Monday 23 July 2018

Lost Love (Episode Four)

“There is a letter at the tip of the lock.” Halimah grabbed the letter, opened it and read aloud:

“Hi, our dear children. I know you are surprised because the gate is locked and we’re nowhere to be found. Don’t be, because we had locked it deliberately. We’re home and you’ll join us very soon, but not now. You need to settle things between yourselves. Fight, quarrel or beat yourselves up. After that, you’d get tired and figure out how to live together.

Don’t bother calling because there is no network. There are food items in the kitchen. Yeah, I know you too cannot cook. That’s why we left a cooking guide on the shelve.
Happy holiday and have fun!”

“What is the meaning of this?” Halimah squeezed the paper and shoved it away.

“I should be asking you and your parents. My parents have always made me live my life, and they appreciate the time I’m using to heal my wounds…all until they met your parents”. Ibrahim blurted.
He sat on the sand and placed his hands over his head.

“You don’t know how better I was before I met you. You can never imagine how much I hate you.”
“Oh, shut up or I’ll give you a slap!” Ibrahim shook the locked gates vehemently but it did not make a difference.

“I have a lot to do…I should have insisted on not coming here…I should have…” he said, breathing heavily.

“You better don’t kill yourself. We are here and there’s nothing we can about it.” Halimah paced around.

“Ah! Ah! humm….hum…” Ibrahim fell to the ground and struggled to find his breath.
“I…know…that…we’re…enemies, but do not me…die”. He tried to gasp for air.
“I…what will I do? Where’s your inhaler?” Haleemah said, confusingly.
“There, over there,” he said, pointing to his bag.
Haleemah hurried to the bag and searched furiously, emptying its contents. “Here it is.” She sighed deeply, running to where he laid.
“Feel better?”
“B…etter. I need to go inside. It’s very dusty out here,” Ibrahim said.

“Okay.” She supported him into the living room. Ibrahim laid on the sofa and coughed.

“I would have made hot tea, but I don’t know how to,” Halimah said.

“Thank you.” He chuckled, “I really mean ‘thank you.’”

“Whatever. You know I shouldn’t have assisted, but I did.” She sat opposite him with folded arms.

“You did help me. Are we still enemies?” he grinned at her for the first time.

“I can’t buy that smile. I know you well, Ibrahim.” She drew on a paper.

“You can also draw? Ibrahim widened his eyes.

“Yes, and why do you ask?”

“My ex could draw,” he replied.

“How wonderful.” Haleemah frowned as she continued to draw.

“What makes you feel so hurt about your past? Why can’t you move on with life?” Haleemah asked.

“I should be asking you that.”

“I asked first,” Haleemah insisted.

“Ladies first, remember?” he laughed.

“The fact is that I do not want to talk about it,” she said.

“Maybe we need to open up and share our feelings…to reduce the burden in our hearts, to heal the big sore in our hearts. A problem shared is always solved…or half solved,” Ibrahim said.

“I’ve kept this for years. It has stood as an obstacle between myself and the present and future. It all started when I met Tanko. Before then, I had always been the cool-mannered spoilt brat who didn’t know anything other than religious and educational activities. I was very brilliant and extremely pretty. I attended one of the most expensive institutions in Abuja, and I studied Medicine. I was a bookworm who would spend all day at the library, studying. I didn’t keep close friends but I had casual friends, who were my colleagues. You know…after years of learning together, you become very close with your course mates.

Well, Mr. Ade, a lecturer gave the class an assignment. He gave us a project to present in class and he grouped us into four teams. I was in the same group with Tanko, Ahmed, and Umar. I was immediately chosen as the group leader because I was the most intelligent, hardworking and the smartest. As a good leader, I had to bring my group mates together, to communicate easily with them and urge them to continue their useful ideas and initiative.

It was easier to communicate with Tanko because he was the most serious and friendly. He, in turn, explained my directions to the rest, since he was a man like them. To cut the story short, we submitted our project and presented our term-paper. Luckily, we were the best and it was a great achievement for all of us. It was then I realized that I had feelings for Tanko, but I waited eagerly for him to express his feelings for me.  We were in class expecting our lecturer one day when a course mate passed a paper to me. It was from Tanko. I froze. I kept the paper in my bag but I couldn’t concentrate throughout the lecture. After class, I hurried to the library, to read the contents. It was a love letter! It was the first time I was receiving a love letter. I felt like a secondary school student because it was awkward but fun. He expressed his undeniable love for me, and I felt that I would faint out of excitement.

I folded the paper and headed to my hostel. I dreamt of Tanko all through the night. At class the next day, I was too shy to face him. I saw him from my side view and noticed his permanent stare on me. I turned to him and he winked, grinning seductively. He called me to an empty class after lectures and confessed his feelings face-to-face.

I willingly accepted and we started a relationship. Apart from the fact that he was loving, he was also handsome and very rich. He was the only one who owned a car in my department. We continued our love affair until my final year in school, when he proposed marriage. I accepted and we had a proper introduction between both families. My parents loved him and his parents did the same to us. I felt like the luckiest woman on earth. He convinced me that we should get married after NYSC. The marriage was to be the talk of the town. My dad gave him a huge sum of money as his son-in-law-to-be. Before the wedding, something drastic happened…that I didn’t tell anyone. Tanko raped me. He deflowered me before we got married. I buried the pain, thinking that he was still my husband-to-be…

…to be continued…

A/N: What will happen to Haleemah and Tanko's relationship? What would Ibrahim's story be? Stay tuned till next week!!!

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