He kept walking around the corridor drunkenly, calling out to her. Mmesoma ran to him with her husband trailing after her.
Mmesoma: “What are you doing here please? Are you out of your mind? Hasn’t the police ordered you never to step your feet into this compound again?” she yelled at the top of her voice.
Sunday: “I know my daughter is inside one of these rooms. Please open it, I want to bring her out” he said seeming like he was not in his right senses.
Mmesoma: “Crazy idiot. What will your daughter be doing inside the room that is always locked? Who gave her the keys to get in there? and for your information, I went in there to clean those rooms by myself today and she was not in any of them so pack your disgraceful self out of my house before I unleash the dogs on you”
Charles: “Sunday go home” he said sadly. He understood his brother’s pain but he dared not make his wife sense he did.
Mmesoma: “Honey please call the police. He will come to his senses when he has spent one cold night in the police cell”
Charles: “Sunday go home, I will call the police o” he said showing his phone to his brother who stood his ground stubbornly.
Sunday: “I will not leave until you have provided my daughter today” he said, suddenly slumped forward and fell face down on the floor. When she went closer to him to check what was wrong, she heard him snoring and belching loudly.
Mmesoma: “the idiot is asleep. Please bundle him out of this house” she ordered her husband and walked angrily away.
She bent over her daughter, trailing cold fingers over her cheek as Angela packed her things hurriedly.
Bolatito: “Baby please don’t die. She will soon pay for everything she is doing to you. How I wish I have some powers. Bolu” she placed her whole palm over her face which went through her but she didn’t withdraw. She let it linger there for some seconds. She was about to leave the house to fetch help any way she could when the baby stirred and began to cough. Angela stopped suddenly, looked at her and heaved a sigh of relief.
Angela: “Oh thank God. I guess she isn’t dead anyway. She scooped her up in her arms to check her properly and realised that she had left marks on her cheek. “Oh no! What will I tell her father?”
Bola: “Don’t think I cannot see everything you are doing right now. Lie to Ife all you want but once I am out of here, I will expose all your ills. If you ever touch my daughter again, I will deal with you” she scowled so hard her formless face began to hurt.
He had gone to the hospital after work that evening and was disappointed that she hadn’t improved a bit. She was neither responding to touches nor any other external stimuli. He had exhausted all the sweet things he knew to say expecting her to at least smile at him but she only left him even more hopeless than he already was. During every of his visits, he would tell her stuffs about their daughter and how well she was growing, show her pictures of her on his phone and try cracking one or more jokes but she just laid there. One thing he didn’t know was that she was listening to everything. She watched her daughter every day and listened to his jokes which made her laugh and run through him a hundred times over in a bid to hug him.
That night, he was so overwhelmed by grief that he decided to take a bottle of beer at Oscar’s beer parlour close to his junction- something he had never done before. His sense of guilt was threatening to overwhelm his sense of reasoning he had to find a way to calm his nerves down. He sat at the counter, sipping the white alcoholic wine the bar man had specially recommended to him. Different thoughts kept going through his mind at this instant. She sat with him, watching him closely, wanting so much to touch him, to hug him the way she used to but she knew better. She just sat there, hoping that he would sense her presence and feel comforted at least.
Ifeoluwa: “Bola… Bola… I am waiting for you to be well again. So I can tell you how much I love and miss you” he robbed his eyes dejectedly, daring himself to shed a tear.
Bola: “I don’t believe you love me just yet but I know you miss me and I miss you too. I want to come back to you but I don’t know how to, forgive me”
Ifeoluwa: “I am confused, I don’t know what to do anymore. Angela is there too, taking care of our child. Do you think I am being unfair to her? Am I being unfair to her by letting her take care of the baby without even having a single feeling for her? I am really lost, you have changed me Bola, I wasn’t like this before” he muttered.
Bola: “She is not a good woman, she almost killed our daughter today. I don’t like her please send her away from the house”
Ifeoluwa: “Should I marry her or send her away? If I do that, I will be forced to get a nanny, if I marry her, what will happen when you wake up? I am torn between our daughter’s well-being and my love for you. What should I do?” he kept asking questions upon questions inaudibly yet no answer was made available to him even though she conversed with him all through. He left the bar feeling worse than before.
When he got home, everywhere smelt of baby powder and soap. He smiled to himself, thinking she had given the baby her evening bathe. He dropped his bag on the chair and headed straight for the room.
Ifeoluwa: “Someone smells nice every night. What is the secret?” he beamed with smiles as Angela scooped up a handful of powder to rob on the baby’s face. “Wait!” he rushed forward and collected the baby from her, scrutinizing her face closely with alarm. “Angela! What happened to her face?” he yelled when he saw something looking like finger prints and pattern on her soft cheek. He noticed the baby looked tired and somehow sickly. Her ribs popped out from her skin, a baby that was normally full of flesh.
Angela: “Ehn! She rolled unto the rug with her cheek on the floor. The rug made those marks” she explained on shaky voice. She had planned using the powder to cover up the marks but had been too late since it took her one hell of a long time to wear the diaper for her. She kept getting it wrong no matter how much she tried. She had been tempted to toss the baby across the room again.
Ifeoluwa: “This does not look like marks a rug would make and how can she roll onto the rug from the bed? What happened to my baby? Did you hit her? Did you touch my child?” adrenaline rushed to his veins at the thought of his baby being slapped by an adult. He lunged for her and grabbed her hair in one hand…
Question: If you are in his shoes, will you believe her? and if you don’t, will you beat her up or just let her go?
Stay tuned for Episode 14 (You don’t wanna miss this!)…AdeLove Stories…Premier Naija Inspirational Blog!
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