Today is the last of the episodes of Crush or Love? on AfricanLoveStories.Com. It was great fun to write and was even more ‘cool’ to have you read it. Your comments kept me going and I hope you enjoy the end as you did the beginning. While I’m tempted to announce another online series I have been conceiving, it’s best I drop the pen here for the year, edit the Sequel to Courting Baida and refresh for the New Year. If you are yet to get a copy of my latest book in my Mini Series Collections, I suggest you DOWNLOAD it now. Finding Baida hits your Devices on 25th December, 2013. I want you to have it. A Christmas gift if you will…..a little love steaming story to spice up your holiday. And thanks again for reading…and sharing.
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“Why did you inject my son with poison?” the disconcerting question caused small beads of sweat to sprout on my forehead in the evenly aired room mainly because I was muddled on U.D’s status. Was he alive or dead? Bassey was the one who injected us both with the brutal injection but the question implied that I was the perpetrator. The stern expectant faces of the occupants in the room told me they were already conclusive on the matter. They thought I was the one and I momentarily considered the possibility of being framed for murder.
My heart skipped at the possibility and my overactive imagination already saw me in handcuffs been led to the jailhouse in orange overalls. Where was Bassey? And how did I get here? How did I survive the lethal injection? These thoughts juggled in my mind and I tensed up. If that was the case, I had a lot of explanation to do. Emeka whose gaze burnt my skin, folded his arms across his chest and waited as well as the rest of them. If there were any misunderstandings, it was time to clear them up.
“Young lady, why were you sprawled naked in my son’s room?” Mr. Odiete had lost his patience and looked like he needed more answers than I could give.
“I wasn’t sprawled naked in any of your son’s rooms” I retorted curtly. It hurt to hear him say I was naked when in fact I was fully clothed as at the time I walked in on his sons, unless, Bassey had tampered with my clothing. I froze and flamed at the thought at the same time. Just then, a man whose eyes looked like they were dyed red barley stepped into the room.
“How she was found?” he asked the man tersely like a school teacher.
“Sir, I was at the post when Mr Bassey called out to me in a rather urgent manner. On getting to Mr U.D’s room, we found both of them sprawled on the bed naked” he said looking at his shoes.
“That is not true!” I shouted from the bed. All eyes were on me now.
“I saw Bassey kill U.D and when I made to call the Police, he attacked me with a syringe!” I interjected forcefully with eyes blazing as Idris attempted to continue his rather falsified story.
“What?!” it was Bisi, sitting back beside me and holding my hand.
“Yes! I walked in on him on top of U.D with a syringe and then when I brought out my phone to get help, he injected me with God knows what. I lost consciousness almost immediately and woke up here. I have no knowledge of what I am being accused of!” I explained in anger.
“What are you saying?” it was Mr. Odiete. I took a deep breath and went into the details, from the one-night rumple with Bassey to U.D’s proposal. Eyes fixed on my lips, I noticed the looks on their faces ranging from disbelief to pain as I narrated the ordeal and how it had all gone ugly.
“This can’t be” it was Mr Odiete muttering under his breath. He looked pained with his thin lips pressed firmly together. Bisi held my hand and gave a reassuring look. Emeka stared blankly at the wall but kept looking at me at intervals while the Doctor and the man with bloodshot stood taking in the account with no expression.
“This is entirely my fault” Mr Odiete said before stepping out, and on his heels were the Doctor and the man with the bloodshot eyes.
“All will be fine” Bisi reassured as she tried to smile patting my hand and following her sweety outside. The room was quiet as I avoided Emeka’s eyes and smiled as Bisi reentered the room.
“Do you love him?” it was Emeka. His voice was thick with emotion as he cleared his throat before speaking again. Bisi had not fully noticed the third occupant in the room and turned at his voice.
“Do you really love him?” he directed the question at me the same time Bisi pierced me with ‘who be dis guy’ look. While I had never told her about Emeka, she knew a man had hurt me and was the reason I was a ‘dumper’ as she called me.
“Yes” I answered in affirmation of the new feelings that washed through me. I really liked U.D and the thought that I would never see him again caused me pain. I fought falling in love for so long but everything felt better with U.D. I wanted to be with Emeka for only one reason but I wanted U.D more. He was the fresh start I needed. He was funny and he was a good friend.
“Is he dead?” I finally managed the question that choked me at the throat.
“He is not” Emeka answered quietly and I let out the tensed breath I held in my weak lungs. I felt dizzy and made to lie down back with Bisi’s help.
“Where could he be?” I asked Bisi who was straitening my head on the pillow.
“We don’t know” she said softly as I saw Emeka walk out of the room without looking back.
Bassey drove like a mad man chased him and I heard curses thrown at him from the slightly opened booth where I was hiding as we maneuvered the thick traffic. The aftereffect of the drug was settling in now and I felt like vomiting especially as he kept up with the rough driving. As I held on to the slightly opened booth, I retched as I felt him push his brakes suddenly, blasting a full horn. He slowed down and it felt like we were approaching a house. I sensed danger the moment we drove into the opened compound and noticed persons dressed in black getup and guns hanging from their waists.
“Where is Sage?” it was Bassey’s voice.
“I should be asking you” it was a heavy deep voice.
“Who are you?” he asked rudely in his usual pigheaded fashion.
“Bender!” the voice called.
“Boss!!” I heard a loud answer.
“Tell him who I am” the voice said before I heard a car open and close. The next sound I heard was Bassey’s shout as he was attacked and dragged around the compound. Heart beating fast and now vigilant, I caught a glimpse of the plate number of the car that drove out and the face of the so called Bender who dragged Bassey into yet another car and sped out. I waited patiently as the crowd cleared out and after thirty minutes, I climbed out slowly. The huge tiled compound was empty and I survey the compound carefully.
Creeping to the front seat, I took a relieved breath on finding the keys on ignition. Just as I entered the car and closed the door, the loud bark of a man from the house alerted me of the presence of yet another hoodlum.
“Get down from that car” he commanded as he cocked his double barrel, aiming it at me. Instinctively raising my hand from the steer ring after bringing the car to life, I watched him approach and pretended to freeze. As he dropped his gun and strolled over, the swift press of accelerator and switch of gear, I reversed roughly out of the compound amidst rain of bullets. Luckily, the gate which was half closed and gold plated with decorative metal flung open on high impact. I drove quick and doggedly avoiding the bullets in the secluded Close before making a 360 degrees on the connecting street and racing away from the house.
Looking back at rear mirror, I saw no one following me and took a deep breath as I noticed Bassey’s phone ringing on the passenger’s seat.
“Dad!” I called loudly.
“U.D” he recognized my voice.
“Dad, Bassey has been kidnapped” I said in rushed tone.
“Calm down, where are you? What happened?” he asked with great concern lining his voice.
“I don’t know. He was taken in company of another car with personalized registration number Prince 001.
“Where are you?” he asked again as I envisioned him already putting a call to his close friend in the Force.
“I am heading home” I said
“Come home” and the line went dead. The thoughts of past events in last days washed through my mind and the foolishness of it all caused me regrets. It was really sad that it had come to this and I rebuked myself for taking the step of temporarily paralyzing Bassey just to beat him to my heart content. It had always been a tit-for-tat case between us when it came to women but I guess I had taken it too far this time around. I didn’t even like her. All I did was to get even with Bassey but instead I had made things worse. I knew Sage was Bassey’s suspicious friend who I maintain deals in drugs and suspected that Bassey mixed possibly in vendetta. I silently prayed he would be found soon.
I drove in through the gate and saw Dad on the front steps. I pulled my tired self from the badly damaged car and walked up to him.
“Are you okay?” he asked with kind eyes. I had never seen my father like this. He looked really shaken.
“Have you heard from Bassey’s abductors?” I asked as he came to help me up.
“No. But he will soon be home” he answered signaling Magdalene, the Nurse to come along.
“What’s wrong?” I asked as I was settled in the Dispensary and propped up to rest.
“I should have paid more attention to your little pranks and feuds” he looked directly at me. I knew what he was talking about but plastered a confused look on my face.
“I know Bassey tried to kill you” he said quietly as Nurse Magdalene left the room.
“No Dad, he didn’t. I tried to inject him first” I confessed and looked at him. His eyes widened.
“You wanted to kill him?” he asked taking a seat. Ever since the death of our mother twenty six years ago, Dad had never remarried but had series of Aunties come and go. They were instrumental to our sex lessons and Dad had done all he could to keep the men in the house happy. We were close but when it came to women, Bassey and I competed and literally fought. Making up was fun and would continue as if nothing happened. This time however, I had gone overboard and I knew it.
Was it because I was in love with Funke? I liked her smiles, she was fun to be with and certainly the trophy woman but love? I wasn’t sure. Perhaps the only reason I reacted that way was because it was the first time I got really hot in the ears anytime I remembered that Bassey had gone in before me and had carelessly disrespected her…like I was any better. Okay, I was but I certainly wasn’t innocent.
“No. I just wanted to put him to sleep. Deep sleep” I said, ashamed of myself.
“I really don’t know what you two boys are up to but I suspect this is about the girl in the hospital” he said coldly.
“A misunderstanding Sir” I replied still wondering if Funke was worth it all. Bassey was my brother and when it came to choosing sides, I would always choose his. The thought clarified my emotions. I was done with Funke’s episode. While the thought gave me peace, it felt like I was going to miss out on her.
“It had better be. I should have word from Mr. Abdullahi soon” he said and as if on cue his phone rang. I nodded.
“Mr Abdullahi” he called into the phone. Not hearing the conversation, I waited for him.
“Ok, thank you very much. Yes, Yes. Yes, of course. It is no problem. Thank you” he was saying and I waited for the news.
“Any news?” I asked hopefully.
“Yes, he was beaten and dropped on the road. He should be here any minute” he gave a small smile as I gave a huge sigh.
“You boys have to stop fighting over girls. This should be the last” he said on a cheerful note and made to stand up.
“Yes sir” I said relieved that he was alright and coming home.
The blinding slaps and knocks had me wishing for the umpteenth time that I had never met the unfortunate lady. Why on earth did I get involved with her in the first place? To hell with the obsession on her honey pot. She was the cause of my misfortune I decided as the heavy man dropped slaps in serial numbers all over my body. And why was this episode so tensed? U.D and I had feuds over women but it had never escalated into this. I actually believed U.D was out to get me. Or was he truly in love? Would he really kill his brother?’
“Where is Sage?” the man whose name I got to know was Bender continued pounding me as the car sped on the high way.
“I don’t know. I came to find him too” I answered amidst the rains of slaps. Just then his phone rang and I thanked the good Lord for his mercy.
“If I come out of this alive, I will stop with the philandering” I vowed silently.
“Yes Boss” he said thickly into the phone.
“Bull Dog! Stop the car” he commanded the driver and the car swerved off the room jumpily, coming to a screeching halt. Roughly kicking me out, I rolled on the highway and they sped off. The tear on my mouth bled and I waved several taxis down. Finally settling myself in one, I was relieved I was heading home. If U.D wanted me dead, I was going to wait for him at home I decided.
“This will be the last time we fight over a girl’’ I said aloud.
“Oga, you say?” it was the cab driver.
“Take me home” I ordered weakly.
The Dispensary door opened to Dad standing with his hands in his pockets. He patted me on the back as I approached with Idris’s help. I had expected some kind of harsh words but it seemed like the old man had lost his hot streak. U.D was sitting on the bed with a small smile on his face and I knew all was going to be alright.
Settling on the opposite bed, I thanked Idris and he left as the Nurse entered the room. Dad’s phone rang and he stepped out.
“Nice one” I said as he shook my hand before Nurse Magdalene arranged her tray. If I didn’t know better, I’d conclude that she loved the feel of pressing hot iodine into our wounds this past years.
“Not again” he said as I was settled in and had the iodine stinging at my mouth.
“Naa, I deserved it” I said and the laughs that followed felt like the episode didn’t happen, except we were in the Dispensary and we both looked like shit.
The moment Emeka left the hospital, I waited to feel sad like I did years ago but instead I felt empty. He affected me when he was before me but the second he was out of sight, I was perfectly good. It must be the sex, I finally concluded. The memories of our rather steaming sessions round the house, in the dark part of the school library, the cold nights in his car…..
“Who is he?” it was Bisi’s voice breaking through my thoughts.
“Emeka” I answered turning to face her.
“Who is he to you?” she asked softly.
“He was a lot” I said and gave a small smile. She understood.
I was discharged that evening.
With the news of U.D reaching me that he was well, I was in high spirits when I went to see him but came back in low spirit. He was no longer interested in seeing me. He was sorry for leading me on and wished me the best.
Blood was thicker water. I was water.
It was over.
It was over. Funke was in love with U.D and again, I had lost her. Leaving the hospital, I drove around for a while and finally made it home heavily drunk. Chichi was in my house with her mother spoiling for a fight I wasn’t in the mood for.
“Where have you been?” it was her mother.
“Hospital” I answered walking into my room. They must have collected the spare key from the young man at the gate. The thought annoyed me some more.
“With who?” she asked following me.
“With Funke” I answered and closed the door on their faces as I reached my room.
That was the end of the marriage. All hell was let lose afterwards and father got to know who Funke really was. He blamed me for not taking my responsibility and berated me for poor decisions.
“Leave her alone! A woman scorned is best avoided” he said after I adamantly informed him of my decision of marrying her.
“I must have her” I had told him and walked out.
The final presentation was awkward and I sat through it. It was a month after I had walked out of the hospital. She was more beautiful; her makeup flawless, her emphasized tiny waist spread out to her hips and eyes darting around as she made the presentation. Of course father was impressed with her work and invited her to the ground breaking dinner to which she humbly rejected. I was in high hopes and had prevailed on father to ask her.
I wanted her so bad it hurt. The thought of her with the so-called U.D tormented me and I knew I was never going to let it rest until I had her back.
I made my move.
The drive to the familiar house took less time on a Sunday evening and was ushered in by the man with the red eyes.
“Is U.D at home?” I asked coming down from my car after he graciously allowed me through the gate.
“Yes” he said in an overly friendly manner.
“Please I need to see him” I said as we walked to the large house.
U.D and Bassey were just entering the sitting room as the man ushered me in. Bassey stopped in his tracks.
“Hello” I greeted and they both looked at me.
“And to what do we owe the visit” it was Bassey coming for a weak handshake.
“Just a friendly visit” I said
“Oh! U.D, this is Funke’s brother” Bassey introduced.
“No, not really. I am not” I corrected with a smile.
“Ok?” he rolled his eyes as he walked to the bar for a drink.
“I actually came to see U.D” I went straight to the point. U.D who had taken a seat on the couch, not paying us attention looked up at the mention of his name. The issue of course was Funke and we took a walk around the large Estate.
To say I was shocked was an understatement. They were no longer an item and Funke led me to believe the opposite. Leaving the house in high spirits, I drove to Funke’s. There was nothing stopping me now. ‘Even if I had to kidnap her, I will’ I said to myself as I parked my car and used the foot gate. The old gateman smiled and waved in recognition.
I knocked on her door and waited patiently.
The door opened to her friend who had sat beside her in the hospital.
“Hello Emeka” she called cheerfully stepping outside and closing the door behind her.
“Hello. Forgive me, I don’t know your name” I apologized.
“Bisi” she said smiling fully.
“How do you do?” I asked taking a handshake.
“I am fine. You are here for Funke?” she predicted and I smiled.
“Yes” I answered.
“To where?” I asked in exasperation.
“A weekend in Lagos-Badagry. She should be back in two days” she informed with a glint in her eyes.
“Bisi, I really can’t wait two days. Where is she staying?” I asked already heading to the airport.
“She is staying at the whispering palms beach resort” she was saying but I cut her short.
“Thank you Bisi” I said as I walked to the gate.
“You may need my number” she called out to me and came back to get it.
“Make her happy” she warned right before I almost ran out of the house.
My flight to Lagos was delayed for about Forty Five minutes. I was the most irritable passenger on board and couldn’t wait to get down at the airport. Speeding to Badagry in a rented taxi, I recited what I needed to say. Bisi had confirmed her room and as I stood in front of her room hours later, I felt my heart leap and knew I wasn’t leaving her until she said yes. The tap on the door and a long practiced smile, I waited.
The door opened to a shocked Funke in a towel and wrapped hair still wet from the bathroom.
“Emeka!” she called totally in shock as I let myself in.
“What are you doing here?” she asked stepping back, allowing for room between us. I closed it.
“I love you Funke. I have always loved you” I said as I took her hands in mine.
“How did you find me? Bisi” she answered herself in annoyance.
“Don’t” I edged closer.
“I……., you shouldn’t be here” she said and I felt her resistance dropping slipping away.
“But I am here. For you”
“I can’t be with you”
“Why? And don’t tell me U.D. I know you two are not together” I smiled and I found her smiling too.
“What do you want” she was getting her dimples and I raised her chin to me.
“Say it” she was smiling now.
“You” and with that, I pulled her into my embrace.
“You are mine. I’m never letting you go, never again” with that I placed my lips on hers. She resisted a little before relaxing her lips. Gradually deepening the kiss, I remembered the first time I had kissed her, emotions exploding as I grabbed her waist and pulled at her towel. She held on.
“Leave it” I whispered in between the heated kiss and she smiled.
“Not yet” she said back into my mouth.
“Why not?” I asked trailing my hands on the surface of the towel, tracing her nipples.
“You need to take your bath” she said mischievously and with that I swept her off her feet.
Off we went to the bathroom.
Removing my piece of clothing and finally discarding her towel, we stood still, kissing and making up for lost years under the warm water than ran down the large cubicle shower. Sweet pink lips, tight nipples and low groans coming from her, I knew I still affected her. I was rock hard and couldn’t wait to penetrate her center.
I had everything I wanted and briefly considered what her reaction would be when she found out that I had a five year old son. I prayed for the best but for now, I was going to make memories and make sure she conceived by the time I was through.
The moment I saw him at my door, I couldn’t stop myself. I had gambled and won. Bisi and I had planned a weekend getaway for me.
“If he comes to look for you, then you know he really wants to get back, if not, I think it’s time Cinderella finds another man” she had jokingly said as we headed to the airport. Not five hours later, she calls to inform me that Emeka was headed to Lagos.
I was ecstatic. The kiss was expected and the feel of his body reminded me why I had fallen in love with him. The night was filled with his insistent sweet love making and I smiled as he filled me up. He wasn’t going to get away this time.
“Make sure say you carry belle for am and this time he must to marry you” Bisi had slyly advised. If only she knew what my real intentions were, she would have stopped me.
I wanted revenge for my womb and getting a pound of flesh was the only way I was going to forgive him. I smiled at the thought again as he administered soft sweet teasing kisses to my oversensitive nipples. He had feasted on them the entire night and was still suckling. I smiled of the ways available to me in taking his life.
“I just can’t get enough” he said, raising his head from my abused puked nipples.
“You have got all of me” I shone him a beautiful smile.
“Marry me” he said breathing on my exposed breasts before taking my lips in his.
“Yes, yes I will marry you” and I sealed it with a kiss. The deed was done.
This was my ultimate revenge and he was done for.
A life for A life.
Emeka Douglass was good as a dead man.