*In Fela's voice* I want to tell you a story......seriously I do.

Sunday, 27 January 2013


The statuesque young lady at the window turns towards her friend worriedly.
"Something is wrong"
Her pretty face is squeezed in worry. She peeks at her diamond encrusted piaget limelight and lets out a worried sound. Her boyfriend Seun is three hours late. Titi has gone from angry an hour ago to plain worried. Seun was meant to pick her up at 11 am for their one o’clock flight to Port Harcourt
"Maybe his wife is giving him grief, it is a  day to valentines."
Titi snorts.
"In her mind."
She turns back to the window and continues calling his number. She must have called like twenty times but Seun doesn't pick. Titi has no doubt in her mind that something is wrong. She knows for a fact that Seun would never  treat her this way. If for some reason he can't take her call, he would send her a bbm, stating why.

She'd met Seun three years ago, just eight months into his marriage with his boring 'arrangie' wife. His marriage is a strategic alliance between two monarch's using their children. Seun is not the cheating type but there is little for him in the marriage. They had met at a friends party and had instantly hit it off. Then Titi was squatting with her friend Adesuwa in a small flat off Allen and taking her daily dose of 'squatters insults'.
Three months down the line, he had moved her to SWAN apartments in Banana Island. The serviced apartments are the height of luxury in Lagos.  She now has two boutiques one on the Island and one on the mainland, three cars  all in her name and is generally living the life. Her personal house in Magodo is at the roofing stage. Her friends are not entirely sure there is no black-magic involved as it had all happened too quickly, how else do you explain a man leaving his wife a day before her birthday which is on valentines day, to spend it with his side chick?
They do not understand. Titi does not agree that she is a side chick. They are both from Ibadan and she has a good relationship with Seun's mother. Besides Seun is royalty and is allowed more than one wife.
Adesuwa's voice breaks into her thoughts.
"Ah maybe the man has come to his senses oh and decided to do the right thing abeg."
Titi was raised in the slums of Ibadan but had had the privilege of a good education on account of a childless aunt. She had schooled herself to emulate the snobbery of the rich kids so as to blend in and  now she turned her frostiest gaze at Adesuwa.
Adesuwa hesitates briefly but carries on.
"Meaning babe, you don't take a man away from his wife at a time like this."
"Adesuwa whose side are you on?"
"The side of what is right, it's valentines day tomorrow and it's her birthday."
"And he wants to be with me."
"Hmmm Titi, you're not even thinking about tomorrow...karma is a female dog oh."
"No  Adesuwa, you're the one whose a bitch. A fucking jealous bitch. What the fuck is all this about sef?
Adesuwa is thrown off guard and stares in open mouthed shock at Titi.
Titi stalks to the door and throws it open.
At that moment, Seun walks in looking dishevelled  and dazed. Adesuwa picks up her bag and without a word to either of them, she walks out.
Seun had gotten some really bad news on his way to pick her and had had to sort out some stuff as a matter of urgency before he could get to her. That is Seun's story and she believes him. He never lied to her, even when it hurt. Seun is quiet through most of the flight to PH and the drive to Okrika. Titi assumes he is still in shock and leaves him be. He would share when he felt like and Titi would listen and then try as much as she can to make him feel better about whatever it is.
Titi is standing in front of the mirror in a nude Carine Gilson Chantilly lace and silk negligee, she squirts Chanel number 5 on her wrist  and turns to Seun with a seductive smile. She looks good and feels good and is set to make him feel good and forget whatever it is that has been bugging him. For the first time today, he looks himself.
He brushes his open palm across her nipples and watches with boyish pleasure as they harden in response. It is a little pre fore play game of their's. Titi's nipples are extra sensitive but he doesn't know this and just assumes it is her reaction to him each time.
"I love you Titi"
Wow, that's a first......something big is about to happen. Titi can just tell.

The room is a little too cold for Titi and Seun's hands are freezing but she is reluctant to spoil the mood so she clenches her teeth and relaxes as Seuns cold tongue flickers up and down her clitoris.  Titi wonders briefly what kind of mad woman had a man like Seun and didn't go out of her way to keep him satisfied. Two orgasms later, it is her turn to please him. She  goes on her knees with her ample bottom in the air and her waist arced as far into the mattress as it could possibly go. Seun is poised to penetrate, his eyes glazed with lust when her phone begins to ring.
"Who the hell?"
She wiggles her bottom and turns invitingly to Seun in an obvious 'lets ignore it' move  but neither Seun nor the caller is having any of it.
"Turn it off."
He orders gruffly.
Still in position, she reaches for her phone and turns it off not before she see's Adesuwa's name flash across the LCD.
"Bloody witch."
She thinks as she flings the phone across the bed and smiles invitingly at Seun.
Valentines day dawns bright and beautiful.  Seun takes both their phones and shuts them in a drawer, no interruption from the outside world he says. They spend the day at Seun's friends private beach in the creeks, eating grilled fish, drinking champagne and making love. By six thirty they are drunk on food,alcohol and sex. They retire early as they have to be in PH at seven am tomorrow to catch the first flight back to Lagos and straight to Ibadan. As she gets into bed, Seun pulls her close, she wiggles invitingly.
"Stop it wench."
She giggles
I just want you to know, you've made me very happy. Happy valentines baby. He hands her a slightly bulky manila envelope. She opens it excitedly and inside, is the title deed for her apartment. She flings herself into his arms and smothers him with kisses. This morning she'd given him a limited edition Waterman Edson 125 ans, (it is always hard to buy things for men like Seun) and she gets a four bedroom luxury apartment in banana Island in return?
"I love you Titi......very, very much."
"I love you Seun."
Titi is shocked to realize that she means it.
Where is the marriage proposal though, she was so expecting it.
Maybe tomorrow, they are still spending a couple of days in Ibadan together.
Getting to Lagos, Seun gets a call and has to go into town for a couple of hours. He pays an airport taxi to take Titi to Ibadan and promises to see her by evening. She offers to go home and wait so they can make the drive together but he insists that she go ahead since her mother is expecting her. He kisses her and hands her back her phone.
Titi turns to look at Seun and he is still standing there, clutching his carry all in one hand and waving with the other. She blows him a kiss and catches the drivers eyes through the rear view mirror. He is smiling indulgently at them.
"Aunty, love sweet ooh."
She smiles at him and settles in for the two hour trip to Ibadan.  As she turns on her phone, she gets the insert sim card message. She takes out the battery to check and lo, her sim card is not in the allocated slot. Strange, she didn't take it out, she seriously doubts if Seun had and it couldn't have just fallen out on it's own. Ah well, she settles back for a nap as the car zooms off to Ibadan.
Titi checks her make up as the cab pulls into her estate, it is common knowledge that she is Seun's girl friend and most people expect wedding bells soon. Titi loves playing and looking the part. As the car parks in  front of her mothers house the door is flung open and her mother rushes out weeping. Titi is taken aback . She cannot make out what her mother is on about  as she hugs Titi and weeps profusely. A small crowd is gathering and Titi is getting scared and uncomfortable.
Now the cabbie is croaking...What the hell?
Titi turns to the driver. He looks petrified as he points at something on the wall. She looks as it seems everyone expects her to. There on the wall is Seun's obituary announcement. He died in a motor accident at nine am on the thirteenth.



Sunday, 6 January 2013


“…of darkness then light.
Of complete cession.
Boom boom, boom boom.
Of silence eternal.
The end…..”
I am Dubem.  I woke up this morning with a stifling sense of foreboding. Lo, my wife Uchenna lay shivering in a pool of her own sweat.
It’s a hot day in Yola and I am sweating and panting as I climb up hill to the Church of Assumption. I’d had to park at the bottom of the hill as the car park is full. I love my wife Uchenna and I would die for her but this errand is one I wish I didn’t have to run. It is a Sunday morning and my wife is home alone and ill in bed and I would much rather be at home with her. Unfortunately Felicia her best friend is leaving for the States tonight and Uchenna has a package for her sister, so here I am. A young man brushes past me and hurries on up without an apology. His yellow caftan makes me uneasy but I brush off the feeling.  I have to hurry back to my wife is my one consuming thought.
I haven’t been in a church since my wedding three years ago and to say it feels strange is an understatement. I sit myself at the back and wait as I have sent a bb message to Felicia. I wonder how much of the mass I would have to take before she comes to relieve me. I try to listen as the priest talks about God’s love. His voice has a hypnotic quality and for the first time today my sense of foreboding eases off a little. I say a little prayer for Uchenna as a fat lady with two kids squeezes past me to sit at the other end of the pew. One of the kids a little girl of about four years old smiles at me. She has the most beautiful eyes I've ever seen. I smile back.
Suddenly, I hear a sound like a banger and I feel intense burning heat from my inside. It started at the back of my throat and in the blink of an eye it consumes my whole body. I do not know what to think. I black out briefly. When I come to, it’s cold, very cold and misty. The church is empty seems like mass is over. Where is Felicia then? A yellow fabric clad limb catches my attention. Why is there a severed arm lying on the aisle? I pick myself and Uchenna’s package up off the floor and take a few steps forward. My foot encounters something which rolls slightly. It is the slightly charred head of my little friend; her eyes are glazed in an eternal question. I begin to cry.
“What is this?”
My eyes suddenly seem to open and all around me is death. A woman with both legs blown off stares ahead in a state of shock, the priest is slumped against the podium, impaled by a large piece of metal. I can neither hear nor smell anything but I feel fine except for an overwhelming spring of sorrow in my soul.   I can’t take much more of this; I have to get home to Uchenna. As I turn to look once more at my little friend, I see me. Half of my head is blown off. I stare in fascination as grey matter tinged with blood seep out of the jagged gaping wound.
I will myself to wake up from this bad dream. It works as the gruesome scene fades away.
Uchenna goes to the table and tries to eat the breakfast that Dubem made for her. She smiles fondly as she feels the stone cold boiled yam. It hadn’t occurred to him that by the time she’d be ready to eat, the yams would be quite cold and inedible. She eats the cold eggs and swallows the analgesic. They are going to the hospital as soon as Dubem returns. She flops on the sofa and turns on the TV. “Breaking News on Aljazeera, a suicide bomber today detonated himself…….” The bell peals four times in sets of twos. Dubem is back she goes to get the door.
“The steady unrest and menace of boko haram is steadily working on everyone’s nerves…..”
She thinks as she opens the door to Dubem.  A news reporter’s voice comes on on the TV;
“…..the body count so far at the church of Assumption in Mubi, Yola State has been placed at thirty; there are no survivors from the main auditorium of the church.”
Uchenna opens the door slowly. There isn't anyone there, only the sticky taped wrapped package that her husband had taken out this morning lay at the door step.