What A Life
Eno got down on her knees and held on to the spiritualist’s legs. “Please, baba. Just tell me any amount, I will pay. I am a married woman, I can’t sleep with you, please have mercy on me”.
Spiritualist: “Of course I know that you are married, but this is the wish of the gods and not mine so I have nothing to do about this. You can choose to stay here as the gods commanded or you go and face the consequences of your disobedience. Remember your promise”.
The sight of how bad Samantha’s eyes have gone made such a huge imprint on her that she was willing to do anything to escape the wrath of the gods. She called her mother’s phone to inform her that she would be spending the night at the shrine and that she cover up for her should her husband call to ask for her. Unfortunately, her mother’s number was switched off.
Eno: “Baba, my mother’s number is switched off, can I go home and come back tomorrow? I didn’t inform my husband that I would spend the night out”. She pleaded.
Spiritualist: “If you step out of this shrine, you will be struck with the same ailment that befell your friend”.
Eno: “Oh God! What sort of problem have I gotten myself into right? Who even said I should come to this shrine for help? It’s not like the Dozie has started showing me love seff”. She reluctantly went in,side the shrine after trying her mother’s number one more time.
Dozie returned home and went into his room. He noticed that he didn’t see Eno in the sitting room when he entered. After freshening up, he returned to the sitting room to watch TV and when it was evening, he expected her to come out of her room and move to the kitchen to make her favorite noodles but she didn’t come. He thought of going to her room to see her but when he got to the door, he felt reluctant to go in and he returned back to his chair.
Dozie: “I don’t care if she remains in her room forever, after all her presence profits me nothing. In fact, she can go ahead and commit suicide for all I care, I would rather be a widower than remain married to that sed-ctress”, he thought aloud.
At exactly 7:00pm having finished watching AFCON match, he took his car keys and drove to Samantha’s house. Since the last time he went there, he had made efforts to get across to her but she had refused to pick his calls or return his messages. On his way, he stopped at a fruit vendor and bought fruits for her exactly the way she wanted it. When he got to her compound, he paused in his car and said a little prayer before walking in. “Jesus Christ!” he scre-med and almost ran back when he saw Samantha’s condition in the sitting room. “My God, what happened to you baby?” he drew near to her.
Samantha: “Who is this, who are you and what are you doing here?” she asked for she could no longer see.
Dozie: “It is me Dozie your true love. Can’t you see me?”
Samantha: “So your wife has sent you here to remind me of my woes? What more do you want from me? After you dumped me for my best friend, things went from bad to worst. I had an accident that almost took my life and now I am blind for no justifiable reason”, she began to cry.
Dozie: “Do not cry my love. What happened to your eyes? How can you just go blind like that? You were so full of life the last time I saw you”.
Samantha: “Get out of my house and go back and tell your wife that I am still alive, even though I am blind, I am alive and that is my consolation”.
Dozie: “No, I can never leave you at this time when you need me. I left you before, I am not gonna leave you again”.
Samantha: “I said get out of my house. Where were you all these days that I needed you by my side? Of what use is your presence and your attention now that I am blind? Go back to your wife and leave me alone, I will be fine with my mother”.
Dozie: “Please, my Sama. Let’s keep the past behind us. I still love…”
Samantha: “Get out!” she interrupted him and grabbed her stick which was aiding her to walk about and began to wave it at the direction from which he was talking.
Dozie: “Please, baby. I am on my knees…”
Samantha: “I hate you!”, she got up and began to walk but she hit her leg on the center table and fell down with a crash. Dozie ran and grabbed her in his arms. “I am sorry, my love. I know I have hurt you but I am willing to make amends.” He pleaded with tears flowing from his eyes.
Samantha: “Just go. Leave me to go through this alone”. She began to scratch and kick and scre-m. “Mum, where are you? Come and take me from here to my room”. Her mother who was in the bathroom grabbed her towel and ran out when she heard her daughter’s voice. “What has happened again this time around? God help my daughter o”, she soliloquized.
Mama Samantha: “So it is you who is causing my daughter so much pain? Have you not caused enough pains already?”
Dozie ran to kneel at her feet. “I am sorry, mum. Please help me talk to her. I am willing to make amends”.
Mama Samantha who was irritated by his presence, softened when she saw him in tears at her feet. “It’s okay my son. As you can see, my daughter is very angry right now and it’s not her fault, she has gone through a lot recently. I will advise that you leave now and come back another day”. She told him.
Dozie: “I will be outside until she calms down. I can’t bear to see her in this condition”. He went out and sat at the corridor weeping for he felt his heart broken by what Samantha was going through.
After staying out for more than two hours, Samantha’s mother came out and pleaded with him to go home and rest and return another day since Samantha was already asleep. He accepted and drove home in silence, his heart heavy and his brain occupied with the thoughts of the plight of his beloved.
He got home some minutes past ten.
Gate man: “Welcome, sahhh”. He saluted as he opened the gate.
Dozie: “Have you seen Eno today?”
Gate man: “Eno…Eno? Who be Eno?” he asked scratching his head.
Dozie: “The woman I live with!” he thundered.
Gate man: “Oh, you wife, that na my madam. She never come back since wey she commot this morning”.
Dozie: “What! You know what, just lock the gate”.
The gateman shook his head after Dozie left his post.
Gateman:“This my oga seff, why him go dey call him wife name? I think say people of nowadays na sweet sweet names like honey, sugar, sweet dem dey call their wives. Na we wey be old school suppose dey call our wives by their names. Anyway, e no concern me, sha. Na husband and wife matter, dem go settle for bed”, he went back into his small room by the gate. Dozie went into his sitting room and dialed his mother in law’s number. “I hope she has not been kidnapped, before her mother will come and accuse me of harming her daughter. I don’t want that woman’s trouble, I need all the concentration I can get to get back Samantha”. Mama Eno who was preparing to go to bed saw his call and quickly picked it.
Mama Eno: “My in law, this one that you are calling me by this time of the night, I am sure that my daughter has cooked your favourite food for you this night. Tell her to take very good care of you o, remember that you people are still in honeymoon and the doctor said you should get your wife pregnant as soon as possible for medical reasons. And…”
Dozie was angry at the other end but he tried to keep his calm. “Can you just listen to me, ma? I didn’t call because of any honeymoon. Is Eno, erm…I mean my wife there?” he asked, eager to hear her reply that her daughter was spending the night with her so that he could go back to sleep in peace.
Mama Eno’s mind skipped a beat, she remembered that she had tried to call her daughter during the day but her number was not available.
MamaEno: “I did not get what you said, the network is fluctuating, say that again”.
Dozie: “I said is your daughter with you there? She left the house this morning and she is yet to return. I tried to call her but it keeps saying ‘number out of network coverage’”.
Mama Eno: “Erm…I…Eno…She…”
Dozie: “I can hear you, speak up ma”.
Mama Eno quickly ended the call and dialed her daughter’s number so she will know what she would tell him about her whereabouts but the number was switched off. Suddenly, she remembered that it was the seventh day and that Eno ought to have gone to see the spiritualist. “But she should be back from the baba’s place by now, I hope she is safe o”. She was still thinking when Dozie called her back.
Mama Eno: “I am sorry, my inlaw. It’s like network ended the call. Your wife is asleep here, she came into the house while I was away. I would have given her the phone so that you can talk to her but she is fast asleep”. She lied to him.
Dozie: “Okay, there’s no need for me to talk with her. I only wanted to be sure that she is safe”. He ended the call and went to sleep.
Eno stayed in a secluded part of the shrine while the spiritualist attended to other clients all day. At sunset, the man brought a white wrapper to the room where she was sitting on the floor. “Take this wrapper, remove your clothes and wrap your body with this. We are going to the supreme Ilele River to bath you there. The gods cannot touch you if you have not had this bath sacred bath”.
Eno obeyed like one who was under a spell. The spiritualist returned with a razor and dirty water in a bowl and commanded Eno to unclad herself and sit on a stool he brought along with him. “Remove the white wrapper and sit unclad on this stool or on my laps”, he said.
She obeyed and sat on the stool instead and the man began to w-t her hair with the water.
Eno: “What are you doing, baba”, she asked.
Spiritualist: “Shhhh! The cleansing process has started. You are not supposed to talk while it is going on. We have to shave your hair both up and down before the gods begin the real ACTION tonight”.
Eno: “What! I didn’t bargain for this. Shave my what?”
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