Category Archives: short stories

Forest Cave

I opened my eyes and I immediately was aware of the strange aura around me. I checked my hands to see they were hairer than usual. I tried to walk but I jumped almost touching the ceiling and when I tried to grab I held onto some fixture while seeing my bed from above .I paved around with worries confirming my fears but I could barely bring myself to look in the mirror. I opened the window and jumped out straight into the forest to dwell with animals because I felt and looked like one now. I ran till I found an enclave in the endless shrubbery. It was uncanny and shaped like a cave that had been hollowed out by some prehistoric meddling. What chances were there that I’d found something important? I lay down in the cave like I’d done all the year’s in which I looked normal. I fell into a deep sleep when a bright light appeared as blinding as a solar flare and told me to go from where I was to where he would show me. I woke up the next morning either overcome with joy or in throes of a psychotic break. I made my way quickly through the forest till I found a strobe field where in unnatural club lights blended with the natural light. Something unnerving was what I felt till a prickling was dealt and I was taken to a place. I was but an unrecognizable figure in a world of darkness I’d known too well. My human name was Jess and I was a screw up. Dad had taught me what worked for him in his life as a proxy to live my life. I listened as he spoke lovingly when I screwed up and I waited as he would kiss my forehead every night saying goodbye my special third. I forget what he told me more every day since he left mom, and shattered my held beliefs about him. I thought Jesus was against doing bad things and seeing kids cry. Why did he let daddy leave? The preacher said with no malice in his heart that there was a reason behind everything. Nowadays I know what the reason was dad was a piece of shit. Mom was no better, she hit me every time I showed disapproval of her new boyfriend who looked too much like her last one.  She sent me to dark rooms to sleep in the basement whenever he had friends over. I cut my finger once and swore that these two would suffer for wrecking me. For failing to be adults for their kids. I’d make them pay, I’d lock them in basements as their voices are spent crying for help. Oh my justice shall be swift and compulsory. When I woke up different I knew it was a chance to be the person to do that. Now again I’m waking as I see wizards who call me by name. Here we will help you to kill your worries and your attachments even if that means ending those miserable parent’s lives. I’m the reincarnated form of their dead leader and I need blood to be fully reborn.

As the sun begins to set on the scene, there comes this overwhelming urge to howl and I do until the darkness comes, until my mission can begin. I will be a king and take from those who never gave me any love.

Cocktail Party

Mr Lewis strained uncomfortably in his seat with both hands beneath view, his hands had been positioned as such for the last few minutes. He was interrupted by the host’s tinkering on the wine glass as he raised it up, he began a toast as to why they were there. The company they had struggled to build got a government contract to build a self powering rail system, a fact that was not lost on any members in the room, he continued especially Jaguar which was Lewis’ nickname. Jaguar made sure that the suited officials knew of the innovations they had made in that field and the patents they had filed tentatively, he noted and concluded Jaguar this is all for you, thanks for showing up man.

 

Applause filled the room and the increasingly uncomfortable jaguar asked that he be relieved and proceeded to put something in his trouser region. Jaguar left unceremoniously toward the washroom positioned in the far corners of the restaurant where they were dimly lit until they interacted with motion (like air plane lavatories and fridges). The group on the table looked at each other and murmured to themselves at the abrupt departure of the celebrant, the host assured everyone that there was nothing to worry about. Soon as he was done assuaging the attendees his wife also took a leave toward the washrooms and dabbed her mouth with a napkin as she stood up and left the event. The host now squirmed as his security adviser whispered in his ears, he seemed to have a reflux every time the man spoke and had now turned a bright shade of fury. He asked the security adviser to go check out the situation and returned smiling to his audience. The expressions on his face seemed to disagree with his eyes, his skin, his hair and a gleaming spot of sweat forming on his crown.

 

The security adviser thought to himself what he would do upon confronting Jaguar, he had heard stories that the man was an immoral communist but he had never let himself believe it. He seemed like a good enough person, he seemingly reminded himself, a wife, two kids and capitalist dollars enough to build the restaurant they were currently having dinner in. His hair (jaguar’s) was silver like a fox of a golden age and he had always walked like an honest  man, his records were clean, he had never protested against the values of freedom and yet here he was. He found it hard to believe that his keen eyes that had helped stop many an enemy of the state had not registered this chameleon as a threat.
Yes, he said under his breath he made the money we are currently using to celebrate
Yes, he noted also, he had not shown any signs of being a sleeper agent of the Kremlin
No, he concluded, that does not give him the right to commit horrible infidelities with the wife of his partner and host.
Jaguar had been in the toilet stall for a while and he was getting ready to clean up, he was sure that any more time spent would raise suspicion of any discrepancies to the host or any of the party members. He had never seen so many people thank him before, validation felt good every once in a while but this felt distinctly like an orgy of circle jerks. He felt no more at home here than he did with his mother who had opened an orphanage so that she could be tax exempt and claim benefits for raising her children she didn’t want. He for the right price became an unfortunate orphan she had saved from becoming a crack addicted communist felon, his own mother waited until his adult life to inform him of the scheme in an attempt to secure a loan from him. He had always known that there was little truth in his life, his kindergarten teacher taught him as much and she gave him a special friend who would solve all his problems. Jaguar held Steve in his hand as he played with it, a rubik’s cube.

 

The door burst open and the security adviser shielded himself as he asked Jaguar to get decent and refrain from hiding his obscene and perverse crime that he had committed that day. Justice was to be served with a mighty helping of freedom and the american way. Jaguar put on his trouser as he was done cleaning up and held his cube in his hand, the wife of the host came in from the ladies’ and was surprised to see a gun pointed at her and shrieked! The security guard had seen the error of his ways and he knew he would have to take the brunt of the blame for the miscommunication that had happened earlier. He apologised to the wife of the host and Jaguar and promised that his letter of resignation and commendation for a replacement would be sent to the offices on Monday.

Crime drama: Confusion

She was stunned by what had transpired that day and looked solemnly at the ground as she was led to her cell. The guards with their expressionless masks reflecting the hallway and its bleak qualities, the cells were full on either side of them with murderers, rapists, fraudsters and petty thieves. Each one anticipating the entry of a new member to their ranks with their prison bars rattling rather noisily while they exclaimed in choice manners some hissing and wolf whistling while some others remarked on her pretty hair and neck tattoo.

The walk seemed to drag on and suddenly, the holding cell where her cellmate resided was before her eyes. Her eyes welcomed the detail of the cell as she entered her new home until her lawyer gets the charges dropped, the room was about the size of a closet in the Apex town centre and was garnished with many forms of paraphernalia. The far end of the room had the toilet while the space beside the door had a shelf where A lily in summer and other poems was placed neatly. As these pictures were taken in by her eyes, the officers proceed to remove her handcuffs and secure the cell doors while exiting the cell area. A hand appears from her blindside to the right and she turns to meet her cell mate Algernon, he was a short man of about 5’7 with a bulging belly and what seemed like gynecomastia. His hair had formed a reverse v and was sitting uncomfortably in small tuft patches, his beard had been grown out in such a way that his eye colour seemed an important detail to note (beige). She introduced herself as Taiwo i.e. Tahyeahwoah to him and shook him feigning a smile as she asked about how the daily life usually is around here. He shows her his tally etchings and explains that he has not been here for very long he does however know enough about the place to survive. He tells her that for the most part, she needs to rest up and that he would show her how the place works.

The night had gone as the day arrived slowly on the horizon, the prisoners were being woken up by the foghorns shouting ‘Cell check time’. Taiwo gets up off the top of the  bunk bed and gets to the ground in search of Algernon. He is sitting upright and apologises for not waking her earlier, he states that his previous female cell mate was very “assertive” and he would usually get a beating whenever he tried to wake her. She empathises with him and points to his nose bandage as if asking whether that was a result of the beatings to which he nods his head. From the cell, they make their way out to the shower room and then towel wrapped around body they proceed to take new clothes from the laundry. He tells her that he usually wakes earlier because he doesn’t want to end up with a uniform that is not suited for him necessarily, he corrects her direction as she heads toward the exit sign and says that it is time for breakfast. They both walk toward the mess hall with bold letters written ‘Peterborough Facility Mess Hall’.

Salted Cashews

“How much of a movie do you need to watch?” asked Justine to the bloke across on the table who sat cross legged while typing something on his keypad. They had been talking about a show from the 70’s called Mind Your Language, He had brought it up rather irreverently as he planned to test the waters and know where she stood politically and socially. She had said that she was familiar with the show as it was mentioned by one of her favourite comedians on an American talk show. She took a few seconds to recall what he had said and she remembered that he had said that the show had been laced with stereotypical characters from dressing and speech patterns to national conflicts, He felt the show was terribly dated and cited it as a kind of zwarte pete of the past.
“What is your name again” asked Justine to the man sitting across the table with his man-spread feet and his worried looking face while scrolling on his phone. He perks up for a while and looks into Justine’s eyes as if searching for something to say. He asked her how she felt about Californication as a drama. She laughed as soon as he said drama and quickly pointed to the immense amount of sex and sexual humour that was used in the show and noted how it was distasteful. She remarked about the opening scene in which he has sex with the daughter of his ex’s boyfriend and how it’s mere inclusion showed the extent to which the show-runners and writers hated women. The first part of the story involves Mia trying to blackmail him for having sex with a minor who was within the scope of his relations. If the show was making a comment on how life kind of winds down for some people and they get into this funk of unhappiness and how the hole is almost impossible to fill at some point during that.
“When did you stop watching the show” asked Justine to the male who sat across the table from her with a full head of hair and a well trimmed goatee. He seemed a bit bigger than he was when they had matched and she was very surprised by how little he had said. He had this intellectual air about him, his speech seemed purposeful and chosen carefully through a vetting process of scrutinising, clarifying and then finally speaking the words he had wanted to. She continued in response to her own question that she had stopped in season three when it seemed like the love story with Karen was going nowhere. She felt Hank was purposely making others around him as miserable as himself in a bid to find completeness, he had wrecked his daughter’s life and toyed with Karen’s marriage to a nice guy who loved her and would give her peace. “That may be true but I thought the show was great, It helped me through a writer’s block and a miserable exam period”.
“My name’s Dave” said Dave to Justine sitting across the table from him with her Afro puffed out and her ear rings glistening as would blind a man and her lips blue bright like the night sky. He smiled as he looked at her and she smiled back. If you looked really close you could see her blush through her dark brown skin as a smile also formed on her face. The waiter comes over to their table no 21. and asks if they were ready to order. Justine orders a baked salmon with stir-fried rice and lemon squeezed over the glazed fish with a beer. For his order, he said, “I’ll have a roasted fish and salad with beer and a side of salted cashews”.

Caricature

Everytime I take off my shirt to clean my body, I have to confront a new set of facts that I had before. I had slept like myself once again and had run in my dreams and flown the skies above me. In my life however real or fake I had become bigger, bulkier, fatter and I think of how sad that makes me. I guess it’s a longer story for another day, how I got here and how I had become this grotesque caricature of who I once was.

I opened my brother’s locker to see if he had an extra pair of clean socks that I could borrow to put on. I found not what I was looking for, I saw a souvenir from our last trip to Paris. It was a drawing of him by a caricature artist, he had stopped my brother and ostensibly the whole family to ask if he wanted himself drawn for free. He obliged as he does and sat in the same spot for five minutes, he asked him what he enjoys doing. “Playing football”, he replied as the artist continued to scribble away. His charcoal-like instrument meeting the page with the swift strokes and conjuring shapes. “Here”, he said as he was done with the drawing. My brother collected it from him as he really liked it and admired the shape of his head, his hair and his other features. It seemed like the artist had tapped into something that I had not seen prior, a chance encounter to see yourself really through another’s eyes. You could guage how the world might see you but then your eyes shifted still as you saw the caricature which likesatire requires understanding of the issue at hand before it can distort and transform the image. “That’s 10 euros sir”, He said and brought us all out of our trance-like state. “I thought you said it was free?” Brother remarked, “It’s free to draw, but it costs to take away” He replied. Dad was enraged as this trip was meant for something else, but my step mother calmed him. He found notes corresponding to the request and took the drawing home that day with contempt for what felt like a scam artist’s doing. I closed his locker because he had no socks there, I still pondered on the caricature potrait. It seemed that what it gives, it takes away as well.

Honestly, my shirt was not sitting well on my body and the side view made it worse as it accentuated my less than glamorous side.

Picture by Mahesh Nambiar. His blog is here: http://maheshworks.blogspot.co.uk/

Crime drama: B-ayonet

She was shocked and shaking as she was being taken into the police station. This was Lagos PD with it’s “restored look” referencing the era that came before, complete with corrugated iron sheets and King Sunny Ade’s music playing in the background. Why this was playing is beyond the reaches of this story, it would make one think that the wizkid renaissance was ignored by history. There were desks everywhere one could look in the room, with a lot of london-blank cop faces looking back at her. There are a few things more intimidating, far more than she could have hoped for.
Interrogation room 1
Detective Cassius was not hesitant as he opened the door into the first interrogation room, he seemed hopeful that this would be an easier solve than the previous investigations they had dealt with. He looked at her as he sat across, she seemed pensive and was still shaken for the most part. Cassius smiled as he began the questioning,
“Do you require a lawyer? You have the right to one you know?”
“Ummmmm…… Ummmm….. No, No……. I don’t” – She said
“Can you state your name for the record?” – C
“Taiwo…. Olanipekun …….Adams” – She said
“That’s Yoruba isn’t it?” – C
“Yes, ……………….. yes sir it is. Can I get some water?” – Taiwo
He signals to someone behind the mirror to bring water
“Well, you were at the scene of the crime at the time of the shootings, were you not?” – C
“I was sir, but I didn’t kill anybody” – Taiwo
“Taiwo, we have it on good authority that you shot the deceased man” – C
“Why? I shot no one, I was riding my bike on the highway. I heard the shot and I rushed to help” – Taiwo
“That’s not what the witnesses say.” – C
“What did they say then?”- Taiwo
“Someone with a dark helmet and all black rode in on a motorcycle and murdered a civilian” – C
“I swear to you sir, I had nothing to do with it. It’s all a coincidence” – Taiwo
“Coincidence? Don’t give me that bullshit….. Pardon my french. You expect me to believe that all of this is a coincidence” – C
“Sir, that is the truth. I expect you to believe the truth… believe me” – Taiwo
“The truth? I can’t just believe everyone’s version of a story. It doesn’t make sense” – C
He closes his file on her that he had brought in the room with him
We can see her sweating in the lit up room from the other side of the glass she is looking at.
“I’m sorry, she seems very shocked to me. That’s not killer-like” C
“Why didn’t you tell her who died? Are you serious? That information can never leak, it’ll ruin us” – Larue Timpkins
“We may have to let her go sir” – C
“I know, I hope we’re right about her” – L

Crime Drama: A-Gain

The story begins and we see a helmet/visor in our immediate peripheral vision. It is quiet, it is static, it is non-expressive and we see a reflection off the visor. It’s big, bright and blue as it comes into view. We can see now that we’re on a road and the figure is riding atop a motorcycle. No sound can be heard as the blue hue on the road is both a light source and an energy source. The motorcycle continues down the road as one begins to wonder what is happening.
     Further down the road, a gunshot can be heard,faint at first but louder as it rings through the night sky. The shots are followed by screams of people, many people in different and divers tongues. Our rider continues down this road seemingly unphased by the recent occurence and without speaking a word or making a noise. Suddenly, the motorcycle screeches to a halt in a dark knight style bike drift as the burning smell of the tires can be smelt in the air. And as if time slowed down, the biker takes off the helmet to unleash the long hair which is possessed by the same rider. The riders steps off the bike to assist the people who may have been affected by the shooting and help to calm the situation in the aftermath of the horror. The walk slowly turns into giant running strides as another gun shot is heard in the enclave. The rider rushes toward the source of the sound down a hill while trying to maintain bearings and hopefully help some innocents.
     When the rider reaches the source of the sound, a hooded person can be seen running away. Instinctively, our rider chases this person. They run through a house, over a bin and under a fence as the breaths can be heard increasing in frequency. The rider stops when a voice can be heard calling for help nearby, the person seems to be on the cusp of death. After a split second of decision making, the rider rushes to the aid of the victim and tries frantically to stop the bleeding and to calm the victim. All of these efforts however don’t come to fruition as the rider watches a person die with no way to help and all hope seeming lost. Suddenly a foghorn blares into the universe”You are surrounded! Put your hands above your head!”. And as a helicopter light shines down on our rider, some individuals in uniform come behind the rider and click handcuffs onto their wrists.
As the head is being shoved down into the car door, one is only left to wonder, Who killed the man?