“What an awful dream,” he gasps, sitting up on the bed.
Amobi feels it is awful because it is a tall dream and not achievable. He keeps watching as spittle drool down to his chin.
Later on, he strolls to Ifeoma’s room, stops at the door and looks into the sitting room which is unusually quiet. The wind whispers an eerie sound. He feels a movement in the dining lounge, tries to call out his parents, but stops. They might be at home and if he alights their attention, they might disrupt his plan and call him to do chores.
Amobi stops at Ifeoma’s door, knocks twice. No answer. He had missed playing with Ifeoma’s makeup kit, experimenting with different colors. In addition, he wants to practice the one Simisola did in class, which she vows to have on her face during their cultural day. He tries to open the door but it is locked from within. Ignoring it, he then walks into the living room.
His gaze moves to the dining table on noticing a movement. He sees a bird on the table. The exact bird he had always seen. His hand dips into his pocket to feel the feather and heaves, remembering it was in his school uniform’s pocket, which he had thrown in the wash basket.
“Hi,” a voice says.
Turning towards the voice, the bird’s eyes doesn’t leave him. He gawks at the bird. “Hi, call me, birdie,” the bird says.
Amobi froze for a second. A chill goes down his spine, series of goosebumps break out all over his skin. His eyes weaken and he stutters and stops. “Birdie,” he mutters, walks close to it, sitting on the dining chair.
He opens his palm to capture it and feel its warmness; he watches as the bird dissolves into little stars under his eyes. Hot breath escapes from his nose, he shivers.
There’s a knock at the door, he looks ahead, staring at the open window from the dining room. His mind busies on the eerie bird. Standing up, he runs into his room, stopping at the basket of clothes, and takes out the short. Tiredly, he dips his hand into the pocket, searches it and finds it empty. The feather is no longer in the pocket.
Amobi hears the door of the living room creak, his gaze moves on the wall. He can see a blurry image resembling a bird on the wall from the corner of his eyes. He looks away, running into the living room. Jaiyeola is standing at the entrance holding the edge of the door.