28 years ago in a quiet village
Moon beams fell on the thatched roof, illuminating the worried faces of the elderly women entering the thatched hut. The air was tense and a few metres away sat some men, all with different expressions ranging from elderly wisdom and complacency to worried and tensed. The youngest man in their midst was the most worried. It was obvious to anyone that whatever was going on inside the hut affected him most.
“Ayomide brace up and be a man. These things happen.”
It was his uncle. Ayomide stopped pacing and looked at him as he spat some chewing stick out. Placing the stick back into his mouth and adjusting his wrapper at his waist, he said “Be a man! We all went through this. Abeke will be fine.”
Ayomide heaved a sigh as the other men smiled fondly, each remembering their experiences.
Just then, one of the women came out, the wrinkles on her face very pronounced as the moon shone on her, catching the sheen in her eyes. Her feet tread made them turn.
“How is she?”
She just looked at Ayomide, her glance flickering behind to meet his uncle. The slight shake of her head struck his heart and he slowly slid to the ground.
She flung herself wearily on the chair and closed her eyes in exhaustion. Her eyes snapped open as she heard a door creak open. She wasn’t going to allow anyone the satisfaction of seeing her discouraged. No way. She smiled as someone passed by her door. As soon as he was out of sight, she slumped back tiredly. How on earth was she going to continue dealing with Mr Femi and his excesses? She rubbed her aching temple. How she wished she could just sink into her warm bed. Mr Femi! He had messed up another presentation again! She picked her pencil and viciously stabbed the notepad imagining it was his neck. Another late closing due to his incompetence together with a reprimand. ‘How on earth can a man be so incompetent?’ She thought, angry and frustrated. He jumbled up the accounting figures and not just for one account but three. “This is beyond my comprehension”, she sighed in anger. ‘Now, we are suffering for his mistakes.’ She fumed silently. Other workers moved wearily and many muttered continuously. They had all been asked to stay back and verify all accounts once the boss had seen the error in the accounts. He had nearly blown his top. Mr. Femi walked out subdued but she had no pity for him. He had always tried flirting with her whenever she brought any important document to his office often disregarding many details in return for any form of sexual enjoyment. ‘Good luck trying to get out of this mess’ she thought. Poju shook her head perplexed.
THE STORY CONTINUES………………….
Story by Oruare Ojimadu
Image by Lukas Baumert from Pixabay