ARRESTED BY LOVE
(The best of Daria)
A STORY WRITTEN BY BRIGHT DANIEL
Light from Austine’s supermarket shone all over the vicinity where Roland’s mouth was smoking light a burning bush. He handed another cigarette to his friend, Henry still waiting for Austine to answer his question.
“Guy, Daria is fine” Austine replied with a smile.
“The girl really gave me a hard time!” Roland said bitterly and stretched a cigarette to Austine who refused.
“How many times have i told you that i don’t smoke?” Austine asked.
“But you do the one worse than smoking” Henry backfired him then they giggled.
“Back to what i was saying” Roland blew out a smoke and shook his head as if he was about to get mad. “Daria gave me a tough time! And i must get her!”
“Guy, remember you’re talking to my girlfriend” Austine said.
“Fuck you! You think i don’t know you are eying Prisca too after you have gotten what you wanted from Daria. Now, you wouldn’t want me to take my own share, abi? Guy, you are wicked!”
“Watch your mouth. Don’t say i didn’t warn you” Austine concluded and ordered a drink for them.
Still on that very evening at Mr Alfred’s resident, Daria could be seen in the kitchen with her mother. She handled a pot she was holding carefully while her mind wandered to Austine and eventually to what Lana told her earlier that day. Therefore, her mood changed. The mother noticed it from aside, so she asked, “What’s troubling you?”
“Nothing, mother” Daria replied without looking at her.
“I know you’ve gone to see Austine today coz no day passes-by without you seeing him” the mother added but Daria kept quiet. “Did you hear about what Red did to two elders today?” the mother changed the topic.
“Yes” Daria seemed interested on the topic. “I heard he’s not a human being. Mother, is that true?”
“Nobody knows my daughter. Even his face has not been seen by anyone due to the mask he normally wears”
“Who is he?”
“A popular criminal. Even though you shoot him with a gun, it won’t enter. And now, the latest news is that he wants to reside in our land by telling King Lucas to secure a house for him before tomorrow”
“Hmm… Mother, that means our land is in trouble”
“Big one” both remained quiet.
“Mother?” Daria broke the silence. “Why can’t the police or soldiers arrest him?”
“How can someone who resist bullets be arrested. He cannot be arrested!” the mother concluded.
At Mama wine’s shop, only Odem remained there. Before him was ten empty bottles of palm wine which he has consumed. Though, Mama wine wanted to close for the day but Odem’s presence couldn’t allow her. So she came out with a sore face. Her physical typology was totally endomorphy.
“The Wine!” she shouted.
“Yes, Mama wine” Odem replied.
“Please, start going i want to close my shop”
“Are you okay? Can’t you take advantage of our names?”
“What do you mean?”
“I am the Wine and you are Mama Wine! Or should i call you madam Wine? Our names should tell you that we suppose live like husband and wine.. sorry, i mean wife. And the gods of palm wine will bless our marriage”
“Over my dead body! Better stand oh, i want to close” Mama Wine went inside.
Daria was ready to sleep. She laid on the bed staring at the ceiling hoping Austine would call her on the phone but he didn’t. So she called him herself.
“Good evening, Austine”
“Good evening, how are u?”
“What do you think? You never care to know until now i called you. Austine, what’s going on?” Austine kept quiet. “You are really hurting me, what’s going on? Please, talk to me” she added.
“Nothing is going on” Austine finally replied.
“Should i be worried about Prisca?” Daria asked but Austine kept quiet again. “You are not talking” her voice began to break remembering what Lana told her. “Austin, please, talk to me” she added but the line went off, so the tears finally dropped.
Though, Daria couldn’t sleep that night but finally did at the very late hour of the night. Darkness covered the land once again. The chirping of crickets could be heard from a nearby bush. Suddenly, Daria’s legs began to move which indicated that she was dreaming..
Daria saw herself face to face with Ebube. She stood a bit far from him but began to walk closer when she saw tears dropping from the mask he wore. “Red?” she called as she moved closer. Yet Ebube stood still without saying anything but the tears continued dropping.
“Why do u shed tears?” Daria was still asking standing very close to him. “Please, stop crying” she raised her hand to take off the mask.
“Don’t come close to me” Ebube interrupted her. “Leave!” he commanded but Daria insisted. “I said leave me alone!” he shouted and brought out his sword to cut her but Daria shouted and woke up..
Daria sat up on the bed breathing heavily. Her mind wandered to and fro to deduce the meaning of the dream but she couldn’t get it, then she went on her knees and began to pray. Just after she finished praying, she heard the sound of Ebube’s motorcycle…
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