AMAZING LOVE - Episode 3

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Seeing she had hurt the girl deeply, Efe stood up and left the hospital. Though she paid for every ounce of Ekaette’s hospital bill, Ef...

Seeing she had hurt the girl deeply, Efe stood up and left the hospital. Though she paid for every ounce of Ekaette’s hospital bill, Efe was never seen in the hospital again. However there was a newly employed medical doctor who took a lot of interest in Ekaette. He was often around to have banter with her. About the time Eka was to be released from hospital, the young doctor, who went by the name Gerry, noticed that Eka became very moody and listless. So she pressed her to know what was wrong with her. For days Eka refused to answer him a word, but Gerry was persistent and kept asking her what the matter was with her. Eka dug her feet in and refused to give say much. On the day she was to be discharged from the hospital, she packed her stuff into her Ghana-must-go bag and made ready to check out of the hospital, and then Gerry showed up and took her to the little bunk which served as his office and pressed harder, “I know you are in some trouble, don’t lie to me. You were in this hospital for two weeks and not one member of your family came to visit you. I have not heard you speak of your father, mother or siblings. What are you hiding?” Eka burst into tears and told Gerry about everything that had happened to her. Gerry was shocked and brought to tears by her story. “Eka, I am not going to let you let you go into the street without anywhere to lay your head or money to survive on. I live in a two bedroom apartment all by myself. I can let you have one room. In fact I want you to take that room. I know people in this place who can help you get job as a cleaner. Please don’t go into the street. It is hard out there, you won’t survive it alone.”

“No! I won’t take your offer doctor Gerry. You think I don’t know your plan. You want me to move in with you and become your toy, and tomorrow your girlfriend will come and throw me out. I know about all that. I have seen girls fall for it. I won’t do it. Yes I know I need help, but I won’t accept your offer.” Doctor Gerry almost went down on his knees and pleaded with her soulfully, “I am older than you are by some years Ekaette, and I know what the street is like. Believe me you don’t want to go into it with this your beauty and no financial support. Life and circumstances will push you into things that right now you think you can never do. I swear by God, I won’t take advantage of you. And if you accept my offer and find out tomorrow that I have gone against our understanding, you are free to leave my apartment. Look, you know me and my place of work; if I do anything stupid you can always come here and report me to my superiors. Please don’t go into the street without knowing even where you will sleep tonight or what you will eat.”

Ekaette thought about Gerry’s words and squeezed the two hundred Naira Simbi gave her; it was all she had.  “Okay Doctor Gerry I will accept your offer because I don’t have a better one right now. But I swear by God, if you do anything stupid, I will strip myself and curse you by night.”  “It won’t come to that Ekaette. I promise you I will make you forget you once were thrown into the street by your family. One day you will look back and you will be happy you took my offer.” “I hope it all works out well, but if you try to put me through hell, I will curse you and kill myself. I mean every word of what I have just said.” “Ekaette you worry a great deal.” “I should and worry is my right. I don’t even know anything about you except your name. Moving into your apartment scares the daylight out of me. I wish I don’t have to do it. What if you wake up in the night and kill me for rituals? Who would ask you questions? After all my parents have rejected me.” “Stop! Ekaette stop! I don’t remember having seen anyone as negative as you. One, nobody is going to kill you for rituals. Two, worry is not your right; it actually hurts you more than you think.” “You have to understand Doctor Gerry that I do not have any reason to trust you. I am not being negative, but protective of myself.” “I have heard you Ekaette, no harm will come to you, okay. Now leave your bag here, let’s go get something to eat.” Reluctantly Eka left her Ghana-must-go bag in Doctor Gerry’s office and they left for the food canteen. When they entered the canteen heads turned in their direction as if they were being choreographed; and voices began to whisper. Ekaette felt very uncomfortable at the starry host of ocular daggers stabbing at them. Twice she missed her step and Doctor Gerry caught hold of her.

The medical and non-medical staff who stared at them did not do so in disgust, but in sublime awe of the beauty which entered the canteen in Doctor Gerry’s company. However Eka did not know the reason for which they looked at them and whispered. Before the steward who would take their order could arrive, Eka had begun to perspire terribly and could hardly speak. Gerry noticed the change in the look of her face and asked, “Eka what is it? You don’t look alright to me.” Eka couldn’t speak; when she parted her lips words simply failed to come out. Gerry had to gently press her once more for answers, “Eka what is wrong with you?” When the words finally came out, they did so with tears, “They…they are…they are talking about me. Maybe someone… knows…” Eka began to choke terribly on her words, coughing and breathing deeply. Gerry understood that moment how much Eka had been hurt and lacerated by what she suffered in her street and in her parents’ hands. Doctor Gerry tried his best to stabilize her; when Eka had come round fully, he led her out of the canteen and those host of eyes admiringly followed Eka and Gerry out of the canteen.

When they came back to Gerry’s office, he did his best to convince her that those people in the canteen were not talking about her, “Eka I actually heard them; some of them are my colleagues. They were not talking about you. Believe me there was no one there who knows you. There was no way they could have called you a witch.” While Gerry persuaded her that no one called her a witch, hot tears freely flowed from her eyes. “I thought I heard them calling me names. For a moment I thought I heard the word ‘witch’.” “Eka they were talking about your beauty. They were all swayed by your beauty. Believe me, when you start working here as a cleaner, most of the men who saw you today will press you out of measure with love advances and crazy gifts. Get ready for them. I want to take you home now, if you were to stay around here for a while longer, you will notice my office will become busy. All those men and women will come to ask me who you are. I know them.” Fearfully Eka asked, “Who will you tell them that I am?” “What do you want me to tell them if they ask?” “Tell them I am your sister.” “No Eka. I won’t tell them that. I will tell them that you are my friend, a good friend at that. I will speak of amazing things about you.” “But you know nothing about me to tell them.” “On the contrary I do. I know you are the prettiest woman my eyes have seen. I know you are very hard working. I also know you can make fruit salad, you told me about it the other day. And from our conversations since you came to this hospital, I can tell you have a good upbringing. Most girls wouldn’t care about who they move in with after going through what you have gone through; yet you are bothered about that.”

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Written by:
Uzoma Ujor

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AMAZING LOVE - Episode 3 An African Literary Blog
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