door bell and buzzing phone in planned union told me Chi-Chi was not just at the door, she was fiery furious. Soon she came around my window and called out my name. I laid down waiting for her to go.
“Matthew, where is his?” she asked the young man at the gate, the annoyance registered in her clipped tone.
“I never see am dis morning Ma” he replied, intimidated.
“Tell him to call me immediately he comes back” she said in absolute irritation. I knew the argument we were going to have; ‘why would you miss Mass and why in the world would you refuse to pick your wife’s call?’ I could hear her loud voice in my head already. Perhaps I was just overreacting because I had found Funke or I was just depressed, most probably because the wedding will make the tabloids and would be another milestone reached between both families. Cementing relationships!
She brought her car alive and drove out minutes later, after repeating herself to the young man at the gate. I called him after a while.
“Yes Sir, Madam don go” he answered promptly as I asked him if Chi-Chi was gone from the window.
“She is not yet Madam” I corrected in obvious annoyance before I realized who I was talking too. It pissed me off when everyone called her my wife or madam when we had not been introduced! The effrontery!
“I am sorry sir” he apologized. I headed to the bathroom for a hot bath. Seeing Funke today was not an option. It was an absolute necessity. I had to get answers and I was going to get them.
Pulling a white T-Shirt over my head and dragging up a pair of jeans, I took a look in the mirror and admired my abs. Rolling up my sleeves and donning my shoes, I grabbed my car keys and headed to her house in high determined hopes and inexplicable excitement, one which I had not felt in a very long time.
The scene I had just witnessed played again in my head as I drove home in high speed. I needed a cold soak and music to calm my jagged nerves. The duo obviously had issues and while it was sad that U.D and I might be over even before we started, I gave myself “brain” as Bisi will always say, wondering briefly how she was doing.
I drove in just in time to see Emeka come out of his car, my breath catching in my throat. I caught on my brakes and made to reverse out but the old gate man had rolled the large metal gate closed. I stilled and took deep breaths to steady my mixed emotions. It felt good to see him, determined to bury the hatchet but it felt absolutely painful to see the man who ………, he interrupted my private thoughts.
“Hello” he said, as a stranger would. I was on guard. The problem with having nice but nosy neighbor was having to keep your shit in your pant! I had to not let them witness this shit that was about hitting the roof.
I came down with contained anger and an unexplained feeling akin to fear. I was afraid to forgive him. I strengthened my resolve. There was no lost love here. It was over, I reassured myself.
“What are you doing here?” I asked. Displaying no emotion, I stared at him in the face. Dressing in white T-Shirts and pair of Jeans, I admired his lean strong abs but kept my eyes on his. He was all I ever wanted and was shocked to find out that I still wanted him. I swallowed painfully at the realization that I had unconsciously dated and had intimate one-nightstands with men that were built like him; but none ever gave me the satisfaction I thoroughly sought for. I grew hot in the face.
“I came to see you” he said, settling his eyes on mine. I fought to stay angry.
“I told you to leave me alone. There is nothing to talk about” I said stubbornly, going to key my door. Why on earth did U.D make that announcement? I’d have been at the Odiete’s!
“We have a lot to talk about” he insisted in his usual calm voice. I opened the door and without invitation, he followed, closing the door after him. I swallowed. I was alone with him. The thought was disturbing.
“We don’t…..” I tried to blow hot air, turning to run into him.
“I was foolish. I was selfish. I panicked but I am truly sorry. For leaving you, for leaving us” he said taking my hand and holding it delicately. I brushed him off and made to go to my room. He grabbed my upper arm.
“You had your say and you are right never to forgive me but I need to apologize” and with that, almost in a flash, he was on his knees, his head resting on my hands. I felt myself go weak and the pain shattering like fine china into a million pieces. I stilled my eyes, resisting the dam that was threatening to burst.
“Don’t, don’t, please don’t….” And I sniffed back the tears that had flooded my throat. Standing up, he gently pulled me into his strong arms, the very same I longed for. His sweet male scent filled my nose, his strong chest so comforting. I knew I belonged here. The old memories surfaced and I pulled myself from his arms with all the strength I could mutter..
“Please you need to leave now” I said, braving a look at him, willing him to leave and never come back but at the same time, willing him to pull me back into his arms and never let me go again. I saw his jaws twitched and in a split second I knew which of my thoughts had permeated.
“I can’t” he said roughly before hauling into his arms, a second hesitation before covering my lips with his. The memory of our first kiss bursting from the dam I had stored it for 10 years and I cried into his mouth as he deepened the kiss. My heart pulsating, his beating so fast. I broke free.
“I am getting married in August. I can’t do this. Stay away” I said, without thinking I picked my car keys that had fallen to the floor and literally ran out of the house. I had sworn never to forgive him but I couldn’t stay mad any longer. Whether right or wrong, well-thought out or not, I was taking up U.D on his offer.
He followed in pursuit as I drove out in a hurry, I saw him enter his car and reverse out of the compound as I raced back to U.D to accept his proposal.
Funke stood rooted to the spot, her eyes so wide and mouth ajar, she stared down at me as I threw the syringe with the half empty content few steps away from where I lay on U.D’s stiff body. I sprang up, sweating, momentarily confused.
“You killed him” she said, just above a whisper.
“I didn’t. I swear. He came at me and we started struggling” I said afraid yet calm.
“He is dead! You killed him” she said, her eye watering, voice reaching the ceiling. Immediately, a thought formed and I eyed the white hand towel that smelt like it was soaked with halothane on the floor. She ran to the body and knelt beside him, shaking him.
“U.D, U.D!! Please! Please wake up. I will marry you” she was crying now and shaking him vigorously.
“Funke, I didn’t. He came at me” I said, using my leg to drag the cloth before picking it up. I advanced slowly. She shook him some more, pulling out her phone.
“What are you doing?” I asked suspiciously eyeing her.
“I am calling an ambulance” she shouted fumbling for her phone. In quick succession, I grabbed her and pressed the cloth firmly against her nose. I felt her tense and she struggled, fighting with all her might. She begged with her eyes as they closed against their ability to stay open. I picked up the syringe, took deep breaths to calm my nerves right before pushing the remaining content of the syringe into her neck too. I waited; trudging the length of my room and cursing them both. U.D wanted me dead and Funke was a witness. She was going to be spill and I had to keep her quiet.
With two bodies, I had to form another plan. Carrying U.D to his room, I stripped him and lay him in bed. I was sweating, heart beating so fast, I cursed him yet again.
“You wanted to kill me over a woman!” I muttered under my breath times without number as I set up his room for the plan I had. Scattering his room, I looked around just one more time before going to the second phase of my plan.
Carrying Funke’s body, I stripped her naked and lay her strategically on him. Cleaning my fingerprints from the injection, I placed it in hers and looked at them one last time before I went to change my shirt and call Idris from the gate. I needed an alibi and he was going to be one.
“Idris! Idris!! Call the hospital. Get the Ambulance” I called loudly in obvious distress.
“Sir” he answered, running in his usual fashion, punching his phone and following me on my heels.
Almost in a run, he called the stationed ambulance driver at the gatehouse to get the car around and bring in the stretcher. He was going to need another I thought as I jumped the stairs and flung the double leaf door leading to U.D’s wing of the house. He followed suit. Opening the main entrance to U.D’s sitting area, I stepped aside to let him in.
“Subahanallah!!!” he exclaimed, taking another look before looking at me with eyes filled with questions I was never going to answer.
“I thought I heard noise about some thirty minutes ago but didn’t take it as anything, coming over to get his car keys for a drive, I knocked and when he didn’t answer after a couple of minutes, I came in to see them like this” I calmly informed and at the same time looking disturbed.
“Sir, are they alive?” he asked, looking at the duo with great concern.
“I have no idea. Where is Joshua!!!??” I shouted.
“Yes Sir” it was Joshua and the old lady Nurse. They both exclaimed as they saw the naked bodies. The Nurse rushed to cover their nakedness and Joshua made to get another stretcher. Idris was on the phone, asking that the family doctor be in the hospital, an emergency he continued. My heart pounded and I poured out in sweat regretting the bickering and the game of who the ladies loved! All our lives, we had competed for attention and now, it was the reason I had killed him.
“She is Alive. She is breathing” the Nurse shouted, almost in an uproar and cutting into my thoughts. She signaled me to help her carry the already dressed body. I stood momentarily confused. She had stopped breathing! How possible was it that she was now breathing? I asked myself, panicking.
“Help me carry her” she shouted as Joshua and Idris arrived with another stretcher. I watched as they hurdled the bodies on the stretchers and wheeled them out. What was to become of me now?
Was she is going to tell the world I killed my brother? It was going to be my word against hers. I had an alibi, she had none. Or did I?
I gave an evil grin as another thought formed.
“I am coming to the hospital. Idris inform father of what has happened” I said jumping into my car.
I had to make sure she doesn’t wake up. There was no way I was going to allow her to spill.
It was the only way
Till next week! Will he succeed? Is U.D really dead? Drop your comments and share!
Have a great weekend!