NADIA: At that particular moment. I felt on top of the world, like I was climbing the sky with my head up high.
Mrs. Olutayo sat throughout the day’s lesson. All of a sudden, Brenda became extra nice and careful; she had no choice than to smile at Joyce and me.
Just after the lesson was over, Mrs. Olutayo called for both of us. Although it felt like she was on our side, I still needed to confirm that. I couldn’t stop myself from being nervous.
DANIEL: "Mum, why did you keep such a delicate information from me? What if I had planned of getting married to Joyce? I deserve to know everything about my family, mum. It's not fair keeping me in the dark."
I lashed out at her, right from the moment I saw her back home.
"Listen, Daniel! It's high time you know that as a family, we have lots of enemies who will dig till the ends of the earth to ensure that they steal our position. Do you think we were dumb when we decided to keep this secret from you? Do you want my enemies to use my family members as leverage to get to me? Do you think I was stupid when I instructed you to keep your identity a secret? Do you think I was been mean when I never allowed pictures, or the media? But did you listen? Hell no! You wanna be the big boy, don’t you? With an empty brain, it’s high time you think, son. Think!"
Her words read different meanings into my ears: Firstly, I got to understand that Wilson wasn’t the one who suggested that I keep my identity a secret; secondly, she knew we had enemies, but does she know she has a friendly foe, or should I say a family foe?”
"Mum, Wilson is...”
She cut me short, “Wilson is doing everything he can, just to ensure your safety, Daniel. You are putting lots of weight on your brother.”
I held my tongue back in its position. The love she had for her brother was so great; It would take more than just spoken words to prove to her that Wilson is not who he says he is.
Oh! I could actually use her help on another matter.
"Mum, the president of the academy, Joyce's father, is sick with the same ailment. We don't know how to get the medications to him."
That was how we got to the academy.
NADIA: She was indeed helpful, and promised to make sure Joyce takes charge of the president's medication. When she left, Joyce and I asked Daniel in unison;
"Does she know?"
The sad look on his face clearly answered our question.
"This is bad. Wilson still has the upper hand," Joyce stated the obvious.
"But at least, we have her on our side, and that's a bonus. A big, big bonus," I tried to encourage them.
"Nadia, I think it's time we have a new supervisor," Joyce butts in. "You can do that, can’t you?"
She made me look at Daniel's direction.
"What!?" he questioned.
"Oh, I get you. I'll talk to my mum about this."
I could see Joyce was true to her words when she stated that she was going to fight back. She hurried back to the hospital, leaving me with Daniel. I was a bit glad to be left alone with him.
"Let's talk over a cup of coffee."
Brilliant idea! In fact, I had been praying so hard for such a moment. As a lady, I had to exhibit some form of resistance to help my pride.
"Are you sure? I don't feel like going out today o."
Jeez! I have said too much. I prayed he didn't fall for it.
"Come on. We won't stay long. I know a place in town. It's cool and quiet, and we need to talk."
I blest him in my mind for pushing further.
I quickly changed into a jean trousers and a silk sweater. It was November already, and the chill of harmattan was trying to inform us of its grand finale. Daniel wore a thick Jacket too.
We went to an eatery instead.
"Daniel, you told me minutes ago that we were going to have a cup of coffee," I tried to find out why the sudden change of plans.
"I could hear your stomach rumbling, eat up!” he joked.
“You might not get this chance again when I travel out of the country," he added.
"You are traveling outside the country?"
My fluttering thoughts got punctured. He grinned. I didn't understand what he meant until he eased my mind with a different statement;
"Traveling to where? I was just joking."
What a relief!
"Serena is my mother's younger sister; Joyce is my cousin."
He threw those words at me like I was some kind of prepared goalkeeper.
“What!? Is Joyce aware of this?”
He shrugged, "I'm not sure."
I was about to say something else when I received a text message on my phone. Its content read, "I can see you eating with Daniel."
My felt a surge in heartbeat. The seat on which I sat suddenly became hot and uncomfortable.
"Are you okay?" Daniel asked.
I was about to explain to him that someone was watching us when another text flashed my screen;
"Don't you dare talk, else I'll expose your secrets. Come over to the rest room now!"
My secrets!? What secrets do I have? My mind travelled back to the evil deeds I committed whiles in school.
"Excuse me; I need to use the restroom."
You won't believe who it was; Wilson again.
I hissed and attempted to walk away, but he was quick to hold me back.
“Wilson, are you monitoring my life now?".
“Nadia, I still love you. Nadia...”
"Ahn, ahn! What is wrong with you? What is this game you are trying to play with me? Wait, do you take me for a fool or something?”
He was rhetorical in his reply;
“Listen Nadia, I am on your side. I love you, don't you get it? You are my wife.”
"Ex wife, Wilson... Ex wife! Our commitment ended the moment I signed the divorce papers."
I turned to leave but he held me back again.
"What if I tell you that those divorce papers were fake? We are still married, Nadia. How do you think Daniel will take that? Of course, he would think you lied to him. Oh, and that's a big disadvantage on your path. So think about it before you choose to walk out on me."
My legs went weak. My heart doubled its beat.
"So when I mean your secret, I meant this: We are still married."
Continued on next page...
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