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Monday, September 25, 2017

Two Brides And A Ring ( Final Episode)



Fifteen months later...

 ***

It was already showing signs of rain with dark clouds dotting the sky when Comfort turned into their street. She was returning home from picking up Nonso from school.

"Looks as if it's going to rain. Good thing we're almost home," she said.

She had not finished speaking when the rain began to fall, first a slight drizzle then heavier drops which pelted the roof of the car.

"Mummy, looks like there's someone at our gate," said Nonso.

Comfort saw the lone figure knocking on the gate, using her bag like an umbrella over her head in the pouring rain.

Drawing close, she slowed down and pressed the horn for the gateman to open up.

The figure at the gate, hearing the sound, turned round.

Comfort's mouth fell open in surprise on seeing the face.

"Ama!" she called out.

***

"So, that's what happened? " Comfort said when Ama finished narrating what she had been up to since she moved out of the house.

Ama nodded, picking a piece of meat from the plate of soup and stuffing it in her mouth. She had changed out of her wet clothes and was wearing an old T shirt of Comfort and leggings.

"It was your friend Rosie that told me sometime last year that you had moved to Abuja. With your new husband."

Ama shrugged.  "Actually,  we weren't married. Glad I didn't marry the bastard. He turned out to be a drunk, a violent one at that, who beat me up without provocation," she said, taking a sip of water. "Hmm. This soup is delicious. I see you have a new maid. What happened to Ene?" she asked.

"She got pregnant for the driver of a neighbour down the street. So, I had to let her go." She paused. "Why Ama? How could you disappear in that manner? Not a word from you, or even a call! Didn't you miss us? What about the children? Were you not worried about them for a minute? Nonso used to ask about you at the beginning when you just left. Now, he doesn't even recognise you," said Comfort in an admonishing tone.

"You think I didn't want to come see all of you? I've stopped at that gate a couple of times before but I left at the last minute."

"Why?" asked Comfort.

"Fear. Of Ebuka. Of how he would react if he sees me."

"So, what made you come in today?" Comfort wondered.

Ama shrugged again. "The urge to see the children was just too much I guess. Besides, I was curious as well. To see Ebuka standing on his feet again."

Comfort smiled. "We thank God the operation went well and he's fully recovered his health."

"Maybe I should leave before he returns home. I'm not sure he'll want to see me here," Ama said as she finished eating and washed her hand in the bowl of soapy water the maid had brought.

"Even if he's still angry with you for what you did, I don't think he'll stop you from seeing the kids."

***

They sat in the living room chatting, with Ama trying to reconnect with the children she had abandoned so abruptly over a year before.

Munachi, who had no idea who she was as Ama had left when he was still a baby, kept looking at her curiously while Nonso ignored her completely.

It was towards evening when Ebuka returned home.
When he stepped into the parlour and saw Ama, he stared in astonishment at the scene before him.

"What's going on here?" he said sharply, pointing at Ama. "You, what are you doing in my house?"

"You're welcome, dear. She came to..." Comfort was saying when he shouted:

"You dare show your face here?  Have you no shame, woman?"

Ama got up, a contrite, pleading look on her face.
"Ebuka, I'm so sorry. Please, listen to me for a minute. Please," she said.

"What do you have to say now?" he demanded furiously. "You said everything you wanted to before running off with your lover. What do you want now?"

Ama, who had fallen on her knees began to plead for forgiveness, tears streaming down her face.

"Please forgive me, Ebuka. I made a mistake. I shouldn’t have left you. I still love you. I've missed you and the children. Please honey..."

"Honey? Ha, ha! I'm no longer a cripple, a useless man? That was what you called me the last time we saw, remember?" he said sarcastically. "You! I fought everyone including my parents to have you with me because of the love I had for you! And the only way you could pay me back is abandon me in my hour of need? What an ungrateful, shameless bitch you are! Now get out of my face! I don't need you, neither do the children!" Pointing at the door, he screamed at her: "Go! Get out! And never show your face here again or I won't be responsible for my actions!"

He left and ran up the stairs, leaving the women alone.

"I think you should go for now. He's really furious right now and won't listen to anything you have to say," said Comfort.

Ama nodded wordlessly and stood up. Picking up her handbag, she headed for the front door, tears of anguish and regret pouring down her face....

The End

 ***
Thanks to all readers and visitors who followed the story up to the very end. Some readers were unhappy that we were not posting as regularly as they would have wanted. We apologise for the delay and promise to improve to serve you better. A new series will start this week so watch out!

Do have a great week ahead.





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