I found time to tell Ike after dinner about Titi and her problems. He had gotten a lawyer that day and he seemed a bit optimistic. They would have a meeting the next day.
“The truth is my defense,” Ike said between forkfuls of rice.
The Bible did say the truth would set you free. I hoped it would set my husband free.
He was sympathetic when he heard of Titi’s plight.
“That poor woman,” he said between forkfuls of rice. He put a hand on mine. “I wish I can tell you what to do now, whether to report to the police or something. I think you should encourage her to stay away from her husband for a while.”
I nodded in agreement not sure what to do. My world seemed so uncertain and unsure.
“At least we could keep praying for her.”
Prayer, that’s all I seemed to be doing these days.
I picked the baby up and rocked her while I distracted myself with the television.
The next day I sat at the edge of the sofa nervously waiting for Ike to call and tell me about his meeting with the lawyer. My phone rang and I flew to pick it. It was Titi.
“Hi Chinelo, I need to talk,” she said.
She wanted me to come to her house. I didn’t want to leave Anna alone with Christy for the second time in one week(she would start asking questions) so I took her with me.
Titi looked a bit better than the previous day but was still a little wan. Her husband had come home last night and had tried to hit her again but she had threatened to call the police and he left.
Titi looked at me squarely and said: “Enough is enough Chinelo. I want a divorce.”
She then proceeded to give me details of her marital history. Their marriage hadn’t always been like that. She had met him while we were in school. His family owned an oil well. He had convinced her to drop out and promised to take care of her. While they were engaged, he hit her once after an argument but apologized profusely for it. She believed it was a mistake but the beatings continued after the wedding. And they got more protracted and more violent. They had a son and she stayed with him because she loved him and her son.
This was the first time his beating had landed her in a hospital though.
“But Chinelo I love him. And what about our son? What do I do?” I shook my head because I had no answer.
“Maybe you should get away from him Titi, at least for a while,” I said repeating what my husband had said.
She broke down, sobbing. And I cradled her in my arms till she fell asleep. I left a note for her telling her we would talk more later.
As soon as I got into my driveway, I saw Christy standing in front of my house, her hands on her hips.
“ Madam, where have you been?”’
Before I could answer her, my phone rang. It was Ike.
“It’s bad Chi,” he said without preamble. “Very bad.”