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Friday, May 20, 2016

The Chief's Pride (5) wedding bells



"I told you didn't I? That you should not worry, my parents will love you. As I do!" said Reg. It was a day after our visit to his parents and we were at his apartment. 

 He was right. His family had been welcoming and seemed to like me. Except for his mother who was a bit cool towards me.

 When I pointed it out to Reg, he simply laughed.

 "It's not that she doesn't like you. It's the fact that I picked my own bride that's the issue," he said. 

 He added that his mother had been trying to matchmake him with another lady, the daughter of a family friend.

"Someone she believes will suit my status as a Prince and their heir. But I told her that was in the past. That the days when parents picked partners for their children was over," said Reg.

Then holding me by the shoulder, he stated:

"You are my choice, Isi. I've made that clear to my people and they have no choice but accept you. So, rest your mind, Sweet."

 I was reassured by his words and his obvious love for me.

 Besides his parents, we had mine to contend with too. This is Nigeria afterall where parents still have a big say in whom their children marry. A girl might have a guy she's crazy about but if her parents don't like the look of him, then she is in trouble.

 My mother first met Reg when she came for a work related programme in Port Harcourt. While she liked him, she thought I was too young to be thinking of getting married.

 "You are not yet 21, Isi. So, what's the hurry?" she wondered. "You have your whole life ahead of you with so much you can do with it. You can go back to school for a Masters degree, see the world before settling down. Enjoy your youth while you still have it my dear," she advised me.

 What else is there to see of the world, I thought to myself. Unknown to her, her little Isi had seen much of the world. I had travelled with Chief T for instance to many countries, had been to all the continents and seen so much. 

 So, as far as I was concerned, I had seen it all. But she did not know all these as my 'runs' lifestyle on campus was a secret I never wanted them to ever know about.

 So, I told her I could always see 'the world' after marriage.
 "It's not as if Reg will put me in purdah after we marry. His job takes him around and I'm sure he'll take me along on some of his trips," I argued.

 "Alright, dear," she conceded. "But you have to wait till you are at least 22 before marrying him. Marriage is a serious business; there's more to it than just falling in love and having a lovely wedding. 

 "You need to be mature enough, mentally and psychologically to be able to cope with the rigors of marital life. I've been in it for over twenty years so I know what I'm talking about."

 "Ok, Mum," I agreed. "But, I'm not sure, Reg will want to wait that long. Infact, he wants us to have our wedding as soon as I finish my service."

 "If he loves you, he'll wait for you," she said.

 Then, giving me a searching look, she noted:

 "You love him vey much, don't you?"

 I nodded.

 "I do, Mum. He's my world," I stated simply. 

 "Oh my! My baby girl is all grown up!" she exclaimed, smiling. "You're a woman now!"

 "Mum! I'm not a baby anymore o! I'll soon be a married woman!" I rejoined.

 She laughed heartily.
 "I can see that. But to me, your mother, you'll always be my little girl! Come and give Mama a big hug!" she said, her arms spread wide.
  Over a year later...
 Isi stood in front of the large mirror and examined the gown. She did not want anything complicated so had opted for a simple style. It was a cap sleeve design with lace bodice. It was cinched in at the waist and flared out over her hips to the floor.

 This was her second fitting for the gown and it seemed to be taking shape.

 "Looking good," she said, turning to get a view of the back.

  Later, she sat to confer with the designer on a few adjustments to be made especially on the bodice of the gown.

 As Isi stepped out of the showroom, her mobile rang.

 It was Reg.

 "How's my baby doing today?" he asked.

 She stood by her car for a moment to chat with him. He wanted to know when she was coming over to PH from Lagos.

 "I miss you, Isi. Hope you can still come over this weekend?" he said. They had not seen each other for nearly a month and he had begun to complain about her absence.

 The plan was for her to do some of the shopping and arrangements for the wedding coming up in less than six weeks before joining him in Port- Harcourt to spend some time together before their big day.

 But that no longer seemed possible as she still had so much to do.

 "So sorry, Reg. I want to be with you too. But my mother and I need to sort out the catering and hall arrangements and other stuff. So..."

 She could hear his sigh of annoyance at the other end.

 "Alright! But don't stay away for too long," he stated grumpily.

  The following week, she had some free time so she flew down to PH to be with Reg.

 The following day, Reg got a call from Dr Patrick, his family doctor to see him with Isi in respect of some tests she had done some weeks before.

Actually, it was Reg's parents that had made her do the tests.

Reg had explained the reason behind it.

"As the first son of the family and heir to my ancestors throne, they want to ensure the succession line is secured. So, any woman I marry has to be able to bear children. There's nothing to it; it's just a formality. I know you are ok, sweetheart so you have nothing to worry about," he had said back then.

At the hospital, they were shown to the doctor's office.

"Sit down," he said. They sat opposite him, waiting for him to speak.

He glanced at both of them then looked down at a file on his desk.

"Reg, can you excuse us for a minute? I'll like to talk to Miss Isi alone," he stated.

Reg and Isi exchanged glances.

"Why, doctor? Is there any problem?" asked Reg.
"We are going to be married soon, Doctor. So, we are one. Whatever it is, we'll hear it together," Isi insisted.

"Alright," Dr Patrick stated. "Well, its like this..."


What does the test result say? The final part of this story comes up on Sunday. Don't miss it!

Do enjoy your weekend!


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