The Regents Hospital
7:00am, Monday morning.
Yemi walked down the hall. She didn’t know what was going on any more. She thought she was going to marry Gbenga because of her pregnancy. Everything was going according to plan until this doctor showed up. She came out of nowhere and has won mama’s heart. A nurse came down the hall rolling a wheelchair. She got out of the way for her. She never knew that this female doctor existed before today. What was she going to do about the baby In her womb? After what happened in the room a few minutes ago, she knew mama would not allow her to keep the baby. She would want to get rid of her and the baby. Yemi hurried down the hall. She saw Kalu sitting in the waiting area with his back turned to her. She stopped and leaned on a wall out of sight.
Why did she agree to Kalu’s proposal? Kalu couldn’t take care of her, neither could he take care of the baby growing in her womb. “Stupid, stupid!” she hit the wall with a clenched fist. She liked the idea of settling down but was Kalu man enough to handle the responsibility she was about to thrust on him? Three nurses walked down the hall chatting.
She knew Sadique would never give up on her. He believed they were meant to be together, that was why he didn’t hurt her like Shade Philips instructed her to do. Sadique would return and find her wherever she was.
She slipped slowly to the floor and sat down with her hands on her head.
“Yemi. I have been looking all over for you. What are you doing on the floor?”
She lifted her head slowly to see who spoke. If she hadn’t been so tired she would have laughed for joy. This could be the solution to her problems.
Chief Babalore held her hand and helped her up. “What are you doing in this hospital?”
Her hand went to her dishevelled hair. “Chief, I don’t know where to begin. But your daughter is responsible for my being here this morning.”
Chief Babalore let her hand drop. “What do you mean by that?”
Yemi paused. “Your daughter tried to murder her husband last night…”
“You mean she accidentally shot him?” chief cut in.
“No chief. It wasn’t an accident. She tried to shoot him but when that failed she sent an assassin after him.” Continue reading
The Regents Centre,
Kalu hurried down the corridor. He found her in the waiting area. She placed her head on top of the chair in front of her and was asleep. He shook her gently on the shoulder and woke her up. She lifted her head, blinked a few times and recognition dawned on her.
“Good morning,” he said and sat next to her.
She looked at him in disbelief. “You came.” She ran her hands through her dishevelled hair trying to give it a semblance of sanity.
He reached out and held her hand. “Yemi, what is going on? What are you doing in this hospital?” He looked around as nurses and other hospital staff went about their duties.
Yemi was silent.
“You know I really care about you and I want us to be together. Tell me what is going on. Let me help you.”
Yemi turned her face to the floor. “Kalu, you can’t help me, nobody can help me.”
“What do you mean?”
“After the way I treated you yesterday, you still came back for me?” She turned to look at him. “Kalu, what is happening here is beyond you. I don’t want to get you involved in my issues. I put myself in this situation and I will get myself out of it.”
“What situation are you talking about?”
She exhaled slowly. “A lot has happened in the past two days, too much for me to narrate right now. All I can say is that I don’t want you involved in this.” Continue reading
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.” Continue reading
The Regents Centre,
Raymond parked the unmarked police car opposite the hospital and turned to Supo who was still massaging the back of his head where Sugar had struck him. “Are you ready for this?” he asked his partner. Supo was silent, like a man contemplating the meaning of his life.
Raymond regarded the officer beside him. ” Do you want to check up on this or should I do it?”
Supo looked at the hospital building through the windscreen as if he could see a sign that would ask him to come in. “I don’t know.” He looked at Raymond. “Maybe you should go in and let me wait in the car.”
Raymond opened the door and stepped out with one leg. “As you wish. I will find out if Mr Philips is at this hospital, if he is, we shall call for back-up. I don’t want a repeat of what happened last night. We made a mistake and you almost paid for it with your life.”
“No, I made the mistake,” Supo insisted. “It was totally my fault. I should have listened to you.”
The overweight officer continued. “Sugar could have shot me but he didn’t. He could have ended my life with one bullet to the back of my head. That would have been the end of my life.” He paused as the reality of his mortality sank in. “When you revived me last night and I realised I was still alive, I felt some great relief. Some time ago a man preached to me about giving my life to Christ and becoming a Christian. I laughed it off as the ramblings of a fanatic but after what happened last night I am strongly considering it.” He turned to Raymond. “I have never given any thought to what would happen to my soul when I die. Last month my mother visited me and asked me a question. She said, ‘what is the state of your soul? Who do you belong to?’ I paid little attention to her words. She promised to pray for God to open my eyes to see the truth. Last night, when I woke up from that blow to my head, I saw the truth.” Continue reading
The Regents Centre,
As she prayed tiny beads of sweat broke out on her forehead, her face a reflection of the anguish within her soul. Her prayer became more urgent, asking God to save Gbenga Philips from all who sought to destroy him. She prayed against every conspiracy to cut short his life. There was an inexplicable heaviness in her heart which she expressed in a language only she and The Lord understood. She prayed with such intensity that she began to gasp for breath, hitting at the air with her hands balled into fists, with a look of total helplessness on her face.
A picture flashed in her mind. She saw the emissary of death standing by Gbenga’s bed, seeking to terminate his life. She saw its dark fingers curl around his neck like a venomous snake and slowly squeeze the life out of him. She saw Gbenga beginning to weaken, his struggles becoming feeble and futile, powerless against the entity that stood over him, watching as his life sipped out of him like air out of a burst tire. Continue reading
The Regents Centre,
Sadique sat in the car tapping the dashboard, his eyes set on the hospital across the road. He had followed the car from the ghetto wondering where it was headed until it stopped at the hospital. He saw Yemi and her father carry Gbenga Philips into the hospital. He saw Yemi’s father come out of the hospital in a hurry, enter his rickety car and drive away. He sat in the car for hours, listening to sentimental music on radio and thinking about what to do.
He had to make the best of the situation. Shade had given him some money to kill her husband. She promised him some more when he completed the job. He counted the money Shade gave him and discovered that he had a small fortune in his hands. Even if he didn’t finish the job, he would have a lot of money to help him lay low until he found another job or travelled out of the country.
Sadique reached for a small bottle of whiskey and emptied the contents in his mouth. He looked at the hospital again. Somewhere in this hospital Yemi his woman was with Gbenga.
He reached for his phone and called a number.
“Hello,” a woman answered.
“It’s me,” he said.
“Hold on a second, let me step outside. ”
He waited on the line.
“Sadique, where are you?” Ngozi asked in a whisper.
“I am where I am supposed to be.”
“What have you done to Gbenga? If you touch him I swear I will hunt you down until I…” Continue reading
The Regents Centre,
Omolara hurried past nurses, night staff, patients, hardly seeing anything or anyone. Everything was a blur. The tears flowing from her eyes attracted curious glances from those she passed in the hallway. She entered her office, quickly shut the door and reached for the phone on her desk.
“Maureen, I don’t want anyone to disturb me for the next thirty minutes.”
She bowed her head on the table and continued crying.
“Gbenga Phillips, why are you haunting me, why?”
She stood up from the chair and walked around the office, allowing the tears to roll down her face. She finally sat on a sofa and curled up in a foetal position holding a pillow to her chest.
“Lord, if this is you talking to me, please let me know or remove this man from my life. I can’t stand this torment anymore!” She rolled on her back and looked at the ceiling. “Gbenga, why have you returned to my life?” She whispered.
She remembered the day he walked out on her, dashing all hopes of getting married to him. Continue reading