Excerpt from "A worm in the apple " a book by KARYN No'adiah Babas

There was a knock on the door and Benita rushed to see who it was, she opened the door and froze at the sight of the person at the door, her heart skipped a beat; she was not ready for any drama.
“Are you not happy to see me?” Umar asked as he stepped into the sitting room.
“No…why…of course I am happy to see you,” she answered giving him a hug.
Umar was her fiancé, but for some reasons, she has being avoiding him since she came back from the States and it seems he has noticed as he hardly visits her unannounced except when he wants to surprise her.
Umar sat on one of the couches in the sitting room and picked a fashion magazine on the center table.
“You and fashion sha,” he said as he flip through the pages
“That is what makes me happy,” she answered smiling
“And me, how do I make you feel?” Umar was now standing next to her and looking straight into her eyes but Benita looked away.
“Should I get you something to eat?” she asked trying to move away from him but Umar grabbed her hand.
“Benny, talk to me, what is the problem? You have being avoiding me”
“Nothing really, I am just tired”
“You know you are not good at hiding things right?
“Baby, I am fine”
“Look into my eyes and tell me you are fine”
Just then his phone rang and he reached for it in his pocket, Benita used the opportunity to free her hand from his grip and sit down.
“Hello Mama!” he said as he answered the phone
“I am fine, how are you doing? ...she is fine, we are even together…ok”
“Mama wants to say hi,” he said handing her the phone”
Benita collected the phone and greeted his mother, the old woman is concerned about her last child not getting married and she didn’t waste time in reminding Benita that time doesn’t wait for anyone.
After the call, she gave Umar the phone who spoke a little more and ended the call.
“Mama wants us to get married soon,” he said sitting down next to Benita
“I know”
“Baby what are we waiting for?”
“I am not ready”
“The same thing you said before travelling to the States, sweetheart how long will it take you to be ready”
“I don’t know, I just need time”
“My love, are you seeing someone?”
“It is not what you think, I just need more time”
“Ok! I will give you time, but please, don’t make me wait forever,” he said as he stood up to leave.
“I am sorry”
“No problem, I will take my leave now”
Benita saw him off to the door. She wished she could explain what was delaying her from getting married but somehow, she felt Umar will consider her reason as flimsy. She wished she has someone to talk to, her mum is late and her dad has never cared about her emotional wellbeing, her only brother was away on a peace keeping operation in Sudan - he works with the Nigerian Army. She felt so alone in a very big world.

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