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[STORY] DIARY OF A PASTOR’S SON (Episode 16)

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DIARY OF A PASTOR’S SON by Frank The Writer - AllNaijaEntertainment
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Episode 16.

After some moment, I overheard the whining of the door. Someone was trying to unlock the entrance door. My heartbeat went faster immediately. I presumed Agatha must have slept off since she said she was hungry. I was lucky I had eaten with Desiré before my father and Agatha came in. I really felt for Agatha who has eaten nothing since morning. The door finally opened making a loud noise. Who could it be? I pondered. My father was the only person that crossed my mind. I overheard footsteps from one end to another. Then I saw the person turn the doorknob, followed by a knock.
“Daddy,” came Shola’s voice. I heaved a big sigh of relief on realizing it was Shola.

She was finally back from school which meant it was past 4 pm. I remained mute in my father’s room, and I noticed she reached to the other door and turned the door handle too. “Who locked these doors?” she said. It was unusual because both doors were always open.
“Shola,” I finally broke the long silence. I watched her through the doorknob. Shola turned but didn’t know where the voice came from. She looked in the direction of my father’s room and also turned to the other door.

“Bro Femi, where are you?” She stood before my mother’s room.
“I’m inside here.”
“Where exactly?” she turned.
“Inside here naa. Daddy’s room.”
“Oh! Both rooms are locked. What happened? Who locked you inside? She queried in one breath.
“Who else if not daddy. Please, can you give me some water?”
“Please, me too. My throat is dried,” came Agatha’s voice from my mother’s room. She couldn’t pretend anymore.
“Ahh!, Agatha, ati iwo no?” She meant, even you too? But Agatha didn’t reply.
“Where have you been all this while?” Shola added.

Silence.

“There is no key here to unlock the doors. Trust daddy, he must have gone out with the keys.” Shola announced to my discomfort. I heard Agatha hissed loudly from the other end. She must be regretting why she even talked in the first place.
“Have you checked very well? Check under the table too,” I said.
“It’s not there. No single key is here.”
“Okay then.”
“Bro Femi, what actually happened?” Shola asked.
“Something happened.”
“You don’t want to tell me or what?”

“Wo, I’m very hungry. Just leave me alone,” I answered, indirectly dodging her query, knowing she wouldn’t bother asking further.
“Okay oo. If you say so. I’ll soon leave you both,” she taunted.
“To where exactly? Where are you going to?” I replied speedily.
“WAEC lesson of course. Have you forgotten my exam will be kicking off next month?
That was the last thing she said to me and eventually left when she had changed her clothes.

Later in the evening, my father came back and released us. He said he’s yet to decide what next he would do to us. I guess the Holy Spirit was yet to decide what punishment was best for us. “Have you eaten today?” he turned to Agatha. She replied in the negative. He wanted to ask if I had eaten then he remembered he met Desiré and I earlier in the day. “Femi, no food for you again today. As for you, Agatha, you are free to eat dinner. Then by tomorrow, I’ll tell you both what I have for you.” He said. When mom came back later around 7 pm, she was shocked to meet Agatha. She began her interrogation and all those scolding stuff. Agatha was calm as a dove as my mom bombarded her with hurtful words. I even pitied Agatha at a point.

***

As soon as they finished eating dinner, they started to prepare for sleep. My father shut the TV and when he turned to my mother, he asked her to lead us in prayer.
Mom began and ended after about five minutes or less. I noticed my father was setting an alarm with his phone. As usual, he would still wake up at midnight to pray. Shola and Agatha went into their room while I sat hungrily on the sofa. My belly was hitting so badly. My mom was seated in the dining room with my father.

“Don’t you think that was fast?” he turned to my mother.
“What was fast?” mom asked, looking surprised.
“The prayer.”
“How do you mean? Are we supposed to hold a crusade before going to bed?” Mom replied jokingly. But unknown to her my father didn’t find it funny. I looked at his face and he wasn’t wearing a smile.
“I never said we should host a crusade but that was a very quick one.”
“How long should a night prayer last? I thought it was just meant to thank God for the day and pray for a night of safe sleep,” replied mom defensively.
“Well, if you do take your time to read the Bible, you will know how unscriptural it is to make short prayers. Men ought always to pray and not faint,” he added by quoting the Bible.

I sat and watched the two love birds arguing over short prayers and long prayers. I was pissed off by my father’s claims and choice of words. I mean, prayer is prayer—be it short or long, as long as it was prayed to God.

“Oh! Has it gotten to the point where you tell me I’m not conversant with the Bible?” my mom said, looking him in the eyes.
“I’m sorry, honey. I don’t mean to be harsh,” my father said, trying to control her temper.
“The thing is, we lead a church which is a spiritual organization. We must be above the par both spiritually and otherwise,” my father added.
Mom kept quiet and peacefully stared at him while he went on.
“And it bothers me that you don’t read the Bible as much as I think you should do,” he said and paused.

“Beautiful! I’m your wife. Go on and teach me more,” replied my mom.
“Well, I can’t teach you how to pray. But I will tell you this: every church needs a spiritual mother, that is a fervent pastor’s wife. That’s why these girls in the church won’t consider you above them because in your private life you act exactly like them,” busted my father.
“Oh! This is it. So why marry me in the first place if I’m not spiritual enough for you?”
“It’s simple. I believe in change. I was hoping you would change with time.”

Silence.

“Come to think of it, when was the last time you fasted? When was the last time you spent considerable time in prayer?”
“Goodnight,” mom said and headed towards her room. She couldn’t take it anymore. I felt for her and I was so disappointed at my father for his choice of words towards mom, even in my very before. I wish I could tell him to stop being too religious. I wish I could just scream out the anger raging inside of me. Well, if only wishes were horses, beggars would surely ride.

“As for you, no food for you till 9 tomorrow morning,” he said to me. I watched him as he walked to the kitchen and padlocked the door. “You must change! Whether you like it or not. Tomorrow, we will continue where we stopped,” he added. I was just mopping at him without uttering a word. The Holy Spirit is yet to give him directives as he said. But I knew my father was only trying to keep Agatha and I unaware of his next line of action. He always wanted to stay unpredictable.

Hungrily, I lay on the longer couch in the living room. I was feeling peckish that I could eat a horse. There was no light in the living room. It was all covered in darkness. As I lay there, random thoughts about my life filled my head. I thought of how the once innocent Femi suddenly transformed into something else. Growing up, I had always been that calm boy with an innocent face not until Agatha’s effect. The calm voice that I used to hear was long gone, now things of the past.

Ten minutes later, I heard my phone beep—a message notification tone. I quickly placed my hand on my trouser, and it then occurred to me that my father was still with my phone. But then, the notification tone sounded very close, I opened my eyes and I could see a dim light from the dining room. With the speed of light, I rushed there. Lo and behold, my phone was at the dining table. He forgot to go in with it.
Unfortunately, my phone had a scratch at the right top when I picked it up. I was so annoyed by the line of the scratch. I had always guided my phone that I never wanted it to have any single scratch. I sighed slowly as I turned the back to see if there was any scratch, it turned out negative.

I clicked on the notification bar and I noticed the sender of the message wasn’t the network provider as I had thought. I had presumed it was one of those MTN random texts. But it was Biola texting me for the first time. Our conversation had always been on WhatsApp, and her text read thus: “Femi, check your WhatsApp. You haven’t been online since morning.” I was puzzled by the content of the message. What could it be?

I quickly turned my data on. Messages began to fly in from different groups and private messages. The network was friendly at that time of the night, so Biola’s message came in a few seconds later.
Well, your guess might be closer but not entirely the way you have guessed. Biola wasn’t sure if she was pregnant but according to her texts, she missed her period and she doesn’t feel entirely well. I felt cold a fiver down my spine. My legs went weak as I stood, and subconsciously, I noticed my hand was shaking as I held my phone.

I cleared the WhatsApp conversation between Biola and I. Then I texted her back. “Don’t text or call me for now, please. My phone is currently with my father. There’s a problem. Please, beg you. I will be the one to call you.” I deleted the text after I got notified it was delivered. Damn! Another trouble about you unfold, I said to myself. Sluggishly, I walked back to the couch and collapsed on it.

To be continued…


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