“what other five lettered words do you know?”I asked Eniola.
I was helping her with her homework.
“Errrm..M-U-M-M-Y….”she scratched her head.
I laughed”write it down.”
“I don’t know anyone again..”she said looking up.
“What about D-A-D-D-Y, DADDY?”
“I don’t want to write that”she frowned
“I don’t have a daddy”she looked down
“You do have a daddy”I corrected her.
“I don’t, i can’t see him”she squealed.
Just then a customer walked in.
“Please I need a bottle of water”he said.
“Okay, get it from the fridge!”I replied without looking up.
“Good afternoon sir!”I heard Eniola say.
“Hi pretty, what are you doing here?”he replied.
“Mummy, look at the man that nearly hit me that day.”Eniola informed me.
I looked up with a smile, but…
I just froze. The whole place became tensed; I could hardly breathe, what does he want here? How did he know I’m here?
“Teju?”David found his voice.
He dropped the bottle of water he was holding.
“I….errm..Teju…what are you doing here?…I mean..errm…how did you get here?”he looked pleased.
My tongue cleaved to the roof of my mouth. He hasn’t changed a bit..still the good-looking guy that ruined my life. I swallowed hard.
“I…errrm…isshe your daughter?”he persisted.
I felt anger surged through my veins.
“Yes o! She’s my mother”Eniola quipped,
“Shut-up Eniola!”I screamed at her, was suprised at my outburst too.
The startled Eniola walked gently back to her book.
“And you!”I turned to face David.
“You came to buy water abi? Now take your water and walk out.”my voice was rising.
“I’m sorry…I really am..”he moved towards me.
“Sorry? What for?”My voice was suprisingly calm.
“I never meant to hurt you…”
my cruel laughter cut him short.
“I’m sorry Teju, I don’t know why you hate me so…”
A resounding slap stopped the gibberish talk.
“now you know how much I hate you huh? Leave my shop”I told him with my hands akimbo.
I expected him to hold his cheeks or make an expression, but he didn’t seem to care about the slap.
“Teju please, we need to talk..”he tried to take my hands.
“if you touch me ehn? I swear, I go wooza you!”i threatened.
He smiled, turned to Eniola, squatting beside her he said.
“Baby…what’s your name?”his voice was cool.
“Eniola David.”she replied slowly with fear in her voice.
He held her chin softly, he examined her face, his hands patted her eyebrow..he searched her eyes..
“Take your filthy hands off my daughter!”I retorted, pulling Eniola away from him.
“She is mine right? She is my baby huh?”he was wearing a wierd look.
“see thief o…”i clapped my hands.
“you hate me so much, you claim to love my daughter…”he said in a lament.
“she’s not your daughter!”I shrieked.
“she is! Her name is Eniola David..which other David do you know apart from me?”he moved towards me”Isn’t it so clear? She has my face…”
“leave at once!”i cut him short
“I will, but I’d come back tomorrow to pick my child.”he said stressing the word ‘child’
I watched him as he left my shop.
I turned to glance at Eniola, i knew i was in deep mess if he should sue me to court. I don’t think I can survive Eniola’s absence.
“mummy don’t mind him you hear?”Eniola said hugging my waist.
Tears streaked down my cheeks.
Is this my destiny? Do I have to suffer? In what way did i go wrong? Do i deserve all these?
Tomorrow! He said. I needed to act fast. He definitely can’t take my daughter away.
to be continued