Boat sat facing Naana in her living-room. He had stopped by to see Esenam as promised. Naana told him Esenam was sleeping. He did not want to wake her up and decided to wait for her. He asked Naana how Esenam had been that day. Naana told him Esenam had kept to herself most of the time, always giving very short answers to Naana’s questions, a clear indication that she was not ready to talk. She added that when she got home from work Esenam had cooked, but she could not tell if she ate.
“Naana, thank you for the big sacrifice you are making for Esenam. I’m very grateful and would never forget your good deed. However, I hope you know how delicate her situation is. If any action or inaction on our part make her feel unwanted, it might lead to disaster. She needs all the support and love we can give. We should put aside our differences and help her. We are all that she has now and I don’t want what happened in my house to ever happen again. I have forgiven you for that but can you tell me why you said those terrible things to her?” Boat reiterated.
“I thought we already talked about this. You don’t have to worry about anything. Elder Asare had a lengthy discussion with me yesterday. I know I have a few things I need to work on. I promise you nothing bad would happen to Esenam. I will make sure of that.” Naana said unconvincingly. She still loved Boat very much.
“Thanks, Naana, you would always be dear to me.” Boat added. Esenam walked into the living-room with a magazine in hand. Boat got up and greeted her warmly with a hug. Boat explained that he was keeping his promise of checking on her every day. Esenam told him she was well but a bit bored so she thought of taking a walk down the street if that would not be a problem. Boat thought it was a good idea and decided to go with her.
“Naana, are you coming?” Boat asked so Naana would not feel left out.
“No. Today was very hectic at the office. I would like to put my feet up a bit. You guys should go and enjoy the fresh air. I’m sure it would bring some colour on Esenam’s cheeks.” Once they were alone Esenam enquired about Boat’s day at the office and he narrated what he did from the time he got in to the time he got out. He told it so well Esenam was impressed. Esenam on the other hand did not have much to say. She had been home the whole day doing practically nothing.
“So, is Naana treating you well?” Boat asked, rather unexpectedly.
“Yes, she is trying although it still hurts when I remember the things she said to me at your place. I believed she hated me. I wish I knew why she thought so evil of me.”
“Don’t worry about that. I guess she was just jealous of the attention you were getting from us. I have a rough idea of what might have been bothering her but don’t let us talk about that.”
“I think she loves you,” Esenam retorted. Boat laughed but said nothing. He had seen some indications like that but he was not going to discuss that with Esenam. It could ruin everything with her.
“Don’t fill your head with speculations. Naana wouldn’t look at a guy like me twice.”
“Why not?” Esenam asked baffled.
“Women have their tastes and stuff like that, right? I don’t fall into her suitors’ club. But that is not really important. I don’t see her as the one for me either.”
“Really? How would you know when you meet that special someone?”
“The heart is our compass in those circumstances. I will let it decide.” Boat replied with a smile. “But enough about me, I want to know how you feel about being away from home.”
“It not easy. It has crossed my mind several times; especially after the incident at your house, to just let it all go and go back home. I miss them so much, especially Yayra. The poor girl could be suffering a lot because of me.”
“Yes I know it’s tearing you apart but you can’t give up now. Do you know the implications if you go back home?”
“I do and that is the only reason I am still here. I don’t want to stop serving God the way He wants me to. When I go back home then I have to give up my service to God. I may be able to get to my Dad on Akwasi by radical means but it’s this passion I have for serving God that is keeping me here.”
“Do you still love him? I mean Akwasi.” Esenam pondered over the question for a while. In the past she could boldly stick out her neck and say she was in love with Akwasi. She used to get butterflies in her tummy when she saw him and he took her hand. Esenam now found him repulsive. Every time he tried to touch her something crawled under her skin. It wasn’t pleasant. It was like her heart had gone numb overnight for Akwasi. Did she ever love him like she believed? Could there be love where her only feeling toward him was one of abject misery?
“It’s okay if you don’t want to talk about it.” Boat said, disappointed.
“Honestly, I don’t know. At one point in my life he was my Prince Charming and the next minute I don’t want to see him again. I don’t feel anything when I think of him. Granted, I was very hurt by his actions but there is much more to what I’m feeling towards him now. I don’t know how to explain it to you.”
“Would you want to talk about it? Whatever he did?” Boat pushed for answers.
“No, I’d rather not get into that. I don’t want to bore you to death.” Boat was disappointed but he knew he had stretched his limit. He wanted to be sure whatever was between Esenam and Akwasi was indeed history. That would give him the impetus to do his utmost to win her over.
They walked in silence until they got to the end of the road and had to head back. Boat briefed Esenam on how the Church started and how he got involved. He talked about the many tribulations they endured just to keep their faith. They got to Naana’s place in no time and stood outside for a while.
Boat had not had enough of her just yet. Every time he was with her, he felt complete. He always found it hard to part from her company. It was an unspoken fact that he really enjoy being with her.
“I guess this is it. The visit for today ends here. I enjoyed every minute of it.” Boat stated.
“Yea, I enjoyed it too. I share the popular sentiments that time flies when you are in good company. Thank you so much for your time.” Esenam replied.
“Esenam, have you thought about what I said the other day? I really want to take you out to try and see if I can bring the beautiful smile back on your face. I want to help ease your pain. Would you give me that pleasure?” he implored.
“I’d love to go out with you but we shouldn’t forget how Naana would feel about it. She gets all worked up about things concerning you. I don’t want to upset her.”
“To ease your conscience, I’ll ask her to come with us. Besides I am taking you out as a friend. So, what do you say, do you want us to do it or not?”
“We can. Just promise me it would not widen the tensions between Naana and I,” she joked with him.
“It’s a deal then. Just tell me when and I’ll come running.”
“Since I have only this weekend before school reopens, I think Saturday will be prudent.” Boat smiled at the thought of a date with Esenam. He was going to make her happy. He would work tirelessly at getting her to wear his ring and be the mother of his children. Boat left that night with a song on his heart: As he walked on waiting for a cab, he whistled Michael Bolton’s “Now that I’ve found you”. He was so happy Esenam agreed to go out with him he walked half the way home.