Read Chapter V here.
Bisi knocked on the girls’ door and entered.
“I’m hungry, mama!” Ewuresi cried out. She smiled. Always the first to go hungry.
“I know; that’s why I’m here; to call you downstairs.”
“Yay!” Ewuresi jumped off her bed and ran out of the room. Kukuaa was lying on her bed, her eyes fixed on the ceiling with plugs in her ears. Bisi sat next to her on the bed and rubbed her arms.
“You’re okay?” She sat up and removed the earpieces. Bisi steeled herself against the rant she was expecting to receive. And knowing Kukuaa, she wouldn’t give her anything less than that.
“How could you let this happen, mum?! What did you do to push daddy to go get a baby outside?”
“Kuks, please calm down. I didn’t do anything. I had no idea your daddy was doing this. But there’s nothing we can do about that now. What we need to do is adjust to the situation.”
“Dad did this behind your back and you’re accepting the baby? Is it because you lost yours? You want another baby that bad? Esi is still a baby for goodness’ sake!”
“Trust me, this isn’t easy for me as well but the baby is your father’s son and your brother. That makes him family.” Kukuaa shook her head and tears began to fall.
“Oh, please don’t cry,” Bisi said as she wiped the tears and held her against her bosom.
“We are going to be fine, babe; I promise you.”
“Mum! The food is getting cold!” Esi said, standing at the door. Bisi got up and took Kuk’s hand.
“Let’s go before your sister explodes. When hunger strikes, she grows impatient.”That made Kukuaa laugh.
They went downstairs. Bisi said grace and they ate.
“When is the baby coming?” Ewuresi asked. Bisi glanced at Kukuaa.
“Soon; maybe tomorrow.” Kukuaa’s eyes popped; she wasn’t expecting it to happen this soon.
“Where will he sleep?”
“Um…” Bisi hadn’t even thought of that. The cradle had been dismantled and packed somewhere. She had to find it and set it up.
“It’s kind of obvious that there’s no place for him here, isn’t it?” Kukuaa asked with a cocked brow.
“We’ll create one for him. I want you two to promise me that you’ll do your very best to make this place a comfortable home for him.”
“I promise on my honor!” Ewuresi said excitedly, placing her hand on her chest. Bisi smiled as she pulled her cheek. She was such a cute kid. She looked at Kukuaa.
“Huh?” She put food in her mouth. Bisi patiently waited for her to swallow it.
“Promise on your honor!” Esi said.
“I’ll try my best, mum; I can’t promise though. You know it takes me time to warm up to people,” she said with a shrug.
“He’s a baby. How difficult must it be?” Kukuaa dropped her fork.
“Have you forgotten how much Ewuresi used to cry every time she was irritated? She’s still a crybaby. I’ve read baby boys are even worse.”
“I’m not a crybaby,” Esi pouted. Kukuaa made a face.
“Uh huh; should I prove it?” Kukuaa asked, reaching forward to take her meat. Bisi slapped her hand away.
“Stop it, Kuks.” She looked at her daughter. She could see she was fighting not to cry. Esi’s tear glands have always been easy to trigger.
“Don’t mind Kuks. Don’t be a bully,” Bisi said, sending a stern look across Kukuaa’s way.
“Sorry. I just wanted to prove her wrong. Sorry, sis.”
Ewuresi nodded and continued eating. One thing she loved about Esi was her automatic forgiving nature. Just ‘sorry’ would make her forget and move on. But Kuks? That was a different ball game altogether. Bisi felt sorry for the guy who would fall helplessly for her.
They finished dinner and the girls helped their mother tidy up. Bisi watched the news whiles the girls did their homework. When Esi finished hers, she showed it to her big sister who pointed to something and said something brief. Esi nodded as she took her book back and erased it. A few minutes later, she showed it to her again who nodded and gave her a hi-five. Bisi smiled at the scene. Esi ran to her and showed her the work.
“Well done, Esi.” Another hi-five. She sat down next to her and cradled her head against her mother’s bosom. After fidgeting for a few minutes, she looked up at her mother.
“Mummy, can I have the chocolate?”
“Don’t you want to save it for tomorrow?”
“Daddy will buy me another one tomorrow.” Bisi couldn’t said no to the cute puppy eyes.
“Okay.” Esi rushed to the kitchen. She went to her sister and offered her a piece which she gladly accepted. She came to her mother and offered her some.
“Thank you, sweetie.” She smiled and sat.
“The rest is for me,” she said. Bisi smiled. About thirty minutes later, Esi was fast asleep. Bisi carried her to their room. When Kukuaa finished hers, she kissed her mother goodnight and went upstairs.
After taking her night bath, she checked up on the girls and they were both sleeping soundly. She placed a hand on each of them and said a short prayer.
As she lay on her bed, she found herself restless. She felt anxious about the baby entering their lives. Why did she feel nervous by his presence? Was he going to be the one going to stir up trouble in her little paradise or was he a blessing in disguise? Only time would tell.
Fiifi stared at his son admiringly as he slept. He couldn’t wait to take him home. To reunite him with the family; to grow up in the love he was blessed to have. Why weren’t the seconds ticking faster?
Fiifi left the office early and went baby shopping. Diapers, wipes, milk and a few things he remembered buying for the girls. He then went for baby Nhyira from his mother’s and drove home. When he arrived, no one was home yet. Nhyira was asleep. Fiifi went for the cradle from the storeroom and set it up in another room. He was helping himself to some bread with peanut butter when the ladies arrived.
“Daddy!” Ewuresi scremed
“My baby girl!” He carried her up in his arms and kissed her face.
“I missed you, daddy.”
“I missed you too, sweetie. I’m home now. Hey, Kuks.”
“How was school?”
“You must really be hungry,” Bisi said when she saw the loaf of bread was left with less than half.
“I am; after putting up the cradle and setting the room, I was pretty drained.”
“Oh you have? So when is the baby of the moment joining us?” Esi took a bite from the bread in her father’s hand.
“He’s here; sleeping.”
“Baby is here? I want to see!”
“Sure; let’s keep it quiet, okay? We wouldn’t want to wake him up.”
“Tell me about it,” Kukuaa mumbled.
Bisi put her arm around Kukuaa as they followed Fiifi up the stairs with Ewuresi in his arms.
Kukuaa stopped in her tracks when her dad opened the door.
“But that’s my room!” she cried out.
“Shush, Kuks! You’re going to wake him,” Fiifi scolded. They heard the baby sound the dreaded cry.
“Baby is awake,” Ewuresi said. Bisi rubbed Kukuaa’s back.
“Maybe he was already awake,” Bisi said to an unamused-looking Fiifi. He entered the room. Kukuaa turned to face her mother.
“You said I would have that room.”
“And you will. There are two spare rooms, Kuks. You can have the other one.”
“I want that one.”
“Okay; so will it be. Let’s go and meet your baby brother, okay?”
“He’s not…” A sharp glance from Bisi made her lose her voice. Bisi turned her around and they entered the room.
“He’s so tiny,” Esi said, so fascinated by his sight. Fiifi put her down and picked up the baby from the cradle. He turned to face his wife.
“Nhyira, meet your mother and Bisi, meet your son.” He stretched his arm toward Bisi. Bisi and Kukuaa exchanged a glance. Kukuaa took the baby from Fiifi. When she looked down at him, the baby smiled and that instantly warmed Bisi’s heart.
“He’s cute,” she said breathlessly.
“I want to touch him,” Esi said.
“Sure, dear. Bisi got on her knees and then sat on the floor. Fiifi did same followed by Ewuresi. Bisi looked up to the one still standing.
“Say hi to your brother, Kuks.”
“Hi.” The tone was emotionless but Bisi appreciated the effort. Kukuaa saw the baby as an intruder and it was up to her to change her mind. That would take time. Esi touched Nhyira’s face.
“Yeah.” The baby yawned.
“No teeth!” Both parents laughed.
“They will come.”
“Kukuaa?” The door to her room slammed shut behind her. She looked at her husband who only shook his head.
“She’ll come around.”
“Welcome home, Nhyira,” Bisi said with a smile.
Josephine Amoako © 2016
Read Chapter VII here.