Rayo burst out laughing.
“I’m sorry Demi. I really am. But this kind of thing only ever happens to you!”
“Laugh all you want. I don’t have any ego left to save.”
Her sister pulled her into a tight embrace and kissed the top of her head.
“What have I been telling you?”
“That Lagos women are treacherous and I shouldn’t trust any of them.”
“And what did you go and do?”
“She was supposed to be my friend.”
“When it comes to men, there are no alliances Demi. Only engagement rings.”
Jumoke ran into the room holding Chief Teddy and climbed into Demi’s lap.
“Aunty Beedee!” Demi drew her niece closer and sniffed in the her baby powder smell.
“Don’t you wish you could capture her scent and put it in a bottle?”
“All the time, she is already losing it. Jummy is a big girl now.”
“I am. I’m free.”
“Oh wow! Three! That’s like…you’re probably already thinking about your wedding.”
Jumoke giggled, shaking the red bows that were tied into her Mickey Mouse hairstyle. Demi took another sniff of her skin and then let her wiggling niece and Chief Teddy go. Jumoke, jumped off Demi’s lap, found her balance and ran out of the room.
Demi fell back on the bed and sighed.
“Dotun was just eyeing me after the whole cake thing – like I did it on purpose.”
“And so what if you had done it on purpose? She deserves worse than a ruined engagement cake.”
“She does, doesn’t she?”
“Do you want the number of my mother in law’s babalawo?”
“Na…I heard they charge in dollars now.”
They laughed and then sighed simultaneously. Rayo got on the bed and lay down, so they were both staring at the ceiling.
Rayo had married straight out of university to her secondary school sweetheart Bayo. They had Jumoke and already Rayo was pregnant again. The annoying thing was Rayo had never really shown any interest in getting married, or having babies. But all Demi could think about was her wedding and future kids. Yet her 33rd birthday was round the corner and there wasn’t a groom in sight.
“I hate my life.”
“No, you don’t.”
“Yes, yes I do. It’s blegh.”
“Don’t be like that…you have a great job.”
“I’m an ac-coun-tant.”
“Ok…well you have a …a great relationship with the parents.”
“Sure…they won’t let me move out till I’m married.”
“Yea…you’re right…your life is bleh.”
She turned around and hit her sister with a pillow.
“Oooh a pillow fight.” Demi moved the weapon out of the way and smiled at her brother-in-law. Bayo wasn’t handsome, by any traditional definition, but he knew how to dress; his style and his scent combined always managed to turn heads. He pulled at his cuff and adjusted it.
“You look dapper.”
“Yes, I’m going to my boss’s birthday…and I thought my wife was going with me.”
“Sorry babe, I’ll be down in just a minute.”
Bayo muttered something in Yoruba and walked out of the room.
“Motunrayo, why didn’t you tell me you were going out?!”
“It’s fine. You needed to talk and these things never start on time.”
“It has never taken you a minute to get dressed.”
“Eh…if he can’t wait. He will go by himself na.”
Demi rolled her eyes and headed to her sister’s cupboard to pick a dress for her. She hated keeping people waiting and she couldn’t understand her sister’s lax attitude towards time.
“So, you’re going to babysit?”
“Well you’re not doing anything tonight are you?”
“Thanks, you’re a life saver.”
“What about your nanny?”
“Oh she went to her village, won’t be back for another few days.”
“Rayo…I had really hoped to go home, put on a onesie and drown my sorrows in chocolate icecream!”
“Excellent! I have chocolate icecream in the freezer.”
Demi knew when she had lost a battle. She selected a black dress that looked like it would fit her sister’s pregnant frame and resigned herself to an evening watching Ajapa and friends with Jumoke and Chief Teddy.