THE FLOWER GIRL EPISODE 16
Nduka and his gang had arrived Oseh and had a brief stopover at Igwe’s palace to tell his father. Igwe Odumesi his mission that might turn fatal if Obele failed to comply. And the boys, who looked rough, deadly and drunk, were armed to the teeth.
Though Igwe Odumesi was not in full support of their mission, he was not able to stop his son. Igwe was at that moment with his Onowu, Ichie Mburuibu, when his son returned.
“The way I see these people, they are mad with anger and needed not to be allowed out of this palace. This is a man that is looked upon to be the next Igwe whenever you join your ancestors. If he then moves into the community with this madness of his, I wonder if the community will accept his igweship when his tenure comes up,” Ichie Mburuibu feared.
“I know all these. And that was why I warned him to stay back in the South as I continue looking for another girl for him. But he insisted on returning saying that he would rather die than not marrying Chidimma.”
“Nduka is in no doubt acting out of his senses because the war of love is not fought with bullet. If he really loves Obele’s daughter, let him be a man enough, approach her and win her love with his heart. He is making a costly mistake…”
Nduka and his gangs had moved out of the palace and their voices were heard outside. Igwe’s effort to calm his son down was in vain and he looked helplessly as Nduka led his gang out of the palace. Before they got to Obele’s house, Nduka and his gangs had inflicted a lot of injuries on many people on their way. Mbachu who was on his way to his farm was pushed down out of the way and he hit his head on an anthill.
One pregnant woman was also said to have been manhandled which made her to have a stillborn. As they were moving towards Obele’s house, their anger kept on increasing and people wondered what would happen to Obele by the time they lay their hands on him.
The ninth synod of Mmaita Diocese was holding at Saint Anglican Church, Okpe. Obele and his wife were among the delegates from Saint Andrew’s Anglican Church, Oseh. The synod which would last for four days began on that day but Obele and his wife had left for Okpe the previous day so as not to be late on the opening service which had just begun by the time Nduka and his gang of thieves stormed his house.
When they got to Obele’s house, they met the house under lock and key. And they thought that Obele had heard about their coming and decided to run away with his family. They broke the doors open, searched all nooks and crannies but found no one inside the house. They looked around the house to check any valuable thing to steal but found nothing.
“O boy, nothing dey for this house o! You sure say man de live here?” said one of them.
“Where them de sleep sef? No bed, no cushion. Na only ute Hausa I de see here o!”
“Me. I never see television or radio here oo.”
“You de talk of radio or television, you see any bulb or tiny sign of electricity here before you begin to look for television.”
“Hey! People de suffer for this world ooh. When one Compares this village with Lagos and Johannesburg, you go know say some people don de dey for hell fire while still alive oo. This one na old atani house oo. Even the atani himself don the wowo.”
“Everywhere sef de smell like my shit.”
“O boy. na here you say the girl wey you wan marry de live?
“Na my father say so oo.”
“That girl, you don take your eye see am before?”
“I don see am for television. I don see am for picture kwa. De girl fine well well. In fact de nnwa na tomato Jos.”
“Oya make we go search for am. I think say they don go hide am for their neighbor house.”
“That one na true talk oo.”
“Oya make we go.”
They all left Obele’s house leaving the doors ajar. Nduk and his cohorts began to search for Obele and his daughter in th entire neighborhood. When they had searched two or three houses without success, they grew wild and began to harass an molest people. When the heat was rising, the members of the community could no longer tolerate it.
They rose up in retaliation thereby turning the peaceful community into a war zone. Nduka and his group began to shoot sporadically to scare away the people and bullet touched so many people killing some and leaving so many wounded. But the people of Oseh community did not relent. They continued confronting them till their bullets were exhausted.
By the time they had no bullets on them any longer, they began to retreat back to igwe’s palace for reinforcement. And the entire community followed them behind throwing stones and sticks at them. The hurly-burly of such domestic war attracted the attention of the neighboring communities and they all sent in their youths to help bring the situation under control so that it would not spread further.
Madam Onyii was in the school when she heard about the war. She immediately ran to Community Secondary School, Okpe, to ensure Chidimma was in a good condition, By the time she got into the school compound, everywhere was as quiet as grave yard. She did not hear any pim in the whole compound and she thought that the school had dismissed. She then became afraid that Chidimma must have gone home. She looked at her clock and it was about an hour before noon.
Maybe the school must have decided to dismiss the students when they heard the news of the fight in OSeh community.
“This will be terrible if this girl had gone home because some people must have told them that she lives with me. And they must have gone to my house and probably met her at home. What will I tell Obele and indeed the people of Oseh? Maybe they must have…,” Madam Onyii talking to herself
“Hey! Madam, who are you looking for?” asked one of the security men.
Madam was shocked to the marrow when she heard the coarse voice. .
Catching some breath, she replied, “I thought nobody was in this compound.”
“Please Madam, whom are you looking for,” repeated the stem looking security man
“I am sorry, I wanted to see my daughter but I just realized that the school had dismissed.”
“Madam, the school is still in session. How may I help you?” asked the security man. .
“You mean the school is still in session in this unusual quiet and serene environment?” asked Madam Onyii as she looked clearly into the school compound.
“Yes, the school is still in session, But why do you ask?”
“Every Where is very calm unlike how it is in my own school.”
“Well, that is CSS Okpe for you. It is a school with a difference. It is a school where future leaders and well meaning people are trained. Madam Caro is a man in a woman form who always ensures that discipline is maintained in this school. Anyone who comes in here to study will definitely achieve whatever he wants to achieve because there is no distraction of any kind in this school…”
“Please enough of this accolade, would you mind helping me to call my daughter, Chidimma. I want to see her?” appealed Madam Onyii.
“Before you see any student in this school during the school hour, you must go through Madam Caro.”
“What if she is not around?”
“Then you have to wait until school over. But I think she is around because I saw her flogging one student who wanted to sneak out of the school.”
“Please, are you sure Chidimma did not sneak out too?”
“Chidimma Obele,” replied the security man.
“No Chidimma Obele is a decent child. She is a child with good character. Are you her mother?”
“Yes, I am. Hope she is still around:”
“Yes madam. Chidimma is not like other students it is we security men that know good and bad students. She doesn’t sneak out. Sometime ago I overheard her telling her fellow girls that her flower was still intact.”
“She is your daughter. You better ask her.”
Madam Onyii was taken to Madam Caro who later sent for Chidimma. Madam Onyii took time to explain to Madam Caro all that happening in Oseh and how it concerned Chidimma. She therefore appealed to Madam Caro to help her take care of Chidimma for some days until the situation in her town was brought under control.
“What about the parents? Where are they now?”
“that’s the question I cannot even answer now. I just heard in the school and I also heard that many heads have rolled and so many people are wounded. As I am standing here now, I don’t know their fate. They have not even come to have they sent me any message. As I see things now, I don’t think they are still alive.
People that have gone to Oseh said that Oseh is burning. Even me, I don’t think I am safe because willingly the person that caused the problem by advising to stop giving his daughter Chidimma away in marriage to that idiot…”
“No! Rather you are the person that God used to save the little girl, especially her future.”
“But my life is in danger.”
“Don’t worry, God will protect you.”