In this life there are two things involved. Its either you make a good decision or a bad decision but be assured that in every one of your actions, there are aftermath. You cannot burn out a candle and never expect the remains of wax. You cannot be for God and devil at the same time. There is nothing like neutral. Lukewarm Christians are the ones who bring destruction and confusion among other people who are not saved yet because they fail to bring out the true reflection of Christ.
My life was now on a perfect highway. For now I could relax and praise God for His abundant blessings. It’s not like I didn’t have problems, but they were not something I couldn’t fix. I was a stay home mum not out of choice but because Peter had insisted on it. He said I should have enough time to take care of the children. He didn’t want a stranger doing that, I guess the issue of the Ugandan maid made him not to want any maid close to the children. I would sit home all day and pamper my pumpkins. Laurent was such an adorable baby. Amanda would cry and refuse to go to school without him. I would drop her at school with a promise that when she comes back she will have him to herself. I had just put him to bed and I was watching TV while waiting for time to go pick Amanda from school. My phone rung, it was Norah.
“Where are you?”
“I am home where else would I be you fool?”
“Yeah luv… we are now living posh and like royalty”
“God knows I deserve it.” I replied with a smile on my face.
“I am right at the gate; I have a big surprise for you.” She knew I hated surprises, they gave me the creeps.
“I hope I won’t kill you afterwards. Come inside the door is open.”
A few minutes later, Norah came in with a strange man. I hugged her and offered them to sit down. I looked at him and felt like I had seen him somewhere before. Maybe he is one of her ex boyfriends. I thought.
“This is my best friend, sweet pie Wangu you have heard so much about.” I smiled shyly because the stranger couldn’t take his eyes off me. I felt uneasy.
“Wangu this is Edward.” I couldn’t believe she could bring him to my house. I didn’t want any contradictions. If Peter could walk in that very minute, he couldn’t take lightly to the presence of a man. Experience had taught me that much. This guy was trouble with a capital T. I stood up.
“Why did you bring him here?” I asked seething with anger. They were surprised with the overreaction. What a nerve he had. It was clear; he never got the message that I didn’t want anything to do with him. The problem with some men is that if you tolerate their advances, they mistake it for an encouragement to go further.
“Give me back my money and get out of my house.” I didn’t want to take any silly chances. I didn’t care what sort of friendship Norah had with him; it was out of bounds to get him here.
“What’s the rush? I told you that I want to marry you, is that the way to treat your future husband?” if someone could say he was on drugs, I couldn’t agree less. If he was expecting me to jump up and touch the moon at the marriage proposal given to me on a silver platter, I was sorry to disappoint him. I had a man who I was happy with and I wasn’t a desperado. This guy had drama written on his forehead. Be careful people face book has deceived and driven many to destruction. The way his photos looked, wasn’t the same way he looked in person. Thank God I didn’t fall for him. Whatever favor I had done him, was merely out of goodwill, no strings attached. Did he think I had packed my heart and put it in his boots to toss?
It was evident he was a chain smoker, coupled with cheap liquor sachets; one could smell it right to the depths of the ocean. I don’t know when was the last time water had the honor of visiting his body.
“Don’t be mean to the poor guy Wangu. He needs your assistance. He wants money to go back to Mzimba, he was deported from South Africa.” I didn’t believe these people thought I owned a charity organization. He had not yet paid the previous amount he borrowed, now he wanted some more. I wasn’t interested in making a further victim of these useless games. He would not get any penny from me. If she was truly his friend, let her help him, it wasn’t as if she couldn’t afford it. They left. He grumpy and shoulders weighed down by his backpack, her seething with anger for my lack of sympathy. I didn’t care.
Later that evening when Peter came home. He had about him an air of weariness. I could see that something was weighing his heart down. I run him a hot bath and we had supper. Amanda’s endless questions were met with a mere yes or no or a nod. I had to tell her to eat her food in silence because dad wasn’t feeling well. It was unusual. I asked him to tell me what was wrong when I joined him in bed. He woke up and got some papers from his briefcase. I read it in shock. It was his transfer letter to Nkhotakota in Six months time. 129 kilometers away from Lilongwe. I was short of words, he was supposed to go and sort out accommodation issues before he could take us along and I had no idea how long it would take. I was so in love with the house we were currently moving, the idea of moving any time soon didn’t go well with me. I tried to ask him if he could refuse, he said transfer came along with a change in package and it was for our own good. Sleep wasn’t easy to come by; I took myself a pen and paper to write to my parents. Hearing Peter talk more about his relatives, roused nostalgia in me. I told my mum how much I missed her and longed to see the whole family again. I was seriously thinking about visiting home.
A week later I got a reply from my mum. She told me that my father was suffering from stroke for quite some time now. I could imagine that my family was now struck by acute poverty with nobody to fend for them. I felt so guilty of not being there for my mum when she needed me most. If I go, how would I explain the existence of the children they had never known? I know my mother would understand at last but won’t I send my father to the grave? I knew our relationship wasn’t one I would boast of but he was still my father when all is said and done. I had to be there maybe they were his last days. I told Peter of my plans and he said when am ready to go I should let him know. I was ready to go in two weeks time. I suffered a long lecture from Peter to take good care of the children, he didn’t want stories. He said I had to refrain from giving them to suspicious looking people who would bewitch them. I told him that he had survived from that very same village and why the children would not survived it too.
“I was so bony as a kid the witches probably thought my meat wouldn’t be tasty.” I laughed so hard at his reply.
It’s better to travel to Nkhatabay these days because you can board a bus straight without going to sleep at Dwambazi and board another bus the following morning. These days modes of transportation are plenty. I set off at six oclock in the morning and when the time was striking past four, I arrived at Sanga Stage and hired two bicycles popularly known as sacramenta to take me to the village. One to carry me and my babies, the other to carry my bags. It wasn’t an easy ride especially for the circlers who found it difficult to wade through the sea of lake shore sand. They left us a few houses away from my place and we walked the rest of the way with Laurent strapped on my back, bags on my head and held Amanda’s hand. When I was approaching I couldn’t miss the sound of voices wailing, then I saw people gathered on the verandah and some men sat under a mango tree wearing somber faces, I didn’t recognize anyone. My heart skipped a bit because all the signs befitting a funeral gathering were evident.
It left me with one question, was it my father? If yes then I was too late …
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