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CHAPTER THREE PART FOUR

CHAPTER THREE PART FOUR

“Have you heard of some men telling their wives that they will get another wife because she didn’t give birth to a male child probably because she gave birth to a female child or she hasn’t given birth at all? That’s how my dad is. Aunty Ebun gave birth to four girls and my dad was unhappy. He wanted a male child, so he married my mum. My mum made him happy by giving birth to a male child and he really adored me and treated me like his only child. This caused a problem between Aunty Ebun and my dad because he wasn’t given her and her children any attention. She told him she was tired of the marriage and she was leaving, and he didn’t mind that she left

“Weeks after she left, she sent the divorce papers to him and they met once to finalize the divorce and since then, we haven’t heard of her. Apparently, she moved to the U.K with her children. When I was young, I always said I wanted to be an engineer because my dad is one and I enjoyed following him to the construction site. It looked like a very interesting profession and the outfit they wore made it cooler. During my stay in secondary school, I realized I had the passion for acting and not engineering. I joined the drama club and was even the head of the club. I was scared to let my dad know about my new found passion because he had boasted to all his friends that I’m taking over him in the engineering profession, and most of the times he sees me, he told me to take my studies seriously because I need good grades to get into the best engineering university

“When I got to grade 11, I changed my classes to what will fit me studying performing arts in universities. It’s not like I didn’t get good grades, I was one of the top students in my class but I didn’t enjoy physics, chemistry or technical drawing. My dad was always happy with my results and he took me out to various countries as a present. I felt bad that I’m going on all these trips when I’ve made a decision that he won’t like. My mum supported my decision but she told me that I’ve to tell him the truth. It was time to check the results of grade 11 first term examination online and my heart was beating fast. Dad was smiling widely knowing that his son will have a good result, but a good result with the unexpected subjects

“Dad saw the result and said congratulations. I got a 4.0 gpa. I was surprised, but thought he was sarcastic, but realized he hadn’t seen the subjects. He saw the subjects and looked at me and asked ‘What are these subjects I’m seeing? Are you sure this is your result or someone else’s?’ I can’t forget those words because of the hurt on his face. I told him it was my result and apologized with tears. He told me I had been lying to me anytime he asked about my studies. I remember him asking ‘History? Literature? What do you want to do with it? You want to become a lawyer?’ I could see the smile in his eyes as he mentioned the lawyer part. I’m sure he was already imagining me being a lawyer and telling his friends how his first son is a lawyer

“I told him I want to be an actor and not a lawyer. He laughed. He didn’t believe me. He asked my mum if she knew about it and when she didn’t say anything, he got his answer. To cut the long story short, he stopped anticipating my result. He said he won’t fund for my university education till I graduate. Mum made sure I get the best education in university outside the country. She was a banker before she met dad and decided to go into business. She sold bags and clothes and the business was really thriving. She was able to fund my education with the money she had in her days as a banker and also as a businesswoman”

“Wow. I’m glad you’re pursuing your dreams and that’s all that matters”

“You don’t need to thank me. Come here” They both hugged and the woman rubbed her back as she cried.

“I’m not going to tell you to stop crying. You’re sad and you wish you weren’t here right now and I understand that so do whatever you can to make you feel better”

“I hope I’m not disturbing anything” Dare said holding a cup of water.

“You are not. I was just making sure she feels better”

“That’s so nice of you mum”

“I brought this water for you and I want to let you know that if you need anything, just let me know”

“Thank you so much. I really appreciate it”

“I will leave you two alone and Dare, take her to your dad’s room when you’re both done talking”

“Dad’s room? You know Aunty Shalewa sleeps there”

“Your dad would want her to sleep there. Shalewa can’t do anything about that”

“Mum, you like trouble” Dare said laughing”

“Did I lie?”

“No, Ma”

“So what’s your name? I’m sure you’re tired of being called the third wife” Dare asked.

“Kikelomo”

“Kikelomo, if you need anything don’t hesistate to let me know”

“Thank you so much. God will bless you abundantly”

“Amen. Like my mum said, I need to take you to your room”

She shook her head severally and Dare looked at her worried.

“What’s wrong?”

“Can you take me to another room?”

Dare smiled with realization dawning on him and said, “I will not lie to you. Aunty Shalewa will be angry that you’re here and she won’t like you for a while. I’m just letting you know this so you won’t be surprised when she get angry at you. None of this is your fault but my dad’s. Dad will want you to stay in the room with him, and there’s nothing Aunty Shalewa can say or do that will change his decision”

“That’s a little bit comforting. Thank you”

“Dare” Two small boys shouted running to hug him.

“How are you two doing today” He asked them playing with their stomach.

“Stop. It’s ticklish” One of the boys said laughing.

Kike looked at the boys with a smile as they ran away happily and Dare said, “That’s aunty Shalewa’s children. Ezekiel and Kayode. They’re twins”

“They’re so cute. Where are the other children?”

“They live in the UK with their mum. That’s a long story, but I will fill you in on everything once you’ve settled in”

“Alright. Thanks”

“So, we’ve gotten here” Dare said with a sigh as they stood in front of Mr Ojo’s room. “Remember what I told you. It will be a surprise if she doesn’t react, but everything will be alright”

“I really appreciate all what you’ve done for me since I came here. Thank you so much”

“It’s no problem. You don’t have to thank me”

Kike stood in front of the door and took a deep breath before knocking on the door.

“Who is there?” A female asked.

“Oh my goodness” Kike muttered repeatedly panicking.

“It’s Kikelomo”

“Who is Kikelomo?” The female asked

“Kikelomo, iyawo mi (my wife). Come inside” Mr Ojo said.

She could hear the joy in his voice and that irritated her.

“Good afternnon Ma” She greeted the lady.

The lady stood wearing a long floral dress, with a sandals and her braids was tied in the middle of her head. She was slim, tall, and dark-skinned with her skin glowing and she immediately felt inferior.

Shalewa looked at her from head to toe with disgust and said, “Please save your greeting and go back to where you’re coming from”

“Shalewa, you’ve started” Mr Ojo said sternly.

“I’ve started what? What did I do? Isn’t it me that should be saying you’ve started? You brought in a new wife and you expect me to be cool with it?” She laughed and looked at Mr Ojo shaking her head. “Ojo, o jo rerin pupo, nigbati o mu mi wa si ibi ti o wu mi ni odun meta seyin, bawo ni aunty Mojirade se se? Se ko fesi ni ona kanna ti Mo n se? O ti se ileri fun mi o si fo. Gbogbo re nitori pe o fe opolopo awon omode… (Ojo, you’re very funny. When you brought me here against my will three years ago, how did aunty Mojirade react? Didn’t she react the same way I’m reacting? You made a promise to me and you broke it. All because you want a lot of children…).

“Shalewa, stop this pretense. Stop pretending that you’re in love with me”

“I’m… I’m in love with you” She said reaching for his hand and he took a step back.

“I know that when I came here I made it clear that I wasn’t interested in you, but I later realized that you’re everything. It’s you that I want and I’m not bothered about the age difference and what people will say. I gave birth to twins for you. Boys” She said the last part softly with tears falling down on her face.

“You’re in love with me, but you’re cheating on me?”

Shalewa looked shocked and asked, “How?”

“How did I know?” He laughed. “At first I believed you when you said you were visiting your friends. You’re young so enjoy yourself, but when I told you to invite the friends over, you refused. You gave different excuses that they’re busy with school, exams or their parents won’t allow them to come over because they’re strict. I thought about what you said deeply and I realized that you could be lying. You were probably meeting someone else, but I decided to give you the benefit of the doubt. I woke up at night and saw you whispering on the phone. I could have pretended that I was asleep but I decided to move on the bed to see your reaction. You didn’t disappoint. You ended the call when you noticed my movement. The next day you said you were going to visit a friend and I told one of the men working for me to follow you. He followed you until he had enough information about what you’ve been up to. I told him to stop following you when he saw you two kissing in a restaurant”

Mr. Ojo reached for his phone on the dressing table and showed her pictures of her and the person she was with in a car, in the restaurant, and a mall which made her to gasp.

“It was easy to catch you in the act because you saw him almost every day. I know about you and Tunji’s plan. He told me everything. You wanted to use me till you got all that you want and you will run away. You saw me as a seventy five years old man who is weak, tired and is always sleeping. ”

“Please stop this. Just stop this. Before I was coaxed into this marriage, Tunji and I have been dating for a year. He is the love of my life and we’re still young and have a lot of things to do together. He’s loving, caring, smart, and funny. He has all the qualities I like in a guy. Even though I’m married to you, Tunji believed I could leave you. Some guys would have believed that was the end road and I will be stuck with you or they would’ve moved on, but Tunji did the opposite. Since you know the truth, please let’s divorce so I will be with Tunji”

“Divorce? It’s impossible. You’re stuck with me. I’ve spoken to Tunji and he has agreed to stop contacting you”

“What? You can’t be serious. Why are you doing this to me? Why are you trying to ruin my life” She shouted hitting him on the chest.

“You ruined it yourself. I can see you’re dressed up to see him. I’ve seized the key and the car. If you want to go anywhere, you have to ask for my permission and the driver will let me know. You can trick the driver to take you to a different place from what you’ve mentioned, but just know that I’m ten steps ahead of you”

Shalewa looked at Mr Ojo with tears and stormed out of the room.

“Wow” That’s all Kike said.

“What’s wrong? Why are you crying?” Mr Ojo asked Kike as he rushed towards her.

“I’m okay. I just miss home. That’s all”

“Don’t overthink the situation. You will love living here, I promise. I also want to apologize for what you witnessed between Shalewa and I. You shouldn’t have saw that, but some things are better said than not saying anything”

A WEEK LATER

Living with Mr Ojo isn’t as bad as she expected. She thought she would meet all the wives angry at her when she came, they won’t like her and would look for ways to send her out of the house. Well, Shalewa isn’t speaking to her or anyone and she understands her reason. Her feelings her valid. Shalewa has been in her room since the incident happened and she only comes out of the room to get food or any item she needs. Mr Ojo has been extremely nice to her. Buying clothes for her before he gets back home for work.

“How are you doing?” Dare asked.

“I’m good. What about you?”

“I’m doing okay”

“You know we’ve been taking since I came here and I don’t really know much about you. What you do, why you’re here in your parents’ house”

He laughed and replied, “I’m 32 years old. I’m an actor. Not yet popular but I will get there by God’s grace. I haven’t seen my mum in months. 4 months to be exact so I decided to see her for 2 weeks”

“You and your mum are really close and it’s so nice to watch. I have noticed that you and your dad don’t really talk. What happened?”

He was quiet for some minutes and she said, “I’m so sorry. I shouldn’t have asked. I understand if you don’t want to talk about it”

“It’s a very touchy subject, but I will let you know what happened”

“The first wife, Aunty Ebun…”

Kike burst out into laughter and looked at Dare apologizing in between the laughter.

“I’m so sorry, but now you’ve said this, I really need to ask. Why do you call you call your step mothers aunty? Why not mum or mummy? I just find it weird and funny”

“When I was young, the first wife didn’t like me or my mum for 2 reason. The first one was that my dad got another wife and the second one was that my mum gave birth to a boy. My dad has always wanted a boy and the first wife gave him 4 girls. That caused a rift between them and everywhere was chaotic. The first wife told me severally not to call her mummy that she isn’t my mum and she hates me. I cried to my mum about it and she told me to call her aunty instead. Since then, I’ve gotten used to the word”

“Wow. Do you think about what the first wife said to you?”

“Once in a while, the event appears in my mind, but I just laugh sabout it now. I understand now where her emotions are coming from. My mum felt exactly the way she did when Aunty Shalewa was brought in here. She didn’t say anything bad to Aunty Shalewa but she spoke to my dad. To be honest, I don’t see the point of talking down on the girl he brings home when it’s clear that he’s the one at fault. Aunty Shalewa was young and it was very obvious that she didn’t want to be here”

“I’m so sorry you had to go through all that from a young age”

“Thanks. I’m going to continue what I was saying from where I stopped. No interruptions”

“I won’t interrupt. I promise”

“Have you heard of some men telling their wives that they will get another wife because she didn’t give birth to a male child probably because she gave birth to a female child or she hasn’t given birth at all? That’s how my dad is. Aunty Ebun gave birth to four girls and my dad was unhappy. He wanted a male child, so he married my mum. My mum made him happy by giving birth to a male child and he really adored me and treated me like his only child. This caused a problem between Aunty Ebun and my dad because he wasn’t given her and her children any attention. She told him she was tired of the marriage and she was leaving, and he didn’t mind that she left

“Weeks after she left, she sent the divorce papers to him and they met once to finalize the divorce and since then, we haven’t heard of her. Apparently, she moved to the U.K with her children. When I was young, I always said I wanted to be an engineer because my dad is one and I enjoyed following him to the construction site. It looked like a very interesting profession and the outfit they wore made it cooler. During my stay in secondary school, I realized I had the passion for acting and not engineering. I joined the drama club and was even the head of the club. I was scared to let my dad know about my new found passion because he had boasted to all his friends that I’m taking over him in the engineering profession, and most of the times he sees me, he told me to take my studies seriously because I need good grades to get into the best engineering university

“When I got to grade 11, I changed my classes to what will fit me studying performing arts in universities. It’s not like I didn’t get good grades, I was one of the top students in my class but I didn’t enjoy physics, chemistry or technical drawing. My dad was always happy with my results and he took me out to various countries as a present. I felt bad that I’m going on all these trips when I’ve made a decision that he won’t like. My mum supported my decision but she told me that I’ve to tell him the truth. It was time to check the results of grade 11 first term examination online and my heart was beating fast. Dad was smiling widely knowing that his son will have a good result, but a good result with the unexpected subjects

“Dad saw the result and said congratulations. I got a 4.0 gpa. I was surprised, but thought he was sarcastic, but realized he hadn’t seen the subjects. He saw the subjects and looked at me and asked ‘What are these subjects I’m seeing? Are you sure this is your result or someone else’s?’ I can’t forget those words because of the hurt on his face. I told him it was my result and apologized with tears. He told me I had been lying to me anytime he asked about my studies. I remember him asking ‘History? Literature? What do you want to do with it? You want to become a lawyer?’ I could see the smile in his eyes as he mentioned the lawyer part. I’m sure he was already imagining me being a lawyer and telling his friends how his first son is a lawyer

“I told him I want to be an actor and not a lawyer. He laughed. He didn’t believe me. He asked my mum if she knew about it and when she didn’t say anything, he got his answer. To cut the long story short, he stopped anticipating my result. He said he won’t fund for my university education till I graduate. Mum made sure I get the best education in university outside the country. She was a banker before she met dad and decided to go into business. She sold bags and clothes and the business was really thriving. She was able to fund my education with the money she had in her days as a banker and also as a businesswoman”

“Wow. I’m glad you’re pursuing your dreams and that’s all that matters”

3 DAYS LATER

“Aunty Shalewa” Kike called as she knocked on Shalewa’s bedroom door but there was no response.

“I know you can hear me. Please open the door”

“I don’t want to talk to anyone. Go away”

“I’m not going until you open the door and speak to me”

“Suit yourself”

“You know you can’t stay locked in your room all day and only come out to take food. It’s not good for your mental health and you will fall sick”

“Mental health?” She asked with a chuckle and you could feel the pain in it. “My mental health is dangling and it seems like there’s nothing left in me. I just want to leave this place. I feel suffocated”

“You can’t leave this place locked up in your room. I understand how it feels for everything to be taken from you from a young age. I have four sisters and I may never see them again. I have gotten admission to the University of my Choice but I don’t think I’m going there or any university. I miss my sisters so much and it hurts so bad that I don’t know how they’re doing. My dad is incapable of taking care of them and it makes the situation worse”

“What about your mum?

“She’s living with her boss in Canada. She promised to get us, but we stopped hearing from her after some months. She never mentioned anything about Canada the period we were speaking to her. It hurts so much because I adore her and she’s my role model, but right now I don’t want to ever speak to her or see her. One thing I loved about her is even when our lives is messy, dad was treating her badly and our lives was upside down in general, she tried to make it a better place. She made sure there was good in the bad and was always positive. She’s a strong woman and she spoke when she was displeased. She couldn’t be silenced. I need you to know that no one can silence you and you deserve to speak your truth”

“How do we speak our truth?”

“We?”


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