Short Story – Being Jumoke..

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Jumoke hopped into the cab headed for the airport because she was tired of everything going on in her life. The continual visits by the demons that tormented her at every waking and sleeping moment were becoming unbearable.

What made things worse was the fact that she was the only one that noticed when these things happened. 

She was always alone when she heard the voices, when she saw things fly around her house, and when she was physically pressed down to the ground or against the wall by a force of unknown origin.

Everyone around her thought she was joking at first but things had gotten a bit out of hand and there was a lot of confusion that she had to get away from. That in short, is the reason why she is in a cab headed for the airport. 

She had a blank expression as she stared out of the window of the taxi cab.

She passively looked at all the people going about their busy lives on the streets of Lagos. 

“There is always so much going on in this city” she murmured to herself. 

“Wetin you talk madam?” said the taxi driver. 

“Nothing oo” she replied. Then later added “only if you knew” on a much lower tone.

They stopped at a traffic light and Jumoke noticed a church on the other side of the road with a banner that invited people for a prayer session to ‘Cast out Spiritual Oppressors by Force’.

At the front of the church stood a man dressed in a suit inviting people for the service with a megaphone. “Come for ya salvation! Let real prayer warriors take kia (care) of ya problems.”

Shade laughed to herself and wondered how much self-control it took for the man to keep on wearing the suit even though he was sweating profusely and a ring of sweat had already formed at the armpit area of his suit. 

“His shirt must be soaked” she said 

“Wetin you talk madam?” asked the driver.

“Nothing” she replied. 

He mumbled something incorrigible to himself in Yoruba and kept on driving.

Jumoke remembered how her super religious parents had taken to her to see their church pastors when the problem had just started. They had numerous ‘prayer and fasting’ sessions all to no avail.

She wondered if the pastors ever really fasted because of how big their bellies were. The only difference she noticed were the pastors’ fatter pockets and their ever increasing bellies. 

The number of prayer sessions reduced when Sade noticed that they were a waste of her time.

In one of the prayer sessions she slapped a Minister of God when he laid his hands on her buttocks. After that incident, she decided to stop attending the prayers sessions and stood her ground against the incessant complaints of her parents.

Sade lost faith in the prayer sessions long before she stopped attending them. She had found no relief in prayer. Sade grew up in a strict Christian home and had a strict Christian upbringing. That was all before the attacks started.

She lost faith because the attacks still happened while she was praying in the midst of the ministers. They weren’t as violent as when she was alone, but she would still hear the voices and see the demons in the eyes of the minister as they screamed “FIRE!” at the top of their lungs.

She had to get away from all of that and that is why she decided to travel away. She would stay with one of her friends from university who lived in Atlanta in the United States. The only person that could stop her was Tola but she decided not to dwell on the thought of him.

By the time they arrived at the airport, it was dark. She paid the taxi driver his fare before she stepped out of the car. He came out to help her with her boxes. When he had gotten the last of her boxes from the boot of the car, he looked at her and his eyes looked different. 

At that moment she got trapped in his gaze and she became petrified as she stared at the eyes that had suddenly become pitch black. In his eyes, she saw all the darkness in the world and his eyes promised and oblivion that only death can give.

He smiled and opened his mouth to form words but she heard the words like they were being whispered in her ears. 

“Safe flight”

Jumoke screamed..

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