The prison warder in charge had gotten the instructions clear from Captain Nwanze,
Captain: “Make sure you give him the food put a full dose of the poison!”
Prison Warder: “But who do I say sent the food? For he is a very sensitive man! And my boss seems to like him. He is treated specially!”
Captain Nwanze sighed,
Captain Nwanze: “Okay, which warder is he very close to?”
Prison Warder: “ Sadiq!”
Captain Nwanze: “nice. We should use Sadiq!”
Prison Warder: “How na? E no gree oo!”
Captain Nwanze: “Relax! We would go about it like this! We would lie that Sadiq sent the food!”
Prison Warder: “Ah! Dat wan go work sha!”
Captain Nwanze :” I’ll send you your balance once it’s done!”
Captain Nwanze was pacing around the office after heard the noise of ongoing negotiations for the country to become a democratic state. It annoyed him, “This is absolute ridiculous! Civilians can’t rule this country. It needs iron hand like us,” he hit his chest, “like me! When the British handed over powers to civilians what did they do? Messed things up until we came and took over, “he gulped a bottle of gin and belched, “So these bastards wants democracy so they’d marsh up all the things we have done? Damn it! Maku!”
He ran into the office and saluted as usual,
Maku: “Yes sir!”
Captain Nwanze leaning on the table,
Captain Nwanze : “Today is the day!”
Maku nodded he knew what Captain Nwanze was talking about.
Thirty minutes later, Maigari entered his office; he wasn’t smiling had a stern look.
Captain Nwanze: “what’s wrong? Why do you look sullen face, my friend?”
Maigari: “nothing Captain!”
Captain Nwanze: “Or is it because of the small beef we had?”
Maigari looked away, “C’mon my friend we shouldn’t act like kids,” he smiled and brought a bottle of gin with a cup and dropped it on the table,
Maigari looked at him suspiciously,
Maigari: “How am I not sure this drink has been poisoned?” Captain Nwanze walked behind and tapped him laughing,
Captain Nwanze: “I can be anything but not to murder my man! I want to make up for my wrong deeds, man!”
Maigari: “Never! You done wrong already no amount of good deeds can erase your actions.”
Captain Nwanze giggled,
Captain Nwanze: “Really?”
Maigari: “Yes!” he pushed the cup away as Captain Nwanze returned to his chair,
Captain Nwanze: “Remember that hectare of land you collected from Bala’s father?”
Maigari: “It was my grandfather’s but he claimed it so I collected what belonged to me!” Captain Nwanze burst into laughter,
Captain Nwanze: “It’s me you are talking to remember? Your friend and partner in crime!” he laughed, “I’ve gotten a buyer for you and he is willing to buy it for ten million naira!” he crossed his legs on the table giggling.
Maigari: “what?really?” Top of Form Captain Nwanze nodded, “Oh my God!” he jumped out of the chair and screaming, “I am going to be a millionaire!!!” he ran to Captain Nwanze and shook him ferociously.
“So when do we get the business done?” he smiled foolishly.
Captain Nwanze looked at Maku who was standing by the door and smiled.
It was noon as Patience was sitting outside chatting with Noami,Shedrach’s wife. After the discovery of the truth that she was raped her parents came and apologized to her pleading she returns home,
Patience: “I have forgiven you all. It wasn’t your fault for what happened but I want to stay here where I have been received with two arms until I have given birth this is my new home. Thanks to Clement, Shedrach and his beautiful wife, my friend, Naomi.” The parents were in tears.
They always come around to check upon her with food items. The Village head had come to personally apologize for the evil perpetuated by his son.
Village head: “I am here to apologize on behalf of my son and my entire family for mistreating you. I want to make up it up to you!”
Her pregnancy had become a community pregnancy. Households came to greet her.
Naomi: “I feel like eating pounded yam!”
Patience: “Me too!”
Noami: “lemme go and peel the yams!”
Patience adjusted her sitting position by holding her waist; Noami stood up, “when is Clay coming with the bush meet he promised you?”
Patience: “today. I can’t wai…”
Noami: “Talk about him and he’ll show up,” Clement was coming with the bush meat; her water broke,
Naomi rushed towards her, Clement too. She was screaming,
Patience: “I just urinated ooo! I just urinated!!!”
They carried her each holding a leg as they got into the room they laid her on the mat and Naomi ran out to call other women. Clement was confused,
Clement: “take it easy!”
She was panting and whistling sweat ran down her cheek and neck,
Patience: “there is fire ooo!”
Clement became nervy,
Patience: “My back ooo! Rub it! Clay,please quench the fire!” she tore her shirt, he rubbed the back for her.
The women came in, six of them. One of them said,
“Clay, thank you ko! We can take it up from here!”
He was chased out. At the veranda he kept pacing about and whispering words that seemed like he was praying.
Patience: “Oh my God oooooo!!! Yeh! Yeh!! Yeh!”
The women kept shouting, “Push! Push!! Push!!!”
Patience let out a shrill;it was scary. Clement rushed at the locked door and started screaming,
Celment: “what’s happening in there? Is she okay?”
No one answered him, tears gathered in his eyes, “Please,God keep her and the baby,please!”
Patience kept screaming and crying,
Patience: “Henry it will not be well with you!”
The groaning continued for about twenty minutes within that period Clement had cried. The cry died down. Clement rushed to the door again.
One of the women screamed, “it’s a boy!”
Patience was sweating and smiling; as she rested her head on the mat tears trickling down into her ears. Exhaustion had taken its toll on her. Clement smiled holding the baby.
Kyauta had arrived at a conclusion,
Kyauta: “I must go and see Captain from all indications since Bala may never make it out of there. But Bala, I’ll forever love you even in death, baby!” she promised
She headed to his office by the time she got there he wasn’t in. she met two officers playing cards on a bench,
Soldier one: “Comot there! Your father!” he dropped the last card.
Soldier two: “You too get mouth! Cos you manage win today abi?”
Kyauta greeted them,
Kyauta: “Good afternoon, officers!”
Soldier one: “afternoon, fine girl!” He looked at her lustfully, licking his lips, his colleague hit him.
Soldier two: “Kyauta, how na?”
Kyauta: “I am fine!ehm is captain around?”
Soldier two: “noo he went out with Maigari! But you can wait for him in his office!” he led her to the door and opened it for her.
She sat down with her eyes bouncing off the war to the pictures on the table and the locker filled with books.
Soldier one: “Baba, dat geh burst brain oooo!” he was a new soldier that had just been posted to the district.
Soldier two: “try em if oga no go burst your brains make dogs chop!”
Soldier one: “Oga na wa oo ! e get eye sha!!”
The creaking of the door woke her from her slumber. It was Captain Nwanze.
Captain Nwanze: “who do I have here?” he placed his hands on her shoulders he was excited to see her.
Kyauta: “welcome!”she said dryly.
Captain Nwanze: ‘what should I offer you,sweery?” he ran to his fridge.
Kyauta: “nothing I’m okay!” she stood up leaning on the table as he poured himself water, she added, “ I am pregnant!”
He turned and looked at her. She was scared- the way he had turned and looked at her sent jitters her way.
Captain Nwanze: “You can’t be serious? Are you?” She nodding, “Woah!” he jumped at her and she screamed too in fear.
He was excited! Super -excited. Pregnancy was the key to making her his,
Captain Nwanze: “marry me then!”
Kyauta, Leaving the office gloom was the crown she wore. She’s heading back home to meet her parents. She had committed herself- she had agreed to marry him. What was left? Bala was going to be killed soon and here she was pregnant for the man she so much hated. He had tricked her and she foolishly fell for it. The compound was quiet everyone had gone out at the door of her room she saw a man sitting. Her heart missed a beat,
Kyauta: “who are you, please?” she said from afar getting ready to flee. The man stood up from where he was smiling he had bushy beards,
“I came to see you first!” as he spoke she could recognize the lips covered by the ruffled beards.
He walked towards her? What was happening to her? She couldn’t scream or shout. For sure she was about to die!
Sweat ran down her spine as she gasped for air. She fainted
Bala: Kyauta! Kyauta!! Kyauta!!! It’s me Bala. I am FREE! Please wake up. I still love you Baby …… (Hmm… Gbese ree ooo)
Question: Should Kyauta tell Bala about her pregnancy and her commitment to Captain Nwanze?
Names have been changed to protect the identity of the narrator and other individuals in the story.
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