Too Late Episode 13

Too Late Episode 13


*Episode 13*

Since the death of Okoye, Chioma had been scared. Scared of everything around her. She was also angry that her husband failed her despite her love for him. Now all she have for him is hatred. She hates her husband, marriage and life.

She hates Stanley because he treated her like a filthy rag. Come to think of it, she doesn’t deserve such treatment. She has sacrifice enough to make the marriage work. She has come to understand that it was one-sided love. She’s very much certain now, that Stanley never loved her.

Chioma lost her self esteem. One of her colleague told her that any man who brings in another wife did wrong but the first wife a bigger failure. Ever since she heard that, she accepted she her failure. She failed.

On this Saturday morning, Chioma did the laundry then settled down to read a novel she bought recently. She had not read few pages before she dozed off. When she opened her eyes, she went to check on her kids and saw them watching television in the sitting room. Satisfied that they are still there, she returned to her room.

By the time she would read more pages, it was afternoon. Chioma went to the kitchen to prepare lunch for herself and her kids. The rice was on the fire when she returned to her room. As she passed the sitting room to her room, she was surprised to see her husband and Rosa joined the kids in the sitting room. One of them had removed the channel the kids were watching.

Chioma entered her room to continue reading, Rosa left the sitting room to the bedroom, then came out and took a pack of juice from the fridge. She went outside and sat sipping her drink.

Ekene, one of Chioma’s kids who was no more interested in the programme came out too. He watched Rosa as she took a sip. Rosa too watched him from the corner of her eyes. The little boy bounced the ball in his hands and occasionally, glance at Rosa.

Quickly, Rosa poured a white substance into the juice she was sipping. After mixing thoroughly, she beckoned on the boy to come. He came and Rosa offered him the juice. She wiped his mouth with the back of her palm and whispered in his ears.

“Your mum will flog you if you tell her I gave you juice. Make sure you don’t tell her anything” She whispered.

Ekene smiled and nodded his head.

“Good boy!,go,go and play”

He ran off to play while Rosa drank the juice in the juice pack. It was not long, Chioma came out and called Ekene to come and eat lunch.

The food was already in the room. That’s where she eats with her children. The last time Chioma ate in the dining room, she had a great fight with Rosa who told her that the dinning room is solely for her and Stanley. Rosa smashed her plates of food on the wall and since then she avoided her and the dining room. Chioma sat with her kids on the tiled floor eating, when suddenly Ekene started coughing. Chioma quickly gave him water but the cough persisted. Tears were having a field day in his little face and catarrh in his nose. Chioma stood up and carried him to the bed.

“What is it Ekene?” She asked panicking.

By the time she would give him water again, he was already stretching his body. Chioma’s scream attracted both Rosa and Stanley. Rosa carried the boy from her.

“Get me a spoon” She instructed

Chioma ran to the kitchen to get it for her. Rosa forced it into Ekene’s mouth.

“Be fast, Onions is needed”

Crying, Chioma rushed again to the kitchen. By the time she would return, Ekene’s eyes were unblinking and his mouth filled with white foams. Rosa removed the spoon from his mouth.

“Ekene is dead” Rosa announced.

Chioma carried the corpse from Rosa and placed on her laps. She shook him gently with his hands dangling.

“He is dead” Rosa repeated.

Chioma screamed and raised the boy to her breasts.

“How come? I was feeding him just now” She said crying.

She left the bed to the floor with the corpse still on her lap. She kept begging him to open his eyes. When she couldn’t bear the pain, she screamed.

Both Rosa and Stanley watched her cry until Stanley left the house. He returned with two men who forcefully carried the corpse of Ekene from Chioma. Stanley followed them to bury the child. It was late when he returned.

It was obvious he went drinking. Rosa consoled her but Chioma was unconsolable. She kept beating her chest and crying.


Since the Karen left Charles, life has not been the same for him. He was depressed. He lost hope. He sent lots of messages to Karen, but never received any response. The pain of losing someone you love is unbearable.

If not for his parents, he would have starved to death. On several occasions, the thought of suicide had crossed his mind.

Charles stood up lazily from the bed. He planned washing his clothes. He entered the bathroom to wash only to discover water was not flowing. Then he remembered that two days ago, the pumping machine got spoilt and needed to be repaired. Disappointed, he picked a bucket to fetch water outside. He has never gone out to fetch water.

The problem was, how would he drag a bucket filled with water back to his house. He has never tried it before. Worst come to worst, he would beg somebody or a passerby to help him. He walked to the gate and opened it. He stood there watching out for a familiar face, but there was none. He decided to cross to the opposite compound to get water. He had finished fetching when he saw a lady passing by. He had never seen her before.

Charles kept staring at this beautiful lady with a baby on her back. He had not seen any lady as beautiful as her. Karen’s beauty pales before her. He watched her as passed him before he called for her help.

“Please, I live here” he said pointing at his compound. ” I need your help. I can’t carry this bucket of…”

Charles studied her face.

“It’s no big deal. Let me help you”

“Are you new in this area” Charles asked.

“No!, Why?”

“Nothing!, I have never met you before and I have been here for close to two years now”

“Awww!, You are new then”

She carried the bucket of water to the house and even helped him drop it in his bathroom.

“This water won’t be enough for you” She said.

“I will manage” he said even though he knew it won’t be enough.

He thanked her.

“I am Charles”

“Elena is my name” She said smiling

Elena proceeded home but soon returned with her brother.
She stood outside smiling when Charles opened the door.

“I like disturbing people” She said “I and my brother came to fetch more water for you. Don’t argue.

Show Chima the way to the bathroom” She said.
The surprised Charles moved aside while Chima went in to locate the bathroom. He brought out all the buckets he could find in the house. Together with Chima, they fetched enough water for Charles.

From there onwards, Charles and Elena became friends. Through his discussion with her, he got to know she just graduated from a prestigious university waiting to be posted to her place of primary assignment. She and her brother were the only surviving children of their parents and they live with their aunty.

Gradually, life surge into Charles.

“Are you a born again Christian?” Elena asked him one day.

“I go to church”

Elena laughed deeply.

“That doesn’t answer my question. Going to church is different from knowing Jesus. Do you know Jesus?. Do you have any relationship with him?”

Reflecting on her question, he replied.

“No!, Truly I don’t know Jesus enough. I have actually not given my life to Him”

They sat quietly for a time

“Are you willing to surrender to him?. Delay may be dangerous” She said looking at him pleadingly.

“I am ready” He sighed deeply.

Elena held his two hands and led him to Christ. For the first time, Charles had peace and he felt a kind of bubbling from his innermost being. He began to laugh and laugh, as tears rolled down his eyes.

“This is what I needed all along”

Elena not only led him to Christ, she taught him from scriptures and gradually, he began to grow.

Charles now on his own study the bible and pray. Wanting to spread this good news of Jesus, he would wake up as early as 5:30am, opened his gate and begin to preach the good news.

Most times, Elena would supply him with tracts and Charles would share it for as many people he could reach. The short time Charles spent with Elena was impactful. She encouraged him to join a bible believing church where the word of God is accurately and rightly divided. Charles not only joined but was an active member of the church. For Charles, Elena was a light that was sent to drive away the darkness trying to engulf him.

To be continued

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