BLACK BIRD (Chapter 1a)

Cakes of concealer plastered on my face make me feel like a clown readied for a circus bit. Its a new world for me and so while the set designer and make up artist fly up and down trying to make it all perfect, I let my short life flash yet again. I beckoned on my P.A to get me a cup of cocoa, while I enjoyed my reverie. But Biola says I cant have cocoa, because it gg mess up my make up, and we don’t want that.

“Nobody tells me when to have cocoa” I called out after her petite body walking away from me.
“I grew up on a cocoa farm. You can’t take that away from me. I picked up cocoa pods and -”

She cut in knowing exactly what I would say next.

“-got tipsy from fermented cocoa beans while picking and parking” she finished and then added. “Me thinks the lady protests too much” and handed me my cup of cocoa.

Biola makes me laugh. She’s my best friend and P.A. but she doesn’t get it. I’m trying so hard to hold on to humble beginnings while getting used to all this posh and pazzaz.

How did we get here? Just a few years AGI I was getting raped by the railway tracks and now I’m a celebrated artist about to give an interview.

My attachment to cocoa is psychological. I don’t want to forget where I came from.

My mother named me Sorrow when she left my father. The cocoa research institute was shutting down and they no longer had any use for fathers security services. The moment things started getting tough, she picked up her bags and left with soldier man balogun in his jalopy Volkswagen. She left all four of us behind to rough it with our father.

My father named me Pain when he got remarried to the worst woman in the world.
I am the third of four children but I questioned everything. I questioned my step mothers authority and I could never accept her. She beat me so bad one day, I fell into one of the worst fainting spells I have ever had. I was out for two days.

I woke up to the smell of antiseptic and watched glucose trickle down my bloodstream from the drip bag hanging over my head.
I was bundled to Iya Elewe immediately I got discharged and that’s where I spent a better part of my childhood.

Iya Elewe is my grandmother. The day I passed out while making broom sticks in front of our yard, she promised it would be the last time. She called out two teenage boys working at baales cocoa farm for help.

They held me down while she marked my face with a carving knife. She cured the thick hideous strokes with black powder that stung. When Iya Elewe was through, she felt proud of herself, and said rest assuredly that my spirit would never leave my body again. I was only 10years old and all she had done was scar me for life.

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