The story continues…
December 31st, 1990
“….Life isn’t fair” he said out loud forgetting that he wasn’t talking to anyone besides himself. All alone in his room he conceptualized the wickedness of a man’s heart, “What did I do? I don’t deserve this kind of life. I’m just a mere shadow that doesn’t exist” he thought. He looked out his window: it was raining cat and dog. “What a way to end the year and I’ve no one to share it with” he lamented. At this point all he could hear were the lyrics of Fela Anikulapokuti’s song “suffering and smiling… 49 sitting 99 standing…suffering and smiling..” the lyrics made him smile “yes, I’m suffering and smiling while the culprits are out there enjoying their lives believing all is well”.
This made him think of past event that have occurred in his life. He lost his parents a long time ago in a car accident on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway when he was still a boy. He was eleven years old at the time; he was the only child of his parents so he had to live with his Father’s relatives. His uncle’s wife treated him badly and blamed him for the death of his parents. He had to struggle to gain admission into the University to prove them wrong but they didn’t care.
He went into his kitchen to get himself a bottle of Guinness. Feeling lonely, he thought of what to do to while away time before crossing into the New Year. He sat on the couch in his living room thinking of his New Year resolution, he smiled “Payback, yes! Payback is my New Year resolution” saying this aloud he began to strategize on how to accomplish his plan. Looking at the pictures on his centre table anger brewed up inside him, these men rendered him useless and a ghost. These four men were prospering in their chosen professions while sat in his apartment brooding over split milk.
He looked first at the picture of Kunle Daniels, who was now a lawyer in Abuja. Kunle Daniels had always been proud even before they met. He was the son of SAN and Mrs. Jide Daniels, a popular lawyer in Lagos. Kunle’s parents were wealthy so it got into Kunle’s head and he trampled and ridiculed anyone he considered inferior. “Yes, I am inferior compared to Kunle and the other guys” he thought. Kunle had caused him much pain and he had to take his pound of flesh.
Next to Kunle’s picture was that of Kazeem Taiwo, a close pal to Kunle. Kazeem and Kunle were both Law students however Kazeem ventured into Company Law. Immediately after Law school he became the company secretary of APTECH company holdings, a big company in Port Harcourt. Kazeem was jovial unlike Kunle back in those days. Kazeem was a lover sports; he enjoyed playing football like any ordinary Nigerian boy. He vied for the position of Sports Director in his department and he won the elections.
The next picture he looked at was that of Femi Bankole, ‘the Historian’ they called him back in those days. He was now a lecturer in the department of History, University of Ibadan. Femi was from a humble background, he was a Casanova back when they were in the University and he was very bright student. He broke the jinx when he graduated with a first class form his department. Femi was his childhood friend; it was Femi who introduced him to the other guys in their second year on campus. The memory was still fresh in his memory “Everyone meet my childhood friend, he’s going to be staying with me from now on so treat him with respect, se gbo” said Femi. His heart was heavy as he remembered this because indirectly Femi brought him in contact with his waterloo; he wished things had been different.
Finally, he picked up the picture of Emeka Okoro, the Ibo boy amongst them. They referred to him as ‘omo nna’ (Ibo boy). When Emeka gained admission into the University he was older than the rest of them, he saw himself through the University. Emeka’s parents weren’t dead but were like they didn’t exist. Emeka was a hustler and he was the only one who had a serious relationship from his first year in the University, her name was Beatrice. Emeka loved her deeply and he finally married her after he graduated. Emeka is now a police officer.
“… hmm, they all excel in their respective fields but they are criminals” he said to himself, they need to suffer and he intended to see to that. Looking at the wall clock, he noticed that it was nearly twelve O’clock, it was exactly three minutes to twelve and in the next four minutes the whole neighbourhood will be rejoicing and shouting “Happy New Year”. “Yes my time has come but I must think carefully. They will pay!” he shouted with joy. He finished his thirrd bottle of beer and drifted off to sleep.
1st of January, 2003.
“Yes sir, it will be an honour for me to be on the committee and an achievement as a Lawyer” said Kunle. “I know you won’t disappoint me, I’ll brief you later on during the day when all necessary arrangements are in place, Happy New Year” said the Party Chairman, “Happy New Year to you Sir” replied Kunle. In a few seconds, he was off the phone and he couldn’t believe his luck in this New Year that had just started.