THE FLOWER GIRL EPISODE 15
Madam Onyii had just been transferred to Umuagasi Primary School, Okpe and decided to take Chidimma along with her family, She was a mother of five: all boys. Her first son also gained admission into secondary school the same year with Chidimma. And two of them: Chidimma and ‘Ugonna were admitted at Community Secondary School, Okpe. Chidimma’s presence in Madam Onyii’s family was highly welcomed as she began to play the act of a daughter in the family of boys.
She was giving much assistance to Madam Onyii in terms of cooking and washing. There was no type of food Chidimma did not know how to cook. She used to wake up early in the morning along with Madam Onyii to prepare the breakfast for the family. And when they were through, all of them would leave for school at the same time.
Chidimma and Ugonna would be heading northward to the Community Secondary School, Okpe while Madam Onyii and her four other children would be heading eastward to Umuagasi Primary School, Okpe. Madam Onyii’s husband, Ukene was a carpenter. He used to relocate with his wife whenever she was transferred.
When his wife was transferred to Okpe, he also moved along with her. When he got to Okpe, he opened his new workshop at Oye Okpe Market. His duty was to visit houses and make repairs to damaged roofs, doors, windows, tables and chairs. He equally constructed stools and Sold to the people. He had a very good handwork and used it to make a lot of money.
Their new house in Okpe was well furnished. It was in Ukene’s house that Chidimma watched television for the first time in her life. Her diet equally changed and her beauty began to be more pronounced.
Quite unlike in her father’s house, there was always time for everything in Madam Onyii’s house: time to play and time to read. Whenever it was time to read, it was a great offence for anyone to play. The way Madam Onyii flogged pupils in school was the same way she flogged even her own children. On daily basis, her children including Chidimma, would come to tell and show her what they have learnt in school that day.
And everything must be said in English. There was no doubt that Chidimma’s performance would improve during her stay with Madam Onyii and so it was because in addition to that, Madam Onyii used to tell them to spell make sentence with five new English words on daily basis. So in about a year in Madam Onyii’s house, every child under her roof was be able to learn about a thousand and eight hundred words in English.
Chidimma’s admission into secondary school was a great challenge to her poor parents, but Madam Onyii and her husband helped greatly in ensuring that Chidimma continued to be in school. The locker Chidimma used in secondary school, together with the stool she used was constructed by Ukene. And Chidimma’s parents did not pay any shishi for it.
On Chidimma’s first day in secondary school, she met a woman popularly called Madam Caro. She was also the woman registered her. That day, Madam Caro did not come to school on time as she used to do. She lived inside the school compound but had travelled to her town over the weekend and did not return on time. So by the time she got to school that Monday a lot of parents who wanted their children to be admitted into JS 1 had come and were seated for long waiting for the madam whom they ‘were told was the one in-charge of admissions.
On the wall was pasted a paper that contained all the requirements which the school had asked the intending JS 1 students to come along with. Chidimma was with her mother who sat next to her in a long bench where other women were seated.
Chidimma and her mother were not among the first people that came to the school that morning. In fact, they were among the few last. but they were assured that all of them would be attended to. Chidimma was also With her two brooms, one hoe, a cutlass, a dictionary, two novels, Mathematics textbook, English textbook, three passport photographs, two flat files, and exercise books.
Chidimma was carrying some in her hands, her mother was with some, while the rest were lain on the ground. They sat quietly waiting for the officer that would attend to them.
Immediately Madam Caro walked into the hall, her eyes caught a beautiful Chidimma who was sitting in the midst of women. And she was highly attractive. Madam Caro walked to where Chidimma was sitting.
“Fine baby, how are you?” greeted Madam Caro as she caressed Chidimma’s chin.
“I am fine Thank you,” Chidimma replied with a smile.
“What is your name?”
“My name is Chidimma Obele.”
“You are from where?”
“I am come from Oseh.”
“You are a native of Oseh?”
“You want to be a student in my school?”
“Where are your parents?”
“I am here with my mum.” Chidimma pointed at her mother.
“Please bring her in. Let me see two of you first,” Madam Caro said to Chidimma’s mother as she walked inside her office.
Chidimma got her admission immediately even though scores were not as impressive as that of so many other candidates who were seeking admission into such Competitive school which was known for a high moral standard. Chidimma’s class was JS 1C and her number in the register was 23.
Chidimma was very domestic to a fault. And that landed him into a big trouble, It was a trouble between her and Madam Onyii. Ukene had not seen a lady in the likes of Chidimma. He was superised the way Chidimma did her own things. He saw Chidimma as an obedient child, polite, homely, unpretentious, humble and also good looking.
“Even when I married my own wife, she wasn’t as good as this,” Ukene said to himself.
“I am beginning to like this girl. She is so pretty and caring to me more than my wife. I don’t. think I will continue dying in silence. I will better act and act fast. I can’t have this type of girl under my roof and continue spending my money on other women. All I need is here with me and I have to start tapping the resources. I will better tell Chidimma that I love her. My falling in love with her is factual not phoney,” Ukene affirmed.