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THE JAILBIRD (Episode 78)

THE JAILBIRD EPISODE 78
© Aaron A. A

THE BAWA RESIDENCE

Mrs. Lois Bawa suddenly puts both of her hands on t©p of her head, and instantly great tears falls down her face.

MRS. LOIS
(shattered)
Oh, my dearest Jesus Christ! No! No, no, no, Chris! Don’t say you heard us that day!
Diana is also leaning forward as she stares at the television with horrified eyes.

DIANA
(aghast)
Oh, Chris! Oh, Lord! What have we done?
The Reverend [email protected] Bawa bows his head suddenly, and although he does not speak his hands suddenly ball into ti-ght fists, and his jaw works painfully.

He begins to shake with abject dejection.

STAN BAWA RESIDENCE
Stan’s b©dy j£rks as if he has been hit.
He gr-abs a pillow and hurls it across the room.

Esther holds his arm, alarmed.

ESTHER
Sweetheart, what is it? What’s wrong?
Stan turns a dazed look on her and shakes his head with real pain on his face.

STAN
(horrified)
He was just twelve years old! He heard us that day? My God, Esther, what have I done to that boy? Oh, damn, damn, damn! Jesus! The pain he must have gone throu-gh! Oh, Jesus!

ESTHER
What’re you talking about, darling? I don’t un-derstand!

Stan points at the television, and he is trembling badly.

STAN
Chris! He was behind the living-room chairs that day! The day Roland died! That evening! We were in so much pain! We didn’t know he was behind those chairs! Dear Lord, we said horrible things!

Esther, who has never seen her husband so vulnerable, reaches out and takes him in her arms.

ESTHER
It’ll be alright, baby. It’ll be alright.

STUDIO 44, HEARTBEAT TELEVISION
Everyb©dy in the audience is silent.
Adwoa Timtim is seen reaching out and tou-ching Chris’ cheeks.

ADWOA
Sorry, Mr. Bawa. Maybe you shouldn’t speak about it.

Chris smiles tremulously and wipes tears from his face.

CHRIS
I’ve kept it inside for thirteen years, Adwoa. It has become acidic, and corroding my soul. That day I heard what my family really felt about me. My father said he wished I had never been born. My uncle said I was Satan’s tra-p to destroy my father’s ministry. My sister said she wished I had died in the fire, and not Roland. My brother said I killed Roland, and I should just die and leave them alone, and if he has the chance he will bury me alive. And then my mother, the woman I loved above all human beings, she said… she said… she…

On the screen Chris cannot speak. He looks at Adwoa and his tears flow.
The little girl holds his hand. He bites his lower l!pti-ghtly.

ADWOA
It’s okay, Mr. Bawa.

CHRIS
My mother… she said she never really planned to have me. She thought she was no longer going to have kids. She said they planned to have Roland, Diana and Stan. But me, she never planned to have me. She didn’t even know she was pregnant until she was about three months into the pregnancy. And if she hadn’t been a Christian she would’ve aborted me. I was a mistake, an unplanned beast. She wished she had gotten rid of me! That’s what my own mother said.

EFFE’S RESIDENCE
Rupert, who is drinking water, suddenly chokes and starts to cough as the terrible words hit him.

Ken Kedem shakes his head.

KEN KEDEM
Jesus!

Ivy Kedem covers her mouth with her right hand and for the very first time since knowing Chris she feels her heart melting with [email protected] for him.

IVY KEDEM
He was only twelve! What a terrible thing to hear your family say! No wonder he [email protected]£ a rebel!

RUPERT
(putting the bottle down)
That is absolutely cruel! Even if he hadn’t been pres£nt, those words were absolutely unacceptable, absolutely wicked!

Effe sinks slowly to her knees, and she cannot see the television screen because her tears are blinding her.

THE BAWA RESIDENCE
Mrs. Lois Bawa screams and holds her stomach ti-ghtly.

Her face is crushed, and her tears flow like the [email protected] of a storm.

MRS. LOIS
Oh, Yaw Bawa! Chris, my son, my Prince, forgive me! I never meant that, Yaw! Oh, woe, woe, woe!! Forgive me, son!! I never meant any of that!!

Her husband gets up.

His face is old and haggard as he walks slowly to his wife and takes her in his arms.
She feels him shivering, and she looks up into his face, and she sees the pain and distress in his eyes, and she realizes he nee-ds her even more.

She puts her arms around him and rests her cheek on his che-st.

REV BAWA
(distressed)
My God! I did that boy wrong. I ruined my son!

Old Ruben Essel stands up and yawns.

1. RUBEN
(softly)
I’m feeling a bit tired. I think I’ll turn in now.

Nob©dy really pays attention to him as he walks out the door.

He stands in the yard for a moment, gazing into the black sky which for once is full of stars.

His old face is haggard, and tears form in his eyes.

1. RUBEN
(voice choked)
Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned. Into Your hands, Father, I entrust my soul.

Forgive your son, as only You can.

He sighs greatly and walks back into the living-room.

He goes throu-gh the southern end of the Mission house straight to his room.

He has a small [email protected], and he walks throu-gh the darkness to the oak desk, pu-lls out a chair, and sits down.

He puts on the desk lamp, and then he takes a clean A4 sheet, picks up a pen from a tray on the desk, and then he begins to write.
What he writes is short and concise.

Next he picks a key from the tray and opens a drawer on his right side.
He lifts some note books and reaches for a snub-nosed pistol lying inside.
He picks up the pistol, sli-ps the safety, and then he sits staring at the gun.

He begins to weep bitterly.

STUDIO 44, HEARTBEAT TELEVISION

The audience is stunned.
The video has come to an end.

For many minutes, nob©dy can move.
Several people in the audience are visibly shaken, and most are either crying openly or trying to stem their tears.

Wach!pa looks at Elaine, and sees that she is crying.

He knows she is not faking it.
He knows her tears are for a man she still loves but thought she hated, a man she is so angry with she has tried a million times to destroy as hate took over her love.

But she is finding out, really brutally, that she still has feelings for him, and this makes Wach!pa so sad that for a moment he debates showing the other videos.

He stands and walks up to Elaine.

WACh!pA SEY
(whispering)
Maybe we should call for a commercial break. I nee-d a word with you.

Elaine stares at him for a moment, and then she nods.

She stands up, wipes tears from her eyes, and faces the [email protected]£ra, her expression really sad indeed.

ELAINE
We’ll be back, ladies and gentlemen. Let’s take a few commercials, and then we’ll continue with this sad story.

As the COMMERCIAL BREAK signal comes on the television, Elaine re-moves her microphone and stares at Wach!pa Sey, who is walking to a portion of the studio where they will be alone.

Wordlessly she follows him.
She looks at him.

WACh!pA SEY
(calmly)
Listen, ma’am. The next two videos shows Chris speaking about how you tricked him into ma-king love to you and pretended he [email protected]£d you, just to make Effe leave him. I want you to know that.

Elaine’s face [email protected], and she looks down at her feet.

When she looks up at him her tears fall down her cheeks.

ELAINE
I loved Chris very much. We [email protected]£d for a year. He’s the only man I’ve ever loved. When he chose my friend, I lost my head.

WACh!pA SEY
You still love him, don’t you?
Elaine brushes tears from her eyes, but still her tears fall.

ELAINE
I’ll never st©p loving him. I thought I hated him, but now I un-derstand him. plea-se, I beg of you, don’t show those videos.

WACh!pA SEY
Then you have to go to his wife, and confess, lady. If you agree to do that, I would skip those videos. If you don’t I’ll put the videos on social media.

Elaine reaches out and holds Wach!pa Sey’s arms.

ELAINE
(earnestly)
Whatever happens, it’s over between me and Jon. I’m going to make a clean start in life. Yes, from here I’ll go to Effe and make a full confession about how I told Chris I’ll inform Effe that he had a relationsh!pwith me if he didn’t make love to me for the last time. I’ll tell Effe that I planned it all for her to come and find us ma-king love whilst I pretended to be in pain. I’ll tell her I tore up my own clothes and screamed as I made love to Chris, to convince Effe I was being [email protected]£d. I’ll confess to Effe that I lied to her when I told her Chris was having an affair, and that all the other evidences were planted by Steve. I promise you, Mr. Sey, I’ll tell Effe everything. plea-se, I beg of you, don’t show it on television.

Wach!pa Sey smiles sadly and holds out his hand.

Elaine shakes it.

WACh!pA SEY
Deal, Elaine. I’ll be listening.
He walks away from her.
He sits behind his [email protected]©p and skips the next two videos.

He selects another video, and when the [email protected]£ras come back to him, he double-cli-cks, and the video begins to pla-y.

To be continued

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