Monday, 20 May 2013

The Sting - Chapter 11


Chapter 11


Tope heard a click and the phone came alive with a soft but sleepy voice say “Hello” and her brain went blank. She could not come up with a response and she did not know what to say. She had dialed the number without having a plan and she was unprepared to hear his voice again. The phone was connected for more that 30 seconds and in that time, she still could not bring herself to say anything and the line went dead on the other side.

Damn, she told herself, now she had flunked the first chance and not only that, he has the number on his phone so if she calls back, he would know she was the one who called him and she would sound desperate.

She got out from under the tree and started walking back towards her room when she realized she had made another mistake. When she left the room, she left Wale and Wunmi alone which meant they were probably having sex or at least making out inside the room right now. They would probably think she left the room to give them some time alone. Now she cursed at herself, she hated what she did.

“I should have at least left with my car keys or at least wore something decent enough to go out with. Now I might have to wait for those two to finish whatever it is they are doing before going in”.

She walked back towards the hostel and met John on the way. John was a friend to a member of the Skulls who she had dated at some point but broke up with because he was too controlling. He had once tried to collect the password to her ATM card and that’s when she decided she had had enough. Ever since then he had continued to disturb her about a reunion she knew would not happen even if there was a gun to her head. He still told everyone she was his girlfriend though and she did not mind as long as he did not say it where she was and no one disturbed her over it. Life was complicated enough without having to fight over what some airhead said to people.

Tope looked like the average girl next door to everyone but those closer to her knew she tried to fit into school most of the time. She is intelligent and academics came to her easily but the fact that her father was a millionaire had made it difficult to make true friends in secondary school. When her dad called her and asked what University she wanted to attend, she had chosen to study in Nigeria for reasons she could not explain.

Her father did not understand why but he had only two children and he made it a point of duty to spoil them silly. He agreed with her and she ended up here. Making friends came naturally to her in her secondary school days as she had things to discuss with the girls and guys but here was a different scenario. Wunmi was the only one she connected with and every friend she made in school was through her and it has always gone smoothly.

John saw her coming at a distance and started smiling at her. His steps changed as he tried to make himself more attractive.

As if it will make you look better, she thought to herself.

She got close to him and brought her phone and pretended to be typing something on it and he called out to her.

“Tope, will you pretend as though you did not see me?”

She had expected him to call her back so she was not surprised. She looked up and feigned surprise.

“Sorry, I got an important message and I was replying it. What were you saying?”

Now the look on John’s face changed a bit, it was obvious the she was lying and was trying to ignore him and he hated it when she did that.

“Okay what message would be so important that you could not even mutter a simple hello to me, If you did not do this on purpose”.

She walked closer to him and put her phone inside her pocket.

“Now what law in the world or this country makes it compulsory that I say hello to you and when I see you? You are not my father so why are you pained?”

She threw her hair backward and continued.

“I don’t want to say hello, simply get that into your skull and move the f**k on. Don’t you have any dignity as a man? You tried to scam me and steal money from my account but instead of getting you arrested and making sure you spend time behind bars like a monkey, I allowed it to pass and you still act like the world belongs to you. Stop pestering me and walk on fool”.

A little crowd had gathered as her voice was slightly raised and when she saw this, she smiled at him.

“Good afternoon John, I hope you are satisfied now” and with that she walked away.

It took John some moments to react to what she did as he could not believe the calm and gentle girl he dated could explode like that, and the fact that she just said all that and walked away make him a lot more crazy. The crowd was gathering and his hurt and anger grew and suddenly he moved towards her. The people who had gathered around saw that there was a chance he might beat her up and they made to stop him but Tope suddenly turned around, looking at him straight in the eyes.

“You would hit me, I dare you”.

And she turned around again and walked away leaving the people laughing at John and his ego completely crushed.

She walked back towards the hostel and saw that the door to her room was opened and she strolled in to meet Wale bent over their reading table studying with Wunmi.

She frowned.

“You both should not tell me you have been studying all this while and could not come to my rescue”.

Wale chose to ignore the statement thinking it was some kind of talk between them when there was a loud knock on the door and someone turned the knob.

Without thinking Wale reached for his gun behind him and kept his hand there while he waited for whoever it was to enter. He stood directly opposite the door in the space between the girls and the door as the knob was turned again. That was when he realized that Tope had locked the door when she entered.

He looked back at her.

“What is going on?”

Tope fell on the bed unconcerned.

“There is no need to be worried, it is probably that idiot John coming to teach me a lesson because I ignored him”.

Bear still did not let his guard down as there was another knock at the door and this time, it was louder as though the person was trying to scare whoever was inside the room.

He stood there with his hand still holding his gun when he saw Tope get up from the bed and move towards the door.

Wunmi went to stand behind Bear as she did not believe Tope’s story of John coming to beat her up.
Tope walked to the door and opened it. The first thing she did when she opened it was to step back and cross her arms over her chest.

“What do you want now? Have I not made it clear that I don’t want to see you?”

John stepped into the room in company of two other guys and when Bear saw their faces, he pulled his hand off his gun, looked back at Wunmi and sat down.

John started to talk.

“What gives you the right to talk to me anyhow? You had better watch your mouth next time or else, I will shut it for you”

Tope started laughing.

“Did you just say you will shut my mouth? Dude, you will spend the next 7 years of your life behind bars if you even lay a finger on me. Ever heard of the term assault? It is a big word, maybe too big for you dumb head to comprehend but I promise you that if you so much as touch me, the next person you will be talking to will be in uniform”.

John could not believe he was been spoken to so brazenly, by a girl of all people, he had shown restraint because he  knew she will go through with her treats of getting him arrested but his anger was getting the better of him. There was an increase of blood into his head and he could not think clearly.

He took a step towards her and she still did not move away she just stood there watching and daring him to do whatever he wanted and just as he raised his hands to hit her, a voice came through.

“If you don’t have respect for the people who gave birth to you, would you also deny my presence?”

(...to be continued)

(Mynd is a final year student of Mechanical Engineering at one of Nigeria's universities. When he's not busy being a nerd he spends his time writing, playing basketball, listening to music and laughing! You can reach him on mynd44@gmail.com)

Saturday, 11 May 2013

This Is Not The End



Dreams hardly ever come true but when it does, boy isn't it worth all the effort and struggle!

Even in my lowest moments I can't seem to ever let up on dreams because without them, I feel like I'm letting myself down and that, I don't want to do. It took me a while to get here but I'm glad all the same. I'm finally getting to my dreams, its becoming tangible and I'm mesmerised by it. I wish everyone with a dream would realise it at the right time. Timing is key. 

I once had a dream which was to make others fulfill their dreams. I guess living my dream takes me closer to fulfilling that doesn't it? Once one dream is settled another one comes into play. Or can I dream more than one dream at a time? Is that wise or suicidal? Sigh. One day at a time. Right now I'm putting this sticky note on my wall. 

"To fulfill my dream takes me one step closer to fulfilling the ultimate dream - Making other peoples dream come true".

So you see? I can't be slack about my dreams now. I need to move to the next dream which feels even more exhilarating!

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

The Sting - Chapter 10


Chapter 10


The bus pulled up at the last bus stop. Sunday alighted and covered his nose. Since the new governor took over the affairs of the state the state has been turned into one massive construction site with roads being extended and new ones built but the downside of it was that there was a lot of dust everywhere as the dry season was still very much around. The dust at the bus stop was enough to cut visibility considerably and make breathing almost impossible. Sunday realized he was hungry and that made him remember a larger problem; he was running broke. His mum had not sent money to him in 2 weeks and even when she did, it was barely enough to take him through that week.

He had always survived through Tayo’s goodwill but Sunday had not asked him for money in a while out of some silly arrogance that he should be his own man. Of course he had not told his friend about his resolve but he had made a resolve within himself to reduce the gifts both monetary and otherwise he collects from Tayo and learn to manage the funds his parents send him. Doing a mental check, he calculated a thousand Naira left in his bank account and that was barely enough to take him over the weekend as he was out of foodstuff at home. He used his hand to cover his nose as he walked hurriedly towards the ATM machine.

Sunday felt renewed confidence after the encounter with the guys on the bus which had some kind of effect on him. It made him a lot calmer and he was not too shaky. However, it also made him aware that people he did not know were aware of his presence. If these guys can recognize him then it is likely that someone who wants to harm him would also recognize him and that might be disastrous.

He passed in front of the ATM but decided against making a withdrawal as the number of people waiting in line were too much. The sun was still beating down mercilessly and he could feel his throat drying up. It would be better if he went home and got some rest then come back to make the withdrawal later. He brought his phone out and dialed his mum’s number. She picked it up after sometime.

Sunday’s mum is a widow. Her late husband used to work for the local factory but he came home one day with his temperature so high, one would assume he had been sick for a long time, things began to change for Sunday and his mum. Although he did not make a lot of money, Sunday’s dad made enough to provide for his wife and young son. He had considered the fact that he does not have enough money to raise another child and so despite pleading from his own family, had decided not to have any more children. He focused all his attention on his family and even managed to open a convenience store for his wife not far away from home so she could help with the finances of the home.

He came home early from work that day as he complained at work about feeling sick, he used some malaria drugs and went to bed. His wife came back with Sunday to meet him on the bed still sleeping and decided not to disturb him until she finished preparing dinner. When dinner was done, she woke him up and he ate a little food before he complained of been too tired and went back to bed. He never woke up from that sleep.

Ever since his father died, his mum was responsible for his upbringing from the proceeds of the shop and most times, the money realized was not enough but they managed. It always pained him that he had to call her to ask for money but he was broke and he had no other source of income except her.

When she picked up the phone, her voice was as clear as though she was speaking from beside him.

“My son, how are you? It has been a long time you called. Can’t you make these calls a little more frequent?”
“Ma, sorry but I want to concentrate on my studies here and I don’t like spending money on airtime so I can do other things with the money instead”.

She paused for sometime perhaps to attend to a customer.

“I wanted to send you some money today but by the time I remembered, the banks here had closed but I will pay it into your account tomorrow morning”.

The fact that she always knew why he called amazed him but he tried to hide it.

“I was not even calling because of money ma. I just wanted to know how you are doing and say hi to you”.

“Thank you son. Let me let you go now so you don’t spend too much on airtime. God will continue to be with you and the future will be as you want it to be as long as God is in heaven. Just don’t forget to pray and go to church regularly”.

 “Yes ma. I will call you some other time. Bye.”

He hung up and started walking towards his house again. He felt like a heavy load had been lifted from his shoulders with what his mum said, at least some money will be paid to his account the next day and he does not have to ask Tayo for money.

*********************************

Tope dialed Sunday’s number immediately Wale finished calling it out to her but the response she got was that of a busy line. She looked back at Wale suspiciously.

“Are you sure you gave me the right number?”

Wale did not answer at first as Wunmi was sitting on his laps once more and they were lost in a barely audible conversation and smiling. She hated disturbing them but she just needed to know.

She faked a cough and asked again.

“Wale, are you sure you gave me the right number?”

He answered without even looking at her. “Yes that’s his number. Why do you ask?”

“I just called the number right now and it told me it was busy”.

Wale did not understand the reason why Tope was so interested in speaking with Sunday and it was beginning to get to him.

“Maybe he is talking to his girlfriend or something”.

The mention of girlfriend made something inside Tope turn and she replied almost coldly.

“He has a girlfriend? How come you did not tell me that before?”

Wunmi too then joined in the conversation as Tope was beginning to get on her nerves. All through the night all she wanted to know was the strange and not so good looking kid but right now was certainly not a good time to start again.

 “I am sure he does not have a girlfriend but he might have been receiving a call from his friends or something. That does not mean the number is wrong or anything. Just try again later.” Wale replied.
He looked towards her and added, “And my girl and I are trying to have a quiet time here so please stop disturbing”.

At that, Tope got out of the bed and went outside, pissed off at the both of them and even Sunday for no just reason. Once outside, she started walking without any direction. She just needed to waste some time and call back and perhaps she will be able to get in contact with him.

While walking, she started thinking about why she wanted to speak with Sting. She had felt a sharp pain in her stomach when Wale insinuated that he might have been speaking to his girlfriend. It was clear to her that this is going beyond wanting to say thank you and that she might actually like him. The thought scared her and also brought a smile to her face. She had only been in two relationships all her life and they had been with close family friends and sons of her father’s business partners. Even then it felt like they were not the ones dating but the families. She never really liked any guy like this but she was not the conservative type and didn’t see anything wrong in a girl going after what she liked.

She walked past her car and remembered that she left the key inside the room. She was not planning on going anywhere but sometimes when she needed to clear her head and be alone sitting inside her car helped a lot. The sun was still hot although its heat had reduced it was still considerably hot so she moved away and sat down under a tree.

She picked up her phone and dialed the number again and to her delight, it rang!

Sunday walked into his room tired and thirsty. He bought some cold water from the shop in front of the house and drained the content into his dried up throat. He allowed his bag fall from his back and he flung his phone onto the bed while he took off his shoes and trousers then he joined the phone on the bed. He had started drifting into another world when the ringing of his phone brought him back; he checked the caller ID and saw none.

A voice told him to put the phone in silent mode and go back to bed but he overcame his fatigue and answered it.

“Hello” he spoke into the phone and no response came.

He held the phone for more than 30 seconds and when the caller did not say anything he hung up and went back to bed.

(to be continued)


(Mynd is a final year student of Mechanical Engineering at one of Nigeria's universities. When he's not busy being a nerd he spends his time writing, playing basketball, listening to music and laughing! You can reach him on mynd44@gmail.com)

Sunday, 14 April 2013

The 'Fine' Lie




It has become so easy to appear cheerful on the surface. To smile and respond with a 'fine' when asked. Not everyone wants to know whether you are fine or not, neither do they care. Its just a formality and so I put on a big smile and say 'fine'.

It is during those quiet moments, in bed, completely shut out from the world that the soul feels safe to come out. No need to pretend here. It starts as an itch at first, then a sting swiftly followed by a tear and before you know it racking sobs escape. Why? I don't know. Maybe I do but don't want to think about it. My head turn to a dance hall with a master DJ. David Guetta has nothing on this guy. The crowd is going ballistic with euphoria and the DJ cranks up the volume emanating a shout from the crowd. Hard punching beats so loud I lose consciousness.

I wake up the following morning and try to access the level of damage in the mirror. Only slightly puffy eyes, nothing makeup can't hide. Good. After a pep talk and a smile, I head out feeling 'brave' again. I smile to the neighbour in the elevator and its game on! I whip out my gold-tinted sunglasses feeling fly, jump into my ride say a quick prayer then zoom off with music blasting from the stereo. I feel the sun on my face and in that instant there's genuine joy, I feel connected to something powerful, something good, something...PURE. A tear threatens to escape but I shake it off. It's a beautiful day.

A few minutes later I'm behind an endless line of cars moving a quarter of an inch every minute. Well, there's no use being grumpy about traffic, I best settle in and besides, nothing feels better than a good jam in the morning. I don't know what the rest of the day will bring but for now I am just going to enjoy being alive, fresh air, the rays of warm sun on my face and nature. Sigh.

Sunday, 7 April 2013

Weird: Dogs Wearing Pantyhose??!

Aah! When will I ever learn not to get blown away by what I read on the world wide web! These days nothing should surprise me but once in a while they find a way to strike hard at me. Are they for real? Dogs....pantyhose? Well, its China so I guess I shouldn't be surprised. Thank you Huffington Post for sharing, we really needed to see this :-/

I just feel sorry for the animals having being inflicted with such owners. I get its for laughs but have we run out of things to laugh at? With the 'Oga at the top' stunts, Justin Bieber, Tonto Dikeh's 'Hi' track, Goodluck Jonathan, Romney and most things made in China.
C'mon now, people! Hehehe!






Sunday, 31 March 2013

The Sting - Chapter 9


Chapter 9


Wale shook his head and smiled at her before walking over to Wunmi to give her a hug. He held her for some seconds and just soaked in the smell of her hair when he noticed the Tope was behind him with her hands at her waist. He drew away and sat down on the only chair in the room while Wunmi sat on his laps. He moved a strand of hair that came to her face and planted a kiss on her lips. He looked into her eyes and saw the look of worry on her face.

“Everything is going to be alright. I am on top of it to make sure it is under control”.

That did not make the worried look on her face leave as she was still in shock over what happened the night before and could not believe how close she was to being killed over an issue she knew nothing about, and the thought that Wale was not worried about it or that he was not even scared made her more worried. She had heard rumors of things like this happening but she had never witnessed it before. 

It was like a scene from a movie and she still could not believe she was in it, yet she was. She had tried to sleep the whole day off but she kept tossing and turning on the bed, startled by any sound she heard. Even though Wale had told her that the environment she lived was dominated by the Skulls, she could not help but be worried that something might happen. 

When he dropped them off the previous night, he said he wanted to go sort some things out with the other members of the fraternity and something told her that might be another fight even though he said he doubted it. She just wanted him to hold her all through the night and she would be sure he was safe in her arms. 

However, she knew who and what he was from the moment he asked her out. He never hid the fact that he belonged to a fraternity and she had come to love him irrespective of that. He had being good with her and gentle but the events of the night before shook her more than anything. Worse was that she couldn't discuss it with anyone. 

Tope her roommate too was scared but had always envied that Wunmi was dating a top guy and she was more excited about the events than scared. Perhaps because she had not witnessed it all as it went down.

Wunmi was brought back from her thought by Wale’s voice and she faked a smile.

“I am sure it is. So I hope this will not cause the school to be closed. I cannot stand going home for now”.

Wale had not thought of the possibility of that happening and he did not factor it into his arrangements but one thing was sure, the events happened outside school grounds so it was in the jurisdiction of the police just like a usual crime and so the school cannot be affected. 

He saw the smile on her face and he knew she faked it to make him think she is okay. He did not know what else to say or do as she had seen too much the night before and she was strong if he really thought about it. Most people would be shaken right now but here she was seated on his laps as if all she needed was for him to be with her.

He knew she wanted him to spend the night but he was too busy, he had to make sure the fight did not blow out and if it did he had to make sure the other members knew what they were up to and not caught by surprise. He was the most senior member to witness the fight which meant he also had to report to the top guns so they could assess the situation. 

He had no doubt that she loved him and he began to regret that he invited her to the party. He looked over to Tope who sat on the bed, fiddling with her phone trying to avoid and ignore them. She looked happy enough and he was not surprised. She did not see what really happened and she probably had Wunmi tell her but that could not be compared with the trauma Wunmi went through. His thoughts went to Sting, thinking how he had been the one who noticed him and became friends with him, introduced him to Skulls and almost had him killed. No doubt after the incident Sting is going to be promoted within the ranks of the fraternity. He showed incredible bravery no doubt and saved his life more than once.

“Hey, wake up!”

Wale looked up towards the voice and realized that Wunmi had been watching him.

 “You need to get more sleep”.

He smiled and nodded. “Well checking on you is more important that sleeping, I have to make sure you are alright plus I missed your voice, the smell of your hair and the feel of your skin. I love you babe and I am sorry you had to pass through that last night. I really am”.

“Hey don’t worry; I had a nice time at the party though before those thugs decided to crash it. So how is your friend? I trust he is okay”.

At this Tope joined the discussion. “Wale you still haven’t told me where you hid him ooo. I have to say my thank you to him personally”.

Now Wale was lost.

“Who are we talking about here?”

Tope almost did not allow him finish the question before answering.

“The charming guy we went to the party with last night. You introduced him to us as Sting and from the stories that Wunmi told me, he saved our lives”.

Wale allowed himself to smile a little, “Well he should be in his house right now. I called him when I was coming here and he said he was heading home to do some silly assignments. But he is okay and I will send your thanks. Now if you girls are not too busy, perhaps you can prepare something for me to eat. I am starving”.

“My food is reserved for Sting you can asked the doll sitting on your laps to prepare you food” with that she went back to her phone.

Wale looked and Wunmi as she gave him a kiss and headed into the small kitchen in their one room hostel.

Tope pretended to be busy with her phone but she was more preoccupied with other things. She had made Wunmi tell her what exactly happened in the hall over and over again and each time she heard the story, she felt jealous and curious. Jealous because she had never had anyone that was as caring as Wale, she had always thought Wunmi was the luckiest girl in school. She was curious because she had never heard of Sting before. She had met most of Wale’s friends but this new guy, who from the stories saved everyone, was strange and something in her pushed her towards him. A little voice inside her whispered she liked him but she dismissed him. It can’t happen, at least not with someone she barely knew.

Well she might not know him but what stops her from getting to know him better? Wale was here and he could give her his details and stuff, even if it is just to say thanks to him, she did not mind as long as her curiosity was satisfied.

She rolled and saw that Wale was already eating while Wunmi was sitting on the table, they were talking in hushed voices and she rolled her eyes.

“Hey Wale, can I use your phone for a second?”

Wale removed his phone from his pocket and tossed it at her and went back to eating while Wunmi frowned.

He looked up and saw her frowning. “Why are you frowning?”

Wunmi was not about to hide her discomfort at Tope’s request for his phone and the fact that he gave it to her did not make her comfortable.

“Don’t worry, she will return it soon” he added.

Tope caught the phone and was about going through the contacts when she discovered that it had been password protected. She looked up, upset.

“You should have told me you couldn't give me. What is the point in giving me your phone when I don’t know your password?”

Wale took his last spoonful from the plate. “You did not really think I would just give you my phone without knowing why, did you?” 

“Okay fine, I want Sting’s number; I want to say thanks since I don’t trust you to do it for me”.

Wale looked to Wunmi and she nodded. 

He collected the phone back, unlocked it and read out the number to Tope who saved it on her phone with all eagerness.


(Mynd is a final year student of Mechanical Engineering at one of Nigeria's universities. When he's not busy being a nerd he spends his time writing, playing basketball, listening to music and laughing! You can reach him on mynd44@gmail.com)

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Reel Addiction!


I have been keeping an eye out for good Nigerian short films and I haven't been disappointed so far. I am impressed by how our film makers has grown, not just in content but production and picture quality.

Some of them include:

  • Down and Out
  • Blink
  • 6.30pm
  • Dara Ju
  • Unspoken
  • Enitan
  • The Promise
  • When Fishes Drown
  • To serve with all our strength
  • 4-1-9
  • Quacks

If you haven't watched these films then you are doing yourself a huge disfavour!

Came across this promo video a few days back and I want to get me hands on the full film. Please, somebody help!!


video



What Ije is listening to