Hi guys, here is Episode 5 of Clandestine. The journey continues…
Alex watched George sternly as he descended the podium with his guitar in one hand and used the other to take the acclaim of the crowd with a wave. He smiled very well too…he probably was a ladies man. He had the looks for that. Alex was that too. He knew he was a complete match for this guy and maybe he had one more advantage, he was married to Lola. He knew her more than this new guy did. George stole occasional glances at their direction, but Alex knew better than to think that the Dude with amazing voice might have checked him out as a competition. All his competition could see was Lola. His wife! His wife! But then, the man didn’t know that and Lola too didn’t make it any better…she probably wasn’t having her wedding ring on when he had met her and even now.
“Didn’t know you had a flat tyre.” Alex said with a soft chuckle.
Lola turned in his direction. “Why are you thinking I had a flat tyre?”
“The guy…That George. It was you, right?” Alex asked. Lola stayed silent. “I only know one lady who can change her own flat tyre.” He added with a smile.
Lola turned away.
“The guy is into you.” Alex said.
Lola stared at him. “Okay…”
Alex took a deep breath. “This is awkward.”
“What is?” Lola asked without staring at him.
“Me, you…us…we are lost.” He replied.
“Can I still fight for you?” he asked.
Lola ignored him.
Alex sighed. He was getting exhausted and his coldest war had not started yet. When you throw away something good to your own carelessness, you don’t have the moral justification to be angry. Lola was right and he was wrong, but he had just shot himself in the foot when he brought Lola to where she might have just met someone else. ‘Ori bobo yi ti daru!’ (This guy is crazy) Alex said in his mind as he watched George from a distance. He boiled with rage as George turned occasionally to them to fix his gaze on Lola. Everything about the bar now infuriated Alex. The bar which gave him his love story had now turned out to be his worst nightmare. He wanted to leave to bad…but not without Lola.
He turned towards Lola who had now focused her attention on the new vocalist. Thankfully, it was a lady singing. He didn’t have to worry about another guy serenading his own wife. He was tired of the bar already and he was quite sure he won’t be coming back here anytime soon. He fumbled with his phone just to get her attention, but it wasn’t working. Could she have forgotten about him so soon? He’d be damned if he didn’t break the silence that she was enjoying.
“Lola, I want to go home.” Alex said.
She stared at him.
“I’ll be in the car. I’ll wait for you.” He said and walked out.
Lola swallowed as she watched him walk out. She picked up her bag and followed him.
George looked into the crowd and her seat was empty. He sprang to his feet and hurried out of the bar. As he exited the bar, he watched her walk into the garage. He couldn’t miss her time. “Hey!!!” he shouted. “Female Mechanic!” he added.
George smiled and hurried to meet her. “Hi.”
She stared at him. “What do you want?”
“You.” He replied with a corny smile. “I didn’t know I’d see you here tonight.”
“Neither did I.” she replied.
He smiled. “I am glad I saw you.”
“You sing very well.” She said.
He took a deep breath. “A friend introduced me to this bar. I thought I’d take a chance singing what I had written after meeting you.”
Lola raised an eyebrow. “Just like that?”
George nodded. “Yes, just like that.”
“Interesting.” She replied.
George stared at the man that watched them from a few metres. “You know him?”
Lola turned and saw Alex. “Yes.”
“Oh? You guys came here together?” he asked.
She nodded. “We did.”
George waved at Alex. “Sorry, bro. I am just saying hello.”
Lola smiled faintly. “He is my husband.”
George’s smile waxed away in one instant. He must not have heard her right. HUSBAND? He blinked and tried to force a smile. “Your husband?”
She nodded. “Yes, he is.”
Alex had started to approach them.
He took a deep breath. “Wow!”
Alex joined them. “Good evening, George. Right?”
George nodded as he stretched a hand. Alex took it firmly. “Good evening.”
“Alex Ojo.” Alex replied. “I guess you have met my lovely wife, Lola.”
George smiled at Lola and then focused on Alex. “It’s good to meet you, Alex.”
“Thank you. You have a good voice there.” Alex added as he put his hand round Lola’s waist. “It’s quite late, we have to be on our way.”
George nodded. “Nice to meet you.” He said as he started to retrace his steps. “Have a good night, Lola…and Alex.” He added and walked away.
Lola turned to Alex. “Shall we?”
Alex took her hand. “Lola, I am not going to give up on us and I want you to know that.”
“Alex…” Lola hesitated.
Alex swallowed. “Lola, I am not giving you up and you better know it. I won’t sign those divorce papers even with a gun to my head.” He said. “Well, figuratively.” He added.
Lola chuckled slightly.
“Forgive me, babe. Please.” Alex said.
“It’s late, I want to go home.” She said and walked over to the car.
Alex took a deep breath and stared ahead of him. George lurked in the distance. Alex knew another guy was in the picture.
Alex pushed the door to Jude’s office open. “Hey.”
Jude stared at him. “What do you want?”
“I want a break.” Alex said as he sank into a chair.
Jude closed his laptop. “Talk to Mr Idahosa about that…not me.”
Alex ignored him.
Jude took a deep breath. “How was the night at Clandestine?”
“FAIL! EPIC FAIL!” Alex shouted as he punched the chair.
Jude stared at him with some concern. “Chill bro…”
“Chill? Someone else is into my wife! And to worsen the issue, I led her to him! Damn the day I thought of Clandestine as an option to repair this marriage. It just widened the gap.”
Jude sighed. “I am confused. I don’t understand a thing you are saying. Maybe if you start from the top and this time, slowly, we could be on the same page.”
“Apparently, the day Lola walked out on me, she had a flat tyre and ran into this guy called George and from there, he started “catching stupid feelings” for my wife-”
“-Soon to be ex, you mean?” Jude asked.
Alex frowned. “Really flat joke.”
“I am sorry, I was only trying to make you laugh.” Jude said. “Please continue.”
Alex took a deep breath. “Now as coincidence or fate would have it, we run into this idiot at Clandestine on Thursday night and he is singing a song that he had written from his first meeting with my wife. Like seriously? Is he mad?”
“Wow, bro! That’s bad o! On a lighter note, do you even sing well at all? Just in case it comes down to a competition and you both have to sing to win her heart?”
Alex swallowed painfully. Everything Jude had said angered him, but there was a lot of truth in them. If it came down to singing, he croaked terribly. George would beat him to that, but he knew that wouldn’t count for Lola. This wasn’t about a music competition. This was about not losing his wife to another man because of his wrongs.
“We could arrange to have him beat up.” Jude said.
Alex stared at him.
“Don’t be so good about it. This guy is about to warm his way into your wife with his John Legend skills and if that voice is anything to go by, you are going to lose the battle and war.” Jude said sternly.
“Do you know what will happen if we beat him? We are going to make Lola like him the more. Sympathy, bro. Then, he’ll feel like a fallen hero that has been hurt for love. Ladies tend to like that more.” Alex replied.
Jude sighed. “But he would still be beaten.”
Alex hissed. “Right now, I’d rather be beaten up by that guy so that Lola can be beside me in the hospital.”
Jude laughed. “Oh man, you are so messed up.”
“I know.” Alex said as he sighed. “I regret everything wrong I have done.”
Jude smiled. “Including insulting me?”
Alex hissed. “You are my greatest regret.”
“Close your mouth jare.” Alex replied.
Jude smiled as he relaxed in his chair. “I think we should do something.”
“And what is that?” Alex asked.
Jude stared at him. “Keep a close watch on that your rival. I mean, he has publicly declared his affection for your wife and that means, he still has the emotions.”
“We can’t yank them out.” Alex replied.
Jude nodded. “I know, but, we can actually frustrate his plans.”
“So, how are we going to do that?” Alex asked.
Jude rubbed his forehead. “We can hire an investigator.”
“Won’t that seem awkward?” Alex asked.
“No. You are only protecting your wife from his predatory eyes. Simple.” Jude said with a smile.
Alex nodded. “Thanks, man.” He said as he rose to his feet. “I’ll be in my office, I have to prepare for a meeting.” He said and approached the door.
“Isn’t it ironic?” Jude said.
Alex stopped and stared at him.
“You are trying to stop Lola from being with someone else or maybe even get her revenge on you.” Jude said.
Alex stared at Jude. “Lola is not that type of woman. I have hurt her badly, but I won’t let do this to herself.”
Jude chuckled. “To herself? Or to you?”
“If Lola is with this new guy out of spite, she would hate herself forever, but if she eventually is able to fall in love with him, then, that’s my real loss.” He replied and walked out.
Jude took a deep breath and walked out after Alex.
Lola stared hard at her wedding ring and then wiped a tear drop from her face. The door opened and Doubra walked in.
“Don’t even try lying to me.” Doubra said as she walked over to her. “What is going on?”
Lola swallowed. “Nothing.”
“And I am supposed to believe that? Doubra asked.
Lola took a deep breath and folded her ring in her palm carefully.
“Can I at least talk to Lola David if Lola Ojo is bound by marital obligations not to speak?” Doubra asked as she took a seat. “Where is your wedding ring?”
Lola smiled. “That’s a question for Lola Ojo. This is Lola David, remember?”
“Nice one.” Doubra replied with a smile. “What did Alex do?”
Lola stared at her. “Can’t I be the guilty party?”
“You are not the guilty party here, if you were, you’d have come to me.” She replied.
Lola blinked. Even if she was guilty, she didn’t know who she’d have gone to. She had always shouldered her own responsibilities and she never saw reasons to lean on anyone, but this was bigger than her. She couldn’t find the right reasons to forgive Alex. Sometimes, love is never really enough.
“Did he cheat on you?” Doubra asked.
Lola stared at her. “Why would you think that?”
“Am I your friend?” Doubra asked.
“You offend me with that question.” Lola replied.
Doubra sighed. “No! You offend me! I know marital matters stay together, but when you are going through something and you can’t seek for help from a friend that loves you because you just believe you can handle it, that is rubbish.”
Lola heart raced fast. Was she going to admit to infidelity? She needed to get it out of her head…the silence in there was driving her nuts already. “Yes.” Lola said as tears started to well in her eyes. “Alex did cheat on me.”
Doubra took a deep breath. “I am sorry.”
“It’s okay.” Lola said as she wiped her tears.
Doubra stared at her. “It is not okay, Lola. Stop it.”
Lola chuckled. “What do you want me to do? Cry? I am done crying. Hurt….I am still hurting…I can’t get over it. I did everything right, but he still played me. Why?”
Doubra swallowed as she stared at her friend. If anyone knew how to hold back pain and fears, it was Lola. Even though she had a front on, she was broken. “Let’s take a walk, Lola.” She said.
“Why?” Lola asked.
Doubra rose to her feet. “I am not taking no or questions for an answer. Let’s go.”
AN HOUR GONE
Doubra took a deep breath as she watched Lola sip her drink. “I am sorry, Lola.”
“That’s the issue. I am tired of you being sorry.” Lola replied.
Doubra nodded. “So, you got the divorce papers so quick?”
“Yeah…ex-boyfriend benefits.” Lola replied with a smile. “He mocked my marriage, of course.”
Doubra hissed. “He shouldn’t even open his mouth. He gave you your first heartbreak, he should be proud of that.”
Lola laughed. “He asked of you though.”
“I can’t forgive him.” She said.
Lola smiled. “You better do. As for me, I have forgiven him and we are even good friends. Look, I got express divorce papers, besides, he even advised me to give Alex another chance.”
“What else would he say? Like minds.” Doubra replied.
“So…what about this George character?” Doubra raised an eyebrow
“What about him?” Lola asked.
Doubra sat up. “He composed a song on first meeting that was that deep, what do you make out of it.”
“Maybe it was a case of love at first sight for him, but I don’t know and I don’t care.” Lola replied.
Doubra stared at her. “You don’t care? Doesn’t the possibility of revenge excite you one bit?”
Lola laughed. “Revenge? You think I can take revenge on Alex and feel okay about it? I can’t.”
“I know you can’t. I was just kidding, but let’s be a little more inquisitive about your new suitor.” Doubra started. “Let’s just do something adventurous.”
“Us or Me?” Lola asked. “I am the one in the centre of this, you know?”
Doubra nodded. “Yeah, but, I was just thinking that we could maybe try to know a little more about him, see the bar schedule and know when next he’d be playing so that we can probably stalk him more, give him more reasons to come on to you, then we can piss Alex off very much…maybe he’d just sign the divorce papers.”
Lola was silent.
“You really don’t want to leave him, do you?”
Lola shook her head. “I love Alex.”
“Then, tell him.” Doubra replied.
Lola groaned. “He knows! He played on it!”
Doubra took a deep breath. “Let’s just go get your revenge. You are not going to get serious with George, but it’s going to drive Alex’s nuts. He’d be really sorry, trust me.”
“What if I lose him?” Lola asked.
Doubra scoffed. “You are not doing anything wrong. He was wrong.”
Lola sighed as she sipped her drink.
“So…what say you?” Doubra asked.
“What about George? Won’t I be playing with his emotions?” Lola asked.
Doubra sighed. “No. George is a man. They know how to deal with these things.”
“I don’t feel right about it.” Lola replied.
Doubra nodded. “Let’s see it like this, we are just experimenting, if we get the details we are looking for from the bar, then, yes. If not, No. We give it up. But, let’s just try to find out…it’s fun too…that way, you are getting your mind off a lot of stuff.”
Lola stared at her. “Are you sure? This doesn’t feel right.”
“It’s just fun. It’s harmless fun, Lola. Besides, we are not killing anyone, are we?”
Lola smiled. “I have a bad friend.”
“I am just trying to make you smile. Remember, we are doing it for the fun of it.”
“It’s Friday.” The barman said as George joined him at the bar.
George nodded as he took a seat. “I need a favour.”
“Like I said, it’s Friday and it’s morning. You are here at the wrong time of the day.”
George fumed. “Bode, stop it. I need you to tell me about Lola Ojo.”
“Lola Ojo? Who is that?” he asked as he cleaned his table. “Guy, I am no secret service or intelligence officer, I work at the bar. How can you walk up to me with a name and except me to help you?”
George sighed. “Okay…let me explain. She was at the bar yesterday with a man…her husband.”
Bode laughed. “Almost every lady was here with a man.”
“Bode, I want to see the security footages from last night.”
Bode seized George by the collar as he tried to cover his mouth. “Shhhh….” He said as he looked around him. “Are you an idiot?” he said, releasing George.
“No, I am not. I just want to see them so I can show you the lady and you can help me.” He replied.
Bode groaned. “Look, my boss is around. What if he walks in on us talking about security footages? Do you want to finish me?”
“I am sorry, man. But I really need this one.” He said.
“Why are you interested in a married woman?” Bode asked. “Or wait…is she the one you sang about?”
George turned away.
Bode laughed. “Ah! You sang for a married woman?”
“I did not know she was married.” George replied.
Bode smiled. “Now you know.” He said with a chuckle. “Describe her.”
“She is beautiful.” George started with a smile.
“Is that a description?” Bode asked.
George stared at him. “All I need is your footage and I can just point her out.”
“Well, that is not likely to happen.” His friend replied. “So, come to think of it, when I provide you the information, what happens next? Are you going to chase a married woman?”
George stared at Bode. He had not really thought about what he wanted to do, but he knew that he just wanted to see Lola again.
“Lola Ojo, right?” Bode asked.
George nodded with a smile. “Are you going to check it now?”
“No. I’ll try to get one of the records from the security guys and we’ll see where we can go from there.” Bode replied.
The door opened and Jude walked in with Alex. Bode and George turned in their direction.
“We are closed.” Bode said. “Or rather, we haven’t opened today.” He added.
Alex stared at Jude. “That’s him.” He whispered.
“The barman?” Jude asked as they approached them.
“No. The other guy.” Alex replied.
George stared closely at Alex as he got to him. “Oh…Alex?”
Bode stared at them. “Ermm… Gentlemen, we are not opened for the day yet.”
“Yes, I know…I actually came here to see the manager with my friend.” Alex said.
George rose to his feet. “Err…Bode, I think I have to be on my way now.”
“Oh…Okay, bro. I’ll have what you want ready in the evening.” Bode said.
George nodded. “Okay.”
The door handle opened and Doubra walked in with Lola.
Alex gaped as his eyes met Lola’s.