Rael’s mind was on overdrive and she knew she was about to get an anxiety attack. The thought that she needed to confront her sister, who hated her, over an issue she had been blind to for so long made her very uneasy. She needed to get a few shots of her gin to calm her nerves and get the confidence to approach her sister. As she went to get the drink from the car, she found her mother right outside the door.

“Where are you going? Tea is ready. Take it then you can go outside.”

“I am coming mum. I just want to get something from the car. I will be back shortly.”

“Okay, hurry. And you have really put on a lot of weight. You should stop eating those Nairobi chicken and fries.”

“It is the medication I am on that is making me gain lots of weight. I am really trying to lose weight. By the way mum, why did you not tell me that Priscilla is around?”

“What difference would it have made? I was trying to protect both of you.”

“Okay mummy. I need to have your tea before it gets cold let me rush.”

 As she took a swig of gin straight from the bottle, she felt like shit. All she wanted was to go back to the city. But then again, she had trouble to deal with in the city. It looked like trouble and drama loved her so much she began thinking she was cursed or being punished for something she did or didn’t do. The alcohol hit home and she immediately felt better. She knew she had to hurry before her mother became nosy. She went back to the house and found her father was now awake.

“Kemmy, you are here already? How are you, my daughter?”

Her second name was Kemunto and her dad and brother always called her Kemmy.

“I am fine papa. How are you feeling? I hope the medicines are helping and you are getting better”

“I am getting better but you know old age does not help. Your sister here wants me to go to America with her but I do not think I have the energy to do that. I might die in the plane.”

“Do not say that papa. I also think you should go. You need to get out of here. Plus seeing your grandchildren will do you good. Priscilla, why did you not come with the children?”

“That is none of your business.”

“Do not fight my children. Rael, get me a cup I take some tea with you.”

“Okay papa”

As she settled to take tea with her dad and catch up with all that has been happening, Priscilla walked out and went to lock herself in her room.

“It’s about time you two made up. You need each other when your mother and I are no longer in this world.”

“We will be fine papa and you are not going anywhere anytime soon.”

“Death is inevitable. It is just a matter of when.”

“Let us not talk about that. I guess mum needs a hand in the kitchen. Let me see how I can help.”

She went to the kitchen knowing too well that her mother loved to be alone in the kitchen and would not allow any form of help. She had even tried to get her a house help when her arthritis flared up and was always in pain, but her mother chased away the poor girl. She claimed that the girl did not meet her standard of cleanliness and did not know how to cook. She even claimed that the girl seduced their dad. Everyone knew the issue was that her mother was a perfectionist and very protective of her space in the kitchen. True to her expectations, she did not want Rael anywhere near the kitchen.

“Go and take a walk in the farm or take a nap. Food will be ready in an hour’s time”

“Mummy, what is it in that kitchen that you always never want anyone in?”

“Aye! Leave me alone.”

She was torn between going to her car and drink the whole bottle of gin or go talk to her sister. As much as alcohol sounded like the best plan and option, she could not get drunk in her parents’ compound. She would either take a walk to the farm, watch television or talk to her sister. She decided to go back to the house and catch a nap. She had barely slept well when Evans sent her a message that he was around and driving for eight hours had left her exhausted. Speaking of Evans, she had blocked him but the nigga kept calling her on different numbers which she would disconnect as soon a she heard his voice. He had resorted to sending her abusive and threatening texts and the last one came in as she talked to her mother after she had told him that she would report him to the police.

“I also know a number of policemen and I hope for your sake you never default in paying your loan because I will make you pay for what you did to me you whore.”

“I am shaking Evans. I am shaking so badly. Just stop texting and calling me”

She sent the message, put her phone on flight mode, and went to sleep until her mum came to wake her up.

“I knew you were tired. I have had to call you several times before you could wake up. I hope you are well rested. Lunch is ready and it’s chicken. Your favorite.

“Nice. Thank you, mum. I am coming.”

Her sister chose to eat from her room as Rael and the parents ate in the living room as they watched TV and talked. Once they were done, Rael helped with cleaning the dishes and decided to go say hi to her grandfather who lived around ten minutes away. She carried some of the food her mother had cooked and a few things she had bought for him as she shopped for her parents. She wished she had bought him some whiskey. He loved whiskey but her parents did not encourage anyone to buy him alcohol because he got rowdy and really stubborn when drunk. There was a time he disappeared for three days after being given money by one of his grandchildren. He went on a drinking spree and only appeared after spending all the money. His dad encouraged every family member not to give him money or alcohol. He was well taken care of but he always complained about how much his family hated him because they did not give him money. She decided that she would buy him a few beers they share as they talked.

Sokoro, as they fondly referred to him, was so happy to see her. She served him food and beer and as he ate they caught up on village and family gossip, each other’s life, and politics. She asked him if Priscilla had come to say hi to him.

“Your sister is around? You know that girl does not like us. I do not know what we did to her. She got a white husband and changed on us.”

“I do not think having a white husband has anything to do with her attitude sokoro. Do you remember the incident with uncle Osoro? I think that is the reason she is so angry with everyone apart from daddy.”

“Let me tell you my child, that incident made me very sad. All your grandmother cared about was our reputation and despite my requests to have Osoro punished, she refused. You know how she is. He did the same thing to your cousin Stephanie and your uncle called the police on him, but your grandmother controlled the situation and kept everything under wraps.”

“Stephanie? That girl is always very quiet and avoids people. Uncle Osoro really messed us up sokoro. The worst thing is that he is doing so well in life oblivious of the people he hurt and the relationships he broke”

“We all played a part and I think we need to apologize to each other and heal. My child, I need some money for medication. Please don’t leave me empty-handed.”

“You know I have broken some rules for you today. I am still around. Let me think about it and I will let you know before I go back to the city. Just ensure that you eat and drink lots of water.”

She was so happy that she visited her grandfather.  At least, unlike uncle Osoro and her parents, he did not ignore the fact that there was a problem. She was feeling tipsy and a little sleepy after taking the beers so she slept on the couch for a while because she could barely drive. Even as she fell asleep, she made up her mind that she was going to talk to Priscilla that evening. This had to be done.

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