Doctor Anaman removes the stethoscope from his ears, folds it, and places it carefully on his desk.
He looks quite shaken as he looks at Effe.
Effe and Eyram watch him apprehensively as he blows air through his lips and stands up.
Out in the reception their parents are waiting with Elaine, Aunt Ruth and Rupert, all of whom had decided to accompany Effe to her first official ante-natal appointment with Doctor Anaman.
(concerned and uneasy)
Gabe? Is everything okay?
Mm? Oh, yes, yes. Just want to be sure of something. Please, come here a moment, would you?
He is indicating the state-of-the-art examination bed in his huge office.
He pulls the curtains off and when Effe approaches him uncertainly he tries a tight smile and indicates the bed.
Effe lies down, and the attending nurse covers her lower abdomen and legs with a clean sheet, and draws up Effe’s blouse, exposing her beautiful belly.
Doctor Anaman puts on gloves and then puts on the scanner, smears a lubricant on Effe’s lower abdomen, and then places the convex probe and starts a gentle but firm enquiry.
Eyram, sensing there might be something amiss, stands beside Effe and takes her hand, sharing stress and giving strength just like twins only know how.
(a little afraid now)
Doctor Anaman punches on the keyboard, and a printer is activated and starts printing.
He extracts several tissues from a box and cleans Effe’s belly thoroughly.
He takes off his gloves and throws them in a bin, and then he picks up the printed material, looks at it, and hands it to Effe.
Damn it, Doc! You’re scaring us!!
Let her be, Effe. Well, I just wanted to be sure. And it is confirmed. Seems to me you’re going to need extra care and handling, my dear. At your age, and seeing this is your first pregnancy, twins will involve a little bit more extra care, don’t you think?
Eyram could feel Effe’s fingers squeezing her hand strongly, and when she looks down she sees the absolute shock and wonder on her sister’s face.
(in a mischievous voice)
Well, now I believe that boy really rocked you well!
Effe looks at her sister, and even though she begins to laugh, tears also well up in her eyes, and at that moment the beautiful soul she has in her merges with her external beauty, and she looks incredibly astounding.
(in a gentle voice)
I agree with you, Eyram. If that boy can make confirmed barren women get pregnant with twins, then I guess I should refer some barren women to him, since Effe here does not want him anymore!
Effe sits up, her lower lip between her teeth, and pulls down her blouse.
Her eyes are filled with wonder, and she shakes her head slowly.
(in a little voice)
I guess, with two children, he has to lend a hand, doesn’t he, that bad boy? I mean, I can’t clean all that poop alone, can I?
You have to call him.
Could be in Switzerland now, Rammy. Haven’t heard from him after I snubbed him the last time we met. But I can’t go on without him, Rammy. I miss him. I miss that damn bad Darling Boy. I’m no longer angry at him. I just want to love him, and marry him, and have his two big-headed children. I miss his arms around me so much!
Yeah, you do, Ef. He really rocked you good.
Effe starts to laugh at that, then suddenly she begins to cry softly, overcome with emotions, and Eyram goes to her, and hugs her, and smiles as her sister’s tears of happiness fall gently.
The door slams open, and Ken Kedem enters, his face flushed and excited.
He stops, struck by the force of the emotional clout in the room.
And what is going on here? Hey, Gabriel Anaman, what have you done to my grandchild now?
Grandchildren, Ken, grandchildren. Effe is going to have twins.
As in two babies? My good gracious, girl! Now I love that boy even more! He’s got a straight penis! Not a crooked one like Steve’s!
(bursting into uncontrollable laughter)
Well, they say men with crooked dicks can’t shoot straight.
He goes to Effe and hugs her tightly.
(drying her eyes and chuckling)
I love him, Dad. I love him so much. But I let him go! I lost him!
Ken Kedem’s face turns into an excited mask all over again.
Yeah, yeah! That’s why I came in! I couldn’t stand you standing there mooching and dark all day and night long. I called him yesterday and told him you know everything. I told him we discussed the Sweet Ama Baby thing. He told me he didn’t believe all that your Mama and Steve told him about you. He just thought you despised him for something he refused to tell me, and I told him you love and want him the way he is. And now he’s out there in the sky! Flying and dropping pictures around!
Who else? Yes, your taxi driver! He’s flying in the sky shooting pictures! Come, come and see! Oh, wait, I think you can even see it right here!
He rushes to the huge French windows and sweeps the drapes to one side, and Effe gasps at what she sees!
There is a helicopter hovering in the air outside the window, and a lot of white A4-sized white papers are flying out of it.
And trailing from the tail of the helicopter, is a huge heart-shaped red poster, and on it are the huge white words:
I’M SORRY, EFFE. PLEASE FORGIVE ME!!
Effe walks towards the window as if in a dream, and her trembling fingers touch her lips.
Her hand reaches out, and she opens the huge windows and steps unto the protruding terrace beyond.
Effe! Be careful!!
The rotors of the helicopter blow more of the papers unto the terrace, and she reaches out and catches one, and looks at it.
It is a picture of her, taken at the Jamaican Resort.
She is standing, and somehow, a photo of Chris on his knees has been photo-shopped into the picture, and he is holding up a most beautiful diamond-encrusted ring.
And below that picture are the words: WILL YOU MARRY ME, MY PRECIOUS EFFE?
(laughing, crying, her heart full with emotion)
Yes, yes, yes, my love, my wonderful sweet taxi driver, YES!!!
She looks at the helicopter, and it swings in her direction, and glides upwards until she cannot see it anymore, and just as she begins to turn back into the room a rope ladder suddenly appears over the terrace.
She stares at it, incredulous, immobile, shocked.
She takes halting steps towards it, and a moment later Chris appears, climbing down the rope ladder.
He is wearing only black jeans, black Nike sneakers and a white singlet.
(shouting and smiling)
I was watching you through a binocular, and I saw you saying yes, yes, yes, YES!!!
Effe is still laughing and crying, and the look of sheer love and adoration on her face sets his heart alive, and he has never known such happiness.
Is that ladder attached to the helicopter?
Oh, dear, come down here, Chris, please get down!
I was scared, Effe! I thought if you knew what I did, with her, you would find me repulsive! I never believed you slept with Steve, or that you tried to kill me! I was just scared of what you might think of me if you knew about … about …
Oh, Chris! I knew! All along! I know you didn’t know! It was no fault of yours, my darling! All that is behind us now, my darling!
Do you love me?
Yes, yes, yes, and I want to be with you. Please get down here!!! You should stop these things, Chris, darling, please! You’re going to be a father …to two kids!
Hanging unto the rope, his face becomes beautiful with a look of sheer delight, and transforms him completely, and she is amazed that her joy can be so much reflected in him!
She nods profusely, and puts trembling fingers to her lips.
Yes, my love!
Oh! My Precious! You see, you didn’t want to sleep that night! You wanted to do it again and again and again… now see what’s happened!
Effe breaks into uncontrollable peals of laughter, and then he jumps unto the terrace, no longer smiling, but his face filled with a love so deep, so complete, so divine, that she knows this is IT, the love every woman seeks, but only a few lucky ones find.
He looks at her, and she looks like an angel, and he knows, deep down, that this is IT, the love his heart has sought, the love every man craved but only a he, the lucky one, had found.
This is the woman he is going to love for the rest of his life.
He catches her, draws her near, and gives her a torture of a kiss… that goes on and on and on…
And when he finally stands back, and looks at her with his heart on his face, she moves forward, and catches him…
The helicopter soars over the most beautiful land Effe has ever seen.
It is an island. The gentle sea surrounds it, lapping gently on its shores.
The tall royal palms and well-pruned greens gives the beaches an exotic look.
On the northern part of the beach is a little harbour, and moored along its edges are two luxurious boats, a few powered canoes, water skiers and other machines she has never seen before.
The helicopter banks and the pilot hovers over a mini-airport.
When they get down Effe can see another luxurious helicopter and a jet plane in their hangars.
You have your own island? Your own harbour and your own airport?
Chris smiles down at her and leans over to kiss her long and gently.
Not me, my darling. It is for us now.
When the helicopter lands, she is whipped through the airport to an incredible carport, where they sit in a sleek black mini-limousine.
They drive through the most incredible land Effe has ever seen.
She sees his personal hospital, his laundry, his filling station, restaurant, and a banking hall.
They are surrounded by natural vegetation, and when they leave the hub of buildings behind they travel through the most beautiful landscape she has ever seen.
She screams suddenly when she sees two lions roar out of the nearby bushes, and moments later she sees a gigantic anaconda gliding past, and then, incredibly, the limousine takes a bend and she sees an amazing garden.
It is covered in green. There are pools, little rivers, waterfalls, hills, valleys, and all around many other species of animals. Giraffes, cheetahs, sheep, orang-utans … all of them milling around gently. Suddenly a terrible-looking giant dinosaur appears and run along the sides of the limousine, and she clutches Chris’ arm with a little cry of fear.
Chris holds her and smiles lovingly into her eyes.
Relax, my darling. They’re not real. I got some Hollywood designers to create all these synthetic machine replicas of animals. They’re like robots, but with advanced functionalities.
(with great amazement)
Chris tells the driver to stop, and then he winds down the window.
The dinosaur lowers its head, and sticks its giant mouth and terrible teeth into the car.
This is Helen. Say hi.
Effe sticks her hand out, a little fearfully at first, because the giant animal is so real.
The dinosaur nuzzles her hand, and then it turns and runs in the other direction.
They are all programmed to give them life-like movements. Look over there! That’s where we’ll be married in a week’s time!
It is the most exotic location she has ever seen. It’s like a glass dome sitting on top of a river.
It has an incredible waterfall falling gently on one end, and a most incredible garden to its western end.
Angels seem to be floating all around it, real-looking beautiful angels with golden halos that takes Effe’s breath away!
(voice trembling, tears in her eyes)
What’s this place, Chris?
Our home, my Precious. Welcome to Eden’s Garden.
Effe nods wordlessly.
It is more than I ever imagined, my love!
The car moves through the breath-taking landscape, and as the road goes around an amazing railroad station and down a most incredible playground that is as huge as a town, looking even more incredible than Disneyland, she shakes her head numbly.
You have that playground all along and you told me you didn’t need children?
I never said I didn’t want kids, my love. I said if we couldn’t have kids of our own, we’ll adopt. When I was growing up in the orphanage, I told myself that one day my children will have a real playground, and all the joys I never had as a child. I created this just for fun, and now it seems I’ll have kids in it! My own children, our children, from a woman I was born to love!
And then, moments later, the scene opens up, and she sees it ….
Nestled in the gardens, with huge golden gates and glass walls that have beautiful paintings all around, is a huge amazing mansion that is absolutely stupendous!
The courtyard has a spectacular fountain in the middle of a green turf. To its eastern end is a moat on which floats spectral angelic creatures with glittering appendages that serve as lights.
The moat ends in a canal at the western end, like those serenading canals in Paris.
Effe can see a garden as splendid as it was majestic just after the canal.
The mansion itself is an edifice hewn into a magnificent hill, and its northern wing is taken up with one of the most spectacular waterfalls she has ever seen, and the endless greenery spreads as far as the eye can see.
It is a thing of such beauty, the sight alone unimaginable, that for a moment Effe can’t breathe.
(in a strangled whisper)
You live here? In a place like this? And you rented a small place and drove a taxi just to capture my heart?
Yes, my darling! The famous, qualified doctor who was ready to love a poor semi-literate taxi driver. You’re amazing, a woman in a million, and this is our home! But if you like, I can give it up for you. I can live in a rented chamber and hall and drive a taxi, if you want.
She looks at him, and tears trickle down her cheeks.
(gently, lovingly, tenderly)
Do you think I’m mad?
He laughs then. A happy, exploding laughter that fills his very soul.
The golden gates of the mansion are opening, and she sees her parents, Eyram, Doctor Anaman and Albert Ntim, Rupert and Gil, and Chris’ mother coming out to meet them.
Mr. Albert Ntim had brought them earlier.
You said we’re marrying next week? That’s too close.
Don’t worry, my Precious. Make it happen. I believe you can make it happen!
Of course, I can make it happen! But why next week, my darling? Surely, there’s no rush?
(looking at her with loving eyes)
Next week is your birthday. On the day you are born, my heart will be complete!
(reaching for him)
Effe! My heart, my breath, my all!
He takes her in his arms, and does not stop kissing her even when the people surround the car and Rupert and Gil start hammering on the windows….
Stay glued for Whatever It Takes By Eunice Ansah Agyeman
45 days By Aaron Ansah Agyeman