I knew I was sleeping but I could hear voices. They were incoherent, like someone mumbling from afar. The noise precedes the cry of a little baby. I starts to open my eyes little by little and the sound become more audible and then realized it wasn’t a nightmare. Someone is hitting the door of one of the rooms with a strong force.
“Open the door. Open it now!!.”
That was the yelling voice that echoes in the four corners of the room. The voice succeeded the continuous banging of the portal of entry into the room and forceful turning of the door knob. The voice was familiar. It was my sister’s husband.
I rubbed my eyes gently and yawned.
“What is going on?”
I rhetorically asked myself.
I was left in a room alone in the house -The visitor’s room. There was no power supply and the room was very dark. My back aches as a result of the low mattress I slept on. It was too flat to the ground, compared to what I used in my own house.
My heart was pounding very fast. I was so afraid to learn about what is about to – or is happening in the house. I couldn’t stay back at the same time. The noise continues as I hurriedly exit the room.
I was at the living room when he finally breaks in, he found his way into the room with her.
My nephew was at the door side, turning around the door knob with tears in his eyes but he wasn’t wepping lousily, but his little years old sister rambled some incongruous words.
I was bitter.
She was lying on the bed and he dragged her onto the floor and hit her with all his gathered strength. He did this repeatedly. He sighed, and she starts to crawl her out of the room but then she got hold of her again and sit on her and resumed with his beastly action on her. My sister was still mute all this time.
I was apprehensive. My voice was gone, my strength, I couldn’t find them. I was overwhelmed with sadness.
“Daddy ple-ase Lea-ve my mum-my a-lone” The little girl cried. I could feel the pain in her voice. She coughed in between her words.
At Thirteen, I had never felt so hopeless in my whole life. It was all happening before my eyes. A woman beater was inflicting pains on my own blood and there is nothing I could do to save her. My soul is weeping but my eyes were dry. I felt an incense mixtures of acridness and lost in the aura of a shallow swamp but still cant swim my way back to the bank. I felt hopelessness, weakness and every of her pain.
She crept out of his legs and stealthily ran out of the room into the visitors room I had slept earlier and lock the door behind herself. He paused and fumes, roared just like a lion that had just devoured an innocent prey – His chest was pounding. His eyes were like a wolf as he stares at me under the gently glowing lamp that lights up the room. He grinned and wiped off the sweat on his dirty, tribal marked face.
He never had enough. He followed her still.
He was banging the door whilst I sat at the living room with his children.
“What happened?” I asked my nephew. He was Ten.
He didnt reply.
“Why are they fighting?” I asked again.
“I don’t know. I woke up to find them like this” He muttered a nervous speech.
“Ha! Oluwa o” I sighed.
“So who should we call now?” I added.
“Nobody o.. Father will kill me like the last time, if I call the neighbors”.
“This is not his first time?”.
He nodded positive.
It was until then that I noticed the time – The shorter arm was on 4 and the longer one was slightly below 2 – 04:13. I was afraid if he breaks into the room again, It’d be more unpleasant for her.
He returned back into the living room and turned to his son, my own nephew.
“Hey you!” He shrieked.
“Get into that room with me now and bring out every of her small and big loads out of the house” He commanded.
The boy obeyed and followed him. They start to bring her boxes and bags one after the other. He yelled at me to join him in the process but I refused.
At the middle of it, My sister open the door and walked to us and said.
“I wont leave this house for anywhere. We built this house together. I am going nowhere” She yelled at his husband.
He laughed hysterically at her comments.
“The house we built together?. Bastard. Did you give me any kobo to build this house?. No!. What you are only good for is your body. Jobless ‘oloshi’ woman. Good for sex appeal only.”
His word were like hypodermic magic bullets on me. They shot directly into my heart and it bled. This wasn’t suppose to be the man whom my sister fell in love with. This wasn’t suppose to be the man who father her three kids. This wasn’t suppose to be the man who prostrated before the whole family to take my sister away. This is definitely a beast covered in human flesh.
He picked up a short wooden stick that lies on the shelf beside him and forcefully threw it at her. It landed on the side of her head and she fell flat onto the ground. He sprang up at her and sit on her again.
“You see this your ears? I will make sure they never ear voices again” He hurled at her as she hits her already bleeding head, she growls in pain and retaliated by muttering heavy curses on him. This obviously provoked him the more and it awarded her more beatings. His derogatory speech hurts my ears and I was moved to tears and my eye lid was laced with salt water. My feet were still glued to the ground. I knew I was a weakling, even if no one say it to my face. I afeard he was going to kill her and I’d stay there watching. It was a mix apples and oranges of sadness and hatred. If I had a gun, I’d shoot him from where I stood and let the animal hop off the twig.
It was a horrific dawn – even in million years, If I’d forgive, I’d never forget…