Episode 3

  Shindara stepped out of the Military camp. She flagged down a Bike and boarded it to her aunty's place.


  Henry woke up feeling tired. He wondered what the time was. It was still 5 in the morning. He was so dizzy. He kicked off his blanket and strolled into his kitchen. He heard some loud music coming from a section of his house and wondered who would be making so much noise.

  He drank his water and climbed upstairs to this little cousins room.

' That boy is up to mischief again' He thought as he held onto the door knob.

  He turned the door knob, pushed the door open slowly and poked his head into the room. He then knew that it was the walls that actually sucked in the noise that he could only hear it mildly from outside, but inside! the noise was louder than in a studio.

  ''Hey!!! Tobi! Hey!!!!'' Henry screamed. The teenage boy didn't hear and kept dancing away in his room.

  Suddenly, the music stopped. Tony turned slowly to find Henry holding up the plug for his DVD player. He sighed and mumbled some things.

  '' It's 5 in the morning and you're making so much noise! Don't your ears hurt you?'' Henry was visibly angry.

  ''I told you I didn't want to leave Ogun state but you forced me here to this dry Kaduna'' Tony wiped away the beads of sweat forming on his head.


  ''What does that have to do with the noise?'' Henry asked still trying to understand what Tony said.

  ''It has everything Uncle. You're always so distant and most times I have no one to talk to. Music is the only way I keep myself sane'' Tony sat on the edge of his bed with his head hanging low.

  Henry realised where Tony was driving at. Truthfully, he hadn't been spending time with his cousin. The guy was just 13, had no siblings and lost his parents to some domestic violence. In the real sense, he was alone and the only family he had was Henry.

  '' Tony. I've been so distant because of my job....  The best is....''

  ''That's what you always say, the best is yet to come, when will it come? It's not your job, its what happened 13yrss ago. If I don't have a father, can'y you be the father I need Uncle Henry?'' Tonyturned his face aside to his a tear.

 Henry came and sat by the bed the bed. Tony stoood up as soon as Henry sat, he grabbed his sweater and bolted out of the room.

  'Emotions! Why did God create us with emotions!''

  Henry sighed and decided it was best to let the 13yr old be alone. Now he was feeling guilt and he hated it.


  ''Ah, omo mi. Isn't it too early now?'' Sindara's aunt welcomed Shindara into her duplex. 

  'Good morning ma... I'm sorry I came early. If I do not come now, I don't know when I'll have the time next.''

  ''Oluwashindara, are you sure you can cope with this military stuff now..'' Sindara's aunt urged Shindara to have her seat

  ''Yes I can ma.'' 

  ''You know this wierd dream we've been having started when you joing the army''

  ''I know. That doesn't mean the army is responsible for my nightmares na Aunty Teni''

  ''I'm not saying that. It's just that I was never in support of you joining the army. I wonder why your father agreed to it. Can't you be like your Twin sister who's a designer.....''

  'Ha, the dreaded lecture again. How long will this one last now?' Shindara thought. Aunty Teni's words just bounced off her.

  '' Shindara, are you listening?'' Aunty Teni snapped her fingers in Shindara's face.

  '' ma?'' Shindara said absentmindedly.

  Aunty Teni eyes her again and folded her hands like she was tired. 

  'This girl is still daydreaming, hope they won't kill this smallie in the military now' Aunty Teni thought.

  ''I said, Find time to come here on saturday so we'll go see someone who can help. You had better hurry back to your camp now.''

  ''But, I wont have time to...'' Shindara grumbled as her aunt pushed her out of the house.

  ''No Buts! Come on Saturday! Good morning!'' Shindara's aunt pushed her out and locked the door.

  ''she doesn't know she's old. See the way she's pushing me yet i mustn't push back now or else she'll faint.'' Shindara grumbled.

  ''I heard that!'' Her aunty chorused from inside the house.

  Shindara borded another bike to the camp.

 she was almost turning into her hostel when she saw a figure cuddled up in a corner of her hostel varandah it was a small figure and obviously wasn't an NDA student or a recruit.. She stood there wondering what to do. He shouldn't be here, not in front of the female hostel.

  She walked close to the cuddling boy and she saw him shrink in fear of her. She stopped.

  ''Hi there'' She whispered 

  No reply.


  No reply again.

 ''what's wrong with you boy?''

  The boy looked up. But his hoodie covered his face and even the poor light of that morning wasn't helping her make out what his face looked like. He was sniffing. He had been crying.

  Shindara was touched. She sat by him in the dark and curled up herself too just like him.

  ''If it helps, I know a place where toys are sold'' She said jokingly. She heard the boy giggle.

  ''Why would I wan't a toy?'' He replied.

  'Ha, finally, some progress.' Shindara rejoiced inside herself.

  ''I don't know.. Maybe because you'll be needing some company'' She replied.

  She heard the boy laugh ''Well, that's just what I need. Company''

  ''I hope you know what company I mean.... I don't mean a working place..''

  ''are you kidding me?''


  There was an awkward silence between them. Shindara thought the silence was healthy.

  ''I'm Oluwashindara'' she introduced herself.

  '' I'm Tony'' The boy replied.

¬©Oluwafemi stephen