Sonia clutched the hand of her bag,the same bag she had come with few months ago and made her way through the back door.She couldnt bear those eyes of Angela looking murderously at her,knowing she did something that deserved more than such a stare. Coming out from the backyard,She saw her mother sauntering into the compound.She could see the ‘okada man’ reversing his motorcycle. “Sonia.Sonia.We are leaving immediately.No questions.I will tell you why,later”Her mother said,seeing the bag in her hand.She already packed.’Whats happening?’ she wondered. “Why mom.why? Dont you want me to stay again,to bring you huge money? Aren’t you happy with that anymore?”She let down the heavy tears from her ears. “I am sorry my daughter.I have truly hurt you in every way.I have really done you enough harm”There was sorrow in her voice.She drew Sonia close and embraced her.Something she couldn’t remember the last time she did.This time,all of a sudden,she could feel Sonia’s pain.She could feel her heartbeat thuddering beneath her chest.She needed no one to tell her she was the architect of the poor girl’s plight. “Sonia!”Angela’s harsh and aggravated tone separated them. “Oh i see,you both have succeeded,”Angela increased her steps towards them,”how could you”She landed a hot resounding slap on Sonia.The kind of slap that comes with stars and dizziness.Angela lost control and pounced on her.She went wacko at that moment,tearing and pulling at the poor girl whose mother she pushed aside when she tried to stop her. “You will kill her o.and you will surely regret it if you do”Sonia’s mother said,trying to get up from where she fell.Her kneels ached as a result of the fall.She could feel the hurting pain of the arthritis and rheumatism which was part of what she had been suffering for years. Angela landed several kicks on Sonia’s belly with her kneel.Sonia screamed painfully with all her might. “Ahh my tommy.Jesus…my tom……”her voice trailed off. Blood was seen traling down her legs. Angela got up from her to get a better view of what she was seeing,which was just playing like a movie before her Sonia continued bleeding. The pregnancy was gone! Gone in the twinkle of an eye.
Angela took some steps backwards with her eyes focused on the red liquid dripping from Sonia. She knew what it signified.She needed no one to tell her that what it meant.With a quick reflex,she turned and saw David standing some distance away.She stared at her,hatred and anger filled her eyes with questions flashing through her mind.How dare him? How dare him do this to her? How could he impregnate their maid? Could it be because she has not been able to conceive and give him a child? Tears gathered in those eyes of hers,red with anger but she fought hard to send the tears back to where they came from. “Are you people going to leave her here? Do you people want her to die?”Sonia’s mother spoke out.Ebere was right.Sonia was pregnant. Angela was sure she didn’t quite hear her right but she heard her say something.Her head was spinning.She was beginning to feel dizzy.It was then it dawned on her that she actually brought another wife for her husband in the name of a maid.She felt everything turning around and before she knew it,she slumped to the ground. David rushed over to her at once while Sonia’s mother was supporting her daughter to her feet.They must get to the nearest hospital as soon as possible. David never knew she was pregnant.She never told him about it. A car pulled into the compound.Mr.and mrs.Uwa;Angela’s parents got down impatiently,seeing their daughter on the ground and a woman they never wished they would see again;Sonia’s mother;Ngozi’s half sister who was always at logger heads with her(Angela’s mother) “How can father give you most of all he has and left me with with little? Am i not his daughter too? You poisoned his mind against me.We shall see”Those were the words Mrs.Ngozi uwa got from her when their father’s will was read out,and ever since then,different kinds of problems unleashed themselves on herself and her husband until they seemed to have ceased.Armed robbers visited them regularly,confiscating almost everything they had.Mrs Ngozi uwa was nearly forced to concluded that her half sister,Adaora,whose husband died in a motor accident with their two kids,was behind the disappearance of her child. Could she be the mother of Sonia? How come? Confusion and curiousity manifested themselves on her,but who was she going to ask those questions. Her half sister had gave a wicked,prolonged hiss on seeing her.It was her husband who signaled to her not to make any move or say anything to her. “What is happening here”Mr uwa asked,rushing to feel her daughter. “David what happened?”Mrs uwa asked with her heart beating fast.She feared something bad might have happened to her daughter. “She fainted!”David reported. “Isnt that Sonia your maid? What happened to her?”She asked againg pointing at them,moving out of the compound.Adaora was seriously making sure they left quicky. “What is wrong with you young man? Cant you talk again? We can take them both to the hospital”Mr uwa rushed and reversed his car.David played down his question.They got Angela into the car and in no time,they were out of the compound.Adaora and Sonia were nowhere to be found. **3.15PM THAT SAME DAY* Angela woke up to see her mother by her side.She glanced around.She was at home. The doctor said she only fainted and nothing more. Mr.uwa had tried hearing from David what actually happened but he never answered his questions the way he wanted him to,so he waited on Angela. Angela’s mother too,was not left out it thoughts.What could have happened to her precious daughter? “Are you feeling better now?”She asked,watching her daughter closely.She looked weak. Angela nodded and said she wanted to ease herself “Where is she?”David who came in few minutes later asked. “She went to ease herself”Mrs uwa replied,eyeing him suspiciously.David left. “I cant find her,”David reported,emerging from the door that led to the backyard,”I have searched every nook and cranny of this house” “Is she up already?”Mr.uwa asked,as he entered the room.Seeing the troubled look on the two faces there,the look on his face changed too. “Angela is missing”David announced,reached for his car keys and hurried out,leaving his inlaws there like undecided ghosts
David zoomed out of the compound with many thoughts racing through his mind.Where could she have gone to? Ebere’s place was where he first drove to but she wasn’t there.He called Ebere on the phone and asked her if she has seen her friend.Ebere told him she never saw her that day. The thought of her running away to kill herself scared him.He knew the whole incident got her shattered,downcasted and heart broken.The only thing on his mind at that time was to find her safe,then whatever happens between them would be another bridge to be crossed.She had left her phone at home. Somewhere along the road,David saw a crowd of people.Some were peeping,others were stretching their neck while others only shook their head. He wound down the glass of his car to inquire from one of the on-lookers what was going on. “Na one useless driver o wey jam one woman leave am there run”The bald headed skinny man answered,revealing his brown teeth. Without waiting for him to conclude,David hastily alighted from his car to see the victim.Could it be Angela? His beartbeat increased. He pushed through the crowd and behold,there she was.A young lady in a purple dress with her long hair scattered on the ground.He could see traces of blood.His heartbeat dropped as he sighed,wiping the sweat off his face.Angela was wearing a red top with a skirt made of jean material but he felt sorry for the lady lying on the ground there.Who knew if she was still breathing? That’s the problem with people,David thought,instead of people to take her to the hospital on time,they left her there,staring at her as if she was something from another planet.He ran back to his car and saw four missed calls from his father-in-inlaw who also went his way in search of her daughter. He dialled back,shook his head,aborted the call and read the message he sent:”HAVE YOU SEEN HER? WHERE ARE YOU?” He drove away,his mind focused on finding his wife. Ebere had paid some boys who raided Angela’s shop but didn’t get her.However,David’s call informing her of Angela’s disappearance got her worried because she was bent on sending the boys to her home,to kidnap her.She went over to see things for herself only to Angela’s mother pacing all around the house pensively. The baba said she must be brought to his shrine that very day. She hung around with her boys near Angela’s locality,searching everywhere with her eyes for her prey. It was when she finally gave up hope of ever finding her that she caught the sight of something.They were from Angela’s area. Ebere focused her attention on the person she saw.She was trying to hang herself with a large rope.It was no other person than the Angela everybody has been looking for. Angela opened her eyes when the blindfold was removed from them.She felt some pain and closed them again. ‘What do this people want from me?’,She kept asking herself,they should have let me alone to have peace.To rest from all these pains’ She remebered how she had gone over to Sonia’s place with the gun in her hand.If only she had met her there or even her mother but alas,the door was locked with a heavy padlock. She rubbed her hand over her eyes burning with pains. She glanced around the place.The angry looking faces of the gods,combined with the furious men that kidnapped her made her nervous. “What do you people want from me!?”She asked with shaky lips. “Your time here on earth is up,woman”the old ‘dibia’ who was just emerging answered her. “You lie.you are not my creator and so,you cant decide when my time is up”Angela,who convinced herself that her time was up when she wanted to take her life heard herself say.Her words earned her a heavy slap from one of those men,leaving traces of his fingers on her face. Ebere showed up,looking at Angela straight in the eyes. “Times comes in this life when we pay for the crimes and sins we commited.Angela,this is the time to pay yours”Ebere said with a mean face. “What are you talking about Ebere?”The confused Angela asked,not believing what was happening. “You thought i wasnt aware all this while? So you are happy that i have remained unmarried while you are enjoying life to the fullest with your husband,right? You drove away Mike,the only man that wanted to marry me by telling him how i do go about sleeping with men.Isn’t it?”Ebere stressed out. “Ebere,What do you take me for? Goodness me.So you believed i did that to you? Why should i? Everyone knows the type of life you are living.Its never a secret”Angela felt betrayed. “I’m sorry.Sonia is already pregnant for your husband.I masterminded everything.She will take over your home because you are not getting away alive”Ebere said and turned her back on her,leaving. “Ebere,Ebere,Ebe…why,i am innocent.why are you doing this to me? Save me oh God,my hands are clean”Angela cried,her heart almost crashing to pieces. “Take her to the execution ground”The old dibia commanded.
To be continued