Nno O. Where is the money, Ebuka? She barked
“He didn’t give it to me, ma.” I said putting my face down.
“Why? Why? Why? why didn’t he give you the money? You of all people knew that we have no food in the house and that money is our last hope!”
” But he said he doesn’t have money”
“Chukwu okike! I told you not to leave there until he gives you the money, Ebuka!! If he doesn’t have money why did he asked me to send you in the first place?”
“I don’t know ma”. I said raising my head.
” Ever since he bought that palm oil from me, he did not want to pay me the money for it. I wonder where he think I get money to buy new ones. Chelukwa! what is that on your face? Did you cry?”
“No ma, I didn’t cry” I said fidgetting.
“Ok, go inside the house and join Nneoma to pick the Rice. I will see him in the evening”
I joined Nneoma in the Parlor to pick the Rice mother asked her to pick. I couldn’t look at her face. That innocent face of her, she was innocent and I am guilty in my conscience.I have sold my innocence to get my family fed. Guilty of who I am, guilty of not telling my mother what had happened to me in Desmond’s house; guilty of letting my childhood out in such a cheap manner, guilty of not being brave. Guilty of letting a stranger touching me against what our teacher taught us in the school. I was guilty and I knew it. I decided to walk into my room and cry which I did.
Hours later, mother came back roaring like a lion. She banged on my door and I woke up frightened. She held my hand and dragged me out from the bed.
“Ka nju kele gi! So Ebuka, you didn’t go to Desmond’s house in the morning!”
“I did, ma” I replied
” Shut up! He said you didn’t come. Now this is 7 Pm, go to his place and collect the money for me. I could have sent you and Nneoma but he said only you should come”
“But mummy…” I protested
“Just go, don’t mummy me”
On my way to the house, I have calculated what he would do to me. This is making the fifth time he would touch me with that disgusting hand of his and I don’t want it anymore. I don’t want him to hold my manhood and shake it, suck it, romance it and caress it and, then moans and groans as if it was nothing at all but a mere stick. I don’t want him to touch me again! Even if I tell mother, she won’t believe me. She would say I was lying, she would not believe me. She said I was bad, spoilt and disrespectful to the elders. I don’t know why she won’t believe me again not even in a seconds, I don’t know why she abuses me at every slight mistake; tell me how I resemble my father; my dead father. She said he was like that until he was killed by armed robbers. I was stuborn and I knew that but she shouldn’t compare me with my father, the father I never knew; the man I never felt his fatherly care and words. He never called me ‘Obim’. Maybe he doesn’t want me, maybe I was disguesting to him, maybe he doesn’t want a boy to come that was why he died before I came to this disvirgined Earth. If the story is to be told anywhere, I was not to be blamed because I didn’t create myself.
I went to Mama Okoro, our Neighbour, and explained my ordeal to her. She was surprised at hearing my ear breaking tale of abuse. She said my mother must hear this but I told her not to bother that I wanted to disgrace and expose Desmond that night if she could help me. She agreed to assist me, so we hit on a plan; a plan that would expose that dog to the public. She would go with me to the house and stay outside the house without being seen by Desmond, when I enter into the house with him and he starts his business, I would give out a shriek that won’t be so suspicious to him, she would then come in to the scene by hitting hard on the door. This would leave him with no option but confusion and distabilization.
The plan was cooked and we were ready to go and expose him in his Evil act. When Desmond saw me coming, he gave out perfect smile that brightened the night with his shining teeth.
“What kept you so long? I have been longing for this night taste of your body to satisfy my feelings. Come inside boy, this night I will give you money for ‘Akara’. Just come in” he said smiling.
He carried me gradually to the door and locked the door behind us. I saw Mama Okoro made her way to the side of the room then to the door when we have entered. He put me down on the sofa, the fan whirls, the tick tack hands of the clock blossom in their journey, the silent room reminded me of the silent torment of mankind against his fellow, the hated mankind for the silent torment.I sees every man as same as Desmond.
After putting me on the Sofa, he went to the kitchen and came out with the normal scissors he always bring. He asked me to stand up which I did and as he unzipped my trouser and pulled it down, he removed my pant and began to touch my manhood. I shrieked out loud and Mama Okoro began to bang the door. Desmond became shocked, confused and amazed.
“Did you bring anyone here?” He asked, I kept mute but watched him as he moved here and there.
As the banging got more fierce, he ran to the door and opened it. Mama Okoro saw me with my trouser on my hand. She began to beat Desmond, screaming at the same time. The neighbours gathered in one accord and Desmond was dragged to the police station that night. Later he was charged to court where he was sent to jail for child abuse. Till now, my conscience still hurt me when ever I remember the incident.
(C) John Chizoba Vincent
All Right Reserved ’16
John chizoba vincent is an actor, poet, novelist and director. He hail from Nkporo in ohafia local government area of Abia state. He studied mass communication at the Lagos state Polytechnic and theatre art from helen paul theatre and film academy. He is a published author with four books to his credit. He has over five hundred poems online and journals.