“You won’t believe who I saw this morning at the jewelry store buying an engagement ring!” My friend shouted at the other end of the phone.
I rolled my eyes, half looking at my computer screen, half monitoring Missy’s movements.
“This person must be really special to get you this excited” I responded.
“Yes, he is special, none other than Jeremiah” Ego said
I almost jumped out of my chair, Jeremiah was seen buying an engagement ring? For who?
“Bella. Are you there?” Ego repeated like the third time before I finally gave a low ‘huh’
“He bought a size 8. He was specific when he was asking the store attendant. That’s your size Bella. I am so happy for you, my dear friend. Don’t worry, I made sure he didn’t see me” Ego said in one breath.
“How can you be so sure the ring is for me?” I had said that before realizing how stupid the question was and my dear friend didn’t hesitate to make me feel more stupid.
“That’s a very silly question, Bella. Your boyfriend who is head over heels in love with you buys an engagement ring and you wonder if it’s for you?”
“We have barely been together for 5 months amidst the whole Edgewood/Pentagon House issue….” I began, defending my previous remark.
“Which, thank God has been resolved” Ego cut in “Who else would he be buying a ring for?” She asked with her headmistress tone.
One would think she was my mum whenever she used that tone with me.
“Well, I don’t know. I am just…” I began but she cut me short.
“That ring is for you Bella. I am only wondering how he knew your size” My friend said and I could picture her in her James Bond state right now, trying to put two and two together to decipher how Jeremiah knew my ring size.
By now, missy has decided to keep herself busy with the TV remote. The TV remote was what she used to get my attention as she was trying to do now.
Better luck next time, Kitty.
I ignored her as my mind drifted off to my mother receiving a call in my presence yesterday. She had walked into her room to complete the strange call, came back few minutes later only to tell me my cousin’s boyfriend of five years called her to help him find out my cousin’s ring size and she knowing too well that my cousin and I had similar hand frame, she would like to give him my own ring size so as not to raise any suspicion with my cousin by asking for hers directly.
I had responded to her with a “size 8” absent mindedly.
My cousin and I had always teased each other about sharing the same ring size anyway so I was beyond suspicious of my mother’s little antics.
Smart woman! I didn’t believe my mother could think of such plan in a couple of minutes. I must have underestimated her.
I narrated my thoughts to Ego. “That’s it then!” She almost screamed. “Do you still doubt that the ring is for you?”
“Oh goodness, Jeremiah is going to propose to you!” She exclaimed further as though it was just hitting her. “Do you have your nails done…Manicured, painted? What dress would you have on the next time you see him? When next are you seeing him? What perfume will…?” My friend chattered away.
“Ego! It may not be now. We are just recovering from the whole Edgewood issues, he may want to give it sometime, please calm down” I said.
“Nonsense…. Jeremiah is proposing to you soon. It may even be today, so get ready! Sorry I let the cat of the bag. Poor guy wanted it to be a surprise, I am sure. So let me know how it goes and act surprised.” She said, then added “Don’t mind me, to be your chief bridesmaid is sweeting me.” She giggled before dropping the call.
The next few minutes got me wondering if to be a bride was sweeting me. A lot had happened in 5 months.
We won the Edgewood vs Pentagon House case, I had left Gregory heart broken by choosing Jeremiah and Edgewood over him and Pentagon House, Patrick had been sacked, Lisa resigned honorably, Chief Momoh was voted out of the board.
In fact, there had been a major shift in Edgewood and everyone was adjusting to the changes… And here was Jeremiah, planning to propose.
My thought was interrupted by a text from him,
“Hey babe, dinner by 8 at our favorite spot? I ordered for some pictures and music too. Look chic. I will be picking you up by 7:30. Tonight is going to be beautiful”
My heart sank.
Ego was correct, everything added up.
Jeremiah was going to propose! Now I wish I didn’t know. Ego! See how this woman has put me under so much anxiety.
As I began a mental picture of what to wear, mother came in from her saturday morning walk. Yes, Jeremiah’s conniving partner was back. I rolled my eyes.
My mother’s excitement couldn’t be hidden. I decided to do a bit of detective work with her,
“Mother, you seem so excited, care to share?
“I am always excited” Came her response as she bent to stroke missy who had gone to meet her upon hearing her come in.
“This look is different” I said eyeing her suspiciously.
“Why are you looking at me like that?” She asked defensively.
“Well, because I know what you and Jeremiah are planning” I replied accusingly.
My mother flushed, surprised.
“Who told you ?”
“Oh, that means I am right” I said, my eyes coming wide open.
“You are such an inquisitive young lady.” She shook her head. “I wonder who is more curious between you and your cat.” She said walking into her room.
She was going to be around for a week and she had only spent three days. Jeremiah had met her on the first and they had both connected instantly. But both of them conniving to help Jeremiah propose to me? That was way beyond me, I still marvel at such closeness.
I followed and called behind her asking about what I already had an answer to.
“Did he say it was today? Is your future son in law proposing today?”
“Didn’t your informant give you full details?” She called back, shutting the door behind her just before I could enter her room.
I opened the door and went to join her on the bed, Missy who wasn’t ready to miss out on the the party did likewise.
“Mama Isabella” I said calling her the way my father’s people did and tickling her at the same time. In a little while, she gave up the hard face and bursted into laughter.
“Tonight…by 8pm!” She screamed as I tickled her the more.
“Wow! Its true, then.” I said staring into space.
“Its a beautiful thing, my daughter. This man loves you and I have no doubt he will take care of you. Its time to be happy again” My mother said hugging me close.
Its time to be happy again….
Those words rang like a bell in my head. Those words kept me whistling as I dressed up for dinner. Those words made me say yes when Jeremiah proposed later that night. I knew those words would carry me through when I say ‘I do’ to the one man my heart beats for.
Truly, its time to be happy again.
Written by Oluwatoyosi Adesuyi
For short stories and fictions: