When Love Finds You XXX

We are at thirty chapters people. I’m excited. I know today’s chapter will excite you too. Thanks so much to all who have stayed through up until now. You cheer me on to write. And even to those of us who read sometimes, I appreciate you too. And yes, you can catch up; find all chapters here. Happy reading and today’s chapter is dedicated to Delali Ed-Bansah, my personal hair stylist. She slays everytime. So here is XXX.

“I can’t believe it’s been two months.” Freda said and rather than look in the eyes of Dzidzor, she was surveying the large outside of Tahil and wiping her dry hands on her apron.

I can’t believe you’re selling it too.

Dzidzor would have loved to put voice to her disagreement. But she couldn’t. She won’t. Tahil isn’t hers. Freda owns it and Freda has made a decision. She just would miss the place; the smell of fries and chicken that kept her going even while being on a diet, Freda’s welcoming smile and the many memories she has here — with her mum and dad, with Sule and with Kate. She looked at Kate seated opposite her and sipping quietly on a glass of fresh yoghurt.

Freda landed her eyes on Dzidzor. She exhaled hard. And Dzidzor understood. She couldn’t stop herself from. Life has to move on. People move on too.

“I understand.” She tried a smile at Freda. “I’ll just talk to my people about the CSR. We’ll see what quickly we can figure out.”

And she should have spoken with them two months ago. She should have two months ago when she realized they didn’t have a CSR project at Tahil at all. She didn’t. She was afraid to accept in all of these years, trying so hard to be the daughter of her mother and father, she couldn’t pull an easy deal when Target needs it most. The plan with Tahil would have gotten Target easy publicity and the new clients they needed very badly. The economic condition hasn’t helped this past year. Target was losing stable clients who are downsizing to keep up. They had hoped a billboard at Tahil and the other ads they were going to put on menus for a year was going to get them a cheap sell to companies that would not look their way otherwise. She sighed, bottling up her fears.

Trust God.

The phrase she’s been grappling with since she walked out with Matey that Sunday in September her parents had the dinner came at her. She shut her eyes quick and opened them and realized Freda was still standing by their table

“I’m sorry.” Dzidzor smiled at her and looked into the menu. “Jollof for me…” She glanced at Kate. She was playing with her straw, biting at the ends. Her eyes were occupied with a far-away look. “…Jollof for us. Half Plate with fish.”

“I’ll be back.”

Freda left, her eyes as bright as they’ve been since she decided to sell. With each step towards the restaurant, she seemed to be devouring the place she won’t call her own should a buyer show anytime soon. Dzidzor watched her go and then settled her attention on Kate.

“Would Zaina do the trick?”

She supported her chin with her left palm and searched the heart of her friend. Kate laughed, briefly, and looked into Dzidzor’s face.

“I’m serious.” Dzidzor rolled her eyes and pursed her lips. Kate laughed some more. Dzidzor shook her head. “See sister thinking I’m kidding. If Zaina would do, we’ll be on the first plane to Tamale tomorrow. Kojo will fill in for me.” She paused and checked Kate’s expression. She was clearly enjoying herself. Or pretending to so Dzidzor will be at ease. Dzidzor let the thoughts off and continued. “Aha. We can get a private pilot to fly one of our private jets over.”

Kate was hysterical now. She covered her mouth with both hands. Her eyes were wet with tears. When she could catch some breath, she held on tight to her glass.

“That Pilot erh.”

“Yes that Pilot.” Kate was full with laughter again. Dzidzor watched her. She hasn’t heard her friend laugh like this in months. “He said I can call if I need anything remember?” Kate shook her head at Dzidzor. They had met a pilot while they were stuck in traffic yesterday. He was so smitten by Dzidzor that he wrote his phone number again on his card with call if you need anything and threw it at Dzidzor. His uniform had given him away. They had a brief laugh then. But nothing like they had today.

“Getting to 60 is turning too many heads. 55 may kill a few.” Kate laughed again, almost choking on her words. Dzidzor laughed with her. With Kate, she’ll never take offence whatever she says about her weight. She knows what heart her words spring from. Losing 15 kilos the past three months has been a dream come true. A dream they’ve dreamt together many countless times. Kate inhaled and cleaned under her eyes.

“Please order our food.”

She drew in the last of her yoghurt sitting in the glass. Dzidzor sobered.

“I have.”

“Oh.” Kate pushed her glass gently from her and avoided Dzidzor’s eyes. “I know.” She looked at her empty glass. “I’m lost most of the day. It must be hard keeping company with me.” She lifted her eyes to the lower lids of Dzidzor’s. She wished she could put her gratitude in better words. “I’m sorry.”

“No sorry.” She shook her head. “He called?” Dzidzor permitted her eyes show the empathy she felt for her friend. Kate nodded. Since she left home two months ago, this was the second time she’s seen Kate talk with Kwaku on phone.

“Yes.” Kate struggled with her words. “He wants to come over so we can talk.” She hurried. “I told him I don’t know.” She smiled and stared at the empty glass again. Freda walked to their table.

“Half plate Jollof rice with fish.”

She beamed. She loved to serve. Dzidzor knows she does. This and that the restaurant has been in her family all these years is why she is shocked Freda wants to sell and has already put up the advertisement outside the building.

“Thanks.”

Dzidzor said, her feeling about the oddness about Freda’s choice stealing through her voice.

“Welcome and don’t expect the bill.” She smiled at both ladies one after the other. She put her hands on Dzidzor’s. “This is the least I can do for all your trouble.” She walked away from their table as soon as she said the words. Dzidzor’s face was filled with heat.
“That woman is something.” Kate tried to be in the moment. She took her fork and dug them into the rice. “She knows just how to say things. Yesterday, she texted me she’s praying for me.”

Dzidzor took a bite of her fish. “She’s always so warm.” She said and looked towards the restaurant. “She reminds me of you.”

She saw her friends face relax, then tense up and then tears were running down her cheeks. Dzidzor handed her a tissue.

“I didn’t mean to make you cry.”

“I know.” Kate laughed, embarrassed. “I…I…just have this emotional overload I think.”

“Mm.” Dzidzor stopped eating. Then she straightened. “You aren’t considering a divorce right?” She’s never asked Kate. She never thought she would. But just now, with how uncertain Kate was about meeting Kwaku after two whole months, she wanted to be sure.

Kate twitched her mouth. That indifferent look Dzidzor had become used to since her marriage with Kwaku started having problems was back.

“I don’t know.” She said and ate a fork full of vegetables. “Papa won’t let me.” She laughed a nervous laugh.

Dzidzor would have gone back at her with the many follow-ups that were brewing in her mind but she didn’t. “He’s a good man.” She let her words out carefully. She wasn’t married. Never have been. After Sule found out about her Bulimia, she wonders if she ever will. More and more dates with Matey these two months have proven he isn’t the husband she wants.

“He has been.”

Kate’s response took her back in time. If Kwaku hadn’t confessed his first affair and this one with Suzie, she’d have never imagined him in that situation. He has strived to be everything scripture says a husband should be. Where he fell, he mourned more than she has. The thoughts lifted her spirit and settled a fact for her. She still loves him. No matter what decisions she has to make, she’ll still love him. She will forever.

“Sule is a good man too.”

She looked fully at Dzidzor.

“He has been.”

Dzidzor stared at Kate. They shared a short laugh.

“He hasn’t talked about the Bulimia?”

Kate asked. She had been dazed too — the day Dzidzor told her. However, she still holds Sule’s silence isn’t appropriate. She’ll perhaps never understand him.

“He never would maybe.”

Dzidzor did not permit the hurt she’s been praying about since then show. For the first time, the reality struck her. Sule is still her instructor. She thought he’d have run off but he didn’t. He stayed and encouraged her through every exercise, warned her when he saw she was working too hard and answered her questions. Yet Bulimia has never been a topic for discussion. And with it, the warm friendship they were becoming is history.

“You should bring it up Dzidzor.” Kate recognized the unsaid in-between Dzidzor’s words. “Sule probably doesn’t know how to.”

Dzidzor nodded and then as if by providence following Kate’s gaze, she saw Sule coming out of the restaurant with Freda. She saw Freda pointing at their table to Sule. She looked away. But Sule may have already seen them. Not that there were many customers around anyway. They only had two other people occupying seats too many tables away from them. Kate smiled, her eyes shining.

“If we believe that God performs miracles, here is yours. He’s walking over. I’m going to grab the keys and go home. Talk to him and let him drop you.”

“Kate…”

Dzidzor was set to protest but she couldn’t. Sule was few steps away from the table and Kate was up, packing her bags with a sudden pleased smile tugging at her lips.

“Hi Sule.” Kate took a hurried tone. “So good to see you but too bad I have to run.” She smiled perfectly for her talk. “Sit. Sit.” She showed Sule to her seat and kissed Dzidzor on the cheek with a wink for only her eyes and was lost. Dzidzor sat amused a full minute. As she watched Kate drive away and remembered her statement about here being her miracle, she sat up, cleared her throat, and crossed both hands before her. She shot her blazing eyes at Sule.

“I want us to talk about my Bulimia.”

Should this be her miracle, she wasn’t ready to be passed by.

©M’afua Awo Twumwaah 2017

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