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THE BOARDING HOUSE EPISODE 2: IN WHICH I VOWED NEVER TO REPORT AGAIN
I was becoming part of the boarding house already and after that first slap, receiving slaps and seeing someone being slapped were like hearing someone say ‘good morning’ – just like the new slang “izz nutin”.
Exactly six weeks after my first slap, my definition of boarding school was simply a mixture of tears and fun – I and my friends gathered on Saturday mornings to do some toilet work and receive beatings, I’m sure you don’t want to read my description of what the toilet I met in the boarding school looked like and then in the evenings, we all gather again, but this time to play ‘catcher’ or ‘police and thief’. I had made many friends now but my closest friends were in the boarding school with me – those boys that collected slaps with me, those that ate hard yam on Monday mornings with me, those that pounded faeces in the mornings with me – these were the ones I liked most because we suffered and smiled together.
On this day, I just got back from the mid-term break and really, home looked like the description we hear of heaven, after a long while of missing home and it occurred to me as if the 5 days I spent at home only had 12 hours in each day, it was so fast! It was a Monday and mum had just dropped me off at the car park, I got off the car and carried my lovely iron box which contained three sets of provision (mum got them for me when she saw how lean I had become in just one and a half month) from the boot then I brought out my leather box which contained my clothes and few textbooks. Mummy came with me to the hostel gate and waited for me to drop them upstairs so that no senior could hold me back – “My mum is waiting for me downstairs please”, that was the sentence that made one free instantly.
I think you should know that in our boarding school, when replying your seniors you add the word ‘please’ to the end of every sentence. I hope you won’t be surprised when you start seeing them in my stories.
Anyways, I got off with that one in the afternoon, all thanks to mum after which I went to one of our hideouts to chill and gist with friends.
The time must have been something around ten because I was fast asleep and all of a sudden, like the sound of a bomb it fell on my cheeks – it was senior Akin’s almighty palm. “Yeeeeeehh”, I screamed out with all my strenght.
“Shut up basket”, senior Akin said at the top of his voice with another slap, but this time it landed on my bare back.
“My own don finish” I thought to myself with fake tears rolling my cheeks already.
“Excuse me please, what did I do please”, I sobbed as Akin dragged me along with him. I looked up somehow and behold I saw myself being dragged to the gathering of some bloody souls (the name we gave wicked seniors) and soon I knew I was doomed but for what reason I didn’t know.
As I stepped into their gathering, one heavy fist landed on my head and quickly, the sleep in my eyes vanished. Another hand landed on me then another, then another and on like that. I could hear my heartbeat quickly, I wished I could just faint immediately and land in the dispensary but nope – I’ve never fainted before in my life.
“Bloody bastard, you sabi wetin you do?” Akin queried me after many minutes of beating.
“No please” I replied calmly. Immediately, another round of beating followed and this time my brain began to calculate and so when I was asked again if I knew what I did, I just replied in between tears (the tears were real this time around) that I knew what I did. The truth was I wasn’t sure if I was right but I knew it had to be what I had on my mind because I hadn’t vexed anyone yet since I resumed that afternoon.
Few days before the mid-term break, I had reported senior Akin for collecting my bread and egg which was my breakfast on Sunday. It wasn’t my intention to report him to the housemaster for just that but he punished me and gave me few rounds of beating, his reason was because I wasted his time in surrendering my bread. Akin was a ‘bad guy’ and a ‘brutal soul’ and yet in front of me and his mates he was slapped by Mr. Fagbowo, our housemaster after I’d reported him and he also received up to 10 strokes of Mr. Fagbowo’s lashing.
This was the Sunday before I went home and more than a week ago today, so I asked them if that was why I was collecting mass beating and I didn’t need to hear yes before knowing that was the reason. The beating reduced afterwards and it all melted down into a long session of punishment, Akin himself was almost dozing off.
“See”, he began as he walked me back to my bed and I listened humbly with shaky legs. “Una too like to dey fuck up, you go dey report me unto ordinary loaf, shey u no sabi say dem no dey report?” he continued. We arrived at my bed space and he rounded it up.
“If you report your senior wey chop cane from house-master, shey u no sabi say dat housemaster go go hin house and na us go remain for here, you go just make seniors dey hate you”, he concluded “you be sure guy, no go fuck up again o”, with that he left me alone
I then reasoned what he said alone on my bed – why should I report sef when I will still come back to the hostel? I dozed off shortly, weak and feeling like I had rocks on my laps.
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