By Efe Floral:
In the space that should be filled with love – at my foundations, keeping my soul aloft – there is a void so black no light can penetrate. It is a wound that can never heal no matter how much salve is poured on. The best I can hope for is to shore up my mind with new loves and pray they never leave. Because if they do my house will fall like the tower of cards it is. Though I like to pretend the walls are brick held together with mortar, they are just card that gets damp in the rain and wobbles in the wind. Feb 18th,2011. 11:44pm. This is my story.
My name is Adebukola Esther Ayorinde. The last child and only daughter of the family Of Late Pa Peters Ayorinde and Mrs Naomi Ayorinde. Although my father is late but my mother and my 3 elder brothers Samuel the eldest, Tobiloba the second and James Ayorinde the third. They have been taking care of the family ever since my father demise.
I was well brought up by a Christian family, My family don’t miss church activities even after my father’s demise. Samuel my eldest brother is working and heading a big company and he was well paid in Lagos I know how hard he work for this, he is married with two beautiful kids and always make sure he comes home every weekend to check on us, sometimes with his wife and kids and sometimes alone, he always make sure he loaded his car with gifts for Me and mother and my two elder brothers . My second brother Tobiloba is self employed as a motor dealer and James, in the other hanf is still looking for a job while I am in 100evel in one of the best State University in Nigeria.
My family have been so helpful to me, I don’t lack anything in school. I’m well care for, though I am not born with a silver spoon but God has been good to us, I have wonderful brothers and mother that support me in anything I choose to do. Life has been a good one for us even when father is not around us anymore. When I celebrated my 23rd birthday it was a blast my friends in school and neighborhood attented and it has been a wonderful one that I couldn’t forget. I stayed in school hostel and come home every weekend as instructed by my brothers, I know they are trying to make sure I am fine and doing well. Sometimes if I don’t show up at home I will received calls from my brothers scolding me asking me ig i’m fine or needed anything in which I will apologize and promised to show up the next weekend. Sometimes they will visit me during school hours and It is what I appreciated most. The love is real and I am very luvky to have and be blessed with such people in my life.
After the exams in school, I did very well anf prepared myself for 200 level. I always want to become a Lawyer, right from my childhood I’ve choosed that ambition and work towards it, my family have been nuturing me towards it too. I love everything about being a Lawyer, their mode of dressing anf they way they defend people mostly in court. I know I have to be very serious with my studies anf not playing with it. I study hard evry time and use my spare time going to school fellowship to worship and listen to word of God which has been the path my family has paved for me. I don’t miss church activities in school and I am one of the workers in school Fellowship.
My hostel room consist of 3 female, me and 3 other girls. But the one that is close to me most is Abimbola. Abimbola is just a simple girl, she comes hails from the western part of the country like me and speak fluently like me. She is not that serious like me and doesn’t even have time going to church as I used to. Sometimes I will invite her to school fellowship or any important crusade going on sometimes she will come sometimes she won’t and give excuses of being busy, there were times she will come and leave immediately saying it is boring and not bubbling as she likes music a lot. I will overlook it and talk about something elses. Everyone knows how close we are, we wear each other clothes in school as we are both the same size, she is fair while i am dark skinned. Although she used bleaching cream but you won’t notice until u see her knuckles which are always dark. I’ve talk about the cream she uses but she is not ready to stop it. Funmi and Tolani were the two other girls staying in the hostel. Funmi is a devoted christian to the core, you will never see her in the midst of some unbelievers in school, she is studios and we always call her prayer warrior in our room. She don’t joke with prayers or anything attached to God. I am not close to her because she is a very strong believer, anf she is the type that will correct everything you do. your mode of dressing, make up etc using the bible quotes to back it up. Sometimes I get mad at her is she corrected me for dressing on clothes that exposes any part of my body. I will lash out words to her and let her know I am a Christian too. I believe being a Christian doesn’t mean one should be slave and not enjoyed life.
Tolani in the other hand is the quiet girl among us. She doesn’t just roll with anyone so we leave her at her own side. Funmi will talk to me anf tell me to repent and sometimes I will follow her to her church when I am in good mood. Abimbola doesn’t have time she goes from one party to another she is the type that enjoys life very well. Abimbola is older than me with two years but she doesn’t judge with that, we play and chat verh well, go out together the only place I’ve never followed her to is party. No matter how much she persuaded I will never follow her, countles time funmi have ventured to change her, but she is the stubborn type that won’t listen I guesd that is why Funmi stopped talking to her. Things were going fine as everyone have their own character.
On June 17. I decided not to go home for the weekend as Abimbola begged me to follow her to afriend wedding in another state. I called my family and lied to them that I have some things to do at school which will make me not to ce home for the weekend. My mother was very angry and tell me to come home no matter what. My elder brother too but after much consideration they accepted. I was very happy, I used to go to wedding party with my family though so I am used to that. On Friday, a day to the wedding we pack our small stuff clothes that will last 3 days and travelled to Ibadan for the wedding. We lodge in an hotel, I pay for the hotel rom for anight and she pay for two nights. After lodging in hotel, there is club house in the hotel which Abimbola was so happy to go. I didn’t follow her I was inside the room sleeping while she is enjoying the life there. The next day being Saturday for the wedding we dressed up for the venue. Out clothes were so fine that people turns their head and look at us. I was so proud and full of life, I walk elegantly and ready to enjoy every bit of it.Abimbola teased me if I am not enjoying myself like I quickly answered her that I am but also I am used to that.
The only differences here in this wedding venue is that, big big men were around they are loaded with falshy cars, phones wristwatches. One will know that it is a very important person that is getting married today. I don’t know how Abimbola knows the couple but didn’t bother to ask as I was enjoying myself. I drank, eat, take pictures, and dance to various music the dj was playing. It was at this scene I saw a man in his late 50 or + if i’m not mistakenly looking at me. Countless time our eyes met abd I will quickly focus my attention on something else. I told Abimbola about the man she glanced and smile and tell me to make myself available if he approach me because he is very rich based on his look. I shake my head and tell her I can’t because I know he is a married man and not yound like me. He is old enough to be my father i concluded, she laughed at me and I feel so embarrassed, but I overlook it. She let me know that those kind of men are good to go out with, after all nothing serious is attached and it is just gor me and him to catch fun and he will spend heavily on me that is if I give him chance. I still stick to my no.
Truly, I don’t have any boyfriend in school or at home as i am well focus on my studies, anyone that ask me out I wil let them know I am not ready for relationships. I look at the man again, his eyes met mine, he smile and wave to me i didn’t respond I sipped on my drinks and watched as people are enjoying themselves at the wedding venue.
Abimbola noticed that the man is still looking at me, she tell me if I didn’t make myself available for the man that she will be angry with me, we quickly have a small heated arguments it is always like that in between us but she is matured enough to let it pass and not stopped our friendship. She brought out her new phone and tell me it is one man she is having an affair with that bought it for her, she also show me her account balance anf I was surprised to see 1.7million naira in there. She said it is from the same man. She made me to kmow that it is not bad keeping one as my needs will be taken care of with no stress. I know if i ask my family for new phones they will get it for me but such amount can never be given to me. She even tell me all the big girls i do see in school gets their money from these men and take care of their needs. If i am lucky that the man can buy me a car if i play very well. That soon she is planning on opening a small shop to sell bags and ladies wears. I was jealous and feel so down. Is not as if she is beautiful than me nor have shape, but I aleo have everything to attract such men. I think about it instantly if i can play well maybe the man can open a shop for me to be managing anf i will be more respected in school and anywhere. I quickly pictured everything in my head. And already see muself driving car and owing a Business. I know after my school as my country is hard with bad government i won’t get job immediately. Even James is still looking for work up till now but always help my brother Tobiloba at his Autos vogue shops.
I asked Abimbola how i can be available for the man, she smiled back expecting me to talk. She said she know the man likes me and he will talk to me that when he ask me out I should accept immediately. But the man is still sitting not making any approach, Abimbola tell me to calm down that it is step by step.
She instructed me to adjust my face make up and pull my blouse down a little bit to show my cleavage, I did, after she said I should walk down to restroom passing his table that he might follow me or something to talk to me. I stood up and head towards the restroom walking elegantly. When I got to his table our eyes met he look at me anf smiled and I do too without wasting time. I went to the female restroom though i am not pressed but to get his attention after a minute i was outside and surprised to see the man waiting patiently for me to come. He ask for minutes and we talk, i tell him i am students anf in 200level and also followed my friend to attend tjis wedding. He smiled and introduce himself, he said he likes me and has been looking at me for some times now and also said he is working in Oil and gas company and he own hotel and two big restaurant accross the country. I wasnt surprised because his mode of dressing says it all. He is tall with a not very big stomach. He call his driver to bring his card for me, while talking his driver came and the card was handed over to me. I smiled and scan through it. He collected my number and call my line to make sure i am giving him my correct line. He promise to call me in the night like around 10pm because by then his wife will have been asleep. He didn’t hide the fact that he is married to me he is married and his kids are in abroad. I count myself lucky to meet him and walk more elegantly back to my sit. Abimbola was waiting for me to gist her. I gist her show her the card and she was surprised that he is working with oil anf gas. That man is very rich she said i smiled and feel luvky through out the day.
We went back to the hotel when it is getting late and enjoy the rest of the chatting as my friend was busy teaching me how and what to do with that kind of man. The next day we couldn’t spend the night because our colleague at school informed us of test coming up on Monday so we pack our bags and leave to prepare ourselves.
Chief Adebanjo have been calling me from time to times. He based in Ibadan but always travel round. He will credit my account, send gifts to me. We haven’t had the cahnce to be together as their is no way because of my family. I must be home during weekends. I promise to hide this from my family. I am a virgin never had sex with anyone before but I am very ready to loose it for this man. He bought a lot of things for me phones, accessories and if my brothers ask I will lie to them that it my friend uncle that gift us. My mother and brother will call my friend Abimbola to confirm if i brought anything home and she will cover me up. I used to dash her money and sometimes share whatever Chief gift me with her.
Funmi noticed I change a lot and try talking to me but i don’t buy her idea anymore. I even planned on renting a room in the school town to stay alonr with Abimbola. I was spoiled by this man, gift from different angles and i keep talking to him. After a month I decided to give him the time he has been waiting for to spend the weekend with him we make arrangements to meet Ibadan and logde in the hotel for two days. Abimbola was aware and she gives me go ahead. I quickly come up with a lie paln that i will be busy this weekend for my family my brother have not been coming to my school based on work so it didn’t affect my plan.
The following weekend i pack my bags and jet out to Ibadan. We lodge and had fun. He disvirgin me and I dont regret that because he has been taking care of me. Knowing thatI am a virgin Chief credit my account with 3million naira. I was so happy and thanked him. I want more of hima nd dont want to share him with anyone. Before i go back to school. He took me out for shopping bought a lot of stuffs for me. I cant wait to tell Abimbola how i spent my days with him
He book my flight ticket back to school. I gist Abimbola everything the money he sent and showed her things that He bouggt for me. Her response was cold and i felt there is something wrong. I didn’t take it serious and overlook it. I transferred 400 thousand to her and her mood changes she was happy and hug me. I ask her why she repsond cold the other time, she said i didnt take her along that is why. I apologize and share everything with her.
Some months, I still have Chief all to myself and we hang out sometimes he will come to my school to see me lodge and take me out with Abimbola. I never knew Abimbola has picked interest in him. She started misbehaving, giving him. Attention if we are all together i wasnt expecting that but i try to overlook it. It got to a point she will call him without my notice and if i found out she will tell me she is just saying hello to him. I know that she is interested in him based on how the man care for me but i dont want to confront her.
One night we are talking and she let me know she is not trying to take him feom me but just trying to make sure he is mine. She siad if I will listen to her that she will take me to aplace that I will tie him downand he wont look at any other woman even his wife except me. I ask how interestingly she said if i am ready she will take me to her village to meet the herbalist that will do it for me. I shouted i was shocked, I said i will never do that. I will never go to an herbalist house for charm. That i am a well brought up Christian. Abimbola said if i dont do that the girls in school will take him from me as he always check on me in school or over where he is he might see another lady and like. She said I should not loose this man because God bless him for me. She explained futher that she did to one man but later she left him since he doesn’t have money to care for her again and makes me to know there is no repercussions in it.
I still say no. And we forget about the discussions. Later months passed I noticed Chief stop calling like before, he reply late to my chats and always busy for me. This break my heart as i have fallen for him. There is one morning i called him and he said he is busy he will call me back through out the day he didn’t call nor reply my text. I missed him and couldn’t hold it anymore i talk to Abimbola and ready to do what we disscussed back then. We amke arrangements for the following week to travel to Ondo state qnd get it done. I was determined that nobody will take him from me. Before we travel, funmi call me one fine morning and tell me she had a dream that i fell into bih pit and i was crying for help but none to rescue me. I ask her the meaning of the dream she said she doesn’t understand but will tell me to pray and fast for 3days to wade it off my head. I sensed it may be the journey i am planning and may be it won’t go well but I was determined nothing could change my mind. I ingore her after telling my best friend she said i shouldn’t pay attention to her that that is how she behaves.
The day we traveled, i wasnt feeling that cheerful and happy. Just want to to do whatever and go back to school and my chief. Getting there Abimbola let me know her family house is far from the town we are but we will go after everything. That day I followed my friend blindly and entered an herbalist house for the first time. Everywhere was stinking of alcohol gin, red clothes tie around the whole mud house botj the inside and outside. Cowries and snail shell scattered on the wall and 4 small statues each carrying whatever is in their hands with oil on their head. I was scared but didn’t show it. Abimbola sit doen peacefully on the mat smiling to the old man. The old man look unkept and dirty. Hoe i wished I didnt come here I couldn’t show that i am not interested again i just said it is only today and leave. I think about my mother and brothers. I wish i can be home with them now. I shouldn’t have come here i pary they forgive if thry found out. After telling the old man what i want. I gave him Chief name and picture. After consulting his oracle, he said it will be done only if he can sleep with and then I go back and make sure I sleep with chief it will be effective. I said no it is not possible i cant sleep with him. Not with a dirty, old looking and scary face like him. He said if i dont do it now that things wont go fine for me. He left the room, i know he excuse me and my friend. I tell Abimbola to let us go back, she was angry and yell at me that why am i so stubborn, i let her know if sge is trying to cahnage my mind that it can’t work. She said she regreted bringing me to this place and going empty handed. She persuaded me to just do it that it is once. And i will forget about it and enjoy my life with Chief. I let her know after all i am not getting married to chief that it is not necessary if chief want to go he can go. I was scared deep down but not showing it. After much talk and thinking about it I accept to sleep with him.
Abimbola excuses us and the herbalist had sex with me. I cried and was troubled.
I have shattered my dreams over a man that can never be mine. I wept after it and he gave me something to use on my body for chief. We travel back Abimbola consoled through out our journey back to school. The pictures of what happened in the herbalist house keep flashing on my head. I was unhappy and the following week I book appointment with chief. We had sex and i do all the necessary things. But i was surprised chief didn’t enjoy it. He dash me a little change and promise to call me. He didn’t book flight for me nor anything. He just left me in the hotel after given me change. I overlook it i told Abimbola but she just laughed it off thst i shouldn’t worry that we should see what will happen next. Chief finally stopped calling he blocke my number anf I will talk to him on My friend’s phone only for him to be telling him i am disturbing him abd i shouldn’t call him goe now.
I gave up chief and started developing feelings for the herbalist. I don’t focus on my studies again and my family noticed I have changed but I let them know I am fine.
I stopped going to church and praying even funmi try to help but all to no avail. I traveled to to meet the herbalist and spent two weeks with him. I do not know what came over me. My family were worried and ask me what is going on with me I will tell them. I am fine. I stopped going to school spending most of my time with the herbalist cooking for him and everything. I went home one day to pack few things i had at home to stay with the herbalist my family locked me up in the house and refused me of going back to school or anywhere. I cried and after faking a promise for them they believed me and let me go back to school only for me to be in the herbalist house. Anytime i reagained myself the herbalist will tell me if i run away from him i will run mad. I am like a sex toy for him. Forcefully having sex witj anytime he want.
My phone wasn’t good so I couldn’t contact my friend nor my family for 2months none of them knows where i was. When My brother aarrested Abimbola,she brought him and my two other brother to ondo state. I was happy to see them but i know there is nothing they could do to set me free as the man is very powerful herbalist. My brothers threatened him and tell me to follow them immediately. I couldn’t i was just looking at them with tears in my eyes no memories on my head. They knew he has bewitched me, the herbalist let them know i will run mad if i leave here. They threaten and pleaded but he said he will not allow me to to go.
A year, I lost my mother she was heartbroken on this issue my family tried all their best they could to bring me back. But bad things keep happening to them. My elder brother Samuel lost his job and He was paralyzed, my second brother buisness went down immediately and they sold everything to get my eldest brother back in shape but all to no avail. As debt keep coming he was beought back to my father house with his wife and kids they couldn’t afford their school fees and feeding anymore. The herbalist banned any of them visiting me nor me going them. I look at myself wept. What greed pushed me to, what friends pushed me to. I pray always but my prayers are very weak. James was sent to check on me by my two brothers the herbalist allow him to because he was alone, he came and explained everything that happened to me. They’ve buried my mother and things are very hard. Even the way he dress breaky heart. I gave him my sim card to put into phone and transfer all the money i had to his account. I always kept the money that chief lavish me with and it is about 6milion. He did . I talk to him to tell begged my brothers to forgive me that i have caused them a lot. He let me kmow they have forgiven me but just want me around. We wept bitterly. He said they have been praying and fasting and they believe one day the chain will break on my head. When he mentioned fasting. I quickly remembered funmi and tell him to go to my school anf look for Funmilayo Aderoye. And he should tell him all what happened i believed if she prayed for me the chain will break on my head. My faith was full. Months pass no information from them, i was heartbroken they have forgotten me. I have missed my steps in life. And shattered the world around me!
I cried everyday, this man maltreat me, rape me, turn me to his sex toy, and do all sort of nonsense things for me.
One day, while i was cooking his meal, I saw Abimbola coming towards the house, i was happy maybe he want to talk to the man. But she didn’t look ate, she pretended not to know me, she comes with a car and dresd nicely. I called but she didn’t answer me. I then wait for her beside her car. As she was through she met me at the door i ask her what happened why did she leave me. She said she doesn’t have any business with me that i shoulad accept my fate sge let me know that this is the place that fit me as i am getting more money than her. Therw i fully know she has hands in the evil things that befall me. I wept kneel and begged her to save me, she said no and drove off.
I was beaten and raped that night by the monster. No news fro my family.
The following week my brother came again and let me know that funmi is no longer in the school, that he was told she is married and living with her husband in her state but he went to her family house and her number was given to him and ever since he has been calling the number it is not going through. I accept fate and ask about my others brothers health. The money i gave him was spent on treatment for him and feeding for the whole family but all is vanished. I tell him to go back home and they should forget about me. My brother wept, he was helpless and weak, he doesn’t want to go but he had no choice. I bade him goodbye forever.
I know it is only Gof that will be able to save me, all my prayers were weak. I might be praying and felt asleep. I had bad dreams almost everyday, i was useless my life was shattered.
I wish i can be with my family, i wish i can be in school reading my book and paying attention to funmi. I can’t help myself and decided to take my life the following day. In the afternoon, i was preparing to end my life when i heard the sound of car at the frontage of the mud house. I pray it is my brother and i was right. It is jamws and Funmilayo. She hugged me tight and wept seeing me in that condition she let me know God told her to look for me and she did she went to my father house there she met my two brothers and his wife and kids. Then he met James and he ask him if she was Funmilayo. Immediately they traveled down to this place witj her husband a pastor. They pray entering the house.
The herbalist comes out sweating, at the sight seeing Funmilayo, he rushed into his power house and wear a big rrgaila. Funmi and her husband started praying hard, i knelt down and they continue singing worship songs and praises that I have forgotten and rain ptayers down!. The prayers was so powerful that the herbalist upon trying all his charm none work out. I immediately come back to senses and see the herbalist rolling on the floor. Shouting fire . Then he stop shouting anf showing an act of imbecile. I vomited immediately a lizard, and 3 other things. I was told to remove all what i am wearing. Funmi was with her husband and my brother excuse as i was stark naked, she poured water in bottle on my head to my to my toes and pour annoiting oil on my head i felt relieved. I was happy then my brother bring in clothes that they bought along the way for me to wear with a new slippers. We all went out from the house leaving the herbalist on the floor and drove off to the city. I was happy to see my brother heathly he can walk now. They hugged me so tight i wept and ask for forgiveness they forgive me and take me back. My family thanked Funmilayo and her husband. I was instructed to always be prayerful anf be close to God. I was happy that God gave me another chance. We badr them goodbye.
After a month, My brother boss came over to our house one fine morning after praying. We believe God will intervene, he apologized to my brother for sacking and even gave him the company in his name. As he is traveling back to abroad to stay forever with his family. It was a good news we were happy and congratulate him, the boss only didn’t do that. He make sure my other brother get his autos work back and tell my eldest brother to employ James in the company even though it is not what he study in school. I was so happy for them.
The following week my passport and visa were made ready for me to study abroad anf chase my dreams of becoming a lawyer.
I was so happy and vowed not to miss this path again. I always get in touch with funmi and always thank her Anf God
Years in abroad after my school, I heard Abimbola is nothing but a mad woman in town, i pray for her and forgive, i was told she confeessed to my brothers before turning to mad woman. I finished my school, got married here in Canada to a white man and i am having my second child in my stomach.
I pray my mother forgive and I know she did. My brothers are doing well and they always check on me as usual. God is the only way. This memories will never ever be erased from my life. I forgive myself and move on hoping for a better life.