Remi stared intently at the 60” inch TV that adorned Somto’s wall and imagined it on the floor; glass in shreds and the shards flying across the room…He could see Somto running across like he was in a maze as he gathered the shards with blood dripping from his palm as the broken glass sliced it. It would be a beauty to behold but then Remi was not that type of guy – always the builder, never the one to tear down, the man who’d take a blow for someone, not the man to land the first blow, not even the second blow, yet, it was fascinating for him to think about Somto’s TV on the floor.
“Remi, you’ve not said anything in the last ten minutes,” Somto started. “I know it’s a shock to learn that I am getting married to your Kamsi, but she is now my Kamsi. I looked out for her just like you asked me too.”
“And it led to marriage?”
Somto exhaled. “I know it sounds crazy and I didn’t mean it to happen this way but love happens and I’m telling you this one happened.”
Remi nodded. “I…I am very happy for you.”
“Really? Guy, you don’t know how much of a relief that is for me.”
Remi smiled. “It’s alright. You’ve always been stupid so you can’t even sniff sarcasm when you hear it. You are a disappointment of a human being and you deserve the worst in hell. The worst spot in hell. I went to jail because of you, you slimy little bastard.
“No, man. Don’t pin it on me. You were reckless and you got caught.”
Remi laughed in spite of himself. “I was reckless? Dude, can you hear yourself? I did it for you.”
“You stole from your company, you had a choice not to help me by stealing. Look man, I really don’t want to sound ungrateful,” Somto said and paused. He exhaled as he took a look at Remi before continuing. “Kamsi and I didn’t mean to hurt you but we just tripped into feelings and we got here. We planned on telling you after a while but there’s no way I could have kept it from you now that you are here.”
“You don’t just trip into feelings, Somto. I want my money back.”
Somto laughed. “That’s petty, man.”
“Petty? You’ve insulted me in one breath and I don’t have the right to be petty?”
Somto shrugged. “If it’s the money you want, I’ll give it to you. It will take a month or two sha because this whole thing is unplanned. But man, you mess up. On top woman? You don’t do that to your guy.”
Remi rose to his feet and stared at the TV. Now it looked more inviting than ever. He grabbed a stool and threw it into the TV screen before Somto could get to him.
“My TV! Remi!”
Somto tried to throw a punch but he was never going to get the better of a man that had been hurt by his betrayal. Remi pummelled him badly in the stomach until he was satisfied.
“I didn’t touch your face because I don’t want you looking bad before the wedding. Unlike you, I am a good friend. Please give Kamsi my best regards,” Remi said, walking out of the house.
“Good evening, Grandma.” Segun said, flashing his teeth as the door opened.
Derin wished he hadn’t called her ‘Grandma’. Her mother was never going to find that funny. “Hey Mum,” she said, distracting her mother from whatever word she had in mind in response to the greeting she had received.
“Derin, hope no problem? What are you doing in my flat?”
Derin smiled. Her mother was literally a pain. She knew why they were here but, she was never willing to let them off easily. “I just want Segun to stay with you for the night, I’ll be back to pick him in the morning. It’s an overnight show for today.”
“Overnight? I thought these things ended by ten pm,” Mrs Shogbola asked.
Derin flashed a grin. “Mum, I thought you didn’t listen to my show, how did you know that it ends by ten?”
“Your show is so pathetic that I have to flash several times so that people will think someone is actually trying to call on your show.”
“I know you love me, Mrs Tola Shogbola.”
Her Mum scoffed and shifted her gaze to Segun. “Ehen, why are you standing and listening to our conversation?”
Segun took a seat immediately.
“Go inside my friend!” Mrs Shogbola ordered. She waited until Segun was out of sight before facing Derin squarely. “Young lady, I don’t understand the experiment you are performing with Segun, but it’s not working. You don’t just pick a ten year old from the streets at night and raise him as your own, that’s kidnapping.”
“Kid what?! Come on! Mum, he was sleeping in a nylon bag under the bridge at night. I took him in to help him.”
“Have you finished helping yourself? Can you afford a flat of your own like I can? I mean buy a flat not renting a flat? Raising a kid is so different from raising an Alsatian! Why do you think I only had you? With my lifestyle and having to deal with a child, it’s high maintenance.”
Derin rolled her eyes. “Mum, we’ve had this discussion before and I believe that as long as helping Segun isn’t disturbing you, back off.”
“He is in my flat and he is going to eat my food while you are away. That is disturbing.”
Now I pause again! My mum is annoying! She is very annoying! At this rate, I can’t wait till she’s old so I can inherit this her cherished flat. However, I wouldn’t bet on it. Mrs Tola Shogbola might have sold off this flat on event of her death and willed off the cash to one of her numerous irrelevant causes like ‘ladies are not slaves day’ and ‘kick men out week’. One day, I am going to invite you to one of my mother’s unbelievable charities and you’ll be shook. I’m serious – shook. My mum has a personal thing against Segun and he’s not at fault for it. In fact, he has nothing to do with it. When I was fifteen, my late father arrived home with a young boy in his hand by the name, Segun, the son of his lover. My step brother. My mother’s worst nightmare. My mother never recovered from the shock of my father having another child so she took me and we left home. It was then that she bought this her prized flat and has since lived here alone with me until I decided that it was time to stop being my mother’s accomplice in the ministry of single-dom. The woman had decided to remain unmarried after her separation from my father and had warned me against men, she had dressed me in apparels that were not fit for a young lady and I didn’t mind, I had learnt to believe in the ‘internal beauty’ as I wore clothes that were over my frame, oh, and if you’re asking how Mrs Tola dressed, it was the complete contrast, she was still wearing her own lovely clothes and I was fine with it until all the boys passed me over for freaking Barbie doll, Lola. Some even had the nerves to ask for my mum’s number (of course, I didn’t give them). It was then that I decided to liberate myself and move to a place of my own. My mother was killing my shine and mind you, this is one alluring woman! Anyway, I’ll bring you up to speed on other matters, for now, I have to get to studio, else, I won’t have a job and my mum’s flat will be my new home.
“I am really sorry, mum,” Derin said. “I have to go now but I promise you that by tomorrow morning, I’ll come for him.”
“Hey Remi! Wow!”
Remi smiled faintly as Kevin allowed him into his apartment. “Thank you.”
“How did you find me?” Kevin asked, taking Remi’s bag.
Remi unwrapped the piece of paper in his hand. “You gave me this the last time you came visiting. Your number and address.”
“I am glad you came. Welcome, please sit.” Kevin said.
Remi took his seat. “Kevin, I don’t have anywhere to go.”
“You are here. This is home.”
Remi took a deep breath as tears ran down his eyes. Kevin moved over to join him instinctively. “Kevin, the last hours have been too rough for me. Nothing is the same anymore.”
“It’s alright,” Kevin said softly, drawing him close for a hug. “It’s okay, man. It’s fine. Everything changes. It takes a little bit of readjusting when you are out but in no time, it’ll all take shape.”
“This is not taking shape. It wasn’t meant to change like this. My best friend is getting married to my other best friend. It’s not right. They did me wrong.”
Kevin sighed. “I am really sorry about it, Remi. But it’s going to be fine, you are going to pick up and walk on from this, okay?”
“I don’t know. I can’t stay here for too long. I don’t even know how to set my life back on track.”
“You can stay here as long as you need to. I am here for you.”
“Are you sure?”
Kevin nodded. “I’ve got you, bro.”
“You are late, Derin. Your show starts in thirty minutes.”
Derin smiled. “In all fairness, that is not being late. I know I signed a contract of being here one hour early but who in this room has not arrived a little too late before, let him be the first to cast a stone.”
“You do realise that it’s just the two of us in this room, right?”
She chuckled. “Brian, I am sorry for not keeping to time but I can promise you that this was not my fault. You’ve met my mother before, right? And you’ve met Segun? So I had to take Segun to my mother and you know how the story goes. It never ends well. Meanwhile, how about that car loan we talked about? It could really come in handy.”
“No. I checked with the Executives and it’s not time for you to have a car. At least, not one bought with their own money.”
She gaped. “Wow! Matilda has changed her car twice and she’s not even a solid OAP. She croaks on the morning show as though she didn’t get to sleep all night. She must really be making the Executives happy. What is she doing that the EP’s wife doesn’t do?”
“Shut up, Derin! Are you trying to get yourself fired?” Brian asked, looking around him. He moved over to close his door. “You should really watch your tongue, Derin. What if someone overheard that statement? You are getting fired.”
She shrugged. “I might as well get fired because I make this radio station look cool and I can’t even get a car loan to upgrade my life. I still have three thousand followers on Instagram because I don’t have a dope house to pose in but Matilda gets to live in one of the Director’s properties and she drives a Range Rover. She’s a crooked OAP, yet all the good things happen to her,” she ranted and then pouted. “Why do bad things happen to good people like me?”
“You are not a good person, Derin Shogbola,” Brian replied with a smile. “How do you sleep at night with these thoughts?”
She blew him a kiss. “I sleep with my fan on.”
He smiled back. “Go and get ready for your show. I like listening to you.”
“Oh, I am switching things a bit tonight.”
He raised an eyebrow. “What do you mean?”
“Wait for it.”
Now whenever I tell people to wait for it, it’s not as if I have one grand idea that hasn’t been conceived in the heart of any man before. No. It’s because I actually have a plan. Let me explain this plan – I have decided to do something on my show that’s going to entertain my audience, cause a lot of rancour and drive serious traffic to me. Hope you read that well? Me. Not the station and definitely not I-sleep-with-my-director-hence-I-rule-the-station-Matilda. The idea is simple, I am going to literally hold them by the balls with my new idea so that they’ll be forced to give me a car befitting of my already existing status as the realest fake girl, but this time, I’ll be scratching fake off it, because I’ve become real. Once I get the car, I’ll take my ride to Lola, Judith and Dami so they can see it as they won’t believe even if I flaunt my car keys over lunch at our next joint hangout in preparation for the wedding.
“Do you want to come with me?” Kevin asked, wearing his shoes. “It’s a praise night and you could use the distraction.”
Remi shook his head. “I don’t feel like making any appearance in public just yet. I have seen enough for one day.”
“Okay. Take care. See you in the morning.” Kevin said and walked out.
Remi turned off the TV and sank into the sofa. He picked an earphone from the table, fixed them into the phone Kevin had left him and slipped them into his ears.
“So guys, this is what we’re doing today and likely for a very long time. It’s the ‘Oh damn, that’s cold…now to the dare’ segment. Sounds long, yeah? Don’t worry, it’s not that confusing. You just need to call up on the show and tell me something that has happened to you that was really bad, like ice cold and then you dare someone to do something. Simple,” Derin started. “That sounds like fun, right? So, I’m going to open the lines now and I expect your calls. Don’t disgrace me. Load your phones before you call so the gist doesn’t end after one minute,” she said with a grin. She paused for a second a smile. “Okay guys, we have our first caller and it is Chiby from Ikoyi. Chiby, what’s up? How are you doing?”
“I’m fine, Derin. This is about my wife, Mary ohhh. This babe’s matter don tire me. She knows that I like cold okra soup and all I have asked of her is that she doesn’t warm my food whenever I am on my way from work, but no, she no dey hear. Guess what she did to me today? She actually didn’t warm the soup, but she kept it in the fridge and served me iced okra with semo, please how am I supposed to eat it?”
“Oh damn, that’s cold, like literally cold! Ice cold! I didn’t see that coming.” Derin squealed as she drummed on the table. “First thing, Chiby. I don’t know why you’re angry. Shey you wanted cold okra soup with your semo?”
“Yeah but not ice cold okra!” he replied.
Derin smiled. “You men are so high maintenance. Sorry, let me back up a little, saying you men makes me sound like my mother. Chiby, you are so high maintenance and your wife deserves an award for this. Now, what is your dare?” she asked, laughing.
“Mary! I dare you to eat this cold okra you have served me.”
Remi laughed as he listened to Chiby rant about his wife and thought about Kamsi. She was his sunshine and the woman he had hoped to build his life around. He stopped the raging thoughts in his heart to listen to another caller.
“My name is Jane and I am calling from Okota. There’s this guy that told me that I meant the world to him. And I truly believed it. Derin, can you believe that I caught him with another lady and he told me that I meant the world to him but she was his world?”
Remi laughed as the caller bemoaned her woes.
Derin smiled. “Context, Jane. Context. You’ve got to learn context, that guy was cold, ice cold but he put it in context. So, who would you like to put to a dare?”
“I would like to dare that useless guy to call on this show and tell me that he loves me.”
Derin rolled her eyes. “Aww Jane, wouldn’t that be so sweet if it were true?”
Brian shot a mean look at her. “Don’t speak to callers like that,” he whispered.
“Okay Jane, this is life. This is it. Sometimes, people walk out of our life for good and inasmuch as we want them to turn back, they’re gone for good and it’s alright. You should let go, alright?”
“Derin, it’s so painful. I really wanted a life with him.”
Derin smiled faintly. “If wishes were horses, I’d be married to my crush too, but they are not horses and right now, Alvaro Morata is married to Alice Campello.”
Brian chuckled as he watched Derin’s attempt to be serious. He raised a thumb at her. She was doing well.
Derin relaxed in her seat. “Hello! What’s your name and where are you calling from?”
“My name is Remi and I am calling from Ikeja.”
She cleared her throat. “Remi, what’s up? Ready to share your cold story and put someone to the dare?”
“Yeah. I just got out of Prison today and I found out that my best friend is getting married to my girlfriend on Saturday. Well, now, ex-girlfriend because she’s going to be another man’s wife. And what hurts is my friend paid me a visit in prison and he never ever shared this with me, I don’t know if I’ll have taken it better if he had told me while in jail but it’s…it’s heart-breaking.”
“Remi, I don’t know what to say to you to be honest because it is heart-breaking to step out in hope and return to nothing but you know what’s better? The fact that he didn’t tell you when he came visiting, else, you might have broken his nose and extended your sentence, so you are a lucky man,” Derin said and took a pause. “…that being said, Oh Damn, that was cold!”
“Thank you,” Remi replied with a chuckle.
She smiled. “Now to the dare. Who would you like to dare?”
“I dare you to go out on a date with me.”
Derin blinked. “Say what?”
I’m sure I didn’t hear this felon ask me out. Guys, did you hear him?
“I dare you, Derin. Go out on a date with me.”
Thanks for reading Episode 2. Don’t forget to share and drop your comments!
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