Burning Coles 8

Mrs. Cole woke up the next day feeling a lot better physically but not much emotionally. She got up and carried out her usual routine. First to the kitchen to boil water for the children to take their bath and next to Bayo’s room to wake him up.
The windows weren’t closed this time around although the room was still untidy with his clothes littered everywhere. His cover cloth had rolled off his body and unlike other times, his pyjamas was on.

His mother observed the changes and hoped it was a positive change that has come to stay. She sat on his bed and tapped him on his shoulder, “Bayo, wake up.” He tossed in bed as usual then finally opened his eyes.
“Mummy, good morning” He sat up. “How are you feeling?”
“Much better, thank you. Hope you slept well?” She asked.

“Yes I did.” He smiled.
“The water will soon be hot. Make sure you don’t go back to sleep.” She got up from his bed and left the room.
Bayo stood up from the bed because he knew if he remained there, he’d sleep off. He walked back and forth praying as he did. He thanked God for the day and committed it into God’s hand. Afterwards, he went to the kitchen with an empty bucket to get hot water.
He met his mother preparing breakfast. He poured the water which had boiled from the electric kettle then filled it up with water from the tap and plugged it for the next person which was most likely Bolu. As he was about to leave the kitchen, he remembered something; he had a dream. He stopped walking and dropped the bucket of hot water.

“What is it?” His mother asked. “Are you okay?” She looked at him with concern filling every of her features, almost abandoning the oat she was preparing.
“I just remembered my dream.” He turned around to face her.
“Your dream? Was it good or bad?” Mrs. Cole didn’t really take dreams seriously. She believed them to be figments of people’s imagination or one’s mind’s way of continuing the activities of the day after the person had slept. She hardly saw them as a message or anything of that sort.
“Good I guess,” Bayo reminisced on the dream as it became more vivid. “I was in a dark cage. My hands and feet were chained. I looked so skinny and starved.”
“Ha! God forbid that is not your portion in Jesus name.” Mrs. Cole immediately rejected the dream. She ignored her ‘dreams are just what we think’ mentality.
“But something happened. A man walked into the cage, there was so much light surrounding him as he approached. I couldn’t look at his face.” Bayo gesticulated with his hands.

“What now happened?” Mrs. Cole completely abandoned the food she was preparing and eagerly waited to hear what happened next.
“The people that were guarding the cage fell flat on their faces and began to beg for their lives. The man told them he came for me and had no business with them. Immediately, mummy,” Bayo’s eyes were open wide, “the chains fell off. The man stretched his hand towards me and called my full name, “Adebayo”. He told me to get up that I was free.” He smiled as he recounted his dream.
“Ehen (really)?” Mrs. Cole felt a surge of emotions. “Wow!”
“Mummy, I think I had that dream because of what happened yesterday.” Bayo told her; his voice was full of with excitement.
“What happened?” Mrs. Cole’s brows furrowed as she wondered which of the many things that happened the day before he was referring to.
“You know, after you caught me, I felt terrible. I told God to help me stop and I promised to be a good boy.” He told her with a broad smile on his face.
“God? Where has God being all the while? Where was he when Gboyega almost destroyed my children’s lives?” She knew there was a God, at least that was what she was brought up to believe. But in recent times she was beginning to believe He had signed off from anything that pertained to the Cole’s Family.
“Go and have your bath before your water gets cold.” She changed the subject of discussion. She was definitely not going to go down that path, talking about God.
Bayo left.

Mrs. Cole resumed what she was doing. She remembered she was to meet with Pastor Gorge by 3pm. She had to ensure she finished all she had to do at work early if she wanted to make it in time. Tuesdays were her busiest day at work because she usually had at least three meetings back to back.
The morning was like most other mornings. Seyi stayed back at home. Mr. Cole remained in bed till 9am, then he started getting ready for work. Mrs. Cole dropped Bayo and Bolu off at their school and went to work.
It was a busy day as she had envisaged. She thought of Emeka so many times. She fought the urge she had to call him. She kept hoping he’d call her and every time her phone rang, she was quick to pick it and check the caller’s ID. The third and final meeting for the day ended by 2:20pm. She hurriedly brought her phone out of her bag to check for any missed call from Emeka because all phones always had to be on silence during every meeting. As she checked her phone, there it was- two missed calls from Emeka, 12 minutes ago. She hurried out of the board room where all the meetings were held and went back to her office. She dialed his number on the way to her office. He picked on the second ring.
“Hi Emeka! “ She had been dying to hear his voice.
“Baby.” Emeka had never called her that in years.
“Baby? Did he just call me baby?” She was speechless. She wasn’t expecting that. Things were progressing fast between them. She had gradually stopped being concerned about the fact that they were both married and had separate families. She liked the sound of being called “baby”. It took her many years into the past. The period when things were perfect.

“How are you doing?” His voice always had that charm.
“I’m good. Just finished a meeting. Will soon be leaving the office for church.” She supported the phone with her shoulder as she packed her laptop and some papers into her laptop bag.
“Church? You are still a church girl.” There was a hint of mockery in his voice.
Mrs. Cole knew what that meant. Back in school, her life revolved round three places; fellowship, lecture halls and her hall of residence. She however didn’t like the sound of being referred to as a church girl. Not from him. That area of her life had died a long time ago. “No, I have a meeting with someone.” She told him. For some reason, she didn’t want him to know it was the pastor she was going to see. The less people that knew, the better.
“Okay cool. I just wanted to check on you and be sure you are okay.”
“I am, thank you. How are you too?” She asked.
“I’m missing you.” He told her plainly. With her, he never beat around the bush.
A wave of heat passed through her body and pockets of sweat immediately appeared on her face. “What am I doing? Where are we headed?” Mrs. Cole immediately began to feel uneasy again, her heart began to beat faster. Deep down she knew all this wasn’t right. But her flesh was quickly gaining control and her spirit on the other hand grew weaker and weaker. The voice of her conscience was being repeatedly silenced by her. She was letting down her guard and she knew it.
“Emeka, I don’t know if you should say things like this” She managed to speak up in a tiny voice.

SEE MORE:  Burning Coles 9

“You don’t want me to tell you the truth about how I feel?” There was an audible smile in his voice. “Don’t you miss me?” He asked her. The smile was gone. He was serious this time.
She knew she did, with everything in her. She had craved to be with him. Even her dream the previous night was proof. He kept appearing in her dream. She didn’t know what to say. “Emeka, I have to go now. I’ll talk to you later.” She ended the call before he could say another word.
She supported herself with the table and guided her steps with her hand till she got to her seat. She threw her body on the black ergonomic chair and held the arm rest tight, panting as if she had just seen a ghost. As she reminisced on the call, her phone rang again.
She knew Emeka wouldn’t let the call end like that. She picked the call still panting.
“Hello, Mrs. Cole,” The male voice at the other end said. “Are you okay?” The person could hear her panting.
Mrs Cole checked the caller’s ID. It was Pastor George. “Oh yes, I’m fine, thank you.” She tried to sound composed and make her breaths less audible.
“Okay, I called to remind you of our meeting by 3:00. I hope you haven’t forgotten?” He asked.

Mrs. Cole looked at her watch. It was 2:45pm. “No I haven’t. It’s just that I will be a bit late. I was held up at work.” She explained to him.
“Aright no problem. I’ll be expecting you then.”
“Thank you sir.” She ended the call. “What does he want to talk to me about?” She wasn’t interested. She needed some space in her life. The only reason why she honored his invitation was because she respected him as her pastor and nothing else.
She left the office and arrived church at 3:15. She parked her car and headed for the pastor’s office. The Pastor’s secretary called the intercom of the office. “Sir, Mrs Cole is here to see you… Okay sir.” She dropped the receiver. “You can go in.” She pointed at the door leading to the pastor’s office.
Mrs. Cole walked to the door and knocked. She heard a male voice telling her to come in.
She opened the door and entered. The office was air conditioned and had an automated air freshener that puffed lavender flavoured scent every 30 minutes. His Bible and laptop were opened on his table.
“Good afternoon sir.” She said with a smile as she approached his desk.
Pastor George stood up and extended his hand for a handshake. “How are you this afternoon?”
“I’m fine thank you. I’m sorry for coming late.” She shook his hand.
“It’s okay. Please have your seat.” he pointed to one of the two guest chairs opposite his table.
“Thank you sir,” She took her seat.
“Can I offer you anything? A drink or at least water?” He turned to the fridge by his right.
“Water is fine, thank you.” Mrs Cole still wondered why he wanted to see her. She looked at her watch, she had to be at her children’s school by 4:30pm.

Pastor George saw her take a peek at her watch. “Are you in a hurry?” He stood up and placed the bottle of water and a glass cup on the table in front of her.
“Not exactly, I’m to pick my children by 4:30.” She told him.
“No problem, we should be done before then.” He relaxed in his seat. “I’m sure you must have been wondering the reason I asked to see you.” He interlocked his fingers and rested his hands on the table.
Mrs. Cole smiled. That was exactly what was on her mind.
“Since you joined this church,I have noticed that you hardly come to church and when you do, your husband is never with you.” He paused and waited to see if she wanted to say anything.
Mrs. Cole listened to all he had to say.
“Let me go straight to the point, I am really concerned about what seems to be the problem.” He gave her the chance to speak.
“Pastor George,” she started, “I appreciate your concerns. It’s nothing really. We come to church as often as we can.” She wasn’t ready or willing to divulge any information about the turmoil going on in her home.

“How is your husband?”
Mrs. Cole was getting irritated but tried her best not to let it show. “Why is he asking how my husband” she wondered. “My husband is fine.” She told him point blank and gave him the ‘any other question’ look.
He got the message and adjusted himself in his chair. “I don’t mean to pry into personal matters, Mrs. Cole. I just felt I could be of help. Maybe even pray for you if you have any burden you wanted to share.” He explained.
“Pray for me?” She gave a sarcastic chuckle. “Thank you for your help pastor, we are doing fine.” She adjusted her bag hoping it will pass the message across to the pastor. She was done and ready to leave.

Pastor George sighed. He knew if he tried to press further, things could get ugly. “Thank you for your time Mrs Cole, I’ll be praying for you.”
“Thank you too pastor.” Mrs. Cole got up. “My regards to your wife.” She smiled briefly and her smile immediately disappeared.
She left his office, thanked the secretary and went straight to her car. “That pastor is unbelievable. I hope he never tries this again.” Mrs. Cole needed help and she knew it yet she didn’t want to allow anyone get too close. Pastor George was not the first person to try. Mrs. Dedeke, her Sunday school teacher had tried on many occasions but she equally shut her out and withdrew from her. Emeka was the only one that had successfully gotten close and that was largely because of the past they shared.
As she approached her car, a car drove into the compound and parked next to hers. Mrs. Cole watched as the person driving alighted. It was Mrs. Dedeke
“Mummy Seyi, good afternoon. So good to see you.” She walked towards Mrs. Cole and hugged her.
“Good to see you too, Mrs Dedeke. How have you been?” Mrs. Cole was the reason they had not been in touch.
“I’ve been good. I’m so glad I saw you. In fact, God ordered your steps. I was praying yesterday and I had a burden for you. As I prayed, I received a word for you from God.” She told her.
“Oh really?” Mrs. Cole wasn’t too interested in whatever the word was but she didn’t have a choice but to listen.
“It was a warning, mummy Seyi.” The smile on Mrs Dedeke’s face disappeared. She looked concerned all of a sudden. “The Spirit of God asked me to tell you to be careful, mummy Seyi. It was like you were heading down a path and at the end there was a ditch but you weren’t looking.” She sighed. “I got scared and immediately intensified my prayer when I saw that revelation. Is everything okay?”
“Everything is fine, in fact the revelation is as surprising to me as it is to you. Thank you, I will pray about it and be more careful.” She told her and hoped there wouldn’t be more questions from Mrs Dedeke.

SEE MORE:  Burning Coles 4

“We could pray together, whenever you are free.” Mrs. Dedeke offered.
“Alright, thank you very much.” She looked at her watch, “I have to get going, need to pick the children up from school.” She opened the door to her car.
“No problem,” I will see you later then. My regards to your husband.” Mrs. Dedeke stepped aside and waved as Mrs. Cole drove off. She was around for Bible study but decided to come earlier to see the pastor. There were a few things she wanted to talk to him about and now that she had just seen Mrs. Cole, she decided to add her to the list.

She went to the pastor’s office and greeted him warmly before sitting down.
“How are you Mrs Dedeke? I was just preparing for Bible study. Hope all is well?”
“I’m fine pastor, I tried calling you earlier to tell you I’ll like to see you before service but your number wasn’t going through.” She explained to him.,
“Oh really? I hope there is no problem?”
“Not really, actually I just saw Mrs. Cole and shared with her the revelation I had about her yesterday. I am really burdened for her.” Mrs. Dedeke couldn’t hide her worry.
“Hmmmm, I understand. I’m equally burdened too.” He sighed. “You know what we are going to do?” He paused.
“Okay?” Mrs Dedeke moved to the edge of the chair.
“I will inform the assistant pastor. Three of us can meet briefly after church to pray for her. Is that okay?” He asked.

“That is great. Thank you very much sir.” She clapped her hands together.
“We thank God.” He smiled.
Mrs. Dedeke discussed a few other issues with him and after about 15 minutes, left his office.
*****

Mrs. Cole went to pick Bolu and Bayo and when they got home, everyone had lunch.
While at the dining table, Seyi remembered she had wanted to suggest giving their dad a spare key. “Mummy, something occurred to me yesterday.” She started.
“Okay? What is it?” Mrs. Cole took a sip of water.
“Why don’t we give daddy a copy of the key to the house so we don’t have to wait for him to get back every night after all, he has a key to the gate.”
“That’s true, mummy.” Bayo couldn’t agree more.
“Well that is not a bad idea. I’ll do that tomorrow, before going to work. Please remind me. Okay?”
“Sure, I won’t forget.” Seyi smiled.
“Sister Seyi, do you know No Longer a Slave?” Bayo asked with excitement.
“Is that a movie or something?” Seyi was clueless.

“No jo, it’s a song by Jonathan David and Melissa Helser.” He told her
“No, I don’t know it.” Seyi took a spoon of rice.
“I got some really cool gospel songs from Siju today in school. I have been listening to them since. I didn’t know what I had been missing.” Bayo couldn’t contain his joy.
Mrs. Cole studied Bayo and knew there was something different about him. She remembered his dream but immediately brushed it off.
“I have a few too, but I don’t really listen to them. They kinda dull my spirit.” Seyi didn’t seem interested.
“Maybe it has something to do with the state of spirit man”
“Yeah right Mr know it all,” she rolled her eyes.
“Just saying…” Bayo wished everyone could share in the joy he was experiencing. “Gospel songs are spirit, soul and body lifting. Trust me.” he tried to convince his sister.

“Bro Bayo, I want.” Bolu spoke up.
Bayo laughed. “You don’t even have a phone. Anyway, you can come to my room and listen to them on my phone later.”
Seyi thought of asking Bayo about Goke but remembered her mum was there. She didn’t want questions about who Goke was. She decided to ask him later.
They finished having lunch and all retired to their rooms.
Seyi went to Bayo’s room and Bolu followed her.
Bayo was playing, “You are Able” by Ada Ehi when they came in. He was folding his clothes which had littered his room.

“What’s going on? Are you expecting someone?” Seyi could not wrap her head around what was going on. She was noticing some changes in her brother.
“Nope, nobody.” He picked up a black T-shirt and smelt it. “Hmmm that stinks.” He threw it to a corner where he was gathering dirty clothes.
Seyi and Bolu watched with amazement.
“I like this song, bro Bayo. It’s not dulling my own spirit o” Bolu said and looked away from her sister.
“Who asked you?” Seyi looked at her and hissed.
“Will you two ever stop doing cat and dog?” Bayo laughed. “sit down na” he pointed to his bed.
Seyi and Bolu sat down.
“Anyway, I came to get gist.” She balanced on the bed, reclining with his pillow behind her. “Did Siju say anything about her sister and Goke?”
“What’s with you and this Goke guy?” Bayo was arranging his books on his table.
“Nothing.” Seyi was quick to answer. “You know I told you he asked my friend out?” She reminded him.
“Is that all?” Bayo winked at her.
“What do you mean?” She began to wonder if he knew the truth.

“Just kidding” he smiled. “she didn’t really say much. She talked to her sister who said she had been suspecting him. Her sister apparently was already tired of the whole relationship and had been contemplating a break up.” Bayo told her.
Seyi sat up from her reclined position. “She should break up with that idiot. She deserves someone better.” She bit her thumb. “How I wished I could talk to that girl.”
“You seem so passionate.” Bayo pointed out. “Anyway, Siju has been praying about it. She says God is touching her sister’s heart.”
Seyi looked at Bayo, speechless. “What?!” She couldn’t fathom what was going on.
“As in her sister is also beginning to see that Goke is not good for her, thanks to Siju’s prayers.” Bayo rephrased his sentence.

“I understood you the first time. What I don’t understand is the way you are talking as if God will come down and do the magic.”
“Well, He won’t come down physically but of course, when you tell Him things He gets them done.” Bayo explained.
“Since when? I know that’s what we are taught in Sunday school and that’s what the pastor says in church but take a good look at our home, what has all the prayers done?”
Bayo left what he was doing and gave his sister his full attention. “Don’t say that Seyi. Things may not be good now that doesn’t mean it will always remain that way. I have faith and I know things will get better.”
“I don’t know about you but I’ve lost hope in things getting any better in this house. I just want to do and get out of this place.” Seyi said pointedly.

Bayo sighed, “It is well.”
“Yeah, that’s what they all say.” She threw her hands in the air and walked out of the room.
“Bro Bayo, I believe things will get better. Don’t worry, you hear?” Bolu was always so innocent at heart. She was very optimistic, hardly ever discouraged. She was just seven but had the heart of a grown up.
Bayo smiled. He remembered what happened on Sunday and knew he owed her an apology. “Bolu,” he started. He sat beside her on the bed. He knew she didn’t hold it against him but she probably had many questions and perhaps concerns too.

SEE MORE:  Burning Coles 1

“You know what happened the other day?” He juggled her memory a bit even though he knew she had not forgotten.
Bolu nodded her head and looked away.
Bayo placed one hand on her shoulder. “I’m really sorry you had to see that, I’m sorry I shouted at you and most of all I’ve told God I’m sorry for dishonoring my body.”
Bolu looked up at him. She seemed a bit confused.
“You may not understand now but masturbation, that is touching your private part to derive pleasure and pornography, those bad bad videos Uncle Gboyega used to watch are sinful acts.” He search her eyes to see if she understood.

She gave a nod.
“Uncle Gboyega introduced me to it the last time he came and I struggled with it up until yesterday when I prayed to God to help me and I believe I am totally delivered.”
Bolu’s eyes widened in amazement. “I also want that deliverance.” She said.
“What do you mean?” Bayo asked, his brows furrowed revealing his confusion.
“Uncle Gboyega, he tried to get me naked but he didn’t succeed. Ever since he left, I used to be afraid that something bad will happen to me. Even sometimes, when I sleep, I have bad dreams. Because of Uncle Gboyega, I’m always afraid of men coming close to me.” She told him what she had never mentioned to anyone before. A constant torment she had lived with for weeks.

“Do you believe that if I pray for you, you will stop being afraid?” Bayo asked her.
She nodded.
“Give me your hands.” Bayo stretched his hands out.
Bolu’s little fingers fitted perfectly into the centre of her brother’s palms.
“Dear Lord, thank You for Your daughter, Bolu Cole. We ask today, that you deliver her from the torment of fear. From today, she will no longer be afraid or have bad dreams in Jesus name.”
“Amen.” Bolu said and quickly added, “Jesus, please forgive Uncle Gboyega for what he did to us. Deliver him too in Jesus name.”
“Amen.” Bayo said.
A smile appeared on her face. “Thank you.”
Bayo smiled. “You are welcome. Do you have homework?”

“Yes.” Bolu stood up from the bed.
“Now will be the best time to do it, don’t you think?”
“Sure.” Bolu walked towards the door and waved at Bayo just before she left.
Bayo smiled and waved back. He finished tidying up his room, then did his assignments. After he was done, he went to the sitting room to watch TV. He heard a knock on the door.
“Who is it?” It was most likely his father because he had the key to the gate but he had to be sure before opening the door.
“It’s me.” Bayo guessed right. His father was back. Today was one of the few days Mr Cole came back early.
“Welcome sir,” Bayo greeted him and collected his laptop bag.
“How are you?” He sounded tired.
“Fine sir.”
“What of your mother?” He walked inside.
“She is in the room.” Bayo locked the door and followed his dad behind.
Mr. Cole sat down in the sitting room and took off his shoe. “What did you have for lunch?”
“Rice.” Bayo placed the laptop bag on the floor beside his father’s feet.
“Is there any left?” Mr. Cole not only did not go to the bar, he hadn’t eaten since breakfast. That was unlike him.

“Errr, let me check sir.” Bayo rushed to the kitchen and was back in no time. “There is little rice in the pot sir.”
“Okay please serve me. I just need to take something so I can take my drugs.” He told Bayo.
“Alright sir.” Bayo went to the kitchen and dished the remaining rice into a plate, served stew on it and a piece of meat. He placed it in the microwave for 2 minutes and then served it with a glass of water.
“Thank you.” Mr. Cole collected the tray containing the plate of food and glass of water from Bayo.
“Daddy, are you okay?” Bayo sat on the couch next to his father’s
“Malaria. I’ll be fine.” He struggled with the food because his appetite was gone.

Bayo could not remember the last time he sat down with his father. He usually would have left the sitting room after he gave him his food but somehow, he felt bold to stay back. Deep down he wished he had a closer relationship with his father where they could talk about anything and everything but most importantly, he wished his father was a believer in Jesus the way he was. He prayed a short prayer in his heart for him. “Dear Lord, please visit my dad and change him in Jesus name, Amen.
“Sorry sir.” Do you need anything else?
“No, I’m okay. I’ll just go in and rest once I’m done.”
“Okay sir.”
He ate his food half way and took his drug then went in to sleep. Every other person retired for the night after a light diner of noodles and boiled egg.
The next morning, as they were about stepping out of the house, Seyi reminded her mum about the spare key.
“Oh thank you, I almost forgot.” She went back into the room. Mr. Cole was having his bath. She opened the door of the bathroom.
“Who is it?” He asked, behind the shower curtain.
“It’s me. I’ll drop a copy of the key to the house for you on the dressing table.” She said and closed the door.
“Okay, thank you.”
She did and left.
****

Mrs. Dedeke was dressed in her nursing uniform. She worked as a public health nurse at PEPFAR (President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief), an initiative established to address the burden of HIV/AIDS in Africa. In the branch she worked in, HIV positive patients came regularly for their doctor’s appointment and to collect their antiretroviral drugs.
She was seated at the vitals stand, where patients had their blood pressure and temperature checked before they went in to see a doctor.
There were lots of patients both young and old seated, waiting for their turn. She had a pile of case notes on her desk. Her and her colleague who sat beside her called out the names of the patients one after the other as they took turns to have their vital signs checked. A chair for the patient was to her left and another one was by her colleague’s right.

“Mr Francis Abayomi” was the next name she called.
The elderly man stood up and approached.
“Are you Mr Francis Abayomi?” She asked politely.
“That’s me.” He smiled.
“Please have your seat.” She pointed at the chair and unwrapped the blood pressure cuff. “How are you today sir?” she asked him with a smile.

“I’m fine thank you.” He placed his hand on the table and his blood pressure measurement was taken. An automated Thermometer was used to measure his temperature. After which Mrs Dedeke wrote down the values in his case note. “You’ll soon be called in to see a doctor. You can sit there sir.” She pointed at a set of empty chairs.
The elderly man stood up and went in the direction she pointed.
She picked the next case note and called out the name, “Emeka Nwafor”
Emeka stood up. He was on the phone. “Hello Funke, please let me call you back.” He ended the call and walked towards the vitals stand.
To be continued…

 ________

Read:

Burning Coles 1
Burning Coles 2 
Burning Coles 3  
Burning Coles 4 
Burning Coles 5
Burning Coles 6 
Burning Coles 7 

Emmanuela Mike-Bamiloye
emmanuelaevb@gmail.com

Emmanuela is a trained Medical Doctor and a seasoned writer. She expresses God's love on a daily basis through the simplest situations that surround her.

3 Comments
  • Yetunde Oni-orisan
    Posted at 18:24h, 20 December Reply

    Oh wow. I’m so glad and encouraged on how things turned out. I just hope Mrs Cole doesn’t make a mistake, and that she chooses the right path. The Lord is truly at work❤️❤️

  • Balogun Victory
    Posted at 18:27h, 20 December Reply

    Thank God for the change in Bayo. He might be the useful servant of God that would bring a change to his family.
    God bless you ma for this Wonderful, Godly lesson-filled story. I pray God will continue to fill you with messages for the world.

Post A Comment