Story: The Unfaithful Wife

    Episode 1

    I stared fixedly at Prof.
    Solomon Laryea, my wife’s lawyer. Perhaps, I did not hear him well, I assured myself. I felt my lawyer’s hand on my arm obviously trying to restrain me from over reacting. “Excuse me, sir. What did you just say?” I asked, still confident that I really did not hear the astute lawyer well when he made the fatal comment. He was a short and stout man with a rich amount of white beard. He must be above 60 years. That he was a brilliant lawyer goes without saying. He was well respected by his peers. It is well known that he had taught some of the judges who were currently on the bench at the Supreme Court. Prof. Laryea sat back in his chair, caresing his white beard as he stared back at me. Then he leaned forward slowly, with his hands on his oak- paneled desk and then spoke. “I understand how you feel, Mr. Ofori- Mensah. But what I said is the truth. My client is ready for a DNA test at any health facility of your choice to prove her claim” he said.
    My wife sat by him with an expressionless face. Even then, her beauty was not in doubt.
    She had a nose that will make many a beauty contestant envy her. Her big romantic eyes stared at the lawyer as he spoke.
    She was ignoring me for obvious reason.
    Seated behind her was her brother, Nana Kweku. He wore an expressionless look on his face. No one, looking at my wife even as she sat across the table from me, would imagine that she would cheat on me. First of all, she had the innocent look of an angel. If she were to be taking part in a movie about the life of Jesus Christ, Mary, the mother of Jesus, would have been the best role to cast her in.
    She really looked as innocent as Mary. Her beauty makes screen goddess, Marilyn Monroe, look ordinary.
    Secondly, that she cheated on me in spite of all that I had done for her will surprise many.I never starved her sexually. We made love at least three times a week. And, when it came to material things, I had made her the envy of her friends. Yet, she went ahead to cheat on me with no other person than my b—m friend, Edwin. I had caught her in the act myself. “Excuse me sir, I did not get what you said.
    Can you please repeat yourself once more” I asked, though his assertion that my wife was ready for a DNA meant I had heard exactly what he said. “Mr. Ofori-Mensah, my client here, your wife, says Peter and Pamela are not your biological children. As you know, only a mother can tell the real father of her child or children. Your wife says the biological father of the two children is another man he would name at the right time” Prof. Laryea repeated. The lawyer’s comments were like a hammer hammering at my heart. I began to tremble all over. I could feel my blood boiling inside me and my heart threatening to burst out of my chest. “How dare you tell me this nonsense!? How dare you tell me that Peter and Pamela are not my children!?” I said through clenched teeth, my anger boiling.
    Suddenly, I banged my fist with such ferocity on the desk that a flower vase on it tumbled and fell.
    So did a pen and some books. My wife got up and backed away in fright. I guess she had never seen me in that mood before.
    She had never seen me this angry. Her brother stepped protectively in front of her.
    “Calm down, Mr. Ofori-Mensah” Prof.
    Solomon Laryea said, getting up and taking a step back to ensure I will not reach him if I lash out at him.My lawyer held me to restrain me but I knew no stopping. “You are a stupid man to call me here to tell me this crap! If you try such nonsense with me, you’ll regret it. If you try this nonsense with me, I’ll kill you! You hear me!” I screamed as I swiftly leaned across the table and grabbed the front of his suit, shaking him violently even before he realized I was going to grab him. . I tightened my grip on him.My lawyer grabbed me from behind, trying to yank me away from his learned friend. But, my grip on Prof. Laryea was so tight that my lawyer’s effort was in vain. “Stop! You are killing me!” Prof. Laryea managed to scream out. I was so much red hot with anger that it did not dawn on me I was choking him. “Paul! Stop it! You’ll kill the man!” I heard my lawyer scream. It was only then that I realized I was on the verge of committing murder. I quickly let go off the lawyer who immediately sunk to his knees, clutching at his neck and coughing. I turned my attention towards to my wife.
    She was visibly shaken by my anger; she obviously had never seen me in that state of anger in all the twelve years we had been married. I took a step towards her and asked what she meant in claiming my two children, Peter and Pamela, were not my biological children. His brother, Nana Kweku, immediately stepped in front of me, blocking my path to his sister, my wife. Before he knew what was happening, I had taken hold of him by his shirt and hurled him across the room. He landed on the ground. I turned my attention to my wife only to realize she was not there. I caught sight of her escaping through the door.
    She had kicked off her shoes to ensure she could run as fast as she could.
    I immediately dashed to the door. When I got there, she had reached the bottom of the stairs, about to step out of the building. I went down the stairs three at a time, got to the bottom, opened the door and rushed out only to collide with the security man on duty. “ Hey! What is wrong with you?” he asked, grabbing me. I hit his hands away and ran pass him before he could stop me. My wife was already getting into her car. I recognized immediately it was too late to get her so I dashed to my car parked nearby. By the time I got in, she was far away. Nevertheless, I went after her. My car surged forward as I stepped on the accelerator, speeding down the road. I was on time to see her about a hundred metres away, turning left at a junction. I stepped harder on the accelerator. The next five minutes saw my wife and me in a car chase, with me in hot pursuit. We both jumped traffic lights and sped over zebra crossings. I barely avoided knocking down two market women at a zebra crossing. I saw them in my rearview mirror, screaming obscenities after me as I sped away. Far ahead, I saw my wife also miss colliding with another vehicle. Finally, she headed for the central market square. By this time, I was only about forty metres behind her. My thoughts were all filled with the beating I would subject her to when I finally catch up with her. I had never touched her. I had never even contemplated or attempted beating her because I loved her so much. Further, I distasted people who beat women. However, on this day, I was ready to do my worse to her for telling me I was not the biological father of my children.
    She brought her car to a screeching halt at the car park in front of the market, got out and flee into the market as I brought my car to a screeching halt beside hers. But I knew having dashed into the market, there was no way I could get her again. Firstly, it would be tantamount to looking for a needle in a hay stack with the kind of crowd that was in the market.
    Secondly, there was no way the crowd would look on unconcerned while I beat her up. They may end up beating me.

    Episode 2

    After about ten minutes, I managed to calm myself down. All around me, activities were going on. It was a typical market scene. Taking deep breaths, I drove away knowing very well my wife was hiding somewhere in the crowd, watching me. I drove back to Prof. Laryea’s chamber and found him and my lawyer standing in front of his building. Both lawyers looked worried. There was no sign of Nana Kweku. I guess he had come after me and his sister but lost us. “Paul, calm down! You have to calm down. What you did was reckless! Where is your wife?” my lawyer asked me, coming towards me. Prof. Laryea did not follow him but he too waited eagerly for my answer. Calmly, I told my lawyer my wife escaped. I saw Prof. Laryea sigh in relief. “Paul, you cannot take the law into your own hands. You could have gotten one of you or both of you killed or you may have killed somebody as you went chasing her. I understand your anger but you have to calm down. I am here to represent your interest and I can assure you that no one will take your children away from you” my lawyer said. I saw Prof. Laryea take out his cell phone and place a call to somebody. I guessed he was calling my estranged wife to find out if she was truly fine. While he was talking to my her, my lawyer took me aside and told me he had just managed to talk Prof. Laryea out of suing me for assault. I told my lawyer I would not be bothered. “Paul, you don’t get it. Why get yourself jailed? Do you think you would have access to your children once you have been jailed? Think well, man. Your wife’s claims will be put to scientific test and we shall all know the truth” my lawyer said. “What do you mean we shall all know the truth?” I asked him angrily. “I don’t need to undergo a test to prove that Peter and Pamela are my children. Or, is it that you too believe that my wife is telling the truth; that my children are not my biological children?” I asked angrily. “I am not saying your wife is telling the truth” my lawyer replied. “She is taking the matter to court. The court will order a DNA test. This will prove she is lying or not.” Of course, I knew about DNA tests. But I did not know what it had to do with me and my children. I told my lawyer I was not going to submit myself to any test to satisfy myself my children are my biological children. We left Prof. Laryea’s chamber a few minutes later. I returned home in a fit of anger and placed several calls to my wife but she would not answer. I sent text messages but she still would not reply.
    Since she moved out of her matrimonial home, I had been able to locate where she was living with our children. I could not believe that my wife will so cheat on me. Images of she and my best friend making love on our matrimonial bed as I walked into the room came to mind once again. “Unbelievable” I heard myself say after the umpteenth call to my wife went unanswered. I took off my dress, showered and then went to sit in my study to reflect on what had had happened so far. Thoughts of the Sunday I caught my wife cheating on me came to mind once again.
    She and our two children, Peter, aged 9 and Pamela, 5, had seen me off at the airport that evening. I was heading for the United States of America to attend a conference. At the airport, we spent time at the Landing Restaurant, eating and chatting. Then at 7:00pm, I kissed her and our two children good bye and then started going through the departure formalities. There was no need for them to wait to see my flight leave because unlike the days of yore, they would no longer see me once I enter the depature hall. Neither would they be in a position to see my plane take off. At about 7:45, I was through. At 9:00pm, I received a call from my wife to say she and the children had arrived home. As I sat among other passengers that evening, waiting to board our flight, I exchange romantic text messages as I always did with my wife. Finally, I bade her bye as we began to board the plane. I told her I would call her once I arrived in the U.S. We never took off because of bad weather. After about forty-five minutes, we were told the weather was so very bad that it would be dangerous for our plane to undertake the journey. As result, our pilot had been advised to abandon the trip. We were told we would leave the following evening. The airline had booked a hotel for all the passengers so they could spend the night there. But I chose to go back home and return the following day. I did not call my wife to tell her the trip could not come on because I reasoned she would be asleep by then, believing that I was airborne.
    So, I got a taxi to take me home. It was raining when I arrived home to find that the gate man was not on duty. That was strange. I paid the taxi driver off and carried my suitcase through the rain to the living room door. With my key, I opened the door gently and entered the living room. All seemed to be quiet; I guessed my wife and children were asleep. Not wanting to wake them up, I tip-toed to my bedroom door and gently turned the knob. The door opened. I stepped into my bedroom only to find my wife and my closest friend in my bed, making love. . My heart must have stopped beating. I starred in horror and disbelief at the two naked people on my bed.
    So much deep were they in the throes of lovemaking that they were not aware of my presence. All kinds of thoughts run through my mind in those few seconds as I stared at them. I am sure if I had a gun in my hand, I would have fired and kill them without blinking an eye. I also felt the urge to run to the bed, grab Edwin and beat the life out of him. However, somehow, I restrained myself. Recognizing that this was the end of my marriage as far as I was concerned, I quietly reached into my pocket for my phone, got the video working and then started recording what was going on. For almost twenty seconds, I filmed my wife and my best friend making love on my bed in my bedroom. The most heart wrenching of what was going on is the groans of pleasure coming from my wife and the sort of things she was saying.
    She was the one who saw me first.
    She screamed and pushed my friend away from her the moment she did. Then with her eyes wide open in fear, she pulled the bed-sheet to cover her nudity. It was then that Edwin too saw me. “Oh my God! Oh my God!” he kept on repeating as he stared at me. I was still recording them. I heard my wife plead with me to stop it. I ignored her. In fact, her voice was very provoking but I simply ignored her. “Paul, please, forgive me” Edwin started saying as he made towards where his clothes were. I moved quickly to the clothes and got them before he got to there. Looking back, I can only be thankful that I didn’t own a gun. Definitely, I would have killed the two if I had. My wife was at this time crying. I switched the phone back from video and then placed a call to the police. I told them I had an emergency so I needed them within minutes. The officer who picked my call promised they will be at my place in five minutes. Edwin went down on his knees and started begging me to forgive him. I screamed at him to shut up. The venom in my voice when I ordered him to shut up rattled him. He could see that I was in a murderous mood and if he gives me the cause, I could kill him. My wife, on hearing that I had called the police tried to reach for her dress but I got to it and tucked it under my arm pit.
    She burst into fresh tears saying she still loved me and that it was the devil which had made her do what she did. I ignored her.
    Soon, the police arrived. They came to the bedroom door. I let them in. They probably were expecting an armed robbery attack on me or a murder. What they saw was one they were not expecting. “Officer, I returned home to see this man, my b—m friend, having s-x with my wife. As you can see, he is still naked because I will not let him dress up. My wife is also naked. I recorded what they were doing,” I told the Sergeant who led the police team into the room. The police officers pleaded with me to give Edwin back his dress so they can deal with him. Reluctantly, I agreed. Quickly, a shame- faced, he dressed up. My estranged wife, Nora, was also given one of her dresses to dress up.
    She did so while still sitting on the bed with the bed-sheet still covering her. Finally they were done. The police told Edwin he was under arrest and then proceeded to tell him his charge and his rights. I told the police to their surprise, and to Edwin’s surprise and relief, that there was no need to arrest him. “Pardon, sir,” the Sergeant said. “Officer, no need to arrest him, I will not be pressing charges against him. I only wanted you to see everything yourself. Please just take this man from my house,” I said. Edwin began to thank me, compelling me to scream at him to shut up. I told him the sound of his voice was something I did not want to hear again. The Sergeant insisted that Nora too has to leave the house. I saw his point. He was afraid I may do something nasty to her if they allowed her to spend the night under my roof. I said I will be happy if they took her too away. The police thus led a shame-faced but grateful Edwin as well as Nora away. The Sergeant promised to call me later. He did; she said my wife had checked into the Marriot’s Hotel and that she would spend the night there.
    Seriously, I didn’t care where Nora will spend the night. I didn’t care even if she was going to spend the night at Edwin’s place. I no longer had any interest in her

    Episode 3

    I could not sleep that night. Every now and then, I found myself playing the video to watch my estranged wife and my best-friend having s-x. The images were so painful to watch. My heart ached. I wept. Even though I was a teetotaler, for the first time, I felt the desire to take alcohol. I wanted to do anything that will ease the pain I was going through. At about 2:45am, I went to my children’s room to check on them as I always did. They were peacefully asleep, oblivious of what had just happened. I stared at them, sorrow in my heart, aware that with the action I had decided to take, life will no more be the same for them again. Their mother had broken the sanctity of their home. The father and mother they used to see together were going to be together no more. Their father and mother were going to live apart. And, though marriage was not on my mind any longer, I knew that they would one day have either a step-father or a step- mother. I stayed in Peter and Pamela’s room for close to one hour, staring at them and crying. Finally, I left them while they were still asleep. Returning to my room, I took off my clothes and went to have my bath. Then I returned to my bed and lying down, began to reflect on the drama that had happened taken place. And Edwin! Hmmmmmm! He was my best pal. He was not only a friend, he was like a brother, one whom I had so much trust in. Though I was a medical doctor, I also ran a huge business and he was my business partner. While I was into the export of charcoal, shea butter, plantain, pineapple and pepper to European markets, he was into the importation of European goods to Ghana. This was one man I was so close to that some thought we were brothers. I believed, at the time, that I could trust him even with my life. Yet, he was the same person I caught doing it with my wife in my house in my bedroom and on my bed. I sighed. Only God knew how long he had been having the affair with my wife. Edwin was a widower. His wife died when he was only 33, that was two years after their marriage.
    She was then 25.
    Since then, he had remained single, dating once a while but making no real attempt at getting married again. With his wealth, friends made attempts at getting him to marry again but he obviously was not interested. And, he didn’t care either that he didn’t have a child of his own. He and I had together made several trips outside Ghana to transact business.
    Sometimes, I facilitate his imports and on other occasions, he helped me with my exports. On some occasions, I slept over at his house and on others, he spent the night in my house. That was how close we were.
    So, catching him with my wife in the act was a real shocker. That night was the longest night ever in my life. Finally, however, morning came. I was happy to see day break. I was just getting ready to go and prepare the children for school when I had a call; it was my wife. “Kwame, please forgive me. I am on my knees. I don’t know what came over me. Please, in God’s name, forgive me. I will never repeat such a behavior again” she pleaded. I could sense she was in tears. But, there was no way I could forgive her. There was no way she could be my wife again. I told her calmly that the sound of her voice could kill me so I would appreciate it if she does not phone me again. “It is over between us so better start getting used to that fact,” I said. Then I hanged up.
    She called and called again but I ignored her, switching my phone to the silence mode so when she calls, the phone could not ring to my hearing. Then I went to wake the children up. Preparing them for school made me realize the tedious task I had ahead because they both courteously asked me where their mother was. I had to lie to them. I said she had travelled and would soon be back. They believed me. . With my driver, Yao, on leave, I drove them to school myself. On hindsight, that was the fatal mistake I made – with the issue at hand, I should not have allowed them to go to school that day. Having dropped them off at school, I phoned my lawyer, briefed him about what had happened and told him to begin divorce proceedings against my wife. “Paul, you don’t mean you actually caught your wife, Ivy, and your friend, Edwin making love in your house, in your bedroom and on your bed” the shocked lawyer said. I told the lawyer that was exactly what happened. And there was no way I was going to stay married to Nora any longer. Back at work, I had a long queue of patients waiting for me. My day at the hospital usually started at 7:00am; I do the rounds in the wards to review the condition of in-patients. But on this day, I was late. I got to the hospital at 7:45am to find anxious nurses waiting for me. There was an emergency waiting for me to deal with. A woman who had been in labour for two days needed a caesarian done on her and I was required to do that. I went to the theatre, saw the patient and then to everybody’s surprise, left without a word. The nurses and other paramedics chased me to my room, pleading with me not waste time lest mother and baby would die. I sighed and told them I knew it was an emergency but it would be better if another doctor did the surgery. I asked them to return to the woman; another doctor would be there to do the operation. As soon as they left, I placed a call to a colleague, Dr. Ntim and quickly told him about the surgery and pleaded with him to take over from me because I was not in the right frame of mind to operate on anybody. Dr. Ntim was a close friend. I had done surgeries on his behalf on many occasions and he had done same for me.
    So, he didn’t hesitate; he didn’t ask questions either. He knew that if I said I was not in the right frame of mind, then it meant something was wrong. He said he was heading directly to the theatre immediately. After I put my phone down, I placed my head on my table and sobbed. I felt bad not going to do the surgery but I knew I had taken the right decision; with my mind pre-occupied with my wife’s infidelity, I knew I could make an error that will be fatal to mother and child. Two hours on, I was still seated behind my desk thinking about my wife and what I caught her doing when the door opened and Dr. Ntim stepped in. I got up and looked up enquiringly at him. He smiled and sitting down and told me that the surgery had been successful; mother and son were doing well. I got up and hugged him, thanking him for stepping in for me. Then after he sat down, I told him why I was not in the right frame of mind to do the surgery. “Oh my God! Paul, are you sure of what you are telling me?” he asked, stunned. “Kojo, would I lie to you in such a sensitive matter? Would I tell you something so shameful for no cause? If you want to watch her and Edwin, here it is. I captured it on my phone,” I said as I switched the phone to video mode. But, Dr. Kojo Ntim stopped me, saying he wouldn’t want to watch. “It’s good you called me to do this operation for the woman. There is no way you could have been in the right frame of mind to do it,” he said. He sympathized with me and agreed with me that divorce was the way to go. Then he left. He had patients to attend to. I too had patients to attend to

    Episode 4

    I found it difficult to concentrate as I attended to the out-patients. This made my progress very slow. Ordinarily, in a matter of three hours, I could attend to at least fifty patients. However, that day, I managed to attend to only twenty people in three hours. Finally, my session at the hospital came to an end. Dr. Eunice Odame, a Cuban- trained doctor took over.
    She noticed there was something was wrong with me and asked if I was alright. I forced out a smile, nodding. From the hospital, I drove to the children’s school to pick them up only to be told that their mother had come for them. Immediately, I regretted bringing them to school that particular day. I could sense what their mother, my wife, was up to. I had sworn never to have anything to do with her again. Phoning her had therefore been out of the question. But, with her coming to pick the children from school, I had no choice than to phone her. “Yes” she said when she answered my call. “Where are my children? Why did you go for them? Bring them back now!” I said, my voice trembling as I tried to control my anger. “I am sorry you are not going to see them again. They are my children and I know how best to take care of them.
    Since you want me out of your life, I am leaving with them” she said. Her answer made me explode. I began to scream on the phone, swearing I would beat her up mercilessly if I get hold of her. That was when she switched off the phone. I phoned again but found to my chagrin her phone was still off. I tried several times to get in touch with her but could not get through. I started trying to recollect the name of the hotel where the police man told me they had checked her into. After a while, I remembered the name and knowing where it was, I drove there at top speed. I was trembling all over with rage when I arrived at the hotel. Never in my life had I been so angry. I loved my children very much so my wife’s attempt to take them away from me was making me go mad. On my arrival, I went straight to the reception and made enquiries about my wife. A call was placed to her room but no one answered. Then one of the two receptionists decided to go and find out why she was not answering calls to her room. The receptionist returned a few minutes later to say no one was in her room. “She has packed out. Her belongings are not in the room” she said. Immediately, I realized that my wife had calculated I will locate her when I find she has gone for the children so she had relocated.
    She had sneaked out of the hotel, gone for the children and gone into hiding. I left the hotel still trembling with rage. My estranged wife, Nora, had outsmarted me. Now, there was no way I could contact her unless she calls me back. I was more or less at her mercy. I drove back home deep in thought and very troubled. That evening, I tried several times to call her again but to no avail. I swore if I ever catch up with her, I will beat her to pulp. I stayed away deep into the night. Every thirty minutes, I will phone Nora only to be told her phone had been either switched off or was out of coverage area. My patience, by 2:00am, had begun to run out. Finally, at about 4:15am, though I was still worried, I fell asleep. I woke up at exactly 7:15 am to find that my wife’s phone was still off. I skipped breakfast and drove very early to the children’s school. I aimed to hide around and grab Nora when she brings the children to school.
    So, I parked my car far away from the school and walked all the way there. I found myself a tree and hid behind it so that when she comes around, she would not spot me. My waiting turned out to be in vain. Nora did not bring the children to school. I guessed she was not going to bring them.
    So, finally, I left the school and drove back home. I spent the entire day at home, trying to get through to her every now and then but her phone was still off. I had earlier phoned the Administrator of the hospital where I worked and told him I was not feeling well so I was not going to be at work. I did not eat the entire day until evening when I prepared rice for myself and the security man at the gate. I noticed how sad he looked when I approached him with his food on a tray. After collecting the tray from me, he thanked me and said everything will be alright soon. I nodded in appreciation, remembering that on the night I came home to find my wife in bed with my best friend, he was not at post; he had obviously been given the day night off by my wife because she wanted him out of the way. Though I had not briefed him about the scandal, I knew he knew what had happened. I went to bed very early that evening but it was not until 1:00am that I finally fell asleep. I was woken up at 6:15 am by the ringing of my phone. The caller said he was Nora’s lawyer. He was inviting me to his chambers that morning at 9:00 am to discuss certain claims my wife was making. I was to come with my lawyer

    Episode 5

    Thankfully, our case was the first to be called. My lawyer and Nora’s got up to introduced themselves as our respective counsels. Then I was asked to go stand in the dock to the left of the judge while my wife stood in that to his right. We both swore by the bible to speak the truth, the whole truth, nothing but the truth. Then another clerk at the court read out why I had been summoned to the court. When he was done, the judge took over. He went straight to the point and said my estrange wife was claiming that I was not the biological father of our two children; she wanted a DNA test carried out to prove her claim. Then the judged asked if I had any objection. “No, my Lord” I said calmly. The judge nodded before announcing that the DNA test will be done at the Central Government Hospital. He directed that it be carried out within 48 hours after the court’s order. The Registrar at the court was appointed to be the independent observer who will be present at the hospital when our respective DNAs are being taken. Having spelt out what he wanted done, the judge then asked if there was any objection. Both parties said they were okay with the arrangement. With that, the case was adjourned. As soon as we walked out of the court room, my estranged wife, followed by his brother and two other men walked to her vehicle, got in and drove away.
    She had evidently come to the court with bodyguards to prevent me from attacking her. I smiled to myself. I had no intentions of attacking her, especially as we were in court though I knew that not even these tough looking sunglasses-wearing men were capable of coming between me and my children. I got into my car and drove to the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) club house with my lawyer in tow. There, we had a brunch. I took Milo and brown bread with baked beans while he took a bottle of lemonade and chicken. “Nora is very interesting. I am surprised at her. It is as if I have never known her” my lawyer, Carl Lomotey, said. I was not in the mood to talk about my wife. Talking about her only brought back painful memories of seeing her in bed with my friend. All I wanted now was to get my children back. I changed the topic. Carl realized this and understood I did not want to discuss Nora. After the brunch, we parted ways. I headed for the hospital while he headed for his chambers. Back at my work place, I immediately began to attend to patients. I worked hard as though it was going to be my last day at the hospital. Burying myself in my work enabled me to forget the pain of my wife’s infidelity. Finally, when it was almost five O’clock, I saw off the last patient. My work schedule for the day too had come to an end. I was about to leave my consulting room when my phone rung. The number that appeared on my screen was that of my wife. I wondered why she was phoning me. I decided not to pick the call. The ringing continued till it ended. Then after about three seconds, it started ringing again. I still refused to answer the call. However, when it began ringing the fifth time, I picked it; I was going to tell her off, warning her never to call me. But as soon as I answered the call, I heard my son’s voice. “Daddy! Daddy! Is that you?” Peter asked. The sound of his voice brought back nostalgic feelings of the good old days when we were a one big happy family. “Peter! Yes! It’s me! How are you! How is Pamela? Where are you?” I asked, my heart aching and yearning for them. “Pamela is here. Daddy, we miss you. When are you coming for us? We miss you. We want to…”Suddenly, I heard their mother’s voice interrupting. “Peter! Who asked you to use my phone? Who are you calling? Let me see,” I heard her say. “I was talking to Daddy,” I heard my son reply. Then I heard my wife say “that man is not your daddy…” then the line went dead. I could not believe it! My wife was telling my son that I was not his father. Immediately, my entire being was gripped with anger. QuicklyI phoned my wife back. . I was virtually choking on my anger as I listened to the tone of my phone indicating that the call had gone through and her phone was ringing. It rang and ended. Nora would however not answer my call. I tried again and again but she refused to answer it.
    When I tried the fifth time, I found, to my chagrin,that she had switched off the phone. I was sweating. I reminded myself on the need to calm down; I had on many occasions advised others on the need to control their anger. Now, I was the physician who must heal himself. I took in deep breathes and turned to other issues. At about 4:30pm, I closed from work. I realized I had developed a migraine. I chastised myself for getting so worked up; getting my children back was not about being angry. The sound of my son’s voice as I spoke to him earlier on kept coming back to me. I yearned to have him and his sister in my arms. I longed to cuddle them. I longed to have my daughter, sitting on my shoulders, holding on to my head and giggling.I longed to engage in the pillow fight I sometimes had with Peter in the evenings after I had supervised him to do his home-work. As I drove home that evening, tears began to stream out of my eyes and meander their way down my cheeks before dropping on my shirt. My grief was deepened by the fact that coincidentally, the radio station I had tuned in to was playing UB40’s “Tears from my eyes.” I knew the words very much but they had much more meaning to me at that particular time. I sang along with the reggae band. “Tears from eyes keep on falling Because you are leaving, leaving with another Things that we’ve done together I’ll always remember though you are with another” I did not make any attempt to dry my tears though I realized I was not only singing for my children but also because of the way my wife had betrayed me.
    She had been the centre of my life but had killed my spirit by cheating on me.
    Suddenly, I felt the urge to take in something strong. I felt I needed something that will ease the pain I was going through. And, this brought another UB40 song to mind. I lowered the volume of the car’s radio and sung UB40’s ‘Red Wine’. In fact, I virtually screamed the word out as tears continued to trickle down my cheeks. I looked out for a place where I could buy some hard liquor that will kill the pain I was experiencing. Finally, I found a drinking spot. I parked the car, got down and entered. There were people in, all men except two women. I could tell that many of the men were already tipsy or drunk.
    Since I was going to drive home, I resisted the urge to drink there.
    So, I bought a bottle of brandy and returned to my car. My head was still aching as I drove home. Finally, I arrived safely. The gate man opened the gate for me. I drove through the gates, parked and got out with my bottle of brandy. There was light in the kitchen. I checked to find Efe, the house-help there.
    She had taken a week off and was back. I guessed she was unaware of what was going on. I was glad though to see her. “Daddy, welcome,” she said. “Thank you. When did you come?” I asked. “At about 5 o’clock, sir” she replied. I nodded.
    She asked about my wife and the children. It must have been weird for her to come meet an empty house. “They are not around. Let’s talk about them tomorrow,” I said, anxious to get to my room so I could drink myself to stupor. “I have prepared yam with corned beef stew. Can I serve you, sir?” she asked me. I shook my head and lied that I had already eaten. I said I was tired so I was going to have my bath and then go to bed. With that, I left her and headed for the bedroom. As soon as I entered the bedroom, I locked the door, opened the bottle of brandy and holding it to my mouth, gulped down a mouthful. The drink stung my stomach as it hit my system. I grimaced. This was my second time taking an alcoholic drink. I took some deep breath as I felt what I had taken began to have an effect on me. I took another mouthful and grimaced again. The drink was really strong. I found nothing sweet about it and wondered why people take it. Yet, I took a third swing as I sat on the bed.
    Soon, I felt the room spinning. I tried to get up but my legs were not study. I told myself I was drunk. I took the bottle to have another swing but the bottle dropped from my grip. I sighed and slumped on the bed. A few minutes later, I was fast asleep.

    Episode 6

    I slept so deeply that it had to take very loud bangings on the door by the maid the next morning to wake me up. “Sorry sir. It is past nine and you had still not woken up so I came to wake you up. I have been knocking on the door for the past fifteen minutes” she began, apologizing for knocking very hard on my door. “Sorry, Efe. I went to bed so tired. Wow! It is past nine. I am very late for an appointment” I said. From her expression, I could guess I was reeking of alcohol and she was trying very hard to bear the bad odour from my mouth.
    Smiling, I closed the door gently, shutting her out. Then I went to the bathroom. One look at my face in the mirror and I realized how badly I looked. Alcohol certainly does things to a man. I went back to the bedroom and tidied up the place. The bottle of brandy I had brought into the house was lying on the floor with only a little of the content left in it. I could not believe that I had gulped down almost half the bottle. What was I thinking? I could have killed myself. I finished tiding up the place, went to the bathroom, shaved, brushed my teeth and then had my bath. Then I dressed up. Efe was waiting for me when I came out of the bathroom.
    She was standing by the dining table. “Sir, your breakfast is ready” she said. I was about to tell her I was not hungry but then I changed my mind and came to sit at the dining table.
    She served me coffee and biscuit. “Coffee, Efe?” I asked, puzzled.
    She knew I hardly took coffee. “Yes sir. You need it to keep you awake. You still look drowsy, sir. This morning, I realized you have taken alcohol so I thought I should give you something that will keep you awake especially as you will be driving yourself” she said I knew she was right. I smiled at her and said “thanks”. Then I decided to let her know what was happening in the house. I proceeded to ask her to take a sit and listen to what I was going to tell her.
    She complied. While eating, I told her what had happened in her absence. I told her everything, leaving out no details.
    She stared at me in silence as she listened with rapt attention. When I got to where I caught my wife and Edwin doing it on my marital bed, her jaw dropped.
    She stared at me as if I was a lunatic. Nevertheless, I continued with my narrative. Efe was so shocked that she could not utter a word. I understood why she was shocked. No one, in his or her right senses, would have even imagined that Vivian would cheat on me. As I said earlier, Nora was not only the epitome of beauty but a strong Christian woman well respected in the church.
    She was a role model for many young girls in the church where we fellowship. “No! I can’t believe this!” Efe suddenly muttered. Tears began to flow down her cheeks when I started telling her about my wife’s claims that I was not the biological father of my children. “Oh no! Sir! Please stop it!” she cried out as if I was the one claiming I was not the biological father of my children. I paused and allowed her to cry for a while as I continued eating. I had no appetite to eat so I concentrated on the coffee. After a while, I resumed telling her about my estrange wife and her claims, winding up with why I brought home a bottle of brandy. Efe could, at this stage, not control herself any longer. The tears flowed liberally down her cheeks. I did not feel any urge to console her.
    She needed to cry to get the pain out of her system and begin to live with the fact that Nora and I would no more be husband and wife. But to my surprise, she got up from where she was sitting and came to kneel in front of me. “ Sir, I beg you…please….please…I know what madam has….has…has…has done is bad but forgive her…please…You have a beautiful family…it must not collapse… the children, …Peter…Peter and Pamela need both of you.
    Sir! I beg you” she said as she began to plead with me to forgive my estranged wife. Efe’s move shocked me. But she was crying and pleading in vain and I told her so. “ No man will forgive the sin my wife committed against me, Efe. First of all, she opened her legs for another man.
    Secondly, it was no other man than my own best friend. Thirdly, she had the effrontery to bring him to my house to do the abominable. Number five, they chose my bedroom for their illicit sexual session. Number six, it was on my bed that they were having their orgy. And you want me to forgive this? And, to add insult to injury, she is telling me I am not the father of my children! Which man will forgive her woman for that?” I asked her. Efe did not respond to my queries for obvious reasons. I had completed having my breakfast so I took my briefcase and left the house, leaving the maid weeping at the dining table. I drove out of the compound and headed for my lawyer’s chamber to discuss with him issues concerning the DNA test

    Episode 7

    I held a one hour meeting with my lawyer, Carl Lomotey, who assured me that once the DNA test proves that the children are mine, he will ensure I have full custody of them. He was confident that the judge will grant that request. I did not go to the hospital that day. From my lawyer’s chambers, I went to my children’s school with the hope that I will find them there. But their teachers told me they had not been to school for two days. It was obvious my estranged wife was keeping them away permanently. I assured myself that soon, I would have custody of them. I went home early that day. On arrival, I found Efe at the kitchen; she was still crying. I asked her to follow me to the living room where I had a twenty minutes talk with her.
    She listened amidst tears. “Such is life, Efe. But, we can only move on. You will see Peter and Pamela soon. I can assure you of that,” I told her, hoping that would cheer her up. The next day, I was up very early. If my Nora and the children had been home, we would have had the usual early morning devotion. But, alas, they were not at home so I had it alone. Then I prepared and headed for my lawyer’s place. Carl Lomotey was waiting for me. Together, we drove to the Central Government Hospital where the DNA test was going to take place. We arrived there to find that Nora was already there with her brother and the men she had obviously employed as bodyguards. Her lawyer, Prof.
    Solomon Laryea, was also present. I sat down with Carl Lomotey as we all waited for George Oteng, the court Registrar who was going to be the Independent observer, to arrive. Five minutes later, he did. We were then all ushered into a consulting room. The medical doctor who was going to perform the DNA was not somebody I knew. He was called Dr. Clement Adu. When he said all was set and asked of the children, my wife asked his brother to go fetch them. Nana Kweku went out. He came in later with my children. Peter and Pamela. “Daddy!” Pamela screamed on seeing me.
    She wanted to dash to my side but Nora stopped her.. “Pamela! Have you forgotten what I told you?” she sternly asked the little girl. I could see my son, Peter, wanting to come over to me. I felt like grabbing them and cuddling them in my arms. But I restrained myself, assuring myself that sooner than later, they will be back in my arms. “Hello Peter and Pamela. How are you?” I asked them. Cowed by their mother, none of them replied but I could see how much they wanted to. The doctor led the way to the laboratory. We all followed him. Two laboratory assistants were waiting for us. The DNA test began. Ten minutes later, it was all over and we were told to go back to the consulting room. Back there, we all waited. The doctor soon came back with a report sealed in an envelope. He gave it to the Registrar who got all of us to sign on the seal. Then he asked us to come back to the court the following day where the envelope will be opened and the contents known. With that, we all filed out of the place. Once outside, both Peter and Pamela began to cry that they wanted to come to me. However, Nana Kweku and his sister, Nora, will not let them. I looked on with a heavy heart as they were dragged towards the vehicle they had come in. A few minutes later, the car was driven away. I felt broken within.
    Suddenly, I began to wonder whether Nora was the same loving, God-fearing, humble and caring woman I met years ago, fell in love with and married. “It is okay, Mr. Mensah. Let us go,” my lawyer told me. I felt like going back in to see the doctor to ask him what the result was but I decided against it. Of course, the children were mine. The DNA will prove it. I went home, hopeful that the next day, the truth, that I was the father of Peter and Pamela will be established

    Episode 8

    Efe, my maid, was anxiously and faithfully waiting for me when I arrived home.
    She was anxious to know what the result of the DNA test was. “Efe, we shall know tomorrow in court but have no doubts. Peter and Pamela are my biological children and this will be proven by the DNA test. Efe, I could see, was totally disoriented by all that was happening and she had good reasons to feel that way.
    Since she came to live with us, nothing serious had happened to shake the unity and harmony in the party. We were all just one happy young family. Then suddenly, everything seemed to be crumbling like a pack of cards. Despite her plea that evening, I skipped supper, went to have my bath and went straight to bed. But, I was to have a sleepless night. My mind kept on going back to my children when I saw them at the hospital and their attempt to break free from their mother’s hold and come to me. My heart yearned for them. Finally, I managed to fall asleep only to wake up about an hour later hoping it was about 6:00a.m. Realizing it was 3:00 a.m, I sat up in bed, paced the room, walked out of the bedroom, went to the children’s room, went to the living room and finally went outside as I restlessly waited for day to break. Finally, it was 6:00a.m. I went to have my bath and dressed up before 7:45 am. As usual, Efe was ready for me with breakfast when I came out of the room.
    She had prepared tea with sandwich for me. I declined the breakfast and said I had to go. I noticed the sad expression on her face as I headed for my vehicle. It was when I got to the car that I saw John, my driver. He had just finished washing the car. His two weeks leave had come to an end so he had reported for duty. I was glad that I wasn’t going to drive. My driver’s sombre disposition was enough indication that he was aware of the fire raging on in my house. Obviously, Efe had briefed him. As far as I was concerned, that was good as it saves me another task of explaining to my driver what was happening. On our way, I phoned Carl Lomotey to tell him I was heading for the court. He said he was already at the court; my estranged wife was also there with the children. Knowing that my children were in court gave me mixed feelings. On one hand, I reasoned that in at most a couple of hour’s time, they will be in my custody. But I was also pained by the fact that they had to be put through a court session. I wished they were not going to witness a legal tussle between their mother and I. Finally, I arrived at the court. Immediately, I spotted Nora and the children. They were seated on the front bench in the middle row of chairs on the court room. I made no attempt to go to them, repeatedly assuring myself that very soon, my children will be reunited with me. The court room was quiet as all awaited the judge. I sat by my lawyer while Prof.
    Solomon Laryea sat by Nora and the children.
    She looked beautiful as usual. There was innocence and decency written all over her. Indeed, no one can judge a book by the cover. No one, by looking at Nora, would believe that she, a married woman, was capable of having s-x with another man in my bedroom and on our bed.
    She was a holy devil, I told myself as I sat there, occasionally staring at her. My children, Peter and Pamela sat calmly by her, not understanding what had taken place so far and what was about to take place. Again, I longed to have them in my arms; to hold them, cuddle them, kiss them and play with them. Presently, a loud voice announcing that the judge was about to enter the court room boomed, interrupting my thoughts. We all got up in the room. The judge entered. He looked calm and composed. . Gan gan gan!!! Are you guys ready???

    Episode 9

    We all rose to our feet, sitting down only after the judge had taken his seat. All the lawyers in the room bowed lightly to the judge before taking their seats once more. I sat down calmly in-between my lawyer and his partner, K.A. Ofori. None of my relatives or friends were in court with me to give me moral support because only my house-help, Efe, and my driver, knew about the case. I had kept everybody in the dark. My colleague doctors also knew about the case but did not know we were in court litigating over my fatherhood of my children. Two cases were called and dealt with. The first case was a theft case involving an old man who was arrested for stealing food somebody had bought. He pleaded guilty to the charge of stealing. The judge, one could see, felt sorry for the old man. He warned him not to steal again even if he was hungry. Then he discharged him, warning him that the next time he is brought before him, he would deal drastically with him. The second case was an armed robbery case. Three armed robbers, with their police escorts were taken to the dock and then the handcuffs removed from their hands. They had already pleaded guilty to various charges and had been brought to receive their sentences. The judge described them as the scums of life and then jailed each of them 25 years in hard labour. Then my case was called. My estranged wife and I got up. The registrar got up to tell the judge that the DNA test had been conducted. “The envelope I have in my hand contains the result. The envelope was sealed in the presence of the two people here, I mean Dr. Ofori Mensah and Mrs. Nora Ofori Mensah Both of them signed on the seal. Their respective lawyers signed as their witnesses. Now, I will give each of them the envelope to check if the seal had been broken or not” the Registrar said. He gave me the envelope. I checked the seal. Everything showed the seal had not been opened. Nora, my lawyer and then Nora’s lawyer all took turns to check the seal. With all of us satisfied, the judge ordered the envelope to be opened and the contents read to the hearing of everybody. The Registrar complied. He began to open the seal. I was calm, confident that I was going to be vindicated. I looked over at Nora.
    She too looked calm, and in fact confident. The Registrar finished opening the envelope and pulled out a piece of paper in it. The judge asked him to read the content. The court room was dead quiet. The Registrar began to read. The sum totality of what he read simply meant that the DNA test had proven that I was not the biological father of my children. Or, perhaps, I did not hear the Registrar well. I looked over at where my estranged wife sat; beaming with a smile, she was hugging my son.
    She looked victorious and this meant I had heard the Registrar well.
    She turned to hug her brother who was sitting behind her. “What did the DNA result say?” I asked my lawyer, who putting a hand on my shoulder said all was well so I should take it like a man. “Take what like a man? You mean the result showed that Peter and Pamela are not my children?” I asked, the tone of my voice rising. “Please calm down and lower your voice or the judge will be angry with you. The judge is about to speak. Let us listen to him first” my lawyer pleaded with me. I could hear the sound of my heart as it beat violently in its place of abode in my chest. I could see my wife jubilating. The judge began to speak. “…the result is conclusive that Dr. Ofori Mensah is not the biological father of Peter and Pamela. The wish of Madam Nora that Dr. Ofori-Mensah should not come anywhere near the two children must therefore be respected” he said in part

    Episode 10

    At this juncture, I felt like getting up and screaming out to the judge that not even he can take my children away from me. But somehow, I managed to restrain myself. The judge then went on to direct that I should stay away from my children forever for my own good until they are of age and can decide things for themselves. Then he proceeded to advise me to move on with my life saying such misfortunes happen but those who retreat quickly and find new directions in life become successful. “Please take heart. Truth is often painful but it is always good to know the truth. I see you struggling with your emotions and I can understand what you are going through…” Suddenly, something in me snapped. I threw caution to the wind and took on the judge. As I spoke, he stared at me in surprise. “No! You don’t know how I feel! You have just given away my children and you say you understand how I feel! How can you?” I began. My lawyer, shocked at my outburst was pulling at my shirt very hard, signaling me to stop but I continued. “You are sitting there telling me to accept that my children, who have my blood flowing in them are not my children and you say you understand how I feel!” At this juncture, my lawyer, realizing that he could not stop me got up and began to plead with the judge not to hold my outburst against me. His attempt at stopping me from talking began to annoy me. I shifted from addressing the judge to addressing him. “Why are you trying to stop me from talking? In fact, I don’t need your services again as my lawyer. You are fired!” I screamed at him. He tried to make light work of my assertion that I have fired him. Obviously scared that the judge may cite me for contempt, he tried to pull me out of the court room. “Counsel, let him be. I understand his outburst. You let him be,” the judge said. As a result of his directive, my lawyer let off me and sat down. “You think you understand me, huh? You think that I am an unfortunate man who needs the help of a psychiatrist, huh? Well, you are wrong. For your information, I am going to have my children back. Nothing will stop me from having them.” The judge could no longer take my outburst. He ordered the policemen on duty to come take me away from the court room. Three policemen immediately began to encircle me. I ignored them and continued to verbally lash out at the judge. They grabbed me and led me out of the court room. I soon found myself in the car parking lot of the court. The policemen who brought me out tried to calm me down. The magnitude of what my estranged wife had done, and which was not part of the issue before the court was known to some of the officials of the court and this made some of them sympathize with me. “Sir, hmmmmm. Just take heart. This is very painful. Women!!! Women!!! Hmmmm! Trust a woman and you are sentencing yourself to death,” one of the men said in solidarity with me. Presently, I saw my lawyer come out of the court room with his partner. Few seconds later, my wife and then my children also filed out of the court room. My wife, for obvious reasons, looked triumphant. I began to scream at her. “Nora! You can smile now but I bet you, you will soon cry,” I shouted. . In response, she cracked into laughter. Before anyone could tell what was happening, I was sprinting towards her in anger. My lawyer screamed after me. His partner immediately dropped the files he was holding and took off after me. I could see Nora ahead, rushing the children towards her car. By the time I got there, they were already in the car and speeding away. I looked around for a stone to hurl at the car, regardless of the fact that the children I was fighting for were sitting in and could get hurt. That is what anger can do to a person; cloud his sense of judgement. However, the stones around were too big for me to lift. “What are you doing, sir? Do you want to be arrested?” my lawyer’s partner screamed at me when he got to me. But one look at my facial expression and he regretted the tone he used to address me. “I am sorry, sir, for shouting at you. But it is important you remain calm in this matter. The court has ruled. There is nothing anyone can do, save appeal” he said. “Then we are going to appeal” I told him. I could see he was not in agreement with my decision to appeal against the ruling. We walked back in silence to where I had parked my car. Two policemen had come out of the court room to find out what the commotion had all been about. When we got to them, I heard my lawyer telling them everything was alright and that we were leaving the premises. Then without a word, he ordered me to get into my car and drive after him. I complied as the two policemen looked on. I got into my car and drove away after the lawyer. His partner followed me in his car. After a ten minute drive, we arrived at my lawyer’s chamber. We all parked our cars and filed into his office. Then he set about admonishing me about my conduct in court and after. “Contempt is a very serious offence. Many judges would have cited you for contempt of court and sentence you to at least a week in prison the way you behaved in court today. Please, never repeat that again even if it is very clear that the judge was wrong in his ruling. I now have to talk to your wife’s lawyer because I know him very well. He is going to press charges against you. If you do not behave, you would not only lose your children but you will also go to prison” he concluded.
    Sighing, I apologized for what took place at the court but said I want to appeal against the ruling. My lawyer said my chances of winning the appeal were negligible. “Once the DNA has established that the children are not your biological children, there is nothing you or anybody can do about it” he said. However, I disagreed with him. “Please just go ahead and file an appeal for me. I want it done immediately. In fact, I want it done today” I said. “Today?” he asked, sounding surprise “Yes” I responded “No. it will take at least a week for me to file an appeal. I now have to go for a copy of the ruling and study it. It will take a while” Carl Lomotey said. “Can’t we make it in three days’ time? I will pay you anything you want” I said. He did not look please with my request. “Mr. Ofori-Mensah, I have been your lawyer over the years and you know that between you and I, money is not an issue.
    So, please just relax. We have to think things over carefully. I know how devastated you are to know that the children are not your biological children. But….” “They are my biological children!” I screamed at my lawyer. He was startled at my outburst. “I see you too believe the nonsense that Peter and Pamela are not my children” I said. “Well, the DNA test proved you are not their biological father” my lawyer said. I sprung to my feet. “You are fired! From today onwards, you are not my lawyer!” I said and I meant it. Then I walked out of his office

    Episode 11

    He came after me but I ignored him. I got into my car and ordered John to drive away. He complied immediately. But, I did not have any place in mind to go to so I got him to drive around till I finally decided to head for the beach. It was a sunny day, an ideal time to splash in the greenish blue ocean so I was not surprise to find, when I got there, quite a number of people swimming. My driver parked the car by the street. I got down and strolled along the path to the beach. When I got there, I found myself a suitable place to sit. I tried to relax my body, inhaling and exhaling deeply.The sight of the sea helped me a lot to relax. Very far off of to my left, fishermen were mending their nets. It was quite a distance away and no swimming was taking place there. In front of me was where the fun was taking place in the sea.Soon, I caught sight of a family; father, mother and obviously, their two children, having fun in the sea. Immediately my family came to mind. I remembered the good old days when I would bring my wife and children to the beach to have fun. Peter loved to swim. It was always difficult getting him out of the water when it was time to leave. All those happy days were now only a faint memory to me.
    Sitting on the shore and staring out at sea, for the first time, I began to wonder what made my wife commit adultery. Was it that I was not satisfying her in bed or that she was simply seduced by my friend’s wealth? Talking about wealth, I was well to do by all standards and was able to provide far more beyond what she needed.
    So, it did not make sense that she would fall for my friend’s wealth. I decided it was not healthy for me to be thinking of what my wife did so I shifted my attention back to the family playing in the sea. They had the fun of their lives, splashing in the water until the sun began to set. Gradually, people began to file out of the sea. The family I had spent my time watching also waded out of the water and made their way to the Chevrolet they had come to the beach in. They got in and a few minutes later, they were gone. Others too were leaving the beach. I watched them all leave. A couple, who had spent time romancing in the sea, also left, hand in hand. Finally, I was the only one left at the beach. It then dawned on me that just as I was the only one left on the beach, so was I the only one left in my family. My heart was heavy. I felt very sad. My thoughts went to my children. I wondered where they were and what they were doing. With a heavy heart, finally, I decided it was time to go so I made my way back to my car, got in and got the driver to head home. We arrived home shortly after 7:00pm. Efe was waiting in the living room. Obviously, my driver, John, had already phoned to tell her the outcome of the court case. Her eyes were very heavy, a sure sign she had been crying. “Sir, welcome” she said as she let me into the living room. Then she burst out in tears. I held her, pulled her close and comforted her.
    She and my driver were the only one I could now call family. I called John into the living room and addressed him and Efe. “You know the outcome of the court case. But this is not going to be the end. I am going to appeal against the ruling of the court. My lawyers are obviously not interested in an appeal so I have sacked them. I would employ the services of a new lawyer tomorrow and then launch an appeal against the court’s decision. Rest assured that Peter and Pamela are my biological children and I will get them back” I said. Even John seemed affected by the whole saga. He was a lucky-go-happy person but suddenly, he seemed to have lost his verve and dash. As for Efe, she broke into fresh tears when I began to talk. When I finished talking, she said she has something to say. “Sir, I am aware I will incur your displeasure after you hear what I am going to say. However, I will take the risk and say it.
    Sir, please forgive madam and take her back. I know what she has done is very bad. But, for the sake and unity of this family, I am pleading with you to forgive her and take back” she said. . I stared at Efe in silence. I could feel her pain.
    She was totally broken because the family she had come to regard as her family had disintegrated. And, it was clear she would do anything to get the family back. Women often have a much more forgiving spirit than men. (Ironically, they also have the penchant for vengeance than men). As I sat starring at the house-help, I wished I had the strength she had to forgive my wife. But, I just couldn’t. Thoughts of someone else making love to her was just too much for me. And worse was the fact that she had the guts to say I was not the biological father of my children was something I could not forgive. For a woman to say her husband is not the biological father of her children is for the woman to admit that she has been cheating on her husband for ages. But, I had no doubt that Peter and Pamela were my children and I was prepared to fight to death to have them back. As far as I was concerned, no authority, no law, no judge, no court and no human born of a woman was going to stand in-between me and my children. “Efe, you wouldn’t understand what is happening until you are in my shoe. Just start getting used to the idea that your madam is no more my wife. However, as for Peter and Pamela they will be back to this house. They are my children” I said. John for the first time spoke up. “Sir, I know and understand how you feel. I support you totally in the path you have taken. It is one thing for a woman to cheat on her husband and another thing for the woman to say her husband is not the biological father of their children. As a man, I can’t forgive my wife for cheating on me let alone forgive her for daring to say the children I have had with her are not my biological children. Madam Nora did not try at all!” the driver said. It was the first time I had even heard him speak with such conviction. I thanked him for his support. Efe, I could see, had resigned herself to the idea that Nora would no longer be my wife. After the talk with the two, I went to have my super of kenkey and fish with slice tomatoes and onions. I was very hungry in spite of the setback I had suffered at the court that day.
    So as not to feel lonely, I invited John and Efe to join me at table. They were understandably reluctant at first but later, understood why I needed them at table; they were the only ones I could call family. Without them, I would feel lonely sitting at table alone. John had been driving me for nine years while Efe had been with us as house- help for seven years.
    She was 27 while he was 35. Now, they were the only ones I could call family. After supper, I retired to my room, had my bath after which I went to bed. By 8:45pm, I was sound asleep. I woke up at 3:35am and sat up in bed to think over all that had been happening to me; my wife, her infidelity, her claim about my not being the biological father of my children, the court verdict and my lawyers’ stance.
    Suddenly, I began to wish that all that was happening was just a bad dream. I wished I would wake up to find that I never caught my wife in bed with my best friend and that my wife never dragged me to court saying I was not the biological father of my children. I wished I would wake up to find my wife up and about in the house, as usual, getting breakfast ready for me to go to work and the children to school. Maybe I was going to wake up from the dream to the usual morning scene of my children being chased around so they could have their bath and prepare for school. Then they will appear at table later on all dressed up for school and looking excited. After breakfast, I would get them into my car and drive them out of the house with their mother waving and smiling affectionately at all of us. I snapped out of my fantasy. What I was dreaming of was a mirage. My wife was gone. The unity of my family had been shattered and there was nothing I could do about it save fight for the return of my children.

    Episode 12

    I got up from bed, went to my gym which I had not visited for days and spent about twenty minutes exercising. Later, I had my bath, had my breakfast and then had my driver take me to town. We found ourselves at Glo Estate. It was a well-planned upper class area of residencies and offices.
    Some of the crème de la crème of the society had their homes or offices here. At Number 6, Lollipop Avenue, we stopped. I got out and walked to the gate while John stayed put in the car. I rang the bell and was startled when a voice asked me who I was and who I was looking for. “I am Dr. Ofori-Mensah and I am looking for Mr. Oscar Brew. I want him to handle a case for me” I said. A few seconds later, the voice, through the phone at the gate, asked me to open the gate and enter. I pushed the small gate backwards. It opened. I stepped into a beautiful yard of very green grass and flowers of all hues. I walked up to the front-door. I turned the handle. It opened. I stepped in and found myself in a corridor. “This way, sir,” a lady who suddenly appeared from nowhere told me. I followed her up the stairs to another room.
    She offered me a seat while she stood waiting. After about three minutes, she pointed to a door and asked me to open and enter. I did. “Welcome Dr. Ofori-Mensah. Are you the Dr. Ofori-Mensah of Mother & Child Hospital at South Ridge?” he asked me. “I am, sir” I replied. He had obviously run a check on me. I took a seat. “Welcome, sir. I am Oscar Brew. My friends call me OB. How may I help you?” he asked. I thanked him and within five minutes, narrated to him everything that had happened concerning my wife, ending with my decision to change lawyers. He did not stir or show any emotion as he listened to me. His eyes bore into me as if he was trying to determine whether I was lying or telling the truth as I talked. Oscar Brew was one of the city’s top attorneys. He was noted to be expensive but delivers to the satisfaction of his customers. He was also noted to have handled very high profile cases and gotten quite a number of suspected murderers off the hook. A tall slim looking man, he was in his mid-sixties and greying. Everything about him indicated he was well to do. “Your entire cost is $50,000. You will make a deposit of $35,000. As soon as you do that, I will take over the case” he said, neither smiling nor frowning. I had come prepared. For my children, I would go any length. I took out my cheque and wrote an amount of $35,000 for him. He stared at the cheque for a while after collecting it. Then he said we were in business. He called in the woman who had brought me in and asked her to take me to see another person. A few minutes later, I was seated in front of a fat looking man. He looked like a man who was perpetually happy. An identification tag on his table identified him as Kwabena T. Torto. He was the junior partner in the law firm. He made me write down all that had transpired, from the day I caught my wife in bed with my best friend to the day the court declared I was not the biological father of my children. “Okay. Thank you. Tomorrow, you will meet me at Accra General Hospital. You will be undergoing tests to determine if you can father a child or not” he said. I stared at him“I must undergo a test to determine whether I can father a child?” I asked him. “Yes. The first thing we need to prove in court is that you a capable of fathering a child. And, it is not about belief; it is about evidence” he replied, not at all bothered by the fact that I was surprise at what he had said. Painful though it was, I reasoned that what he was saying made sense. If I prove to the court that I was capable of fathering a child, my appeal will make sense. Why would a woman claim her husband is not the biological father of their children when that father is very fertile and able to father children? But, for me, that may not end the issue in my favour.
    So, I questioned the lawyer further. “But if the test proves that I could father a child, how can it disprove the DNA result that I was not the father of my children?” I asked him. He smiled at me and asked me to leave that aspect to his senior partner. He seemed to be very confident that we will win the case with ease. I left the law chambers satisfied that I had come to the right place. I could sense victory ahead; I was going to have my children back! The next morning, I was at the Accra General Hospital before 9am. Kwabena T. Torto arrived a few minutes after. Together, we met the doctor on duty, Harry Adu, who conducted the test on me. He then asked me to come for the results in the evening. Mr. Torto and I subsequently left the hospital to return in the evening. I went back home to sleep but, I could not. I could not watch TV, read or even phone somebody to chat with either. I was restless. I wanted the case over and done with. As for the test I had no doubt that I was fertile and able to father a baby. At 2:00pm, Efe came to tell me I had a visitor. When I asked who it was, she said it was my lawyer. I went to the living room expecting to see Mr. Torto only to find that it was, Carl Lomotey, my lawyer whom I had discarded after he expressed doubt that I was the biological father of my children, Peter and Pamela. He smiled at me when he saw me. I did not return the smile. Rather, I told him to leave immediately. I said it quietly but the threat in my voice made him recoil. Quickly, he backed out of the house, got into his car which he had parked outside the gates and drove away. I sighed in relief. By 5:30pm, I was back at the hospital and found to my surprise that Kwabena T. Torto was already there. I nearly screamed out more in fright than anger when the doctor came out to give us the result of the test; it said I was not fertile enough to father a child. “How? How? Why? I mean what…why… how can I not father a child?…how am I not fertile…?” I asked. The doctor sympathized with me but said that was what the result of the test showed. I was totally devastated. I sunk to my knees in shock. The doctor and KwabenaTorto had to support me back to the car. At the entrance of the hospital before we will get to the car park, we bumped into Kweku, my estranged wife’s brother. He stared at me in surprise and came to us. “What is it? I hope everything is alright” he said. The sight of him gave me strength. “Do not come close to me!! Get out of my sight!!!” I screamed at him. He backed away, terrified by my anger. But for Torto and the doctor, I am sure I would have slapped Nana Kweku. He left us quickly, entering the hospital. I decided to walk the rest of the way to my car without any assistance. John had the engine of the car running by the time I got to it. Once I was seated, he drove away without a word. I asked him to pass through the Pink Lady restaurant where I bought food for three. But he did not see me buy a full bottle of German-made Vodka. When we got home, I went in-doors and began to drink. The revelation that I was sterile and could not father a baby was too much for me. The result, indeed confirmed the DNA test that I was not the biological father of Peter and Pamela. Within twenty minutes, I had consumed a quarter of drink and was already drunk. As I drank, Iwept. I could see my world coming to crush down. Now, it was clear, at least for all the tests that had been conducted, that I was not the biological father of my children. I began to contemplate suicide

    Episode 13

     It seemed the most natural thing to do. With my wife having cheated on me, and now the revelation that I was not the biological father of my children whom I so much loved, I felt there was nothing left in the world for me. The thought that my children, Peter and Pamela were not mine biologically was killing me more than the fact that I caught my wedded wife in bed with another man. How could I accept that Peter and Pamela were not my children? I wept like a child while thinking of the best way to take my life. I didn’t have a gun. But if I had, could I shoot myself in the head as some other people do? I knew I couldn’t. Then I thought of committing suicide by hanging but I knew I couldn’t do that too. All the methods of committing suicide I had heard others use did not appeal to me. I wanted a painless death. It was unbelievable that I was thinking about suicide. I could remember the many times I had described those who took their own lives as stupid people. I had boasted time and again that nothing will ever make me take my own life. I could also remember the many times I had counselled people against committing suicide. Yet, there I was contemplating suicide.
    Suddenly, my thoughts were rudely interrupted by a knock on the door. I knew immediately who it was. “Who is it?” I asked “It is me” I heard my house-help reply. It had to be either her or my driver. They were the only people around me now. “What do you want?” I asked. “Sir! We want to talk to you” “About what?” I asked again “Sir, we have come to submit our resignation letters to you,” I heard her say. “You are quitting?” I asked, shocked. “Yes sir. There is nothing more for us to do here so we are quitting,” I heard my driver, John, say.
    Suddenly, I felt calmness fall upon me. I felt it was okay if my driver and house-help want to leave. I did not see it as a betrayal. I saw it as a logical conclusion of events. My wife had left me. My children had been taken away from me – no, the children were not mine after all. It was therefore natural for those who are not that close to me as my wife and children who have left, to want to leave too. “Leave the resignation letters on the table,” I said. “Okay sir,” I heard them both say. Then they added, “bye”. “Bye” I said back. After a while, I knew I was now truly all alone. I did not feel sorry for myself. I felt empty. I felt I had never lived and there was nothing to live for. As a staunch Christian, it was amazing how I forgot to pray as I had counselled countless others to do. The last thing on my mind was prayer. I was not thinking about God. And, when I finally started thinking about Him, I started asking questions. How could He have allowed me to live the lie all this while that Peter and Pamela were my children? How could He have looked on while my wife got herself screwed by another man on my marital bed? Why did He create me infertile, as the test at the hospital showed? Suddenly, He didn’t seem to be the God I knew. I was not angry with Him. I simply felt empty too. Thirty minutes or so after my driver and my house-help were gone, I decided to go find out what they had written down for me in their resignation letters. I got up, went to the bathroom to wash my face. But, I didn’t. What the hell—why should I be bothered about how my face looks, more so when I was the only person in the house. However, I was startled by my image in the bathroom mirror. I did not look like myself. To me, I looked like a junkie. I smiled. The smile looked like a sneer. I burst out laughing at myself and crying at the same time as I went to my bedroom door. I opened it. All was quiet. Then I stepped outside. As soon as I did that, I saw them. Efe and the driver

    Episode 14

    Both of them, John, my driver and Efe, my maid, were standing just a few feet from my door. They rushed to my side before I could retreat into my room. “Wait, sir. Please sir, don’t do this to us,” my driver began to plead as he held me back. “So the two of you tricked me, right?” I asked for want of any other thing to say. “Sir, we cannot resign from your employment. We only pretended we had quit and had left because we needed you to come out of your room. You have locked yourself up for hours now. You have not eaten anything,” Efe said. With that, she went down on her knees with tears beginning to trickle down her cheeks. To my surprise, John too began to shed tears. I was touched; really touched. These two were showing that they really cared about me. I asked Efe to get up as I began to fight back tears.
    She got up. I led her and my driver to the living room. We all sat down. For a while, no one talked. I could not say anything for fear of bursting out in tears. Finally, however, I got a grip on myself, cleared my throat and addressed them. I told them I had felt despondent and depressed after the second test showed I was not fertile enough to father a child. I then confessed I had begun to consider suicide as the only option left to me. John and Efe were shocked at my confession. “But what more would I be living for. My wife has betrayed me. As if that is not enough, tests have proven that I am not the biological father of my children, Peter and Pamela, whom I love with all my heart. Then came the news that I am not fertile enough to father a child.
    So, what am I then living for?” I asked. “ Daddy, we know how you feel. In fact we are all devastated by all that is happening. But seriously, suicide cannot be a way out. You have preached to us several times about how evil suicide is. Why resort to it now?” my driver asked me. For the first time, I could not look into his eyes. I felt stupid ever contemplating suicide. “You are right, John. I am sorry. It will never happen again” I said Then John spoke again. He said he did not think all was lost for me. He had heard of fertility centres where men who could not father children are helped to become fertile. “Yes!” Efe responded, brightening up immediately. “Fertility centres could help. I know two of them. John, you are right” she said. I could see from the way she had brightened up suddenly, that they had been really affected by my plight. But, indeed, what John said made me brighten up too. There was nothing I would not do to become a father, a biological father. Despite the truth having been made to me, my heart still yearned for Peter and Pamela. Yes, they may not be my biological children but I still loved them. It was going to be very difficult for me to turn my back on them. Memories of happy times with Peter and Pamela often came rushing back to me. I could remember very well my trip with them to Egypt where we went visiting the pyramids. Pamela had been scared initially but had later on overcome her fear of the pyramids. We had a very good time. Then also was my trip with them to Zambia. We had visited the Niagara Falls and later were at the Game and Wildlife Park to watch the wild animals in their natural habitats.
    Sometimes, I could hear their laughter, their innocent laughter. All these made me hate their mother the more.
    She had shattered the unity and happiness of the family. “It’s time for supper, sir. I have prepared your favourite for you” Efe announced. I knew what she meant by my favourite. wonder woman “Well, today, no supper in this house. I am taking both of you out. We are going to have our supper at the Super Maxi Restaurant” I announced. John beamed with delight. I noticed that Efe immediately wore a crestfallen look. I knew she did not like the idea of us eating outside. “Efe! Come on. We always enjoy your food but it is not every time we have to eat at home and it is not every time that you have to cook. I am giving you and John a treat because you have remained my best friends in my moment of need.
    So, come on. Let, everybody go and prepare!” I said. The two left for their respective rooms. I left for my room too. I had my bath, a hot bath and then got into a simple sleeveless light blue shirt with a blue- black khaki trouser to match. When I emerged, I found that John and Efe were already waiting for me. Efe was in a simple purple dress while John was in a white T-shirt and a blue jeans trouser. wonder woman “Good. The two of you look superb. Now, off we go,” I said. To John’s chagrin, I insisted that I will be the one to drive. He protested. Efe supported him – they could not imagine how me, their employer, will drive them to town. Finally, however, they caved in to my demand. I got behind the steer with John by my side and drove off. We had a nice evening at the Super Maxi Restaurant. Everything at the restaurant was very expensive. While a bottle a bottle of coca cola was selling at GH¢3.00 in town, it was selling at GH¢10.00 at the restaurant. It was so priced to keep some elements from patronizing the place. We had an exciting evening. A live band played some local songs. I did not dance but I encouraged John and Efe to. At 10:30pm, we left the place and returned home. “Thank you for a nice evening sir,” Efe said, beaming with a smile when we arrived home. I returned to my room feeling a bit cheerful. I went to bed with a smile. I woke up the next morning at 6:30am. I was surprise to find lawyer Torto waiting for me in the living room. “I have brought back $30,000 out of the $35,000 you paid us for our services.
    Since the result of the test showed you are not fertile, and therefore incapable of fathering a child, it will be useless to continue with the case. My chamber therefore decided that we return the $30,000 out of what you paid to us” he said. wonder woman I was surprise by the move. It showed honesty. I collected the cheque and thanked him. That morning, after we had had breakfast, John and Efe set out in search of a fertility centre. They were back later to take me to one that they felt will help – the Royal International Fertility Centre. The doctor on duty was one Dr. Paul Quansah. For twenty minutes, I was with him. He took me through the line of treatment they were going to give me. Finally, we scheduled that I begin the programme in two days’ time. I left the hospital feeling confident that I had found the solution to my infertility.
    Soon, I would be able to father a child. But, it felt as though I was starting life all over again.

    Episode 15

    I picked up my fon call and it was my son. He screamed my name. I quickly asked him where he was. “New York” he said. “Daddy, we want to come to you. We are not happy. We want to come to you”. “I miss you, Peter. You will always be my son and I will always be your daddy,” I heard myself say. I heard him begin to cry so I tried to console him. “Daddy, come for us, please. Come for us!” he said. I was about to say I will when the line dropped dead. Had his mother found him out and taken the phone away from him? Or, his units had run out. Quickly, I searched for the number on which he called me only to find to my dismay that the name did not appear on the screen. I felt helpless. Hearing Peter had an effect on me. It made me yearn for him and his sister. But, I had to also remember that it had been established that I was not the biological father of the children. Then I began to wonder who the biological father of Peter and Pamela was if I was not their biological father. Was it Edwin, my b—m friend who I had caught in bed with my wife? Or, it was another man I did not know? Did it mean that all these while, my wife was having an affair with another man? Then my thoughts drifted to Nora, my estranged wife. After the treatment she had meted out to me, I had lost interest in women entirely. But I knew that once I was through with my fertility test I had to get involved with a woman so I will be able to have my own biological children. I sighed! Monday finally came after a boring weekend. It was the day I was to begin my fertility treatment. I had a sugarless and milkless tea as advised by the fertility doctor. Afterwards, I set off with John for the fertility center. Finally, we arrived there. I got down and went to see Dr. Paul Quansah. He explained to me once more the process I was going to be taken through. Then he said for the avoidance of doubt, I had to take another fertility test to first of all, certify that I was not fertile and secondly, to enable him determine the extent of my infertility. “No problem, doc. I am hopeful that all will go on well. I can’t wait to have my own children,” I said. Dr. Quansah beamed with a smile. A lady in a white overall came to escort me to a lab and handed me over to the laboratory man who gave me a small bottle and asked me to provide my semen. I was asked to go into a room and do all I can to get my semen. That meant self- stimulation. After about thirty minutes, I emerged and handed over to him the bottle in which my semen was. Then I went to sit in the waiting room. An hour later, a nurse came for me, saying my result was ready so I had to see the doctor. Once more, I found myself seated in front of Dr. Quansah who looked at me quizzically as if I was funny. “Well, Dr. Mensah, our test proved that you are fertile so I don’t understand why you are here,” he said. His statement was like a joke. I asked if he could repeat what he said. “I said the result of the fertility test we conducted on you shows that you are fertile so I don’t see why you are here.” I was shocked, and then decided that the doctor was playing a joke on me. He handed me the result of the test to read. I read through it three times. It said I was fertile and could father a child any day. There was therefore no need for me to undergo a fertility treatment.

    Episode 16

    I stared at the doctor in shock. I was speechless! “Why do you look so shocked,” he asked. “You should be looking happy,” he added. He was right. I should have been jubilating that I was fertile. But, instead, I was shocked for good reasons. When I tried to explain to Dr. Paul Quansah why I was shocked, I found that my whole body was trembling. He asked me to relax for a while before I talk.
    So, I sat before him, breathing heavily. To allow me sometime to calm down, he got up to attend to other issues. I began to ask myself several questions. If I was fertile, how come test ordered by the law firm I had hired indicated I was not fertile? I was confused. After a while, I decided that two hospitals couldn’t be wrong. The first hospital had said after a DNA test that I was not the biological father of Peter and Pamela and the second had said I was not fertile enough to father a child, a result that more or less confirms the DNA test at the first hospital. My conclusion therefore was that the hospital I had come to was wrong in its conclusions about my fertility. I was still analyzing the matter when Dr. Quansah returned to his consulting room and sat down. I decided to summarize for him why I had come to him to have a fertility treatment. He listened to me quietly without interruption as I narrated how I caught my wife in bed with my best friend, my wife’s claims later that I was not the biological father of my children, the DNA test which backed her claims and the fertility test I had done on the insistence of my lawyers which showed I was not fertile enough to father a child. “So you see, I am sure that you have got the results of the fertility test wrong,” I said in conclusion. But, Dr. Quansah said there was no way they could have gotten the results wrong. He said it had never happened before. “I will advise that you go to another fertility centre to conduct another fertility test to verify whether we are wrong or not.” he said.

    Episode 17

    “I will advise that you go to another fertility centre to conduct another fertility test to verify whether we are wrong or not.” he said. I agreed it was the way to go. I thanked him and returned to my car. I explained to John what had taken place. He too was shocked and then agreed with me that the hospital may have gotten things wrong. He also agreed that the way to go was for me to go to another fertility centre to conduct a second fertility test. Quickly, he suggested another fertility centre. It was at the eastern end of the city. I agreed that we go there immediately so he started the engine of the car and then drove away, heading for the eastern end of the city. The name of the fertility was the St. Michael’s Men’s Medical Centre. We arrived there after twenty-five minutes drive. I was processed at the reception by an official to see the doctor. Then I joined the queue of patients waiting to see the doctor. After ten minutes, I got the opportunity to see the doctor on duty. To my surprise, the doctor was a woman. A female doctor in a men’s health facility! I wasted no time in telling her why I was there.
    She scribbled something on a piece of paper and then directed me to the laboratory. At the laboratory, the head there collected the paper, studied what was on it and then giving me a small bottle, requested for my semen. Twice in a matter of an hour, I had to compel myself to produce semen. I did and handed it to the laboratory assistant. He then asked me to go relax in the waiting room. I did, taking a seat and grabbing a magazine and waited. But, I could not concentrate on what I was reading. My mind was on the test that was being done. What if it turned out that I was fertile after all? Did it mean that I was the biological father of Peter and Pamela? Will it mean that the first DNA test was wrong? . Eventually, the door to the waiting room opened. It was the laboratory technician. He said he had completed the test and that the result was with the doctor who was ready to see me. I immediately placed the magazine down on the table, got up and followed the man. At the door of the doctor’s consulting room, he knocked, opened and asked me to enter. Then he closed the door and returned to his laboratory, leaving me alone with the doctor. I was tensed. It was as if a judge was about to read to me his ruling. I noticed that I was sweating. The doctor looked up at me without a smile. My heart sunk. For me, it was indicative of the fact that the original test was right; I was infertile. I had somehow been hoping that the test would prove that I was fertile because it will likely mean that I was the biological father of Peter and Pamela. But alas! In that few seconds before she spoke, her expression was enough of an answer to me. I psyched myself up for the worse.

    Episode 18

    The doctor looked up at me without a smile. My heart sunk. For me, it was indicative of the fact that the original test was right; I was infertile. I had somehow been hoping that the test would prove that I was fertile because it will likely mean that I was the biological father of Peter and Pamela. But alas! In that few seconds before she spoke, her expression was enough of an answer to me. I psyched myself up for the worse. “Well, sir. The result indicates you are very fertile. You should have no problem fathering a child or children,” she said. Her assertion was like sweet music to my ears. “Madam, you mean that I can father a child?” I asked her. “Yes, Dr. Ofori-Mensah,” she replied. I nearly hugged her in my delight as I whisked the results of the test from her hand. “Thank you Dr. eh…” I stumbled. I did not know her name. “Shirley Brobbey,” she said. “Dr.
    Shirley Brobbey, I am very grateful for your assistance. Thank you very much”, I said, smiling. Then I walked out of her consulting room and then half walked, half ran to the car where John was waiting for me eagerly. “John, I am fertile. I am very fertile,” I said, waving the results at him. He beamed with a smile and screamed “yes!” while punching the air. “This first of all calls for celebration, John. Call Efe, tell her the good news and tell her to join us at the Great Ambassador Hotel now. Let’s go!” I said, excitedly. On the way to the hotel, I talked about going to see my lawyers once more with the new result of my fertility test. “I am confident that it will turn out also that the result of the DNA test was also wrong and that I am the biological father of Peter and Pamela. That will give me the joy of a life time. It is possible, John. It is possible!” I said, excitedly. We soon arrived at the Great Ambassador hotel. We made our way to their restaurant where I ordered food and drinks that even six people could not consume. Efe, joined us ten minutes after we arrived.
    She was the one who pointed out that what I had ordered was too much.
    She quickly followed up to the reception to make new orders. Then she returned to the table. We spent about an hour at the restaurant. I had never been so happy in my life. Every now and then, I will reach inside my pocket to make sure that the result of the fertility test that proved I was fertile was there; it was worth more than a $500 billion cheque to me. When we left the restaurant, I directed John to drive to Number 6 Lollipop Avenue, Glo Estate, to the chamber of Lawyer Oscar Brew. A few minutes later, I was seated before him, wielding the results of the fertility test proudly. “Well, well, well, Dr. Ofori-Mensah, what brings you here again? I am sorry I could not help you the previous time you were here,” he said. I smiled. Then I handed the result slip in my hand to him. They were two slips. The first was the result from the test ordered by Dr. Dan Adams and the second was the result of the one done at the St. Michael’s hospital. He read both quietly. Finally, he looked up at me, a wry smile on his face. “Well, well, well! I smell something fishy going on. I sense that the chickens are coming back home to roost.
    Somebody out there has a lot of explanation to do. Here we go. I am going to demand a third test from you from a hospital that I will choose. Then we will proceed from there” he said. I nodded. I knew why he wanted a third test from a hospital of his choice: he wanted to be sure I had not manipulated the results I had handed over to him.

    Episode 19

    It was agreed that I will have another fertility test the next day. Lawyer Oscar Brew will however not mention the name of the hospital to me. Obviously, he wanted to make sure that I would not know the hospital so that if I had manipulated the two that had given me a clean bill of health, I will not be able to do the same where he was taking me to. I left his office that day very hopeful. We drove back home. I called my hospital to find out how my colleagues were doing. “We are doing well, Isaac. We can’t wait to have you back. We hope you will solve whatever problem has plagued you so you return to work sound and happy”. Dr. Boateng, one of my colleagues at the hospital where I worked said. That evening, after supper, John, Efe and I sat in the living room to discuss the latest development. “I am really surprise, Daddy.
    So does it mean that the result from the first fertility centre was wrong?” Efe asked.
    She was as happy as a happy puppy. “Hopefully, it may also turn out that the result of the DNA tests too were wrong” John said, smiling. “That is what I am hoping will be the case. I will ask my lawyer if the court will grant us a second DNA test. You may never know,” I opined. We went on and on about the possibilities. The prospects that I may be the biological father of Peter and Pamela after all, kept me excited. Then I noticed Efe was yawning. I said it was time to call it a day. We all got up, bade each other good night and headed for our respective bedrooms. The next morning, I was up very early only to find that my driver was already up and waiting for me. I quickly had my bath and dressed up, hopeful that the day will be fruitful. We left the house before 7:00 a.m., arriving at Lawyer Oscar Brew’s office at 7:20 a.m. He was waiting for us in his car. The moment he saw us, he signalled us to follow him. Then starting his engine, he got going. We followed. Ten minutes later, we arrived at the Ave Maria International Hospital. I knew the place. It was a private facility, one of the best in town. We parked the car and followed Lawyer Oscar Brew inside. We went down a corridor and came to a door. On the door was written Dr. Chimaobi igwe. He knocked, opened and entered. Dr. Chimaobi welcomed us. He was a tall and lanky man. He was a Nigerian but ,was a trained German Doctor. Apparently, my lawyer had already briefed him about our mission. He got up and asked that we follow him. We did. A few seconds later, we found ourselves in a laboratory. There were all kinds of sophisticated gadgets there, some, even as a medical doctor, that I had not seen before. This time, the doctor did not require my semen. He switched on some of the equipment, asked me to stand on one and place all five fingers of my right hand on a scanner. I did. We waited. My fingers appeared on a TV screen. We all waited. About two minutes later, a green light began to beep on the screen. “Finished” he said and then turned to my lawyer. “Your man is very fertile. I will print the result of this test for you” he said. Relief swept through my entire body. I felt weak at the knees Dr. Chimaobi printed the result for us. Then we all returned to his Consulting Room. He sat down and explained to us the process he used to determine whether I was fertile or not. “As you can see, Dr. Ofori-Mensah is very fertile. We have here the latest and most advanced equipment in the world for testing the fertility of both men and women. The green light which beamed indicated he is fertile. If the light had turned red, it would have meant he is not fertile,” the doctor explained.

    Episode 20

    I was jubilant! I was fertile after all. This meant that I could father a child. I resolved to do another DNA test and quietly prayed that the result, like the fertility test, would also prove that I was the biological father of Peter and Pamela. Lawyer Oscar Brew thanked Dr. Chimaobi Igwe . Then we left. At the car park, the lawyer told me he smells a conspiracy against me. “I am willing to bet that the DNA test which was presented to the court was false.
    Somebody made sure the wrong results was written. I am going to find this out and if true, we shall sue the hospital and the individuals involved,” he said. Though I nodded in agreement, I really did not care about suing anybody. To have found out that I was fertile after all and that was very good news for me. All that I wanted now was to have another DNA test and be told the result proves I was the biological father of my children. “We are going to sue each of the health facilities GH¢20million each if it turns out that they lied. The doctors too who supervised it will be sued GH¢2million each” he said, beaming with smiles. I could see that as far as he was concerned, he had hit a jackpot. His next statement confirmed this. Dr. OforiMensah, we need to sign an agreement. If our suspicions turn out to be true and we sue them, my law firm will receive 40% of the total amount of money we sue them for when you are paid. Agreed?” he asked me. I nodded happily. He said in that case, there was the need for us to return to his office and sign the agreement.
    So, we headed for his office where the agreement was written and signed. I really was not interested in the money. I was interested in being told I am the biological father of Peter and Pamela. Three days later, I received a call from Lawyer Oscar Brew. He said he had filed an appeal at a High Court in the face of the new evidence we had. The case was scheduled for a week’s time. He informed me that Nora’s lawyers had been served. “Okay, but my ex-wife is out of the country with the children” I said. “No. they are back in the country. They are living at North Legon in a house bought for your wife by your friend, Edwin” he said. I was surprised at this information from my lawyer. “Oh! I see! How did you get to know all this?” I asked him, impressed. “Well, alongside our law chambers, we ran an investigative agency. We use it to fish out needed information that will assist our cases at the court. I can tell you for now that we have placed surveillance on your ex-wife with our team of investigators so we know where she is at any particular time” he said. I was impressed with my lawyer. The work he had done so far made me realize why his services were so expensive and why he is reputed to be a crack lawyer. I began to day dream about me having my children back. The thought so excited me sometimes I found myself dancing though I was a bad dancer. Peter and Pamela were the love of my life for whom all the diamonds in the world cannot compare. Three weeks after I went on leave, I had to resume work. I had rested enough and with all the good news, I looked forward to joining my colleagues at work. On a calm Monday morning in September of that year, I woke up early, skipped breakfast and headed for work. I was driving myself and was in high spirits. About ten minutes after I left home, I heard my phone ringing. I stared at the screen but could not tell who was calling. I answered the call and was surprised to hear my wife’s voice.. “Please can we meet? I have something important to tell you” she said “ A meeting? What for, Nora?” I asked her. I was really surprised she had called.

    Episode 21

    “A meeting? What for, Nora?” I asked her. I was really surprised she had called. “Please, I want us to talk over our break- up and the children. If you don’t want me again, I will not deny you your children,” she said. “Me my children?” I asked. “I thought you said Peter and Pamela are not my biological children and you got a DNA result to prove it.
    So, why refer to them as my children?” I asked her. I heard her sobbing. When she spoke, her tone was remorseful. “Darling, I lied. You are their biological father” she said. My heart must have skipped a beat. It was hard to believe that Nora had said Peter and Pamela were my biological children. I thought I had not heard right. “I don’t get you,” I said. “Honey, Peter and Pamela are your biological children. I lied when I said you were not their father. I bribed the doctor who conducted the test to present a false result to the court. I also bribed the fertility centre to give you a result that will convince you that you are not fertile enough to be a father. I am sorry,” she said. “Nora! Why?” I asked as my heart began to beat wildly. “Honey, I am sorry. I am truly very sorry. When you said you will divorce me, I became scared because I did not want you to take the children away from me. I had to do anything to make sure you do not take them away from me,” she said.
    She was crying. However, I cared less about her tears. I was rather left speechless by the callousness of the woman I had called my wife for many years.
    She had not only cheated on me with my own friend but had done everything she could to deny me my children – my biological children! “Nora, you are wicked! You are a Jezebel! In fact, you are not fit to be the mother of our children. You are the devil incarnate!” I screamed at her. “I know Isaac, I know! I know I do not deserve to be your wife! I know I behaved badly! Please forgive me. I beg you,” she cried. “Forgive you? You think it is as simple as that? Do you know the trauma you have put me through? Are you aware of the pain you have subjected me to? Are you aware I could have died as a result?” I asked her. I had driven off the road and parked the car. I did not even notice that I was trembling all over until later. “Isaac, I have sinned against you, God and our children. All I want you to do now is to forgive me. I am very sorry. Please! I am sincerely sorry. Forgive me. Isaac, forgive me,” she continued in tears. Then I asked her why she has now called me to make the confession.
    She could not tell me why though I knew the answer; her lawyers had been served our appeal and they knew the game was up. My estranged wife was therefore calling to confess because she knew that she would be jailed if the court heard the case. “Nora, I don’t know what to tell you now though forgiveness is out of the question. We have gone back to court to have the earlier ruling of the court set aside.
    So, let us meet in court,” I said.
    She burst into tears again, pleading with me not to drag her to court.
    She said she would be jailed if the case goes to court. “Isaac, you know it! Please! I beg of you. I am on my knees. I am begging you in the name of God and our children. For the sake of our children don’t do this to me,” she pleaded. “Were you thinking about the children when you cheated on me and in no place but my own house and our marital bed? Were you thinking about the children when you tried to deny them their father?” I asked her. My questions were like a hot knife slicing through her heart. I could hear her wince as I asked her the questions. “Isaac! Honey! That is why I say I am sorry. I know I have behaved badly. Please forgive me. I beg you,” she pleaded once more. “Nora, don’t worry. You would not be jailed. Have you forgotten that you have one of the best lawyers who will make sure you do not go to jail?” I asked, the sarcasm obvious. “Honey, please. You know no lawyer can save me from going to jail,” she said. Then there was a pause. I did not say anything either. Then she spoke again. Her voice was calm and resolved. “I have to take my life then. I cannot go to jail. Whatever it is, forgive me and always remind the children I loved them,” she said. Then she hung up.

    Episode 22

    As much as I hated my wife for what she had done to me, I did not want her to die because I did not want my children to loose their mum. My love for my children was stronger than my hatred for her.
    So, I tried to call her back, but she would not pick the call. After trying a couple of times, I gave up and sent her a text message. “Your decision to take your life shows that you are still a heartless woman. No wonder you want to take your life and leave your children without a mother. You know what that is called? Selfishness. Rot in hell.” I felt good sending her the text message. Then I got my car going again, continuing the journey to my hospital. Minutes later, she phoned back but I did not answer her call. My phone rung over and over again but I refused to pick her call. Then she sent me a text message. I scrolled to the text messages part of my phone and pressed the button on the inbox. It opened to reveal her message to me. It read. “I am not selfish. But I will not allow myself to be locked up for years in prison”. I decided to ignore her text message. In the meantime, I was happy to be back at work. My colleagues were excited to see me back. Bubbling with energy, I began work, attending to patients, a few of whom I knew already. While attending to a patient, I saw that Nora had sent more text messages. I decided not to read them; I simply deleted them. Then I continued working. Five hours later, my schedule for the day came to an end. I got into my car and headed home. I was half way home when I received a call from a number I did not know. Believing it was my wife, I refused to answer it. My phone kept ringing till I reached home. After it had rung for sometime, I decided to answer it. As soon as I did, my son’s voice came through loud and clear. “Daddy!” he shouted. “Peter!” I responded, my heart melting immediately. I loved my son and daughter so much I knew I would not mind dying for them. “Daddy, please forgive Mummy, okay.
    She is sorry” my son said. His statement took me by surprise. “Daddy, Mummy said she had done some very bad things to you so the police are going to lock her up for a long time.
    She says if you forgive her, they won’t lock her up. Daddy, please forgive her. We love her. We cannot live without her” my son said. My little boy’s comment pierced through my heart. It made me hate my wife with passion. What she was doing, as far as I was concerned, was blackmail.
    She knew I had a soft spot for my children so she was using them to get me to let her off the hook. “Let me talk to your mother” I said, my voice trembling with anger. “Mummy is not here” my son replied. I did not know whether to believe him or not. Nora was a smart person.
    She was using one person she knew I would listen to. “Listen, Peter, your Mummy has been very bad to me. If you grow up, you will understand it…I cannot just…..hmmmmm….she has….” I did not know what to say. I was choking on my words. While I was angry with my wife, I was also not prepared to take my son through any psychological trauma.
    So, I was finding it very difficult to explain the issue to him. “Daddy, we beg you.
    She is our mother. We love her so much. Forgive her.
    She would not do it again. You always said Jesus said we should always forgive.
    So why don’t you want to forgive her?” he said. My son had cornered me. He was a smart kid. I knew I had to play the whole thing carefully or he would never believe me again. I began to crack my brains on how to proceed with my son. ..

    Episode 23

    My wife had me cornered and I knew it.
    She was a very cunning woman. “Peter, your mother asked you to call and say what you are saying, right? And I am sure she is standing by you right now, gesturing to you” I said. My son said he was alone with his sister and that they were at a public pay phone. They had sneaked out of the house: that their mother was not aware that they had sneaked out to call me I believed him. I knew Peter very well. He was terrible when it comes to lying. I was in a fix. My children loved their mother to a fault just as they loved me. Now, to have their mother jailed would have an adverse effect on them. And, I guess they will never forgive me for it. “Daddy, are you there?” he asked me. “Yes I am here” I said “Daddy, do this for Pamela and me. We beg you” he pleaded once more. I could feel the passion in his voice. I also knew he was crying. “Okay, for the sake of the two of you, I have forgiven her” I said “ Daddy! Are you sure?” he asked.” Are you sure you have forgiven mummy? “I have. I love the two of you so much” “So Daddy, will you take mummy back in our home? Will she be your wife once again” he asked. I said she will. I heard him scream in joy and narrate what I had said to her younger sister.
    She screamed and asked to talk to me. “Daddy?” she asked. Her innocent and soft voice immediately set my heart racing. How I missed her! “Daddy, I love you. Let us see you soon!” she said, giggling happily. “I love you too, Pamela” I responded. Then the connection went off. I sighed as tears began to trickle down my cheeks. I took a handkerchief and wiped it off. Then I got my car going once more.
    Suddenly, I wished I had made John drive me to work. By the time I arrived home, I was at peace with myself, having decided not to pursue the case in court. Once I was in the privacy of my bedroom, I phoned my lawyer to tell him I was no longer interested in pursuing the case in court. I explained to him that my wife had confessed to me that she lied to the court concerning the DNA and once she had pleaded for forgiveness, I was no longer interested. “Wow! She confessed to perjury. That is an offence for which she can be jailed. You have a golden opportunity to put your wife away for a long time” he said. I repeated that I was no longer interested in the case. He was stunned. Apparently, he saw the news twist as an opportunity to make money. “Doctor, you are throwing away an opportunity to make some cool money” he said, frantically. However, I stuck to my guns. That ended it. John and Efe, my driver and house-help respectively were stunned when I later told them, after supper, about my wife’s confession. “Jesus Christ!” John exclaimed. “So Madam concocted all that lies against you?” Efe, though stunned, spoke up, saying that many a woman would do what my wife did to ensure no one takes their children away from them. “So, you mean Nora acted right?” I asked Efe. “Daddy, I am not saying Madam’s actions were right. I am only saying most women will do anything to ensure that their children are not taken from them” Efe replied. Then I dropped the second bombshell of the evening

    Episode 24 (Final)

    Calmly, I told them I had decided to let my wife back into the marriage. The two stared at me as if I was a ghost. “Daddy! What did you just say?” Efe asked me.
    Smiling, I repeated what I had said.
    She and John stared at each other as if I was talking gibberish and then Efe began to cry as she showered praises on me. “Oh God! Thank you, God! Thank you! Thank you for listening to my prayers” she kept on repeating. I got her to get up and calm down. “So, when is madam coming, Daddy?” she asked. I could see the sparkle in her yes. “Can’t tell now. But she will be coming” I said. Then I said I had to go have my bath so I stood up. The meeting came to an end. I had just gotten back to my bedroom when my phone rang. The number on it indicated it was my wife. I hesitated and then picked the call. “Daddy, Mummy is here. We have told her that you have forgiven her but she won’t believe.
    So, please tell her” Peter said. I was proud of my son. Though still young, he was doing everything possible to bring his father and mother back together. Of course, it was obvious that his mother had not told him or his sister what she did. And despite my anger, I also did not wish her to tell them. I did not want the children to know what their mother did. It will take away her honor in their eyes. I smiled. Then Nora came on the line. “Isaac” she said “Yes” “I am sorry” “I have forgiven you” I said. There was silence. I could hear her sobbing. I waited. “Thank you, darling. Thank you so much. I am grateful” she said finally. I said nothing more. There was silence again and then she asked if she could come back home. “Yes” I replied. Again, there was a pause. More sobs. I kept quiet. Then my son spoke. “Daddy, we are coming back home tonight. Right now! Right now” he screamed excitedly. Okay, Peter. I will be waiting to see you and Pamela” I said. “And Mummy” he added. “Of course, and Mummy” I said. “Daddy, do you still love her?” he asked me. If there was anybody I loved that moment, it was my son. “Yes, I love her” I replied. I heard him scream in delight as he ended the call. I suddenly felt a bit empty. Then against my wish, I broke down in tears and cried my heart out. For close to thirty minutes, all I could do was weep. In order not to be heard crying, I later went to my bathroom, stripped and got under the shower. Under the shower, as I bathed, I wept. By the time I had come out, I felt ok I had barely finished dressing when I heard a knock on my door. Expecting that it was Efe coming over to tell me food was ready, I hurried to the door and opened it. Lo and behold, standing there was my estranged wife with our two children. “Daddyyyyyyyyyyyyy!!!” the two children screamed out in unison as they jumped into my arms. I curled my hands around them as tears of joy began to trickle down my cheeks. They were my children; my biological children; bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh and blood of my blood. And, every attempt had been made to deny them their father. I held on to them tightly. They were more important to me than all the gold and diamonds in the world. They were more important to me than I was to myself. Finally, I put them down.
    Screaming, they run to my bed, jumped on it and began to play as they used to do.
    Seeing them at play made me realize that the good old days were back. I turned to Nora.
    She was on her knees and in tears. Her eyes looked puffy. “Isaac, I am a fool. I don’t deserve….” She began. “Ssshhhh!” I said, stopping her from talking. Holding her hands, I got her to her feet, pulled her close to me and kissed her on the lips.
    She literally melted into my arms as she began to cry again. Over to my right, I saw Efe and John, standing by the TV, looking at us and smiling. I nodded to them, smiling back.
    The End

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