It was a pleasant Saturday morning characterised by the usual harmattan chill and mist in the ever busy and noisy Agofuri Park in Warri. Despite the chaos, her ringtone stood out.
“Hello, Phebe. How are you?” she spoke into the receiver of her phone with a smile
“Aunt Laye, there is a problem,” came the tensed voice from the other end of the line
“What again?” Laye asked
“Uncle had a terrible accident. His car got crashed into a truck on the expressway by our street.”
“Phebe, please don’t start the April fool with me. April 1 isn’t till tomorrow.”
“I’m serious, ma. We’re still here trying to rescue them. Let me send you pictures on WhatsApp.”
Layefa hurriedly opened the chat app on her phone to confirm her greatest fear. Pictures and chats flew in from Phebe and other friends who had heard of the incident. The surviving number plate of the black Honda City proved it was her husband’s car. Looking further, she could even see him in his favorite blue silk shirt with black sharks. She broke down in tears, as other passengers consoled her.
“It can’t be,” she mumbled. “It can’t be.” This time, it was a yell, as she called his phone repeatedly to no avail.
“Maybe, if I hadn’t come for this revival, maybe my husband would still be alive. But God, why?” she asked in-between tears.
Her wails continued throughout the 85 minutes’ drive to Yenagoa. As soon as she entered her street, she sighted her pastor amidst a crowd of friends and relatives.
They will say I’ve killed my husband, she thought.
On seeing her mother-in-law, she collapsed. Her eyes opened a minute later and saw her husband holding her. “Am I dead also?” she asked.
“No, my dear. I was robbed and stripped last night on my way from Evening Service,” he replied.
About the Author
Rex Dogood is an English Language graduate of the Federal University, Otuoke. He considers himself a patriotic Bayelsan and is a literary enthusiast.