Forever and For Always 15 pt 2

Present day

Ezinne felt quite ashamed. So much for priding herself on non intimacy all these years, claiming she’d chosen to be celibate when the truth had been that she’d never had the opportunity. Mofe had touched her a little and she’d all but melted into him like butter on a heated pan, begging him to take her. If he hadn’t gently let her down, she would have let him go all the way, she was sure.

The most embarrassing part of it  wasn’t even the let down. It was the note he had left this morning, notifying her he was going back to the states briefly to take care of some things.

She didn’t need a rocket scientist to tell her why he’d left. He was giving her some distance and she didn’t blame him. She should have comported herself better, and not acted Iike a wanton slut. If she’d known he was engaged she probably wouldn’t have been so eager to give it all up to him.

Even if he’d been the first to initiate the kiss but she shouldn’t have acted so eager for it also. She should have stopped him but she’d been weak. It had been a while…. A long while since anyone had touched her, since he’d touched her.

She’d been having the usual nightmares, tormented by Kene and then his figure had suddenly faded off and instead Mofe had appeared. In her dreams, all she saw were shadows. She’d known him by his voice and she remembered drawing him in for a kiss.

It had felt so real that she knew something had to be wrong. The feeling of his hands on her shoulders and how her body had reacted as he’d kissed her had told her it had been more than a dream and she’d called his name to be sure and had been surprised it had really been him.

Now she was in the car on her way to work and couldn’t shake the events of the night before. It would haunt her for a while. She in Mofe’s arms, crushing him to herself, the feeling of his warm breath fanning her neck. The slightly familiar feeling of the evidence of his arousal grazing her thigh.

“Do you know when Uncle MJ will be back?” Azora asked quietly and it jarred Ezinne out of her sleazy thoughts as she remembered her daughter was also in the car.

She could sense Azora was seated at the end of the back seat, away from her, closer to the car door. It was as if she didn’t want any sort of contact between them. This disturbed Ezinne because Azora used to love holding on to her any chance she got. Their fights had never lasted more than a night. Things were different now.

Her daughter was still peeved after their spat of last night and in addition to that Azora had woken up to see that Ezinne had locked off the gaming room till further notice. She hadn’t spoken much all morning and this troubled Ezinne.

“I’m not sure dear, he didn’t say.” Ezinne replied.

“But he will be back?” She asked to be sure.

“Yes, he definitely will.” Ezinne replied not exactly looking forward to his return. She wondered at how they had bonded so quickly. The games and awesome new stuff definitely had a lot to do with it, Ezinne thought jealously.

It was probably a good thing he had left, might give her a chance to get her daughter back now that he was out of the picture.

But locking her out of the gaming room wouldn’t score any points in her favour. Ezinne had to review her decision,maybe she could draw up some sort of timetable instead of totally barring her from the place.

“Did he say why he left?” Azora asked again

Ezinne frowned,”He didn’t exactly say, but I guess he has some important business to take care of back home…. You know he’s based in the States? He has business over there.” She added purposefully trying to get her daughter to know that More might not be a permanent fixture in her life.

“So… you didn’t have a fight with him or anything? “ she asked back and Ezinne had to frown.

Had Azora heard their quarrel in the dining room the night before? If she had, it wouldn’t be great to lie about it.

“We… um..we had a little disagreement at dinner last night but we talked over it later, so I’m quite sure he didn’t leave because of that. It’s quite normal for friends to disagree now and then. I’m quite sure you and your friends disagree on stuff once in awhile?”

She and Mofe were definitely not friends but she couldn’t come up with a better explanation for her daughter.

Zora didn’t reply and Ezinne was tempted to repeat the question but knew she should let her be. She would come around later, she didn’t need to force her daughter to speak to her at the moment.

Meanwhile she hoped More stayed away for a long while. His presence caused too much unease. Not just between she and Zora but in Ezinne’s head. She’d always wondered if she’d been over him, now she suspected more clearly than ever that she wasn’t.

He claimed he had moved on but she hadn’t and it was foolish harbouring feelings for him. She would need to steel herself from him before he returned from his journey, bringing his chaos back into her and her daughter’s lives.

*********

Mofe was just about ready to leave for the airport. He’d branched by the office to finish off some work before heading out to his Private Jet. He’d spent more time than he’d planned already, and needed to get out as soon as he could.

He got up from his desk and began putting together his notebook computer and other effects he would be leaving with when the door to his office was suddenly jarred open amidst shouting and struggle.

He looked up sharply to see the receptionist who looked confused and very flustered along with some guys from security. Before she spoke he heard the commotion going on out in the hallway and looked in that direction through the open door.

“Is there a problem, Agnes?”

“I’m sorry Sir, but there’s a man here to see you. He has no appointment and when I told him you are unavailable as you are on your way out, he barged into the building. Security is holding him back but he says you know him.”

“Okay, what’s the name?” He asked now placing the power pack of the notebook into the case,curious to know what this was about.

“Err…Retired General Onu, Sir.” She replied and he looked at her sharply.

“Onu!” He repeated.

“Yes Sir…..”

Ezinne’s dad was here. How the hell had this happened? He wasn’t ready for the man yet. He’d hoped to pay him a visit at the right time which definitely wasn’t now.

Him showing up here was not the plan at all but what could he do? The man was here already.

“Show him in.” Mofe told the secretary. He might not be ready to see the man but he sure as hell wasn’t running from him.

Keeping his backpack under the desk, he returned to his seat. He had been looking forward to this for years now.

The door reopened and the man was ushered in.

Mofe relaxed back into his seat as he planned to enjoy this moment of reckoning as well as he could.

“Hello General.” He greeted as the man stood in a spot, staring at him transfixed. “If I’d known you would be gracing me with your presence today, I might have made better arrangements…. You’re still welcome none the less, please have a seat.”

“You!” was all the old man could mutter as he stared, a surprised look on his middle aged face as he took Mofe in.

What Mofe wouldn’t have given this very moment for a lasting image of the General’s stunned expression. The old man had aged quite well. He still stood tall and proud, his face though older still had that autocratic commanding look that begged no defiance. His hair had more grey in it now but he wasn’t the weather worn man Mofe had expected him to be, especially as Mofe had turned up the heat beneath him by buying over us company.

The company had been repossessed because the General had defaulted on some huge loans. Mofe had bought it from the bank but the plan had been to expose the Generals fraudulent financial activities with the business which ran the company into the ground. He had intended to take the case to the financial crimes commission and have him prosecuted.

Mofe’s plan was to break this man to size. He’d been biding his time but now seeing him, he was considering putting more pressure onto him. He wanted the old man grovelling and begging him to stop.

The man shuffled forward slowly, still staring at him, “ I didn’t want to believe it but it’s you, you are back…. Mofe, is it?”

Mofe shrugged with a smirk as he replied, “Yes, it is me and I’m back… after all this time.”

“After all this time,” The man echoed, “and obviously, you still carry a grudge.”

“A grudge?” Mofe asked.

“Yes of course…. Isn’t that why you bought my company? Isn’t that why you are liquidating it and isn’t that why you opened an investigation into its accounts? An investigation into the way funds were handled when I owned the company…. All this because of something that happened over ten years back.”

Mofe shrugged. “Well….I’m a thorough business man, I acquired a company overrun in debt which I have to pay off. Now, why would I pay off its debt without trying to find out where the money went in the first place? I wouldn’t call that holding a grudge, just being thorough.”

“Oh please…” The General scoffed. “You and I both know what this is, don’t try to justify it any other way.”

Mofe shrugged lazily, “Okay then, I won’t. Yes I am holding more more than a simple grudge, I have my personal feelings invested in this. You are going to jail for embezzlement one way or another.”

One way or another, Mofe thought, he was going to atone for every sin committed in the past.

Now that he had confessed, the General slumped into the chair Mode had long since offered him.

“Are you okay, Sir?” Mofe had to ask seeing the man go so still. He had to be sure a cardiac arrest wasn’t setting in.

When he got no reply from the man who was now staring at nothing exactly, he sat up in his seat.

“General,” he called. “ Are you alright?”

“How can I be alright? I find out the ex boyfriend of my daughter holds a grudge over events that happened over ten years back, so he buys my company and is doing all he can to send me to jail. How do you expect me to be alright?” He spat angrily.

Seeing that he was talking again, Mofe relaxed a little. He wanted the man to suffer, not die. There wouldn’t be much fun if he died before the fun really began.

“I’m not doing this entirely for myself, you know?” Mofe told him. “Ezinne told me everything that happened… how you forced her to marry Ekene despite knowing she was pregnant for me. Passing my child as the other man’s…The hell she endured…The hell which you contributed immensely to. You knew what the bastard was doing but didn’t interfere. Everything that’s happened to her is all on you! She’s lost the use of her eyes because of selfish decisions you made. She can’t do much without someone aiding her because of your selfishness. Hell! She doesn’t even know how her daughter looks anymore… and it’s all thanks to you.

I loved her so much but as I wasn’t good enough for your standards, you connived with my cousin and got me out of the picture.

So do I hold a grudge? Of course I do. When someone I love is treated unjustly, I do something about it unlike you. I make someone pay for it and that someone this time is you, General.”

“And you think I don’t regret my past actions? That I don’t suffer in my own way after all that happened? You think I enjoy what happened to my only child?” The General asked back.

Mofe raised a brow unaffected by the General’s seemingly emotional outburst.

He shrugged as he spoke, “None of that matters to me…. I don’t really care what you feel.”

“So…What next after you get me in jail? What next, you and Ezinne will feel better with yourselves? How does she feel about you sending her own father to jail?”

“Leave her out of this. This is between the both of us.” Mofe pointed.

The man narrowed his eyes thoughtful, “she doesn’t know, does she. You didn’t tell her….I know my daughter, she would never allow this if she knew. She’s too good natured, too forgiving send her father to jail.”

Mofe scoffed before replying, “trust me, Sir, she hasn’t forgiven you…but like I said, this is between you and I. This is something I’m doing to feel better about the decision I was forced to take all those years ago.”

“So you two back together now? You went out there, made your money and name for yourself, then came back for her. Proving me wrong that you wouldn’t amount to much and proving to her that you truly love her….. and I know my daughter, she never got over you….You must be having the last laugh now, aren’t you?” He asked gazing at him with a self deprecating smirk.

“Yes, I am.” He replied not bothering to correct the old man that he and Ezinne weren’t exactly in the best terms at the moment. He wouldn’t give the man the satisfaction of thinking he’d won, he could see the General already regretted his past transgressions. He had the look of a beaten man. He’d lost his power, clout, business and daughter. Mofe saw all this just looking at him now and felt nothing for him, not even pity.

The man had destroyed so many lives with his meddling and persecutions. Mofe would deal him the final blow by making sure he went to prison.

“Now that we’ve had this reunion, can you leave? I have a flight scheduled and even though it’s a private flight, I still have to be on time.”

He got up from his seat and the General got up too, aided by his walking stick.

“This isn’t over, you know?” The general said. Like a drowning man, Mofe expected he would fight till his last breath. “I won’t just sit back and let you do this.”

“Well… General, feel free to do what you have to do because I will surely do what I need to.” He replied before adding dismissively, “have a nice day, Sir.”

Without another word, the elderly man walked out of his office. Mofe stared at his retreating back not knowing what the man planned to do but whatever it was, he couldn’t escape this. He would pay dearly for all the pain he’d caused.

As he watched the man leave he could help but think about something he’d said, that Ezinne had never gotten over him and he recalled once again their brief passionate session the night before. How far he’d been willing to take it and knowing she wouldn’t have minded going there with him.

He recalled her disappointment when he’d said he was engaged to be married. She’d tried covering it up quickly but hadn’t been too successful.

He sighed, picking up the backpack once again as he would be late if he didn’t leave now.

There was nothing to be done about whatever feelings still lingered between them now. Too much water under the bridge and he was with someone else. He needed to do right by the woman he was with.

*********

Akínjídé Akíntayo(Divepen)

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