“Sorry babe, I have lost appetite…” “What! Did you say you lost what? Are you aware I have been laboring in the kitchen to make you a nice meal? You have to find your appetite somehow,” Janet retorted. Emmanuel could see his wife was not happy. Refusing to eat her food would be one too many troubles to handle in a night, so he agreed to nibble at some of whatever she had cooked for him. “For all I care, my father died peacefully in his sleep, but what you have told me has left me wondering if there was much more than I have known.” “Let it go baby,” Janet pleaded. “You are making me regret telling you that. Just let it got. Your dad died in peace and that is how it is. Come and have your bath…I will bathe you, if that will make you cool off,” she concluded.
Emmanuel exhaled to let out some of the steam inside of him. Not even the offer to be bathed by Janet could make him relax. Receiving a bath from Janet was one of his favourite romantic moments together with her. However, in spite of that offer, his mind remained fixated on his father’s death and her mother’s reported comment. A foreboding feeling had been swooshing over him from the time they were on their honeymoon in Monaco. By now Janet had succeeded in peeling off all his clothes, except for his boxer shorts. Holding him by the hand, she led the way to their king size bath. “By the time I am done with you, you won’t remember who your mother or father are, nor your middle name,” she said as they stepped into their bath. Emmanuel chuckled in spite of himself. Turning to face him, she pulled off his boxer shorts, and pressed her body into his and whispered, “Undress me, baby.”
As Emmanuel’s hands worked to remove her clothes, he recalled a dream his brother had before he died some years back. “My brother Jeffery had a weird dream a night before his death.” Janet made a face, indicating she did not want him to spoil their romantic moment. Nonetheless, she gave him attention, “What did he see?” she asked. “He saw my father walk into his hospital room and said to him, “come and see Jeffery.” According to Jeffrey, he did not want to go, but in spite of himself, he followed him to a garden filled with only white flowers. As soon as they stepped into the garden, my father touched one of the flower petals in the garden and suddenly, all the beautiful flowers began to die, bleeding streams of blood. Jeffery said he was afraid and turned to ask my father why the beautiful garden was dying, only to see my father chained to a metal pole and bleeding from the eyes, nose, mouth and ears. He screamed and woke up. By seven am the next morning, Jeffery was dead.”
Janet did not like the sound of that. Though he was there with her, she felt fear seizing at her heart. It was as though a third unseen person had joined them in the bath. Janet took hold of him firmly, looking around fearfully. “What is it babe?” Emmanuel asked. “I don’t like the way I feel. It is as though someone else is here with us,” she replied. Emmanuel looked around and just in time, he saw the reflection of a figure in a white shirt on the glass panel of their Jacuzzi. Taking hold of Janet firmly, he whispered, “You just might be right, babe. I think I saw a reflection on that glass.” “You did?” Janet asked, her eyes widening in absolute fear. “Yes,” he whispered. “The problem is that I know the shirt the figure was wearing. I remember it clearly…” “Whose shirt is that?” “My father’s shirt.” “Your father?!” she asked, swallowing hard.
Mrs. Asibong and Ibinabo, 12:35 AM
“I have heard your plight madam. We have the solution to your problems right here. We have the power to change what has been done to your son and to stop you from suffering further losses,” a burly, potbellied man, with an unkempt look, said to Mrs. Asibong. The man was probably in his mid-fifties. He worked from his large house. One could tell that his shrine, which was a large room in his house was custom made. It must have been designed when the house plan was being drawn. It was very clear that his customers were politicians and top business moguls.
“I have heard that before. What is the price I have to pay for you to help me?” Mrs. Asibong asked. The man smiled and said as softly as he could, “Cash is a compulsory first payment here, but it is in most cases not the price people pay for what they want. What you want determines what you pay, and in this case, yours requires an altar to be raised for you and your family, to keep the fellowship from bringing you down. For that to happen, life will be required. That is the real price.”
“Never! I am done spilling blood! Eme Asibong will never do that again!” Mrs. Asibong spat. “Okay, if you won’t do that, can you give us a part of your body or any of your unborn grandchildren?” the man asked. Mrs. Asibong sighed regretfully and lowered her head to ponder the new option.