Eno kept running without turning back. She knew that she was getting deeper into the forest without knowing where she was going but she didn’t mind as long as it would take her far away from her abductors. She heard footsteps behind her and when she turned, she fell down heavily bruising her knee and her elbows. She made an attempt at getting up and running again but she bruised her big toe on a big stone that she didn’t see because everywhere was dark. She fell and this time around, her abductors caught up with her and slapped her twice.
Driver: “You bitch, you think you can outsmart us? To even think that I was pleading with my colleague on your behalf”. They dragged her back to where the car was parked and ordered her to lie on her back. She did and one of the men unzipped his trousers and came on top her. She screamed while he attempted to pull down her pants and this attracted the attention of a local vigilante group that was going around for inspections. “Who be that?” They shouted and flashed their torches at the direction from which they heard her voice. Her abductors, realizing that they may be caught, abandoned her and their car and ran away. She ran towards the men who were flashing their torches at her suspiciously. “Please help me, they almost raped me”, she shouted. After some questionings, they drove her home in one of their patrol vans after she promised to give them money for petrol if they take her home.
Mama Samantha was about stepping out of the house when her neighbour who had just left for work earlier that morning came running back into the compound.
Mama Samantha: “What is it? Why are you running as if someone is chasing you? Is anything the matter?”
Neighbour: “Hmmn, the thing wey my eyes see this morning, my mouth no fit talk am finish”.
Mama Samantha: “What is it? What did you see? Just say it anyhow”.
Neighbour: “I was on my way to work this morning when I saw people gathered at an accident scene. Our car stopped and went out to check what was happening, we saw officials of the FRSC trying to rescue the driver of the car that had fallen into the ditch. Alas, we saw that it was your daughter Samantha. I was shocked when I saw her mutilated body”.
Mama Samantha: (Rushed and grabbed the woman’s blouse). “What are you telling me this morning? That my daughter was involved in an accident that claimed her life? My own Samantha?”
Neighbour: “Just take heart. I thought of coming to inform you so that you can go to the general hospital and identify her corpse because I know that you have been searching for her since yesterday”.
Mama Samantha screamed and woke up to find herself sweating on Samantha’s bed where she had slept off. She glanced at the bed side clock and realized that it was already past 7am. She remembered the events of the previous day and her heart sank. “God, what kind of a dream was that? It felt so real. I hope my daughter is safe? Please have mercy and protect her wherever she is, Lord”. She got on her knees and began to pray.
Mama Eno woke up that morning and was surprised to see her daughter in the house.
Mama Eno: “What are you doing here? Are you not supposed to be in your husband’s house? In fact when and how did you come in that I didn’t know?”
Eno: “Too many questions, mum. Anyway, I got into the house when you were already asleep. I knocked for several minutes before the security guy opened the gate for me. He helped me call the house maid with his phone and she opened the door for me. I didn’t want to wake you up since it was already late”.
Mama Eno: “That is just one out of my many questions. Why are you here instead of being in your husband’s house?”
Eno: “Which husband, mum? Me I am not going back to that house again o. That guy is psycho, he will just kill me there one day”.
Mama Eno: “How do you mean? You people just got married o, it is too early to start having issues”.
Eno narrated to her mother all that had happened when they got home and how Dozie threw her out of the house and how she was almost raped by some men but for the timely intervention of some security operatives.
Mama Eno: “You mean that useless boy had the guts to throw you out at that time of the night? What if something bad happened to you? Get ready we are going to report him to the police”.
Eno: “You know what, mum? I am sick and tired of all the drama. It is certain that that guy doesn’t want me in his life, there is no need forcing it. The fire I saw in his eyes yesterday scared me. I will rather be on my own and be happy than force myself on him”.
Mama Eno: “Now I know that you are very stupid. What gibberish are you uttering? Haven’t you realized that it was the presence of Samantha that spoilt your husband’s mood? So, you want to bow out of the marriage just because of this simple misunderstanding? The earlier you learn to fight for what is yours, the better”.
Eno: “I understand what you are saying, mum. But there should be a better way of settling this. I mean there must be some other way, not every time police, police, that will create unnecessary attention for us”.
Mama Eno agreed to call Dozie’s parents and inform them of his behaviour rather than going to the police. Few hours later, Dozie’s mother came and picked Eno in her car back to Dozie’s house.
Mama Dozie: “Don’t worry my daughter. This will never repeat itself again”.
Mama Eno: “It had better not. Can he imagine what my daughter went through in the hands of evil men that night? What if they were ritualists? Next time he does this to his wife, I will have him arrested”.
Mama Dozie: “It is okay, my in-law. I will ensure that this doesn’t happen again. Let’s just keep the police and the media out of this”.
Samantha, unconscious and bleeding heavily was rushed to the hospital by some mobile policemen who were on duty that night. When they got to the hospital, she had lost a lot of blood and she needed an urgent blood transfusion. At the blood bank, there was no blood that matched her blood group, her phone was searched and the hospital authorities called her mother to make haste and meet them so they can find out if her blood matched her daughter’s. The drive from her mother’s place to the hospital was more than an hour and she was worried that she may not make it in time to save her daughter. Frantic and determined to make it in good time, she took a cab instead of driving herself there.
Mama Samantha: “Oga, you have to drive fast o”.
Driver: “Madam, why now? Why you no leave house since so that you go meet up with your appointment?”
Mama Samantha: “Just drive and stop talking, I actually hired you because I know that taxi drivers are better at maneuvering their way instead of those who drive private”.
There was a terrible traffic on the way and even though the driver did his best to speed up, she arrived the hospital more than an hour later. She rushed to the reception and she was directed to the accident and emergency ward. She rushed in there and collapsed in tears when she saw her daughter unconscious in the pool of her own blood. She drew near and on close examination, she realized that Samantha had stopped breathing. She ran out of the ward to the nurses section.
Eno, her mother and Dozie’s mother arrived the house and met the door locked…
Mama Dozie: “Don’t you have your key? Use it to open the door for us to go in”.
Eno: “I don’t have access to this house. He didn’t give me anything”.
Jonny: “Madam, oga Dozie carry him box commot this morning o, e be like say him don travel”.
Mama Dozie and Eno: “What! Travelled where”? they chorused.
Eno: “I am finished, mum. I guess he has travelled back to Canada leaving me behind. What do I tell my friends? How can I bear the shame? I am sure that he has eloped with that Samantha girl? God, I am finished!”
Mama Eno: “You just shut up and allow me think”…
What next? Will Samantha make it?
*This story’s author is unknown.