The Elder’s Daughter – Episode 10
© Jennipher Duru
Esther woke up in the morning with a swollen face. She struggled to get out of bed as her whole body was in pain. Naomi was also awake. She watched Esther from her angle and when she saw her face, she felt very bad within her. She felt sorry for what they had done to her. Esther slowly rose up and went to the bathroom to take a bath. “Ouch, ouch” Esther said gently as she tried to stretch her joints. As soon as she left, Naomi went to wake Janet up “Janet, Janet, wake up. Wake up! We need to talk” she said. Janet slowly sat up “What is it mehn! Why are you waking me up? You know that we are not going to class until 2pm” she said.
Naomi: Janet, I really feel bad about what we did to this girl. I don’t think it is fair.
Janet: What is not fair? And you think it is fair that she slapped a man who is our only hope of passing our exams?
Naomi: I know what she did was wrong, but I don’t think we should have beaten her up that badly. I just saw her this morning and her face is all swollen up. I feel so guilty
Janet: You make me laugh. Is this the first time we are involving ourselves in a fight? Have you forgotten how we almost killed that useless girl who slept with Big Joe?
Naomi: That was a different case altogether Naomi. This girl did not deserve such a treatment.
Janet: Oh really? You mean to say that you don’t care if we fail our exams? Are you ready to repeat classes for the second time? It’s only because Dr. Albert is a good man otherwise he could have just left the room yesterday and decide not to help us because of the embarrassment he went through.
Naomi: Oh God! Another thing: why did you have to lie that she stole my money when you know very well that I lent it to her?
Janet: To cover ourselves up my dear! If those students knew the real reason why we were beating her, they could have done justice to us. Listen; don’t even think of telling anyone that you just lent her that money. We have already entered into the deal, too late to back off. We need to cover ourselves up before we are sent to jail.
Naomi kept quiet and gave it a thought. Janet put her hand on Naomi’s lap and encouraged her “Don’t worry. She will soon be alright, and you know how naïve she is. We just need to play with her and she will soon forget the incident. You and I have an image to protect. Now, allow me to go back to sleep. I was actually dreaming that Big Joe had taken us to Dubai for a summer vacation. Let me go and continue my dream” she said. Naomi laughed and shook her head “Oh Janet, you are terrible!” she said.
Esther came back from the bathroom and was getting ready to go to class. Janet opened one eye and looked at her from her bed. She rose up and went towards her. Esther, who was so scared stretched her hand towards her and said “Please Janet, I don’t want any trouble. You people have done enough harm to my body already. Just leave me alone please”. Naomi was feeling so bad already. Janet smiled “Oh come on Esther, you surely don’t think I want to fight again, do you? I am not a monster. Let’s just forgive each other and move on. Fights between girls are so common and we cannot allow what happened yesterday to spoil our friendship. Come on now! Be the good hearted Esther that I know” Janet said. Esther looked at her and pushed her violently with the little strength in her as she tried to come close to her. “Leave me alone! I don’t ever want to talk to you. Both of you are so evil. If you can do what you did to me, then you are capable of killing me. You don’t deserve to be called my friends. And as for you Naomi, I will soon pay you back your money. Thank you for lying against me that I stole your money. God will definitely judge between us” she said. Janet knew that she was very serious and decided to withdraw while Naomi was speechless.
Someone knocked at the door and Esther knew it would be David. Sure enough, it was him. He looked at her face and sighed: “Oh Esther! Your face is swollen. How are you feeling? He said.
Esther: I am feeling much better. Let me just get my bag. Why are you sweating this early morning?
David: Oh, I had to make sure that the guard of the girl’s hostels did not see me as I came in, because they don’t allow male students at certain hours. So I ran as fast as I could when he went to the toilets.
Esther smiled and went inside. She took her bag and they both left. When they were getting near to the main gate, Esther went to have a fake discussion with the guard in order to distract him as David went through. They both went to have breakfast. They found Angela who had already reserved seats for them. She stood up and hugged Esther ‘How are you doing my dear?” she said. “I am doing fine just having some joint pains, but I’ll be fine soon” Esther answered. They all sat down and started having their breakfast. David looked at Esther and spoke gently
David: Esther, you know that you can always count on Angela and I as your friends right?
Esther: Yes. Why do you ask?
David: Angela briefly explained to me what happened yesterday although she says she does not have enough information. According to her, your roommate accused you of stealing money. Is this true?
Esther: Are you trying to say that I am a thief?
David: Not at all! I know you can never do a thing like this. I am asking if it is true that she accused you
Esther: Y-e-e-e-s, she did, but she is lying. I have never stolen in my life. Never! It’s against our Christian values
David: Then explain to me what really happened. What brought up the fight?
Esther: it’s simply because they were upset with the fact that I slapped that old Dean who tried to touch me. When I told them that he had no right to do so, Janet insulted me. I didn’t mind at all, but the moment she called my father an old stupid man, I couldn’t hold myself. I went to slap her and that’s how the fight started. When Naomi saw that I was stronger than her friend, she pounced on me and started hitting me hard until I fell to the ground. They both continued kicking me until people passing by heard my cry.
David: My God! These are animals. I don’t think they deserve to be in this Institution. They need to be thrown out of school to be on the streets where they belong. How can girls behave like gangsters?
Esther: I have left them to God. He will judge them
David: If you wish, I can escort you to the police station so that you can file a complaint
Esther: No, I don’t want to involve the police. I am already coping with the situation and I will be fine. And besides, they seem to have been really frightened by you because they were both so quiet last night and this morning, Janet even wanted us to become friends again but I refused. What did you tell them exactly?
David: Hahaha. Don’t worry about that, I just did what any man can do. If they think they are tough, let them do something stupid to you again. I was also thinking you can inform your dad about it, maybe he can call the Administratio….
Esther: No way! I don’t want my father to know anything about this. How will I explain that I borrowed money from a prostitute to pay for your school fees?
David looked surprised. Esther realized she had spilled the beans. She put her hand on her mouth and became silent. “Esther what did you just say? Are you trying to tell me that you borrowed money from those girls in order to settle my arrears?” David said. Esther stood up from her chair and tried to leave, but David pressed her hand firmly and asked her to sit down. People looked at them. “Ouch, my hand, you are hurting me!” Esther said.
David: I am sorry, but you need to explain to me what you just said now, or else I will not even allow you to go to your class. Esther had no choice but to explain everything to David. David looked perplexed. “My God! Anyway, I won’t be angry with you because you did it out of love. However, you have to understand that every friendship that should last must be built on the truth and honesty. You lied to me about the source of that money. Now look at the problems you have put yourself into. But I promise to settle that date next week once I get paid. I am really sorry for putting you in this kind of situation” he said. “It’s not your fault David. My fight with these girls actually had nothing to do with the money. She only brought it up to cover their evil deeds” Esther answered. David held her hand gently and said “Thank you Esther. You are the purest soul I have ever met. I promise that one day, I will show my gratitude in a grand style”.
“Oh there you go again with your grand style issue!” Esther laughed. After having breakfast, they all hurried to class.
And so it was that from that moment on, that Esther stopped relating with her roommates. She stopped talking to them, even though Naomi would sometimes try to talk to her. After getting paid, David gave Esther the money and asked her to pay her debt. Naomi was rather surprised to see the money. She tried to refuse to accept it, but Esther forced it into her hands “I know that we are no longer friends, which I think is a very good way to avoid problems between us. However, I just want to thank you for helping me out when I was in need. Thank you” she said as she put the money in Naomi’s hands. Naomi was left with a guilty conscience. She knew deep within her that Esther was a good person.
It was exam time and students were busy. Most students were writing their final papers that day, including Janet and Naomi. Esther woke up very early to revise. Her roommates didn’t seem to be moved by the exams. They continued attending parties every weekend and sometimes, even during week days. They boasted of how they would easily pass their exams without studying. “Dr. Albert is in control baby!” Janet would shout as they gave each other a high five.
“Oh my God! I can’t believe we are through with these exams!” Angela shouted as they came out of the exam hall. “Yes indeed. Thank God!’ Esther replied. They both decided to go and sit in the public garden as they discussed. “As David suggested, we will go out to town the whole Tuesday once the results are out so that we can show you around and have some fun” Angela said. Esther smiled “I am really excited. I can’t wait to visit the whole city” she said. Esther’s phone rang “Oh, it’s my father” she said.
Esther: Good afternoon sir
Elder Barnabas: Esther, how are you doing? Have you finished writing your exams? How was it?
Esther: Very well thank you sir. We just finished now
Elder Barnabas: And you didn’t think of calling to inform me
Esther: Sir, we just finished a couple of minutes ago
Elder Barnabas: Ok, so when are the results coming out? Are you confident enough that you will pass?
Esther: Yes sir.
Elder Barnabas: Oh my God! I think I am really getting tired of teaching you the same things over and over. Esther, I have told you to always say “by the grace of God”, how many times will I….
Esther: I will pass by the grace of God, sir. I am confident. The results are coming out on Monday.
Elder Barnabas: Good! I hope you have already packed your bags, because you have to leave early in the morning on Tuesday
Esther: Er-er-er. Sir, Tuesday will be too early. I need to…
Elder Barnabas: You need to do what? Once you receive the results, you have nothing more to do in that place. The annual church conference for youths will be starting on Thursday, and I want you to be here in time because I have very important news for you. Do you understand me? Esther!! I said do you understand me?
Esther: Y-e-s sir
Elder Barnabas: Good! The Lord be with you. I will call you on Monday afternoon. Bye
Esther looked sad “Ohh, this means I won’t be able to go out with you guys on Tuesday because my father demands that I leave the Campus early in the morning on Tuesday” she said. “Ohh, that is really sad. Can’t you talk to him to change his mind?” Angela asked. “My father? You don’t know him! Anything he says is final” Esther answered.
To be continued