While the church service was going on, Ijeoma became worryingly withdrawn; absent minded due to the absence of her best friend/chief bride’s maid on what was going to be the most important day of her life-“her wedding day”. Up until now, Moyo’s absence did cause a feeling panic in the environment as all efforts to reach her were abortive after which Ijeoma’s body language clearly indicated signals of her worry while the crowd kept murmuring in the background.
Just when Ijeoma and Oscar were about exchanging their vows, there was a slight disruption in the church caused by members of the crowd who appeared to have received numerous notifications about the unmitigated disaster at the third mainland bridge which Moyo happened to be involved in. Quickly, one of the bridesmaids ran up to the aisle to inform Ijeoma what seemed to be the cause of her chief bridesmaid’s absence. Shocked by the news of her best friend’s tragic situation, Ijeoma immediately dashed down the aisle and headed straight for their car. Oscar, completely startled by the uproar of the crowd, Oscar instantly followed behind despite having no insight on the situation. Up until the wedding day, Oscar hadn’t met Moyo who was his bride’s best friend.
Oscar: Honey wait up, what’s going on?
Oscar: Ijeoma, Ijeoma! Aren’t you listening?
Ijeoma: Baby, just get in the car, I will explain on the way. She replied.
Oscar: You had better have a reasonable explanation for running out on our wedding. He gratingly replied.
Driving as fast as he could, Oscar’s heart raced as he was unable to maintain a certain speed. He was already driving above the required speed limit, breaking too many traffic laws and risked being involved in an accident by endangering the lives of many on the road due to his overspeeding, yet he still didn’t understand why he had to be under such pressure. Soon he inexorably demanded an explanation from his wife to be.
Oscar: Am listening… He said
Ijeoma: My best friend, who also happens to be my chief bridesmaids, was not present today at the church service.
Oscar: So…? Have you tried reaching her on her cell?
Ijeoma: I was informed by one of my other bridesmaids that she was about to commit suicide on the third mainland bridge today at exactly the time our church service was going on.
Oscar: suicide ke? Why?
Ijeoma: I don’t know oo. [Sobbing]
Ijeoma: It’s just like your best man should be absent on your wedding day; you know how terrible that would seem yeah?
Oscar: Okay. Don’t worry babe, am driving as fast as I can. We’re almost there.
Oscar: Baby please stop crying. Nothing terrible will happen okay.
Ijeoma couldn’t contain her emotions the longer they spent on the road causing her tears to ruin her makeup.
Finally, they arrived at the bridge and were very close but got stuck in the heavy gridlock. Hurriedly, they both stepped out of the car while in traffic, running as fast as they could hoping to get to Moyo before she attempts to make any rash decisions. Desperately manoeuvring their way, they encountered a large crowd filled with despair and overly terrified of the incident going on at the third mainland bridge. Soon they became exhausted from forcibly squeezing their way out through the crowd causing them to slow down their pace as they tiredly walked their way up. People barely noticed their desperateness as they assumed them to be newly wedded couples that got stuck in the same gridlock as everyone else, trying to perceive the situation. Little did they know that they were related to Moyo.
Panting heavily, Oscar noticed Ijeoma was somewhat precise with her movement. Although she could barely run in her body con wedding dress despite having no shoes on, Oscar he assumed she had been exhausted and stressed out from all of the “crazy drama” on her wedding day.
Ijeoma, sighting Moyo from afar, screamed her name repeatedly, forcefully clearing her path. Oscar, still a bit far behind had no facial recognition of Moyo since they hadn’t officially met each other.
Ijeoma: Moyo, Moyo, stop! It’s me Ijeoma. She yelled, desperately waving her hands hoping to get Moyo’s attention. Oscar still couldn’t get a clear recognition of Moyo’s face from where he was standing.
Ijeoma: Moyo, What are you doing? Why are you doing this? Ijeoma asked, breathing heavily.
Oscar, slowly approaching her from afar instantly recognised Moyo. Overly stunned by what he had just witnessed, his body froze in shock for a second or two as he felt totally paralysed from his neck downwards. He was only able to blink. His heart paused in that moment, causing him to experience the symptoms of a cardiac arrest but he was clearly suffocating in shock. His tongue, quickly swelling caused him to choke on his breath as he tried to scream for help. Oscar was experiencing an anaphylactic and collapsed in the crowd instantly.
Confounded by what was happening, Ijeoma immediately rushed to help Oscar, presuming he must have collapsed due to the immense pressure he had been under lately; dashing down the aisle up until now. Moyo, still unaware of Oscar’s presence became distracted by the crowd’s attention towards Oscar and Ijeoma’s dilemma. What the crowd was experiencing on the third mainland bridge that day was ineffable to even themselves. Luckily for Oscar, the emergency response team on standby immediately rushed to his rescue, trying to resuscitate him back to life.
Moments after fully regaining his consciousness, Oscar firmly grabbed onto Ijeoma’s hands seeking her forgiveness for what he was about to tell her.
Oscar: Ijeoma please forgive me for what am about to say.
Ijeoma: Honey, what are you talking about? I should be the one apologising to you for all I’ve put you through today.
Oscar: Ijeoma, please listen to me. I need you to forgive me for what am about to say. Please tell me you will forgive me…
His plea for forgiveness despite his current predicament made Ijeoma become increasingly troubled.
Ijeoma: You know I love you no matter what! So whatever it is, I believe I can deal with it.
Despite saying that to him, she could immensely feel the magnitude of the burden he was about to lay on her by the way he clutched her hands. Notwithstanding, she felt it wasn’t going to be a burden that would affect her day any less after the series of events that have already occurred.
Ijeoma: Am listening…
Oscar: I know who that lady is. Ijeoma interjected.
Ijeoma: Yes, she’s the person I’ve been talking about. I must have mentioned her to you during our conversations.
Oscar: No! You don’t understand. We share a history.
Ijeoma: what do you mean you share a history?
Oscar: Moyo was my first love and I hers. I did something terrible to her back when we were dating.
Startled by his confession, Ijeoma tried to contain her curiosity.
Ijeoma: what do you mean by “back when you were dating”?
Oscar: We dated for more than two years and after a while, she got pregnant for me. I was able to convince her to abort the baby for the sake of our relationship after which I then jilted her and never saw or spoke to her again. This is the first time seeing her since leaving her.
Ijeoma, unable to hold it together, lost her cool and instantly detached herself from his clutch. It was only a matter of time before she loses her sanity. The simultaneous pause of her breath and clenching of her fists while her eyes were firmly shut indicated the close proximity of losing her mind. She was unable to even shed a tear after all she had been through in just one day. She had obviously cried out her tears while worrying about the safety of her best friend, but the confession Oscar gave triggered an illogical attitude. Ijeoma was devastated!
Ijeoma: [sighs] Is this really a nightmare because I really need to wake up. I don’t understand, I just don’t understand. She said slowly breaking away into an unstable state. She kept repeating her words to herself leaving Oscar’s bedside.
Ijeoma: I don’t understand, I don’t understand, I don’t understand…
Oscar completely helpless due to his predicament became excessively paralysed as Ijeoma stepped away from him. She walked up to Moyo, gazed at her and repeated “I don’t understand”, meticulously climbing the rails of the third mainland bridge. The crowd raised their fretfulness as soon as Ijeoma stepped on the rails too, urging the officials to handle the situation before lives are lost.
“Do something now! Or are you just going to watch them die?” they yelled as the tension that hit the crowd on the third mainland bridge that day was titanic! There appear to be two people prepared to commit suicide while another is being attended to by a medical team. One could sympathetically relate with their agony in such a situation.
Moyo: Ijeoma, what are you doing???
Ijeoma: I don’t understand she repeated as her face delineated her misery.
Moyo: Ijeoma I’m sorry for all that has happened. I was shocked immediately I recognised the man in the picture. I just didn’t know what to do other than to end my life as all of the memories kept coming back. I just couldn’t bear the thought of watching you get married to the man who ruined my life.
Ijeoma: I don’t understand because I have already fallen in love with him. I can’t begin to explain how I feel too after all that’s happened on what is supposed to be the most important day of my life.
Moyo: I know right…
Ijeoma: the worst part of it all is I’m carrying his child. After hearing what he did to you when you informed him of your pregnancy, I was devastated
Moyo: You’re pregnant? Ijeoma whatever you may be going through, you mustn’t jump. I can’t allow you to do this to yourself and the baby.
Ijeoma: But…I don’t even understand anymore. Please just let me die, please
Moyo: there’s no but Ijeoma. I will not allow you to. Whatever it is, you can both sort it out together, but you mustn’t jump. She said powerfully persuading her.
Ijeoma: Okay, what about you? I can’t allow you jump either. I need you by my side more than ever. If you jump I jump too Moyo. Ijeoma emphatically stated.
Oscar still feeling mystified by Moyo’s presence approached her, prostrating fully as he tightly held on to her feet, to plead for forgiveness. Ijeoma joined with the plea asking her best friend to forgive Oscar for the sake of their unborn child, as she wouldn’t want her baby to be without her father and her godmother.
Moyo: Wow! I can’t believe this, am gonna be a godmother. The end
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