(My heart desire)
BY BLESSING SILVER
“Speechless huh?” Amelia nudged her “that was how I felt when she called me!” Amelia said..Leona blinked twice at her.
“Hi Betsy,” she said, looking her up and down.
“Surprised to see me?”
“I-I guess” she stutters causing Betsy to laugh.
“Whoa! You got more fleshy and pretty, unlike the last time I saw you, you were all skinny and geeky then. Look at those curves!” She said and Leona didn’t know if that was a compliment with bits of mockery or just pure mockery meant to look like a compliment.
Leona flashed her a fake smile anyways. .
“Um thanks and you look uh–
Leona made her words trail off, not sure of the right one to use.
“Skinnier,” she completed wryly “And maybe less sexier and a little too old for my age?
I know, Amelia told me that already” she said, her voice a bit sad and Leona gave Amelia a knowing stare, she shrugged.
Well, Amelia has always been the honest one, saying things without caring if it hurts people feelings or made them feel less happy, that is something Leona can’t be. Nevertheless, Amelia wasn’t lying, Betsy truly had changed and it’s not just any normal change that happens when you leave college, it was kind of not nice. Betsy then was a queen bee, the girl that got everyone’s attention with her presence, daughter of a politician.. rumors had it then that she had slept with all the male staffs in college just to get good grades. She was the type that walked around with high shoulders, live in extravagance, dated the most popular and richest kid in college and skips classes a lot but at each semester ends, her result came out as one of the best.. She had all guys on her palm and had destroyed many relationships back then just for fun, much to Amelia’s disgust. . Leona’s relationship was one of the victim but Leona didn’t feel hurt or angry about it for anything, she didn’t even like the guy in question, she had dated him to experience what dating felt like and at a point he began irritating her when he started demanding for sex.. she was relieved when Betsy took him, to her, she thought she was causing pains to Leona but in actual fact, it was a big relief. Even though she was the one whose boyfriend got snatched, Amelia was the one that challenged and fought Betsy for it, she was so angry about it that you’d think it was her boyfriend that got snatched from her by Betsy, she had been the one getting into trouble for Leona because, either Leona felt too affected to defend herself or she decided to give the whole situation a brush-off but Amelia wouldn’t let it go, especially if it involved Betsy, it’ll all end in the dean’s office..If for anything, Amelia hated her guts and personality, she wasn’t a saint either but she doesn’t go about sleeping with anything on trousers, snatching people’s guy and going to bed with lecturers to boost her result or making out shamelessly in passage halls.. They’ve been rival right from when they knew eachother till they both left college and parted ways.
And here she is, standing right in front of them with a different look and a totally different attitude.. she now looked skinnier, her once bright and flawless skin now had wrinkles on some part and her face was so pale with sunken eyes.. her shape, which attracted guys to her then is no longer there and her blonde hair that had been severally bleached stood as a bob now.
“It’s been pretty tough and rough for me ever since my dad died” she said with a sad frown.
“I’m so sorry Betsy, what happened to him?” Leona asked.
“He died from a severe heart disease” she revealed.
“I’m so sorry about that”
“I’m over it, it’s been two hectic years already” She said. “Let’s sit over there and talk some more” she beamed a smile at them and Leona exchanged eye contact with Amelia before moving with her to the bench. Amelia started the conversation.
“So I guess you didn’t become the fashion model you’ve always boasted about being back then cos to me right now, you look nothing like them” she said, a bit of teasing in her voice, Betsy bent her head, speechless and embarrassed at the same time but Amelia continued “And yes, how about the Ferrari you bragged about Bryan getting you once you turned eighteen, or are you still seventeen?” She said, this time in full sarcasm. Leona nudged her, showing her the effect her words were having on Betsy but she only giggled.
“Wait, are you guys still together?” Amelia asked.
“We’re not” Betsy answered, moistening her lips as she tilt her head upward, guilt eating her up. Amelia expression wore excitement, she’s enjoying the whole thing.
“So there’s no Dean son or Mr rich, popular guy to brag about now, you’re more like any normal person now or maybe a little different.. in a bad way?” She asked with a smirk.. Leona nudged her again, signaling for her to stop. Betsy gulped the words, her cheeks flushed from embarrassment and hurt.
“Look Amelia, I’m truly sorry about snatching your guy from you back then-
“Ew, that pathetic scumbag wasn’t my boyfriend, he was Leona’s” Amelia interjected in slight disgust.
“Well, I’m sorry anyways and for my past behaviors towards you both.. it was childish and rude and I hope you can forgive me?”
Leona looked at her pitifully, truly life had dealt with her.. the Betsy she knew back then wasn’t the type that apologizes. She preferred it the other way round.
“Yeah, it’s okay” Leona answered and she nodded with a smile.
“Amelia?” She called.
“Fine. I forgive you” she said after a reluctant pause.
“Thanks guys. I don’t have friends anymore, they all left me when I became this person. Maybe we all can be friends now” she suggested.
“I don’t think s-
“Of course we can” Leona chipped in before Amelia could complete her words, she gave her a look and sighed..
“Thanks guys” she said.
“So did you get the job?” Amelia asked Leona and she nodded.
“Yes and the pay is pretty good too” she replied.
“You were job hunting?”
“Yes but not anymore” she answered Betsy who was trying to flow along with the conversation. “And I got an apartment too” she said.
“Really?” Amelia asked. “So you’re moving out today?”
“No. Tomorrow or next, they’re few leakages on the roof that needs to be fixed, few house stuffs I need to get and some thorough cleaning in the house”
“I know a joiner if you need one, he’s pretty good. I could send you his number if you want” Betsy said.
“Um okay” Leona took her phone and let her punch the numbers into it from hers before giving it back to her. “Thanks”
“You’re welcome and if you want I can come help you with the cleaning of your house, I don’t really have much to do today” she said.
“You don’t have to Bet, Leona and I can handle it” Amelia replied, shortening her name, something Betsy had always hated and Leona almost gasped when she smiled at her. Well, that’s one thing conditions and life can do.
“Okay, if you say so” she said.
After some more talks, Amelia finally ended the conversation and they exchanged phone numbers before parting ways.
“Phew! I can’t believe Betsy said all those heartfelt words to us” Leona said as they got home and walked to her room, she bent to take off her shoes.
“I still don’t trust that girl one bit” Amelia said, “And I don’t like her”
“Why? Cos you don’t believe that people can’t change?”
“Yes. It’s one axiom that I don’t believe” she said “I mean look at Betsy. Bitchy drama queen back then suddenly wants to be friends with us? Tch”
“People do change Amelia, either through circumstances or just sheer realization”
“Okay. But I still don’t trust her”
“You can’t trust anyone when you haven’t giving them a chance and reason for you to do so, Amy. Just like your mom, she’s changed. You see it but you just don’t want yourself to realize it. Once I leave, you’ll be stuck with her again, just give her another chance to be your mother, start treating her like one” she said.
“Okay don’t try to twist the conversation”
“I’m not twisting anything” Leona paused to sigh “I wish my Dad could be as sober and sorry as your mom, it’ll be one of the happiest day of my life.. I’ll be more than ready to accept him”
“Wait.. You’re saying that you miss your dad?” Amelia asked, surprised “even after what he did to you? After sending you away and freezing your accounts without even caring about your survival?”
“Funnily yes. They’re so many things I would’ve wanted us to do together, so many memories I want us to create. Yes, I lost my pride in a bad way because of him and that’s something I’d never forget but sometimes when you see the sincerity in people’s apology and you know that they’re someone that didn’t start off that way but just got off in the middle, it’s okay to give them a second chance” she said. “Listen Amy, your dad’s gone, your mom’s the only big person you have now, you might not know it now. Time’s something that never goes back, one day you’ll just wake up and realise that they’re so much you should’ve done but didn’t do and then it becomes too late to do it”
“Wait.. Did my mom push you to tell me this?”
“No Amy, no one pushed me. I just felt that I should tell you.
Parental love is not something money can buy and not something everyone’s privileged to have, it’s something you should value. I know sometimes parents can be wrong, just like my dad but apologies and forgiveness is what settles it”
“So you’re saying that-”
“You should give her a second chance, treasure every moment she spends to show you how sober she is about you. You don’t get to see people change everyday but it does happen. Make amends while you can and a lot of memories too, do it before it becomes too late” she said..
“Okay, how on God’s earth did we ever become best friends?” Amelia asked “We’re complete opposite of each other. You’re too magnanimous and I’m just a complete different person with a different attitude. I know I’d never forgive my dad if he does something like yours to me”
Leona smiled “We do have mutual feelings in some things” she said.
“You know what, you should become a motivational speaker” she said.
“I might consider that if this one works on you”
“Keep whining Leona, your words never work on me.. You’re propelling but it doesn’t apply to me” she said and Leona chuckled, “Thanks for the tips though” she said and Leona was about replying when her phone started to ring. She reached for it and answered the call “Hey mom” she said.
“Honey, sorry I didn’t call yesterday, I’ve been totes busy. Damien told me you found an apartment already” she said. “And before you frown, he had no idea that I didn’t know about it”
Leona sighed “Well, I did and I got a job too, mom”
“Wow. That’s great baby. I heard you and Damien are neighbors too”
“You heard that from him, right?”
“What do you expect, he was so excited, he couldn’t hide it”
“Yes, we’ll be neighbors but the house needs a bit of fixing, cleaning and few appliances, I already got a joiner to fix it”
“Okay. You’ve started work right?”
“No. I’m starting tomorrow”
“Well, since you’ll be busy tomorrow, I can help you clean up the house with Mandy if you want”
“Oh really? Of course. You can as well watch the joiner while he works on the ceiling. Thank you mom” she said.
“It’s nothing and besides tomorrow is my supposed off day. I’ll be glad to help and then we’ll meet after everything”
“Yes mom. I’ll come there after work” she said..
“Alright. See you tomorrow then”
“See you too, I’m pretty sure Damien already gave you the house address since you didn’t ask” Leona said and her mom giggled.
“He did. Bye baby, I love you”
“Love you too mom. Bye”
After work the next day, Leona drove to Amelia’s place after giving her Mom a call. It was few minutes past six when she last checked the time. Amelia wasn’t home when she got there so she quickly got changed from her office clothes to a baggy shirt and a pair of black trouser before walking out..
“Leona?” Hilda called her, coming out from the kitchen.
“Good evening, Aunt Hilda” she said “I didn’t find Amelia in the room, did she go somewhere?”
“Yes, she didn’t tell me where. She just took the Jeep and left”
“Okay, if she returns please tell her I went to the house, she should meet me there”
“Okay but won’t you eat something first before leaving?”
“No aunt. I’ll just grab a bite on my way. Bye” she said and walked out. She got into Amelia’s car, since she had offered it to her to use until she moves out. She drove it to her house, she met her mom taking carrying a box out of the house.
“Mom?” She called, as she left the box outside.
“Leona” she squeals, engulfing her in a hug.. “Oh my baby.. I’ve missed you so much” she said.
“I’ve missed you too, mom” she said, trying to squeeze herself into the tight hug. “Can you let me go now ?” She asked and her mom slowly disengage from the hug, she smiled at her.
“How long have you been here?”
“Eight hours or so,” she said as they head into the house “The repair man left after I paid him. He fixed the tap too. The cork were getting hard and rusty so he changed it” she said and Leona nodded. She stepped into the house and a big smile crawled up to her face..
“You did all this?” She faced her, referring to her transformed house, they had not only cleaned the house to a sparkling state, they had also painted the chaffed walls and taken out all the stuffs Leona had planned to take out.
“Mandy and I did, we used some of Damien’s help too to paint the high walls and take out the cupboard and wardrobe” she said..
“Thank you mom. Now I only have to worry about getting few house stuffs” she said
“Hi Leona” Mandy waved, coming out from the bathroom with wet hands..
“Oh hi Mandy. How are you?”
“I’m okay” she said.
“Mom said you helped her in the cleaning. Thank you”
“It’s nothing. I’m glad I could help, nice house you’ve got here by the way”
“Thanks. How’s school going?”
“Great. I got high marks in the test and it boosted my GPA” she informed.
“Wow, that’s a good one. Remember what I told you, if you get a high GPA, then getting a job won’t be a problem.. I’ll give you all the support that I can”
“Thank you” she said with a smile.
“Mandy, we’ll be leaving soon. Take the stuffs I brought to the car” Elisabeth told Mandy and she nodded before walking away.
“So, how was work?” She asked.
“Fine. How’s yours?”
“Good, I’ve been getting more customers lately, it’s starting to get a bit tiring” she said.
“If it’s too stressful then just give yourself some break, okay? You need your health in stability to continue” she said and her mom nodded. “So.. How’s dad?”
“He’s okay. He’s been getting really tired lately but he won’t admit it even when I try to help. It’s all over him, I think he’s overworking himself” she said and Leona shrugged.
“That’s what he wanted right, to do everything himself?” Leona sighed “Is he still taking his medications?”
“Yes, I make sure he does” she said. “Have you eaten?” She asked and Leona shook her head. “I made you something before I came, I left it to warm in a cooler, it’s in the kitchen” she said.
“I should head home now, your dad should be on his way home any moment from now, I need to fix him something before he arrives” she said.
“Damien should be here soon too, he left when his Granny called, she’s such a lovely woman and he promised to be back”
“Yes, She’s adorable. Thanks for everything Mom” she said, going to hug her.
“And I’ll send my support for you to purchase the few home stuffs that you’ll be needing” she said and Leona nodded, gratitude in her expression, she moved to hug her.
“Hey! I’m your mother okay, you can’t keep thanking me for everything” she scolds and Leona laughed, pulling away. “I’ll see you some other time” she said as they stepped out of the house to where her car was parked.
“Take care of yourself, okay?”
“Yeah, you too” Leona said.
They hugged again and she got in, after an exchange of waves, she got in and drove off.
“Was that Elisabeth leaving?” A voice behind her made her turn.
“Yes,” she answers Damien. “You’ve seen the house right?”
“Yeah. Mom told me you helped in fixing it. Thanks”
“That’s what neighbors are for right? It’s nothing” he said and Leona smiled. “There’s something I have to show you inside” he said and she nodded, they walked into the house and he moved forward.
“Over here, I was thinking that since there’s no dinning room in here, you could make one here. I already moved the shelf blocked here. What do you think?”
“It’s good. I actually planned on making a dinning place here, I just didn’t know which part to use” she said, examining the place and walking around.
“It’s perfect” she said and he nodded, quite impressed with himself. Damien saw something shake and as he tilt his head upward, he saw the ceiling fan, just above Leona’s head loose.
“Watch out, Leona!!” He yelled as he swooped to her and pulled her away, she fell on him and the fan landed few meters from them with a thud. Leona turned back in alarm at the sound.. if that fan had fallen on her then she’d no doubt be dead by now. Damien heard her heartbeat fast on him, his breathing was hard too both from anxiety and shock. Unaware, she buried her face in Damien’s chest out of fear.. she almost lost her life back there.
“It’s okay Leona,” he held her close, still trying to steady his breathing. “It’s okay” he raised his head up. Leona took three huge breaths into his chest, trying to prevent herself from having a panic attack. She slowly raised her head up and paused when she realized it was few inches from Damien’s. His coffee-breath was all over her face as their gaze rested on each other, none wanting to look away as thoughts the accident that almost happened slowly faltered off. Damien slowly reached out and tucked strands of her hair that fell to her face behind her ear, Leona’s gaze went to his lips and she slowly lean in, her once racing and scared heart going back to normal, only beating with an urge for her to fulfill her wants. Damien waited for her to take another step and as she lean in a second time, he pushed her face from the back of her head towards his..
Wow.. I didn’t give conditions you all did great in the last chapter.. I’ll be giving conditions on this one though😒.
Question! What do you think about Betsy reappearing back in Leona’s and Amy’s life?
What about Damien’s and Leona’s position??
Please drop your thoughts in the comment box, I’ll react to the best one and I’m sure you all noticed that this chapter is unusually lengthy.. I purposely made it so and it took so many of my time, so here.