Evening was drawing near when Gbenga dropped his uncle home, he took his briefcase in and met his wife Ajobi painting her nails in their lavishly furnished sitting room.
Gbenga eyed it knowing that one day all that will belong to him that was why he was doing boy boy work for his uncle. The nice aroma of the chef’s food visited his nose but he knew smelling it was all he could do, no tasting the new madam forbade it, only after she and oga had gone to bed can the left over food go to the workers.
Gbenga and the rest were not bothered about her attitude like the other wives she too had come with her different ways of doing things.
Gbenga had come to live with his uncle at age six when both his parents passed at short interval, his mom was the only female in the midst of four boys and naturally the rich uncle adopted the children.
Gbenga’s uncle however did not have any of his own maybe that was the reason for him changing wives like garments.
The longest marriage he ever had lasted six years and she was his first wife, she passed away before he became rich.
The likes of women like Ajobi could have contributed to Gbenga’s disposition towards women. Linda one of his uncle’s wife who lasted less than six months was caught in bed with the laundry man, that day Gbenga wa s grateful it was not his turn to service madam.
Alata got pregnant, the day she told her husband about it was her last day as a married woman for Gbenga’s uncle knew he was sterile.
That was why Ajobi’s attitude bothered no one because they knew like the others she too would leave.
Gbenga showed unalloyed loyalty towards his uncle, unlike his brother who broke free. His uncle in turn was so impressed that he promised Gbenga that he would become the heir to his entire fortune after his demise with a clause to marry an egba girl.
Gbenga had lived with his uncle until he graduated from university after that he requested an apartment to move into and his uncle obliged.
When he drove back to his apartment it was still not dark though the sun had already sunk. He knew his girlfriend Aida would be home waiting for him, She usually welcomed him with smiles from the door but that day she was absent.
He got in, his apartment as usual was spic and span, aroma of a delicious meal welcomed him, the benefits he enjoined despite not being married. He proceeded to dinning table and opened the food warmer it was ogili soup that meant no kissing tonight.
He eneterd the only room they both shared, he could hear her retching in the toilet, he waited till she finished washed her face and came into the room.
He did not miss the shock that registered on her face when she saw him, she quickly glanced at the clock.
‘How far gone are you?’ He asked.
’15 weeks.’ She answered feebly.
‘What!!!, He screamed ‘why the hell didn’t you tell me ealier?’
‘Were you blind?’ She asked shakily.
‘Tomorrow we’ll go and get rid of it.’ He said with a tone of finality.
‘No.’ She said.
Gbenga froze, all the years he’d known she was always subservient, never said no to any thing he said.
‘What did you just say?’ He asked genuinely surprised.
‘I said no, not this time.’ Her face was straight, her voice determined.
‘Why? She asked back, her tone implying he should know why.
‘You know very well that I’m not ready.’
‘That’s what you always say, when will you ever be?’
‘Don’t raise your voice at me.’
‘I wont abort this baby no matter what you say or do.’
‘Use your brains.’
‘I just started using it.’
Gbenga was too stunned to react immediately.
The first time he saw Aida he was dumbstruck, she was drop dead gerogeous, her hair and skin were amazing. He knew immediately that they would be a couple
When she first got pregnant he blamed her for her carelessness. It was easy to persuade her to terminate it because of her studies also that he wasn’t ready yet.
But it happened again and again and the same excuses always worked.
He knew she loved him maybe he loved her too but his dreams were much more important to him and he was sure his uncle would be disappointed in him if he knew that he impregnated a girl out of wedlock, besides she was not an egba girl.
She also had a flaw that was a blessing to Gbenga, she was always conceding, agreeing to every thing he said so how she grew up to hide the symptoms of pregnancy from him was surprising him. He glanced at her she was cuddled up in a corner he went to her and held her hands.
‘I’m sorry.’ He said.
‘What? She asked very surprised.
‘I’m sorry I got mad.’
‘I’m sorry too but I wont abort this pregnancy.’
‘Alright get up lets get that sad face away.’ He said and helped her up, She smiled again and she warmed the food and they eat together laughing. The next day she woke up to meet Gbenga in the kitchen.
‘What’s going on?’
‘I’m making breakfast baby.’
‘Because I love you, you know I’ve had time to think and fatherhood would be interesting, holding my little boy’s hand, teaching him to ride a bike it’d be amazing.
‘I’m so happy.’ She said and flew into his arms.
‘So now be a good girl and go to the table and wait for food.’
‘It tastes funny.’ She said after taking a spoonful of oats.
‘I’m still learning na.’
She had only gone half way through the food when she screamed out in pain, Gbenga just sat with a glass of juice in his hand and looked at her as she writhed in pain when her screaming got louder he put masking tape over her mouth then he took her to his car without a word.
She was jerking and bleeding as he drove her to the hospital, the blood scared him. The guy at the pharmacy said that she would just bleed like her normal period, also that pain would just be like normal cramps but this was different.
She had stopped jerking and had gone limp, he drove to a hospital that was very far from where he lived.
He said she was his wife and filled the forms in false names and lied that he had to go to the ATM and ran for his life.
He left Abeokuta as soon as he could telling his uncle that he needed to try to live on his own. The man was impressed and gave him a substantial amount and called some of his associates in Abuja to help Gbenga with a job.
Gbenga never enquired about Aida again, whether she lived or died. He just dumped her at the deserted hospital and moved on with his life as if nothing ever happened. On the occasions he visited his uncle he stayed indoors and left as soon as he could.
Gbenga drifted in and out of conciousness, his eyelids were heavy as he tried to open them, he caught the sounds and could make out each and everyone’s voice but he could hardly see them.
He knew his uncle Mallam Ibrahim was there because of the constant sucking sound on chewing stick and Mazi Ezekwensili because of the constant tapping of cane on the ground. He moved his hands and waved weakly to gain their attention but they did not notice him, he tried standing up but realized he couldn’t move his lower body. They were talking and he could now hear them clearly.
‘It’s a pity what has happened to our boy.’ Mazi Ezekwensili said.
‘It indeed is, its a fate worse than death.’ Mallam Ibrahim said.
‘Imagine I cant use this again, chai chai arum!!.’ Mazi Ezekwensili said gripping his loins.
‘Do you think he deserves it, see the drama between him and Okwubia back home.’
‘I can’t say, we’ve all made mistakes.’
‘Mistake pass mistake Nna.’
Gbenga heard their conversation and tried hard to put things together but could not until a doctor came in and Mazi Ezekwensili still asked again.
‘Are you sure it will never work again?.’
‘Of course it will but only for passing urine.’ He replied.
‘I doubt if an erection is even possible let alone the process of having kids.’
‘Chai arum arum.’
‘Why is he not opening his eyes?’
‘He’ll be conscious soon, vitals are good.’
It was then that Gbenga understood, he remembered the reading of the “Will”, Benazir leaving him and the accident, he couldn’t move his lower body because a large cast was in between his legs. His manhood was obviosly gone along with his uncle’s riches, if only he hadn’t made Aida abort all those babies.
It was too late to cry and regret, when the room was empty he carefully pulled the IV line from his wrist, he watched as his blood trickled down drop by drop until he became hazy, he wished the end would come sooner but he wasn’t that lucky, a nurse came in in time and he was saved and strapped to the bed like a lunatic to prevent future occurrancies.