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THE TENANT (episode 4)

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(Fugitive)
© Ajiboye Ayobami Tomilayo
 THE TENANT Episode 4
Francis drove on smiling in such a way that revealed his dentition. He was happy he had contact with the beautiful ladies. And he meant it when he said he was interested in her case- or was it truly in her? He couldn’t answer that just yet, time will tell.
Francis was a very cute and tall guy, he had the exact features of a model. He turned 25 last month and he just returned from America to visit his 17 year old sister who is sick and he would not return soon but even if he wanted to leave he won’t because of who he just met. He was however grateful that Niks gave him her number, he would call her tomorrow after church service. He grinned again with self satisfaction revealing his white set of teeth and he had a gap between his incisors. He was the dream man of any lady.
Francis was taken to study in the US at the age of 16 and this is the second time he would come home ever since, the first time was when he lost his dad two years ago- he went back to the States with his mum leaving his sister behind with an uncle so she would finish her secondary education.
Francis went to Michigan University and studied Psychology. He graduated three years ago, finished his masters last year and he is presently working in an hospital at New York. He was engaged to Jane, a black American lady
He had a strong feeling that there was a reason behind Vanessa hating al the Francis on this earth planet and come to think of it, Nike made a comment of her going through a lot recently. He was determined to help her when he said he was interested in her. He would get her out of the trauma at least he was able to help his sister.
‘Damn!’, he suddenly exclaimed stamping his fist on the steering wheel. He had forgot to get the drugs prescribed by the doctor from the pharmacy. He had to turn back.
He got the drugs and some food for his sister and some for himself. He was on the road leading to the estate where he lived in another two hours- he was stuck in traffic.
He maneuvered the car into the estate’s gates, he drove past different streets and accessed the whole building he saw as though he was seeing them for the very first time, he saw a truck carrying furniture trying to enter a big building painted lemon, obviously moving into the compound.
He reached his house number and opened the gate with the remote control, he parked t he car in the parking lot and stepped out holding the medicine bag in his left and the cellophane containing the food in his right.
He rang the door bell of the flush door and a plump woman in her early forties opened the door. He went inside the house.
‘Oh dear!’, the woman exclaimed as he hugged her and she collected the cellophane from him seeing how tired he was.
‘Ma’am, Lagos traffic is something else. I should have arrived earlier.
Sorry dear, you will have to get used to it since you will be around for some time.

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Francis sighed and shook his head.
‘Where is Sharon?’, he asked.
‘She is upstairs in her room’. The woman replied as she followed Francis to the kitchen.
Alright ma, you can have the second pack of food, I will just give her this so she can take her medicine.
‘No! you should eat that, I am leaving soon’, the woman objected shaking her head, watching
‘No way, I am the man, you should eat that- I will find something else to eat’, Francis quickly said and ran upstairs with a tray containing the food, cutlery, a bottle of water, a cup and the medicine bag- avoiding the woman’s protest.
The woman walked back to the sitting room smiling. ‘the boy is just humble and kind’, the woman said shaking her head the smile still visible on her face.
The woman’s name was Mrs. Chioma Winifred, Francis’s aunt- his mum’s younger sister. She was the closest to her elder sister and ever since she heard of Sharon’s illness and Francis’s arrival, she has been helpful. She is a business woman and owns one of the largest boutiques in town. She held up a fashion magazine to read when her phone rang, the caller’s ID was my sister and she picked it up really excited.
Francis turned the knob and pushed the door open with his right leg after knocking briefly. He saw Sharon reading her Bible on the bed.
‘ Hey bro! she exclaimed happily’
‘Hi Sharon, how are you feeling today?, he asked very delighted to see her sister happy. Its been long since he last saw the big smile he is seeing now.
‘I am feeling great bro- and how was your day?, she asked sitting up the Bible still in her hand.
‘It wasn’t bad, Francis replied and you have to tell me how it went, he quickly chipped in.
‘oh-well, she laughed and continued, I received a couple of phone calls from my friend and the I got one from uncle Richard.
‘he called you’, Francis asked with a tinge of anger
Sharon simply nodded and added,’ he called to ask for my forgiveness but-I cut the line because I was too upset.
‘That’s fine, don’t bother about that’, Francis said patting her shoulder.
She shrugged and Francis brought the food closer on a stool. Sharon prayed and started eating and after wards took her medicine. Francis made to pack the plates but she stopped him. ‘I can do that now bro’, she said smiling.
‘wow! Francis said as he watched her with admiration. He opened the door for her and they both left the room.
Sharon greeted Mrs. Winifred and went to the kitchen to wash the dishes while his brother chatted away with the woman.
Sharon was a very beautiful and adorable seventeen year old girl. She graduated from high school early this year. She lived with her aunt, another sibling to her mum throughout her final year in high school. She was a victim of s£xual assault and rape. And as she washed the dishes, her mind went back to her bitter experiences
It wasn’t up to two weeks after she moved in with her aunt that her husband, Mr. Adebiyi, the general manager of David and Sisters, started throwing advances at her. Her aunt
was a banker and returned no sooner than 10 pm everyday except on Sundays and sometimes Saturdays when she stayed at home.
Mr. Adebiyi finally raped her and she cried from that night till day break, she tried telling her aunt a couple of times. She remembered one of those occasions she tried telling her. It was around 10:30 pm.
‘Aunty!?’, she began, ‘I need to tell you something’
‘Oh my God Sharon, can’t you see I am tired, I just got back from work’, she said half yelling.
‘Aunty-but-‘,
‘Okay dear, tell daddy everything you want to tell me when he returns from work tomorrow’, she said cutting her short and stood immediately and left for her matrimonial room before she starts protesting again.
Sharon broke down uncontrollably in tears as soon as her aunt exited the room.
She punched the brown leather seat in despair and quickly got up when she saw her husband’s aunt come into the living room, she eyed him badly and she could see a sign of relief written all over him-he was probably scared Sharon would successfully tell his wife about them-or him actually.. It wasn’t the poor girl’s wish or desire. But he can’t just bring himself to stop as his wife was always busy with work.
Sharon eyed him and left for her own room and slamming the door with full force obviously trying to show Mr. Adebiyi how mad she was at him.
They have been taught in school how s£xual assault and rape could have negative effects on the victim and such person should not keep quiet but since she had tried many times she decided to keep to herself.
To be continued …
NRX
NEXT (episode 5)                                                                           PREVIOUS (episode 3)

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