The Man, The Shadow: Diary of a Lost Soul Part 2
The morning sun was beaming through the window pane as I jumped out of bed. I noticed that my shorts were on as I grabbed my T-shirt from the chair it was rested on.
I turned to my left and made eye contact as I whispered to her
“When did you come here?”
She whispered back
“You came in here last night. Buzzed”
I had fallen victim again to my own body. Fuck!
I slid my slippers on and whispered as I gestured
“did we fuck last night?”
And we both smiled simultaneously.
I whispered again with a wry smile.
She beamed as she said
“Only for you papa”
As I took a few steps towards the door, I heard a knock
The person from the other side called. It was my aunt.
I waved Monsurat to sit on the bed but away from sight. As I opened the door, I stepped out and into the hallway.
“Meji, have you seen Monsurat? We can’t find her anywhere”
I placed my right hand on my head and scratched it. I finally said
“Ooh! I sent her to the market. I need some black soap”
My aunt looked confused. She then said
“Why didn’t you ask me, I have some”
I shrugged and said
“Oh sorry aunty, I didn’t know.
She should be back soon”
As I turned around to head back into the room, I caught the look of Jolade from the corner of my eye. It was filled with judgment.
She knew. But she was never going to say a word.
I reentered the room and said
“She is gone but how did you end up in here.”
She smiled and slowly walked to me. She planted a kiss on my cheek and whispered
“You should be thanking me for not being loud last night”
I slid my hand down her back and squeezed her bum while I said
“You were loud the last time though”
She smiled and said
“Only because you were trying to prove a point…. I’m going to wait a few minutes before I head out. This one that your aunt is looking for me”
I left the room and heard the door lock behind me. I remember chuckling to myself as I walked out into the yard.
I was quickly met with my uncles and aunts seated in a circle gisting and catching up. Preparations for the traditional part of the wedding were under for later that afternoon.
The cow was been slaughtered. Goat meat being cooked under firewood stoked pots beneath the mango tree.
It was truly amazing to see the family all coming together. When you looked at the entire family from a birds eye view, we truly looked like we had it all together.
Working professionals, creatives, entrepreneurs and folks on the verge of fulfilling their potential; my family was beautiful but broken and I just prayed we would get through the entire weekend without any issues.
Someone called my name and I turned around. It was Chukwuka, my best friend from high school, in town for the wedding.
I shook his hand and said
“Long time no see”
He smiled back and said
“No be you dey run from me?”
If you have ever been in a part of a traditional Nigerian wedding, you can tell that time is a concept that is is lost to Yoruba people. Well Nigerians as a whole if I am being honest.
It was one thing after the other, there was one point when they had all the single men in their entire family, come and beg for Jola’s hand in marriage.
A beautiful experience without a doubt but just looooong.
As I sat next to Sola, I began to scan the room.
My mind started to wander.
I was reevaluating what had happened to us. Don’t get me wrong, every family has their own drama but I always felt like that at every turn, we were only a few wrong words from an explosion.
My life mirrored that of my family; put together on the outside but very broken on the inside.
Uncles and aunts that didn’t talk, cousins that would never see eye to eye and just an all round tension that floated around the family.
I noticed Monsurat walk by, I loved her but she was in love with me.
She had been for years. The circumstances that made it so were cleared at play during the ceremony.
I wanted her to leave and come to Lagos but the loyalty she showed towards my grandmother was commendable.
It actually made her more attractive.
There were times when I would come into town and stay at a hotel, she would come over and spend time with me.
I get what you are thinking. That I am the entitled child from wealth that is taking advantage of the help.
In actual fact, it’s been the other way around. Well not exactly.
Monsurat is beautiful, one of those that you will adore the first time and her looks just captivate you.
She has such a warm smile with that darker chocolate skin tone that suggests that she might be from the northern parts of Nigeria.
All in all, she is beautiful and smart and for the last two years, I have trying to make the relationship official.
I wanted to shout it out to the whole world but she asked me not.
She invited me to see the world in her shoes and how she will be viewed as “the help that got the child to fall in love” or as a gold digger.
I totally understand how she felt and knowing how judgmental my family can be, I am glad we never said anything.
I was tired of living in the shadows.
My depression and anxiety were two of the things I battled with but I was never able to share with my family.
I also temporarily battled with sexually acting out.
From one dangerous act to the other, I kept pushing the envelope because I wanted to feel something, even if it was pain.
But some of the people that contributed heavily towards my present state, were people that I had been promised that they would love me. Because we were family.
I was getting bored and actually annoyed that they were wasting time, so I got up and headed into the house to top off my Jack and Coke.
As I headed back outside, I realized that the ladies were in the living room helping Jolade fix her gele which is a traditional head-tie.
I peeked into the room and said
“Heyyyy, I just wanted to come and say congratulations before all the second round stuff starts”
Jolade smiled at me said
“Meji, thank you so much”
she reached up and planted a kiss on my cheek.
I smiled at the other ladies in the room and turned around to leave. As I exited the room, I noticed Sola walking towards the room.
“What were you doing in there?”
He rudely asked.
I smirked and said
“None of your damn business”
As I tried to walk past him, he pushed me in my chest and said
“Who the hell are you talking to?”
I stepped back and looked him square in the face.
“Juwon, if you know you want to fucking get killed today, touch me one more time”
He stepped up to me and tried to push me, at this point, the ladies helping Jolade with her makeup and outfit, ran into the hallway and got in between us.
“Juwon, what the fuck is your problem ,huh?
Why do you fucking have a problem with me? Is everything okay with you?”
He reached around some of the women and poked me again and said
“You are my fucking problem, you damn snake”
I was livid and boiling inside as I yelled back
“You called me a snake?
From you???!!! Are you fucking kidding me??”
He gestured at me as he continued to be held back.
I blurted out and said
“You definitely don’t want to go there with me here because if I start talking here…”
“You don’t have shit to say like always! Always making shit up, stop fucking lie”
He yelled back to me.
I kid you not, my chest must have jumped out of my heart. Yes, you read that correctly.
I wanted to jump over all those people holding me back and rip his throat out.
As I tried to push them off saying
“E fi mi le”
“Leave me alone”
His mother, my aunt, my mother and some other family members had now filled up the room.
“Aunty, tell your son to stop trying to start problems wherever he goes. We are tired of it”
My mom frowned and said
“What do you mean? What did he do?”
He shouted back.
His mother jumped in and said to him
“You will speak to your aunt with respect. Now what is wrong with both of you?!
This is Jola’s special day and you are both doing your best to ruin it. What is going on?”
I relaxed a bit and said
“There won’t be any problems if Juwon just stays in his lane and leaves me alone”
He got riled up again and said
“And if I don’t leave you alone? What will you do? Cry like a little pussy that you are. You are weak and thats why you are fucking alone. Your life is sorry and no one is able to tell you!”
I won’t lie, upon reflection, those words cut deep because there was some truth to it, I didn’t realize what was like a defense mechanism when I blurted out
“At least it is better than brother and sister fucking each other!”
Everyone gasped and the entire room went silent. All eyes turned to a fully clad Jola and then to Juwon and then back to me.
A few awkward moments and suddenly Jola ran out of the room and into the living room. There was another door that led to the front of the house and I think she left through there.
Some tried to follow her and Juwon again tried to launch at me before people grabbed him. My aunt, teary eyed, walked towards me and said
“You just wanted to tear my family apart?”
I replied without a flinch and without any remorse,
“They broke me first”
Thank you for READING. PLEASE COMMENT and answer the poll below. 3 lucky readers will get a first look on Part 3.
It’s Part 2 of The Man, The Shadow: Diary of a Lost Soul by The Wordsmith @adewus4real
PART 3 drops next Saturday!
Thank you for reading and commenting. You are highly appreciated.
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