The sun rose early the following morning.
It was a Saturday. The events of the day before had become history, a blur in Isa’s memory.
He stepped out wearing a white kaftan and a brown flip flop. He stood in the balcony and beheld his father’s compound. His room was on the fence, the floor just beneath his was a shop in which Aisha sold provisions. The compound was designed with a quadrangle. His was the only storey building, every other room circled the quadrangle.
Isa’s father had designed the compound is such a way that each wife was on a section of the compound. Aisha and her children had the East side of the compound. Since Aisha was the first wife, he built her a shop and since Isa was the only son, he built him a room one storey high. Kudirat and her children were on the West side of the compound, Rukayat and her children were on the south side of the compound. Their father stayed in the northern side of the compound overlooking the main gate.
Isa looked towards Kudirat’s section of the compound and saw a goddess.
Zainab was sweeping. She wore a wrapper that was strapped just above her breast. Her skin was like silk and her hair bounced on her shoulder: long, dark and curly. The shape of her body was impeccable, nothing was out of place. She was perfect.
She sang a song in their local dialect and Isa listenedintentlyallowing her voice caressed his ears.
Isa was having a crush on his sister.
He brought his mind back to reality. Incest was a path he never imagined he take, a taboo.
“Zainab”, he called out
“Good morning Bro Isa” she greeted, almost on her knee
“When you finish sweeping come I want to tell you something”
Isa came downstairs with a toothbrush in his hand. He had changed into a pair of football jersey, he carried his boot on the other hand as he came into the quadrangle.
He stayed at one corner and cleaned his mouth.
When he finished, he looked in Zainab’s direction. She understood that he wanted her to come. She left the broom on the floor and walked towards him.
“Good morning Bro Isa” she greeted, almost on her knees again.
Isa was the first son and the eldest, she had to greet him respectfully.
“Has Mohammed come to talk to you?” Isa asked
Zainab was confused,
“Talk to me about what?” she asked
Isa asked if he had come to speak with her about becoming his girlfriend. Zainab laughed as though Isa was making a joke.
“Zainab I am serious!”
“Father had better not hear such a thing oh. Has he not told you that Mr. Hassan from Lagos is coming to officially ask for my hand in marriage at the end of the month?”
Isa suddenly recalled that his father had told him that Mr Hassan was coming to ask for Zainab’s hand in marriage. But that was before he began to have a fondness for her, that was before he noticed how beautiful she was.
“That’s true, I remember father telling me about that. So how are you preparing?”
She explained how she was preparing but Isa’s mind was somewhere else. He couldn’t imagine allowing such a beautiful fruit leave his house without first tasting it. As she moved her lips, Isa thought about how it would feel to have her lips caress his. He waited for her to finish talking then he just nodded his head.
“Zainab, later in the evening come I want to tell you something.” Isa announced
She bowed and allowed him to join the other boys that had gone to the field to play football.
When Isa got to the field, the match had already started. Mohammed, Bello and Bala were already waiting for him. Mohammed was the first to speak.
“Isa you be bad guy ooo. See as woman naked inside class for you” he spoke sarcastically
Bala quickly called Mohammed to order. Isa didn’t feel any remorse for what he had done, in his opinion she wasn’t even supposed to be in school in the first place. Women were to be seen and never heard so she deserved what she got.
“That Joy get luck say I no get her time yesterday, I for rape am for that class” Isa said vulgarly
Bello was the most reserved of them all, he advised them to be careful in their dealings.
“Get away jare” Mohammed rebuked
“So if dem dash you fresh bobby you no go touch? Or if you see free goal post you no go score goal?” he continued
They laughed at Mohammed comment.
Soon it was their turn to play football and they went on the field.
Later that evening, Zainab came to see Isa. Isa was searching for something at the bottom of the bottle of beer.
“Good evening Bro Isa” she greeted.
He quickly put aside the bottle and she pretended as though she hadn’t seen it.
“Zainab, how far?” he asked casually
He couldn’t discuss what he wanted to discuss in his room, or within the four walls of his father’s house – the walls had ears. Turning to Zainab, he aksed her to accompany him to pick up something he had forgotten in the field.
“That place would be dark and there has been rumours that the terrorist are targeting our community. It is not safe” she protested.
Isa pacified her, so together they went to the field.
Quiet and alone, Isa took a seat under the cashew tree.
“Bro Isa, what is the thing you forgot here?” she asked, afraid.
“I forgot how beautiful you are” Isa said seductively.
Zainab was taken aback.
“Seat down, I want to tell you something about the future”
Zainab reluctantly sat down, he came closer to her. Nothing he said made any sense to her, then he asked her to kiss him. Zainab wasn’t sure she heard correctly.
Isa moved his hands to her shoulder and she tried to free herself. Then he took his hands towards her breast and she pushed him away.
He got angry and slapped her.
Zainab was scared, very scared. She put her hand on her face and forgot how to cry. She ran home as fast as she could.
Isa looked at his hand, then watched as his manhood gradually relaxed under his trouser.
The ‘agro’ had gone, he was covered in shame.
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The Mourning After – Episode 2
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