Lost But Satisfied - Episode 27

The Birth of a Fire

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 Grace woke again, lifeless. She was weak and it was better to allow her hands to remain on the bed because it made her feel the bed and helped her know she was still alive.
 None needed to explain the situation of things to her. She had refused to eat ever since she returned to life the second times, five days ago.
 Sleep seemed to be a love of grievance because it came to her intermittently, and transported her to a world of bliss, where she saw herself playing with Bidemi and Ademola.
‘Mummy Demola, You’ve woken. Please rise and eat something’. 
Grace couldn’t bring herself to eat anything . The appetite for food died within her and like a phoenix, it gave birth to the appetite to die. Her appetite for food had been swallowed by desire and hatred. Desire to see her son; desire to defame Chief; desire to get Bidemi back into her life. And hatred for Chief for the system.
‘Please, Mummy Demola, rise up’, Mrs Akintoye, her neighbour said, as she scurried back into the room with fruit salad.
‘Thank you, Mrs Akintoye. I’ll eat today’. 
‘Good. I thank God ooo…Some people from your workplace are here, outside. They want to see you’. 
Grace nodded.’ I’ll be there’
 The worms in her belly jostled for food and made a lot of noise

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. Blood and nutrients began to move about in her body, strengthening her.
 Mrs Akintoye stood to leave. Grace held her hand,’ Thank you very much… For staying with me these weeks’.
‘What are sisters for?' Mrs Akintoye said and covered Grace’s hand with her other hand.
 A big smile crept across Grace’s face and covered it. ’I think I’m seriously hungry’.
 Mrs Akintoye turned to her and smiled.’ I’ll get you bread and milk to start with. It will repair your worn out tissues’.
 Grace replied with a nod, still smiling.
 The past few weeks had made her come to the realisation that tears do not resurrect the dead. Grieving does not bring them back. And that it was time to get her husband back.
‘A dead husband is better than a kidnapped one’, she murmured as she moved along the wall towards the bathroom.
 Not minding that people were waiting for her, Grace took her time and had a long hot bath and that was the advantage she got from marrying Bidemi. Before they began having financial problem, Bidemi built the luxurious house for massive comfort and she was really enjoying the amenities.
 After dressing, she stepped into the parlour in her long peach gown and met Usman and Deroju, her junior colleagues.
 ‘Mrs. Adeoti’, Deroju cried as she rushed to her side, helping her to a seat.
Grace’s face still held the gloom. She hugged and comforted the crying Deroju instead of receiving comfort from her. The hugging lasted for a longer time than expected until Grace smiled and pleaded with Deroju to sit back. They began to discuss. Their discussion moved from commiseration to the reason behind Ademola’s death, and to Fortune City.
‘How’s it going at work?’
 Usman and Deroju sighed and gave themselves side-glances. Usman shrugged and rested his back on the chair.
 Usman was a plain lanky guy whose only distinctive features are his bald and his goatee. Grace knew something was up, but she decided to wait for their reply, which didn’t come.
‘What’s happening?' She said as Mrs Akintoye brought the bread and tea. Although Grace loved eating in the dining room, she sat there in the parlour.
 ‘Thousands…’ Deroju said. The sofa made sounds as she took her fat body to the edge.
‘If not more…’ Usman said, shaking his head and opening his palms.
Grace’s eye roamed from one person to another, trying to decipher what was bothering them. From the look of things, she knew the matter should not be probed.
‘Did you hear of the death of Marcus Fijabi?’
Grace shook her head and swallowed hard. She knew Marcus Fijabi, he was an activist who would fight for anything, no matter how small.' When did he die?’
 ‘January second. He was found hanging from the ceiling?’ Deroju said, filling her in.
‘Ohhh…’ Grace said with her mouth full.’ Suicide’.
‘So I thought…’
‘As in?’
‘Can you believe I was near the place when it happened?’
 ‘That’s good. You will be the first to cover the news of course’, Grace said, wondering if she should smile because the people she wanted to smile at looked sad.
‘That’s not good. I noticed that trend after the bomb blast’, Usman said, sitting up and joining his hands.’ We were always the first to know about people’s death. Many bad incidences that had been happening, we knew it first’.
‘That’s true. It's not good’. Grace nodded. She reasoned with Usman. 'What have you done? Have you tried finding any evidence’?
‘So, I bugged Oga’s phone and I discovered that we were the one causing the news’.
 ‘Causing the news… as in?’
‘There are some people causing the accidents, the deaths, the quarrels, the framings…’ Deroju said,’ even the criminals caught...’
 Grace swallowed hard, her eyes roaming about in the room, as she remembered every news they had covered. They were always the first, the most credible.
 She covered her mouth as she stared at Usman.
‘I know the person doing it. I mean the man behind this evil. It’s our CEO. He caused the bomb blast. He killed my son and is now holding my husband’.
‘Are… Are….’ Deroju said and used her left hand to brush her hair.’ Your husband? I thought… ‘
 ‘I know… It was deceit; they made me believe he was dead’.
 ‘What do we do? I can’t keep working there.’ Usman said.
‘We are starting a real story newspaper, and website. We will be everywhere. The truth will be our only priority. And you will be the E-In-C, Usman’.
 A bright smile appeared on Usman’s face.

Read " Don't! Look Closer " by the same author ( Akíntayo Akinjide )

. The thought had been lingering on her mind for long but she didn’t have a genuine reason to leave their newspaper company and now was the time to do so.
‘And you, Deroju will be the Deputy’.
Deroju face brightened. Grace felt her heart glowed with pride. All she had to do was to point them in the right direction.
‘You will find your crew, credible people who are ready to die for the truth. And I think the first news you should get is news about what happened before and after the bomb blast. What is the government saying about the event?’
 Usman and Deroju stared at each other and later at Grace.
‘They are-‘Deroju said.
 ‘The government-‘Usman said. Usman stopped talking.’ You, go first’.
‘No… You… You have the details’.
‘The government have discussed with the federal government and they have decided to fence Greencity round’.
‘That’s impossible’ Grace said, shifting to the edge of the seat.
 ‘That’s possible. Refused at first, they requested for cessation from being part of Nigeria. And for some absurd reason, their lawyer won the case’.
Grace was stunned.’ Does Governor Bolude have such liver? And why will they do that?’
 ‘That’s what I’m saying’, Deroju lamented. Her voice rose above the sound of the ceiling fan. ‘He’s gullible; there are some people that are pushing Him. He said it was to protect us from Boko Haram’.
 ‘We need to know more’.
 

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