“Someone is crying outside.” I inform father, and head for the main door.
My heart leaps and races with several thoughts as to why a girl would be crying so loudly at 11 p.m.
“God. Let it not be that she was raped.”
With questions lodged in my throat, I stare at the sobbing girl being held by the hair by Father’s tenant, Ikem. Father joins me, takes a look and hisses.
“Awon omo oniranu” He spits.
“Come on. Just ignore them” Father says as he heads back into the house.
Shouldn’t you say something to Ikem? Ask him why he is holding the girl so and demand he free her? I ache to ask. But I couldn’t and didn’t because I’m almost certain Father would ask why she was in his apartment at such an ungodly hour to start with.
I head back in, shame washing over me for not saying something. To father. To Ikem. I wish I have the courage to rage at Ikem to leave the girl be or at least demand that father interfere. But, I don’t.
“There’s no guy I know in this neighborhood that that girl hasn’t slept in their house.” My Cousin says to me, minutes later as we head back in.
“Slept in their house as how?” I ask.
He smiles at me as if to say you know what I mean.
“Okay. I know what you mean” I say. “But it doesn’t matter you know. When a girl says to leave her alone, you do.”
We sit in silence for a few minutes “Doesn’t she have her own place or family she stays with?” I ask
“I think she sleeps wherever the night meets her.” Cousin shrugs.
I sigh “Maybe she ran away from ho….”
“Ada! Ada! Stand up!” Ikem’s scream interrupts me.
My cousin and I rush outside to find Ikem standing over the girl, who was now lying on the floor, her neck bent in an awkward angle.