A short story

Allan knew two things as he lay on the concrete floor; he had sinned and he was not the only one. He could see the headlines at dawn. He could see his colleagues lining up to praise him. He could also see his constituents sneer upon the heaps of praises he received. There was a time he could read his wife’s expressions, how she smiled or frowned when she wanted to dispute something he said. She would be seated wearing sunglasses to hide her tears.

He would wonder if she missed him, but his children would. Henry was only ten and yet he knew more about what was right and less about what was wrong. Jacinter was eight, named after his mother, the first woman to look him in the eye and say she couldn’t recognize him beneath all his skin of lies. He had wept that day. Mercy was only five and even then he knew she was the sun that lit his world. He was always Daddy to Mercy. She would jump on his lap and fill his face with kisses whenever he came home. She would use her mother’s phone to call and say how much she missed him. She lived in a world he once believed in.

He would take a bow as ‘Mheshimiwa,’ but even then he knew in reality, there was nothing honorable or respectable about his life. The best thing he had done was to ensure his family never lacked for anything. Mercy would be the Nurse she wanted to be, without his wife-Hilda, worrying about a single cent, but even then, he took from everyone to provide for them. If that was not a curse, then he would surely be sipping red wine in Heaven.

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