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IT was a dry, foggy Friday morning in late December 2017. And Christmas was only three days away.
The humid harmattan cold was here already and the cities and districts in Kimberland were fast adapting to the change in season.
Teo was nervous. It was the third time he’d been excusing himself to the washroom.
Tim, his right hand man, could guess why his boss was restless though. He knew Teo was camera shy.
Teo had fixed the exclusive with Mia for the fifth working day in the week. He was afraid he might have the entire week jinxed if the interview was held on Monday.
The young architect didn’t want to spend an entire week in a bad mood, should he not fare well in the interview.
But then, it wasn’t the camera that’d troubled the still waters in Teo’s mind. It was rather the absence of Teo’s heartthrob in the midst of the strangers around.
And every time Teo made a visit to the restroom, it was to dial his woman who was already running late.
Foye eventually arrived after some minutes wait.
The beautiful young woman perched on a seat adjacent to her man. Her presence installed in the room gave Teo both the psychological and emotional support he needed.
Teo’s responses to the interview questions were apt, intelligent and well-coordinated. Mia was satisfied with the way the young architect delivered his responses.
The interview soon came to an end.
Teo had a warm handshake with the journalist. ‘Thank you very much, Ms Mia,’ he said in a cool, soft voice.
‘And merry Christmas,’ he added, with a warm gleam.
‘Same to you,’ Mia replied with a gentle smile.
And she added, ‘You really did well today, sir.’
The young woman had absolutely excused Teo’s rudeness of the other day.
For the gentleman was simply likable after all.
Demi Jacobs consented to Jimi’s reunion with his new found son.
Jimi always knew he had a real gem for a wife. He knew Demi wouldn’t hide how she really felt.
Demi usually didn’t hesitate on showing how angry she was with her husband. And the moment she’d expressed her mind, she forgot about what bothered her already.
The early morning Demi told her husband she was hurt by the idea of a biological son to him somewhere, the hurt didn’t live to see the brightness of morning light.
It was Saturday evening today, two days before Christmas. And Jimi had returned home earlier to spend more time with his wife.
If time together could mend the crack in the first couple’s home, Jimi was ready to spend as much time as possible with his woman.
He desired to have his ever cheerful wife back once more.
But then, what the handsome forty-something didn’t know was that he was the very one needed back.
He’d somehow grown more distant, more calculative… perhaps more guarded with his woman. Since he mounted the nation’s seat of power there at the Rock Castle.
Jimi was the one whose crowned head lay uneasy. He was the one who was changing.
The couple sat together in the flower garden within the Presidential Villa of the Rock Castle.
Jimi asked to call the boy on phone – his new found son. ‘Perhaps, this is a Christmas gift for our family,’ he whispered with a genial smile.
Demi nodded; her lips curled up in a gentle smile.
Jimi wanted to carry his wife along in the process of uniting with his biological son. And the gentleman explained to his lady that he didn’t want to hurt her by sidelining her.
Demi gave a warm smile of consent, wondering how blessed she was to have an understanding man for a husband.
The forty-six-year-old man dialled the number, which he’d saved up on his phone. And while the phone rang on the other side, he put the call on speaker.
Soon the call was picked up and the long awaited voice came up. ‘Hello…’
The president swallowed and his eyes widened.
He could hear himself in the rather deep and bold voice of the man on the other end. It sounded almost exactly like his when he was about thirty.
He couldn’t believe he was on phone with his own son.
Demi wrapped up herself in a bundle as a chilly breeze blew over her. She was nervous, too.
Up until now the biological son issue was more or less an idea to the first lady. But now it seemed to have come to life right in front of her.
‘Jimi Junior is probably real,’ she muttered. ‘There is really a biological son!’
Jimi parted his lips in a gentle stammer. ‘He-llo…’
The person on the other end went on just as soon. ‘Who am I speaking with, please?’
Jimi was as still as a steel bar. The man’s voice sounded even more particularly like his.
Demi knew her husband was thrown off-balance already. She just held his hand in hers and gave it a warm squeeze.
Jimi was able to get himself together in that instant. ‘Am I speaking to Jimi Jacobs Junior?’ he said in a cool, composed voice.
The man’s voice at the other end leaped a bit. ‘Yes, you are. And who am I speaking with, please?’
The president’s tenor took on a warm, fatherly candour. ‘I am Jimi Jacobs and I saw your letter. Merry Christmas, son.’
Demi touched the screen of the phone and turned off the speaker mode. She motioned for her husband to feel free to talk with his new found son in private.
The first lady quietly stood up took a walk in the garden.
After few minutes’ walk, and at a time Jimi must have ended the call, Demi walked back to her husband.
When she stepped behind Jimi where he sat on the concrete seat, Jimi had his head sunken in-between his laps.
Demi touched her husband on the shoulder. ‘How was the call? Didn’t it go well? Why are you sitting like this?’
Jimi raised his head and spoke in a weak, low voice. ‘I must’ve caused the boy a lot of pain in life!’
Demi took a seat beside her husband and watched him speak.
Jimi heaved a sigh. ‘He said meeting with me now would have a negative impact on his work and he doesn’t want that. He simply doesn’t want to meet with me.’
He swallowed and faced his wife. ‘You don’t think he has harbored a lot of resentment for me, Demi?’
Well, the first family was like an open book for the entire nation.
It was no secret that the first couple had no biological children. The couple’s adoption of two orphanages was also general knowledge.
Demi was curious to know what made her husband think in that manner. ‘What work does he do?’ she asked. ‘Did you ask what work he does?’
Jimi retorted. ‘No, I didn’t.’
Demi couldn’t help interposing with concern.
‘Darling, how won’t you show the slightest curiosity? That would’ve convinced the young man you really wanted to see him if you showed a bit of interest in his life, huh?’
Jimi bowed his head again.
He mumbled. ‘It’s not like I had a son yesterday; how would I know I should ask about his work? My wish to see him should itself suffice for every other thing, uh?’
He raised his head and faced his wife. ‘Don’t you think so?’
Demi thought for a while and then spoke up. ‘Okay… Let’s assume he’s doing a work that puts him in the public eyes and he wouldn’t want to be seen with the president.’
She gave him a nudge. ‘Just let’s keep contacting him every now and then, so we can get to know him more.’
Demi paused and held his both hands as she finished her words.
‘He grew up well without you,’ she said in a soft voice; ‘so, he doesn’t resent you, my husband. That’s what I think.’
Jimi gently nodded and curled up his lips in a little half smile.
Now he dearly wanted to know more about Jimi Jacobs Junior.
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