Thursday, 3 May 2018

AFFLICTED Episode 13-14

People are staring at the man as he crosses to the entrance of the hospital and approaches Amina.
She closes her eyes and shakes her head hard, thinking she is hallucinating.
She opens her eyes again and he is right there!
He is not smiling, and his face is grim and extremely wrathful, as if he is very angry.
Y-you! I-I s-s-saw y-you in… I saw yo-yo-you in m-my dr-dr-drea-dreams!
The stranger doesn’t even stop to look at her, but he speaks in a calm, deep, bass voice.
I know, lass.
He walks past her.
Amina turns with a strangled gasp and follows him.
He is not in a hurry, but his legs are long, and his strides sure, so she had to run to keep up.
She reaches his side and reaches out to touch him, and when her hand touches him it further confirms to her that she is not crazy, and that the stranger she has seen in her dream is indeed here.
He enters the reception and does not stop to ask direction.
He enters the elevator, and Amina follows him in.
She is not surprised when he punches the number for the fifth floor, where the FEMALE WARDS are.
Please, sir, who’re you? What’s your name? How come I saw you in my dreams after my fasting and prayers?
He looks at her, and the harsh lines of his face does not relax, and indeed he does look a trifle irritated by her questions.
You prayed to our mighty Lord Jehovah.
Yes, I did! And for three days I saw you in my dreams! And now you’re here! I’m a bit petrified, really, and freaking out a little, if you see what I mean.
No, I don’t see what you mean. And I certainly owe you no explanations, lady.
The lift doors slide open, and the stranger walks out.
He strides along the corridor, and presently arrives at WARD 5, where Maame Akua is still lying on a bed, attached to the life support machine.
He slides the glass door open and enters the ward with Amina close behind him.
There are two male doctors and a female nurse in the ward, and they both look up at the new entrants.
DOCTOR GYAMBIBI, the elderly man who has been attending to Maame Akua, looks at Amina and smiles.
Oh, hello again, Amina.
Hello, Doctor.
Is this Madam Akua’s son? Mr. Akoto Nyameboame?
(licking her lips)
N-no, please. He’s a f-friend.
In that case you two have to wait outside for a while. Visiting hours is still about an hour away.
Yes, Doctor. Please, sir, we have to wait outside for a while.
The stranger does not bother to listen to anyone.
He walks forward briskly and stands at the foot of the bed looking at the frail woman attached to the life support.
The younger doctor has a name tag on his coat lapel which says he is DOCTOR AKWASI KISSIEDU.
Look, sir, with all due respect you should go out. There is a procedure going on. You can come in when we’re done.
The stranger looks at the doctor without expression.
You say there’s no God, and you’re bitterly fighting with your wife because she chooses to worship God. She believes that only God can heal your daughter, who was born a week ago with a weak heart, and not expected to live past two weeks.
The doctors exchange startled glances, and the nurse gasps with shock.
Doctor Kissiedu puts the clipboard he is holding down with a curse and approaches the stranger angrily.
Now, look here, you bastard! How the hell did you know that?
He is reaching out to push the stranger in the chest, and the tall man’s stare drills into him.
Believe me, Akwasi Kuntukununku, you don’t want to touch me!
Doctor Kissiedu pauses with even more shock!
The man has just mentioned his childhood name, the name he has shirked many years ago, the name no one knows.
He gasps, and he drops his hand, and he takes a step back.
Listen, sir! What game do you think you’re playing with ME?
The stranger reaches out suddenly and touches Maame Akua’s right foot.
If I be a man of the Almighty Jehovah, then with the power vested in me by the Holy Spirit, arise from this bed, woman, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!
And Maame Akua suddenly sits up in bed, coughing!
She looks around, her eyes once more normal, her limbs once more cured.
She stares at the stranger standing at the foot of her bed with stunned incredulity.
Yes, me.
I saw you in my dreams! I was lost, and you took my hand and led me to my house!
Then get up and go to your house, woman, and stop your muttering! I have other things to do before the day ends!
He turns and walks towards the door.

Episode 14
The doctors, absolutely scared, jump out of his way with looks of dread and confusion etched deeply on their faces.
The nurse is trembling rather badly by what she has seen, and she gives a startled scream and jump to one side as Maame Akua tries to get out of the bed.
The stranger is out of the ward again!
Amina quickly approaches Maame Akua and takes hold of her shoulders.
Mama, please, wait here! Don’t go anywhere, okay? I think we’re going to bring Akoto home!
What’s going on, my daughter? Where’s my son?
God sent us a helper, Mama! I’ll explain later, but I need to go!
Maame Akua holds Amina’s hand, and tears are running down her cheeks.
Amina! You’ve been an angel! I saw you in a dream too, with Akoto, and he was so happy, and I know God wants you to be his partner! Forgive me, daughter, for being a bad Christian and thinking some tribes are better than others! I should have encouraged Akoto to love you a long time ago!
Amina smiles.
Our God makes everything beautiful in His own time, Mama! And I know the time is now! Please, lie back down. We’ll be with you soon!
She turns and runs out of the ward after the stranger.
Doctor Kissiedu looks at Mama Akua for a moment, and then he suddenly curses and turns for the door.
He goes out and sees the stranger striding purposefully away.
Doctor Kissiedu begins to run hard, his heart thudding with sudden resolve.
He passes Amina, and then he reaches out and catches the arm of the stranger.
A violent vibration blasts through him, as if electricity is passing through him.
He gives a muted scream and scrambles back, and would have fallen if the stranger hadn’t reached out instantly to hold him steady.
I gave you a warning about touching me, Kuntukununku!
There is abject misery in the doctor’s eyes.
He is trembling fiercely.
Please, please! Please help my baby girl! She will be dead by the end of this week! Please, I beg of you, save her!
The stranger steps away from him and heads for the elevator without a word.
Doctor Kissiedu once again runs round him and falls down on his knees in tears, reaching out bravely to hold the man’s leg.
This time there is no violent vibration.
Now what ails you, Kuntukununku?
I hate that name! But you can call me that, it’s okay! Please, my daughter! Please, please help her!!
I am but a mortal, Kuntukununku. I have no power to heal your daughter!
Oh, please! Damn it! Damn it, man! That woman you just cured… damn it, she wasn’t expected to live! She was brain dead, man! Only her heart had a trace of life! She wasn’t supposed to wake up and be able to speak and be cured of all that massive organ and tissue damage! But you healed her!
Get out of my face, Kuntukununku! I have no powers, I told you, fool! I didn’t heal that woman. I’m but a messenger!
What? But you healed that wo-
(breaking in)
He didn’t heal the woman, Doc. God healed her. That’s what this man is trying to tell you!
Doctor Kissiedu’s eyes fill up with tears now.
Still on his knees he raises both his arms upward and shuts his eyes as tears rack his body.
I believe now, sir, that God does exist, and that His son Jesus Christ died for my sins! I repent of my sins, please! I’ll be going to church with my wife, always! I’ll get baptized! I believe, God, dear Lord, please heal my daughter!!
The stranger looks at the broken man and steps past him again.
In two minutes your wife will call and tell you your daughter is now crying, and that the doctors have taken her out of the support system, and she is breast-feeding her! The Good Lord has heard your prayer, and Heaven is happy because another lost sheep has come home, Kuntukununku, you fool!!
The Doctor springs to his feet, but the elevator doors are open and the stranger has entered with Amina.
Wait! Please, sir, wait! I-
The elevator doors swing close, and just then the doctor’s phone rings.
He takes it out with trembling hands.
It is his wife!
He picks the call.
Hello, darling. Ewura Adwoa is up, out of the life support system, and you’re breast-feeding her for the first time, isn’t it? Wait for me, I’m coming over right now.
There is a strangled gasp in his ear, and his wife begins to cry uncontrollably.
(tremulously, stunned)
How did you know, my love? How did you hear of the awesome miracle that just happened? I was watching her and suddenly she opened her eyes and started crying and the doctors came in and took her out and listened to her heartbeats and gave her to me to feed and they’re all confused and waiting to run scans and tests and they can’t understand wh-
(overwhelmed, weeping)
Darling, darling, darling, please breathe! Breathe, my love! I know what happened! I have the strangest news for you, darling. Wait, I’m coming over to the Maternity Ward right now! We’re going to church this Sunday!!
To be continued


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