Lanre stood at the entrance door to Dr. Coker's two storey house for a minute before he knocked on the door. Nike had been staying there since she ran away and jilted him at the altar.
A maid opened the door a bit then widened it upon recognizing him. He was not sure but it seemed she gave him a pitiful look. He gritted his teeth, walked into the living room and tried to calm himself. He dislikes it when people pity him.
"Good afternoon sir. I'll let Miss Nike know you are here," the maid said and walked away.
"Thank you." He said after her retreating back.
A few minutes later, Nike emerged from one of the rooms, looking solemn and beautiful.
"Hey Lanre," she whispered hoarsely with a pained look. Lanre could only stare at her, having missed seeing her for some days. He covered the space between them in two long strides to hug her but Nike realized his intent and quickly moved away to stand behind a sofa.
Lanre furrowed his brows. "Why are you doing this?" He asked. Nike shook her head. "It won't work. Your parents are right…"
"What is wrong with you?!" Lanre interrupted, clearly pissed. Nike gasped in surprise. He moved closer to her. "This union is about you and me and not my parents."
"No, Lanre. That's where you are not being realistic. Every marriage is not about the couple only. The extended family is also involved."
"Yes, involved but their opinion should not determine our union. If that's the case, I will resign from the family company tomorrow and we can both fly out to the US, get married there and settle down."
Nike could not stop the tears from streaming down her face. She knew this young man was ready to defy his family just to be with her but she could not allow it.
"Please stop Lanre. I will never allow you to do that. Your family is a part of you. You resign, you lose them. No."
"My mind is made up already…"
"I mean it Lanre. Just so you know, I'm leaving already. My flight is in three hours."
Lanre could not believe his ears. He stared at her, speechless while she avoided looking at his face.
At the airport…….
Lanre held unto Nike tightly, running his hands down her back, pressing her soft body close to his firm, broad chest. She had smeared his Hawes & Curtis shirt with tears but he was not worried about that.
She sniffed, reluctantly pulling away from him. She stared at his chin instead of his eyes.
"I'm truly sorry." She whispered, kissed him slowly one last time and turned into the departure hall without looking back. Lanre stood on the same spot for an hour, just staring until his driver came to escort him back to the car.
Nike resolved to move on with her life, knowing she had loved truly but had to let him go to protect him. He deserved better. He deserved a family.