About this writer
Best Laid Plans
Thanks for a lovely evening darling.” Yomi said, as they walked through the door of their home. “It’s been a while since you treated me to dinner and a show at the theatre.”
“It was nothing.” Sade said brightly. “I had a great time too. Would you like a cup of tea before we go to bed?”
“Thanks, honey! I wouldn’t mind one at all.”
“Okay, you go up first. I’ll bring the tea to you.”
Sade smiled to herself as she went to the kitchen to put finishing touches to her plan. A few minutes later, she entered the bedroom with two cups of tea on a tray. Yomi was already in his pajamas and was sitting up on the bed.
She carefully put his cup of tea on his bedside table and set hers on the other side of the bed.
The telephone started ringing downstairs.
“Would you mind getting that?” Yomi asked. “It could be important, at this late hour.”
She came back up a few minutes later.
“Who was it?” Yomi asked.
“I don’t know; the caller blocked their number.”
She saw that he had already finished his own cup of tea. She could feel the excitement running down her spine.
“How was your tea darling?” She asked.
“It was nice. Did you put in some extra sugar or something?”
“Yes I did.”
“Are you trying to kill me?” Yomi asked, smiling.
Sade gasped. Did Yomi know something or was he suspicious?
“What? Why would you say something like that?” Sade asked, raising her eyebrows and trying to keep her hands from trembling.
“Relax my dear wife, I didn’t mean anything. It’s just that you’ve been so nice to me today. It makes a change from your usual grumpy attitude.”
She shook her head.
“Never mind,” he continued. “I’m just pulling your legs. Finish your tea and let’s go to bed.”
“Please don’t joke like that again,” Sade grumbled as she got into bed. Yomi watched as she sipped her tea thoughtfully. Afterwards he switched off the lights and they both slept.
The funeral service was well attended. Sade’s friends and family from far and near packed the church. Everyone thought the grieving widower was holding up very well. But nobody noticed the ironic little smile playing on Yomi’s lips when he spotted Sade’s lover in the crowd …
The bridal march was playing. My chief bridesmaid adjusted my veil and I began my walk down the aisle.
Five years ago, I wasn’t sure I had made the right decision. Tunde and I had reluctantly agreed to put our relationship on hold while he went abroad to study.
I missed him terribly.
At first, there were frequent calls, emails and texts. Then they gradually reduced, until we were arguing over why either of us didn’t keep in touch anymore. He got busier with his studies; I threw myself into my new fashion business.
Six months ago, he came back full of apologies. But I had my own stories to tell.
Now he smiled at me, as I walked into the church, on my way to marry his twin brother.
The two men were seated in the far left corner of the bar. There was just enough light from the centre to make out Mark’s face from the shadows. Two empty beer glasses sat on the table, along with a half-full one for Terry.
Mark was fidgeting with the silver band around his fourth finger. This was the seventh year since he started wearing it.
‘I told you about my test result last week, didn’t I?’
‘No, you didn’t.’ Terry replied picking up his glass. ‘How did it go?’
‘It wasn’t good news.’
‘What did they say?’
‘I was told that I have virtually no sperm at all, the few ones detected were not viable.’
‘Oh man, I’m so sorry.’ Terry gulped and put his glass down. ‘How did Claire react when you told her?’
‘I haven’t told her yet.’
‘I was going to tell her, but…’
‘This morning, Claire told me that she’s pregnant.’
“Honey, I know we’re not rich,” Tunde would say, “but we’re happy. I’m content.”
I would roll my eyes in exasperation and reply. “But you could be earning so much more! Why didn’t you apply for that position?”
We had this argument many times. I constantly pushed him to be more ambitious at work. I wanted him to get the promotions, the bigger salary and all the associated perks. Why did I want to be the wife of a comfortable man, when I could be the wife of a rich man?
“I want to travel abroad, buy nicer clothes and jewelry, and not have to worry about budgeting every single penny…”
“Count your blessings, Chi. Stop trying to compete with your friends. You have your health, food to eat and a roof over your head. And you have me.
You have all that you need.”
“I want more out of life.” I would snap back.
Then one day, I got a call while I was at work. Tunde had been in an ccident. I rushed to the hospital. I waited for hours at his bedside until he regained consciousness.
He smiled weakly at me when he finally opened his eyes.
“Tunde, I’m here. How do you feel?”
“No, no, no! You’re going to be alright – ”
“Listen to me. I won’t be here for much longer, but you’ll be fine. My insurance policy will pay out when I die. You’ll be able to live the rich life of your dreams…”
His voice trailed off.
“I don’t want your insurance money! I want you!” I screamed.
But it was too late.
These stories are the creation of Nigerian writer and author, Tolulope Popoola