Read Chapter 20 here.
“Ayesha, Nadia and I are going grocery shopping for your dad and Bibi’s homecoming dinner. Do you mind keeping your uncle company while we are out? I don’t want to leave him alone for too long. You know him,” Ida said with a wink.
“Would be my pleasure, Auntie,” Ayesha said with a smile. “How long will you be gone?”
“Maybe two hours…depending on the traffic situation. We hope to be back before 2pm but in case we are not, could you whip up something for both of you?”
“Sure, I can manage that. Don’t forget to buy me something.”
“What would you like me to buy for you?”
“I don’t know…anything. Surprise me, Auntie.”
Ida chuckled. “Alright, I’ll try. Let’s go, Nadia.”
“Be good, sis,” Nadia said as she turned to follow her mother.
“You know I always am,” Ayesha replied with a smile.
Ayesha waited for them to leave and quickly ran to Omar’s bedroom.
“Honey? Forgotten something?” Omar asked from the bathroom. There was no answer as he came out, wiping his face with a towel.
“Ayesha? What are you doing here? Ida is…”
“Gone. She went to the market with Nadia,” Ayesha replied.
“Oh okay great. Why didn’t you go along?”
“Apparently your wife doesn’t trust leaving you by yourself so I’m to keep a watchful eye on you.”
They both burst out laughing.
“If only she knew…”
“Hmm…come to think of it, what do you think would happen if she found out?” Ayesha asked.
“I actually haven’t made time to think about it.”
“Is it? Why, you’re afraid of what the outcome might be?”
“What do you think? Imagine being in her shoes: finding out your husband is sleeping with your goddaughter. How would you handle it?”
“Well, knowing that I’m having my own secret affair with my trainer, I don’t think screaming infidelity should be the way to go,” Ayesha said.
“It’s not just about sleeping with someone; Ida knows I’ve had my fair share of fun outside the home. But you as Tariq’s daughter should be a no-go. At least let’s agree on that.”
“It’s not like you and my dad are blood brothers,” Ayesha said defensively.
“Family sometimes runs beyond blood, babe. It’s like someone disputing that Nadia isn’t your sister because you don’t have the same parents.”
Ayesha nodded. “Anyway, all good things come to an end at a point, right?” Ayesha said as she wrapped her arms around his neck. “I’ll be marrying Jamal soon and we can put an end to this chapter. A wonderful chapter.” She kissed him.
“Will you miss me?”
“You know I will,” Omar said, holding Ayesha closer to himself.
Ida’s phone rang as she drove. She swiped the screen.
“Hey T! Back in Accra?”
“Yeah…headed to your place. Are you home?”
“Stepped out not too long ago. Nadia and I are going to get groceries but Omar and Ayesha are home.”
“Oh okay. We’ll meet you there then.”
“Sure. How was the honeymoon? Did you two have fun?”
“Yeah, we did but it feels good to be back home as well. Miss you guys.”
“Miss you too. We’ll prepare your favorite meal as a welcome back gesture, won’t we, Nadia?”
“Miss you, Uncle T,” Nadia said.
“Miss you too, sweetheart. See you soon.”
“Bye, T,” Ida said and ended the call. Ida turned to find Nadia typing on her phone.
“What’s the emergency?” She asked.
Nadia only chuckled.
Tariq ended his unanswered call to Omar.
“Why do you keep trying to reach Omar? We are almost there,” Bibi said.
“I know. Just protocol.” He called again.
“To call him when he’s expecting us?”
Tariq sighed as he canceled the call and put the phone down.
“True. We’re almost there anyway.”
When they entered Omar’s house, Tariq shouted, “Omar!”
The house was quiet.
“Babe, please have a seat while…” They heard a door open. They both looked up.
“Dad!” Ayesha screamed and ran down the staircase into the arms of her father.
“Good to have you back!”
“Good to be back.” Then he whispered, “Where’s Omar?”
“So where’s your uncle?” Bibi asked as she sat. Tariq and Ayesha broke apart.
“In his study. He took a call.”
“Ah I see.”
“Just call me Bibi, dear.”
“Great. Would you like something to drink?”
“I’m fine, thank you.”
“I think I’ll check out the refrigerator myself,” Tariq said, heading towards the kitchen. Ayesha followed.
“What the hell, Ayesha?”
“What did I do?”
“Were you in his room or not?”
“I wasn’t…not when you two arrived. I swear it.”
“Yeah right,” Tariq said cynically as he slammed the refrigerator door.
“What’s wrong? You seem tensed up. Is everything alright?” Ayesha asked.
“Not being able to reach either you or Omar when I’m almost here with my new wife? Yeah, that got me tensed up. I thought by now you would have grown out of this; now that you’ve a great guy willing to marry you but obviously, that’s not the case.”
“Okay, I know I should be offended by that but something tells me this isn’t really about me. What’s really going on, dad? Something’s up with Bibi?”
“She seems to be insecure about Nadia. We were cool when we were away. But she has been off since our drive back. She believes Nadia has a crush on me,” Tariq told his daughter.
“Well, Nadia does a terrible job at concealing her feelings. But that’s nothing to be worried about since Nadia isn’t staying with us.”
“But she practically does; just as this place is your second home.”
“Well, she’d have to deal with her insecurities by herself. Don’t let her trouble you. You have your political career to think about, right, dad?”
Ayesha hugged her father.
“Welcome back. Everything will be fine. You’ll see.”
“Hope so, sweetheart.”
An hour later, Ida and Nadia returned home. After dinner, Bibi asked Ayesha, “You’re coming home with us, right?”
Ayesha glanced at her father. “Well um…I figured you two would appreciate sometime alone in your matrimonial home…”
“Oh never mind that. That was what our honeymoon was for. Now I want to know how to live with my family and that includes you, Ayesha,” Bibi said.
“Well…if you say so and Dad doesn’t mind.”
Bibi glanced at Tariq. “Is that alright with you, babe?”
“Sure; I don’t mind at all. I miss my girl. Would be nice for us to bond together…”
“May I join you too?” Nadia asked.
“Well, I was hoping I could spend some time alone with Ayesha…”
“Unfortunately, the girls come together as a package. You choose one and you’re stuck with the other,” Ida chipped in with a shrug. Bibi looked at Tariq.
“Ayesha?” Tariq asked.
“You know I love being with my soul sister anywhere. So if you wouldn’t mind…”
“If the newest member of the family wants some time alone with Ayesha, I think we should grant that,” Omar interrupted.
“I agree,” Tariq added.
“Then it’s decided. Don’t worry Nadia, you may join us next week. Just want to warm myself in one at a time,” Bibi said with a smile at Nadia.
“Talking from experience, it’d have been better to start off with both of them. You’re not going to get any time alone with Ayesha. She’d either be here or holed up in her room,” Ida said knowingly.
“Don’t worry, Bibi; I’ll try and come out for you,” Ayesha said with a smile.
“I’d appreciate that. You may also invite your fiancé over for dinner. Would love to see him.”
“Huh….beginning your mummy’s roles already, I see,” Ayesha teased. They all laughed.
When it was time for them to leave, Ayesha hugged Ida.
“Be a good girl, will you?”
“Always. See you soon, Auntie.”
Ida hugged Bibi as Nadia hugged Tariq.
“Good to have you back. Missed you,” Nadia whispered to Tariq.
“Same here,” he replied and pulled away.
“Let’s go, honey; been a long day,” Bibi said, wounding her arm around Tariq’s.
“Sure. See you soon, buddy,” Tariq said to Omar with a fist bump. Ayesha waved at Omar as they walked out.
Tariq and Bibi were having small talk while Ayesha was texting Omar. Bibi turned when she heard Ayesha giggling.
“Who’s tickling you, your fiancé?”
“Yep; who else?”
Ayesha’s eyes met her dad’s in the rearview mirror. Her lips curled into a sly smile. Tariq shook his head and turned his gaze onto the road.
(c) Josephine Amoako 2021
Read Chapter 22 here.