ROYAL MEMOIRS (Ranti Remembers) 11

Mrs. Mommodu took off as soon as she dumped her adopted daughter at the teaching hospital. She obviously couldn’t care less as long as she had no dead body to answer for.

It was a miracle Ranti made it out of the hospital alive. She had been managed as a case of septic abortion and a total hysterectomy was neccessary to save her. The recovery process was quite satisfactory, her scars healed beautifully.

Ranti’s major problem however, was sorting the hospital bills. Even if she put together all of her life savings, it still won’t suffice.

Each day spent at the hospital increased her already outrageous bill. Most nights, she cried herself to sleep. Life had been unfair. There was no forth coming helper, neither did she have a friend to lean on. Odds would most likely have been in her favour if she had remained at the orphanage and never crossed paths with the Mommodus’.

Lekan Smith; a young and well spoken medical doctor was the angel sent to rescue Ranti. He was unbelievably nice, almost to a fault. It’s no shock she eventually fell for him. The day Ranti attempted suicide remained vivid in her head.

Dr. Smith had been passing by to see his patient in the adjacent room when he noticed her door was unusally ajar. He instinctively looked through the opening and was alarmed. There she lay, gradually slipping away, in a pool of blood. Thankfully, she still had a pulse and the medics swung into action immediately.

After the suicide attempt, Ranti was watched like a hawk by the nurses. She was almost never left alone in her room, all objects that could potentially endanger her were taken out.

Dr. Smith took particular interest in Ranti and it made her uncomfortable. With time though, she warmed up to him, and shared some of her burdens. She narrated her life story and highlighted how the stars had never aligned in her favor. Patience was definitely one of Dr. Smith’s attributes; he listened attentively to every detail of her story with compassion.

The young doctor had been brought up different, in a rich and loving home; devoid of negativity or jealousy. He just could not imagine a family with most of its members being evil. Ranti’s story touched the deepest cords in his heart and he decided to help her. Paying courtsey visits and praying for her became his norm.

The anonymous donor responsible for clearing her hospital bills wasn’t so incognito. On the day of her discharge she cried, but this time, they were tears of joy. It finally seemed like things were beginning to look up.

Ranti decided never to go back to the Mommodus’. Sleeping on broad street seemed more palatable.

Dr. Smith surprisingly had made plans. He walked into her hospital room on the morning of her discharge with a big smile and some lovely balloons.

“Congratulations on your discharge Ranti, I am sincerely happy for you,” He spoke gleefully.

“I know you paid my bills Dr. Smith, you honestly shouldn’t have. I am however extremely grateful, May our good Lord bless you immensely.”

She almost dropped to her knees with a well of tears in an attempt to show gratitude, but Lekan immediately stopped her.

“It is nothing, we thank God for his blessing,” he smiled.

So, please if you dont mind my asking, where are you headed? I mean, where do you intend residing when you step out of the hospital?” Lekan asked.

“To be honest Sir, I would rather sleep under the bridge than return to those monsters,” she replied with disgust.

“I have told you repeatedly to call me Lekan, I am no old man,” He laughed. “Why don’t you come with me?”

She seemed shocked and uncomfortable.

“Oh! no, I am not asking you to live with me. I am saying come with me, my Dad has a mini flat two houses away from mine. It is currently vacant, you could stay there for a while,” He mentioned.

“That would not be possible, I can’t afford a mini flat at the moment,” she spoke in a defeated tone.

“I do not expect you to pay for the flat silly. Don’t you think it would be nice to live close to my apartment? So you could visit anytime you feel lonely or need a friend?” He smiled.

“Ah! You are really God sent Doctor, I pray you never know sorrow in your lifetime.” Ranti spoke before letting out a cry of anguish.

“Stop crying Ranti, this is a new dawn, embrace it.”he smiled.

She had never been acquainted with anyone like Dr. Smith, he seemed too good to be true, almost unbelievable. . The amazing part of it all was that she was unaware of the part he would come to play in helping to find her real family .

Three months down the line, Ranti summoned the courage to complete her four year accounting course. She had two years to go, it was no easy feat, considering she had left abruptly. Thankfully, Lekan was there to cheer her on and provide both moral and financial support. He was super proud when she graduated from the University with a second class upper.

He immediately secured for her, an investment banking job with his wealth of connections. It wasn’t like she didn’t merit the position, but considering the way things play out in the country, connection is always very key!

It was obvious they had both started to develop feelings for each other. Ranti tried hard to ignore hers. In her opinion, there was no use starting a relationship with no clear future. Lekan had been good to her, she found it unfair to deprive him of a fruitful marriage.

Lekan however had a contrary opinion, the feelings he had for her were too strong to be ignored. He never hid his intentions where she was concerned. On some days it seemed like she felt the same way, but on other days she was real distant. Lekan was confused but decided to play the patience game till she was ready to decide and speak about her feelings.

She finally opened to him. Ranti trembled as she spoke, that beautiful morning. It was as though she felt intimidated and couldn’t look him in the face.

“I can’t put you through this hell Lekan, you sholud leave while you still can.”

“It’s me o RT, me Lekan!, Look at me, we can do this together.” He immediately pulled her close.

“I ain’t going nowhere. Don’t worry , we could try other available options like surrogacy and adoption,” Lekan mumbled as he stared intently at her.

All he could think of was devouring those beautiful lips of hers, he had forever longed to feel them. Ranti must have pierced into his thoughts, she beat him to it.

Feeling her soft lips on his took him back to his teenage years as he savoured every moment of the deliciousness. She tasted like heaven! You know, that never ending sweet and peaceful feel. He held on tight, obviously unwilling to let go.

“Easy there Mr Macho.” She giggled.

“I am in Love with you Ranti, always have been and I am ready to fight for your heart. Get ready, I won’t give up.” he mentioned.

“Trust me, you have it,” she smiled.

There was more to Ranti’s background than was revealed to her. Lekan occasionally travelled out of town for update courses. There was a particular update course he attended that completely changed her life.

He got acquainted with a female doctor; Morenikeji who looked exactly like his wife. The resemblance was too striking to be ignored. Infact, they had this strange mark on both temples, subtle but visible. He had always wondered how his wife got the mark.

It was after conversing with Morenikeji that Lekan discovered she was of royal background. He was even more disturbed when he got to know that she was a twin. Apparently, her sister had died along with their mother and driver in a vehicle accident twenty two years back.

The car was said to have gone up in flames and it’s occupants were burnt beyond recognition. It then dawned on Lekan that Ranti might just be the young doctor’s sister. How she survived the accident was what he could not fathom.

“So were the bodies retrieved after the accident,” he inquired.

“Well, kind of, those of the driver and my mum but not Morayo’s. Perhaps she was flung into the bush, We searched but our efforts were futile. We eventually got tired and let it go.

“I am sorry, I don’t mean to come across wierd, but you look exactly like my wife.” Confused was the word written on every inch of her face.

“Ok, hold on,” he spoke as he reached for his mobile phone. “Take a look at this.”

Morekenikeji collected his phone and stared at her spitting image in amazement.

“O wow!” you weren’t kidding. Who, where and how?” she questioned, obviously in deep thought.

“You know what, we need to seat and discuss this,” Lekan resolved, “Let’s talk this over drinks at the bar. After you,” he gestured.

Ranti couldn’t believe her ears, that she was a twin and from a royal family was quite ambitious, until she scheduled a meeting with her twin sister.

The visit to her home town was unlike anything she had ever experienced. The celebration was massive. Excited villagers ushered her into the palace with melodious songs. Aside a twin sister, she had an elder brother and her father, the king; a true family she could call her own.

She was jolted back to the present by her father. He was calm and friendly despite being in a position of power, he was the complete opposite of Mr. Mommodu; her adoptive Father. He walked up to his daughters and placed his right palm on Ranti’s shoulder as he tried to console her.

“My princess, I don’t know how I could ever make up for the lost time and suffering you have endured. I am however making a promise that you would know nothing but joy from here on. Your sister, brother and I would always be here for you.” The king spoke with a heavy heart.

Ranti wailed. All her life, she had known misery and misfortune. The Mommodu family had made her feel unworthy of being loved, but here she was, in the midst of a beautiful family and a man who loved her unconditionally.

“God knows best Daddy, I was bitter and angry but he turned my pain around and has given me so much joy. I look forward to a wonderful relationship with you all,” she smiled.

“Please note however, that you would need to contact this dashing young man for permission to release his wife for sleep over visits,” she giggled.

“Not to worry Sir, I am no jealous lover, there is love in sharing. Permission absolutely granted, anytime, anyday,” Lekan immediately chipped in.

“Ok! That’s comforting, else we would have been forced to stage a kidnap with no ransom.” They all burst into bouts of laughter with the King’s playful remark.

The End!

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