My Gray Haired Groom 2

It was very early in the morning when I opened my eyes to find myself in a very cozy bed. I raised my head to see the white satin sheet I was lying on and the soft pillows and throw pillows all over my bed. It seemed he carried me to that room when I slept off on the couch because I couldn’t recall going to that room by myself.

I looked at the tiled floor, it wasnt like the ones I was used to. It was with a high quality and the closet was something to behold. I rubbed my eyes and walked and changed my mind concerning Ukadi. Not that I fell in love with him because of his taste for quality furnitures and beautiful interiors decorations, far from it. I began to think of him as civilized and not as uncivilized as I had always thought of him. I guessed constant traveling had made it possible. If only I would but love him, I might see him with romantic eyes and probably see him as a great package with many goodies inside. For now he is the Ukadi that I used to know.

Nothing had changed as far as my feelings for him is concerned.

I got up and walked to the closet and opened it, it was full of clothes. Assorted types, casual, corporate, party, traditional wears and so on. I tried some of them on and they fitted perfectly.

Did he stuck the wardrobe for me? Really?

I was still trying to pull off my last when I heard a knock on the door.

I quickly pulled off and packed the pile of clothes I scattered on the floor and o the closet and pushed them inside the closet before answering the door.
When I saw him, I recalled the incident of the previous day and my countenance changed.
He forcefully kept me in his house when I was supposed to be with my family!

I sat quietly in the gorgeous chair before the dressing mirror was in his house and he sat on He sat right there in front of me, on the bed close the edge.

“Hope you slept well.” He said

I stood up.

“Please Ukadi, I beg you to take me home. I’m not comfortable here. I feel like you kidnapped me” I screamed and his mum came to the door again. She could pass for a good eaves dropper because she was always there at the door at the slightest argument between us.

“Don’t say that again, you will be leaving on Sunday when I travel back to Lagos.” He said as he got up to let his mum in.
What? Now this? His mum?
“Okay.” I said quietly with a lot of thoughts on my mind.

I didn’t want to talk in front of the his mother because I didn’t want to upset her. From the look of things it’s like she wanted the marriage more than Ukadi.
“Good morning ma.” I greeted nicely to show there was no problem but Ukadi spoke up.
She made a gesture to silence him.

“Nne how are you?” She asked touching my ruffled hair then my shoulder, pulled a short stool from under the bed which I wasn’t aware of and sat facing the gap between me and Ukadi as if she was trying to cover it up and bring us closer.

He continued..

“Mama, I called you here to let you know that Amaka had been behaving somehow ever since the engagement. I have tried to make things work but it seems she was prepared to make my life difficult for me.”

“What is it Amaka?” she asked with her eyes glaring at me and I noticed since I knew her she could be a determined woman.

“My son had been very nice to you and all you do is pay him back in this way?” she said and I kept silent.

“Don’t worry Mama. Leave everything to me. I told her she won’t be leaving until Sunday. I’m proving a point. Amaka you are my wife to be. You are not my girlfriend but my fiancee.”

He took a step to stump away but turned back.

“And long as you have been collecting gifts from me, you must work towards getting married to me. I’ll be coming back next weekend to see your people for our proper marriage rites.” He said with an authoritative voice and I sensed determination in each one of them. First his mum then him

Who on earth forces a very young girl to marry a man old enough to be her father?

I kept silent. No need to talk. It’s pointless. My father would never accept the new development since I had to finish up my SSCE before marriage. That was the agreement. But my fear was if he could use his financial weapon to get everyone moving in his direction. It’s possible in a world full of money mongers. Those whose brain stop working when they see a flash of money can do that.

“Please I need to go home now. I need to go home.”

“Don’t you think this is your home too?” His mum asked gently.

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To be continued….

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Except from my work, My Gray Haired Groom.

I, Gabriel 1

My name is Gabriel, you can call me Gaby. I grow up in the small town of Zuika watching the sufferings the people around me have to go through just to complete a single task and think that they’re not created to suffer this way.

I shed tiny bits of tears one day looking at my mum standing close to the cooker sweating like a sacrificial lamb, kneading the dough she used to bake bread for breakfast. That same day I also cried watching my mum chewing her bread, working hard to grind it with her molars and it seemed hard swallowing it too. At that point, I couldn’t bear it anymore and had to look away. I’m so much pained to know that if I happen to grow up, I will definitely be like them; the same suffering which goes on and on, from dusk to dusk with little or no time for rest.

So, I’ve been thinking that it will be really helpful to invent a machine like a robot but far more sophisticated; like one thousand times more, and can do lots of work in a twinkle of an eye, while people rest their heads. This might take lots of time to construct but I’ll see how it goes.

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Next: Obstacles I face

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My Gray Haired Groom 1

Ukadi and I got engaged to be married when I was 16 and he a little less than 50 with good number of gray hair scattered all over his head and scanty beards.

I hated the arrangement but could not escape the engagement partly because I was only a child whose parents expected to depend on them for expression of opinion in such matter- either to agree or disagree, and strongly because my whole family thought he was a good and wealthy man- a girl’s bright future depended on getting married to good and rich suitor like him.

I was young but wise, stubborn and defiant. The third child among my six siblings and yet Ukadi chose me over my 19 year old sister who was more beautiful, collected and humble. I blamed my robust built and escalated maturity which sold me out as ripe and attractive.

During the engagement, Ukadi agreed to avoid all manner of going all the way with me to allow more time for me to reach eighteen which was the minimum age my father could allow before collecting the dowry and handing me over as Ukadi’s wife.

It’s funny my father didn’t think the age difference between me and him was any problem. When I pointed that out for the second time, he told me older men took care of their wives better.

The courtship followed and was absurd. He tried to woo me and get me fall in love with him but it was ineffectual since I didn’t care a hoot about him and his pouring gifts and any time he narrowed his cunny eyes at me to register his love, my spleen nearly busted with hate for him. I didn’t love him a bit and that was a big problem to start with.

I told my mum how I felt and she stated I would start loving him when we spend much time togethe and get to know each other deeper as married couple.

According to her, love was not the sole recipe for a happy marriage but also respect, tolerance and understanding. She said I would fall in love with him with time.

I waited for that time but it didn’t come.

Ukadi tolerated my defiance alright and accommodated my pure hate for him, probably thinking I would change with time. But, his leniency paved way for firmness when he saw me and a 17 year old boy one Friday afternoon walking home from school. We were laughing loudly at one of the boy’s jokes and the boy’s left hand was on my right shoulder when he drove along unexpectedly.

The wolf in him came alive before my very eyes and I discovered the real Ukadi. He man-handled the innocent boy, when theboy tried to defend me not knowing he was my fiance. He introduced himself as my husband and warned the poor boy seriously not to go anywhere close to me ever again. He then bundled me into the rear of his car and sped off.

I was speechless. He was a strong man and possessive of me but that was foolhardy considering his age. He shouldn’t fight over me with a boy whom he could father.

When we reached his house, he gently shove me to a luxury couch and talked to me for hours during which my eyes were glued to the exotic wall clock in his well decorated living room.

“Amaka, I don’t like what you did today,” he said gently.

I kept silent and he warned me never ever to get involved with boys or else he would show me his other side.

Hmmmmm..

That very utterance was a mistake because I hated him the more.

As he kept talking non-stop, the clock kept ticking away, and when the time said 5 pm, I spoke up for the first time since we entered his house.

“It’s getting late. I need to go home. My mum will be worried.” I said.

“They all know you’re here,” he said in an unpolished English.

Surprised, I shifted my gaze to look at him, but all I could make of him was his grey hair, fat wrinkled face and the corners of his lips where good amount of saliva had accumulated and almost dripping.

Within me I made up my mind, I would never marry Ukadi. I knew my family won’t stand by me because of all he had lavished on me, but I’d rather run away than be the wife of the old man.

“I have to go now?” I said.

“No,” He said gently.

“What? It’s dark already.” I shouted and his mum came knocking at the door.

“Bring down your voice! I will take you back home on Sunday.” He stood up, walked to the door to talk to his mum. When he came back into the room, he locked the door and went to the TV set.

“You can’t keep me here! I’m not married to you yet remember, take me home now.” I threw up my words at him. He paused, walked back to where to where I was and stared at me in silent when I started crying.

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Excerpt from My Gray Haired Groom – one of my works – coming Soon

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Temporal Delusion

I tried but couldn’t stop laughing. Laughing in public when alone without a genuine reason could be a sure sign of insanity.

People looked at me and shook their heads in the street as I danced occasionally too.

I’d walked a good distance when it popped up in my brain; I’d got a car I left behind in the parking lot. I made a clear U-turn and started running back to it, as fast as I could.

As I was running, I saw a man running too and tried to catch up with him and had to reduce my speed to keep pace with him.

The man looked at me and got amused. He stopped at the bus stop and I ran past him to the parking lot.

I saw my car, an Acura MDX, couldn’t remember the model year and color, anyway, I went to it.

I tried the door and it wasn’t opening. I moved back a little to check if I had got the wrong car. I tried again and again. As I stood there thinking of how to break in, a lady came. She was red with fury.

“What are you doing?” She asked.

A second pop in my brain and she was my wife.

“Honey are you with the car key?” I asked moving towards her.

She stood aside, searched for something in her bag, brought her spray and a phone; phone on her left ear, spray and car key in the other hand.

I went to her, took the car keys after a little love fight during which I managed to dodge her spray. She rushed after me to stop me, calling for help. People gathered and looked on, but none bothered to help.

I pressed the remote control and the car responded. I jumped into it and opened the passenger’s door for her. She stood in front of the car yelling. I was amused by her actions. She can be fun at times. I moved a little forward, she stood aside. I stopped and opened the passenger’s door. She jumped in and we had another love fight. I won.

I saw the police vehicle as I was driving away from the parking lot.

They were three of them aiming their guns at me.

“Why are they doing that?” I asked.

I stopped the car when I heard a gunshot. It was in the air. I opened the door and stepped down.

“Do not move. Put your hands in the air,” I looked at their mouths. I couldn’t make which one was speaking or whom he was talking to. But when I looked at the speaker’s bloodshot eyes, I realized it had been me all along.

I moved towards them and brought out my hand for a shake.

“Stand still. Put your hands up in the air.”

I laughed hysterically.

“I will explain. I’m heading home to celebrate with my wife. She came to my office to give me the news. We’re getting a divorce, in New Jersey” I said and looked back but the lady, my wife was gone. I searched and saw her standing behind the car.

“Oh! There you are,” I said and opened my arm and ran towards her for embrace. The Police followed giving orders.

“Thanks for waiting,” I said to her but she moved back and hastened to safety.

“This is the best day of my life.” I said and looked around laughing.

I faced the crowd. Listen, everyone. We”re leaving for New Jersey right now. It’s going to be a long trip but don’t worry, we’ll be back soon. Don’t worry, we’ll be fine.”

Suddenly the paramedics launched at me. I wrestled until I slept off in their arms.

I woke up to see my self in chains. It was in a room. A lady with a familiar face was at my side crying.

“Why am I here? Who put this thing around my feet?” I asked, got up and advanced towards her in a brutal manner.

She pressed a button and they rushed in. I counted six of them all wearing scrubs.

“Don’t make me miss my flight to New Jersey. I won’t forgive you.” I shouted.

“Yes we know,” one of them said. “You’ll soon fly to New Jersey on a special flight.”

I laughed.

The needle went deep and I felt dizzy. I was in her arms, looking at her face. I smiled when she smiled looking down at me. We’re on a flight for two. To New Jersey. To get a divorce.

I hoped it’s not happening in my dream world.

“Welcome back.” I heard a man’s voice. Initially it was his silhouette. Then all white. Then his form with lab coat. Then stethoscope. I guessed he was the flight doctor.

I smiled.

“Oh life can be sweet at times,” I said to him smiling with all my dentine exposed.

“Oh yes!” Life can be so sweet at times,” he said as he lowered himself by my side and we settled down to play staring and head shaking game before I eventually slept again.

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Dogs Don’t Care

You own the house, the tenant owns the dog. You have to travel and stay away for quite some time for a reason.

Finally, you decide to go back home and on reaching your house you discover you can’t enter your own house. Your tenants furious dog is right in front of the house about to make your life a living hell and refuse you access to your house. It begins to growl and bark.

Your tenant is not around to make the dog behave. You have to hasten outside the gate and have to stick outside the gate to wait for your tenant to come back.

Your tenant comes back and takes the dog away. You look at it, it growls at you showing its wicked eyes and teeth.

The next day you step into your compound, about to go out, and the dog on seeing you, makes at you. Your tenant has gone out again leaving you and the dog. The tenant forgets to put his dog in the cage.

With desperate effort to prevent a fatal attack on you, you drop your briefcase and run.

The dog grabs your briefcase and keeps watch over it. Your phone is in it. No means to call your tenant to come to retrieve your briefcase.

You’re angry and have plans to disallow the dog in your compound. The dog looks at you again and growls and barks. It lunches an attack, you run to the gate, the only option you have. On reaching it, you discover it has been locked, your tenant has locked it from the outside forgetting you’re still in the house.

The dog rushes closer, nothing to do but climb the wall and that’s what you have to do.

A passer-by sees you jumping the fence, alerts other passers-by and they chase you to catch you. You know that thieves stand a good chance of being stoned to death in the area.

You run and run until you meet one of your neighbours who stands to explain who you are. But you are no where to be found.

When you later come back you have to send your tenant and dog packing.

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