Man of the South 3

Towards the end of the eighth month she suddenly reappeared in the house again and she was more beautiful than the last time I saw her. She seemed rested and there was a glow around her that I felt myself get jealous of her and I felt panic squeeze my heart till it felt like if I kept watching her the blood would stop flowing and I would die.
One day she came with Festus to my room and I wondered what was going on, they were sharing these glances like they had something they wanted to tell me. I watched them with keenness as they took their seat. I kept trying to get Festus to meet my eyes but no, he couldn’t meet my eyes but he could look into Chisom’s eyes without fear. Then madam started.
“Uju…”
My eyes almost popped out of its socket to realise she knew my name and could even talk to me like I existed.
“I want to sincerely thank you for giving my husband this child. You may not understand the ridicule I have had to face because I can’t give him a child.”
Wait a minute! Did I miss something? My thoughts were running wild and I was beginning to wonder if I was imagining things.
Who was the one giving who ridicule again? But I didn’t voice it out, I just kept looking at Festus to see if he supported his wife, maybe she had something on him that he was afraid she would expose and only his eyes could communicate it but he still refused to meet my eyes.
“I just want you to know that my husband’s child would not suffer any lack.”
I frowned wondering what that meant but she didn’t say any other thing. Festus did though but he had been looking past me when he talked.
“Thank you for doing this.”
Doing what exactly? I had screamed in my head but before the words could form in my mouth I saw them interlock hands and get up to leave.
For the remaining two weeks before I delivered, I watched them laugh, play, gist and eat together and I wondered where the bad tempered and ill-mannered Chisom had gone. Several times I came out and saw them kissing but would double back to avoid them knowing I had seen them.
I believed so strongly that this would wash over and Festus would come back to me seeing I was the woman who took away the insults his wife had thrown at him. He would realise soon enough that I was the woman for him so I acted like I was not bothered. It took all my life’s energy to do so.
Then the delivery came and I had a beautiful baby boy. I was overjoyed when the nurses placed the child in my arms and when he held on to my finger my heart melted and formed again, turning me in pieces. It was the most beautiful feeling. But the nurses took him away very quickly, claiming they were going to get him cleaned up. I didn’t worry, there was nothing to worry about, my prince was here and when his father saw him, I was sure he would remember how we made him.
Festus and his wife came in came in with my baby cooing and shooing him, Festus had him in his arms and my heart warmed to him but instead of acting like we had the child together he had told me thank you and they left with my child.
I had thought they were going to clean the child up but they didn’t come back that day. And when I asked the doctor he stared at me like I was insane and asked if they weren’t the parents of the child. Ok, I thought I would go crazy.
“Who had the child? Who are you calling the parents?” I had screamed.
The doctor apologised and said that they had showed him a document I had signed to be their surrogate mother and which was why he had allowed them carry my child and even written the birth certificate in their name. Hmm, I couldn’t believe what I had been hearing. I had been robbed, of a child and in broad daylight!
I can’t remember what happened after that but I must have passed out because when I came around two days later, my family members were around and fussing over me. I think mum must have talked and talked before my eyes opened because she had been so grateful and appreciative of me for hearing her. By the time they had calmed down I had to tell them my ordeal. My mother almost went off the roof hearing I had been pregnant not to talk of that they had taken the child. Her first grand child. I had to beg my brothers to allow me handle it because I know them those two guys? They have the temper of a mother hen!
So one week after I had been released from the hospital. I went to their house to collect my child and have a peaceful conversation with them and you wont believe it. They had kept my belongings at the gatehouse and left an instruction with the gateman not to let me in. So I waited outside for them, Festus must have forgotten that I knew his routine of taking a walk in the evenings and true to my expectation they were taking a walk, hand in hand, whispering and smiling at each other.
I didn’t see my baby anywhere but I was not ready to talk. The sight of them living the happily ever after at my expense infuriated me, and my heart burned with hatred. I don’t know when I started the car but it all happened so fast and the next thing I knew Festus was on my bonnet while Chisom had jumped out of my way and was screaming. I screeched to a halt and reversed with speed, he fell off my car and I drove off.
The following day two police men were at my house to arrest me for trying to kill a man and his wife with my car.

The court is now adjourned.” I heard the Judge say and the Judge get to her feet amidst the shout of “Court!”
I watched with dark eyes as Chisom and Festus left the courtroom hand in hand. I smiled because I knew the doom that awaited them not too far away from the courtroom. They would have chosen my wrath over her brothers’.

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