Story: The Secret

    Episode 1

    I said lie down!” He shouted at me sending me a hot slap which landed me on the bed. I must have gone blind or deaf that instance because the only thing I could hear was some ringing in my ears.
    By the time I realized what was happening, I felt a needle jammed into my arm and I passed out.
    By the time I came to, the back of my skull throbbed like a w---e’s heart. I tried to check my arm and then I realized I couldn’t move.
    Something was restraining my arms and feet. I could barely raise my head too. Everywhere was hazy and spinning, it was like I was paralyzed but not completely.
    Luckily, I was able to turn my head to the entrance where Henry was bound. One of the men was talking with him, still pointing the gun at him. He was the one out of the two whose eyes were left uncovered.
    I struggled to hear what he was saying and why they had to be hush about it. I could hear a word but my brain refused to register so I gave up.
    “Hey, she’s awake”
    I heard the other announced and then both Henry and the man stared at me. Henry looked at me with so much pity and terror.
    He struggled against the ropes and plasters but it was useless. I shut my eyes and opened them as the first man came closer. He was big and his eyes were filled with pure hatred.
    I felt him climb unto the bed beside me…A tremor of panic vibrated in my core. I couldn’t do anything, not to even lift a finger. Then I realized, whatever content they had put in my arm was having its full effect on me.
    No!no! This must not happen! God please help me!
    Then he slowly lifted my wedding gown and patted my legs while he knelt in between, unbuckling his belt. Everywhere was still spinning but I knew what was about to happen.
    I could feel the sweat , the throbbing of my own eyes, the ringing of my own silent screams.
    Hesitantly, my eyes went to Henry who apparently was no more struggling but whose eyes were now shut as hot tears flooded his cheeks.
    I felt him inside of me and I shut my eyes as the paralyzing hurt spread inside me through my entire body.
    Sharp pain tore into somewhere deep down in my belly and colorful spot flashed in my brain…
    The pain took me far away but deep inside myself to some primitive place where I could handle that kind of pain that preceded death.
    Memories of my younger days flashed through my memory as I recalled how I had wanted my wedding night to be special…I had wanted my husband to disvirgin me and now that had been forcefully taken away from me.

    Episode 2

    Seriously guys…if you see my head right now, it is taller than that of mount kilimanjaro….i mean with your comments..please dash me an handkerchief Heheheh!
    ***“Hey Tee!”
    I turned around as I heard someone called my name, it was Rose. I signaled to her to hurry up as I took my seat beside my other Co-workers.
    It was already some minutes past four and like we always did, we would meet at the cafeteria and gist about ridiculous things for about an hour before we would all go home in our different cars.
    I worked for a Telecommunication Company at Victoria Island and there was no much time to chit-chat for ladies so we always did that after closing period. The Cafeteria was noisy as always , while others were busy getting their bags from the lockers, some like us were busy catching up with our friends.
    “Hey, look at you, I could barely recognize you this morning” Rose said, embracing me after we both took our seats.
    “Your wedding was beautiful, God! I am so happy I didn’t miss it!” Laura declared as she stuffed her mouth full with doughnut.
    I smiled. “I would have killed you had it been you missed it” I replied jokingly.
    “So how is Henry?’ asked Cynthia.
    “He is fine” I replied , switching on my phone. I noticed the both exchanged glances. “What was that about?”
    Rose scoffed. “Girl, do we need to spell it out for you? You know how we always do this thing at least, you started it. we don’t understand why you have been avoiding it.”
    “You always seem somehow whenever it comes to this.” Laura continued for her.
    “Comes to what?” I snapped.
    “The details babe! Your first night…we want to know everything. It’s been more than two weeks and it’s like you don’t want to talk about it. You remember how you kept telling us you wanted your first night to be special? Now that you are no longer a nun, please tell us everything” Laura begged excitedly.
    “Did you scream? Did it hurt? How was Henry? Is he good you know…stuffs like that.” Rose completed for her.
    I was quiet for a while and I know my eyes must have probably frozen over. My inside was damp all of a sudden and I had to bit my lips to stop me from crying.
    I looked at their faces lit with excitements. I wanted to say something but I couldn’t. I was the one who started this .When Rosa got married, I made sure she told us everything right from their leaving the reception, the same thing with Cynthia and it became a tradition. I was the only virgin amongst them before I got married, I told them I needed their experiences for my wedding night.
    “Was it that bad?” Cynthia asked with a little show of concern.
    “Urm,,,” I started with a shaky voice. “Er..urm. It was okay..nothing special” I replied weakly as I tried effortlessly to push the bad memory back inside.
    “Just okay?!” Laura demanded, a little bit angry. “ We need all the juices Tola. You remember you made us promise to always do this!”
    Sharp pain lanced through my head at her sudden demand .
    “Look! It is my life okay ! it is none of your businesses!” I lashed out, hurriedly picked my bag and rushed out of the Cafeteria, ignoring their looks of surprises at my over-reaction.
    Getting into my car, I dropped my bag on the other seat while I rested my head against the steering for a while, with my eyes closed.
    Colorful spots flashed in front of my eyes, it felt like my whole body had been beaten and every movement caused some muscle or bone to ache. Regardless , I needed to get out of here. I turned on the ignition key , maybe Henry was right, I wasn’t ready to come to work…
    By the time I got home, it was already some minutes past 7pm, the traffic was always crazy on Fridays.
    Having stepped out of the car, I pulled off my shoes and held them in my hand.
    I could see Henry’s car beside mine, in the Garage. He got home sooner today, I wondered why , because it was a Friday night and normally he would be at the club with Moses and the rest of their crew.
    I inserted my key into the Key-hole and turned it, pulling the door open. It was a little dark and soft music seemed to be playing from somewhere in the house.
    “There was power, so why were all the lights turned off?” I asked myself. I walked to the switch…
    “Babe!” Henry’s voice came astoundingly, almost giving me a heart attack.
    I turned around and saw him behind me.
    “… Do not turn on the light” He said softly.
    “Henry! What the hell is happening, you are scaring me” I whispered and he chuckled, kissing me on the lips.
    “Come with me. I have a surprise.” He ordered, taking my bag from me while holding me by the waist.
    It was a romantic dinner with the candles and all. That was why he put off the lights. It was fried rice and chicken with my favorite Red wine.
    “Did you cook this?” I teased and he gave me the look which always made me laugh.
    “I wish” He replied. “So how was work ?”
    I shook my head. “I don’t want to talk about it”
    “Are they still asking you stuffs”
    I nodded.
    “You can quit and we can start a supermarket for you” He said, lifting my hand to his lips.
    “Thank you darling” I replied with a smile.
    “I want to do anything that would make you happy”
    Henry had been so supportive ever since that terrible incident of three months ago he was doing everything to make me forget it…he was trying so hard.
    Had taken me for checkups at all the best hospitals in town and thankfully, I was okay. Then he had hired a cleaner and a maid so I wouldn’t have to stress myself.
    He also got me a therapist. Now, he planned a romantic dinner just as he had done several times since we got back to Lagos. Just that, I knew he was doing all these out of sheer pity for me.
    Assuming that hadn’t happened, would he do all these for me too? I sometimes wonder
    ***It was some minutes past 10pm. I was busy reading the book Moving On with life which the therapist has given me.
    My back was turned towards Henry who was busy fast asleep or so I thought until I felt his hand caressing me.
    I flinched at first because it was so sudden but then I relaxed. It was just a normal Caress, no big deal.
    I read on..he moved closer, pressing his body fully against me… Then he raised his head and placed it on my cheeks, breathing hot ear into my ears…
    “Henry Honey, stop that. Go back to bed” I said sternly.
    I tried to be calm at first but then he brought his hand into my night gown, reaching for my thighs but I immediately yanked his hand off.
    He sighed in frustration.
    “Babe…please!” He pleaded
    “You know I can’t do this Henry! Why do you keep stressing us!” I was beginning to get angry.
    “It has been three months. I have done everything needful, when am I ever going to have sex with my wife.
    This is not fair!” He shouted. “ I am human, I have urges! Would you prefer me going to the street?”
    “I am human too and I am still healing!” I snapped back at him.
    Now we were both sitting down, arms akimbo and backs against the wall.
    “This is not fair Tola. What else do you want me to do for you?” He asked softly.
    “I want you to understand what happened to me destroyed me Henry! I don’t want to have sex okay! Not yet!”
    “Until when?I planned a romantic dinner, fixed you for a therapist, I am changing your work for you . What else do I do? Are those not enough for you?”
    “What happened to me Henry, wasn’t a matter of the tommy, you got me your own therapist and not the one I wanted. She keeps telling you to woo me and buy me beautiful things but that is not what I want!”
    “So what do you want!”
    “I want to talk about it!” I shouted. “If we do not talk about it, there is no way we are moving past it.”
    He calmed down. “You want to talk about it?” He asked, a little surprised.
    “Yes” I replied.
    “Okay, I am listening” He replied, squeezing and rubbing my hand.
    I sighed and shut my eyes as the memories came back to me and the unsettling feeling began to well inside me again, so I held my tommy.
    “I am listening babe.”
    I opened my eyes and was looking at him.
    All the sincerity and love that I knew was all there….so I could I tell him that I thought that….that I heard that………….
    I sighed. This would ruin us and I didn’t want that. Maybe I should just let it be like he had said.
    “Henry, I’m sorry, let’s just sleep please. I am sorry…”
    He smiled and carressed my cheek before kissing me on the lips.
    “It’s okay darling. Just know that I am here for you.”

    Episode 3

    I woke up late as I often did on every Saturday morning. Checking beside me I realized he had woken up sooner.
    I stood up and having folded my blanket, I put it beside the pillow and left the room. I could hear noises and laughter coming from the living room-
    “You are not serious. You think I am like you…have you forgotten what name they gave you then?”
    “Those guys were assholes…”
    It was Felix, Henry’s friend , he had come very early this morning. I walked in on them . They were both holding a cup of tea each while there was a third in the tray on the table.
    “You see, you have disturbed my wife’s sleep” Henry accused Felix, who was smiling at me as my husband extended his arm towards me, pulling me closer.
    “Good morning darling” He said, handing me a cup of hot tea as I sat down beside him before he kissed me on the lips.
    “Morning Beauty. Sorry we woke you up with our incessant noise” Felix apologized, giving me one of his dashing smiles which I knew so well. He was in a pink shirt , black jean and a pair of black trainers, his sun glasses were hooked in his hair. i used to love him in a pink shirt, he is fair, I used to tell him that pink color makes him m=look more… hot especially with his pink lips.
    “You think I’m not used to that after all these years I have known you two?” I replied, trying to ignore the effect his smile was having on me.
    They both chuckled. Felix maintained his eye contact at me but I looked away.
    “So what are we discussing this morning?” I asked, placing a hand on my husband’s shoulder.
    “Nothing special love, he came across an old picture during NYSC so he were just discussing old days.” Henry said.
    “Days of harvesting” Felix put in , laughing so hard.
    “What do you mean by days of harvesting?” I asked, picking the picture on the table. There were a group of students in their school uniform while Henry sat in the middle beside a girl carrying a cake.
    “Oh, someone was celebrating her birthday?” I asked.
    “Yea. That is Tori, the brightest student in my class” Henry replied.
    “WOW! Its good seeing your NYSC pictures.” I replied. “Thanks for bringing this Felix. You know I never saw any of his service pictures.”
    “Really?” Felix asked.
    “You didn’t…” I started but Henry interrupted-
    “Sure. You remember I was robbed of one of my bags in the train that brought me back to Lagos”
    “Oh..that…sure” Felix replied uncomfortably.
    “So this was your brightest student in the class, you must really be proud of her” I said to Henry.
    “Yea” Henry said.
    “No…Tori wasn’t your brightest student Henry. Have your forgotten your baby-Benita? That girl loved you so much. Her whole family worshiped you.You know the period you were doing home lesson for her and the principal thought something was going on between you two and almost reported you to the Inspector?” Felix asked excited.
    I shivered at the name… why didit sound so familiar?
    “Excuse me please.. I need to pick something in the room.”
    I watched as henry stood up abruptly and began to climb up the stairs that led to our bedroom. Then I faced Felix but he was already pulling me closer to him.
    “Stop it Felix, are you high?” I snapped at him quietly, pulling my arm from his grip.
    “Oh my God! You still smell so amazing when you just wake up.” He said, sniffing at my hair and holding me closely and forcefully by the waist.
    “You need to stop this nonsense this minute.” I ordered, beating his arm and looking hesitantly towards the staircase.
    “ You know I love it when you hit my arm playfully.”
    I groaned and using all my will power, I pulled away from him, maintaining a considerable distance.
    We were looking at each other. He looked as handsome as the devil, giving me that low sexy look while biting his lower lip.
    “You should have been mine, you know that.” He growled.
    ‘Well, you are too late.” I replied before changing the subject.
    “What did you call the girl’s name again?”
    “Which girl?” He asked and I pointed at the picture.
    “Benita. I think she died or so, she is not in the picture. I don’t really understand what happened with her.” He replied nonchalantly.
    The name rang a bell, where have I heard it before ?
    “Honey, I’m hungry. Can you please fix us something to eat?” he
    Henry’s voice snapped me out of my thoughts . He came into view as he climbed down the stairs. “Sure baby.” I replied and stood up, ignoring Felix as completely as i could before heading towards the kitchen.

    Episode 4

    # Benita
    My head ached terribly it was someone was hitting my head against an armored tank. My heart was beating rapidly and my arm hurt. My vision was blurry but I could sense that I was still bound.
    I could hear Henry’s occasional whimper and one of the men, talking to him, pointing a gun at him. I turned my head slowly, it was like watching a movie in a slow motion and zooming in and out.
    I could see the movement of the man’s lips as they came together slowly, and then parted a little before opening even wider as if he was saying……Benita!
    “She’s awake!” The other man shouted and the first man left Henry and was now walking towards me. His face wasn’t so clear, part of the effect of the drug I was given…
    I felt him entered me in one full t----t and the agony and pain I felt that day, started building up in me, shattering me inside out and jerking me back to consciousness.
    I was covered in sweat and I could hear my heart still beating so loudly, I felt a touch beside me and I screamed, yanking the hand off before I realized it was my husband who quickly put on the light.
    “Baby, it’s me.” He said before pulling me into his arms, comforting me.
    I rested against his chest as I tried to calm down.
    “You are okay love. You are okay.” He was patting me on the back as I relaxed more….
    “Do you want to talk about it?” He asked.
    I thought for a while, talk about the name he had mentioned with Felix earlier today ,magically showing up in my dream.
    “No.” I replied, pulling the blanket over me.
    “Should we go to the therapist today?”
    I nodded. “Yes please.”
    ***I was sitting down beside Henry in front of Kate, my therapist. She was sitting down all dressed in red suit, her large glasses pressed on her tiny nose while she scribbled something down in the note on her lap.
    “So, how are we doing today? “ Kate asked
    “Fine.” I replied, absent-mindedly.
    “Do you think we are making progress at all?” She asked again, directly at Henry who nodded.
    “So are you saying that your wife is improving sexually and emotionally?”
    Henry hesitated for a while but later nodded.
    “You don’t need to lie Henry, we both know I’m not.” I blurted.
    “I believe she still needs more time.” Henry explained, holding my hand.
    “I do not think I do Henry, I think I am not making progress at all” I said sharply. I had no idea why I was feeling so irritated when he was being nothing but nice.
    “Please let us all calm down.” Kate said calmly. “I am sensing some tension here and I need to know what is going on.”
    “What is going on here is that my wife will not accept that she needs more time.” Henry replied, gently.
    “But I do not!” I shouted. Now facing him. “ I do not understand what is going on Henry.
    Maybe I need time, maybe I do not. I don’t know. I still don’t know why you refused to report the incidence to the police, since all these days!”
    “But honey, I thought it’s for your own good. You agreed to this!”
    Henry sighed and buried his face in his hands.
    “Well, Mr. and Mrs. James, may I know what is actually going on? Because I do not understand this sudden outburst from the two of you.”
    We were both quiet. I realized I was acting as a result of my own doubts or suspicion and he was acting out of his own fear, maybe I should just apologize or better still, remain quiet.
    “My wife had a nightmare last night, she refused to share it and I respect her choice. I am not going to force her into anything she doesn’t want to do.
    I just want her to know whatever she is going through, I am here for her.”
    I looked at Henry, he was being sincere but that was just not enough for me, I needed so much more, yet I was so afraid I might end up being an ingrate and then ruin our marriage, I didn’t want that.
    “Madam, is there anything that is making you afraid?” Kate asked.
    I sighed. “Maybe.”
    “Like what?”
    “I don’t know.” I replied.
    The two exchanged glances and Henry held my other hand to his lips.
    “Love, you need time to heal, I will buy you anything you want, take you out of the country if you want, just tell me what you need me to do.”
    “Who is Benita?” I finally asked, looking into his eyes.
    I could have sworn that he flinched but he maintained his position…or maybe it was my thought.
    “Who is Benita?” He asked again and I nodded.
    “I don’t know what you are talking about.” He replied.
    “That day I was bound, I heard the guy mention a name, now, I heard same name yesterday, who is she?”
    The two exchanged glances again.
    “Tee, you were drugged that day, you remember? You cannot trust whatever you think you may have heard or seen.”
    I thought for a while maybe he was right, maybe this was a mistake…God I was losing my mind.
    “But….” I started but stopped. “Okay, I am sorry. I think I need to go lie down.” I replied.
    We later left the therapist that day and after Henry left for work, I sent a message to Felix, he must definitely have something to tell me…

    Episode 5

     “How stupid was I to have let such a beautiful woman like you leave my life?”
    I smiled as I heard Felix’ voice behind me. He must have packed outside the gate because I didn’t hear him drive in and I haven’t heard his footsteps either. I was behind the house, in a pink flowing gown and a hat to prevent the sun while I watered the flowers.
    I sensed him move behind me and I stood up straight to give us some space before facing him.
    He was in his Monday suits, and I was sure he had left the office to come see me. I held the watering can in my hand as I surveyed him with my eyes. The Fendi sunglasses he was wearing made him even more handsome.
    “You like what you see?” He asked but I chuckled.
    “Not bad.” I replied as I continued my work. Flirting with him had always been fun for me. Even though we were no longer together and he was my husband’s best friend, nothing changed. I was the one that got away, when I caught him cheating on me, few months later, I had met Henry, unfortunately, they ended up serving in the same place and that was how they got close until he introduced me and he realized his friend’s fiancĂ©, was his ex. He had travelled out shortly after and then by the time he got back , we were already married.
    “You know you could have waited for us to patch things up.” He continued as I walked towards the entrance of the house while he followed me, I was smiling all the way, like I said, it was fun.
    ***“Is my friend making you happy?”
    He asked when I handed him a cup of wine, I was avoiding his gaze all the while so I just nodded.
    When I turned around, he held my hand and took the wine from me. Then he faced me so we were looking at each other.
    “I know I was a fool to have cheated on you when I did. There is no day that I don’t regret that. The next day, I got my posting letter; I sought for you and didn’t see you. It tore my heart apart when I discovered you both are together.
    Leaving for UK was beyond my control either, you know I had set that plan in motion since our three hundred level days, and now I am back, I know it is too late but I still love you…”
    I wanted to protest but he continued….
    “You don’t need to say anything. I will never ask you to leave him for me. What I want is for you to answer me…. Adetola , are you happy in this marriage?”
    I had no idea why or what had caused it the next thing was that I was crying and he
    was hugging me tightly, comforting me….
    ***“You were raped on the night of your wedding?” He asked again, finding it so hard to believe.
    I nodded.
    We were sitting down now after I have calmed down.
    “Did you tell the polices?”
    I shook my head.
    “Why not?”
    “He said the deed has been done already and he didn’t want me to keep reliving it with polices problem.”
    “Bullshit!” He snapped angrily, standing up and now pacing with arms akimbo.
    “So something this terrible happened to you and he was just sitting down there without doing anything?”
    “He was tied up too.” I replied in Henry’s defense.
    “Oh my God! I wouldn’t have minded getting shot in the process of trying to rescue you Tola, what happened to you was cruel!” He came closer to me and went on his knees, holding my hands and looking into my eyes.
    “My darling, I am sorry beyond words. I wish I was there to do something.”
    I said nothing but just gave a weak smile.
    “Who else knows about this?”
    “Just my therapist.” I replied.
    “You told no one?”
    I nodded.
    He sighed and then continued. “Why did you decide to tell me?”
    Well, I was waiting for that …
    “Because I need your help Felix.”
    “I will do anything for you my love.” He replied. ‘Send me.”
    “Who is Benita and how is she related to Henry?”
    He looked surprised. “The girl we spoke about?”
    I nodded.
    He gave a sharp breath before sitting down beside me.
    “Are you sure that was the name you heard ?”
    I nodded. “Yes and for some reason, I have not asked my husband. I just don’t know why I have this fear of confronting him.”
    Felix thought for a while I waited eagerly.
    “Benita is one of his students as I remember and one of the brightest students in the school, I don’t know more than that. I was in the junior school while he was in the senoir’s.”
    “So, you haven’t seen her before?”
    “Of course I have, very brilliant girl, she got an award before we left the state, just that as I recall now, she wasn’t around to be given the award, someone collected it for her.”
    “What about Henry’s NYSC pictures?”
    “We didn’t come home together, I took a flight, he told me he was robbed and ……”
    I sighed.
    This was not making any sense. Could I be wrong again?
    “Is there no one you could talk to for, I need to know what happened to that girl. I have a feeling that something terrible happened and it can be the reason why what happened to me happened.”
    “Okay, I will try to seek out those we served with then I will get back to you.”
    “Thank you Felix.”
    He was quiet for a while but then said.
    “If only I can get my hands on those fools that did this to you…..” He shook his head bitterly while I smiled .
    “Felix, do everything you can to find me who Benita is.”
    “I will love. I will..
    Who's still up here?

    Episode 6

    Was I wrong to have told Felix the whole thing? Was I wrong to have suspected that my husband has something to do with what happened to me?
    I sighed as I kept having these thoughts in my mind.
    “Baby are you okay?”
    I turned around to face him. His back was turned towards me as he fastened his belt while facing the mirror.
    “Yes love.” I lied. “Where are you off to? It’s Saturday.”
    “Yes, dear, I just got a message from the man that is fixing the supermarket up for us. I want to see how it’s going.”
    I sat up straight. “Wow, you didn’t tell me you have started working on it.”
    “I wanted to use it as a surprise. “He replied with a wink. “But now I have spoilt it.”
    I smiled.
    “I am so lucky to have a man like you.”
    “Well, you have to be.” He teased. “Now get dressed, we are meeting Felix and his babe at the lounge later.”
    I was surprised. “Felix has a babe?”
    He scoffed as he turned around, his tie was already fixed. “What kind of question is that? Of course he does, I am just happy that he is finally getting over his ex?”
    That got my attention.
    ‘What ex?”
    “Well…” He started, coming closer to me and holding me by the waist.
    “When we met at the camp, he used to tell me about his ex, said he cheated on her and he was so heartbroken for a while. Come to think of it, he never got to show me her picture…”
    I could sense some unwanted feeling building up in my belly. I knew the lady in the picture was me.
    “So, he is with a babe now and we need to be as nice as possible.”
    “Okay.” I replied without betraying my emotions. “let me go take my bathe.” I kissed him before leaving the bed. Then grabbing my bathing robe from the wardrobe, I headed for the bathroom.
    As I sat in the bathing tub I could hear Henry’s loud voice.
    “Do you want some toast bread?”
    “Yes love, thank you.” I replied before turning on the shower.
    Okay, this is getting complicated or maybe it is just my imagination.
    I sighed as the cold water hit my face and down my naked body and I shivered. Memories of few years back was coming back to me.
    Felix and I just got engaged. I was already through with my National Youth service corps but he was just going, so he decided to engage me before leaving. We had been in a relationship for two years, so to me, it was appropriate.
    The plan was for him to travel out of the country immediately after NYSC , get a job, then come back for me so we can get married there.
    A week before he left for service, I had found the pack of condoms in his back pack, I was curious but I never asked him.
    We were not having sex because I was not ready. My mother had made me promise her that.
    I never knew my father as I was single handedly brought up by my mother.
    My father had impregnated her and ran off with some other woman. I knew the pain she had gone through while raising me and she never knew any man apart from my father.
    She made me go to Sunday school and I attended church services so well, it was as if I was programmed to reject sex before marriage. Even though I wanted to have it so many times, I mean there was condom and several other preventive measures. But each time, my mother’s last words before she died always haunted me.
    “Tolani, do not make the same mistake I did. Let the right man come for you my love.
    He is bound to wait because you are a PETAL of a flower, you will attract lots of men, but only the right one will wait for you.”
    I never asked him about the condoms, instead I started doing my own detective work and a day before he left for Kano, I caught him in bed with another girl and that was how we broke up. It was evidently clear what he would be doing when he is far, he has already started doing it when he was still close. I threw the ring at him, went to his phone, deleted all our photos and then changed my number afterwards.
    He sent me several messages on my social media but I had already blocked him everywhere.
    I had met Henry shortly later whenhe came to Lagos from Ibadan to visit his grandma who stayed in my neighborhood.
    He was also waiting for his posting letter The entire time he spent with her brought us closer and the relationship started sooner and to my surprise, he was posted to Kano but I never told him anything about Felix.
    I remember the day he had asked me to speak with his best friend on the phone….when I heard the name and the voice, I knew it was Felix.
    Perhaps he knew too, but we spoke as if we never knew each other…..
    “Baby, hurry up, you are taking too much time!”
    Henry’s voice snapped me out of my thoughts then I remembered I have not even used soap or a sponge.
    “A minute please….” I shouted back, grabbing the towel, I could use the soap later in the night. I shouldn’t keep my husband waiting..

    Episode 7

    # Meeting_The_New_Girl
    “So, hope my friend has been taking good care of you?”
    I watched the lady nod with a smile as Henry threw the question.
    We had gone to meet Felxi at a restaurant and the girl was not what I expected, she was really pretty, thin and exceptionally fair. She looked like all those super models and her hair was almost reaching her butt and occasionally, she would rub her hand over Felix’s chest.
    “So how long have you two been married.” The lady , whose name I forgot , asked.
    “Three months now.” Henry said proudly, kissing me on the cheek.
    “Was Felix at your wedding?”
    “No babe. I wasn’t, I travelled shortly before their introduction and got back two weeks after the marriage.” Felix replied, lifting a cup to his lips.
    “That was too bad baby. You could have tried to make it on time.”
    “Don’t mind him Lucy, he is so useless.” Henry replied, but Felix only laughed.
    “I tried to come I just couldn’t” Felix replied, throwing me a ‘you-should-know-why’ but I looked away instantly.
    I really hoped this guy would not mess things up for me .
    “You are such a beautiful couple, and still so young.” The girl, urm, Lucy, said before standing up. “You will have to excuse me, I need to go to the bathroom.”
    Felix pulled back her seat while she kissed him on the cheek, then she walked to one of the waiters who pointed a direction to her.
    “So, is she our Mrs Right?” Henry asked teasingly.
    “God forbids bad thing. She is more of mrs left. Henry, how can you ask such a dumb question?” Felix said disappointedly but my husband only laughed, squeezing my hand.
    “Where did you meet?” asked Henry.
    “In a plan I boarded to Accra last week.” Felix replied.
    Henry wanted to speak but his phone rang, he brought the phone out and stood up. “Excuse me guys, it is one of my investors.”
    “Okay love.” I finally spoke and watched him leave, holding the phone to his cheek.
    Thank God! Finally!
    “How are you doing Tola?” Felix asked, attempting to hold my hand which was on the table but I took my hand away.
    “Get a grip. Your girlfriend will be here any minute and so will my husband.” I said firmly. “So about Benita….”
    “Oh yea..I’m sorry, I couldn’t get anything from anyone, I lost many people’s contact when I travelled and the few I have don’t really remember. They keep asking me to ask Henry since, he was the teacher of her class then. So , Tola, you need to ask him.”
    My heart sank. “I cannot ask him felix!”
    “Why not?”
    “Because I am sure he will deny it and not only that, he will know I am suspecting him and that will destroy my marriage. He has been nothing but nice and supportive to me!”
    “But what if that is part of the cover-up?”Felix snapped at him.
    I sighed , arms akimbo.
    “I am so confused Felix. How do I even ask him?”
    Felix smiled and leaned forward. “ You always look so beautiful when worried.”
    I scoffed but said nothing. He used to tell me that while we were together and now, it was like ….wait….. am I missing all the time I spent with him?
    “You should have waited for us to patch things up. Maybe all these nonsense would not have happened to you!” He said, giving me that look…
    “You should not have cheated on me!”
    “You know you never gave me the chance to apologise or to even explain myself.”
    “Does it matter now?”
    “Yes, it does, though it is just about 2 years but it still does. You blocked me everywhere, I couldn’t find you because of NYSC and the only time I thought of coming back to lagos to find you and then go back to Kano, I found out my friend was dating you! How could you have left and forgotten me so quickly. We were so good together. I never disturbed you about sex, I was willing to wait. I waited….”
    “Then you cheated…” I snapped again, my emotions were building and my voice was quavering.
    He was looking frustrated already. “Yes, I did, I am not perfect. I swear I didn’t mean to but it wasn’t easy babe! That was the one time and you could have just forgiven me and we could have moved on.
    We were so close and so in love…and you just threw that up within two months!”
    “No! You threw that up when you cheated not me!” I snapped back, lowering my voice, my heart was beating so fast and all the emotions I had been buried all the while started finding their way back…”Maybe if you haven’t cheated, I would never have met Henry and all these might not have ….
    “So sorry I’m late babe.” Henry’s voice sounded behind me as he kissed me on the neck before sitting down. I faked a smile and turned my head to the other side so he would not see the tear in my left eye. I desperately hoped he didn’t hear me.
    “Hey…what did I miss…?” Lucy said as she approached the table but then stopped as she sighted me. “Oh my God! What happened? Your eyes look….”
    “A fly entered my eye so , I’m trying to remove it.” I lied, cleaning my eyes with my handky.
    “Okay, Sorry.” She took a seat. ‘Did you miss me love?” She asked Felix who nodded with a smile and then they embraced while I averted my gaze…..
    ***now I need your help. I am so confused right now I do not know what to do….do you think I should ask my husband who Benita is?

    Episode 8

    It was a beautiful and I kept glancing through my phone to the coolvall site and the more comments I got to ask my husband, the more panicked I got.
    I thought of how best to start without pissing him off and without being suspicious but I got none until an idea came to my mind while we were having our breakfast the next morning.
    “Babe, are you okay. You seem a little quiet.” He said to me, I could see the look of concern all over his face.
    I sighed and replied. “Nothing, love.”
    “”Come on, we both know that’s a lie and you have’nt even eaten anything out of your food.” He stated. “My love, your happiness is my happiness, I live to make you happy, so tell me what the problem is.”
    I gave another exasperated sighed and abandoned my food, leaning back against the seat.
    ‘Henry, something has been bothering me and I do not know how best to approach this.”
    He stopped eating, giving me his full attention. “Talk to me.”
    I sighed again for the third time. “A memory came to me, a name rather, part of that terrible night.I don’t know how best to approach this matter…”
    “A memory…? A name? what name?”
    ‘First, please, that night, when they were talking to you, while I was unconscious, what were you discussing?”
    He was a little bit taken aback and he stared at me for a while. Then he spread his arms. “I was just begging them not to hurt you, that was all.”
    I studied his face and whatever emotions he was trying to hide was hidden so well so I decided to turn it up one notch.
    “I heard the name …..Benita.”
    I waited for his reaction but got none, then continued. “…so I thought you may enlighten me on who she is.”
    “Who is she?” He asked.
    “I don’t know, the guy mentioned it that night.”
    He sighed and took my hand. “Baby, please let this go. There was no name that was mentioned that night, you were drugged, you cannot trust what you may think you heard.”
    Okay..let’s play a game….
    “So, what about the girl during your NYSC?”
    At this he flinched but slightly. “I can’t believe you are trying to make a mountain out of a mole hill. How does my NYSC relate with what happened to us?”
    “Do you know anyone by the name please?”
    “Yea…yea…I know a couple of people, people who do not matter, for instance, the girl was my student during NYSC. Nothing more!”
    “Baby, you do not need to raise your voice.” I tried to sound as calmly as I could but it was not helping. He was now standing up.
    “What are you doing? Trying to accuseme for what happened to you? Do you think I have something to do with this. How delusional are you? How dare you think of something like that! I have been nothing but nice and understanding with you! Do you know what I’m going through!”
    “I am sorry Henry, I just…”
    “Being celibate for years, because of you! Do you think it has been easy for me and what did you repay me with, suspecting me for your rape. I cannot believe this! infact….” He left his seat and walked to the table, then he picked his car key and left me sitting, some seconds later, he was driving out of the compound.
    God! What have I done?
    ***It was already some minutes past 10 pm, my husband was yet to come home and his line was switched off still. I didn’t know what to do so I decided to call Felix.
    He picked the call on the first ring.
    “Hey babe.”
    “Yes love. How are you? Have you asked him?”
    “Yes and he w
    alked out on me, he hasn’t come home since then and his line is switched off.”
    Felix chuckled. “He is with me.”
    I sighed as I heard that. “Is he okay?”
    “Yes and he has not told me anything. He only said that you too had a misunderstanding.”
    I was surprised. He didn’t tell Felix anything….
    “You didn’t ask him what could be the cause?”
    “No babe. I think he is really keen on making the whole incidence a secret. Do not wait up, he is not coming home but he is fine.”
    “Okay, thank you. Goodnight.”
    “Wait….what do you want to do?”
    “Well, I will get some sleep tonight, then I will know what to do.”
    “Okay dear, goodnight love.”
    “Goodnight Felix..,”
    “I love you….”
    I inhaled deeply and said nothing before ending the call.
    Lying down on my bed , I stretched my hand to the nearby stool and took my night book. Then I opened to the middle page and in it was the picture …the NYSC picture….I had kept it that day. I looked at everyone in the picture than I turned it to the back. Somewhere at the bottom was written…
    Muhammed Ali memorial college, Bebeji tarea, Tofa localgovernment Kano state…
    I took my phone and dialed a number , then I put it to my left cheek.
    “Hello, yea, goodevening. It’s tola…..yes, is my passport ready? Okay thank you. Have you come up with the best excuse for my husband? ……..okay perfect…I cannot wait, I will leave for Kano tomorrow. Thank you Kate.”
    In case you are wondering, Kate is my therapist and she is helping me leave for Kano and not only that, she is coming up with a perfect excuse for my husband on why I had to leave to take a vacation in a far away place, alone of course. Once he knows it is for me to get healed sexually, I am sure he would not worry too much.
    I returned the book back to the stool and held the picture in my head….
    “Kano….here I come….”

    Episode 9

    # The_first_discovery
    I yawned and rubbed my eyes as the keke napep I boarded finally stopped.
    “Madam, we don reach Bebeji town.” The Hausa man said to me.
    The journey had taken just 1 hour and another one hour to get to Bebeji by cab before I finally took Keke Napep.
    “ Kai, are you coming down or not madam? Me aI want to go back to my house.”
    I smiled as I gave him some naira notes from my purse. “Keep the change aboki.”
    I climbed down from the keke napep with my bag and began to look around.
    Everywhere was sunny and dusty but crowded as well. We seemed to have gotten to some kind of market. I could see people whose faces were covered on donkeys many ladies who were buying and selling had their bodies covered from head to toe.
    Even with the way they were covered, you could tell they are really beautiful.
    There were some men biker men who non spotting me started calling to me . Some even climbed down from the bikes to come and meet me.
    “Where you dey go madam?”
    One of them asked.
    “Mohammed Alli.” I replied and then followed the one that seemed to know the school.
    While on the bike, my phone started vibrating I had forgotten to switch it off in the plane.
    I took it out only to find 32 missed calls. 10 from my husband, 5 from my therapist and the rest was from Felix. I sighed and then switched off my phone. I needed to digest this beauty of the north and I didn’t want anything to distract me…
    ***“You are welcome to memorial college, Madam Tola, I am Mr Chuks, the school principal. Mrs Kate told me you were coming, I never knew you would come so soon. So how can I help you?”
    The principal was Igbo, even though his intonation was quite flawless. He was cleanly shaven, and looked like a man in his late fifties.
    A lady came in and opened the bottle of pepsi for me while placing a straw inside it carefully with a courtesy before leaving.
    “Thank you ma and thank you sir for welcoming me.
    I am glad you are aware of my coming. My name is Tola as you know and I am from the department of Social sciences of University of Lagos.” I fidgeted with the fake I.D card on my chest so that he could see.
    “How was your jouney ma , I hope you like what you have been seeing so far about Kano?”
    I smiled. “Kano is a beautiful place , I am honored to have been sent for this generous offer all the way from lagos.”
    The man smiled and leaned forward, placing his arms on the table that was littered with opened files.
    “So ,how can we help you ,our LAgosian?”
    I chuckled. “Well sir, just like I said, I am one of the lecuturers of the school and we just started a project that will benefial for all Nigerian students through NYSC corp members that have served or still serving.
    We know that so many people think that the NYSC scheme is just a waste of time, so by rewarding brilliant students through the corpers recommendations, parents, school and students can really benefit from the scheme.”
    “Wow! This is really good. But why start with our school, we have bigger schools with more intelligent students.”
    I smiled at his humility. “Well sir, the reason is because we have recommendations for your school, A high number of corpers recommended this school because of the great work of the principal in the person of you sir and many great impact of some of your teachers too.”
    He leaned back, I could detect a hint of pride on his face.
    “Wow! I am so happy to hear these. So when you said reward, what exactly is it? Money or scholarship?”
    Well….this plan is working so well…
    “Well, it depends sir, for students, we have money and scholarship and for the principal and teachers, we have token for them.”
    We both laughed at this and he stood up. “No problem, as long as we also benefit something. So where do we start from?”
    “Let’s start from the corpers you had two years ago, let’s see those that had great impact on some of your students.”
    “WoW!” Thought you would ask for the one for this year. Let me call my secretary.”
    I waited patiently as he called his secretary who came in with some files, They both went through it and later separated some files from the rest.
    “Madam, these are the files of the corpers we had from the last two years.”
    “Alright, please help me look for Corper Henry Benson’s file, he recommended this school.”
    At this, the principal’s face lightened up. “Wow! Henry , he was one of my best corpers, here is his file.”
    I tried to maintain my emotion as I collected Henry’s file and went through it.
    There were some pictures of him in his white and green Khaki shirt where he was standing alone and then another with Felix, then the same picture I had seen back at home and then another with a girl and a woman, giving the girl an award. The girl was very fair and exceptionally beautiful.
    Her hair was packed in a pony tail and it seemed to be reaching her waist. She couldn’t have been more than sixteen years and she was not in the picture at home.
    “Please, when was this?”
    “Oh, that was last year. When our brightest student was given the state award .”
    I had no idea why my heart was beating so fast…
    “Please what is her name…?”
    “Oh….that is Benita Achinga…” The principal said sadly. “She was our brightest student. She was the best student to win a schorlaship in this school. Benita, the pride of our state.”
    The beating of my heart increased and I tried desperately to calm down. What was wrong with me!
    “So where is she now?”
    “Well, madam, she died last year….!”

    Episode 10

    Well madam…she died last year….!
    My heart sank as I heard the statement.
    No, it couldn’t be !
    I wanted to talk but it was like something was blocking my throat. Suddenly I felt a little dizzy and I had to hold the chair to maintain my balance.
    “Are you okay madam?” Mr chuks asked, reaching out to steady me and I looked down in embarrassment as I let my emotions betray me.
    “I am so sorry sir….” I started, clearing my throat which sounded a bit husky as if they were not mine. “I..I just never expected that such a talented girl could die so suddenly. What happened?”
    The man sighed regrettably, taking out her picture. ‘Well, she was sick or so I heard. That was shortly after the corpers have left though. She was really sick and that was why she wasn’t in this picture. The sickness lasted for a while as her mother had said.”
    “Was she taken to the hospital?”
    Mr chuks shrugged slightly. “I thought she was then we found out she wasn’t. It was really a complicated story.”
    I sighed as I took another file. I didn’t want it to seem as if I was only interested in Henry. Fortunately, I found that the file was Felix’s.
    “Oh, this is Mr Felix. What subject did he teach?”
    “Urm,,,it should be in the file. He and Mr Henry were very good with the students. We have other good students that are alive though so that your journey will not be wasted.”
    Felix had taught Economics while Henry took political science. They were seen together in all of the pictures except that where Henry had taken a picture with Benita, Felix was not there.”
    “Well, she was a brilliant student to have been given an award. Her demise would have created such a great hole in her family.”
    “Well that’s for sure.”
    “Can you give me her address. I really need to go see the family….”
    “Wow! Sure. But you are coming back here right?”
    I nodded. Ofcourse.
    ***The house was a little bungalow, moderately furnished. I climbed down from the bike and paid my fare, then carefully I walked to the front door and just a I rasied my hand to knock…..I stopped.
    Am I really doing this? Am I actually facing my nightmare? Once I knock and the door opens, there is no going back….I said to myself. But I knew I had signed up for this when I had taken a flight to Kano. Just as I wanted to knock again, my phone rang. It was Kate.
    “Hello Kate….”
    She said my husband has given her 24 hours to produce me else she will be arrested for kidnapping. She wanted me to hurry up.
    “Thank You. I will get there soon.”
    Just as I ended the call, Felix’s call came in.
    He was worried sick and wanted to know where I was.
    “Felix. I will be back soon. I am so sorry for getting you so worried. I will let you know once I’m back…”
    He said Henry was worried sick and greatly troubled. He also said he had calmed him down from calling the police. He begged me to call him but I said not yet. I was worried about him the other day, it was his turn now.
    I ended the call without disclosing my location. Just as I raised my hand again to knock …the door opened without me touching it.
    “ Waye kai?”
    A female voice shouted at me from within.
    “ Waye a wurin?”
    The voice said again. It sounded like an elderly woman’s voice but I couldn’t understand the language.
    “hello, good afternoon ma.”
    “ Me kake so?”
    I sighed. “Please does anyone in here speak English?” I shouted back .
    “Yes we do. What do you want?”
    AT the sound of the manly voice that spoke back, a chill crept up my spine and For some second, I felt as if the ground would give way under me…
    I could see a figure approach me and my heart beat faster …when I finally saw his face…I gasped…it was the man that had raped me….the one that had taken my virginity

    Episode 11

    For a while we just starred at each other. I kept looking at those eyes that were unblinking when my virginity was being ripped away from me. Somehow, I knew he could recognize me as his frowns deepened. He stepped a little closer and shut the door behind him.
    “What do you want?” He growled.
    That voice seemed to bring back the nightmare of that night and before I knew it, tears were dropping from eyes. I was trembling and maybe I had hoped for some kind of remorse but the hatred that radiated from him was overwhelming all I could say was….”Why?”
    He scoffed. “Are you here with the police? Are you here for some kind of revenge?”
    I shook my head slowly. “I am here to know why you ruined my life!”
    At that, he raised his brows. “I ruined your life?” He demanded with a deeper growl…”You ruined my family!” He shouted. “I wish I had done more to you!”
    My heart was falling and rising with both anger and curiosity. “I did not deserve it! You are a monster! What did Henry do to you! You spoke with him that night. What did you say to him? How is he related to all this? Why did you have to punish me for it?” I was lowering my voice and sobbing loudly…”Why? ….why did you have to rape me to punish him?” This time I was already sitting on the ground, I wasn’t having enough strength to talk again or cry…
    The elderly woman called form inside and then he shouted back in Hausa language. Then he faced me.
    “You want to know why? Come, I will show you.” He replied, opening the door while I stood up and followed.
    ***The living room contained four chairs and a single T.V . It seemed a little bit furnished and plates seemed to be scattered here and there on the dining table. There was an elderly woman tying a cloth around her, wearing a big dark sunglasses and holding a stick. Beside her was a girl that couldn’t have been more than eighteen years old, she was arranging the table. I recognized her, she was the one celebrating her birthday in the picture. As we came in, they both turned towards our direction.
    The woman asked Musa something and he responded in their language.
    “That is my mother..this is Adijat and that is Benita….” He said, pointing to a picture on the wall. Benita was holding a certificate in her school uniform.
    “You need to sit down for this!” He replied, taking a seat for himself while I did the same.
    “Adijat, com here.” He beckoned to the girl who came instantly.
    “Tell this young lady who you are and how your friend died.” He demanded, looking a bit angry.
    The girl was surprised and stared at me. But shrugged and started.
    “I am Adijatu, Benita’s closest friend. Benita died on June 14…and….”
    “June 14?” I asked and she nodded.
    How ironical, that was the day I got married too.
    “She did not come to school that day and it was strange because we have been planning for the birthday together. So when I go back home that day. I came to check on her and I see everywhere…bloo
    dy…everywhere is in blood. I dey afraid and I run to check mama who is not inside that day, brother Musa to, he no dey. So I come back to Benita’s room and I see her rolling on the floor, blooding coming out of inside her….” She pointed to in between her thighs. She come tell me that…corper…corper did this to her…say corper raped her and gave her drugs to use and the thing is bringing out blood!”
    I gasped as she was explaining, Musa’s eyes were already red and there were some lines on his forehead, he was also biting his lips .
    “But what corper? I am sure there were many corpers….”
    “It was Corper Henry!” She shouted angrily and affirmatively and all my world came crashing down.
    “Did she say Henry’s name?” I asked again, stubbornly.
    “No, but she never tell me about any corper apart from corper Henry. He used to come here very well then, to take her lesson and she liked him a lot, she used to tell me.”
    “Thank you Adijat, you may go.” Musa said and faced me as I battled with my discovery. Somehow, I had known this would happen but for it to finally happen was just making my heart shatter.
    “When my mother heard that her daughter was bleeding to death, she left her shop and was running across the street.
    She didn’t see the truck coming and she got hit. That was how she lost one of her legs and her two sights!”
    I gasped even more and glanced at the woman, she seemed not to understand a word, she was busy talking with Adijat in a hush tone.
    “I had a dream of becoming a doctor.
    Going to Unilag to further my education but now, I have to stay at home to take care of my mother!”
    “I am so sorry…” I began to sob.
    “Your sorry will not bring back my lost sister…or bring back my mother’s sight and leg. I did what I did because he destroyed my family and I wanted to revenge.
    If you want to arrest me, go ahead, I am not sorry.”
    Just then, my phone started ringing, it was Henry but I ignored it.
    “I cannot believe Henry could do something like this!” I said to myself.
    “Benita had a diary that explained everything.
    Yes, she may be throwing herself at him but he should have known better. He was her teacher! Then he raped her and destroyed her, he killed her!” Musa was sobbing now.
    “There are two diaries.” Adija said from across the dining. “I have one with me, the second one is still missing. We don’t know where she kept it.”
    “Do you need the diary?” Musa asked and I nodded, then he signallled to Adija who went inside and then came out with a diary.
    I collected with trembling hands as I scanned through it. I couldn’t read, everything I saw was ‘corper H in every page.
    I dropped it on the table then I burst into tears.
    ***It was time to go back home, I had discovered what I needed to discover but before I boarded a plane back that night. I called Felix and cried.
    “Henry is such a killer Felix. I am coming back home to divorce him.
    I am so sorry I left you, will you take me back….?”
    He was confused but was also happy with my decision. He just wanted me to come home.
    I decided to sleep in his house that night once I landed, Then I would finally confront Henry with the truth.

    Episode 12

    I met Henry sleeping on the settee in the living room, I had used my own key to get in so I didn’t have to wake him.
    He looked exhausted and there were two empty bottles of Vodka on the table. The house smelt like someone had poured alcohol everywhere.
    I placed my bag quietly on the table and began to observe him.
    Maybe I never loved this man after all, maybe I had actually been too hasty in jumping into a relationship with him but I had actually loved him…at some point or maybe so I thought.
    The blanket covering him had dropped to the floor and there were some pictures littered all around the cushion in which he was sleeping.
    I could see Benita’s face in one of them and others were Henrys pictures with Felix;s while they were still serving.
    I sighed, I had no interest in stressing myself any further, he had lied and it was too late for any redemption.
    My phone vibrated, it was a message from Kate. She told me not to make any drastic decision yet…I ignored her, it was my life and she had actually tried for me but she could mind her business now.
    Just then, Henry stirred and his eyes opened slowly but on sighting me, he became wide awake and stood up immediately.
    “My love where have you been? I have searched everywhere for you!”
    I said nothing but was just looking at him.
    How could I have married such a monster? How was I so deceived and blinded by stupid emotions!
    “I am here now…Henry.” I replied, emotionlessly.
    Perhaps, he could feel the hatred that was radiating from me towards him, because he immediately went on his knees.
    “Baby, I meant it when I said I love you …I can never trade you for anything…I got so scared I kept secret from you. I did it because I didn’t want to lose you!”
    I smiled. “That is a lame excuse Henry.
    I do not need your apologies anymore, I know the truth. I went to Kano to find out things by myself and I know what you did!” This time, my voice was quavering.
    “How could you do that Henry? You did this to me…to us! You thought all the nice things you were doing would actually entice me and distract me from suspecting you? How stupid do you think I am? ”
    He clasped both hands together as he knelt.
    “Baby…I know.. I am sorry. I did this to protect us so you won’t think I am a monster…”
    ‘But you are Henry! You are a monster! I should never have agreed to marry you! I should have waited and forgiven Felix!”
    AT this he frowned. “What are you talking about?”
    “Yes Henry. You are not the only one keeping a secret. Gosh! This is so messed up!” I began to recount what had happened between Felix and I before I met him but I left out what happened last night.
    I could see the hurt and disappointment building inside of him but I could care less. We had both deceived each other. It was better we go our different ways.
    “You and Felix were in love before we met? Neither of your cared to tell me?” He said slowly and weakly.
    “You have no right to be angry right now Henry. You did me a favor by keeping such a secret from me so I could be with the right person.
    You are a somwthing elseHenry! How could you keep quiet? How were you able to live?”
    “Keep quiet!” He shouted at me, now standing up.
    “You and Felix? Baby, I would never have loved you lesser if you had told me. It would not change the way I feel about you. I love you so much.”
    “Well, you lost me ever since you started hiding the truth from me. I was raped because of youHenry! Did you actually belive I would never find out! You didn’t even think that oneday you will also have a daughter? Do you know the problem the family faces now because of you!”
    He was more sober now as he bit his lips in deep regret, he was also sweating but my phone rang and I ignored. It must be Felix and I had no intention of picking.
    “So, what do you want to do now?” He finally asked. “Can you forgive me so I can also forgive you? I belive our love is strong and we can overcome this trial.
    I scoffed. ‘Never Henry! Not on your life! I slept with Felix last night so that we will never have the chance to come back together!”
    At first, he stared at me without blinking….then he looked away as if he was trying to analyse what I just said.
    “You slept with Felix?”
    “Yes Henry. You raped a girl and I slept with your friend, You killed that poor girl and you rendered the family powerless!”
    He looked lost and attempted to sit down.
    Then he held his head in his two hands as he looked down.
    “I didn’t kill anyone…” He was muttering to himself and my phone rang again but I still ignored.
    “You killed the girl after you gave her the drugs henry. Stop lying!”
    He looked up and sat akimbo, still looking confused.
    “I am going inside to pack my stuff Henry! We are so done! I will never be with you , you this cold murderer!”
    “Listen to me!” He started, standing up.
    “I never killed anyone! I do not know what you are talking about or what lies you were fed but I killed no one!”
    “So how did Benita die? Who raped her? Were you not the so called corper H?”
    “She..she wanted me to sleep with her but I didn’t. I saw her as a small girl, like my sister. I wanted her to have the best of education. She wanted me to sleep with her but I couldn’t because I love you so much.”
    “You are such a lously lier! So why did you tell me you never knew her?”
    “I know that was my mistake.
    I said that because…because I was the last person to see her before she died. She called me when she was in pain and I went to her house. She was covered in blood but I was helpless, I knew if she dies, I would be arrested.
    I could see that she took some drugs which affected her womb, I panicked. I couldn’t even …..I couldn’t call for help.
    That night of your rape…I denied knowing her because I was afraid.
    I didn’t know how her brother found me or why he thought I raped her because nobody saw me that day. I quickly went back to school and travelled back the next day.
    You were raped because of her and I didn’t want you to suspect me.” He was shedding tears now as he spoke but I was unmoved.
    “I thought you were a good man Henry…even with all these! You are still lying!”
    My phone rang and I finally picked.
    ‘What? Who is this?”
    “It is Musa.”
    “Oh! “ I said, I have forgotten I left my number with him in case the second diary comes up. So I put the phone to loud speaker. “You should listen to this Henry, so that you will finally realize that your secret is out.
    “We finally got the second diary and we realize there has been some mistake…”
    “You don’t need to be scared Musa, please say it, Henry is here, let him know what he did.”
    “It wasn’t he who raped Benita…it was one Mr …felix.
    We found the diary …Henry was only her crush….he didn’t rape or kill her…Felix did everything. I am so sorry…”
    The phone dropped from my hand and clattered on the floor as I heard the news.
    My legs were trembling and my heart was beating rapidly…I couldn’t say a single word as I stared at Henry whose face was now covered in his hand…
    Just then Felix opened the door

    Episode 13 (Final)

    For a minute, nobody spoke. I remembered I had told Felix to come and meet me once he hears no feedback from me incase Henry tries to do something stupid.
    Henry smiled painfully and sat on the settee looking at the both of us…
    “You…you have ruined me!” I managed to say as I was too weak o say anything else. I just went down on my knees. My heart was breaking so fast and so heavily as I realized the gravity of what I just did.
    “You raped Benita…you lied to me…you…you took advantage of me….”
    Felix was quiet.
    He also wasn’t looking sober though he seemed surprised.
    “Babe, you should not have gone to Kano! You should have told me first!”
    I couldn’t believe my ears , I just wished I could die that moment as I looked at Henry who was only looking at us quietly.
    “Henry…” I started, crying profusely. “I am so sorry….”
    Henry smiled. “ I loved you.
    I took care of you. You just..just threw it all away as you allowed yourself to be misguided by your own fair and past affair…” He was talking as if he had no strength left. I walked closer and held his hand.
    “I am sorry, please forgive me…he deceived me! Please Henry …”
    He yanked his hand away. “Forgive? There is no forgiveness in this! You made it quite clear when you jumped into bed with Felix and you sealed your own fate. Both of you are dead to me…you deserve each other…”
    He stood up, placing his hands on his doom. “You cheated” He was crying and shouting.
    “I loved you but you cheated on me! You didn’t trust me”
    “Henry please. I know I messed up but please it wasn’t my fault…please…”
    “You ruined us! I was willing to wait for you!
    The next thing you did was to jump into bed with that b-----d! You have ruined us! I loved you! I did everything for you! I never bothered you with sex! You ruined us!” He was shaking and crying profusely now…
    Even though I pleaded and pleaded, it was of no use. Out of shame and guilt, I left and reported the rape and murder to the police. Felix was arrested and taken to jail.
    Musa was nowhere to be found after he had successfully ruined me…but did he actually ruin me or I ruined myself?
    Here I am two years later telling my own story.
    I am still here picking back the pieces of what is left of my life. Last week I learnt that Henry got married in Georgia and his wife gave birth to twins. He had left shortly after the whole saga between us…
    I am not telling this story so you can laugh at me or you can judge me, I know I am at fault and I know I made a terrible mistake but I am saying all these so that you can learn from my mistake of jumping into conclusion without full investigation, my mistake of not trusting my husband who loved me unconditionally, the mistake of allowing my past to mess with my present and ruining my future.
    I have had my own share of fate and I do hope my life will return to normal after this….pray for me

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