“THE RIGHT PLUG”
He sat there with his head bowed down. He was scratching his head with his long fingernails. My mother was about to ask another question when I noticed white particles from his head and some patches at the back of his neck. I drew her attention to it. Immediately my mother saw it, she told me to bring her torchlight to be able to see clearly. She collected and beamed it to his head,
“My God! What happened to you?” She exclaimed.
She removed his shirt to see more patches on his body. The way she was checking his body like a small boy brought to my memory that mothers will always be mothers even to their own husbands. She temporarily forgot about her loss and shifted her whole attention on my father. She dragged him like a love-drunken lovers to the bathroom to take his bath.
The way she was running up and down to take care of him baffled me. It dawned on me again what I heard on a radio program by MC olufats that “Once a woman loves a man unconditionally, she can go an extra mile to sacrifice her all and satisfy him. That is the more reason a man must treat his wife lovingly and guide her jealously”
That depicted my parents. Within some minutes, he was out of the bathroom and my mother asked if he used soap to which he responded in the negative.
“My dear, go back and use soap or do you want me to help you?” She asked him.
When I heard that I wanted to laugh but cautioned myself. Trust my father, he replied from the bathroom,
“Mama Rebecca, Ololufe mi, I really need your gentle touch on my body. I can’t find the soap, come and help me look for it”.
I ran to my room to empty my trapped laughter bubbles. No wonder they said the bond of love between a couple isn’t easily broken. Despite the fact there was temporary separation, the love kept drawing them to each other. Later, my father came to the sitting room looking refreshed and cool. She went to the kitchen to prepare another food for them as I had already eaten rice. It was while they were eating that he began to narrate what happened to him. I sat with them to hear from the horse mouth and to be a judge in case of another misunderstanding.
“I have been unfaithful to you..”
We knew that already ticked the first box in my head. My mother had told me he would always forgive my father no matter what happened. She said God had forgiven her all her sins and it was a must for her to forgive others too.
He continued: “I’m sorry for hurting you. My business partners introduced me to a woman who was ready to pay off some of my debts under the condition of working extra hours. I agreed and decided to be travelling from one state to the other until I was duped.”
My mother cut in, “But you didn’t inform me.”
“I’m sorry. That was my number one mistake of hiding that information from you. She began to pressure me to look for money until I found a man who was ready to help me. He told me he was impotent and didn’t want to lose his wife.”
“So?” My mother said with agitation in her voice.
I was already thinking along the same thought as my mother whether he had a child elsewhere. However, my father paused and looked at us to see our reactions but I bowed my head to avoid eye contact with him.
He continued: “I was under pressure from the other woman to pay back the money I owed and this man was ready to pay me huge amount of money to settle my debt if… if… if…”
“If what? Talk now…” My mother asked him fastening her eyes on his lips to read it.
“He said if I can give him a child”
“How?” She asked.
“By sleeping with his wife”
“Ha! Don’t tell me you accepted his offer…” My mother shouted.
I knew the water of their relationship was almost getting to one hundred degrees Celsius and I quickly went inside to take the photo I took from his bag some months before. I sat down listening to them and looking for a way to intervene.
“I rejected the offer at first but later succumbed to the pressure” My father burst into tears.
My mother couldn’t say a word again. I knew she was boiling inside and what might happen next can be unpredictable like the car of Baba go-slow in our town. He owned an old Mercedes car that could take forever to move from one street to the other talk less of travelling outside our town. His car bonnet was always opened and small children used to gather around him shouting, “Hail Baba go-slow!”
In his characteristic way, he would smile and reply, “God will provide a new car for me”. True to his constant confession, one of his former students bought a new car for him to appreciate him for training him and impacting good values into his life. Even after he began to ride his new car, the old name of Baba go-slow had stuck on our lips.
Without wasting time, I brought out the photo and showed it to my father. My mother was curious to see what I gave him. When my father saw it, he was shocked. My mother collected it from him to scrutinise it. She began to look at the photo like the way some foreign immigration officers used to check the passports of some people from developing countries. She couldn’t believe her eyes and asked the much awaited question,
“Who is this boy?”
He didn’t answer as he was full of tears. My mother turned to me to ask me where I got the photo.
I replied her with caution, “Mum, when Dad came home last time.”
“And you didn’t inform me about. it?”
“Mum, you used to tell me not to jump into the conclusion on any matter.”
She banged the table and screamed, “Not in this case. Can’t you see that the boy resemble your father?”
I sat there like a child deprived of his chocolate. My mother turned to him again to demand an answer. My father summoned the courage to hit the nail on the head,
“He invited me to his house one day and told me to forget about the ungodly offer of sleeping with his wife. He gave me a cheque to clear my debt and we drank wine together. The next thing I found out was that I was on the bed with his wife. I didn’t know how it happened until he came in and threatened to kill me if I revealed it to anyone. He then placed a black calabash on my hands to swear never to reveal what transpired between us. Out of fear I did it”
“Hmnnn…My God!” She sighed deeply.
My father continued: “I made a mistake of hiding things from you. Early this year, he sent for me to meet him at the airport. He introduced me to his wife and a boy. Before we could talk further, he took my picture with the boy. I was still in doubt when he told me that he was my son. I was scared at first but relaxed when he told me they were leaving the country for good. He told me that was the product of my impatience looking for money and eventual entering a covenant with him. Without any controversy, he resembled me. He later sent the photo to me which I still find strange. I knew I was hypnotised and here is the repercussion. I’m sorry… I’m sorry… ” He began to beg her again asking for forgiveness.
My mother rested her head on her two hands weeping when I rose up quickly and ran to my father shouting when I saw…
“THE RIGHT PLUG”
My mother rested her head on her two hands weeping when I rose up quickly and ran to my father shouting when I saw him vomiting. We held him in our hands and scared when we discovered it was blood. She began to question what was in the food that made him to be vomiting blood. I knew it wasn’t the food but the repercussion of letting out the secret. My father was already lying on the floor convulsing and speaking strange words.
“Mummy! Mummy!! Let’s call Mama Bolanle. I can’t lose my father now…” I screamed as I held my phone to call her.
“No!” She shouted.
“Why? He is already weak. Aren’t you concerned about him?” I asked her still trying to call her.
“I said don’t call her.” She knelt down beside him and began to pray for him.
I knelt beside her also hearing her fervent prayers like the way Mama Bolanle used to pray for us. I never knew my mother had digested many bible verses and the effect on my father opened my eyes to the power in the Bible. It was as if each verse of the Bible was an arrow piercing him. I heard her shouting,
“No weapon formed against you shall prosper”
“You are made whole in the name of Jesus”
“You shall not die but live”
“The number of your days you shall fulfill”
“Oh Lord, have mercy on him”
She kept on quoting the Bible verses and mentioning the name of Jesus until the vomiting stopped and he opened his eyes. To be sure if he had been healed, I asked my father who was kneeling in front of him,
“Rebecca, my daughter”. He said slowly.
“And who is this person?” I asked him.
“Dad, I mean who is this woman here?” I asked again.
“Pastor!” He repeated.
I turned to my mother and said,
“Pastor, over to you. He has given you a new name.”
My mother who wasn’t in happy mood asked him if he was feeling fine and he lifted up himself and sat on the chair to confirm he was strong enough. He started staring at my mother but she wanted to know if he was feeling fine. I went to clean the blood and its mixture. That strange experience made me to realise the importance of knowing a Supreme being who can help one at anytime. I knew she called on the God she had been praying to everyday but there were still some unanswered questions bothering me.
I heard my father asking my mother where she got that power from. He told us how a dark tall being appeared to him when he revealed those secrets and choked him. He asked my mother again,
“Where did you get that power? Did you get it from the Priestesses or from Baba Oloketuyi?”
When he mentioned Baba Oloketuyi, I remembered how he once told us to buy a charm from him that would protect us from the enemies and all accidents. I heard he later died when he was hit by a motorcycle at the junction leading to his house. I concluded his charm couldn’t deliver him.
My mother replied calmly, “No”
He pressed further, “Are you now a pastor?”
“I’m a child of God” She replied confidently.
Still baffled to hear that from her because he once said only God would change my mother’s behaviour. He said,
“Immediately you began to say those incantations and calling Jesus, the tall being was overpowered and disappeared. If not for those incantations, I would have died”
“It is not incantation but Bible verses and the name of Jesus” she corrected him.
“Please, enlighten me. Where did you get that power? You have changed completely. Tell me, what happened to you?” He demanded to clear his doubt.
“Jesus Christ came into my life and transformed me.” she said.
“The same Jesus Christ Mama Bolanle used to talk about?” he asked her still doubting her assertion.
“Yes! He found me. He washed away my sins. He wrote my name in the Book of Life. He is my joy. He is my all in all. Dear, I’m free. Totally free!”
.My father held my mother’s hand and asked,
.”Can he do the same for me?”
“Of course my dear. The way I helped you to wash away the patches and white particles from your hairs and gave you a new garments this evening, Jesus Christ will do the same for you if you ask him.” My mother said with joy.
“How? I want him too in my life. I’m dirty and sinful. I’m tired of living recklessly. I want peace” He said with a crack in his voice.
My mother held both his hands and asked him,
“Confess your sins to Jesus Christ. Repent of your evil ways and accept Him into your life to be your Lord and Saviour. Open your mouth and tell him…”
I watched them as they prayed together. Something pricked my heart to yield my life to Jesus too but I shrugged it off. I comforted myself that I was still young and would do it later when I might have fulfilled all my dreams and desires. After the prayer, I saw my father beaming with smile just the same way my mother did when Mama Bolanle prayed for her. It was almost midnight and I left them there. As I got to my room, I became restless and wondered why I was still torn between yielding to one of the voices struggling to capture my thought. I went to bed with a troubled heart.
In the dream, I saw a man carrying two briefcases and opened them for me to know their contents. One was filled with many beautiful fruits while the second one contained scorpions, snakes, black ants with a human skull. I ran away when I saw the deadly animals in the second briefcase. Then, the man pleaded with me to take the briefcase containing the beautiful fruits.
As I was about to collect it from him, another man appeared suddenly and advised me to take the second briefcase. He said the animals would help me fight my enemies. The first man warned me not to hearken to the deceiver but the other man began to dangle money and beautiful ornaments. He collected the second briefcase and told me to follow him to get more money and beautiful ornaments.
After a while, the first man stopped pleading with me when he saw me following the second man until we entered a dark room and the door was shut. I began to grope in the darkness calling for help until I was stung by a scorpion and I woke up.
I was already sweating when I woke up. I felt something around my right leg and I quickly switched on the light. I couldn’t find anything but I felt a little pain there. I couldn’t sleep again until the morning. I narrated the dream to my mother and the interpretation she gave me didn’t interest me.
“Rebecca, God wants to save your soul. Won’t you yield to him? Don’t surrender to the enemy of your soul. Come now, tomorrow may be too late” She explained and asked to pray for me but I told her it was an ordinary dream.
I remembered one of the books Thonia gave me about interpretation of dreams. I looked through and found where it was written to discard any dream involving briefcases and the like. I was satisfied with what I read but fear wouldn’t allow me to forget the dream. Mama Bolanle was glad to hear about my father’s conversion and her presence in our house with another man she introduced as Brother Martins began to visit us regularly to teach us the Bible.
My parents began to read bible together and my father commanded me to participate in the family devotion. I feigned my obedience but peace eluded me. The transformation in the life of my father was rapid and so evidenced. I began to envy the joy they exuded in their daily routine. I overheard them sharing their hidden secrets and asking for forgiveness. It seemed they just got married. They were all over each other and they spent time together watching movies, praying and playing. I once heard them throwing up things in their room and laughing together.
It was a great relief for my mother when we went for Grandma’s burial and that afforded me the opportunity to give her my last respect and to see Mama Gabriel she had often spoken about. They grew up together and married their husbands from the same town. Mr Gabriel was in attendance too. He took interest in my education and promised to help me search for foreign scholarship opportunities. He wrote down his contact on a piece of paper and I lost it before we got back home. It pained me a lot which made me resigned my fate to bad luck.
Aunt Sharon travelled down from Germany and was there but didn’t talk about my travelling to Germany again. She began to give me excuses until the day I …
Published By: Ifeoluwa ORISAKAHUNSI