Happy December, everybody. Enjoy Episode 8.
Alex lingered by the door as he watched Lola gather her clothes into a bag. He took deep breaths intermittently as he watched her hurry while packing the bags. His father-in-law might be one of the wisest men he knew, but he had started to doubt the efficiency of this new strategy. Lola was packing and she wasn’t looking back. She had shed a few tears downstairs moments earlier and run up immediately to gather her things. He had chased after her immediately only to stop at the door and watch her do the packing. Alex was emotionally drained. He knew it…but he was also responsible for the situation in which they had found themselves and maybe all he could do was to make things right between them. He swallowed painfully as he watched Lola zip the bag. She was done.
Lola took a deep breath and stared at the divorce papers. Her fairy tale marriage and love story was over in no time. Was she at fault for staying mad at Alex? He had hurt her! Why wasn’t he fighting anymore? She swallowed and picked the papers up. “This is it, right?”
She took a deep breath. “You swore that you were going to love me. You were going to protect me. You were going to make me happy, but all you have done is destroy me. Break me. Make a fool out of me and make me cry.” She started and dropped her bag from the bed to the floor. “Where did those good days go, Alex?” she asked with a faint smile. “Just look at us, Alex. Just look at us. You’ve ruined everything. You’ve destroyed us. You’ve-”
“-WHAT DO YOU WANT FROM ME?” Alex yelled. “WHAT???” He asked as tear drops rolled down his eyes. “You don’t want me to fight for you, Lola. You want out. I am tired. I am sorry. I am drenched and I am tired. I am really tired. I can’t focus anymore, Lola. Every time I see you, I just want to be with you, but I can’t. I broke your heart and I am deeply sorry for it, but I can’t keep fighting a lost cause.”
“Lost cause?” Lola asked.
He nodded. “You don’t want to talk. You don’t want to listen. You don’t want to try.” He said. “Then there is George.”
“George?” Lola quizzed.
Alex looked away.
“You have got to be kidding me, Alex Ojo. George?”
He took a deep breath. “I didn’t mean it that way.”
“So what did you mean?” she asked. “Alex, that is so low.”
Alex swallowed. “Maybe you think of him now, right?”
“What?” Lola asked. “You are unbelievable.”
Alex sighed. “Do you still love me?”
Lola was silent.
“Say something, Lola. Please.”
Lola stayed silent.
“Lola, I am giving up on you. Say something, please.”
She took a deep breath and looked away.
“Lola, Say something!” Alex yelled.
“I have a right to be angry!” Lola screamed. “I have every right to be angry. You are responsible for everything.”
He nodded. “I know and I take the blame for it, but we can’t continue like this. You are not coming around. You hate me so much and you can’t heal here.” He said. He swallowed as he watched Lola wipe her tears. “Lola, I am sorry. I don’t know what to do anymore. I never saw this happening.”
Lola gaped as she pulled her bag. “There’s no need to talk about it anymore. We must have rushed things. I’ll just go. Maybe we were just a mistake.”
“No, Lola. You are my life. You are not my mistake.” Alex replied.
She nodded. “I know. You are my mistake.”
Alex’s heart ached.
Lola pulled her bag and walked up to him. “You were too good to be true, Alex Ojo.” She said. She then chuckled. “I should have known you were trouble, Alex. I should have known.”
Tears rolled down Alex’s eyes as he lifted his face to avoid her.
Lola placed a box in his hand. “That’s us, Alex.”
Alex squeezed the tiffany box with her ring painfully and stared at her. “Lola…”
Lola couldn’t hold back her tears as she crashed into Alex’s arms. “Alex, please…” she cried.
He hugged her till they slid onto the floor. “Lola, I am sorry.”
Lola took a deep breath and pulled away from him slowly. “Alex…”
“Lola…” he called back.
Lola leaned closely to him and kissed his forehead. She took a deep breath and rose to her feet. “I’ll send someone to get the rest of my stuff. We can meet with the lawyers on Monday to finalise everything.” She said and pulled her bag.
Alex held the bag back. “Please.”
Lola shook her head sadly. “No, this is goodbye. Take care of yourself.”
“Lola, I am sorry.” Alex said.
She nodded. “I am sorry too. I am still hopelessly in love with you.” She replied. “But, I’ll be fine.” She said and walked out, closing the door after her.
“What do you think you are doing?”
Mr David turned around as the Television went off. “I was trying to watch the game.”
“What game? Why were you at the gym with that guy?” she asked.
He stared at her. “What guy?”
He smiled. “How did you know that I went to the gym with Alex? You were sleeping when he came by this morning.” He replied. “Come and sit with me.”
She took her seat with a frown. “That man hurt Lola and the next thing you do is go about throwing punches with him? Not fair.”
“Dear, Lola is too hurt to reason properly right now, all I am doing is trying to help her.” He said.
She stared at him. “And how are you doing that if I may ask?”
“It is top secret.” He replied and reached for the Television’s control. “May I please continue the game?”
“No. Not until you tell me what is going on.” She replied, keeping the control away.
“I can’t tell you else you are just going to blow it out of proportion.” He replied.
She stared at him. “What is going on, Mr David?”
“Mrs David…” he started with a smile. “It’s nothing we should worry our heads over.”
She took a deep breath. “Something isn’t very right here and I don’t like the smell of it.”
“It must be the food in the kitchen. Maybe it’s burnt.” He replied with a corny smile.
She jabbed him in the waist. “Come on, don’t be silly.”
He pulled her close as they chuckled. “My Lady, how did we make it this far? We are still so crazy about each other?”
“I missed all the better guys so I had to settle for you.” She replied with a soft laugh.
He smiled at her humour. “I have always loved your sense of humour.” He replied and pecked her forehead. “We made it here together because we are a team, because we know what it is like to hold something down. I have hurt you, you have hurt me and maybe not the way our baby girl is hurting, but we didn’t throw it all away. We fixed it and we are fine, darling. I know Lola is hurt, but she is also very strong and she is going to get through this.”
“I don’t know about it. This is too much for her. She didn’t bargain for it.”
He nodded. “But it has happened and we have to let life run its due course that we might be complete, lacking nothing.”
His wife stared at him bemused. “Did you just join a line from the bible to your motivating talk?”
He shrugged. “I might have. But that is not the point. We need to let Lola fix this. She knows the right thing to do and it certainly isn’t giving up now.”
“Alex just messed everything up.” She replied, sadly.
Mr David nodded. “You are right and I wish he had not done this, but we have to move on from it.”
The doorbell chimed. Mrs David stared at him. “Who are we expecting?”
“I…I don’t know.” He replied.
“I’ll go get it.” She replied and walked over to the door.
Mr David knew that if Alex had done everything according to a new plan, it would be Lola at the door.
Mrs David stared at her daughter and pulled her close for a tight hug. “It’s okay, my love. It’s okay.” She repeated as she took a crying Lola into the house.
Mr David looked away as he watched them go upstairs. He couldn’t bear to see his daughter in pain and he started to second guess his genius idea. Maybe he had just ruined her life with his ‘not-so-genius-plan’.
He hurried upstairs to meet them.
“Mom, he just signed them. He let me go.” Lola muffled amongst tears.
Her Mom hugged her tight. “Lola, let it go. You’ll be fine.”
Mr David cleared his throat. “This is what you wanted, right?”
“What I wanted? I wanted Alex to love me! To be faithful as I was. To take care of me! Not to cheat on me! I didn’t bargain for any of these, Dad!” she yelled.
“Watch your tone with me, young lady.” Mr David replied.
His wife turned to him in a flash. “This is not the time or place for any of this and you know it.” She rushed through clenched teeth.
He nodded as he took a deep breath. “I’ll be in the living room. Give her time to rest. We would talk about this over dinner.”
“There is nothing to say!” Lola yelled. “It’s all over for me.”
Her father swallowed and walked out.
“That is no way to talk to your Dad, Lola.” Her Mother started.
Lola wiped her eyes. “Mom, I don’t know what to do anymore. I can’t go on without Alex. I’ll die.”
“Of course, you can! Don’t allow your happiness to be hinged on anyone.” She said as she adjusted the pillows in the bed. “Now, you will go into the bathroom and have a nice shower, when you are out of the bathroom, take a good nap and we would talk when you have rested.”
“Mom! You can’t hear me.” Lola started as her tears rolled down. “I am not fine! I can’t take this.”
Her mother stroked her hair. “Take a shower, Lola and we would talk.” She said and walked out.
“What did you do that for?”
Mr David turned to his wife. “What…what do you mean?”
“Don’t give me that innocent face! You told Alex to sign the divorce. How could you?” she shouted.
Mr David pulled her hand and led her out of the living room into kitchen. “Why are you screaming?”
“Why won’t I scream? What sort of a father helps to tear his own daughter’s marriage? I should have known that you never wanted her to get married.”
He took a deep breath. “Women!!!” he stressed.
“What about women? Why do that to our girl?” she asked.
He pulled one of the chairs. “Please sit.”
“I am not in the mood for any of your romantic games now. You have to tell me the meaning of this nonsense.” She replied, taking a seat.
He smiled as he watched her sit. “Yes, I told Alex to sign the papers. But, it is not what you think. I would not want to see Lola get hurt.”
“Oh really? Se erin lo n rin loke yen? (Is she having a laugh up there ?) Lola is weakened. I have never seen her break down like that. It is not funny!” she retorted.
He nodded. “I know it is hard to see her like that and trust me, it is harder for me. But, the Lola we raised is really angry at her husband and might not forgive him if she continues staying in that home.”
“The Lola we raised?” she questioned. “People change! Lola might be angry but she sure can handle this in that house, not here. People are going to start talking about her. You of all people should know that.” She added.
He took a deep breath.
“Now, we are going to be visited by our neighbours regularly just to confirm that Lola has moved back in with her parents. Do you know what is going to happen to us in church? And our club meetings?” She asked.
He groaned. “Is that our biggest concern right now?”
“It might seem irrelevant and maybe not our biggest concern at the moment, but it is going to fuel our worries. So, maybe, yes. It is our biggest concern.” She replied.
He nodded. “I agree with you.”
“So, what is this grand plan of yours?” she asked.
He blinked. “It is not really grand…and considering the fact that Alex was wrong, it might be a cheap plan, but I think reverse psychology might work best in this situation.”
“Reverse Psychology?! Do you think Lola isn’t smart enough to know what is going on around her?” she asked.
Mr David smiled. “That’s the beauty of Reverse Psychology. You know it is being used on you but you can’t help it, because it hurts.” He replied.
“This doesn’t feel right.” She replied.
He nodded. “Lola is going to be fine. She loves Alex and he loves her too. He made a mistake and he is sorry about it. That marriage is going to be pointless if Lola stays with him filled with so much rage, she has got to find it in her forgive him and learn to rebuild that trust. If she succeeds, then she has a marriage. If not, then their divorce might just be real.”
Mrs David exhaled. “I don’t want my daughter to be hurt by this.”
“We are here for her. But, we are not going to help her take the easy way out of this. Sometimes, you have got to fight for what is truly yours.”
TWO WEEKS GONE
“So, Mr Idahosa is considering firing you due to your inefficiency in the past weeks.” Jude started as he stared at Alex who laid face down on his bed. “Alex?”
Jude took a second look at the room. It was littered with food wraps, clothes, bottles, and of course pictures. “Lola has moved on, Alex.”
“Get out!” Alex said.
Jude sighed as he took a seat. “Bro, you have kicked me out regularly in the past week, but today I am going to stay.”
Alex rolled over in Jude’s direction. “You have my attention now. What is it?”
“Why did you sign the divorce? Were you drunk” Jude asked.
Alex shook his head. “I was hypnotized.”
“Hypnotized?” Jude asked, slightly confused by Alex.
Alex took a deep breath and sat up. “My father-in-law told me to sign it and that when I did, we were going to work the reverse psychology on Lola and I did.”
Jude stared at him. “Guy? You mad? And you signed it?”
“It seemed like the smart thing to do at the time.” Alex replied.
Jude sighed. “Why didn’t you come to me for advice?”
“You? You are the devil.” Alex replied.
Jude nodded. “Fine, but I never would have told you to work the reverse thing on Lola. She is too hurt to want to listen.”
“I have not seen her in two weeks. She has barred me off her phone and I can’t even go to her house because the guards won’t even let me in. Worse, she hasn’t been to the office in two weeks, so, she is in that house.” Alex rambled. “What am I going to do?”
“It’s obvious Mr David played you. He used his wisdom to get his daughter’s freedom for that singing bird, George.” Jude retorted.
Alex nodded. “You may be right.”
“Of course, I am right! And you are here wallowing in pity when you should be fighting the old man for doing this to you.” Jude replied.
“Fighting?” Alex asked.
Jude nodded slowly. “Maybe not physically-”
“Can you be serious, Jude? This is my life we are talking about.” Alex replied.
Jude sighed. “I am sorry, I was just trying to make you happy.”
“It is not working.” Alex replied.
Jude nodded. “Okay, we have to come up with a plan and really fast. I hired someone to find out about your rival, George and he has a pretty scanty resume.”
“Resume?” Alex asked. “Are we hiring him?”
“No. He sings at Clandestine on Thursdays, he runs shifts at a mall and he volunteers at a kid’s home.”
Alex jerked. “Is that what you call scanty? He already sings like Legend and now he volunteers? Do you know how sensitive Lola is? She is going to adore him for his impeccable kindness!”
Jude sighed. “Oh boy! You have such natural bad luck.”
“Has she seen him in this last couple of weeks?” Alex asked as he drew close to Jude.
Jude scoffed. “How am I supposed to know that?”
“I thought you hired someone to watch him.” Alex replied.
Jude took a deep breath. “Based on the report I got, your wife, sorry, your ex-wife has been a really good girl.”
“I want to see her. I need you to help me come up with a plan.” Alex replied.
Jude clenched his teeth. “If I were you, I’d be worried about fatso who is threatening to fire you from work.”
“Idahosa can’t run that place without me.” Alex replied.
Jude nodded. “He knows. He has offered me a huge salary bump to take your place.”
“What are you saying, Jude?” Alex asked.
Jude smiled. “I turned him down and promised to get you back in shape, which he considered a better offer than having me in your place.”
Alex took a deep breath. “I want to see Lola again. Do you have a plan?”
Doubra handed Lola a glass of water. “How long will you continue like this?”
Lola stayed silent.
“You don’t look well. Let’s go to the hospital.” Doubra started. “I am tired of seeing you this pale.”
Lola turned to her. “You can go away.”
“Lola, you won’t get rid of me so easily. You might have succeeded in keeping your parents out of here but it won’t work for me.” Doubra replied as she drew the curtains back. “So, I take it as you have resigned to dying in here?”
“I’ll be over him soon.” Lola replied, weakly.
Doubra sighed. “Soon? How soon is soon? Look at you. You are fading away.”
“These things take time, Doubra. Just be patient.” She replied and drank some more water.
Doubra took a seat beside her bed. “I was thinking of getting us two movie tickets.”
“I am not going.”
Doubra nodded. “I haven’t bought them yet. I was just thinking.”
“Quit thinking.” Lola retorted.
Doubra checked her wristwatch. “I have to be at the office at noon. What do you want me to tell Oga?”
“Same thing you have been telling him. Unavailable.” Lola said and rose to her feet. “Excuse me.” She added as she hurried into the bathroom.
Doubra followed her to the bathroom. “Unavailable again? I think the man is getting bored.”
Lola puked into the tub and ran some water over her face. She then turned to Doubra. “I already sent in a letter notifying him of my absence, if that is not good enough for him, then, I am sorry.”
Doubra stared at her. “Lola, are you pregnant?”
“Pregnant?” Lola asked. “Where would I have gotten it?” she asked as she returned into the room.
Doubra followed her. “It’s just that the rate at which you have been throwing up in the last days is quite disturbing.”
Lola shrugged. “It must be malaria.”
“Have you taken any test to affirm it?” Doubra asked.
Lola sighed. “You are bugging me. What do I need a test for? I am not pregnant. I can’t be.”
“Why not?” Doubra asked. “Were you not intimate with your husband?”
“Not for a long time now. Ever since I got a whiff of his cheating, I stayed away.” She replied in a rush. “But…”
“But what?” Doubra probed.
Lola gaped as she took a seat. “It can’t be.”
“What can’t be, Lola?”
Lola stared at her. “It was just once. Oh my God!” Loa rushed to her drawer and pulled out her pregstrips. “Pass me the bottle of water.”
Doubra watched her friend as she nervously gulped the water and hurried into the bathroom, shutting the door after her. She took a deep breath and waited as she called ‘Lola’ several times to no avail.
After a while, the door opened and Lola stepped out.
“Lola, what is it? Talk to me.”
Lola stayed silent as she sat on the edge of her bed.
“Lola, you do know that these tests are like ninety-nine percent correct and you can take it many times to erode the possibility of the one percent?” Doubra started.
“I took it four times already.” Lola spoke up. “I am pregnant.”
Let’s have the comments roll in… 😁