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WILL I BE FORGIVEN

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He loved money and women. S*xy ladies were his passion. His dream was to become a billionaire pastor, but s*xy ladies got in his way. He thought he could live above the flesh. The harder he fought against the desires of the flesh, the more he discovered that he was chasing after shadows— The seduction and deadly influences that come with the flesh set him on fire to become the man, he never envisioned. Soon, he engaged in extramarital affairs with women. The more he fought to resist the passion and fleshly sins that held him hostage, the more he knew he needed external help to rescue him, or he would die young. He soon consulted the witches of the Miles to succeed— A few years later, he rebelled against the same powers that made him. They rose against him and brought him down to his knees to bow before them and crawl on the dust to his death— But his past sins soon came knocking— The quest to survive was ultimate now and it unearths deadly secrets that the ears of humans have never heard. As the clock ticked, he only had one chance of escape. Something sinister awaits Mandolin Trump, something more deadly than he could imagine that spawn in hell— Will he survive the superpowers that made him a billionaire Pastor or die before dawn? The journey had only just begun... YA/Teen

1 THE MISCHIEVOUS

His laced shoe was still the center of attraction as the wandering eyes of Eric Travis picked it up from the rear this time.

What was he thinking?

He wasn't sure what he was thinking either but then, the words that Mandolin Trump spoke last before the room turned silent still lingered fresh in his mind. It should have been stale by now considering the time interval it was spoken but he didn't allow that—he wanted it fresh in his mind as he kept on tossing it over.

He knew Mandolin Trump was right at some points but wasn't so certain of others.

But why must he think of a thing like that, a thing so desperate, heartless and possibly so adventurous?

He glanced at him, this time with his widened eyes shifted from his laced shoe as if woken up from slumber. Yes, they have been friends for quite a while now and have agreed on almost every issue of life until this moment.

Eric Travis knew Mandolin Trump was stubborn right from when they were in college and even through their university days. He had always been the party type, but how he graduated from the upper class was still a mystery to him. He had proven to be a goal-getter and had never slacked in achieving what he had proposed to do and that's why what he spoke about an hour ago was a very serious issue.

He pondered over it once more as he narrowed his eyes at Mandolin Trump. Though he had failed in one important area of his life—marriage. He was supposed to be married by now at the time his friends started picking ladies for marriage, but he had shunned the idea and now still looked not set for it yet.

Eric Travis stood up for the first time since he entered Mandolin Trump's little apartment that seemed to be consciously built for him alone and not for a wife or kids around. He could imagine as his eyes swept through the sitting room again.

He walked around the center table for a while and seconds later, stood in front of Mandolin Trump.

This time he was ready to engage him in a fiercer talk. His lips moved for a while and as he was about to give up, he heard Mandolin Trump coughed. Reluctantly he started. "I cannot believe what I heard—can't imagine you said such things. Listen Mandolin, as much as I know about you, you are not even a good Christian—talk less of having a calling to become a pastor—a pastor? This is impossible!" He hissed and wheeled around angrily, backing Mandolin Trump who just gave him a smug smile.

Mandolin Trump sat up again crossing his legs over as if in a sort of executive meeting except that he wasn't. His arm was on his broad chest as his eyes steadied on Eric Travis, boring through his back as he waited anxiously for him to speak another word. He could hear him talk now but wasn't that audible. He waited for him to turn around and immediately he did a few seconds later. He heard him repeating himself.

"There are other jobs you could do and not this pastor thing, agree jobs are hard these days, the population is exploding by the day and the government can't cope with the trend—planning method is poor and a whole lot of other things is making the economy sick. Pastor is not a job but a calling. Telling me that's what you want to do is the last thing I will want to hear you say, Mandolin!" He sat down quietly on the center table he had been walking around for minutes now and gave him a sober stare.

"You could be something else, let's say an entrepreneur or something, and not this idea of becoming a pastor. You don't have the calling; it is for special people—special—"

Mandolin Trump stopped him and didn't allow him to finish. "You make me sick, Eric. I have sat down patiently to hear you talk. Now just hear yourself talk—special, what makes pastor ministry special?—"

"Here you go again," Eric Travis broke in. "Pastoral ministry is not a business as you think. There is a supernatural calling attached to it and I know—"

"What is it then?" Mandolin Trump flared as he lifted both hands to stop Eric Travis.

Looking angrier now, he dropped his left leg on the floor he had placed on the other for minutes.

Eric Travis ignored it as he looked away. He felt so worried that Mandolin Trump was beginning to make a scene out of nothing.

"It is a task, a godly responsibility given to anyone by God—it is a calling, Mandolin." Eric Travis whispered calmly as if he was beside himself with his hands in his pocket.

He was shocked at Mandolin Trump's reaction but wasn't surprised. He knew he has not changed a bit right from their university days—always desperate.

He watched him frown and then also heard him talk. "How many Pastors have the calling you are talking about? They take your offerings, your tithes, and build big mansions and drive around in the best cars and you sit here and talk about calling. Who cares? D*mn it!"

Eric heard him hit his hand hard on the table in front of him and that got him shivering—and that was also enough to tell that Mandolin Trump was upset.

Upset by whom?

The church system, pastors, or what?

He shrugged as he struggled to listen to Mandolin Trump's piercing words screwing through his eardrums.

"And you know what? What if I tell you I was called? Or have been called, what will you say? What if I tell you I got a revelation from God telling me about this task? Of course, you have nothing to tell me because you weren't there when I was called, so you see! The work of a pastor is open to anyone who can talk, and convince the people. I mean do the job—the rich job and at the same time profit immensely. I want in Eric—I mean I am entering the pastoral ministry as it is called and away with poverty."

Eric Travis watched smiles play around Mandolin Trump’s lips.

Was he out of his mind or pretending he wasn't?

His smiles looked heartless but the interesting thing now was how he wants to go about it. Was he going to a pastoral school or—

His thoughts dropped as he watched Mandolin Trump walk towards the wine shelf and heard him whisper. "Good wine brings good memories—for a brighter future Eric. Always friends, still good friends, and friends we are forever." He smiled and this time, his eyes looked so bright as if he saw something Eric wasn’t seeing.

Eric Travis watched as he poured wine into his glass cup and they both drank with eyes fixed at each other. And deep down in those red sl*t eyes, Eric Travis knew another deadly phase of Mandolin Trump's future has only just begun.

“Monica is a wh*r* and you know it” Mandolin whispered.

“You made her one because you wanted her so bad. I would have made her a better person. I wanted to train her mind, but every time she came looking for me, you took her to bed countless times and ruin her life—” He shouted at Mandolin and walked closer to him with his fist clenched.

“She was an amazing s*x figure and all guys I know wanted her on their beds and when my time came I had her, why me only? Why not go taking to the other guys who ruined her also—” Mandolin shouted angrily.

“Are you crazy, this was fifteen years ago—”

“You brought this up, listen Monica is a wh*r* and you better let her out of your mind.”

“Oh, I see you want to fight for a wh*r*. I am a changed person now, Eric—” He kept his eyes on his fist.

“I see, let’s see when beautiful ladies get their s*xy eyes on you and how you would handle it. You are not married Mandolin.” Eric’s cold eyes fell on him

“Marriage doesn’t count her Eric; it is nothing as far as the ministry work is concerned, Eric.”

“Oh yes it does, it puts you in check, especially your sexual excesses. I am afraid I am done here, when you need me, you know where to find me,” He walked out of Mandolin’s apartment.

************

Eric Travis drove into his garage and came out of his car quietly. He looked at his car again the second time, after he left Mandolin Trump’s house. This time, memories flooded his mind.

It was given to him by his father after he graduated from university as a graduation gift.

The bruise it has on the body has given it an ugly look that made it seems it wasn't of his class anymore.

But what if I fixed it?

What if the bodywork was upgraded and then—

His mind shifted when he heard Dralex's voice behind him. "Welcome home Daddy. Dinner is ready and we have been waiting for you to come home!"

Eric Travis looked down at his 3-year-old daughter.

Her brain seems to be developing at a faster pace than expected of a child of her age, he thought as he wheeled around to watch her talk once more.

"Are you okay Dad? Just wondering why we didn't see you come home quickly. Well, Mum is waiting, shall we?" She led the way with her slow walking steps but that didn’t bother Eric who was pleased to shuffle behind her.

Eric Travis could not help but smile as he watched in amazement her daughter talked as though in a drama session in school. He never hesitated to respond. "Why not Dralex, I am after you." He watched her take the lead to the sitting room.

"Welcome home darling." The words that seemed to reverberate in the sitting room got his spine aching. "I was almost thinking your dinner will be cold before you come home, just the way your lunch ran cold—what devoured your day up like a little squirrel, darling?" Prislla's tiny voice got him frozen to a spot for a while as he walked further into the sitting room.

He looked at her and grimed. He dragged his legs from their frozen spot and joined her on the dining table and also watched Dralex slides into her favorite chair even though her little legs still hung in the air and most times, he noticed she enjoyed dangling it on the air as she eats.

Not quite five minutes he sat, he stood up again and strolled to the window by the dining table. He pulled the curtain to his left and watched outside for a while and then watched the curtain swing into its position.

"You got something in your mind you want to talk about?" He watched Prislla's eyes all over him.

He knew her mind search was always exact and her questions always compelling. She has this unusual way of reading thoughts through the eyes.

Immediately her eyes caught him again, he shifted his head. "Not really—Just thinking, perhaps we leave that for tomorrow and—" He felt reluctant to say anything now.

"I see you are troubled darling. We still got plenty of time to talk—to talk about it." He heard Prislla's chair pushed backward and soon heard her footstep behind him.

Suddenly, she stood by his side with her left hand on his shoulder. "Discussion brings a solution—if we discuss what's on your mind now. We would have solved what will perhaps push us far apart, perhaps in thoughts—so, let's hear it from you." She smiled at him and then looks out the window with him.

Eric Travis looked down at her. Her look wasn't different from the one she had on four years ago when they first meant in Garlic fast food plaza.

She was one of the food attendants. There was this way she looked and walked that almost caught his attention and when it finally did. It was after the marriage vows, he woke up to the reality that Prislla was now his wife—those eyes are piercing, but innocent and beautiful.

Her body shape was still intact, her breast still stood firm on her chest and her curvy *ss made her even sexier.

As he kept on staring at her, suddenly his mind sparked when the words of Mandolin Trump rushed back in, the words that seemed taunting but far gripping now. He shifted his eyes from Prislla. "He wants me to assist him as a pastor." He whispered and Prislla heard him.

"A pastor—" Prislla muttered. "Are you kidding me or—wait a minute, who said that to you? I mean who wants you to—" She looked confused but steadied her thought, and gave him a worried stare.

"Mandolin Trump, he wants me to be his assistant." He cut in and looked away quietly. "I am confused and—" Eric’s nervous eyes meant hers.

"Mandolin Trump, I remember him now—you told me about him but don't tell me you still go around with him. You said he isn't married, right? Stop seeing him darling or he will ruin you. Any man who had gotten to his age and is still single is irresponsible. I have never meant him in person but from what you told me about him a few weeks ago. I think he is!" “We almost had a fight, it was all about Monica and—” He looked at her angrily.

“What, that wasn’t necessary, Eric. Monica is in the past now and you must bury everything about her, you have a family now, so—”

“He ruins her life with s*x and—”

“That is what she wanted, she wanted to be caressed and all that. I think she got what she deserved.”

“I don’t think so, she was deceived and lured to bed and Mandolin was the actor. I hate him with so much passion, he used her.” He looked away

Prislla stood mute for minutes and then muttered. "A Pastor, what a hell," she sank into a chair opposite Eric Travis with her head bent over in deep thoughts and then suddenly as if she remembered something. She lifted her head and her eyes narrowed at Eric Travis.

"Let him go ahead and be a novice pastor. For all I care, you aren't going to join him and besides, we are alright where we worship." Her eyes rolled in thoughts as she continued. "Have you told Pastor Joshua? I guess he can counsel you more on this." She looked into his eyes.

He stared at her for a while, "How is Dralex's health? Did you see Doctor Mattis today?"

He watched Prislla nod her head but certain she wasn't happy he changed the topic suddenly. He stared at her for a while again and then walked out quietly from the sitting room.,from

2 THE ADVENTURE

It wasn't bedtime yet, was he going to bed?

But then he hadn't even touched his dinner, what has come over Eric?

That was how a friend led him to lose thousands of dollars in an investment that never worked and now another friend who got absolutely no calling is dragging him to something he got no experience to accomplish.

Why must Eric always be, a prey or a tool?

We must resume our talk on this in bed tonight. Prislla shrugged as her thoughts walk unparallel to each other, now refusing to merge.

Her eyes reluctantly shifted to the dining table where Dralex was still eating. She wished she had another child so that Dralex could have a company but Doctor Mattis will always have a word to use about the delay.

She knew it must have been the family planning contraceptive pill she took after having Dralex, just after her birth.

She forced her thoughts to stop but eventually, the chiming sound of the wall clock stopped it. She looked up

Heroes

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