It seemed the response was in the affirmative as he cut the phone. Derin had ignored her till they got into bed and slept, she was surprised when about one hour later, he turned to her for s*x. She had imagined it to be reconciliatory and had expected the usual but his performance surprised her beyond her imaginations.
Segi came back to the present, and sat on the sofa closest to thebedroom door. She found it odd that she could smell Derin’s perfume so strongly; she looked around and found the cause. Apparently, her husband in his usual fashion had discarded his jacket on the arm of the sofa.
She picked the jacket and realised that there was something bulky in theinner pocket, she examined it and realised that it was an envelope with a lot of cash inside. On the outer side of the envelope, she could read : ‘From Oyinda’. She began to wonder who Oyinda was. Where had hegotten so much money and more importantly, why had he not told her? Was he keeping it secret from her? What kind of fellowship would give anyone so much money in just one evening?
Segilola was lost in thought.
Derin knew he was alone in the room before he even opened his eyes, he could feel Segi’s side of the bed was empty. He reminisced back to yesterday night. Why had he dreamt of the light skinned girl, he’d had such an erotic vision of her that he’d had to have s*x with Segi, his manhood began to rise again and he decided he had to focus on other issues. Could he really boot Segilola out of the way? Did he stand a chance of getting more out of Oyinda if he could get Segi out? Would it be fair? He decided to get up and look for his wife, so that they could make up properly. He found her sitting on the sofa outside.
‘Good morning, S.H.’ he said hugging her
‘Hey’ she said,
‘That’s a little cold isn’t it?’ He said winking at her. For someone who had made so much noise from her enjoyment last night, she was a little off
‘Depends. Who is Oyinda and why is she giving you money?’ asked Segilola
‘Oyinda?’ he asked confused
‘Don’t even pretend, Derin’ responded Segi
‘Ohhh, Oyindamola Robert? She’s Mrs Robert’s daughter, why?’ he said, finally recalling
‘The Roberts again uh? Why then is she giving you money?’ Asked Segi
‘She didn’t give me money, it was her mum that gave me money.’ Heresponded quietly ‘Is there any reason why you are going through my things? He asked
‘Is there any reason why you are keeping secrets?’ she responded with a question of her own.
They stared at each other for a long while before each walked off in different directions, to start their morning rituals. There were no morning prayers at the Hughes residence for it was an angry morning.
‘Deaconess are you near here now?’ Asked Adesua, she had been waiting for the call all morning. They had agreed to meet at the estate gates and the Deaconess was obviously not a stickler for keeping to time
‘Yes, Sister, I’m there already. You can leave your house now’ said the Deaconess
As Adesua got into her car, she knew she needed to get in and out quickly. She had sent the driver and housekeeper to Mile 12 Market so that the coast would be clear for her to go on her Prayer Jaunt. She did not need either of them to know what she was up to, otherwise, her husband would hear of it.
Adesua was angry to find out that the Deaconess was not waiting at theestate gate when she got there. She called the woman again.
‘Deaconess I cannot see you. Where are you?’ she asked
‘Sorry, our bus is nearly there’ said the woman
‘This is annoying! Why will you let me come out when you have not gotten here? Should a Deaconess lie?’ said Adesua, irritated. She waited in her car for another ten minutes before she saw the Deaconess alighting from the bus. In those ten minutes, she had tried to call her husband, and was excited that his phone went through, unfortunately he did not respond to any of the six missed calls she placed to him.
‘Sister, don’t be angry, please’ said Deaconess
‘Okay, let’s go. We need to be fast’ said Adesua, who was in a rush. She needed to get back before her domestic staff did.
‘Don’t worry; this will be the end of your problems’ said the Deaconess. ‘It’s just that….’ She began and faltered
‘What?’ asked an irritated Adesua
‘E go cost oh’ said the Deaconess
‘You know money is not a problem’ responded Adesua who started thelong drive to the Alfa’s house in Epe. When they got there, Adesua was a little concerned to realise that they had driven so far, and to such a secluded area. With her heart in her mouth, she asked the Deaconess, ‘are we there now?
‘Yes. We will walk a little bit though’ responded the Deaconess as they both alighted from the car and began a seven minute trek to the Alfa’s house.
As soon as they arrived, the Deaconess announced their arrival and they were asked to enter the house. Adesua did not notice that her companion had remover her slippers before entering and she walked in with her shoes.
Before she could take a seat, the Alfa yelled at her:
‘Don’t sit! Remove your shoes!’ said the elderly man who sat on the floor as Adesua hurriedly removed her shoes and went outside to drop them.
Once seated, she looked at her surroundings and wondered if she was in the right place. The Alfa had several interesting items tied in several corners of his otherwise simple living room. The floor was covered with linoleum and at the far end of the room was a bed with a tattered looking bed sheet on it; she could see the bed through the open makeshift curtain that had been made of a string tied across the room attached to a woman’s wrapper. Adesua could easily imagine that in its hey days, the wrapper had been full of colour, it was now faded, and looked dirty.
The string which held the curtain also held many other clothes, shecould make out a cardigan and a towel from the pile of clothes on thestring. Adesua kept looking up, hoping that the string would not break while she was here. It was a very distracting thought.
‘Baba, we are here because of this my sister, she has been facing many probl….’ Began the Deaconess
‘Keep quiet! Let her speak herself! Madam, bring out hundred naira, fold it in your hand and whisper all your problems into it’ he said
‘I don’t have one hundred sir’ said Adesua. ‘Deaconess, do you have?’ she asked the Deaconess.

‘No, interjected the man, it has to be your money’ said the old man
Adesua brought out a one thousand naira note and did as she had been directed. When she was done, the man presented an old tray upon which she put the money. He then poured some sand on the tray and made some incantations before he began to tell her what her problems were.
‘You cannot have children and your husband is not concerned about it. The problem is from your step mother who was against your marriage to this man. Your step mum is late now. We would have to appease her spirit. She possessed a vengeful spirit. Don’t worry, you will have to bathe the spiritual stench that has been placed off you, so that your husband would find you attractive again. Once you do this, he will begin to look for you himself. There is a river behind here. You can do that now’ said the man
Adesua was surprised that he had gotten so many facts right, she had her doubts that he was a Muslim Cleric. Or is this how they operate? She conferred with the Deaconess and agreed that she would have her bath quickly which she did.
Whilst she was bathing, the Deaconess ran to the old man.
‘Well done Baba, you used the information well. Now charge her thirty thousand naira, my cut will be ten thousand, said the Deaconess
‘Is that not too much?’ said the man who looked shocked at the price she had named
‘No! I know her well.’ Said the Deaconess as she reassured him
‘Okay’ said the man who did not look too sure
As soon as Adesua finished her bath and dressed up, she heard her phone ring. She checked the screen and it was her husband! Was this a mere coincidence or had her prayers worked speedily?
‘Hhh..ello’ said Adesua into the phone
‘Ades, where are you?’ asked her husband
‘I popped out quickly’ she responded
‘Where is everyone at home? The house is locked’ he said, sounding very irritated
‘Are you home right now?’ she asked
‘What a stupid question! How else would I know the house is locked? he asked, vibrating with anger
‘I’m sorry. I will be on my way right now’ she said as she hurriedly put on her clothes
‘Deaconess, let’s go! My husband is at home, waiting for me! She said
‘Praise the Lord! Can you see how fast this man’s prayers work?’ said theDeaconess who was ready to take the glory.
‘Let’s hurry, she said as she threw a wad of fifty thousand on the old man’s table. ‘I’m sorry Baba, I need to go. Please manage that.’
She was at the car honking her horn for the Deaconess to hurry up. Shewas too worried to notice the Deaconess tuck some money into her already full bra cup.
Adesua knew how her husband sounded when he was mad. She hoped she would not end up with another black eye today. The last one took a very long time to clear. Charles Susu was not a man to keep waiting. With her heart pounding, she found herself stuck at the Ajah gridlock and knew she was toast. Or would the cleansing bath work and make him forgive her? Adesua was too scared to imagine the consequences, she could only hope and pray


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