What comes next?

“I will wait for you even if it means the clouds will birth rain or sun – day or shadows – night, I will wait for you” she read it again and closed the book. She looked around hoping to find some sense of life moving in the room, hanging was a picture from the trip on the wall, his smile radiantly exposing his naked teeth. She sighed and sat on the bed as if she was waiting for him to come out of the bathroom.
Downstairs they had just arrived with him, the house was quiet despite the people it gathered but the air was still.

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Von and the twin

She would always take a stroll in the evening to clear her head after work, allowing the air to breeze through her mind as it carries her hair in its palms “where would I be, five years from now” that was how she began to walk endlessly, either till she answers the question or not.

Von as she was called by her friends and acquaintances was a short form of whatever name her grandpa meant when she was born in his house by his daughter. She grew up to look like the old man’s wife so well, people thought he purposely named her so as it was the name he called his wife while she was alive.

It was just a normal Saturday and she was busy in her saloon shop, braiding young girls hair, washing, drying, fixing, selling, buying and all sort of activities that involved a hair dresser, and as usual she was sweating as the A.C in the shop had decided it was tired of working since the beginning of the week. Her fellow hair dresser Henry who was known for his red shirt had arrived late. She was giving him attitude for his late habit even though he had another explanation this time but she wouldn’t listen as he tapped her again to tell her something that looked to be itching his mind. Von still didn’t give into this but continued on her customer’s hair.

There was a sudden commotion just outside the shop, traders began to gather around as if some wealthy man was sharing his wealth with passersby. Von hardly even noticed as her mind kept her busy with what sat in front of her, then she heard Henry, who had hurriedly left the shop when he noticed the gathering, shout her name. When she reluctantly chose to leave her customer’s hair, she pinned the comb down and picked the needle looking a bit angry, on reaching the scene she found herself staring into the crowd like everyone else, only this time the crowd seem to have been taken aback by her appearance. Von saw the strangest thing she had never guessed to see, she saw a girl of her height, complexion and pointed nose, in fact it was like staring into the mirror. The girl too was staring back at her, and the last thing she recalled was her body loosing it’s balance. Von fainted

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The day I told her I loved her

Janice, she was a fine, tall, slim looking girl with voluptuous breasts that argued her age. A fair sister to my dark skinned friend Japhet who was the only play mate I had back then in the neighbourhood. We lived in the same compound back then and that meant that I will have to wake up each day and see one of them on either errands or coincidence, wait! No! We attended the same school back then. I was in pre-primary and Janice was in Primary 3 or so, and Japhet, well, he played alot even though he was older than me, I hardly cared about his class. I just loved rough play.

I remember one evening when I and Japhet went on one of our games around the neighbourhood and ended up bursting the football belonging to a bully, Ibrahim after I and Japhet shot it against a wall moulded with broken bottles on the top that served as a protection against those who would like to jump the fence.
As tall as Japhet looked back then he was still bullied by Ibrahim who was short and had marks like my uncle’s local guitar (the molo), he looked strong and had a clique of other weak boys who rallied around him.

“What are we going to do, Japhet?” I asked and you know him, he turned smiling to me and said “we do not have 25 Naira to replace it, I suggest we run home”.

I ran home too scared to realise I ended up in Japhet’s house while I think he may have ended on the mango tree behind the house. Janice called me to hide in her room like she knew what had happened and stood outside pretending to be all by herself.
When the bully arrived with his gang, I heard alot of grumbling and noise and for a few seconds I prayed.

Janice walked back to the room and sat with me, and she asked what happened, I told her everything and she wasn’t happy with me, I sensed it in her voice “You’re such an intelligent boy, I don’t expect you to go around looking for trouble, or even playing with Japhet, you’re much wiser than he is”.

Few weeks later, my play mate became Janice, I found her attractive even though I was only 7 years old, I felt somethings move in my belly and my heart beat faster when I think of her. Janice was like a morning flower that showed her beauty with the first ray of the sun. “I’m going to tell her I love her”, I kept saying that for weeks until one Saturday I took ill and had to be in the hospital for a week. Janice never came to see me, “maybe I should have told her sooner, she would have come” I thought to myself.

After I was dismissed from the hospital, on arriving home, I casually asked about our neighbours when I was told they moved out.

21 years have passed and Janice has always lingered in my thoughts, she was swinging on them or still holding the end of it.

Today I saw Janice by the primary school we used to attend, she was as radiant as I could remember, I dropped from the bus and walked up to her “Janice, it’s me, I never ever got the chance to tell you how much I loved you, in fact I still do, everyday I think of you, it staggers my heart that I had promised myself I will marry you”.

The shock on her face was like that of the young Janice I kissed some years ago in her room, when suddenly a girl broke the silence between us with a kid on her back and one holding her hands saying “Madam! Rudolph no gree chop him lunch today oh” and she gave her the kids and left.

The Market

The Market. . .

I didn’t want this day to pass without my mind carving the story of how we met. So I went to the Mr Biggs eatery around the roundabout, I sat inside without talking to no one, ‘what am I going to talk about, will I go back to Abuja today?’ Questions kept its slide show running through my mind and I ignored like a mad man.

I picked my phone and went through my contacts, found a name and sent a message ‘I’m seated in Mr Biggs’, a nervous sweat broke the silence as my mind pictured a suicide bomber sending such a message to the detonator.

I turned to the window and saw a car parked outside and the backdoor was open, another car came to park and the driver kept honking so the driver of the open car would close the door, but no he didn’t, the car however squeezed its way to park and the driver who was a man dropped with his passenger a woman and from the window it looked like he was pouring curses, when suddenly the driver of the car that was parked open and dropped too, it was a woman.

I picked my phone and deliberately began going through my gallery and it didn’t interest me because the tension outside was as hot as the Shendam weather now, people screaming, a woman shouting at a man. I could see her saying ‘I will slap you now’ and people gathered around wondering how and what happened that a woman is trying to fight a man and a woman at the same time.

Someone quickly stepped in through the front door and said ‘Charles’ then she slumped before our eyes. The door quickly opened and someone suggested space be provided so air can flow around her, she layed there for about 7 minutes and I kept wondering if it was a movie or it was real.

The tension outside had begun fading, the woman on the floor began to move a little, then suddenly she walked through the front door. My heart skipped as my mind began to sketch her face, I could see a quill dipping its tip on the contours of her face, painting her teeth and trying to describe her smile as she said ‘Hello Rudolph’.

My heart skipped a beat.

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THROUGH THE EYES

She did not know if sunsets existed there, or rain, or rainbows, she didn’t know if she was ever going to find laughter or joy, because the pain that lingered in her heart kept piercing like the relief in her hands. She had done a lot of things that the sands on the shores of life have soon covered over time, but this particular one, this one, that was her.

Her brother would grow in a happy home she thinks, even if it’s not the home with his biological parents and she doesn’t know if she would ever see him again. Her mum always told her, “keep your brother close to you always”, she had forgotten what it meant literally and had decided to keep him close, at least to her he was close.

She was ducked into the van; it looked dark inside even with the little light rays that was distracted by the surrounding trees. And as the black van started, she dozed off. She quickly went back to school where she had just heard the closing bell danced in tintinnabulation to the hands of the time keeper and she gathered the papers from the dustbin, and rehearsed it again.

Back at home her drunken dad lay tired on the couch; she was just 11 for heaven sake not sure if she could continue like this. She locked the door, remove the papers from her bag, fetched kerosene from the kitchen and sprinkled on the curtains, picked her blanket soaked it in water, took her 4 years old brother lit the room and covered them with the blanket, and as she laid underneath the wet blanket, she prayed for the every night her Dad would creep into her room and rape her since she when she turned 7 to burn with the room.

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I DID NOT GO NO WHERE ‘fiction’

I could not drink from the cup she had drank, I promised to stay loyal, faithful, trustworthy and understanding. I could deep my feelings into her ocean but what would it profit me? She had been the only girl I have loved, I practically and literally mean that. Just one night. . .

I cannot remember my memories, they are faint from the fall of alcohol in my body, so this is what it means to be drunk in love? Everyday trying to get over her malicious heart, the one made of stone, the idiosyncratic republic of Jezebel’s, if it exists. Girls are evil, why would I have to go through 4 years of joy, only to be rammed by this wall of shame, mistrust and cheat? Did I ever do any of these to be hurt? Was my love only to be gotten back at? . . . .

I did not go nowhere today, its been 274 days since I saw a seed yield upon the sands, a drop of dew resting on a new leaf, I don’t know what kind of people live out there, except the fact my roommate is alive and well, I can only say the world hasn’t changed. I’m trying to think what he thinks of me, what he wants me to do now. I know I’m probably fat on this bed laying all day, sulking my past, dreaming my memory, and forgetting a future exist. Wait! What could she be doing now? . . . .

God! I sought your help when this all started, when I first told you how she was the one the crown spoke of, my ark of the love covenant. You knew how well we were never gonna break this. You remember the pink dress and the red flowers, the one I hid because of the scent of her sweetness? Well I had to get rid of it by fire, but I’m just not happy the fire wasn’t blazing enough to melt the clothes before it reached her. You always knew about this reccess and still let me had it. Its not fair, its not fair . . . . .

Today my roommate found that flowery earing with crystals that shone like diamonds, it had been missing in the third year and its over 458 days now she stopped looking for it. I tried to grind the thought of finding it now but its too late, I told him to grind it over a moving truck and bring me the ashes so I can mock her with it. Did he think I meant it?
He did grind it over a moving truck and brought the ashes, I cried again cause each dust was like a piece of my heart, shattered, unable to be mended. Why did the Sunday become rainy? Wasn’t it supposed to be sunny?. . .

I was told my best friend from the south ‘Darcy’ called again, I have lost count, this may be the 16 hundredth time she has dialed my roommate’s, I still don’t care, nothing she will ever say may change a thing, or heal, or even return me to the past without all this. But if she calls again I promise, I will talk to her. . .

Whatever I ate last night is pushing me out of this bed, to go out. I really want to go a vestibule and tear her pictures.
I did burn them today but in the trash can, maybe I’m ready to talk to Darcy, after all she will listen to everything I have to say. . .

Darcy will come to town tomorrow, I don’t know if I’m happy or sad, all I know is I need her to read all this because I’m suddenly having a short term remembering why I am sad, I feel sick since the nightmare from yesterday and today afternoon. What is happening to me? Do I need to pray or something?. . .

“It was August 12th  and I saw him last, he lay as though he was asleep in his tight tux staring into the blackness with his eyes close. Darcy is in a coma and I wonder if they are together, because I need her to wake up and read this journal, I need her to read from behind what truth he had always written about her in the words ‘Dear Darcy'”.
My roommate should have layed down mourning as usual but he decided to see Darcy, and now the same moving truck has sent you to death, what do you want me to do now? Who would continue the journal?

SECRETS IN THE SUN

When the sun does not shine in the village of Kuirpyang, it means night has doomed upon their hills, it falls on them like a stranger on new tides rowing to adapt to the nature of its horn and silence. Kuripyang had the most delightful landscape that does the magical spell of chasing any ill thoughts or any form of negative emotion to the soul, it’s like pouring water to a dying rose flower and it immediately responds with its glowing petals flourishing scent of been alive. It hills surrounded the village enclosing it like the clouds do to the sun in the season of rain and hailstorm.

People from this village were not civilized yet but those who have had the opportunity of leaving the village tend to have a remarkable impact in the knowledge of the world be it in any field of study, it is like the myth said of last King of the village Muripang, whom before his death was told to have been exiled from Kuirpyang for possessing demonic properties, he served the longest and was known to be the best King ever in the village, he was known for his great insight and wisdom.

The chief priest of Kuripyang is the oldest man in the village, he was known to have been the first man created in the village according to the legend, and he was also given the wisdom of the gods to put things in order in the village, he has never touched a woman nor laid his hands on any mortal, he was the demi god of the land, people were scared and as well protected by him.

NaNanni was the only woman in the village who had had no child, she had been married to several men and all of them were not men enough for her to hold just a child in her womb, as she always conceived triplets, she was known as the village prostitute for having tried the man-hood of a lot of men in the village and gave birth to triplets who were seized by the chief priest and killed, she felt it was a curse for her.

LaNanme was a woman who was living in the village of Muripang. Known for three set of triplets, she was the wife of the prince even though all her life she had grown in the palace, she had wished she had a sister who would at least take care of her children for her even though she grew up with no mother and the only father she ever had was the late king.

Years ago there was a man who had an affair with a woman but never saw her at daytime, he always was her place at night because he hadn’t done the traditional rites of his adulthood so therefore he was not entitled to lay hands on a woman’s breast or touch her hair, it was forbidden. Until the day he was sent to be brought forward by the chief priest, when he heard the news, the man disappeared from sight, night after night they searched for him and he was never found.

Until one day in the cold breeze of the rainy season, when the chief priest had asked the villagers to perform the annual ritual of sacrificing 16 young virgins who were aged 16. These girls were to be tied up in between the road to the forest that leads outside the village so the gods could come and take them to keep themselves warm for the season, as it was said ‘anyone who steps foot outside the village has then died’. Midnight had come and the villagers had gone to rest, some had mourned and were tired and slept, and as the night unfolded evil, that man returned just in time to kill the Chief priest, and on his way he noticed some men untying the girls who now had passed out. He then hid and watched as from which part of the world these men came from because the color of their skin was not like his, they were white, and to his amazement he saw the chief priest exchanging words with one of the men who had dropped from a metal kind of animal to give the chief priest his hand and also some items to take with him.

In vexation the man rose to shout and was immediately knocked out by a loud bang on the head by the chief priest on looker. Waking to his surprise he was surrounded by the villagers and tied to a tree, his mouth was tied and so were his hand too. And the chief priest removed some items and showed to the villagers saying, he had been told by the gods that these were demonic properties and if they were ever retrieved he should take it and show them, and this man was planning to use it kill him with it last night, and so in that note, they will have to sacrifice him like the girls so he will slave for the gods.

That night as the man was tied to the tree, he knew he was going to die somehow but that day he didn’t, the chief priest didn’t come for him that night but the same man who had knocked him out came untied him gave him a new born baby to leave the village and never come back, he told him to take care of her like he would do to his own saying he was the only person that knew his wife had given birth to twins. The man left with the baby but the guard died after rumors had reached the priest his wife had gone into labor the second time that evening and he couldn’t account for the child or the cadaver.

It is on this very day that the chief was about to die for a disease known to have been sent by the gods did he tell the villagers that he had been trafficking girls as slave to some white men, he was not even the only chief priest, they were triplets themselves and his brothers had died of this same disease for he didn’t know the power they possess to have lived this long but he had finally reached his end.

©Rudolph Adidi

THE MEETING ‘A love tale’ pt2

 

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Now she was perturbed, her mind was like little wool caught in thorns, her mind was made but his mind too? She wondered, she took her cellphone and tried to switch it on, but on second thought was she expecting any international call? She threw it back on the bed looked at the wall clock, “perhaps I wouldn’t want to be running late” she thought. She then took her mascara and started her eyes, but the more she did it, her heart kept skipping beats, yes, the tears felt like rolling down her face again, so she took her cell phone and switched it on, there was one person on her mind.

He got up and showered, normally he would take hours in the bathroom trying to fix one or two stories to write for his book but today was different, his heart was racing, his fingers trembled from his head to his shin as he washed off the soap, his mind flashed different collages of pictures as it took them away from memory. ‘Damn, I’m too old for this” he thought as he hurried up to apply lotion to his body before the harmattan breeze blew him through the open window, but this time he was breathing too hard to have moved on, he wondered what he was thinking at the moment. He picked his phone and dialed but immediately ended the call before he thought it rang. “What the hell am I doing”?

Juanita was a fine tall girl, light skinned, slender looking as though she was unhealthy, she had an appealing figure, during her days in school she was the hour glass lady and very friendly. Now she and Ben had met several years ago via social network and called themselves “friends” even though they never got emotional at any point of their friendship, but now Ben had met her friend and fell in love with her which of course she didn’t have a problem with. Although the only issue she had with them was when they had those silly fights, like the one time Ben came to see her and didn’t stop by, well, she did have a problem because he flooded her phone with calls and messages and anything just to get her talk to her friend. That wasn’t a good episode to her amongst many because she would have to side with somebody at the end of the day, and if she didn’t want to be part of it, she’d look like a Grinch at Christmas ‘like she didn’t care’. Now she’s been married for 4 years now and is pregnant for her third child already, she was at the store in the morning trying to pick between a big washing machine and a dispenser, she didn’t know which she needed most when she heard a phone vibrated and then off, and she checked her bag and picked her phone and she was stunned, “Why’s Ben calling me” as she thought suddenly her phone vibrated and when she looked at her screen she grinned “hmmmm, serious”. “Hello, hey I was going to call much later to be the first to say . . . “ she was interrupted “Juanita, I’m thinking twice about this, I don’t know if I can go on, I don’t know if I’m even doing the right thing”. “Common hun, its normal to feel this way, very normal to be this cold, just do me a favor, take three deep breath, okay, and she inhaled, One, Two and Three, now that’s my girl, you’ll be fine”. “No that’s not all, I’m also thinking about Ben”, there was a long pause and then “Juanita, are you there?”Yeah I’m still  here” she then sighed “Babe, we have talked about this, I don’t want us to go back on this again, you need to do this, for your own good and because you still love him, I beg you, please, please” she pleaded, then she said “ I am going to hang up now, and I will call you when its 3pm over there, okay, you will be fine, I know, and please send my regards” then he hung up.

She was staring at the dispenser as though it was lying to her when she picked her phone and dialed and waited till the phone was picked and she began “I don’t know the life you two have chosen to live, but today will be the last time I will be in the midst of all this, please, move on, I just poke to her and she is going on, Ben, I hope for Pete’s sake you don’t call me and do what your mind has told you to, Bye”.

At that moment, he knew it was settled, at that moment too she knew it was settled. Ben tucked up is shirt and wore his tie, knelt down and tied his lace, he stood straight and looked into the mirror “This is it”

She took up her make up kits and put them in place dried her face to patch up the tear path, looked how magnificent she looked in the mirror and said, “well I guess this is it”

She then went out of her apartment and there a chauffeur was waiting for her, where he drove her to the court for her meeting with the groom, yes that was her wedding day

He then got into his car took up the keys started it and zoomed off, when he reached an eatery half way town he then got down and met his waiting friends, and they asked him if he was ready to see Angela, he just smiled went in spotted where she was sitting, walked straight to her and knelt down with a leg above then both his friends and her friends walked in and screamed in unison “Will you marry him”?

It was later 3pm he was back at the apartment and went through his mails, after he read one particular mail, he got his phone out and texted, “Hiya, I saw your wedding pics, looks nice, you look happy. I popped the question to Angie today, and she said yes. I wish you all the best. It’s me Bennie.

                              ~THE END~

©Rudolph Adidi

 THE MEETING ‘A love tale’ pt 1

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So he woke up and sat beside his bed wishing it was not Saturday, somehow deep down he had dreaded today, he prayed like the man from the bible that was scared and prayed in the garden until he sweated blood for today to have passed in some way. He remembered exactly in years he couldn’t count how they first met, in front of the cafeteria, he had actually been in class tutoring his colleagues and his friend from a social network had called him and said she wanted them to meet in front of the cafeteria, “I’ll be back, just give me some few minutes” he had told his colleagues and now it was some minutes past now he saw her coming down from a lab to the cafeteria with the one who would change his life forever. He could remember how after that day he kept wanting to meet her then he remembered her friend had called with a different number that day, so he checked his call log and yes, he dialed and hoped she would be on the other end, lying that he had tried to reach her friend was a page for discussion. Friendship then mutilated the strangeness and hooked them up, in fact he smiled as he recalled the day he got stuck in the same cafeteria with her as they waited for the rain to cool off when they secretly went to eat without telling no friend of theirs. Why today? Of all days you chose today? Why? He kept asking these questions with his hands on his chin as though he lost a soul, he then checked his phone for missed calls and text messages just in case the meeting wasn’t going to happen today.

 She was going to have her makeover done but it wouldn’t cover the wrinkles of worry, and no matter how hard she tried to powder her face, the blemish ‘she missed him’ was still there like the moon in the sky. She stared into the mirror and tried hard to hold back her breath to be normal and as she closed her eyes, she saw him on the day they had their first fight over the fact he came to see her friend and didn’t check up on her and left, she wouldn’t pick his call for 48hours, 24minutes, and the seconds was still counting, yes he counted how many hours as he sent her the message with those figures, and she felt pleased he did love her after all. Even the day they came home for holiday, he wouldn’t travel to his home in Asaba until he had spent a month with her in Kaduna, which of course she tormented him to see if he would still be with her no matter what, he did it, all of it. She could still read the first email he sent her in quotations from his collected Shakespeare works, how he missed her, how he wanted her, and how he felt like coming to see her. She recalled after she read that email and replied him saying she wanted to kiss him, some hours later he was in her house sharing that moment, she wouldn’t ask how and he wouldn’t say how either. They were perfect for each other, both tall, he light skinned and she was close to dark, long hair, fine nose, slender legs, and shiny skin under the moonlight, he told her how he told God the type of girl he wanted and she met the description. Everything had been alright, but not some time back when none of them could describe what happened, why it grew so cold, why she was not in the country at the moment, why he wouldn’t be at the meeting today.

          To be continued. . . . . . .

A TALE OF THE TWINS

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He told me in words and not pictures, how he grew up with his twin brother, always getting into trouble by the day, and also got out. How also they forge out stories of comfort to their minds when father would beat them for playing outside. How they drew pictures of mother together to celebrate her presence each time they were lonely. He told me one story in particular when the yearly August rain fell on them and as they tried to rush home from school under, the rain was heavily dropping and not minding the fact they were both under, and at the instant hailstorm too joined in and knocked him out, he later woke up and was almost drowning by the culvert. He told me how frightened he was because immediately the rain started he didn’t see his brother until when the rainbow came out the next day smiling at the sky. I asked him exactly whether they still lived with their father and he told me how they had planned to kill their father one day because of how wicked they felt he was, until one night when they heard him sobbing after he got home drunk, murmuring how he missed their mother and how he didn’t know how to take care of the kids, he was so sorry for himself that he picked up a knife and drove it into his heart, he said at that moment he felt fear gripping him like the day he saw momma in the wooden cage laying as if she was asleep and dreaming, he told me how he rushed to pick his dad who just smiled at him and said “Sorry Ben”. That same day he ran out of the house too and left his siblings, the same night he never saw his twin brother again. He told me with an emotion of lost, how life has been a parent to him and knocked him over and over again, even to the point he lost his legs, he could even stare at the night and tell me with the stars how he wished he stayed back that night, how he would have helped the dad not push that knife into his body. I then asked him if he ever wanted to see his twin brother again and he told me they were together, it confused me because I was talking to him alone and I reminded him that he left him back at the house that night but he opened his mouth and said “Momma’s last words was for me to see my reflection as my brother, and so that has been, he has done same things I did and has never argued with me, he’s my most reliable partner, he’s my friend and only real brother, he is my twin brother” I just looked at the silhouette on the wall and smiled ‘A Tale of the twins’.

©Rudolph Adidi