The Regents Hospital,
“Could somebody get this woman out of this room. I need to attend to the patient,” Omolara said.
“Doctor, will he be okay?” Yemi asked as she was escorted out of the room by a nurse.
Omolara ignored her question and checked the vital signs of Gbenga. “Thank you Lord,” she breathed a sigh of relief. She turned to the security guards that stood at the door of the room. “Make sure nobody enters this room unless they are hospital staff. You must clear with me first before you allow any member of his family see him. Is that understood?”
“What about the woman who brought him to the hospital?” one guard asked.
“She can see him whenever she wants.” She turned to look at Gbenga on the bed. He opened his eyes and saw her. “Everyone leave the room. The patient needs some rest.”
The nurses left the room. Omolara stood by the bed and regarded Gbenga.
Gbenga blinked a few times and looked around. “Where am I? What am I doing here?” he asked in a tired voice.
“This is my hospital,” Omolara said.
“Who brought me here?” Gbenga asked.
“Her name is Yemi. She’s sitting outside the room. Gbenga, what is going on in your life?” she asked.
Gbenga said nothing. He stared at the intricate patterns on the white ceiling.
“And why was that man trying to kill you?” she asked.
Gbenga was silent, his lips taut like someone who ate an unripe lemon fruit.
“Gbenga, please let me help you. Tell me what is going on,” Omolara pleaded. “Unless I know what is going on I won’t be able to help you.”
Gbenga turned to her, tears rolling down his face. “Omolara, I am so sorry for how I treated you. ” He took a moment to control his emotions and continued. “You were right about Shade. Everything you said about her was true, but I couldn’t see it. Will you ever find it in your heart to forgive me?”
Omolara looked at him with love filled eyes. “Gbenga, I forgave you a long time ago. You chose Shade over me. You hurt me but God used it to teach me a spiritual lesson. I had to learn to put God first, to honour Him in my relationships. I was so carried away by my feelings for you that I never made sure if God wanted us for each other. It is God’s will that matters to me now. I know that His plans are way better than any plans I may have for myself.” She paused and smiled at him. “I released you to God a long time ago and I have always prayed that He will deliver you Himself from the hands of that wicked woman.”
“I thought you were angry and bitter because I rejected you and said those things about Shade out of your pain. But you were right. You’ve always been right.” He shut his eyes trying to stop the tears from flowing. “I was such a fool! I should have listened to you when you tried to warn me.”
Omolara drew up a chair next to the bed and sat down. As she sat near him, she felt some old emotions which she thought were dead beginning to awaken in her heart.
“Gbenga, no matter how much I loved you, I would never have concocted lies to make Shade look bad. I wasn’t desperate to get married to you. I told you the truth about that woman but you wouldn’t listen to me. You were like a fly trapped in her web of lies and sexual manipulation. I tried to help you but you wanted to have her rather than listen to the truth.”
Gbenga raised a weak hand and placed it gently on Omolara’s hand. “You warned me. Yes, you did.” He managed a weak smile.
“You thought I had become obsessed with you and wanted you for myself, that was the reason why I painted Shade black. But heaven knows that my hands are clean.” She lifted both hands and looked up at the ceiling.
“Now I understand that you were in love with me, not obsessed like I thought. How could I have been so blind not to see what was right before me?” He shook his head with sadness. “I have really messed up my life. Can God forgive me for my foolishness? Can he restore all my wasted years?”
Omolara’s eyes clouded up with tears. “Gbenga, the Lord will forgive you if you return to Him with a sincere heart. The Bible says “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” I know there was a time in your life you had a relationship with The Lord. If you repent, He will accept you.”
“Will He?” Gbenga asked, his face shrouded with doubt.
Omolara nodded knowingly. “Yes, He will. Sometimes we make terrible choices that bring us pain but if we turn back to The Lord in true repentance, He will receive us and fix the issues we created in our lives by our own foolishness and rebellion.”
Gbenga shut his eyes. When he opened his eyes, there was hope on his face.
“Do you want to tell me how you got here?” Omolara asked.
Gbenga looked up at the ceiling. “It all began on Saturday morning,” he said in a tired voice.
“Which Saturday morning are you talking about?” Omolara inquired.
Gbenga turned his head slightly towards her. “The day before yesterday.” He spoke slowly telling her everything, leaving nothing out.
The Philip’s Residence,
Supo watched from a safe distance as the car stopped in front of the Philip’s mansion. The bearded man got out of the car, opened the side gate and entered the house. Supo sat in the car and thought about what to do. The bearded man looked suspicious but that didn’t mean he was guilty of any crime. What was he doing at the Philip’s residence? Did he work for them? He pondered.
The police man leaned back in the seat and exhaled slowly. After a few minutes he brought out his phone and called Raymond. “I am at the Philip’s residence.”
“I have been trying to get you. Why are you there?” he asked.
“I followed a suspicious character here. I saw him run out of the hospital, dump his lab coat in a dustbin near the hospital, then he drove away in a hurry. I didn’t like the way things looked so I decided to follow him and he led me to the Philip’s mansion.” He paused and looked around to make sure the bearded man wasn’t coming out of the house.
“You said he threw a lab coat into a dustbin?”Raymond asked.
“Yes, he did.”
“Supo, listen very carefully. Whatever you do don’t let that man leave that house,” Raymond warned.
“Why? Do you know something I don’t?” Supo asked.
“Someone tried to murder Mr Gbenga Philips tonight. The nurse who witnessed the attack said he was a bearded man who wore a lab coat. I am sure that is the same person who ran out of the hospital and drove to the Philip’s residence.”
The fat police man hit the dashboard with the palm of his right hand. “Yes! So my instincts were right. I knew there was something fishy about that man when I saw him run out of the hospital as if he was pursued by a masquerade.”
“Yes my friend. This time your instincts were right on target. It is good you followed him and look at where he led you to.”
“Right back to the Philip’s residence and I want to bet that Shade Philips is in that house right now talking with him.”
“We can’t be sure what is going on inside that house until we go inside. You should wait for some back up before you go inside. That man could be harmed and dangerous,” Raymond warned his partner.
“I will be careful,” the fat man ended the call and got out of the car. He looked at the imposing building and hesitated at the gate. This was going to be the second time within twelve hours that he had come to this house. He brought out his gun and looked at it for a few seconds. “Lord, protect me in there,” he prayed, looked around to make sure he was alone then walked through the gate, heading for the main house.
Shade Philips sat on a chair in her bedroom drinking some coffee. She wore a black nightdress and a loose fitting house coat which barely covered her body. Sadique stood at the door of the room like an evil sentinel staring at her.
“Did you get the job done?” Shade asked.
“It is done. Gbenga Philips has gone to rest with his ancestors,” the ex-military security guard assured Mrs Philips.
Shade placed the cup on a stool and stood up. “You did good. Gbenga Philips is dead and all this will be mine!” she spread her hands and laughed.
Sadique licked his lips. For the second time within twenty four hours he was alone with Shade Philips in her bedroom. His eyes followed her as she paced around the room, her house coat opening at odd angles, exposing her legs. She was ranting like a lunatic, uttering terrible things about the man who used to be her husband, the man he just murdered. He didn’t care about Gbenga Philips. He never liked him for one day. He did his job as a security guard and got paid for it. But last night, after Shade Philips fell into his arms and offered herself to him if he would kill her husband, he started desiring her. In the past several hours this desire in his heart had grown to become a burning obsession. He wanted to possess Shade Philips, to own her as his own. Never in his life could he have imagined that such a beautiful woman would throw herself at him. It seemed like the gods had given him a rare opportunity to enjoy what Mr Philips enjoyed before he gave it all up for the maid.
Shade came out of the walk-in wardrobe with a big envelope in her hands. She handed it over to him. “There is more money in that envelope than you’ve ever seen at once in your entire life. Take it and leave.”
As he stood before her, her perfume teased his senses and he felt an overwhelming desire to hold her.
“I said take it and leave!” Shade repeated. “And don’t you ever return to this house,” said Shade.
Sadique took the envelope from her hand, regarded it for a moment, then threw it on the floor. It landed with a heavy thud near the bed.
“What did you do that for?” Shade asked him.
“Shade, I don’t want your money,” said Sadique.
Shade looked at the envelope lying on the floor. “Do you know how much I put in there? Do you know what people would do to hold that envelope in their hands?”
Sadique took two steps towards her. “I am sure a lot of people would want your money. But I don’t want it.”
Shade didn’t like the way his eyes wandered over her body like a stray dog. She pulled the house coat tightly around her body. Suddenly she felt too exposed. “What do you want front me Sadique?” She took a nervous step backward. She felt naked and vulnerable before the security guard who stood before her.
Sadique saw the fear in her eyes and smiled. He had her where he wanted her. Her fear would paralyse her senses, making it difficult for her to think, sapping her of energy, turning her into putty in his hands. He reached out and placed his huge hands on her shoulders. She tried to shake off his hands but he was too strong for her. He looked into her eyes and shoved her violently on the bed. She landed heavily on her back and it knocked out her breath. Sadique walked deliberately to the bed, his eyes on her like a slave master examining his prized possession.
“I want you,” he said. “And I want you now.”
“Sadique please don’t do this,” Shade begged.
The ex-military man ignored her plea. He ripped off her clothes like a hungry man peeling a ripe banana. “You and I had an agreement. You promised me that I could have you when I killed your husband. I am here to cash in on that promise,” said Sadique.
“Sadique, I will give you more money. I will give you anything you want. Please don’t do this,” she pleaded.
But all Sadique could see was her body, desirable, inviting. He saw her lips move but didn’t hear any thing she said. Shade thrashed wildly under him like fish taken out of water, gasping for breath. She threw wild punches at his head and scratched his face, but the big man was like a zombie and kept coming. The punches bounced off his face completely harmless. The only emotion he felt was the one that twisted itself around his burning loins like a venomous serpent.
Shade’s eyes opened wide in terror, she tried to scream but her throat was constricted by fear. The sound struggled in her throat for a moment before it died in a desolate whimper.
To be continued…