Preordained - Episode 4


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“Mama, is there a story behind this pair of earrings, and the necklace?” I’d asked my mother right after that supper, carefully taking in her features. And it’d been right there, etched upon her visage: the shock of some sort, then the preceding frown, both morphed in a sequence. 

Even her recovery was a little suspicious. 

“Look Lulu, there’s no story to it,” She managed to say. “Well, apart from the fact that it used to belong to my grandmother, then my mother, who passed it over to me . And I obviously did the same with you.”

If only I actually believed her. 

Then again, why would Mama lie to me? I thought, before drifting off to sleep.. 

Darkness is an abyss that we instinctively unwelcome. And it’s ironic, because when the inevitable twilight looms, we surrender ourselves to the impending sleepiness, and closing our eyes meant welcoming that same darkness. 

Could it be that the word darkness was only a deliberate scare? Could it be that, there was some sort of sheer comfort beneath the thickened layer of terror? 

I’d merely drifted off to sleep, — at least, that was as far as I knew. Yet, somehow I’d managed to find myself in someplace unknown, sat on a myriad of crunchy autumn leaves. 

Everywhere was dark, but not pitch black

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. It was a strange kind.. inexplicable. Nonetheless, amongst the surrounding cloudiness that I’d suddenly found myself, my Ankara stood out: A colourful mixture of a unique African print; the same one that perfectly matched my dangling earrings, and the tiny piece of necklace. 

I’d had those jewelleries since as long as I could remember.

Read " Zakia " by the same author ( Ishola Ubaydah )

. I couldn’t even recall ever taking them off at any point. It was beautiful, that was basically all that mattered to me. Well, until I’d caught a glimpse of a similiar sample in the flimsy sheet of Mama Yahimba’s book. Suddenly, its very essence was something I desperately wanted to be aware of. 

“Hello?” I called out, walking through the sandy ground, whilst all I got in return was the echo of my own curious voice. 

I wasn’t scared, — that was what I  thought, until they had emerged from the caboodle of trees.

The three of them were beautifully scary, eyes shining in different colour pallettes: blue, red, then another blue. I was paralysed on the spot, too numb to even react. I, Lulu Madiba, was absolutely frightened.

The big dogs in front of me were nothing like Mama Yahimba’s book had portrayed. Stood there in the same space as me, the perception was way different. They looked alive

Heart pounding, I murmured my last prayers as they encircled me. There’s no point hoping for the impossible, I thought. But just when I thought they would grab me, and tear me to bits, that didn’t happen. 

Instead, they bowed to me..

“Lulu, wake up. It’s morning!” Mama had suddenly said, tapping me on the arm.

It was only just a dream.

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