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What do they say about writers that commit suicide? I have a story.

Amidst the trials of the world, insincerity has become the watchword. If you must eat good food, then tell a good lie or risk being squeezed to nothingness. This little closet of mine was just home, a simple apartment where I created mansions in my writings. You could equally say I was a loner. The career I’d always longed for as a child has put me between just coke and smokes. They soothed more than human company.

This same career had cost me a fortune in the past but rather than breaking, it invigorated me to write till I heard the captives have gotten freedom. That pushed me to stay alive. I loved to live in my loneliness where books were just companions and the sheets were partners that I caressed on a daily basis. The pen was a dildo. What was it that folks offered that I couldn’t create with mere objects? I knew I lived just right and we’d rather not judge right? There’s only one merciful creator we all trusted.

Back into the worst day of my life, the fourth day of March 1995. There was an uproar in the city after a story of mine got published in the City’s paper headlines. In the course of life, I’d learnt how much the world despised truths especially those minorities who were being trampled the most. That day, after a closed-door meeting of those top ranked robbers in guise of leaders, I wrote particularly on those who were found wanting, and further leaked secrets other people were afraid to share. The world didn’t appreciate that in anyway.

Rather, it cost my parents their dear lives. Well, I expected nothing less than a gruesome murder by some gunmen in a city trembling of insecurity. I remembered the day before, I alerted the police for protection, after we had received a warning letter threatening to kill us all. I was bluntly told to reap what I had sowed.

“You news writers do not think before acting, so face it alone,” he had told me.

On getting home that evening, I had met my parents in the pool of their own blood. It hurt so much that they had paid the ultimate price for sincerity, but I was happy at least, that they were honest to the end. Those were the people that stood by me, lying still without life. In tears, I dipped my hand into the crimson thickness and rubbed their blood on my cheeks and swore never to quit soon. If I had stopped in the course of it all, I knew death would come ringing.

It’s been ten years since that incidence and here on my table lay a similar note written in red ink this time, with danger signs at all corners. I didn’t shiver in any way. I simply pushed other manuscripts by the side and sat to reply the empty threats. I wouldn’t let let my life be snuffed out like that of my parents.

I was jolted by the loud hits on my door.

“They’re here,” I muttered.

Next was the shatter of my kitchen windows after futile attempts to break the front door. The kitchen had no burglar proof, so it aided their entry. I heard voices so, I knew there were three of them there, it was always three and I also expected three. The trio signed on the letter too—Scorpio, Vegas, Thunder.

“Hands above your head.”

“Shut your eyes woman!”

They thundered simultaneously. One of them threw a pistol at me, after which he pressed me against the wall.

“Any last favour?” he spoke so closely. If there was something that repelled me about hugs and kisses, it was the bad odour. I sneezed so loud and got freed in his lose grip. It actually earned me a blow in the abdomen. Finally, I requested to send a mail to a family member which they graced without mincing words.

Afterwards, it was game time. I fired first at Vegas and he dropped. It was he that handed me the pistol and whispered his name in my ear.

Then the other two shot me twice in the chest. I felt my own blood gush out, clumps of viscous fluid, smelling of iron, red like roses. It felt good. Just before I reached the floor in emptiness, I shot at their legs as they ran over the same window. I used the last strength in me to fire those bullets and I gladly didn’t miss.

One thing that enticed me most as a journalist among others was to give breaking news. As I struggled with the little life left in me, I reminisced how much I fulfilled my earthly dreams.

Luckily, I’d entrusted the news I was working on to someone else. Idara my cousin had sworn to get it published in my name, there was no greater honour.

Mr. Gusau, the Local Government Chairman would be all over the news in a short time. I, the only witness of his ruthless murder of four newsmen was approaching the end too, and by daybreak, the young journalist’s assassination would appear in the headlines as well.

Then darkness came.

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