Alhaji: “oh no come on girl. You are an adult. This shouldn’t be difficult for you” He pulled Matilda to himself.
Matilda: “let go of me sir” she shrugged off from his grip after she sighted his broomstick standing firm and straight. She backed him.
Alhaji could not control his libido anymore, as he looked down at his legs, seeing his third leg almost tearing through his white underpants. He wiggled to Matilda with his hands in between his thighs. “See let’s do this. Okay I will add a thousand dollars to your pay”
Matilda turned back at him, looking confused as she was stuck in between yielding to the temptation. She nodded and lifted her purse to leave. However, Alhaji, held her shoulders from behind, sniffing on her nape with his moist lips.
Matilda: “excuse me” She thrust him to the bed, picked her handbag and ran out of the room as fast as she could.
Matilda wept bitterly as she laid in bed in her room. Her pillow was soaked in tears. She remembered her sick mother back in Nigeria. How she had jeered at her so called enemies- her uncle and his family, and other people who had scorned at her and her sibling. She remembered how her mother did odd jobs to provide for her needs and that of her sibling, the aftermath of which is her sickness. She wept the more, each time she remembered how she had thought her trip to the Gambia was the beginning of a new dawn for her and her family. She bit her lips and clenched her fists as she looked faced down. She wept till she fell asleep.
The reflection from the sun rays penetrating through the window woke Matilda up the day after her ugly experience with Alhaji Kinteh. She looked at her self and found the she was fully dressed; her shoes were still on her feet with the white bed spread stained with make-up washed away by tears. She checked the time on her wrist watch and found out it was past seven.
Matilda: “Oh, I must have slept off” soliloquised as she stood up and stretched her arms, unbuckling her heeled sandals. “hmmmm, this life is so unfair. Why is my case always form frying pan to fire? What has my family done to deserve this kind of life? Anyway, I will keep pushing on, life has never been fair” she entered the bathroom to clean up.
Matilda: “hmmm, is this what Wendy is into here in Gambia? Of course not. She is always travelling from one country to another, so, definitely she can’t be into this kind of dirty job. But how could she secure this for me and call it a job? Is this a job or prostitution?’ She thought as she got out of the bath tub. “I will not conclude yet, let me get to her first before I know the next line in action.
Matilda scrolled through her line to call her friend and ask of her whereabouts.
Matilda: “Hey, Wendy! What’s up?
Wendy: “I dey. How nah?”
Matilda: “I am not bad either. But wait a minute, Wendy, do you have idea or know anything about the so called job you asked your friend to help me secure?”
Wendy: “What happened?”
Matilda: “hmmm, you won’t believe what I went through the previous day’
Wendy: “what did you go through that no one has been through my dear?” She asked casually.
Matilda: “Would you believe the lady you sent me to is a pimp? I knew something was fishy when I was summoned to the hotel. I was not that suspicious though, because I have heard of about interviews being conducted in hotels and conference rooms. But, when I saw your so called Aisha, then I knew something had gone amiss. And I received the shock of my life when I saw Alhaji, thinking he was a CEO recruiting employees by himself in his hotel room, until the man started sticking out his tongue like a snake about to strike.
Wendy: “in conclusion now, you did not do what he asked you to do, right?”
Matilda: “what are you talking about? How do you expect me to do sleep with a total stranger? That is prostitution!”
Wendy: “tell me what I don’t know. You call it that, but we call it networking. We are just networking with all these big wigs to make a livelihood. You see me traveling from here to different countries flying first class, na cowries I dey spend. Abi since you enter Gambia, how many companies you don see here? Tell me.
Matilda: “Wendy, am I hearing this from you?” she looked at the screen of her phone to be sure of whose number she had dialled.
Wendy: “no, you are hearing it from my twin sister. See, let’s even see sef. Can you come to my house?”
Matilda: “hmm, okay I will come. In fact look through your window you will see me right away” She hung the phone and raced to the street to stop a taxi to Bakau.
Wendy: “Welcome”. She greeted her friend hugging her. “Sit down”
Matilda: “Thank you”
Wendy: “So, I did not really understand your rants on phone, can you please give a recap of the whole story?
Matilda: “See, Wendy I have told you my own. I, Matilda Amarachi Okeke, can and will not spread my two legs for a stranger to get in between for money. In case you do not know, it is PROSTITUTION” she said, emphasizing the word and straining her eyes, gathering folds on her forehead.
Wendy: “hahahahha, do you know you are so funny?” she asked rhetorically, laughing hysterically at her friend.
Matilda: “See, what is funny in what I have just said? I have reached a conclusion now. I can’t do it. And I will not do it. Period!
Wendy: “Fine. It is very simple, be ready to face the music and dance to the rhythm of huge bills and debt. But, mind you don’t call on me for money or accommodation. As you can see, my house is full to the brim, and every occupant brings me pay at the end of the month. Or better still I get my commission from each and everyone of them, so, if you think of joining me here for free, it is not going to work. You can’t be a liability on me. Therefore, my dear shine your eyes, use your brain. Are you here to come and count the number of beaches? How much did the man offer you sef?
Matilda: “A thousand dollars and a trip to Dubai. But she added another thousand to it when I felt reluctant.
Wendy: “oh no Matti, you disappoint me. Do you know what you are doing at all? A trip to Dubai and two thousand dollars? And you just threw the offer off fence like that? See, you don’t know how lucky you are?
Matilda: “is this luck or doom? Do you call this luck?” she looked at her with amazement.
Wendy: “if course it is fortune sef. I never got that as a start off offer when I first came here few years back. That is even if I was paid directly. My agent would give me whatever she felt like giving, but you, here you are having a direct negotiation with your clients and still declining such mouth- watering offers. Wake up girl!” She yelled at her and shook her vigorously, holding her shoulders firmly.
Matilda: “I still stand on my words, I will never do such.
Wendy: “No problem. Suit yourself. I hope you remember that you have bills to pay and I can’t fend for you here forever. So, the ball is in your court. See all these girls that you see here with me, they don’t have the kind of privilege you have, and you are misusing your own opportunity.
Matilda: “Wait, so, you are a pimp, Wendy?”
Wendy: “What you people call it.
Matilda: “Ha, Wendy, when did you turn to this?” she opened her mouth wide, wondering when the soft-spoken childhood friend of hers turned to a beast.
Wendy: “When I was subject to hardship. Inhumane acts. When I was used as sex slave by my sadist uncle, whom my parents entrusted me with while they were dying and anguishing in pain after a ghastly motor accident. Come on, girl you know little about my story. You were my saviour back then in Nigeria. You fed me with the little you had back then in school, have you forgotten? I never told you all these, because I hated me then. I hated the life I lived under a foster family. So, tell me Matilda, what do you expect of a girl subject to such hardships?
Matilda: “hmmmm, seriously I was never aware of all this. Nonetheless, this is not enough for you to do all this. You can always pick your pieces and start all over again”. She advised, moving closer to her friend who shifted back from her reach.
Wendy: “are you here to preach to me or what?”
Matilda: “Excuse me. Let me receive this call” she hushed her raging friend as she dipped her hand into her purse to bring out her phone while her friend looked on.
Matilda: “yes, ogini?” She asked her sister after seeing the caller identity on the screen of her phone.
Mercy: “sister, ma – ma is” she sobbed making her speech incoherent and her voice heavy.
Matilda: “whetin do mama? She asked looking jumping out of the chair.
Mercy: “Doctor say make we go bring money for surgery within forty-eight hours or else mama go die” she wept at the other end.
Matilda: “How much is the money?
Mercy: “Two hundred thousand naira, sister.
Matilda: “Ha! I don’t have money now, Mercy. I still dey find job to do here. Why is life so unfair?” she hung the call and sank into the chair raising one hand above her head and weeping.
Wendy: “What is the matter, Mati?” She asked, feeling concerned.
Matilda: “The call I just received now is from my sister. You remember I told you my mum is sick, you were even the now that gave me money to send home few weeks ago. Now, she called that her health deteriorated that she needs to undergo surgery within forty-eight hours, otherwise she would die.
Wendy: “You see now, if you had done what was requested of you, Alhaji would have shouldered the bill without you spending a dime from the money given to you for the service rendered.
Matilda eyed her as she rested her back on the sofa, staring at her friend irritatingly. She thought of where to get money within forty-eight hours to send home for her sick mother’s medical bill
Question: What will Matilda do to save her dying mother in Nigeria as she refuses to do the offer thrown to her? Also, are Wendy’s actions justifiable?
SEE Episode 8 Below…(You Don’t Wanna Miss This!)… Adelove Stories… Premier Naija Inspirational Blog!