Derek: “So how were you able to convince her grandparents? I’m not saying I will agree to that yet o”
Anita: “Well it wasn’t easy actually but when I told them all she had been through and the fact that she had met them just once before and wouldn’t even recognise them and the fact that she needed stability and I was willing to provide that for her. I could be a mother and you, a father to her. I was the one told them they will continue being her family and will even have more access to her now than they did before”
Derek: “Hmmmmmm…you are worded mehn! And you are a good woman Annie. I am the luckiest man on earth right now. How did you come about this idea of yours though? I wouldn’t have been able to think of it myself” he was full of admiration for me, making my head swell uncontrollably.
Anita: “I just don’t want her being sad all her life. I don’t want her to go back to living on edge. And she is already getting used to me. I really like her. I like her very very much I don’t want her out of my reach”
Derek: “Okay sweetie. Know I am support of whatever you decide to do. We are in this together and we will surely give her the best, help heal those scars in her heart and her body. We will try all we can” he said, holding me against his chest. I could hear his heart pimping aggressively. We were alive, and we were making this decision together. I felt on top of the world, blessed and graced. What patience can do.
I couldn’t help but overhear their discussion. I could not believe my luck. I who had always gotten rejected, I who had always been mocked and used is now being loved to this extent. I couldn’t contain my joy, I ran out and joined in their embrace even though I was not up to their height.
Rose: “Thanks Annie. No! thanks mum, I will call you two mum and dad from now on” I said excitedly and they both laughed.
Anita: “We are more than glad to have you in our lives baby”
Derek: “I guess we just had a child out of wedlock. Honey please marry me before we become the talk of the town” he said and went on his knees, brought out a ring from his pocket and held it in front of her. “I was going to this later today in a five star hotel but I just can’t postpone it anymore. What better time than now in front of our daughter? Will you marry me Annie?”
The two of us were dumbfounded…
Anita and I: “Yes yes yes” we said jumping up. I felt like I was the one being proposed to, I was extremely happy I didn’t know when I said yes yes yes. He slipped the ring into her third finger, I turned away when they started to kiss.
My father’s lawyers tried all they could in court to prove he wasn’t guilty of the charges levelled against him by saying he had a history of mental illness and my claims were also as a result of the mental illness I must have inherited from him. They even went as far as pleading with the judge to take me and my dad to a mental home instead. At some point I was afraid I was going to be locked up in a psychiatrist hospital but thank God for the tests carried out on me and the scars on my body. He was found guilty and sentenced to thirty years imprisonment with hard labour. He later died in his third year there. Francis on his part was found guilty of murder. He was sentenced to death by hanging and before he was hung, it was reported that every day he spent in prison was like hell for him, he got raped every single day by men who were just like him. it got to a point that he almost committed suicide, he prayed for death and it found him when at last he was hanged.
Anita and Derek got married in a most beautiful way, we all lived together even when they gave birth to their own child, a son. My grand-parents seldom came to see me. I was made to go to Oxford University in UK for my university education even though I didn’t want to. I wanted to stay with my kid brother and parents.
I became a Girls’ Right Activist after my university education when I came back to Nigeria and realised there were many girls going through the same stuffs I went through. I couldn’t let that happen, I went from school to school, town to town, city to city, educating girls on their rights and how they shouldn’t keep silent about any form of abuse they were going through. They deserve to be heard and helped. I provided scholarship to as many as I could, sheltered some just the same way Annie and Derek did for me.
I thank God for my struggles and where I have been through. His grace sustained me, saw me through and gave me a home, a family and a voice which can be heard far and wide.
IF I told you I don’t bless God for making me adopt that girl I’d be lying. She brought so many blessings to my home after we adopted her. Favours poured in from every angle and before we knew it, we were being used as an example of humanitarian couples all over the country. The evil men do surely do catch up with them no matter how hidden it is now, someday, It will surely be revealed. My baby girl became a poet and an activist for girls passing through the same stuffs she did and I am so proud of her. She will be getting married next month and I just can’t help but thank God for the man she is going to marry too.
Andre was her classmate who taunted her so much in high school. He told me how he regretted everything he did after she left. He actually liked her then and that was the reason he did all that, just to find excuses to talk to her. Well he is a good guy too, I and Derek are going to give them the best during their wedding for sure.
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