‘Can’t Get Enough, Anthonia!’ (1)
TWO promising lovers, Bode and Anthonia, were busy enjoying themselves at the beautiful Lekki Beach on a Saturday afternoon, but unknown to the lovebirds, danger lurked around the corner.
The duo were still smooching and cooing sweet nothings into each other’s ears, unaware of the treacherous and dangerous moves of Alani, a.k.a Dimka and his gang of thugs, who had been spying on them for the past 30 minutes, waiting for the right time to strike.
Still unmindful of the approaching danger the lovers continued their tete-a-tete, giggling and laughing.
“Ever since you walked into my life,” Bode said, “it has been nothing but true love. Anthonia, I’m on fire with passion!”
“Oh! Bode,” she said softly, “nothing compares to your ever flourishing love, that would always take me to the highest plane when I’m at my lowest ebb.”
“I just got to say this, Anthonia,” Bode continued, “you’re the one that fills me with deep, undiluted feelings of joy, desire and love. Your charm is something beyond physical comprehension, it’s celestial and cherubic, I must confess! I’ll love you always. Your presence in the morning, afternoon or evening makes my day beautiful!”.
Just as Bode was about planting a fervent kiss on the lips of Anthonia, he got a violent slap on his right cheek. He was dazed.
“What!” he screamed, “who the hell are you?” he uttered with bloodshot eyes and staggered up, fidgeting and sweating.
“Ha, ha, ha!” Alani laughed grotesquely and said, “Perhaps you don’t know me but I know you very, very well. You’re my rival. You’re dating a lady after my heart! And you’ll pay with your life for loving Anthonia, I swear!”
“But…but…there must be a mistake somewhere,” Bode tried to explain. In a jiffy about five hefty thugs descended on Bode and started punching and pounding him here and there with their hard fists.
“No! Noo!! Nooo!!!” Anthonia screamed, “Don’t beat him again. Please, don’t kill him. I beg you in God’s name, don’t kill him!” She started crying and shedding tears of sorrow. After so much cudgeling and bashing for close to 20 minutes, the hoodlums moved back a little and watched Bode writhe in his pool of blood. Other picnickers at the beach took to their heels for fear of attack by the hoodlums.
The fact was that Anthonia could remember the face of Alani a.k.a Dimka as one of the young men who always admired her while she was studying Sociology at the University of Lagos. But she never had the slightest love for the young man. They had never spoken before; she also had heard that he (Alani) belonged to the ‘Red Panther’ secret cult in the university.
Throughout her studies at the university, Anthonia had been careful of the kind of friends she made on Campus. She could see the tattoo and emblem of the panther on the right shoulder of Alani. In a split second she wondered where this horrifying drama would end. She was afraid of the consequences. How did Alani find out she was at the beach with her sweetheart?
Anthonia had graduated and was looking forward to the successful completion of her National Youth Service (NYSC), but she had been dating Bode way back in her undergraduate days. Bode was more than a boyfriend, she was her fiancé, ‘What in Heaven’s name would happen if these social miscreants murder my fiancé?’ she asked herself; so many questions but no answer.
As Anthonia was regaining control from her sudden flight of thoughts and melancholy, the hoodlums prepared for another attack on the helpless and hapless Bode. Alani bent down and grabbed the almost lifeless young man and sputtered:
“Hey Bode, you don’t mess around or play with the head of a deadly cobra! I assure you, you’ll pay with your life for being the lover of Anthonia! I have drank the lion’s blood. I have chewed the Crocodile’s teeth! The ocean never dries! The lagoon never dries! I have swallowed the poisonous fangs of the puff adder. Nothing scares me. I will make you a potion, and you will walk at ease into a refuge of roaches! I am the master of coincidence. The sight of blood makes me happy and excited!”
It was unbelievable how Alani trailed Anthonia and Bode to the beach. Alani lived in the notorious ghetto of Mushin, while Anthonia lived in Surulere with her sweetheart, Bode. Alani was a never-do-well and a dullard who was rusticated from the university due to his bad, unwholesome and ungodly ways.
His body, particularly his face bore the scars of many years of physical attacks, which showed he was into gangsterism and thuggery. But funny enough he had a secret passion for Anthonia and imagined himself as her would-be-husband despite the fact that he had not spoken to her of his warped intention. Sadly though, Anthonia would not have fancied such a queer human being like Alani.
She was too polished, too academically-inclined and beautiful to have such a beastly character as Alani for a fiancé. Anthonia came from a decent home. She was a rare breed. Her beauty and manners were superb and out-of-this world. She was virtuous, deeply unassuming and courteous. She was well-cultured and God-fearing.
It was impossible not to love Anthonia – her eyes, her smile, sense of humour, and everything were unique. She was so perfect and on the other hand, the man in question, Bode was a medical doctor with the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH). He was a ladies’ man any day. Tall, good-looking and handsome, he had a light skin that could make many a girl swoon with love because of his uncommon attributes – an impeccable brain and brawn.
As the assault on Bode continued, he hiccupped thrice and coughed out blood from his mouth, then he fainted. Bode was now in coma. Alani turned towards Anthonia.
“Now, to have you in my arms is my ultimate dream and ambition,” he said in a guttural tone, baring his big, brown and dirty teeth.
“Help! Help!! Help!!!” Anthonia screamed when she saw the monster-like man coming towards her. She collapsed the next minute and fainted.
Alani and his gang moved towards her with the intention of raping her in spite of the fact that she had fainted. But just then they heard the siren of a police patrol van; they turned and took to their heels. They ran in different directions, like mad and deranged men escaping from the long arm of the law.
The arrival of the policemen saved the day for the unfortunate lovers. They were carried inside the police vehicle and rushed to the hospital; they were quickly taken to the emergency ward of the General Hospital, Lagos…
To be concluded next Saturday.