Hello dearies. It’s been a while y’all, and I missed you guys as much as you did me. I’m back again with another explosive episode. If you’re new to this page, welcome to my exciting world of words. You can start reading the story from here. If you’re an old fan too, hi there my friend🤗. In case you missed the last episode, oya go and read now—Episode 3.
Also, I dedicate today’s episode to my very stubborn friend, Kari’brain. Happy birthday little guy and cheers to more amazing years ahead😋.
Wishing you all an exciting read as always.
On Saturday, the 18th of May 2019, I get to the address given me by Mrs Sue at a quarter past five. Their house is located at Gyinyase. Although, the place is closer to Kotei, I have a hard time finding it; I’ve never really been to that side of town. Mrs Sue saves me the trouble of clueless wandering by meeting me at the junction where I’d alight and takes me to their home.
Their house is a magnificent two-storey mansion, greenly-painted on the outside, with two heavy black metal gates hugging each other at the entrance. The gates give way even before Mrs Sue could honk her car’s horn, a sleek white Mercedes, as if they’d somehow magically detected her arrival. A well-mannered security—a not so young lad, clad in blue uniform and black khaki trousers—greets us with a courteous salute and a funny grin that seems to spread endlessly across his face. It’s easy to tell he loves his job, or better still, his ‘madam’ as he addresses Mrs Sue. Their compound is capacious and brimming with brightly-coloured petals from countless varieties of flowers and trees, from purple hibiscuses, to thorny intertwined bougainvilleas, to sweet-scented lilies, and so many others. The sight simply exudes warmth and serenity, a lovely environment for any good home.
The heavily-built, pot-bellied, unapologetically thick figure propped up on the sofa upon our entry into the living room could be none other than Will’s father. The large flat screen TV hanging firmly on the creamy wall is tuned to Joy News Channel. I couldn’t get enough time to survey my new environment, but I notice that the interior of the house holds much elegance than its exterior. I remember thinking quietly to myself, that whoever decorated it surely did a good job. I go over and greet Will’s father; his response, an extension of his wide palms to shake my hand. Boy, must I say I have never felt so small in the presence of anybody else? I spend the next second wondering exactly what was so attractive about this small-eyed, thick-mouthed, double-chinned man that Mrs Sue couldn’t resist and instantly, I’m rebuked my own conscience with a follow-up question, ‘Do people fall in love only for looks?’. Mr Gyamfi thanks me for everything I’d done for his family ever since ‘Will’ happened.
‘My wife updates me all the time. I’ve heard so much about you Fafa. Glad to finally meet you,’ his smile warm and his eyes teasing, it made me miss my father in that split second.
I return his smile and say, ‘It was no trouble at all’.
Mrs Sue emerges from what I’d suppose to be the kitchen, carrying a tray of bottled water and a sparkling glass cup. I do not refuse, although I’m not thirsty at all. Amusingly, it kind of takes me back to the first time she came knocking on my door, looking torn apart by grief and uncertainty, and I smile silently. With my eyes darting from one corner to the other, Mrs Sue catches on and says before I even ask, ‘He has been in his room for the most part since his discharge. His only friend we know, David, came by and he wouldn’t even come out to see him off,’ she says with an air of exhaustion.
She gestures me to follow her which I do, climbing a winding staircase to an upstairs floor and to our right, is Will’s room. Mrs Sue apparently knocks and waits for his response before entering,—a formality I find acceptable, as opposed to my mom’s, who just barges in on me all the time, with less regard to my numerous protests about privacy. I follow closely behind her. He does little to hide the indifference on his face when we make eye contact—it is evident in the way his brows raise a little upon seeing me that clearly he wasn’t expecting me, but he doesn’t seem to care either. He exchanged questionable looks with his mom till she had no choice but to look apologetic.
‘I’ll leave you guys to talk then. I’ll bring some juice from the kitchen.’
Mrs Sue exits leaving a petrified me standing all alone in her son’s room, who needn’t try so hard in order to make me feel like the unwanted guest that I am. I remain standing awkwardly, my hands moving to and fro, finding no place of rest, till I finally decide it’s best to lean them against the wall behind my back. His nonchalance to my presence feels a bit insulting, I can literally feel my wounded pride with each lump in my throat and the uncomfortable tightening of my stomach. Why should I care if you’re just going to be this rude?—I fight the urge to blurt that out to his face.
‘Hi Will,’ I say instead.
He doesn’t even speak. He just nods, as if saying, ‘I could care less about who you are. So what if I remember?’
It is then that he motions for me to sit on a small armchair in the room. I dart my eyes from one corner to the other in my attempt to avoid his cold gaze, my restless eyes skirting the room and realizing the place is squeaky clean. Everything is carefully in place, clearly untouched since his return. Meanwhile, the awkward silence blooming between us is nerve-racking. I decide to save the situation; it is evident he isn’t going to be the one to initiate the conversation. I only realized then too, how hard it is actually going to be to have him open up to me, unlike I drunkenly did months ago. But as a person who never gives up without a fight, I persist regardless of how futile my efforts may turn out.
‘I’m glad you’re doing better now. I came by a couple of times at the hospital, and you were always asleep.’
He nods again and smirks—it is very swift but I see it.
And almost like a mutter, he says, ‘My mom told me. Thanks.’
I don’t know what else to say than to give a weird flat grin. His coldness is sucking the strength out of me. Mrs Sue brings our juices right on time, thankfully though, before I make any utterances I’d later regret. I know she senses much isn’t happening between us from my pleading looks of ‘Can you please help me get out of here?’ when she entered the room. She just gives me a ‘try harder’ smile, that does little to calm my nerves, places the drinks down, and leaves right afterwards with the excuse of going to prepare dinner. Honestly, this lack of interest emanating from Will is repulsive but for some reason, I know better than to lose my cool around someone who had just survived suicide. On any other occasion and any other day, he would have tasted my wrath.
‘Listen Will, I know you’ve been through a lot lately and you don’t feel like opening up to anybody, especially not some stranger you’ve been avoiding. But I’m only here because I genuinely care and well of course, you mentioned me in your note. I don’t know if you recall our conversation from three months ago but you did save me on that day. I used to think afterwards that you were some guardian angel sent to help me. I was equally astounded when our paths crossed again. You don’t have to say anything to me now if you don’t want to. But just know that I’ll always be available to listen whenever you’re ready; just like you did for me when I needed it the most. Thank you for that night. I’m grateful it was you I met. I’d like to take my leave then.’
With that said, I exit the room. The rush of air that escape my lungs and lips right after I shut the door is exhilarating. I only realize then, how much I was suffocating in there.
I stand there for a while, mumbling to myself, ‘Ha! Finally. You can breathe, Fafa.’
For a moment I’m sad, then angry. This is so not how I imagined our meeting would go. I stumble into Mrs Sue, who is just making her way up to call us for dinner, on my way down.
‘Don’t tell me you’re leaving already Fafa dear. Dinner is ready. Please have dinner with us,’ her lips utter the words, while her eyes do the pleading on behalf of her apathetic son.
For some strange reason, it’s always difficult for me to turn down Mrs Sue’s requests. There’s something deeply sincere and pleasantly earnest about them. The odd feeling that made me accept her into my house as a stranger is different from the one that causes me to say yes to dinner this time. I head downstairs while she continues upstairs to call Will. Minutes later she descends the stairs with no sign of him. I plant myself on the seat beside Mr Gyamfi, while Mrs Sue sits directly across the table from her husband.
Right after we are done sharing grace, led by Will’s father, I spot Will descending the stairs, his glide all too relaxed, having the grace of a king. His next step taking him forever to make after each previous one. It is now that I get a chance to have a good look at him—his undeniably attractive masculine figure, his noticeable heavyset arms that looks like they can swoop any woman off her feet, his enviable lush brows complemented by his distinct, long eyelashes, twirling up in curls just above his dreamy eyes. One thing is for sure, he inherited without doubt, his mother’s dark chocolate skin colour and shiny black hair. Inasmuch as his demeanor isn’t so attractive right now, anyone would agree that on any other day, he would be a sight to relish. It does not register with me, that I’ve been staring for far too long, till those cold apathetic eyes find their way to settle on mine and send chills down my spine. I just wanted to crawl under the table and disappear.
He takes his seat beside his mom right to my opposite. Even after I turn bright red with a sheepish grin plastered on my face, like a little girl caught doing something she shouldn’t be doing, those eyes never betrayed a single flicker of emotion. I divert my attention to the sweet-smelling jollof rice being served on my plate, finding much love and warmth in there than the glum figure seated right before me.
The silence at dinner is visibly painful to endure. While Mrs Sue is doing her best to brighten up the mood by throwing around random comments, both father and son are pretty determined to avoid any conversations with each other. I must admit it’s the worst family dinner I’ve ever witnessed. All through dinner, I’m stealing glances at Will and he never says a word except for the one time, he looks up with the same steely cold eyes, and says, ‘Pass me the salt. Please.’
As I leave the house that evening, I make a subtle vow never to come again. A promise I know, long before I’d make it, that I wouldn’t be able to follow through with it—because of Mrs Sue.
Welcome to the end of today’s episode. Yay. Glad you made it. Don’t forget to drop that thoughtful comment for your girl. For those of you already imagining a love story between Fafa and Will, I must say your imagination is impressive. Who knows? —Anything is possible.😉 Keep your fingers crossed for the next episode.
For now a girl needs to find a life. Byeee. Till next time.