If You Missed The Part 2, Read It Here
of her temper’. “I’m not going to give any of my daughters the opportunity to get spoilt. Not in my house. You’re going to stay where i can keep an eye on you”,her father continued. “So you don’t want me to get spoilt,ehn? That’s why you want to keep me cooped up in here? did it ever occur to you,Dad”,she asked,spitting out his name in anger,and continued;”that if i wanted to be spoilt,or promiscuous,i could’ve done so a long time ago?” “Shut your mouth or i’ll shut it for you. None of my children will ever disgrace me. I won’t give you that chance”. “Oh. Ok. See,you don’t have to worry about me getting pregnant and disgracing you,dad. I assure you,if i sleep with a boy,i’ll have the good sense to protect myself.” Her father leapt up with surprising agility and slapped her so hard her face spun. She stood up and moved away from him “How dare you? How dare you sit there and talk about sleeping with a boy? In my presence! Efe!”,he yelled,calling her mother. “Come and take your daughter before i give her the beating she’s asking for”. “You don’t need to call mommy,dad. If you want to beat me,then go right ahead and do it. I’m not that little kid who was terrified of being flogged by her father. Not anymore. Yils it unou wanna flog me? then go right ahead and do it,”she said quietly. Her father took off his belt and walked towards her menacingly and then stopped a few feet away from her,at which point she was supposed to throw herself at his feet and beg for mercy-except she didn’t. “Go on dad. I’m not afraid of you,or your belt.” Her defiance infuriated him the more,and he rapidly closed the distance between them and brought the belt down on her. The iron buckle hit her lip,and she clenched her teeth tighly to keep from crying out. Her father hit her,again and again. Miriam’s fraught nerve ends screamed to her brain,her whole body racked with pain. the pain was agonising,gut-wrenching infact;she heard the soft swoosh of the belt sailing throught the air ant the thwip sounds made when it landed on her soft skin,but she still didnt cry. She’d sworn a long time ago never to give her dad the satisfaction of seeing her tears,and she wasn’t about to break her oath now. The part of her brain that wasn’t overwhelmed with pain caught a glimpse of her father’s face and processed the look on it;he looked angished,almost as if it hurt him to be beating her,but he still kept on doing it until she heard her mother’s voice from what seemed like a far way off.
“For the love of God,Moses,stop it. Do you want to kill her?”,her mother asked,pulling his arm. Her father stopped flogging her and shouted;”I can take a lot of things from this girl,but the one thing i will not tolerate is her disrespect!” “But you know she has a bad temper,just like you,and it pushes her to say and do things she doesn’t really mean”. “Temper or not,she needs to realize that she must respect me,and if whipping her’s the way to go,then so be it.” Her mother sighed in frustration and then went to help Miriam up. “Are you okay?”,she asked in concern. “I’m as okay as i can be,given what just happened”,she quipped. “Enough of your wisecracks young lady. To your room!”,her father roared. “Yes daddy”,she said and looked up at him for a few seconds,enough for him to see that she was dry-eyed and that annoyed him even more. Then she turned and went uo to her room.
On Sunday morning,Miriam sat in the dining room,slowly chewing the food in her mouth. Her mother,father and her junior brother to find her sitting there,and they were all dressed up for church. “Aren’t you coming to church?”,her mother asked. “No mum”,she replied. Very briefly,a look of pain flashed through her mother’s face. “Okay,then. Let’s start going”. “You go and start the car. I’ll be down in a few minutes”,her dad said. Her mother and brother left the house. “Why do you always do this,Miriam?” “Do what,dad?” “Antagonise people. You know how devout your mother is,and how important it is to her that her children be spiritually inclined. Why cant you do this for her?” “I love mom,but i can’t be something i’m not. I believe in God,but believe that going to churches to be fleeced,like sheep being led to the slaughter is the way to serve him. I’m not religious,dad. I’d rather stay at home than go to a church and become a part of the blatant hypocrisy therein”,she said with feeling. “Just come”,he said. “What for,dad? So i can sit down doing nothing useful for the next three hours”. “Why is your own always different,ehn Miriam? Why are you so problematic? Your sisters never gave me this kind of trouble. Why cant you be more like them?” “Because i can’t,dad”,she said softly and continued;”I’m not them. I’m not an extension of your perfect daughters. I’m me. And i can’t be someone i’m not,no matter how much you want me to”. “Fine. Have it your way”,her father said in frustration and left the dining table.
WATCH OUT FOR PART 4