REDEEMED (A SERIES) – EPISODE 8
(WRITTEN BY JOY A. ADEWUMI)
I woke up with a banging headache and rushed towards the restroom as my bladder threatened to burst. I threw the door open and unceremoniously relieved myself. Stepping out, I saw a figure glide past me and memories of last night came to me. BJ! My guy! I rushed forward and slung my arm across his shoulders.
‘Guy! When you start to dey waka like woman?’ He felt shorter and thinner and I tried rubbing my eyes with my other hand. Was I hallucinating? He tried to shrug off my arms but I held him in a vice grip only to discover that he was softer than normal. There was a shriek and I laughed. Wonders shall never cease.
‘Oh boy! I no notice say you soft like this oo!’ I joked as I prodded and poked him here and there. Then a tiny female voice pierced into my subconscious and jarred me out of what was left of my drunkenness, as she wiggled her body helplessly in my strong grip.
‘Ahhh! Please leave me, I’m not him!’
I let go of the person instantly like I would hot potatoes! What the-!
My eyes cleared and I saw the real BJ running in our direction. I ran back into the restroom, washed my face with water to clear my eyes and dashed back to the living room where a young girl was sobbing in BJ’s arms. BJ threw me a dirty look and I felt like scum! Jeez! What on earth had I done to the poor teenager?!
I sat and waited for her sobbing to subside with my suddenly throbbing head in my hands. When she quieted and BJ moved away, she avoided my eyes as I sought the right words to say.
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‘Hey, Justina!’ I whispered quietly and she glanced at me for the briefest moment.
‘I’m sorry. I was drunk and thought it was my friend. I’m truly, honestly, genuinely sorry.’ I pleaded.
She nodded wordlessly though she was quiet for some few more seconds, then she spoke.
‘I know it was a mistake. It’s not the first time I’m coming to clean without mummy, and we’ve been home alone countless times. You’ve even warned off Hamid with his stupid advances countless times. I was just very shocked and shaken. It’s okay Uncle Tomiwa.’ Relief flooded my heart at her words and nodded at her as she dipped in courtesy at BJ and walked back to her duties. I excused her for the day and asked her not to feel obligated to keep it from her mother. I didn’t want to feel any more like a criminal than I already did.
About an hour later after I freshened up and BJ was ready to leave, I still couldn’t get my thoughtless actions out of my head. I felt like the lowliest of earth’s scum. I glanced at BJ as I walked him to his car and noticed his sullen expression.
‘Guy, I already apologized now. I know what I did was sick and I know I really need to get my act together, since each passing day; I keep doing worse things under the influence. You don’t have to look like a disappointed parent.’
‘It’s not that!’ BJ retorted.
‘Then what?!’ I threw my hands out in curiosity.
‘I can’t believe you let her call you Tomiwa and you won’t permit me!’ I glanced at BJ as I burst into laughter.
‘Guy, you no well, I swear!’ I don’t know if he was serious or whether it was just to lighten the mood, but whatever the reason, I felt a teeny bit better.
After BJ left, I found myself going back to what happened earlier. I ran a palm down my face and stared unseeing at the mute TV.
What was going on with my life? One day, I was beating up my friend and the next I was almost molesting a seventeen-year-old. What if I had drunk alone last night and had mixed up those dangerous booze I’d been mixing lately?
Two things could have happened and I might have ended up doing what I would regret for the rest of my life, not to talk of scarring and hurting a poor girl who’d trusted and loved me like an uncle and who I doted on in return.
One, I wouldn’t have snapped out of my drunken hallucination so easily and might have gone farther than simply touching the girl. Especially when I finally discovered it was not BJ but an actual woman.
Two, BJ wouldn’t have been around to rescue the girl and me from my drunken foolishness.
I felt as though the universe had conspired against me to prove that I was indeed my father’s son – a terrible man, who did the worst things in a drunken rage.
I shook my head, wanting to ward off that thought. I was nothing like that old slime and would never be! Even if it killed me, I was never going to become a miniature Otunba!
But if that’s the case, how come you’re showing just the same violent and careless traits despite how hard you try?
As that taunting thought sifted through my mind, my hands fisted and I wanted so hard to punch something!
Just look at that! Thinking with your fist yet again! How come you keep fighting against the truth?!
‘Shut the hell up!’ I shouted hoping to silence the provocative voice and kicked at a chair, as I shot up from the one on which I was seating! The taunting voice laughed at my outburst and excused itself.
I grabbed my car keys. I needed a drive to clear my head and probably find some inspiration in the streets of Lagos for my ongoing book. I’d been away from it too long and I had a looming deadline. I’d been off my game too long. It was time to get back to my work, get back to my book and get my life back together!
Enough of this nonsense!
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I glanced at my silenced phone at around 4pm when I happily dropped the final fullstop on a fulfilling chapter of my book, only to find about thirty missed calls from both Otunba and his sidekick. What on earth?! The man had been calling me almost nonstop since yesterday! Couldn’t he take a hint?
I also found about five missed calls from BJ. What was wrong with everyone anyway? Couldn’t a guy take some time off from the real world? Just as I was about to return BJ’s call, he called again. I picked it promptly ready to tease his persistence.
‘Hello, guy!’ I greeted.
‘You bastard! You had the effrontery to ignore my calls. Twenty! Who on earth do you think you are?!’ It certainly wasn’t BJ’s voice. I shot off the study chair as my mind started racing in several directions.
All thoughts of my book and the feeling of fulfillment gone, I wondered worriedly even as I rushed out of the house towards my car why and how on earth Otunba had BJ’s phone!
Ghen-ghen! This time around, na wahala wear crazy jeans! What is Otunba playing at? Just what is he doing with BJ’s phone? Is BJ safe? And how far will this Otunba character go to get what he wants?
Besides, how on earth is Skinny going to fix his deteriorating character? Looks like the apple might not be as far from the tree as he thought, or what do you think? Let me know your opinion in the comment box below.
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The Girl with the Winning Smile,