During that period my sister was ill, Mama, and I were on a bus to visit a man who according to her, could see demons and call upon heaven. It was the fifth one this month, each of them failed because they weren’t powerful enough according to her. “This man was peculiar,” a close friend had informed her as they sat up chatting while they lost customers at the market. Mama patted her palms on her thighs as she resonated with curiosity.
“He once cast out seven demons from a girl who constantly had a nag migraine,” her friend had mentioned. Those words were inducement enough to get Mama hooked, so here we were, cramped, ice fish in a humid, onion smelling bus as we rode to meet my sister’s savior. Mama’s savior, because that was how it felt.
Few moments thereafter a man as if possessed with a supernatural entity, sat up straight, fixed his mouth and screamed the noisiest “Praise the Lord”.
The response “Alleluia” filled the bus and made it vibrate like an earthquake. Mama clapped her hands and shut her eyes as they man sang “He can never, never change”. The entire bus responded as if it was a normal duty to carry out. That if a man sings and claps his hands, the other passengers must follow. My sister woke up occasionally, squinting her eyes and falling back as she swiftly had woken. Mama pinched me as she gave me that ferocious look. “Is your mouth too heavy to sing?”
“I don’t want to,” the passengers turned to face me, condemning me with their eyes and extending their sympathy with a failed telepathic communication. “All these for what?” I asked. They made me feel as if I was a sinner. Maybe I was. For all I knew, I was a boy who my teacher thought I was too smart for my class.
Mama felt irritated. She was flushed with humiliation and she screamed at me, pointing her hand like a flexible arrow. I mumbled the words and grumbled as the bus bumped along the deteriorated roads of Imo State.
My sister didn’t wake up for a while, Mama got scared, she kept placing her palms on her neck often as if to check she was still alive. She still didn’t wake till we arrived at the pastor’s home….Continues on Saturday (subscribe to follow our Saturday story series😊)