Embarrassed, Stephen enters his car and drives away with his suit dribbling water like a man who accidentally fell into the swimming pool. And he is perplexed maybe to visit her next time due to the embarassment her step mother had given him in public. ‘’ what an insult’’
Iyabo: “Stupid girl, so this is how you have been bringing men inside my house to sleep with them when I am not around. Your cup is full today, you will see what I will do to you today. Look at you, you are just 19 years old but look at the man that came to look for you”. She slaps Charity and removes her slippers and attempts to use it on her when Charity moves away.
Charity: “I will not stand here and watch you use your slippers and beat me again. What did I do to offend you? Is it my fault that my mother died and left me all alone in this world? Ever since I became self conscious, I have suffered untold maltreatment in my own father’s house. Several times I have prayed for death to come and carry me away to where my mother is so that I can leave this house for you, I wish I can just die, oh God why didn’t I die at infancy?”
Iyabo: “So, Charity, you have grown so big that you now talk back at me right? Oh, I don’t blame you, you have started opening your dirty legs for men so you now see me as your mate. No wonder you have the guts to talk when I just caught you with a man in my house”.
Charity: “God knows that I have never brought any man into this house. I met the man that came here today only once and I never gave him this address. I don’t know how he was able to find his way here. Please, mummy, I need you to believe me. All my life I have longed for a motherly love, please…”she draws near to hug Iyabo.
Iyabo: “My friend will you get your filty hands off me! Who is your mummy? See this witch, so you want to call me mummy so that you will have the oppportunity to kill me like you killed your mother? Let me tell you, it will not work. Don’t you ever call me mother in your miserable life again! Your mother is at her grave, go and look for her there”.
Charity falls on the chair and begins to weep. Her father walks in.
Mr Jide: “What is going on here? Charity, why are you crying? Iyabo, what happened?”
Iyabo: “Why don’t you ask your prostitute of a daughter?”
Mr Jide: “I have told you to stop calling this girl such names. Why are you this wicked? Is it because you are yet a mother”
Iyabo: “I will call her any name that I like and not even you or anyone can do anything about it. See them, like father like daughter”, she hisses and walks away.
Stephen has been waiting in his car outside for almost an hour hoping to see Charity come out. Ever since he visited her and was chased out by her step mother three days ago, he had been restless and couldn’t help because he couldn’t bare to see her suffer so much in the hands of her step mother. He decided to visit her after work today but he decides against going into her house. Instead, he had parked his car at a vintage position where he can see anyone going in and out of her compound. After waiting for an hour and some minutes, he sees her walking towards him. She looks so innocent in her long gown that his heart went out to her. As she gets close to his car, he opens the door and comes out.
Stephen: “Hello, Charity!”
Charity taken unawares and mistaking him to be kidnappers take to her heels but Stephen quickly grabs her hands.
Stephen: “Hey, don’t tell me you don’t remember me, its Stephen, I mean no harm”.
Charity: “Ah, you scared me, I thought I was going to be kidnapped by ritualists because I know there is no kidnapper that will kidnap a poor girl like me”.
Stephen: “Hahahaha, like seriously? You have a very good sense of humour. How are you?”
Charity: “I am fine, what are you doing here?”
Stephen: “I came to see you, of course”.
Charity: “Please leave now, if my parents meet us here, I will be in trouble. Don’t ever come here to look for me again, I am begging you in the name of God”. She begins to walk away but Stephen grabs her, turns her around and makes her to face him”.
Stephen: “What is wrong with you? I have gone through a lot of trouble just to find you and see how I can help you and you are here giving me attitude. Are your parents God? I just want to help you achieve your dreams of going to higher institution because I see that you have great ambitions. Listen to me, your destiny is in your hands and if you allow your parents alter it, you will have yourself to blame in the future”.
Charity: “Oga, leave me alone. I didn’t ask you to go through any trouble to look for me and I am not complaining about my parents, leave me with them like that. Just go your way and leave me alone”.
Stephen: “Okay. Fine. As you wish, you suit yourself. God knows that I tried to reach out to a friend in need”.
Charity walks away but turns back after some steps “. “I am sorry I shouted at you, it’s just that I am confused. I am tired of this world, I just want to die and leave everything behind”.
Stephen: “You don’t need to give up. Can we go somewhere and talk? You can’t give up on your dreams just like that”.
Charity: “Ah, follow you where? Abeg o, let’s do the talking here, I am not going nowhere”.
Stephen: “Okay. But you are afraid of your parents meeting us here so how can we talk in peace? Even now, I see your eyes moving up and down, afraid that your parents may come out and see us”.
Charity: “Okay. Fine. Let’s just drive to the next street, then you will park and we will talk”.
They drive to a restaurant and Stephen insists that they go in after which he ordered two plates of fried rice and chicken. He watches Charity as she devours her food hungrily and gulps down the bottle of chilled water that she had requested for.
Stephen: “So, tell me, will you like to go for your registration?”
Charity: “Of course, but that won’t be possible. My father doesn’t have money and neither do I. So, I give up”.
Stephen: “So how much are we talking about?”
Charity: “Its plenty money o, like N100,000”.
Stephen: “I will give you the money”.
Charity is surprised and she begins to cough.
Stephen: “Take it easy, drink some water”. He says as he pours more water into her glass and hands it over to her.
Charity: “You said you will give me the money? Why? What will you demand in exchange for it?”.
Stephen: “Nothing. I just want to help you achieve your dreams. That is what my Bible tells me what to do”.
Charity: “I don’t know. I will talk to my father about it and get back at you. Take me home now!” She gets up, realising that it is getting late and dreading what will happen if her step mother finds her away.
Stephen: “Common, we haven’t finished talking and you haven’t finished eating”.
Charity: “Take me home, now”.
Stephen: “Okay! Let’s go”.
They drive back home and that takes longer than usual because the road is congested with people going back from work on bike, KekeNapep and taxis. It is already 8:00PM when Stephen drops her off.
Stephen: “Please, get back to me tomorrow so you can commence the registration this week…” he is still talking when she gets out of the door and runs into the compound without saying a word to him.
Charity gets to their room and meets the door locked; she taps on it gently for more than ten minutes, she is afraid to knock harder because of her step mother. “Who is that thief that is knocking my door at this time of the day?”Iyabo’s voice cuts short her thoughts.
Charity:” It is me, ma”.
Iyabo: “You who? You no get name?”
Charity: “It’s me Charity, ma”.
Iyabo: “Yes, what are you looking for here?”
Charity: “The door is locked, I can’t come in”.
Iyabo: “You have no reason to come back into this house. Check outside the compound, your things are there, go back to where you are coming from by this time”.
Charity continues to knock but they ignore her, scared that she doesn’t have any place to sleep, she begins to weep.
Charity: “I am sorry, please open the door. I don’t have anywhere to go and sleep”, she keeps pleading but her stepmother refuses to open the door. Exhausted from crying, she sits at the entrance of the door and there she spends the night in the biting cold. Early the following morning, her father is the first person who opens the door.
Mr. jide: “What! Charity, what are you doing out here in the cold?”
Charity: “I spent the night here”.
Mr. Jide: “Oh, don’t be silly. How could you have spent the night here?”
Charity: “I kept knocking last night and the door was locked”.
Mr. Jide: “What! You mean Iyabo has the guts to lock out my own daughter? What if something had happened to you over the night? I mean what if you were raped or kidnapped? That woman must leave my house today”.
Question: Do you support Mr Jide over the statement he threatened?
…. SEE Episode 9 Below (You don’t wanna miss this!)
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