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The substitute wedding.

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"I'm sorry this is not the life I promised you" Jerry apologized to me as he lay helplessly on the hospital bed.

"Don't be please. You don't have any reason to apologize, you were only trying to be the best boyfriend you could ever be. It's sad that things turned out this way." I said trying my best to hide my emotions. Although I was seriously drowning in pains and guilt as I sat there looking at the energetic, strong hard working man who I once knew turn into a

Jerry was in an accident on his way back from Abuja. While trying to meet up with my birthday. He had traveled days before for an urgent meeting with the board of directors of his company at the company's headquarters at the capital of the country.

He had finished just in time to annd set out for asaba out state of residence. Just a few kilometers to Asaba, he rammed into an incoming vehicle. Which affected both of his legs. And ever since I couldn't stop blaming myself and anything I could think of for his predicament.

Seated right there beside him I held his hands and assured him that everything was going to be fine. Although I know that it was visibly clear that all has changed not for me though but for him.

"Look at me babe," I said. He turned to reveal a face that had pain, anguish and regret all mashed up in one. His eyes were red from constant crying.

"I love you babe, and I'll never trade what we have now for anything. Not now, not in the future." I gently rose from my seat and gave him a kiss on his forehead. Immediately I walked out the room and when I was sure I was clearly out of his sight I let the tears out. It was hot, yet satisfying as it ran down my cheeks.

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I could recall how I met Jerry. I was in my finals in school trying to manoeuvre between a fresh heartbreak from my then boyfriend and my final exams. I could barely concentrate on reading. It was like trying to run a race with a sack of neatly packed sands on your shoulders.

I was on my way to the exam hall, when all of a sudden I felt woozy and fell in the walkway. And the next thing I could remember was opening my eyes in the school clinic to this huge mass of a man sitting right beside my bed, it was Jerry. That was how we met, he had helped to carry me to the hospital after I collapsed on the walkway in school. But at that point all I could think of asking was about Tunde who had just broken up with me.

"Are you, Tundes brother or friend? Is he here with you? Can I see him? " I asked, Jerry wh looking around as if Tunde could just materialize miraculously into the room.

Instead this stranger smiled and replied.
" I'm not Tunde, but whoever he is must be on his way here now worried" he replied still with a cheerful smile.

"He isn't" I said crying.

"Hey, hey, hey. Don't cry, such a beautiful lady. Like you don't need to get your face stained with tears. Come on, wipe your tears." He said wiping the tears with his fingers off my face. " Look, I don't know what's going on with you and as the doctor advised I'm not gonna ask you anything now but all I know it's that all is gonna be well. I got your mum's number from your emergency dial and she should be here any moment from now. So I'm gonna head off for my appointments for the day but I promise to be back to know how this damsel is coping. Alright?"

I nodded as he stood up.

"By the way I'm Jerry"

" Diane," I forcefully said.

He stood for some moments as if he had more words to say then gave that cheerful smile again and left the room.

That was the beginning of what blossomed into a perfect relationship more than the other relationship I've ever been in. A relationship that was supposed to have graduated into marriage by the next month if the accident hadn't happened.

Jerry was all a woman could ever pray for. Apart from pressing the way he pressed toothpaste by the neck Jerry was everything I asked for.

I stood in the hospital walkway looking dejected. Are we gonna call off the wedding? I asked myself. I love Jerry and wouldn't want to leave him. Then it struck me.

I quickly ran back to his room with a beautiful smile. He jerked as I dashed into the room.

"Is everything alright?'' he asked.

"Let's get married here" I replied instead.

"Babe, this is a hospital"

"I know, " I quickly sat beside him and held his hands. "Think of it this way. People get married at the beach, park, anywhere. It doesn't necessarily have to be the church. What matters is the hearts involved. Since our hearts are made for each other, getting married here doesn't matter"

He kept calm for a few seconds, smiled, then replied.

"Choosing you wasn't a mistake. Let's do it"

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A few weeks later we were married at the hospital.

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