At first when he heard it,he thought he was still dreaming.
It was loud,almost as loud as the thunder and rain outside.
“Can you hear that..sounds like a baby?”Gloria whispered into his ear.
The warmth of her naked body made the notion of getting out of bed to investigate the noise a very dull affair.
The cries were louder now.
“Probably one of the neighbour’s…I guess”Tunde mumbled as he reached for his wife’s soft body.
“It sounds like it’s coming from outside”she whispered with some urgency in her voice.
He knew whenever her burning curiosity was piqued, sex was the last thing on her mind.Infact,he doubted if the threat of a nuclear holocaust could dissuade it.
He sluggishly checked his Mobile Phone by the bedside.
It was 4:07AM.
He was supposed to be up in approximately 53Minutes.
He could really use the extra minutes of sleep….or at least a glorious A.M shag.
He listened intently into the stillness of the semi-dark room.
More sounds of rain.
“I think we should go check it out”She hushed.
Tunde knew,like most married men did that whenever his wife said, “we”,it meant, “him”.
Reluctantly,he got out of bed and stumbled into his boxers.
He walked out of the room into the dimly lit passageway.
“Can you hear that?”came Victoria’s voice from across the corridor.
Victoria was Gloria’s sister.
One of the many annoying perks that come with marriage is annoying inlaws.
If ever such label came with picture illustrations,Victoria would be it.
Tunde secretly counted the days to when she would leave his house.Her wayward ways coupled with her flimsy attires around the house made him uncomfortable.
If Victoria’s clothes were inappropriate,Gloria didn’t seem to notice or care.
Just a few more days.He thought as he passed by her room door.Few more days and she’d be back to school..where the rest of her “kind” flocked.
The infant’s cries were louder now as he descended the stairs.
Go back to bed”Tunde said over his shoulder.
The infants cries were louder as he approached the door.
A flash of lightening temporarily illuminated the inside of the living room.Tunde flipped on the light switch by the door.
The sound of thunder sent tremors through the house as he opened the door.
The wind sprayed cold tiny droplets of water on his skin.
The rain was picking up pace as it poured down roof tops of the still estate.
There was a small flood building up next to his car.
Then he saw the baby.
The child was lying just outside the door wrapped in a black cloth.
The infant couldn’t have been older than a few months .
The instant he opened the door the crying stopped.
It looked up at him with what Tunde could’ve sworn was a great degree of intelligence.
It was a little creepy at first.
He just stood there staring at the child as the heavens rumbled.
He looked around ,the estate was devoid of prying eyes(or at least prying eyes he could see any way).
He stared back at the infant whom at this point was regarding him strangely.
If tunde didn’t know any better,he’d have sworn it was gazing at him skeptically.
“What is it?”came Gloria’s voice from behind him.
He shuddered at the sound of her voice.He realised he’d been so focused on the child, it seemed everything else had faded away.
“Its…a baby”He heard his own voice say.
There was something in its eyes something unusual…a sort of ……..awareness he couldn’t quite put his finger on.
Another small gust of wind sprayed some rain water on his bare chest.The sensation chilled him,like the minute kisses of a thousand phantoms.
More rumbling in the heavens.
“What are you doing?”Gloria said brushing past him and gathering the tiny visitor in her arms.
The baby didn’t make a sound but just regarded her with a creepy sort of curiousity for one so young.
“It’s a boy”came Gloria’s delightful voice as she took the baby inside.
Something inside Tunde screamed at her,telling her to put down the baby at once.
But all he could say was;
“I think it’s sick”
“Don’t be silly”She said as she rocked it.
“What sort of person would abandon a baby in this storm”came Victoria’s voice from the top of the stairs.
“..I don’t think we should….”
“What?…bring an innocent child in from the cold?”Gloria cut him looking at him with a slight annoyance.
Victoria made her way down the stairs wearing a pair of boxers and an obscenely tight sleeveless vest.
Like her sister,she was very busty which made her rapid descent down the stairs…distracting.
Tunde averted his gaze and stared at the infant again.
“…we don’t know who it belongs to…”he began.
“He’s just a baby..Uncle T”Victoria said playing with the child’s nose.
“….and stop calling him an ‘it’…”Gloria said defensively.
“..Maybe one of the neighbours left him out there by mistake”Victoria said.
Yep.Victoria was dumb like that.
“..can we keep it…him?…I’ve always wanted a nephew…”She said delightfully.
Victoria was the sort of girl that could adopt a fully grown Baboon if it landed on her doorstep wearing a t-shirt the read “I don’t bite…trust me”
Tunde stared at her for a few seconds wondering if she were secretly an adopted child.
“He doesn’t seem hungry”Gloria said smiling at the baby.
Tunde felt a slight tinge.She would make a great mother someday.
He knew the sort of thoughts that were probably running around her beautiful head.
They’d been married for Five years without a child.
It hadn’t been easy.Though they rarely talked about it,he knew it worried her.
He knew,she wished the baby was theirs.And Victoria’s comments weren’t helping .
“Uncle T..”she began again.
Now as far as Tunde knew,the term “uncle”was usually reserved for a blood relative…or at least a rich man whom young girls slept with for money.Since he was neither,he wondered why she always called him that.
“……what do you think we should call him?….can I use his picture as My DP?”
If not for the fear of prison,Tunde was fairly certain he would’ve smothered Victoria in her sleep a long Time ago.
“…its not an inanimate object you use to get Likes on your profile…”He began
“Will you two just stop???”Gloria snapped.
Another tremor ran through the walls as the sound of thunder reverberated within the house.
“…some one abandoned him on our doorstep….bastards”Gloria spat.
“…Victoria will take him to the authorities in the Morning”Tunde said as he mounted the stairs.
He knew a shag was definitely out of the question now.
A man knows when he’s been beaten he thought.
“….but Uncle T…”Victoria began.
“Its not a play thing ..”Tunde responded coldly.
“Don’t talk to her like that,she’s just being a teenager”Gloria said evenly as she continued rocking the baby.
“I’m turning Twenty in four months time”Victoria responded defensively.
“My point exactly”Gloria said over her shoulder as she carried the infant into the living room.
“…This is so unfair…which authorities should I take it…him to..?Victoria sounded like she was crying.
Tunde rolled his eyes and said;
“…Any police station will do”
Gloria sat on the couch .
“Vicky,bring me some milk and a dry towel to clean him up with”she said.
“I don’t like police stations…..”Victoria said with a childish grimace.
Tunde didn’t bother going back to bed.It was already a few minutes to Five.
He simply took a warm shower and got dressed for work.
There was something in the infant’s eyes.He thought.
Or had he just imagined it?
At sunrise,he came down the stairs to find Gloria still cradling the child on the couch.
“Aren’t you going to work today?” He asked her.
She didn’t respond.
“Gloria!!” He called out.
Still no response.
She was staring lovingly into the child’s face.
The Child was staring back.
Tunde took a few tentative steps towards her.
Still no answer.
She was still staring into the childs face.
“You will all Die!!”
Had he heard right?
Tunde felt his heart beat quicken.
There was something menacing about her tone.
Why was she whispering?And why did her voice sound so unsettling
“Gloria!!!”He called out as he placed a hand on her shoulder.
She snapped her head in his direction.
“Hey babe…Didn’t hear you come down”She said in her normal voice.
“Seriously?”he said arching an eye brow at her.
The baby’s eyes were on him.
Tunde could’ve sworn he saw hate in them.
“Seriously….what?”she asked curiously.There was no trace of the whisper he’d previously heard.
Confusing thoughts ran amok in his head as he looked into the face of his beautiful wife.
“…You don’t remember talking to me just now…?”Tunde asked with a frown.
Gloria stared at him incredulously and shrugged.
“….em…I think I would’ve remembered if I had…don’t, you think?” She replied staring up at him with a hint of amusement.
“Guys,…guess what?….my comment just got A 1000 Likes…isn’t that great?” Came Victoria’s excited voice from behind him.
They were still looking at each other in silence.
Victoria considered the two of them curiously.
“…What did I miss,have you guys given it..him a name yet…?”
Tunde sighed and finally tore his eyes away from the infant.
“Aren’t you going to work today?”he asked his wife.
“Yeah…I am”Gloria said,clearly a little distracted.
“Funny…he’s kind of addictive she said looking back at the child.
“He’s so beautiful.”She said.
“Anyway,…”Tunde began after another long silence.
“….Take him to the station”He said to Vicky.
“….He might belong to someone in the estate.”Gloria cut in.
“Let the police decide.”Tunde said with a sigh as he walked towards the door.
He couldn’t get those words out of his head.
“….You will all die….”
There was something wrong with that baby.He thought.
Will you be okay by yourself?”Gloria asked at the door again.
Victoria couldn’t get her sister’s sudden attachment to the baby.
It was a little annoying.
After Tunde had left, It had taken her almost an hour to get off the couch.
It was as if she couldn’t get enough of staring at the baby.
She’d just sat there staring into its eyes .It was a little weird.
But then again, maybe it had to do with the fact that she didn’t have a child of her own.
But what was wrong with Uncle T? Victoria wondered.Couldn’t they just keep the baby as their own?….wouldn’t that be nice?
Why did they have to take it to the police?
Weren’t Children supposed to be a blessing from heaven or something?
She almost felt sorry for her big sister.
“…Yes I will be,I’ll take him to the Police station this morning.” Victoria said simply.
Gloria lingered at the door a little while longer.It seemed difficult for her to tear her eyes away from the infant’s face.
“Just go!” Victoria barked at her.
After she’d left.
Victoria stood over the baby.
The kid had a weird stare.Victoria thought.
She decided to update her profile online.
“Maybe I could get a Million Likes on my Profile with your pic.”Victoria said delightfully as she took out her phone.
She put on her camera and took the a few shots of the baby.
The Child didn’t even blink or stir when the camera flashed.
That was weird.Victoria thought.
Could babies do that?
When she opened her picture gallery ,the pics were awful.
For some weird reason,instead of capturing the baby’s image,all she got was the couch and the white cloth Gloria had wrapped him in.
She tried a few more shots but got the same result.
Her phone had a virus.
She knew she shouldn’t have downloaded that music video the night before.
Thirty minutes later,she was ready to leave.
She grabbed her car keys and picked up the baby.
She felt a little uneasy under the baby’s stare,as she locked the front door behind them.
“Don’t you ever cry???” She asked it.
The baby just regarded her in silence.
Victoria loaded up the Baby in the back seat.
She was about to jump into the driver’s seat when she realized she’d forgotten her Fourth Phone.
How could she be so careless?she thought to herself.All her twitter contacts were on that Phone.
Blowing the baby a kiss,she ran back into the house.
As she dashed up the stairs,something caught the corner of her eye……something on the couch .
She stopped and turned to see what it was.
Panic gripped her instantly.
The baby was lying on the couch,and was smiling her.