Bad Market

Of all the secondary schools in the mainland of Lagos, No one kept bad history like the students of Uzochuckwu’s school: Saint Thomas High school, Ikeja. They were a tagging plague and this affinity to tag was an unspoken one.
It often began with silly incidents, like when Tomiwa, the social prefect, brought Eba to school in a green flask. His crime was simple: That as a senior student, he brought a flask to school, and as if that wasn’t crime enough, he had the extra effontry to put eba inside.
Perhaps if it had been rice, or the normal beans and yam, the students of Saint Thomas would have looked with mercy on him.
The name “baba Eba” taunted him for the rest of his stay in the school.
What made these occasional taggings worse was that the students enjoyed the extreme of over doing things.
Baba eba was exempted from all forms of food that was served at shindigs. He ended up avoiding school parties altogether. What was the need of going to a party where one wouldn’t be offered the choice of accepting or refusing a meal?
But, Tomiwa’s case was one of the subtle others. Theresa was not that lucky, she was outcasted. She got into Saint Thomas in the last year of her junior high and right from the day she resumed for classes, her fate was hopelessly sealed.
There was a secret law in J.S.3, that a newbie would offer 3 eggrolls and 2 doughnuts to the captain of the class as a sworn sign of loyalty, obedience and respect. The offerings were to be offered on bended knees in the solititude of the afternoon break, in the presence of the assistant captain and 2 other members of the class standing as witnesses and this secret duty was known throughout Saint Thomas as Osaro’s law. How that law and its name came to be, remained a mystery
Unfortunately, Theresa did not understand why money should be wasted on eggrolls and doughnut when cheaper snacks like puff puff were readily available, so in place of the former, she offered the later. Her offence would have been pardonable if she hadn’t still bragged about satisfying the class captain’s urge for puff-puff.
The result of Theresa’s action was to be seen the next day on the assembly ground. It happened that someone on her row, “accidentally” pushed her so hard, she fell down with a thump. Her uniform got torn so badly, her panties were wholely revealed.
It was in these moments when all eyes were focused on Theresa that a live cockroach, as if gasping for fresh air, crawled out of her yellow panties.
That was how Theresa came to be known throughout Saint Thomas and even beyond as the “Cockroach-pant girl”.
Uzochukwu’s affection for Theresa had begun unexpectedly. He found out one certain afternoon, after he had stumbled upon her in the hall way that he was attracted to her in an unexplainable way. Some poets would have called this attraction “love at first sight”. He couldn’t understand it himself, so he tried suppressing the feelings.
After a couple of weeks without luck and wallowing in self denial, he began to stalk her.
He would follow Theresa in guise to her home in Agege and watch her knock on the gates till she was inside her house. Apparently, his stalking, in no way, reduced his attraction towards her, so he decided to go a step further by asking her to be his girllover.
He called Chinedu, his best friend one Friday afternoon and conveyed his intended plan to him.
Chinedu laughed for what seemed to be like forever.
“That cockroach pant girl?” He queried, for He could not understand why his friend would be foolish enough to take as lover, one whom the school had ostracized.
“Yes! I like her, and don’t call her that. Her name is Theresa.”
“It seems like you don’t love yourself Uzo! You want the whole school to start calling you Cockroach pant boy abi?”
“See let me tell you Nedu. I just thought I should let you know. Its not like I am asking for permission to go ahead. Anything that want to happen let it happen. I like her, that’s my own ‘Ogwula.'”
Chinedu stood up. It was obvious his friend had gone mad, but he wasn’t going to stay and watch this madness humiliate him. The students would not show him mercy and neither would love.
After he left Uzo that afternoon, Chinedu managed to arrange a meeting with the cockroach pant girl in the secrecy of the boys toilet, away from the prying eyes of students to strike a co-mutual deal. She was to refuse any advances made by his friend in exchange for help during her mathematics C.A.
The deal seemed fair enough, so Theresa accepted, besides she had never liked that Uzo of a boy.
The day Uzochuckwu approached Elizabeth, she was coming down from one of the classroom blocks to the main kiosk. Uzochukwu took a quick glimpse at his wristwatch, straightened his collar and looked up, away from the kiosk to the school auditorium. Chinedu was somewhere behind those windows, watching him closely, waiting to see him “mess up”. He could tell he was mocking him, chewing gum and waiting to burst the bubble in his face. But Uzo wasn’t going to freak out. He was going to face her with all the courage his heart could muster.
The girl in question, Elizabeth, was already agitated when she noticed Uzochukwu approach her.
“excuse me, hold on” Uzo said but she kept on moving, increasing her pace as the student neared.
“Please wait, I have been wanting to see you”
“Just give me a few minutes of your time”
Elizabeth kept on walking.
“I’ve got something to tell you, it wouldn’t take long”
Without even flinching at him, she kept her distance.
“You should go to hell for all I care” a frustrated Uzochukwu yelled.
“Cockroach pant Girl”
What Chinedu did not envisage during his negotiations with Elizabeth was a lovely “toasting” turning into violent confrontation, and maybe that was were the purpose for which the deal was made backfired.
Elizabeth turned in sudden anger and slapped Uzo.
It was more of a surprise than of shock to him.
“Never in your life should you be rude to a lady, useless guy” Elizabeth hissed and as she was about to walk off, Uzo drew her back with his left hand, his right hand was grasping his cheek. He punched her hard in the stomach and she went down, clutching her abdomen in pain.
Uzochukwu’s new name would have been anyone’s simple guess…

18 thoughts on “Bad Market” by Gabriel (@GabrielNwogu)

  1. Uzo the woman beater or puncher??

  2. I didn’t only like this story, I loved it! It was realistic and sincere. True ways mainland kids school. The guy with the flask containing Eba had me rolling………….am sure if I had gone to one of those schools I would have came out with a name. I loved how you took me back to my high school days. I would say go to boarding school but those are even worse jare.

    Hey!!! @gabrielnwogu you did a wonderful job here you hear???

  3. Gabriel (@GabrielNwogu)

    Lolzz. @ufuomaotebele I hear oo, and thanks for the read. At some point, I actually considered using you for Theresa… *evil grin*

    1. HAHAHA ahan! Gabriel you should have asked me for my English name naa would have shocked you to know that its “Theresa”

  4. Gabriel (@GabrielNwogu)

    Lolzzz. @shatzilien A.K.A. Sweetheart… Maybe they called him Uzo, “the Cockroach pant girl puncher”

    1. Lmaooo
      ..damn i wonder how tht cockroach got there

  5. Gabriel (@GabrielNwogu)

    @ufuoma, really? See Setup.

    1. Nah no setup there is a truth in that lie.

  6. …………………………………………………………………………
    not surreal
    but really real
    the story reveals
    reality plainly and simply

  7. wait o, who be elizabeth an who be theresa/ u make mistake there for the name.
    the story real though but come to think of it, a girl wey people dey yab get mind dey slap another guy. guy wey wan improve her status? nah. she mess up there.
    all in all bro i think it is a good story. uzo name go be the cockroach girl puncher or maybe…

  8. Gabriel (@GabrielNwogu)

    LOlzzz oxy, i totally agree. See me messing up names… lmao!

  9. What if it was a mouse that came out??jesu

  10. Gabriel (@GabrielNwogu)

    lolzz @schatzilien if it was a mouse ehhn, that means the mouse must have seen things..

  11. Lolllll reminds me of my school. A rat came out of a girls bag in class and she became “Lola ratigan”

  12. mendel martha (@ihenyengladysusile)

    In defence of theresa or abi na elizabeth all join,the cockroach was just her pet ,who got lost,so guys *BACK OFF*

  13. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! . . .This is true naija story!
    You went back to those rugged secondary school days. Brilliant and funny!
    Keep it up bro

  14. “Cockroach killer”

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