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*continues*

“listen to me Mary, i beg of you please” i pleaded, but she never cared to listen.

“get out of here this minute or you will get to regret ever coming here” she threatened. I stood my ground and still pleaded, surprising them with my behaviour.

“i guess we should wait and listen to whatever he has to say” her elder sister cut in,

“no way. I’m tired of listening to him, he deservers a dirty bucket of water and that’s what i’m going to get” she barked and went inside the house. I turned and fled without another word.
It was one thing to be assaulted verbally and another thing to be assaulted physically. The fire in her eyes and voice told me she meant every word and i wasn’t ready to take the risk of going home soaked with dirty water.
_________

“what’s up. How did it go with Mary?” Chioma asked the next day.

“i didn’t achieve anything. I only got insulted and embarrassed” i answered. She dropped her eyes and held my hands.

“i’m sorry” she murmured,

“nothing will stop us from getting married. We will travel together to see my parents and the next day travel to your hometown. It’s better we kick off things without delay” i said to her. She smiled and stared at me with love.

“really?” she said with happiness. I smiled back at her while the pastor’s advice came flashing back in my head.
“you have to make peace with anybody you have offended in order to avoid any tragedy” his voice kept repeating.
__**

The next weekend, I took Chioma home to see my family. Everyone was very delighted, especially my mother. Chioma equally lived up to expectation drawing out smiles from everybody.

“it’s really bad that you abandoned us my son. When you were still a student you came home almost every weekend, but now it’s a miracle to see you in three months. That’s bad, but seeing my daughter inlaw to be, the joy she brought along has made me forgive you” my dad seriously said to me, while i looked down a bit ashamed for staying away from my family and also happy at the same time for the manner in which they recieved Chioma.

The next day Chioma and I headed to her home. Her family equally welcomed us with open arms. She introduced me to everyone and they had no problem accepting me.

After a little discussion, i reached an agreement with her family to start up the first stage of marriage talks in the coming saturday {which traditionally is called knocking of door in Igbo culture. The traditional way of a suitor formally introducing himself to his girl-friend’s family. A keg of Palmwine and a bottle of schnapp are the only items required{ in most places}. After which the marriage list{ or list of items required as part of the bride price will be handed to the suitor if he so desires. Though the list isn’t given out for free} *Igbo is a tribe in the southeastern part of Nigeria*
____
I returned to the city later in the evening, happy and proud of myself. Chioma joined me the next day.
“i’m so happy. You are wonderful” she thanked me with love and gratitude, while i kissed her happily.

I was very determined to Marry Chioma but the only obstacle now was the pastor’s revelation and getting Mary’s forgiveness.

To be continued.

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