Family goes beyond blood ties; family is genuine relationship and togetherness. Pa Jimoh, Mrs. Jimoh, Timi, Ebun and I are family, but in the real sense we aren’t. The disunity that thrived amongst us was worse than the one plaguing the country. In fact, if we were Nigeria, we would have been no more after the civil war of 1967.
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Timi had always been the black sheep of the family since his primary school days, with him it was always from one problem to the other and adulthood did not change him a bit, instead the dude got worse and my dad’s hair got grey from having to cope with his first child’s excesses.
Dad’s continuous stay at the hospital meant that Timi was bound to have a field day causing havoc both at home and away from home. Our prayer was that he wouldn’t end up getting into trouble that was going to be beyond us and hell no! that prayer was never going to be answered because it wasn’t a worthy prayer to start with, not when the person in question is the devil’s advocate.
Timi’s excesses was beyond prayers even God knew that. I couldn’t stop Sotonye from joining me on the ride to Ojota anymore. Even if she had opted out due to my insensitivity, I would have pleaded with her to go with me. After the last chat I had on phone with Mr. Shina, I now needed moral support to even drive. Sotonye was all I needed to stop my emotions from running wild.
She kept doing all she could to bring me out of my hysteria. She had a way with words and it brought some sort of soothing relief to my downtrodden state. Whatever had transpired at Amosun street won’t have been so much of a trouble if my old man was not lying ill on a hospital bed.
Now the onus was on me, though I had an elder brother but I had to take care of his shit too. Worse still, he was the major problem facing the Jimoh family. My mum who would have deputized for my dad had also somewhat gotten herself in the middle of the ensuing melee.
I usually don’t like to be caught unawares by any development whatsoever, so I like getting first-hand information like the lawyer I am before heading to any place that is a centre of conflict and controversies. However, Mr. Shina who could have given me a full report of what went down in the residential rental property at Amosun street, Ojota was acting incommunicado. But I had another option; Suleiman was my course mate at UNILAG. He lived with his father on Amosun street, in fact their house was opposite ours.
“Let me call Suleiman,” I addressed Sotonye as we approached ori oke bus stop at Ogudu.
“Dele is it really necessary? We are almost there”
“It doesn’t matter dear. At least let’s know what we are going into,” I replied, not taking my eyes off the road.
“But we will go anyways”
“Sotonye can you just scroll through my phone contacts, search for Barrister Suleiman and dial his number”
In less than a minute, Sotonye was putting a call across to Suleiman. “Should I put it on speaker?”
“Hello! Baba how far now! You remember your guy today” Suleiman’s voice reverberated from my phone’s speaker
“Most wanted I dey alright o!”
‘Most wanted’ was Suleiman’s nickname at school. He was called that name by all and sundry because he was always at the heart of every crisis or controversy in the faculty of law. And basically, virtually every lecturer in the faculty always called upon him to do their dirty jobs. Truth be told, Suleiman was a two-faced person. “No vex bro…You know as our country be naa” I added.
“Na so….this una building just busy since morning o! I first think say na home video dem dey shoot sef, na now person dey yan me say na reality show”
“Egbon you don start o! which one be reality show again?”
“Baba I swear down! This your brother dey para gan ni o! You dey around ni? I know say you go don hear wetin happen”
“Wetin happen?” I feigned ignorance
“Wetin happen asin? You never hear ni?”
“Most wanted I want the full gist, na him make me call you.”
“Where you dey?”
“I dey drive come so?”
“Erm… when you come dem go give you the gist na, abi I resemble CNN ni”
“Bros make I know wetin dey happen now before I reach that side, you know I don’t react well to surprises”
“Of course, the hysteric Dele….bros the gist long o!”
“I get awoof credit egbon, download!”
“Baba na your brother dey cause gbege for hear o! I no know why una never lock that guy for zoo sef. But wait o! you sure say that guy na your blood brother because una be better opposites”
“Most wanted ginmme this gist na…I go soon reach that way na,” The dude was beginning to get on my nerves with idle talks just like he always did back then in UNILAG
“Where you dey now sef?”
“I don enter Ojota road naa”
“You know wetin… make I go ask my junior brother, na him film the whole matter”
“I beg your pardon!”Before I could get further clarifications he had gone off
“This dude is sick o! can you imagine!” I turned my face from the road to face Sotonye briefly
“Dele we are almost there, what is the point?”
“True that!” It only just dawned on me that we were just a street away. I had no other choice but to face the issue headlong. As I drove into Amosun street, I could sight from the entrance to the street that a small crowd had gathered around my father’s property. Then I noticed an ambulance just behind the small crowd that had gathered.
I drove quietly afterwards expecting the worse. Just as I parked the car by the entrance to the house, my mum was stretchered off by medics into the waiting ambulance.
My heart sunk in my chest at the sight. The crowd even made my situation worse for they were all looking morose. From where I was I couldn’t tell if mama was dead or alive.
Bad Market continues next week..