Thursday, 17 May 2018

WEDDING OF MY EX (A ChrisEffe Bliss) Episode 28

FINALE EPISODE

THE BAWA RESIDENCE - SUNRISE
Chris emerges from the bathroom towelling his hair with a huge towel.
He is wearing a white singlet and white boxers. He throws the towel unto the bed, and then he picks up a Brut deodorant spray and blasts some under each arm.
He moves to the wardrobe, pulls out a pair of black jeans and put them on.
He moves to the huge windows and pulls the blinds. Sunlight streams in.
He walks to the huge oak desk and sits down. Huge blank sketch papers are arranged neatly on it, and to his right are his sketch pencils.
He picks up a pencil, draws a blank sheet of paper, and then he shuts his eyes tightly.
CHRIS
A new day, fresh new pain! My Effe is gone. Oh, Lord, help me through this, a minute at a time.
His bedroom door opens, and Chris looks up warily.
Suddenly he jumps to his feet, so shocked that he knocks the pencil holder down, scattering coloured pencils across the floor.
Standing in the doorway, wearing a sweet white dress, and looking so incredibly beautiful is Effe.
Chris shuts his eyes as the realization hit him. It is not Effe, of course.
This must be her twin sister Eyram! He opens his eyes and stares at her. She is carrying a laden tray.
CHRIS
Eyram, right? Damn, you almost gave me a heart attack! I thought Effe has come back to me!
EYRAM
Really? You must love her very much then. I came to see how you were doing after your famous wedding-crashing wonder yesterday. Michael let me in. He was bringing up your breakfast so I offered to bring it up.
Chris is still staring at her. He shakes his head suddenly and then he bends to pick up the pencils.
She puts the laden tray on a free portion of the desk, and when he straightens he finds himself standing so close to her.
Startled, he stares deep into her eyes. Her eyes bore into him, and she is not smiling.
CHRIS
Dear God, you two are really identical.
EYRAM
Is that so? Then maybe you can marry me then. I can grow to love you, and you'll have your precious Effe back.
CHRIS
That'll surely heal my heart, sure. Thanks for the offer, love, but no.
EYRAM
And why not, dear? Is it because of my past, what I did before? You can't accept a former stripper and semi-prostitute as a wife?
CHRIS
No, my dear. I don't judge people. Even if I did, I will never judge you by your past. I don't care what a lady did before I knew her. I care about what she does after she meets me.
EYRAM
Hmm. Sounds like an experienced lover to me. You've had your fair share of women, haven't you, Chris Bawa?
CHRIS
Your sister is the only one in my heart, Eyram. For now. For ever.
Eyram places a hand on his shoulder. She looks deeply into his eyes. She takes a step closer.
EYRAM
And not even I can replace her?
CHRIS
(Gently pries her hand off his shoulder and steps away from her.)
No, Eyram. You're not Effe. No woman can replace her.
He walks to the window because his eyes are suddenly filled with tears.
Eyram lies down on his bed.
EYRAM
How're you faring, Chris?
CHRIS
Bad. I am living in pain. I will live in pain forever. Is their honeymoon here in Takoradi?
EYRAM
Nope. They went to Accra yesterday after the reception. By now they're on their way to Paris for a week and would move to South Africa afterwards.
CHRIS
(whirls round. His face is clouded with deep pain.)
Oh, God! Effe is gone?
Eyram flips on her side, supports her head in her palm and stares at him with sad eyes.
EYRAM
You really love her, don't you?
CHRIS
Oh, God!
She reaches for a huge black object on the bed and flips the cover open.
EYRAM
What's this?
CHRIS
(opens his eyes. His pain is real. He looks so distressed.)
What? Oh, that's my phone. Look, Eyram, maybe you should leave, okay? We'll talk later. Right now, you're reminding me so much of Effe, and God, I'm in so much pain. I can't take it anymore!
She does not appear to hear him. She is examining the phone. She presses the power switch at the side, and the screen comes on.
EYRAM
Hmmm. Nice phone. Enter password. What's your password, Chris? Oh, ok, don't tell me. Let me guess, it is your birthday right?
She mentions his birthday figures in sequence of day, month and year as she inputs them on the phone.
The phone gives an error beep.
EYRAM
Hmmm. Not your birthday. Effe's birthday maybe?
Again she mentions the figures aloud as she inputs.
Again the phone rejects it and beeps. She purses her lips and feigns anger.
EYRAM
Hmmm. Not that too? Maybe your mother's birthday? No? Let me try your father's birthday. Still no!
CHRIS
(flips a tear from his cheek and chuckles. He leans against the wall and crosses his arms across his chest.)
Effe really told you a lot about me, didn't she?
EYRAM
(does not look at him. She still examines the phone.)
No one told me anything about you. I know myself. I'm gonna crack this password, I do swear. Let me try the date you met Effe.
She enters. The phone rejects and beeps.
EYRAM
Hmmm. Alright. What about the day you proposed to her?
She mentions the date aloud, inputs. Rejection, beeping.
The smile dies from Chris face. He stares at her.
EYRAM
Oh, man! You got some tough password here. I'm sure it has something to do with Effe, though. Hmmm. Let me try the day you took her to your favourite spot at the beach.
She mentions the date as she enters. The phone rejects and beeps.
Chris stops breathing. He just stares. His hands drop from his chest.
EYRAM
No? Okay, no problem for a determined girl. What a woman can't do can't be done, so they say. Where did I see that sticker? Aha, on the back of your Auntie's car four years ago. Okay, let me try the date you first cut Effe's nails for her.
She mentions, inputs. Rejection, beeping.
Chris clutches his heart and stares at her.
EYRAM
No? The date you bought that book of love poems for her? No. Let me see...hmmm, the date she tried to teach you how to make a vegetarian pizza pocket?
She mentions dates, inputs, the phone beeps rejections.
She still does not look at Chris. He is staring at her, his mouth open, his eyes almost popping out of their sockets.
EYRAM
Stubborn, stubborn password! What can it be, huh?
CHRIS
(speaks softly, and his voice is trembling)
Maybe you can try the date Chris lost his heart to Effe.
She still does not look at him. There is a flash as Chris remembers a night.
It had been the day he had driven her home after she had been discharged from Dr. Anaman's hospital.
He had had taken her hands, looked deep into her eyes and spoken softly.
CHRIS
This day I have lost my heart to you, Effe Kedem. I have given it to you. I can't take it back, because it doesn't belong to my chest anymore. Please, you have my heart now. Take care of it.
There had been tears in Effe's eyes. She had replied softly.
EFFE
It will be my most treasured jewel, my love.
Now the woman on the bed looks at the phone, and she takes a deep breath.
When she speaks her voice is trembling too. Tears fill her eyes.
EFFE
Now why didn't I think of that in the first instance? Of course, it can only be the date I got my most treasured jewel.
She enters the date on the phone, not mentioning it aloud this time, and presses OK.
A gentle melody emanates from the phone, and it opens to the homepage, which has a picture of Effe.
Slowly she looks up at him. Their eyes hold for a while.
Chris is trembling. His lips and his nose and his whole face is awash with tears.
CHRIS
Oh, Effe! Oh, God, Effe, my Angelface! Oh, God! It is really you! You came back to me! Oh, dear sweet God! You are here, my Effe!
She does not speak. Her own face is drenched with tears. She gets up, and Chris rushes to her.
Their embrace is fierce and violent. They squeeze each other as if they will never let go.
They are both trembling, and their tears flow like a river. Finally he pries her arms off his neck and stares at her.
CHRIS
Oh, Effe! How did this miracle happen? I can't believe it! It is you, oh, my angel! You almost killed me! How? What happened? You got married! I saw you in the church. What happened?
EFFE
(touches his face tenderly, lovingly, gently.)
I realized just how much you still loved me, and just how much I still loved you, and I couldn't go ahead with the wedding. Thinking back, I think I only accepted Rupert's proposal because he told me you were going to be in South Africa, and that you will leave Ghana. I panicked! I wanted to be where you were! Rupert knew what I felt towards you. He only needed a companion and suggested marriage to save me from any humiliation. He didn’t want people referring to me as his mistress. As for me as long as it kept me close to you, I was ok with that.
CHRIS
Oh, my love, forgive me! I have given you such pain!
EFFE
So I called Rupert from the car after we left you on the road. I told him I couldn't go through with the wedding. I told my parents too. Rupert had answers for everything. He told me he always suspected I would not go through with the wedding. He suggested that Eyram and I could switch places, for appearances sake, because he didn't want the humiliation a broken wedding would bring. So we switched places. Eyram put on my wedding dress, I put on her maid's dress, and we went to the church.
CHRIS
Oh, dear sweet Lord! It wasn't you on the dais when I barged in?
EFFE
(chuckles happily and kisses his nose.)
No, my love! I was in the maid's dress! You made me so happy with those wonderful words. You scared me at first! You almost made me ran after you!
CHRIS
So Eyram married Henderson?
EFFE
Yes. It is meant to be a marriage of convenience. Rupert only wants a companion and he got one. Eyram was thrilled to give it a try and see what life can offer after all the wasted years. I think they're superbly suited to each other. I think they're going to make that marriage work! You should have seen them yesterday. This dawn they both called. They're flying to Paris for a week and then to South Africa in Rupert's private plane...and they are happy! They're expecting us in South Africa soon!
Chris touches her hair, and he touches her face. He is trembling now.
He touches her lips, and once again he draws her into a fierce embrace.
CHRIS
Why didn't you come for me last night, my Angelface? Oh, God, I almost killed myself!
EFFE
I called your Mom last night and explained everything to her. I wanted to know if you were alright. I wanted to surprise you, my love. She told me you were with Mike. And she was so overjoyed!
Chris puts her away from him. Pure unadulterated love is reflected on his face.
CHRIS
Oh, God, Effe! Forgive me. Forgive me. I have been such a fool!
EFFE
I was too. I believed your mother and Elaine and Steve. I believed the lies, even when he told me you asked him to fake the rape scene so it would look like we were lovers so you would have an excuse to break up with me! Not ever again, Chris! There shall be no third parties between us!
CHRIS
No, never, my love. Oh, Effe...welcome back to my heart, my Angelface, for an eternity this time!
EFFE
You'll always be the owner of mine, for eternity!
He reaches for her.
She sees the deep look of love in his eyes, and suddenly she moves away from him, backing quickly towards the door.
CHRIS
Stop that, Effe, my love. Come back here, I need to kiss you! You owe me a kiss at least.
EFFE
(laughs nervously and shakes her head.)
Not now, Chris Bawa! At the altar, remember? First kiss at the altar!
CHRIS
No, Effe! Now!
EFFE
Chriisssss! Nooooo!
She bolts out the door, screaming and laughing. She goes down the stairs, he chases her.
He catches her on the landing, draws her close, takes her face in both hands, and kisses her passionately.
Effe does not struggle. Her arms go around his neck. They kiss as tears of happiness falls from their eyes.
When they part her eyes remain close, and her face shines with great happiness.
And then he hears great applause, and he looks down, shocked.
The living room is packed.
His mother is present. Mr. and Mrs. Opoku are present. Dr. Anaman is standing beside Joshua Darkwa and Mrs. Darkwa. Evelyn and Mr. Tamakloe are also present.
Iris, Sandra and Steve are there too. Michael is holding his girlfriend's hand.
They are holding steaming mugs of beverages, and everybody seems so happy.
Effe turns and runs straight to Mr. Opoku who puts a protective arm around her shoulders and looks at Chris with mock severity.
MR. OPOKU
And what do you think you want to do to my daughter without performing any rites, you foolish boy?
EFFE
(bursts into laughter)
He loves me, Daddy!
Chris looks at their upturned faces. He grins happily.
CHRIS
So, you were all in on it, huh? Well, yesterday I felt like dying. Today, I just want to dance. And you, all of you, get me married to that woman by next week. I won't wait any longer!
And then he begins to do a crazy dance on the landing, with total abandon, his inbred shyness gone.
And they watch and laugh.

THE END

HOPE YOU HAD A SWEET TIME.

WEDDING OF MY EX (A ChrisEffe Bliss) Episode 27

THE BAWA RESIDENCE - NIGHT
When Chris gets out of his car his mother comes tearing out of the house to meet him.
He turns to walk towards the house, and that is when he sees his mother running towards him.
She is barefoot, and is still in the dress she had worn in the morning.
Her hair is undone and wild, heavily peppered with grey. Her face is free of makeup, and her eyes are huge with her tears. Chris stops with shock.
CHRIS
Mom!
She begins to cry as she reaches him. She stops within touching distance, and to his horror she suddenly falls to her knees and raises her clamped hands to him.
MADAM LOIS
Oh, my son! I've heard everything! Oh, Chris, please forgive me! Forgive me, my son! I was so terrified when we couldn't reach you! I have called the police, son! I thought I had lost you, and I couldn't forgive myself!
CHRIS
(lifts her to her feet.)
Please, Mom, get up! Please don't kneel before me!
MADAM LOIS
It was her, my son! Elaine! She showed me pictures that I thought were Effe, terrible pictures that made me so scared, angry and confused! That's why I did what I did! I'm sorry, my son! My foolishness has made you lose the one woman you love! Please forgive me! Oh, God, how you must hate me!
Chris embraces her tightly. After a while he steps away from her and looks at her.
CHRIS
You carried me in your womb for nine months, Mom. You laboured to give birth to me. You breast-fed me, and changed my diapers, cleaned my poopoo and taking a lot of jazz from me, and I know you love me. I know that everything you do, whether wrong or bad, it is because of the love you have for me. I can never hate you, Mom. Never. You're my mother.
MADAM LOIS
Oh, Chris, my dearest son! We were so wrong to arrange a marriage between you and Elaine. My marriage to your Dad was also arranged, but it worked out for us. We were so happy until his death! I thought it could work for you too, but how wrong I am now! Elaine's parents called. They're all so sorry! Oh, Chris, What a terrible thing I have done to you!
CHRIS
Terrible, yes, but I don't blame you. The fault is all mine. Now, let's go inside, okay? I love you, always will. What's done is done, Mom.
MADAM LOIS
But I have denied you any chance of finding happiness, my son, in a very cruel manner. The pain I see in your eyes now shall be the cross I shall carry to my grave! How can I forgive myself?
CHRIS
Tonight, Mom, don't let us talk about this, okay? I will take it a day at a time. It will be hard, yes, but it can be done. Let's go in now.
She puts her arm around him. He puts his across her shoulders, and they walk in silence.
When they enter the living-room Michael is just putting down the telephone receiver.
MICHAEL
I called the police, Madam. I told them Chris is home now.
MADAM LOIS
Thank you, Michael.
Michael stares at Chris. Chris walks forward, and just then tears begin to roll down his cheeks again.
He touches his cheeks, looks at his wet fingers and tries to smile.
CHRIS
I can't believe this, man. I'm crying again! It feels like a damn dam has opened in my soul, man! I never thought human beings have so much tears in them! Ever heard the cliché that men don't cry? I'm breaking that saying straight into the record books tonight.
Behind him his mother puts both hands to her cheeks, and her face cringes with pain. Michael puts a hand on Chris' shoulder.
MICHAEL
A man's tears are always true, bro. Let them flow. They will heal that messed-up heart.
CHRIS
You know, I've always been an only child, right? I mean, I have never really been bothered about being an only child, you get me?
MICHAEL
Yeah, bro. I get you.
CHRIS
But, you, Mike, have always been there for me. Tonight I need a brother, man. Tonight I can't get through the hours alone, and there's no one I'll like beside me than you. I don't wanna get drunk tonight, because if I do I'll never stop drinking; I'll become a drunk, always waking up in gutters. Yeah, some shit like that. I need a brother, Mike. I need a brother tonight.
MICHAEL
It will be an honour, bro. Your words are the sweetest thing any human being has ever uttered to me.
CHRIS
I'm going up to take a bath and cry my heart out, man. You lock up and come upstairs. Let's play some video games together and watch some Kung-Fu movies, man. If I get through tonight, I believe I can make it.
MICHAEL
I'll be right up, bro.
CHRIS
(gently to his mother)
Get some sleep, Mom. I will see you in the morning. Good night.
His mother is speechless. Her tears are drenching her.
Chris climbs up the stairs with his shoulders sagging and his head down.
MADAM LOIS
Oh, God! I have destroyed my son, Michael! I have hurt my poor son so badly!
MICHAEL
(hugs her gently)
Get some sleep, Mama. He'll be just fine.
.
It continues after comments..

WEDDING OF MY EX (A ChrisEffe Bliss) Episode 26

GOLGOTHA HEIGHTS CHAPEL - CONTINUOUS
Five white Chrysler saloon cars enter the gates of the Golgotha Heights Chapel.
The cars are now parked in front of the church with precision. Mr. and Mrs. Opoku alight from one car.
Effe gets out, helped by two handsome men in black tuxedos. Eyram pulls the veil across Effe's face.
Mr. Opoku and Effe link arms, and they are seen entering the church. People are shouting happily.
Photographers and media personnel rush forward; camera lights flash, recorders and powerful cameras are brandished.
The organist plays a slow sweet flow that ushers Effe and her party to the altar.
Rupert Henderson smiles broadly as he gets up to stand beside Effe, and then they mount the elaborate dais, and stand in front of the officiating minister.
OFFICIATING MINISTER
Dearly beloved, we are gathered here today in the sight of God, to join this man, and this woman, in holy matrimony.
All sounds die down.
Rupert and Effe exchange glances. The organist begins a soft, barely audible tune.
OFFICIATING MINISTER
Not to be entered lightly, holy matrimony should be entered into solemnly and with reverence and honour. Into this holy agreement these two persons come together to be joined.
His gaze sweeps the congregation. Tension mounts slowly.
OFFICIATING MINISTER
If any person here can show just cause why these two people should not be joined in holy matrimony, please speak now, or forever hold your peace!
A tension-filled silence reigns as the Minister's eyes sweep the room from one corner to the next slowly.
Finally he nods slightly, picks up his spectacles, cleans it quickly, and settles it on his nose.
OFFICIATING MINISTER
Marriage is a sacred union...
The entrance darkens suddenly. Chris Bawa stands in the doorway.
CHRIS
Hold your peace, Man of God; hold your peace a moment!
There is a stunned silence.
Rupert curses and grinds his teeth. The Bridesmaid whirls round, her face is absolutely startled and frightened.
Mr. Tamakloe jumps to his feet, but Evelyn holds his arm quickly.
MR. TAMAKLOE
The fool! What's he doing now?
EVELYN
Hold it, John! Let him be!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Why should I? That boy's going to make a mockery of Rupert's wedding, for Christ sake!
EVELYN
Sit down! Should I remind you that you need Chris more than you do Rupert? And for God's sake, that boy loves the girl! Did you think for a second that he wouldn't fight for her?
There is a buzz in the church room. Mrs. Opoku jumps up with a sharp groan, but her husband holds her down and stands up himself.
Chris walks forward. His steps are purposeful. Mr. Opoku meets him half-way across the room.
OFFICIATING MINISTER
Young man, do you have anything to say?
CHRIS
You bet your holy clerical that I do have something to say to that woman!
MR. OPOKU
(Holds up a hand to halt him) Chris what're you doing? Please don't do this! If you love her please don't do this to her! Don't ruin her day, boy!
CHRIS
(Smiles sadly and stops.)
But I am not here to make trouble for Effe, my dear Mr. Opoku. I just want to say sorry to her.
MR. OPOKU
I don't understand, boy!
CHRIS
Relax. You will in a minute.
He walks past Mr. Opoku, and pauses in front of the dais. The noisy mumblings in the room drop to a few scattered whispers.
The Bridemaid stands up and walks towards Chris.
BRIDESMAID
Chris, please.
CHRIS
(Turns to Rupert Henderson, whose face is tight with anger)
I am extremely sorry to make such a scene, and believe me, I feel greatly humiliated. I just came to say sorry to Effe.
Effe does not stare at Chris. She is trembling. Chris' voice is now filled with sadness.
CHRIS
I am sorry, Effe. I am so sorry for the pain I caused you. On my own behalf and on behalf of my mother and all the people close to me who contributed to breaking your heart, I stand here and apologize for our misdeeds. Please, forgive us.
Effe still does not stare nor speak. Tears slowly trickle down her cheeks.
Chris turns to Henderson.
CHRIS
Mr. Rupert Henderson, you are a lucky man. You are not marrying an ordinary person. Today, you've got an angel for a wife, and I hope you know that.
RUPERT
(Nods, and suddenly the anger leave his face. He smiles gently.)
I know, Chris. I know.
CHRIS
Yeah. She is a good woman, Rupert. I'll tell you this for real, if it was in our era that God was choosing a mother for His beloved son Jesus Christ, I am convinced that He would've chosen Effe!
.
RUPERT
(Laughs gently)
You know what, I think I agree with you on that too, Chris.
CHRIS
(Tears in his eyes)
Treat her well, Rupert. You treat her good. If you ever hurt her, I swear I'll rip out your intestines through your nose and strangle you with them.
RUPERT
I will do my best, Chris. I give you my word.
Chris throws up his head; tears drown him. The room becomes absolutely quiet now.
CHRIS
Oh, God! I am in pain, but I think I'm done here now!
Rupert takes out a white handkerchief and hands it to Chris.
They nod at each other. Chris turns away, and he faces the congregation.
He is a picture of absolute dejection. He begins to clean his tears with the handkerchief as he walks away.
He passes Mr. Opoku, who is still standing. Mr. Opoku touches Chris' shoulder lightly.
Chris is halfway to the door now. He is passing Evelyn.
She reaches out and squeezes his hand. Chris is almost out of the door. The room is still quiet.
He is passing an old woman who seems to be in her late sixties. She stands up and glares at him. She begins to speak.
OLD WOMAN
And what was that nonsense all about, young man? What do you think you were doing? You foolish man!
CHRIS
(Pauses and looks at her.) You speak the truth, old woman. Never has truer words been uttered by a human being. I am, indeed, a very foolish man!
He walks out of the church. He walks on the grass, and his legs tremble.
He misses a step, and he suddenly falls to his knees and throws up his face to the heavens.
He bellows loudly.
CHRIS
Dear God! Why are you doing this to meeeee? How am I going to survive this moment? Help me out here! I need peace Lord! I am in pain, please give me a second, just a second of peeeeaaace! pleeeeease looooooord!
THE BEACH - EVENING
The sun is going to set. It is low over the sea, casting a golden glow on the waves.
The waves are lapping gently, rolling smoothly towards shore and splashing the rocks with deep and muted sounds, and then cascading down the sides of the jutting rocks.
Chris is sitting a little way back on a flat rock. His shirt is opened halfway down his chest.
His shoes are off, and one of his legs is propped up. Only few people are around, mostly new couples in love, and as he watches them he smiles sadly.
He remembers, a few years ago, he and Effe had strolled these same shores, so crazy mad in intoxicating love.
A taxi pulls up behind his car, but because it is behind him he does not see it.
Elaine alights from the car, pays off the driver, and turns towards the sea.
She sees him immediately, a forlorn lonely creature sitting on a flat rock.
Elaine bites her lower lip, and her eyes are deeply troubled as she stares at his back.
Slowly and carefully she picks her way towards him.
She rounds the rock and stands in front of him. He looks at her and smiles sadly again.
CHRIS
Hello, Elaine. How did you find me?
ELAINE
I know you, Chris. You always run to the beach, to this spot, anytime you are unhappy.
CHRIS
Hmm, I see. I tried to call you, but I couldn't find my phone. Don't know where I put it.
ELAINE
It’s with Michael. I called and he answered. He told me he didn't know where you were.
CHRIS
I see.
Tears well up in Elaine's eyes, and then she slowly falls to her knees in front of Chris.
She reaches out and holds his dangling leg.
ELAINE
Oh, Chris, my darling, please forgive me! I know what I did was unpardonable. I know how much you must hate me now, but please, my love, I did those horrible things because I love you, and couldn't bear to lose you! I do love you Chris. I love you a whole bunch!
CHRIS
Hmm. What can I say? Get up, Elly. Don't kneel before me. I'm not worth it. I am nor worth your tears. Come, sit with me a while. Don’t want you getting the wrong ideas though. We are done. We are finished.
ELAINE
( a bit confused. He extends his hand, and she takes it. He pulls her to her feet, and the smile on his face is very gentle.)
Are you okay, Chris? I didn't expect this from you. I was sure you were in a killing mood, ready to wring my neck for all the pain I caused you.
CHRIS
No, Elly. Look, fill in a few blanks for me, okay? Did you plan this with Afful all along?
ELAINE
(looks at him intently, and then she sighs. She bows her head, and tentatively she reaches for his hand and holds it.)
I'll tell you the truth, Chris, because I don't want any more lies between us. Yes, I was in great pain after I lost you. To say I was shattered was putting it lightly. One evening Afful sought me out. He had lost his job at the orphanage. He wasn’t bothered about the money because he had made a lot of money from dealing drugs and selling babies. He told me he had always been in love with Effe and wanted her to pay for the disgrace he had to suffer when you got him fired. He told me Effe had an identical twin sister who was a high-priced prostitute, willing to do anything for a price. He mentioned that neither of them knew the other existed. He told me he had a plan and if I played the cards right with his plan I would have you back, and he would succeed in wrecking Effe's life forever.
CHRIS
And that was when it all began? You two also involved my mother and Steve?
ELAINE
(looks ashamed)
Afful took some pictures of Eyram, Effe's twin sister, in some very dirty poses. He told me to show them to your mother and Steve and get them to hate Effe. I went along with his plan because I wanted you back, Angel. I showed the nude photos to Steve and your mother and told them you knew about Effe’s sordid life but didn't want them to know because you were ashamed. I told your mother not to confront you with it because you were almost decided on leaving Effe. They were both very angry, and decided to work together with me to get Effe out of your life for good. Oh, Chris, I'm so terribly sorry.
CHRIS
But how did you guys know Effe will meet Koffie at the Sports Club? How did Afful know about Effe's meeting with Mr. Darkwa and his family at the Ocean Front Hotel? How did he plan these?
ELAINE
He and his friends were monitoring Effe constantly. He told me, for instance, that Effe has gone back to your house after the hotel incident. He asked me to persuade Steve to go over to your house and fake a rape scene on Effe to make it look like they were secret lovers. It wasn’t difficult to persuade Steve because I had an advantage over him. One time when you travelled out of town I was so bored I invited him over to keep me company. We had a few drinks and the inevitable happened. He was very miserably when he woke up beside me naked and when I confirmed we had sex he was beset with misery. He knew that was the one thing you would never forgive him for. That day you made it much easier by asking Steve to go watch or lock up your house for you. I threatened him that I had a video of us making and would show it to you if he didn’t do as was told. First Afful wanted me to hide in the room and take pictures of Steve’s move on Effe and later show them to you. But then he called me to say you were on your way home, so I quickly left. I was shocked because Steve really meant to go ahead and make love to her. Believe me, Chris, I never meant for that to happen!
CHRIS
(nods, and then he smiles sadly again.)
You seduced my best friend? Ha, I don’t think I really knew you, Elaine. We were together for a long time but I think I didn’t really know you at all. As for Afful, he was a criminal. He was a very vicious person. Do you know he died? He paid for his sins somehow. He suffered before he died.
ELAINE
Yes. He had a terrible heart attack. I went to see him, and he really suffered for the one week it took him to die. He was in terrible agony, and that was when I began to get scared. It was as if our bad deeds were catching up with us. Oh, Chris, my honey, please forgive me! Please don't hate me!
Chris notices that Elaine is shivering with cold. He drapes his coat across her shoulders and gently draws the lapels close around her.
He smiles into her eyes.
CHRIS
Hate you for what? I don't hate you, Elly. I don't even blame you. I don't hate Steve, and I don't even blame our parents who saw it fit to bring us together where there was no love. You guys have done nothing. I blame myself, and I hate myself. It is all my fault, and I gave myself this pain. Me, myself and I. No one else.
ELAINE
Chris...
CHRIS
No, Elaine. It is me. I practically lived with Effe. I knew her. What I saw, what I heard, they shouldn't have mattered. I should've known what that dear angel was capable of and not capable of. That should've made me pause, and speak to her. But no, I let myself be manipulated like some stupid mannequin, a moronic puppet, and ended up driving my brains up the lanes of hell, and burning my own heart. You are not to blame, Afful is not guilty. I am guilty, I am to blame.
Elaine looks horrified. She shakes her head, and tears glisten on her lashes.
She is suddenly desperate. She jumps down and holds his hands desperately.
CHRIS
No, Chris! You can't take that stance! You have to hate me. You have to be angry with me! You have to be bitter! Only then can you forgive me, and possibly allow me back into your life as the woman who will always love you! You have to hate me, Chris! I deserve your anger. I deserve your hatred.
CHRIS
(Smiles and smooths her hair. He touches her cheek gently.)
I don't hate you, Elaine. I just can't. You'll always be a friend. I gave you hell, forgive me. I have wasted many years of your life, please forgive me. Maybe, if it is not too late, you can get back with Frank Stiles, your fiancé, the one you introduced to me some years back?
ELAINE
You fool! It was just an act to get you jealous! That bastard was one of Afful's stupid cohorts! It’s you I love, Chris! For you I will go to hell and back! Can't you get it into your thick skull that I only love you?
CHRIS
I don’t really think what you feel for me is love. How do you justify sleeping with my best friend and I know he wasn’t the only one you have been with. That doesn’t even matter. Let’s say for the sake of argument that you do love me. The truth is I don't. I'm sorry, but I see it differently. I had a chance with an angel, I blew it, and now my heart has ceased to function where love is concerned. By now that asshole is all over Effe, doing God knows what. I can't love you, I can't love any other woman. Friends, yes, but love, that’s like asking for a slice of heaven.
ELAINE
(crying now)
You're hurt. You're very hurt. Now I understand. Your brain is in a state of shock, and you're not really functioning. You're delirious with your pain, and your body is withdrawing, sheltering itself from the shock. I will give you time. Soon you'll recover and my love will nurture your heart back to health, Chris. You will see.
CHRIS
I am not delirious or shocked or any of that drivel you just spewed out. I'm at peace with you, and everybody else. Steve is like the brother I never had. He betrayed me in the worse way possible. But I am not God to judge him. I will let him live with his conscience that would be the best judge of the matter. I'm okay. Come, let's go. I'll drop you off, and then I'll go home and watch some Chinese movies, see some Chin Sin man breaking some bones and doing some crazy stunts.
ELAINE
Chris, don't withdraw this way, please! Get angry, hit me, pull my hair. Curse me! Yell at me! Do anything but this, please. You're scaring me, Chris, my darling! Stop being a damn Saint!
She begins to wail. Her face crumbles, and her body shakes violently.
Her tears are great sobs that racks her body, causing her to lose control. Her voice is not loud, but her agony is great.
Chris takes her into his arms. She buries her face in his shoulder, holds on to him tight, and cries in a heart-broken fashion.
Chris brushes her hair and pats her back tenderly. On his face is a huge sad smile.
CHRIS
The damn wedding reception might be over by now. That stinking crazy old man is probably with Effe. He is touching her and there is nothing I could do about it! I gave her to him on a silver platter. I pushed Effe into that old man’s arms. For all you may know, she did it to scorn me.
Elaine looks up with tears still streaming down her face.
She stares up at him with some mixture of exasperation and confusion.
.
It continues after comments..

WEDDING OF MY EX (A ChrisEffe Bliss) Episode 25

THE PRINCESS ROAD
Chris overtakes wrongly, drawing the angry horns of drivers.
His attention is divided between driving and looking out for a wedding procession.
His face is an epitome of distress. He fumbles out his phone and dials Effe's number. The call is picked.
CHRIS
Effe? Is that you, Effe? Hello, Effe?
MRS. OPOKU
This is her mother, Chris. Her phone is with me.
CHRIS
Oh, Mrs. Opoku! I need to speak to Effe. Please, please, let me speak to her.
MRS. OPOKU
I will not let you speak to her! Chris, why now? Why do you want to wreck her life so much? Please leave the poor girl alone.
CHRIS
You don't understand, Mrs. Opoku. I need to speak to her! There is something she must know.
MRS. OPOKU
Today? After all these painful years it is today, her wedding day, that you choose to speak to her? I'm sorry, Chris. She's had enough of you and your childishness. Just let her be. Let her be happy for once. She’s suffered too much. Rupert is good to her. He adores her. Who knows, he may be able to bring back the smile to my girl’s face, the smile you destroyed!
CHRIS
Oh, please, Mommy! Oh, please, I need to speak to Effe!
MRS. OPOKU
Keep away from her, Chris! You had your chance and you blew it. Effe doesn't want to speak to you ever again! Get that through your thick head and leave her alone.
She cuts the line. He redials and listens. The phone rings, but Mrs. Opoku cuts him off repeatedly.
CHRIS
Okay, one of her friends. Her best friend. Yes, somebody who'll be her maid. Who, who, WHO? Yes, Sylvia...do I still have her number. Yes, yes, yes, I think so...lemme see...
Chris slows down, swings off the long stretch of road and parks.
He flips through his phone contact lists, selects Sylvia and dials.
SYLVIA
Hello?
CHRIS
Hello, Sylvia.
SYLVIA
Get lost, asshole.
CHRIS
Sylvia? This is Chris!
SYLVIA
Yeah, I know. Just get lost. You imbecile.
She cuts the line.
CHRIS
Damn bitch!
Just then he sees five white Chrysler cars! It is a beauty to watch.
They are passing right by! There is no question that this is the bride's procession because the cars are decorated with the same gold and white colours he saw in the church!
Chris desperately swings his car unto the road, cuts right across to the other side, and heads straight for the last two cars!
People scream loudly, cars blast their horns with concern.
The fourth car passes, missing Chris' car by inches. Chris parks across the street, cleanly cutting off the last car in the procession which comes to a screeching halt!
Thefourth car has now parked, and already three men had jumped out.
Chris gets out of the car and approaches the fifth car slowly, praying that Effe will be inside.
Chris is unaware that the three men had closed in behind him. He walks slowly towards the fifth car.
The driver also gets out. He is a huge man, and he is angry. He rushes at Chris, speaking angrily.
He tries to push Chris back. Chris slams a fist into his face, and he falls.
Suddenly the three men from the other car grab him. Chris struggles with them furiously, sending one crashing, but the others push him to his knees and down on the hard road.
The back door of the fifth car opens. A foot clad in white stockings and beautiful white shoes steps out, and then she emerges.
Effe is dressed in her wedding gown, and she looks so stunning that tears come to Chris' eyes. Her veil is up, and she regards him with shocked eyes.
CHRIS
Oh, Effe!
EFFE
Stop it. Don’t hurt him! Let him go!
Other people from the other cars have arrived on the scene too.
They include Mr. and Mrs. Opoku, Sylvia, Dr. Anaman and a few others.
DOCTOR ANAMAN
Chris, my boy! What're you doing here? Get up from the street boy!
MRS. OPOKU
Chris Bawa! What calamity are you bringing on my daughter? Why do you want to bring bad omens on her wedding day?
MR. OPOKU
Let the boy be, woman. Chris, you're indeed causing a big mess. What do you want?
CHRIS
Can we talk, Effe? For a moment, please? Give me just five minutes!
MRS. OPOKU
No, Chris, not now, not ever! Leave her be! She's getting married, and we're already late!
MR. OPOKU
(speaking sharply to his wife.) That’s not your decision, Ivy! Effe, my angel, do you want to talk to him? We're causing a big scene here.
EFFE
Chris. What do you want?
Cars continue to honk angrily.
DOCTOR ANAMAN
Listen, you better get your car off the street, Chris, before the police come. You're blocking the flow of traffic!
One of the drivers climbs into Chris' car and drives it off the street.
The driver of the fifth car also drives unto the sidewalk and parks.
Chris moves towards Effe, and she meets him.
They stare at each other.
The tears well up in Chris' eyes first, and then slowly they fall down his cheeks.
Effe does not speak, but her eyes well up with tears too, and slowly they spill down her lovely cheeks.
CHRIS
Four years ago Mr. Afful came to my office. He told me you and Bright Koffie were lovers, that you'd been taking my money, the one from our joint Savings Account, and giving it to him. I was a fool. I didn't ask you. I checked the account, and realized you had withdrawn the money. I believed him.
EFFE
Bright told me about it this morning. He said you followed me to the Sports Club. I didn't know Mr. Afful was involved.
CHRIS
Oh, Effe! Afful lured me to the Sports club. I saw you and Bright together. You were behaving like an intimate couple. I was convinced you were lovers!
EFFE
I told you about him. I told you about Kofi Panyin.
CHRIS
Damnit, Effe! How was I supposed to know the Kofi Panyin you told me about was Bright Koffie?
EFFE
You could've asked me, Chris, when you saw us together!
CHRIS
Yes, I know I was a fool in letting Afful manipulate me, but you could've told me you were transferring the money into a new account!
EFFE
Yes, I should have, Chris. Under normal circumstances I would have. But I was terrified because Elaine spoke to me and said you were going to withdraw all the money from the account and tell me we didn't have money to begin a married life. I panicked, I guess. I wanted to invest the money, and get more for our life.
CHRIS
Oh, God! Afful told me there was more, and foolish as I was, I believed him. He called me to the Ocean Front Hotel, where I witnessed you meeting Mr. Joshua Darkwa.
EFFE
(totally stunned)
You were there? Oh, God, Chris! I wasn't meeting him! His son, Stanley, was in a bad shape. He wanted to commit suicide! I was just helping out! I was just trying to make him see that was not the answer to his problem.
CHRIS
I didn't know that, Effe! I didn't know! I was with Afful, and for three hours you were inside the hotel room with that man! I believed the worst!
EFFE
You fool! Why didn't you just ask me about it, and why didn't you come and break in the hotel door or something? I would've done that! I came to your house after leaving the hotel. I wanted to tell you about Stanley, and how you would also kill me if you left me, but then, that awful thing happened!
CHRIS
Oh, yeah. About that. You were making a video for me, right?
EFFE
Yes, Chris. With that camcorder you bought me! Maybe...
CHRIS
(holding up a hand, cutting her short.)
Michael, my friend, found the camcorder. He just brought it to me at the church premises. It captured everything. That drink Steve gave you was drugged on Elaine's orders!
EFFE
Steve? Elaine's orders? He told me you've realized you made a mistake in choosing me. He and your mother both told me you still loved Elaine, and wanted to leave me but didn't know how. Steve later called and told me the rape scene was planned by you so that you could get rid of me.
CHRIS
(face melting with shock)
Steve told you that? Oh, God!
EFFE
That day your mother told you I hit her... I didn't, Chris. You must believe me. She was telling me to leave you alone, that you loved Elaine. She fell accidentally. I don't know if you believe me, but I never hit her!
CHRIS
(voice chokes on a sob. He is hurting.)
I know. She confessed to me after I confronted her with evidence from Dr. Anaman's examination. That video showed how Steve drugged the drink and tried to rape you. It shows how you fought him off. Oh, Effe...
EFFE
But there's still something else, isn't it? I can see it in your eyes. What is it, Chris?
CHRIS
(glances at the other people)
I can't say it here, Effe, not with all these people present.
EFFE
Say it, Chris. I have nothing to hide.
CHRIS
No, Effe. I can't say it here. Afful took me to the Gentlemen's Perk too.
EFFE
The what? I didn't catch that, Chris.
CHRIS
Don't let us do this here, Effe, please.
EFFE
I'm not going anywhere with you, Chris. Let's get this over with, right here. I told you, I have nothing to hide.
CHRIS
Afful took me to the Gentlemen's Perk Nightclub, where I saw you performing.
EFFE
Me? At a nightclub? Performing what? What're you talking about, Chris?
CHRIS
(speaking explosively)
Don't lie to me, Effe! I was there! You saw me! You begged the bouncers not to beat me up when I climbed unto that stage! Don't pretend now, please, Effe! Leave me something to hold on to, at least! I saw you stripping naked! I came towards you, I was beaten...please that's the main reason why I broke off with you, and you know it!
EFFE
Stop it, Chris! Is that how you want to justify yourself, by lying? I don't know what you're talking about, Chris. I think we're done here. Please let me go.
CHRIS
Don't do this, Effe, please. I saw you. You saw me! But if that's how you want to play it, fine. I understand.
A woman's voice breaks in from behind Chris.
A WOMAN'S VOICE
Stop harassing her. That was me, you silly man.
The passenger door of the fifth Chrysler has opened, and a woman steps out.
She is the bridesmaid. She is the exact replica of Effe.
She looks exactly like Effe. Chris turns and stares at Effe, and then he whirls round and stares at the woman who has gotten out of the car.
They look exactly the same. Twins? Chris loses it then. He begins to shake his head, and then he clamps a hand to his mouth.
He looks first at Effe, and then at the new woman. His face horrified.
CHRIS
Oh, God! No, don't tell me that is also a mistake! What's this, Effe? Who's this?
EFFE
(speaking gently)
This is Eyram Kedem, my long-lost twin sister! You see, when my mother took me to the Orphanage, we were twins, but Mr. Afful kept me at the orphanage and took Eyram, my sister, to another woman who was a slut, and who ran a place for men to have fun.
EYRAM
(now stands besides Chris. She looks up at him.)
My sister is modest. Actually, that woman operated a brothel. She brought me up. Afful always came to me when I grew up. He was my pimp. He gave me to rich men and took lots of money from them. He never told me I had a twin sister. He was the one who introduced me to the Gentlemen's Perk. One day he came with a woman who offered me lots of money to put on a sizzling performance that night. That was the night Afful brought you to the club. I was there when you were being beaten. I didn't know you were my own lost sister's fiancée! I just didn’t like the way the guys treated you. That was why I asked them to stop beating you. For some reason, I felt sorry for you because I knew you had been set up.
Chris can barely stand up. He stares at Effe with great fear and panic.
He shakes his head, and great tears fall down his cheeks.
MR. OPOKU
To cut a long story short, Jonathan Afful took ill about three years ago. He was really in a bad shape. He begged the doctors to get in touch with Effe and get her to come see him. When Effe went to see him he begged for her forgiveness and managed to scribble an address for her, He told her she had a twin and she could find her at the address. A day after that Afful suffered a massive stroke and died a week later. Effe tracked down Eyram with the address and they’ve been re-united ever since.
DOCTOR ANAMAN
This woman who was working with this Afful, I think it is Elaine, son. Somehow, she and Afful put all these series of horrible incidents together!
EFFE
(tears drenching her face)
Chris. You saw a stripper and thought it was me? Me, your love, a stripper? God, you never knew me, did you? I don't think I can ever forgive you for thinking that of me! That alone should've told you something bad was happening!!
DOCTOR ANAMAN
(sadly)
What was he to think, my dear girl? The young man had already been convinced you were a gold-digger capable of sleeping with old men, and a whole lot of other nonsense, and he had no idea you had a twin sister. What was he to think? I think you should put yourself in his shoes. What he could have done was to confront you with it then maybe the truth would have come out.
CHRIS
I was convinced that you had wronged me. I was convinced you didn’t love me. I wanted this to be true, that you had been at the club. I wanted to forgive you for that, at least, so that I can have you back. Oh, God! I saw the ugly sides of a hexagon where there were only the smooth curves of a circle. I saw a devil where only an angel dwelled! I saw truths in falsehood! I have wronged you, Effe. I don't deserve you. I really don't deserve you!
EFFE
(clutches her heart. Her face is anguished.)
Oh, Chris! You foolish dear one! Now look at what you've done to us!
CHRIS
(walks forward and takes Effe's hands. Their tears fall stronger.)
Do you remember that day in Dr. Anaman's clinic, when we found each other?
EFFE
How can I ever forget the day I drew my first breath, Chris Bawa?
CHRIS
Welcome back to my heart, Effe Kedem Opoku.
EFFE
You'll always be the owner of mine, Chris Bawa.
Their combined tears fall on their intertwined hands.
CHRIS
Can you, will you, for our love’s sake, come back to me?
EFFE
(tears fall harder and heavier.)
I will always love you, Chris Bawa, you fool, but you know I can't break my promise to that dear old man! I can't. I won't. He’s been simply good to me. I can't break his heart, and I can't humiliate him.
CHRIS
(face shattered)
Oh, God! And a kiss? Do I get a parting kiss? Like a souvenir. Something I will hold on to until you become mine again?
EFFE
My heart tears up now, Chris. I don't know how I'm going to be able to go through the next hour of my life! But a kiss, alas, my soul cries for it. But unfortunately can't give you one.
CHRIS
I know. A first kiss, for you, only on the altar, right?
EFFE
No, Chris! I know, if you kiss me, I will take off this gown and throw it away. If you kiss me, I will be lost. I cannot go to that church. That kiss will imprison me in your kingdom for life. Oh, Chris! Oh, my heart screams! I can feel it breaking! To find you again, at this time, and lose you instantly, is killing me! But there is Rupert to think of. He doesn’t deserve the humiliation.
CHRIS
My heart is forever shattered. Each second of my life, from now on, will be spent in agony. Each breath I take will be a pain to a heart I shattered myself because I lacked the basic ingredient for a good relationship: trust. Let this heart rot, let it kill me with its poison. No one deserves it better than me. Have a good life, Effe. And try to be happy. You deserve that. As for me, let death be my early companion!
Chris drops her hands and turns away. The people around are all crying.
Mr. Opoku touches his arm. Eyram embraces him. She is crying silently.
EYRAM
Forgive me, Chris. I never meant to hurt you! I'm so sorry!
Chris nods. Mrs. Opoku touches him, and then she embraces him. He moves on.
EFFE
Chris.
He turns.
EFFE
I love you. You're taking my soul away, you know. For now and eternity. The pain you feel is amplified here in my heart.
Chris nods. Tears drown him. He turns and enters his car. He watches as they all board the cars.
He watches as the cars move away. His forehead falls on the steering-wheel.
His body trembles with great sobs. Suddenly a voice speaks.
DOCTOR ANAMAN
Get down, son. You can't drive. Let me take you home.
Chris looks up slowly. Dr. Anaman is standing beside the car.
CHRIS
You didn't go to the wedding?
DOCTOR ANAMAN
(wiping his tears with a handkerchief.)
You need a father now, son. I'm here. If you will let me.
Chris nods.
He gets down, and then frantically he goes into Dr. Anaman's stretched arms.
He holds the old man tight. And then Chris begins to shake.
His whole body trembles as he wails like an infant.
To be continued

WEDDING OF MY EX (A ChrisEffe Bliss) Episode 23-24

Chris is driving.
He is obviously distressed. He keeps hearing the voices of Dr. Anaman and Bright Koffie.
He runs his hand through his hair repeatedly. Finally he turns off the road and parks the car. He picks up his mobile phone and calls Steve.
STEVE
Hey, paddy! What the dilly-dilly-dilly-dilly-yoo!! How did it go with the meeting, man? I just arrived to pick up Elaine! We're meeting you at the church, right?
CHRIS
(voice dangerously soft)
Was Effe really trying to seduce you that night, Steve?
STEVE
And what kind of damn foolish question is that, bro? C'mon, man, don't tell me her wedding is affecting you that much!
CHRIS
Did Effe really try to seduce you, Steve?
STEVE
Are you mad, man? Of course she bloody did! YOU SAW IT WITH YOUR OWN BLOODY EYES!! C'mon, man, what's gotten into you?
CHRIS
I saw what I saw or what you wanted me to see Steve. Swear to me, bro. Swear to me that she really tried to seduce you!
STEVE
I swear on the grave of my unknown mother, bro. The truth is Effe is a nut case. You should not waste your precious time feeling sorry for that girl. She is a good actress. What’s going on with you now, man? You're scaring me, Chris. Damn, man, what's going on?
CHRIS
I don’t know what to believe anymore Steve. Last night I learnt that Effe never raised a hand against my old lady, but four years ago my mother looked me in the eyeball and lied to me that Effe hit her on the head with a side-table!
STEVE
And because of that you began doubting me, your own soul brother? You disappoint me Chris!
CHRIS
Damn it, Steve, she was my own biological mother! I am her flesh and blood yet she looked into my eyes and lied to me. This few days have been rough. I also just found out that Effe did not touch a penny of my money contrary to what I was made to believe. All she did was deposit it into another high-interest account. She didn't steal my money, man, she did me a huge favour by investing that money and thus increased it tenfold!
STEVE
Is it not the same as stealing if she didn't tell you she was depositing your damn money into another account, huh?
CHRIS
I don’t think that was stealing! The account she put the money into is in my name! You know what that means? I’m the sole signatory to the account, and she couldn't have taken money out of it without my signature! Can you now understand where I'm coming from?
STEVE
I understand, my brother. But honestly I think you are losing it. You still love that girl and her impending marriage is driving you insane. You should've let me know earlier so we decide what to do. Right now, as I speak Elaine is walking to the car. Let's meet at the church and talk more on this ok?
CHRIS
Sure, sure, man. I'll meet you two at the church. Bye for now.
EXT. GOLGOTHA HEIGHTS CHAPEL.
The church is packed with hordes of people. On the grounds of the church, parked on one side, are three sleek black cars decorated with gold and white colours.
Chris is walking through the throng of people. Many recognize him and shake his hand, whilst others just stare.
Soft music is filtering through hidden speakers.
People are happy, and the whole aura is one of serenity and bliss. Chris takes out his phone and dials.
CHRIS
Elaine? Where're you guys? Okay, I'll join you presently.
He walks hurriedly to the entrance of the church and stops.
The same gold and white decorations are everywhere. Chris sees Mr. Rupert Henderson seated with his best man, dressed in excellently-tailored black suits.
Chris' face suddenly cringes with pain. He cranes his neck, looking for Elaine and Steve.
Finally he notices Steve standing up and waving to him.
Beside him is Elaine, looking beautiful in a white and purple dress.
Chris begins to move towards them, and suddenly he collides with a lady.
Chris reaches out to steady her, and realizes it was Evelyn Boampong. She looks splendid in a cream suit and holding unto the arm of an elderly man in a white suit.
EVELYN
Chris! Glad you could make it! I already heard you were a bomb at the meeting!
CHRIS
Eve, glad to see you! You seem to be enjoying yourself!
EVELYN
Of course I am! Meet Mr. Joshua Darkwa, an Elder of this church! He's more than an uncle to me! I used to visit him and his wife a lot when I was a kid! He and my father used to be business partners.
At the mention of the name Chris turns and looks at the elderly man with shock.
He has a lot more greys in his hair, but yes, it is the same Joshua Darkwa!
He is the man that Effe had spent so many hours with locked up in room 209 at the Ocean Front Hotel.
He is Effe's dirty old lover! Chris feels dizzy. He sees the scene again and again!
He remembers Darkwa wearing only a white T-shirt and trousers when escorting Effe after their encounter at the hotel.
He remembers this old man embracing Effe! He remembers the old man making a victorious punch in the air!
From a long way off Chris seems to hear Evelyn calling his name.
Slowly Chris comes back to the present, and finds himself leaning against the wall with Evelyn and Darkwa holding him with concern.
EVELYN
Chris, are you okay? What happened to you? You scared me!
JOSHUA
Young man! Are you okay? You almost blacked out! Have you checked your sugar levels lately?
Chris snatches his arm free from the grip of the old man and glares at him with venom. He hisses fiercely.
CHRIS
Git your damn fingers off me, you son-of-a-bitch!
Evelyn gasps with horror. Joshua Darkwa looks shocked and scandalized.
JOSHUA
Hey, what's the matter with you?
CHRIS
Don't give me that act! Elder of the church, right? I wonder how many young girls you've had your way with, you slimy bastard! You hide behind the church and do despicable things with the young and innocent women under your watch!
EVELYN
(screaming)
CHRIS!!!
Chris takes menacing steps towards the old man who walks backwards with sudden fear on his face.
JOSHUA
What's gotten into you, young man? Have you perchance gone mad?
An elderly lady in a superb brown attire joins them. She takes the arm of the old man and glares at Chris.
Chris was reaching out for Darkwa when Steve suddenly appears by his side and holds his arm.
STEVE
Hey, hey, hey, Tiger! Take it slow, man! What the hell is going on here?
CHRIS
That piece of dung is Joshua Darkwa, one of Effe’s lovers. Four years ago he slept with Effe! He is probably still sleeping with her!
Evelyn's voice is hoarse with shock.
EVELYN
Chris Bawa!! Stop this atrocity!
The old woman slaps Chris across his right cheek.
OLD WOMAN
You crazy young man! Watch your obscene mouth!
JOSHUA
Cool down, dear. That young man is a troubled soul.
Chris struggles against Steve, intent on hitting Darkwa, but Steve holds him back.
STEVE
Hold it, man. You're causing a bloody scene, goddamn it! Let's bounce, bro!
CHRIS
Stop lying, old man, or I swear I'll knock in the rest of your teeth! I saw you with Effe with my own eyes! Four years ago, Room 209, Ocean Front Hotel! Does that ring a bell? You spent three long hours alone with Effe in that hotel room when she lied to me that she was on an errand for her pastor! Don’t tell me you were praying in a hotel room!
The old woman is indignant. She tries to slap Chris again, but Evelyn holds her back.
OLD WOMAN
Who's this fool?
JOSHUA
(nodding his head.)
Oh, honey, I think he is the young man our dear Effe was going to marry! The fool that jilted her and caused her so much heartache.
OLD WOMAN
Chris Bawa?
EVELYN
Yes, Auntie. Please forgive me. He's our best designer. I feel so embarrassed.
JOSHUA
No, it's okay, my dear. I think the young man is just confused.
CHRIS
Confused? Are you for real?
OLD WOMAN
You fool! That's my husband you're talking to! That day you saw him with Effe, if you had bothered to ask, he would've told you that our son had left home and settled at the hotel! He was suicidal because his girlfriend had left him! A friend of his alerted us about his whereabouts and his intentions. I was with him in room 209 too! Later my husband came with Effe, so we were four in the room all that while.
Chris halts. For a moment he can barely breathe. Joshua speaks in a calm, kind voice.
JOSHUA
If you had your doubts why didn’t you come inside to confront us, young man? That’s what I would do, under circumstances like that. I would break the door down if I had to just to get to the truth. That day you saw me with Effe she was just trying to help our son who was so suicidal and all our persuasion failed. He was so burnt on ending his misery that nothing could dissuade him. In my desperation I called the pastor, who told me that Stanley, that's my son, was great friends with Effe. So the pastor called Effe to meet us at the hotel and see if she could talk him out of it. Effe did come, bless her, and spent time with Stanley. My son listened to her. She saved his life.
OLD WOMAN
We didn’t want to leave the boy alone. That was why my husband saw Effe off alone. If you are in doubt you can ask Mr. Afful. He was a new member of the church then. We bumped into him at the hotel that day and we told him our plight and the fact that the pastor had sent Effe over to see if she could calm the poor boy’s nerves. Effe gave us back our son! Did you honestly think Effe could do something like that? You are a big fool and I thank God she didn’t end up with a fool like you.
Chris could not speak. There was a look of abject misery on his face. He is almost gasping for breath.
CHRIS
Oh, God! Oh, no! Tell me I just didn't hear that!
OLD WOMAN
(face showing distress as she takes Chris' hands.)
Wait a minute. You mean you were spying on Effe? Were you convinced Effe was having an affair with my husband? Why, young man? Why would you even think that? You were her world! You were the reason that girl breathed. She couldn't stop talking about you! She adored you! Why did you think she was even capable of such a rotten act? That girl is nothing but an Angel!
Blindly Chris snatches his hands from hers. On his face is a look approaching panic.
CHRIS
No! No she's not an angel! She's a bitch! She's a nothing but a bitch! Somebody tell me she's a bitch!
ELAINE
(At his side, hugging him tightly.)
It’s okay, my love! It's okay. Come with me, dear. Let's get some fresh air! Let me take you home and pamper you. I’m sure that would do you good!
CHRIS
Oh, God! Oh, dear sweet Lord! What's happening to me? What's happening? I'm dying, I'm lost.
People are talking excitedly around them now. Chris is gasping for breath. Flanked by Steve and Elaine, they move quickly outside.
STEVE
We gotta get outta here. You don't need to be here, Chris!
ELAINE
Yes, Chris. Coming to this wedding was a bad idea. Look at how worked up you are. That’s why I told you to stay away. Let's go home, my darling! Let’s go home so I can pamper you back to sanity.
When they get to the car park a white Nissan Xterra roars in, executes a dangerous turn that makes people flee with cries of horror.
The car comes to shuddering halt, and the driver's door is opened almost violently.
Michael Ameyaw jumps out. He is wearing only a pair of black jeans, a singlet and bathroom slippers.
ELAINE
Mike! What's wrong? Why're you looking like that? Is everything okay?
CHRIS
Is it my Mother? Is she okay?
MICHAEL
She's fine, Chris, Sisi is fine. So sorry, didn't mean to cause any panic. I got a little problem and I need Chris’ help urgently. Bro, please come inside my car and take a look. We need to make a decision about something right now.
CHRIS
Hell, Mike, you think this is the time to discuss some damn rice deal? Gimme a break, man! Let's do this at home. C'mon, let's get outta here!
Michael's face hardens. He suddenly grips Chris' arm as the latter tries to walk away.
CHRIS
Mike,let go! I ain't gonna discuss no damn Colombian rice with you here, goddamn it! Get your hands off me!
ELAINE
Mike, let's go home, okay? Chris is not feeling too good!
MICHAEL
You got to take a look at this thing, Chris, trust me. You got to get into my car right now! It’s a matter of life and death please.
CHRIS
Hey, what's gotten into you anyway? What the matter with you? What’s so damn important that it can’t wait till we get home? I am at my wits end presently.
MICHAEL
Chris. Trust me. This won't take more than a few minutes! Take a look at the damn thing!
STEVE
(Pushes Mike back.)
Lay off, bro! The man says he gotta blast outta here, and we're all heading home, so what's stopping you from bringing your ass back to the house and having it addressed?
CHRIS
(Sighs and speaks calmly.)
Listen, Mike, I'm on edge a bit, okay? Forgive me, alright, let's have a look at your sheet or whatever the hell it is, man.
ELAINE
Darling? Are you doing it here? Let's go home and take all the time you need.
CHRIS
Gimme just a few minutes, my love. I’ll be with you shortly.
Elaine and Steve head towards Chris' car.
Chris moves into step with Michael, who opens the backdoor of his car.
MICHAEL
Get in, please.
Chris looks at Michael for a moment, and then he gets into the car. Michael climbs in beside him and slams the door.
To be continued..
.
Episode 24
Continues..
GOLGOTHA HEIGHTS CHAPEL - CONTINUOUS
The head supports of the front seats of Michael’s car have DVD video players fixed in them, and are on, showing blue screens.
CHRIS
So what was all that fuss about? I guessed you have something else on your mind to talk about apart from Colombian rice deals. You didn’t track down me here to talk about rice, did you?
MICHAEL
(Picks up a camcorder lying on the seat and shows it to Chris.)
You bet I didn't. You said this camcorder belonged to Effe, right?
CHRIS
Do we really have to go over that shit again? You wanted a camcorder to take with you to the beach, I told you to take that one and keep it. So why are you still bugging me with it?
MICHAEL
Hold your guns, bro. After you left I was cleaning the camcorder. Well, there was a CD in it, so naturally I wanted to find out if it was blank so I could use it or if it had some important stuff on it, and man, you won't believe the shit on that CD!
CHRIS
You found some funny movie on it, maybe of me and Effe? That's it? You make all this fuss because of a fucking four-year-old movie?
MICHAEL
It is a movie of your so-called best-friend trying to rape your finacee! Just shut up Chris and watch the damn thing! I think you deserve to know the truth.
Chris jerks as if he has received a physical blow. His tortured face turns almost completely black. His voice is a hoarse whisper.
CHRIS
What did you just say?
Michael opens the camcorder's CD slot and extracts a small CD.
He leans forward and opens the DVD on the headrest of the car's seat, slots in the CD and leans back.
MICHAEL
You heard me Chris. Just watch, would you?
Chris' dazed eyes move to the screen in front of him. The blue background turns to black, and then suddenly it emits a hissing sound.
Chris sees his living-room furniture first, and then Effe suddenly comes into view.
She is wearing the same dress she had worn to the Ocean Front Hotel.
Chris remembers that it was the same day he had come home from the Gentlemen's Perk Nightclub and found Effe seducing Steve!
Effe sits down on the sofa facing the camera. She looks sad.
EFFE
I don't know how to begin this, my darling Chris, but first I want you to know that I love you very much. I love you in a way I will never love any man! These past few weeks have been very difficult for me. I'm so scared! I know I should've talked about this with you earlier but I didn’t want to cause any problems.
Effe stops speaking. She covers her face with both hands as if she is overwhelmed with emotions.
EFFE
My dearest Chris, I can't imagine myself without you, that is a fact! I'll rather die than live without you! These few days you don't know just how close I've come to giving it all up! I’ve had visits from your Mother, from Elaine, from Afful and from Steve! They were not pleasure visits. All of them want one thing from me. They want me to leave you. I don’t know what I have done to them to make them hate me so much. I’ve tried to talk about it a couple of times but had chickened out because I know it would hurt you very much. I decided to tell you all about it in this video. Let’s talk after watching this please.
Your mom invited me over for lunch the other day on the pretext that she wanted to get to know me more since I was going to marry you. I was elated that finally your mom was accepting me as the woman in your life. You can just imagine my joy when I stood behind her gates and rang the doorbell. She begged that I shouldn’t tell you because she wanted it as a surprise for you. She even gave me the indication that you were going to join us later on. Since I wanted to impress her I baked some pastries and took them with me. I was ushered in and found her in the living area. I happily gave her my present and her countenance changed immediately. She called the maid in my presence and gave her the pastries and asked her to put them in the trash can. I felt so embarrassed. She then went on about a lot of things. She went on to state that you told her you didn’t love me but that what you felt for me was pity and you didn’t know how to tell me. She told me I wasn’t fit to be your wife because of my background. To cut a very long story short she wanted me to call off the wedding and leave you to Elaine who was the perfect woman for you. Then two weeks after that Elaine came. She barked up the same tree that your Mom did, telling me that I wasn’t good for you and all that nonsense. She told me you are still in a relationship with her and make love to her every time you meet and that was frequent. She mentioned that she was sure you still loved her but you didn't know how to tell me. She told me to name my price for letting you go. She insinuated I was only with you for money so she practically offered me money to leave you alone. She wrote a huge amount on a cheque and asked me to take it and vanish forever. I turned it down and she almost scratched out my eyes with her sharp nails.
Three weeks after that, Steve called that you were drunk in a joint and asked that I pick you up. I was a bit alarmed because I didn’t know you as the type that drunk your head off. I didnt believe him but he insisted I come and see for myself so I obliged. When I got there, he told me you were in one of the rooms and led me to a room. Then he insulted me and asked me how much I would take to have sex with him. At first I thought he was joking since he was a bit drunk but when he tried to touch me I realized I had been tricked. If his girlfriend had not badged in that day, I don’t know what would have happened. I am scared and don’t know what is going on. Is it true you don’t love me? Are you really ashamed and embarrassed to have me in your life? What broke my back is your attitude. It seems to me your attitude towards me has changed a bit too. Have I done anything to hurt you? Is it…………………..
Effe breaks off and glances sharply over her shoulder at the main door. She bites her lip.
She stares quickly at the camera, gets up and approaches the camera.
Her hand is large as she reaches for the camera, but then she glances over her shoulder again. Her hand zooms into the camera, giving it a red tinge, and then her hands go away again.
MICHAEL
I'm sure she thought it was you coming in, Chris. She panicked, I guess, and wanted to put off the camera. She thought she did, but rather her hand clicked the mute button, which is next to the power switch. She just muted the sound, but the damn machine, by some divine intervention, continued shooting!
Chris' grips his temples, his breath coming in dazed whoops.
Effe is walking to the door, and she soon disappears from sight, but a moment later she reappears in the living-room, and Steve is walking behind her.
CHRIS
(horrified.)
Oh, dear God! I remember calling Steve that damn night! Told him I wasn't coming in so he should go sleep in my house or something! Oh, God, oh God! He told me Effe came to meet him in the house! He told me she told him she fancied him, that she wanted money, and then she tried to seduce him! Oh, God, oh sweet, sweet Jesus...
MICHAEL
Shut up, Chris, just watch the damn thing, bro!
Steve sits on the sofa, and pats a space beside him, telling Effe to sit down.
Effe smiles, but does not sit near him. She sits at the far end away from Steve.
Steve is speaking, and after a while he gets up and leaves camera range. He comes back with a tray.
There is a canned beer on it, and a non-alcoholic apple juice, Effe's favourite. He sits down and speaks. Effe gets up, leaving the camera angle.
MICHAEL
I think, at this point, Steve asked her to go for some glasses.
Steve looks up furtively. He reaches into his top pocket and takes out a syringe with the plunger drawn all the way out. It contains a red substance.
CHRIS
(trembling, eyes wide open with horror.)
Oh, no! Oh, mother of God, dear sweet Jesus, oh God, oh, no! Oh, my God!
MICHAEL
This is where Steve drugs the drink.
In the shot Steve plunges the needle of the syringe into the paper drink on the top, beside the opening and fluidly depresses the plunger.
He puts the syringe back into his trouser pocket just as Effe returns and hands him two drinking glasses.
Steve shakes the fruit box and opens the paper drink. He pulls out the foil and pours a full glass and hands it to Effe.
Steve pops the canned beer and drinks from it straight, keeping his eyes on Effe.
She drinks, speaks to him, drinks again, speaks, and then drains her glass.
Suddenly the glass drops from her hand. She holds her forehead, and then she slowly looks at Steve.
She says something, shakes her head and tries to stand up. She is groggy and weak.
She tries again and again to stand up, but to no avail. Finally she manages to stand on her wobbly legs.
Steve is up on his feet, pulling off his tie. He reaches for Effe. She tries to push him back.
He pushes her hands away and grabs her, holding her close. She is flailing weakly against him; her mouth opens in a scream, her face tortured.
Steve is trying to kiss her, and she is turning her head continuously away. He grabs her hair, steadies her head, and clamps his lips on hers.
CHRIS
(Screams in agony.)
NOOOOOOOOOOO!!
Effe bites Steve, and he pulls her hair viciously and pushes her, and she falls to the floor.
He rips off his clothes. He drops to his knees, almost out of camera view.
Effe suddenly lashes out her legs, catching him in the groin. He is screaming painfully.
Effe wobbles to her hands and knees. Her head is down. She is trying to fight off the effects of the drug, but it is weighing her down.
She holds unto the chair and gains her feet. She walks in a zigzag fashion towards the door. Steve catches her across the waist and brings her down hard.
They fall towards the camera, hitting it. The view spins and spirals, showing the ceiling, the floor, a whirlwind view as it skitters across the floor, and then finally darkness.
MICHAEL
And that's how the camcorder ended up under the sitting-room furniture, where I eventually found it.
Chris cannot speak. Tears roll down his cheeks unchecked. He opens the car door and gets out.
Elaine and Steve walk towards him. Elaine looks alarmed.
ELAINE
Darling! What did he do to you? Why do you look like that?
STEVE
Chris, what the fuck happened?
Chris hits Steve so hard on the jaw that he is flung backward and he smashes into a parked car.
Steve sits on the floor, his back against a car tyre, and blood streams from his mouth and nose.
He tries to get up, his face dazed. Chris kicks him hard in the belly. Steve grunts and falls on his back.
Elaine screams. Michael grabs Chris from behind.
MICHAEL
That's enough, bro! You're gonna kill him!
ELAINE
What did you do to him, Mike? What did you say to him!?
Chris pushes Michael away, grabs Steve's shirt and hauls him to his feet.
Blood is pouring down Steve's face. He weakly tries to hold Chris' hand.
CHRIS
Right now I want to kill you, Steve, but you're not worth it. The depths of hell would be too comfortable for a sick soul like yours. I'll ask this for the last time, and you better level up. Why did you drug Effe's drink and try to rape her? Why?
STEVE
(tears falling his cheeks)
Chris, my brother! Forgive me, man! God, I’m sorry, man...
CHRIS
You think sorry answers the question I just asked you? Why the fuck did you do it, Steve? You are like a brother to me. Why did you want to rape my woman, my Effe? Why, Steve, Why?
Chris smashes a blow into his ribs when he doesn't
answer.
CHRIS
Don't make me kill you with my bare hands, Steve. Level up or.....
STEVE
(pointing an unsteady finger at Elaine.)
Elaine. She made me do it. She confused me! She seduced me and blackmailed me with it. She said she would tell you I raped her if I didnt rape Effe. She told me how bad Effe was. She told me Effe was cheating on you with some guys. She showed me pictures of her in a club and even took me to see her perform at the club.
She turned my fucking mind so badly that I began hating Effe. I didn’t like her treating you like that. Elaine made me do it, bro! I'm sorry, man. Oh, God, I'm so sorry!
Chris turns horrified eyes on Elaine. She runs forward, falls down on her knees, grabs his right leg. She is crying.
ELAINE
Chris, I did it for you! I did it because she destroyed the love you and I had! I did it because you were going astray, because I love you, because you're mine and always will be mine!
CHRIS
Oh, God! Oh, Lord, what have I done to us, Effe?
He kicks away from Elaine. She gets to her feet and grabs his lapels. She is crying and grovelling.
ELAINE
She's not worth it, Chris! I love you, always will! She's a slut, Chris! She strips at bars! She's a whore! I'm the only woman for you. I love you Chris!
CHRIS
(grips her upper arms so fiercely that she winces with pain. He speaks in a fierce whisper.)
How did you know about her stripping? I have never told a soul! How did you know about that?
ELAINE
It doesn't matter, my love! I matter! We matter! I love you! I am the only woman fit for you.
CHRIS
(pushes her away angrily.)
Oh, Lord! Yes, Afful! You were working with Afful all this time, Elaine! You planned this with Afful to destroy Effe! Oh, sweet Jesus! How foolish I have been, how blind I have been!
Michael grips Chris' arm fiercely.
MICHAEL
You're wasting time, man! This is not important! You can deal with these traitors later, but right now every second you waste means you're losing Effe for good!
CHRIS
But what can I do, man! She's going to get married in a few minutes!
MICHAEL
But she's not here yet. You gotta find her, you got to talk to her!
CHRIS
I treated her bad, and I'm dying now, man! My soul is dying! I deserve it.
MICHAEL
Stop behaving like a fucking sissy! Go find your damn woman and drag her with you if you have to! Find her even if its just to apologize.
CHRIS
You don't understand, do you? Fine, the good reasons I had for breaking up with her have all been shot dead within days, bro! But that other reason, I beheld it with my own eyes, man... It was terrible! That cannot be forgiven or forgotten! That one deed makes it impossible for me to be with her! But Lord, if I had known about all these, my break with her would've been different, man! Oh, Lord! How she must hate me! But I saw her stripping, man! She is nothing but a damn stripper.
MICHAEL
Just like you beheld how she seduced your best friend with your own eyes?
CHRIS
Oh, God, oh Lord! I can't take this! Lord, maybe she had a reason for doing what she did. I can forgive her, I don't know! Damn, this hurts! This heart bleeds. Oh, Lord, what am I gonna do?
MICHAEL
Stop shitting around and bust a move, Chris! The clock is ticking! Call her, talk to her, meet her, tell her the truth, show her the CD. Anything, bro! But MOVE! Don't drool, man! GO! Where is your car? Never mind, take mine! Go! Go! Go!
Chris snatches the car keys, and rans to the car. Elaine tries to stop him, but Michael draws her back.
Chris jumps into the car, spins it round and speeds off.
Elaine tries to scratch Michael's eyes. Michael pushes her back hard. She totters and lands hard on her buttocks.
She stares up at him in shock.
MICHAEL
I'm not the chivalrous type, lady, especially to snakes like you. If you fuck with me, I'm gonna break your damn jaw! You are the bitch!
.
It continues after comments..

WEDDING OF MY EX (A ChrisEffe Bliss) Episode 21-22

THE BAWA RESIDENCE - EVENING
Chris stands just inside his living-room.
He looks around slowly, his face anxious.
He takes a few steps further into the room.
He racks his memory, dredging up that painful moment when he had seen a mean-looking Effe standing over the sprawled body of his mother, holding a side-table in her hand as blood dripped from his mother's scalp.
He hears Dr. Anaman's voice talking about glass particles ...
and then, suddenly, Chris remembers!
There had been a fancy flower pot, shaped like an octagon, near the door!
It had held artificial seaweeds with lights in them!
Yes, he remembers now! It had shattered that day!
He is so engrossed that he does not notice that her mother has appeared on the landing, and that she is staring at him with a slight frown of worry on her beautiful face.
He gives a startled jerk when she speaks suddenly, breaking into his reveries, her voice in a happy.
MADAM LOIS
Chris, my darling Prince! You're here!
His mother is coming down the stairs with outstretched arms.
She looks extremely happy.
She throws herself into Chris' arms and hugs him tightly.
She steps back with a look of sudden anxiety on her face.
MADAM LOIS
Chris-love? What's it? You don't look too cheerful. Sick? Where's my daughter-in-law? I thought you were coming here together.
CHRIS
(softly)
Mom, Effe didn't hit you that night with the side-table. You fell down on the glass flowerpot accidentally, didn't you? And you lied that Effe hit you, didn’t you?
His mother's face collapses instantly.
The happiness drains from her face, and she looks haggard and old suddenly.
Her shoulders drop, and she looks at Chris with abject misery.
She looks scared.
MADAM LOIS
I've been dreading this day, son.
Her words make Chris' own face contort with shock.
He feels so weak that he almost falls down.
He shakes his head numbly at his mother.
CHRIS
Oh, my God, Mom! How could you? Oh, dear Lord, you lied to me? You accused Effe falsely? Why, oh why, Mama?
Madam Lois turns away.
Shakily she sits down and clamps her hands in her laps.
Her head is down because she cannot bear to look into her son's hurt eyes.
Her voice is contrite.
MADAM LOIS
I won't bother to deny it, Chris. It has haunted me ever since. I don't know why I did it, son. I felt so ashamed afterwards and wanted to tell you, but I couldn't. I was overcome by the moment, son, and acted shamefully without thinking!
CHRIS
Oh, my God! Oh, God! Oh, dear sweet Jesus! How could you, Mama?
MADAM LOIS
Oh, son! Please forgive me! I think I was still angry with you for breaking off with Elaine. When Dr. Anaman told me you were hurt and I came here to check on you that night, Effe was very moody. She was weeping and told me you were angry because you saw Steve kissing her, much against her will. I was convinced you had finally seen her for what she was, and on the spur of the moment I lied to you.
CHRIS
Did Effe push you, Mom?
Madam Lois remains silent.
Chris’ voice explodes like a whiplash.
CHRIS
MAMA!
MADAM LOIS
(trembling, wringing her hands)
No, she did no such thing. She didn't push me, son. I tripped when I tried to hit her and fell down hard on the flowerpot. The flowerpot cut me on the head. The side table got dislocated and trapped my hand. Effe picked up the side-table and she was trying to help me get up, and that was when you came in...oh, Chris-love, I'm so sorry! Please forgive me!
Chris wordlessly begins to walk away from her.
She gets up and blocks his way, and her face is acutely distressed.
MADAM LOIS
Oh, son, I'm so sorry! Please, forgive me! I would've told you, but I was scared. Later, I thought whatever caused the breakup between you two had nothing to do with my lie! If you broke off with her because of what I accused her of, then I’m very sorry, Chris-love! I have been feeling so ashamed for four years now. Please, son, forgive me!
Chris looks at his mother with so much pain on his face that she drops her gaze, and tears come into her eyes.
CHRIS
Yes, it is true that I was going to break up with Effe anyway before that incident, but because you lied, our breakup was nastier, and very painful. I would’ve spoken to her and broken off with her with mutual understanding, because although I was very angry and disappointed in her, I didn’t hate her. However, because you made me believe that she dared raise a hand against you, my mother, my treasured Mother, I hated her that night! That was something I couldn’t tolerate. I hated her for that single act. That hatred has lived with me all these years and I have suffered considerably because of a lie. Why would you compromise me in such a way? What in God’s name were you thinking, Mama?
Chris stops and looks at his mother with his tormented soul on his face.
CHRIS
What you did was wrong, Mama, so damn wrong!
Madam Lois doesn’t speak.
She keeps her head bowed as Chris steps past her and climbs the stairs.
She speaks behind him.
MADAM LOIS
Chris? Did you speak to Effe? Is she the one who told you?
CHRIS
Does it really matter where I learnt the truth that my own mother could betray me like this? For your information, Dr. Anaman made me see the light of day. He told me you had glass particles in the wound. Obviously, the side-table didn't have any glass.
He enters his bedroom and falls on the bed.
He shuts his eyes tightly as he recalls how he had screamed at Effe that night, and would not allow her to speak.
His phone rings; it is Elaine.
CHRIS
Hello, Angel?
ELAINE
Darling, is everything alright? We are very worried! I expected you back here ages ago.
CHRIS
I'm okay, darling. Doc told me ... no, ordered me, actually, to rest after he gave me a barrel of medications. I didn't want to spoil your mood so I came home. Was about to call you when your call came through.
ELAINE
Oh, I see. You had me worried. Alright, I will see you in a little while, so get some rest. I'll come and caress your body, Tiger.
CHRIS
Hurry up then, honey. I could use some TLC.
He ends the call but keep on looking at his mobile phone.
He sighs deeply, and stands up, but almost immediately he inputs a number manually, and then he puts the phone to his ear.
Chris hears loud music in the background, and a lot of excited voices.
And then, he hears a sweet voice in his ears.
EFFE
Hello?
Chris sits down slowly. He cannot speak for a while.
EFFE
Hello? Who's this, please? Hello? Can you please speak up a bit? I can barely hear you.
CHRIS
It is me, Effe.
He hears her sudden intake of breath.
She is silent for a long time.
CHRIS
Effe? Are you there?
EFFE
Chris. Please. Stay away from me. I beg of you.
She cuts the line.
Chris dials again, it rings with no answer.
He redials. She cuts the call.
He redials. Her phone is switched off.
He sits down, navigates to MESSAGES on his phone, and begins to compose a text message:
I JUST FOUND OUT U DIDN’T HIT MA MOM. SHE JUST CONFESSED. I JUST WANTED TO APOLOGIZE FOR NOT GIVING YOU THE CHANCE TO EXPLAIN YOURSELF. I’M VERY SORRY 4 NOT BELIEVING YOU ON THAT THAT.
He sends the message.
He strips and enters the bathroom.
He is getting into the bath when his phone begins to ring.
In a rush he runs into the bedroom and snatches up his phone, thinking only about Effe.
CHRIS
Hello,
EVELYN
Chris, my darling. Are you in Tadi now?
CHRIS
Yeah. Landed a couple of hours ago.
EVELYN
Wonderful. The wedding is at ten tomorrow morning. Rupert has managed to arrange a meeting between you, John Tamakloe and the South African Team led by their Minister of Trade and the CEO of Black House Creations. We've just shown them your FURY collection and it has completely blown them away! Chris, darling, you've just put your stamp on world fashion!
CHRIS
I see. Time of meeting tomorrow?
EVELYN
You okay, Chris? You don't sound overly joyous about the news! Expecting you to jump through the roof and break one leg, at least. Hahahaha!
CHRIS
I'm okay, really. Just stunned, I think. Can't believe what began as a pursuit of a hobby can end up in such a fulfilling way.
EVELYN
Now you're chirping the love song I want to hear! Okay, the meeting's scheduled for seven o'clock, venue First Floor Conference Center of the Slash House. Wouldn't take more than an hour; they just want to meet you and brief you about the South African Lounge. Can you make it?
CHRIS
Of course I'll make it. It is the reason why Tamakloe dragged me to this wedding, isn't it? This is good news for me in more ways than one. Way I see it, after the meeting, I may decide not to grace the wedding. Thanks, Boss.
EVELYN
No, I thank you! You've vindicated me, love. Some of the Directors almost had my head four years ago when I took you on and made you a section head. Now they can’t look me in the eye because you’ve put our name on the international map. But don't start that absentee show now, please. Be at the wedding; John and Rupert would want to see you there. Bye.
To be continued..
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Episode 22
Continues..
THE BAWA RESIDENCE - MORNING
Chris opens his bedroom door and comes out.
Elaine is following closely behind.
Chris is well-dressed in an expensive and well-cut suit with a crisp white shirt and polka-dotted tie.
Elaine is wearing her nightdress but has pulled on a morning gown.
They go down the stairs, chatting softly.
They find Madam Lois in the living-room.
She is dressed casually and has her headgear on.
She is perusing a Bible.
MADAM LOIS
Chrissy love? Are you going to the wedding this early?
ELAINE
No, Mama. He has a meeting with some important people. They're pleased with his work, and very soon Chris Bawa is going to be a famous household name in fashion!
MADAM LOIS
Oh, thank God for that! Finally, your efforts are paying off. Does that mean you're not going to the wedding after all?
CHRIS
I'll go to the wedding when the meeting's over. Steve will pick Elaine up, and I'll meet them at the church.
Just then a delighted voice shouts from a doorway across the hall, and Chris turns to see a medium-built handsome young man emerging from one of the rooms.
He is MICHAEL AMEYAW, Chris' friend.
He has been taking care of the Supermarket when Chris left for Accra.
MICHAEL
Chris, my main man! Don't run out on me, bro!
Chris and Michael embrace warmly.
CHRIS
Mike, bro, damn you're looking good. Been a while, dude.
MICHAEL
When I came in last night you were out cold. Oh, Lord, you look svelte, like a president, man!
CHRIS
You're probably looking at the man who's gonna knock Pierre Cardin, Tommy Hilfiger and all the other bigshot fashion gurus off their pedestals! Good to see you, man. I'm very impressed with the returns on the shop. Highly impressive figures! Thank you, Mike.
MADAM LOIS
Yes, I commend him too. He's running the place better than I ever imagined.
MICHAEL
Thanks, folks. But where're you bouncing off to this early morning? Mommy told me the wedding you'll be attending is around ten o'clock.
CHRIS
Yeah, right. But I gotta tie a few ends before I get there. We would go back to Accra tomorrow, but when I come back from the wedding I'll like us to talk about that Colombian rice deal you told me about.
MICHAEL
Sure thing, sure thing, bro. But come on, let me see you off to your car!
ELAINE
(feigning mock indignation)
What's this? I thought I was doing that? You wanna take over my man or what?
They all laugh.
MICHAEL
Go back to bed, pretty face. Let me hang out with my big bro a bit!
Laughing, Chris and Michael leave the two women behind.
They engage in chit-chat as they walk out towards Chris' four runner.
Chris climbs into the car.
MICHAEL
Just a moment, bro. Almost forgot. Me and a few friends are going to the beach this afternoon. I was wondering if I could use your camcorder.
CHRIS
Yeah, why not? I wouldn't be needing it today. Elaine will give it to you.
MICHAEL
No, not that one. I'm talking about the one in the house.
CHRIS
(puzzled)
You've lost me. Is there another one in the house? I know nothing about it.
MICHAEL
I found a Sony camcorder under one of the living-room furniture about two years ago. I gave it to your Mommy.
CHRIS
Oh, I remember now. Yeah, Mom gave it to me. Actually it belonged to Effe, you know, a lady I went out with four years ago. I bought it for her, but it seems she forgot it in the house. No sweat, man. I don't think she needs it now. Trouble is, I don't remember where I put it.
MICHAEL
It is in the living-room, locked away with the other equipment.
CHRIS
Take it and keep it, boss. No sweat.
MICHAEL
Thanks, bro. Hey, hurry back, okay? Looking forward to a little jaw to jaw with you.
They wave, and Chris drives out.
SLASH DESIGN BUILDING, TAKORADI - MORNING
There are four men in the plush conference hall.
Mr. John T. Tamakloe, the owner of Slash Designs.
The South African Minister of Trade.
The CEO of Black House Creations, South Africa.
And Chris.
They are all happy, and they are laughing.
The meeting has gone on well, and ended very satisfactorily.
Chris' FURY Collection has evidently impressed them very much.
Mr. Tamakloe looks at his watch and stands up. He informs them that he has to be at the wedding.
They all shake hands and congratulate Chris profusely. They leave the Conference Hall.
They are seen emerging from the lift and a few seconds later coming out of the sliding glass doors of the building.
The South Africans are seen entering a sleek Mercedes Benz and Chris and Mr. Tamakloe are waving at them.
Chris chit-chats with Mr. Tamakloe as they walk towards their cars.
A uniformed chauffeur takes Mr. Tamakloe's bag.
Chris and Mr. Tamakloe are chatting when a white car enters the park, passes, stops and reverses slowly.
The driver's door opens and a handsome young man steps out.
He is holding a brown envelope.
He walks towards them.
Chris stares at the approaching man with an expression of shock and instant hatred.
MR. TAMAKLOE
What's wrong, Chris? You look like you've seen a ghost!
The man approaching them stops, smiles and begins to speak.
With a snarl Chris steps forward.
His fist flies out, crashing into the man's temple, sending him sprawling heavily to the ground in a daze.
Mr. Tamakloe screams with shock.
MR. TAMAKLOE
MY GOD, CHRIS!!! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU, BOY?
He holds unto Chris tightly.
Chris tries to push Mr. Tamakloe aside.
The young man struggles to his feet, and his eyes flash angrily at Chris.
He stands shakily, still dazed from Chris’ blow.
CHRIS
Let me go, John, please!
MR. TAMAKLOE
But why? What's come over you? Calm down, boy, calm down!
Chris points an accusing finger at the enraged young man staring at him.
CHRIS
That man is Effe's lover, sir! A little over four years ago she withdrew a lot of money out of our joint account and gave it to that son-of-a-bitch! They are con artistes! They stole my damn money!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Are you crazy? What drivel are you spewing?
CHRIS
Not drivel, sir, but unadulterated fact! It is one of the reasons I left Effe. She was meeting with this dirty bastard at the Takoradi Sports Club where she hands over my money to this fool!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Bright Koffie?
CHRIS
(looking at Mr. Tamakloe in utter shock)
You know him?
MR. TAMAKLOE
Of course I know him, you hothead! He works for Rupert! I've known him for a while. He is a fine gentleman.
CHRIS
Bright Koffie works for Rupert Henderson, Effe's soon-to-be husband?
MR. TAMAKLOE
Yes! The one and only Rupert I know.
CHRIS
Now you see what I was talking about? Effe managed to get him to work for Rupert! They're playing him for a fool! They'll con him out of his wealth! You better warn that old man to open his eyes, sir, and not be fooled by these liars!
MR. Tamakloe begins to speak, but turns away with a strange sound of indignation and approaches Koffie.
MR. TAMAKLOE
Are you okay, Bright?
The young man nods, but his furious eyes drive into Chris with venom. He bends down, picks up the brown envelope and approaches the fuming Chris.
BRIGHT
(angrily)
You're lucky I have so much respect for Effe, and for Mr. Tamakloe! I would gladly have met you blow for blow, Chris! You’re the big fool here if you believe all that shit about Effe!
Chris rushes towards him again, but Mr. Tamakloe steps between them, pushing them apart.
MR. TAMAKLOE
Stop that, stop this at once, both of you!
Chris and Koffie glare at each other, but they step back.
MR. TAMAKLOE
Chris, I don't understand you. Bright here's been working for Rupert for a while now. What nonsense were you saying about him? That he stole your money? Did you steal his money, Bright?
BRIGHT
(handing over the brown envelope to Mr. Tamakloe)
You know something, Chris? I've spent the past four years feeling sorry for Effe because things didn't work out between you two. I got the impression that you were the perfect guy for her, but after meeting you today, and from what I have seen, I can say Effe is better off without you. I am totally convinced that Effe is the lucky one. You don't deserve an angel like Effe!
MR. TAMAKLOE
(gesturing with the brown envelope)
Bright? What's this?
BRIGHT
Accounts of Chris’ investments with us. That's the documentations for his money, the money he claims Effe stole. All the deposit slips and statements of investments are in his name. Please give it to him!
Bright turns to leave, but Mr. Tamakloe hold his arm.
MR. TAMAKLOE
Hold on, Bright. I don't understand a thing! What's all this? What are talking about?
BRIGHT
Sir John. You see, four years ago, Effe and I were both lucky to leave the orphanage. Thanks mainly to this man, Chris Bawa! Effe and I were like brother and sister...
CHRIS
(angrily, bitterly)
The hell you were, you stupid liar! They were lovers! They still are, John!
BRIGHT
(face tight with anger)
I'll tell you this, Mr. Bawa, and only this once. Effe and I are friends, very close friends. Maybe you saw Effe and I together, maybe the way we relate so each other suggested to you that we were intimate, but it was nothing. It was a show of affection between a brother and a sister. A deep love between siblings, for that's the love I feel for Effe. What's got you so riled up anyway?
CHRIS
Because she stole my money and gave it to you, idiot!
BRIGHT
(taking a shuddering breath)
I’m trying to remain calm and civil here, Mr. Bawa. You better stop those insults because you’re really making me angry. Effe never took a pesewa from you, Mr. Bawa. Her father, Mr. Opoku, found work for me at the African International Bank many years ago. I was a clerk then, and we had just introduced a high-yielding investment account into the system. I advised Effe to sign on to the investment account. She bought the idea and brought you an application form to complete. After completion Effe brought it back to me!
Chris' eyes narrow.
His mind flashes back to a warm evening.
He and Effe are in his study, filling out an African International Bank account form.
CHRIS
I remember something like that, yes, but I also remember she had a portion to fill too. I gave the forms back to her, but never heard about it again. I forgot all about it, and I don’t think I asked her what happened to the forms.
BRIGHT
She filled her part and brought it to me. That investment account wasn’t meant as a Joint Account, so you were the sole signatory. She only filled the emergency contact section of the form. Shortly afterwards, I was transferred to the Cape Coast Branch. I however came to Takoradi weekly or so for official purposes. I met her at the Sports Club where she gave me the deposits for the account, YOUR account, because everything was in your name, not hers. All the monies I received from her on my weekly visits were deposited into that account, and she could not withdraw from that account because EVERYTHING WAS IN YOUR BLOODY NAME!
CHRIS
(voice now low, devoid of fury. He seems confused)
But she never mentioned you. Not even once. If you were like siblings, how come she never mentioned you?
BRIGHT
She did. I was known at the Orphanage as Kofi Panyin, a name I couldn't use when I got employed. I began using Bright Koffie only as an adopted name when I got the appointment. Not all of us grew up knowing our parents, Mr. Bawa!
CHRIS
Oh, Lord! You're Kofi Panyin, her brother at the orphanage? She mentioned you all the time! Yes, we were coming to Cape Coast to visit you one day...oh, God! But why the Sports Club? Why didn't she bring you home instead?
BRIGHT
It was because I was time pressed. The Takoradi sports Club was one of our biggest clients and I managed their accounts too, so I was coming to the Sports Club every week to go over their investments portfolio with the Chief Executive. Besides, you were not home during the weekdays. So that's it. I deposited all your money into the new account. She told me you were saving it for your marriage. She only made deposits into the account. Not a pesewa was taken from the account. So the money she gave me, YOUR MONEY, grew even after you were separated.
CHRIS
(shaking his head dizzily)
Oh, no, no, oh no!
BRIGHT
Yes, Mr. Bawa. When the two of you broke up, I was then attached to the Kumasi office. Effe was so hurt that she never informed me about the break up. When I came back to Cape Coast, after two years, I assumed that you might have withdrawn the money, you being the sole signatory. A few weeks ago I was privy to our Internal Auditor's report, and I realized that the money was still in the account, untouched. I notified Effe and she asked me to give all the documents of the investment to your mother, but I never could not make the time. Later, Uncle Rupert told me you would be meeting here this morning. I manage some accounts for Uncle Rupert too, and work for him on the side, so he gives me a lot of info. When I heard you would be here I went for your account documentations two days ago. They’re all in that envelope. All your statements, deposit slips, account details, everything! They’re all in there. Effe never stole a pesewa from you, Mr. Bawa.
MR. TAMAKLOE
So, the money Chris thought Effe was stealing and giving to you is all here?
BRIGHT
Yes, everything. The envelope has all the deposit slips, and since no withdrawals have been made, and the amount was re-invested quarterly, it has now earned very impressive interests.
MR. Tamakloe tears open the bulky brown envelope.
He rummages in there and finally withdraws what looks like an account statement.
He looks at the entries, opens to another page, and then he whistles silently when he sees the current closing balance
MR. TAMAKLOE
Chris, you're a millionaire!
Chris’ face is twisted with shock and pain.
There is sweat all over his face, and he is trembling. For several moments his eyes dart from Bright’s face to the sheet in Mr. Tamakloe’s hand.
CHRIS
Oh, God! Oh, Lord no! Oh, God, oh God, oh God!
BRIGHT
Oh, man, don't tell me you really didn't know! How can you even think Effe can ever steal from you, or con you? Are you mad? That girl loved you! She worshipped you! You were her world! She wanted you to be proud of her.
Chris loosens his tie.
He cannot speak. His face is so shocked.
Wordlessly Mr. Tamakloe puts the accounts statement back into the envelope and hands it to Chris.
BRIGHT
I have to run now. You look genuinely shocked, so I wouldn't hold it against you. My question is, why didn't you ask Effe about the money when you were convinced she was stealing from you?
Chris still cannot speak.
Bright shakes his head sadly and gets into his car.
He drives off.
MR. TAMAKLOE
(sadly)
Is this why you broke off with Effe, Chris, my son? You thought she was stealing from you and giving it to her lover?
CHRIS
(unsteadily)
I am scared, John! Within a few hours I’ve had shocking revelations. I’ve found out that two of the reasons I had for breaking off with her are false! Sure, they're nothing compared with the other reasons, but Lord, I'm scared! I'm scared to the core!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Did you ever speak to Effe about your reasons for ending your relationship?
CHRIS
No, no! I was too overwhelmed! I can't tell you what happened, but it wasn't nice! But now, faced with these, maybe I should've spoken to her!
MR. TAMAKLOE
(softly)
Do you still love her?
CHRIS
(voice breaking)
I've never stopped loving her. Yet I've done nothing but hate her. I will never stop loving her, that's a fact, but she hurt me so much that I hate her!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Chris. That's some damn crazy talk if you ask me. Listen, kid, I'll give it to you straight, man to man. You got to get your act together. I'm beginning to think that maybe you broke off with Effe when lies were flying all around you. You didn't take time to know whether she was really doing the damn things you assumed she was doing. Your mistake, I think, was that you didn’t confront her, or talk to her about the whole caboodle.
CHRIS
Maybe you're right, yeah, about some of the reasons, anyway. Maybe I let my heart rule my head, yes. But then, maybe there was no other way considering the circumstances. If only you knew the kind of things she did, you would award me for staying sane all these years. At the time there was no way else but to call it off.
MR. TAMAKLOE
There's always a way, boy, there's always another way. Listen, your girl is going to get hitched in a couple of hours. Whatever your reasons for hurting her...
CHRIS
She hurt me John! She damn hurt me, not the other bloody way round!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Maybe she did, boy. Listen, I've been a tad longer on this earth than you, and I still say you got to get your act together. I've just been privy to how you thought she stole money from you and how it just turned out that she didn't do nit! Maybe, just maybe, you might be wrong about your other reasons too!
CHRIS
(tremulously)
No, Sir. The other reasons, the REAL reasons for the break up, I WITNESSED, okay, saw with MY OWN EYES. She just acted bitchy, that's all she's always been. I've found out two shocking misconceptions I had about her, but the rest, she is as guilty as Cain, Boss!
MR. TAMAKLOE
Okay, if you say so, boy. But, maybe you shouldn't come to the wedding. Maybe you have to go home!
CHRIS
Go ahead, Boss. I need a little time. Oh, God!
Tamakloe nods, squeezes Chris' shoulder affectionately, and then he turns and heads for his car.
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It continues after comments..