A slap landed on my left cheek while I got a knock on my head from behind.
“mummy, I swear,I didn’t take the money. I haven’t even swept your room this morning.”
She looked at me with scorn and had another reason why i would be dealt with.
“Chy, go and call your father.” she said to her daughter who was my age mate and had given me the knock on my head.
Chinenye ran into the house, leaving me alone with her mother who was my aunt.
My name is Chimamanda Okoye. I’m nineteen years old and just finished my waec. I don’t know my real parents but I grew up with mummy Joy and daddy Alex. According to what I was told, daddy Alex was my mother’s elder brother. They were the only children of their parents. My mother had died while giving birth to me three months after my father was buried. I grew up knowing Joy and Alex as my parents.
On the other hand, Chinenye and Chukwuebuka are the only children of mummy Joy and daddy Alex. They were twins. They’re older than me with just two months. We three wrote waec together and were awaiting our results.
Chukwuebuka left for Abuja immediately our exams finished. He was my best friend, my confidant and my saviour. Daddy Alex was also good to me but he was never around. It was from one country to the other and whenever he was around, mummy Joy tried her best to prove to him that I was worthless.
Alex: Amanda,why are you kneeling down? What did you do?
I quickly noted the frown forming on Chinenye’s face. She had come out to the backyard with her father smiling sheepishly.
Joy: You won’t ask me, your wife, why I’m punishing her eh daddy?
Alex: What did she do?
Joy: She stole my money.
Daddy looked at me and frowned. He came closer to me and squatted, daddy was a tall man.
Alex: Amanda, did you take your mother’s money?
I shook my head as fresh tears fell from my eyes.
Alex: Speak my child and stop nodding. Learn to defend yourself.
He spoke in a very soft way that I wanted to pull him to me and hug him for loving me so much.
Me: Daddy, I didn’t take the money. I haven’t even gone into mummy’s room this morning. I……..
Joy: Shut up your mouth. I’m still talking about the money that you stole and you’re drumming it into my ear that you’ve not swept my room this morning. What do I keep you in this house for?
Alex: And what will Chinenye be doing while she’s working herself up in this house?
Alex: Shut up and get into the house. Make sure you’ve swept the entire rooms before I get back into that house.
Joy: Daddy leave this girl alone. How can she be suffering in her own father’s house?
Alex: If sweeping the house is suffering,she should suffer. Now,get into that house now.
Chinenye ran into the house making noise like she was crying. She had never touched a broom since our childhood. I wanted to stop her and tell her to wait for me to do it but I caught daddy staring at me in a mean way.
Joy: Look how you overlooked this fool’s mistake and carried it all out on my daughter. Nenye is still a child. She…..
Alex: Woman,don’t provoke me anymore. You call that arrogant girl a child? If so,then Chimamanda is a child too. Why leave her to do all the work?
Joy: This is your house and Nenye is your child. If this bastard needs someone to pamper her,she should go and look for her late parents and live with them.
Mummy Joy meant to walk away but daddy slapped her and she fell on the ground.
Alex; You dare call my niece a bastard? Twenty one years ago,who was i? Who knew me in this country? Her father made me who I am. Her father restructured my life and that is why you even married me at the first place. This house belongs to Amanda because her mother willed everything to her,the money and every other thing you used in starting your business,it was from Amanda’s money. Now,you call her a bastard. Is that how shameless you’ve become? I won’t say this again,lay your hands on this girl just one more time and that will be the end of our marriage.
I knelt there and tried to think over all daddy was saying. The house was mine? I had money too? Then why did mummy Joy always refer to me as a wretched child who her parents left with nothing? I wanted to smile and dance around for joy but not now,not when my mummy was on the floor in pains.
Alex: Amanda, go and finish with whatever you’re doing. Once I come back, you’re leaving this house with me.
Mummy Joy left as soon as daddy left the house but while mummy came back later around 8:00pm,daddy never returned.
TO BE CONTINUE