AMAZING LOVE - Episode 10

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Eka nodded happily and took the card from him. She waited impatiently for Dr. Gerry to leave for work, but he wasn’t done yet, “Eka, I ...

Eka nodded happily and took the card from him. She waited impatiently for Dr. Gerry to leave for work, but he wasn’t done yet, “Eka, I will speak with my sister today about the sewing machine. I know she will let me have one. As soon as she agrees I will take excuse from work to go bring it home.” “Thank you doctor.” Then Dr. Gerry turned and left for work. Eka didn’t wait a moment, she locked the door and ran into her room and resumed her prayers. On her knees she poured out her heart to God. “Dear God, whatever this thing is, I ask you in the name of Jesus, please take it away from me. I don’t want to be a witch.” She remained in her room till afternoon and did not eat anything. Fearing that Dr. Gerry might return suddenly with the sewing machine she went into the bathroom to have her bath. She expected the bruise on her back to burn painfully when water touched it, but to her dismay, the bruise was gone. There was no sign of it on her back. In joy she had her bath quickly to go have a chat with Faustina, the neighbour who helped her burn her clothes the previous day. When she was done she went to knock on Faustina’s door, but no one answered her. Through the glass door she could tell someone was in the apartment, but the person, whoever he or she was, did not have her time. She didn’t care; she was too excited to spare a thought for what went on with the neighbours. She ran into the street to call Simbi from a pay phone.

She did not want to be heard, so she moved away from the girl who managed the call centre. “Hello.” “Who are you?” asked Simbi’s father. “Papa, this is Rita, Simbi’s friend. Can I speak with her?” “Simbi! A friend of yours is on the phone!” Simbi’s father echoed. In a moment’s time, Simbi’s voice came through, “Hello!” “Simbi, it is Eka.” “Eka! I have been longing to hear from you. Hold on let me go to my room.” “Is anything wrong?” “Eka wait…I don’t want my father to know it is you.” Simbi hastened into her room and shot the door behind her. “Ehee! Eka God has begun to vindicate you.” Simbi continued. “Simbi I am dying to know what is happening over there; please just tell me what it is.” “Last night three children died in our street.” “What?! Are you serious?” “I am dead serious Eka. Four other children are also sick. Now they don’t know who to blame. Your parents are ashamed and do not know what to do. This afternoon they came to ask me if I have heard anything about you. I was so angry I refused to answer them a word.” Ekaette’s heart began to beat fast and she thought, “Could I really be a witch? I had an attack early this morning and last night some children also died… No, it can’t be me. This has to be something else.” “Eka! Are you still there?” “Yes, Simbi.” “Okay…the street people have gone to invite government health workers to investigate the deaths.” “Please Simbi, as soon as their finding are made known let me know.” “I won’t fail to do that for anything. How are you doing? Have you started the job?” “No, Simbi. I would rather be starting my own sewing business; the man I told you about wants to get me a sewing machine.”

“Eka, God has begun to lift you high. Make sure you keep your head low, okay and don’t forget me!” “I won’t forget you Simbi.” The sound of Eka’s voice wavered and Simbi picked it up. “Is there something you haven’t told me Eka?” “Yes, Simbi. This morning I had an attack. Something attacked me while I was lying on the bed watching TV. It left a mark on my back. I did not see what it was. I was scared almost to death. At first I could not tell the source of it until I saw my dead grandmother standing in my room. Simbi, it was as though she was never dead. I saw her the same way she was the last time I saw her before her death. She entered my room with an evil perfume.” “Eka, I don’t like the sound of this! What does she want with you?” “I don’t know Simbi. But since Dr. Gerry left for work, I have been praying against any power which intends to initiate me into witchcraft.” “You have to fast and pray harder, Eka. I will join you in the fast. Whatever power made your grandmother to leave her grave to come pay you a visit will be destroyed after our fast. Don’t let fear overwhelm you. You are not a witch and I know you are not one.” “Simbi, I have already begun to fast. Moments ago I left my room to go have my bath; I expected the bruise on my back to burn intensely when water touched it, but instead I found it had disappeared. It is no longer on my back.”

“You mean it has gone… it is no longer there.” “Yes Simbi! It is gone.” “I don’t know what to make of this, but I will talk to pastor about it. Whatever he tells me I will let you know.” “Thank you Simbi. I have to hang up now. There are others who want to make calls here, let me not keep them waiting for too long.” “Okay Eka.” Ekaette dropped the call and paid the girl who managed the call centre. She hastened back to Dr. Gerry’s apartment. Just before she passed Faustina’s apartment, Faustina came out. Ekaette greeted her, “Good morning aunty Faustina.” Faustina looked her over and walked away without saying a word to her. Eka was surprised and could not figure out what she must have done wrong to deserve that sort of treatment from Faustina. Then it occurred to Eka that it was actually Faustina she saw when she went to knock on their door earlier. In spite of how hard Eka tried to unravel how Faustina could turn from a nice person to an enemy within two days, she still could not. Reluctantly she entered Dr. Gerry’s apartment to go find what she could eat.

Having fixed herself a meal, she carried it to the living room and turned on the TV to see what she might find to watch. As she watched a fashion show, her heart began to ring with joy. She could not tell why she could be that happy. While she thought on it, she heard a knock on the door. She went to get the door only to see Dr. Gerry standing at the door, smiling and with a shiny sewing machine by his side. When Eka saw the machine, she could not contain her excitement; she leapt on Dr. Gerry and held him firmly. Dr. Gerry did not expect that much open show of happiness from Eka. Slowly he set her feet on the ground; but Eka was not done yet. She gave him a peck on the forehead while holding him, and said to him, “You are a darling.” Dr. Gerry picked up the word differently. He thought, “She always called me an angel; did I just hear her call me a darling?” The smile on Dr. Gerry’s face grew wider. He asked her, “Do you like the machine?” Eka released her hold on Dr. Gerry and assessed the machine. It was so clean that one could have thought it was bought brand new. “Did your sister decide to give me a new machine instead?” Eka asked. “No, She has had it for a while now, but it has not been in use that  much; she has many others. I told my sister about you, now she can’t wait to see you. She even offered to teach you a few things you might not know now.” “You did? Oh my God!” Eka took Dr. Gerry’s hands, looking into his eyes, she said, “You keep your words and you often do much more than you promise to do. I love you.” Eka released Dr. Gerry’s hands and stood behind the machine and asked Dr. Gerry, “Can you help me to carry the machine inside?”

Dr. Gerry couldn’t move. Ekaette’s confession of love for him had taken his breath away. Even though his hands lifted the machine and his feet moved into his apartment, his mind was filled with bliss and was in Elysium. After they had set the sewing machine down in one part of the dining, Dr. Gerry sat down at the dining table and wondered what to do with the maelstrom of emotions Eka’s words stirred in him. Eka was oblivious of Dr. Gerry’s challenge. She was more interested in the sewing machine. She ran into her room to look for a piece of cloth she could sew into anything that could come to her mind. When she returned to the dining she announced, “I am going to buy thread and needles now. I intend to put my hands to use right away.” Dr. Gerry who was still at loss as to how to relate to Eka, whether as a lover or a sister, answered her, “My sister gave you those too. They are in that bag. I guess there are many things in that bag you will find useful for your sewing business.” Eka hurriedly unzipped the leather bag and found sewing threads, needles, Sewing machine oil, two pairs of scissors and lots of other things she knew she would need in sewing clothes for others. She lifted her eyes with tears in them and thought, “God, it has to be you who sent me this man.”
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Written by:
Uzoma Ujor

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AMAZING LOVE - Episode 10 An African Literary Blog
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