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Sleeping With Yesterday (Episode 10)

Posted by on September 9, 2016.

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Now, in their room, it is 9 pm. She wraps her arms around herself as the air conditioner takes deeper hold of her. Something makes her turn to the corner of the room where the bags she packed Seun’s toys are lying. She looks away again outside only to hear a voice that sounds like it is impatient for not being heard at first. The voice says, “Irudika.”

Nnafuka stands, stands erect, stiff as though a blind ghost is passing right in front of her. She hears it again. Then she moves like one would move on remembering that they have misplaced something precious in the room. She goes straight for the first bag. It is as though the voice is coming from there, faint, almost a whisper. She tears it open with her hands, throwing out the toys, some wooden, others plastic on the floor. The way they fall and the noise that follows their falling seem to be some from of mockery to her. She keeps digging until she gets to the bottom to find nothing.
“Irudika…” She pounces on the second bag, holds it by the bottom and turns it upside down, laying the dolls on the floor. There is nothing there but the smiling faces of dolls of different sizes. She draws her hairs, tearing some out in the process.

“Irudika…” She lunges at the wardrobe. The voice comes again, now a bit clearer. She throws out her braziers, her pants, her blouses and skirts from the wardrobe. Her wigs follow too. She lays hands on her shoes and spreads them in the centre of the room.

“Irudika…” It is coming from Dayo’s wardrobe this time. She tries to heave it open and one of the sliding doors refuses to bulge. She uses her shoulder to nudge it and the thing slides through at the third attempt.

“Where are you? Where are you?”

The stench of the stockings there hit her nose hard. She does not mind. She throws the shoes out, flings the suits and the shirts; hacks the trousers from the hangers. But she does not see anything. All she sees is the emptiness in the two wardrobes. She sights a reflection of herself on the mirror beside the wardrobe and she goes to it. She hears the voice again – “Irudika” – and she sees her lips move. She hears it again as she sees her lips move. She recognizes that it is her voice.

Furious, she picks up the dolls one after the other and puts them in the bag. She picks the toys too and throws them in the bag. She does not drop the bag to face the other things littered on the floor. She marches with the bag out of the room, downstairs to the sitting room.

There is a little sound that is rising and falling in the sitting room. When she looks to the dining table it is Dayo fast asleep, his right arm is outstretched across the table so that his left hand lays on it and his head is in turn placed on his left hand. She ignores him and carries the bag into the kitchen. She comes out of the kitchen with a bottle and a match box. Outside she picks her spot in the grass, close to the tap which Abdul would often fix a hose to when washing Dayo’s car. She piles the dolls and the toys there, on top of each other, a soft colourful hill of fabrics, plastic and wood. She pours the content of the bottle on them and strikes a match that she lets drop on the pile. The fire catches on a doll, its red and blue jacket folding up in black patches. She pours more and the whole pile catches fire. She looks at the fire, seeing its red tongues jumping up, over each other, shivering in the wind, yet spreading down to the bottom of the pile. She walks back into the sitting room.

Once inside she drops the bottle on the floor and goes ahead to lock up the door, pulling the curtains together. She picks up the bottle, the content moving like something alive. At the centre of the sitting room she stands and keeps her eyes on Dayo who by now has turned his head so that he faces down the table. From outside the bright light of the fire comes in through the window, painting the walls with yellow and red and blue.

Nnafuka advances to the dining table. Standing over Dayo she singles out a matchstick from the matchbox and removes the cover on the bottle.

Dayo snores on as she raises the open bottle.

To Be Continue

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2 Responses

  1. hmmm she wan burn you dayo

    by Michelle on Sep 9, 2016 at 4:52 pm

  2. Death of a child can be pains

    by Viviy on Sep 9, 2016 at 7:40 pm

Comment below

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