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Thursday, 8 December 2016

SMOKESCREEN: Final Episode!


Titi alighted from the vehicle and made her way to Christian’s apartment, she knocked at the door and  Desta pulled it wide open with a smile on her lips and an apron tied around her waist.
“If you’re here to see Christian, he’s not home.” Desta said.
“Yes...I reckoned...I expect he’s at Mabel’s place.”
“You guessed right! If you know he’s not here, then why are you here?” Desta asked.
“I just came to check on some things...and I was hoping that you’d be home.”

BLACK MAIL: Disappointments!


Vanessa was clearly unnerved, she couldn’t believe what had happened to her at the church and once she was able to regain her strength, she thanked the pastors and headed out, promising to come back frequently for church programmes. She was headed to her car when she realised that she hadn’t called her husband to tell him what happened to her, so she brought out her phone and dialled his number. It rang several times but he didn’t answer, she tried over and over again but he still didn’t answer her calls so she placed the phone in her bag and walked towards her car. As soon as she got into her sleek vehicle, she placed her head on the steering and closed her eyes.

Wednesday, 7 December 2016

The Adventures Of Abosede: CHANGE!


As days progressed into weeks, I became someone I didn’t recognise, I cooked, I cleaned, and worked very hard and earned my keep at Sister Lucky’s. I found that the teens were not all her children as I had thought at first. Kemi was her niece, Omorege was her nephew, Mine was her adopted child and Yusuf was her former employer’s nephew. The teens behaved like siblings and attended the same school as they were with her because her house was very close to their school and she taught there as well. I heard them speak occasionally about home and having to return during the holidays except Mine, whose home was with Sister Lucky.

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

TEENAGE SERIES: Tailing Daniel!


Daniel was in his room, he was trying to keep calm as he didn’t want Mira’s father to suspect anything unusual in his behaviour. Mira’s mother was in Mira’s room and he’d heard her moving about the room all through the night, he could tell that she didn’t sleep a wink. His mother had spent the night in his room as it seemed as though things were turning sour between her and Mira’s father. He needed to act fast and quickly too or risk loosing it all. Mira’s father was stalling with the payments and his biological father’s lawyer was already running out of patience. The man wanted his payment to begin with the appeal as soon as he could. Daniel paced his room in worry; he recalled that Esther had told him something about sending Mira’s father, her body part and he’d given a go-ahead. Esther was supposed to call and tell him where the drop off of the body part will be so that he can pick it up and drop it off at the house without being seen. He was still pacing about the room when he heard the loud shrill of his telephone. It was Esther.

Monday, 5 December 2016

TEENAGE SERIES: The Truth That Changed It All!


Mira was so confused, she had no idea of what was going on. Where was her daddy? Why hadn’t he come to pick her up yet? Why hasn’t he paid the ransom yet? Wasn’t he rich enough? She thought as she hurdled herself against the wall of the place where she was confined and cried. She hadn’t eaten since last night and her captors gave her one meal per day which wasn’t enough considering the fact that she was a growing child and had never had to go without food for such long period of time. As she sat by the wall, she thought of her family, her sisters who were abroad and who perhaps had no idea that she had been kidnapped, and her mother who was in Abuja and who might have no idea of the kidnap.

Sunday, 4 December 2016

BLACK MAIL: Deliverance!


Vanessa spent most of the morning conversing with Jennifer and she found that they had a lot in common. They both loved fashion, they loved reading books and they surprisingly had a few mutual friends.

“I can’t believe you know Kamto...wow what a small world.” Jennifer said in delight.
“Yes, we served together in Nassarawa state. It was such a long time ago but we were assigned to the same place of primary assignment so that was how we bonded.”Vanessa said with a smile.

Friday, 2 December 2016

SMOKESCREEN- Ep 11!


Desta smiled as Christian dragged her outside the house, she enjoyed the thrill of his palm tightening against her arm.

“What is wrong with you?” Christian spat at her.

“What do you think is wrong with me? I’m in love...” She sang out.

WIFE MATERIAL: Season Finale!

Image Source: monafrika.com

The room was deadly silent as the steel fell to the tiled floor in a loud thud. Cherry stood there at the entrance to the sitting room trembling and shaking. She couldn’t believe it, she had never thought she’d go this extreme. She stared at the knife at her feet and burst into tears.
“I’m sorry...oh my God! What came over me? I am so sorry...” Cherry said falling to her knees in tears.
Diamond, Mitch, Jerry and their mother turned to stare at Cherry who was shaking like a leaf. They stared at the knife at her feet and stared at her in shock.
“What did...did you intend to do with that?” Her mother asked.
Cherry replayed in her mind the scenario she’d so desperately wanted to pull off a few minutes and trembled more, she couldn’t believe she’d actually imagined striking her sister with the knife, she felt so sad.
“I don’t know what came over me mom, I am so sorry...I don’t know what I’ve turned into...please forgive me.” She cried as tears streamed from her face.
Mitch hurried over to pick up the knife and inched away from her. Diamond stared at her sister apprehensively, she walked up to her and crouched beside her.
“Hey...Cherry, it’s okay...” Diamond said comfortingly. “You didn’t mean to do it, you were blinded with anger.”
“All you’ve ever been to me was a good sister, you supported me, you even covered up for me but how did I want to pay you in return? I wanted to stab you...I’m a devil...I’m a horrible person.” She cried.
“No you’re not, you’re just a bit disturbed but you’re not a horrible person sis...you’re a good person.” Diamond said pulling her into her arms for a hug. “I forgive you, I know how hard it is for you to accept the fact that Mitch and I are going to be together and I’m sorry that I chose Mitch instead of someone else....”
“No, you two deserve each other. You are selfless, loving, kind and sincere. Mitch was never mine from the start, he was yours and he always will be.” Cherry said and breaking the hug she looked up at Mitch. “I’m sorry Mitch, for everything that I caused you, for every tear you shed for me, for every hurt I brought your way, I am truly sorry.”
“I’ve forgiven you Cherry...” Mitch said not knowing whatelse to say.
Their mother walked up to them and hugged them tightly.
“Hatred is really as strong as love and I am glad that love triumphed after all. You didn’t go ahead with your evil intent because you realized how much you love your sister and how much she’s a part of you. I am glad that at the end of it all, you remembered your upbringing and decided to block the evil thoughts in your head.” Their mother said to Cherry with tears in her eyes.
“I’m sorry mummy, for all the troubles I put you through, for every bad word I uttered, for every time I didn’t listen to you. I am really sorry.” Cherry cried.
Their mother hugged them tightly while their brother joined in the hug, it was a bittersweet moment.

************
Stella stared at the address in her hands and stared at the building again. Her sister stood behind her as silent as a mouse as she too stared at the building before them.
“Are you sure this is the address?” Stella asked her sister without turning to look at her.
“Yes, I called Madu and he gave me this address.”
“Does he know I’m coming?”
“Well...I told him you’d like to see your daughter.” Her sister said.
Stella looked at the paper with the address again and stared at the house, she couldn’t believe it.
“Are you sure we’re not in the wrong house?”
“How can you know if you don’t go in?” Her sister said.
Stella nodded and took a small step forward. What happened? How did Madu amass such wealth? She thought to herself as she rang the bell at the gate.
The gate opened and a young man stared at her strangely.
“Good afternoon...I am here to see Mr. Madu.” Stella squeaked.
“Mr Madu?” The young man said as though not understanding what she was talking about.
Stella turned to regard her sister as though to say, ‘I told you we’re in the wrong place’ when she heard a small voice.
“Mummy...”
Stella turned around and tears fell from her eyes.
“Kamsi!” She said.
Kamsi was at the gate with a bicycle which was obviously quite difficult to ride. Kamsi dropped the bike by the side and rushed into her mother’s arms. The gate man was surprised as he tried to pry her away from Stella.
“She’s my daughter...she’s my...” Stella said hugging her daughter fiercely.
“I’ve missed you mummy, where have you been?” Kamsi hugged her mother back.
“I’ve missed you too my little sweetheart, I’ve missed you so much.” Stella said.
Stella sister touched Kamsi’s hair affectionately and she looked up at her.
“Auntie...you’re here too.”
“Yes I am.” Stella’s sister said to her niece.
“Come inside...c’mon in.” Kamsi said as her mother lifted her up into her arms.
A young girl walked up to the gate with a frown on her face and with her hands on her hips.
“Kamsi, how many times have I told you not to run to the gate?” The girl said.
“I heard my mummy’s voice.” Kamsi said to the girl.
The girl stared at Stella and her sister.
“Good afternoon...” She greeted.
“I’m Kamsi’s mother, is her father at home?” Stella asked.
“No ma, he went out but his aunt is at home.” The girl said.
“Meet Youme, she helps out around the house and she takes care of me.” Kamsi introduced the girl to her mother.
The girl smiled slightly and the gateman opened the gate wider for them to come inside. Stella couldn’t believe how beautiful the house was on the inside, she kept staring at the compound in open admiration.
“You like our new house right?” Kamsi asked with a smile.
“Yes, it’s lovely...it’s really lovely.” Stella said with a smile.
“Do you know that this is the house daddy grew up in? Daddy’s father built this house long ago but he didn’t get it back till now.” Kamsi informed.
Stella knew Madu’s story so well, she knew how his father’s people had taken all that belonged to him and threw him out into the streets. She was surprised that they’d returned his parent’s property to him.
“This house is so empty without you mummy, promise that you’ll come back.” Kamsi said.
Stella could only smile bitterly in response, it would take a miracle for Madu to ever let her pay regular visits to her child, talk more of returning to him as his wife. Duncan had killed her self-esteem, she didn’t feel she deserved a man like Madu or even her daughter.

**************
Madu and Emenike alighted from the car laughing like good old friends, they had just left the company where Emenike was helping Madu learn the ropes.
“We should hang out at a bar sometime.” Emenike said to Madu. “Gisting over drinks is so much fun.”
“Yes we should, it’s been so long since I hung out at a bar...you know.” Madu said as they walked up to the house.
“Really? How long?”
“I think the last time I hung out at a bar was when Kamsi was born. I went out to celebrate with friends on the arrival of my daughter and...”
“What? Are you kidding me? What sort of a man are you? I can’t believe we share the same blood.”
“Life happened. I had to take full responsibility of my daughter right from the moment she was born. I used to decline offers to hang out because I wanted to spend more time with her and by the time I lost my job, I was a full-time stay at home dad. I guess I just got used to not hanging out.”
“You need to be rebaptized.” Emenike said and they both laughed.
Madu pushed open the door to the house and stepped in with his cousin. The interior of the house boasted of two massive sitting rooms joined together, downstairs while the upstairs had a big sitting room and five rooms. The house also had boys’ quarters for two household staff. They heard noise coming from the television in the second sitting room and they both walked in.
As soon as Madu stepped in, he froze in his tracks. Stella was seated on the sofa watching television with his aunt while Kamsi’s head was nesting on her lap. As soon as Stella saw him, she jerked causing Kamsi to wake up.
“Daddy...” Kamsi greeted leaving her mother to hug him.
Madu didn’t speak, he just stared at his wife in silence.
“Mummy came and I told her not to go.” Kamsi said.
“Yes, Kamsi insisted that I stay with her...I was...was...about to leave but she...she...” Stella stammered.
“Youme!” Madu called out.
The young girl rushed into the sitting room.
“Take Kamsi to bed.” Madu said.
Kamsi looked at her father with tears in her eyes.
“Don’t send mummy away please...” Kamsi begged.
“Go to bed Kamsi, you have school tomorrow.” Madu said to his daughter.
As soon as she left, aunt Scholastica stood up from the sofa and motioned to Stella’s sister to join her. Emenike stood there and stared at Stella in open hostility.
“So she’s the one huh? She’s the one who left you for the finer things of life.” Emenike spat.
“Can you excuse us please?” Madu asked.
Emenike stared at Madu for a while and walked away. When they were left alone, Stella looked at her feet as she couldn’t look at her husband in the eye.
“How are you Stella?” Madu asked.
Stella couldn’t believe the first words Madu had said to her was to enquire on her welfare. She looked up at him as tears welled in her eyes.
“I feel...empty.” She said to him. “So empty.”
“Have you had anything to eat? Did my aunt offer you anything?” He asked.
Stella looked at him as tears poured from her eyes.
“Why are you being so nice to me? I’d rather you insult me, and call me names for abandoning our family. It’s unbearable to have to speak so nicely to me...when I’ve been so bad.”
Madu shrugged and said nothing.
“I know it’s too late to say this but I’m sorry. I now realize that there’s nothing better than a strong and good family. I expected a thrashing from your aunt and yes, she was upset with me but after a while, she spoke to me about life and how I’ve learned my lesson the hard way. I am not asking you to take me back because I know I don’t deserve you but I just want you to know that you’re a good man, you are priceless, you didn’t have anything and you tried so hard to make me happy while I abused your kindness. Even now, with all your wealth, you’re still the same man I met and married, you are rare.”
“I understand that you want to see Kamsi from time to time and I’d like you to know that you can come and see her whenever you want.” He said to her.
Stella nodded, wiping the tears from her eyes.
“Why don’t you go up to her room to bid her goodnight? I’m sure that’ll mean a lot to her.” He said.
“Thank you...thank you... you have such a heart of gold.”
As she left the sitting room, Madu stared at her retreating back and sighed, he knew he couldn’t be cruel to her even after all she’d done.

**************
Three weeks later, Madu and Emenike sat at a bar and gisted about life. Stella was a frequent visitor at the house as she paid her daughter a visit on a daily basis.
“Tell me bro, are you really allowing that woman to weave her way back into your life? Don’t think I don’t see that she visits the house frequently to see her daughter and waits till you return home before leaving.” Emenike said raising his glass to his lips. “She’s out to get you back.”
“Well...she’s entitled to see her daughter.” Madu said.
“You’re divorcing her right?” Emenike asked. “You have to divorce her.”
Madu didn’t respond.
“Don’t tell me you’re thinking of taking her back. Listen to me Madu, that woman is not worth the trouble! There are loads of women out there who’d love to be your wife and take care of your daughter like she’s theirs. Don’t go back to your vomit...c’mon.” Emenike said.
Madu looked at his cousin and said.
“She hasn’t said anything to me about coming back into my life, besides I allowed her visit our daughter.”
“Don’t you see that she’s slowly weaving her way back into your life? Did you forget what happened two days ago? She prepared dinner all in the pretence that her daughter wanted her to cook for her. If she wanted to cook for her daughter, why didn’t she cook for her child alone and forget about cooking for the house in general?”
“I’ve learned that in life, we all make mistakes no matter how small. When Stella left me, I fell into Anita’s trap and I almost ruined my life because of that woman but for some reason, I came out unscathed. I have made my mistakes and so have many people in life. For instance, your dad and my uncles sent me out of my parents house at a young age and I practically fed from hand to mouth for over twenty years of my life and they wouldn’t have returned my properties to me if bad things didn’t start happening to them. What I’m saying in essence is, as humans, we really don’t have a long time to live on this earth; rich or poor, sick or healthy, tall or short, beautiful or ugly, and we all make mistakes. If I forgave those who threw me out and disinherited me and made me suffer for years, all in one day, what more my wife who I pledged to love. You see, everyone expects life to go the way they planned it but life has its own plans for us, sometimes, it’s good, sometimes, it’s not so good. Stella has asked for my forgiveness and I have forgiven her. She hasn’t asked to come back into my life and if she does, I’ll make a decision. I can’t hold on to hate forever.”
Emenike looked at Madu, he was speechless.
“You’re really an old soul. I’ve never viewed life the way you see it and if that’s what works for you, I support you a hundred percent.”
“I haven’t said I’m taking her back but I’d like to see her try to win her family back.” Madu said and lifted his glass to his lips and drank his beer.

Epilogue


Cherry held on to Diamond’s wedding dress as they both walked down the aisle, she had helped her sister chose the ivory wedding dress and she was so glad that it looked stunning on her.
Mitch stood at the altar, waiting for his bride, he looked so gorgeous and dapper in his blue tuxedo suit.
Their families stood in the pews and watched with joy as their children prepared to say their vows. The moment couldn’t have been happier.
Cherry was taking life one step at a time, she had retraced her footsteps and vowed to stay away from dating for a while as she rediscovered herself. She was pursing a master’s programme and was focusing on it for now. She had asked Mitch’s family for forgiveness for all she’d caused their son and they had readily forgiven her, she felt as light as a bird.

********
Stella knew she had to tell her parents the truth, she had hidden it for too long and she was tired of hiding any longer. Her parents had come to Lagos for a family wedding and they’d decided to stop by at her place. They were so surprised to see that she was living in a hotel with her sister.
“What is going on here? What happened to your family home? Your husband...” Her mother had shrieked.
Stella broke down and told her family the whole story; they were bitter and angry over their daughter’s actions. Stella had informed them that Kamsi was with Madu so they decided to pay Kamsi a visit at her father’s house and Stella joined them as well as her sister.
When they got to the house, Madu received them warmly, he didn’t show any resentment of any sort. He spoke to them just the way he used to and he made sure they were comfortable. After seeing their grandchild, they closed the door of the sitting room for a private family discussion. Emenike, aunt Scholastica and Madu sat on one side of the sitting room while Stella, her sister and parents sat on the other side of the sitting room.
“What our daughter did to you was wrong.” Stella’s father said bitterly to Madu. “We had no idea of all that was going on till we decided to pay her a visit and saw her living in a hotel.”
“We are really disappointed in Stella...so disappointed...” Stella’s mother said in tears.
Stella stood up from the sofa and walked over to kneel before her parents.
“I am sorry...I am very sorry, I can’t blame anyone but myself. I was carried away by all Duncan offered me. He had wealth, power and many other things I felt were impossible for Madu. It was when I got into his house that I realised that I’d stepped into a trap. He beat me terribly on several occasions, he stripped my job from me, he stopped me from contacting my daughter, my parents and siblings. Now, I know that all I suffered in his hands were to teach me a lesson for abandoning what I had all because of greed. I am really sorry...I am so sorry...” She cried.
“Don’t apologise to us! We are not your husband...you didn’t wrong us but you wronged your husband and child.” Her father shouted at her.
“It’s okay...please Stella, rise...don’t cry...we know how sorry you are.” Madu said walking over to her to help her up to her feet.
“You’re too kind to me Madu, I don’t know what good I did to deserve you.” Stella said.
“We have all learnt from our mistakes. Let’s forget the past and move on to the future.” Madu said.
Everyone looked at him in surprise, Stella’s parents couldn’t believe what he’d just said.
“Are you saying...are you saying you’ll have her back?” Stella’s mother asked.
“Don’t put words into his mouth.” Auntie Scholastica said. “He said that we should move to the future and not that he wants her back. Stella has wronged Madu. Who says she won’t do the same again if given another chance?”
“Auntie...I know that I lost your trust when I  abandoned your son and grandchild and I vow that if they have me back, I’ll never...ever hurt them again. I promise...I promise...” Stella cried.
Aunt Scholastica stared at Stella and said nothing. Stella looked at Madu with tears in her eyes.
“I know I shouldn’t ask this but ...but...I have to ask if ...if there’s room in your heart to accept me back. I promise that I’d live under your terms, whatever you tell me to do, I’ll do it...just ...just accept me back...I beg of you.”
Madu didn’t respond.
“I know it’s so hard to forgive me after all I’ve done, even after I aborted the baby...and...” Stella sobbed.
“Aborted what?” Aunt Scholastica screamed as she jumped off the sofa.
Stella’s parents stood up in shock and stared at their daughter.
“Stella! You did what?” Her mother asked.
“I was stupid...I was so stupid...I let Rhoda push me...I let greed push me.” She cried.
“That’s the height of it all! I won’t allow her back into this house! She did what? She aborted my grandchild? What?” Aunt Scholastica fumed.
“Madu, say something...” Emenike said quietly.
Madu looked at his cousin and sighed, Stella had just opened a can of worms.
“Did you have to go that far? Is that what greed pushed you into?” Stella’s mother screamed at her.
Stella burst into tears, she was so sad.
“Please Madu...I beg of you...take me back...I vow to never...” She cried.
“She’s still begging to be accepted back after killing our child! You have the nerve Stella! You have the nerve!” Aunt Scholastica spat.
“Enough!” Madu said firmly.
Everyone turned to stare at Madu in silence.
“If you’re ready to come back home, the door is wide open.” Madu said to Stella.
There was a loud gasp as everyone stared at Madu in disbelief.
“This is jazz!” Auntie Scholastica said open mouthed.
Stella burst into tears as she hugged Madu close, she thought she’d lost it all but right here was a man who showed her that true forgiveness was real.

                                                                      The End

‘I prayed and understanding was given me; I entreated and the spirit of Wisdom came to me. I esteemed her more than scepters and thrones; compared with her, I held riches as nothing’. (Wisdom 7:7)

This season of Wife Material throws light on forgiveness. From Cherry, Diamond and Mitch to Stella and Madu, there wouldn’t have been a happy ending without true forgiveness. Forgiveness heals all wounds, mends broken hearts and breaks the chasm of hate.
Let us learn to forgive from the heart.

Thank you so much for being amazing readers. Let’s hope for a new episode soon....

God bless you all.

The daily  MTSA series is still on, all you need to do is, send MTSA to 700 only from an MTN line.


To purchase the new eBook on Okadabooks, click the link below  


Did you miss the season's episodes, catch up here>>>

Thursday, 1 December 2016

BLACK MAIL: Dreams & Revelations!


Today, a new month begins and it's the last month for 2016. In this last month of the year, I pray that you will be exceptionally favoured and everything you wish for will be granted. I pray that peace will be yours forever and that joy will never depart from you. As we inch closer to the end of the year 2016, I pray that all your hearts desires will be met.

Happy New Month of December dears! May God bless us all. Amen!

********
It was two days since Jennifer returned from the hospital with Emmanuel and she noticed that her husband was acting very strange. Sometimes she caught him staring at the children with an unreadable expression in his gaze. Once she caught him staring at Mercy with such strong intensity that she didn’t understand at all.

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

SMOKESCREEN: Ep 10!

Lucas stared at the police officers sourly, he wasn’t intimidated in the least. They were already tired of asking questions and now, they were threatening.

“Tell us! What really happened on the night of the murder! Tell us!” They threatened.

Lucas remained silent. He wasn’t going to play into their useless trap. They had already arrested him for what he didn’t do and he wasn’t going to speak till his lawyer showed up.

“He’s playing smart with us.” The first police officer said to the second.

The Adventures Of Abosede: Sister Lucky!


Sister Lucky didn’t blink an eye, she stared at the teens who’d come out from their rooms sleepy-eyed and they all disappeared back into the rooms. I stood there, daring her to refuse to give me the matches box I needed. Sister Lucky closed her door and walked out of her room while I followed behind, already smiling in triumph that I was going to get what I want. We walked into the kitchen and she saw the already peeled yam in the pot, she turned to look at me.

Tuesday, 29 November 2016

TEENAGE SERIES: The Bitter Pill!


Kate looked at her daughter as though she’d just spoken an abomination.

“Look at me! You don’t need that information for anything...not for anything! Do you hear me?” Kate screamed at her daughter.

“I don’t want to feel like an outsider anymore mom, you either introduce me to my father’s family or I’ll leave this house!” Winnie cried.

Her mother jumped off the bed and rushed up to her and shook her shoulders.

“Listen to me Winnie, you don’t need that information at all. Do I make myself clear? I am your mother and I know what’s best for you.”

Monday, 28 November 2016

TEENAGE SERIES: Hard Truth!



Here's wishing all my amazing readers a wonderful new week and a countdown to the end of the year. Thank you all for reading my stories. 
I'd like to plead for votes for a young writer, Maureen Okolo. She's so talented and she's written a piece for Etisalat Flash fiction prize. Please let's show her our support by voting for her to win this. Let's support writers because one way of the other, they help put smiles on our faces with their God-given talent. Here's the link to vote https://prize.etisalat.com.ng/flash-fiction/voteall.php?id=1086
Just click on the like button in blue above her story and voila! Very easy.
Thank you all so much.

******

Mira was very afraid. From the mouths of the kidnappers, she’d heard that her parents were getting the police involved and it made them tense.

“What does he mean by her father is getting the police involved? I thought we gave a clear warning.” The girl in the gang of kidnappers known as Esther said.

“That’s what I was told.” The second guy known as AKA said.

“Then we have no choice but to threaten her family. They’d better not do anything stupid.” Esther said.

“What do we do? How do we threaten them?” AKA asked.

“It’s very easy, we only have to send them her body part...”

Mira had been tied to a corner of the room and was listening to all they were saying, her heart skipped a beat as she listened in fear.

“Body part? Do we need to get so messy?” The first guy who’d doubled as the driver and who’d picked her from her house said.

“Yes, we need to threaten them that if they report to the police, she’ll be killed in no time.” Esther said sounding hardened.

“Oh my God!” Mira said in alarm.

They all turned to look at her, then AKA smiled.

“I bet you never imagined that you’d ever be in such situation...right?” He said to her.

“Please...I’ll talk to my dad...he’ll send you guys the money...please don’t hurt me...don’t...” Mira cried.

“It’s the second day already and we’ve not heard from him. We gave him a place to drop off the money and he hasn't done anything about it yet. I doubt that your dad loves you as much as you think.” AKA sneered.

“He loves...me...I know he does....” Mira cried, praying that she didn’t have to spend an extra day in this place.

“Your life is in your family’s hand right now...if they don’t pay up...you’ll be dead.” Esther sneered.

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

Winnie stared at her parents, she wondered how they knew Steve. Rachel quickly excused herself and hurried upstairs.

“Steve?” Winnie echoed.

“Yes...who is he?” Her mother shouted.

“Calm down Kate, we agreed to ask her this question very calmly...” Her husband said.

“Steve is my friend.” Winnie said. "How do you know about him?"

“How did you meet him?” Her father asked calmly.

“I met him while I was with sister Theodora, he...errm...” She started.

“Did you see what I told you? Haven’t I been right all along?” Kate cried as she spoke to her husband. “Whenever I tell you that I don’t want my kids to spend time with your children, you feel as though I want to divide the family when that’s not true. Did you hear her?”

“Calm down Kate, let Winnie finish.” Her husband said calmly.

“What’s going on dad? What’s up?” Winnie asked in confusion.

“Tell us more about Steve.” Her father asked.

“Well, I saw him on my way back from the supermarket while I was still at sister Theo’s. He’s been a good friend so far...and...”

“And what else?” Her mother stared at her in anticipation.

“I don’t understand you...” Winnie said.

“Tell us more dear.” Her father said to her.

“Do you think I’m dating Steve?” Winnie asked with eyes wide. “Yes, he asked that we start going out but I refused and he’s been a good friend to me ever since.”

“I believe you dear but next time, whenever you have these random friends that are not from school or church, please tell us.” Her father said to her.

“Do you see? Do you see that they’ve been plotting against my daughter all along? Are you satisfied now?” Kate cried louder.

“What is going on mom, dad?” Winnie asked, staring at her parents.

“Don’t worry about it, just go to your room.” Her father said.

“No! She deserves to know the truth so that she doesn’t continue pointing accusing fingers at me or believing that I’m out for her downfall.” Her mother said in tears.

“No Kate, don’t...please don’t...” Her husband said.

“Winnie, it was all a trap set by your aunt Eva, she planted Steve as a bait for you. She came here and threatened me and said that Steve failed in his quest and that’s why she came to seek vengeance by herself. She planned to bring you down with Theodora.” Her mother spat.

“I don’t believe it...there’s no way Steve knows my sisters...” Winnie said.

“Are you sure of that? How did we know his name? Why did we ask you if you know anyone called Steve?” Her mother asked.

Winnie couldn’t believe it, she brought out her phone and dialled Steve’s number right there before her parents.

“Hello Steve...” She greeted.

“I just spoke to you a while ago...missing me already?” Steve asked.

“Do you know my sisters Theodora and Eva?” She asked.

“Who? No...I don’t...I don’t know them.” He stammered sounding unsure of himself.

“There’s no use lying to me Steve...I wondered why a university guy like you took interest in plain me but now I’ve figured it all out.” Winnie said bitterly.

“Wait...Winnie, I can explain...I beg of you...I can explain...” Steve begged.

“Our friendship is over!” Winnie said and hung up the phone. She was very hurt.

Her father stared at her in pity.

“I’m sorry Winnie...” He said.

“It’s okay dad...I guess that’s life.” She said and hurried upstairs.

As soon as she left, her father turned around to face her mother.

“You’re so insensitive Kate. Even if we wanted to tell her the whole truth, you should have at least waited a while and revealed it to her in a calmer way.”

“You are just protecting your daughters, because you don’t want my daughter to hate them like I do. Guess what? Winnie is my daughter and I’m protecting her too.” Kate said and headed upstairs.

**********

“Winnie, stop this...c’mon.” Rachel said, patting her friend on the leg while she sobbed.
Winnie’s head was buried under her pillow and she was crying heart brokenly.

“How can I stop crying? All those I thought had my best interests at heart, have failed me. Do you know I used to wish that Theodora was my mother? I feel so bad...” She sobbed louder.

“Hey...it’s good that you found out the truth about her. What if you never did?” Rachel asked.

“I just feel so hurt that Steve made me feel as though we are good friends, I feel so bad that I asked for advice from Theodora rather than my own mother.” Winnie cried.

“You can’t blame yourself for that. Theodora was so close to you, she was nice too and kind, that’s why you were closer to her. No one knew she didn’t have your good intentions at heart.” Rachel said.

“I feel so betrayed! I’m still so young to be experiencing all this at once. First, Mira is kidnapped, second, I find that Steve is a two-faced liar and same goes for Theodora and sister Eva. Now, it's as though my mom has been right all along. I feel so stupid.”

“Calm down Winnie...” Rachel started.

There was a rap at Winnie’s door and it opened to reveal her father.

“She’s refused to stop crying...” Rachel said to him.

He nodded and said to her.

“I have invited a lawyer here to the house, he’s in charge of cases like yours. He has contacted an NGO that deals with young people who have been through similar cases like yours. They will be here this evening for dinner.”

“Thank you so much sir...I really appreciate your help.” Rachel said in gratitude.

“You have to be ready to face Black and his members, you also have to be ready to expose them because you are also saving other young girls like yourself who are lured into their den.” He informed.

“Thank you sir...thank you...” Rachel said with tears in her eyes.

“Could you leave us for a while? I’d like to talk to Winnie.” He said.

Rachel nodded and left the room. As soon as she left, Winnie’s step father sat on the bed beside his daughter.

“I’m sorry Winnie...”

“Don’t be...I was so stupid. I was so stupid daddy... I thought Theodora loved me...I thought she really loved me.” Winnie cried.

“I believe she does...” Her father said.

“You know that’s not true...” Winnie said. “You’re just taking sides because she’s your real daughter.”

“There’s nothing like a real or fake daughter.” Her father said to her. “We have just jumped into conclusions...so far, the only thing that Eva said was that she shouldn’t have confronted your mother if Steve had done a proper job...we don't even know if she's speaking about the Steve that you know.”

Winnie sat up and looked at her father, her eyes were swollen.

“I have always wanted people to love me for who I am. Is that too much to ask?” Winnie asked in tears.
“We love you...” Her father said.

“As far as I know, you are the only one who really loves me but I don’t think that the others do too. Your kids don’t love me, my mother says she loves me but her actions prove otherwise. I feel as though I don’t have a real family. My brothers share the same blood with your children and they are bonafide members of this family.”

“Hey...there’s nothing like that...do you hear me? We all love you and this is your family, Winnie.” Her father reassured.

Winnie stood up from her bed and walked out of the room while her father stared at her retreating frame in shock. She walked out to the corridor and reached her mother’s bedroom. She knocked.

“Come on in.” Her mother said.

Winnie opened the door and walked in. Her mother and brothers were on the bed watching cartoon. Her mother’s eyes lightened when she saw her.

“Winnie!” Her mother said.

“Mom, I think it’s time I knew my father’s family.” Winnie said.

To be continued tomorrow....

The MTSA series is still on, all you need to do is, send MTSA to 700 only from an MTN line.


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