“Hello!” “Hello Bros! Good Morning!” “Morning! Micheal abi?” “Yes bros” “How are you?” “Fine Bros” “what’s wrong with your phone? I was trying to reach you yesterday” “bros! They don steal the phone o, in short na why I call you be that” “what! How come na?” “Bros! I beg I fuck up, bros! I beg forgive me, I kno…” “Wait first… That porsche abi?” “Bros I swear I no even know wetin control me yesterday” “my goodness! Micheal you have killed me… Micheal you mean… In short you’re a disgrace, at age 29 Micheal you think you’re still a kid abi? You know what? Just make sure when I reach house on Friday I go see that phone, I de go deliver am on Saturday morning, any other of your story na your business” the other end of the connection suddenly went dead before Mike could say a thing. He looked up to the opened toilet windows above him, ‘I doubt if anyone heard this conversation’ he thought. A lizard landed on the floor from the fence & nodded, he suddenly envied the lizard, no reputation to guard, no fears or worries, no troubles to face, just free. He felt exhausted and sat down on a concrete slab protruding from the wall of the house which roofed the ground floor soak-away. Another lizard suddenly materialised from a nearby shrub and engaged the lizard in a hot pursuit, ‘the lizard wasn’t that free after all’ he thought. He scratched the back of his head, glanced at his wrist watch, vitamin D was still up for grab so there wasn’t any need returning to the house, he wanted to be left alone to think so he leaned on the wall, hung his legs on the fence in a scissors and reactivated his worry mode. His elder brother Jimmy wasn’t the type that made a fuss. Unlike Micheal, he never showed off, always busy trying to make more money & was very contended with his possessions. Jimmy Kassar was the first of two children of Late Mr. & Mrs. Fanen Kassar who died 17 & 12 years back respectively. Jimmy had always blamed himself for the death of his father even though his mother credited it to Mr. Fanen’s pride. When Jimmy was 18 & had rounded up his SSCE, there was a night party organised for his set, a final year party for only the graduating students of FGC Malali, Kaduna which was to hold after the last WAEC Paper for the year. For security reasons, a hall in Police College Kaduna was proposed as the venue for the party while Mr. Fanen Kassar, for principles influenced by religion, forbade Jimmy from attending. Jimmy had made his father see reasons to why he must attend the party but to no avail since Mr. Fanen stood firm to his grounds. Jimmy made up his mind & sneaked out of the house at Station quarters, Kaduna, which was roughly 5km from the venue at about 11pm when his parents had retired to bed leaving little Micheal Fanen to lock the back door behind him. It was a swell party & made Jimmy discard every atom of regret for breaking his father’s rules ‘anything were wan happen, make e happen’ he thought as he returned home in the wee hours of the morning. Mr. Fanen’s big Ego was wounded upon discovering Jimmy had not obeyed his words. Irrational decisions were taken, wrong moves were made & a show of shame displayed publicly as father went way out of line to reign supremacy over son. Despite cries & pleas from family & neighbours, Mr. Fanen disowned Jimmy in his very own words, banned him from answering his name for a surname & sent the boy parking out of his house. The beg for forgiveness continued for weeks to no avail as Mr. Fanen’s Ego didn’t allow him go back on the decision. This disturb Mr. Fanen though, Jimmy had reacted as well during a verbal fight between father & son, “I pray this your pride doesn’t kill you someday”… In another development, Jimmy also said “its your pride that made you fix your name for our surname instead of grandpa’s name” these words had hit Mr. Fanen hard & he wished he never took it this far. Mr. Fanen had HBP which resulted to a Cardiac Arrest & four weeks after his brawl with his son, the 16 months retired Nigeria Railway Service officer, the ever galant pensioner kicked the bucket. Jimmy relocated to an Uncle’s at Sabon Wuse in Niger State while Micheal & His Mother relocated to Mr. Fanen’s poor father’s house in Igbor, Gboko, Benue State. Micheal was practically a burden to his mother & paternal grand parents because his smallish physique didn’t allow him work in the farm, hunt or go fishing. He was definitely younger than his age & couldn’t compete with his peer group for the struggle for survival, the only way he contributed to the family was through the money he earned with his dance during the annual kwagh-hir festival. Nevertheless, Micheal was handsome, outspoken & had a touch of a city boy, which attracted a lot of village girls to him & made him the errand boy of so many village champions who couldn’t approach the ladies they desire, this fetched him stipends too. Mrs. Julie F. Kassar died wretched four years later, leaving behind nothing tangible for little Micheal who had now become 16 with only a Primary School Leaving Certificate for academic success. 2 years after the death of his mother, Jimmy had visited the only blood relation he had left in Igbor & upon seeing Micheal’s living conditions, made preparations to take Micheal along with him to Abaji in Abuja where he was running his one year compulsory NYSC program. As a Youth Corp member earning a monthly allowance of N9,900 from the Federal Government & N6,000 from Abaji Local Government, with a free accommodation in a secondary school staff quarters situated at a very remote part of Abaji, Jimmy had a fat savings & was capable of catering for the welfare of he & Micheal. He took it upon himself to sponsor Micheal’s education to any length if He would drop the Ego & start from JSS 1. Micheal grabbed the opportunity with opened arms, thanks to his deceptive physique, which allowed him process another birth certificate, taking 6 years out of his current age. Micheal successfully rounded up his SSCE & secured admission to study Political Science in University of Abuja while Jimmy on the other hand resorted to self employment, running a Laptop & Phone supply company, located in Abuja, having worked with various private companies. Jimmy resided in Gwagwalada, Abuja because of Micheal, he wanted to be close to his brother to be able to cater for his welfare financially & emotionally and make sure he never lacks or have any cause to revisit history.
Micheal who resided in Jimmy’s that seldom stays at home kept a whole lot of secrete from his circle of friends, amongst the lot was his age of which he was thought to be the youngest. Family history was another secrete, everyone believed Micheal came from a wealthy home, born with a silver spoon & owned the house he resided in Gwagwalada. Micheal would put a large framed photo of himself in the living room in Jimmy’s absence, wear Jimmy’s expensive clothes & shoes & go withdraw imaginary money sent to him from his imaginary wealthy parents. To further cover his secrete, he became reserved, an introvert & deceptive, showed off to impress, attracting loads of campus girls. Maintaining this false high standard made him insert his sim card in the new Blackberry p’9981 porsche designed phone Jimmy had purchased for N350,000 on demand, he had lied to his friends that he bought it & didn’t really like the phone as such he was likely to resell it any soon. Now the phone had been stolen, Jimmy is mad at him, his reputation stood on a cliff edge, soon to hit the rocks. “I will not break down, I’m Tiv, I dare not fall my own hand” he said quietly to him self and snapped back to reality. He felt moist on his face, vitamin D had gone on a break to return the following day, the sun threatened to rip off his eye balls, he got up from the slab, stood on his feet, swiped his hands at the back of his trousers severally, took 5 steps from the back to the side of the house, and 15 steps more brought him to the stair case where he began the slow climb to the apartment he occupied with his elder brother, enveloped with the thought of his next line of action. “Mike! Mike!! See this guy, were you de since? Na you I just de find up & down” Emma came rushing up the stairs while Micheal paused at the front door he was about opening before Emma showed up “I been no lost na, why you de find me?” “Inspector Adamu called me since that they’ve found my car” “what! So fast? Where?” “For kwali, its like them no fit activate the security so the car off for road” Emma smiled, looking very happy & anxious to go to Kwali. Micheal who knew it was useless to have any hope of his phone still being in the car reciprocated the smile and pretended happy “wetin you de wait for? Where’s Jacob? Let’s go na”
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