Nene was weak. Her knees were failing her and her legs were threatening to give way. Mercy had always been that child who sprung her actions up on others, she had always done things that weren’t expected of her and went to the extreme to show it, but even Nene didn’t see this one coming.
Jaiye watched her fall on her knees and he knew whatever was wrong was weighing her down not only emotionally but physically.
The moment the call had come in, he had watched her go from happy to shocked and now confused. He covered the little distance between them and pulled her up. Then, gently, he helped her sit on the large bed.
“What in the world does she think she is doing? America?!” He heard her say to nobody in particular, her statement wasn’t directed to him, she was just talking, talking to herself as if questioning someone. “Mercy!!!” She screamed and stood up. Then she started pacing the room, while she tried dialling Mercy’s number. It was switched off. Nene cussed and threw her phone at the wall. It came shattering on the tiled floor, the parts scattering immediately, making what used to be a phone look like a pile of rubbish.
“Nene, calm down” Jaiye said. She barely looked in his direction, she was too busy pacing the room and uttering every cuss word in the world.
He marched over to her, grabbed her shoulders firmly and brought her to a halt.
“Whatever is wrong with you can certainly be taken care of when you’re calm.” He said gently but her response wasn’t in any way gentle.
“My sister just flew to America to do God knows what, dude! That can’t be taken care of by being calm!” Then she pushed him away and dashed out of the room.
It took Jaiye half an hour to find her, she was at the hotel bar, drinking and smoking. There was a young man who looked like a model, talking to her, she looked uninterested in what he was saying but still, she was listening. Jaiye sensed she was very drunk, considering she had enough earlier, he knew it was only a matter of time before she started acting out of control.
He marched to the bar and gently pulled her up, she looked at him and willingly let him pull her. The young man she was with seemed unhappy she was being pulled away. He made to complain and instantly recognised Jaiye.
“Ah chairman, I no know say na you” he said, grinning like an idiot. Jaiye simply nodded and carried Nene, he ran up the stairs and took her to the room.
By the time he got to the room, she was drifting into sleep. He laid her on the massive bed after he had removed her shoes and dress, exposing her round full breast in the lacy bra she wore.
She smiled at him as she shut out the world and welcomed the dream world.
“Take care of that Mazi, I’ll be coming in a bit late and I won’t be able to make the meeting. Yes. Thank you”
Nene stretched and opened her eyes, the sharp pain in her head reminded her of the night before and foretold how terrible the next couple of hours was going to be for her.
Holding her head with one hand, she rose up and staggered into the bathroom. She sat on the toilet seat and waited for a few minutes, hoping the severe headache would subside a bit, she cussed Mercy and her stupid attitude for her present condition. Who would have known she was planning something as drastic as hopping on a plane and flying to a country where she knew nobody and she had never been? She did not even state when she would be back.
Nene stoop up and staggered back into the room, Jaiye was concluding a call when she walked in.
“Hi” he smiled at her and she tried to smile back but nothing was easy for her to do at the moment, not even smiling. “I have ordered breakfast and painkillers for you, You are likely to feel really uncomfortable in the next couple of hours.”
She nodded and that small action threatened to break her head into halves.
“You should freshen up, so you can come eat breakfast” he added and she shed her remaining clothes, not caring she was getting nude in front of a man she was getting attracted to and had kissed the night before. Only then did she realise she slept in nothing but her bra and pant. For the first time in her life, she thanked Heavens that she had chosen a decent pair of undies to wear.
Usually, Nene covered her hair with a shower cap while she bathed but this morning, she let the shower on to her hair and body without covering anything. The icy water splashed on her body and she enjoyed it as its coolness eased the slight discomfort the night before had brought.
When she was done showering, she wrapped herself in a towel and brushed her teeth, getting rid of the horrible taste in her mouth. By the time she returned to the room thirty minutes after, she was feeling slightly better and she hoped the painkillers would do the rest.
Jaiye offered her a cup of steaming coffee. He watched her intently, as she sipped it little by little and eventually, used it to swallow the pills in the large tray on the bed.
“you should eat something” he muttered.
She shook her head.
“You just swallowed strong painkillers, you need to eat something Nene” he said firmly. Nene almost giggled, he was playing guardian. And to be honest, it was fine with her. Having a hot millionaire play guardian wasn’t something she had ever had and she certainly loved it.
She eyed the plate of fries in front of her, picked the fork by it and started to eat slowly. Her hair was still wet and was dripping on the bed.
“Tell me what exactly is wrong Nene” he said to her when she was halfway through breakfast and when she had emptied the coffee in the cup she was holding.
“my sister, Mercy, she travelled out of the country last night to America and I don’t know who she left with. She has been staying with me since she came from our town for some weeks now and I thought she was fine. Apparently she wasn’t and she has been doing a lot of things I was not aware of.” She looked at Jaiye and he was staring at her, as if lost in deep thought. She continued to speak, “She just dumped her baby with the neighbours and disappeared just like that. What am I supposed to do with a child? I have no idea how to take care of a baby and…” her voice trailed off as Jaiye’s brows slowly creased into a frown.
She looked away from him and started to play with her fingers. “the baby is not mine Jaiye, it is Mercy’s” she said.
He didn’t say a word, didn’t move and didn’t make a sound. He just sat there, staring at her.
Nene didn’t look at him, she wasn’t sure what that piece of information meant to him and how he would take it, just a day ago, she had walked into his office to collect money to take care of “her baby”, a baby that he now realised wasn’t even hers.
Jaiye kissed her on the lips and got up. Then he said, “get dressed. We are returning to Lagos now. The chopper is here”. Then he sauntered out of the room.
Nene slumped into the bed. Everything about the way the man saw her was going to change forever!
Oluchi wasn’t the one to view videos on the internet, she still wasn’t used to the internet TV idea and she didn’t think she ever would because her idea of television still firmly remained the old idea of a big screen in the house where she didn’t have to pay for data or internet to watch. But right now, she was snooping through internet videos.
It was after she had kept looking for something on Nene, she didn’t trust the woman to go away without asking for more or trying to be funny, so she had decided to dig for more dirt on her if she ever tried to be silly.
The Fowler family patriarch had also gave her more reasons to do this when the old man had called her aside, shortly after Jaiye left the Fowler family mansion, telling her to not relent in her effort of having a back up plan just in case she decided to blackmail them.
She had not expected to discover the things she did and she was surprised that she had not found them the first time she looked.
It was the program Nene hosted, it was called “The Diggerz” and it was a show where she exposed dirt and secrets about very popular people and celebrities.
Oluchi chewed on the chips in her mouth and swallowed hard, she did not know if Nene came looking for a story when she stumbled on one or if she just got lucky but one thing was for sure, she was dangerous to the Fowlers at the moment and she had to be stopped immediately.
She grabbed her phone and dialled the Fowler family patriarch, she waited impatiently as the phone rang but she got no response. She tried two more times and it was the same response. She decided to send him a text to inform him she had discovered something, then she picked her phone to warn Jaiye Fowler.
Jaiye Fowler’s phone was off and somewhere in his bags when Oluchi tried to reach it, he had landed in Lagos and was driving Nene back to her house while Oluchi kept trying his line.
Nene had tried her best to keep quiet and stay out of his way during the trip back to Lagos and he had not said a word to her either.
He reached her house and killed the engine, Nene smiled at him, knowing deep down it was the last time he would look for her or care about her.
“goodbye” she muttered and he nodded. She made to get down and then turned to him, “I’m sorry Jaiye for lying to you…” and again, all the response she got was a nod.
She got out of the car, reached the trunk of the car and pulled out her small bag.
Then, with her heart breaking and her eyes heavy, she watched the man she was slowly beginning to fall for, drive out of the street.