Short Fiction – Rape of The Lock (By Opaniyi Samuel Oluwawumi)

            RAPE OF THE LOCK



Yemisi was nice to me. Nkechi just left me for no cause. We were already thinking of marriage and I just newly got a Big-Daddy Toyota Camry Car then; she had cream colour like Kabria’s Creamy in Darko’s Faceless. I was deeply at six and seven when Nkechi, a lady I met during my

service year in Adamawa State left me unannounced. I got pinned to her by her virtues and faith. We attended the same Assembly of God’s Church. She served with the State’s Ministry of Education, while I served with the  State’s General Hospital. She studied Psychology in UNICAL, Calabar and I, a Micro Biologist from UI, Ibadan. We were really serious with our business – what business you’re asking? Forget da’ tin! Six months after we began the race, she told me in a close-chat that she was UNTOUCHED; I was happy. My joy knew no end: she was actually the one I prayed for. It rained heaven and earth one Friday while she was with me in my own flat for a visit. I could not let her go as it was, I felt, dangerous for her to go home at such time as a lady, especially, ‘ mine ‘: it was almost Eleve

n-thirty p.m before the cloud stopped weeping. My land lord was Hausa and would not allow me stay with them overnight. We slept together in the same room after a film on my lap-top PC. We even used that time to pray together for the first time overnight. Around six o’clock, she was about going; ‘‘you’re a man o’’, said she. I tried figuring out her meaning but I could not. Looking at her eyes to check for what she meant, there came electric power supply, she saw my eyes too; two minutes, we were still gazing at each other; I could not help than to fall into emotion with her. “How do you mean my queen’’, I broke the graveyard silence. She threw herself on me and I caught her like one of Ronaldo’s hot kicks; she came surrenderedly like a stone thrown at a bird. It was then I knew a woman’s body is warm early in the morning. I wanted to excuse her but she tied herself round me like forest rope round a tree. “I’ve just known I’m fortunate, I love you my king, thank you for respecting me”, whispered her to my left ear. I saw my head flying in the sky. “I love you too”, I retorted. Still perplexed, gazing continued. I saw fire of love flaming in her eyes. Then, she held my right hand, put hers in it; I was just keeping on watching her drama. “Keep on respecting me and I will give it to you as a gift on our wedding night”, she whispered. That last phrase, ‘Wedding night’, clued me of her mind. Fakingly, “I can’t get you baby’’, mewed me like a cat. “Okay, I meant, you’re different from other brothers who can’t stand being with a skirt under the same roof without any bedminton, and then, I grasped her message. I wanted to blush like a lady but I must not; still, I felt it was another feather in my cap. “That? It’s my determination and covenant with my maker that I will stay a male-virgin till I’m married”, I told her sincerely. Wow! She shouted. “And I shall help you achieve it, thank you my king”, she said angelically. I rushed to the kitchen to make warm tea, and, I still had bread. I played like a scene I’ve watched in one English film like that. She was glad. “I wished we’re married”, she spoke gently. Around seven-thirty, she left for her house. I saw her off. I came back and started replaying our drama of almost two hours. It was my first time I would experience such. Some things later hardly got my mind. It was a phantasmagoria for me. Hum . . . I enjoyed that time sha.

NYSC went away. Nkechi’s parents resided in Lagos. I too went back to Lagos to continue my business: I began importing ICT gadgets since I was in school. I domiciled in Ikeja, while Nkechi lived in Iyana-Ipaja. She had a friend living in Ikeja too, Yemisi. Yemisi worked with GT Bank. Her house was a stone’s throw to mine. My queen introduced her to me as her ancient pal. Life continued. I only observed; she would come to my house’ junction for a lift by me daily. I was innocently doing it since her friend; my queen was in the know of it. Nkechi at times would sleep in her house, whenever she decided to pay me a visit, yessed by her parents. We were already ripe in our business, almost two and half years now. Yemisi suddenly became familiar with me because we met daily. At times, being a girl from my tribe, she would confide in me of her pasts; I found it unnecessary that she did trust me lengthily in such elephant manner. Things went by and Yemisi was moving closer. I became suspicious of her but such did not last as my Nkechi was always in my heart. She often came to m

y house; even, at times, she would spend her holidays in my house whenever I travelled on business purpose. Like the falling of the angels, it surprised me that that Saturday, Nkechi came, played with me; chased me to my bedroom, kitchen . . . she even FLASHINGLY . . ., won’t you help me anymore, I cautioned her but I was seeing  something in her eyes which I never cognisantly read meaning to, I knew I saw something strange – bitterness and pity; wild play wiped away with time. After some time, I stopped her, went to kitchen and she joined me later and began her playing again until I touched her in somewhere soft innocently with pepper in my hand, she yelled and I quickly did something to avert the pain. We prepared wheat and assorted Egusi soup that woke up my land lord from his three days sleep. Oh! Nkechi was a great cook. I was happy in my inside. After the meal, she was set to leave around five p.m. Reaching the door, she faced me, looked at me very well, GOOD BYE, said she and she ran. I raced after her and grabbed her before she could exit our gate. Tears were rolling out from her eyes. Then, I knew there was fire on my mountain. Her good bye read meaning to me. I just held her speechlessly, astounded of her silence that I heard loudly enough, the dawn came on me. Still drunk with my imagination, I only heard her lastly afar off, GOOD BYE. I woke up from my dream land to reality, to discover I was holding an empty shadow of her. Her number ceased going through since then. Going to her school where she worked as an educational counsellor, she instructed I must not be allowed in. her parents were passive on the august matter. That finally convinced me she meant it. I would not die now, I concluded. Life went on. Yemisi became my intimate person and was always there to counsel me. My business paid for it for almost two months. Nkechi went like a flash of light from my life. I became inside-out broken. Yemisi proved to me that a woman is a barracks. Not quite long, we became two fishes in a stream – I saw another woman in her and I proposed to her. She ph

oned me around one p.m. in the afternoon of that day – two weeks later, “I love you my baby”. “Is that a yes”, I queried. “That’s my style. Tomorrow is Saturday, take me out and let me wear your ring”. I was elated hearing such from her. Yemisi was a belle, but Nkechi was actually a jewel – she left now. A new foetus of joy leaped in my womb. I was pregnant with joy. “I don portu o Yemisi, pariboto-riboto Yemisi has indeed honoured me, I sang. Going home in the evening, I bought two-hundred-naira Agege bread and left the one thousand naira note without change in return out of joy with the woman. My car screeched off. I played Dr. Peter Olaiya co-performed with Itu-bab’s music and Itu-baba’s single, “E bami so fun sisi yen ko Mai lo o . . . and, You’re my African queen repeatedly that night and slept off in my ecstasy. It was joy unspeakable all for four months. One night, around twelve mid-night, I received an emergency call from Yemisi requesting for my quick attention in her house. I risked it out. Getting there, a gang of harmed robbers just left, leaving everyone empty. Her room was not spared. I never noticed her roughed hair. Everybody employed fate and retired back to their rooms as it was just a winking at a lady in the dark alerting the police. A dead child would answer before the police would remember her duty. Yemisi opted to pass the rest of the night in my house, an idea I could not put off with that situation. We slept together in the same bed as I could not leave her, noticing the shock on her. I only noticed she profusely cried and I petted her. We slept. Somehow, something emanated from her and something happened. I woke

up to reality, cried, wailed, and wept. She pleaded with me. She left at six in the morning. I was in sorrow for days, prayed, called our youths’ president and I was restored. She was scared to see my reaction to that effect. We became part-time lovers; she never came to my house except that I saw her at times by the road. I would reluctantly pick her and no discussion ensued, even, greetings. It was like that for two months. Suddenly, I received a mail from Nkechi, she would be visiting as soon as possible. I took it for a play. Two days later after the Sunday service, I arrived from church to meet her at my door. I was astounded. Before she could say anything, my heart wept. She came to meet a broken man not complete as she left. I did not talk, just opened and I ushered her in. For almost ten minutes, the graveyard was noisy than my sitting room. “I’m sorry, I left you at six and seven. I was misguided and I left unknowingly I was in a fool’s paradise. It was Yemisi”. Yem what? I yelled. “She advised me not to waste my time that no Yoruba parents would allow their son take an Ibo girl to the altar. She told me many things t

hat our tribal difference would pose a bitter problem latter. And I thought it would be wise I left when the show was hot, before we reached the climax and headed towards dénouement.”  And, where have you been? Asked me. “I got a job accidentally that time with U.N.O and I was emergently sent abroad for a professional training. I left you but my heart never did. Even, abroad, I was always sick of you. Just came back last week. I’m sorry for what I might have caused you. I learnt your business is now in three states already and a branch in Belgium. That’s good of you. I believe in you. Please forgive me. Let me be your queen I had been, please. Full concentration is promised. It was Yemisi”. The more she mentioned Yem… the more I raged within me. ‘Any problems?’ She asked. I burst into cry like a baby. She held my head to her chest. I saw a mother in her heart, and immediately believed it was Yemisi. I told her all that had happened. “You’re still my king, she emotionally replied. I felt the pain in her voice. Such might have happened but I blamed myself for leaving you. Forgive me my king. I ignorantly left my yam in the care of a goat. To me, nothing has changed in you. My gift for you is still intact. Let’s start again”. My heart welcomed her. This was going on, when I noticed footsteps approaching, we knelt down holding each other firmly; looking up, it was the witch. She dropped a paper on the table beside us. “Romeo and Juliet, it’s for you”, she sounded. My Nkechi picked it up, read for one minute, looked at me and cried out. I snatched the damn paper from her, reading through, my eyes, without any rehearsal, became red. She saw the mood at hand and hurriedly left. Nkechi did no otherwise. “I will stand by you. She is up to something, I’m sure”, she silently said. We cried and later encouraged ourselves. The church got involved, and a forced marriage occurred between Yemisi and I. I did not do with her till she put to bed. One night, she carried her ball-like stomach to my side in the sitting room in my own new house at Akoka; I have not slept in the same room with

her, neither have I eaten her witched-food for once. “I loved you, that’s why I did everything I did to have you. Nkechi left you as a result of my mathematics. I’m sorry I hurt you. Please forgive me and let’s accept our fate”. Then, I felt like strangling her, but I thought of the law and the Bible. Nkechi left me finally; she had no option. I was still going to her office seldomly. I always dreamt of her every night. The witch had never caught my attention for once. She finally put to bed but the child was never well since birth. Blood was needed and I had no option than to . . . the result said my blood did not match with the baby’s – total confusion landed. How? The general question! The witch later confessed to the doctor that she was raped by two harmed robbers on that night but used it to catch me. It was serious! The baby boy could not survive it for want of blood as the thieves were no where to be found. I went back to Nkechi that week that the church freed me from the bondage I have been. Narrating the film to her, “don’t worry my supposed king. I’m sorry. I loved you but fate would not allow. Paul would be expecting me at the super market by now. She gave me her wedding invitation card. I read it and got it clear it was a month time. She left me in her office weeping as she was going. It was a rape of the lock! Yemisi, that Indian maggot, foreign demon weaved me. But, where is my wrong? I’m confused.

Going out of her office after I have created a sea with my tears in her office, my phone rang and I picked. I heard her crying, humming my name like an opera singer. Nkechi, what is it? I questioned her.” Paul is gone”, she said. Paul what? Okay, where are you? I quickly went to meet her in one private hospital along Victoria Island. He is dead, said she. How come? I was shaking. He packed his car and wanted to come for me at the other side of the road in front of that filling station down there and before I knew it, he was rolling on the ground with blood oozing out of his head and mouth. A  hit and go car did the evil work. People carried him and an hour later, doctor came saying, he breathed the last. Paul has gone, he never told me this. Paul, why did you choose to leave me? She threw herself on me while weeping profusely. I too wept sincerely. It took her five months to get over it. I maintained pure friendship with her, until one day on Sunday in my house when she came on a visit. Where is Yemisi now?, she asked. Who is Yemisi again? I don’t know any Yemisi o ( I never wanted to remember her again). But won’t you marry again? Maybe, I answered. ‘She broke my heart beyond repairs, I said. I can’t love any woman anymore. Even me? She emotionally said. We talked, and five months later, we were at the altar.


Author Bio: Opaniyi Samuel Oluwawumi

Opaniyi Samuel Oluwawumi is a creative writer, linguist and a creative writing coach. Member and one time president, Association of Nigerian Authors, Adeyemi College of Education Chapter, Ondo. A young man full of creative, leadership and capacity building ideas and a post-modernist writer. He majors in prose fiction cum poetry. He bagged NCE (English / Pol. Sc.), EACOED, Oyo and B.A. ED(Hons) English, ACE-OAU affiliated, Ife. He has some of his works in SaturdaySun, online and other national dailies. He resides and teaches now in Abuja, all in Nigeria.