As I set up candle sticks on their stand, lighting them up to illuminate my dark little home, I begin to shed fresh tears. Today makes it exactly twenty-two years since I last saw my baby boy Ade. The event of that very night stains my memory. Clear and vivid, it replays itself like it was just moments ago when I woke up to nothing.
When the kidnappers threatened to take Ade away from me, I tried shouting for help. Invoking everything within me to shout, as I opened my mouth, I felt something hard hit my head. Waking up to nothing but a single leg of slippers on the floor which I think dropped as my boy struggled for his dear life, I broke down in tears.
I couldn’t let my son go, no I couldn’t. I reported the incident to the police but they couldn’t find him. I made missing boy”” posters and placed them everywhere but it didn’t bring my son back. After two years of continuous searching, people started telling me to stop and move on because “he is probably dead by now, you know” like an aunt of mine once said.
“Gbam! Gbam!! Gbam!!!” The knock on the door distracted me from my thoughts. “Who is there?” I asked still wiping the tears from my face as I reached for the door. Its Iya beji; my neighbour who had made it her duty to check on me every night after she fed her twins and husband and tucked them to bed while her husband listened to the evening news.
“Good evening Aburo” she greeted me with a smile. Then she noticed the tears I had just wiped off my eyes and she started asking questions. “I’m alright” I lied but my eyes burst forth with fresh tears and at this moment I knew I had to tell her everything. I narrated the whole story to her while she listened without saying anything. But the look in her eyes was a mixture of pure pity and love.
As I finished my story I brought out the single leg of slippers I picked when I woke up that fateful night. Then she encouraged me, holding me in her arms like I was her daughter even with my age. Not long after that, I became cheerful again. We laughed and made jokes about the market place. It was getting late and Iya beji had to go, we said our goodbyes and I walked her to the door.
At the door she paused like she was about to say something but had forgotten. “What is the problem?” I asked, my voice laced with concern. “Well its nothing much. I just wanted to ask you if you would be at the market tomorrow because of all this political rallies and all” she said giving me a childish smile. “I’m not sure yet but I’ll try “I replied her with a hug as she went her way.
The next morning, the sun is shining already and I’m just struggling to get up from my bed. Apparently I over slept and I don’t exactly feel like going to the market for any reason today. I hate politics and politicians because they never keep to their promises in any way. But then I remembered Iya bejis face when she asked me if I was going to come and so I decided to go but I determined not to stay for very long.
On getting to the market place, all the stalls were empty, not of goods but of their owners. What is going on here? I asked myself. I tried to figure it out, then I hear people shouting from one end of the market. I dropped my things in my stall and locked it because I don’t want anyone stealing from me then I dashed to the general direction the shouting was coming from. On getting there I was shocked to see what was happing. It wasn’t that they caught the thief who had stolen from stalls for the past three-nights now but it was a senator.
These grown up men and women were shouting, jumping and catching gift items being thrown at them like dogs begging for scrap from the masters table. “Who is this one again?” I asked a lady beside me. “It’s senator Daniel” she said excitedly as she rushed to join the others in their display of slavery. As I turned to walk back to my stall, the senator started to speak. Hearing his first two lines, I turned back with one name on my mind “Tunde”. Looking back, it was a face so familiar but I couldn’t just place it, it was too young to be Tunde the good for nothing who got me pregnant. Then something twisted in my stomach as I reached the front of the line. Then what seemed like a whisper turned to a shout. “ADEDAMOLA!!!!” I screamed. The senator turned to my side searching for who shouted. On seeing me his countenance changed as he began to shake with tears flowing down his face as he said “Maami”.
sorry i took this long for this part of the story, i hope its worth your waiting and all. Don’t forget to tell a friend to tell a friend to view this blog ( saw that somewhere). CLICK HERE FOR PART 1