Short Fiction

Drama in the Hall again

Facet 9

The twilight was late in arriving. It was rather a long night. Today certainly wasn’t Auntie Efua’s day. Only one of her customers had showed up and purchased her goods. She became anxious. She supported her chin with her right hand and placed her left hand on her lap. Alongside her gloomy demeanour, she carried a long face. She seemed to have forgotten about the stubborn mosquito that was hungrily guzzling out blood from her cheek. The coil she bought was doing absolutely nothing to those mosquitoes which bred in such wild conducive environment. They behaved just like the indigens of that surrounding: headstrong, tough and stubborn. They were unlike the mosquitoes in her residence that disappeared after the smell of a lit coil or a repellent.

One after the other, the market women left to their respective abodes. Auntie Efua was one of the very few who remained, partly because she was lost in her thought and also because she had not made enough sales. She suddenly felt a sharp pain on her cheek, but the mosquito had already left before she could say Jack.

***

Nyamekye was still sobbing. She was completely taken aback by this new revelation. She just didn’t understand why her life should be filled with so much pain with inconsistent people showing up periodically to worsen her plight. Firstly, her parents disappeared from her life while she was still an infant. It was very difficult for her to handle that as a child; that space in her heart and that first love for her parents was left unoccupied until Nhyira came and occupied that space. She finally felt full and whole again. After some time however, Nhyira tore her heart apart and smashed it. And now, this troublesome woman who just made her life a miserable one. It was as though they deliberately kept pricking her wound each time, again and again to prevent her from healing completely. Now she was devastated. She was simply tired. She didn’t have anyone to call “mommy” whom she’d tell her deepest secrets to or “daddy” whom she’d run to for protection or advice. Wasn’t this enough pain? Why were others making life more unbearable for her? Why didn’t she die along with mom and dad? While these thoughts and questions kept running through her mind, a strong urge to end her life surfaced. She didn’t have the courage to do that; so she replaced it with her loud sobs instead.

***

Auntie Efua alighted at her usual bus stop. She crossed the road to the other side and began to walk briskly. There was not a single soul outside and the entire neighbourhood was quiet, except for some barks from the night dogs in the area. After every two steps, she’d turn around to watch if someone was following her closely. There was always no one but her shadow in the dark. She hated it when the entire neighbourhood was quiet, because it made her vulnerable and chances of attack from robbers and rapists were high. She quickened her steps and walked faster. In no time, she got into her house. She sighed softly and muttered a few words of prayer to thank her God. She entered her room only to find Nyamekye still awake. What troubled her more was the fact that she was sobbing uncontrollably. Nyamekye raised her head and looked at Auntie Efua for a while, then she spoke to her in an undertone.

“Auntie Efua, why didn’t you tell me?”

“What didn’t I tell you, Nyamekye, speak to me.”

“Why didn’t you tell me you weren’t my real auntie? All these years, you’ve made me believe you’re my only auntie and my only family member. But that’s all a lie.”

“Who is feeding you with such nonsense. I am your Auntie, and …”

“That’s a lie Auntie Efua; and you know it. Why are you hiding my personal details from me. Isn’t it high time you told me all I need to know?”

“Nyamekye, I’ve never meant to trouble you with all these memories. All I have ever wanted is for you to live like every other child without regrets nor sorrow. I’m sorry I hid some of your personal details from you. The time has come for me to tell you all there is to know. But promise me one thing: that you would keep up with your normal life and not let this new discovery depress you or change our relationship.”

“I promise”

“Yes, it’s true. I’m not your real auntie. Your mother and I were friends. We were in the same high school. Your mother, AJ and myself were friends. We were “The 3 Musketeers” because we were always in one another’s company. But your mother began to act strange; she was hiding things from us and she became jealous. Although she had everything, she took my one thing away from me. “

“Johny?”

“Yes Johny. She seduced and stole him from me. Then they gave birth to you.”

“Why wasn’t I in custody of any of their family members and I had to be with you instead?”

“Just like you, your mother was an only child and her mother, who would be your grandmother died during her birth and her father disappeared after he heard that she– your grandmother was pregnant. So your mother grew up with her grandmother, who died shortly after you were born. That means you have no aunties nor uncles from your mother’s side and nobody knew any of her distant relations.”

“What about my father’s family?”

“Your father wasn’t a Ghanaian. His parents were in Nigeria. He had only come to Ghana to have his secondary school education. He stayed with an uncle at Achimota who also left for Nigeria after we completed Senior High School. After your mother and father died in the accident, I was called by a good Samaritan to come get you. Apparently, my contact was the only one which wasn’t switched off. That was how I became your auntie.”

At this juncture, Nyamekye was speechless and shocked. She realized how extremely good this woman was; she had never noticed until now. She embraced this great woman and sobbed even more; this time around, tears of joy.

Short Fiction

Drama in the Hall again

Facet 10

“Times flies,” they say. Indeed, if time was a bus to be caught up with, only a few would sit in the bus of time because of how swift and fast time flew. Gradually, days grew into weeks, weeks into months and months into years. It was already three years since Nhyira graduated from the university. He was still on the search for a job. He had been trying to secure himself with a decent job but all his efforts were in vain. Although he was trying so hard, he wasn’t getting a job of his choice. In the recent interview he went for, the employer was willing to give him only 650 cedis. That was too low for his qualification and he wouldn’t stoop so low for such meagre salary. Thus, he rejected the offer. The search for a job had been tedious and together with the pressure from his parents to live an independent life and not depend on them made him lost weight. He finally admitted that life after school was more stressful than life in school. He received a phone call from a company he submitted a CV a couple of weeks ago, to prepare for an interview the following day. He was more than delighted and dashed into his room to select his outfit for the interview scheduled the next day.

Meanwhile, as young as Nyamekye was, she had been promoted to work as the Human Resource Personnel due to her diligence and her working experience of over five years. She had taken a short course in Human Resource Management which earned her this position, after the former HR was sacked due to improper misconduct. Nyamekye demonstrated competence among her colleagues which made her suitable for the HR position. Exactly a month ago, she was promoted to the HR position. She celebrated that day by throwing a party for her co-workers and laying off workers who were lazy. They had left with a bad memory of her; but she was unperturbed, she had done the right thing and she felt accomplished.

***

It ticked thirty minutes after seven in the Company’s “waiting” room. Nhyira was already seated waiting for the interview which was scheduled for 8:00 am. He was the first interviewee to have arrived as early as 7:00 am. He was smartly dressed, yes, except he was overly dressed for the position he was seeking to have. The company was in search of a male secretary and Nhyira thought it wise to grab the opportunity. He was dressed in a blueblack tuxedo with an inner lilac shirt and a blueblack tie. His black belt was just perfect for his black pair of shoes. He carried along an old suitcase that made him appeared he was a business tycoon. He didn’t forget to put on a broad contagious smile. After twenty minutes, five more candidates showed up for the interview and in all, they were ten.

A young lady walked to them. She was about 5.5 ft tall. She was fair in complexion and quite busty. She wore a knee-length maroon satin dress. Her hair was scarfed with a coffee brown turban which match her coffee brown heels and her belly belt. She carried herself with much confidence and her smile was golden. Each time she smiled, she revealed a white set of teeth which stood out because of her red lips. She smiled at the interviewees who were seated in front of her and welcomed all of them. She asked them to sit in accordance with the time each came. Nhyira was first and that made him the first to be interviewed.

He followed the young lady to her office to be interviewed. The young lady began by asking his name, his college and the course he read. She then looked at his transcript and his certificate. She proceeded with her own set of interview questions. He answered them so well. Being a smooth talker, it wasn’t difficult for him to please the young lady with his intelligent answers.

“With the proliferation of graduates we have, what makes you the suitable candidate for the job and not the others.”

“I am the suitable candidate because I am friendly and approachable. Besides, I have experience. While in school, I did my internship with an NGO where I worked as their secretary. I was equipped with the necessary interpersonal and communication skill needed for the job. I believe your reputable company would need someone with such skills.”

“Well, that’s true. But do you know that appearance also matters in being a secretary? Why do you think so?”

“Appearance does matter. The secretary acts as a bridge that connects clients to the company. A good-looking secretary who carries a broad smile attracts clients and prospects which is necessary for the company’s growth.”

“If so, hasn’t anyone told you yet that you look like a bedridden rabies infected patient? And don’t you think with those hard, red messed up threads on your protruding head, you may as well scare our clients away? Anyway, forgot to mention my name; I am Nyamekye Fosu and it’s a pleasure meeting you.”

With this, she walked out of her office leaving the confused and “business tycoon” looking gentleman alone in the just displayed drama.