Lawyer: “with due respect madam, you have known me for years as your husband’s lawyer and I such I demand that you caution your children. I will not have them insult my person and my profession. I have been serving your late husband, my client for years now and if I didn’t cheat him while he was alive, I see no reason why I should temper with his will now that he is no more. Have you asked yourself what I will achieve by altering his will?”
Mrs Ogar: “stay there and be speaking English. All we know is that this will is not acceptable by us and we have lost trust in you”
Declan: “mum, please. I think my father’s properties is not something that we should fight over…” he started to say but his step mother interrupted him.
Mrs Ogar: “shut up your gutter of a mouth there. Why won’t you talk when you have connived with the lawyer to forge your father’s will?”
Jim: “mum, I have always known that Declan had bought this lawyer over right from when this meeting started. Can’t you see the chemistry between the two of them?”
Iyke: “if he likes, let him buy over all the lawyers in the world. All I know is that nobody will allow him go with all these properties. Who even knows if his dead mother did not even have him for another man and then gave him to our father”
Declan: “what! How dare you insult my late mother? How dare you call me a bastard in my father’s house? Do you realize that I am your elder brother with more than ten years difference between us? If my mother was alive, do you think you would have been born into this family at all?”
Iyke: “elder brother my foot. I can never have a dummy like you as my elder brother. Tufiakwa”
Declan: “mummy, talk to your son. I will not have him insult me, no I will not”
Jim: “and what if he insults you, what can you do?” he said getting up and going to Declan for a fight.
Stacey touched her husband lightly on the hand.
Stacey: “relax my love, remember you father’s dying wish? He said you people should live together as one after he is gone. These are your younger ones, so just ignore whatever insult they dish at you” she said.
Jim: “and you woman, why are you in this meeting in the first place? Are you a member of this family? Are you not an ordinary wife? Oh, so you are here to give your husband moral support to perpetrate his evil right? Now get out of this meeting”
Declan: “she is my wife and she has every right to be here. In fact, what am I saying? She has more right than you to be at the reading of my father’s will because she took care of our father while he was alive. She was like the daughter he never had to him”
Stacey: “its okay, baby. I will go to the car and wait for you. Just take things easy okay?” she said and planted a kiss on his forehead.
Iyke: “nonsensical rubbish”
Lawyer: “I think I am done here. Mr Declan, can you please come over and sign the will?” he asked Declan.
Declan: “of course, barrister” he said and signed the will and handed it back to the lawyer.
Suddenly, Mrs Ogar got up and yanked the will out of the barrister’s hand and tore it into pieces as Declan stared at her in horror.
Declan: “what have you done, mother?” he heard himself ask.
Mrs Ogar: “what does it look like I have done? I just tore the fake will” she said grinning from ear to ear.
Lawyer: “not to worry, mr Declan. Years of experience in this field has taught me to expect reactions like this. What she tore is a photocopy of the original will. The original copy and other duplicates are in places she can never imagine. Come around to the chambers one of these days and sign so that you can have your copy. This properties and others belongs to you and you can send anyone you wish out. Should you encounter any opposition, inform us and we will not hesitate to involve the police and charge the guilty parties to court” he said and extended his hand for a firm handshake.
Declan: “thank you very much, barrister. I do appreciate this” he said and walked him to the door.
He returned to pick his phone so that he could join his wife who was waiting for him in the car. His step mother stopped him.
Mrs Ogar: “you are happy now right? You think you have won, isn’t it? If you think I will sit back and watch you enjoy all that your father left behind while my children get nothing then you don’t know the sort of wife your father married” she said and went up with her children following her after making similar threats.
Frank tried all he could within his power to discourage his mother from going to the village but she refused and insisted on going alone with his wife if he didn’t want to travel with them. Afraid of the dibia telling them his secret behind his back, he agreed to travel with them and so they set out that that weekend.
The drive to the village was hectic and stressful. It was the rainy season and the condition of the bad road that led to the village from the city had deteriorated because of the rain that was heavy in that part of the country.
Mama Frank insisted that they drove to the dibia’s shrine immediately they got to their state. The young couple had expected that they would get sometime to rest before embarking on the long journey to the dibia’s shrine but his mother would have none of it.
If the drive from the city to the village was bad, the drive to the dibia’s shrine was terrible. At some point, the road was not motorable and so they had to alight from their car and pick commercial motocycles who drove them close the shrine from where they had to walk into the cave.
The dibia, a short pot belied man with eyes that looked like they would pop out of their sockets any minutes listened as mama Frank narrated her son’s ordeal to him. However, she left out the part where her son had given a woman money to abort his baby while they were in secondary school, she didn’t want to tell him that because she felt it was part of his job to consult with the gods and tell them where the problem was coming from.
After she finished talking, the dibia began to make some incantations and chants. It lingered on for a while after which he would shake his head and start the entire process all over again.
Dibia: “arlu, chai! Arlueme eh!” he screamed, startling his clients.
Mama Frank: “wise one, what is the matter?”
Dibia: “woman, my eyes have seen my ears. Chai! Human beings are evil. Tufiaa!” he spat out.
Mama Frank: “what did you see? Please tell us, our ears are itching” she said anxiously.
Frank looked from the dibia to his mother and then to his wife.
“I am finished. This man will expose me today” he thought.
Dibia: “tell the young woman to excuse us. The secret of the house must first be known to the head of the house before other members” he said.
Mama Frank spoke to Liz and she willingly stepped out. She was glad that she had been asked to excuse them because she didn’t want to get involved in any diabolical practice.
Dibia: “your son here is the cause of his own problem. He raped his wife sometime ago and that is a great abomination. That girl placed a curse on the man who raped her and as long as she is alive, your son will never see his own child. That is not all, he will never succeed, all that he has now will soon go away with the winds after which he will end up with abject poverty and rejection. Then he will die mysteriously. This can only be averted if he kills his wife and use her blood to atone for his sins”
Mama Frank: “Ewoo o, Frank has killed me”
Frank: “ah, I am dead. I am finished! Frank sees what you have done to yourself” they exclaimed simultaneously.
To be continued.