Fatou came into the room, meeting her father on top of her mother, pinning her neck to the bed.
Fatou: “Agh! Daddy!” she screamed, pulling her father off her mother. “She will die. She is not feeling fine. She is sick!” She shouted at the highest pitch of her voice but all fell on her father’s deaf ears. She was confused as no neighbour was willing to help since the father was known for abusing the wife most times, hiding under the pretext of alcohol’s influence. Immediately, a thought flashed across her mind. She reached for a rolling pin behind the door. And hit it on her father’s head.
Aremu: “agh!” he screamed and looked up, sweating profusely. “What is that? Fatou, what did you hit on my head?” he said, swivelling around, staring at his daughter, who was looking so fierce as he touched his bald head. He stood up to clean the blood stain oozing from his bruised head.
Fatou ran out to call his mother’s friend from the next house to help save her mother from being totally killed by her father. A neighbour entered the room, meeting Ranti’s right twitched to the back, coughing out blood.
Neighbour: “agh, Papa Fatou, you want to kill this woman? She has not been well for some days now”. Mama Kashi screamed as she entered the couple’s room. However, the husband ignored her as he was busy cleaning his wound with wool and methylated spirit. “agh, you this man, you are wicked o. you don’t have the fear of God at all. How can you do this to the mother of your children?” she complained turning Ranti in bed. “Ranti! Ranti!” she shook her vigorously.
Ranti: “hmmm” She replied faintly, slipping out of the woman’s grip.
Mama Kashi: “Ranti!”She called her name several times without response. She had blacked out and the husband was already out of the room heading to an unknown destination. Few minutes later, Fatou came in with Mama Dapo.
Mama Dapo: “agh!” she exclaimed after seeing Ranti in a terribly bad shape, half naked.
Mama Kashi: “Don’t stand there and look at her die now. Let us carry her to the hospital” Mama Dapo sent Fatou to get a taxi to convey her mother to the clinic.
Khadi went to see the local midwife for her procedure as scheduled.
Khadijah: “mama, good afternoon”. She bowed courteously.
Ye Olosa: “welcome my daughter. How is your husband?”
Khadijah: “hmmm, he is fine” She replied, looking weary. “hmm, Mama, I am tired of life. Are you sure this thing will work?” she asked, looking weary and worried.
Ye Olosa: “stop it!” she snapped at her. “You don’t know anything. My foremothers have been doing this for ages and they never failed, so, why will it start from me? I have treated women with fertility issues, who have been rejected in large hospitals with big doctors from abroad and they came back o say thank you after having children. So, how will your own be different? Calm down” she consoled her, rubbing her chest with her palms.
Khadijah: “hmmm, I know mama, but I am saying this because, doctor said I don’t have womb again, and you know what that means. No place for baby to stay”. She said, with her eyes heavy with tears.
Ye Olosa: “hahaha!” she laughed hysterically. “This is the issue I have with you learned, you rely so much on orthodox treatments and medicines and forget your roots. My mothers here will never fail me”. She boasted, pointing to the array of figurines in the small dingy room she used as consultancy room. “F’okan bale, ko se wu. Put your mind at rest, my mothers are capable”. She assured her, handing her a small sized earthen pot of freshly prepared concoction. “o ya eat, and flush it down with this herbal drink”.
Mama Kashi: “nurse, how is the woman doing now?” she stopped a petite nurse who walked out of the emergency ward hastily.
Nurse: “Mama, hold on. She will be fine. The doctor is attending to her”.
Mama Kashi: “hmmm, toh, it is well”. She prayed silently under her breath, looking at Mama Dapo and Fatou who were looking worried. She put her hand round Fatou’s shoulder.
Few minutes later, the doctor came out of the emergency ward.
Doctor: “you brought the woman to the hospital?”
“Yes Sir!” the two women replied in unison.
Doctor: “okay, good. I am sorry. She has to be transferred to the teaching hospital as soon as possible.” I will type a referral letter for you”. He said, leaving for his office.
The word: “teaching hospital” was like a poison to every patient’s relative because it meant to them that: the hospital would not be able to handle their loved ones’ cases. The two women were thrown off balance and started trembling at the mention of the referral. He called on them to come for referral letter to the university college hospital in Ibadan.
Mama Kashi: “hmmmm, this is serious o. What do we do now?” She asked her neighbour, trembling.
Mama Dapo: “there is nothing. We will go and call her family ni”.
Mama Kashi: “but, what kind of husband and man is Papa Fatou sef. The man almost killed her and still left the house without even looking back to see how the woman is doing. This is serious o”. She complained.
Mama Dapo: “see mama, this is not the time to complain. Let us reach her family before things get out of hands. Because, me I cannot collect that letter”. She left the hospital reception.
The thoughts of Khadijah’s childlessness since they got married clouded the mind of her husband. Millions of thoughts ran across his mind as he sat in his office in one hot Monday afternoon. He sat back in the rocking chair, looking up to the ceiling. He was in a dilemma, wondered what to do. He had a recall of what his friend had told him at the club the previous weekend. Ponmile’s words re-echoed in his head as though they were being spoken to him at the time of his brooding. He stretched his hand to pick his mobile device to call his friend, but retreated as he had a fast rethink of his many vows to his wife. He had promised not to cheat nor marry a second wife, even though it is not against his faith. However, at this period of their childlessness, he began to doubt if he would be able to stick to his words. He shook his head vigorously, clenched his fists and gnashed his teeth like a child convulsing. Tears trickled down his eyes, mixing with sweat under an air conditioned room, soaking his white shirt with sweat. He banged his table several times furiously, and this called the attention of his secretary to his office uninvited.
“Sir, is anything the matter?” the petite round faced secretary asked, as she barged into the office, seeing her boss in a mind boggling state. He refused to answer her, but she asked persistently until he yelled at her.
“Get out!” He yelled at her
Secretary: “yes sir!” She slammed the door shut, feeling frightened as she had not seen him in this situation before. She wondered what could have taken over her lively, humane, generous and down- to-earth boss.
“It is well. Everybody with e own wahala”. She soliloquised as she sat down at her desk.
Abbas picked himself up, cleaned his face, sat for few seconds thinking of what to do. He stared at the bunch of key on his table, wondering what to do next. All of a sudden, he picked up the key, reached for his suit from the hanger and left the office bidding no one goodbye.
Question: “Where could Abbas be storming to? And what happens to Ranti next?”
SEE Episode Below 10…(You Don’t Wanna Miss This!)… Adelove Stories… Premier Naija Inspirational Blog!
See Episode 20