I had to think of creative ways to make more money. I needed to pay up my balance for the house and I wanted to become an investor. I was so thrifty about money I spent that Tito commented a couple of times but I just brushed it off. I knew that he had money and I did not want to share my plans with him because I felt that he could weaken my resolve to achieve all that I wanted to and I wanted to do it by myself.
I looked for online writing jobs. This earned me some change that I used to take care of immediate needs for food and transportation. I was thinking of selling something, possibly a product that will get me more income. Finally, after discussions with different people, my banker linked me to one of his customers who imported luxury items as souvenirs. Since I was staying in a high-end neighborhood, I decided to partner with Stephanie on this. She gave me contacts and I gave her a percentage of what I earned. Marketing was a bit gruesome, I had to think on my feet to get the rich to spend money but I prayed and I was blessed. I made enough money to complete payment for my house. I got access to the house documents and the keys. The feeling was heavenly. I had an estate and I didn’t have to pay rent again if I did not want to. I decided to use the ground floor for an office space. I was going to move upstairs.
The day that I was moving, I told Tito casually that I bought a house. He asked me to repeat myself and I did.
“Wow! That is fantastic. But why didn’t you tell me you were doing this and how did you achieve this?”
“I had been doing this for a while, you know, working hard, being creative and so on. I just wanted to do this for myself.”
“I see.” He said. He was quiet.
“Hey, are you upset about this?”
“Upset? No. I’m just wondering why you would not share this type of detail with me. I thought that we were operating on trust. The worst I could have done was encourage you and the best would have been to support you.”
“I am sorry. I didn’t think of it that way. I got carried away and I had been on this path by myself for a while that I had learned to be self-reliant.” I apologized and he accepted my apology.
I realized that I had to share my vision with him. I was not going to stop because I was planning to marry a rich man. So, I told him of my hopes and aspirations and how all the pain of the recent past had birthed who I was now.
“This is great. I’m in awe of you. I knew that you had greatness inside of you and I am happy that you are exploring all your talents to achieve all of this.” Tito said. “I would love for us to achieve some great things together but I would leave you to do your own thing. If you feel that we can partner on something, I am always here.”
I was touched by his humility and openness as he shared his own dreams with me. By the end of the day, I took him to the house and he gave great suggestions for maximizing the space on the ground floor. He also assisted me in registering a company.
Three days later, he took me to a duplex at Gbagada.
“Do you like it?” He asked me.
My mind was calculating already. I just hoped for a moment that this was not where he wanted us to live after marriage.
“Hmm, yeah. It’s okay. What do you want to use the space for? Personally I am more passionate about estate on the island but this is not bad.” I chipped in the last sentence on purpose.
“Oh. You prefer the island? I was hoping that we would live here after we get married.”
“Ouch! So far away from my office space.” I told him gently.
“It is not that far. I wish I had known about your place before I bought this. I just paid for this last week. I wanted it to be a surprise.”
He looked so sad and I had to laugh.
“Aww. Don’t be so sad about this. We didn’t communicate. My bad! I’m so sorry about that. It’s done though and we have to figure things out now.”
He gave me a tour of the house. The area was not bad at all. In fact, it had the homely feel compared to my duplex in Idado. I conditioned my mind immediately and I started seeing the potential of the house in Gbagada. There were more affordable schools on the mainland and my family lived on the mainland. The house had a small detached Boys’ Quarters at the side and I asked him what he intended to use the place for.
“Domestic staff.” He said, still sounding morose.
“Nope. It would be my office. I will rent out the duplex at Idado.” I told him and he smiled.
“Hmm. The guru is thinking.” He responded and we laughed.
It was obvious that were starting to compromise and work together and I knew then more than ever that we were both ready for this marriage.
I called Stephanie up and told her that I needed to update my story. We worked on it, slaving to get it out in good time.
I got to Stephanie’s Ikoyi apartment after she summoned for me one day. She was laughing so hard that I wondered if there was some juju at the Ikoyi apartment that made her act crazy sometimes.
“Kunkle Afolahan called me.” she said.
She was a star actress. It was not uncommon that colleagues in the field communicated. So I shrugged.
“Wait for it. He said he got some unfinished manuscript from someone a while back but he had not been able to trace the writer. He wanted me to look at the script and tell him what I thought. That he thought of me as the lead actress. When the manuscript arrived, I was just screaming.” I started screaming myself when she showed me the worn copy of the incomplete manuscript I gave someone at the premier of a movie.
She told me that she was able to sign a deal with him. I was ecstatic. I told her that I would call the publisher that worked on the last book. I was learning to make deals myself too.
“You are one talented writer.” she said to me.
The movie got a lot of hype. It was Kunle Afolahan after all. Stephanie also did a great job of being the lead and there were a lot of popular actors in the movie. During the premier Tito Sat there, shocked. He realized that it was our story told in a beautiful way. He actually had tears in his eyes. I whispered to Stephanie afterwards that she did a great job of being me and she laughed. “I’ve lived with you. I had to understudy you if I was going to perfect the role. We make a great team, you and I.”
Our families saw the movie. Trust me to send them copies. Eventually, Tito’s parents called for a meeting with my family. By the end of that meeting, the wedding date was set. All the lines fell in pleasant places. I was so happy that I was on a path of success.
It has been two years like I said earlier. I am so full of faith in God and myself. Love is all around me and I hope for a better tomorrow. One of my current goals is to mentor young women and even men especially the less privileged ones. I plan to show them how to explore their talents and achieve their dreams. I am currently looking for a property for a youth center. I am going to call it called Stephanie’s Bank. I am certain that she will be ecstatic.
I hope that you enjoyed the story. Do not forget to share if you did.
Thanks for reading.