“At all, at all, naim bad pass…” I said aloud to myself as
I walked out of the school gate with the stolen rice in my bag.
“Good night ooo…” The gate man said to me.
“Good night sir…” I said as I waved back at him.
I took the short cut home because I was already very hungry; when I reached the house, I made my way to the kitchen, brought out a huge plate and taking a spoon, I made my way to my room. There, I locked the door and
opened my bag. The aroma of the rice was doing wonders to my nostrils and just
as I had torn open the polythene bag and poured the rice into the plate, there
was a knock at my door.

“Who be dat sef?” I muttered to myself.
“Abosede! You dey inside?” My father’s voice called out.
I hissed as I wondered how my father knew I was back
already.
“I dey come, make I change cloth.” I said as I quickly
opened my wardrobe and taking my plate of food, I shoved it inside. When I closed
the wardrobe, I took out a small bottle of perfume spray and sprinkled the scent around
the room and opened the door. My father stared at me with excitement in his
eyes.
“Daddy good afunun.” I said.
“How you dey my dear?” He asked, sniffing the air.
“I dey fine. Wetin happen?”
“Na wah for you ooo…so you mean say pesin nor fit check up
for him dota again?”
“Check up on me? For dis kain hot aftanun? I dey fine.” I
said.
He scratched his head and peered into my room.

“Wetin you dey do?”
“I wan sleep.” I lied.
“Make I enter room gist small.” He said to me.
My stomach was growling in hunger and I wanted him to leave
by all means possible.
“Wetin you wan gist me wey I never hear before?”
“Na gist about ya mama…” He said. “Make I come in naw.”
I push open the door wider and he walks in.
“Dis ya room dey scent like better food ooo…” He said to me.
“I go sell food for Jimoh school, na de food wey I sell dey
smell for my cloth so.”
“Hmmm…you sure?” He asked. ‘De food dey scent like say na ya room dem dey cook am.”
“Daddy, if you nor get anything to talk, abeg dey go…”
“Calm down na….I get gist for you.” He said and sat down
on my bed. “You see ya mama ehn, dat woman stingy nor be small. Na alaroro she
be.”
I nod as I wanted him to be done with his talk.
“How she go tell us say, she nor go fit give us food if we
nor work?” He asked. “Look my belle, e don less. Na hunger go kee pesin for dis
house ooo…” He said pointing at his stomach.
“Shebi mummy talk say make we work for daily bread, I dey
work for my own ni…” I said.
“Hmmm…na big babe you be ooo…” He said.
“Oya daddy, come dey go…I wan chop…I mean to say, I wan
sleep.”
He looked at me and smiled.
“You be talk say na chop you wan chop.”
“No, nor be wetin I wan talk…na sleep I dey talk say I wan
sleep.” I say.
“Anyhow sha…I wan tell you say Broda Gabriel come compound
today.” He said rubbing his palms together.
My eyes widened, Brother Gabriel was my all time crush,
right from secondary school. His uncle’s family lived in our compound and he used to come and spend the holiday at his uncle’s house back then. He only came
once in a while now, since he’d started working. I was madly in love with the
slender, trim and handsome young man.
“Broda Gabriel…come…come where?”
“In fact, I think say he still dey inside compound sef.” My
father said to me.
My brain suddenly wasn’t working anymore, I quickly hurried to my
small side stool, took my talcum powder, poured the rose scented powder in my
palms, rubbed it together and applied it on my face.
“Where you dey go?” My father asked me.
“I dey come…” I said as I dashed out of the room.
It took me seconds to reach my neighbour’s room and when I
got there, I knocked loudly at the door. The door opened and their last child
answered the door.
“Good afternoon, sister Abosede.” She greeted.
“Wia ya uncle Gabriel?”
“Which uncle Gabriel?” She asked me.
“Ya uncle Gabriel na…you nor know am again? I hear say him
come hia today?”
“Nooo..uncle Gabriel nor come hia, he nor even dey Naija now
sef…e be like say im company send am go training for overseas.”
I was confused.
“My papa say him come compound…” I started then suddenly
realised that I’d been played. I ran back to my room and on getting there, I
didn’t see my father. I dragged open the wardrobe and I didn’t see the food
either. I raced out of my room screaming at the top of my lungs.
“Daddy don thief my food ooo…”

To be continued on Wednesday……

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