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The Cloak Of Darkness - Literature - Nairaland

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The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 5:49pm On Jan 11
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
Written by: Grace Olayemi

CHAPTER ONE
“Another glass of brandy please,” Frank yelled from across the room. A
young lady, who was the waitress, ran to the counter to attend to his
orders.

“You are drunk, man,” Steve said trying to stop his friend from popping
another bottle of alcohol.

“I need boldness to take this step and so I need to get high to achieve the
level of boldness I need,” he replied to his friend while yanking his hand
off the bottle so he could pour himself another round.

“You are so stubborn,” Steve said and gave up.

After drinking himself to stupor, Frank stood up abruptly and staggered
to another table towards the end of the room.

Frank and Steve had made it a habit to spend their evenings in a club
house to drink, play cards, dance with ladies and feed their eyes with the
strippers’ moves and mostly get to spend the night with any of them.
They had lived their lives on the basis of “all work and no play makes
Jack a dull boy” and that made it difficult for them to see anything bad
with their way of life. They had tons of girlfriends and had lost count of
the number of flings and ‘eat and destroy’ they had had and yet they
could not seem to ignore the sight of a beautiful woman.

Frank finally got to his destination after tripping twice and bumping into
men and ladies alike who were also having fun in their terms at the club.

The table was occupied by a man who dressed like a titled chief with his
cap and beads. He looked slightly above sixty with his neatly shavenbeard and a pair of eye glasses which looked more like his only source
of illumination into the happenings around his surroundings. The room
was not properly lit as there were only coloured bulbs and loud music
so, the colour of his attire cannot be clearly determined but it looked
more like a lemon green traditional wear. He was in the company of two
young ladies who were seated on his either sides and were busy
caressing his head, face and potbelly and he was enjoying the gesture.

Frank banged the table and that gave them a jerk. He was about saying
something when two able-bodied men appeared behind him and bundled
him outside.

Steve, who did not leave his seat, watched the entire scene closely and
he was afraid of what would become of his friend.

***** 3 hours earlier

Steve and Frank had arrived at the club at about 9pm and were so
excited about the thought of the fun they were going to have that night.

They had carefully selected a seat that would give them access to have a
clear view of all that would play out at the club that night. They had
called all their girlfriends and were disappointed by all of them but they
didn’t allow that to spoil their euphoria as they were optimistic about the
idea of tasting a new fish that night.

They sat down and placed their orders to get started for the night. Just
then, a lady walked in, in the company of an elderly man and Frank’s
mouth went agape. He was flabbergasted to see Rita, one of his
girlfriends, who just told him that she had travelled to the village to visit
her sick mother and that was why she could not spend the evening with
him. He stared and stared until his eyes turned red. He gazed at theirevery move and could read in between the lines that Rita was actually
dating him alongside an old man and that pained him to his bones.

“You might be mistaking someone else for her,” Steve said in a bid to
get his friend’s eyes off them and also not to ruin their evening.

“I’m not blind at all. I can recognise that dress even in my sleep because
I bought it for her with my hard-earned money,” Frank said soberly and
that made Steve giggle as he had never seen his friend broken because of
any woman.

“He might be her dad or uncle or just anyone and not what you are
thinking,” Steve said and he also did not believe what came out of his
mouth because he knew that no reasonable father would bring his
daughter to that kind of place at that time of the night.

“You sound like a dunce right now,” Frank said with so much disgust
and Steve agreed because he knew it himself.

“Don’t let this girl ruin our evening please,” Steve pleaded with his
friend as he looked into his eyes and saw rage which he knew would
make him become irrational.

“I’m going to make sure she doesn’t get away with this,” Frank said
while gulping down the content of his cup and turned the bottle of
brandy on the table swiftly, emptied the content into his cup and made to
drink it before Steve held his hand.

“You have little resistance for alcohol so please take it easy and don’t
drink yourself to a pulp,” Steve said, still holding him.

“She played with my intelligence and made me into a fool and I won’t
take that,” he said and yanked his friend’s hand off before forcing the
alcohol down his throat.

“I can’t take it!” He exclaimed after catching his breath and Steve could
sense that he was getting drunk and that would not do him any good
because his friend behaved like a fool whenever he was drunk.

“You are known for playing with women’s intelligence and their hearts
so I wonder why you are so pained that just one woman deceived you
and you are acting as though you loved her,” Steve said with irritation,
wanting his friend to snap out of his pity party and allow him to enjoy
the night.

“I’m the only one that has the right to play women. They have no right
to play with my intelligence,” Frank replied in anger.

Steve tried all he could to make his friend snap out of his rage and fury
but his entire attempt proved abortive. And after drinking himself to a
pulp he walked over to the table to confront Rita but he had been
whisked away by two macho men and Steve was scared to go out to see
what they were doing to his friend because he knew he won’t be able to
overpower such men.

*****
Steve finally summoned courage to see what had befallen his friend. He
took his jacket and car keys after paying the bills and stepped outside.

He walked through the alley and checked the back of the building but he
saw no sign of his friend. He then searched through the parking lot and
still could not find Frank. He was almost giving up when he saw those
two men standing across the road and he walked up to them. He saw his
friend dumped in a gutter and his sight left little to be desired. He made
to walk away without them noticing him but he was too late and it was
when he heard them say “na him friend be that” that he took to his heels
but they caught him and he had a taste of what they dished out to Frank.

He sat in the gutter and watched his friend snore his life out in the dirty
ditch. He wished he had not even attempted to look for him but it was
too late as he was already facing the consequences of the action. The
men stayed with them as though they were under strict instructions and
he could not reach to his pocket to get his phone because he feared they
might smash it and he could not risk the pain of losing his phone as it
contained vital informations regarding his life.

After what seemed like eternity, the men moved away and when he rose
up he saw that the chief was exiting the club in the company of those
ladies and he looked down at his defeated friend who was still sleeping
soundly in the gutter.

When the coast was clear, he gave his friend a hard slap that made him
to jerk and he walked away. Frank could not register his environment
but he saw his friend walking away. He tried to stand up and then the
pain in his body sent him falling backwards into the ditch filled with
mud and then the stench rose to his nose and he tried to cover his nose
but his hands were all covered in mud. The smell of the place made him
gather all the strength he could muster and he was able to get on his feet
and crawled his way out of the pit. As he walked towards the direction
he saw his friend walking to, the images of what happened came to him
like a flash and he gritted his teeth in anger while tightening his fist but
he was only a toothless dog that can only bark.

They were able to get some water to clean up and he was so apologetic
to Steve who just blamed him for ruining his evening and laughed him to
scorn as he showed him the picture of the chief walking out of the club
with Rita clinging to him like a pest and that infuriated him the more. He
promised himself that he was going to deal with Rita and make her pay
for the pain that was inflicted on them but Steve just laughed at him in
disbelief as they got into the car to drive home.

The night had been ruined and they could not go into the club to drink
and get girls again because the time was fast spent and most of the
beautiful girls would have been carted away leaving the old and used
ones and they would rather sleep alone than deal with such. They were
also relieved because it was a Friday night and so the bruises on their
faces and arms would have healed a little before resuming to work on
Monday which will save them the pain of cooking up a lie to cover up
the disgrace of being beaten up in a club because of a girl.

NO PART OF THIS BOOK IS TO BE REPRINTED,
COPIED, OR REPRODUCED IN WHATEVER
FORM WITHOUT THE PERMISSION OF THE
AUTHOR.
You can contact the author via:
Facebook: Olayemi Grace Boluwatife
Email: rayofhopestories@gmail.com
Instagram: @ray_of_hope_stories
Whatsapp: 08168467521
Website: rayofhopestories.com or
okadabooks.com/user/Graceolayemi
LIKE OUR FACEBOOK PAGE @ RAY OF HOPE
STORIES
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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 10:35pm On Jan 12
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER TWO
“Good afternoon o!” Mrs Alfred shouted for the umpteenth time and
gave the door a tug to see if she could force her way in but the door had
been firmly locked and her efforts had been abortive.
She had left the heart of the city that Saturday morning to attend the
wedding of a friend’s son in the suburb and she had decided to use the
opportunity to check on her son who also resided in that area. She had
called earlier to inform him of her intentions but the phone went
unanswered and she just found her way there. She had been knocking for
what seemed like eternity and would have given up but her gut feeling
kept telling her that her son was inside.
Steve and Frank had been childhood friends and they had remained so
close since then, doing everything together. They were both working
together in the same industrial estate, though for different companies,
and they lived in the same house.
It was a beautiful bungalow with a nice exterior and it was standing
alone towards the end of the big compound. The compound had about
six other bungalows that were individually constructed and carefully
fenced with wire to mark out each person’s space to avoid unnecessary
rift. Steve and Frank had moved to that house to escape the scrutiny eyes
of their parents and they specifically chose the building standing alone
and facing the back as against others that were facing the gate, to make
sure none of their neighbours got into their business.
Frank heard the knock on the door more clearly that time than the first
time when he thought he was suffering from hallucination as an effect of
the life-threatening beating he had received the previous night. He lazily
rolled out of the bed and walked out of his room that was opposite his
friend’s and towards the living room where the knock was coming from.
He could not hide the displeasure on his face and he matched to the door
to give the person a piece of his mind. He and Steve had no relationship
with their neighbours and even though they had been living in the house
for over five years, they could not even recognise their next door
neighbour. They had deliberately avoided any occasion that might makethem relate with their neighbours and the only time they came eye to eye
with them was during the monthly meeting with the landlord which they
hardly attended.
Frank opened the door with a frown plastered on his face like a second
skin and he was surprised at who the intruder was.
Standing outside the door was an elegantly dressed woman who was
beautifully dressed in lace and had a wrapper that would definitely had
cost a fortune to purchase and her beautiful high-heeled shoes and the
number of jewelleries on her neck, hands, fingers and nose made her
look like a young woman but a closer look at the wrinkles that were
starting to form on her face would give her away and one would be able
to tell that she had aged.
Frank recovered from the shock and prostrated to greet his friend’s
mother.
“Good morning ma’am,” he said with all the courtesy he could gather
and immediately put on a smile.
“Morning ke? By this time?” Mrs Alfred said and walked into the ever
messy house her son lived in.
She had lost count of the number of times she had visited her son since
he moved out of the family house about five years ago but she could
count the number of times she had met the house clean and
well-arranged. It was always dirty with used plates littered around and
worn clothes thrown carelessly on the floor and wraps of fries, bottles
and many other things would graciously decorate the room. Their
kitchen was always an eye saw and she could remember running out of
the kitchen on a particular day she visited them because of the stench
that welcomed her. Their rooms were also no go areas as everywherewas always littered and unkempt. She had talked them into employing a
maid to help out with the chores but they had declined the advice
because they wanted their privacy and she wondered what they needed
privacy for since they were men.
Frank took a glance at the time and saw that it was some minutes to 4pm
and he knew that the beating had made him sleep for that long and then
he remembered his bruised face and arm and tried to hide them to avoid
answering more questions.
“Sorry ma, I didn’t check the time,” he said and smiled.
“You are welcome ma,” he added.
“Where is Steve?” She asked him as she tried to push some clothes off
the sofa to afford her enough space to sit and rest her back from the
slight ache she was feeling from having knocked at the door for so long.
Frank had no idea whether Steve was still sleeping or he had left the
house and he didn’t know how to answer the question.
“Let me check his room,” he said and dashed off before she would say
any other thing.
The walk from the living room to Steve’s room seemed longer than it
ought to and Frank bumped into everything on his way. He quietly
entered the room and an air of relief blew on him as he let out a sigh.
Steve was quietly sleeping on the bed and a look at his calm face would
melt anyone’s heart as he looked like a perfect gentleman that he was
not and Frank smiled at his own thoughts. He gave Steve a gentle tap
and watched him roll to the other side of the bed without opening his
eyes. Frank climbed the bed and gave his friend a big slap on his bare
back and that sent him off the bed and Frank had fun watching his friend
get mad at him.
Angry would be a mild way to describe Steve’s mood at that time. He
was furious and in rage and he didn’t spare Frank from receiving a big
blow as pay back for aborting his sleep aggressively.
“I should also give you a blow for how your mom aborted my sleep,”
Frank said as he sat on the floor nursing his shoulder where the blow had
landed.
“What the hell are you saying?” Steve asked with anger still layered in
his voice.
“Your mom is here, man,” Frank said and watched his friend jerking and
stiffening up.
“Are you kidding me?” He asked and gave Frank a stern look to read the
expression on his face and see whether he was serious or was playing
games with him.
“I wish I was,” Frank said and Steve could see that he was serious. He
went over to the big mirror in his room to see his reflection and he knew
his mom would have a heart attack if she should see the bruises on his
face but he had no way to conceal them. Those were one of the days he
wished he was a woman and would have easily concealed them with
heavy make-up or a veil would have done the job. He wore a
long-sleeved shirt to cover the wounds on his elbow and hands and he
just hoped his mom would not ask too many questions.
“Good morning ma,” he said with courtesy as he made his entry into the
living room with Frank following like a fly would follow a man with
sores.
“Morning!” His mom repeated and gave him a funny look.
“A lazy man would even greet you ‘good morning’ at 10pm,” his mother
added and he knew that she was referring to the disgusting state of their
apartment.
“What can I offer you ma?” He asked with a smile to make his mom
wipe off the irritation on her face.
He was her only son and his mom had a special fondness for him which
made it impossible for her to stay mad at him for too long and with just a
smile from him, she would forget all her anger and fall for his charm.
It was not only his mom that do fall for his smiling face as he had used
that same tactic to capture many girls that would just start smiling at him
sheepishly once he captivated them with his killer smile.
“If you have any clean cup, then get me a cup of water,” she replied with
a frown and Steve knew that his charm did not work that time which
meant that she was extremely furious at him.
And he also felt the blow of her statement as an insult on their
personalities and he gave Frank a knowing look but the latter, who was
seated at the dining table, did not seem to care about their ruined
reputation.
After exchanging pleasantries and catching up on old times, he asked his
mom why she was in their area and once she started, he immediately
regretted his actions and wished he had never asked.
“You will not believe who just got married today,” she started and Frank
wished he could walk away but it was too late and he knew the
conversation can never end in their favour.
“Who?” Steve asked reluctantly when he noticed his mom’s gaze and he
just had to pretend to avoid offending her.
“Samuel,” she said and looked from Steve to Frank to see if either of
them remembered the person but their expressions implied they didn’t.
“The son of Mr & Mrs Chuks, our neighbours then at the estate. The one
you used to teach how to ride a bike,” she said with so much enthusiasm
and the men had no choice but to remember the said Samuel.
“He is five years younger than both of you and he has settled down,” she
continued and Steve knew that that was where the conversation would
head.
“You need to see how happy Mrs Chuks was and she even asked after
you but what can l tell her? That my son is still busy sampling all the
women available in the market and has not found any one to tie the knot
with.”
“You see my children,” she said passionately and turned from Steve to
Frank to make sure that she had their rapt attention before continuing.
Meanwhile, the men could not wait for the lecture to end as they were
not ready to go into the life imprisonment called marriage.
“You need a woman in your life to give your life meaning and direction.
Any man that wants to be responsible in this life would definitely have a
woman he is accountable to and that woman is not his mother but his
wife. You think I didn’t notice the wounds on your faces or because I
didn’t talk about it you thought you had successfully concealed it?” She
asked, sighed and continued
“If you have a woman and children waiting for you at home then it
would be impossible for you to keep late nights or be gallivanting
around town like manner less children.”
“Look at your apartment looking like the pen of a pig. If you have a wife
to help you clean up after you then your house would always be a nice
place to come into.”
“You are both gainfully employed and I don’t know why you would still
want to remain unmarried at 35,” she said and broke into tears.
Steve was tired of his mother’s drama and wished he could walk her out
of his house. He had his life to live and was not ready to live according
to anyone’s terms and besides if marriage would stop him from having
fun and having the best time of his life then he had more reasons to
remain free from the bondage of marriage.
Life begins at 40 and he was only 35 so he should still enjoy life more,
he thought to himself and looked at Frank who was probably having the
same thought as him and then he turned to his overreacting mother.
“Mummy, stop all this you are doing. I’ve told you before that I would
get married when I find the best woman for me,” he said in a bid to
make her stop bugging him.
“I want to carry my grandchildren Steve, all my mates have at least a
grandchild but all I get is a son who is not sensitive to my needs,” his
mother added in tears.
Steve looked at his mum in disgust at that statement because his two
sisters were already married and had given her grandchildren.
“I want grandchildren from you,” she said when she noticed the question
on Steve’s face and Steve sighed.
“That’s not a problem mom you would get five in nine months time,” he
said and laughed.
“Naughty boy, get a wife, that is what mum is telling you not a baby
mama,” Frank said between his teeth.
“She is talking to us not just me,” Steve said and went over to hug his
mum who was busy wiping her face with the hem of her wrapper.
“Just give me time mum,” he said penitently and his mum gave in to his
plea.
She assigned the cleaning chores to the men while she helped them to a
delicious meal. They enjoyed the meal but had a hard time getting their
apartment clean enough to satisfy Steve’s mum who made sure they
scrubbed everywhere, washed all that needed washing and disposed all
the overdue trash.
“I think I’ll consider getting a wife,” Frank said to Steve as he settled on
the sofa after the herculean task.
To be continued…
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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 10:38pm On Jan 13
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER THREE
“Get your lazy butt off the bed!” Steve said as he gave Frank a slap to
make him wake up before heading to his own room to get ready.
It was Monday morning and Frank hated working days especially
Mondays and he loved his weekends more. He lazily got out of bed and
dragged himself to the bathroom.
Frank and Steve worked in different organizations but it was located in
the same estate and that made them go to work together and return
together.
“Are you still in bed?” Steve said as he barged into Frank’s room to find
him struggling to knot his tie due to the wound on his arms and Steve
had to help him while making a joke out of what happened to them the
previous Friday.
“Thank God the wound on your face is becoming less visible,” Frank
said to Steve who had to look at his face for the umpteenth time that
morning.
“I can’t wait to have my fine boy look back,” he said and looked away
from the mirror to check the time.
“We need to hurry man,” he said and bent over to put on his shoes.
“A woman, who has been identified as Mrs Rasden, was arrested
yesterday for the crime of brutally killing her husband in cold blood. It
was reported by our correspondent that Mr Rasden was stabbed
severally on his stomach and chest at midnight while he slept on the bed
he shared with his wife. While asked for the reason for the crime, Mrs
Rasden claimed that she had caught her husband cheating on her several
times and she finally heard him talking to a woman who was pregnant
for him on the phone and she could not contain her anger because of the
level of sacrifice she had made for the man...”
The news continued and Frank and Steve had to stop in their tracks to
pay full attention to the reporter.
“I hope my mum is watching this,” Steve said and continued battling
with his shoe lace.
“Me too,” Frank said.
“I wonder why she didn’t just walk out of the marriage instead of killing
the man,” Steve said pitifully.
“She knows that the man would happily jump on the next available
woman if she should leave him alive,” Frank said.
“But some men too are not smart o. How would you allow her to catch
you nau?”
“He probably got careless or thought she won’t do anything.”
“He should have known that a woman is like a lioness that is nice to her
own children but hunts the children of another.”
“The woman went too far with her anger. She should have thought of
her children. Imagine what would happen to them when she gets
sentenced.”
“The news didn’t say they had any children o Mr man.”
“It’s like you need to read it again online.”
Steve took his phone to confirm his claims that the couple had children
but he was dumbstruck at the number of similar cases that were online
on domestic violence and wives stabbing, poisoning or pouring acids on
their husbands.
“O boy, you need to see this,” he said and handed the phone over to
Frank.
“I am never going to get married,” Frank said and returned the phone to
Steve.
“Imagine I left all my girlfriends and got married to just one woman who
would nag, complain and spend my money and just get fat and ugly in
my house and I’m expected to stay loyal to her. Never!”
“She would want to control everything in your life and even you and you
won’t be able to taste other babes but will be glued to her forever. God
forbid!”
“Or after fighting and fighting, you guys would later settle for a divorce
and then your children would have two homes. Impossible!”
“I just hope our parents can understand that our decision to stay
unmarried is to lengthen our lives and they should respect our decision.”
They kept on evaluating reasons upon reasons why they would never
venture into marriage until Frank checked the time and discovered they
were running late and had to run.

TO BE CONTINUED
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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 8:00pm On Jan 14
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER FOUR
“The manager wants you to go through this proposal again before he
tenders it to the boss,” Susan said as she walked into Frank’s office with
a file in her hand and she waited for him to look up at her before she
dropped the file on his table.

“Ok dear,” Frank said and winked at Susan who hissed and tried to walk
away but he stopped her.

“What is wrong with you, my sugar pie?” He asked with his eyeballs
rolling intermittently and undergoing a marathon round her well-set
figure.

Susan and Frank worked together in the same department and had had
some flings that made Susan assume that they were dating and when she
heard from her friend that Frank was beaten at a club because of a
woman she was angry at his betrayal.

“I’m not your sugar pie. Go and meet the lady that you got beaten
because of her and leave me alone,” Susan said in anger and yanked
Frank’s hands off her body.

“What are you saying?” Frank asked as he was oblivious of what she
was insinuating.”

“What I’m saying is that you are a bloody cheat,” Susan screamed in
rage.

“Keep it down, woman and don’t you ever call me names,” Frank also
was getting angry at her unwarranted outburst and name calling.

“I’m the one you can shout on but when you were being beaten on
Friday because of a woman, you could not shout. Weakling!” She tried
to walk away but Frank had had enough of her insult and he gave her a
resounding slap across the face not minding the pain he was feeling in
his arms. The slap sent her falling backwards into the chair and it took
her some time to recover from the shock.

“I thought you loved me. I gave you everything I had but all you can do
is to repay me by cheating on me and now you can slap me,” she said in
tears holding her face.

“Ha! Ha! Ha!” Frank laughed to his heart’s content at the claims of
Susan and she was slightly embarrassed since she didn’t know why he
was laughing.

“What are you claiming to have done for me? We had times when we
enjoyed ourselves and we both had fun, I paid your bills, so, what
special thing have you done for me? Let me refresh your memory
because it seems like you don’t remember many things. I don’t belong to
you and you don’t belong to me as we are just friends with benefits,Frank said sarcastically leaving Susan dumbfounded. She had thought he
loved her and was always bragging to her friends that she had a man that
would do anything for her and that he would even propose marriage to
her soon but his words were like daggers to her heart.

“And for the love part, I don’t love you and you don’t love me. We only
use ourselves to meet our needs and that is called a fair partnership,” he
said and went over to his seat to sit.

“I’m done with you lowlife cheat,” Susan said, still in tears.

“That would be your loss, my dear because I wonder how you would
pay your bills henceforth,” he said and laughed making Susan boil in
fury and she wished she had a knife so she would stab him for hurting
her so badly.

Frank laughed to himself as he reminisced on what Susan said and he
wondered why women were so controlling and domineering. Just
because they went out a few times and had fun she thought she had the
right to dictate what he did with his life.

“I wonder if I put the ring on her finger then she would trail me
everywhere and demand an explanation for all I do and where I go.

Marriage is a scam and I have more reasons to stay unmarried and not
get myself entangled with these wolves called women who are the real
culprit but would act like the victim to receive sympathy from the world.
Imagine how she was crying as if I ever asked her to be with me,” Frank
thought to himself and hissed before focusing on the work he had to get
done.

*****
Steve was so engrossed with work that he didn’t even hear his phone
ring. It was at the second ring that he heard and took the phone to
answer the call.

“Busy man, wassup,” Frank said to his buddy as he answered the call.

“Yes o, it’s not easy,” Steve replied with a grin.

“It’s almost lunch hour, should I expect you?” Frank asked and Steve
wondered why he wanted them to go to lunch together all of a sudden.

“What of your girlfriend?” Steve asked.

“She just dumped me,” Frank answered and feigned a cry making Steve
giggle.

“Bad boy, she must have realized that you are a player,” Steve said and
laughed.

“I’ll give you the full gist when we see,” Frank said and ended the call.
He quickly became more serious with the files he was reviewing so he
could submit it before lunch hour.

Lunch hour was the same time for Steve and Frank and they seldom ate
together because most times Frank was with Susan. That day however
was different and Frank sat in the restaurant with his friend to have
lunch.

“Give me the full gist man,” Steve said impatiently.

“Calm down. Let’s order first,” Frank replied and called on the waitress
to take their orders.

“I’m listening,” Steve said immediately the waitress left.

“You just like stories,” Frank replied.

“The babe heard about what happened to us at the club on Friday and
confronted me about it. She got so angry and called me a cheat and made
other derogatory statements about me which made me give her a slap
and she called the relationship quit.

“You should have apologised to her to make her stay with you.”

“I can never beg a woman in this life of mine. If she wants to go then let
her. Besides, what am I benefitting from the relationship?”

“She’s warming your bed and also covering for your inadequacies at
work,” Steve said and smiled and that made Frank furious.

Their food was served and they started eating.

“I pay her bills and many more. So, I think I’m the one that has
sacrificed more into the relationship and not her.”

“Well, she’s gone now and Rita too is gone. Which means you just lost
two girls already,” Steve said again and let out a laugh.

“I’ll get five more this week,” Frank said assuredly.

“Really! Where would you go for the shopping?” Steve said and
laughed but Frank didn’t find anything funny as he was not joking about
his decision of replacing his lost girlfriends with five more that week.

“Anywhere I see women then I’m shopping for them,” he said and
smiled at a direction and that made Steve turn to the direction to sight a
beautiful young lady seated alone at a table towards the door.

“Don’t,” Steve cautioned.

“Watch me,” Frank said and stood up to approach the lady.

Steve watched his friend talk to the lady and he thought the lady would
reject Frank and probably embarrass him but he just saw her giggling
and then he knew that his friend had gotten another catch. He saw them
exchanging contacts and after that Frank came back to the table.

“One down four to go,” he said as he approached the table and Steve
could not just but admire his friend who was always on top of his game.

They were both Casanovas but Steve knew that he held no water where
Frank was because Frank could even approach the First Lady and she
would say yes to him.

Sometimes, he wondered what exactly the women saw in him to make
them always agree to his proposal but he had not been able to crack the
nut and was left to wonder.

“Bad boy!” Steve hailed him.

To be continued…
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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 7:20pm On Jan 15
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER FIVE
Frank was the only child of his parents and they were quite worried
about his way of life. They had called him several times to private
meetings to express their utmost displeasure about his lifestyle but he
would feign remorse, promise to change, lay low for a while and then go
back to what he was doing before.
Frank’s father ran a multi-million
dollar company and he was afraid that if Frank should continue like that
then the company would be reduced to ruins. His other friends had
retired and handed over their companies to their children but he couldnot do that as he was not sure of what Frank would do with the company
due to his nonchalant attitude to work. He had made Frank work in a
lowly position so as to get him to jeer up and take his life seriously but
Frank seemed to be content with whatever position he got in his father’s
company.

His mother on the other hand had become so lean due to incessant
fasting on the case of Frank. She was fond of moving from one place to
the other to find a solution to Frank’s waywardness as she had received a
prophecy that Frank’s condition was spiritual and it was done to wipe
out their lineage.

Frank’s parents had had enough of their son’s selfishness and
insensitivity and they were tired of advising him on the importance of
marriage and have made up their mind to use another method to make
him do their bidding.

*****
Going home was one of the things that Frank dreaded in his life and ever
since he had gotten an apartment for himself, he seldom visited his
parents. Because they were fond of pressurizing him about marriage and
they had refused to see things from his own point of view and he had
always seen them as being too selfish and self-conceited.

He had received an emergency call that his father was terribly ill and
demanded to see him. He had panicked at first and was seriously hoping
that it was not too serious and that he would recover soon. But as he was
driving over to his parents’ house, it dawned on him that they could be
playing a prank on him to make him come home.

He got to his parents’ house and saw what looked like a banquet and his
mind started playing games with him.

“What if my father had died and they just called me over for the burial?”

“This can’t be.”

He held his head in a bid to block out the disturbing thoughts and ran up
the stairs to his father’s room.

He barged into the room and met his father comfortably seated on the
chair, playing chess with his mother.

Frank stopped in his tracks and looked at his dad properly to see if he
looked sick. But the old man was looking so healthy and agile and he
knew he had been deceived into coming home.

“Where are your manners?” He heard his dad say and he greeted them
while curtseying.

His mom was excited to see him and she rose up to give him a hug.

“Welcome my son, how have you been?” She asked joyfully while
scrutinizing his body to see if he looked well.

“I’m fine mum,” Frank managed to say.

“But why did you call me like that and lied to me?” He asked looking at
his mom. He had directed the question to his mom because he knew his
dad was a very strict man and he hated to be questioned so to avoid
offending his dad, he had to vent his frustration on his mom.

“Nobody lied to you,” his father answered before his mother could.

“I was sick and almost died because of you. But I’m fine now and I have
called you to inform you that if you can’t get yourself a wife from the
billions of women in the world then I can help you.”

“Today is your engagement party. Hurry up and get dressed as the guests
would be arriving soon.”

Frank didn’t know if his father was serious or joking because he could
not read the expression on his face. He would have laughed if it was his
mother that said that but he dared not laugh when his father was talking.

His father had been a hard man and a disciplinarian and that made Frank
to be so afraid of him.

He just stood on a spot looking numb and didn’t know what to do. At
that point, he wished Steve had come with him but Steve had other
things to do and that was why he was alone.

He was confused at his father’s statement and he wondered why his
parents would organize an engagement party for him without his consent
and worst still, he would be getting engaged to a stranger.

He wished he had not honoured their invitation and wondered what
would be the consequence of his refusal to get engaged that day.

“Is this a joke or something? If it is a joke then it would be better you
stop it now,” he found himself saying but at that point he felt like a dead
man and was no longer afraid of his dad.

“We are the jokers right?” His dad said in rage and turned to his mother.

“You better talk some sense into your son and make sure he doesn’t
disgrace us before our in-laws,” he said and walked out of the room.

Frank felt at ease after his father left and knew his mother also felt the
same. His father had been the tyrant of the family and his mother was
always calm, cool and collected and while growing up, he had wondered
how such a nice woman would end up with a hard man like his dad.
He sat on the king-sized bed in the room and removed his shoes to
relieve his nerves a bit while his mother came to him and sat beside him.

“My son, you should know that we are doing all this because we love
you and we want the best for you,” she said.

“Love? You call this love? Hooking me up with a stranger and sending
me to an early grave, is your definition of love right?” He said with a
slightly raised voice that depicted anger, bitterness and sadness.

“We want you to be settled and enjoy the bliss of marriage,” she said in
a bid to convince her son who was obviously enraged at the news he just
heard.

“Who says I’m not settled? Who says I need to enjoy the bliss of
marriage? I don’t need any of those, mom, all I need is freedom and I
have it already,” he said a bit calmer this time.

“A man is never settled without a wife. You see, you need a...” she was
saying when he caught her off

“Mom, please not again. I’ve heard enough of your philosophies. I’m
not ready for marriage and that’s final. If you can’t respect my decision
then deal with it,” he said and made to walk away but he heard the quiet
sobs of his mother and that made him stop.

He went back to her side and placed his hand on her shoulders while
looking at her straight in the eyes.

“Why are you doing this to me, mom? I understand that dad may be
callous and insensitive but you don’t have to join him,” he said.

“This is not about your dad. It’s about you, your life, future, well-being
and happiness.”

“I’m happy the way I am.”

“But we are not happy the way you are.”

Frank was tired of going back and forth on the same issue with his
parents and he wished he could give in to their request but he had too
many reasons to not want to subject himself to the pain of marriage.

“What do you want me to do?”

“Get married.”

“Give me time.”

“You have till December,” his dad answered and entered the room.
He never knew his dad had been eavesdropping on their conversation
but he was relieved that he had some time to save himself from the
sudden engagement.

“What would happen to your guests?” He asked and watched his parents
laugh.

“There are no guests and we are not expecting anyone. We had to put up
that show to tell you of what we would do if you don’t get married
before the end of this year,” his father said.

Frank could not believe he had been tricked by his parents and even his
mom whom he trusted so much was part of the arrangement. He felt
betrayed and looked at his mom who was wearing a big grin. The anger
in him multiplied and he rose to his feet but had to drop a final word
before he left…

“Forget about me getting married because it would never happen.”

“Then forget you ever had parents because you have no inheritance with
us,” his father answered to the amazement of his mom. Frank was their
only child and so disowning him would mean they had no child and she
could not bear to live with that. She would have confronted her husband
for that statement but she felt he might not mean it and had said it only
to frighten Frank.

“Fine,” Frank answered and walked out of the room while ignoring his
mother’s incessant call. He hurriedly left the house, entered his car and
sped off.

During his drive back home, he had a critical thinking of what his
parents wanted and concluded that it was not a big deal. He could not
bear to lose his inheritance since he was still practically living off his
parents. He was working in one of the branches of his father’s company
and knew that he would have been fired due to his incompetence at work
if he was not the boss’ son. He made a decision to get a wife and settle
down as his parents called it.

On getting home, he saw Steve seated on the couch and was lost in
thought. That was quite unusual and he wondered what could have
happened to his care-free friend to make him so bothered.

“Whatsup man,” he greeted but got no reply and he knew that whatever
the problem was, was definitely a big deal. He went over and gave him a
tug which made him jerk.

“What was that for?” Steve asked angrily.

“Cool, man, I was just greeting you”

“What’s wrong?”

“Big trouble!”

“Want to share?”

“Want to listen?” Steve asked and Frank giggled making Steve loosen
up a bit.

“My parents called and as usual they gave me a piece of their mind
about my bachelorhood. And I felt like usual I would give them some
excuses and they would let me be. But they had other things on their
plate. Apparently I have been given the ultimatum of September to get a
wife or forget that I have parents. And after much consideration, I think I
would go with the second option.”

Frank listened to his friend carefully and was surprised that their parents
both gave them the same options and on the same day and that made him
wonder if it was planned but he discarded the thought.

“You would not believe that I’m also in the same shoe,” Frank said
excitedly and Steve could not believe it. If Frank was being threatened
into getting married or getting disowned then he knew that he would not
be smiling.

“I don’t believe you.”

“I’ve given it a thought and I think marriage is not as deadly as getting
disowned and I would just stick my head into marriage instead.”

“I don’t think you know what you are talking about. You want to subject
yourself to...”

Frank didn’t allow him to start his lecture on why marriage was not a
better option since his mind was made up.

“My mind is made up Steve, I have until December to get married and I
would start my hunting now since the year is still fresh,” Frank said with
determination and Steve was impressed. Frank had always been a hard
person that did whatever his mind wanted to do without listening to
others’ opinions.

To be continued
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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 10:11pm On Jan 17
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER SEVEN
Frank and Steve took it upon themselves as a matter of urgency to
launch out immediately and try out the stranger’s suggestion. They were
excited about the idea and somewhat optimistic that something good
would come out of it.

They went to a bookstore to get new bibles. They also went shopping for
new clothes and even visited the barber’s shop to give themselves the
best cut to look like a perfect gentleman.

“I just hope all these sacrifices would not be for nothing,” Frank said
truthfully to Steve as they got ready for church that Sunday morning.

They had always spent their Sundays for recreation and fun and then
having to spend that precious day in a church was such a great sacrifice
that they hoped would produce their needed results.

“I hope so too,” Steve replied, giving himself another look in the mirror
and he smiled to himself, satisfied with what he saw.

“You and mirror,” Frank said sarcastically and they both laughed.

“Hurry up so we can take some pictures before going.”

“Why is that?”

“I would be opening a new Facebook account and I need some pictures.”

“What for?”

“Don’t you know the babe I get would want to add me up on Facebook
and I need to maintain a Christian brother’s attitude and have nice
pictures and bible quotes on Facebook so she would fall for me?

“Chai! You this bad boy! I never thought of that you know...”

“I’m the smarter one of course so I’m not surprised.”

“You are not serious,” Frank said and took his bible before they headed
out of the room.

They had decided to attend a big and famous church in the city so it
would afford them the opportunity of having many options to choose
from and also mingling with the crowd.

Steve drove into the premises of Divine Vine Assembly and he was
carefully directed on where to park his car by the security and he was
mesmerized by the level of organization that was displayed by the
security men.

The big auditorium was almost filled to the latter and they wondered
what time the service started for such a large crowd to be there already
at 8:30am.

“These people no dey sleep?” Steve said to Frank’s ears as they were
being ushered into the church and it was as though he was reading his
thoughts.

They found seats for them after what seemed like eternity and they were
grateful that they could sit already, to escape from the gaze of men and
women who seemed to be distracted by their entrance.

They immediately engaged their eyes to spot some beautiful ladies that
they would speak to after the service and there were so many of them
that Steve found himself smiling from ear to ear and wondering why he
had not taken the initiative of coming to the church to get girls
beforehand.

“Praise the Lord somebody!”

“Give the Lord a shout offering!”

The voice of the moderator for the service roared over the PA and that
made them focus on the pulpit to hear what he had to say. The moderator
introduced a guest worship minister that would take the worship session
and left the stage.

The worship minister was a beautiful young lady that caught the eyes of
both Frank and Steve and they gave themselves a knowing look. The
worship and praise session lasted for one hour and they both wished they
didn’t have to stop as the lady’s voice was so sonorous and also the beat
made them dance so wildly that sometimes Steve would have to tap
Frank’s shoulders or vice-versa to remind the other that they were in the
church and not the club.

After the worship session, there was a brief moment of prayer that
seemed like forever and they both wished it would end soon. The firsttimers to the church were welcomed afterwards and they both signified
even though Frank had earlier suggested they shouldn’t. They received a
warm welcome from the members and that made Frank thankful that
Steve defied his suggestion.

The pastor’s sermon was brief and interesting as he spoke on
“maintaining your position in Christ".
He used a lot of illustrations that
carried the congregants along and made them able to relate to what he
was saying. Frank and Steve had earlier thought that the sermon session
would be boring but they were proven wrong and they had fun listening
to the pastor.

The service ended at about 12:30pm and they hurriedly left the church
without waiting behind even though the first timers were asked to.

“This church is definitely the best church in the world,” Steve remarked
as they drove out of the premises.


*****
“Help me with the sauce,” Steve said to Frank who sat beside him at the
dining table where they were having their dinner. They had slept for
long hours after they returned from the church. Frank passed the sauce to
him and they continued eating their food in silence before Frank broke
the silence.

“How many girls caught your attention today?” He asked with food in
his mouth.

“Is that what you want to ask that you can’t swallow your food first,”
Steve replied in disgust. “And we have already discussed that on our
way home so I don’t know why you are asking. Or was that the only
thing that you noticed in the church today?” He said and smirked.

“I can never get tired of talking about girls and women. But seriously
there are many fine girls in church o!”

“That’s true bro. I wish I had known before now.”

“I just hope they will fall for us.”

“We are irresistible”

“Keep deceiving yourself or don’t you know that they see into the spirit
and can spot a pretender.”

“Gone are those days. The Christian sisters of these days see six packs,
nice hair cut, beards and money.”

“And like the pastor said, we are to claim whatever we want in Jesus
name and it would be ours...”

“Really? So with all your looking around and sampling of girls you were
able to learn from the sermon.”

“Of course, I’m so versatile.”

“So, how many girls would you be chasing?” Frank asked.

“I’m a gentleman so I would go for one at a time and besides I don’t
have the luxury of time to be going from one to the other,” he replied.

“If you are a gentleman then I guess Solomon too was a gentleman.”
“Who is Solomon?”

“The king in the bible that had one thousand wives.”

“Wow! Just one day in church and you already know so much. I just
hope you won’t become a pastor.”

“That won’t be a bad idea at all. With this my look ehen I would win all
the women in the world to my church.”

“Dream on!”

“But seriously, I enjoyed the service a lot,” Frank said as he helped
Steve with the clearing and washing of the dishes.

“This one that you are washing the plates, it’s like you are already
learning to be a good husband,” Frank teased him and they both laughed.

“I’m just in a happy mood.”

“Because of church girls!”

“Not really. But because I didn’t feel condemned or out of place in the
church today. You know that when you attend some churches, the way
the sermon, prayer and everything would be would make someone like
us feel condemned like a sinner and out of place.”

“Are you not a sinner?”

“If I’m a sinner then what are you?”

“That’s true”

“What?”

“The church felt so good and I think I would enjoy going there.”

“Me too.”

They left the kitchen after cleaning the dishes and went over to the
sitting room where Steve kept handling with his phone.

“Who have you been calling?” Frank asked him after a while.

“Greta!”

“Who is Greta?”

“A girl I met last week and I think she liked me but she has been
ignoring my calls.”

“So, you can still call a woman after going to church? You need to be
born-again,” Frank said and they both laughed as they chatted on.

To be continued…

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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 6:30pm On Jan 18
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER EIGHT
Peace Godwin was a lady in her late twenties. She was the only child of
her parents and that made them to insist that she would stay with them
until the day she got married and thankfully she had no problem with
that. She was an accountant that worked with a microfinance bank in the
city and lived a very comfortable life.
She was also a devoted Christian
that was sold out for God and spent her entire life serving God in every
area she could. Her parents were also good Christians that had brought
her up in the Christian way and that had enabled her to be grounded in
spiritual things.

Peace entered her parents’ house after she returned from yet another
devastating and heartbreaking service in church. She was about to go up
the stairs when her mother came out from the kitchen to see who had
entered the house.

“Welcome dear,” her mother greeted her with a hug but instantly noticed
that she was cold and seemed unhappy even though Peace had tried to hide her emotions because she knew that her mother would blame her
for putting herself in that condition.
“What’s the problem, dear?” Mrs Godwin asked her daughter.

“It’s nothing, mum; I’m just tired from the long hours of standing in
church. You know I’m in the ushering department and I officiated
today,” she said and tried to walk away but her mum was not convinced.

“That is not a good enough reason for you to be looking so down after a
Sunday service. You should be radiating the joy of God even when you
are tired,” her mum explained.

“I’m just tired of this whole thing,” she said and walked over to the sofa
in the sitting room and her mum also followed suit.

“Talk to me, my dear, what are you tired of?” She asked.

“I’m just sad about it mum and I wish there were other ways I could
help.”

“I don’t understand you, Peace,” speak in clear terms.

“It’s our pastor mum and the spiritual atmosphere in the church. The
more I look at it, the more I’m convinced that something is wrong
somewhere. He was not like that before and the change was so gradual
and subtle that it was at first unnoticed but now it is so obvious,” she
said and her mum heaved a sigh of relief.

“Your father and I have told you countless times to leave that church and
join us in the church we are attending but you have refused to listen. We
know what we saw that made us leave that church but you seemed to
know more than us. Can you now see it for yourself?”

“But mum, I think leaving the church is not a solution to the spiritual
decline, lukewarmness and worldliness that has rampaged our church.”

“So what is the solution?” Her mum asked

“The solution is prayer.”

“You can pray for him and the entire church without feeding from his
table. Don’t you know that a pastor is in charge of feeding his members
with spiritual food and if he feeds them with junks and unbalanced diet
then the members would be malnourished and they won’t grow,” her
mum answered trying to make her daughter see reasons why remaining
in a church where the pastor would always tell jokes, make unnecessary
illustrations, excuse sin and misconduct and not preach the whole truth
of God’s word was not a good option for her especially if she sought to
grow spiritually and know more about God.

“I am convinced that light should not run away from darkness but rather
stay where darkness is and illuminate it.”

“But you are just a growing light, if you are exposed to too much
darkness, you will wear out and obviously run out of oil to keep
shinning. Imagine how down you are now after a time in church. Don’t
you know that is contrary? We are to be happy and full of joy after
returning from God’s presence but when you fellowship in a church
where God cannot find expression then there won’t be joy,” Mrs
Godwin kept on saying…

“Ok mum, I’ve heard you but I want you to join me in prayers for my
pastor, his family, our church and the body of Christ generally. That God
would help all the ministers of the gospel that they would not deviate
from the truth.”

“Yes ma, I will do that,” her mum responded and they both laughed
which made Peace a little bit relieved.

“Would you come down soon for your food?” Her mum asked as she
started walking away.

“Not yet mum, I need to pray,” she answered and walked away.

Peace got into her room and went on her knees in penitence and poured
out her heart to God for the restoration of her pastor and the church. She
was so engrossed with the prayer that she didn’t even eat throughout that
day. She prayed, cried, groaned and did all she knew how to do with the
faith that there would be an outbreak of revival and righteousness in the
church.

To be continued…

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Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 2:40pm On Jan 19
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER NINE
Frank and Steve just returned from a hectic day at work and were trying
to rest and fix something to eat when they heard a knock on their door.

They ignored the knock for a while because they thought it was one of
their nosy neighbours and felt like the person would leave once they
didn’t answer. The knock continued and it got louder and annoying that
Steve went over to the door in rage to confront the intruder. Something
prompted him to check through the door hole to see who it was before
opening and the sight that met his eyes sent him flying back to the sitting
room.

“Did you give anyone our address?” He asked Frank impatiently.

“Who is there?”

“That’s not the answer to the question I asked,” he replied sounding
unsure if he was excited or apprehensive or just nervous.

“I filled our address on the slip we were given at the church yesterday,”
Frank replied nonchalantly.

“Shit! You should have skipped the address part. Now we have guests
from the church,” Steve replied as the knocking continued incessantly.

“What!” Frank exclaimed and he also became apprehensive.

“I didn’t know they would visit,” he said.

“But wait, why are we acting like criminals? We have not done anything
wrong. And besides, our apartment looks neat enough to entertain
guests,” Frank added and walked away to open the door.

“Good evening,” Frank said with a smile as he opened the door to see a
young man and a lady about exiting.

“Oh! Good evening sir, we have been knocking for so long and we
thought maybe there was no one in the house,” the man replied.

“Sorry about that,” he said again with a smile and he too wondered why
he was smiling but it might have been because he was trying to portray
himself as a good Christian.

“Can I help you?” He asked.

“Yes, we are from Divine Vine Assembly and we are both from the
welfare and follow-up department of the church. You fellowshipped
with us for the first time yesterday and as our custom is, we have come
to express our profound gratitude for having you in our midst,” the lady
explained the purpose of their visit and Frank did not miss any detail
from her hair to her face, fingers, clothes, curves and even shoes and he
must admit that she was elegant and looked better than most SU girls
that would not wear foxy clothes.

“Can we come in?” The man finally asked when he noticed that Frank
was not saying anything and he was just staring.

“Of course! Forgive my manners,” he said and ushered them in.

“Welcome to our humble nest, make yourself comfortable,” Frank
curtsied as he led them into the sitting room.

Frank was surprised to see Steve all dressed up in a nice t-shirt and
trouser and wondered why he had to change from the casual clothes he
was wearing before he left for the door.

‘Meet my friend and brother, Steve,” he said and Steve greeted their
guests with his eyes glued to the lady.

“What can we offer you?” Frank asked and they requested water which
he hurriedly offered and sat with them.

The man introduced himself as Jasper and the lady introduced herself as
Catherine. They gave them the first timers’ package that was meant for
Steve and Frank if they had waited after the service the previous day and
the duo thanked them sincerely as they wondered why they would go out
of their way to bring it to them.

They talked about other things from politics, to bible and business and
football and indeed it was a wonderful time for them to familiarize with
one another and Steve enjoyed the entire conversation with his eyes
scanning and dissecting Catherine.
They left after about an hour and Steve wished Catherine would stay
back.

“If the fire in your eyes could burn then you would have roasted that girl
to ashes with the way you kept staring,” Frank said to Steve immediately
they returned from seeing their guests off.

“Didn’t you see how perfect she looked? Her hair, her smile, her face
and that nice body. Come‘on, didn’t you see?”

“I saw but I’m not impressed,” Frank said and hissed.

“You have a problem if you can’t agree that Kate is beautiful,” Steve
remarked.

“Who is Kate?”

“The lady that just left. Don’t tell me you didn’t even get her name.”

“She said her name was Catherine. Which one is Kate again?”

“That would be my special way of calling her,” Steve said and smiled as
he fantasised about Catherine.

“You haven’t even asked her out and you have given her a pet name
already,” Frank said.

“There is no time to waste, my brother, everything would be sharp sharp
and then she would be my wife.”

“Really?”

“Yes!”

“But I think there is something off about her,” Frank said as he had had
his reservations about Catherine. He had also noticed her beauty in
church the previous day and recognised her as one of the people that
gave them the first timer’s slip to fill.
But she seemed to be so loosed with men and the way she kept smiling even at unfunny jokes from
Steve made Frank think of her as a grabber.

“What is off about that perfect beautiful lady?” Steve asked
nonchalantly showing that he would not be convinced otherwise from
chasing Catherine and making her his bride.

“I noticed how she was smiling at you the entire time and the look on
her face was more like that of those call girls whenever they wanted to
attract a man. She was smiling seductively.”

“Haba! Frank! You are so corrupted. If you can categorise that harmless
smile from a God-fearing lady as seductive then I think there is
something wrong with you,” Steve said, getting angry.

“She might not be who you think her to be. What if she is also a bad girl
that has come to the church to get a good man to marry?”

“She doesn’t seem like that to me.”

“How do you think they would also classify us? Don’t you know that
they would call us brothers too and we know we are not and we are just
there for a mission...,” Frank was saying before Steve cut him off

“Whatever, man, I’m interested in her and if it happens that she also
likes me then that would make it easier for me,” he said and walked
away.

*****
Catherine kept smiling to herself as she bade farewell to Bro Jasper after
they got to their parting point. She had been praying seriously that God
would give her a Godly and rich man to marry and with Steve she was
happy that her prayer had been answered.

She had initially rejected her departmental president’s instruction for her
to go with Bro Jasper to visit some of the first timers they had on
Sunday. She didn’t like to visit strangers and had tried to talk her way
out of it but when there was no one else to replace her as every other
person had another assignment, she had no choice.

She was impressed when they got to the address and more fascinated
when they entered and one look at Steve made her convinced that she
had found a husband. She loved the way he was dressed and even his
cologne made her lost in the clouds.

She was busy checking Steve out as they chatted away and she
subsequently caught him looking at her which made her somewhat
optimistic that Steve also liked her.

She had refused the proposal of other brothers that had approached her
before because she was looking to get married to a rich and settled man
because she wanted to be a full-time housewife that would just be
enjoying her husband’s wealth. And she was convinced that Steve would
definitely be the prince charming she had been waiting for.

To be continued…

Thanks for reading, feel free to share but don't edit!
Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by graceola001(f): 9:54pm On Jan 20
THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS
GRACE OLAYEMI

CHAPTER TEN
Catherine took it upon herself to call both Steve and Frank daily but
most especially Steve, to check up on their welfare and get more
familiar. Steve was happy that the lady he was interested in also seemed
interested and he didn’t waste time before asking her out on casual
dinners and her disposition and demeanour gave all the impression that
she also wanted a relationship.

“I’m going to propose to her tomorrow after church,” Steve said
excitedly to Frank who was struggling with his phone that had refused to
connect to the internet.

“Why are you telling me?”

“Why won’t I tell you? You are my best buddy and would be my best
man so you need to have a firsthand knowledge of everything as it
unfolds.”

“I don’t think telling me is necessary since you no longer listen to my
counsels and everything I say to you now sounds like trash,” Frank
answered with a raised voice.

“You don’t need to be angry with me. You know how these things are. I
think I like this girl and I just want to give it a shot to see if we would be
compatible.”

“But I keep telling you that she seemed to me like a gold digger and
worst still, her clinging attitude is so annoying and with the little I know
about Christian sisters, they are not that clingy.”

“I don’t think I would like all these overly SU girls. She seemed average
and knows how to have fun and I guess she’s just in love with me.”

“In love with you, you say? Or in love with what she sees. Your money
and looks. I noticed the way she was looking around the house the day
she visited. She is just a desperate girl that can do anything to have a
man.”

“Enough of that! If you don’t like her then it’s fine but please don’t try
to turn me against her because my mind is made up.”

“What does she do for a living?”

“She is a business woman.”

“What kind of business?”

“She buys and sells clothes.”

“Where? Have you been to her shop before?”

“Why all these questions? Abeg! I want to ask her to marry me and it’s
not that we would get married immediately. I would still have enough
time to sample her before I finally tie the knot.”

“You are already acting like a blind bat and I tell you that by the time
she agrees to be your wife then you would become a deaf bat,” Frank
said, hissed and walked away from his friend towards the room.

Steve called Catherine later that evening to remind her of their outing
after the church service the following day and she was so excited to hear
that he had planned a surprise for her.

“Do you think he might propose?”
She asked Ruth, her roommate who
was not a Christian and the latter hissed.

“What is my business with all this stupidity? If you want a guy, get
dressed and let’s go out and stop being desperate.”

“I don’t want just any man. I want a God-fearing rich man that would
marry me and not just sleep with me.”

“Then dream on and by the time you are 50, you would know that no
God-fearing man would marry someone like you.”

“I take an exception to that insult. I’m a worthy bride of any good man
so never say that rubbish to me again. And lest I forget, one chief
stopped by this evening and asked after you.”

“Oh! What did he say his name was?”

“Water!”

“Spoilt brat!”

*******
The Sunday service seemed longer than necessary and Catherine wished
she could tell the pastor that she had an important outing that afternoon
and so he should make everything snappy. Catherine took it upon herself
to dress her best and would have worn heavy makeover if not because
she didn’t want to raise unnecessary questions and gossips about herself.

She had gone to shop for the dress, shoes, accessories and hair specially
for the occasion and she had thought she was overdressed for the outing
which might turn out to be just one of their regular dates and hangouts,
but, when she saw the designer suit Steve wore with his gorgeous shoes,
she was thankful that she didn’t slack in her looks.

Her entire concentration was on Steve throughout the service and she
didn’t get tired of smiling and winking whenever they made eye contact
and Steve didn’t hesitate to smile back. Frank had noticed Steve was
smiling and he followed his gaze to discover that he was smiling at
Catherine which made him irritated.
He had never had anything against
all Steve’s previous girlfriends and most often he became close friends
with the ladies. But, he could not explain why he was feeling so much
hatred towards Catherine.

“You are jealous because Steve has found himself a lover who would
soon translate to his wife and you are yet to even speak to anyone,” a
voice in his head chided him and he somewhat felt that his hatred for
Catherine must have been out of jealousy.

He tried to take his mind off Steve and Catherine and focus on getting
himself hooked up with someone. He looked and looked until he sighted
a beautiful usher who was helping the pastor’s wife with her bible as she
walked away from the podium and immediately his heart called out to
her and he knew he had also found himself a wife.

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The service ended after what seemed like eternity to Steve and
especially Catherine and they both met at the parking lot where they had
agreed to meet and left the church together.

Steve took her to a beautiful resort in the heart of the city. Where they
played, chatted and teased each other. They later left for a five-star
restaurant to climax the event.

They sat across each other on the table in the restaurant and just as their
meal was served, a group of musicians walked in and started performing
which made everyone around pay close attention to them. They were
followed by some guys who wore matching shirts with inscriptions on it
and the inscription was “will you marry me?” a little girl walked to the
table where Steve was seated with Catherine with a plate in her hand and
once she got to their table, she opened the plate to reveal a ring and then
Steve went on his knees smiling from ear to ear.

Catherine was speechless for more than five minutes. She had been
hoping Steve would be serious with their relationship and that she meant
more than a friend to him but she had never expected a Christian brother
to be that romantic. The onlookers kept shouting for her to take the ring
and say “yes” which she did with a nod.

Steve was super excited and then became apprehensive when he got to
Catherine’s home and then she broke her self-imposed silence by
saying…

“I appreciate everything you did today but I must tell you that I only
took the ring because of the people that were there and not because I’m
giving my consent to this relationship. I’m a Christian and I have to do
things the Christian way and that means that I would have to pray about
your proposal and hear what God has to say before I can give myconsent. I would give the ring back to you when I’m convinced
otherwise but for now I would hold on to it as a sign of gratitude and
respect for you.”

Steve was shocked to his bones with the statement and he could only
nod and wave goodbye to her. He went home dejected as he was sure
that there was no way God would allow her to marry him.

“I didn’t know she was that deep,” Frank remarked after Steve told him
of his ordeal.

“Me too. Looks can be deceiving, you know.”

“She looked like she would jump on you and devour you before you
proposed and after you did, she said she would pray about it. I think she
is just pretending about the prayer part. She would definitely be dancing
for joy in her room right now,” Frank said as he thought about the
situation critically.

“Whatever!”

“But we would know if she really prayed or not by her response,” Frank
said.

“What do you mean?”

“If she says ‘yes’ then she didn’t pray and she is not real but if she says
‘no’ then she is a true child of God,” Frank explained.

“Just shut up! So what would I gain if she says ‘no’?”

“Nothing! You would learn a lesson that a true SU cannot marry a
pretender like you,” Frank said and laughed which made Steve so mad at
him.

“It’s not your fault. I shouldn’t have told you,” he said.

********
“He has done for me, what my father cannot do, he has done for me”
Catherine entered the room she shared with Ruth with that song on her
lips and she danced vigorously until her legs gave way and Ruth
wondered when the madness in her friend would end.

“Thank you Jesus for finally giving me the man of my dreams. Jesus I’m
grateful,” she said and went on her knees to begin another session of
singing but Ruth cut her off…

“Stop this nonsense babe, have you forgotten that you are not the only
one in this room? Abeg, use your brain o!” Ruth said angrily.

“Sorry for disturbing you. I don’t mean to but I’m just super excited and
in awe of how God has answered my long time prayers. Steve
proposed!” She screamed and showed Ruth the ring on her finger but the
latter was uninterested in that.

“So? What’s the big deal in that? Is he the president of the country or the
richest man in the world? Abeg shift jare and let someone have peace.

“Jealousy will not kill you. At least you can be happy for me. Even if he
is not all you have mentioned, I still love him and he loves me too,”
Catherine said with so much joy as she was determined not to allow her
friend’s negative comments get to her.

“Congrats then, I wish you the best.”

“Thank you! Can you now see that going to church pays? Stop all this
your jumping around from club to club and come and find a decent man
in church that would take care of you.”

“Shut up there! Who are you to tell me what to do? Is it because a man
gave you a ring? You think you have made it life? Wait till he knows all
about you and we would see if that ring would still be on your finger,”
Ruth said in rage as she hated it whenever Catherine tried to talk her into
going to church with her or rubbing it in her face that she was a call girl.

“I’m sorry. I don’t mean to insult you. Please don’t expose me to Steve
please. He is my happiness and I don’t want to lose him,” Catherine
pleaded and Ruth hissed.

“Stupid girl!”

Catherine gave Steve a positive reply the following week and the latter
was excited that his net had finally caught a big fish.

Stand a chance to win ₦5000 by giving an awesome review to this book, titled THE CLOAK OF DARKNESS BY GRACE OLAYEMI

download the book at https://okadabooks.com/user/Graceolayemi
Read it

Make an awesome review and

Comment directly on the post thread on our Facebook page at Ray of Hope Stories

Deadline is 30th January
Winner would be announced on 31st Of January, 2021

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Share with friends who might be interested

Have fun and don't miss the message of the book

Cheers
RAY OF HOPE STORIES

Thanks for reading, till I come your way again with another exiting, lesson-filled and impactful story, remain blessed and rapturable.
Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by idmicheal20: 10:24pm On Jan 20
It seems what Steve is afraid of in marriage will happen.....nice update, more ink to your pen.
Re: The Cloak Of Darkness by Zara20(f): 4:12pm On Jan 21
pls keep it rolling,more grace

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