''Well dear, it is a good thing, right?'' asked Julie.
''Wow, he must be close to his mum, which is a nice thing.... Sometimes'' said Melissa. ''I didn't even know when I said yes, sure, okay, why not. Now I am going to have lunch with them tomorrow, after service. He happens to be an Anglican too, so he asked me to come to St. Patrick's Parish, which is where they worship. He would then take me 'home' in quote (she makes the double air quote sign with her fingers), after service. I am so nervous''.
''This guy could just be your husband you know''. ''I only pray he is not like every other guy out there. You really have to be careful okay? Guys would do anything to be a lady's first. They can even go as far as seeing your parents, so you can feel relaxed and let them in. I love him oh but I don't want him reaping where he did not sow, unless he marries you. Honestly, I can't say how proud I am of you. It is really difficult to find a virgin these days so please do all you can to keep it for the right person, under the right ceiling, a person deserving of your special kind of loving'', Julie smiles.
''Ok, now she's singing'', Melissa said.
''Ooh you know how much I love that song na, even though I no be virgin. Tu Face really killed the song''. ''Don't worry dear, relax your spirit. Things would go on smoothly'', Angela assured Sonia.
The next day after service at ST. Patrick's Parish, Derrick took Sonia to his house to meet with his mum. When they got to the house, the dining table was already set and Derrick’s mum ushered then to the dining.
''Sonia darling, I am sorry I couldn't make it to service. I wanted to prepare something nice for us all to eat. I hope you love coconut rice'' Mrs Smith said while she opened the plates to reveal the contents.
''Yes ma, I do. Thank you''
''Okay,I consider you to be a part of this family now, so please bless the food''. ''Oookay ma. Let us close our eyes and hold hands. In Jesus' name'' ''Amen'', they replied
''Most Gracious God, I thank you for this wonderful family and I thank you for this wonderful lunch. I ask that you bless and sanctify the food and bless our mummy who has done well to prepare it. Amen''. ''Amen''. They replied.
''So dear, tell me about yourself'' ''Well ma...'' Sonia began with a smile.
''I am from an Anglican family of five. My dad, mum, my elder brothers and myself. I am a 100level students of Fine Arts...'' ''Wait a minute, you are studying Fine Arts?''
''Interesting. That is not something most young ladies want to study, and I mean that in a good way. Most ladies want to study Accountancy, Mass Communication, Medicine, Law, ah! Law. I think it is brilliant and smart to think out of the box, follow your heart, and I bet you, you'll be satisfied doing that which you love'' ''Thank you ma. It wasn't easy getting my mum's approval. She wanted me to study Microbiology. Actually, when I got my WAEC result, I was uncertain which course to go for. Before I wrote the exam, I told myself my result would determine the course I'd study. I intended to study Arts if I did better in it or study Science if I did better in it. Alas! I got all my papers, 9As. So I was confused and I decided to follow my ear and do that which I enjoyed doing. Life is too short, why spend it doing something you don't really love''
''Wow, 9As. That is a record I thought only my son had. Then, I was so quick to tell anyone who cared to listen that my son had 9 distinctions. You know, I can't forgive you for graduating with a second-class upper division. You are brighter than that. Whatever happened?''
''Mum, please don't start''.
''Well dear, you must promise me you would graduate with a first class honors''
“I promise ma'', she smiled graciously.
''And I promise to get you a car when you graduate with a first class''
''Wow ma, now I wish I was graduating tomorrow''.
''You can make use of Derrick’s first car for now though, till your graduation day'' ''I don't understand ma''
''I got Derrick a mini jeep as his car gift after school. Now he has bought his car, he dumped mine. So annoying''
''Well, you kept reminding me of how I didn't graduate with a first class each time I rode the car. I just had to get something of my own''
Sonia was still puzzled and so Mrs. Smith made it clearer.
''After lunch, Derrick would take you to my house and hand over the car to you. That is if you are ok with it''.
''Ma, I really don't know what to say''
''Save it. Just make me proud with that first class okay?''
''Thank you so much ma''.
''You are most welcome. Now if you both would excuse me, I want to get some sleep. Make yourself comfortable dear. It was a pleasure getting to know you'' ''Same here ma, and thank you for the spectacular meal''.
Mrs. Smith leaves the dining room. When she had gone upstairs, Sonia was now free to eat the way she wanted.
''Ah! Your mum can cook for Africa, the food is great''.
''I have a food flask you know, you can take some home''.
“Insult me now, insult me you hear?'' They both laughed.
After eating, they cleared the dinning, and washed the plates together. They then went to the sitting room and Derrick was about to slot in his favorite movie, 'Coming to America', when Sonia's phone beeped.
''Wow! That is it then. I've got to go home''.
''Is anything wrong?'' ''No dear, the alarm was for my studies''.
''Today is Sunday you know, you can take a break''. ''I would love to, but I am a student and studying is what makes me a good one. Besides, I love to shine in the class when the lecturers start asking questions''.
''That is good. Well, as much as I wouldn't want you to go, I promised not to get in between you and your degree. So do you by any chance know how to drive? If you don't no problem, but if you do, I would love you to ride your car back home''. ''My mum had to force me to learn how to drive, so I could be running errands for her. Funny enough I almost didn't. Alas! It has paid off. I really am grateful for this car gift, please let your mum know ok?''
Derrick grabbed his car keys and they left the house together. They went to Derrick’s mum's apartment and then Sonia got into her car and Derrick drove behind her. When they got to Sonia's apartment, she parked the car in the garage provided by her landlord, and they had a brief talk.
''I really had a nice time today thank you''.
''You are most welcome''. ''Please Derrick, can I ask you a question?'' ''Certainly, shoot please''. ''What of your dad?''
''Oh, that'', he said and then fixed his gaze on his shoe.
''I noticed you had only pictures of your mum hung up on your wall, in your house. I didn't see any picture of your dad''.
''Well dear, we were never close. He and my mum separated when I was 12 and I saw him just once after the separation. We learnt he died last year, of cancer, cancer of the lungs. He was a chain smoker''.
''Oh, I'm sorry''.
''Don't be. He wasn't worth it''.
''So I usually switch off my phone when I study. I would call you after studying ok?''
''I will be waiting student''.
''Be a good boy''. ''You can count on it''. She gave him a hug and a peck on his left cheek and then she went inside while he got into his car and drove off.
Written by Jonah Sandra