“I’m sorry for your loss.” I said as tears of pity coursed down my face.
“Thanks.” Mr. Kayode responded, after which he lowered his head and looked me in the eyes.
“I’m also sorry for your loss.” He said, biting his lips and brushing away the tears on his face. As I made the move towards the door, he called me.
“Tonia, I love you.”
“Hmmm, I don’t love you.” I said with a frown. “Think about your dead wife and forget about me.” I turned, stared at him before I walked out of the hospital room.
“You have a very nice child.” The nurse with whom I left my son with said softly.
“Thanks nurse.” I expressed my sentiments of gratitude.
“Mummy, what about aunty Busayo? We were together in the car before the car tumbled.”
“Aunty Busayo is fine.” I lied to my son.
“Mummy, is she dead?” My son asked. “I heard a nurse telling another nurse that two people died.” My eyes lingered on the face of my child. What should I tell him? I began to ponder. I was a little bit flummoxed.
“Take care of your son, I have to go now.” The nurse said. I was thinking about Busayo and the way death had suddenly stolen her away from me.
“I appreciate you.” I told the nurse before she briskly walked out of my sight. My son then ran to my arms with a shout: “I love you mummy.”
“Mummy loves you too honey.” I whispered into his ears and he laughed as I pinched him on the ear.
“What will I do now?” I was asking myself, not knowing I was speaking out loud.
“Mummy will take me home.” My son said. “That’s what you will do mummy?” My son smiled and I saw my husband’s face in him and his pointed nose reminded me of my husband’s handsomeness.
I felt faint as I sat down inside the car. I kicked it off and before I realized it, I was already on the road, maneuvering the steering wheel. My son was drinking the yoghurt I bought him just outside the hospital gate as I was thinking about Busayo. It all sounded like a dream and I tried to evade the thought of the fact that I will never chat with her again, maybe until we meet in the netherworld.
Five years later, my son wrote the entrance examination into High School and he passed with flying colours. I was elated that he was going to a boarding school: St. Joseph’s College. After I had helped him dressed his bed and arranged his box in the hostel, I went seeing the principal of the school.
“Good day sir.” I greeted him.
“Good afternoon Madame. You are welcome to St. Joseph’s College.” The bulky, bespectacled man made me feel at home. He had gray strands of hair combed over the top of his bald head and he was wearing a black bow tie and a black suit that looked as though it belonged to someone of a much smaller frame. His white shirt strained at each buttonhole as if one more bite of the slice of bread on his hand would explode the buttons around the cluttered cubicle. His eyes blinked as he peruse through the list of items on the prospectus. I sat very straight, folding my hands on what remained of my lap and silently wishing the best for my son.
“Mrs. Anthonia, did you get all these for your son?” The principal asked me, holding the prospectus.
“Yes sir, I bought everything required and even more.” I answered him.
“Then be sure that your son will receive the best training possible. We have the most qualified teachers in the state.”
“I really do appreciate you sir.” I said when a young lady barged into the office.
“Ooh, I’m sorry sir; I didn’t know you have a guest.” The charming looking damsel apologized to the principal.
“That’s no problem Miss Elizabeth.” She handed a file to him before she turned towards the door. I looked at the mini skirt she wore and the way she walked, shaking her butt made me smile.
As soon as I came out of the principal’s office, I saw my son standing next to the car chatting with another freshman.
“Mummy, meet Christopher my friend.” My son said smiling and exposing his open teeth. “Christopher, meet my mum, the best mother in the world.”
“No, my mummy is the best mum in the world.” Christopher said and I burst out laughing.
“You two have great mothers.” I said. “And don’t forget to marry your books.” I gave my son some pocket money and gave Christopher some two thousand notes before I entered my car and kicked off.
During the holidays, my son invited Christopher to spend some days with us. It was while he was in our house that I discovered that he had lost his mum and he was being raised by only his father.
“I’m so happy to be here Odin.” He was speaking to my son.
“I’m also happy you finally consented to come around.” My son said, making a sigh.
“I never wanted to leave my dad all alone.”
“What about your mum?” My son asked him.
“My mum died while in an auto crash some years ago.”
“I’m sorry about your mum but I’m glad we have something in common.”
“And what could that be?”
“We are children with single parents. You have a dad and I have a mum. We should be glad and make merry.” My son said out loud and I heard him from the kitchen.