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"Alone you came into this world, alone shall you leave."

Every element of the world was on their own and each day they kept to their demand; the sun to shine in the day and the moon glows in the night, rain falls when its cloud is filled. Who knows if the animals aren't on their own? If they hide collective actions to be themselves in a single World.

The world is single so everyone is to his business as mother does say, 'my daughter if you depend on anyone including me you may be turned down someday! On your own is the capital of this world.' I wondered if her comment about the world is good.

"Should it be her experience?" I thought. "If so why?" I haven't been given an explanation on why is everyone individualistic, why when collective actions are planned it'll end up in commotion and loss of trust.

That once happened between father and some of his business partners, I remembered father yelling on the phone that the attained profit should be equally shared otherwise it will call for a battle not planned for.

"Sir, the deal was that the contract will be a fifty-fifty share but not the profit, although wasn't said but as we brought the contract we're supposed to get the higher pay. That's how professional businessmen do..."

"You must be a cowboy!"

"Sir, we've come to conclusion and period."

Father smiled at their dishonest comment, "I think a lawyer should tell me that." He cut the call.

"Fools! They tend to exaggerate at their victory."

"Honey! Why not let them be, perhaps it's an eye-opener. You now know that Aba men aren't common men in business." Mother justified.


"Don't worry!" Mother bluffed, paying rapt attention to the television. No time for argument, they just concluded one during the weekend and now- three days later another trying to arise. I glimpsed at her knowing that she couldn't continue to watch me stare at them arguing either about money; attitude, events, lack of responsibility... And others that cause ensues of argument between my parents.

"So this woman has gotten her immoral act to my house..." Father once yelled as he walked inside to find some strange male clothes on the sofa.

"What again!" Mother entered.

"Where is him?"


"Your lover, you pros-"

"Dad enough! Mum bought them as a gift for your birthday." I interrupted.

He grinned as he went into his room with some suspicious stare wondering if we'd coaxed him to a hush.


"Your lover!" As little as a sixteen years old teen, I was in a single World. Father's statement always makes me think who, I tried to know the so-called mother proposed lover that father always accentuate daily. I observed mother looking young and gorgeous and had never denied rather she just bluff the comment.

"Who told father of that?"

"Juli, this life is not collective. Everyone is on their own, don't buy anyone's trust because even your own blood can sell you, don't be ruled by other's opinion otherwise you'll fail. Alone you came to this world, alone shall you leave..." Mother said as usual.

Then we're planning dinner before father returns with furious words in his mouth. It was past ten and father hasn't returned, mother didn't complain; she'd never, she once mentioned that he closes by six from work- which is about four hours ago.

"Mother but you're married to father!"

"Yea, but your father has married his job."

"How mother?" I asked.

"Can't you see," mother checked her wristwatch, "it's past ten and he's not yet back, what'll a married man be doing away from his house by this time."

"But mother it's better, than he returns and start yelling for dinner."

Mother gave a stern look, "how about that! Isn't him the head of the family?"

I turned away from mother, was sick and not able to reply; to argue words with her especially about father. I wanted to ask like other times "who's your lover?" But wished it won't cause a scenario.

"Mother, who's... Is... Your... Lo-ver?" I stuttered as I stared at the table which mother placed her hands, I couldn't give her a direct stare, the fear was strong like the fire from the cooker.

"Your father's trying to use-"

"No mother!" I interrupted, "just that with father's constant nagging about it, it..."

"It what!" Mother barked.

I was taken aback.

'go on!' my conscience encouraged me.

"...it worries me." I replied lamely.

Mother sighed as she gave a relaxed breath, "don't follow your father."


"He's always crazy!"

"Mother!" I cried.

"Yes, he's!"

I stared at my mother, this time I did boldly look at the two fixed pupils in her eyes, at her look of depression and willingness to say what she had over and again-

"How mother,"

"How does he know I have a lover?"

"So mother you do!" I cut in.

"Juli enough! What kind of joke is that?" Mother digressed her attention to the food on fire.

"Mother it's no longer a news."


"Your lover!"

"Enough Juli!" Mother yelled, "should I tell you about your father, should I?"

I was fed up. She had exclaimed more than my ears can hear, 'should I say an unfaithful couple!' I soliloquy.


"A lady called!" Like a dream I remembered mother exclaiming. That was precisely a year ago, after my parents marriage anniversary which was also my birthday. July 2nd 2016.

"Who's she?"

"She said her name is Tracy!"

I turned to father who seemed anticipated to hear if mother will say any more comment, his eyes were fixed on mother.

"She said you both have meeting by..."

"Yea, I know! She's the bank manager I told you of."

I wanted to interrupt if mother has forgotten but it was lack of manners to do such. I remembered father once mentioning of the bank manager to be a man, how come the manager has turned to a lady?

"I thought the case was over?"

"Ah-ah! I thought I told you that of the contract Mr Tony and I did that the bank got involved... They need their money."

"Why not transfer it?"

"This is business transaction not shopping transaction."

I left the sitting room for my parents as their quarrel arose. Silently I crept into my room which was a bit spacious, the door was shut but the altercation from the sitting room was echoing in my room, the window was widely opened as I wondered if this is the best life to live. If the photocopy of my parents are the originals of life.

I could hear mother, "you're too crooked!" She echoed.

Few minutes later, I was on my bed having no definite thought. Different monsters were in my room, around me like in an operation room, with some biased results. Their whisper and images put some odd thoughts to my heart. Lust was taking over as I imagined myself caressing my body, so silly! What joy will I derive from it? I remembered Gloria my best friend who had been so nasty sometimes with some immoral acts.

I remembered that week she exclaimed with tears to me that her boyfriend cheated on her, that he broke her heart. With pity I couldn't imagine myself being heart broken, not like Gloria that'd done several abortion, has gotten several breakup.

I stared at my nudity as I walked into the bathroom, my eyes were gazing at my chest especially as I could see the reflect on the mirror hung opposite me. I remembered Selina exclaiming the her breast has fallen. I wondered how.

By the time I was out mother was already in my room, on my bed.

"Nne...!" She spoke in her Igbo tongue.

"I'm fine mum," I interrupted with a look at her, trying to know if she was injured by the arguments. "You ain't good mother."

"Umm, just stress." Mother paused, "I knew you were depressed, I saw as you crept out."

"Um, I know, mother!"

"It's your father!" She stuttered, "he prefers his sugar girl to staying with his family."

"Mother!" I felt bewildered.

"Yea! Your father, his debauched lifestyle is out of control."

"But he mentioned of seeing you hanging out with a... Man!" I stressed.

"Juliana! It's your father..." It was like an echo to my ears.

I couldn't stand to listen to all the bluffing comments against my father, he spends more on liqueur, cheap girls and less on his family. I'm happy he pays my fees at the beginning of the term even though he can leave without breakfast being decided.

"He gave his friends some money to support their family, at work they honour him, respect him a lot."

"But mother he do give you."

"After I protest, after I stop him from going out, try to make he late for work. Is that supposed to be so?" She asked.

"It may be his appearance, don't judge him."

"What has judge got to do with it?" Mother asked, "what appearance? It's his nature! Blood, his relatives all the same."

"Mother it's much! Perhaps words can't change anything."

"Let it be since that's your opinion," she got up.

"No mother, your tongue is cruel." I cried.

"Like father! Like daughter!" She walked out.

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