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“Tolani, I hope Alexander’s room is prepared?” Richard questioned the maid earnestly. The maid responded in the affirmative and Richard proceeded to ask questions about food and every tiny detail. Belina sat down on the couch, looking at Richard with a frown until he finally met her eyes. The maid left and they were alone.
“Is it necessary to go through all the stress?” Belina asked.
“Of course. She is my daughter and should feel comfortable in her own father’s house” Richard responded, coming to sit beside Belina.
“You pamper her too much honey” Belina started the speech she had given over and over again. “She is a woman Richy, no matter how rich we are, she has to be shown some level of discipline”
“I do confront her when she is wrong Bell” Richard defended.
Belina almost snorted. “That happens once in a year. You handle Roland with a tough hand, why are you not doing the same with Alexander? She wants to have her way all the time, and it is a bad thing”.
“Oh heart, I concur that her leaving the house was a wrong idea, I never should have supported her, but baby, we can’t have two strong hands handling her. You are already tough on her, besides, you are not that hard on Roland” He raised a brow.
“You know that I am not really the disciplinary type. I became exceptionally hard on Alexa because you treat her like a doll”
Richard smiled widely and pulled Belina till her head was on his laps. She frowned. “You surely are not going to flirt your way out of this Richard Branson”
Richard’s smile widened. “Oh, I am up to the challenge Bell” he said and started tickling her. Belina started giggling uncontrollably.
“Stop it” she gasped out as she giggled but Richard only increased and she tried to stand up but he restricted her. Her moving about on his laps was affecting Richard too as his own wide grin became strained. He bent his head and covered his wife’s giggling mouth, effectively silencing her, and started kissing her playfully. Even in her late forties, she actually looked more beautiful. Considering just how beautiful she was before, Richard had thought that her beauty would reduce with age but her beauty actually increased, and the desire and fire he always felt with her was obviously still burning at the fullest. The playful kisses were over and desire took over as Richard kissed Belina deeply. Belina’s small hand went to circle his head, pulling him closer.
“Get a room”
Richard’s mouth left Belina’s in a hurry, leaving her hanging. She hadn’t heard the words, and was however curious as to why the igniting kiss should be suddenly cut off. She did not have time to brood though because she instantly saw what had Richard’s attention.
“Alexander” Richard said with a smile as Alexander moved forward. Belina took her head from his laps, standing up on her feet. Richard was up instantly. The typical Alexander dropped all her bags and ran into her father’s hand.
“Dad” she moaned softly. “I have missed you very much”
Richard kissed the top of her head which was on his chest. His heart swelled with pride. How lucky can a man be to have such beautiful women? “Oh baby, daddy missed you too” Richard said and pulled her back to examine her. He frowned. “You have lost weight”
Belina shook her head. Richard was such a doctor in everything he did.
“Don’t I deserve a hug too?” Belina asked with a fake frown.
“Awww… Mummy is jealous” Richard said and Alexander grinned. Belina folded her arms across her chest. “Go and make it right before we both get punished”. He winked.
Alexander turned to Belina with that innocent and winning smile that could soften the heart of an angry lion.
“Mummy mummy” she cooed teasingly. “I surely have missed you too much, possibly much more than I missed dad”
Richard frowned as a slow smile crept up Belina’s face. “Come here honey”
Alexa jumped into her mother’s hands for a hug. Richard watched the two women in his life with extreme happiness. He was obviously the luckiest man alive.
“How are you baby?”
“I am fine mum” Alexa responded as she pulled away from her mum. “When would the both of you stop making out on the couch? Aren’t you too old for that?”
“Oh sweetheart, I know she is your mother but she is my wife and I bet she is far more beautiful than most of the small girls floating around these days. Besides, she does not look a day older than thirty”
Alexa would have argued with her dad if it weren’t obviously true. She had been argued with on countless occasions whenever she told people that Belina was her mother. Not everyone knew them via the social Medias which never stopped carrying gossips about their private lives but even Alexa had found it hard to believe that Belina had given birth to her and Roland.
“Tolani” Richard called and the maid appeared shortly. She was obviously at the other part of the house and Alexa’s arrival must have skipped her too. She greeted Alexa with open excitement and, following Richard’s instructions, carried Alexa’s bags into the room.
“Sweetheart, why don’t you go to your room, freshen up and relax? When you get back, we can discuss your weight loss”
Nothing escaped her dad’s notice, Alexa thought sadly. It came with his being a doctor. Alexander was not sure if she should be happy about that virtue or be sad because she was not ready to open up about her problems with Michael. When she saw the intense look on Belina’s face, she was sure that she was in for it because if nothing escaped her dad, it was even harder to hide a thing from her mum. She had those eyes which could read a man’s soul with just one glance.
Alexa smiled and quickly vanished to her room before a therapy session commenced.
“This your network is getting on my nerves o” Eric said suddenly as he faced Michael with a frown. Michael sighed as he braced himself to defend ‘Tel’. When his father had died, he had passed on the company to Michael over two years ago and since then; the company had gone up, far above its competitors.
“What happened this time?” Michael queried.
“My five hundred Naira airtime has vanished into thin air; this is corruption” he lamented.
Tunji laughed. “See this one o, since you have been doing lovey dovey on the phone with your woman, did you forget that it is not midnight call?”
“God bless you T.J” Michael chipped in with a grin. If you want your airtime to last long, minimize your speeches, besides, why are you lamenting over five hundred Naira credit, I thought you were richer than that” Michael stated with a lazy grin. He was goading Eric who never stopped talking about the little wealth he had, claiming to be the richest man in the universe.
“Well, being rich does not mean that you spend everything you have over the phone. You spend less if you want to stay rich”
“Hmmm” Tunji and Michael grunted.
Michael’s phone rang and he picked it after looking at it for some seconds. “Alexa” he murmured immediately he picked up. “I know you must be pissed off baby, I am sorry, I should have called… Are you settled now… I am with the guys now… Alright dear, I would call you later; just take some time out to rest… Bye baby” he hung up and noticed for the first time that his friends had their eyes on him.
“Tell us man, how is she?” Eric mouthed.
“How is who?” he asked, relaxing fully on the chair.
“What do you mean ‘who’? Alexander of course” Eric said again. Tunji was diplomatically silent.
Michael gazed from one man to the other. “Since when did you start caring about how she is faring?”
Eric snorted. “I don’t care about that dummy. If she is half as good as she looks, she would be exceptional in bed”
Tunji coughed as Michael’s eyes shot up instantly. “I would punch the living daylight out of your guts if you dare talk about my woman in such a mundane manner”
“You don’t have to be defensive Mike, we were just joking” Tunji put in to douse the tension.
“That was an expensive joke. If you have imaginations in your filthy minds, you better wipe it out right now” he growled.
Eric raised his hands. “Woah, if you are this possessive, you should treat her much more than you are doing now”
“And what does that mean?” Michael was becoming increasingly angry.
“You just talked with her the way you would normally talk to Anita or one of your staff” Tunji put in, also pissed off at Michael. “I don’t see the spark in you when you are with Alexander”
Michael swallowed as he looked at both men in anger. He was not sure which one of them he was actually angry at. Maybe it was not even any of them. ’10.9.8.7…’ he started his calming exercise mentally. When he was calm enough to talk normally, he stood up. “Just mind your own damn business”, with that, he walked out to stand at the lawn.
Alexander came out of the bathroom feeling refreshed and calm. She still could not get the image of her loving parents out of her head. The two were so much in love and wasted no time in telling and showing each other how they both felt. How many times had she wished that Michael was like her father? She had lost count. How many times had she longed to share with Michael what her parents shared? She exhaled and sat on the bed. She heard a knock and asked the person to come in, knowing that it could only be Tolani. Her mum would knock and enter instantly. Her dad would knock and call out her name if he were the one.
“Ma, should I serve your food now?” Tolani asked.
Alexander smiled. “No. I need to do some things before I eat, I am not that hungry. I would serve myself when I am done”
“Ok ma” with that, she turned to leave.
“Oh yes!” Alexa gasped out as an afterthought and Tolani turned. “Do you see that green travelling bag?” Tolani nodded. “Take it, it is for you”
Tolani’s eyes widened. “Me?”
Alexander nodded with a smile.
“Aaahhh, thank you ma, God bless you and your works. Thank you ma”
“Ok, stop thanking me. Why are you kneeling? Please stand up. You deserve much more”.
Tolani stood up like the enthusiastic nineteen years old that she was and said her thanks again, carrying the heavy bag along with her as she left. Putting smiles on people’s faces had remained the only thing that made her happy lately. She put on the short gown she had put on the bed and picked up her Tab. She hadn’t been on Facebook for days; lately, all she did on net was whatsapp, ping and tweet. She wanted to know what was going on in other people’s lives.
She had opened a facebook account which was only known to few people because her former account was already too flooded, being the public figure that she was, due to her parents’ popularity. When her account loaded, she went to check the first thing that always came first to her – her notifications. When she checked, she noticed that Michael had posted some things on his old Facebook wall. This was strange because the account was not the one he currently used. He had told her that he no longer used that account. Even the one he used was almost always empty. Just like her, the initial account he used had exceeded the 5000 friends’ limit and he had opened another, then another. But… she stopped thinking and opened the profile. She was stunned by the first things that she saw. First was a shirtless Michael, looking exceedingly hot, like one of those sex gods that were often seen on magazines. She swallowed a rising panic and scrolled down, seeing several pictures which were nude like the former one. He even saw other nude guys. Just when she was about to go to the pictures to fully check his uploaded pictures, she saw a link which Michael had posted. She swallowed and clicked the link. The link opened up a site which made her eyes pop. “Gay.com?” she gasped out in horror. She hadn’t seen the worst because as she scrolled, she saw the picture of her very own Michael.