I wobbled to my room on trembling feet as I spent the whole night weeping; sleeping or walking brought me great pain, I wish I had not been found outside that night. I just laid in my bed and watched the ceiling with tears in my eyes, my body was in flames and hurting, I felt sharp pains between my thighs in fact I felt like I no longer owned my body.
My friends walked into the room and I had to act like nothing had happened then Tope broke the silence that enveloped the room, “speaking of the devil, guys look at the missing girl here, she is just cruising on her bed like nothing matters to her”. Mirabel moved towards my bed and asked, “Ugo, where were you last night? I searched everywhere but I…” Tracey interrupted loudly, clapping her hands towards me in an offensive manner, “Ashewo! Pretender! You’ll be raising your shoulders like almighty, so you have been deceiving us all along.”
I was confused but too tired to speak then Mirabel said to me and was a little bit more calm this time, “Ugo, where were you last night?” I managed to sit up and I replied in tears, “I was raped.” Everyone becam silent until Tope paced up and down the room before saying, “the internet says otherwise Ugochi.” She showed me her phone and passed it to the other girls to see the evil that has befallen me. My eyes widened and my heart skipped; I fainted. The internet; the devil’s tool read boldly, ‘CAMPUS GIRL INVOLVED IN MULTIPLE SEX FOR MONEY’.
I opened my eyes; it was a dream after all, at least that’s what it felt like. I looked around, it wasn’t a dream. I was in the hospital, I had fainted for real.
My parents walked in, my mother sat beside me and touched my cheeks while my father stood beside the door staring at me like he was seeing a ghost. “How are you Ugochi?” mother asked me and I replied, “I‘m not fine mama. Papa good morning!” His response was a slap on my face as he snapped, “If you greet me again I will curse you.” Mrs Ikechukwu held her husband’s hand immediately but that didn’t make him calm, instead he started to lament, “you have brought shame and disgrace to our family. How could you sell your pride as a woman? You were supposed to be our joy, our pride, the first female graduate in our village. Suitors are to be charged heavily with a bride price worth millions. Unfortunately we’ll only get potato chips and a few tubers of yam from them. So this has been your intention all along, this is how you have decided to repay our efforts?
No wonder you hardly called us to request for money because you are getting it elsewhere. In fact, let’s not prolong issues; I no longer regard you as my daughter, stay away from us and stay away from my family.”
Tears raced down my cheeks as I watched my father walk out on me and told mum to meet him in the car. I looked at my mum, was she really going to neglect me at this point? Did she think I did this to myself? I neither knew what to say nor the right questions to ask but I turned to mum’s direction, she was staring at me with disappointment and pity written all over her face. I continued tearing up and stuttered while I made efforts to convince mum that I am innocent, “I didn’t do it mama. I was raped; they assaulted me and rendered me helpless.” I was still speaking when my mum stood up, patted my shoulder saying, “rest my dear” then she walked out with tears rolling like water from a stream
Tope and Mirabel walked into my ward, I never believed they would come to check on me. “How are you?” Mirabel said. I didn’t feel like talking, I just wanted to be left alone but I didn’t want to be rude to them so I said with my unclear voice, “my parents don’t believe me, no one does.” Mirabel sat beside my bed and held my hand while she thought aloud, “you are just too stubborn, if only you listened to us early all this won’t have happened; we wouldn’t be here now.” Tope walked towards us and I knew she was about to say something provoking as usual, she spoke, “I’m sorry to interrupt; I see you both are getting along quite well but we are here to inform you that you will be facing the school panel tomorrow. If your evidence are not convincing enough then you will be rusticated from the University. Wouldn’t it have been better to leave the Department than to bring so much shame on yourself? Anyway you are ‘Wonder Woman’ so you must have gotten your mess all figured out.”
This was a nightmare; I had not finished putting myself together when I heard someone say, “madam, you are discharged”, it was the doctor. I knew I had no way to hide from the world, it was almost time to face the reality of my shameful fate. I pleaded with him, “doctor, please help me prove that I was raped. Please I need some evidence before I can face the panel tomorrow. I know there should be a way you could help me. You can do this can’t you?” I was expecting an optimistic replied but my hopes were shattered as he said, “My work here is done madam and you should get set to leave.”
I held his arm and cried loudly, “Doctor please. My life will be ruined if I can’t prove my innocence. My parents already disowned me some minutes ago and I will be rusticated tomorrow if I have no evidence to prove my innocence.”
The doctor bowed his head in guilt as he shamelessly but remorsefully said, “I’m sorry madam. There’s nothing I can do. You’re going against the son of one of the most powerful and influential men in the country. My life would also be ruined if I help you. I would first lose my job then my life.” I sat up, looked at him and couldn’t stop crying, he was the only hope I had, how would I escape from this? I didn’t know when I uttered, “It is not fair, it really isn’t.” The doctor said arrogantly, “welcome to reality sweetie. Life is not fair”.
To be continued next week.
Written by Ordeezy 2018
Photos from Google Chrome images.