A Father’s Love

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I love my wife, yes I do. That is the only real truth I can tell a perfect stranger. My wife is everything I can think of, she is the air breath, she make my whole life complete, she could nag the hell out of me but I still love her crazy.
I met Nkechi (my wife) at a restaurant, infact no formings, I met her at Iya Sikirat’s buka, it was a hot sunny day in school, I was so hungry and headed there with a few friends. After our order was taken, Nkechi walked in, all at once I lost every touch with reality. Iya Sikirat’s buka had transformed, the wooden benches turned into sofas, the bike men turned to photographers, the horrible floor now had a red carpet on it and my dear Nkechi was was the centre of attention, a runway model with paparazzis shoving to take pictures. I was brought back to reality when the hot plate of hot soup I held in one hand droped on my laps. Anyway Nkechi and I got talking, started a relationship and things blossomed.
After school, I worked for a bank, the salary wasn’t much but it helped look after me and my wife. We usually ran late with paying bills but at the end, we eventually did pay.
August 12th, Maria was born, she was the second girl, she was the second girl I confessed my love to. I love her as much as her mum. She had her mum’s eyes, those kinda big intimidating sexy eyes. We took care of ourselves though the bank work was a little demanding but I still had time for quality family time. Every Friday was family night, we watched a movie with popcorns.
Next month maria would be 5, we had arranged to have a clown for her party, two big cakes, a bouncing castle and lots of candy for the kids. I was glad my little girl was gonna turn 5. She teased me that I would forget her birthday. I told her I’d have to die to forget her birthday.
It was a Sunday, after service, we decided we decided to go have a treat at an eatery close to the house, we sang on our day there. As we walked in I held maria’s hand. I looked down at her as she smiled and kept talking about the chicken she wanted me to buy.
There was abrupt silence, maria had stopped talking, in a second she hit the floor, I picked her up , she wasn’t breathing, we rushed her to the hospital, she got resuscitated. Doctor said she had a heart condition that led to the heart failure. We were shocked, our little girl was dying. She needed immediate surgery at India costing N6million. I had barely N600,000. My wife and I wrote letters to family, friends charity organizations, we even went on tv.
In 3weeks we had raised N1m, it was no where close to half the amount needed. Maria was hooked to a machine, she was dying, my Maria was dying. I knew I couldn’t sit and watch, I had to move fast.
I woke up the next morning, didn’t even shower, I was suppose to be at work that day but today I had another plan. I drove down to the alley, got down from my car and went in. he was dark, rugged and had a voice that could scare the shit out of you. Without hesitation I handed him the little bag and in return he gave me a brown paper bag envelop. I went straight to the car, opened it and ther it was, a revolver handgun with live ammunition. I was ready.
Parked beside the bank I work, I was sweaty and nervous. I had never held a gun, but here I was, ready to use one. I took out my rosary from my pocket, said a few hail marys, dropped it and came out of the car. I walked straight into the bank. Headed straight to the manager’s office whom I knew had the key to the vault. Opened the door, drew out my gun and pointed it straight at him saying ‘’ I need money from the vault’’ he walked with me to the vault without raising suspicion and I took out exactly N6m into my back-pack, tied him up and exited the bank. As I walked to my car, screams of ‘’thief thief. Ole ole’’ filled my ear, the bank manager had somehow freed himself and was unto me. I had to move, the road was jam with traffic, I abandoned the car and started my escape by foot. The mob was growing but all I could think of was getting the money to Maria’s doctor.
I was cut off by people in front and behind me, I had no escape. I took out my gun, I could never shoot my way out of this if I tried. This was it, I had failed Maria. I dropped the gun, knelt down, and awaited my brutal death. It didn’t take a second for a huge black man to run up to me with a large stick, he struck me so hard to the head, and I saw my own blood leave my head, he hit the second time and my body caved in. I fell to the ground, death was imminent, no escaping it. A teenager walked up to me with a bottle, he was smiling, raised it high, he brought the bottle down to my head, it shattered with fragments lodged to my head. Short of breadth and at the verge of expiring.
I felt my left leg vibrate, it was my phone, I wondered if it was Jesus calling at the hour of my death. I reached for it with every last bit of strength I had left. It was a message from my wife, it read:
‘’Darlyn, the lord has answered our prayers, an NGO has just paid for Maria’s treatment. Am so glad, please come over to the hospital, Maria is happy and cant wait to c u. i love u xoxo’’
With my last breadth I was gonna say I love u too when a large stone ended my very existence. The calendar read: August 12th, 2012. It was Maria’s birthday. I had forgotten, and I was dead.