Lara And Seun 15

 

Catch Lara and Seun 14 before you proceed.

 

‘So adorable’ Seun whispered to a resplendently dressed Lara as she cat-walked to his car. She blushed at his complement, shy to look into his eyes. And basking in his ability to move her insides in such a sweet manner, he complemented her some more as she took her seat.

‘You look good yourself’ she managed to utter, still avoiding his gaze, and he realized that only little effort was actually needed to soften her. While she blushed all over, he took some more time to take in and appreciate her beauty.

‘Are we going to spend the day in the car?’ she smiled coyly, reminding him to move the car.

‘Is this the place?’ Lara grunted as Seun stopped in front of a huge unfinished building. He grinned slyly at her and she almost lost her peace. She would have just worn slacks or something if Seun was planning a community service instead of a date. Why waste her time looking beautiful to be brought to a place with workers on every window pane, nailing one thing or the other. He didn’t still reply her, but drove in as the gates were opened for him.

He laughed as he drove in, because Lara’s emotional expressions were beyond his expectations. He knew that she would be shocked and annoyed, but he never expected that she’d be ready to go mad. Her aghast-mouth, heaving chest, squinting eyes, and the way she sporadically hit the glove compartment amused him.

‘You dare not… ‘ she tried to resist, but it was too late. Her anger was starting to be melted by amazement as he drove further inside.

Inside of the compound looked nothing like the tall uncompleted building shooting out in the front of it. He had expected this sudden change of mood, so he smiled as she took in the scent of the freshly mowed lawns, and admired the beautifully carved plants. There was a lot of artistic touch to every part of the field, and it pleased her.

As he drove into a parking lot, she smiled at him, apologizing for fuming earlier on. She slid into his side and let him help her walk out of the white pebbles that filled the drive way. Seun didn’t mind holding her in that position either, and they walked together that way, arms around each others’ waist.

‘This place is beautiful, thank you’ she whispered to him.

‘And you were about to kill me for something nice’ he smiled.

‘I don’t mean that building jo’ she laughed, pinching his side, and he joined in the laughter.

‘Wow! An artificial lake? Very lovely!’ Lara exhaled in glee, and Seun prod himself on the back for scoring very high in sweeping her off her feet.

‘Yeah, let’s check it out’ he replied calmly as though he wasn’t excited by her response, and walked her towards it. He loved that she had let him lead her along since they arrived, and that she had been blown by the beautiful sight surrounding them.

He had come here almost every day, for weeks, to plan this outing with the help of his boss, the owner of the place. The man was a blessing to him for giving him this place at no cost. From the moment he knew about Lara, the man had nagged him everyday to marry her, and on a particular day, when he couldn’t stay calm about his nagging anymore, he had blurted out that he should give him some money so that the ceremony would be done. The boss had taken him seriously, and gave him the place to use. When he first brought him to this place, he was like Lara, ticked off by the front building. But by the time he had taken some walk round the compound, he knew that it was the perfect place for their first formal date, even though his boss meant to give it to him as his wedding venue.

‘How come they let flowers litter this path?’ Lara asked, and Seun shrugged as though he didn’t understand her question. But as they walked further along the path, she observed that the floor was actually decorated with different flower petals in a catchy sequence. She looked closely and noticed that the petals were used to inscribe something on the ground.

‘They actually wrote something with them’ she pointed Seun to the floor, giggling, and he nodded in agreement, still acting like he didn’t know what she was talking about.

‘My feet hurts’ she whispered to Seun, and he was grateful that it had only begun to hurt- he imagined that she could carry on for the little more distance left.

‘We’re almost there’ he soothed, and helped her up to a high marble stone in front of them. Then he beckoned on her to turn towards the path they had just walked through.

‘I said it, they were writing something with those leaves!’ she giggled.

‘Yeah, right. Let’s read what is written’ he smiled, and they began to read:

S
E
U
N

    L 
    O 
    V 
    E 
    S


 L

A
R
A

She immediately covered her mouth with her hands on realizing what she had just read. Then, stepped down from the stone, went back to the beginning of the first letter on the floor, and lingered through the words, releasing soft tears, forgetting about her hurting feet. He didn’t know that she would start to melt at this point. He had some other plans ahead, plus, the camera men were also stationed ahead and not here. So, he got down to her level, let her cry a bit on his shoulders, then walked her ahead.

‘Oh no!’ She shrieked and fell into him, closing her ears with her hands as they stepped on a button and triggered an alarm. But he assured her that all was fine. And indeed, all was fine, because immediately, her favourite song began to play, exciting her.

‘Wow! Can you hear that?’ She yelled, screaming, singing and dancing along with the record. Seun smiled, and joined in her happiness.

As they sang, and Lara recklessly abandoned her consciousness, Seun’s guys appeared behind them, from where they were positioned, set a diner-table for 2, and disappeared again. So, when the song finished playing, Lara felt she was hallucinating when she saw the set table.

‘Oh, I’m famished!’ Seun said and moved towards the table with her, ignoring and smiling at her confusion.

‘What will you like to have?’ He asked, picking the menu card in front of him, and Lara just stared until he beckoned her to pick hers as well.

But what was in hers was different:

‘PLEASE MARRY ME AND LET’S BE HUSBAND AND WIFE FOR LIFE’

She read it repeatedly to herself, then gently closed it, and looked up at Seun. But Seun was no more in sight. Some guys were rather standing and smiling in front of her- some carrying food, others ready for photo and video coverage.

Then she looked around, and found Seun kneeling on both knees beside her with a lovely engagement ring!

‘Oh my God, Seun?!’ She shrieked as she dragged him up from the floor, but flash from cameras had already begun to blind her eyes.

‘Say Yes’ he pleaded with his eyes, holding unto her.

‘I can’t think about it?’ She whispered, and he nodded in disagreement.

She laughed, and said ‘Yes’, and he whisked her up and flung her about in glee.

When he dropped her she reminded him that he hadn’t given her the ring. Laughing at his slip, he went back to the ground with both knees.

‘It’s one knee’ she teased, and he corrected himself, pulled her to sit on the ‘spare’ knee, and slid the ring to her fingers.

‘Awww’ she cried and hugged him tightly, granting the camera guys some good sight.

(… And that is the end of ‘Solomon Grundy’, as Lara and Seun continue their lives outside this blog… Lol)

Thanks lovely people, for waiting, and loving it!!!

Lovely end, right? I guessed so!!!

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Lara and Seun 14

Catch Lara and Seun 13… before you continue!

 

‘Yeah, I was calling to lock down a date with you by this weekend’ Seun spoke through the phone to Lara.

‘Lock down a date? What does that even mean?’ Lara groaned back at him.

‘Honestly, I don’t know the meaning. But, I know that this is going to be a little bit different from what has always been happening between us’ Seun stammered.

‘Ah! Seun? Happening ke? Just take a break and call me later, you’re babbling… ‘ Lara giggled and hung up. As she turned to leave, she bumped into her mother who had quietly stood behind her as she received Seun’s phone call.

‘Jeez! Mami! What’s up? You scared me!’ Lara screeched.

‘Too exited to look I guess’ her mother shrugged, and Lara knew at once that she had eavesdropped into her conversation with Seun.

‘Mrs Olubunmi Balogun, can you kindly explain to me about your affiliation with young people’s love gist?’ Lara frowned.

‘I’ll just tell you to better lock down that date with all the keys in your power’ Mrs Balogun replied her daughter and left the living room where they stood, leaving Lara to stare in unbelief.

‘I’m well now though, in case you need to return to your husband’ Lara called after her and followed her out immediately.

Seun reclined back in his office after work, thinking about all the places that Lara could like to go and jotting them down. After a while of canceling and rewriting items, he tore several sheets of paper he had written on, and threw them into a waste bin. Deciding that he wasn’t sure of what Lara really liked, he picked his phone to call her and ask her for the right details.

‘Wait a minute! You’re serious?’ Lara laughed into the phone as Seun asked her about her likes and dislikes, and when Seun affirmed his seriousness, she fell out with him.

‘Gosh, I just feel that our friendship has been a waste if you don’t know the answers to your questions. I can’t tell you…’ She began to lament until her mother interrupted her conversations.

‘You don’t say that to him!’ her mother scolded.

‘What? Are you trailing me now?’ She yelled at her mother without cutting off her conversation with Seun, leaving him confused at the other end of the line. But her mother left immediately without responding to her.

‘Let me call you back’ Seun interjected and cut the call, but Lara didn’t hear him, so that when she turned from her mom to continue with her phone conversation, the line was dead, and she became frustrated.

With that frustration, Lara stormed into the room that her mother occupied.

‘I’m sorry’ her mother threw out immediately she stepped in.

‘No, you’ll repeat it’ she replied her.

‘I’m only concerned’ her mother defended.

‘You should stop this, please… It’s me, not you that he wants after all’ she retorted.

‘Let me just go back home’ her mother replied in remorse, walking towards her box.

‘No, you’ll stay’ Lara sighed and walked up to soothe her mother’s shoulders, attracting a smile from her.

‘That’s because you’re better off where I can see you function’ she teased the woman, and both women laughed and hugged themselves.

‘You just don’t have to stress him out though’ her mother whispered in her ears.

‘He’s already having a hard time. Don’t add to it’ she continued as Lara furrowed her brows in disagreement.

Dragging her daughter to the bed and sitting beside her, she narrated to her how she almost lost her father as a result of harsh words. Explaining that although she didn’t consider her words as such and really loved him, her father had taken it seriously and interpreted them as an open hatred towards him and as a cue to run for his life.

‘I’m not like you’ Lara laughed.

‘You obviously are, my darling’ her mother laughed in reply, further admonishing her to trust and enjoy Seun’s affections instead of picking on all of his faults.

At the end of their conversation, Lara was thankful for her mother’s presence, and decided to grant Seun some peace.

Seun lay on his bed, thinking to himself if he was making the right choice by wanting Lara for life. Her spice was a little too much, and he wondered if he could handle it everyday for the rest of his life. He wished she wasn’t very harsh with him- that was her only “but”. Her words struck his heart like poisoned arrows, and he began to consider if he wasn’t wasting his time after all with her.

He took out his diary where he had written down the features that attracted him to her in the first place, just to focus on the right thoughts. As he started to pray to God to help him live past Lara’s wounding words, a message from her entered his phone, apologizing for being rude, and listing out 5likes and 5dislikes as an answer to his previous question.

‘Is this for real?’ Seun muttered in unbelief, reading the message over and over again. The Lara he knew would never give him a clue to any ‘likes’. In fact, she would make him suffer for “wasting their friendship.” But this detailed explanation even came with an apology, confusing him the more.

He shut his phone down and decided to sleep through the situation, so as to verify the truth of the message he had just received.

Lara and Seun 13

You can read the previous episodes of Lara and Seun 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Seun stood at the door of his friend’s house, looking dejected and morose.

‘Hello’ his friend’s wife smiled as she opened the door to welcome him.

‘You’d have some cold juice while you wait?’ she asked as Seun sat on a sofa.

‘Don’t worry’ Seun began to respond, but as she saw her face squeeze in rejection, he deferred to asking for hot coffee instead.

 

‘Darling, I think Seun is bothered’ the young woman spoke to her husband as she entered their bedroom.

‘Seun ke? Where did you see him?’ her young husband replied in confusion.

‘Oh! I didn’t put the sentence well’ she regretted. ‘Seun is here, looking troubled and asking for hot coffee in this heat, which is strange’ she rephrased. The husband shrugged, put a shirt on his body, and headed out of the room.

 

‘The Barrister himself!’ he hailed Seun as they briefly hugged.

‘What’s up?’ he asked, sitting on another sofa adjacent to Seun’s.

‘We dey try’ Seun smiled.

‘Here you go’ the man’s wife interrupted, dropping a small serving coffee pot and a mug on a stool beside Seun.

‘Thanks ma’am’ Seun smiled up at her as she left again.

‘All is well?’ the man slowly asked Seun as he sipped out of his mug.

‘Hopefully’ Seun replied as he dropped his mug.

‘Work is intact? They’re not relieving you of your duties any moment from now?’ he gently inquired.

‘Impossible’ Seun dully laughed.

‘Then what’s disturbing you?’ the man asked.

‘Is it that obvious?’ Seun asked.

‘What is it?’ the man repeated.

‘Lara’ Seun sighed, scratching his head, looking at his friend as though the mention of Lara’s name explained everything that was needed to know. Fortunately, his friend understood and laughed gaily.

‘If she’s bumping into your heart like that, then, I think it’s time to step up the relationship’ his friend responded.

‘I don’t know o, she could say “No”’ Seun stammered, scratching his head again.

‘Which is a good answer as well’ his friend replied and started to laugh when he saw traces of panic on Seun’s face in response to his statement.

‘You think say na beans before?’ the man laughed louder.

‘But really, you’ve got to tell her as it is…’ he started to say but Seun interrupted him.

‘How? She doesn’t even give me the opportunity to… she even acts like I’m the cause of all her problems. Is that not a “No” in advance?’ Seun gestured.

‘Bros, you no go know until you talk o. Do your part and leave the rest to God jo’ his friend finalized with a shrug.

 

 

‘Mami, nawa o. How can you tell Seun that kind of thing? How can you even be jumping into peoples’ lives like that?’ Lara spoke as she tidied up in her kitchen.

‘Shut up and stop whining. I’m trying to help you’ her mother reprimanded, helping her tidy up.

‘By soiling my reputation?’ Lara barked.

‘I doubt Seun took it that way’ her mother defended, but Lara didn’t stop nagging.

‘This could be why Seun hasn’t taken your relationship further’ her mother screamed at her.

‘What? Lara shuddered.

‘You nag a lot. No man wants that’ her mother explained and left the kitchen.

‘What?’ Lara asked herself in shock as her mother shut the door.

 

‘It’s time to leave’ Bola said, barging into Lara’s kitchen, but stopped halfway when she found Lara cuddled up at a corner, weeping, and ran to her.

‘What is it?’ Bola asked, sitting beside her sister on the floor.

‘Am I a bad person? Lara cried out, confusing Bola.

‘Do I nag a lot?’ she continued, but Bola gave her a handkerchief to dry her tears instead.

‘You stamp your feet on the ground for…’ Bola tried to explain but Lara cut her off.

‘Do I do it too much?’ Lara asked.

‘You’re a wonderful person Lara, that’s all that matters’ Bola replied, hugging her.

‘Seun thinks I nag’ Lara mistakenly slipped.

‘Seun?’ Bola asked in shock.

‘Sorry, mami!’ Lara laughed, realizing her error.

‘It’s fine. It’s allowed to be in love’ Bola teased.

‘You know it’s a mistake’ Lara sighed.

‘It’s a very good mistake. I even like this type of mistake’ Bola continued teasing.

‘You won’t even ask what mami said’ Lara hissed.

‘I only care when Seun will say it’ Bola replied matter-of-factly.

‘What? You think Seun wants to propose?’ Lara shuddered.

‘I think he knows that you love him’ Bola smiled.

‘Of course I love him as an ordinary friend’ Lara denied, shoving her sister aside, but Bola will have none of her flimsy excuse.

‘Ordinary friends don’t whine or cry over each other’ Bola insisted.

‘I wasn’t crying over Seun’ Lara defended.

‘Really? Then tell me that mami didn’t mention Seun’s name in whatever she harassed you with’ Bola continued, and Lara kept quiet.

‘Oh, wow! And again, ordinary friends save each others’ number on their phones so that their sisters can also get to call’ Bola accused, shocking Lara.

‘How do you know I don’t have Seun’s number saved on my phone’ Lara shrieked.

‘How about I tell you after you accept that you’re in love with him?’ Bola smiled.

‘This acceptance, what is it to you?’ Lara asked.

‘It’s to help you send the right message across… to him’ Bola explained, but Lara waved her away.

‘Save your explanation jo. And you can also keep your reason for trying to steal Seun’s number from my phone’ Lara gestured.

‘That’s right, because I could call him right now and explain that my sister has been crying because of him’ Bola replied, showing Lara her phone with Seun’s number on the screen.

‘What?’ Lara screamed in shock, snatching the phone from her.

‘Mami has it too, just in case’ Bola defended.

‘Yes, he gave it to us’ their mother spoke as she entered through the kitchen door, and seeing the shock on their faces, she quickly explained that the door was slightly open, so she was forced to listen to their conversations. Bola started to laugh, but Lara wasn’t even smiling.

‘So you guys will tell him what now?’ Lara shrugged.

‘Nothing. We’re telling him nothing’ their mother replied. ‘But how do you really feel about him in your heart’ she asked, joining them on the floor.

‘I don’t know… before now, I felt nothing for Seun, like he was just an ordinary friend that I could even barely stand’ Lara shrugged, then continued, staring into thin air.

‘I’m confused now though. I feel that Seun may not be into me like you guys think, which means that I need to be strong for myself’ she said and stood up.

‘And I could accept right now that I love him, and risk him being maneuvered by you to do what is not coming from his heart’ she accused.

‘But now you know, you are automatically sworn to secrecy. Nobody tells him anything, even if I say “No”’ Lara slyly grinned, continuing her monologue.

‘No? Are you kidding me?’ Bola shuddered as she stood up to challenge Lara.

‘Come jo, let me drop you off at your bus stop’ Lara laughed, dragging her sister away.

‘I doubt you’ll say “No”’ their mother spoke as they left the door.

 

 

‘Seun?’ Mrs Faloye shuddered in shock to find her son standing at the door of her friend’s house where she had been staying for some time.

‘What are you doing here by this time?’ his mother’s friend asked as he walked into the house.

‘Good evening ma’ Seun greeted his mother’s friend and the woman laughed away his greeting, pointing at the clock that showed 12:15am on her living room wall.

‘I was in the neighbourhood and decided to stop over’ he shrugged.

‘Abi you’re missing your mother’ the woman teased and left the room for mother and child.

‘Whats’s bothering you?’ Mrs Faloye whispered.

‘Is it that obvious?’ Seun sighed.

‘To me it is.’ she replied.

‘So, what can I do for you?’ she asked, knowing that her son hadn’t just come because he was in the neighbourhood.

‘Tell me how daddy went about proposing to you’ he stammered.

‘Lara is coming back home o’ Mrs Faloye jumped up and danced in glee, and Seun quietly waited for his mother to be done with her gimmicks and start a long story of her love life with her husband.

 

Lara and Seun 12

Bola kept breaking into her mother’s conversation with Seun, with chips of Seun’s good deeds:

‘He brought these’
‘He slept over’
‘He helped us pay’

And after a while of bearing a constantly punctuated discussion by her daughter, Mrs Balogun exited the room with Seun.

‘Nawa for you sha’ Lara charged at her sister immediately their mother shut the door.

‘What?’ Bola shrieked.

‘Now we won’t know what they’re saying’ Lara murmured.

‘Will it pass your wedding plans?’ Bola mocked.

‘Wedding Plans ke?’ Lara fumed.

‘You and Seun ni’ Bola continued, and received a long hiss from her sister as a response.

‘Why the sad face, mami?’ Lara asked as her mother grimly walked in through the door to the bed where she lay, but Mrs Balogun quickly slipped on a dull smile as a cover for her troubled spirit.

‘Mami?’ Lara sat up with questioning eyes, and Mrs Balogun rubbed her daughter’s feet as she sat beside her on the bed.

‘Lara, I don’t like this best friend idea’ she said after some moments of silence.

‘Best friend idea?’ Lara replied in confusion.

‘It’s either Seun wants to marry you or not o, don’t waste your time being just a best friend’ Mrs Balogun warned.

‘Oh! Where did he even go?’ Lara smiled.

‘It is funny, abi?’ Mrs Balogun frowned and started a lecture on how grown women should not waste their time in waiting for men that do not want them as wives.

‘What of Seun?’ Bola suddenly screamed from where she was seated at the sofa, plucking away the ear piece that she was listening to music with.

‘And why the solemn conversation?’ She continued, moving towards them.

‘You know that your sister isn’t well, right?’ Mrs Balogun asked and Bola started to apologise for raising her voice.

‘Oh, not that type! I just hope you are also not sick?’ She continued, waving Bola’s apologies away.

‘Sick?’ The ladies shuddered.

‘Yes! The type that makes you to have mere best-friend relationships with men you should be getting married to’ she blurted out.

‘Anyway, I have given Seun a piece of my mind.’ She finished and stood up.

‘What did you do?’ Both ladies attacked.

‘He rushed to attend a meeting by the way. And I’m going to see your doctor right away’ she added, ignoring their irritation.

‘You don’t jump into people’s business without their permission, mami!’ Lara vented, stopping her at the door.

‘Because you took permission before jumping into my stomach to be born, right?’ she responded and left the room before another word could be uttered.

The ladies exchanged worried glances and Lara immediately took up her phone to dial Seun.

‘Relax’ Bola offered in comfort as Lara began to panic that her calls were being ignored, but she slipped out her hands from her sister’s grip and started to type a text. In her hurry, she mistakenly sent the text to a wrong number.

‘Hello, who’s this?’ The recipient called back after he got the text.

‘Abeg, what did my mother tell you?’ Lara nervously responded, oblivious that it was a strange voice at the other end.

‘Your mother? Who are you please?’ the caller continued and Lara angrily cut the call.

Then Seun called her.

‘What do you mean by “who am I”?’ Lara harshly asked before he could say a word.

‘Hello? Lara? I can’t hear you’ Seun faintly responded.

‘What do you mean…’ she started to say but the line got disconnected.

And the stranger called back.

‘Why did you rudely hang up?’ He asked.

‘Rudely hang up? No be you cut the call?’ Lara harshly responded.

‘Hey lady, relax okay, and call me back when you’re calm’ he finished and hung up.

‘Lara, don’t be hard on yourself’ Bola cut in as Lara stared in shock into her phone, but Lara waved her away and began to compose another text.

‘Stop this and breathe jo!’ Bola snapped, snatched the phone from her hands and switched it off.

‘Good morning ma’ Seun greeted as he entered the room clad in his work attire.

‘Wow! Is this your new office?’ Mrs Balogun teased.

‘Hello Seun’ Bola greeted.

‘I didn’t want to miss you’ he gestured at them with a smile, but Mrs Faloye waved his excuse away.

‘Hi’ Lara coldly threw across to him but quickly supported it with a fake smile when her mother rebuked her coldness with a glare.

‘We’re set to leave, I’ve been discharged’ Lara added, pointing at their packed items.

‘Its good I came early then’ Seun stammered, and Mrs Balogun left the room with Bola, giving them some time to talk.

‘Who am I? Seun?’ Lara blurted out as soon as the door shut.

‘Who are you? How?’ Seun winced.

‘Like, there are better ways to be saucy, not “who are you?”‘ She spat angrily.

‘I don’t still get you o’ he replied.

‘Really? She sarcastically replied.

‘Madam, I don’t understand abeg… How are you feeling now by the way?’ He responded and sat down.

‘Your response to this!’ She accused, showing him the text that she had mistakenly sent to a stranger.

‘Lara, what now?’ He sighed, taking the phone from her.

‘Do I have to remember what your mother said?’ He asked, perplexed at the message she had shown him.

‘That’s all your defence?’ She shrieked.

‘What defence? That isn’t my number by the way’ he gasped, returning the phone back to her.

Seun watched Lara’s facial expression quickly change from anger to shock, then to shame in a short while and almost pitied her.

‘Don’t run mad one day o’ he began to tease her, but she interrupted him, apologising with tears, alarming him.

‘Relax, that’s not an issue’ he pacified.

‘Really?’ She smiled, and he pulled her to himself.

‘Sit down and don’t worry’ he whispered to her.

‘Maybe God just wants to punish me for not saving your number’ she whispered back, reclining on his arm.

‘Yes, he should do that often’ he said, and she punched him.

‘And you should send another text to that number, apologising for wrongly sending a text’ he added, nursing his ribs.

‘And for even harassing him!’ She added, and he frowned.

‘Why am I not surprised?’ he sighed.

‘I thought it was you ni’ she laughed and punched him again.

‘Ouch!’ He yelled and shifted away from her, away from her punches.

‘Na joke na’ she defended, shifting towards him.

‘And what did my mother tell you?’ She added, smiling and hitting his arm.

‘What? Man beater!’ Seun gasped and got up completely from the sofa.

‘Ah! Seun?’ Lara frowned.

‘Yes ni’ He laughed.

But Lara got offended and kept quiet until Seun begged her.

‘Talk jo’ she prodded.

‘Oh, dear Lara! She just joked that she must be part of our friendship or scatter it if we refuse her… Can I breathe now?’ he blurted out. And she knew that he needed to know that her mother had meant every word that she said.

Lara and Seun 11

Lara woke up in the middle of the night and was startled to find Seun snoring lightly at an end of the long sofa in her hospital room, still clad in his work clothes. She tried to get to the sofa but an ache in her head drew her back. She tried harder, dragging herself down the bed, towards the sofa. And like fire works, the ache sparked, causing her to fall on top of her sister at the other end of the sofa, waking her up.

‘Lara?’ her sister jerked

‘what happened?’ she prodded in shock, rubbing her hands all over Lara.

‘I’m fine…’ Lara murmured, nursing her forehead.

‘Are you sure? Or should I come and lie with you on the bed? Or escort you to the toilet?’ Her sister continued to press.

‘Just stop it, okay?’ Lara hushed, raising an arm. ‘I said I’m fine’ she continued, and then she quietly asked why Seun was sleeping in the hospital.

‘He insisted… So I let him’ her sister shrugged in reply.

‘Wait, is that why you woke me up?’ her sister smirked, but Lara wasn’t minding her reprimand.

‘Insisted? Left him? The guy has an early morning work…’ Lara rather started to blast, nursing her forehead at intervals.

Her sister gently put her down and rushed to get a wet towel to place on her head.

‘Don’t place that thing on me… You don’t know who used it last’ Lara hushed, turning her head away from her sister’s grip.

‘Should I call the nurse instead?’ her sister replied, and Lara rejected the suggestion, surrendering her head for self medication.

‘Ouch! It’s cold’ Lara blurted out.

‘Shhh… You’ll be fine if you’re quiet’ her sister responded, then supported her back to the bed.

‘She’s been sleeping uninterrupted since yesterday?’ The doctor asked Lara’s sister the next morning while on ward round.

‘Well, she woke up in the middle of the night to disturb, and that’s that’ her sister shrugged to the amusement of the doctor.
Then she told the doctor about the headache and what she did to salvage the pain. After scolding her for not calling a nurse, the doctor continued her check up.

‘Call me when she awakes’ she concluded and left the room.

‘ You’ve been awake all this time?!’ Her sister exhaled in shock as Lara’s eyes opened soon after the doctor left.

‘What?’ Lara asked, ‘and when did Seun leave?’ She continued.

‘Seun? That’s more important to you?’ Lara’s sister accused, and Lara winced in shame.

‘It’s not like that…’ Lara started to defend, but her sister waved her away.

‘Let me get the doctor’ her sister said. ‘She was here while you were asleep’ she added, dragging the “sleep” part and looking suspiciously into Lara’s eyes.

‘What? Why are you looking at me like that?’ Lara asked.

‘Were you asleep or pretending to be asleep?’ her sister queried.

‘Pretending to be asleep? Lara responded in disgust.

‘Yes…’ Her sister shrugged.

‘Goodness gracious! Who sent you here?’ Lara sighed.

‘Mama, and I’ll be off as soon as she arrives today’ her sister said.

‘Mama’s coming? Why?’ Lara sighed.

‘Yes… and Seun left early enough, I doubt he’ll be late to work’ her sister added and left the room.

And Lara’s phone rang.

‘Hey, Seun… I’m fine… Thanks for sleeping over… Yes… I’ll be out today hopefully… Oh, please! I’m a grown woman… Hahahahaha… Thanks,bye’

And as she dropped the phone, her sister returned with the doctor.

‘Let’s see how the head fares this night…’ the doctor said after checking Lara up again.

‘I can’t leave today?’ She asked, pained.

‘No, a night or two more’ the doctor replied, and Lara grudgingly lay down and forced herself to sleep, thinking of everyone that has been inconvenienced because of her accident.

‘Hey babe… lunch and drugs’ Lara’s sister tapped her up, presenting a tray with a plate of Yam Porridge, medicine and water in it.

‘Oh, thanks’ Lara replied, slowly rising up to eat. As she put the first spoon into her mouth, the door opened and Seun walked in with grocery bags.

‘Seun!’ the sister screamed at once, stopping him in his track.

‘No… Continue’ Lara’s sister laughed, waving his confusion aside, and helping him carry the goods that he brought with him, as Lara just stared at him with concern.

‘Don’t worry, I won’t be sacked’ He whispered to Lara, rubbing her shoulders, and sitting by her side as she quietly continued her meal.

‘I shall eat this chicken alone!’ Lara’s sister suddenly threw over her shoulders in a song from where she backed them to arrange the provisions Seun brought into a cupboard.

‘She’s good company’ Seun whispered to Lara, and they shared a soft laugh.

‘I just feel like selling her sometimes’ Lara smiled.

‘Thanks a lot Seun’ she continued. ‘Though you shouldn’t have bothered’ she added, pointing to the provisions he brought.

‘She’s Bolu right?’ Seun asked, avoiding her last statement.

‘Bola… And you really shouldn’t stress your self out’ she repeated, hoping to address the issue, but Bola distracted them.

‘Thanks Seun, you’ve got some lovely taste’

And she walked to them, dropped a grilled chicken wing into Lara’s plate, then carried the remaining grilled meat in a disposable plate with her to the sofa, munching on them noisily to annoy Lara.

‘Hello sirs, good evening,’ Bola greeted as she opened the door to the 2 men that had brought Lara to the hospital. She ushered them to the sofa, and served them some crackers from what Seun had bought.

Lara greeted them gaily, and after a while of light conversation, she gave them an envelope with their complete money. After counting and confirming the amount in the envelope, they left with Bola escorting them out.

‘I had that covered, you should have let me’ Seun whispered to Lara as she climbed back on her bed.

‘You’ve done enough already’ she remarked.

‘Maybe we should all abandon you’ Seun replied.

‘It’s not like that…’ she winced.

‘Then drop the attitude’ he concluded.

Bola arrived almost immediately she left, took her purse and rushed out again before Lara and Seun could ask what the matter was.

She was back again in a few minutes, carrying a travel bag. And before Lara could ask a question, the door opened to an elegant elderly woman.

‘Mami!’ Lara screamed and jumped out of the bed to the woman at the door, causing Seun to spring up in anxiety.

‘You didn’t have to’ Lara muttered to her mother amidst tender hugs.

‘I have to see my baby…’ the woman began to respond,but paused at the sight of Seun.

‘Mami, this is Barrister Oluwaseun Faloye…’ Lara casually introduced, and Seun fell in prostration to greet the woman.

‘Welcome dear’ Lara’s mom muttered, lifting Seun up.

‘Thanks for bringing my daughter to the hospital’ the woman continued, rousing laughter amongst the sisters.

‘Mami! This is the Seun!’ Bola threw in and their mother gasped in awe.

‘Oh! You should have simply said that’ the woman smiled and dragged a confused Seun to the Sofa.

‘So, tell me about you’ she continued as they sat down.

Lara and Seun 10

Lara was driving into her street, nodding to a soulful tone from her stereo when she heard the smashing sound of metal behind her. It hit her faster than she could imagine, vibrating her, and smashing her into a Tin-Shop.

The owner of the Shop, a petty trader, who was outside at the time, hearing the smash and seeing a car destroy her shop, started running towards it, screaming ‘Egba mi o’, lifting her hands to her head, vibrating her bulky body and drawing people towards her.

As a crowd gradually formed, the man who hit Lara slowly climbed out of his car unharmed, and began to apologise. The people rushed him, forgetting Lara who had fainted inside her very damaged car.

‘Help the woman first!’ The man managed to raise his voice amidst the yells, pointing towards Lara and momentarily pausing the confrontation.

Two men from the group quickly rushed into a nearby compound, drove out a car, and with the help of some people, they broke out Lara from her damaged vehicle, carried her into their own car with her handbag, and rushed off to the hospital.

‘Sorry, please we’re calling all the people on her call log…’ was all Seun heard from his caller without understanding a word, nor asking for clarification, or even looking at the phone to know who was calling him. He was in a meeting and didn’t want to be distracted.

He however tried to re-dial Lara’s line after the meeting, after finding out that it was her number that had dialed him, but he kept cutting the call immediately because it was a male voice he heard at her end of the line.

‘Come to Spring Field Hospital Ikeja if you want and stop flashing. It’s an emergency’ was the text that came into his phone as he walked towards his car to head home earlier than usual. He paused at the ‘stop flashing’, irritated by the sender, and took his phone to speak some sense into whoever was at the end of the message. After ringing up thrice without any success, the man at Lara’s end picked on the fourth ring and without letting Seun as much as exhale, he narrated the whole incidence, stating Lara’s accident and her new location.

Seun was running down with his car from the Island, grateful that it wasn’t the rush hour and that the roads were free, and as he neared Ikeja, he realised that he had forgotten to ask for directions to the hospital. He tried to dial the number again but his calls were ignored. He tried to search for the place via Google but his efforts were futile. He drove into a restaurant, rolled down his window, and tiredly muttered some prayers for Lara.

‘Hello sir, you’ve been merely sitting here close to an hour now…’ a security man said to him through his window, and as he looked up at the elderly but friendly looking guard, he explained that he had been searching for a hospital that he wasn’t sure existed, chipping in a bit about Lara’s incidence.

Sympathising with him, the elderly man let him stay and turned to leave, but suddenly turned back again.

‘There’s this “Sting Free Clinic” down the road, just in case’ the elderly man smiled and left again. Seun smiled back at him, amused at his sense of humour.

As he was driving home some minutes after, he approached a hospital with a water fountain in front of it, and while he wondered at the reason behind having a fountain in a hospital, he suddenly saw the sign board that read “Sting Free Clinic” and was shocked that the elderly man’s words were no joke. He drove into the driveway, and decided to check inside.

‘Please was any Lara Balogun brought in some hours ago?’ he asked a nurse, but a slender lady that looked familiar walked passed and as he looked at her, he discovered that asides the fact that she was shorter, had a different hair style, and had a quiet look, he would have mistaken her for Lara.

He caught himself staring, and turned back to the woman he was speaking to, but it was already late. She gave him the stern ‘so you’re also a womaniser look’ and he carefully replied with a gentle ‘I’m sorry, it won’t happen again smile’, and pleaded to no avail with her to let him see Lara after she affirmed that Lara was a patient in the clinic.

He slowly walked away, knowing that this woman that thought him to be a womaniser wouldn’t change her mind, and as he stepped outside, he stopped to watch Lara’s look-alike arguing with two men- arguing just like Lara would.

He heard ‘we would have left her dead to avoid this drama’ from one of the men and listened harder. They kept repeating the same things- the men describing an incidence exactly like Lara’s, adding that they had to deposit all their money, and needed it back; and the lady promising to give them all and more the next day, explaining that she just came in from another city and had nothing else apart from a few Naira Notes.

The men were gradually increasing their voice when he turned and faced them, then drew near without their notice.

As he drew closer, they gave him an unfriendly glare and he merely smiled back at them. But the lady spoke out, stating that he was not welcome into the discussion, and he was almost sure that he just heard Lara’s voice.

‘Sorry, are you related to Lara Balogun?’ was all he said and their stares grew sterner, especially the lady’s.

‘I’m Seun, Lara’s friend’ he gently continued, and got on the lady’s good side immediately. She quickly assessed him from the crown of his head to the sole of his feet, and with excitement, brought out her hand for a hand shake.

‘Seun! I’m Lara’s sister’ she exhaled warmly to the surprise of the furious men. They were angry that she had the nerve to ignore them for social purposes. And in the calmest way he could, Seun led the 3 adults to his car, and led them further to a resolution- he added some more cash to what Lara’s sister’s had, and gave the men half of what they needed, and they gladly agreed to return the next day for the balance.

‘You kept flashing’ one of the men whispered to Seun, irritating him again.

But Seun smiled and teased him, pointing at the hospital’s sign board ‘You couldn’t read and write anyway.’

The man got edgy and loudly defensive, but when he started to draw the attention of his friend and Lara’s sister, he shut up and smiled shamefully.

‘She’ll have to tell us herself to let him in’ the nurse repeated to Seun and Lara’s sister despite Lara’s sister’s vote-of-confidence for Seun. But Lara’s sister immediately ran to the office of the Doctor on duty to seek permission for Seun.

‘She needs her rest so you will not engage her in any conversation for now’ the female doctor warned Seun while permitting him to visit Lara, and they thanked her and moved on, but not without Seun winking and smiling at the stern nurse.

Lara was lying down peacefully on the hospital bed in a private ward without any pipe or tube fixed into her, and as the door opened, she opened her eyes to behold her sister leading Seun in, and coyly smiled. Seun walked towards her and gently squeezed her hand.

‘I’m fine’ she began to mutter and he encouraged her to postpone the talks and continue with her rest. He gave her hand another gentle squeeze and proceeded to sit at one end of a long sofa inside the room, with her sister at the other end.

Lara and Seun 9

Mrs Faloye entered into the living room and found Lara standing and staring blankly into a window.

“What’s the matter?” She inquired, but Lara was so far off that she didn’t hear a word.

She asked again, touching her shoulder and slightly shaking her.

“Nothing ma” Lara shivered and arranged some straying twists on her head.

The woman sat down on a sofa, pulling Lara down next to her.

” We need sanity when our men offend us. It is necessary; if not, we may not forgive them” she told her, rubbing her knee. And as Lara squeezed her face in confusion and wonder at the statement, Mrs Faloye got up again and walked to the television.

“Then we don’t fail to remind them that it is very healthy for them if we are always in a good mood” she completed with gestures and a wink, and turned the television switch on.

She returned to the sofa with remote controls in hands and began to surf blank ‘foreign’ TV channels.

“I don’t think he subscribed” Lara jumped in, helping soothe away the rising wrinkles of irritation on the woman’s face.

“Oh!” the woman replied, hissing and navigating to the local stations with another remote control, and fortunately landing on a wedding ceremony.

“Oh my!” she nudged Lara in gladness but Lara winced.

She laughed hard and waved Lara’s wince aside. Then she ignored Lara and began to comment on the show:

“Lovely gowns”

“I don’t mind one of those gele styles”

“That is the best colour blocking so far!”

“Pretty lady… So happy…”

But Lara was indifferent about her comments and the entire wedding ceremony.

As soon as the bride’s mother was called to dance into the hall, Mrs Faloye got up again and began dancing to the tone of the music, causing Lara to laugh hard.

“Oya! Let’s not waste this dance” the woman declared.

“I should teach you some Owambe steps” she continued, pulling Lara up by hand, but Lara went stiff.

“Come jo!” She dragged her up with force, and left her standing like a stick.

The woman continued her dance, nudging Lara’s hips once in a while, and Lara just stood, giggling.

“What’s happening here?!”
Seun asked as he entered without their notice, laughing at their antics.

“Nothing oh!” Lara burst out in shame and walked back to her seat.

Seun shrugged, gave Lara back her phone and headed to the door out of the house.

“Where to?” His mom asked.

“Downstairs” he replied, looking at Lara, and when she said nothing back to him, he left the house.

“You can still join him o” Mrs Faloye whispered into Lara’s ears.

“The music is wasting ma!” Lara distracted her, laughing and rising up in mock readiness to a dance.

“Ah! Is it the young peoples’ turn now? Jumping up and down in the name of dance” Mrs Faloye teased, laughing.

“Yes oh!” Lara replied in laughter and Mrs Faloye joined in her laugh.

“I should teach you that Etighi style” Lara said pointing to the couple’s train that had begun to dance into the hall.

” Ah! I don’t think my hips will take this one o” Mrs Falayo laughed her off.

“You should come again before I travel” Mrs Faloye told Lara as they walked down the stairs holding hands.

“And again and again!” Lara added.

“Yes o” the woman replied.

“I should even travel back with you” Lara teased and they laughed.

“Definitely!” she responded.

“Thank you ma’am!” Lara replied in mock jubilation and they continued in silence till the door step.

“You are welcome my dear” Mrs Faloye said warmly as she stopped, squeezing her hand and looking into her eyes.
Lara knew she meant more than a response to her ‘thank you’ and slowly slipped off her hands and took a step forward.

“Wow!” she screamed and Mrs Faloye looked up to what she had seen and began a round of applause.

Lara rushed towards her car, touching the washed body, then towards the foot mats washed and spread besides the car, on a flower bed, and screamed:

“Thank you very much Seun!”

And rushed towards him, where he was cleaning his own car.

“What?” He began to ask as he climbed out of his car, leaving what he was cleaning inside it, but Lara jumped onto him with a hug before he could stand strong, leading them to crash on the car bonnet with force.

And Mrs Faloye burst into happy laughter, still standing at the door step.

“Thanks for washing my car” Lara shyly mumbled, squeezing his hands.
Seun smiled and retrieved an arm to nurse his hips.

Then, he whispered into her ears:
“The gate man actually did!”

And Lara hissed, snatched herself away from him and walked briskly towards her car.

“Hold on” Seun yelled, following her.

She stopped, turned to him, and snatched the car key from his hands.

Seun sighed and continued following her, listening to her rants:

“And you just took my hugs like that”

“And even smiled for that matter”

“Happy that I was mushy over you”

And she hissed again, longer this time around.

And Mrs Faloye’s eyes fell in confusion while she remained standing on the same spot.

Lara started to roughly gather her foot mats and rugs, but Seun took them from her and carefully placed them inside.

She rashly entered her car as soon as he was through with closing the other doors of the car, banged her door, and inserted the car key.

But Seun knocked on her window for her to wind down, and as she obeyed, he took key from her.

“That’s mine… I used the spare you gave me to wash yours” he told her calmly.

She hissed again and retrieved her key from her purse.

Seun held her hand and looked into her eyes; “I gave him the key to help me do it.”
And Lara’s stares became soft and unsteady.

“I have to go out soon and my car is dirty… And I couldn’t just let you drive home with a dirty car” he explained and Lara felt foolish for being angry.

“I appreciate…” she stammered, holding his arm.
“And I’m sorry…” she completed in shame.

He smiled, patted her arms and whispered; “don’t forget to thank the gate man.”

“Yes boss!” she smiled back

And Mrs Faloye’s confusion widened as she watched them smile easily again at each other.

“We’ll talk soon” Seun said as Lara started her car, and she winked at him.

She waved goodbye to a ‘dumb founded’ Mrs Faloye, and drove to the gate

(NB: thanks for your patience and love despite my inconsistency)