Esenam rang the doorbell to their home and waited. She felt sad coming in as a stranger to her own family. Mrs. Fiagbe opened the door, gave her a long, emotional hug, and asked her to step inside. Esenam was a bit reluctant about getting inside but her Mom insisted.
“How have you been, my daughter?” she asked and took a seat.
“I’m surviving, Mom. It’s not easy but I’m managing.”
“Where are you staying?” Mrs. Fiagbe enquired worriedly.
“I’m at a friend’s temporarily. I will let you know when I get a more permanent place.”
“Don’t give me that, Esenam. I still need to know where you are, temporal or not.” Mrs. Fiagbe stated, a bit angry.
“I’m staying with a church member, a guy, but it’s just a temporal arrangement.” Mrs. Fiagbe was a little uncomfortable with the idea that Esenam was staying with a man. She thought that would complicate issues with her Dad if he found out.
“It’s not that I don’t trust you but is it safe? Won’t people talk?” she asked with concern.
“Yes, Mom, I’m worried about people talking but as for my safety there’s no problem with that. He can be trusted. He is a perfect gentleman.”
“Do I see a glitter of love in your eyes for this guy, whatever his name is?”
“Mom? Stop pulling my legs. I must admit he is a nice guy but love is the last thing on my mind right now. I have more pressing needs that require immediate attention.”
“Yes, that’s how it starts, him being nice and the rest follows. Can you honestly say that you’ve not thought of him when you were alone?”
“How is Dad?” Esenam changed the subject quickly, a little uneasy with her mother’s probing questions.
“The same. He didn’t talk to anyone this morning. He left for work a few minutes ago. Everything is not the same around here without you Esenam. Everyone eats breakfast separately and that has never happened before. I think I hate him now.”
“Please don’t say that, Mom. I know he loves you, but he is just stubborn and a pain sometimes. Please don’t change how you relate to him because of me. There is always a good reason for everything that happens. He needs you now more than ever.”
“Listen to yourself. He throws you out without a care into the streets and you are making excuses for him, actually seeking his welfare? You never cease to amaze me. Anyway, are you sure you don’t want to talk about this guy who has obviously made a big impression on you?” Esenam asked her Mom to stop pushing for things that were not there. She enquired if her things were still in the Boy’s Quarters and got to her feet. Her mother answered in the affirmative.
Esenam learnt upon enquiry that Elorm had gone with their father to his office to help out with some tasks. She also learnt that Yayra skipped school. Esenam walked up to Yayra’s room and found her pretending to be asleep with her cover cloth wrapped tightly around her from head to toe. She pulled off the cloth when she heard Esenam mentioning her name. She was so happy to see her big sister. She told Esenam she was very angry with their Dad for what he did last night.
“I’m never going back to school because he shouted at me when I asked him where he was taking your things.” Esenam calmed her down and asked her not to take that stance. She explained that their Dad was angry with her because she did not do what he asked her to do. He was angry at her and that was why he took her things out and asked that nobody opened the door for her.
“I still don’t understand why he should do that.” Yayra stated.
“Dad is a little upset with me because I wouldn’t do something he asked of me. And he told me that if I don’t do as he says, he would send my things out. I don’t think you should blame him for what happened. It’s my fault. I don’t want you to disrespect him for my sake. He loves you very much and he loves me too.”
“If he loves you, why didn’t he open the door for you? Yesterday, he made Mom cry and I also cried a lot because Mom was sad.”
“Yayra, you are too young to understand a lot of what is happening but believe me when I tell you Dad loves all of us very much. He is just upset right now.” Esenam assured her and told her she was leaving. Yayra begged to go with her. Esenam promised that she would be coming back soon. Esenam left the room with Yayra and told her Mom she was calling it a day.
She went to the Boy’s Quarters with Yayra and picked a few things. She gave her little sister a big hug and made her promise to go back to school, and then left in a hurry with tears in her eyes.