Solemn Lasting Days (chapter Four)

The burn was thankfully a second-degree burn that removed some part of her left side hair and also scarred her face.

"Everything is so cruel," Abena said as she lay on the hospital bed covered in facial bandages."You are going to be fine," Bewa whispered into her ears as she caressed her face."I would have to grow my hair from scratch," Abena said amidst painful tears that she tried not to let out. "It would grow in time for me to plant them again, don't worry," Bewa told her again. "You even look more beautiful without the hair," Bewa said to her and smiled.

Only a few of the family who probably wanted to see how much damage was done came by without anything to show for it. That night, Wale called a meeting. It was the first time in a very long time he had done that. They rarely saw him around, talkless of his children talking together with him in the same space. Everyone had their own lives to live until the unfortunate incident. He warned vehemently against the atrocities that had been going on in his house and said he was giving the person who did such to her a chance to come out and own up to his or her crime. It was a one-day chance.

Abena stayed in the hospital for about a week before coming back home together with Bewa. Her mother had always warned against a relationship with the young girl saying her mum was the reason for the bad luck that came to the family that caused the father to be cold to other wives after she left, but Bewa did not argue or say anything. She asked her mother if there was happiness in living without anything to live for. "Even if I wanted to give up mama, Abena would be the reason I wouldn't," she always said.

There were mumbling and hateful looks directed toward Abena, especially when the culprit turned out to be the one of first's wife's daughter, who was thrown out immediately after she was flogged mercilessly. It was better than being spiritually cursed by her father. It now confirmed the fact that her father favored her over all other children. "Why would only her case be taken up that far and to the extent of extremely punishing the culprit, they said."

Even when it happened among them, they either held their peace, cursed at whosoever did so, or retaliated. Never has the man of the house interfered in their affairs, not until now. "Everyone hates me more now," Abena said as Bewa applied ointment to her already healing scars. "It is a relieve your hair follicle was not destroyed," Bewa interrupted, trying not to continue the conversation.

"What do I do now," Abena said, bursting into tears."Everywhere I turn, it's like everyone's eyes are going to kill me and dump my body somewhere," Abena sobbed more. "Why is everyone so mean? Every time I want to come out of this door, my body still shudders at the thought of being hit by something again. I cannot even sleep well because my dreams are haunting me. The children give me glaring looks; I get notes threatening to kill me nowadays." "What do I do, what do I do," Abena cried more loudly than ever with Bewa patting her back."I thought I could handle it, but being in this kind of family is suffocating. What if they kill me or send someone to kidnap me? What if..." "You are going to be fine Abena, you are. Stop saying things like this and destroying your mental health," Bewa said, hugging her.

"It's not like you can really leave now, right. We should just endure it till everything gets okay or when there is a better way," Bewa said with so much concern in her eyes. "Should we run away," Abena said suddenly. "What."

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