Karen: There’s a ‘get well soon’ party I have organized tomorrow evening. I had a feeling that you would be awake by then. Dad will be here and so will the Kenyan Deputy President. They are close friends. Almost everyone in our Parent’s political circles will be there and your mum is flying in today from SA. So you need to pull yourself together and recover as much as possible (smiling) to be able to walk around. You also need to be sober then.
Me: You know this is a scandal waiting to happen. Don’t you? The last time we had such a gathering, I ended up embarrassing my father after being caught sniffing coke in the washroom by the then NRA Commissioner General. Good thing his daughter was by my side. She ended up being flown back to Nigeria the following morning. DO you remember that?
Karen: I do. This will be different. We have to behave. Some important people are flying in from Nigeria to discuss my dad’s race for governorship back home. So it has to go smoothly. I have to be there for him as you have to be there for me. Remember we are to be married in 9 months. Yemi (Karen’s younger sister) and Chloe (a mutual friend) are also coming.
Me: So is this about my health or is it just another political gathering? I have nothing against your dad but his timing is shit.
The nurse knocks on the bedroom door to inform Karen that tea is ready. Upon seeing me awake she is overjoyed. I infer that from the big smile that crosses her face. She rushes to the room and gives me a warm hug that lingers on more than expected. I can feel the suppleness of her breasts. They are hard. In a good way.
Karen clears her throat and that’s when she lets me go. She profusely apologizes to Karen and rushes out.
The following day
Guests start arriving at her father’s compound at 7:16 PM. I am immaculately dressed and so is Karen. The spirits in the house are high and the soft music playing softens the political temperature in the room as politicians chat the night away, once in a while congratulating me for my recovery.
It’s all smiles from Karen and I. we have to, it is my night. When I look at how easily she interacts with the political elite, I understand that politicians aren’t born, they are made.
I am taking a leak outside and at 8:45 the Kenyan DP arrives in two Range Rover cars. The one that comes in first is being driven by his son with the DP as the passenger’s with the other one carrying officers trusted with his security.
He gets into the house after greeting me by name and that’s when I notice two vans, with the caterer’s logo at the gate.
I get into the house and everyone is listening to dad as he introduces the DP to everyone. Of course everyone knows him but that is just the way politics are. You have to devour every moment that comes along. Soon the chatter continues as business deals are sealed and notwithstanding the fact that I was the primary reason these people were here (or so I thought) no one seems to be paying me any attention other than Chloe who is sitting opposite me.
I can see Karen, a glass of wine at hand, talking with the DP’s son and a tinge of jealousy hits me. That’s when I remember how much she really means to me. They are laughing. I see him brushing his palm on her exposed upper arm. I don’t like the way he is acting towards her.
Then lights go off. The chatter goes on for a while as everyone waits for the backup generator to fire up. It doesn’t. 3 minutes into the darkness I ask everyone to relax as I head to the door to check what the problem with the generator could be.
Having been here more times than I can count, I know my way around the house. On the way out, I bump into two or three people who I apologize to thereafter continuing with the walk…
When I open the sliding doors that lead to the back lounge, the evening breeze hits me and that’s when I feel something cold on my forehead.
Before taking time to contemplate what it is, I hear a corking sound… it is a pistol. On my forehead.
A female voice in the darkness: Make a sound and I will splutter your brains allover these walls.