Read Chapter II here.
Fiifi sighed in relief when plane finally landed at the Kotoka International Airport. He had underestimated the complications in traveling with a baby. If it weren’t for the Good Samaritan of an air hostess who offered to change the diapers more than once and put him to sleep, he was sure the passengers would have ganged up against him and put him in the cargo segment. Whew!
He went straight to the one who could help him out with his ‘package’.
His mother was surprised to see him at that time of the night with a baby in his arms.
“What is this, Fii? Whose baby is that? Did you find it by the roadside?” she asked, taking him from her son. Fiifi sat down, exhaustion heavy on his shoulders.
“He’s very cute. Where did you find him?”
“He’s mine, mother.”
“Yours? How is that possible? I saw your wife a few weeks ago and she clearly wasn’t pregnant.”
“It’s because Bisi isn’t the mother.” She sat down, sensing a bombshell was about to drop.
“But you are the father,” she said, hoping to clarify what he was implying.
“It’s a long story, mother.”
“Then stop beating about the bush, Fii. I only know Bisi to be the bearer of my grandchildren so don’t bring a baby to my house in the middle of the night claiming to be another grandchild without a tangible explanation. Does B know about this child?”
“Not yet; that’s why I’m here. I need you to come home with me.”
“For what, to ask or to order her to take this baby in?”
This woman wasn’t making this mess any easier for him. Before taking this decision, he had not factored in how he was going to present the child to the family. He had told himself he’d cross the bridge when he got to it. There he was now and he was still blank on how to do the crossing.
“Who’s that woman? I hope it’s one of your skinny-looking secretaries,” she spat out.
“No, mum. I didn’t not have an affair. It was a business transaction.”
“Is this one of the crazy evolutions this generation has come up with? I think technology is driving people insane.”
“Mum, I’m tired. Can I just retire to bed so we talk about this tomorrow?”
“You’re lucky I’m living here all by myself. I’d have thrown you out like a stubborn tenant.”
Fiifi stood and walked to her mother. He kissed her cheek.
“Thanks mum. See you tomorrow.” He entered his old room and threw himself on the bed. He fell asleep within seconds.
“Welcome, dear. You do look like my son. The nose…tomorrow, you will meet your mother. She’ll take great care of you, okay? How do I know, because she’s good like that.”
Bisi checked herself out in her dressing mirror. Fiifi would be home today and she couldn’t wait to give him the news now. She touched her belly.
“Hurry up and grow okay? I can’t wait to meet you! And please come out with a penis, okay?” She laughed at herself for sounding so silly.
“Mum?” Ewuresi called out as she opened the door.
“We’re done with breakfast.”
“Okay; I’m done. I’ll be down in a minute.”
“Mum, you’ll make us late. Why not let the driver take us?”
“Because I want to take you to school myself. Besides, your dad is coming home today. He might call any minute for the driver.”
“You look fine. Can we go?”
“Why are you stressing me out this morning, young lady? I’m saying good morning to the baby.”
“Oh!” She ran into the room and placed her hand on her tummy.
“Good morning, little brother or sister. Hope you slept well in there. Mummy has to take us to school. So let’s talk later, okay? Shall we go?” The proud smile on Bisi’s face turn to a scowl.
“You’re so not romantic, Esi,” she said, taking her bag. Ewuresi laughed.
“I’m not dad, mum.” She ran out laughing before Bisi could react. She shook her head and walked out of the house.
“Kuks! Are you ready?”
“Yep; you’re the one we are waiting for.”
“Okay; let’s go. How do I look? Will dad be happy to see me in this?”
They both sized her up as Bisi posed model style, with hands on her hips.
“You know dad will still drool over you even if you were in rags, mum.”
“You two are such buzz killers! Would it kill to say something nice to your mother?”
“Why are you so excited?” Kukuaa asked. Esi whispered to her sister.
“Oh, is it the hormones?”
“Hey!” They rushed out of the house.
“Silly children.” She smiled at herself as she walked out of the house.
It was a good day. Bisi was the guest host of the mid-morning show on one of the radio stations and she was all bubbly on air. Her spirits went on an all-time high when Fiifi texted to inform her he was in town. When the show ended, she went home to prepare his usual welcome-back-home favorite meal: macaroni.
She was fixing her hair when she heard the car pulled over. She checked herself out in the mirror one last time.
“Get ready to meet daddy!” she sang out.
“Fii?” Bisi called out as she came downstairs.
“Yes honey.” She saw him and rushed to hug him. She pulled back when she saw her mother-in-law holding a baby.
“Ma! This is a surprise.”
“I know; how are you doing, dear?”
“I’m fine thank you. And whose baby is that?” Mother and son exchanged a nervous glance.
“Why don’t we all sit down, my dear,” Fii’s mother said.
“Sure; would you like something to drink?”
“No, we’re fine.” They all sat. The baby squirmed.
“Can I hold it?” Bisi asked.
“So cute. Boy or girl?”
“Ha! What’s his name?”
“Nice. So, whose child is this?”
“My daughter, before we talk about this, I am pleading with you…” she said, getting on her knees.
“Ma! What are you doing? Please get up.”
“I’m on my knees, Bisi; do this for me.”
“Mummy please, get up. This is not right. Fii, help her get up.” Fiifi helped her to sit down.
“What is going on?” No one spoke. Bisi looked at both of them, puzzled by their demeanor.
Fiifi cleared his throat.
“B, um…the baby is mine.” Bisi’s heart sank.
“I…I don’t understand,” she stammered. She could feel tears gathering in her eyes.
“I…I made an arrangement with a lady to…give me a child.”
“An arrangement? But we have two kids. Why would you go out to make an arrangement?”
“I don’t know what came over me but I thought to…experiment.”
“You had an affair?”
“No; it was an arrangement. Artificial insemination.”
“I still don’t get it. I’m not barren. Why would you consider contracting a stranger to give you a child when we have two?”
“You know I’ve always wanted a boy child.” Bisi felt a sharp pain in her chest and she winced at the pain. She felt her hands trembling.
“I am so sorry, Bisi; I disrespected our vows to do this but we finally have what we’ve always wanted…”
“We? Did you just say we? How could you be so selfish and insensitive, Fii?!”
“I am as disappointed in him as you are, my daughter; but the child is here now. We can’t punish him for the sins of the father,” the mother said.
“So what, you’ve brought the results of your experiment here for me to do what with it exactly?”
“Bisi, I know this sounds terrible but I want him to be raised here.”
“I don’t get it. What exactly were you trying to prove? That I’m incapable of bearing a male child?”
“No; not that. I just wanted to know if the story could be different with someone else.”
“Don’t try to justify your nonsense, Fiifi!” his mother chided.
Bisi felt her chest tighten. Her breathing had gone heavy. She began to feel dizzy. She got up.
“Please take him…I’m not feeling too good.”
The door opened and the girls came in running.
“Daddy!” They both froze when they saw their mother holding a baby.
Bisi was visibly shaking at the moment, tears on her face.
“Mum?” Kukuaa pointed to her dress.
“Mum, you’re bleeding.” They all looked down at her. Panic struck at Bisi.
“No, no, no; this can’t be happening. Take him!” The mother took the baby.
“What is happening, mummy?”
“My baby, I’m losing my baby!” Bisi shrieked, holding her tummy.
“What?” Fiifi was too shocked to react.
“Oh no!” Ewuresi screamed.
“Don’t just stand there, Fii! Hold her!” his mother ordered.
“No, no, no, not like this,” Bisi kept murmuring.
“Esi, go tell the driver to get the car ready.” The girls ran out. Fiifi held his wife and slowly took her outside. He helped her into the car.
“Could you please stay behind and watch over the girls?” Fiifi asked in a distraught voice.
“Sure. Go ahead. Let me know what happens.”
“Sure; please pray for us.” He got into the back seat with Bisi and the car took off.
Bisi broke down into uncontrollable sobs. Fiifi tried to comfort her but she shrugged him away. He watched her helplessly as she continued to cry. His heart flinched in guilt in pain as he stared at the blood in her wife’s dress. That was his child…possibly, a son. What was he thinking? He should have waited…Bisi could have given him one. But it was too late to cry over spilt milk.
Bisi saw the same panic she felt in Eva’s eyes when her eyes fell on her.
“What happened?” Bisi’s reply was more subs. The answer couldn’t be found on Fiifi’s downcast face either. She got straight to work.
Bisi found herself lying on a hospital bed. Fiifi was beside her, holding her hand. She pulled her hand away from his grip. She would never forgive him if…
Eva entered. Bisi sat up.
“Bisi, I’m sorry…” She gasped.
“We did our best but…it’s gone, B.” Bisi buried her face in his palms and screamed. Fiifi bowed his head.
“Calm down, Bisi. You’ll get through this.” When Bisi uncovered her face, she glared at Fiifi.
“Get out of here!” she shouted, pointing to the door.
“Bisi, calm down…”
“I said, get out!” Fiifi got up.
“It’s okay; I’ll go. I’ll be outside, doctor.”
“Why are you acting like this? It was his baby too,” Eva said.
“He killed my baby.” Those words arrested Fiifi which made him freeze. Eva cast him a stunned look. Without a word, he walked out of the room. When he closed the door behind him, he heard Bisi scream again.
Josephine Amoako (c) 2016
Read Chapter IV here.