Toluwani 27


           Sola drove to his apartment in Marigold estate with a migraine hitting his head hard. His temples throbbed as if someone had taken up the task of hitting it with a hammer consistently. 

He gripped the steering wheel hard as he turned left into the tiled road that led into the estate.

He fought to keep his breath even. If he wasn't careful, he would likely have a panic attack. His chest was constricting badly and he could barely breathe.

On the drive home, he had flung curse words around carelessly. He slammed the brakes when he ought not to and he was almost stopped for disobeying the traffic light. He had hit the road seconds before the lights turned green.

Out of the corner of his eyes, as he sped into the ever-busy expressway, he noted that the traffic warden was been distracted by a commotion happening behind him, if not, he would have ensured that Sola spent some time revising the road user's manual.

Solar cringed when he remembered he had called an elderly commercial driver who was trying to overtake him a "bone head."

"Bone head! Why don't you just fly over my car instead of trying to overtake in this manner," he recalled hissing annoyingly and hitting the pedals hard as a pedestrian almost ran in front of his car simultaneously.

He also recalled yelling, "You should be locked up somewhere not roaming the streets as a sane being!"

But rather he knew he was the one to be locked up in some room so the demons tearing at him won't devour him completely.

He had called the young man "a dipstick." Sola thought he was stupid for not using the pedestrian bridge provided by the government and instead try to cross the busy road with vehicles moving at a high speed.

His head became heavier as he thought about them. He was almost home, and would soon be in his apartment. The tightness in his chest continued to expand as he continued to drive. He arrived at his gate and yanked the car door open, unlocked the gate, and drove into his compound.

He flipped his wallet open to retrieve the keys that open the front door and then gave the door a push as he entered the living room. His house was a two-bedroom apartment furnished to the taste of the contemporary age.

He had two sofas facing each other in the spacious living room. The sofa placed anyone sitting on it at a vantage position of the 43 inches flat-screen Tv. Beneath the Tv was a small chest of drawers that held the decoder for cable stations on the surface. And inside the drawers are the remotes and the utility bills. He also kept an extra pair of each key that opens anything in his house in the drawer.

There was also a small library in a corner of the room, it replaced the position of the bar if there would have been one. It contained all kinds of books and journals Sola thinks could help anyone relax. He ensured that the books are not serious academics since anyone could be invited into his living room and go with one of them.

Off to the right of the room is the dining set with four chairs around it. When he had bought the set he had hoped things would end well between himself and the girl he was seeing then and so had thought they would get married and have her move into the apartment with him. 

He had been in the apartment for five years since he got his appointment at Chesire University, the University where he lectures. 

Now he rarely eats on the dining table, it served him more for his study than his meals. 

Sola flicked on the lights; the cream paintings on the wall welcomed him home but his mood was too sour for him to acknowledge them. He plunged himself fully dressed into one of the sofas tiredly. He barely managed to lock the door and pull his shoes.

He laid there praying and wishing the migraine away. He was too exhausted to undress. 

His mind was too blurry to concentrate on anything. 

He just laid there wishing the world would pass away alongside his anguish.

His phone buzzed in his pocket, he took it out with great effort, he didn't pay attention to the caller id and answered the phone right away. It was his mother, Tayo.

"Sola, did you arrive home safely?"

"Yes," he groaned.

"Thanks to Jesus," his mother exhaled.

"I was worried something terrible would happen after you drove off in that manner."

"No mum, I managed to get home in one piece."

"Sola," his mother called. Sola noted the worry in her voice. "She continued to threaten fire and brimstone after you left, she would have caused more chaos outside than she had done in the hall if the security hadn't acted promptly to heave her out. I'm sorry she caused you so much trouble," she said genuinely.

"I am sorry I almost ruined Dapo's big day. It could have been anyone but not me," tears welled in his eyes again.

He dashed them away furiously, he had only been this soft once and that was when he thought his father was going to die from a cycling accident.

"," his voice thickened He couldn't bring himself to complete it. He was ashamed of himself. He wanted to say he knew his cousin would have been shocked at the turn of events and would demand some sort of explanation.

"Don't worry about him, I met him and Ayo already. Ayo was clearly distraught but she has forgiven you."

"Mum, I can't explain how I got into this," he felt like a baby again confessing his fears to his mother.

He recalled when he was a child and he could always tell his mother everything. She was his best buddy before his father. He had a cordial relationship with his dad and even more with his mum.

He and his mother never drew apart even after he met Toluwani, rather they welcomed her into the family and would often spend time together with her.

His parents doted on him as an only child, however, they ensured they trained him properly. He had grown up to be a respectable person. If not for the morals his mother had taught or sometimes instilled in him with beatings, he would have etched a permanent scar on Ife's soul, not only her face before shoving her out of his car.

He knew if it weren't for the training, he would have done something worse and unimaginable.

Sola sighed and scratched his head.

"You need to come see your dad and I soon,' his mum announced.

His stomach quaked and thunderstorm storms clapped inside him. He had a forbearing of what they intend to discuss with him - Ife.

His parents weren't ones to mince words and never one to impose their decision on people but neither were they also ones to turn their backs on people deliberately cultivating their path to ruin.

It was unavoidable. If he doesn't go visiting, they would come instead.

They only allowed him enough freedom as an adult but they were very much involved in his life.


Flexible yet involving.

He recalled an unpleasant memory.

He had come down with flu and had taken a sick leave from work. It had worsened and he had to be admitted. The doctor had said the flu had affected his respiratory organs and he was placed on oxygen for a week.

The only person he had told was Toluwani, he had tried to soothe her at first, telling her it was a minor case. He had made her promise not to call his mum as Toluwani was worried that he needed his parents to be aware of his health status. He had kept insisting he was fine until the doctors placed him on oxygen.

He had filled in Tolu's contact as emergency and when the doctors called her, she had called his parents right away, telling them all he had been keeping a secret.

Tayo had been furious but she had arrived in the hospital as soon as she could alongside his father.

They had scolded, chastised, and bitten his head off until they made him promise to not hide important details about his life from them, after all, in Africa a child is never older than his parents.

"Okay, I will come during the holidays," he answered her.

“How's Tolu? I didn't see you two talk at the party and that's really odd. Is everything between you two?

Sola sighed.

He knew his mother would pry on this.

"We're good mum, his response sounded like a lie even in his own ears. He knew his mother wouldn't buy it either.

Tayo paused for what seemed like forever, Sola knew she was contemplating whether to press him further or let him off the hook, rather his mother said, Jadesola seemed to be enchanted by her. I know I can't be the only one to have observed that."

The weariness seeped from his bones instantly and the migraine from his head.

He sat straight on the sofa, Mum, you know him? What does he do? Where is he from? he serenaded her with questions.

Tayo on the other end shook her head in pity. Her son is not only emotionally blind but he is also confused.

"I know he is an event planner. One of the best in town and we have worked together on several occasions."

"I also know he's a bachelor and he's on the lookout for a good woman,"

Good night Sola, she feigned a yawn, "My husband needs me," she said quietly and hung up the phone.

She had intentionally added the last part of her statement. If she knew her son well, she had just rubbed him off his night's sleep.

To be continued......

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