Ngozi horned at the gate to the house and the gate opened. Expecting
to see the gateman, she was shocked to see Nduka instead, pushing the gate open
with strong arms. Alarmed and surprised at the same time, she slowed down the
car, wound down the window, stuck out her head from the window and asked.

“Honey, what are you doing at the gate? Isn’t Musa around?”
Ngozi asked, a bit embarrassed at the actions of her fiancé, who was opening
the gate like a gateman.
“Baby…this is all for you. I told Musa that I wanted to open
the gate for you and he agreed even though we argued a bit…but come on in, I’ll
close it as soon as you drive in.” Nduka said delightfully.
“Ndu love…please don’t do this again okay, the neighbours,
they might start talking. A grown man like you shouldn’t be opening the gate,
that’s why we hired the gateman in the first place remember?” Ngozi cautioned.
“Why are you shouting at me? Are you angry with me? Please
don’t be…if you get angry with me, I’ll die…I can’t bear to see you angry…”
Nduka started then burst out in tears.
Ngozi quickly turned off her ignition and hurriedly stepped
out of the car, rushing to meet him, she enveloped him in a hug.
“Babe…what’s wrong? I’m sorry that I made you feel this way,
but Nduka…you are not the crying type, why are you tearing up?”
“Because you don’t love me anymore…” Nduka started as he let
her wipe away his tears with the back of her palms.
“I love you so much…more than any other person in the
world…” Ngozi said.
“Really…do you promise?” Nduka asked.
“Yes…I do…err…let me get back into my car and drive into the
house okay…” Ngozi said to him.
Nduka nodded and smiled.
“Hope you brought home goodies?” Nduka asked, sounding
instantly like a child.
Ngozi shocked, stopped short and turning to him, she said
silently.
“I got some M&Ms from the supermarket, on my way home.
We’ll eat it together and speak of our day at work today.”
Nduka said nothing and watched her get into the car before
speaking loudly to her hearing.
“I didn’t go to work today…I have resigned.”
Ngozi blared her horn loudly in shock, she blinked rapidly
and starting the ignition slowly, she wound up her window and drove into the
house. ‘What does this mean?’ She asked herself, ‘why was Nduka acting
strangely? Was it the potion? Was it her imagination?’ She was still wondering
about the changes in Nduka when someone rapped at her window. Shocked to see
Nduka again but in another outfit, she wound down her window and looked up at
him. He spoke to her.
“Ngozi right?”
“Are you kidding me?” Ngozi asked bewildered.
“My name is Moses and I’m Nduka’s twin brother.” The man
said, ignoring Ngozi’s expression.
The air in the car immediately seemed to choke her, images
and flashes from Ngozi’s dream came to her head and in a desperate attempt to
flee, Ngozi screamed.
*****
“Hi Jonathan…I am so sorry that I didn’t pick your call…I
was at the office and …” Henrietta started.
“Oh no worries…” Jonathan said, sounding bored.
Jonathan had called her while she was arranging the last of
the files into the shelf in Ngozi’s office. It was seven-thirty and almost
everyone had gone home except Henrietta who had to tidy up a few things or face
damnation at the hands of her boss tomorrow.
“How are you? You haven’t contacted me in a long while and I
was wondering if you are alright.” Henrietta said.
“Oh…I’m good dear.” Jonathan said.
“I just finished from work and I am still at the office, you
could come pick me up if you are free.” Henrietta supplied.
“Pick you up? Why?” Jonathan asked.
“I remembered that some days ago you dropped me off at my
house in Surulere…”
“Yea…I did but that was because, I had to get something at
Surulere…”
“Okay…sorry I said that…I didn’t mean that you should put
everything on hold for me…”
“It’s no problem…I am not around now though…but I called
because I needed a favour from you, Henrietta.” Jonathan said.
“A favour?” Henrietta echoed, she was so thrilled that
Jonathan was calling to ask her for a favour.
“Yes…I need a favour. You see, my friend is at Shitta and he
has something of mine, I will need you to bring it for me. Are you going to
work tomorrow?” He asked.
“Well…I could call in sick if what you need is urgent.”
Henrietta said, mentally imagining her boss Ngozi and the fit she’ll throw if
she didn’t come to work tomorrow.
“Okay…please take a taxi to Shitta…I’ll reimburse you when
you come. Collect my item from my friend and wait for my call, I’ll send you
directions as to where to bring it.”
“That’s no problem…will I see you there? I mean at the place
where I am to take the item to…” Henrietta asked.
‘Yes…you will. I’ll be there waiting, please do not
disappoint. My friend’s name is Jabehz, he deals in gold.” Then after a while
he said. “You can pick whatever accessory that catches your fancy. Just tell
him that you are my girl and he’ll give you anything you want.”
“Oh thank you so much Jonathan…God bless you.” Henrietta
thanked him.
They hung up on each other as soon as Jonathan had given her
the address to Jabhez’s place. Henrietta quickly packed up her bag, rushed out
of the office, hurried to the ATM machine, withdrew cab money and hailing a
cab, she blurted out Jabhez’s address. As the car zoomed off, Henrietta said to
herself, “I’ll fight for what is mine, even with the last drop of my blood.
Jonathan is mine and he’ll fall in love with me and we would get married soon,
that’s a promise.”
*****
Ade opened the door to Emeka’s house and stepped in, she had
the spare key to his apartment where she intended to pick up what she’d left in
his place some days ago and leave as discreetly as she came. Ade knew Emeka’s
schedule, he closed work at seven pm and waited for traffic to die down before
heading home. She had left Lekki at four pm after receiving
an intense lecture from her supervisor, she knew she performed badly in the
presentation but her supervisor made it sound like she had destroyed the
company’s solid reputation. Not ready to be attacked by more superiors, she had
left a note with the receptionist explaining that she had to leave early
because she was ill. She had left the office, not knowing where to go, she didn’t
want to go home because she knew that her step-mother would instantly know that
she didn’t have a good day at work and would be hell-bent on knowing what went
wrong. She wanted to be alone and what better place than Emeka’s place, she
still had his apartment key and conjuring up excuses in her head just incase
Emeka walked in to find her in his apartment, Ade sped through the freeway and
headed down to Emeka’s place. Since their small spat, Emeka had called her a
few times and after that night when he had invited her for dinner and she had stood him up, he had stopped calling her. She really
needed to talk to him but pride held her from calling him, so instead, she was
going to spend some time in his house, pick up a few of her lingerie, drop a
note and run off, ‘that would make him miss me’ she said to herself.
Ade closed the door behind her, turned on the lights and
walked into the bedroom, the bed was well made and everything kept in its
place, a typical Emeka habit. He was not known for being untidy and unkempt, he
was the neat sort of guy. A naughty thought filtered its way into her head and
she laughed it off, the desire to scatter his room and leave it in a mess was
one thought and she shrugged it off, ‘childish’ she murmured. She walked to the
wardrobe and was about to open it when she heard a knock.
“Who is it?” She asked puzzled that anyone would be paying
Emeka a visit at this time.
The doorbell rang long and hard and Ade marched to the door
and held it open. At the door was a tall lady, light-skinned, wide smile
revealing gap-teeth and clad in a very clingy outfit. The lady’s face was
achingly familiar but Ade couldn’t place a finger to where she’s seen the face
before. The lady was holding in her hands, a huge parcel that smelt like food,
good food.
“Hello.” Ade greeted, letting off the ‘territorial vibe’ and
cringing her nostrils at the lady’s toxic perfume.
“Is Emeka at home?” The lady asked, with a bit of
igbotic-accent.
“No he’s not and who are you?” Ade asked rudely.
“Why do you ask?”  The
lady shot back.
“You are in my fiancée’s place dear and this is my house too
so…” Ade said as she folded her arms and faced her opponent squarely.
“Hahahaha…e bu onye ara (you are a mad person)” The lady
said to Ade.
“Are you serious?” Ade mocked.
“You are a joker girl! I have spent the past four nights in
Emeka’s bed and I have prepared his meals in between so…”
“I am not interested in a shouting match with a fool, if you
know what’s good for you…turn back and leave.” Ade shouted.
“It’s you who should leave! I am Nkechi, Emeka’s wife…did
you hear my name? Nkechinyere…which means, the one bestowed by God. I am God’s
gift to Emeka and I am his wife, the woman officially known by all his family
members. A proper Igbo woman, a true daughter of the soil. I am sure that you
are the Ade, the Yoruba woman who has no place in Emeka’s home…I’ve heard a lot
about you and one thing that I am sure of is, that you are wasting your time
with him because, he is mine.”
Ade’s head spun in a thousand circles, she couldn’t believe
what she had just heard, ‘how long did it take for Emeka to replace her, one
day, two?’ Something told her to leave but instead, she stepped back into the
house and closed the door at Nkechi’s face.
“When Emeka gets home…when Emeka returns…” Was all she heard
herself say, as she leaned her back against the door.
Nkechi was determined to get into Emeka’s house even if it
meant bringing the house down, she pounded hard at the door and spoke in rapid
Igbo language, hailing curses and insults at Ade.
*****
“What’s that suitcase in your hand Henrietta?” Her father
asked her.
Henrietta had just stepped into the house, holding a medium
sized suitcase in her hand. She had gone to Jabehz’s place and had even picked
up accessories for her whole family.
“Good evening dad…” Henrietta smiled cheerfully.
“What’s in the suitcase?” Her father asked.
“Oh…nothing…it’s Jonathan’s stuff…” Henrietta said.
“Who is Jonathan?”
“My new boyfriend…” Henrietta smiled sheepishly.
“He shouldn’t be giving you suitcases to take home…” Her
father said.
“Well…this is something he asked me to collect from him and
guess what? He gifted me with real gold jewels…and I got a stunning bracelet
for you.” Henrietta said as she dropped the suitcase on the ground and rummaged
through her bag for the bracelet which she gave her father.
“Hmmm…it’s nice…it doesn’t look like real gold though.” Her
father said.
“C’mon dad…it’s real… Jabehz deals in pure gold.”
“Who’s Jabehz ?”
Henrietta rolled her eyes and sighed.
“Where is mom? Let me go inside and have a shower, it’s been
a long day. My boss at the office is a Vampire…she sucks blood for a living.”
Henrietta said, conveniently changing the topic.
“That’s okay…go inside and have a bath and later, fill me in
about this new boyfriend of yours.”
“Yes! Yes! I will, definitely, you’ll love him!” Henrietta
assured.
Carrying the suitcase to her room, Henrietta shut the door, removed
her shoes and fell flat on her bed. Her phone vibrated in her bag, she
stretched out lazily, picked up the bag and retrieved her phone. Glancing to
see the caller ID, she smiled and sat up.
“Hey babe…” Jonathan greeted.
Henrietta was in cloud nine, Jonathan had called her babe,
which made it official! They were now a couple.
“Hey…” She squeaked.
“Jabhez just confirmed that you have received the item…good
girl.”
“Thank you for the compliment…”
“I should hire you, you know, in my company.”
“Aww…that would be nice…my boss is Dracula.” Henrietta said.
“Haahaahaa” Jonathan laughed. “Let’s see how well you
deliver this item…then, I could actually hire you.”
“Really…trust me…I am so good at running errands, that’s my
strong point.”
“That’s good. So, tomorrow, I need you to travel to Dubai
with that suitcase.”
“Dubai?” I have never travelled to Dubai before…what of visa…I
don’t understand…”
“Okay…first things first, we need to get you a visa…I hope
you own an international passport?”
“Yes, I do…”
“That’s great! I’ll arrange a visa for you…it’s no biggie…I
need the suitcase before 5pm tomorrow. I’ll be waiting for you here in Dubai,
when you arrive, I’ll send a driver to you and once I receive the suitcase, we
can explore Dubai together.” Jonathan said.
“Really? This is big! I …intended to call in sick for only
tomorrow…how would I enjoy Dubai with the risk of getting fired?”
“Don’t worry…by the time you get to Dubai…I’ll take care of
everything. Do you trust me?” Jonathan asked. “This is a delicate business
babe, and I chose you for it because I have no one else that I can trust. I
trust you.”
“Thank you…” Henrietta said.
“Now, I need you to keep this a secret for now…don’t let
anyone in on this yet okay.”
“Okay…but what do I tell my family?”
“You’re a smart girl…you’ll figure it out!”
“Yes…I will.” Henrietta echoed.
Henrietta smiled in excitement, Jonathan ended the call and
as soon as she dropped her phone on her bed, she whooped for joy.

“Dubai, here I come!”

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