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Paradise Street. Chapter Eight.

Motivational speaker, freelance writer and lecturer at JGA Writing Techniques.


Linda was in very high spirits since the doctor confirmed that she is three weeks pregnant. This is the first time she has ever conceived since ten good solid years of being married.
She sat down in the favorite Part of her bedroom reminiscing of some nights ago when she and George had made that spot she now sat; her favorite.

He had asked; Linda, my sweet pregnant wife, how are you doing?

And she had replied. George darling you know I can't do this alone. We have been married now for the past ten years and this is our first baby. I have just been confirmed three weeks pregnant. I am in pains sometimes. I need you more around. The baby needs it's daddy.

His reply had been. Linda my wife, you complain too much. Am excited about this baby and you know it. Just relax more often and the pains will lesson. Besides it's just your toes you complained has been hurting you. Guess what? I have decided to write a script on our baby. Will title it "The baby at last". And I assure you the film will be released.

George why don't you write the real story and entitle it "Father don't care" because that is exactly how this baby feels about you.

Oh my Linda you exaggerate too much. How do you know that the baby feels that way?

Because I feel the same way too George.

Okay so what can I do to make you know and feel my care?

How about a hot bath with I and the baby now?

Now? Honey why don't you get to the shower bath alone. I need to work on the scenes of the movie I just told you about; “The baby at last” Let me write some scenes down before I forget it. You see the baby is already inspiring me. See you in thirty minuets time. I love you baby.

And she remembered their kiss. There have been many kisses coming by these days, and she was loving it.

As she got up to look out through the window, she saw a cloud of smoke coming out of Nike's building. Before she could think twice; she was out of her house, standing in front of Nike's house which had already attracted a huge crowd as expected; it being Saturday and on Paradise street. With her phone in her hand trying to ring Nike; her heartbeat calmed a bit when she heard her voice.

Hello Linda, Am sorry this isn’t a right time to call. I am at the market buying plantain and can’t hear you well.

Nike come home now your house is on fire!

I am at the market at the bus stop, what are you saying?

Nike your house is on fire! Fire!

What! Fire in my house? How come?

I don’t know there is a thick smoke coming from your kitchen and I see a little flame; she exaggerated.

What! But Ayo is in the house. I left him in the sturdy writing.

But it doesn’t seem there is anyone in your house, please hurry! Some neighbors are trying to break in.

Okay okay. Nike now panicking. I am on my way now. Hangs off and runs off to where she parked her car; gets in, starts the engine and zooms off like someone in a stolen car.


Within twenty minutes, Nike had stormed into paradise street, right in front of her house now gathered with neighbors. As she flung herself out of the car, she could now clearly see the smoke coming exactly out her kitchen's direction. With her mouth agape she raced to her entrance, only to be stopped by someone she knew too well.

Linda, what’s going on, where is Ayo?

I don’t know Nike.

But he is in the house. Nike fired back. I left him writing in the study. Her voice now shaking; grasping Linda by the shoulder.

Nike please calm down. It doesn’t seem anyone is in the house.

Push am down! One, two, three! The door flung open by some male neighbors, who turned fire fighters.

Linda am so scared, where did this crazy Ayo go. Screaming and shaking, she flung her hands to her head jumping up and down.

Persin dey inside o! I don see persin. Hey haaa help am! Help am! The rescue team shouted.

Did you hear that Nike, there is someone in there. Linda reassured.

Ayo! Ayo. Nike called out. Running over to a figure she saw coming out of the house that resemble her husband, she paused in amazement.

What Ayo! You are inside the house? And the house is on fire! staring at him in disbelief.

Do not scream at me Nike. You should thank God am alive. Fanning off the smoke in the air he added: thank God!

I should thank God! What the hell! You almost burnt the house to ashes!

But why did you too stay long? You said you were only going to buy plantain. What happened?

I stopped over at aunty Shola's place first to discuss the business I and her plan to start. Then I rushed to the market after that. I left you at home Ayo. I expected you to put the beans down when it was cooked. Instead you left it on to burn and burn the house? Breathing heavily wide eyed.

How was I to know that, that demon beans was cooked already. I was in the study writing my articles when I got lost in it. It was then I heard someone break into the house that I knew something was wrong. Be happy they rescued me honey. He concluded staring at her for some sympathy.

I should be happy? You know what Ayo, you should have gotten burnt with the beans.

Oh my God Nike! You are so brilliant. Laughing and clapping his hands at the same time.

Looking puzzled she asked. What is it?

Another line for my article. “The government is a burnt beans”. He smiled.

You are crazy Ayo! Crazy! Get the hell out my sight! She marched off.

From that day, everyone around them, then had a nickname for Mr Ayo and it was ‘craze man'. After watching and listening to the discussion, everyone felt there was no need to help them clean up or even sympathize anymore. They deserved it, some judged. Others felt they didn’t get what they deserve; their house should have been burnt down completely. As they all dispatched without feeling sorry; only one person stayed.

Linda thanks so much for staying to help. But you know your condition. You should not be doing this.

It’s okay dear. I can’t leave you like this. The kitchen is burnt up! So much to do. I am happy it didn’t affect other parts of the house.

My sister! If it had happened, what would I have done? Where will we start from. Ayo has gone crazy. And I am beginning to lose it. Linda please you have done enough, go sit now.

My dear thanks for being considerate about my condition. But do not worry, I will rest later on. I have been trying to reach George but his line is switched off. You don’t look well Nike. Turning the attention back to her. Please open up to me; you don’t have to worry about us all the time. Rose isn’t here now, you can talk to me. You know I got your back anytime.

Linda, I think am losing it. Now giving way to tears. I am really losing my mind staying married to Ayo.

Oh honey. Taking her into her arms and crying along, but getting distracted by her phone almost immediately. Who is this? She wiped her tears and answered.

Hello this is Linda. She answered very calmly.

Is this Mr George Benjamin’s wife?

Yes please. I am she.

Good. We need you at the station. Your husband has been detained and he asked me to call you.

What the hell! What do you mean by detained? And where?

Come over to Jegede police station. Hangs up.

Hello, hello. Shit! What is happening today! Looking at Nike in disbelief.

Linda, I heard. Will go with you. She said standing to her feet.

No dear. You stay here. You house is in a mess. And you need to keep an eye on Ayo. It’s like the men in our lives are all losing it. With that she went off quickly, like a detective going to a crime scene.

Fourth five minutes later, she was staring at George eye to eye, as he stood behind bars; sulking.

Hello George, how is it behind bars? She asked.

It isn’t funny Linda, bail me out of here.

But why did you choose to call me?

Because you are my wife Linda.

No George. I know the truth. It is because your boss asked you, or let me say; warned you not to sell that script to your company’s rival, but you refused. And now the richest mam in the town got you arrested, because the whole story in the script was about him. Did you think it wasn’t going to lick? The rich have ears everywhere! So no one cares to bail you and you had to disturb your pregnant wife.

Looking defeated. Baby please, for the sake of our baby.

Hmmm I like that "for the sake of our baby’’ you know George for the sake of our baby, I have to go rest my pretty feet and come see you tomorrow.

Common honey, what are you doing? I called for tour help.

But why can’t you call Ayo? Opps, his house got burnt today, so he doesn’t have time now for you. Call Emeka! Oh wait, he is having this big meeting with his sponsors today, so he won’t have time for this. Wait a minute, what about Maggie? Oh she is new in the neighborhood and she is beginning to look at you as a stranger; so that was why you called me. Enjoy cell for this night George, we will see tomorrow.

Linda what the hell!

What the hell what? You think you are the only one who can be crazy? And leave me lonely when you feel like? No George I can be crazy too. After all, I am a writer’s wife. And you know what George; you in cell and me abandoning you here, is the real story. Write it, bye.

Walking off and feeling satisfied, Linda left her husband wondering if he married his wife so, or he made her so. Monsters are not born, they are created; he finally lamented out loud. I wish Emeka could learn from my mistakes and just make things right with his wife. For there is always a moment in a man's life; when all he would count on was the support of his wife, and he wouldn’t get it because of his own negligence towards her. While he waited for tomorrow to come, he wondered how Emeka's day had went and what trouble he was up to now with Rose; one of the pack.

At that very minute, Emeka was on a visit to his ex wife’s house, with a job in mind. He and called her on her cell phone and told her told to meet him in front of her gate; she readily accepted because in her vulnerable moment, she felt he wanted to make amends. As he approached her gate, he saw her figure leaning so gorgeously on the gate with one hand to her waist.

Hello my Rose.

And what are you doing by my house and calling me your Rose? She asked curiously.

You don’t understand Rose. You just won’t understand.

Then make me understand! Getting emotional she added; Emmy it’s me o.

Okay I hope you never forget it. In a split of seconds he sprayed pepper spray into her eyes.

Haaaaa Emeka stop! My eyes! my eyes! What did you spray Into my eyes? Oh God my eyes, do you want to get me blind?

Yes! Yes Rose. I want to get you blind so you won’t find your way into my house again. That was pepper spray, next time you meddle in my writing business; I will look for Onion spray to blind you more. And stop teaching my kids to hurt me. Goodbye.

With that he walked off not even minding her cries. Not even minding what was going on in the lives of other writers and not caring one bit of how they might judge him for what he just did to Rose. At least, he was very sure of one person that would never judge him, and that was Maggie.

The Author, Jade George Anibor


Maggie sat in her home that evening writing. She had been writing for two straight hours immediately after dinner. And she knew, he would be here any minute to drag her to bed. Or better still; convince her and fail as usual.

Maggie. Peter peeped into her study as he called her. Baby you have been writing for the past two hours. Please come to bed. You know the server of our bed needs your body to code in sleep.

Oh please Peter stop it! Our bed is still aching and quaking from the one we did last night. Please I need to write okay. I drove all day in town making research for my book, only to get to the street and hear that Ayo’s house was on fire earlier on during the day. I had to go check him out, I mean he is our next door neighbour. And the fool wasted my whole time talking trash! About how it all happened and how he feels sorry for his wife but not sorry about getting the article right. I couldn’t help but listen and then come home to prepare food for you this over grown baby.

Hey watch it young lady!

Why should I? Who said a woman must be the one to cook and why am I always the one doing the cooking? I work too Peter.

Okay Meg I get it. I shall leave you to write more; but please do not leave me alone in bed for too long. The weather is cold. He walked off in a hurry, not ready to argue with her because she always won; and he always begged in the end.

It was now 3 a.m in the morning and Maggie was still up in her study writing her poem and now on the phone with Ayo.

Ayo I really need to get this line right. It isn’t forthcoming. Meggie complained over the phone to Ayo.

We have been on this poem for an hour now Meg, I think you are having a writer’s block.

Wait hold on. I think my husband is coming. She wasn’t done with that sentence when Peter came in looking angry and horny.

Really it’s 3a.m in the morning. And I wake up and not see my wife by my side, only for me to come see her in her study talking to another man on the phone!

How did you know it’s a man?

Who is it?

Okay fine! It’s Ayo.

What! Ayo? The one that almost got his house burnt.

Yes. I need some inspiration from him about the poem I am working on.

Really? Give me the phone. Grabbing the phone from her instead. Ayo! What are you discussing with my wife by 3a.m in the morning?

Oh just telling her how much I love her. He smiled.

You love my wife? Peter asked irritated.

Common honey, he didn’t mean that. Maggie said laughing. He meant that he loves my brain.

Look Ayo, I do not care what you meant. But I don’t appreciate you calling my wife by this time, and trying to burn down my marriage by telling my wife you love her, good night. He hangs up on Ayo. Staring at his wife he asked; Maggi what’s going on?

Nothing Pete. I just wanted an inspiration from Ayo because he is so good in poetry.

So I don’t inspire you Maggie?

Peter please! You are an engineer. Stop talking trash.

Take off your glasses and let’s go to bed. He ordered.

Okay boss. Glasses off and bed here I come.

Honey look at your eyes Maggie! All deep with dark shades. You are stressing your eyes too much. Remember what the doctor said; even though you've got powerful glasses, if you don’t take it easy; you just might go blind.

Blind! I haven’t gotten a best seller yet! Speaking softly and then crying out. Pete did the doctor say the glasses will heal my eyes?

No honey.

Then I better write now before I go blind. At least I will know that my sight was not in vain.


Maggie knew what that full pronunciation of her name meant: no more argument. And off to bed she went.

© 2020 Jade George Anibor

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