The door flew open. Elorm stopped dead in his tracks. He could not believe his eyes. He had come to tell Esenam it was time and was very pleasantly surprised.
“Dad?” Mr. Fiagbe went over to hug him. He apologized for hitting him earlier and asked for his forgiveness. Elorm felt very proud of his Dad. He knew the old man had made the right decision and he also knew his Mom was going to be very proud of her husband too, and he knew it must have been the most herculean decision his father ever made. They walked out of the room. Reggie, Boat’s friend and best man, was at the main entrance with the beautifully-decorated car waiting to pick Esenam to the Church. The Church was filled to capacity. Boat sat in the front seat all tensed up. He looked back occasionally to see if his Esenam was coming. He prayed that nothing bad happens that day. He just wanted to marry Esenam, after that nothing mattered anymore. All he needed was her in his life. After what seemed like an eternity the horn of the car carrying Esenam become audible. The whole crowd murmured and stretched their necks ready to catch a glimpse of the bride. Mrs. Fiagbe looked back to see if they had arrived, but they were not yet visible. Elder Asare called for order for the commencement of the ceremony. The procession began right after that. Yayra, carrying a bouquet of flowers, walked to the front row and took her special place. Betty, Boat’s sister, also carrying a bouquet of flowers walked to the front row and took her place. Naana carrying a bouquet of flowers and a tiny handbag followed. Then, the bride on her proud father’s arm walked gracefully through the crowd. There was a sudden hum all around as the crowd murmured appreciatively as she passed.
Esenam’s Mom looked back and saw her smiling daughter on her smiling father’s arm. Tears of joy formed in her eyes. She was deeply touched to see her husband with the first fruit of their love.
Boat was on his feet and had turned in the direction Esenam was coming from. He smiled with sheer pride as he watched his beautiful Esenam walk to him. He was surprised to see Mr. Fiagbe representing and thanked God for the miracle. His love for Esenam was simply beyond measure. He loved her with his very soul.
Esenam and her Dad were now at Boat’s side. Mr. Fiagbe hugged Boat and told him to take good care of his first daughter and girlfriend. Mr. Fiagbe walked to his wife and sat beside her. He whispered in her ear and she smiled. He took her hand into his and kissed it gently.
Elder Asare asked Boat to take off the veil and confirm that she was the woman he intended to marry. Boat took off the veil slowly and confirmed it was Esenam, his endless love. The congregation sang and then a prayer was offered to begin the ceremony.
“Can you two face each other and answer these questions.” Elder Asare directed.
“Do you, Nana Yaw Boateng, take this woman, Hope Esenam Fiagbe, to be your lawfully wedded wife, to love and to respect for as long as you both shall live?”
“I do.” Boat answered looking straight into Esenam’s eyes with a smile on his face.
“Do you, Hope Esenam Fiagbe, take Nana Yaw Boateng, to be your lawfully wedded husband, to love, respect and obey for as long as you both shall live?”
“I do.” Esenam answered looking straight into Boat’s eyes with a smile on her face, and with love dancing in her eyes.
“Let hear your vows. Boat you go first. Then Esenam will follow.” Boat took Esenam’s hand in his and whispered her name sweetly.
“I, Nana Yaw Boateng, affirm my love to you, Hope Esenam Fiagbe before God and all present as we start our life together as man and wife. You are and will always be the most beautiful, smart and gorgeous woman I will ever know. I promise always to respect and love you unconditionally. With kindness, unselfishness and trust, I will work with you to create a wonderful life together. I take you to be my lawfully-wedded wife, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health forever and ever. I Love you Esenam, always have, always will!’
The crowd cheered as he kissed her hands when he finished his vow. Esenam was so touched she could barely speak. Her heart was full with gladness. She smiled at him. She looked straight in his eyes and said her vows.
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“I, Hope Esenam Fiagbe, affirm my love to you, Nana Yaw Boateng before God and all present as we start our life together as man and wife. You are and will always be the most handsome, smart and kindest man I will ever know. I promise always to respect and love you unconditionally. With kindness, unselfishness and trust, I will work by your side to create a wonderful life together. I take you to be my lawfully-wedded husband, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better or for worse, for richer or for poorer, in sickness and in health forever and ever. I Love You, Nana Yaw! Always have, Always will!”
The crowd cheered louder. Boat and Esenam exchanged rings and Boat finally got to his favourite part, the part he had been craving for: he kissed Esenam in front of God, family and friends to solidify their journey together as man and wife.
Mr. Fiagbe seized the opportunity when he was asked to give a few words of advice to the couple and appealed to his wife to come back home. He apologized to his wife, Esenam Yayra and Elorm for his actions. They all walked to him on stage and hugged him. That night as Esenam and Boat ate in the private suite of one of the luxurious Beach Resorts in Ghana, she was glad things had worked out just fine for her. She was most grateful to God that her family was back together again. She walked over to Boat and sat on his laps. She thanked him for everything he had done and she promised him he would be the only man for her as long as they lived. She kissed him passionately and asked him what he would say about making love to his wife for the first time. Boat swept her in his arms and kissed her while he carried her to their room.
Story By Eunice Ansah Agyeman