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Tamara walked back to her daughter with medications on her hands but she was surprised to find her perfectly well.
“What happened to you Amanda? I mean how are you all well?” She stooped to caress her face.
Amanda pointed to Jamal’s vehicle scudding away amidst the durst particles. “That man inside that vehicle treated me right here.”
Tamara’s face shimmered with surprise. “Who is he? Do you know him?”
Amanda shook her head. “He is a medical doctor mom and I think he is cool.” An aplomb smile crossed her face.
“Really?” Tamara raised an eyebrow.
“Yes mom and he even asked of you?” Amanda said.
Tamara shot a smirked. She hadn’t expected anybody to come to their aid. All of Tamara’s life had been rived with scorn and disdain from people around her. People she had wished to come close with had all spat on her face and treated her with contempt. She had no friends, families, allies and acquaintances well except Me Bells who stood by her all along.
“Did you say your thank you to him?” She asked.
Amanda nodded. “I did mom.” She answered. “But there is something mom.”
The smirk on Tamara’s face morphed into frown. “What is it?”
“Mom lets just assume you saw dad now are you going to recognize him?”
Tamara scoffed at her daughter’s question. Her question wasn’t stupid though, but at the same it wasn’t carrying any iota of sense. How many times did she have to tell her that Khalid was dead and gone. She really needed to to talk some sample sense into her daughter to live with the fact that her father was dead and gone forever and he wasn’t coming back.
“Amanda” she cooed softly. Her face widened to someone who was about to have a serious talk. “I need you to accept what am about to tell you. Though it may seems wrong but you really need to to accept and live with it. You see your father is d…”
“Answer me mom!” Amanda yelled. “Can you still recognise him because I don’t believe he is dead!”
“Your father is dead and he is not coming back to us. Amanda you need to live with that!” Tamara said slightly peeved up, while trying to fight back another round of tears.
Amanda shook his head in distraught. “No mom did you confirm his death? Did you see him dead?”
“Sweetheart,” Tamara wiped her tears and nodded. “Yes I saw him dead. He died in my arms. He died of arrows that was shot at him by my mo…” Tamara quickly refrained himself from revealing to her daughter that her grandmother killed her father.”By our people.” She continued. “You know they think your father is a Lamia–a vampire making him our threat as Larabas. So they attacked him and shot him with an arrow and he dropped dead instantly on my arms.” Tamara squealed.
“So the Larabas killed my father?” Amanda asked, curiosity aching on her queer eyebrows.
“Amanda, you are also Laraba and that’s same with me. So don’t start picking on us this time–we are all werewolves.”
“But my father is vampire right?”
“I’m not sure but that’s what they thought before he was killed.”
Amanda suspired. “So you are now sure my father is dead without any tiny possibility he might still be alive?”
Tamara nodded in cocksure.”I’m very sure daughter. Khalid died in arms.” She replied.
Amanda threw a shrug–a gesture indicating she heard all what her mother said but she never believed the part she said she was sure her father was dead. Of course she could feel the clairvoyance inside of her–telling her and screaming loudly that her father was alive. That her father was the man that just left in the vehicle. There were evidences confirming that. The dazy look that appeared on the man’s face when he saw her meant something. Perhaps he was having the same feeling she nurtured. He might be mistaking her for her mother who happened to be his long lost lover. Then aside the look on his face, the talisman he had on him also spelt loud confirmation he might be his father. The tales attached to the talisman beseemed her mother’s as well. Even the man possessed the type of smile her mother had once told her her father had. The sweet-embolden smile that could make the world a better place. And then there was this last thing that stamped the chances he might be her father. That was the humane side of him. Ever since she had been walking on the earth surface, she hadn’t seen anyone so caring to like him. Another perfect trait of him her mother had tattled about.
Amanda thought of telling her mother about the talisman she saw on Jamal’s neck probably that could steer what she felt about her father being dead but later decided against it. Her mother could still be obstinate.
“Who is Jamal?” Tamara asked.
“Jamal is his name. The man that treated me just now.” Amanda said.
“Okay.” Tamara mouthed feeling indifference.
“I’m just telling just incase you met him again.”
“Amanda have you said your ‘thank you’ when he finished the treatment on you?” Tamara quizzed.
“Yes mom.” She shrugged.
“Good you did– because we can’t meet him again.” Tamara said.
Amanda’s hefted her eyebrows. “Why mom?” She was getting somewhat teed off at her mom’s hash replies.
“Amanda don’t you get ? We are going to the city and I think he is just arriving here. So there’s no way of ever meeting him again. It’s good you’ve shown your gratitude–I never raised you to be ingrate.” Tamara stated as she flagged down an upcoming vehicle.
Amanda smelt the seriousness in her mother’s words when she flagged down the vehicle taking them to the city. Perhaps it was a good idea to heed to her mom’s advice of living with the fact she didn’t have a father. She was sure he was still alive somewhere but decided not saddle herself with the blurry hope of meeting him again. So she would stick to mom’s word.
After her mother’s haggling with the fare, they both entered the vehicle going and mustered up for the city. Amanda dug her hands inside her pocket.
“Hold on please.” Amanda said as she hurled away the business card Jamal gave to her before he left.
“What’s that?” Tamara asked her daughter.
“It’s nothing mom. Just trying to live with the fact that I don’t have a father.” Amanda uttered supressing a snivel.
Jamal had found it difficult to take his mind away from the thought of Amanda. He knew there was more to her than just acquaintance. He was sure the girl was the exact replica of Tamara and even did she possessed some sparkling traits of himself. Nothingness Jamal didn’t want to think Tamara would be alive all these while. He didn’t want to think Meshach lied to him about her death. Of course he had known the man for being perfect fibber. All the lies he told him before was centered to a point that he was trying to protect him. Could Meshach still be daft to lie to him about Tamara also? Definitely NO!–he answered himself. Tamara was dead! The girl she saw only clang the same features with her–nothing more.
Regardless of whatever he resolved to himself, Jamal still wished the girl would be back for her treatment as she promised so he could see her many times more.
Rominick coughed, trying to bring Jamal’s attention back. “I have another surprise for you when we arrive at our new home.” He said.
“Dad and surprises. It seems you’re never tired of giving me surprises after all.” Jamal beamed a smile.
Rominick put his left hand on the headrest and his right on Jamal’s right shoulder. “Son that’s because you deserved being surprised after all.” He smiled. “You are good son remember?”
Jamal scoffed. “And Hilton? Some kind of bad son to you ?”
Rominick withdrew back to sit properly. “Hilton is my son! But you know he doesn’t deserve any of what I’ve given to you.” He said while previous smile turned to a scowl.
Jamal shrugged. “Well he still your biological son and I’m just an adopted…”
“I know that before.” The old man said sternly. “Jamal I know the reason why I’m doing all these for you and I don’t think you have to rub it on my face that Hilton is just a scrap.”
Jamal remained silence. He swerved the wheel into a massive compound they were heading to. He treadled on the pedals and the car jerked to a halt. Jamal climbed down from the vehicle to meet Adriana sauntering around the compound. She was oblivious of their presence.
“Aren’t you surprised you are seeing her here?” Rominick’s voice strolled from behind.
Jamal scoffed. “Daad! If this is the surprise you are talking about then I’m sorry to disappoint you. I’m not surprised.” Jamal said as he walked passed him.
“Jamal!” Rominick called vehemently.
Jamal stopped walking and pranced back to his foster father.
“That’s is not the surprise.” Rominick said looking at Jamal.
“Okay.” Jamal shrugged. “So what’s the surprise father?”
Rominick paced towards him with self haughtiness. Happy he was almost done with his decoy. He was at the final phase of his retribution and he hoped Jamal wouldn’t flaw it by objecting what he wanted him to do. Rominick had met Adriana before that day and lured the girl into his mission. Of course she was willing to contribute her part since it entailed what she even hankered for. Adriana was happy she was going to have Jamal all to herself after all.
Rominick placed his hands on Jamal’s chest. “The surprise is you will have to get married to Adriana in a month time.” Rominick replied with a malign grin.
“Father!” Jamal stared at the old man.
Rominick moved away from him. “Son.”
“You’re joking right?” Jamal scoffed.
“No, I’m not son.” He replied while backing Jamal.
“But this isn’t a surprise.”Jamal said. Anger yelling out on his face.
“Son that’s left for you to decide.” Rominick murmured and walked back to where Jamal was standing. “You remember the day I told you that when the time comes I will ask you just two things I need from you.”
Jamal groaned. “What has that got to do with this?”
“This is actually one of the thing I want you to do for me. The only way to repay me for everything have done for you is to get married to Adriana.”
Jamal shook his head vehemently. “Father I can’t do this and I will never do this.”
Mr Rominick scoffed and shrugged. “Then you stop being my son too. And I’m sure you know what that entails? You would loose everything you’ve gotten through me.” A frown pervaded his face.”When I said everything I meant including your medical practice.” He said with his aura of haughtiness.
Rominick could perceive the ire lurking around Jamal’s face. He wasn’t bothered because his fear was palpable too. Exactly what he needed. He was going to exploit his weakest point in other to achieve his mission. His mission of retribution.
“I hate you father!” Jamal blurted.
The older man smiled before tapping Jamal’s chest. “Common son, you can’t hate me for fever.” He said and walked out on him. “Lets explore the interior of our new home and start preparing on how to propose to her.”
Jamal looked with disdain as his foster-father walked away. Anger mixed with hurt. He wasn’t accepting any of his father’s caustic words. When he said he wasn’t loving another because of Tamara he wasn’t joking.
The rain fell in slopes defying all louvres and marquee or anything else being used for protection against the rain. The raining was heavy and it was unfortunate that it dropped mightily on Tamara and her daughter.
After they reached the city, Tamara and her daughter had nowhere to turn to. They kept roaming the street until they felt fatigue. They had decided to a nap under an empty marquee they found but not soon after they were in their resting spree then the rain started. And since they had nowhere to go for shelter, while all the vehicles they tried to flag down had all scrammed off immediately they found out that they were with no fare, they had decided to stay inside the downpour. All alone in the discomfort of the night.
“It’s okay honey. We will be alright when it stops raining.” Tamara cooed into his daughter’s ear.
“Ok mom.” The little girl replied and crawled tautly under her mother’s embrace.
Both mother and daughter were still in the rain when a shadow approached them. They both flinched at the sight person.
The figure raised his hand to calm them down.”It’s okay you don’t have to run. I’m just trying to help here.” He said and pointed to a vehicle that was parked a bit afar. “That’s my car over there and if you don’t mind I can take you out of here.”
Tamara slammed the figure with a probing look. The figure looked innocent and seemed reserved with intense calmness.
Tamara nodded and nudged her daughter to follow the person to his vehicle. The person quickly loped to open the door for Tamara and her daughter to enter. Tamara scoffed seeing how the chap scuttle to open the door for them. She was slightly amused.
The young man cast a look on Tamara as he turned on the ignition. Tamara’s coifed hair had fallen over her face due to the wetness. That kindled her beautiful more.
“So what’s the name ? I’m Hilton.” Hilton introduced himself, smiling chivalrously.
“Tamara. Just call me Tamara.” Tamara replied unsmiling.
“Tamara.” The name rang a bell. Jamal had neighed about the name countless of times in his eardrum. Could this be the supposed dead friend of Jamal ? There was only way to confirm. Jamal intensed his stare on Tamara. Then he saw the confirmation on her neck. He saw the second pair of the talisman Jamal always wore and also told him about. So Jamal’s girlfriend wasn’t dead after all.
“Nice name you’ve got Tamara.” He breathed as a wild grin clawed his face.