I looked at Monica who gasped probably in surprise and I instantly drifted to a state where I believed that what was happening was just some dream so that I would pray against it when I woke up and I felt comfortable in that state
I got startled and muttered a curse under my breath “God, why didn’t you at least warn me about this in my dream?” I asked myself. I drifted back to that state again but this time I could hear voices which sounded to be distant until I heard dad calling out my name even though it sounded distant but he didn’t stop until I could hear him loud and clear. Dad was by side and he was shaking me but the first thing I saw when I shook my head countless times hoping it was a dream was that woman
Dad: Lucy, are you okay?
Me: dad, what’s this you’ve brought home?
I tried to ask calmly as possible and my hatred for her increased
Dad: calm down please
Me: IS SHE THE REASON YOU COULDN’T COME FOR ME AND SENT SOMEONE ELSE? OH! SO SHE’S THE REASON THERE’S ONLY ONE PICTURE OF MOM IN THE LOUNGE, SHE’S THE REASON YOU DON’T MAKE TIME FOR US AND COME UP WITH SOME “PROJECT” EXCUSE, IS SHE THE PROJECT YOU WERF TALKING ABOUT?
Dad: enough of this, that’s no way to treat someone especially an adult and sit down
Me: this is exactly a way to treat a Mrs Mulenga wannabe, I only of one Mrs Mulenga and that’s mom and she’s irreplaceable
I unlocked my phone which had a wallpaper of mom and approached the woman
Me: you see this woman here? You’re nowhere close to reaching her qualities
Monica: Lucy! Calm down already
I was breathing fire and there was nothing that would calm me down until I spoke my mind
Me: I WON’T CALM DOWN WHEN I DRAINED MY ENERGY IN THR KITCHDN THE WHOLE DAY AND DRESSED UP FOR NOTHING, WHAT A WASTE OF TIME
I didn’t realise that dad was speaking all this time until I heard a tone of anger in his voice and I kept quiet then looked at the woman who was facing down with tears streaming down her face
Me: nx crocodile tears
He banged the table and I stormed out of the room since I had started feeling chest pains and went to my bedroom where I locked myself up, I took off my shoes which I threw against the wall followed by everything I wore and got in my pyjamas then I got one of mom’s pictures which I tightly hugged and cried myself to sleep……
I woke up with a banging headache the following day and my eyes were all red and puffy from all the crying of the previous night, I went to the bathroom and did my hygiene process then opted for a white oversize T-shirt, black shorts, black fluffy flip flops then tied my hair in two buns. I went to the kitchen and was glad that dad had already left because he was the last person I wanted to see, I made myself a bowl of corn flakes and ate with my eyes closed as I felt my taste buds respond positively to the flakes then I was startled by Nancy
Nancy: you’re praying?
I quickly opened my eyes and she shook her head
Nancy: heyyyyy! Did your babe dump you
She asked teasingly
Me: it’s worse than that my friend
Mapalo walked in right then
Nancy: want to talk about it?
Me: most definitely, did y’all see dad’s guest yesterday?
Mapalo: his colleague? I saw her
Nancy: she looked kindah weird
I narrated the story to them
Me: that woman wants to climb her way to the top and become the lady of the house but she’ll have to get rid of me before that happens
Mapalo: that woman has got guts, what class is she?
Me: I really don’t care about her class or anything what’s gotten to me is that she wants to replace mom and I really hate her guts
We started laughing and Monica walked in looking annoyed then she greeted us and made her breakfast, she started eating and wasn’t part of our conversation then she started listening to music on her headphones, I noticed something weird about her……
After having breakfast I took back the pictures where they belonged and went back to my bedroom where I face timed with Austin since I missed him, I told him about what happened and he was dead laughing especially when I described her, I told him how I felt and he told me to concentrate on my studies and we’d deal with her when we were done with our exams then I remembered that I’d never studied since I got to the house “that woman is a devil who wants to affect my studies, the devil is a liar it won’t work,” I said to myself
A week went by and I decided to visit Austin who was locked up in his bedroom studying, his mother was glad to see me just like I was coz I hadn’t seen her in a long time then I was allowed to go in….. His bedroom had books and passed examination papers scattered on the floor then I threw myself on his bed
Me: hey stranger
Austin: what topic are you studying on?
Me: I’ve been in no mood to study ever since that woman happened
He got up from the table and came to the bed
Austin: I understand how you feel and this will seriously affect your studies, we’ve got an exam to write by the end of the year couldn’t have uncle brought her at another time?
Me: he shouldn’t have even brought her, I’m sure she fed him something coz dad doesn’t behave like he is so if he wants to push her into my life I’ll fight back
He looked at me with pity
Austin: don’t worry we’ll deal with her
Me: I trust you on that one
He led me back to the table and explained what he was studying to me which was another way if studying for me, I had such a great time that I even forgot about the incident. I spent a night there and only went home the following evening where I found dad and Monica in the lounge chatting, I was just going to avoid them like I hadn’t acknowledged their presence until Monica spoke
Monica: hey Lucy
I faked a smile
Monica: I missed you
Me: don’t worry I’m back
I attempted to walk away
Dad: Lucy, get back here
“Not again,” I said to myself as I rolled my eyes
Monica: umm…I’ll be in my bedroom
She left and I took a seat
Dad: Lucy, why are you doing this?
Me: dad, why are you doing this?
Dad: DON’T ANSWER ME WITH A QUESTION, DO I MAKE MYSELF CLEAR?
I huffed and saw dad trying to calm down but I didn’t care coz he was being selfish, he was supposed to make sure I fared well with the shocking news he delivered and get rid of the woman because women like her would do anything be with dad since he’d be her meal ticket but he was lashing out at me which got me angry too
Dad: where did you go to and where did you spend the night?
Me: Austin’s house
Dad: and you didn’t bother calling to tell me that you were spending the night
Was that such a big deal?
Me: why not monitor that woman?
What was happening? I thought I was saying that to myself not knowing that I’d said it a loud and until I saw dad’s hand raised in the air ready to slap me
Dad: you’re only 18 and I’m capable of laying a hand on you if you think I can’t.
Me: for that woman? Go right ahead and you’ll never see me, couldn’t you have picked another time to do what you did?
Dad: I wanted you to know rather than finding out elsewhere
Me: you’re not planning on bringing her here, are you?
At that point we were both calm and he touched my shoulder
Dad: you’re growing and will begin to understand how some of these things work but it’s been 4 years since your mom left us and one ought to leave the past behind and move on
Me: then why didn’t you tell her on her hospital bed that you were willing to throw everything you built with her in the mud and replace her?
Dad: nobody knows the future and I didn’t know it would happen
Me: maybe she even caused mom’s death
Tears flowed down my face as memories of her played in my mind
Dad: no, no, no
Me: and one thing you’re not seeing is that she decided to appear after all our struggles are gone, she wants to reap where she did not sow something mom prayed so much for all her life but couldn’t experience
Dad: don’t think in those lines
Me: I’ll think whatever I want about her it’s either you choose her and lose me or the other way round, excuse me I’ll have an early night…..
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