I was released from the hospital the next day. Dad didn’t take the news of me being pregnant well. He was about to beat the hell out of me when mom took it all on my behalf. We both cried afterwards as she held my hands in regrets of letting me go out that day. The thought that I had gotten r*ped because of a pack of cigarette made her even angrier.
“Aisha” she called out and I answered.
“Do you want to have the baby?” she asked, and I shook my head. “Don’t worry… . We’ll have it removed”
“We would kill it right?” I asked going down bible study and Sunday school memory lane. “Thou shall not kill” I mumbled, “I won’t be able to live with myself”
“Do you know what it takes to be a mother?” mom asked, “Worst of it, you’d be living in this hell called home”
She paused then sniffed looking down as if embarrassed. She had just said more than expected. “Why do you stick with him mom….why stick with dad?” I finally summoned the courage to ask.
“Why not leave him?”
Mom turned back as if trying to survey if father was anywhere near. “Because I loved him…..i loved your dad…
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Now I’m just doing it to fulfil all righteousness; I don’t want to divorce since it’s against our religion”
“Until dad dies” I added and mom shot a glare at me. “Aisha!”
“That’s if he doesn’t kill you first” I came clean with a scoff. “I pray to God everyday to change him… hopefully someday he would”
Miss Zainab came the following morning with her fiancé a human right lawyer who seemed really angry about my being r*ped. He brought an offer to sue Mr. Titus to court for r*ped.
I didn’t like the idea of going to court because obviously the whole town would find out about it therefore stigmatizing me but after being oriented that my success in court would make other girls in my position come out clean about their experience and probably bring those criminals to book; I accepted to their bid; at least a chance to make a difference.
Christopher Ajayi, the lawyer then requested I tell him everything that happened without missing a single detail.
The court proceeding commenced, Mr. Titus had left for Lagos and was summoned back to town. He pleaded not guilty that I was a liar and probably a machinery employed by political adversary to tarnish his image.
Things heated up within days; it was my word against Mr. Titus’ I had hope of winning the case.
I couldn’t wait to see him pay for his sins but everything crumbled after the wife came in to bear witness of his so called “innocence”
“Where was your husband on the fourth of February, 2003?” Christopher asked, “At home….we…. the kids we didn’t go to church that day; my son Junior was sick…we called in a nurse to take care of him…you can as well ask the nurse” she busted into tears looking at her husband.
“My husband is innocent of this charges; this girl lies!”
“So he didn’t go out that day?”
“He did…. He was the one who brought the nurse in.”
“Perhaps the r*pe occurred the moment he went out”
“Objection my lord!” the defense attorney announced but was overruled.
“He didn’t take up to fifteen minutes and he came along with Janet; she’s a witness to my husband’s innocence. I know my husband has political enemies, but I never knew they would stoop this low as to accuse my husband of r*ping a fifteen year old”
“She’s just fourteen! And you’re a liar!” I heard mom yell while Miss Aisha tried to calm her.
She was good at lieing, that I can say. I almost believed her own story amidst those tears; I noticed others did too.
After several testimonies from various false witnesses including Mr. Titus’ first son Junior; I lost the case.
I waited outside until I saw a car coming out of the gate.
I took my chance and walked into the car. I could see the terror in the wife’s eyes, she was scared as i walked into the moving car.
“Are you crazy?” I heard her ask as she came out, slamming the door of the car. “You could have died!” she added, well I would prefer death any day to this embarrassment, I thought within. Mr. Titus came out shaking his head.
“You this girl, what do you want from me again?”
“The baby” I replied in tears, “It’s your flesh and blood; please accept your responsibility” I added then laughed. I had no idea why I laughed, I felt like I was going insane. This was followed by a long hiss from him.
“You had better find the father of that bastard and stop looking for whom to pin it on…. Or better yet, flush the useless thing out” he added and I knelt down holding firmly to his legs. “Please Sir”
Mr. Titus pushed me away making a move back to his car. “Honey let’s go” he chipped in and the wife followed. They drove off leaving a pathetic me on the ground in tears.