It’s been a long time coming, this series! And it’s finally here! Take a seat, or whatever, and get prepared to delve into the lives of this humble little family… wait, sorry, they’re not a little family, actually. You’ll see what I mean. Get prepared to fall in love with some of the characters, be indifferent to some, and absolutely despise some! Let’s waste no further time and get into it!
A bright and lovely Thursday morning. Kwame Benson’s third morning in Ghana after being away for years in Canada.
As the time read 7:15, he was seated at the dining table of the Dolphyne, busily eating with his little twin cousins. The youngsters, dressed in their school uniforms, were done with their bowls which had once been filled with oats, and were swinging their feet, waiting for the call so they could set off for school.
“Good morning, Kwame! How are you doing this morning?”
Kwame looked up from his bowl to smile in response to the greeter.
Mrs. Larissa Dolphyne. The lady of the Dolphyne tribe. Daniel Dolphyne’s evergreen wife. Mother of the twins and three older children. No doubt about it, there was an aura of grace that just seemed to follow her all round. Whenever she walked into a room, nobody needed to be told that a queen had entered. A queen that silently commanded respect and admiration from all and sundry.
“I’m fine, Auntie. Just having my breakfast at the moment,” he replied.
“Good, good. Still adjusting to the time zone change?”
“Yeah, I guess. I should be fine by the end of the week, though.”
“Yeah, of course, you’ll be fine. You’ll soon get used to things here. The weather and all,” she said, nodding at him. She then turned to the youngsters at the table, reminding them to check if they had packed all their books for the day.
Kwame briefly stole glances at her, then blinked and shook his head and smiled to himself. Larissa was his auntie alright, but it was near impossible to ignore what a devastating work of art she was. For a woman in her mid-40s, a mother of five, everything about her on a physical front was almost perfect, and since his arrival, he couldn’t help but marvel at her astounding beauty.
Her magnificence went beyond her looks. Being a lawyer of high repute, she was one with a brilliant mind and an enviable track record. A Senior Legal Officer at a big firm in the capital, she was a well-respected professional.
“Alright then, Kwame, I have to get to work. See you in the evening,” she said as she finished with the kids, waving to him as she walked out of the dining room and out the living room onto the balcony, where Daniel was seated.
A few seconds later, he heard the two…
“You ready, babe?”
“Yeah, I got the message. So I’ll head to Mr. Adedeme’s office.”
“Oh boy, you’re probably gonna meet that Adamtey guy. Lord knows I can’t stand him.”
“I know right! Such a brash human being. I wonder how radio stations keep calling him up when he rips into their presenters so unapologetically.”
“Hmm.. Oh well… hehe… mmm… come here, you…”
Those last sounds widened the grin on Kwame’s face. He could guess what was going on.
A shy giggle from Larissa followed. I knew it! he thought.
“Oh, Danny! Stop! The kids are still around, you know.”
“Hehe, you know we’ve always been able to work our way around that.”
More giggles. “Honey, not today. The last time I gave in to you in the morning like this, I nearly got into a whole lot of trouble for being super late.”
“Oh yeahhhh. That’s true. My bad, love. It’s unfortunate you can’t resist my charm that well.”
A gentle laugh followed. “Next time, shift your leave period to the legal vacation period, so we don’t have to be held back by these distins.”
“Yes, ma’am! OK, Lari, stay safe. I’m just gonna get Anasah and Serwaah off to school. Call me after…”
Whatever made him stop in mid-sentence, Kwame had no idea. But a subsequent sly giggle from Larissa, followed by, “I’ll see you later, Handsome,” was all he needed to guess what was going on.
And then, he heard Daniel say to himself, “Damn, I really love it when she teases me that way.”
He hadn’t been around for too long, but already one thing was clear about his uncle and auntie.
For a couple that had been married for almost a quarter of a century, they still flirted with each other like university students in a fresh relationship.
“Oh yeah, we’re used to it,” said Oscar, the second born of the Dolphyne children, shrugging his shoulders in amusement as he and Kwame walked through the neighbourhood. “For as long as I can remember, they’ve been like that. Daddy has always said the thought of being with another woman is utterly ridiculous to him, because he’s got the ultimate gift in Ma. It’s great to have parents that are still so crazy about each other after all these years. Just that…” he smirked as he trailed off.
Kwame smirked. “I haven’t been here for too long, but I have a fair idea what you mean.”
Oscar laughed. “They try their best to hide from us. Sometimes, they’re successful. Or most of the time. Just a few times do we accidentally chance upon them. Kinda awkward. But hey, I’d rather walk in on them passionately making out than walk in on them screaming and fighting. A thousand times over.”
“Haha, yeah. Most definitely.”
Oscar, a third year student of one of the nation’s major universities, was on vacation, and as such, had a lot of time on his hands to bond with his cousin. Telling him briefly about his petroleum engineering course, he listened with keen interest as Kwame spoke about his passion for all things related to aviation.
Of course, being the son of the multi-millionaire, Clayton Benson, who had his own airlines, Bersson Air, it seemed rather obvious that matters relating to planes and travelling would be a passion of his.
Nodding as Kwame made mention of Boeings and Airbuses, he noticed a familiar figure on the other side of the road. A figure that got him excited.
“Kwame, I beg, hold that part for a second,” he pleaded before calling out, “Barbara!”
The figure turned.
Almost too excitedly, Oscar grabbed Kwame’s hand, saying, “Let’s briefly see her. It’ll take just a minute!”
Moving over to the other side to meet the girl with a little smile on her face, Oscar, face beaming, said, “What’s up with you, girl?”
Looking slightly amused by the excess enthusiasm on display, she responded shyly, “Nothing much oo. You?”
“I’m doing good by God’s grace. Just relaxing after the stressful sem and all. Oh, by the way, this is my cousin, Kwame. Came from Canada a few days ago.”
“Oh, that’s nice. Hello, Kwame, and welcome back to Ghana,” she replied, stretching out her hand. Kwame reached out and shook it, giving her a friendly smile. “Thanks a lot, Miss Barbara. Nice to meet you.”
As Barbara nodded, Oscar asked, “Umm, Kwame, can I briefly speak to her in private?”
Standing by, observing his cousin as he spoke in hushed undertones to Barbara, Kwame clearly didn’t need to have the brain of Albert Einstein to know that the boy was in love. His excitement at seeing her, the mannerisms as he spoke to her… too many giveaways. When a boy is in love, he thought to himself in amusement.
As he began to observe Barbara, however, he began to have a funny feeling.
Sure, she had a cute smile, which was on her face the whole time Oscar spoke. She seemed to like it when Oscar touched her chin at a point. She laughed when he make a brief joke, or so it seemed, since Kwame didn’t hear whatever it was that was said. Yet, something felt aloof. Amiss.
Almost as if there was something about her that wasn’t genuine.
Weird. Why am I feeling this way…
“Alright, I’ll call you later, then. Bye, Barbie!” Oscar said, hugging her as he waved at Kwame to indicate his little convo with Barbara was over. She waved at Kwame, then walked away.
“What do you think? Fine girl, isn’t she? That’s the one my heart desires,” Oscar murmured to him.
“Why, is something wrong?”
Yeah. There is. For some reason, I just feel there’s something amiss… or am I just paranoid? This is my first time encountering her, anyways. Maybe I’m just being pre-judgmental…
Kwame shook his head. “Sorry, man. I was trying to recollect where I left off before we saw her. But yeah, she’s a lovely girl. Cutest smile I’ve seen in the past three days. You’re definitely your father’s son. Got a good eye for good things.”
“Oh Lord, finally!”
Diamond fell into her seat, sighing with relief. The past two hours had been grueling, with her needing to fill out vehicle details for one of the company’s biggest clients. It had been pretty intense, with her bosses putting her and her colleague under a lot of pressure. A transfer of pressure, since the management at the top were applying the fire to them. But she was finally done with the completion of details. For a National Service worker, she was really doing a lot.
“Chale, girls abrɛ,” her colleague, Naa Shormeh, said as she began to pack.
“Serious oo. This pressure alone entitles me to a sweet bubble bath and a good massage. Ei! Ohh, girls abrɛ tooooo much.”
“Who will give you the massage? Toby or Anasah?” Naa Shormeh asked teasingly.
“Oh, Anas of course. Anas is my darling. Sweetest darling in the world. Toby diɛɛ, if he doesn’t give me that up-and-down look at least three times, then I have to be extremely worried, coz that won’t be my brother.”
“Hahahaha! Ah well, at least the day is over. Time for me to get the hell out of here and find my way to choir rehearsal.”
“Sure thing, baby girl. See you tomorrow,” Diamond said as Naa Shormeh walked away.
A couple of minutes later, having felt that she had released a bit of tension, she grabbed her bag and exited the office.
As she made her way out of the gate and onto the path to the bus stop, she groaned out loud as she noted the growing number of people gathering there. Checking her watch, she looked up to the sky in frustration.
“Ugh! 5:15! The last time I got there at this time, I was there for close to twenty minutes, and even when I got a trotro, the elbowing I had to do to get in. Arrrghh!”
She froze upon hearing those words. Then, as her brain began to register the familiarity of the voice, she closed her eyes. Oh, God, things just went from bad to worse.
The first child of Daniel and Larissa, Diamond Dolphyne, being an almost splitting image of her mother, certainly wasn’t the kind of young lady most guys would fail to take a second look at. Of course, this brought about a lot of attention from guys. A lot of whom she didn’t like.
And the guy behind that voice, Ayembi, apparently also known as Desert Eagle, was one of them.
After encountering him at one of the eating spots she and her colleagues frequented during lunch hours, it was evident he was out to win her over. Only problem was, Diamond could tell a real one from a thirsty one, and everything about him showed that he was one of those thirsty types whose direction was easily determined by his erection. The way his gaze constantly landed on her bust, coupled with her once overhearing him tell a friend how badly he wanted a feel of her ‘juicy curves’, was enough to convince her that her instincts were on point. So she had said no when he made his intentions known. But he wasn’t ready to accept that answer, much to her chagrin.
And as he appeared in front of her, a sly grin on his face, she knew he was nowhere near ready to relent.
She sighed. “Mr. Ayembi, please, I-“
“Oh, come on, babe. Call me Desert Eagle. You know I don’t joke with my nicky,” he said, punctuating that statement with a wink that sent uncomfortable chills down her spine. “So wassup with you, chale? You for make I feel you oo, anaa?”
She looked at him blankly. “Please speak English.”
He snickered. “OK, let’s try this again. What’s up with you, ma? You know I want you bad. Just quit the hard-to-get and let’s get it on like Marvin Gaye said. I don’t like long things.”
Oh, dear Lord, why can’t he just get it into his thick skull that I don’t like him? Diamond thought to herself. She shut her eyes again, took a deep breath and opened them, staring him in the eye.
“Listen, Mr. Desert Eagle. I appreciate your compliments and all. Thank you for telling me how beautiful I am since day one. I truly am grateful for the nice words. But please, I’ve said it from the first time you made your intentions known, and nothing has changed. I am not interested in being your girlfriend. I am not playing hard-to-get, I just don’t wanna date you. If you wanna be my friend, that’s fine, I have no problem with that. But please, no means no. I am not interested!”
He smirked, shaking his head. “Girls. They know what they want, but will always play coy. You know you want me…”
Irritated at this point, she snapped, “Listen, Mr. Man, I’ve had enough of this. No means no! Stop this! Just stop it! Ah, why?”
Stunned, the look on Ayembi’s face slowly changed to a scornful one. Clearly, this rejection had not gone down well at all.
“Hoh! Forget you mpo. Kwasia! Me wey you dey flex me like that? Ibi like you no get brain. See some nonsense. Ah! Me you dey rosh like that? Mtchewww. I swear, you go see your morda for here. Bomboclat girl!”
Having thrown a hissy fit at that statement, he walked off angrily, leaving her with a look of disgust on her face. She shook her head in amazement as he sauntered off furiously.
“Ugh, some of these males are so bloody entitled. Thinking they’re God’s gift to every woman and acting like the Bible commands us women to submit to every dumb command of theirs. Well, good riddance to such foul-smelling rubbish!” she said to herself, looking at the bus stop ahead, which still had quite a lot of people waiting for the next trotro to arrive. “Time to get another burden off my shoulder. I just hope I don’t have to elbow or be elbowed this time. Ugh, even more reasons for pampering myself this evening!”
Well, this is just the start of this journey. Bad vibes about love interests and immature idiots! Loool, let’s see just how this goes. Next week Friday, we get to know more!!