Four months had rolled by silently since the death of her father. Rose had become more withdrawn as the days went by. Everyone, especially her mother was beginning to think she was becoming mentally ill with her weird character but Bisola maintained that Rose was fine. She was only dealing with her grief differently.
Rose will come along soon, just give her time. Bisola told their mother.
But days ran into weeks and weeks into months; four months and she just hoped her daughter would allow her to be here for her on this her special day.
This day was the day of her matric; she had gotten admission into the university upon leaving secondary school. She knew that if her dad was here he would have been the happiest man in the world but he wasn’t, he was gone somewhere into the shadows where he is just a wind. She can’t touch him but she could feel him.
The tears were about dropping from her eyes before she caught herself. Dad wouldn’t want me to cry, he would want me to be strong for myself and my mum. She said quietly to herself as she laid on her bed
How she missed him, she felt so lonely, he was her motivation and she had looked forward to this day because he was around but now she looks forward to other days because she hopes she would wake up one morning to realise it was a long dream. It felt like he was asking too much of her, too much it is for her to hold onto what is left in this vacuum where she has found herself. So much so that she didn’t realise how thick the wall she had built around herself had become and how deep her pain of loss has sunk. She felt she was a moving shadow and when the sun will shine through her dark clouds she didn’t know, when a man will come and fill this void that is if she ever allowed she didn’t know.
Rose, isn’t that your phone ringing? One of her roommates called her attention.
It was her sister on the phone.
Rose we are close to your hostel, please come out to meet us
Alright. Is mum with you?
Yes and a…never mind. Meet us outside.
Rose got down from her bed and headed for the mirror who had become her constant reminder of who her father wants her to be.
It doesn’t show that I cried, right? I am a strong woman and that I should remain.
Using her hands to strengthen her plain but beautifully cut and designed turquoise blue gown, Rose headed out of the door hoping that they should have arrived by now.
Mum, what have been thinking about?
Bisola’s words brought her mum back from her long travel to her thought island, the place where she had consigned herself to since the death of her husband. She had not giving any soul the privilege of visiting her sacred chamber. Her thought island was where she longed to always escape to and they were too hallowed to allow any sinful eye a glance.
Mum! Please don’t say, nothing, I don’t want to tell you will do.
Bisola, this is not about me today. It’s about Rose and we are here to support her. I feel my presence would not be sufficient for her.
Shade Alade closed her eyes and heaved, if only that would give all the relief she needs.
Just then Segun said, It’s well. She would come around today. Don’t worry about her today. Leave me to worry about that.
Rose stepped out just as the driver marched the brakes. Rose was all smiles because she knew that was what she needed to do to keep everyone happy. She headed to the car and hugged her mum, greeted her and came down to head to her sister’s place. And then she saw Segun. She couldn’t contain her smiles. She greeted them both and sat down to gist with them.
Rose, you look great.
Thank you, Segun. How come you didn’t give me a hint you would be coming when we talked on the phone two days ago?
If I had told you, would you have been surprised?
Rose grinned in response.
So, Rose! How is campus life treating you? How does it feel to be in the uni as a fresher?
Just then Bisola’s phone rang.
Bisola, Rose called. Why are just stirring at your phone? Answer your call. It’s not ladylike to ignore a gentle man’s call. Rose said with sarcasm and they all laughed.
It’s one of my classmate that keeps disturbing me. He won’t face his primary reason his parents are paying good money to keep him where he is. All these skirt chasers, not like they have anything to offer. They claim love but the truth is that they want to steal your apple.
Hmmmm. Ride on counsellor. Rose said while Segun decided not to get himself tangled up with these ladies words. He had rather pretend deaf.
I think we should get going to the matriculation venue now.
So you get sitted at the right time for your matriculation ceremony to commence. Their mum said.
The driver turned on the ignition and straight they headed for the venue.