Afflicted Episode 1

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Story By Aaron Ansah Agyeman

There is merrymaking at the NYANTAKYI residence.
It is the sixty-first birthday of Mr. KUSI NYANTAKYI, and a party has been organized for him. He is surrounded by family, friends and colleagues. His wife, SIKA NYANTAKYI, is looking resplendent in her all-white attire which matches her husband’s. She is sitting in a wheelchair by her husband’s side.
She cannot walk. A massive stroke two years earlier has rendered her incapable of walking, and has paralysed half her body. Her right arm is bent, and she is not capable of coherent speech as part of her mouth is also cruelly twisted to the side.
Their only daughter, twenty-six-year-old KESEWAA, is also fawning around her parents. Kesewaa is indeed a very beautiful girl. She is tall, extremely fair and as graceful as gazelle. She is as incredible-looking as a fairy, and all eyes follow her as she moves from one guest to the other.

Her father has already blown the candles and cut the cake and tired from dancing and all the excitement, he is now sitting down with his wife by his side.
Also on the high table with him are BISHOP OSUANYI AYEH, the General Overseer of GOLGOTHA HEIGHTS INTERNATIONAL CHURCH.
The Bishop’s wife, KORKOR, is also present.
So also is the new pastor of the church, REVEREND EBOW OBUOBI, who has recently returned to Ghana from his studies abroad, and who is already causing a great fire revival in the church with his display of the power of God.
He is the nephew of Bishop Osuanyi.
People are still dancing, eating and making merry.
White tents, white cotton-covered chairs and tables fill the yard.
Food is in abundance.
The Gift Area is laden with wrapped parcels. Sitting to one side under the tent is a calm-looking man in his early thirties. His name is AKOTO NYAMEBOAME. He is wearing a designer agbada, and he is very handsome. By his side is his mother, MAAME AKUA, who looks quite elderly and a little out of place.
On his other side is a dark-complexioned twenty-nine-year-old lady called AMINA MOHAMMED.
She is Kesewaa’s best friend.
Kesewaa extricates herself from a little group she is chatting with, and approaches Akoto with a lovely smile on her face.
She walks with rhythm, and Amina sees the look of love and adoration on Akoto’s face as he looks at Kesewaa.
AMINA
(giggling)
Ei, Mr. Akoto! Look at the expression on your face! Love is going to kill you one of these days!
AKOTO
(laughing softly)
I love your friend, Amina. I love her so much!
Kesewaa has reached them now.
She kneels down by the chair Maame Akua is sitting on, and smiles sweetly.
KESEWAA
(gently)
My dearest mother-in-law! Are you okay? Was the food sufficient for you?
Maame Akua smiles with real joy and touches Kesewaa’s shoulder.
MAAME AKUA
I’m very full and happy, my dearest daughter. Thank you very much!
Kesewaa now stands up and looks at the adoring face of Akoto.
KESEWAA
(sweetly)
My darling! You’re devouring me with your eyes! Ei, I’m even scared of what you’ll do to me after our wedding!
They all laugh, and Akoto shakes his head.
AKOTO
(lovingly)
I keep telling you, Kesewaa, that I’ve never seen the nakedness of any woman before. My mother brought me up as a Christian, and I’ve grown up a virgin. Yes, I can’t wait to hold you on our wedding night!
AMINA
(giggling)
Ei, doesn’t the Bible say that if you desire a woman in your mind you’ve fornicated? Be careful, my friends!
They all laugh again.
KESEWAA
(holding out her hand)
Come, my love. Father wants to introduce you to our Pastor. He will be officiating our wedding, you know.
Akoto takes her hand and stands up.
They begin to walk towards the high table, and the crowd looks at them.
They look so good together, so suited to each other!
People look at them and whisper, pointing fingers at them, telling those who do not yet know that very soon the beautiful Kesewaa will be married to the handsome and very wealthy Akoto.
The two of them have now reached the high table.
Mr. Kusi Nyantakyi stands up and hugs Akoto, and then he turns and introduces him to Bishop Osuanyi and Reverend Obuobi.

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MR. NYANTAKYI
(beaming with smiles)
This is Akoto Nyameboame, the young man who is going to marry Kesewaa within the next few months. He has already come for the list. He brought me a brand new, registered Nissan for my birthday!
Bishop Osuanyi is smiling broadly as he shakes Akoto’s hand vigorously.
BISHOP OSUANYI
Aaaaah! A man after my own heart! So young, and yet so blessed! I hear you own IT-SENZ, young man! The biggest telecommunications company in West Africa!
Akoto smiles modestly and nods.
AKOTO
(softly)
It is all by the grace of the God I serve, sir.
BISHOP OSUANYI
Beautiful! Nice! Then you’re going to bring that blessing to Golgotha Church, my friend!
Mr. NYANTAKYI
(proudly)
Akoto and Kesewaa have known each other for four years, and now God has paved the way for their marriage. Akoto paid the total expense for this party, Bishop! He bought me my car and bought this house for us. He’s been taking care of my wife’s medical bills! He’s a good man, Bishop!
BISHOP OSUANYI
(vibrantly)
That he is! That he is! May God bless you, Akoto, my man! Next week we’re holding a one-week Holy Spirit Convention. The proceeds would be used to complete another branch of the church for Reverend Obuobi to preside over! You should make the time and be there, my son!
AKOTO
(smiling)
Wouldn’t miss it for all the riches in the world, Bishop.
There is happiness and good feeling all around. The new pastor, Obuobi, now steps forward. He reaches out to take Akoto’s hand, but he pauses suddenly and drops his hand without touching Akoto. The pastor’s face is suddenly filled with a scowl.Akoto’s hand is still in the air, but when it becomes evident that Pastor Obuobi has no intention of shaking his hand, he puts his hand down with his eyebrows raised.There is a hint of mounting anger in Akoto’s eyes.

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