At the Restaurant
She rang her father to inform him of Halima’ sickness but he yelled at her with insults.
“Never ring my phone again don’t you know I am busy with my guest?”
Fams latest chick asked;
“Who is that you were too harsh?”
“It is my maid asking for lots of favour and I have no time for that. What is your desire the honour is mine?”
“I want to do shopping in Dubai that’s all.”
“The choice is mine.” There and then he drew a cheque of D300, 000.
Hojah was overwhelmed;
“Sweetie you are so generous.” She kissed him and they got up and drove away.
She is very sick and shivering.
“Go to the cupboard and took my pain killer to subside my pain. It is not serious just pregnancy sickness.”
“There is no pain killer mom.”
“Come and look into my purse a D100 is there take it and buy paracetamol for me.”
She is another sweet chick;
“Today is my birthday what will you give me?”
“What about the newest posh car?”
She jump with excitement;
“That’ splendid! You are so generous darling Lemon! The car has to be coupled with a trip to Paris with you.” She kissed him passionately.
“Your wish is my command.”
Halima requested to talk to Fams he paced up and down waiting for her then she appeared and made a timid emotional request;
“Be quick I am late for work hurry up!”
“Sorry for bothering you I am already late for Ante Natal as I am seven months in advance and I don’t know the condition of my baby.”
He got mad at his wife;
“Demand! Demand! What is your contribution to the welfare of this family?”
She took courage and said her mind;
“I am pregnant with your child for God’ sake and I should be taken care of as the right of a wife and mother from a husband and a father.”
Fams ignored her and decided to leave but Halima stood her ground and blocked the path.
“You have to kill me first before I let go.”
He took out his trousers belt and beat Halima in her heavy state and she ran away with angry eyes he said;
“It is not a joke I can kill you, you know.”
Halima and Salma took deep breath;
“Dad is cruel mom he can kill us unintentiously.” Salam helped Halima got up and go to her room.
Grandma rang and asked after their health;
“How are you and the rest of the family?”
“Everything is very fine Mama, Fams is taking very good care of us he has changed drastically and I thank God for it.”
“Didn’t I tell you? My son is kind I trained him very well he was just angry with us but he loves you and his daughter Salma.”
She became angry;
“But mom you are very unfair to us by giving out false information why did you do that I am very angry with you?”
“What can I do as a wife and mother? According to tradition I have to cover up for the family you don’t wash your dirty linen outside for family honour and prestige and please don’t be wrong your father loves us.”
“Culture of Silence is what is killing our women folk you are dying and still pretends I’ll never marry a man like dad if I do I’ll kill him this man is wicked he is filthy rich but decided to waste it on prostitutes of all sorts while he starves his family to death how can you cover such a man? Grandma is not a stranger she is a stakeholder had you opened up to her she would have put dad to place. This is very unfair we are dying and you are pretending to cover up a monster if you continue this trend you’ll sooner than later go to the grave.”
Halima wept bitterly;
“Let us pray for him as he is in the hands of the devil.”
“May Allah only helps those who help themselves.”
“My daughter you are still young every family has its secret.” She hugged her daughter and gave her hope for the future.
“You are young be serious in your studies don’t depend on your father’ wealth some day when you are there you’ll not forget me.”
Terror at Home
Fams is a terror at home he is always tense, uninviting and uncivil Salma is distance with him he called the house help Susan and asked after Halima.
“Boss madam dey sleep,”
“What sleep at this time of the day? She is very lazy go and wake him up.”
“A wake am?”
“Yes go and wake her up and now!”
She woke and came to enquire from Fams;
“Here I am.”
“Sleeping! What is the time now? You are very lazy nowadays.” Then he abruptly announced;
“Susan you are fired!”
“Fired boss! What a do help me ano want go village.”
“Not only you but I’ll never hire any maid here again hiring maids has made you lazy.”
In the Morning
Sue came out with her luggage and prayed for Halima and Salma.
“Salma madam Halima is a good woman and a good mother take good care of her, her heart is golden.”
“Thank you Sue take these clothes, shoes for yourself you have served me very well but go straight to the village and not to Haja’ home she would be very worried.” She agreed and left.
He was watching football Halima came and sat beside him and commenting about the match he was uneasy he then said;
“Halima! Can you please fetch me some water?”
“Okay.” She went and came with the water.
Halima sat and again asked about the players;
“How is Asante? He plays very well.”
He ignored the question and asked;
“Can you make fruit salad for me?”
Halima came back but before she sits down Fams made another demand;
“Do you know where I put my rainbow shirt? Find it and iron it straight for me.”
She left and Fams frown;
“I’ll never allow you sit beside me who are you eh? You are not my class I’ll make this marriage your hellfire.”
To be cont.