I frown first, the way the man dey rub in palms dey lick em lips dey strange.
Akpan’s father: my son, no be only cow, we go buy goat too.
Me: goat! *I scream*
I never even gree for the cow, all these rituals na for cleansing for just river, he nodded.
Me: all these cow and goat, who go chop am?
Akpan: no body oh, we go throw them enter the river.
Ugochukwu: the river go come swallow everything? that kind river still dey Nigeria?
Akpan’s father: yes, and na night we go carry out the ritual… Ehnn… We go need white wrappers like two.
Me: all these things you mention no get list, instead of to dey mention them one after the other.
Akpan’s father: *clear his throught, carry one long paper give me* see am there, we go buy everything.
My eyes for don run commot from their sockets, total na one million naira for common cleansing ritual.
Me: who go come chop these three bags of rice?
Akpan: na the priestess go chop am to revert the curse.
Akpan’s father: you nofit compare one million to your life my son.
I shake my head, I fit compare that amount em dey mention to my life. If you point me gun ask me one million naira or my life, na that one millionaire i go pick. Even though I go spend am for land of death.
Me: my go withdraw the money, so that we go get the requirements, ehnn… Ugochukwu, you godey here.
Akpan’s father: Akpan…
Akpan: yes, papa..
Akpan’s father: go with our friends from the city.
The man don hear money dey hammer queen’s English, criminal!
Me: make em no bother, I go go withdraw come back today.
I stood up and left the sitting, Eni and Akpan’s mother has gone to the kitchen to prepare food for us. I left Ugochukwu in Akpan’s father sitting room.
I folded the list and walked under the sun like someone who doesn’t know were he is heading to, I get money wey pass that amount for my account. As a capitalist, I nofit waste am for this kind thing na.
A thought entered my head to ask someone about this culture, I wanted to enter a house by the road side, when I suspected that a naked small boy has been trailing me.
Small boy: me?
I nodded and he came, I knew they sent him to make sure I didn’t talk to anybody.
Me: *I give him one hundred naira* take this one go buy biscuit.
Small boy: I never get this kind plenty money for my life, thank you brother.
He ran off like a naked mad man, while I entered inside the compound fenced with flowers.
It was a mud house, and luckily a woman was pounding fufu be side her kitchen when I met her.
While her daughter was carrying a baby behind her, the baby was crying. Thank God I have biscuit in my pocket.
Me: don’t cry, iyaa! *i give him the biscuit and seal his big mouth.
Woman: oga no vex oh, na who you dey fine? *thick Calabar accent*
My mind come dey tell me say what if the woman dey amongst those people wey dey plan with Akpan’s family, I come use my number 6.
Me: em get one girl I see when I dey waka pass here, I no know whether na your daughter.
Woman: no, em no go fit be my daughter, see the only daughter I get *she point the girl backing the child*
Me: madam, thank you… Collect this one buy something for the family *I give her five thousand naira*
Woman: oga….! make God bless you, your enemies no go see you.
I nod and bade them goodbye, as I was walking out of the compound. I pretended to forget something and turned back.
Me: madam, em get wetin happen to my friend. Em marry wife from this village, the wife and one man come dey sleep with each other… the woman and the man die, naso em dey happen?
Woman: na their time to die, since when I dey this village. That kind thing never happen, even our culture nothing like that.
The woman just saved me, I for my way to Port – Harcourt, I took bike and got lost from the village and boarded a bus to Port- Harcourt. I called Ugochukwu while I was in the bus heading to Port Harcourt.
Me: guy, you still dey there… shift small from those thieves.
Ugochukwu: *some minutes later* I don commot, wetin be the matter again?
Me: those people them be thieves, nothing like that dey happen for their culture,them dey fine way to collect money.
Ugochukwu: you for tell me since na you come say my stay here, where you dey now?
Me: I dey on my way to PH, tell them say you dey go meet me for where I go buy the things.
Ugochukwu: I go do wetin you talk.
Immediately I got to Port- Harcourt, my stomach started behaving funny. I took another bus to the area I am living, my stomach come full like say shit wan fall out.
I enter one bike wey dey jump upadan, the shit threatened to fall. But I still hold am sotay I reach yard, I jumped down from the bike tear race enter inside yard.
Okadaman: *shouting* oga you never pay me!
I searched my pocket fast fast, see one hundred naira throw give am. I saw Samuel sitting on the passage floor lamenting.
I searched my pockets fast fast for my room keys.
Samuel: I tell my wife to born girl, where i wan come get the extra ten thousand naira to pay doctor!
I quickly remembered that I forgot my key in Ugochukwu’s car, I rushed go the public toilet. All was locked apart from one unlocked, but someone was singing inside.
Voice: I saw Michael Jackson in the toilet, he was drinking garri.
Me: *slamming the door* who dey inside? open oh!
Voice: *still singing* I saw Michael Jackson, in the toilet. He was drinking.
Which kind mad person wey enter market newly be this?
To be continued…..
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