Kejiro’s Demon – Episode 2

Kejiro's Demon - Final Episode

Kejiro had all the characteristics of a human being: blood, flesh, skin, hair; but not a single, clear, identifiable emotion, except for anger and wickedness. Something horrible was happening inside of him. His nightly bloodlust had overflown into his days. He felt lethal, it was as though his mask of sanity had slipped away.

Kejiro’s Demon – Episode 2

He rubbed at the fleshy mounds of his cheeks, easing away the chill of his cold nature. He reminded himself that he had achieved far more than Chike; his mentor. He had stolen the palm wine tapper’s bicycle only for it to be found down the river three days after. As though that was not bad enough, he stole a chicken from Nana’s poultry, roasted it and ate it in the bush. Kejiro wreaked havoc with his catapult; broke the clay pot of the young ladies when they laid it down to fetch water from the river, he bullied the other children and  permanently injured Obi’s dog.

Kejiro’s Demon – Episode 2

After he injured Obi’s dog, Obi, burning with anger, called him a stubborn son-of-the-devil. In Kejiro’s mind, that was a declaration of war. Strategy is king, even for a “stuborn-son-of-the-devil”. Kejiro not wanting to accept that he deserved the cruel name he got from Obi decided to make him pay for insulting him. Kejiro wanted to hit Obi below the belt and leave him wallowing in the pain. He was sure that his catapult would not get the job done neither would hiding behind over-grown bushes. He want to hit Obi where it would hurt him the most.

The voices came back to his head, this time with a plan. A few days after “the line was drawn”, it was reported that a mysterious fire flattened Obi’s cassava farm. Unable to come to terms with the loss, Obi found himself in the hospital. His body couldn’t bear the shock of losing his source of livelihood in a cryptic inferno. Obi had pictured himself going to the farm with his two wives and seven children. He had estimated that it would take about two days to completely harvest and transport the cassava to his house.

Kejiro’s Demon – Episode 2

He already had a market for the garri and fufu he would make from the cassava. He had pictured himself selling the garri, fufu and some unprocessed cassava, and using the returns to pay off his loan and perhaps marry a third wife. But all that represented his reality were cinders where cassava tubers once stood. Kejiro made it look like an accident, an act of God, and he got away with it. Obi had received a blow below his belt and Kejiro had won the battle.

Kejiro’s Demon – Episode 2

Kejiro wasn’t the only trouble-maker in Anioma community, he had competition. Anioma and the neighbouring community had been regularly tormented by a menace that went about wearing masks. The masked men were well organised and knew the community very well. They always struck when the household was most vulnerable and had built a reputation of fear. They stole the courage of men and women alike. Fathers and mothers went to bed with one eye open. Children clinched to their parents.

From one community to another, the masked men caused mayhem and left behind tales of woe. They stole the spotlight; Kejiro was just a troubled nine-year-old.

 

***  To be continued ***

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