Her bedroom was dim in a pale blue light as it was illuminated from a small bulb. The bulb hung loosely in a mushroom bulb protector with an umbrella structure that shielded the bulb, preventing too much light from shining. The darkness was not completely vanished, because she likes her room dim whenever she sleeps.
Dianna was still asleep when she felt troubled by a too-full bladder. She awoke and sat up in bed. Then, she let out a wide yawn. Her eyes were puffy with sleep. She put on her slippers, and stood up to go to the bathroom to pee. She opened the door and walked out, with the intention of using the toilet upstairs. She staggered as a wave of dizziness hit her. Wobbling down the passageway, she heard a loud sound, the soundtrack of a movie. Instantly, her instinct told her that the sound was coming from the TV.
Surprised, she wondered who could have switched on the TV. She had forgotten that she left it on when she was watching a seasonal movie last night. She was watching the movie when suddenly she started to doze fitfully. She had then climbed the stairway, staggered to her bedroom, and fell asleep, leaving the TV and the DVD running.
Perplexed with wonder, Dianna walked downstairs to the sitting room in order to switch off the electronics, as well as make use of the toilet downstairs. She was putting on a white robe as she walked. As she went into the sitting room, she moved to the centre and yawned again, this time covering her mouth. She walked forward slowly, exhaustedly, and switched off first the TV and then the DVD. She stretched her body and staggered forward a little before she got her balance. She was about to move to the toilet, and do her business when, suddenly, she heard a knock at the back door.
Dianna quivered in fear. She was wide awake now. Her eyes brightened in surprise and fright. She stared flustered at the door, wondering who it could be. ‘‘Sophia? Gertrude?’’ she called out uncomfortably.
Her friends were the only ones who had access to her house, and they always knocked hard at the door. But this knock was polite, and gently tapped.
She stood motionless, straining to hear a reply, but silence surrounded the atmosphere. Her legs began to tremble. Her heartbeat was fluttering. She stole a gaze at the wall clock. 5:30 A.M the clock chimed.
It’s too early for such a knock, she thought. No one, not even my friends, have ever knocked at this hour.
Dianna nearly collapsed in fear. Her initial fright was now overshadowed by a far deeper dread. Tension began to spread through her core. ‘‘Sophia! Gertrude!’’ she called out again, but her fear kept her voice subdued.
Another long, heavy silence weighted the air.
A surge of terror continuously rushed waves over her, causing her to lose all sense of reasoning. She began to panic and thoughts of what to do wildly flew through her head. Her heartbeat pounded faster. She was still battling with her thoughts when the knock was gently tapped double time against the door.
Dianna’s heart skipped several beats, and she let out a shaky breath. She stared but her vision was blurred from fright. She was at a loss.
Bolstered by logic and curiosity, she moved forward to investigate. Her legs felt as heavy as blocks. As she dragged her feet through the steps to door, she was weighted down with dread. Trepidation ripped through her system. Slowly, she unlocked the door, and then opened it quickly. To her surprise, she saw nobody there. The little relief that fell on her did nothing to overcome the terror that quickly reclaimed her.
Dianna was stunned, and looked around slowly.
But someone was knocking, she thought. Or am I crazy? Can it be a spirit?
She took a step forward, but remained standing in the doorway, and peeped outside. Still, she saw no one. Usually at that hour, the sky was always dark but the compound was lit up as bright as midday because of the many security flood lights that surrounded the house.
Dianna didn’t know that at the moment she pulled the lock to open the door, the stranger had quickly hidden herself beside the flowers. Still confused, she decided to ignore everything. She turned and took a step back into the sitting room. As she was about to shut the door, a young lady dressed in red semi-jean trousers, a black blouse, and silver heel sandals jumped out from the flowers and hit Dianna on the back head.
She fell on the marble floor, her knees bruising the floor. She turned and saw a pretty, young lady about her age standing in front of her. The young lady was holding a knife – a butcher’s knife. Dianna recognized her.
‘‘How dare you?’’ the young lady growled, wielding the knife as she walked close to Dianna.
Dianna crawled backward across the floor on her buttocks. Her elbows gripped the floor as she crawled. ‘‘You’re Vanessa?’’ she managed to speak, struggling to keep her voice steady. ‘‘The lady that met me at Maxwell’s house?’’
‘‘Shut up!’’ Vanessa screamed in her face.
Dianna was frightened. She felt a sudden rush of panic piling on top of the one she was already feeling, and it caused horror to settle in her core.
‘‘Who do you think you are?’’ Vanessa frowned. ‘‘You think just because you’re the daughter of Mrs. Cole, the multibillionaire woman, that no one else is even good enough to breathe! You believe you can do what you like and intimidate others! Huh?’’ she roared. ‘‘You’re wrong!’’ Vanessa yelled angrily.
Dianna became even more frightened. Her heart beat had never slowed down, and now it raced faster with every passing moment. She felt the blood in her system drain away from her head and it made her feel as though she would collapse.
Vanessa’s gaze darted around the sitting room, admiring the Coles’ possessions and all the good things of life. This sitting room looks very posh, she thought. Her gaze flicked back to Dianna.
‘‘What do you want?’’ Dianna stammered.
Vanessa’s mouth curved into a cruel grin. ‘‘What do I want…’’ she said mockingly. ‘‘She is asking me what – ’’ She broke out in a horrible chuckle, and moved around slowly, all the while tapping the blade on her palm.
She turned towards Dianna, and pointed the knife close to her face.
Dianna crawled backward in dread.
‘‘You stole my boyfriend away from me!’’ she snarled. ‘‘Maxwell was the love of my life!’’
Dianna was so afraid that all coherent thought left her mind. She saw her own terrified reflection in the blade. She saw herself shuddering in fear. Drops of urine began to drench her white robe. She completely forgot she had ever wanted to pee. Had she been wearing pajama bottoms, they would have at least absorbed some of the urine, but she never wore them when going to bed. The robe soaked up all the urine that continued to come out in droplets, forming a pee map.
Vanessa looked ruthless. ‘‘You came and took my man away, and you must pay severely for it.’’ She said in a painful voice. ‘‘You have to remember how humiliated I was. You slapped me, and then I was prevented from retaliating. I was heartbroken. But revenge will fix everything.’’ She smiled mockingly.
Dianna’s heart sank completely. ‘‘I’m sorry! Please forgive me! I never knew he was your boyfriend.’’ Dianna begged, sobbing. She was sweating even though the AC was on full-blast. ‘‘I’m very sorry.’’ Her voice sounded pitiful and flat. Her eyes were shining with an accumulation of tears.
‘‘Oh! You are very sorry,’’ Vanessa ridiculed. ‘‘She is sorry after having a feel of his erection with her disgusting vagina.’’ Vanessa’s mouth was filled with harsh and dirty words. She had come prepared. ‘‘Bitch! Even if you had known he was my boyfriend, you wouldn’t have cared because you go about stealing handsome, rich guys from their girlfriends all the time! And you think you can get away with it because you think your mum is “Mrs. Wealth” and “Mrs. Famous”, and you believe nobody will stand up to you!’’ Vanessa said angrily as she moved the blade from Dianna’s face, down the length of her throat, and further down to her stomach.
Dianna felt her soul leave her body. She could smell the metal of the blade; it smelt like death. She crawled slowly backwards, as far as she could, then felt the sofa behind her back. She leaned on it, quivering. Her eyes were already filled with tears, and they were preparing to flood her cheeks. Enormous dread threatened to drown her. She needed someone to rescue her, but who would she call? Her phone was upstairs even if she planned to call an emergency number. Her mother had traveled abroad for business. Musa, the gate-man, would do nothing. Even if he did, it would probably only be to scream to the neighbor in the estate or alert the estate’s armed guards. He obviously didn’t know that Vanessa was here and would probably not hear Dianna if she screamed. The walls of the mansion were like the walls of Jericho and the distance to the gate house would make any sound difficult to hear. There was also the fact that Musa slept like a corpse. The house keepers were on suspension for two days, as Dianna had suspended them. She was crippled with fear, waiting for the outcome of the drama.
‘‘I’ve broken up with him! I’m no longer with him!’’ Dianna twittered. She was searching for anything to say that might make Vanessa forgive her.
Vanessa scowled. ‘‘Shut up!’’ she shouted.
Dianna went deadly silent.
‘‘Move…!’’ Vanessa ordered her, directing her away from the sofa with the knife.
Dianna obeyed, as she knew what the consequences would be if she hesitated. She was panicking, and the sound of her heartbeat was like that of a talking drum.
‘‘I got the worst humiliation of my life on my birthday because of you!’’ Vanessa wailed. ‘‘You’ve offended me twice; the first was at Polo Club where you and your friend beat me up and injured me on my mouth,’’ she paused, and smiled horribly as she saw the memory come to Dianna’s mind.
Dianna was horrified. She remembered. She was surprised that Vanessa was the same lady they had dealt with at the club. She was thinking about that night and how everything had happened.
Vanessa grew exasperated. ‘‘You know what,’’ she broke in between Dianna’s thought. ‘‘I’m not one for chatting.’’
She lunged forward, and pierced Dianna’s lap with the blade.
Dianna screamed in pain.
‘‘Go to hell, bitch!’’ Vanessa snarled, as she stabbed Dianna’s skin mercilessly. She left a stab on almost every part of her body – her arms, thighs, stomach, and legs. When she had finished with her assault, she rushed out, leaving behind the knife, which lay covered with blood, on the floor.
Dianna had screamed in agony every time the blade pierced through her skin. Blood flowed like ocean across the floor. She could see her own blood spilling out over her flesh. Her white robe turned red, and she writhed in pain. She crawled slowly to the door; the pain tore through her muscles. She was riddled with pain, and felt as though she was hanging in between life and death. She let out a short, wet cough, and saw that she had coughed out blood. She was helpless, but she still struggled to reach the door. The pain that seared through her skin was too much, so difficult for her to bear alone. There was nothing left in her mind other than death.
‘‘Forgive me, Lord. I am a sinner.’’ She slowly said, picking her words carefully from her sluggish thoughts.
It was already daybreak, and Francis had returned to clean the pool early. He walked straight to the pool to check and see how dirty it had gotten. As he was walking around the pool, he heard a voice of someone groaning loudly. His eyes followed the direction of the sound, and his gaze found Dianna crawling in pain on her stomach like a suffering snake.
Shocked, Francis hurried towards her. He saw the pool of blood on the floor, and he became stupefied. He felt a wave of nausea hit him. A surge of uneasiness rocked his core. Fear, confusion, and shock all gripped his senses.
Who could have done this? He thought. “No time for questions, dude,” he whispered to himself.
Without any further hesitation, he picked her up, and she relaxed in his arms. She was not so heavy that Francis could not carry her. He raced with her to the gate. He could smell the urine that wet her robe but he couldn’t mind that now. On a good day, Francis dared not go close enough to her to talk to her but this wasn’t the moment for the separation of classes. She saw him. Her eyes were wide open but her stare was unfocused. She needed Francis right now more than anything else in this world.
‘‘Musa! Musa! Open the gate.’’ Francis shouted, running towards the car. His voice was stern.
Musa froze at the sight of the two. Panicking, he opened the gate wide.
Francis opened the back door, and carefully laid her on the seat. His hands and clothes were stained with blood. She was in a semi-conscious state, and found it difficult to breathe. He rushed to the driver’s side and sat down. He began to search for the car key. He was worried he wouldn’t find it, then he located it lying on the dashboard. He started the engine, and drove speedily out of the compound.
Musa was stunned. He stared at the car until it disappeared. Then, he shook his head in wonder.