Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Authors Note

Hello,

The wall between has been an interesting read and am happy we’ve come to the end today. But not to worry, there are more short stories and daily quotes to look out for.

Thanks for reading, feedbacks and suggestions. Every suggestions are been taken into consideration and I promise I’ll try and work on them.

I also want to address the typo errors in the story, the story hasn’t been reviewed and are straight out of my keyboard. I’m happy to inform us that it’s going through review for future read and reference.

I want to thank everyone who has been following, thanks for your time and support.

Thank You and I love you all.

Follow SHUKRWRITES on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Wattpad.

Haruna Shukurat 

© Shukrwrites

Advertisements
Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Twenty

“Hello” I said as I answered the call, I was barely awake and didn’t check the screen

“Happy birthday!!!” voices from the other end of the phone screamed, I checked my phone and the ID read “Father” 

“Many more years to come with good health and God’s blessings” he prayed, I could hear his wife’s voice at the background.

“Amin, thank you” I replied

“May this new year bring you great success, I pray the Almighty grant you your hear desires” His wife prayed

“See you soon dear” my father said and hung up

The door opened and Granny walked in

“Happy birthday dear, may this year be a turning point in your life. May all your prayers and wishes come through, I pray Allah bless and protect you from all forms of evil” Granny prayed

“Amin” I replied

“Happy birthday, once again” she said and kissed my forehead “Get up and come out” she said and left for the sitting room

I had my bath and went out to the sitting room, my family were all present. Everyone was looking and beautiful my favorite cake was baked but this time it was a different.

The icing read ” Happy Twentieth Birthday” 

It was my Twentieth Birthday. It’s been four years since I forgave my father, I still live with my grandparents. I visited my fathers house thrice in the past years but I have allowed him play his role as a father.

A lot of things changed during the years, Maryam got married and was heavily pregnant but she made it to my party. Uncle married another lady, and they both had a son. My grandparents were aging, Kabir now has his own law firm and Aunt Faiza and Aunt Baraqah are happy mother’s and wife’s.

“Happy birthday pumpkin” Maryam said

“Thanks dear” I said giving her a hug “You’re almost due” I said in excitement

“Yes in two weeks” she replied

“Wow, can’t wait” I said staring at her bump

Hours into the party, my father and his wife who am used to calling Aunt or Mrs Usman arrived with their son who’s my stepbrother. The young boy is now grown and in junior school, he looked just like my father. 

“Happy birthday” my father said hugging me

“Thank you” 

“You look younger than your age” Mrs Usman teased

“She looks just like her mother” Grandpa replied

“Common let’s join the party” Mrs Usman said calling our attention off Grandpa statement.

Every year since my sixteenth birthday, my father and his family joined in celebrating my birthday at my grandparents house.

I graduated from the university the previous year and was serving in Abeokuta. I graduated with a 3.25 GPA and my family was really happy, I had plans of getting a second degree after my youth service. As the party progressed, I stood and admired everyone. They all looked happy and were merry, I was happy too, my aging grandparents were happy and my father and his family were happily talking to them.

“You made a great decision in forgiving your father” Maryam said cutting me off

“Yea, am happy I did” I said smiling.

…THE END.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Nineteen

My father was restless, I couldn’t understand why my forgiveness was really important, they needed my grandparents forgiveness more. I painted a picture of everything that happened between him and my family in mind, for a minute I felt I saw my mother. It was impossible to see the dead but I could see someone who was just like the lady in the picture Granny gave me.
I saw her smiling at me, telling me to go on. It was evening and I wasn’t by her grave and so I was sure I was imagining things. My mother was dead and I don’t believe in ghosts, I took a deep breath to relax my nerves and continued.

“I hold no grudges against you nor your family”I continued “You should ask for forgiveness from my grandparents, you owe them an apology” I paused

“I have and it’s in good faith that I hope they forgive me” my father said almost kneeling. 

He wasn’t going to do that to me, kneeling for a young was considered an insult. I didn’t want him kneeling either.

“I have forgiven you already, God forgives and I hope and pray he forgives you” I said. His mother stood up with excitement and gave me a hug. I wasn’t expecting it, my father and everyone had a smile on their faces after hearing I had forgiven him

“Thank You” my father said as he moved closer to me, stretching his arms for a hug. I responded and he kept whispering “Thank You” in my ears

I turned to look at my family, they were all smiling. They weren’t upset, that means they were expecting me to forgive him. Grandpa kissed my hands and Granny had tears running down her cheeks. I couldn’t tell what was going on in their minds but I knew there was more to come.

“We are happy you’ve forgiven your father” his father said “He’s your father and you’ve done what anyone with a big heart will do” he paused and said “Thank You”

“We hope you both get close and try to make up for the lost times” his mother added

“Thank you for forgiving my husband” his wife said smiling “I admire your strength and courage, you’re strong” she said

“I will want you to come around to visit us” my father said. He was proposing I follow him home, i knew he was going to request that of me.

“You can come with us if you wish” his mother added

“Am not going anywhere” rebuked “I’m staying right here with my family” I said

“We are not asking that you leave your family, we are family too, am your grandmother too” his mother said

“I know, but my home is here” I said holding my grandparents hands “They lost a daughter once and am not ready to loose them” 

They all stared at me, they weren’t expecting such from me. My forgiveness doesn’t mean I was going to put the past behind and pack my bags to my father’s house.

“I understand, you just admitted into university and you need the necessary things a young girl needs” my father said

“I have it all here” I replied

“Dear” his wife said “I know it’s a little bit early to request such from you, your father just wants a little father and daughter time” she paused “Everyone wants to have you around, I also want to have you around, it may be a day or two. Just to get to know you” she concluded

She sounds more intelligent than my father and his parents, she spoke with so much love and wisdom. I was amazed at the way she was trying to convince me, I was almost considering the offer when I thought not too soon. I don’t have to make my father have it all in a day. 

“You can always come visiting whenever you want to” my father said

“I’ll think about it” I said

“Thank you, I brought you a little gift and I want you to accept it from me” my father said getting up from his seat as he pointing to a leather bag 

“A gift to bribe me” I thought

“No gifts” I said

“Please take it, let me know you’ve forgiven me truly” he replied

I was about refusing again when Granny patted my thigh and I nodded in agreement. He wore a big smile, he was happier than the first time. 

They all left and my family and his shook hands as they reconciled. I felt something called sadness leave my heart when I forgave him.

“I’ll be expecting you at the house soon” his wife said as she hugged me. She seemed to be a nice woman.

“Thank you” my father said as they all left. I stood at the courtyard with my family as we watched them leave.

“Am so proud of you” Granny said giving me a hug

“You made us proud” Grandpa said

“Why didn’t anyone say anything” I asked and they all laughed

“We’ve always been the ones talking all these years” Aunt Faiza said “We wanted it to between you and your father, we decided to break the wall between you and him” 

“We wanted to hear you speak and say whatever was going on with you, we needed you to speak for yourself without any barrier” Uncle added

“And you made us proud, you did what any strong person would do, forgive” Granny said

“Your mother would have forgiven him too” Aunt Faiza said

“You didn’t fail in your promise” Grandpa said giving me a hug

I had promised I wasn’t going anywhere with my father if he came for me. And I didn’t fail to keep my promise. 

…To be continued

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Eighteen

I got admitted into the university of Lagos to study my dream course. I was getting ready to leave for the university and I was prepared to meet my father before going to the university.

I went out one day to get supplies for school, I walked into the sitting room and met my father in the sitting room with my family.

“Good evening” I greeted everyone, I was quite surprised to see everyone calm with my father. 

“Hiqmat, this is your father. I’m sure you know that already, these are his parents and his family” Grandpa said introducing two early couples as my father’s parents and a young woman with a young boy as his family. 

My father was married with a son.

“They are here to talk to you” he added

“Yes,my child” the old lady who was obviously my father’s mother which makes her my grandmother said

“I’m your grandmother” she introduced herself “I know you are angry at us, we are here to ask for your forgiveness as well as your family’s” she said

“Why don’t you let him talk for himself” Granny said and Grandpa ran his hand across her shoulder telling her to “be calm”

“We have offended you and your family. Your father is not the only one at fault, we his parents are also to be blamed. We are also at fault for not coming to check on you” her husband continued

“We are aware he’s been coming cover to harass you and your family. You might still be a child but you are created by God and for that we seek your forgiveness. We need you to forgive your father” his mother added

I caught my father staring at me, I felt this is all he should have done rather than coming over to harass my family wanting to take me away.

“This woman here is his wife” the old lady said placing her right hand on the ladies thigh and this boy is his son” the young boy was sitting beside my uncle, he had a striking resemblance with my father.

“I’m sorry” my father said “You are my daughter and you have every right to be angry. I made a mistake, I never tried my best to get close to you. I should have been remorseful and understanding but I wasn’t, am truly sorry I haven’t been a father to you all this years” he said

I turned around to look at my grandparents. They didn’t say anything, they stared at me in the hope that I make the right decision.

“We know it will be hard for you to forgive him, it hasn’t been easy for young girl who has a father to be abandoned by her father. He didn’t want you all this while and now he wants you, I know that’s how you feel” the young woman said. I looked at her and she was saying just what I was thinking.

“Everyone makes mistakes, no one short of sin. You’re going through a difficult situation because of all this drama. Your decision whether or not to forgive him is right, because no one knows what you’ve been going through” she said looking straight into my eyes “But I want you to know that to err is human and to forgive is divine” she concluded

I felt she was patronizing me, but she spoke with no force. She said all I needed to hear, she spoke as if we’ve met before and I have told her everything going on on my mind. I took another look at her, she was a mother and had a son, she might have other kids but she was a mother and sure knows what it meant to never care for a child.

I was prepared for the meeting but I expected him to be at our house much earlier than that day. I had already made a decision and I wasn’t going to change it. Sixteen years is a long time to ask for a child, I wasn’t taken away to another country, he never pushed further to ask for his child. I didn’t forget all that he did to my mother, she died after giving birth to me all courtesy of my father. 

My nights were becoming long as i think all night, I barely catch a sleep. My thoughts was distracted with my father’s plea

“My dear child, please find a place in your heart to forgive me” my father please, he called me ‘Dear’. 

“Am now dear to him” i thought, I stared at him and am sure he got the message in my eyes which meant  “Am not your Dear”. 

“I’m not entirely happy with everything that you’ve done over the years to my mother, me and my family.” I said “My mother died after my birth all thanks to you, my grandparents has been my only support and strength over the years. You never showed remorse and gratitude for everything they did to you” I paused 

“Granny refused Grandpa from sending you to prison, they took care of me and gave me everything I ever wanted. You are here today with your family to ask for forgiveness from my family.” I said, I looked at his family making sure my eyes met with theirs.

“You should have done this long ago, just maybe I would have forgiven you and all this drama would have been avoided” I paused. I might have talked too much that day, but no one stopped me from talking. They all wanted me to speak, I have been holding too much inside of me and it was time to throw it out.

The whole room was quite, they all stared at me upon hearing my last statement. I had said “just maybe I would have forgiven him”, that statement hit everyone really hard. I could feel my grandpa hands on my legs. I didn’t know what that sign was, but I have already made my decision. 

My father eyes were almost teary, he needs to pay for all he’s done but I won’t be the one to make him pay. His wife stared at me as if her eyes could make me reverse the statement, his mother turned pale and everyone in the room was waiting eagerly for my next statement.

… To be continued.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Seventeen

JAMB exam was a week away and classes were rounding up. On my last day at the tutor center, everyone was talking about the latest news and trends going on. They talked about the things going on social media.

My colleagues had phones with Internet connection but I had none, they all knew what was going on home and abroad. 

“Guess what happened yesterday” Funke said, Funke was a very nice girl, we were both age mates and graduate from the same secondary school. 

“Tell us” Faruq said

“Yea, we are not good at guessing” Bimpe said

“Ok, my Mum and her team raided a baby factory and arrested a woman who bought a baby from the factory ” Funke said

“What does that mean” I asked

“Yea, whats that” Bimpe asked

“A baby factory is a place where ladies who are pregnant stay, they give birth and sell their baby”

“Oh my, you mean they sell their children. That’s absurd” I said

“Apparently, my mother and her team arrested the woman. She bought the child from the child’s mother for two fifty thousand”

“That’s a lot of money” Kunle who has been listening said

“Is it worth selling a child for money” I asked

“In the past, children were exchanged for debt.” Kunle said

“Common, you not trying to say the mother did right?” Bimpe asked

“Not at all, am just kidding” Kunle

“Let me continue my story then you guys can argue later” Funke “The mother was arrested and she said she sold her child because she needed money” she continued
“That’s bizarre, people can do anything for money” I said 

“What about mother’s who abandon their babies because there was no money to take care of them and now she wants them” Bimpe 

“Yes, I have heard of stories like that. Mother’s and sometimes father’s abandon their kids and come back years later for them” Funmi said

“You know, it’s wrong to sell a child. That’s slavery even though other people might take care of the child but it’s wrong, what if they use the child is killed and organs are removed” I said

“That’s true Hiqmat, parents who do that have no respect for God. They are just wicked and have a special seat reserved in hell” Funmi added and everyone laughed at her last statement

“As for parents who abandon their kids, theirs is better in a way. They get to ask for forgiveness, but who forgives those who sold them” Faruq

“I can’t imagine my parents selling or abandoning me, it’s not possible” Kunle said ” I don’t know if I will forgive them” he added

“Well you will, I mean they are your parents even God  forgives” Funmi said and everyone murmured “They did what they did out of ignorance, and when they come back you’ll forgive them” she continued

“Seriously, Funmi do you think it’s a walk in the park. After so many years they show up, you think am going to open my arms to them. No way!” Funke replied

“We are all saying this because we haven’t experienced any. For me, I will forgive but never forget” Bimpe

” I know of a young lady whose mother abandoned with her elder sister after her birth. Her mother’s sister, that’s her aunt took great care of her. Years later, this young lady became a medical doctor and her mother came looking for her” Funke narrated

 “It was a tough time for the young doctor but she forgave her mother who was already married and had two kids” She said

“Just like that, without any issues” Kunle 
I listened to everything they said, I felt my story was related in one or the other, their thoughts on this issue was helpful.

“She did try ignore and deny her mother but on the other hand her mother was ignorant and didn’t seek guidance before running away” Funke replied

“OK, she forgave her mother who abandoned her. I guess the story would have been different if she sold her like Funke narrated earlier” Bimpe

“Selling is worse, I won’t bother having anything to do with such, she can kill” Faruq said

“I pray we never experience such, no one should go through such nonsense” Kunle

“Why get pregnant when you can’t take care of the child, why marry when you can’t father a child?” Funmi

“Huhm, word” Faruq said 

“What’s the penalty for abduction, selling and killing” Bimpe asked

“Death and sometimes life imprisoned” Funke replied

“Huhm, that’s OK” Bimpe

The conversation went on and on, everyone had something to say. I was lost in thought as I felt a connection with  the stories Funke related. 

I thought to myself “what will I do?”, it was up to me to decide whether or not i needed to forgive my  father. I haven’t seen him since we last met, I needed to forgive him so I could have some peace. I haven’t been able to sleep well at night for a long time, I kept recalling everything that was happening whenever am alone.

I got home that day and decided i needed to have some peace. I went thought about everything from the story Aunt Baraqah told me to my father coming over. I made a decision that night, one I know was going to change my life and might hurt my family.

…To be continued.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Sixteen

After my fathers visit to the house on my birthday, I kept recalling everything that happened. I got upset thinking about all he said about my family, and the story Aunt Baraqah told me about him. I didn’t want to make a decision because I was upset, I decided to talk to Maryam hoping she would help.

“I think I need to talk to my father” I told her

“Are you sure you want to do that?” She asked spreading the clothes on the line, Maryam and I were doing the laundry.

“Yes, he is my father. I need to ask him some questions” I replied 

“It’s OK, after what happened, I think you both need to talk. Your father needs to apologize to you and everyone too” she said staring at me

“I want to hear his own side of the story” I said, letting her know why I wanted to see him

“Huh! What do you want to hear?. Hiqmat!, are you doubting all that Aunt Baraqah told you” she asked with a straight face

“No, I need to know why he did what he did” I replied

“He did what he did because your mother refused him” she said still angry

“I know, I need to know why he never cared to check on me. I need to know why he wants to be part of my life now” I explained.

“I know how you feel. If that’s it, you should see him, but you mustn’t let anyone know” 

“I don’t know how”

“I don’t either, but I think you should be prepared to meet him soon. He’s coming back” she said as we continued spreading the clothes on the line

Few days later, I was returning from my JAMB class when a black vehicle waylaid me. At first I thought I was going to be kidnapped, but I saw my father getting out of the car. 

“You scared me” I said almost screaming

“Am sorry, I had no choice” he replied with a smile

“What do you want?” I asked with a straight face, I wasn’t going to forgive him just like that.

“I need to talk to you, I know you hate me but I need to clear somethings up” he said as he moved closer

“Really, things like what?” I asked trying to figure out what things he wants to clarify.

“Come with me, we can talk in the car” he said pointing at a black Toyota corolla car

“Am not going anywhere with you” I said as I tried to leave

“Please, am not going to hurt you I promise” he said, and continued to persuade me.

After much persuasion, I agreed to enter the car.

“Thank you” he said as we both got seated in the car.

“Am listening” I said, ignoring him

“I know you’re not happy with me, after everything they must have told you about me. I know you really wish you could erase me from your story” he said

“What do you want” I said, I wasn’t interested in long talks “Why are you just showing up” I really wanted to go hit the nail on the head.

“It’s really not my fault, your grandparents never gave me the chance to. They always hid you anytime I came around” he replied

“No one hide me, you never came around. If they had hidden me, why are you here with me?” I asked “You always came over to hurt my family, cursing them without showing any form of remorse for what you did to my mother” I added

“Am sorry, I know I did wrong too. I wasn’t the best husband to your mother, I was ignorant and as the years went by I got to realize my mistakes. Am sorry for everything, your mother didn’t deserve all that I did, I hope and pray am forgiven” he said, his face turned pale

“So it’s really true, you did what you did” I said almost crying

“Am sorry” 

“I really can’t imagine why you did that, aside she not wanting you. You abandoned me and after sixteen years you want me” I said staring at him, but he avoided my eyes.

“You’ve been the wall between me and the things I want, am not letting you come in between me and the things I want again” I continued

“Hiqmat, I know how much I have failed. I know I haven’t been the best of a father but I can right my wrongs. All I need is your forgiveness, I couldn’t get your mother to forgive me, I want you to forgive me. Am not coming in between anything, I just want to be with you as a father” he said 

“You need to ask for forgiveness from my family, they’re the ones you’ve hurt the most. They’re the one’s who took care of your wife, my mother till she died and they nurtured me till date” I told him

“I will, I need you to forgive me first” he pleaded

“When my family forgives you, I’ll do the same” I replied and got down from the car.

It was good to know he’s alive and well, I was scared of getting too close to him thinking I might fall victim of what happened twenty years ago. My mind kept going through everything Aunt Baraqah told me about him and how he admitted to it. 

This is the story of my life, I got home and plunged into my bed. Maryam came over to check on me, I hugged her and narrated everything. She’s been my greatest confidant and strength

…To be continued.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Fifteen

  It was my birthday, Maryam woke me up from sleep. She sprinkled water on my face as she wished me Happy birthday. 

“Happy sixteenth birthday to my favorite cousin” she said hugging me. “May this day bring you joy and May the Almighty bless, protect and grant you all your heart desires” she prayed

“Amin” I replied with a big smile,  yay! it was my sixteenth birthday.

“Wash yourself and come over to the sitting room” she said and left for the sitting room.

 I hurried into the bathroom and in no time I was in the sitting room. Granny and Aunt Faiza baked a chocolate cake for me, it was my favorite cake.

My family always planned a birthday party for me every year. I was sixteen already, a sixteen year old was considered an adult in my family and was thus treated as such. Grandpa always told me a sixteen years old girl should be able to handle the affairs of a home, because that’s when she starts facing challenges with the outside world if she’s not facing one before sixteen.

My Grandparents prayed for me and I cut the lovely cake. Everyone was merry as they all talked about my growing up, the things I used to do and the things I still do. As the party continued, I took a moment to thank my family for everything they have done for me.

 I had written a speech prior to my birthday, I stood for a moment trying to get their attention when Maryam whispered.

“Everyone loves you, I think you should tell them you love them too. You’re sixteen, I read your speech. Go on” she said

I managed to get everyone’s attention as I read out my speech, at first I was reading from the paper.

“I can’t thank you all enough for everything, every year, am being celebrated. Thanks to my grandparents who has always been there for me, thank you for everything. Thank you for not giving up on me, thank you for trusting me.” I paused and folded the paper into my pocket.

“Today am sixteen but you have taught me how to be eighteen. You both have taught me that life isn’t a bed roses and we learn everyday.

Thanks to my Uncle for being a father, thanks for teaching me how not to jeopardize anything, thanks to Aunt Faiza for always been there for me. Thanks to my cousins who have always supported me.

Thanks to Aunt Baraqah for everything. I really can’t thank you all enough, your prayers have kept me going and am promising never to let anyone down.” I said.

Everyone wore a big smile and soon they started hugging and kissing me. It was one of the best birthday party ever.

Few minutes into the party, a knock was heard on the door. Maryam opened the door and the man from the previous night walked in, everyone was surprised to see him. I knew who he was, I have seen him thrice, twice at our house. I was nervous at first but then I remembered all that Maryam told me.

The room was quite at first, Aunt Faiza held my hand and Granny asked him what he wanted

“What are you doing here?” She asked

“It’s my daughter’s birthday, am here to wish her” he replied

“She doesn’t need your wishes” Granny told him

Our eyes met and he said

“I’m sorry this is how you get to know am your father” he paused “Happy birthday to you, am wishing you all the good things of life” he said as he moved closer to me. 

“I should have come around earlier, but they don’t want me around you. They’ve always hidden you away from me” he added

“Oh no!” Aunty Faiza exclaimed as she let go of my hand, it was obvious he was lying. If a father wants to see his child, he would go extra mile just to see his child I thought.

I said nothing as I patiently listened all he had to say. He was got very close to me and offered me a birthday present. I stared at him and the gift, trying to figuring out what to say. Staring at him, I was lost in words and full of anger.

“You should leave” I finally said

“They’ve told you bad things about me, you shouldn’t believe anything they say” he said trying to touch me

I shrugged and gave him a stern look

“Please leave” I told him. He dropped the present at my foot and turned around to leave

“Don’t forget to take your present” I said as I pushed it towards him with my right foot.

He was shocked at my behavior. I really don’t know if I was doing the right thing, but I know he wasn’t doing the right thing.

“Am your father, these people have denied me the right to know you and today you’re refusing me” he said.

Everyone was quite, the watched us both act.

“For sixteen years, they have been refusing you or for sixteen years you have refused to show compassion, remorse and effort” I asked him. His eyes widened and his mouth opened. I said the truth, my family didn’t refuse him, he failed to show compassion, remorse and effort.

He couldn’t say anything, he stared at me, picked his present and left without saying a word. My grandparents eyes were teary already. Maryam gave me a hug and she whispered 

“You made us proud” 

I didn’t know if I could forgive my father or let him into my life in future but one thing was for sure he’s going to come back. I started to prepare myself for next time, I was certain he really didn’t want to ruin my day that’s why he didn’t say much.

My family talked about what happened all through the night, I could hear them from my room.

… To be continued.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Fourteen

One Friday night, when everyone was getting ready to sleep, a huge knock was heard on the door. I was surprised, who could it be at this hour, I heard my Uncle murmur as he opened the door. Few minutes later, I started hearing voices from the sitting room. The voices were loud enough to bring down the roof. There was a different voice, it was a masculine voice and it belonged to the visitor.

The visitor kept shouting “My property, give it to me”.

What property was he talking about. I opened my door and tiptoed to the sitting room, I hid behind the door to see who it was. I saw the man who got everyone upset the other day, the man Aunt Baraqah said isn’t worth knowing, my grandparents were shouting at him.

Then I heard Grandpa say “how dare you, you killed my daughter and now you want the child. I should have sent you to jail”

That man was my Father, I was shocked. My mouth was wide open, for a minute, my mind went back to the story Aunt Baraqah told me about my mother and how my father treated her. 

I wanted to go into the sitting room but I couldn’t, my grandparents won’t be happy to see me there.

“I will take my daughter back and that’s it, she’s mine”

“For 16yrs you never showed up, who do you think you are. You’re a murderer and an ingrate” Granny

“Call me whatever you like, she’s still my daughter and she need to be with her father and not live in this jump site” he said

“You’ve overstayed your welcome, you’re not welcomed here anyway so leave” Uncle

“I will leave but the next time I come, you better be prepared,am coming to take what’s mine” he said and left cursing.

I went back into my room tried to sleeping. Granny came over to check on me, the voices were loud enough to wake me up, but I pretended I was sleeping.

At dawn, I asked who and what was it that made such noise. I pretended not to know anything, Grandpa looked at me and said

“Your father came to take you” I wasn’t expecting him to say it, he probably felt I needed to know.

“He said he’s coming back” Granny added
I couldn’t say anything, I saw sadness in my grandparents eyes. They weren’t happy and my father was the cause of it.

“Hiqmat is old enough to make decisions on her own, she can decide whether to leave or not.” Uncle said.

I wasn’t happy, my father never asked about me till I was 16. After all he did to my mother, he still wants me. He talks rudely to my grandparents and shows no remorse for what he did. I wondered why Granny didn’t allow Grandpa send him to jail, my mother would have wanted him in jail. He was my father, but I started having negative feelings towards him. He wasn’t a good man before and after I was born. He probably hasn’t changed I thought and I haven’t spoken to him before.

My cousin, Maryam, came home for her semester break. She told me a lot of things about school trying to prepare me for the university struggle. I talked to her about the situation at hand

“Maryam,what will you do if he was your father” I asked her

“I will do what’s best and what’s right”

“What’s that”

“Be grateful to those who nurtured me and never forget the one person behind ny mother’s death”

“But it’s good to forgive”

“Yes,but don’t loose your self when doing that. Remember people aren’t always who they seem”

“Are you saying I shouldn’t give him a chance”

“Don’t even dare, you can forgive him. He’s your father and human but don’t deny our grandparents what’s theirs”

“What’s that”

“You, you are your mother only property. Apply wisdom Hiqmat, that’s the meaning of your name.

“I really don’t know what to do”

“Hiqmat, look within you, you’ll find answers but whatever you do remember your family” she concluded.

“Do you think I should talk to him first, probably hear his own side of the story”

“Hiqmat, what else do you want to hear, he did all they said he did. If he wasn’t guilty, why didn’t he come around all these years” she paused “There’s nothing to the story again, please don’t get yourself hurt” she added

“Am confused”

“Don’t be, think before you do anything but always remember our grandparents”

Everything Maryam said was true, she was right. I shouldn’t loose my self when I forgive him. I was ready to meet my father and talk to him, but I am not going anywhere with him.

…To be continued.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Thirteen

Aunt Baraqah and I left Aunt Faiza’s house,we took a cab and left for home. We were quiet although the ride, she kept staring at me. I was thinking about everything she and Aunt Faiza said. 

When we got home, she held my hands and said “Talk to Grandpa tonight, let the words come from your heart. I have narrated the story, go talk to him. Remember he loves you” she said.

I walked into the house and greeted everyone. Everyone was seated in the sitting room except Grandpa, I went to Grandpa’s room and knocked at his door

 “Come in” Grandpa answered, I entered the room and saw Grandpa. He was sitting on a chair,he held a picture frame. When he saw me, he hid it. I pulled out another chair and sat beside him. I looked straight into his eyes,they looked weak, he has been crying.

“I know what happened to my mother” I said Grandpa eyes widened, he was surprised. “I know he bewitched, abused and maltreatment my mother” I paused showing him her shoes. Aunt Faiza gave them to me,she said Grandpa bought them for my mother.

“Who told you” he asked touching them.

“It doesn’t matter Grandpa, I will have to know sooner or later” I continued “You and Granny has always been there for me, you’ve been my parents ever since I was born. I know you love me just as you love Sofiyah” Grandpa eyes was filled with tears upon hearing my mother’s name.

“I love you Grandpa,you’re my Father. I know my Father is back for me, am not leaving you. My place is with you and Granny. I love you” I said, tears flowed freely from Grandpa’s eyes.

“Let me fulfil my mother dreams and I promise you won’t loose me to anyone” Grandpa pulled me over and I could hear him cry

“I love you, am scared of loosing you just like your mother, I failed to protect her like a father should” he said, I wiped out his tears with the edge of my scarf.

“It’s not your fault Grandpa, you were a good father and you still are” I said holding his hands. “Am not going anywhere,i will be with you not him” Grandpa looked at me, his face brightens, he pulled me closer and kissed my forehead.

Grandpa and I left for the sitting room, he held me close. Everyone had a smile on their face, they knew what was happening already. Granny stretched her arms out for a hug, she has been waiting for that moment. Everyone was happy that night.

In my room, Aunt Baraqah and Granny came over to talk to me. Granny apologize for not telling me about, she felt I wasn’t going to understand.

“Am sorry for not telling you, I don’t know how to and I couldn’t tell if you would understand” she said 

“I understand” I told her

“It’s good you’re on the same page with Grandpa now” Aunt Baraqah said smiling

“Thank you”

“I will be leaving tomorrow, been away from home for long” she said.

“Go to sleep now” Granny said as they both left 

I tried sleeping and this time I was happy, happy to know what happened to my mother and also happy to know Grandpa is happy. Knowing what happened to my mother was caused by my father, I was getting prepared to face him anytime.

____________________________________________

After salatul fajr, Aunt Baraqah was ready to leave. Her bags were packed already, Uncle volunteered to drop her off at the bus station. I hugged her as she was about to leave

“Thank you” I said

“Make sure you keep to your promise” she said.

The car left for the park, Aunt Baraqah came over because of me and she was happy her stay paid off. I was going to miss her but she’s right I shouldn’t forget my promise, I promised my grandparents I wasn’t going to leave them for my Father. 

Grandpa left the house that day, he told us he was going to town and won’t stay long. In his absence, Granny and my cousin Kareem were talking

“You haven’t told us what brought you home” Granny asked him

“I came over because Hiqmat called, I wanted to talk to Grandpa and am happy everything went well” he said. I looked at him with a big smile, I was really happy my cousin came over because of me. It was one of the best feelings ever.

When Grandpa came back, he told me he has paid for my jamb form and I should visit the cafe to complete my registration. I was really happy, Grandpa had a big smile on his face. He told me to read hard for my exams and choose any university of my choice.I put a call through to Aunt Baraqah and Faiza telling them about it, I was really happy my dreams were coming through 

Kareem left for Lagos the next day and my Software classes continued. I registered for JAMB and attended JAMB lectures after my Software class. 

…To be continued.

Fiction

THE WALL BETWEEN- Chapter Twelve

NARRATOR- BARAQAH

I cried as she narrated her story, I knew it wasn’t Sofiyah who was getting married. Usman bewitched my sister!. I wanted to take her away that day but she said she can’t leave.

“We are leaving together today” I said 

“It’s not possible today, his boys are outside.They didn’t see you coming, If I go out with you, they might hurt us”
“So what do u suggest” I asked her

“I will call you when the boys aren’t around, but I don’t have phone” she said.

I gave her my phone, I had just one phone. She had to call my husband and I will be there in a jiffy. I waited for the boys to be distracted, before I left the house.

I called Faiza and your uncle when I got home, I told them what was happening and your Uncle who was in Lagos then said we needed to take Sofiyah out of Usman’s house. He spoke with our parents about it and they told us to bring her home. Grandpa was angry, he wanted to get Usman arrested, but we needed to get Sofiyah out of his house.

Two days later, Sofiyah called “Hello, please tell Sofiyah to come over, the boys are gone” she told my husband.

  I called your Uncle and we went over to her house and took her away. No one was in the compound that day, we left and No one saw us.

Sofiyah stayed at my place that day, and the next day we brought her home. On arrival, Grandpa took her to the hospital she was six months pregnant. My parents had tears in their eyes when they saw her, Sofiyah looked really bad. In her bed, she cried asking for forgiveness from our parents. They needed to forgive her, she didn’t do the things she did on purpose. 

When Sofiyah was with us, no one knew where she was. We didn’t tell anyone about it and your father didn’t look for her. Sofiyah was literally missing for four months and your father didn’t tell anyone.
We were aware what happened could lead to something big because of the law so we made things right. I had pictures of Sofiyah taken when she was alive, the scars on her body, the house and everything around her. Her story was recorded and a statement was made in the police station. All these were done with Sofiyah consent and we were safe Incase Usman wanted to accuse us of kidnapping and killing his wife. 

Four months later, she gave birth to you. Sofiyah spent two days hospital and then Cesarean Section (SC) was done. She died few hours after your birth, She shouldn’t have died but she did. No one could stop death, she died of postpartum bleeding. Grandpa named you Hiqmat because it means Wisdom.

After your birth, Usman got to know Sofiyah was with us. He came to our house with the police, meanwhile, we’ve reported him to the police before he came. Grandpa got him arrested instead, Usman spent a night at the police station he was bailed out by his sister. Grandpa was willing to jail Usman but Granny said he shouldn’t, she said his sentence or death won’t bring back Sofiyah, it was best to let him be and let God be the judge.

I tried convincing Granny but she said her daughter is dead and buried. Grandpa gave you his name Hiqmat Ali, but we can’t deny the fact that you are Usman daughter Hiqmat Usman.

It’s wasn’t entirely your mother’s fault but Grandpa hasn’t let go, he still blames himself. Grandpa is scared you might fall victim to such, not just by going to school, but seeing your father in school. Usman is a junior lecturer in the Engineering Department of the University of Lagos.

NARRATOR- HIQMAT

“Don’t cry dear” Aunty Baraqah to Hiqmat

“Dear, I know how you feel about this. We really wish none of this happened” Aunt Faiza

“My father killed my mother” Hiqmat said crying

“Let it go,you need to let it go” Aunty Faiza 

“Grandpa doesn’t want me in school because of him, he’s wicked ” Hiqmat

“Your father is back” Aunty Baraqah said “He came some months ago and most recently two days ago. He has been asking about you, he said he wants his daughter back.” She paused 

“That’s why I came home, we needed to find a solution to everything. You told Grandpa want to go to the university to study architecture, that’s why Grandpa is angry. He’s scared your father might find you there and take you away” Aunt Baraqah

“He said you belong to him” Anty Faiza.

I was cold, my father is back to take me after sixteen years, it’s impossible. Then I realized why Grandpa was refusing to send me to the university. My father is the reason, he’s the wall between me and my dreams.

“Grandpa is concerned about you, you might think he’s selfish but he has to protect the only thing Sofiyah left behind” Aunt Faiza said

The wall between you and your dreams is your father, he’s the reason Grandpa is scared of sending you to the university. There’s no way he won’t get to know about you going to the university and we don’t have to capacity to send you abroad except there’s a scholarship” Aunty Baraqah

“A time will come when we won’t be there to protect you, he will find you.” Aunt Faiza

“What can I do” I asked in tears.

Aunt Baraqah held my hands ” you need to convince Grandpa you aren’t going anywhere, talk to him and tell him you can do better than your mother. Tell him you know the story and you know why he’s scared, tell him you will never leave his side, appreciate him. You need to talk to him from your heart”

…To be continued.