Early on a Saturday morning, a noise was heard from house 19A Sunflower Street M.K.O Abiola Gardens Alausa Lagos. It sounded like some plates had been broken.
Mrs. Daramola walked into the kitchen shouting “Oluwadumininu what have you done this morning again? You cannot kill me ooo” Mrs. Daramola was a widow with a daughter; Dumininu and luckily for her, her husband left her enough wealth to last her a life time and left her no extended family to wear her out. Dumininu just stood there staring at her mother with a poker face. Dumininu was just twelve years old but got into too many troubles for a twelve year old. It was three years now that she had lost her dad but ironically, she had lost her mum as well.“You have broken another set of plates again, by the time you break everything, we will eat with slabs. Anyway thank God it is just plates this time not beating up a classmate or an attempt to burn down my house”
“My house” Dumininu thought, no longer our house but she remained silent and just stared at her mom. “Dumininu you know I love you, but I have to work hard to put food on our table since it’s just the two of us but you are not helping out here” Dumininu almost told her mum how she felt also. That she loved her too but she did all she did to get her mother’s attention since that was the only way she could remind her mum of her existence; by getting into trouble. Since dad died, her mum had become a workaholic and she knew her mum didn’t have to work that hard with all that her dad left them. Instead, Dumininu decided to drive her mum nuts by walking away mumbling an “am sorry” that even the closest fly would strain to hear. “Dumininu come back here” her mum shouted. Dumininu stopped without looking back. “Who will pack these things from the floor?” Dumininu shrugged turning to face her mum. “This is too much for a twelve year old and definitely too much for me to handle” her mum raged. “Go upstairs and pack some things, wear something decent we are going to Uncle Vincent’s place” “for what?” Dumininu uttered her first words to her mother that morning”
“To spend the rest of your summer break”
“No buts young lady do as I say now.” Dumininu grumbled in anger as she walked up to her room, wishing she could get her old mum back. The mum she knew before dad left them to the land of the dead.
Dumininu went upstairs packed some irrelevant things and put in her duffel bag. Too bad her mom did not know her. She was gonna do whatever to get her mom’s attention. Yes she would go to Uncle Vincent’s but she wasn’t going to spend the rest of her summer with him; never. She knew what to do. She had a plan.
Mrs. Daramola pressed the horn of her silver infinity car with Dumininu in the passenger’s seat beside her listening to her iPod. She was in front of the gate of the second house in flash estate at Opebi Ikeja which was Vincent Makalu’s house. The security man opened the gate and gave a salute to her and she nodded in response. Mrs. Daramola came out of her car signaling to Dumininu to get down which she did agreeably and Mrs. Daramola was most thankful. Dumininu carried her bag and walked behind her mum as they entered Uncle Vincent’s house. She kind of liked him so she wasn’t so upset about spending time in his house.
Mrs. Daramola walked into the living room with Dumininu behind her and Mr. Vincent got up to greet Mrs. Daramola and gave Dumininu a hug. A boy of about fourteen years old emerged from the kitchen with a tear stricken face and greeted Mrs. Daramola and Dumininu. “How are you Stanley” Mrs. Daramola said with worry on her face and faced Uncle Vincent with a questioning look. Don’t mind Stanley, he is naughty and doesn’t like to do his duty without tears” Uncle Vincent said dismissing him. Mrs. Daramola got up telling Uncle Vincent she had to hurry as she had an appointment in two hours. Dumininu just stared into the TV screen knowing it was typical of her mum to always have an appointment to hurry to. Take care of yourself dear and be a good girl Mrs. Daramola said as she walked out.
Mrs. Daramola was a few miles away from Uncle Vincent’s house when she remembered she had to make a call. She parked her car and checked her bag but couldn’t find her Black Berry and she knew Dumininu was at it again. What will she do with the girl? She thought as she started the engine of the car and drove back to Mr. Vincent’s house. She didn’t have time to drive in so she knocked at Mr. Vincent’s gate and the security man opened she nodded and she rushed into the living room. Once in the living room, what Mrs Daramola saw shocked her to the bones. She saw Mr. Vincent with his shirt off and pants down and heard Stanley sobbing. Stanley was standing naked in front of Uncle Vincent but their proximity was too strange. It was obvious that Stanley was being abused sexually by Uncle Vincent. Her motherly instincts made her look around for her daughter; she saw Dumininu at shivering frantically at a corner with fear in her eyes and tears on her face while Uncle Vincent struggled to get dressed. Mrs. Daramola screamed at impulse; with fear of what might have happened to her daughter. Immediately Dumininu sighted her mum, she ran over and hugged her still crying. “Dumininu are you okay?” her mum asked. “Yes” she replied, “did he do anything to you?
“No mum” “Oh thank God” her mum said as tears rolled from her eyes. She looked at Uncle Vincent and Shook her head “shame on you” she said as she dragged Dumininu and motioned for Stanley to get dressed and come with her.
On their way home Dumininu was quite glad at least she did not go through with her plan to get her mum back while Mrs. Daramola was grateful she got there in time and thought that Dumininu’s troublesome behavior paid off after all. She felt so much pity for Stanley whom she also took along but was grateful her daughter’s life hadn’t ended up like the broken plates of that morning.
BY OLUYOLE OLUWASEYI