The day after the aborted introduction, exactly 3:00AM again, the man who had hynotized Funke while she was in America comes out of his room holding a sponge in his left hand and a wooden human-like statue in the right.
Man: “Funke, you are not progressing anywhere. The sponge used to bathe you at birth is still with me. Yes! It is still with me. Still wet and dripping water. It has been with me for over 23years now and as long as it remains with me, nothing good shall come out of you. So, you refused to return to Nigeria empty-handed, you came with a man, a rich man for that matter! You want to cause discord among the relations in our family right? You want people to disregard me as an elder in this family and give all respect to your own parents because of their rich son-in-law. No way! Over my dead body will that marriage work! Each time we plan something evil against you, the powers behind you turns it for your good but this is the end of the road for you. The sponge which is responsible for all the problems that you have been encountering is still in my custody and no one, I mean no human, no god, no power can ever get it from me. Not even God, the Creator. It will be as I say!”
He uses the sponge to clean the human statue which represents Funke and then tip toes back to his room.
Funke has been making efforts to reach Kenny after he and his parents left but he has refused picking her calls. She is thinking of travelling to the city to see him and apologise to his parents but she is weak and is taking some herbs for the treatment of Malaria. Ever since the embarrasing incident, she has not been able to go anywhere outside the compound because the whole village was agog with her story. She is also afraid of meeting Wahidi who has sworn that he must marry her even though the Introduction ceremony couldn’t hold that day.
While she is sleeping that afternoon in their sitting room, she saw a vision again. This time around, she is not afraid because of the peace that flooded her mind since she started praying. The angel stands smiling at her and after a while she hears him talk in a voice that echoes.
Angel: “Peace, Funke, I am your guardian angel, fear not. Rejoice in the Lord, let not your heart be troubled.”
Funke: “Rejoice? Did I hear you say rejoice? After all that I am going through? How can I rejoice when all I see everyday are pains and disappointments. Why must I suffer this much? After all the prayers and fasting I did, why hasn’t God delivered me? I should rejoice when Kenny and his people have abandoned me? Tell me, what reason do I have to rejoice?”
Angel: “Do not lose faith, for this battle is not yours but the Lord’s. Exalt the Lord, sing praises to Him from your heart, for it is right to do so. He knows the plans that He has for you, plans of good and not of evil, to bring you to an expected end. Magnify the Lord, again I say, magnify his name!”
The vision fades and Funke’s countenence brightens up.
So, she decides to walk to the next street to buy airtime so that she can call her uncle and ask for his intervention. She has just steped out of the house when she runs into two of her friends, they ignore her as though they didnt know her.
Funke: “Ah-ah, Abike, Ruth, are we fighting? We used to be best of friends before I travelled, so why the attitude now? What did I do wrong?”
Ruth: “Sorry o, Funke America, I didn’t see you, I was busy concentrating on the road.”
Abike: “Ruth, do you need to explain anything to her? Is friendship by force? Abeg, shift make I see road.”
Funke is short of words as they walk past her. As she takes a turn leading to the next street, she eaves drop on two girls talking about her:
Girl 1: “Imagine o, some people don’t even know what God has done for them. How can somebody go to America and come back without an oyibo man as a husband?
Girl 2: “My dear, I tire o. No be husband own dey pain me seff. Why she know wait complete her school wey carry her go there? I dey suspect say na pursue they pursue her come back.”
Girl 1: “Me, like this, if I by mistake enter America like this, first thing wey I go do na to carry belle for one fine oyibo bobo so that im go marry me.”
Girl 2: “My friend, my friend. I trust you na. Sharp sharp things. The only baby producing machine of our time.”
As Funke walks past them, she realises that her days in her village are numbered and she is determined more than ever to marry Kenny.
Its morning the next day, Funke wakes up very weak and feverish. “It is Malaria from the mosquitoes in this village, she thought.” “Kemi, get water ready for me to bath, she calls out to her younger sister.”
Muli: “Okay, sister mi.
After taking her bath, Funke runs in to the bedroom to cover herself. She feels extremely cold and the shivering gets worst that her parents go with her to the community clinic.”
She has been on bed rest in the hospital for two days and she is recuperating well, she tried calling Kenny several times to no avail. While she is eating the lunch her mother brought her earlier, the doctor, a corp member walks in. Funke hurriedly covers the plate and keeps it away.
Doctor: “I see that your appetite is back now. How do yo feel.”
Funke: “I feel much better, doctor. Thank you.”
Doctor: “Great. Well, you have been discharged, make sure you pick up the prescribed drugs at the pharmacist before leaving. Be deligent in taking the drugs and then you need to register for ante natal as soon as possible. I am sure your mother knows how very important that is.”
Funke: “What! Ante what? for what?
Funke’s Mother: “Eh! doctor, no vex o, I no sabi speak big English. Wetin she dey find for ante natal side?”
Doctor: “You mean you all didn’t know? Very well then, your daughter is 8weeks pregnant. ”
Funke: “Doctor, no, there must be a mix up somewhere. I can’t be pregnant.”
Doctor: “Really? Why can’t you be pregnant? Are you a v!rgin?”
Funke: “No, but..”
Doctors: “No buts, pregnancy is one of the results of having s*x without protection.”
Funke: “But doctor, I..I…I mean I dont feel pregnant.”
Doctor: “With time you will soon start feeling it. Excuse me, other patients are waiting.”
As the Doctor leaves, Funke’s mother get up and begins to wail. “Funke you have killed me. What did I do wrong that you are causing me so much pain. Where I wan hide my face now?”
Funke’s mother bolts out of the office in anger. Funke in the gait of a snail walks out of the doctor’s office and suddenly everything becomes bleary for Funke, this time it is not a dream but she is thrown into some sort of vision the Old Man visits her again, Funke is sobbing,
Funke: “Baba, this is too much for me to handle. I just want to die!”
Angel: “Be calm my daughter. Remember the battle isn’t of the swift or strong but of the lord. Wailing isn’t the solution give thanks to Him, who oversees the affairs the heavens and earth. The set time is near!”
He disappears and peace returns to her, shortly after, Funke notices that a text message has dropped in her phone. She expects it to be from Kenny so that she can tell him about the pregnancy. She opens the text and it reads:
“If u wan make I free u 2 marry anybody wey you like, come see me tomorrow by 5pm for my house and anything I ask for u must do am. Wahidi.”
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