Shadé #10


“Dust to dust, ashes to ashes…” Bishop Coker echoes as he places the ash with the sign of the cross on Aunty Nji’s forehead and those of her children. Thanks to Bòdé; one of them is missing. Sadé follows them behind closely, sober, like everyone else at St Michael’s parish, Osun state. It is the beginning of Lent.

“Hopefully we get the order not to fast this year too Biko”, Uncle Ràntí jokes in the car on their way back home. “Sadé, any update?” He asks. Sadé turns around to give him a blank stare, “No Sir!” She replies. “Well; make my guy talk make we know. I get many people wen I need forgive this year. Actual fasting fit help me, true….” he says and feigns innocence. The entire car erupts in laughter.

Pa James asks “Who is this your guy Ràntí?”, “The Pope Sir” Uncle Ràntí replies. “Something dey do you!” Pa James replies. The driver turns the wheel when Richard’s text message appears on Uncle Ràntí’s phone. He takes a look, the text reads “Bros dis kitchen na die o, multiple aromas. D feast too sure, plus dia is Loud ina d place…” He smiles to himself. Nji stretches her neck to look at her husband’s phone.  “What is Loud Ràntí?” she asks, unsure. He gives her a funny stare. “It’s a cocktail baby. Made of ice…” he lies. “Meaning?” She probes further. “Meaning it’s chilled…” he winks at her, she’s not having it but she lets it go…


“From dust, we were created, to dust shall we return…” says the Reverend. Family members of Young Sam take turns to pour some red sand onto the brown casket in the ground. On the fence of the compound, the obituary announcement on the walls outside reading, “Painful exit...”

Freda and Ada stand behind with 4 other members of staff to represent the rest of the Hotel management and staff. Young Sam died a month earlier, in his sleep. He had raped Freda later that day. She cried to Ada when she narrated the story so Ada chose to take laws into her own hands. My Chi will handle him for us. Don’t worry yourself…” those were Ada’s words to Freda, she can never forget. Now, Freda looks at Ada’s face for any trace of happiness or sadness, she gets nothing…

On their way back, she sits next to Ada on the bus. After some time, she gathers her mind to ask her “Ada, did you have a hand in this?” Ada looks away. “Certain people deserve judgment not mercy…” she says and smiles softly. Freda begins to sweat, seriously. Fear was written all over her face…


“Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. From dust we are made, to dust shall we return….” Bishop Coker’s voice lingers on in Sadé’s head. She sits on the rock staring out into the garden. Aunty Nji walks up to her, clad in black from head to toe; “How do you feel? You’re the only one here wearing all white?” She asks. Sadé turns around sharply; Aunty Nji’s voice brings her back to the estate. She smiles to reply to her, “Aunty, I’m special like that. Wearing black is a taboo for me.” Aunty Nji continues, her eyes are serious, “The Lord God created them all you know, colors and left hands alike…”.”I trust you!” Sadé agrees to avoid further arguments and debates. “How are you doing Aunty? How are you holding up?” Sadé asks, tender. Aunty Nji claps her hands together slowly “Hmmmm. Well, I do miss my daughter if that is what you mean. However, knowing that Ràntí killed him is justice enough for me so it helps.” Sadé nods with a smile “I understand what you mean Aunty?” Just then, one of the caterers walks up to Aunty Nji, she attacks him with a question before he gets to her “YES?! ANY PROBLEM?” “Yes, ma.” He stutters. She shakes her head and walks away from Sadé to attend to the situation. Sadé looks into the stream again, it is peaceful and quiet. “I must come for a swim later tonight.” She mutters to herself…



Author: Nnennaya

In love with creative arts. And living...

3 thoughts on “Shadé #10”

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