Femi sighed as Yemi wheeled him out of the Muritala Mohammed International Airport. The driver was waiting for them in the Land rover parked outside. He was obviously astonished and beyond shocked to see his boss in a wheel chair.
The bomb blast had affected his left leg really bad, and the doctors had to amputate it at India. The explosive shock waves from the bomb had caused severe body displacement which had resulted in serious injury on his limbs that were beginning to threaten other parts of his body. The doctors had said some tissues had been affected from the blast, and infection had begun to set in.
He had been so scared, as he was wheeled into the theater. The last thing he had looked at was the leg that was to be cut off, before he had been given shots of anesthesia.
He thought he had dreamt of Jadesola, as he was asleep from the effect of the shots. He remembered how she loved to come watch him play football at the open field in the estate where he lived, every Saturday morning. She was always screaming and cheering him, even when he didn’t score any goals. He was a striker, and she always called him “Magic legs.”
He woke up after the surgery, and they had amputated every form of magic from his leg. All that was there was a stump which was now bandaged. He burst into tears that night after the surgery. He was uncontrollable. Yemi tried to calm him down, but she defeated the whole purpose by weeping profusely. Their father walked out of the ward, trying to pull himself together.
Shortly after he had been put under observation, Dr. Gaur had to carry out another prosthesis procedure.
The hospital had arranged a counseling session for him on getting over the trauma of the bomb blast, and also how to get used to his new life and how to learn to walk with the artificial limb. They’d told him things would never be the same and he needed his loved ones closer than ever before.
Jadesola was his loved one, but he didn’t even know how he was going to present himself to her. Their wedding was almost around the corner. He didn’t want to embarrass her with a handicapped groom. That was not the dream wedding she wanted.
He was supposed to stay back for about eight weeks more for regular checkup and therapy sessions on how to begin to live and walk with the artificial limb, but he had insisted on returning to Nigeria. He knew Jadesola was going crazy. It had been three weeks and he knew she needed to know. He didn’t know how or when to tell her, but he was going to.
Tokunbo looked at her as she poured out her frustration. She was furious, scared and agitated, above all scared. They sat together in her living room as she was trying to stop herself from weeping.
“The problem is, I don’t understand what is going on. Yemi won’t return or pick my calls, and I don’t have a number to call Femi on. I want to be there for him. I don’t know what has happened to him. I just have a feeling something is wrong somewhere. I don’t know if he’s trying to leave me…” She ranted.
“Jadesola, he would be the craziest man ever to leave you. I guess he is just confused with the whole blast. It’s enough to scare anyone, knowing you closely missed death, you know.” Tokunbo said.
She nodded, but this time, her tears could no longer hide in her eyes. She burst into tears. Tokunbo pulled her closer and hugged her.
He remembered back in his apartment at Dundee, when his girlfriend had cheated on him and Jadesola had been the one he called to come over. She had held him too in his vulnerability. He began to stroke her hair, and then she jolted.
“Um…thank you Tokunbo.” She said.
He cleared his throat.
“I’m sorry…I was just trying to calm you down,” He said. He felt embarrassed like he had crossed a line with her. “I should leave now.”
As he approached the door, Jadesola went over to him.
“I didn’t mean it that way. I do appreciate your concern…I guess I’m just not at my best these days.”
He smiled, pecked her forehead, and walked out.
She shut the door and sighed, then walked into her bedroom, and opened her closet. She had missed work for about two weeks, and she wasn’t on leave. She had resumed the week before, though she knew she wasn’t being as productive as she ought to. She knew her boss was just being lenient because he was Femi’s cousin. She had to get her act back together. She had even asked him if he knew anything about Femi’s situation but he said he had not been able to get through to Yemi or their father either.
She brought out her dark grey dress and a black blazer, and laid them on the sofa in the room. It was about Nine thirty p.m. Teni had gone to church for a vigil, and her parents had travelled out of town for a relative’s wedding. She took off her dress as she was about to take a bath, and then she felt some heaviness and pain in her breasts. She placed her hand on her abdomen and hissed.
“Femi, well done.” She said to herself. The thought of aborting the pregnancy crossed her mind, but she was too scared to do it. What if complications happened and she was never going to be able to get pregnant again? Maybe it was time she gave up on trying to communicate with him. If he wanted her, he knew how to find her. The worst that would happen was that people would talk and gossip when she announced the wedding was cancelled.
She heard her phone ring.
It was a text message from Femi.
She threw on an oversized t shirt and shorts, then ran outside, and got into her car. She drove down to Ikoyi. There was no traffic around that time so she got there fast. She honked several times as she approached the gate of his apartment. She didn’t care if she disturbed any neighbor’s peace. She brought out her phone to call him. Just then the gate man opened the gate. She drove into the compound, parked as carelessly as she could, and ran into the duplex on the left wing of the twin duplex where Femi lived.
Yemi opened the door and tried to hug Jadesola but she retreated and walked past her, her eyes searching for Femi. She dashed into his bedroom. He was sitting in the couch, wearing a t shirt and long jogging pants that covered his prosthetic leg.
“What the hell is going on, Femi Adewale? How can you just send me a text that you’re back in Nigeria? You left me in a mental state for weeks?!” She yelled, pushing him. He fell against the cushions.
“Babe, I…” He stammered.
“I have been so worried about you. I haven’t been able to speak to anyone that was with you. I don’t know what happened to you. I have been sick worried!”
He pulled her hand but she pushed him harder again, in anger. Yemi ran into the room and yelled at her to quit shoving him.
“Yemi please just stay away from this okay?” She yelled back. She looked at Femi. “I don’t know what it is you guys are trying to do. I have been so mad thinking you were badly hurt but I see you’re okay. How was the family cruise to India? Hope you had fun!”
Yemi shook her head and shot her brother an angry look.
“It’s not what you think, babe.” Femi said.
“Save it. Before you call off the wedding, I’ll call it off.”
Yemi couldn’t help but talk at that point.
“You’re just a stuck up selfish person!” She hissed.
“So says the girl who’s having an affair with her married boss.” Jadesola yelled.
Yemi went silent. Femi dropped his head in his hands. He had told Jade that Yemi was having an affair with her boss and he was trying to get her to leave the man. Yemi looked at him, and then walked out of the room.
She parked her car in the compound and then walked into the house. She was shocked to see that Teni was back from church. She was eating in fact. Her sister was weird. She ate so much at odd hours, yet she never put on any weight unlike her who had to diet and diet some more to maintain a UK 10.
“Where did you go?” Teni asked, gulping her glass of orange juice.
“Can you imagine? Femi is back! I went to his house after he had the guts to send me a text that he was back. He was just in his room. I looked at him. Nothing was wrong with him! I thought I would see him bandaged and all that! And Yemi had the effrontery to call me selfish?!”
“If you weren’t my sister, I would have wondered what kind of person you are, Jadesola.”
“What’s that supposed to mean? Watch your tongue!”
“Femi’s leg got amputated! That’s why he went to India. He is going through so much and all you could do was to accuse him and scream at him. He didn’t wanna tell you because he was scared at how you would feel.” Teni said angrily.
Jadesola stared into thin air, wide eyed, as tears streamed down her face.
Teni watched her sob uncontrollably and went to hold her. She grabbed her car keys and wanted to go back but Teni didn’t let her.
“We will see him tomorrow, okay? It’s late already.”
She picked her phone and dialed his number.
Femi heard the phone ring but it was plugged to charge in an electric socket in the living room. He knew it was Jadesola because of the ringtone; Love my baby by Wizkid. Yemi had packed some of her things and left, leaving Femi all alone in the house. She had been so disappointed that Femi had told Jadesola about her affair with her boss. He was far away from his wheel chair and he couldn’t yet walk well on his own. He couldn’t even reach for his crutches. He screamed his gateman’s name but the gateman was listening to his small radio in the gatehouse.
He heard the phone ring continuously and he tried to crawl on the floor to the living room. He tried dragging himself but he felt so much pain. It felt as though Jade was going to slip away and leave him if the phone stopped ringing. He was halfway when the phone ceased ringing.
“Jadesola…Jadesola…” He kept on saying, as though she were physically there.
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