When where you going to tell me about it?” Ken asked her
She turned her face towards the window, away from his eyes, the ray of the sun permeating in the hospital room turned her face to golden brown. She didn’t want him to see how miserable she was about everything that happened, she doesn’t want him to feel sorry for her either.
Her greatest regret was that she lost the pregnancy, when she was beginning to love the baby, she was beginning to feel the movements, the connection between them the intimacy, she had lost them all, those moments in the bathroom when she would stand Unclad, with the water running down her body and she would be speaking to her while rubbing her stomach.
She had wanted the baby to be a girl so she had always addressed the baby as a girl;
“Imelda is preparing pepper soup this evening, hope you will like it little lady?” she would talk to her little protruded stomach
Tears rolled down her cheeks as she remembered all these, she didn’t want him to see that she was crying, she doesn’t deserve his pity, she couldn’t face him with guilt, she would have died with the baby and forget about everything.
“I would have been part of their lives at least for a little while, I would have be happy to be their father for just a day, but you shut me out completely” He said
“Did he say ‘their lives?” is there something he wasn’t telling me?” She thought
“one moment I heard about your pregnancy, the next moment it is all gone, a dream, a mirage… to even think that they were two of them…”
He broke off, fighting not to get emotional
She looked at him sharply, what does he mean ‘two of them’ she wondered
“You mean they were two? Like twins…how?” She asked him
“I got to know about it just yesterday, Doctor Ayo said one was already gone by the time we got to the hospital, and we are still at risk of losing the other anytime” he said looking away
“Oh God!” she exclaimed with her hand on her mouth, the grief that was building in her almost choked her, “Oh my God!” she said again
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He blinked severally to prevent tears from building up in his eyes; he wanted to be strong for them
“I don’t have any idea, I didn’t know… Oh God!” She muttered
He gathered her in his arms, he said no words for he was grieving too, she was sobbing softly, he felt her tears on his shoulder
“You shouldn’t be crying now so you don’t hurt yourself, you need to recover very well” He said after some minutes had passed
They had brought her back to her hospital room after the scan, she was faintly conscious throughout the scan and could understand all the discussion that was going on around her, but the only thing she could remember was when she heard someone said ‘it was already gone before she got here’
She thought of the lost when they brought her back and she became fully conscious, It was like an arrow passed through her heart, they heard her groan, she didn’t know what to do with her life anymore, a sense of failure over took her,
“Why am I failing in the simplest thing every woman knows how to do? Why couldn’t I keep my baby alive?” she asked herself
When he walked into the room she looked away from him, she had failed him again. He had sat beside him without saying anything for a while, just holding her hand, then he threw the question ‘when where you going to tell me… ’
He tightened his grip around her, his embrace felt warm
“I am sorry K, I have been so unfair to you…you shouldn’t have met me in the first place” She said, her face hiding on his chest
He was hurting and he couldn’t hid it anymore, maybe this wouldn’t have happened if she had agreed to come back to him, maybe he would have known how to protect her, maybe she would have even called earlier enough when she got the wine, that would have prevented her from drinking it.
But he didn’t lash out on her, he knew she was also hurting, so he held her to his chest and silently cried for his loss.
Edu sat in his care and watched, he had finally located her thanks to her cousin. He had set out to solve the riddle early Monday morning, he had asked other sales girls about Chinyeaka, but only one of them had admitted to have known where she stays.
He had met Chinyeaka’s Cousin in her salon, claiming to be Chinyeaka’s long lost boyfriend who had come back to settle down with her, the cousin was so thrills that she gave out information about Chinyeaka’s way about like a parrot;
“Make I call am for phone na?” She had offered
“No no…” he had objected sharply
“I wan surprise am” Edu added handing over few five hundred naira notes to the excited lady
“Correct guy!” she hailed him, chewing her gum loudly
It was as if luck was beaming her generous light on him that day because he had gotten a glimpse of her standing with a young man with a tattered jean and a hood by the junction leading to the restaurant as directed by her cousin, the restaurant wasn’t hard to locate any way as it was popular in the local community.
He drove no further; he brought his car to a halt a little far from the junction and waited
He saw the two persons exchange heated words, he was sure it was a heated argument because they where pointing fingers and throwing fists in the air, he also noticed when she brought some money from her Jean pocket, counted it and handed it over to him, the young man smile, looked around and walked away.
Edu wanted to follow Chinyeaka back to the restaurant but on a second thought, he came out of the car and followed the young man.
“Hey! Hey! Hello…excuse me!” Edu increased his pace as he tried to catch up with the young man
It was as if he knew he was being followed and had picked up his pace real fast
“Abeg no vex, na question I wan ask you!” Edu shouted
“I now know you abeg, go ask another person” the young Man replied while still walking very fast.
Edu needed to slow him down but didn’t want to draw attention to them
“I dey look for person abeg help me”
“Oga ask another person!” The young man replied, though he had slow down his pace, Edu saw his chance of getting closer to him
“No vex abeg, that babe way you been dey talk with…”
“Which babe? I no know watin you dey talk about” the young man cut in, he was physically frightened as Edu pointed out his meeting with Chinyeaka.
“My Man chill… see eh, na my girlfriend be that, she jus bullsh*t me like that and ‘japa’ I don dey look for am since, abeg I wan know where she dey stay now how I go take meet am, I wan beg am…” Edu hoped that his acts would work on him
The young man stood for a while looking at him as if he was weight whether what he said was the truth or not.
“How you take get here?” He asked
“Na her sister I met” Edu replied
“My guy you sure say that babe na your girl, you no look like the kine person way this girl dey roll with o” He said, looking at Edu from head to toe
“Yes my brother, but she leave me comot” Edu replied
“Hmm… my man I no go lie to you o, I better make you forget that babe, she no be am, her heart black no be small…” He said
“Why you talk like that?” Edu asked, showing keen interest
The young Man caught himself before he said more than he was supposed to
“You be police?” He asked rather
“No o, I wan know why she leave me, I no do her anything”
They exchanged glance, the young man was convinced a little but he was still being careful
“I get one other babe way she say make I dey watch for am, small time I hear say the babe don die, in short I see am as them dey carry the babe comot sef, me I know say na your girlfriend kill that other girl, I even tell am sef say I know and she no deny am…”
Edu didn’t show his excitement; his only regret was that he didn’t record his conversation with this young Man
“I can believe Chinyeaka can do this, she was such a nice girl when we were together” Edu was closed to tears, putting his University Certificate as a theater artist to use.
Ken had always told him that he was wasting his talent doing business; he would have gone into the movies straight after graduation,
“Money no dey that job abeg” he had said to Ken
His little acting worked
“I go advice you make you leave that babe, me if I collect the money way I wan collect from am, I go find my way run” he said to Edu
“Chai! See my life na…mtcheeewww… Abeg I fit give you my number, if you get anything you still wan tell me, you fit call” Edu said
He didn’t allow the young man to make his decision, he shove his hand inside his pocked and brought out few naira notes and handed them over to him, the young man eagerly took the money, brought out his phone that was held together by a rubber bind and saved Edu’s number.
“Thank you sir, ese o ! I go call you eh…”
“Edu watched him walk away.
He was lost in his thought, they had not said much to each other, just few words
“How long have I been here?” she had asked
“Since Saturday morning…that is two days now” he replied
The heaviness in their hearts was so strong in the room
“And you have been here all along?” she asked again after some time
“Yes, though I left for some few hours today…I needed to check the shop and know what is happening there” he replied
“Have you heard anything from Imelda? She is supposed to be here” she said
“Actually…she was detained by the police in connection with this case, she is a major suspect” He said
“I don’t think she was responsible K, someone gave her that drink…”
“How are you sure about that, did you see the person?” He asked her
“Not really, but I overheard her talking with someone, I heard footsteps and I saw when she closed the gate…” Grace insisted
He pondered on what she said for a while and then said
“Edu didn’t agree that she is responsible too, he is strongly accusing someone else” He said
“Really…Who?” she asked sharply, she was eager to know who would want to see her dead and why
There was a soft tap at the door and Doctor Ayo stepped in with a sheet of paper, smiling
“I thing we some one really want to have a family” he said looking at both of them with smiles
“What do you Mean Doc” Ken asked
“Well… according to what I am seeing here, you tiny baby have decided to live after all, I don’t know how he was able to survive, it is a miracle…” he was not done with what he was saying when Ken screamed out of Joy
“Yes! Yes!!” he stood up and lifted Doctor Ayo from the floor out of happiness. Grace was laughing and crying at the same time
“Calm down you two… Take it easy…” said Doctor Ayo as he straightened his coat and panting
“There are more to be done to keep the babe” He continued
“Okay…”Chorused Ken and Grace
“She needs lots of rest, the womb is still fragile, we don’t know how strong it is to hold this baby but we would try, you also have to try to keep you baby. So no hard works, no stress, eat healthy and rest a lot…for now you may not eat solid foods until you heal very well from the inside, after that, you will be free…” he said
“And how long will this healing take?” Ken asked with a chuckle
“Until I say so…till then, she stays here” Doctor Ayo said before leaving them to celebrate the good news
“You are very excited right now and you may want to scream…but you know you are not yet well enough to do so…” Ken said to her, both of them were chuckling like primary school kids.
She wanted to scream down the hospital but had little strength to do so, so she laughed
“Come here you stubborn woman” he said to her and she flew in to his arms.
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