POTHOLES

Chapter Fourteen
Mr. Desmond’s cup was finally filled to the brim as his lawyer’s attempts were inefficacious.

Loveth could not pin point the reason for her husband’s sudden change and became ill at ease. “Could he already know the truth?” She soliloquized as she hastily called Desmond.

“Dee, where are you? I need to see you. Meet me at our usual spot. How long. Alright,” she said and ended the call.

She met with him and raised an alarm about the recent disposition of her husband who she suspected might already know the truth. But Desmond told her to be at ease.

Unknown to her, what she said had gotten him more on the qui vive. “Am I not digging my own grave like this? I know my friend very well. I know what he is capable of when it comes to his woman. The thought of what he did to Caleb in school because of Jane is getting me nervous, and it’s not even up to a percentage of what I have done. God! It’s not my fault. How would I just ignore a babe like Loveth? I have to look for a permanent solution,” he said.

On a bid to conceal the truth, he paid Loveth’s maid an elephantine amount to poison him.

He thought that was all he had to do to conceal the truth, but at the return of Mr. Ade, he became quite uncomfortable with his moves to unravel the death of his friend and hired assassins to get raid of him as well.

But, little did he know that Mr. Ade had helped the leader of the assassins.

Some years ago, the man was swimming in the pool of lack when his pregnant wife was due for delivery. No matter how she travailed, she could not deliver the child herself and needed to have a caesarean section.

There was no one to turn to, and he walked back home confused.

He was so deep in thought that his ears were deaf to the horn of the car behind him. The driver turned out to be Mr. Ade who was going home excitedly the same day he was offered the visa to UK.

He was so moved by the story the man related to him that he quickly drove him back to the hospital and paid the bill, and also gave him extra money.

“How would someone want to end the life of a good man like that? But if I don’t, he will send someone else who will or even eradicate me too so as not to leak the secret. That man looked so desperate. OK, I know what to do. I will make it look so real,” the man concluded.

He smartly got a gun that seems like a normal gun whose bullet will weaken the victim immediately and sleep off for hours as if he had died.

He then arranged with his wife to pick him up after they had left, as well as his doctor who confirmed him dead. Not even his boys knew his plan, they also thought the man was dead, and he gave them their share of the money.

When Mr. Ade woke up, he related the episodes to him. He instructed him to tell his wife to make his death/burial so real, and return to UK immediately, until Mr. Desmond has been prosecuted.

There was no more evidence the judge could ask for, and he was sentenced to death.

Everyone, including Dominion who had followed the case were stupefied, but excited to see the criminal pay for his crime.

Dominion, among the lot had gone through series of dramas, but he refused to be pinned down by his circumstances.

With the help of Divine, he planned his first exhibition. To his consternation, Mr. Ade and his wife came with two of their friends who were lovers of art in UK.

He was still swimming in the pool of excitement when he saw his sisters.

“Wow! I didn’t know you will come,” he said excitingly as they embraced each other. “How would we miss our brother’s exhibition?” Said Gift. “Mummy is here too,” Grace said when he changed his expression and said, “Oh, you came with your mum.” “I mean our mother,” said Gift. “Look, I am really not ready for any drama. I have had enough of dramas in my life, and I don’t want anything to touch the beautiful things that is happening in my life now,” he replied.

“But you have to forgive her,” insisted Gift. “Dear, I didn’t tell you I have anything against her,” he said when Loveth joined them.

“Excuse me,” said Dominion when Gift held his hands. “Please, you have to let go,” she pleaded. “Of what and for what?” He responded sharply and left when he caught the sight of Isabella in her beautiful royal blue gown and smiled as she walked towards him.

“Hello,” she greeted. “You look so…. I am still trying to brain storm for the adjective to use,” he said. “Oh, really, well congratulations,” she said. “Thank you, though I expected it to be packaged with a hug,” he said jokingly. “Oh, alright,” she said.

As she smiled and hugged him, she saw his family. “This facsimile I am seeing, Is that not your mum and sisters?” She asked. “My sisters, but not my mum,” he replied. “Don’t tell me you have not gotten over that. Let go,” she said. “There is nothing to let go of, just forget it,” he replied. “For real,” she said with a questionable expression.

“Bella stop. Let me just focus on this exhibition. You know what it costed us to put this together,” he said. “And you know I don’t intend on distracting you. Just forgive her. Don’t forget what Pastor said on Sunday, forgiving others is liberating yourself,” she said looking into his eyes.

“You’re really the last person who I want to ask me to do this,” he said. “Why?” She asked wonderingly. “Because you know I will do it,” he responded. “And you will not only do it because I asked for it, but because it is the right thing,” Isabella replied. “But I guess we can leave that till later,” he said. “Yes, but you’ll just give her a sincere hug now and discuss later,” she insisted. “Bella! Alright fine, I’ll do it,” he said and did exactly what she said.

It was truly such an emotional moment that those who really didn’t know his story were wonderstruck, until the time he was invited to give his speech.

“I grew up to have all I needed before I needed them. I enjoyed the love of my family and never understood what pains, disappointment, betrayer and lack felt like. My path was without potholes, and I kept living my father’s dream until what I thought was a nightmare came to my reality.

All I thought was mine, I woke up to find them no more. My father was snatched by the cruel hands of death and I ran into a secret that I still wish I never knew. My certificate failed, and I was left to clear my own path. I must say it was really bushy that I thought I couldn’t create a path through that thick forest, but then I realized there was already a path that divinity had prepared for me, it was just that I was too comfortable to see it.

All you are seeing today is a product of that discovery. Thanks to my friend who stood by me all through, my mentor, my friend and brother who watered this gift, Divine, my mother and sisters and the beautiful gift that God brought my way to heal my wounds, Bella.”

As he said these words, his mother could not hold back the tears that flowed freely down her cheeks.

Than what he imagined, his paintings were not just beautiful, they were inspiring and bought for humongous amounts.

Isabella was about taking her leave when she went to inform him. “I am about leaving. Congratulations once again,” she said. “Oh! Not so fast, there is something I must show you,” said Dominion as he led her to a rather private place where a painting that was covered was hanging.

She became curious and asked, “What?” He unveiled the painting and said, “Well, you know the best way an artist can express himself is his painting.” “Then, don’t you think you should interpret what you have there,” she said pretending as if it was not obvious.

“OK,” he said as he took a deep breath and pointed to the painting. “This is me asking for your heart, this is us walking through the path of life together, and that’s our beautiful home,” he said as he brought out a ring and said, “I love you, please marry me.”

She was quiet for a while and then broke the silence. “I will be honest to you. I am sorry. I only see you as a friend and a brother. I am sorry,” she said and left.

For a while, he stood still, not knowing what to say or do when Gift saw him.

“I have been looking for you. What are you doing here?” She asked when she saw the painting. “Wow! This is nice,” she said admiringly and Dominion carefully put the ring away. “You have a message notification,” she said as she gave him his phone that had been with her.

He collected it reluctantly as if he didn’t care, until he saw who sent the message. He quickly opened it only to see, “I love you too and yes, I will marry you.”

Instantaneously, he left without saying a word to his sister who stood there wondering why he left in a flash.

THE END

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