Felix had been confused since the pseudo-date he had with Veronica, throughout the outing, he avoided sensitive words, his plans for the outing were shattered, he couldn’t express what he had in mind. He selected his words carefully trying to be appropriate as possible, he was more careful of the environment they were during the outing, he didn’t want to raise dust, seeing a Reverend Sister in a public place alone with a man could raise questions in people’s mind.
He ended the pseudo-date as quick as possible and as much as he felt uncomfortable throughout the outing, he enjoyed every bit of it. He felt the fragment of peace he had always felt, when the thought of Veronica came to his mind, her presence seemed to revive his confidence as a man, as much as Veronica was conscious of her environment too as a Nun, she still spoke politely ending every necessary line with a blush.
Felix was perplexed at her attitude, the boldness she had to appear in the public with her robe, sitting with a man, and still smiled intermittently, something was definitely unique about her. Felix loved her more in the robe. She was elegant, beautiful as it were, Felix enjoyed their time together, although it was not a sophisticated one with candle lights in a cool evening but it seemed to appear more romantic than the usual ones. He eventually dropped her off at the school where she worked.
Felix sat in his house thinking of Veronica, it’s been two weeks since their pseudo-date, although the movie played on in the living room, he could hardly concentrate, regardless the noise from the action movie. He had just sent her a text message, he paid her no visit since that day, neither did they agree to meet anywhere again, he carefully selected the lines he wrote and that was how it has been since his knowledge of her real status, although he called her, it was less frequent than before. As much as he did his best to get over the thoughts of her, he sincerely wanted to move on, and let it be. As a catholic, his father was a catechist during his life, so he understood what it meant for a Reverend Sister to be married to Jesus, with a ring on her finger as a symbol of her marriage to Christ.
Felix wanted to part ways with her, but the more he tried to cast off his mind from her, the deeper the feeling he felt for her, at some point he felt it was the devil seducing his mind, and prayed against the thoughts, but it didn’t take long before the feelings overwhelmed him again. It seemed like he had never seen a woman before in his life. Her thought crossed his mind several times in a day, but he disciplined his hands not to pick up his phone at every of such times.
He just couldn’t fathom why he felt so strongly excited about her, he loved everything he knew about her, even for the fact that she was nun; the more they struck acquaintance over the phone the more he wanted her. He struggled with the thought of her all of the time, her love flowed through his heart unabated, he wished he could give her a glimpse of his heart; he wished he could hold her hands and tell her how much he loved her.
“Enjoy the rest of your day,” her caller said on a final note, “bye.” She replied as she ended the call, it was Felix, he had called to say hi, Veronica toggled on her bed, meditating on their discussion over the phone, she reminisced on all he had said to her, she enjoyed the thought of it all.
She had seemingly fell in love with him too, although she didn’t like the fact that their friendship had suffered setback because of his knowledge of her status, but she had to do what she did to be on a safer side, but she couldn’t cover her emotions with a robe even if she covered her body. She awaited his call all of the time, but she made sure she never returned any of them, so as to avoid sending a wrong signal to him, but she often replied his messages with a thank you.
He enjoyed the times they spoke on the phone; he was a friendly and nice man. As his thoughts wandered in her mind, suddenly she felt an awakening, she was there lusting after a man again, she stood up from the bed immediately and knelt in front of the small table covered with a white clothing, on which was a frame of Mary the mother of Jesus and a cross with an image of Jesus on it, she quickly lit the candle in the candle stand on the table, and bowed with her hands clapped together. She muttered, ‘Holy Mary Mother of God have mercy on me for lusting after a man, holy Mary Mother of God pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.
She went on with the prayer, moving the rosary in her hands as if she was counting the beads. She had done this severally especially when the thought of Felix came to her heart; she had bound the devil several times. She felt it was a demonic operation, but she had forgotten it takes the grace of God to be a celibate. She had forgotten there were special human called to be ‘eunuch’ for the Lord, and it was not just any soul that grew up in a catholic environment and felt they were capable of holding their emotions bound.
Immediately she stood up from the table, it didn’t take long before the thoughts filled her mind again. Just as she stood up to retire to her bed she heard a knock on her door. “Come in” she answered, it was Juliet, “how are you dear friend,” she stepped in quietly. She guessed she was the one at the door; she had called to confirm her presence in the compound and informed her of her intended visit.
She to rose to hug her with a smile, they settled on the bed and started to gist, Veronica opened her bedside fridge to serve her soft drink, Veronica had hid Felix’s friendship from Juliet despite how close they were. Just then Juliet mentioned it, “how is Felix doing?” she started to say, Veronica looked at her with a suspicion, “Felix? I should be asking you that, you both are in the same parish and should know better.” Veronica tried to avoid any suspicion.
“Yeah I know that! I mean you both seem to be friends now,” Juliet replied. “Well yes we are, nothing more than that,” she answered defensively. “Ok, but why are you been defensive? I am your friend and you should be able to come out pop and plain to me.” Suddenly the look on Veronica’s face changed she knew she needed help, and decided to be sincere with her. “Are you sure you want me to be sincere with you?” “Why not, what are friends for?” she said staring into her eyes.
“I am in love with Felix,” she landed the bombshell, Juliet flashed her a despicable gaze right away. “What do you mean? Holy Mary Mother of God!” Veronica felt sober, but took the courage, “but you asked me to be pop and plain with you, didn’t you?” Juliet’s mouth was widely opened. She spoke at last, “that’s serious, how did you get yourself there? I hope you haven’t insinuated such to him?” “I haven’t but my heart tells me he is also in love with me,” she said.
“Stop it Veronica, how do you know? On what ground do you base your conclusion?” “Haba! Juliet how wouldn’t I know if a man is in love with me, the fact that I am a Nun doesn’t stop blood from running in my veins, does it?” Veronica answered back. “Anyway, that is correct but you need to pray against such lustful thought, you are a nun for Christ’s sake, the other Reverend Sisters must not hear about this.”
“Of course, it’s only you that I can share this with, moreover I have prayed severally over this but I couldn’t help the feeling.” “I think you should initiate a resistance against it, if it doesn’t work we’ll find something about it.” Juliet said patting her friend.
Felix had done his best to hold back his feelings for her, four months since their outing. Although he called and sent her messages regularly, the more he tried to seal his mind concerning her, the more he fell in love with her, his feelings for her grew day by day.
Falling in love with someone, who doesn’t love you back could be saddening, but falling in love, and never finding the courage to tell the person was painful.
He concluded in his mind to tell her, he was ready to face whatever would be the consequences; he was tired of denying his feelings. He was ready to rise to the challenge, he was going to damn the reactions, even if he would receive a ‘NO’, which was not synonymous to a death sentence, he would at least be man enough to confess his love for her. He picked his phone immediately before the courage eroded away.
“Thanks for coming over,” he said on his feet as he pulled the chair for her to sit. “You are most welcome,” she replied as she settled in the seat. This time around she didn’t wear her robe; she wore a blue blouse on a pleated skirt which was way below her knees. Felix had invited her to the place they met few months ago.
“You have a nice blouse there,” he commented, “thank you, you look good too,” she said with a grin. “Thank you, but you don’t need to flatter me.” Felix chuckled, “howbeit I flatter you? Okay you look very ugly,” trying to broaden her voice with a giggle at the end. “You are funny you know,” Felix smiled, “I presume, if you do not want a complement you would at last prefer it the other way round,” she said smiling as she sipped the juice she was served. “Alright then, I admit I look good,” he smiled. Felix raised a lot of discussions trying to put her in the best mood she could be in order to receive such a news.
“Ma’am permit me to ask, if you don’t mind,” Felix started to say, “okay, go on and what is it?” taking a bite of her snacks. “What’s your definition of ‘compromise’?” Veronica tried to read in between the lines but couldn’t figure out where the question was heading. “Compromise? I think it literally means bending rules, protocols and principles. I guess that answers your question Sir” “Yes it does,” “Okay that’s cool” Veronica said. “Veronica…” Felix started to say calmly, the pitch of his voice had suddenly dropped. “Yes Brother Felix,” she replied.
“I understand that you a Reverend Sister, and you have ban marred to Jesus, but I want you to make a compromise for me, I have done my best to hold back the strong feeling that I have for you, I thought it was only a flimsy one at first, but it has proven itself with time, I have done my possible best to conceal the thought, but I found out that love is stronger than one can conceal.” He felt the draw upon his heart, even more so as the deep colour of her eyes pleaded with him. “Veronica, your love has filled my heart, I have struggled to resist it, but I couldn’t help it, I thought I could master myself and be in charge of my emotions, but concerning how I feel towards you, I have lost hold of it. Veronica, can you make this compromise for me? I want you to be the love of my life?”
Veronica’s mouth was wide agape, she sat in there amazed, she tried to look , elsewhere although she knew Felix was affectionate about her, she never thought he could summon the courage to tell her to her face, let alone propose marriage to her.
It’s been years she had such experience, she was not familiar with it again, a man seating right in front of her, wooing her, her robe had shielded her from such experience over the years, but here was a man that damned her status and approached her boldly.
She didn’t know exactly what to say; although she loved him too, but it definitely could not work, what would the Abbess of the nunnery she was trained in say. How would she report such a decision? Would she join the list of Reverend Sisters that broke their allegiance to Jesus, their allegiance of chastity and purity? Several thoughts flew through her mind, what exactly was she supposed to say as a reply.
She spoke at last, “you mean ‘the love of your life’? I am a nun for Christ sake, what are you saying?” She answered with shock expressed all over her face. She muttered beneath her breath as she bowed to the table, “Holy Mary Mother of God!”
………….……To be continued…………………