“Happy Sunday” was the greeting that came repeatedly from Martha’s neighbours as she returned from church on Sunday. The Sunday might be happy but she was not. She hurried to her home with her twin sisters in tow. Her twin terrors. With almost twenty years between her and the twins, Martha figured her parents couldn’t have done worse than produce more offspring many years after her, not one, but two. They nagged, fought, played, screamed and in summary, they probably derived the joy of their very existence by driving her crazy.
Oh, they were adorable. Everyone oohed and aahed over their cuteness. Today, they were clothed in matching little pinafores with white t-shirts underneath, they could pass for models in one of those kids’ clothing magazine. They were little replicates of each other, having equal mix of their mother and father and it was quite hard to tell them apart. That was part of what everyone found attractive. But nobody knew that she would probably owe some premature grey hairs in the nearest future to them. That was by the way. A matter of national importance required her attention and she increased her strides.
The twins could feel their elder sister’s distress but they thought little of it. She was probably experiencing one of her infamous ‘that time of the month’ as she always told them. Whatever that meant. They hastened after her when her pace suddenly increased and they scrambled in as she opened the door.
“Pull your shoes outside o. I can’t be sweeping three times a day,” Martha told them as they came in. She then hurried into her room to ensure that the notes missing from her purse was not because she forgot them when she was going to worship that morning. She checked under the bed, her chest drawer, her reading table by the window, the corners of her bed, everywhere she could think of, including in her cover shoes. Certain now that she didn’t forget those notes at home, she came out to the living room where she saw the twins sitting quietly. It probably wasn’t them that took it, but she had to be sure. They looked innocent. Too innocent in fact.
Dear God in heaven, did they take it? Martha’s suspicion grew to a hundred degrees on her inner detector she had come to depend upon over the years when dealing with the twins.
“I’m looking for four notes. Did anyone see them?” she asked. Best to advance stealthily than pounce on them directly.
The twins looked to each other and looked away with carefully schooled expressions.
They took it! Martha thought to herself.
Mary, the first twin was in deep thought. Four notes? I saw only two in her purse. Four ke?
Magdalene, the second twin was also thinking. Four notes? But when I checked, there were two left!
Martha waited for a response and got none. Her patience wearing thin, she repeated the question, directly this time, and with more force.
“I said, who took the notes I kept in my purse this morning?”
Magdalene replied, “I didn’t o”. I didn’t take four notes.
Mary replied, “I did not take your notes o.” I definitely saw that two notes were left.
Martha was certain they took her money, and though she couldn’t explain, she was as sure as her name was Martha.
“Okay, since nobody took the notes, then everybody will refund it. Before that, I think everybody should be punished, so that if the thief walks by, he’ll take pity on you innocents suffering for his crime and confess.”
To be continued