THE LITTLE BOY CAN’T SPEAK 

The little boy still couldn’t speak. Singapore thought. He grabbed his bottle of chilled sprite and he took a sip as his dark eyes searched above the table staying close to the wall. His tie was on the same table, dusty and wet. Singapore moved over to the table, leaving the small boy with a bowl of stew. He picked up the tie and he tried squeezing water out of it. He tightened his teeth in pain as the tie dropped into the ground. He went mute as he moved over to the end of the room. He turned off a switch angrily and he took down all the curtain blinds. 

A rusting knife was in his self. He picked it out and he cleaned it up. It looked like it had been passed down from a generational rail. He could hear the little boy try to speak but his tongue failed again. He was pained and his eyes reflected anger. His deep eyes craved thin linings below it end and his wide lips stood  away from his rigid chin. A dry pound of flesh laced his neck like he escaped a fire accident, and a wide scar came up his arms as he rolled up his sleeves. He looked determined with his cheek bone rising with a stiffened collar.

Singapore picked up the boy in his arms and he thought about sipping him up in a bag so he could be save but that was no option. He picked up the baby and he stomped out of the room with the boy in his arm. 

He got a car outside his flat and he rode down the street till he was up in the major road. The traffic was tight and the road was busy. Singapore watched the boy as he took him in his arms. He wished he could speak just a word. Just one word. He knew it would be a miracle if the  boy tongue loosened. He wasn’t going to force him to make anymore attempt fail. Singapore had his fear crowned when the taxi got waved down by a patrolling police Hillux. The driver paid his way out and soon. He was away with Singapore and the little boy to the market he had been paid to drive them to. 

It was a little market close to the only teaching hospital in town. He dropped off the taxi with the little boy and he squatted to touch his face. He lifted him up and the fight began. The boy struggled to break free and soon Singapore was trying to make him relax. A struggle to cry broke out and everyone's started watching suspiciously. He held the baby's hand and he tried every trick to make him stop struggling. Non worked. It was obvious he was a stranger to the baby. Maybe not! but it was clear beyond hidden doubt. He didn't make it too far when he got smashed by angry mobs and he baby was collected from him.

"Kidnapper!! Kidnapper!!" The angry mobs kept shouting as they filled him up with pain, off kicks and knocks. Everyone came at him with what they could grab and before they gave burning him into heart, a police hilux came at the scene. They left the baby alone and they ran away. Everyone! except Singapore who could no I longer feel his legs. 

He stayed behind the counter for hours and soon a woman appeared, saying she owned the baby. 

Singapore was summoned and she claimed He was the baby's father. 

"His name is Tunde, but he is known as Singapore. He is my husband and he agreed to hold the baby while I travelled to get goods in Ibadan." The woman told the D.P.O.

Off course, she wasn't believed. They kid was carried in and they asked. 

"Do you know them." He gave no positive reaction. But they only noticed he was trying to speak. 

"Doctor he can't speak." The woman lashed out in pain as  she watched the struggle. 

"His name is Emmanuel." She continued as she zipped opened her wallet and she brought out a picture. She slid it across the table towards the D.P.O. He picked it up and he started at the people he had in front of him one at a time, and as he did that; he checked the picture. It was a family picture with Singapore on the right, the woman on the left with the kid in her hands. The exact kid they said, could not speak. 

©Godwin Okhuoya