Written By Bibijay
Tosin kept bombarding me with questions on the way to the Joseph’s Residence. He was genuinely worried and I wondered briefly if there was something he wasn’t telling me. I remembered the first time I came to this house, years ago, I must have been five or six. My mother and some ladies were having tea with the late Mrs. Joseph, Linda and I was the only kids present so we were asked to go play in the yard.
“My father said you will be my husband someday” the little girl said revealing her bare upper gum.
I ignored her and continued kicking the ball I saw in the yard.
“Are you deaf? Well……… I don’t want to marry you! You look too thin and your mother looks like a pig! A fat pig!” she laughed, spinning an imaginary hula hoop round her tiny wispy waist.
“I will knock out your teeth if you call my mother a pig again!’’ I threatened the little demon.
“Try it and see! Your mother is a……..”
I shoved her hard onto the green grass. She stood up, dusted her behind and marched into the house. Minutes later, I heard the ladies in the house screaming and they all rushed out to the yard where I was. My mother was in front of them like she was leading them to the war front.
“You naughty, naughty boy!” she took hold of my ears with both hands, twisting it hard.
“Boys are so naughty!” One of the women said. ‘’ You should train this boy properly, his heart is too dark for a little child?”
“Mom Please….. I didn’t do anything to her.” My mother grabbed both of my ears, twisting it hard.
“Please don’t tell lies Kelvin…..…you should apologize to your friend for hurting her so” Linda’s mom said in her angel like whispery voice.
That was when I saw the blood on Linda’s thumb. How she could hurt herself just to implicate me was beyond my young mind and thoughts.
“He used a blade to cut my finger” she cried.” He threw the blade there” she pointed towards the Dog cage.
Her mother lifted gently into her arms carrying her back to the house. The other ladies admonished me while my mother continued twisting ears. In the end I was made to apologize to her, till date I don’t know how she managed to pull that off.
The gate man threw open the gate and I drove into the Joseph’s residence. The house was unusually quiet. The Sitting room was packed like a funeral was being held for a dear loved one. Dantata and his family were seated, his flighty sister was chewing gum as is her usual hobby, his Mother was decked in a flowing sequin gold gown like the queen of Egypt. Linda’s handbag, Oyinye was sipping red wine from the wine tumbler in her hand with no care in the world. She is another heartless biitch I wouldn’t wish on my enemy. She flashed a wide fake smile in Tosin’s direction but his mind was on something else. Auntie Maggie was crying into her hankie whilst Mr. Nwosu Joseph was pacing the length and breadth of the elegant sitting room in worry. We greeted them and asked for updates on the issue of Victoria.
“What really happened?” I asked, my heart palpitating as it dawned on me that Vicky was truly gone.
“She was taking a basket of fruit to Mrs. Adams this morning but she never got there and she isn’t back home till now” Maggie blew her nose into the tear soaked hanky in her hand.
“Has the police notified?”
“The inspector General of Police called me just now, he has assured me they are doing all they could to find her” Mr. Joseph said. “We have combed the entire area but Vicky isn’t a baby who will get lost on her way home! Tomorrow i will go to the media, my daughter must be returned to me hale and hearty!” he sat down on the sofa, his faced buried into his hands in frustration.
“I don’t know why you are all worrying your head over nothing! That girl has gone to meet one of her numerous lovers” Linda glided into the room seductively. Her ni.pples was stone hard and they were threatening to burst through her transparent blue body hugging gown. It was either she was feeling cold or she was up to some naughty lone fun before coming downstairs.
“Linda please don’t rub your callousness in our faces! Go back upstairs if you have nothing better to say!” her father shouted in anger.
“ That is what I said to my mother too, Victoria is enjoying herself somewhere while we are all here worrying about her” Suresh blew her gum into a big bubble, its irritating sound grated heavily on my nerves. I saw her mother elbowed her and she kept her foul mouth shut.
“Hi kel” Linda beamed at me. “Mind helping me to check my tab? I don’t know what is wrong with it” her words dripped heavily of something else.
“Not now Linda” my nerves were frayed already, another minute of Suresh’s irritating chewing habit, Oyinye’s flirting and Linda’s presence will surely send me to an early grave.
My eyes caught Dantata’s gaze, they were fixed on Linda’s bosoms. He licked his lips and I could practically read his thoughts, he wasn’t bothered about the issue at hand, he only came to see if he could get an opportunity of getting into Linda’s pant.
” Has there been any ransom call?” Tosin asked worriedly.
“No” Maggie moaned and continued crying.
Linda walked seductively towards me. She perched herself between my friend and i on the sofa. I scooted back to give her more room. suddenly a shrill sound pierced the atmosphere, it was the gate man shouting and we all raced outside at the same time as if some invisible force had commanded had us to.
I played the scene over and over in my head. Victoria had looked so radiant that morning, i remembered the warm smile she had given me before walking out of the house. I wished i had stopped her, i wished i had forseen it but i know if wishes were horses beggers would own a polo club already.
I felt like a failure. Jennifer had trusted me with her girls and i have failed in my duties. She was so kind to me when she was alive, she took me in from the street and gave my life a meaning.
I was found in a polythene bag by the roadside on a fateful drizzling August morning. I was told, some kind souls had taken me to an orphanage nearby which was where i grew up. Life in the Orphanage was bitter sweet for me. i dreaded the dawn of each new day, i hated the nights most because that was when the repulsive caressing hands seek out my young body in the darkness.
Mother Superior Annabel had taken to me since I was brought to the orphanage. She looked out for me, she personally made new dresses for me to the envy of the other girls and she taught me my letters and alphabets. I felt loved in those days, i had someone to talk to, i had a surrogate mother to look out for me but that bliss was short lived.
I don’t remember precisely when it all started but one particular night stood out in my mind and it would hunt me forever.
” Maggie dear ”
I was in my favorite part of the Orphanage which was the little garden at the back. I got up happily as my surrogate mother approached me. I thought she wanted to give me an early gift since it was the eve of my 14th birthday .
” Mother” i called, so very happy to see her.
She pressed me into her bosom and held my head close to her chest. Her hand drifted to my lower back as she fondly caressed me lightly. She truly loved me and she always said she would want a daughter just like me if she wasn’t a nun.
” How are you my child?” She kissed my cheeks.
” I am fine mother”
” Good. I have something special for you but i don’t want the others to see it. When it is light out, i want you to sneak into my quarters and i will give it to you. ”
I lept up with joy. ” What is it mother! tell me! please tell me”
” Shhh, you don’t want the others to hear, do you?”
” No mother”
I was so impatient and almost keeling over with curiosity. Immediately after light went off, i threw back the covers and stole out of the room i shared with six other kids. I knocked softly on mother’s door and she threw it open but i was rooted to the ground in shock because the person before me looked nothing like the sweet mother i knew.
She was in a scarlet nylon panty hose, her lips were painted bright red and she had on heels which made her look like a lead cast from those late night movies we sometimes snuck out of bed to watch.
” Come in and lock the door” she commanded in a deep sultry voice.
” Mo..mother” i stammered in fear.
” It is me dear” She said in her nun voice.” We are trying something special tonight, that is why i am dressed this way”.
” OK mother” my voice trembled slightly as i settled on the long sette in her small living room.
She handed me a plate of cookie which i devoured raveneously.
” Do you want more?”
” No mother. Thank you”
She sat down next to me caressing my thighs lightly. I felt uncomfortable and scooted back.
To be continued
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