fiction

Once Upon A Time

It's been quite some time myrihla fam. I haven't been in the best of space over the past two months so I've taken a step back from blogging to recuperate and get myself together!

Although I’m not publishing new blog posts at the moment, I wanted to share with you all a fiction piece that I entered for the Afreada writing competition this summer. The challenge was to write a 500 word story based on the prompt below:

‘Have you considered that my daughter here is a soon-to-be pharmacist?’

‘Yes, sir.’

‘Have you considered that she is now completing her bachelor’s in pharmacy and will proceed to do her MPhil in the UK?’

‘Yes, sir.’

‘Have you considered, young man, what kind of future you, an unschooled farmer, will have with her?’

I didn’t get shortlisted for the final five but I’m really proud of myself for taking the leap because it’s been a while since I’ve felt confident enough to write fiction. Do have a read below and I would love to know your thoughts.

white and black lighted concrete house

Irewole was the 10th man to visit Mallam Musa’s house that month. Rumour had it that the last one to leave did so with tears in his eyes, sniffling as he used his Agbada to dab his face. This was what was reported by Mallam Musa’s clan of ‘home maintainers’ in one of their daily briefings. The men usually came in Jeeps or Lamborghinis, most of them known to Mallam Musa through his business dealings. Nureni in his childlike manner would rush over with a wide grin, his arms swinging from side to side like a drunkard unable to contain his obtrusions.  Coming to a stop, he would salute then open the vehicle’s door and offer to carry whatever gifts the visitors brought. 

Mallam Musa was not unaware of his servants indiscretions and their loose mouths. On a recent visit, his long time friend Alhaji Maitama tried to counsel him.

‘Musa, if the sun rises, the palm cannot block its rays. Be careful before you lose her.  The rumour around town now is that you want to marry your own daughter or that perhaps her spinsterhood is the source of your wealth. I know you to be a truthful man but pay heed.’

 Mallam Musa had laughed at his friend’s report refusing to put the rumour to bed. He had known the identity of his visitors would not be kept a secret by his domestic staff and their agendas even more so. But he hadn’t reprimanded them yet. Doing so would displease his deceased wife and his daughter Ji-Ji, who grew up in their shade without a mother. 

And now, sitting in his presence was this young man. Wole. A man who seemed to him so light that he could be carried away with the whisper of the wind. 

‘Wole,’ he repeated. 

‘Yes sir.’

‘Have you considered that my daughter here is a soon-to-be pharmacist?’

‘Yes, sir.’

‘Have you considered that she is now completing her bachelor’s in pharmacy and will proceed to do her MPhil in the UK?’

‘Yes, sir.’

‘Have you considered, young man, what kind of future you, an unschooled farmer, will have with her?’

‘Haba Baba,’ Jinan breaks the exchange. ‘You promised me you wouldn’t interrogate him.’ She continues.

As if on cue, Aunty Aisha steps in with a tray of freshly made jollof and an assortment of meat and fresh drinks. She places it in front of Wole who now looks visibly distressed. Seemingly unable to open his mouth to respond to Mallam Musa, he looks to Jinan’s direction for help. 

‘Ji-Ji, kwantar da hankali. I’m just getting to know the young man.’ He smiles at his daughter then takes his glasses off. 

‘Aisha, you can go now.’

Tripping over herself, Aisha readjusts the cups and leaves the room to join her congregation at the edge of the living room entrance. Their bodies crouched on either side of the door with their ears placed to the wall to await the fate of their latest visitor. 

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I pray that you benefitted from this post and I would love to hear your thoughts in the comment section. Subscribe via email for exclusive content and new post notifications. Listen to my podcast Bookversations here.

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