Forgive – Episode 15


© Jones Kwesi Tagbor

“Mum we did it only once and it was an accident so I’m not sure the pregnancy belongs to me.” “What is going on in this house? Forgive why are you crying? Is everything alright?” Gilbert’s father asked upon returning from work, He heard the discussion from the corridor as he was entering.

Gilbert and his mother kept looking straight into my face to hear what I would say.

“Are you not the one he is asking the question? Or you can’t talk?” Gilbert’s mother asked. “Gilbert what is the problem with your friend?” Gilbert’s father asked.

“Dad honestly I don’t really know. She was moody since she came and was not talking.” Gilbert reported. “Forgive my dear, you are such a beautiful girl and looking at your face like this is not the best. Tell me what your problem is. OK, follow me let’s go to the summer hut and talk to me. Stop crying.” Gilbert’s father said. “My dear, you told me over the phone that you were hungry, your food is getting cold, come and eat first. Know that you are not very well.” “Oh yeah am hungry but am not sure we will keep long. Or Forgive will it take you long to tell me what your problem is?” he asked. “No dad.” I responded. “My friend, if you won’t keep long in telling my husband your problem then say it here. Don’t use my husband as one of your preys. My husband is not feeling well.” Gilbert’s mother said angrily.

“I’m…… I’m…… I’m pregnant for….for Gil…. Gil…” “hey my friend stop it there! Since when did you start stuttering or stammering? But be mindful of what you want to say here.” Gilbert’s mother intercepted me. “I believe you people said she wasn’t ready to speak. Now that she has started, allow her the opportunity to tell us what her concerns are. Forgive, speak we are listening.” Gilbert’s father cautioned. “Please I said am pregnant for Gilbert and he refused to accept responsibility.” I disclosed.

“Forgive stop that concert and tell my parents the truth. Tell them you want me to take someone’s pregnancy because you think we are rich. When did I get you pregnant? Some jokes are very expensive. Dad please don’t take her serious.” Gilbert said.

“Gentleman will you shut up? Have I asked you any question? Gilbert was silenced. “Honey so will you believe what this girl is saying against your son? How can someone who is just recovering from his condition impregnate a lady? Or he has now turned into Angel Gabriel who got Mary pregnant? prop this girl well if not you will be making mistakes.” Gilbert’s mother advised.

“Woman, stop defending your son here. This lady here is not a child not to know who got her pregnant. Gilbert have you ever slept with this lady without protection?” Gilbert’s father asked.

“Dad, what we did was not anything that you could refer to as s€× which can lead to pregnancy. Besides, it wasn’t even up to five minutes.” Gilbert said. “Will you answer my question and stop the circ-mlocution? I asked if you’ve ever slept with Forgive without protection. I only expect a yes or no response and nothing more than that. Am listening.” His father instructed.

Gilbert remained silent.

“Has Forgive’s mutism affected you that you can’t also talk?” His father asked. “Dad… Dad…. It’s not what you think. And besides what we did cannot lead to pregnancy.” “Don’t get me angry and answer my question.” His father retorted

“Darling at least let your son explain himself. Are we in a military camp in this house where one cannot complain before doing?” Gilbert’s mother came into it. “Irene I said you should stop defending your son. Let him speak for himself.”

*”Yes dad we did.”* but I can explain. Gilbert confessed.

“And when was that or if I should ask, when was the last time you both had that experience?” His father asked. “Dad only once and it was very short.” he said.

“Don’t be stupid by telling me it was short. Do you need twenty four hours of s€× before you get a woman pregnant? You are even lucky that you are in your final semester, you would have deferred your program, work and take care of the lady and her unborn child.

Don’t be too smart. I’ve been to school before. I’ve seen more than you are doing now. Answer my question.” His father commanded.

“Dad it was only once.” Gilbert said.

“OK. Forgive don’t worry yourself. He will marry you. And you Gilbert, I don’t like irresponsible people in my house. When I got your mother pregnant in school, I took the responsibility and the product is what is making you stand here behaving like this in my presence. Irene, accept her, after all, she is a nice girl and you do say it yourself.” Gilbert’s father suggested.

“Honey, why do you just conclude everything like that without investigating to know the truth? Do you think this girl does not have other sugar daddies and boyfriends on campus? I just hope you are not making mistakes.” His mother said.

Gilbert couldn’t say anything again.

“Gilbert won’t you talk? His mother asked. “Mum what should I say after all that daddy said? It is Afya I love but since she doesn’t care about me any longer, I won’t mind accepting Forgive and the pregnancy.”

“Oh my God! Gilbert! Thank you very much for understanding me. Daddy thank you. God will always bless you. Gilbert thank you for accepting me if not I would have become a single parent to our unborn child. God bless you.” I said with tears of joy.

“OK, if you say so, I equally have nothing to say. Since your father is in support, I have no problem.” his mother said.

“Thank you mum.” I went to give her a hug and later came to hug Gilbert.

“I hope the food is warm?” Gilbert’s father asked after he came out from the bath. “Yes it is.” his wife responded. “Forgive come and join me let’s eat. Don’t worry, Gilbert cannot make your life miserable.” His father assured.

I went to join them on the table but I didn’t eat because I wasn’t having any appetite for food.

“So where are your parents? We need to do the arrangements fast before the pregnancy becomes visible.” Gilbert’s father asked.

“My mother is late but my father is at Agorkpo in the Volta region.” I said.

“oh yeah, you said it, you told me your mother had pass on. Sorry for reminding you of that. OK get us the marriage list from your father so that we do everything fast.” His father said.

“Am just not comfortable with how you are handling this matter? This lady just claimed something to you in just some few minutes ago. Why don’t you let us investigate further. Hmm.” his mother cautioned.

“I’m a man and I know what guys at this age are capable of. Irene, have you forgotten the circ-mstances under which I married you? Rather be advising Nana Akua to take care of herself before what I did to you happens to her.” his father quizzed.

“Dad I’m interested in knowing what happened between you and mum. ‘ _Na wo y3 guy wuhu haha…_” Gilbert teased his father.

“Silly boy, sit there and ask me questions instead of thinking of how you are going to take care of your woman and her unborn baby. I’m only helping halfway with the marriage ceremony so stop jubilating. You saw yourself a man that’s why you did what grown men do.”

Later, after the dinning, I left to campus. Afya went home and showed the picture to her mother to have a look whether she knows my dad somewhere.

“Afya where did you get this picture? And why did you bring it to me to have a look at it? Afya’s mother asked.

“Mum is that not the man you’ve been talking about? Just look at it well.” Afya asked.

“This man looks like your father but am not sure he is the one. That man do not have such a big head as this man in this photo. Let me see, I think he should be the one. Looking at his big belly, it looks like him. My eyes can’t see well now a days oo. Where did you get the picture from?” her mother asked.

“His daughter is in our school. Per what she was telling me I think her father is also my father per what you’ve been telling me about him.” Afya said.

“Afya am not very sure it is him. That man cannot afford to pay university bills. Let your friend ask his father if he knows me. Or go with her to their house and see if the man knows me.”

The reason was that my father has changed over time and also, Afya’s mother was ageing so had problem with her sight.

I was in my room thinking of how I will go to the village to get the marriage list from my father and also know why my sister called.

I heard a knock on my door and it was Afya.

“Are you done with my father’s picture now?” I asked her without allowing her to greet. “Forgive I think we share the same father. Can you take me to your village let me see him?” Afya requested. “You think my father is your father. hmm this girl paa, have you started doing weeds? My dear it’s not good for your health. Did you hear yourself well? What made you to say so?” I asked.

“Forgive I can only confirm this after I’ve seen and spoken with him. I’ve not taken any weed or drink. I’m serious. When will you be going home?” she asked. “I’mm planning of tomorrow.” I replied. “Why? did you have that plan for going home already?” Afya asked. “That is none of your business madam. Should I tell you why am going home?” I asked her.

“Sorry. I will go with you tomorrow. This is your picture.” she gave the picture and asked for a leave. A call came and it was from Nana Akua, Gilbert’s sister. Afya stopped to listen to our conversation. “Hello Nana Akua, how are you doing?” I asked over the phone. The environment was quite so Afya could hear the callers voice. “Sister Forgive I was told you are becoming my sister in-law. Meaning the pregnancy was for my brother. Wow! I’m happy for you.” Nana Akua said over the phone. “Nana Akua let me call you back later.” I  said and ended the call.

“I think I can recognise that Nana Akua girl. Is that not Gilbert’s sister? Forgive are you pregnant for my Gilbert?” Afya asked.

To be continued

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