A Lawyer For The Devil
A LAWYER FOR THE DEVIL
A ChrisEffe Bliss
“Wakey, wakey, daddy!” Sisi’s urgent voice called out.
Chris opened his eyes a crack and turned slowly on his back to see his daughter on the bed, shaking his arm.
“Princess, what’s it?” he asked with a wide yawn that made her giggle.
“Time for church, daddy!” she said.
He ran a hand fondly over her head and shook his head.
“Daddy! But why not? I want to go to Sunday school!”
Chris sat up and drew her into his arms, then nuzzled her neck area.
“Noo!” she protested amidst giggles. “You should shave! Your beard is spiking me!”
He ruffled her hair.
“Those bad people that were after you, I want them all to be arrested by the police, princess, before you go into crowds again, okay?”
She looked at him, horrified.
“But what about school?”
“I’m getting in touch with one of my friends. He owns a security company, and he’ll provide some giants to take you to school and back. They’ll keep you safe until we get all of the bad people.”
A troubled expression crossed her face, indicating that inside, she was very disturbed.
“But would we, daddy? Would they be captured?”
“They surely would, princess!” he said and nuzzled her again, and as if on cue his phone rang, and when he looked at it, he saw it was Chief Inspector Steve Hollison.
“Hello, Mr Bawa,” the cop said brightly. “We’ve had a break in the case. The man you brought down yesterday talked to us.”
Chris briefed with relief.
“Is it over now?”
The cop hesitated a fraction, then he replied carefully.
“Let’s say we’re halfway there. Look, can I come over this morning? There are some things I need to discuss with you and your fiancée.”
Chris felt a kick of unease in his chest area.
“Yes, Mr Bawa, Elaine Boateng. I trust she’s with you?”
“No, she went to Takoradi and is expected back on…”
Chris’ voice trailed off because the bedroom door opened just then, and Elaine stood framed in the doorway. Her expression was cold as she looked at the surprised face of Chris.
“I’m already here, Chrissy,” she said softly.
“Well, that’s unfortunate, but – ” the Chief Inspector was saying.
“She’s here, Chief Inspector,” Chris said softly. “You can come over.”
“Roger that. See you in about a quarter of an hour.”
Chris cut the call and lowered the phone carefully as he and Sisi looked at Elaine with puzzled looks.
“You didn’t go to Takoradi, Auntie Elaine?” Sisi asked with a scowl.
Elaine walked in and dropped her bag on a sofa, then sat across from the bed and looked gravely at Chris.
“Actually, I went, but last night I received disturbing news that made me lose focus, and so I had to take a flight back early this dawn. Sweetie, do you mind if I speak to your father alone for a minute?”
Sisi’s miserable look shifted from her father to Elaine.
“It is about Auntie Effe, isn’t it?” she asked worriedly. “She’s my friend!”
“It’s alright, princess. Run along now. Will be with you in a jiffy,” Chris said kindly.
“But I’m hungry!” Sisi said, obviously reluctant to leave.
“This won’t take long, Sisi!” Elaine said sharply, exasperated. “I’ll make it fast then come and fix breakfast.”
Her voice had attained that cadence Sisi mistrusted and hated, so she bounded off the bed and walked morosely from the room.
“You didn’t have to snap at her, Elly,” Chris began, and Elaine held up a stiff hand as a fierce look entered her eyes.
“Don’t even start, Chris!” she hissed and got to her feet. She took her phone out of her bag, crossed quickly to the bed as she flipped the screen and showed an image to Chris. “Is she the Effe your daughter is talking about?”
It was a sharp image of him and Effe at the park. It had happened just before the attack when Sisi was posing for the artist. Chris and Effe were on the bench holding hands and looking into each other’s eyes with incriminating intensity. The photo was taken across the park, and its quality stunned Chris.
He sighed as he fought down his guilt, then he got off the bed and looked at her, finding a core of pain in his guts as he saw how devastated she was. That she had not been able to concentrate on her fashion explosion fair, that her pain had made her drop everything to come running to him, to find solace, filled him with great remorse.
“I’m sorry, Elly,” Chris Bawa said softly and put his hands on her shoulders. “It is a situation that I lost control of. She’s Sisi’s new maths teacher. I met her the day those thugs tried to kidnap Sisi – told you about it – and she just got stuck in my mind. Sisi wanted to go to the Children’s Park, she asked Effe, she came along. My second time of meeting her. I admit she affected me, but it is over now. She feels it, but she doesn’t wanna see me again, I accepted. It is over.”
Elaine’s eyes searched his face, and he could see the acute pain and terror somewhere deep in her eyes.
“I’m wearing your ring, Chrissy!” she said desperately. “I took your love for granted! Was I wrong to trust you so totally?”
“Nothing has changed, dear Elly,” Chris said with a soft sigh. “It was a bump in the road, and I’m over it, we’ll move on from there. I’m sorry you’re going through this pain. Never meant to hurt you.”
“Did you kiss her?” she asked, and her voice trembled.
“Attackers came at us again, same mysterious gang, wanting to hurt Sisi. I fought them off, Effe got stabbed with a knife. As I said, everything with Effe is crazy. When we were saying goodbye, yes, I kissed her. She didn’t want it, though, and pushed me away.”
“Jesus, Chris!” Elaine wailed and slapped him hard across the face. “You bastard, Chris! How could you do this? Are you out of your mind?”
“Baby,” he whispered, feeling awful as her lips trembled and tears fell down her lovely cheeks. “I’m sorry.”
“Sorry doesn’t cut it, you bastard!” she said and slapped him again, and again as she broke into tears. “I’ll kiss you a million times, fuck you a million times more if you want! I put you on a pedestal, untouchable, the perfect gentleman! And you fucking cheated on me at the sight of the first hot arse you saw!”
He gathered her in his arms and held her tight, stroking her hair tenderly as he put his lips next to hers.
“Believe me, Elly,” he said softly. “Whatever it was, it is over now, please.”
“Promise?” she whispered; her voice tragic. “I almost died, Chrissy, when I saw that photo. My heart just tore apart! I can’t live without you, please, I beg you. I know I’m not expressive enough, yes. My darling, I never thought I’d ever fall in love. But I’ve fallen for you, and I’ll do anything you want. Just don’t leave me, don’t cheat on me!”
He held her face between his hands, his handsome face torn to shreds as he witnessed her breakdown.
“Elly, I’m sorry. I’m terribly sorry. We’re going to get married, and I’m going to spend the rest of my life making you happy if you can forgive me for this.”
She nodded tragically.
“I forgive you, of course. Kiss me, kiss me, Chris!”
Even as he kissed her, her body shook uncontrollably.
She was that hurt and vulnerable, and it tore at his heart.
He had assured her, of course, but even as he kissed her, his mind was on Effe’s lips, how soft and sweet they had been, how amazing her body had felt against his.
Could he ever forget her?
Could he ever get her out of his system?
Desperately, he held Elaine and forced his mind to the present. His hands roved over her, then she stepped back and smiled tremulously at him.
“Wait, my love,” she whispered. “Sisi is hungry. Let me fix her something to eat. Then, we’ll resume this.”
They held each other as they walked towards the door, and Chris prayed that the thunder would settle down.
Effe, Effe… what have you done to me? Why can’t I get you out of my blood?
He had to be strong now and get rid of that lady. It was time to move past that and be the man Elaine trusted. That would be hard and extremely painful, but it needed to be done.
My heart is sprained… dear Lord, I have a sprained heart!
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