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Sacrilege - Season 1 - Episode 52
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Source: coolval
*****
The door was opened few seconds later. Laura stared into the frowning face of her uncle who looked at her with worry. He was in his white singlet and short. “Laura” he muttered in surprise as he pushed the door wider to accommodate her. “What the hell are you doing here this late?” Mark Johnson asked as he closed the door, facing her fully with questions all over his face.


Laura stared tongue-tied at her uncle. He had the most honest expression on his face and she could see that he was genuinely worried about her. What on earth was she doing there? “Erm…” Laura groped around for words, something to use as an excuse”
“Come in” Mark seemed to realize they were standing by the door and pulled Laura to the sitting room, pushing her gently onto the couch before taking his seat beside her. “Is something wrong dear?”


“Yes… I mean no… erm” Laura jumped out of the chair, stalking away from the chair before she turned to face a puzzled Mark. “I want to ask you something, dad” she finally said. “Do you know Teju?”
Mark stared at her for a brief second before contemplating the question. “You’ve mentioned her couple of times, yes, I must have seen her at your wedding, and I’m not sure.” He shrugged. “I don’t think I would be able to recognize her, to be honest” he frowned at his niece as Laura pushed her hand into her pocket and fished out her phone. “What’s going on, Laura?”
Laura tapped feverishly at her phone. Her fingers shook and Mark was increasingly becoming worried. “I should have a picture of her here” Laura explained as her eyes seemed to search the content of her phone. Mark held his tongue, waiting patiently. Laura found what she was looking for – a clear picture of Teju – then, with her heart thudding in her chest, she moved towards her uncle, stretching the phone which he instantly collected. “Recognize her?”



As Mark’s eyes touched the picture on Laura’s phone, a sharp, barely audible gasp escaped his lips. It was a silent gasp that could have gone unnoticed but it echoed in Laura’s ear as though he had screamed. Her mouth suddenly went dry as she saw her uncle pale before her very eyes. He seemed to have lost all trace of colour as he all but gaped at the picture. “You… you recognize her?” Laura gasped out as she took a step back. No! He didn’t… he couldn’t!


Mark raised his eyes to Laura and she was shocked to see his eyes filmy with tears. And was his hand shaking? What was going on? “Laura…”


“No!” Laura gasped, shaking her head as she stared at her uncle in bewilderment. “You didn’t…” she shook her head continuously. “Just… just tell me you didn’t, uncle and I would believe you” she smiled strangely as she looked earnestly at Mark. But it was all there… everything Laura had never seen in the man she respected so much. The guilt was clearly etched on his face like an invisible scar.


“I never knew… I had no idea…” Mark pushed out of the chair, walking further away from Laura as though he was too ashamed to let her see him this way. His shoulders were slumped in defeat as he turned. “It was all a misunderstanding, Laura”


“Misunderstanding?” Laura yelled as she stared at her uncle in utter disbelief. “You raped her! You raped Teju” she yelled. “You call that a misunderstanding?”
“I did not rape her”
“That’s not what she wrote in her diary” she stared at her godfather. She wanted to burst into tears and weep her eyes out but her well of tears seemed to have dried up. She needed tears to wash away the sight of her uncle’s dejected form but the tears just wouldn’t come. All she could do was stare wide-eyed at her uncle. “Who are you?” she voiced. “Can no one just be what I thought them to be?” she asked. It was devastating enough to see that Deolu was not what she had thought him to be. He was not the perfect husband who wouldn’t dare cheat on her, despite the odds. Teju was not the loyal childhood friend she had thought her to be, but now, it also appeared her uncle who she had loved and respected beyond everyone else was a completely different person. Her godfather was a rapist! She shook her head. “Am I so stupid that I always misjudge people?” she chuckled bitterly. “And to think I went to confront my dad telling myself he was the only Johnson who can be so callous, it just turns out he is not half as worse as you”


Mark breathed, feeling his world crash. “I am sorry, Laura…” he swallowed the lump in his throat. “I haven’t been myself since it happened” he explained, his desperation to make her understand was evident as he drew closer. “It was why I travelled and stayed away for so long. I couldn’t get over what happened, what I did.” He swallowed. “I started attending therapeutic classes abroad”
Laura bursted out, laughing mirthlessly. She shook her head. “You didn’t book classes for Teju too? Surely she is more traumatized than you”
“Laura-”


“Don’t…” she jumped back as Mark tried to touch her. “Don’t you touch me. So there is a possibility the child Teju is expecting is yours?” she knew she should feel a bit of relief at the thought but all she felt was misery. “Wonderful! Tito would be pleased” Backtracking, she made for the door, grabbing her phone as she went. She had to get out… she just had to get out. Tears started filling her eyes and Laura blinked repeatedly. It hurt… it hurt too much to realize that her father had been right. Laura shook her head against the tears threatening to fall, biting hard on her trembling lips. Mark called out to her, but she didn’t stop and thank God, he didn’t try to stop her.

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