Simon whispered funny words of encouragement to his love whilst Ayo looked on in admiration,and Patricia in indignation. The elderly woman spoke lengthily after she instructed the maids to clear the dining table.
“Simon,you’re my beloved grandson. There’s no way I would ever want you to fall into a ditch. People like Princess Ireti are mistresses and not wives. Patricia is well mannered,intelligent,smart,well trained and beautiful. What more do you want? This girl is nothing but trouble! You’ll get trouble if you continue with her,I doubt if that useless and promiscuous womb can even produce children” she rounded off with pointed fingers at Ireti.
The second the elderly woman finished talking,Ireti motioned to return home.
“Thank you Ma” she said with much respect and arose.
“I can’t believe this! If you love me,then you would respect my choices and decisions. If I can’t get married to ‘this seductress’,then that’s the end of our lineage. Its either her or no one else!” He responded in a low tune.
Rising up to escort Ireti,he grabbed her waist and their lips convened tenderly.
“Jesu!!” His grandma yelled with both hands on her head.
“She has turned my son against me! They’re even committing immoral acts in my presence” she lamented to Ayo and Patricia who were surprised at Simon’s action.
“Ireti!” The elderly woman began, “I will report you to your mother-the Queen Regent. You’re even more mannerless than I expected you to be. If they can do this in my presence,then what has happened in my absence?” She asked Ayo who was consoling Patricia.
“They can’t do more than this Mama,he’s doing this because of what you said. He’s infuriated, I think Simon should be blamed for this act and not Ireti.” He responded reasonably.
“Its Ireti’s fault! She’s using the feminine tactics she learnt abroad on him. Its because she’s given him her body and I haven’t,I can’t breathe Mama. My heart is breaking” Patricia chipped in with loud sobs.
“Ehhhh! You must breathe my daughter,your heart can’t break! Ehn..if she’s using her body..use yours now.. abi? Shebi you will still marry him?” Sims’ grandma replied with a devilish grin on her face.
“But..its unholy Ma!” Pat replied with a sad face.
“Unho what? Ta lo sofun e? Shebi you will still marry him now..I’m sure he wasn’t even the one that deflowered that princess sef..if he deflowers you, then you would be more special to him.”
“Hmm..if only she knows I’ve been deflowered already.” Patricia said to herself and wished Ayo was still seated,he would have changed the topic to something more whimsical.
“I’m sorry for Mama’s behaviour sweetheart,I’m sure its because of the stress she’s been passing through of late,” Ayo said to Ire as she was on her way home.
“Its no problem dear,I understand.” she replied with a hug.
The love birds sighted a car parked a few metres from his house. Seated in the black austin car were Patricia,her mother,and his grandma.
“Have a look at her Mama! That’s the fat delilah!!” Patricia complained bitterly and his grandma patted her back to pacify her.
He hailed a cab for Ireti and the moment she got in,he was about to follow suit.
“Noooo,I don’t want you to infuriate your grandma any more dear. I can go home alone,please don’t complain. See you tomorrow” she said smiling.
“I love you.” he replied and they got entangled in another kiss.
“Awon omo aye isin yii sha” (These kids of nowadays sef…) The cab driver commented with a nod.
He took her home on his way from work the next day,his grandma and everyone else were absent so the lovebirds had time to themselves.
“I’m nervous..what if your grandma walks in on us?” Ireti enquired after resting her head on his laps.
“Nothing can happen dear..” He assured with a hand to her cheeks.
“Why don’t you like ties? You’re the only male I know that doesn’t.”
“It makes me feel choked and restricted..weird right?”
“You can say that again” she replied with a smile, “I love your weirdness..Ayike insists I get intimate with you..she says that’s the only way I can keep your eyes from straying away to other girls..I’m concerned..but I can’t indulge in such,”
“Huh? We’re perfectly fine dear..don’t even consider that..its not an option as you rightly stated..the only girl that drives me crazy is you..” He replied, thus prompting her to kiss him tenderly with his hands on her back. His lips were all over her face when his grandma walked in,she announced her presence with a fake cough.
“What’s this? Is my house now a brothel?Ireti! Is this what you were taught in Church?” She clouted angrily.
Ireti itched her head nervously.
“Sorry Ma,we got carried away.” Simon answered with a coy smile.
“Is she dumb? Why can’t she speak?” The elderly woman asked as she took closer steps to the couch where they were.
“I’m sorry Ma….its all my fault” the young lady responded nervously.
“It just has to be! My grandson is well mannered,he doesn’t commit such immoral acts!! I hope she hasn’t made you go beyond this level?Her cursed womb is unfit to birth our babies oh..What do I expect from a harlot?” She soliloquised aloud and walked out on them both.
Ireti sobbed gently whilst Sims hugged her affectionately.
“I’m sorry my love. This shouldn’t deter you,don’t try to end what we have..It’ll emotionally kill me..please my love..Please!” He pleaded with her sincerely.
“This won’t hold me back! Words can’t explain how much I love you. I think I should get going..please don’t argue with her over what just happened. See you tomorrow.” she gave him a warm hug after making that statement.
“How dare you apologise to a woman?” His grandma asked angrily after Ireti exited the mansion, “She must have bewitched you” the woman lamented before going out.
He visited her on his way to his company’s dinner party the next day with a wrapped present.
“I love the colour…but I’m not sure about the style. Its too exposed for me,you want Mama to keep seeing me as an immoral rebel right?” She asked sadly.
“I don’t see anything wrong with it dearie..I felt compelled to get this for you since I forgot to remind you of the dinner yesterday..Why don’t you try it on first?” he responded.
“Yes Ma!” They yelled as they walked hurriedly to the living room where she stood.
“What do you think of my outfit? Is it decent?”
“Yes Ma! You look beautiful! Its decent and glamorous Ma!!” They chorused randomly in pidgin english,the young maids always felt quite important whenever she asked for their opinion.
It was a lengthy red gown with long sleeves and a criss crossed design behind it which exposed a bit of her skin.
“I won’t leave you tonight…so don’t worry” he assured her and tugged her cheeks gently.
They were the cynosure of all eyes the moment they stepped into the exquisite hall. It was a rather short dinner celebration which was hosted by a partnering company of theirs. The lovebirds sat at the center right table with Ayomide and Simon’s grandma.
“We’ll be right back. Pls don’t cause a spectacle” his grandma pleaded with him before leaving with Ayo.
Although she had never entered the four walls of a school before,Mrs Braithwaite had acquired the poise and elegance of the elites. Her newly mastered prowess in english language greatly facilitated this improvement of hers, as did the sudden upliftment of their social status.
The moment they both left,Sims kissed Ire briefly and all eyes were on them. People began to chatter,smile and frown at them both.
“I wasn’t expecting that…not with the crowd and all….” Ireti whispered to him,her cheeks were as flushed as that of a teenager in love.
“I’ve waited for this very moment since we got here.Its an opportunity to let everyone know that this precious jewel isn’t a business partner or friend,but my soul mate.” he responded confidently.
Ireti had the time of her life there and then,she couldn’t stop smiling when she got home.
“No one has ever made me feel this special” she wrote in her diary as ecstatic tears dropped down her cheeks.
The midweek service was an awesome one as usual,but he received long stares from the congregation who couldn’t believe what a National Pilot journalist insinuated-that he was courting Princess Ireti. He didn’t care anyways,not after he got slapped by his grandma earlier on when she found out that he caused a spectacle by making out with Ire at the dinner party.
“How was the service? Wish I was there but….I closed late from work” she asked when he visited her that night.
“Fine…but…The Reverend wants me and several others to attend a crusade organised by a Western church group. You can’t come with because you’ve got the late night shift, and Ayo can’t come either because he has an engagement. I don’t wanna go..it would be weird.”
“I think you should go,you can leave the office for this…can’t you? And maybe you’d see some church leaders from Ayetoro.It won’t be bad..trust me.”
The crusade was held at a mega stadium. Hundreds of ill,afflicted,infirmed and ignorant people were in attendance. He arrived when the miracles were about to start and the short usher directed him to his reserved seat which was at the front.
“Giving Time!” The fat minister who was on stage hailed.
“Healing Time!” The members of the congregation responded and hundreds trooped to the front with squeezed offerings in their hands. Shortly after, another Minister who wore a sort of regalia mounted the stage and ordered all the invalids to come to the front.
“Christ has heal you! Come and take da healing!!” He yelled out loud in his faulty english intonation.
The people were required to drop another offering on the podium before he ‘healed them of their illnesses’.Even after this,he dismissed most of them and called their illnesses acts of God,of lawful punishment,and thereby incurable!
There was one case that got Sims’ attention,a pale looking six year old boy who was wheeled in by his elderly mother. She was given a microphone to speak after dropping her second offering.
“Please help him Sir! I’ve lost all I have on this ailment. The doctor said he’s got one month to live” she cried out loud.
“I’m sorry Ma,this boy has offended God. There’s no way I can heal a demonic person,please take him out!” He commanded the ushers who attempted to lead them out gently.
“Wait,let me wheel him out” Simon volunteered and led them into the garage where all the ministers parked their luxurious cars(the members of the congregation could barely afford three square-meals,talk more of a car)