Friday, 29 July 2016
Boma was very disturbed, she wanted to get out of Paul's house but she was helpless. What if after their meeting this morning, that woman had rushed to tell her husband something? She thought. But, Paul promised that no one who knew her secret. What if Eloise contacted her husband and told him stories of how she’d seen her in her brother’s house? She was confused.
Chills ran through her spine as she pondered on what next to do. Should she go home and see if Chike had heard any news about her? Should she stay here till the end of day? She brought out her phone to call her husband, at least to be certain that everything was alright and that the stalker woman hadn’t found a way to contact him and tell him rubbish about her.
Boma stared at her son, he was fixing a puzzle and wasn’t even looking at her. Paul had gone to work and he’d left her to figure out the duties of a nanny. Boma’s heart ached, she found that she wanted the little boy to smile at her but he didn’t, he was engrossed and caught up in his own world.
“Do you…want anything?” She asked him.
He didn’t look up at her, instead, he shook his head and continued fixing his puzzle.
Boma looked at his room again and was impressed, Paul was a good father, the boy had everything he needed, he was also very respectful and well-brought up even though he was a bit edgy and standoffish, something she was sure was instilled into him by his father especially as there was no mother’s touch. She watched him fix his puzzle and her heart ached, he was such a sweet and handsome young boy.
Madu woke up to the noise from the neighbours, his mouth had a sour taste and saliva had trickled down his jaw and dried up. He opened his eyes and realized where he was, he was crouched at the entrance to his house. He remembered what had happened last night, how his wife had refused him entry into his house. Some of his neighbours threw him puzzled looks as they nodded in greeting and went about their businesses. Madu was ashamed, he had never been embarrassed this way in his entire life.
Thursday, 28 July 2016
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Boma stared at the woman who was standing at the door to Paul’s house and she felt a shiver run through her spine, she knew her! She’s the marriage wrecker who had appeared at her church wedding with Chike.
“My God! It’s you!” Boma said.
Eloise looked at the woman who’d taken the man she loved and the father of her children. She stepped outside, shut the door behind her and took three steps towards the woman till their noses almost touched.
“You!” Eloise said in a voice dripping with venom.
“You didn't have to wait so long right? You've hardly left the church where you blackmailed my husband and now, you’re here to blackmail Paul right?”
“Is that what you think?” Eloise asked in spite. "You think I blackmailed Chike?"
“Go dig your claws elsewhere you good for nothing pig, my husband told me all about you and how you chased him from pillar to post in the United States and wanted him to be all yours.”
Eloise raised her hand to give her a slap but Boma caught it mid-air.
“Don’t you dare!” Boma spat.
The door opened and Paul stared at both women, his sister’s hand was in the air while Boma held it firmly in her grip.
“What’s going on here?” Paul asked in surprise.
The two ladies quickly comported themselves, Eloise didn’t want her brother to know anything about Chike or he might cause more trouble than there already was. Boma didn’t want Paul to know that Eloise had tried to wreck her marriage for fear that he’d laugh at her.
“Nothing…I was just about to leave.” Eloise said.
“Yea…she was just leaving.” Boma said.
“Well, Eloise I see you’ve met Boma, she’s Junior’s new nanny.” Paul said to his sister.
Eloise's eyes widened in surprise but she didn't say anything instead, she smiled stiffly. She really wanted to badly damage Boma’s face.
“Oh…” Eloise said with a smirk. So she was a nanny, what happened to her rich family that Chike had bragged about? She thought.
Boma rolled her eyes, she could tell that Eloise was smirking at her role as Junior’s nanny.
“Boma, meet Eloise, my little sister.” Paul said.
Boma’s eyes widened like saucers.
“What? Your sis...sister?” Boma asked in a strangled voice.
“Is there anything the matter? Do you two know each other?”
“No…I’ve never met her before.” Boma denied.
“Me neither, I don’t know her.” Eloise said.
"Okay then, have a nice day Eloise..." Paul said to his sister.
He turned to go inside the house and Boma followed him behind. Eloise quickly dragged her by her shirt and Boma found herself facing Eloise again.
“This is just the beginning mademoiselle…we’ll meet again.” Eloise threatened.
“I’m not afraid of you…”
“Does your husband know you’re a nanny? That’s not what he told me or is this part of your social service assignment?”
Boma’s eyes widened.
“Stay away from Chike…I’m warning you.”
“Ha! The guy’s mine…we have a life together.”
“If you like yourself, you’d be smart to keep our meeting to yourself. Let's fight this battle woman to woman.” Boma said stiffly.
“What are you really doing here? Who are you?” Eloise asked in disgust.
“Your worst nightmare!” Boma spat and sauntered into the house.
Eloise watched the door slam shut and took deep breaths, the devil had just found her way into her lair and she there's hell to pay.
“Junior, say hello to your new nanny.” Paul said to his son.
“Hi…” His son said.
“I didn’t know you had a younger sister.” Boma chirped in.
“Yea…I do, I actually have two.” Paul said, walking over seat at the table.
“She lives in Nigeria?” Boma asked.
“You sound interested in my family. Any particular reason?” Paul asked.
“No…nothing I just wonder where she was all the while we were…”
Boma looked away and sat down at the table.
“Eloise has been in the United States, schooling and now, she has a job there.”
“You forgot to add stalking people’s husbands to the list.” Boma said under her breath.
“What did you say?”
“Nothing…” Boma said quickly.
“In the meantime, I’ve moved your nanny duties to four times a week.” Paul said.
“What? Four times? We agreed on twice weekly. How dare you make this decision without consulting me?”
“My son’s nanny has to quickly travel for a month so…there’s really no one else…that leaves us with you.” Paul said drinking a cup of tea.
“No way! I won’t do it! I’m newly married.”
“Calm down tiger, I could just end this for you by meeting up with your husband and telling him our little secret.”
Junior looked at his father and new nanny, he was soaking the words in.
“You won’t dare.” Boma said with a catch in her voice.
“Try me…” Paul said.
Boma sat at the table and stared at the plate before her. This wasn’t good, she thought, if Eloise was Paul’s sister, then, she could also know the truth about her and seeing the way she spoke possessively about her husband, she could tell that the secret would get to Chike in no time.
“Does your sister know?” She blurted.
“Know what?” Paul asked.
“No one, except you and I.” Paul said with a smile.
“I’ll make it five times a week if you can keep it that way forever.” Boma said, wondering what possessed her to make such promise.
“That’s the spirit.” Paul said with a bigger smile.
Cherish and her sister sat in the taxi with their mother, she wondered where they were headed.
“I’ll take you with me to Uncle Paul’s house to spend the night then you can return to my sister’s house tomorrow.”
“We didn’t see you this morning and Cherub was worried.” Cherish said.
“Now, I’m here and I’m sorry for leaving you guys like that during the night.”
“Apologies accepted.” Cherish said.
Cherub was busy with her lollipop, she wasn’t paying any attention to her mother or sister.
“Where are we going to mom?” Cherish asked.
“It’s a surprise.” Eloise said.
The taxi drove them into an estate and soon stopped at a house. Eloise and her daughter’s walked into the house and were soon ringing the bell. Chike opened the door and beamed at his family.
“Hello sweetie.” He said as he kissed Eloise then stooped low to hug his daughters. “My gorgeous cupcakes.”
Cherish stared at her father in horror. She backed away from him.
“What’s wrong baby?” Chike asked.
“I wanna to go back to auntie’s house, mom.” Cherish said.
“What? Don’t be silly dear, say hello to daddy.”
“No! I wanna go back to auntie’s house now!” She said stomping her foot.
Cherub was already toddling about the house.
“Don’t make me spank you Cherish! Say hello to daddy now!”
“No way!” Cherish screamed and ran off to hide behind the car in the compound.
Chike looked at Eloise.
“What is wrong with her? Is anything the matter?” Chike asked.
“I don’t know, she loves you so much and yet, she’s acting so strange.” Eloise said.
“Go inside the house, I’ll go talk to her.” Chike said as he headed towards the where Cherish had gone to hide.
He saw Cherish standing beside the car, her arms folded over her chest and a stubborn pout on her lips.
Cherish looked away.
“Don’t you want to say hello to daddy?”
“You’re not my daddy.” Cherish said.
“You know I am…and I love you to bits.”
“Nope you’re not and I want to go to auntie’s house.”
“Look at me baby…” He said reaching out to hold her arm.
“Don’t touch me! You are the one who told everybody that you didn’t know us.” She said accusingly. “It was you! I saw you in the church and you said that we are not your children. The daddy I know wouldn't do that, the daddy I know loves me and Cherub.”
“No…that was make-believe, I was acting a drama, it wasn’t real.” Chike lied. “That woman with me was an actress and we were just doing a small feature film. I’m still daddy and you’re still my chocolate cupcake.”
“I still wanna go to my aunt’s place. I don’t wanna stay here anymore.” Cherish said with tears in her eyes.
“Alright, I’ll tell mom to take you home but first of all, I have ice cream in the fridge. You can eat all of them if you want.” He said with a smile.
Cherish nodded and followed him into the house but she was smart, she knew something was different and that this daddy was not the same as her daddy in the States, try as he may, she refused to be convinced otherwise.
Eloise was disturbed after seeing Boma at her brother’s place. ‘She’s a nanny?’ she kept repeating to herself. As she watched Chike play with his kids, she watched him. Was he lying to her as her sister had said?
“Babe…” She called.
“Yes darling…” Chike answered while tickling his second daughter.
“Where’s your wife?”
“Why do you ask? I told you she means nothing to me.” Chike said, leaving his daughter to seat by Eloise’s side.
“No…it’s not that, I’m just wondering how a newly married woman can leave her husband’s side barely days after her wedding.”
“Well, her friend is very sick…it’s a terminal disease of some sort.” Chike said quietly.
Eloise’s mouth hung open.
“Are you serious?” Eloise asked, happy to find that Chike’s wife was hiding things from him.
“Yea…she’s such a kind-hearted fellow so she decided to go stay with her for the day.”
“What does she do for a living?”
“Stop asking these questions honey, I told you, Boma’s from a rich family and she doesn’t need to work for a living…” He said pulling her close for a kiss.
“So, you mean, she’s at a hospital right now?” Eloise pressed again.
“You’ve asked me that question before, what are you getting at?”
“Nothing boo…I just wanted to be sure that she’s far away.” Eloise said kissing him passionately.
As she locked her lips with his, all she could think of was how exciting her revenge against Chike’s wife would be. She stole her man and now, she would be happier stealing him back from her. Life was sweet after all.
To be continued…..
This was supposed to go up at three thirty pm on Thursday, I'm sorry I didn't realize that it published and then reverted to draft. I just saw this at two fifty-five am and I had to republish. I apologize for this. I'd appreciate it if someone would alert me at the comment section if any of my posts don't go up on time. Thank you.
This was supposed to go up at three thirty pm on Thursday, I'm sorry I didn't realize that it published and then reverted to draft. I just saw this at two fifty-five am and I had to republish. I apologize for this. I'd appreciate it if someone would alert me at the comment section if any of my posts don't go up on time. Thank you.
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Alice closed her eyes and sang from her heart, she couldn’t put a finger on the reason she had decided to fall on her knees in prayer. She had gotten home barely an hour ago and the desire to pray filled her heart. She prayed for everything, the church, herself, Promise, Japheth, Gift and everyone she could remember, she also prayed that wherever the late pastor Hope was, she wasn’t disappointed in who her daughter had become or what the church was at present. Alice knew that even though Promise had suddenly grown more powerful overnight, and even though it seemed as though the Holy Spirit was with her, there was some sort of coldness, some kind of bitterness that she couldn’t seem to place a finger on.
Wednesday, 27 July 2016
Eloise stood outside the door of her brother’s house and rapped impatiently, a housekeeper opened the door.
“Good evening ma…” She started, not knowing who she was.
“I’m Paul’s sister…” Eloise said impatiently. “Besides would I be in here if the security hadn’t let me in from the gate?”
“I…errr…” The housekeeper started still standing at the door.
Tuesday, 26 July 2016
Rachel lay on her bed and chatted on her phone, she had a way of busying herself with social media so she didn’t have to help out around the house.
“Rachel!” Her mother called out.
Rachel didn’t respond, she was sending a message to her crush.
“Rachel!” Her mother called again and this time, she walked into the room she shared with her
Monday, 25 July 2016
Image Source: www.youandmemagazine.com
Eloise was leafing through a magazine when her sister walked up to sit beside her.
“Didn’t you go to work?” Eloise asked.
“I did but I came home because I was having a bit of a headache.” Her sister said.
“Oh, sorry…I hope you took some pain relievers.”
“Yes…I did.” Her sister said. She looked at Eloise for some seconds and bit her lip.
Eloise knew her sister too well and read her like a book, she knew when she was up to something and biting her lips was one of the numerous signs.
“I really want to commend you for your maturity in handling the father of your kids. You are a real woman and I’m proud of you.” Her sister said.
“Stop saying that…I didn’t do anything.” Eloise said guiltily.
“Yes you did…you knew he wasn’t good for you after humiliating you and the kids in front of the guests at his church wedding.” Her sister said. “What stupid and ignorant man does that? Do you know that he needs to apologize in public to you and the kids before you ever let him come near them again?”
“Well…I really don’t want to talk about that now.” Eloise said.
“ I’m sorry I’m brought it up. However, there’s a light at the end of the tunnel as there’s someone I’d like you to meet. He’s a charming guy, a single fella and a very interesting one too.”
“Sis! Did you set me up on a date?”
“Well…kinda but it’s not like it’s a proper date. He wanted to hang out casually with someone and I spoke of you and he’s been dying to meet you.” Her sister said.
“Sis, I’m not ready to go into the dating field…”
“I know and I’m not pressuring you to, all I’m asking is that you go out, have fun and come back home fulfilled.”
Eloise breathed deeply.
“I really have no choice in this matter do I?” She asked her sister.
Her sister shook her head quietly.
“Why do you always do this?” Eloise fired.
“I don’t always do this…” Her sister defended herself.
“Yes you do! You always try to meddle in my business especially as regards relationships.”
“I didn’t meddle in yours and Chike’s and look what happened! I wish I meddled in it, at least you’d be married now and not….”
“And not what?” Eloise asked with tears in her eyes. “A baby mama? Guess what sister, whether you like it or not, that’s what I am and believe me when I say that I’m trying to change my situation.”
“I don’t see you trying to change anything, all I see you doing is keeping calm and pretending as though nothing happened between you and the father of your kids.”
“You advised me to keep calm, and I’m taking your advice.” Eloise fired.
“Don’t speak to me in such tone young lady!”
“I’m sorry sis…” Eloise said, standing to leave.
“He’ll be here at seven…please be ready.”
Eloise rolled her eyes, she wasn’t ready to date any other man, her heart and soul belonged to no one but Chike.
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“Slow down babe….what do you have to tell me?” Chike asked his wife with a smile.
His phone rang and he quickly answered.
“Hello Jibo…what’s up?” He started.
Boma’s heart beat frantically as she waited for her husband to finish his call so that she could tell him the truth. She had rehearsed everything in her head, how she’ll start with the confession and how she’ll finally end it. She was still thinking of this when Chike said.
“Are you serious? That’s unpardonable! How can she have a child and not tell you about it and now, you’re less than two months to your wedding? How did you find out?” He said and paused to listen. “Listen to me buddy, that woman is a trickster, if she could hide that from you from the beginning of your relationship, she doesn’t deserve you. My advice is, end it.” He said.
All colour drained from Boma’s face as she stared at her husband in horror. When he hung up the call, he drew her close to him and smiled at her.
“What did you want to say honey?”
“Errr… I wanted errr…nothing.” Boma said.
“You’re shaky, are you alright?”
“Yes…I’m fine, I’m actually very okay…I am just a little cold.”
“You said you wanted to tell me something. Have you changed your mind|? What did you want to say?”
“No…nothing, I just wanted to tell you that I really hate the colour of the living room sofa. It gives me the creeps.” She lied.
Chike looked at the expensive sofa that graced his living room.
“Are you sure about this?” He asked. “You hate the sofa?”
“Yea…positive….I hate it.” Boma said quickly. “But you don’t need to change it, I just needed to get the truth off my chest.” She said.
“Owkay…” Chike stressed as he stared at her as though she had gone nuts. "Is there anything else I need to know about my furniture?"
“No. I have to rush to the toilet.” She said and ran off.
By the time she got to the bedroom, she was breathing so fast she was sure she would lose her breath completely. She quickly made a call to Paul.
“Hey mama.” Paul greeted in his usual causal tone.
“I’ll do it but just for three months and after that, I’m done. Just don’t tell my husband.” She said in a sob.
“Deal.” Paul said and hung up.
As soon as he hung up the call, she rushed into the bathroom to cry, she couldn’t believe she’d just walked into a trap set for her downfall.
Eloise wasn't smiling and yes, the guy was charming and his name was Andrew.
“Are you having fun?” He asked.
He had taken her to a rooftop which had a bar and a restaurant, it was a beautiful place and she could tell he was trying so hard to impress her.
“I’m sorry, what did you say?” She asked.
“I’m asking if you are having fun.” He said.
“Oh yes but I have to be home on time to tuck my kids to bed. I have two kids, do you know that?”
“Yes I do…Cherish and Cherub, I believe.” He said.
“They have a father too and he’s present in their lives.” She said.
“I don’t doubt that.” He said.
“What do you really want, Andrew?” She asked.
“I just want to hang out and have fun.” He said.
Eloise rolled her eyes, she really wanted to go home and call Chike before she slept, she needed to hear him reassure her that she was his only love. As though a case of telepathy, her phone rang and it was Chike.
“Excuse me…” She mouthed at Andrew and walked away to the far side of the bar.
“Where are you? There’s music in the background.” Chike asked over the phone.
“Yes…I’m with someone my sister introduced to me.”
“What?” Chike asked, sounding upset.
“Don’t worry babe, he’s not material, I mean…I don’t have eyes for him, I just went out with him because my sister insisted.” Eloise said.
“That’s no excuse! You should have told her that you aren’t interested.”
“Listen Chike, no one at home knows that we are back together so I have to play low key.” She said.
“That’s none of my business! I don’t want you with any other man and that’s it.” He said.
“You’re sounding like a spoilt little boy.” She said.
“I want you to leave that place…I don’t want to think of you with another man.” Chike said.
Eloise was happy that he was jealous and she said.
“Okay, I’ll give him a quick excuse and be out of here as soon as I can.”
“I don’t want you out as soon as you can, I want you out of there now!” Chike demanded and hung up the phone on her.
Eloise hurried back to meet Andrew and said.
“I’m having a runny tummy. I need to leave now.”
“But we just got here…” Andrew started.
“Are you deaf? Didn’t you hear me correctly? I have a runny tummy and I need to go.”
“Okay…sure…no problem, I’ll errm….drop you off at home.” Andrew said.
“Thank you.” Eloise said and walked ahead of him as she headed to the elevator.
To be continued tomorrow…
Winnie sat before the mirror of her mother’s shop and stared at her reflection in the mirror. She couldn’t believe it, she looked so beautiful.
“Look at you! No one would guess you’re still in secondary school.” Her mother’s apprentice said with a smile, happy at her job weldone.
“Thank you auntie Megan, thank you…thank you…” Winnie said with a smile.
“You are beautiful dear, the make-up just added a touch.” Megan said with a smile.
Sunday, 24 July 2016
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The days slowly progressed into weeks and months and Promise’s church became widely known. Alice never stopped praying and teaching Japheth, they both studied the bible and grew closer to God.
There was a preparation for the biggest crusade in the history of the church and Promise wanted all hands on deck with the project, so she called the church workers.
Saturday, 23 July 2016
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Sean got into Lagos and as soon as he arrived, he called his fiancee.
“Back already?” She asked.
“Yea…I’m back, I actually just got off the plane. How are you?”
“I’m okay…I’m missing you, that’s all.” She said.
“Hmmm…me too…so are you coming over to my place today? Let’s spend a few days together.” He said.
“Well, I don’t know if that’s a good idea…I am at work and I have a lot to do. Can we leave this till maybe weekend?”
“Okay then, but I’ll come pick you up after work.” He said.
“Sure, of course…” She smiled and hung up.
His friend John was by his side all the while he spoke to Cherry.
“That’s Cherry huh? Your lady-love.”
“I love that lady like crazy, it’s almost as though I’m obsessed.”
“Where is she from?” John asked.
“What’s your business with that?” Sean asked.
“It’s nothing really, I just wanted to see if she belongs to the tribe that jazzes their men.”
“Hahahaha….very funny. Cherry is a sweet, down to earth and God fearing girl.”
“I’m happy for you bro.” John said.
“I’m happy for myself.” Sean said. “I have a parcel for her, a very big one , something she won’t believe.” Sean said.
John smiled and patted his friend at the back.
Cherry was at work smiling as she typed into her computer, she loved love, she loved being in love and she can’t remember not ever being in love in her entire life. Sean was her everything, he made her smile, he made her happy and he was very wealthy to boot which means she could get everything she wanted and more.
“Cherry!” A colleague of hers called out.
“What’s up?” Cherry asked.
“There’s someone waiting for you downstairs.” Her colleague said. “And by the way, congrats again on your engagement, your ring is out of this world.”
“Thank you….” Cherry stressed, looking at her finger with the huge diamond ring, Sean had given her. “Who’s downstairs by the way?”
“I don’t know, he refuses to give his name, he says it’s a secret.”
“Are you serious? Okay…” Cherry said, leaving her desk and hurrying off downstairs to the reception.
She got downstairs to see Mitch seated on one of the sofas at the reception, holding in his hands, yellow beautiful flowers. Cherry’s eyes widened, she quickly slipped off the ring Sean had given her and put it in the pocket of her blazer.
“Mitch!” She called out.
Mitch turned to look at her and gave her a big smile.
“Hello baby…” He greeted as he stood up with the flowers and handed them over to her.
“Wow…thank you.” She said.
“I was in the area, I submitted my CV to a company down the road, one of my guys that schooled with me abroad linked me up. His uncle heads the board….”
“Wow, that’s good news! Congratulations.” Cherry said.
“Well, thank you but it’s not yet finalized. I just submitted my CV and they said they’ll get back to me.” He said. "I pray I get the job because it means that we'll work closely and I'll get to see you all the time."
“I wish you all the best dear.” She said.
He looked around the office reception and said.
“You have a beautiful office….”
Cherry forced another smile, she really wanted Mitch to go before her busy-body colleagues came downstairs and started asking questions.
“Errr…Mitch, I’m kinda busy…” She said.
“Oh, I’ll wait.”
“Wait? I don’t think you’ll want to wait…I’m really busy and I have a load of work to last me a lifetime.”
“Look at me baby, I’ll wait for you till closing time and we’ll go home together.”
“Go home together?” Cherry squeaked. She had a date with Sean tonight and there was no way she was ever going to let that slide.
“Yes, it’s almost three pm, so I’ll wait till five and…”
“I don’t close at five besides I have a load of work and I might close by ten today.” She lied.
Mitch sighed and looked at her.
“I really want to wait for you.” He said.
“Wait for me? Naaa…that’s not necessary okay…the weekend is almost here and we’ll err…be together then.” She said quickly.
“Okay then…I guess I have to go.”
“I’m so sorry honey…you know I love nothing more than spending time with you.” She said.
“Yea, I understand…I’ll be off now. I’ll call you this evening…” He said.
Cherry waved when he left and just as she was about heading upstairs, a call came in from Sean.
“Hey baby…” She said. “You just called me hours ago.”
“Step outside your office…” Sean’s voice said.
“Outside my office?” Cherry asked as she headed over to the exit door.
“Yes…” He said.
Cherry stepped outside and walked out to head out through the gate. Sean was standing there with one of his impressive rides and right there beside him was a red brand new vehicle. Sean walked up to her, took her hand in his and dropped the keys in her palm.
“It’s yours baby.”
It was a miracle that Cherry didn’t scream, she stared at the vehicle and jumped into Sean’s arms.
“Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! My goodness! I can’t believe this!” She said.
“You mean more to me that you can ever imagine.” Sean said with a smile as he held her hand.
Cherry hurried towards the car, opened it and got in, it was brand new and she was amazed at the interior of the car. She stepped out and hugged Sean again, kissing him and not caring if people watched.
Mitch walked to the bus stop and waited for a bus to his destination, as soon as he got there, he perched against a pavement at the roadside and composed a long sweet text to his fiancee. It was no secret that he loved Cherry beyond words and he wanted to show it to her anyway possible. He finished typing and pressed the send button.
The bus he was waiting for arrived and he ran to secure a front seat as well as some people who ran behind him. As soon as he got into the bus, he smiled, he was back in Nigeria where people chased buses as though they aren’t paying for transportation. He thought of how Cherry got to work every morning and knew she took the bus, he prayed that he got the job with the company he’d just sent his CV to. The first thing on his list once he got his salary was saving up to get Cherry a car.
Madu waited at the gate for the school bus to drop off his daughter, and soon, the bus was driving towards their gate. The bus stopped and the child minder alighted and carried out his daughter from the back seat, what he saw left his mouth agape. His daughter’s arm was bandaged.
“What happened?” He shouted.
“She was on the swing when it broke and she fell down and sprained her arm.” The child minder said.
“What?” Madu shouted.
“There’s a letter from the headmistress, the school will take care of the bills.”
“Are you guys crazy? How can you place faulty game equipment on school grounds?” Madu shouted.
Kamsi reached out to him and he took her from the child minder.
“We are so sorry sir…” The child minder said, handing over the letter to him.
Madu took the letter and stormed off into the compound with his daughter. They entered the house and he proceeded to help her remove her uniform, he was scowling.
“Are you angry with me?” She asked.
“No…I’m angry with your school management. What if something bad happened? What if you broke your head?” Madu spat.
“They said I don’t have to go to school tomorrow…” Kamsi said.
“You don’t have to go to school? Where will you stay?”
“At home! You lost your job remember? So you’re at home for now.”
“No baby, I got a new job and I can’t stay home tomorrow.” He said.
“And I can’t go to school either.” She said.
Madu released a pent up breath as he studied his daughter’s bandaged arm.
“I wish great-aunt was staying here with us, she’d have been here with me in the house.” Kamsi said of her father’s aunt.
“Yea…but she’s in the village.” Madu said as he walked over to the bathroom to get her bath ready.
Stella stepped into the house and saw Madu cradling their sleeping child with a bandage on her arm and asked in alarm.
“She fell from a faulty swing at school.”
“What? How come? Didn’t the school check their swings before kids climbed on them?”
“I really don’t know…I spoke to the child minder and she said the school will foot the bills.”
“Is that what you should be looking out for? Our child almost died and you’re spitting about bills.” His wife screamed.
“Don’t yell at me! What did you expect me to do?”
“I expect that you would have stormed off to the school and demand an explanation for this!”
“It was already end of school hours and…”
“You’re such a weakling!” Stella fired.
“What did you just say to me?” Madu asked in anger.
“You heard me, you are a weak man! How could you sit here and do nothing when your daughter was almost killed at school? Where you waiting for me to put on my superman gear and head over to the school and demand an explanation?”
Madu was so angry, he had never felt this angry at his wife before, he quietly lay his daughter on the sofa and walked out through the door. He knew that if he sat in the house a moment longer, he’ll do something he’d regret.
He walked out of the compound and kept walking. Nothing was making sense to him anymore, his wife’s degrading tone, his wife’s insults and in fact everything. After spending about an hour outside the house he walked back to the compound. He tried opening the door but it was locked, he knocked quietly at first and after a while, knocked harder.
“Stop wasting your time Madu, you’re sleeping outside today. Since you can't be a man, then there'll be no roof over your head tonight besides, I pay the rent!” His wife shouted from within.
To be continued on Friday….
Friday, 22 July 2016
Thursday, 21 July 2016
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Promise closed her eyes in pain when she received the news of Bernard’s death. His cousin had called her to tell her that he'd found his dead body in his room. She hung up the call and quickly called for a meeting with the church workers. Everyone assembled, including Alice who didn’t care that Gift was giving her side eyes for being at the meeting.
“Something bad has happened to us.” Promise said in an emotional voice.
Alice was surprised to see Promise emotional, this must be something really serious. She thought.
“Bernard…passed away in his apartment. His cousin just found his body in his house.” Promise said.
Everyone gasped. Alice stared at Promise, her eyes were instantly filled with tears and when they fell, another batch readied itself.
“What? Bernard? I spoke to him yesterday, what could have happened?” A worker asked.
“I have no idea, I guess he was sick or something. All I know is what the neighbours told me…” Promise said.
“This is too sad…too sad.” Another worker said.
“May his soul rest in peace.” Gift said with a short sniff.
“When he was with you yesterday, did he complain of any problems? Maybe headaches, dizzy spells or anything like that?” Alice surprised everyone by asking.
Promise jolted, she looked at Alice and said in a snap.
“I wasn’t with Bernard yesterday.”
“But he said he had to accompany you to see the land.” Alice said.
Promise was shocked, she remembered asking Bernard if he’d told anyone where they’ll be and he said he had told no one anything. Where was this coming from?
“Gift normally accompanies me on that kind of mission. I don’t know why Bernard would say such a thing.” Promise said.
“Thank you so much for informing us pastor, I’ll contact his family and see if there’s anyway we could help with his funeral.” Gift said as she turned and gestured that the workers follow her out.
Alice followed them but Promise’s voice stopped her.
Alice stopped and as soon as the door was shut, Promise said.
“Bernard brought so much to this church and you and I know him for who he is. I suggest that you go to his house and send my condolence to his family.”
“On my way to your office yesterday, Bernard saw me and he told me that he was going to get his bag because he was going to see a property with you. What happened to him, Promise? What happened to him?” Alice asked in tears.
“What are you saying? Are you implying that I killed him?”
“Everything in this church has changed. It doesn’t even resemble the house of God anymore!” Alice cried.
“I’ll pardon you because it’s not your words but grief that’s speaking through you.”
“I loved Bernard, he was the only man I ever truly loved and suddenly, Gift came and he turned his attention from me to her. I felt it was a stage and that it would pass then all of a sudden, I hear that he’s dead? The Bernard I saw yesterday was hale and hearty…there must be an explanation to how he died.” Alice said in tears.
Promise advanced towards her.
“Listen to me Alice, people die. We could be here one day and the next day we’re gone! It’s not a new thing! And if you feel that God has left this church, then why are you here? I remembered I fired you and you came back begging to stay.”
“I came back because…your mother…she came to me in the dream…and asked that I return.”
Promise looked at Alice in shock.
“That’s not my mother, my mother is gone and she’s stopped paying visits to me in the dream, talk more you. That woman you see in the dream is someone else and not my mother!”
“I’ve seen your new power in action, I’ve seen you pray for dead limbs and they come to life. I’ve seen you raise a child from the dead. This is Bernard we are talking about. He’s a devout member of this church and one of your most trusted followers. Can’t you pray that he rises from the dead? Can’t you?” Alice cried.
Promise breathed heavily, it was obvious she was trying to control her temper. She raised her hand and gave Alice a sharp slap on her cheek.
“Wake up Alice! Wake up and don’t get left behind! Bernard is dead and he’s never coming back! Get that into that skull of yours.” Promise said.
Alice looked at promise and at that moment she didn’t know what she saw; a woman of God or a devil in human skin, she couldn’t tell. She placed her hand on the cheek that Promise had slapped and turned away, heading to the door and leaving the office.
As soon as Alice left, a choked sob left Promise’s mouth and she placed her palm over her mouth to avoid crying out. She hadn’t been able to sleep through the night as she had kept tossing from one corner of the bed to the other. Bernard’s eyes as he died kept haunting her and she knew it’ll hunt her forever.
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Alice stood and watched as the box with Bernard’s body was being lowered to the ground. Every worker in the church was there except Gift and Promise. They had an important meeting with a Christian organization, they said.
Alice had dreamt of Bernard during the past few days after his death and in her dreams, he didn’t look happy, he looked as one who was betrayed. Alice knew something was wrong, there was something fishy about his death and she hated to think that it had anything to do with Promise. As the dust fell on the hard casket, she made a vow to herself and to God, that she’ll create a space for God outside the church and groom herself prayerfully because the way she saw it, she was a sheep in a den of wolves.
She felt pain in her cheek and touched the slightly swollen face, it's been almost a week since Promise slapped her and the side of her face that suffered the slap hasn't been the same. It hurt and it was very tender and looked as though she was suffering from some kind of toothache.
As they left the cemetery, her phone rang, it was Japheth.
“Hello Japh…” She greeted.
“Alice…how was the burial?” He asked.
“It was fine, Bernard is resting with the Lord now. Promise couldn't be here so one of the junior pastors did the funeral service.” She said.
“I am really sorry for your loss. I wish I knew him and I wish I could be there.”
“You are in town, you traveled for your business, there’s no way you could be here.” She said.
“I’ll be back tomorrow and I wanted to ask if you could come over to teach me more on the bible.” He said.
Alice paused then she said.
“I have a better idea Bernard. Why don’t you come over to my place instead? It’s small and not as luxurious as Promise’s house but I feel …” She said not knowing how to say she felt God’s presence more in her house than at Promise’s house.
“Sure…of course…” He said.
“We’ll also be praying as well. Let’s make it a bible study and a prayer group kinda thing.” She said.
“Sounds like a plan. Thank you so much for your help Alice…I am so grateful.” He said.
“You’re welcome.” She said and hung up.
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Promise sat in a hotel room and stared at the television. She had been warned by the queen and Sir Gideon not to attend Bernard’s funeral. According to them, she killed him and there was no telling what could happen there at the burial site. Her heart broke as she thought of Bernard’s body in the earth, she knew she’ll miss his voice, his singing and his personality. She was still deep in thought when there was a knock at the door. She walked over to open it and Gift walked in.
“The burial is over, we can go back to the church now.” Gift said.
“Just for clarity, if we are asked the Christian convention we went for, it is the ‘Christian Convention for West Africa and it held at one of the churches in town’.” Gift said.
They both had made up excuses to attend a non-existent conference all in a bid to stay far away from Bernard's funeral.
Promise looked at her and said.
“Do you think I made the right decision?”
“Right decision in what? Killing Bernard or not attending his funeral?” Gift asked.
“You have no choice in this. This is what you signed up for and you can never run away from it till your dying day.” Gift said.
“I feel terrible…” Promise said.
“Don’t…you’ll still offer up more, this is just the beginning.” Gift said and when she saw the look of shock on Promise’s face, she continued. “I heard you tried offering me up and found out that I am one of the queen’s daughters.”
Promise looked at her and looked away.
“It gets easy with time, this is your first kill and in order to grow more powerful, you need to sacrifice more. So, if I were you, I won’t dwell on Bernard but start thinking of the next on the list for sacrifice and if you know what's good for you, the next on your list should be Alice. She’s a nuisance and it would do you a world of good to get rid of her once and for all.”
To be continued….