"Yes, and don't even give me that innocent look, because it's of no use anymore," Lilian moved closer to Olivia and uttered softly. "It is not your fault actually. I'm sure Olivia pushed you to do it," her voice came out loud again. "Why don't you wanna see a friend being happy Olivia? 'Cause I don't even understand you any longer."
"What are you saying? Why on earth should we want her to remain this way. Can I even–" Olivia caught her breath, while Lilian wrapped her arms around her rib cage, then rolled her eyes at her.
"Are you trying to say–we made her like this? I called Arnold? While I don't even have his contact. By the way, why are you always blaming Olivia for everything, all she had wanted until today is her happiness, she only wants to see her happy, but you are always misunderstanding her, girls." Amy said, in a calmed voice.
"Is this the time to argue? I mean, is this actually the time to talk about this. Look at the state she is in, but all you ever cared about is trying to clear yourself. What is wrong with you girls?" Ciara dropped her hand in anger.
"Excuse me Ciara! You are not the only one that cares about Monica, you get that? You don't actually know the best thing for her now is to meet that guy, that is all she needs now, and you don't fucking talk to me that way." Amy pointed a finger on the ground.
"Shut up guys, just shut up," I half yelled in frustration and gave a long sigh. "Who is this fucking Arnold to us. I don't know him and I don't wanna know who he is. With that, I don't even want to hear his name any longer. I'm fed up of all this." An unexpected tear ran down my cheeks. "Why don't you girls just put yourself in my shoes. I only said to you that Arnold is on his way to Nigeria, but you kept arguing about unnecessary things instead of thinking about what to do. Do you love seeing me this way? Why would you even think of calling him or mentioning the damn name every single time?" I gasped again and dragged down my palm onto my head. "I don't need him anymore, not around me, not in my life. I hate him! I hate the sight of him and I hate the fucking name! Whatever games you are playing, just stop it pls because I will be leaving for Nigeria tonight."
"You also think I called him? Gosh–"
Ciara interrupted Amy's conversation. "Just come off it Amy!"
"How long will you keep running for Monica? For how long will you keep running from the truth? Why don't you just end this once and for all. Face him and tell him what you felt, if you are going to be with him or not. He will understand your pains and let you be. You can't keep running away from him, he's still going to find you because he loves and wants to be with you." Olivia squealed.
"Love!? Did you just say love? He loves me, but never tells me the truth. He loved me and all he could do was to hurt me in the process? He loves me with his whole lies and deceit? Is that what you called love," I sighed out. "Listen, I will only do what I have in mind. I don't care if that would cost me to keep running until I leave this life for good, even if that would cause my death. At this point, I don't damn care, not anymore!"
"Monica! I need you to calm down. Okay, just tell us where you are heading to." Ciara asked.
"Now I don't trust anyone anymore. Who knows if one of you could call him to disclose my location to him." I glared at each of them, and took a step to leave for my room.
"No one is disclosing your location to anyone, he doesn't even know your house here in Nigeria. Well, who told you he is on his way to Nigeria?" Amy asked, folding her arms around her bosom.
"Mum told me he called her, he told her he is coming to visit her soon, and – this is Arnold we are talking about here, he is a stalker, he will find me everywhere." I turned back at them.
"Exactly, he will find you everywhere even if you leave this country. You declared that yourself so think about it and don't make rash decisions." Amy said, and left for her room.
Lilian sighed and did the same.
Ciara called out on my way to the room, but I turned deaf ears.
I sat down at the dressing table and thought of how I created a wedge between the girls.
Everything is happening because of me. What must I do to make things right again?
I placed my elbow on the dressing table and placed my palm confusedly on my head.
It was 9:53pm when we arrived in Nigeria. I and Loveth were both in a cab on our way to a hotel, both clad in a black pullover because of the cold weather. I looked towards her direction, but she was looking outside the car's window, viewing the shining star, I guess. The red light above us, above the car and above the few houses in the city of Lagos. She must be ignoring me. Yeah, she is my sister, so I knew her well enough. She is always this way whenever she is angry at me.
"I know how you must be feeling about this whole thing, but can't you at least forgive your bro?" I said to her.
"Where are we heading to now? Have you got her location and all other things you need to know?"
I heaved a sigh at the way she ignored the question thrown to her. "We are heading to an hotel on the island. I could recollect she once told me she stays on an island. I have called her doctor though, but she hasn't said anything to me."
"That should be enough of an evidence to know she doesn't want to disclose her location to you–I hope our staying here would be meaningful." She put on her MP3, and danced to the tune of music.
Oh God! Take me to wherever Monica could be.
I left for Monica's apartment that evening, then I pressed the doorbell on getting there. I dipped my hand into my pocket, expecting her to come open up. There, I noticed the flower vase at each side of the door, to beautify the door entrance.
"Who is there?" Her voice came through. She was surprised at the sight she saw as she opened up, holding onto the knob. "Hey love!" She giggled and pulled me for a hug. "Why don't you inform me you'd be here?" She offered me in. "How are you doing?"
"Just wanna surprise you, or are you expecting someone else? Those white American guys? Should I go back?" I pointed my thumb towards the door. "You are actually free to invite them over. I will go back peacefully." I scorned.
"You love teasing me alot. Don't you?" she clenched my ear.
"Fuck off!" She nudged me and gave a wide smile.
I grabbed her hand and pulled her closer to me, feeling her breast on my chest.
"Ahh!" She moaned jokingly, parting her lips.
"So romantic." We both giggled.
"Naughty boy!" She tapped me on the chest, and disengaged herself from me.
I swirled her around, then she ended back on my broad chest. I wrapped my hand around her back, and moved my face towards hers. "You smell nice." I inhaled and moved my lips slowly to hers.
"My friends are here." She whispered.
"Like seriously! What the–"
She laughed out loud and loosened herself from me. "Shy stalker. Don't worry, they will only tease you a little." She grabbed my hand and walked me to the living room. "Hey girls, look who we have here." She said, and giggled.
"Oh my! Stalker?" Amy folded up her two palms, and placed it on her cheek, like that of a baby.
"Hey! Don't call him that, I'm only allowed to do that." Monica dropped her elbow on my shoulder.
"What! Why must you call me a stalker? Above all, in their presence."
They laughed shortly.
"Because I love too, aren't you a stalker?" She widened her brow to me.
"Hmm–this is not the time to argue with you. Well, sorry girls, but I have to borrow your friend tonight. Can I?" I removed her hand on my shoulder, and grasped it.
"Where to?" She wondered, while I winked at her instead.
"You are free pls. Go on and do that." Amy conceded.
"Of course! You don't need to ask." Lilian added.
"Thanks girls! I will surely repay." I smiled at them, while they did the same.
Her friends contact. How could I forget that? I brought out my phone from the pocket, trying to search my contact list when the cab man muttered to us.
"We are there sir! This is one of the best hotels on the island."
"Oh! okay." I brought out some cash in my wallet and offered him. "Thanks a lot –come on Loveth."
Two security men at the entrance helped us with the luggage to the hotel. We headed to the reception office and met two female receptionists dressed in black and white, they greeted us, then one of them uttered with a large smile on her face.
"We welcome you both to the 3 star hotel, how may we be of help sir?"
"Can you show us the menu pls." I asked.
"Yah, sure!" She placed it in front of me, then I opened it to cross check.
"Ehmm –These are all nice – rather help us choose. I can't seem to choose one." We both smiled. "Or will you? "I turned to Loveth.
"Just give us a nice room, and hurry pls. I'm exhausted." she squeaked while occupied on her phone.
"Yea! Sure ma'am –Are you paying in cash or debit card sir?"
"I'm paying in cash. Pls, hand over the key to her first."
"Alright –Here is the key, a lady will show you the way to the room at the entrance." She gestured.
I paid the lady and used the opportunity to check my contact list. Luckily, I found Olivia's contact, then dialed.
"Hi, this is Arnold on the line."
"Arnold? What –Why– "
"I know you must be wondering why I called and probably angry I do, but I am lucky I found your digit among others. You are the only one that I believe would understand me, and I wish you could help me with this."
"I know why you must have called, but – I am sorry. I don't think I can be of help –see Arnold, your issue has caused a lot among us ladies here. I can't help you out. By the way, I heard you are on your way back to Nigeria, probably, you must have landed as it is."
"Yes, I have but –How does my issue cause a lot over there, and how did you know my journey back to Nigeria?" I questioned.
"Monica heard from the doctor and told us all. As it is now, she is trying to leave the country and that is because of you. I don't really know what happened between you guys, but she really is hurt Arnold and she needs someone by her side. I would love it if you guys come back together and sort things out. It won't be easy though, but with time –try searching for her before she leaves the country, that's all I could help you with."
"How can I possibly search for her if I don't know where she is. I don't know her house, pls help me with this. I really love Olivia and I want us to start a good life together again."
"I am afraid I can't tell you. I don't wanna betray a friend."
"But you are trying to make her happy. I only came here for her –You are my last hope."
"Yeah! I know, but what if I don't really know what is best for her? What if I won't do right by telling you this? What if I can't trust you totally? And what if she later knows? It's going to ruin the friendship. I can't lose a friend."
"No– This can't happen – I will make sure to set things right again, just – hello! Hello hello. Gosh! She hung up."
(Olivia) I am sorry Arnold. I wish to help, but I am helpless more than you could think of. I'm in a tight situation right now.
It was the next morning. I prepared marshmallow cake and a dessert for breakfast. I knew the girls would love this, which I hoped this brought them closer together. I served them on different plates on the dining table and covered it up. I went back to my room after I'm done serving. My phone rang some seconds later. It was whom I had been expecting. I slide to the right to pick up.
"Hello ma'am! How was your night?"
'It was good. Thanks –Have you done it?"
"Yes, I will be there in a few minutes to hand it over."
"Alright, I will be expecting. Thanks." I hung up and heaved a relieved sigh.
I peeped from upstairs to see the girl's reaction to the meal. There they were looking confused about it all. My hope was to see them happy and talk to each other, but it doesn't seem that way to me.
"Hello girls!" I hollered on my way downstairs in a large smile.
"How are you doing? Your face is glooming in joy. Any good news?" Ciara grinned, as she said.
"I know things have been hard these past few days and all this has been happening because of me. Forgive me girls. I am really sorry for the tension I've caused between you girls."
"Oh! Come on. It is fine so– are you trying to blackmail us with this meal?" Olivia chuckled.
"I guess so. That is what she is doing." Amy said.
I smiled shortly. "Like I never prepared meals for you girls before? But if you say so, then I won't deny that."
They smiled widely and sat down to have their breakfast. "Thanks girl." They said in a chorus.
"Come join us," Lilian called.
I walked forth and back looking towards the entrance, expecting the ring of the door bell.
"Aren't you eating?" She called again, while others gazed at me suspiciously.
"I made it just for you girls, pls eat it." I managed to smile, then turned back to the door.
"Are you expecting someone?" Ciara asked.
"I –Ehn– yes, I am expecting someone."
"Then – Who? If I may ask?" Olivia asked further.
"Never mind about that, girls, it's one of my dad's secretaries." It took a few seconds before I could respond.
The bell rang, which made me feel relieved. I glanced at them, and then moved to the door hastily to get it open.
"Good morning ma–Yh–" He dipped his hand into his suitcase and brought out a white short paper. "Here is the ticket." He stretched it at me.
"Alright! I appreciate, thanks." I collected it from him.
"You welcome ma'am. I'll be on my way now." He crooked his head and turned to leave.
I got back inside and tried to leave for my room, to hide it from them.
"Ticket?" The ladies chorused, and be on their feet.
They saw it already, there was nothing to hide anymore. "Yep –Ticket– I am sorry girls, but I need to do this. I am not going far and I promise you girls, after this whole thing is over, I am going to come back here."
"Like seriously! You think it's easy. We came here for you and all you could do is to leave us here?" Amy lifted her hands to her ears in anger.
"Just calm down Amy, let's solve this amicably." Ciara said.
"What do we need to solve amicably when she won't adhere? Monica is just too stubborn. Dammit!" Amy said, like she was giving up on me.
"This isn't about yelling –" Lilian squeaked.
"I am not yelling! Don't text my patient this blessed morning Lilian. I wasn't talking to you. I am only talking to my friend, which is Monica," she pointed a finger to me. "Could you do me a favour and just shut it up while I am still talking. It is a request and I am sure it won't be too hard for you to do." She said harshly.
"Could you just calm down Amy?" I muttered to her.
She moved closer to me and snatched the ticket from me, then she glanced at it. "This tickets," she held it up to my face and threw it to the floor violently. "It's useless. Do you think that preparing meals for us would make us happy? Or by giving us the whole freedom in this house will make us comfortable? She shook her head. "No Monica, that is not how happiness works. I might not know how it works because of my personality. I might be jovial, but I don't care about anyone. I don't even want to know if you are happy or not. I never even love anyone, but I love you Monica and I care about you. You filled that space in my heart. I love you, that is why I am here, we care about you, that is why we are here to stand by you through thick and thin. We left everyone there in the state just to be with you, we left our parents' there in the USA just to make you happy, but you just wanna leave? And it is so easy to make the decision without thinking about us? Where is the human feelings left in you Monica?"
Tears slipped down my cheeks as Amy talked in pains. "I am sorry girls. I–I don't know what to do anymore. I can't stay here either, Amy. Okay, I will also arrange your tickets, so we can all leave tonight and –"
"If we were to leave, we would have left long ago, but we are not like you who just leave whenever you got the chance. You just leave like you were never there. You leave without thinking twice or looking back. We are different. We think twice before we make a decision. We think deeply to see if it's going to hurt people around us or not. We thought of how much it's going to hurt if it is likely to hurt."
"Do you think I'm doing this purposely? Do you think I wanna do this also," I wept out loudly and knelt down unconsciously on the cold tiled floor. "You know how much I care and love you guys," I gasped in. "What must I do to show how much I love you?"
"By staying with us. Never leave us Monica." Ciara bent towards me, and grasped my hand.
"You know I would want to do that, but Arnold?" New tears dropped out of my eyelids, as I glared at Ciara.
"Then let us know what happened between you guys. If it's worth leaving then we will gladly let you." Amy spread her hands sideways.
"What! Arrgh!" I said weakly, and sniffed in the liquid in my nostrils. I wiped off my tears, and picked the ticket across me. "I am sorry," I roused up and glared at each of them. "I–I can't."
They kept mute as they watched me leave through the stairs to my room. My heart skipped, as the doorbell broke the silent among us.
Who could that be?
I stopped walking and turned back my gaze. They stared at each other until Amy came to a conclusion to get the door opened. "Who is there?" She asked, holding the door handle."It is me." A familiar voice came through the door.That is mum.Amy opened up the door, and smiled widely at her. "Oh my! Welcome ma. Pls, come in.""How are you all doing? You all look so stunning." A dark-skin, average, slim woman walked into the house, putting on
Chapter twelve."Years ago while I was in year 3, I– I was forced to party out with my friends on my birthday. Yes, I was happy, I couldn't resist because it was my birthday, and I want the people around me to be happy because of me. This is where this got me, I care about people's happiness without thinking about what I really want. I never like the decision of going clubbing, but I go anyway," I lowered on the ground, and tugged my hair as tears kept flowing down. "I resisted at first, but I was confused by them. My desire was to make them happy, right. They were, I fulfilled their dreams. Their mood lightened up that night. Just this night then never will I go again, I told them that, then they agreed immediately. Of course, that was my first and last night I went clubbing. Neither will I be forced to drink, Nor will I be forced to dance. They had no problem with all my conditions, all they cared about was for me to go with them," I smiled to myself and gasped out. "
Chapter thirteen.~~"How can you be this heartless Loveth!" Ciara said in tears.I smiled and cut in whatever Arnold was about to say, then I sat closed to my mother on the cold tiled floor. I raised up a leg to reach my elbow. "A year later. Even after the whole support mum gave me, I still couldn't help it, but to feel depressed. I can't do without having a nightmare every night. I kept missing my parents' every day. I couldn't help the loneliness, so I called mum and told her I have decided to travel out of the country, to make myself happy, to get my mind straight. I just wanna be happy. I don't wanna give up on life anymore, dad must be proud of his daughter wherever he is. I wanna be the strong girl dad always wanted me to be. She agreed with my decision and supported me with it. I got to the states, I thought of everything possible to be happy. So I decided to keep going out to catch fun. Then I met this beautiful angels," I stretched my ha
Chapter fourteen.***ARNOLD's.I got home, in a dark room, looking paled that night. Loveth ran to me when she saw me in that state."Hey bro! What is wrong? Look at your hands, you are injured. Why do you have blood stains on your shirts?" Loveth asked curiously."We are leaving for USA tomorrow. I will book the ticket early morning tomorrow, so pack your bags." I ignored her questions and walked away from her."What! USA... Ticket.. Money.. Where... I don't understand anything bro. Where did you get the money from?" She came after me."You don't need to understand anything. Where I got the money from is non of your concern. All I know is that – I didn't steal the money. Just pack our bags, I will leave early tomorrow to take care of other things .""This is just too sudden, you didn't even tell me anything about your plans,
Chapter fifteen.***It had been two weeks after Arnold visits to my home, but it felt like the incident had happened for two months now. The revealed secret had caused positive and sudden changes in my life. I had started working as one of the managing director in my dad's company. I have tried my very best to become a happy and interactive person, but it seem I still haven't gotten over Arnold yet. I might be angry at him, but I also felt so attached towards him, just like he never stop chasing me. It is in Arnold's blood to never stop stalking me. Ahh! I gasped out. My hearts want to forgive him, but my head keep telling me I would be making the biggest mistakes of my life. I don't know what do. If I don't want to have him anymore, why do I feel the need of making him jealous? Well, if he can play pranks to get my attention, just like he used to do. I wrapped my arms around my chest. Why can't I? I shrugged and returned the last batched o
Chapter sixteen.••• A cab causing a blaring noise drove across me, and whined down the glass at the passenger's window. A young dark guy in his thirties stretched his head out of the window and told me he was from Arnold. He opened the car's door, then I hopped into the car, resting my head on the car's head rest. We arrived at the restaurant I and the ladies planned to eat. I moved in through the sliding door, then walked pass a couple, which I guess they were, giggling and leering at each other romantically. I sighted the girls at the arranged table, at the centre of the restaurant. To my wonder, I saw victor sat with them, looking around the restaurant, as if searching for someone."Hey! Welcome love." Ciara hollered at me with a large smile on her face."How come you are here victor?" I adjusted the empty sit beside Amy to seat down.
Chapter seventeen.***"Look at this dress Monica. I'm sure it's going to suit you well." Victor Unhanged a long - straight -pattern- gown in a gold form."This? Are you sure? This is not my taste." I glared at him, then to the dress, gazing at it like it is a rag or something."Come on. Just go try it on–" he handed it over to me, but didn't let it go. "Monica, are you okay? You have been feeling way to empty since you spoke to that lady. Though, I don't what you guys talked about, but you look stressed out.""Oh– It is –it nothing like that. I –will go try this on." I faked a smile and walked out of his sight."Miss –Pls show her to the dressing room." Victor called out to the attendant behind me. On getting there, I saw Arnold sat on a sofa closed to the dressing room, with his head crooked as he went through the magazine. The
ARNOLD'sI laid on the white sofa in the living room, with my laptop placed in front of me, applying for my usual contracts online. Then, I caught a glimpse of Loveth walked up to me in an high waist - blue jeans, and a top in tube form, dropping her butt on a sitter couch."Hey bro!""Hmm! What is it?" Still concentrating on my system."I guess you've booked the ticket?"Ye–ss!" I stressed out the word."I'm curious bro–wh–" she cleared a throat, which I knew very well it was a fake one."About what? I've booked the ticket. Anything else?""Why have you decided to go back to the states?" She pursed and said further; "I mean, you are here for Monica,