Ndudi sent Chidimma to go and buy dry fish from Ogunna’s house. Ogurina’s wife, Obuna, was a dealer in dry fish and was the only one in the entire village that did such business. Ndudi had waited for Chidimma for a very long time and could not see her. She then wondered what was holding her.

Chidimma had earlier forgotten to tell her mother that she would also go to Akpunku’s house to see Obinna whom she said would help her tack some Mathematics problems that had been giving her tough time.

So when Chidimma was through with the buying of dry fish, she ran to Akpunku’s house in search of Obinna and luckily Obinna was at home. Solving the Mathematics problems was not a big task for Obinna. So he did it very fast.

He in addition used the opportunity to teach Chidimma some other topics in Mathematics which he believed would appear in their entrance examination.

When they were through, Obinna decided to see Chidimma off.

“I am happy that now I have begun to understand Mathematics.” said Chidimma.

“Mathematics is not difficult. People fail Mathematics because they are afraid of it. Once you begin to develop love for it, you begin to understand it. But if you hate or fear Mathematics you will never understand it.”

“I thank you so much for helping me to overcome the Fear of Mathematics.”

“You are welcome. But Chidimma, what do you think about your father’s decision concerning your education?”

“I don’t have any option than to do whatever my parents decide for me.”


“Does that mean you are going to stop going to school?”

“What else will I do other than that? I have to stop if they insist.”

“So you want to get married now?”

“That’s what my parents want for me.”

“And you think it’s good?”

“It is not my wish to get married now but if they insist. who am I to say no?”

“You have to say no because it is not good for you now.”

“So you want my father to kill me?”

“He will not kill you.”

“He will because I know him too well. He is very hot tempered.”

“Okay, if you must many let me marry you.”

Chidimma smiled. “Okay. I will like to marry you because I love you.”

“Are you sure you love me?”

“Yes I do. I love you. I mean it.”

“I also love you.”

“Now, you have to come and tell my parents.”



“I don’t want to tell them now.”

“You are too small for marriage now and I am not yet ready too.”

“That means you are not serious.”


“About three men have approached my father for my marriage. So if you are interested, you better be test before it is too late for you.”

“But those that have come to marry you do you love them?”

“I don’t even know them talk less of loving them

“Then why will you many them’?”

“As far as my father is concerned rejecting the offer on the grounds that I don’t love them does not hold water I even saw one of them bribing him to agree to give me out to him in marriage.”



“My father is such a wicked fellow. When he says his own, your own opinion is needless.”

“So what do you want me to do in this instance because I have not yet gotten a job? I don’t have money and I don’t have a house of my own. So it is not wise getting married now.”

“I still want you to come because you are the one I love, and if you fail to come, my father will give me out in marriage to someone I will not like. Whether you have a job or not, I still want to marry you, after all, I don’t eat too much. I am not a glutton…”

“It is okay. I know what I will do, I will come and meet your father tomorrow…”

Chidimma jumped up happily and said, “Thanks a lot! I will be looking forward to Seeing you tomorrow. You have to come in the evening because he goes to the farm in the morning. Besides, I will like to be around by the time you come…”

“But that does not mean that I will start marrying you immediately.”

“Meaning what? Ibiakwa!”.

“You are going to have patience till I get job.”


“So when are you getting a job?”

“Soonest! I am sure of that because my result is very good with second class upper. I am very sure I will get good job. In fact, I have already started talking with one company. The manager of the company is my uncle’s friend…”

The two friends sighted Ndudi coming towards Akpunku’s house Chidimma wanted to hide when she saw her mother.

“No, don”t hide because she has already Seen us.” advised Obinna.

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“She  will skin me alive because it has been long she sent me on errand.” feared Chidimma.

“Don’t be afraid, I am here.”

Ndudi who was visibly fuming with anger had reached to where the two lover birds were. Chidimma who was full of fear was hiding at the back of Obinna.

“Chidimma, it is now over an Hour  I sent you to go and buy me dry fish which I will use to cook today’s dinner. What are you doing here ChidiMma?”

“Please, I plead on her behalf. She came in with her arithmetic problems which we have just finished solving together. I was just seeing her off when you met us here. Please, forgive her.

Looking angrily at Obinna she said, If you are solving that arithmetic with her, you have to be very very careful to avoid acting a negative answer. Please, I warn you for the very first and last time, leave my daughter alone because she is not destined for poor people like you.”

Ndudi picked a long stick from the ground and gave Chidimma a chase. And Chidimma ran back home.

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