Daisy chuckled. ‘yeah, a wonderful one at that’ she said and they both laughed.
Bren: ‘whoa, I’ve missed loads! Just two weeks since last i saw you and you’ve got this story for me?’
Daisy: ‘what can i say? It just happened. The whole sh.i.t was weighing me down, no joy in my heart, got fed up, everything and everyone was so damn annoying, and i just had to shut down and booth again. All thanks to my coz – you need to meet her – she told me so much from her wealth of experience, now look where I’ve ended – am so happy like a butterfly’
Bren: ‘butterflies ain’t happy insects Dee’ Brenda said and frowned.
Daisy: ‘that’s what you think’ Daisy drawled, then in an euphoric state she added: ‘They are beautiful and happy, those helpless tiny things, life takes them through phases -egg, lava, pupa – till they become such beauties…with pretty wings and shiny dots…just like me’ she completed. Her expression distant and thoughtful.
Bren: ‘uhm Daisy, we aren’t talking about butterflies here’ Brenda said jolting her back to reality.
Daisy: ‘sure we aren’t’ Daisy smiled and faced her friend.
Bren: ‘so, what’s his contribution in all of this?’
Daisy: ‘nothing big, i don’t need much from him either, just need him to communicate with me, and so far, we’ve said so much like we are on Oprah’s show…he knows me in and out, everything about my past and present, and so, what more can i ask for?’
Bren: ‘nothing i guess’
Daisy: ‘yeah, nothing! Just working through the good and the bad together is all that matters’
Daisy fell silent for a moment, then with a thoughtful look she continued:
Daisy: ‘know something else Bree, i’ve realised a lot and I’ve changed much too. Now, am going to stop living like some goddamn hypocrite. I mean, i profess to hate the ibos passionately, but here you are! A full blooded ibo! And Peter? He’s also ibo! Then whether i like it or not, am ibo…well technically offcourse…But the point remains that i never got my facts straight, people ain’t the same, my father is different from everyone out there, people won’t treat me like he did, just because they are ibos! Right now, am so ashamed of me, but i promise to get my head and facts straight again. No more hates, am ready to forgive and stop the ridiculous hatred already! gush!’ Daisy concluded.
Bren: ‘My God! little Daisy is fully grown and getting all philosophical on me!’ Brenda replied.
Daisy scoffed. ‘welcome to Nigeria girl’
Bren: ‘you can say that again! But am truly happy for you Dee’
Daisy: ‘I know you are and have always had my back’
Bren: ‘yes girl. Through the thick and thin, tough-lady Brenda is ever here for you’
Daisy: ‘like hello! no more toughness girlfriend, go get yourself a strong man, will you’ Daisy teased
Bren: ‘whatever’ Brenda replied waving her hands. ‘cos you got yourself one hunh?’
Daisy: ‘yeah! and a good one too’
Bren: ‘a pighead you mean’ Brenda replied although in a light tone.
Daisy: ‘would you stop hating on my man already?’
Bren: ‘that’s after he hits it right with me. It ain’t easy on this part of the divide, you know?’
Daisy smiled. Yes she knew. And she would leave it to Jide to sort his way through her friend’s cold shoulders that served as a mask to the warmth in her. Brenda was a darling if you got to know her better, just a lil bit spoilt and indulged which makes her raise her chin up at people. But she loved her friend and would really like them to get along.
Bren: ‘Speaking of which where the heck is he?’ Brenda continued.
Daisy: ‘he’s in somewhere’ Daisy replied.
Bren: ‘for real?’ she asked in amazement.
Daisy: ‘yeah, he’s in…he’s looking for some document of his’ Daisy replied then relaxed on the settee. Then suddenly she sat up, her eyes gleaming. ‘i can’t believe i left out this part! Oh silly me! Come this Sunday, we are gonna be out and on our way to Boston!’ she almost screamed.
Daisy: ‘yeah, its kinda like a honeymoon. I so miss Boston and wanted us to go there, and i told him! And he’s cool with it too…God! am so excited! you’re gonna help me pack, thank goodness you’re here!’
Bren: ‘slow down girl, this suit ain’t on me for nothing! I started working for the company this week and…’
Daisy: ‘for real? well that explains the suit up. But you’re the bosses daughter, You can skip…’
Bren: ‘nah nah nah, my dad’s gonna…’
Jide: ‘I see you girls are catching up on lost time?’ Jide interrupted as he entered into the parlor, wielding a brown envelope. He was putting on a denim blue jean and a customized sports polo.
Then heading for the table in the middle of the parlor, he added
Jide: ‘hello Brenda, how you doing?’
Bren: ‘good as you can see’ came the curt reply from Brenda.
Daisy smiled as she watched her husband and friend, knowing that they’d be a word battle soon and hoping that they’d get to settle whatever issue they had going on, even though she knew Brenda was the one with the adjusting problem.
Jide picked up his car keys from the table.
Jide: ‘you look rather odd in the suit, going to work or something?’ he asked.
Bren: ‘some of us work you know’ she retorted.
Jide: ‘offcourse, no food for lazy men, they say’ he replied.
Bren: ‘then why aren’t you working?’
Jide: ‘am sure you know what’s up’ he winked.
Bren: ‘whatever… Just get going already!’ The guy was intentionally trying to annoy her, but he wouldn’t get to her!
Jide: ‘i can’t wait to leave ‘your’ presence too’ Jide replied sarcastically ‘…and offcourse you’re looking great as usual’ he added.
Bren: ‘thanks for the compliment, but i don’t need it’ she drawled and eyed Jide.
Jide: ‘you’re always welcome’ Jide said and chuckled. ‘so sunshine, got to go finish up today’ he addressed Daisy
Daisy: ‘sure honey, Brenda will keep me company’ Daisy replied smiling.
Jide: ‘so, can i get my lucky charm’ he asked grinning mischievously
Daisy: ‘coming right up’ Daisy replied, then rose up, took a step further to wrap her arms around his neck, while her lips produced ‘good luck charm’
Brenda watched on, feeling both envious and happy for her friend, and finally understanding what Daisy had been on about all morning. She had to admit that they looked good together, the love seem to radiate from both sides. Daisy’s fantasies and precarious leap of faith, had finally paid off. Lucky for her too! But personally, she couldn’t take such chances on a man, having nothing tangible to run with but some out of the blues feelings? Hell no! That wasn’t how she groomed herself. It Definitely wasn’t! Whenever that naughty boy, Cupid, decides to play a fast one on her with his arrow, she would be ready for him, with eyes and senses wide open! Twas the 21st century for crying out loud, and such things shouldn’t exist! Brenda concluded with a scoff and diverted her attention from the unabashed kissing couples to the clock slowly ticking away to 9am.
Daisy: ‘guess this charm would carry you through today?’ Daisy asked softly after she broke the kiss. Her eyes still cloudy with emotions.
Jide put up a contented smile, then Softly he replied: ‘not entirely for the day…It wouldn’t’. Then loudly and with a mischievous grin he added :
Jide: ‘but we have got company and we wouldn’t want to make her uncomfortable, would we?’
Brenda’s attention redirected then. She glared at Jide, waved her hands like she didn’t care and stuck her tongue at him.
Jide: ‘now see, she’s already grumpy’ Jide said and chuckled, then gently shoved Daisy aside and headed for the door.
Daisy slowly sat down, whilst smiling at her friend.
Jide: ‘have a wonderful day ladies, and be a nice lady Brenda’ he called back then hurried out, not waiting or wanting to hear what Brenda would spit back. He knew the chick wouldn’t warm up to him that easily, not that he cared offcourse, because Daisy was all that mattered to him. Nevertheles, he had finally come to the conclusion that Brenda couldn’t just change an attitude which was obviously part of her and seem pronounced where he was concerned. He would just have to work his way through her rudeness, to see if he could get to her soft spot – That was offcourse if she had one. Jide thought and grunted.
Jide: ‘must be some female ish with their friend’s husband’ he said to himself as he rode out of the compound, enroute to the embassy to get his papers completed.
Going to Boston was Daisy solemn wish and idea, and he just had to indulge her. His own honeymoon wish would kick off when they returned to Nigeria, he would take her to one of the serene resorts that characterised Nigeria. And give her the African treat. That much was certain! He concluded and zoomed off.
Back in the parlour, Brenda didn’t look or seem unruffled by the bickering she’d had with Jide, neither was she angry at him, if anything, she was smiling warmly at her friend now, no speck of jealousy or rudeness on her face. For She was indeed happy for her friend at long last.
Bren: ‘now i see, what you couldn’t say in words’ Brenda said softly, then: ‘Damn girl! You rock!’ she exclaimed.
Daisy: ‘it has been awesome i tell you’ Daisy softly replied
Bren: ‘then what are we waiting for? On to get you set already! Work can bloody take a hike!’
Daisy: ‘now you’re talking!’ Daisy exclaimed now and stood up, pulling Brenda with her. ‘just get ready to be blown away as i exposed the x-rated part!’ she added as they made for the hallway.
Daisy: ‘bad girl!’ Brenda screamed and they both giggled as they bounced towards the house like overzealous teenagers.
The international terminal of the Muritala Muhammed Airport was abuzz with activities this Sunday morning as both expatriates and Nigerians thronged its terminal. Some of them were arriving into the country, while others were going to the check-in gate to catch their flight. Few steps away was a woman and her little daughter standing at the Baggage claim, waiting to retrieve their luggage. Some others were queued at the ticket counter to purchase their flight ticket.
Daisy and Jide were seated at a corner holding hands, while they awaited their flight which was to leave at 9am. They were flying with Lufthansa airline.
Daisy’s scanning eyes rested on that woman now towing her bag away, while she held her daughter as they made for the exit. ‘Pretty little darling’ she muttered and smiled, wondering how soon she would have a daughter just like that.
Jide had been quiet all morning. But then she didn’t have much to say herself. She was contented with the way his hand was holding hers all morning. She had also noticed with a feel of pride and joy, that he was now wearing his wedding ring and she just couldn’t wait to explore her world in Boston with him. She was so going to show him to everybody over at the hospital like a prized possession. A real Honeymoon to her, was supposed to last forever & not just only for a week set aside. So the journey was basically for him to learn more about her life. Mama too was excited and expecting them.
Her roaming eyes brushed past two female at the check in gate, but her mind didn’t registered the fact that they had quickly evaded her gaze to busy with the computer on their desk.
In the state she was, Daisy couldn’t be bothered by the fact that she was being watched or that she was the topic of discussion amongst the two less busy flight attendants.
And indeed, they were discussing about her and Jide.
Attendant 1: ‘Did she notice?’ asked the fair of the two
Attendant 2: ‘haba Amaka, i don’t think she did, she was probably glancing around’ replied her accomplice
Attendant 1: ‘mehn, the girl set die’ said the supposed Amaka.
Attendant 2: ‘yes oh, but i dey trip for the guy abeg’ Amaka’s friend chipped in.
Attendant 1: ‘but they are married nao’
Attendant 2: ‘yes I think. And such lovely couples too’
Attendant 1: ‘yes oh! their children sef, go make sense’
Attendant 2: ‘they remind me of Jayz and beyonce’
Attendant 1 :‘you don come with ur own! But na that kain marriage i want sha’
Attendant 1: ‘na made in heaven things oh’ replied Amaka’s friend and they both laughed. But their fits of mirth was cut short by a feminine voice from the speaker announcing that their scheduled plane was ready and prompting passengers to start checking in.
Since it was their airline that had being announced, the two previously chatting female propped up for action, putting on their monalisa smile all ready to assist the already queueing passenger to ‘a safe and pleasurable flight with Lufthansa airline’
Daisy and Jide had also risen to join the queue. When the fair lady named Amaka saw them in the queue, she smiled, as that would enable her confirm their previous discussion about the seeming Jayz and Beyonce look-alike couples.
And Soon it got to Jide and Daisy’s turn.
Amaka slightly stepped on her friend’s toe as she attended to them. Her face brightly lit up in smiles to expose her lovely gap teeth.
Attendant 1: ‘welcome Mr. And Mrs olukoya’ she read from computer in front of her. ‘it says here that you are headed to Boston and that you both have a return ticket back due in two weeks time?’
Daisy nodded and smiled in response.
Attendant 1: ‘…you’ve checked in your baggage i presume?’
Daisy: ‘yes’ said Daisy.
Attendant 1: ‘ok! Please move to the security cubicle over there. Thank you for flying with us and do have a pleasurable trip ahead’ she concluded with a smile.
Daisy: ‘thank you’ Daisy replied, smiling. Then Still holding hands they passed through the counter and towards the security room.
Attendant 2: ‘I told you! They look so like Jay and Bee’ Amaka’s friend whispered excitedly. She had seen the light tone of Daisy’s skin and the dark hue of Jide’s, then offcourse with the almost levelled height, the slim dark girl needed no other signs to confirm her insinuation.
Attendant 1: ‘na made in heaven things indeed!’ Amaka whispered, then eyed her friend.
The two ladies giggled briefly at their secret gossip and star- comparism before they diverted their attention to the waiting passengers.
Out in the runway, as Jide, Daisy and other passengers trudged towards the airplane in a file, Daisy’s thoughts slowly drifted to another time, another situation and another companion.
It was the day she arrived Nigeria for the wedding.
Slowly, all the forgotten and suppressed memories started springing up, so much so was the intensity of the deja vu feeling that Daisy had to shake herself just so she could ascertain that she wasn’t anywhere close to that time of her life.
The smile that had crowned her face all morning suddenly fizzled out and in its place was a mixture of fear, doubt and anger. Daisy tried to push the thoughts and feeling away, but couldn’t. For the sudden thoughts seemed determined to keep up a mind game with her.
As she quietly battled with this new emotion that threatened to engulf her, she felt Jide gently squeeze her hands. Then Slowly, she raised sad, doubtful face at him, while his was smiling peacefully, oblivious to the inner struggles of the woman beside him.
Daisy noticed now that they were closer in the queue and it would soon be their turn to board the plane.
Jide: ‘i guess…happily ever after awaits us, sunshine’ Jide said smiling down at her.
Then slowly, Daisy’s previously lost smile creeped up, back on her face.
The magical spell wasn’t more about what Jide had said, but totally about the way he had said it. It had been so open, so loving, so giving, so sincere. All of which, didn’t seem to be hidden under a mask of pretence.
Daisy’s smile spread wider all through her body now. The significance of the word he had said to her made her so. It was actually the longest he had spoken to her since today, and she never knew him to believe in ‘happily ever afters’. All of this lifted her fear and doubts about the future that had seemed uncertain. And so finally, she won the mind game.
The new Daisy, the one that had arrived Nigeria months ago to chase an uncertain dream, had stopped believing in happily ever after’s. But if it ever still existed, she mused, then it was guaranteed with this man whose eyes had entranced and held her forever.
And so gently she squeezed his hands too. ‘and i can’t wait to live it with you’ she replied softly.
Jide said nothing, there wasn’t much left to be said. Instead he drew his wife closer, placed a kiss on her forehead, then helped her mount the steps to the plane. Unconcerned with how the other passenger would interpret his gesture.
And so, this became the beginning of a marriage adventure for them, they would live through their lives, taking chances to achieve the happiness that existed between the ups and downs that life would surely throw at them. But the best of it all, was that they had grown wiser, learning from the school of life, friendship, love and family. And their love which had been tested and proven to be resilient under the heat of fire, could surely stand the rain and weather the storms of marriage till death would do them part.
(Hope you enjoyed the Story.. Share your Joy, Experience, Advice, Suggestions as you await for another interesting Story)
…. THE END
Names have been changed to protect the identity of the narrator and other individuals in the story.
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