The next morning, Declan and Stacey set out to visit his family house. The house which was located in Asokoro was about 30 minutes drive from Kubwa where he and his wife lived. It was the first time they were going to visit the family house after marriage and Declan wished he didn’t have to discuss the kidney transplant with his father.
As soon as they got to the gate housing the edifice that his father and step mother lived in, the security man on recognizing the car as that of his favourite ‘small oga” who had just gotten married opened the gate and saluted them respectfully. Declan dipped his hands in his pocket and gave him a new one thousand naira note as he always did anything the gate keeper impressed him.
His step mother was watching a series on Zee World when the young couple entered.
Mrs Ogar: “look who we have here” she said as soon as she saw them.
Stacey went on her knees immediately and greeted her respectfully. Declan bowed courteously. Ever since his father married her when he was barely ten years old, his step mother had taken a dislike for him and he could not explain why she hated him that much. The only time she smiled at him and spoke to him with love was when they had visitors in their midst, therefore he was not carried away by the outburst of emotions for he knew that she was just trying to put up appearances before his wife like she had always done.
Mrs Ogar: “come here and hug me, young ma. Don’t you know how much I have missed you?” she said and spread her arms. Declan had no choice but to hug her. She went to Stacey and hugged her too, turning her all over, in feigned motherhood expectation.
“I hope I get to come around for omugwo soon?” she asked her.
Stacey: “by God’s grace, ma” she said with a little sense of embarrassment.
Declan: “where is my dad” he asked unconsciously looking upstairs.
Mrs Ogar: “oh, he is in his room” let me get him for you” she said and made to turn around but he stopped her.
Declan: “don’t bother yourself ma. I will go to his room and see him, I have something to discuss with him, part of the reason why we came” he said and ran upstairs before she could even think of asking what it was that he wanted to discuss with his father.
“So, tell me our wife, have you missed your period yet? Has my grandchild entered your womb?”
Stacey: “not yet, ma. She said shifting uncomfortable in her chair.
Declan met his father sitting before his computer in his room.
Mr Ogar: “ah, my son is here” he said getting up and hugging Declan.
Declan: “Good afternoon father. I must say that you are looking very strong today. I hope you have been getting enough rest and sleep as advised?”
Mr Ogar: “we are trying. The white man doesn’t know that I was not brought up to sleep and rest during the day. If I had been sleeping and resting during the day all these while, how would I have been able to acquire all that I have?” he asked rhetorically, going back to sit on his chair.
Declan: “well, you have acquired the properties and money and so you can afford to sleep now. Remember that the advise is for the good of your health”
Mr Ogar: “I will try. I have been trying, haven’t I? Anyway, how are you and your wife?”
Declan: “she is fine. We actually came together. She is downstairs”
Mr Ogar: “You left her downstairs without bringing her here to see me? Well, if Mohammed doesn’t come to the mountain, the mountain will go to Mohammed. I am going down to see her” he said and made to get up but his son stopped him.
“Not yet, dad. I left her down purposely because I have something to discuss with you” he said taking the available chair close to his father.
Mr Ogar: “what is the problem? Are you having issues with your wife already? I mean you just got married last month. Well, you have to be very patient and understanding. That is what I have been doing with your step mother ever since I married her. I guess women were specially designed to trouble men” he said in one breath.
Declan shook his head. “It is not about my wife, father” he said.
Mr Ogar: “then what is the problem?”
Declan: “it is about this forthcoming India trip. I mean the scheduled kidney transplant”
Mr Ogar: “oh that, don’t worry about it. It will go well, the hospital is good enough, trust me” he assured his distressed son.
Declan: “it is not about the capability of the hospital. I am no longer interested in giving up one of my kidneys anymore, dad”
Mr Ogar: “what! What did you just say?” he asked again.
Declan: “I said I have thought about the whole thing and I don’t think I am willing to give up my kidney anymore”
Mr Ogar: “so what happens to me? You want to abandon your father to die? Is that it? After all that I have done for you after your mother died and left you in this cold and wicked world?” he asked.
Declan: “father, you have to listen to me please. You have come a long way in terms of age, education and achievement. You have seen your children and by God’s grace you will live to see your grandchildren even before this one kidney that you are depending on fails. But look at me, I just got married. Do you want me to die in my prime without seeing my children? Think of my wife, what happens if I die now and leave her?” he asked, stress veins appearing on his forehead.
Mr Ogar: “who wants to kill you, my son?”
Declan: “you cannot be too sure that there will not be side effects after I give out my kidney. Some healthy people did that and their lives were never the same afterwards. Just think about it father” he pleaded.
Mr Ogar: “at this juncture I think we need to get somethings straight. To say that I am shocked about your refusal to help me life again is an understatement. I give you two options, Declan. It is either you donate one of your kidneys to me and save my life or I disown you and you lose out your inheritance. Make your choice now!” he barked and Declan’s feet began to quiver.
Question: Can a father ever do this to his own son? What do you advise Declan to do?
To be continued.