THE GLOOMY CORRIDORS (Episode 16) – Olumide Fatunsin

Debby rushed downstairs but they weren’t there. She checked the main door and the other rooms but there was no trace of them.

She went upstairs again and tried to open the door. Fortunately, Lisa opened the door and Debby rushed inside to know what really went wrong. She saw Charlie lying on the floor half naked and his mother looked ruffled in her appearance.

“Mum scared me with her weird appearance again. I don’t know what came over her.”

Debby turned to her to ascertain his claim. Lisa couldn’t utter any word when she asked her the reason for her behaviour. Charlie then sat at the edge of the bed still afraid. However, Lisa stood there staring at the table. Debby decided to check the table and found the drawings of a man and a woman facing opposite sides. As soon as she showed it to Lisa, she screamed and tore the paper. Debby knew anger and hatred had taken greater part of her emotion.

“Mum! Why? Why did you tear it?” Charlie showed his dissatisfaction.

Debby decided to pray for them and sing a lullaby for him until he slept. Lisa was still lost in thought until Debby held her left hand.

“Do you mind sharing your burden with me?”

Lisa didn’t pay attention.

“What’s bothering you?”

She looked at Debby briefly and sighed deeply.

“Can we talk now or early in the morning?” Debby asked.

“I hate him!”

Debby listened patiently to allow her pour out her heart.

“I love him!”

Debby couldn’t correlate her sayings but promised herself not to interfere.

“He abandoned us. I hate him!”

She paced up and down in the room with tears on her face. After a while, she stooped in front of Debby who sat on the bed,

“His son cannot even recognise him. Why is he so wicked? He didn’t look back. We don’t deserve this harsh treatment. Do we?”

Debby nodded her head in the negative.

“I’m lonely. I’m not happy. I regretted travelling to Barbados for a short vacation. I tried to bury my pains there but I was mistaken. Am I not beautiful? Am I not educated?”

There was a pindrop silence as they looked at each other with great concern. Then, Lisa came to sit beside her and burst into tears. Debby placed her hand on her shoulder to comfort her.

“All will be well. God knows your heart desires and he’s willing to carry your burdens. Will you allow him?” Debby struck with these words to call her attention to the need of the great Saviour.

Debby, a devoted Christian came from a polygamous family where her mother was the third wife and she happened to be the only person among the 16 children to travel abroad for higher studies. Her family was a battlefield where the fortunate ones barely survived. She was the only surviving child of her mother who had visited strange places to ensure the survival of her daughter.

Debby turned out to be the favourite of her father because of her academic excellence and forthrightness. She never disobeyed her father’s instructions and he in turn didn’t hide his love for her from the family. This bred hatred and envy among them until she encountered Jesus Christ through a friend during her secondary school days. She caught the fire of God in her heart and that brought persecution chiefly from her father. He didn’t want her to tarnish the reputation of the family by attending the Pentecostal church in their town. Her refusal to bend to his dictate to renounce her conviction added to the heat of envy and hatred in the family.

Her mother who wanted to please her husband pleaded with her daughter to obey him. Despite his refusal to sponsor her education, she still stood her ground. However, her maternal Uncle came to her rescue until she entered the university. It was during the…

To be continued in Episode 17.


Olumide Fatunsin

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