When the woman was done dancing, she sat down all smiles and the Oba (king) who was so impressed by his son’s readiness to settle down after years of begging him to get married and give them grand children.
“My son,” the oba called Kehinde smiling, then continued.
“I’m very happy that at last, you have finally found the woman after your heart who will also build the empire with you” he said and his shouted,
“Yes ooo. Oluwa ese oo” she exclaimed excitedly and her husband smiled before turning towards Kehinde again.
“Oma oba,” the oba called Kehinde who answered him warmly,holding his palms together as if he was struggling over something.
” You know you are my only son and also the heir apparent to the throne and you can’t afford to marry a woman who will bring problems and reproaches into your life and the kingdom at large,” the oba said and breathed down, then continued.
“Who is this lady that has won my son’s heart ? I mean where is she from and what information have you been able to gather about her lineage?” He asked looking very serious as he observed his son looking down and fidgeting. Kehinde that he knew was a fearless and a stubborn son except for the intervention of God who arrested him and he became cool headed. He suddenly began to suspect that something was wrong as he and his wife exchanged glances. Kehinde suddenly looked up at them with a determined face and said,
“Ba mi , maami ” he called his parents in his Yoruba tongue, looked down and then felt obliged to make his parents proud. He made up his mind to mention Toyosi’s name to them, though he knew he was not yet intimate with her relationship wise but he was very sure that she was crushing on him and would accept his marriage proposal without a second thought. His parents would be proud to hear that he was marrying a barrister from a well to do family and would also love her when they meet her because she was a beauty to behold. Though he liked her for her smartness and visionary spirit, he didn’t have much attraction for her like he does for Sade. Secondly, he knew everything about Sade more than Toyosi who have been doing everything possible to please him. Though Toyosi told him she was not in any relationship, he had his doubts about her still and couldn’t go beyond normal friendship even when she was trying everything possible to initiate a romantic relationship between them.
” Her name is Sade…” He opened his mouth and mentioned Sade’s name before realizing that it wasn’t her name he wanted to mention. His heart began to beat faster signalling trouble but deep within his heart, he had peace beyond description.
“She is from a small village called Igomu (not real name), in Ondo” he said and breathed down heavily as he watched his parent’s eyes fixed at him.
“She is not really from a wealthy family but her lineage has a good record..” He explained and watched his father nodded his head in response. He gathered boldness from within and released the very words that have been troubling his mind.
” But, She… She’s a single mother” he said and fixed his eyes on them to face the outcome.
“Sorry?” The oba said trying to understand what their son was talking about and his mother gave a disapproving scream.
“I mean she already has a child but it was a…” He was trying to explain but they both hushed him.
“Stop!!!” They both shouted in unison as if they planned it.
“Ah! Is this how you want to pay us back ? By bringing a leftover food into this honourable home? Kehinde do you even realize you are a royal seed?..” His mother began to quarrel, raising her voice then turned to face her husband who was not talking.
“Are you not going to say anything? Will you keep quiet and watch Kehinde bring in a loosed woman who will bring this family and the entire kingdom shame? She asked the oba in anger and but he was lost in thoughts and couldn’t answer her a word.
” Mammi, she wasn’t a loosed woman and she is not… ” Kehinde spoke up in defence but the his mother won’t allow him to speak further.
“Short your dirty mouth! Foolish boy!” His mother fired at him to his surprise because his mother has never spoke so harshly to him, not even when he was living a rough life.
“Listen, I will never be a part of that union. If you can’t find a virtuous woman to marry, tell me and I will find one for you from this kingdom. But if you insist on marrying that Sade of a woman, count me and your father out!” She said in finality and walked out leaving the Kehinde and his silent father.
“Baba mi, please try and understand me. This is the only woman after my heart, besides, she didn’t wasn’t a loosed woman that jumped from bed to bed, it was…” Kehinde drew closer to his father thinking he could get through with him but he didn’t want to hear him out.
“I’m so disappointed at you. This discussion is over, when you are ready to marry someone reasonable, come back. You may leave my presence.” His father said in dismissal and looked away.
Kehinde drove back to the city with sadness of heart and kept rejecting Toyosi’s calls all through that day. Toyosi became restless and thought that he probably was in danger but didn’t know how else to reach him because Kehinde refused to disclose his house address to her. She called few people whom she felt could know his place, but they couldn’t help her with the house address.
Kehinde did not want to make his intention openly known to Sade until he settle with his parents and get their approval before proposing marriage to her. His heart was troubled over his parent’s reaction, though he expected them to react,but not to the extent that his father who always long for his presence would ask him to leave his presence. He needed to speak with someone in order to relieve himself and possibly forget what happened between him and his parents and Sade came to mind. He dialled Sade’s number and expected it to be switched off because the last time he visited her, she complained that her phone had gone bad and he promised to get her a new phone in his next visit. His heart skipped as the thought of Olori Ade buying Sade a new phone flashed his mind and he prayed under his breath that she should pick her calls so he could confirm it.
“Hello brother Kehinde” Sade was heard at the other end.
“Hello sister Sade, how are you?” He said calmly and suddenly found himself smiling at the sound of her voice.
“Am fine sir, how are you doing?” She asked, and her little daughter Toyin came running from behind, shouting,
“Bother Kehinde! Bother Kehinde!” Toyin kept calling as she ran towards her mother to speak with him. Kehinde bursted into laughter on hearing Toyin shouting his name and asked Sade to give her the phone, but before she could do that, Toyin had grabbed the phone from her mother and had started talking ceaselessly to him without minding whether he was listening or not. Kehinde kept laughing as little Toyin kept giving him account of things he didn’t ask her.
“Olori bought new phone for iya mi o” Toyin informed Kehinde excitedly and Sade grabbed the phone from her and gave her a hard knock on the head. She fearfully placed the phone close to her left ear but Kehinde was silent.
“Hel..lo ,hello” she stammered over the phone but Kehinde refused to respond…
To be continued