Sunday 21 November 2021

Life and Everything in Between (Episode Twenty)

 Farouk stared at Khalid with furrowed brows as I placed a lid over the flask and stepped out of the car.


“Who’s that?” Farouk asked with an eager tone.


“Khalid, Rasheedah’s fiancé,” I replied with a whisper as I joined Khalid.


Khalid placed both hands in his jeans pocket and started to walk away to ensure that Farouk wouldn’t hear what he was about to say.


When he was confident that we were far away from where Farouk was seated, he whipped his head up and greeted me with a wince. “Asalamu ‘alaykum, Rafiah. How have you been?”


“Wa’alaykumu salam. I’ve been trying to stay positive. You?”


Khalid groaned. “I haven’t had up to three hours of sleep since the dreadful incident happened. Where could Rasheedah be, and who the hell is behind this?” Khalid sighed in frustration as he placed a hand over his head. “Your parents are not even giving me the chance to speak to them. This isn’t fair. I’m hurting as much as everyone is. But, unfortunately, it is my wife-to-be that got missing. On our wedding day!” he screamed.


“They are not listening to you because it is all your fault! We are in this mess because of you and your family members. My family is simple and easygoing. We do not involve ourselves in people’s businesses. We’ve been living peacefully until Rasheedah got engaged to you. Discuss with your parents. You guys need to sit down and analyse those you’ve offended. One of them is holding my sister captive.”


“Rafiah, please, you’ve got to listen to me,” Khalid said as sweat dripped down his face. “I don’t know where your sister is, and I’m also trying hard to make sure that we find her. I love Rasheedah. Do you know how it feels to lose your love when you’re a minute from tying the knot? So please, let’s work this out together.”


I swallowed hard and nodded. “That’s fine. I guess we’ll talk over the phone. I urgently need to be somewhere.”


“Where?” Khalid asked.


“To see your ex, Mutmainah. She’s also a suspect.”


Khalid laughed incredulously as he glared at me. “Mutmainah? What has she got to do with this?”


“Everything! Rasheedah talked about how she keeps disturbing you to return to her. Don’t you think she might have a plan?”


“You’re saying that twenty-five-year-old Mutmainah would have the guts to capture Rasheedah…because she is getting married to me, isn’t it, Rafiah?”


“Yes. Look, I’m not a psycho. I’m just doing all it takes to find my sister,” I blurted out as I walked out of his presence and returned to the car.


Khalid kept staring at us with a shocked expression until Farouk drove out of the compound.


About five minutes later, I gave Farouk a shooting look. “We’re not crazy, right?”


“Of course, we’re not! Don’t let anyone make you see yourself that way. We’re going to study Mutmainah until we’re certain that she doesn’t have Rasheedah. Cést fini!”


“Yeah,” I muttered as I scrolled through Mutmainah’s Instagram posts.


Mutmainah wasn’t just the only daughter of a wealthy politician; she also had a great fan base on Instagram. She promotes brands and shares pictures of memorable places in Nigeria. And based on her daily schedule, she was currently at De Cuisine, having a meeting with some of her clients and planning on taking more photos for her Instagram page.


Throughout the short trip to De Cuisine, Farouk prepped me on how to spend time at the restaurant without signifying that I was there on a unique motive.


At exactly 03:15 pm, Farouk drove into the restaurant’s building and parked the car. And there Mutmainah was, looking dashing as ever as she smiled affectionately and talked to two men, dressed in suits.


“She’s adorable, isn’t she?” I said as I stared at her through the glass walls.


Farouk ignored my question. “You’ve got this, Rafiah! I believe in you,” he smiled at me as I nodded in response and alighted from the car.


My heart jammered in my chest as I walked towards the entrance. I took deep breaths before stepping into the large room that smelled of lemon and raspberries, and I smiled appreciatively at the waiter, who opened the door.


‘Rafiah, you’ve got this. All you have to do is order a drink and secure a seat close to where Mutmainah is. She wouldn’t even notice you’re here. She’ll…’ I thought when I heard someone say the teslim.


I whipped her head up in shock to see Mutmainah grinning at me. She looked prettier in person.


Mutmainah was dressed in a red gown with puffy hands, and her lips shimmered in red. I gingerly lowered my eyes to catch a glance at her gold pointy heels. How could someone look this perfect?


“I’m sorry….can you hear me?” Mutmainah stared at me with confused eyes. However, she still had a bright smile plastered on her face.


“Oh…pardon me. I just can’t believe that I’m seeing you in person. You’re one of the few personalities I admire on Instagram. You’re so beautiful…” I was saying when Mutmainah pulled me into a hug.


“Oh, you are beautiful! I couldn’t help but notice you when I stepped into the restaurant. You have a lovely skin. Brown and smooth. This is the first time my manager is choosing the right model for the shoot,” Mutmainah said as she continued to stare at me.


I chuckled. “Model? Oh, I’m not a model. I’m just to relax after a busy day.”


“My bad. I’m sorry once again. But, please, can you join the shoot? You are gorgeous. What’s your name?”




“Great. Rafiah, please, I need you to become one of the faces of Zurie Moisturizer. Not free, obviously. Are you free? Can we have a drink and talk about random things?”


“Err…okay,” I said as Mutmainah squealed in excitement.


“Great. I just found a new friend! What would you like? Here’s the menu…” she was saying when my phone chimed in my bag.


I brought it out and checked the new messages, certain that it would be from Farouk.


What’s up? Have you guys met before?

-          Farouk.


LOL. We haven’t! I’m also surprised. She’s been gushing about my beauty and all that…

-          Rafiah.


Hahaha. I can see how you’re blushing over there. Well, this is also a good strategy. Get to become Mutmainah’s best friend and see if she’s hiding anything.

-          Farouk.


I honestly do not think she’s hiding anything. I mean, look at her! So sweet and adorable. I was expecting to meet a proud lady, but Mutmainah is really friendly. So I don’t think she should be one of her suspects.

-          Rafiah.


We have to be sure before clearing her name off the list. Better safe than sorry.

-          Farouk.


Okay. I’m hanging out with Mutmainah till evening. After that, we want to go for a shoot with other models.

-          Rafiah.



-          Farouk.

Be careful? Would Mutmainah drive elsewhere and hold me captive? Does she look like someone capable of doing that? No wonder Khalid was staring at me like a psyc…

-          Rafiah.


I was still typing when Mutmainah called my name. “Rafiah?” Mutmainah stared at me and lowered her eyes to the phone in my hands. “Gosh. Have you been listening to me?”


“I’m sorry. I had to discuss an important issue with someone,” I explained.


“Your fiancé?” she said with a smirk. “Or…are you married?”


“Well, my fiancé to be.”


“Wow. I love love stories. Tell me everything about him!!!” she sipped from her watermelon juice and giggled excitedly.


I gingerly waved my hands at Farouk as I dropped my phone and started to talk. “He’s amazing. Really amazing…”

 Don't miss out on the previous episodes:

Episode One

Episode Two

Episodes Three & Four

Episode Five

Episodes Six & Seven

Episode Eight

Episode Nine

Episode Ten

Episode Eleven

Episode Seventeen 

 Episode Eighteen

Episode Nineteen



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