BY DOROTHY BUDU-ARTHUR
She was not deeply asleep. She could see a figure of a shadow. It then started to come towards where she sat in the hut. She started getting tensed. It was this stranger who was up and was coming towards her. Her heart began to beat fast as she slightly opened her eyes. Was he finally coming molest her? Sama pretended to be asleep.
But this stranger did not harm her. He rather pulled one of the blankets he had put on her bed then wrapped her with it. Afterwards, he went back to sleep.
He jolted out of sleep as he heard the cock’s crow. He opened his eyes, stretched, and then yawned. Switching on his phone which he had been trying to save its battery power since he got to the village, he realized that it was 4:30am. He yawned again as he turned it off, then hid it under the bedding.
He watched the young woman sleeping soundly on the mat. He realized the bowl which he had left with food inside for her was empty.
Smiling to himself, he felt happy knowing that she ate the food. Going out of the hut to wash his face then brush his teeth, he hurried back afterwards to light fire in order to prepare some hot water for the young woman in his hut to bath with.
Sama opened her eyes to realize that it was morning. She couldn’t believe that she slept soundly throughout the night, and this stranger did not touch her or do anything to her. She couldn’t remember the last time she felt that restful.
Turning, she realized that the stranger was working out in the hut. Again she thought that to be strange. The men in the village did nothing like that. As the room was quite dim, she did not see his face. She sat up still with her head bowed. That was when the young man realized that she was awake.
He beamed with smiles as he looked upon her.
“You’re awake!” he said as he halted with his exercises. “I hope you slept well.”
“I’ve prepared some hot water for you to wash down with… And a meal for breakfast too… I guess you may have to wash down soon!”
“Yes… I have to go!” Sama said looking away. “I have to go now!”
“Why don’t you wash down first? I will be away from the hut, so you have no need to worry.”
“No… I can’t. I can’t stay any longer. He will be angry! Thank you for not harming me!” she replied with an agitated look.
And as the stranger looked on, she left the hut.
Sama walked with her head bowed to their hut. She still could not fathom all that had happened at the stranger’s place.
He paid such a price, yet he did not sleep with her. He rather cared and was concerned. Tears flowed as she thought about that. As she got to the hut, she saw Kuuku sitting by.
“Aww… Poor thing. He wasn’t gentle with you, huh? That man wasn’t gentle with you throughout the night, huh? Is that why you’re crying? Look at all the tears on her face! But I get to enjoy 2 fattened sheep. So sorry for you! At least, you aren’t limping. I hope you really satisfied him in bed.” Kuuku mocked.
And as Sama lifted up her head to look at his face, she shed more tears. Kuuku really did not care for her.
©Dorothy Budu-Arthur, 2017