Damade arrived back at school full of pity for Uncle Soji to the extent that people started asking if she was okay. She was this kind of person that's so full of life and makes everywhere she is lively and full of fun. When Sade asked her, she didn't hesitate to tell her all her mum told her about Uncle Soji.
"Please put him in your prayers" she concluded
"I certainly will, dear" Sade replied "Anyway, Kayode has been here several times this weekend asking for you even though I told him you won't be back until today"
"Oh really? I'd call him later or go to meet him in his hostel" Damade replied
Kayode is Damade's boyfriend in school. They've been together for quite a while. Apart from his desire to have sex with Damade and his unnecessary jealous attitude, he's a good and 'perfect' guy for her. She has told him times without number that she's not cut out for such, and Kayode seem to have appeared to be a changed person. She often discuss with Sade about him.
"But what else do you want in a guy that Kayode doesn't have?" Sade asked her on one occasion when Damade said she was fed up of the relationship.
"Well, he's a nice guy but its not about what he has, its about what he wants" Damade replied as she continued eating the apple she was taking before Sade asked her that.
"And what does he want?" Sade asked curiously, moved close to Damade on the chair she was sitting, probably to catch the reply instantly.
"Well, he wants me to sleep with him" Damade replied, almost whispering and with the fact that Sade is now closer.
"What?!" Exclaimed Sade, then she added "I thought he was a strong christian" with her mouth still wide opened.
"Abeg, close your mouth" Damade said jokingly "even strong christians fall talkless of a weak one" she added undauntedly "Ehn ehn"
"Anyway, I've told him the next day he asks me that is the last day of our relationship"
"He did?, so what else are you worried about?" Sade asked, seeing no reason for her worries
"Kayode is damn too jealous! Remember the other day Philip came to visit me in school, you know he saw us that day at the Restaurant" Damade said
"Hmmm hmm" Sade hummed and nodded
"He almost went crazy when he saw me later that day. You needed to see how stupid he looked asking if Philip was my other Boyfriend. I was like whew. Didn't know his jealousy was up to that extent"
"But i'd advise you to talk things with him maybe he'd change" Sade replied almost feeling sorry for the situation
"Taaah! Can a jealous lover ever change???" Damade retorted with a rhetorical question.
Damade, after lectures that day and with fruitless efforts of trying to reach Kayode went to his hostel. She met him lying down on his bed and reading a book. He didn't look happy nor sad seeing her and only got up when Damade requested for a cup of water as she was tired climbing the 5 storey hall of residence.
"This your hostel is too tall, I'm so tired sha" she said after taking a cup of cold water and still panting "How are you dear?" She finally asked, not taking note of his countenance.
"I'm okay" he replied coldly.
"I've actually been trying to reach you on phone, you weren't picking up the call. What's up?" She asked, still not aware of his cold responses.
"Nothing" he replied cold as ever, this time around with a squeezed face
Then she noticed "What's wrong baby? You don't look too good" she asked, touching him to check if he's sick and running temperature
"I was told you went home" he asked, brushing her hands away
"Oh yea I did..Sade said she told you. I had a flat battery when I was going on friday so I couldn't reach you" she carefully explained
"Why did you go home? 'Cause we still talked on Thursday and you never told me you were going home" he asked, still with that angry look
"Something came up. Mum called to tell me Uncle Soji was coming home that day so I had to go meet him"
"Wait Wait Wait" he stood up, assigning her to stop with his hand.
"You disappointed all the plans we had for the weekend just to go meet Uncle Soji?" He asked with an awkward and weird smile
"Yeeeesss?!" Damade replied stressing the 3 letter word
"Damade! You know we were supposed to go to the birthday celebrations of the friend I told you about the last time we talked on Saturday and you couldn't even confirm you wouldn't be coming and you went home just like that" he said, almost yelling
"But I just explained to you why I couldn't reach you and that was why I told Sade to let you know when you come looking for me"
"Listen Damade, its not your first time running home like an headless chicken all because of this Uncle Soji and I think im beginning to get uncomfortable with it"
"Wait, how do you mean?"
"Don't you get it? You choose him over me!" He yelled, then he added softly, "listen, you are no more a kid and Uncle Soji is now getting old, don't you think its high time you left all this obsession and childish attitude about him?"
"Kayode, the relationship between me and Uncle Soji is not just something I can leave. He's more than anything you can ever think of" she replied angrily
"I don't care! Just cut off or totally reduce this obsession if you don't want me to think there's something between you two" he said angrily too
"You know what? I don't care about what you think" she said and was about walking out of the room, then she stopped and added, "listen Kayode, don't make me choose between you or him 'cause you and I know exactly who I'm going for" she said and stomped out of the well furnished room.
Damade really wished she could just cut off the relationship between her and Kayode. She couldn't believe he could get jealous over her relationship with Uncle Soji despite knowing the history between them. Kayode, feeling guilty about all he said the day before brought flowers to apologize to Damade.
"Damade, I'm so sorry for all I said yesterday. I dont know what came over me. please forgive me" he apologized ,on his knees and Damade forgave him.
Few weeks later, Kayode asked her for sex again.
"Kayode, ive told you times without number that i cant dabble into this kind of stuff" she replied
"But you are almost done in school and old enough" he persisted
"Age and class doesn't mean anything before God, so far I'm not yet married. Its either you wait or you get out of this relationship" she replied firmly. Kayode held his peace and never pestered her again.
Six months later, Uncle Soji came to Nigeria. It was christmas period and everyone was home for the christmas holidays. Christmas period use to be so much fun in Dare's family especially when Uncle Soji is around. They go to the beach, sometimes to the amusement park, the zoo or to one christmas party or the other. Everyone gets a gift for everyone in the family and since Uncle Soji is practically part of the family, he gets some gifts too. Kayode is also a well-known incoming member of the family. Damade finally found the courage to go introduce him to her family. She told her parents earlier about him and he was warmly received by all members of the family and of course excluding Uncle Soji and that's because they haven't met. He came this christmas period to greet him since he's around. Uncle Soji happily welcomed him into the family just like everyone did.
"Wow, Damade of those years is finally preparing to get married o" Uncle Soji teased and everyone laughed. Damade laughed too but didn't reply him. She wasn't yet convinced Kayode is the right person for her. She introduced him just to let her parents know him and see if they have any problem with him.
"Damade, please let us know about any man you are going out with. Dont think you can do it all on your own" her mum often says
Kayode, for the past six months haven't shown any sign of unworthiness but Damade is taking her time. Even though Kayode has formally proposed marriage to her, she replied by saying he should go wait on God more as she's also going to do the same. After having all the fun of the day, Kayode went back to his parent's house since they stay in another part of Lagos. On a normal day when Uncle Soji comes home for christmas holidays, he spends a week or two before going back, well this time isn't going to be different but something exceptional happened.
TO BE CONTINUED
Author: Peace Toluwanimi Odeniyi