Sharon’s parents sat before the
pastor and waited for him to speak. They had been patient to wait on the queue
with those who wanted a counselling session with him and now, at almost
midnight, it was their turn, they were so grateful that they got the chance to
meet him.
“Mr and Mrs Ekanem right?” The
Pastor said.
“Yes Pastor.” They both
chorused.
“How is Sharon?” He asked.
Sharon’s parents looked at
each other in confusion, no one had told the pastor about Sharon, how did he
know her name? They thought.
“Your daughter is a witch! She
operates with the higher levels so, she’s more powerful than a witch, there’s another name that they are referred to but for easier comprehension, I’ll call her a witch.” The pastor said matter of
factly.

“Excuse me? What are you saying
sir?” Sharon’s father said clearly offended.
“Does what I say offend you?”
The Pastor asked.
“Yes, it does, Sharon is our
blessing from God, our first fruit of the womb who was born alive and hearty.”
“The day Sharon breathed the
air of life was the day your lives became cursed. Do you think I’m lying to
you? She was born in the year two thousand and three, can you count the years
before that and your progress through those years and the years after that and your progress as
well?” The pastor asked.
“This is already getting out of
hand sir! We are leaving!” Sharon’s father exploded standing up and taking his wife’s
hand, this wasn’t what he was expecting to hear.
“If you leave this church, you
have less than two weeks to live…” The pastor said.
Mr and Mrs. Ekanem stopped
short and stared at the pastor, they couldn’t believe what they had just heard.
“You are fake that’s why you’ve subjected to threats!” Sharon’s father said angrily.
“Thank you sir but we’d rather
die than listen to you, spew rubbish about our only daughter. Good night!”
Sharon’s mother spat as she stormed out of the church with her husband.
The pastor looked at their
retreating back and shook his head as he watched the dark cloud of death lead them out of the church.
**********
Sharon wasn’t concentrating in
class, her mind was far way, she needed to go home and as soon as possible. She
had no idea how she could escape the French camp,  as she knew that escaping wasn’t possible. She placed her head on her
table and closed her eyes.
“Who’s sleeping in my class?”
Monsieur Olabisi asked.
Sharon didn’t raise up her head,
she closed her eyes and remained in her position.
“Am I not talking to a human
being?” Monsieur Olabisi asked again.
When she didn’t respond. Monsieur
Olabisi who was holding a small cane in his hand, hit her hard with it. Sharon was very
angry, she lifted her head and stared at him in silence and as they exchanged glances, something
fierce passed from her to him. Olabisi didn’t feel it at first but Sharon knew she had deposited something into him.
Sharon was not used to getting angry quickly or
letting out powers on just anybody but Monsieur Olabisi had met her at her bad
mood.
Monsieur Olabisi felt a kind of
electric shock pass through his body as soon as he left Sharon’s seat, he felt a bit dizzy so, he left her and walked to the front of the class where he quickly ended the class
for the day.
As he left the class that
afternoon, a strong headache beat hard at the centre of his head.
*********

As soon as Ben stepped into
Amanda’s church, he felt some sort of calm wash through his body, he was
certain that after it all, all will be well. They had left camp early that
morning and Ben had driven them out of the resort area into the centre of Lagos
where her church was located.
“Hey Amanda…how far?” A lady
greeted as she walked up to meet Amanda and Ben.
‘Hey Pastor Shola…I’m good
ooo…” Amanda said, hurrying to greet her pastor with a hug.
Ben was impressed by the young
pastor’s dressing, she was a very pretty lady. He wondered what pretty women
were doing in church, wasn’t church reserved for the dowdy ones? He asked
himself.
“Meet my…err…meet Ben…”
Amanda said, not knowing what to introduce him as.
“Oh…hello Ben, I am so
pleased to meet you.” Pastor Shola said.
“Same here…” Ben said. “You
have a beautiful church.”
“Thank you, we all built it
together…” Pastor Shola said, then quickly she said. “So, let’s sit somewhere
and talk about what really brought you here.”
They went to one of the pews in
the church where Ben opened up about his life to pastor Shola and after he had
spoken about everything and about Princess, she spoke.
“Wow Ben…you have an active
life…”
“Yea…I guess…” Ben said.
“Well…as it is, we need to do
a deliverance session for you, a proper one but unfortunately the men and women of God who
are in the deliverance ministry are in Ibadan right now for a crusade.”
Pastor Shola said.
“What? That’s too far…can’t
you do it for me?”
“Well…you see…everyone has
their gifts and mine is teaching…I can’t do deliverance, I am sorry. But I
will pray for you…” She started.
“What am I doing here then? I
don’t think you understand that I haven’t slept properly since I saw that
…that woman in my room…I am slowly losing my mind…” Ben said.
“Calm down Ben, you must not
yield to the spirit of madness…”Pastor Shola said.
“Are you insane? What spirit of
madness are you talking about? I am speaking of a marine spirit here…”
“Sleepless nights can cause you
madness and yes, it’s a spirit of its own.”
“Please Amanda, could you tell
your pastor that I really need help?” Ben said to Amanda in a desperate voice.
“I am not ignoring the fact
that you are in a real dilemma, I am just trying to reassure you that all will
be well. We serve a might God and…”
“Oh what crap are you talking
about? I need this deliverance now!” Ben shouted.
“Look Ben…you really need to
calm down…” Amanda said to him.
“It’s so easy for you to say,
you are not being plagued by a spirit woman…”
“Well, yes, I didn’t sleep
around with everything I saw so…” Amanda said upset.
Her statement got to Ben and he
angrily stood up from the pew and stormed out of the church. Amanda wanted to
follow him but pastor Shola held her back.
“Let him go…don’t worry, it
will all make sense to him when the right time comes….” Pastor Shola said.
Amanda nodded and remained
seated.
***********

That night, as her husband opened the door to their shabby apartment, Layla Ekanem had a few words for Mama Chinedu. She walked to the woman’s house and banged hard at the door.
“Who is it? It’s so late in the night…” Mama Chinedu protested from inside the house.
“It is I, Layla Ekanem- mama Sharon.”
“Oh…Mama Sharon.,..welcome ooo…una don finish prayers?” Mama Chinedu asked joyously as she opened the door.
Mama Chinedu was startled to see Sharon’s mother at the front of her door with a broken bottle and glaring at her like a wild cat.
“Mama Sharon, odikwa nma? Is everything okay?”
“Is this your plan? Is this your plan mama Chinedu? To rid me of my daughter? Is this your plan? You know that Sharon is all I’ve got and you went ahead to give your pastor details about my family and he decided to refer to my daughter as a witch and the cause of our misfortunes. You know what? Keep your thoughts and churches to yourself. I regret asking you for help!”
“Mama Sharon, is that why you are here with a bottle? Look at this woman I was just helping. Can you imagine? So, Mama Sharon, this is how you want to use bottle on my head because I did something good for you abi?”
“Stay away from my family, Mama Chinedu! Park out from this compound and stay away from my family or else…this bottle is not the only object that I’ll break ooo…your head will be next!” Sharon’s mother said and tossing the bottle at the frontage of Mama Chinedu’s house, she stormed off.
“Nekwa’nu anya ooo…see me see wahala ooo…person wey dey helep im neighbour don turn ajo mmadu (evil person)! It’s okay, mama Chinedu, next time just dey run ya mouth like tap, you hear?” She said and closed the door, hissing as she did.
**************

Monseiur Olabisi was not
feeling too well, he had taken pain killers but the headache seemed to be
worsening, he had to take permission to leave the camp for treatment. He
boarded the bus with a few other passengers to base at Ijaniki, by the time the
bus reached its destination and everyone alighted, Monseiur Olabisi didn’t
alight. The driver walked up to him and saw him seated with head bowed as
though in deep sleep, he shook him but he never awoke!

To be continued…..

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