Akwaugo: Episode 1 - 70 : TOPSTER STORIES

Akwaugo – Episode 62

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When everyone had gone to bed, auntie Nneoma called me for us to talk. I knew she wanted to convince me against marrying Samuel. I came to her prepared. Before she could start, I said to her.


“Auntie Nneoma, do you remember when I had the sore on my leg? A woman spoke with you and asked that we wash the sore with water in front of the house. I



know you remember because you mentioned it on our way back from the village when we were summoned. She told me the sore will go back to those who sent it. I didn’t take her words seriously then but when It happened, I was shocked beyond words and went back in search of her. She refused to see me but she sent a message to me. Before you say anything, listen to what she said to me when I had the sore and then what she said when I after we came back from the village. Just listen, auntie”


I played the first audio for her to listen to. She listened with keen interest. After listening, she looked at me in wonder. The man she described began to dawn on auntie Nneoma. Importantly, everything she said happened. Then I explained to her how I went back to seek the woman after her in-laws summoned us. She refused to see me but she sent a message back. I played it too. Auntie Nneoma was quiet. She couldn’t say anything. She looked from my phone to me and back. Then I added, “when I got the message, I prayed to God because I was confused. I wasn’t used to vision seers and to be this accurate scared me. I prayed to God for a sign. God gave me the sign just as I had asked. I had to accept him, auntie. I had told me he loved me when we came back from Abuja but I refused him. When this happened, auntie, I told him we can have a relationship and he agreed. He wants to marry me and spend the rest of his life with me. He had always wanted us to travel to Canada together. I never knew it was because he wanted us to be together forever”


“What sign did you ask of God?”


“I told him if Samuel was my husband, let him come to me that day and ask me to be his wife. Auntie, he was waiting for me at my house before I got home. The sign was clear”

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“Do you love him?”


“Very much auntie. I have grown to love and trust him. Didn’t you see the way he was with his mother during the burial? He takes very good care of her; I know he would do the same with me”


“I have no choice but to support you. This one you are travelling to London, maybe you should get pregnant before you travel”



“Auntie, no more premarital sex for me. Everything can wait until we get married. I will come back for my wedding and get pregnant after we have wedded”


“And he agreed. I see both of you stay in a room together and nothing happens? He has tried”


“We have many years to indulge ourselves. Right now, we have to build ourselves”


“You have always had a good head on your shoulder. Nda Mike must be happy where he is right now. You and your brothers are good children. I can see you all are going after people you love just like your parents did. I have accepted and I will shower Samuel with the love he deserves. Don’t make us wait for too long”


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The next day, everyone had agreed with my choice. I stayed in Umuoji for an extra week before I left. Samuel came a day before I was to travel to spend the night so he could drive me to Calabar the next day. He was well received and was treated like an ‘ogo’. He came with food for my mother from his mother. They were packed into several bowls. I was glad a made the right choice. He took care of the little things.


On our way back to Calabar, I could see he was happy. Mother prayed for him and kissed him on his forehead. It touched him. Auntie Nneoma asked him to take good care of me and prayed for him. He flowed well with my siblings and their wives. He smiled as we undertook to journey back to our domain.


We talked about so many things and then he brought up something I had completely forgotten about. “You gave me an envelope to keep for you. I kept it in my apron and completely forgot about it. When I wanted to was my apron, I saw it and brought it out with my wet hand not knowing what it was. There was a letter in there and some dollars. I had to put it in another envelope for you. I will give you when I get home. My mum wants to host you in the house” I couldn’t remember the envelope so I waited until we got to his house.


We arrived at Calabar. I went home first to drop my luggage. Then we went to his place. It was no longer a hidden relationship; everyone knew we were dating. I went home with him to meet his mother. She was very happy to see me. She



praised my siblings and me on a successful burial. She was impressed with the crowd that attended. She prayed for me. I ate with her and her sister while we chatted. Samuel went out and came back. He stayed in his room.


“Your man will quarrel with me for keeping you, please go to him. This one he hasn’t come out of the room, he is expecting you there”


“It can’t be. We just came back together and I haven’t seen you in days now”


“I know him. He won’t say anything to you but he will tell me I am using up the time both of you are meant to be together. I have learnt” I laughed at her comment. I couldn’t believe Samuel will say that.


“Since he brought you home and you sit with me, he terrorizes me that’s why I told you to be visiting when nobody is at home. Then I will have you to myself”


She hushed me to go and meet her son. He was on the bed when I came in. I sat on the bed with him and he gave me the envelope. I opened it. I saw a pack of $100 bills. “Who gave me this money?” I asked aloud. I brought out the note. I opened it and it was from Dubie. Why would he give me $10,000? I read his note.


This is my support to you at your trying time. I miss you very much. I wish we could put the past behind and forge ahead together. Now that one obstacle is gone; others might have to follow. I want you and you alone.




I was surprised. That amount was too much for him to give me. I gave the note to Samuel and he smiled after reading it. I picked my phone to call him.


“What are you doing?” Samuel asked me.


“I want to call him I replied”


“Why? You want him to continue talking about wanting you back?”


“I want to return the money”



“Why? Aren’t you travelling soon? Won’t you need all the money you can get? He has put water in a basket; he is getting no returns. A gift is a gift. If he ever mentions it, thank him for the gift and that’s it. Ediye, there are more important things for us to talk about”


Since I said yes to a relationship, I could see the confidence in Samuel. He didn’t care whom I spoke with or was with. He didn’t bother his head over anything that had to do with me. He trusted me so much and I tried to reciprocate especially with the girl who showed her figure. She still came around. I wasn’t comfortable with her staying with him in the room but he told me he never locks the door and he wasn’t attracted to her. He was almost done with her project.


I went to see mother every time I could get three days off working shifts for others in exchange for days together. When it was weekends, I went with Samuel. I had asked for an extension at my employers in the UK so I could bury my father and mourn a bit. Mother asked me to travel immediately. She said my father wanted it so much, he couldn’t wait until I left. She begged me to travel so nothing will stop it from happening. I understood her fears and I prepared to go. Auntie Nneoma was still with her in the village and she made the home very lively. Mother was beginning to adjust to the reality of my father’s demise. We talked about father often. It didn’t feel like he was gone; it felt more like he underwent a journey and would be back. He wasn’t forgotten. It wasn’t possible to forget someone like him.


I shared Samuel’s opinion about not collecting relocation allowance from my new employers so I could leave for Canada when our papers are eventually out with Amanze and Chiamaka. Amanze was impressed with our plans to travel to Canada although I begged him not to tell the family yet. He agreed but he advised I do the introduction or traditional marriage before leaving. I refused. I wanted to do everything at once. I told him I would come back for the wedding when we were ready. I needed to leave and experience life outside before deciding.


Amanze bought my ticket to and fro. He gave me £2000 to hold. I was surprised. Why would he do that? He told me it was his little way of supporting me. I was grateful. I shared with Samuel and he called Amanze to appreciate him. We decided I would travel from Abuja. I saw everyone before I undertook the trip. We travelled together to Abuja, Samuel and I. Amanze put us in a room together. I



didn’t know what he believed but I didn’t mind. We were together round the clock for two days before my departure.


That morning of my departure, Samuel woke me up. He said to me, “When I met you, I was just a struggling secondary school Mathematics teacher but all that has changed now. I have only you to thank. When you allowed me to sleep in your room, a stranger, I wondered what kind of human you were. I realized you were special when all you suggested to me began to change my story. I can’t tell you enough how much I love. This journey you are undertaking is a giant step to our together forever. I promise you; I won’t do anything to bring us shame and disgrace. Once you get there and settle down, I will want us to begin our wedding plans. I want to submit our marriage certificate to the embassy so we can’t quickly get our visa. I don’t have much to give you but have this” he gave me an envelope, “this is a £1000. I hope it will be useful”


I couldn’t believe it. £1000 was a lot of money. Why did he have to? Where did he get the money? He wasn’t done yet.


“I don’t want to allow you relocate and then men would want to steal you away from me. I want to officially engage you” he brought out a box, brought out a beautiful ring from it and then asked me, “would you marry me?”


“Of course, I will” I replied with tears in my eyes.


He hugged me tightly and kissed me on the forehead and said, “you have made my day. I will miss you. I love you but I know you need to go and explore. Share your experiences with me, ok? I want to be apart of your new experiences”


“I will” I replied as I snuggled against him.


We got ready and left for the airport. We held hands in the car and we all chatted away in the car. At the airport, he helped with my luggage weighing. I went through and got my boarding pass. Samuel was supposed to go back on the same day after dropping me off but Amanze asked him to spend two more days with them before leaving. I suspected he wanted him to cook their delicacies for them. Samuel didn’t mind.



I left my life behind in Nigeria in search of a new life abroad. I was leaving my husband to be so we could have a future. I knew my life wouldn’t remain the same.


Uju picked me up at the airport when I landed. I was excited to see her. She came alone. I asked after her husband and kids. She said he was at home with the children. That was a surprise to me. The drive back to her house was interesting. She commiserated with me on the death of my father again. We talked about everything as it was a long ride.


“Ugonna gave birth. The siege has been broken. She is now the mother of a son. If she doesn’t have another child, she is settled. It took some time but it ended in praise”


“That’s good to hear”


“Jacinta is in the village. She was very sick again and no one wanted to take her in. Ugonna refused to allow her to stay with her. Instead, she contributed money for her treatment. They are treating it both spiritually and physically. I hope she gets better”


“I hope so too”


“When was the last time you spoke with Emeka?”


“When my father died”


“His woman has given him two other kids. He has three boys now. He has secretly wedded her. But he is still deceiving his people to find him a wife to marry. He will sleep with promising her marriage and then travel back and not communicating with. I told him to see what Jacinta and Ugonna are passing through before his evil deeds will come back to haunt him. He stopped. Why can’t he pay a babe to spend time with you that deceive girls into believing you will marry them? He said he had learnt and he stopped”


“I hope he has”



“We still talk about you. He confessed he made mistakes with you. “There is no other woman like,” he said to me. She was very submissive and loving. He hasn’t been with a woman like you ever since. Even the woman he married doesn’t know about his exploits. I told him to protect her always. She’s such an adorable person but a no-nonsense individual. She’s a feminist. I think she loves Emeka”


“Have you met her?”


“Yes, I have on several occasions when they came around”


“Emeka comes to the UK?”


“He does. I told him you were coming and he promised to call”


“Please, I don’t want any distraction while with you”


“You won’t have. He can’t come here without his family”




While we spoke I had roamed my line and was chatting with Samuel. I promised to call him when I arrived at Uju’s house. I also sent messages to other family members.


“Is there anyone?” Uju asked out of the blues.


“I don’t get”


“You look different and you are acting completely different. Is there anyone? You must be involved with someone”


“I am dating someone if that’s the question”


“I never heard about this”


“We are still in the preliminary stage. What’s it gets serious, I will let you know”


“Who is he?”


“My dear Uju, you will know in a very good time”


“We are keeping secrets”


“This one is very special and might not meet your approval”


“What do you mean?”


“You will no hear about him, you will get to meet him”


“I can’t wait then. I had plans to matchmake you but now, I will wait”


“He is better experienced than heard of”



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