Around 7am the next morning, we left Mirage Hotel and headed towards Lagos.
The longest i had taken the car with me was to Ezeagu which was just less than 50 Km from my village. However, Lagos was hundreds of kilometers from Enugu and since Queen was the only person with me, i needed another person to travel with us; a man. The car could break down on the road and that would require strong hands, not hands that had held more chocolate than any other thing else.
Therefore when we got to Upper Iweka in Onitsha, i stopped and picked a man.
The road from Delta State to the end of Edo State was neat and motorable. However from the beginning of Ondo State to Lagos was bumpy. At some places, it was almost impossible to go through but i managed to navigate my way out of every one of them. The vehicle was in perfect condition and never gave me anything to worry about until we got to Lagos.
We had stopped at Ore and ate some food before continuing our journey. It was while eating at Ore that it occurred to me that i didn’t actually talk to the Principal. I had based my travel and plans on what Queen told me. It was a kind of mistake i hardly made but then i had a lot on my head the day before. It was a miracle how i managed to concentrate on the driving for the entire period.
As soon as i recalled that i didn’t discuss anything about the documents with the man the day before, i ate my food a little bit faster and went to the toilet. Inside the toilet, i called the Principal from my own phone. He confirmed that the documents were ready.
We got to Lagos and drove straight to Victoria Island through the long 3rd Mainland Bridge.
By 4pm, we were already settled in a hotel room. I had told the Principal that we would be in the school the following day.
I didn’t drive too fast since i was using a car i didn’t know how it was maintained.
At 140km/h most of the time, i knew i would get to Lagos on time. We would have been there earlier but Nigerian roads were very unpredictable.
Inside the Hotel, a very serious discussion started between Queen and I.
She had asked a question which i thought was just a casual one but it turned out to be a very delicate one.
“What are you going to be doing when i return to the UK?” she had asked.
“I would be partying and clubbing with girls” I joked.
She suddenly looked at me and stood up right on my face.
“I knew that was your plan. I knew that was why you didn’t even ask me if i would like to continue my schooling here in Nigeria” She said.
The look on her face told me that she was dead serious. My joke about clubbing with girls was a very bad one at a very bad time.
“It was a joke” I said.
“I dont think so. I hoped you would offer to put me in a school there in Enugu. I love the city”.
“I thought you were excited about the availability of your documents, why the sudden Change of mood?” I said.
Queen said she had been thinking about it on our way to Lagos.
She said life would be boring in the UK Despite good environment and social system.
She was right. She had nobody over there but in Nigeria, she had her father’s people who could recognize her at any time. Above all, she had me whom she believed would do anything to be with her.
At a stage in our conversation, i felt that lies were required to correct my mistakes.
“Queen, my major aim of sending you to the UK was because i plan to come to the UK too. If you start school here, it would be difficult for you return to school in the UK when i eventually get ready to go there. Remember what happened during the first time you stopped school here in Lagos. I want you to be settled before i come there. I am not abandoning you, just that you are better off over there than here. Secondly, you are not secured with me at the moment. People who are after me could hurt you and that would pain me more”.
After my little speech, she smiled for the the first time since we arrived in Lagos.
I had no plan of traveling to the UK. I never liked living in an Island. There won’t be anyhere to run to if something goes wrong.
The following morning, we drove to the school. The principal was waiting for us at his office as expected. When we settled down, he brought out every kind of certificate in the book and placed them in front of us.
“This one cost 4500 to obtain” He said as he brought out a certificate which had the Lagos State Education board as its heading.
He said the second one was from the local government and cost 3800 Naira.
The rest of the documents were from the school itself. He had picked each one of them up and explained to us what it does and what it was used for. He also explained to us that several people had actually been to the school to ask for such documents to enable them get admissions in foreign lands. That was why he had the experience and knew the right documents to obtain for us.
Queen was actually lucky because she personally didn’t know all the documents required to start school in the UK. Though most people over in foreign lands usually send their relatives to obtain the documents for them but unfortunately for Queen, she didn’t have such people.
By the time the Principal finished his explanations, we were faced with a bill totalling N45, 000.
That amount was relatively small compared to what i had in mind. I was thinking that the documents would cost in the region of 1000 Euros which was about 200,000 Naira then.
Before i paid the Principal, i thanked him for making out time to gather the documents, especially those from the State School Board and the Local Government.
I gave him an envelope contains N50,000 before we left.
From the school, we drove straight to the Murtala Muhammad International Airport Ikeja.
There was still enough time to go and buy flight ticket. I had a lot of things to do and i needed to return to Enugu as soon as possible. That was where the war was being fought. I had no business staying in Lagos past two days.
But Queen must leave first.
Written For http://www.globalruns.com