Published:1 Jun, 2012


In a thousand years to come, if he was still to be alive, Tommy would never believe that he could be looking for something that would lead him back to his village. In a thousand years to come, he would never dream of stepping his foot on the soil of his forefathers, if he was to be alive. His generation was that e-generation that came close to what is attainable in paradise. This generation never had any reason to go back ‘home’ as their elders called it. Going back to the village was exclusively reserved for festive periods like Christmas and New Year celebrations. Everything they ever needed was in the city. Even at these festive periods, they would find excuses not to go. There was virtually nothing out there in the village to make life any better than what technology had already given to the cities. Villages were relics of the past and technology was already thinking of how to put the whole living and dead generations of villagers in new museums that could be viewed at the click of a button on any smart phone or electronic storage device. Villages happened in the past. Their place was in history books.

Now in the tastefully furnished apartment on the Island which he shared with his two business partners, Tommy tried to convince himself that the only thing to do in this situation was to go to his grandparents’ house in the village. He mused to himself about the circumstances that led to this impromptu journey.

Tommy, Kenny and Richard were professional hustlers. They started their hustling way back when they were in the university. They did anything that fetched them money back then from arranging protesters for politicians and academic unions to bribing policemen that would come and put a stop to these same protests. They would arrange girls for rich married men that would come to the campus in the dead of night. They had their own quota of first year entry-level students that would be given automatic admission into the university. They simply represented that dark part of the higher institution of learning that was controlled by the ‘owners’ of the school. Because they were untouchable, they also made sure their students that got into the university through them had the same academic and extra-curricular protection they enjoyed for a token per-semester pay. It was just natural that they would be in the service of die-hard politicians when they graduated. Their reputations preceded them and it wasn’t long before they got called up for different odd jobs that would require no witnesses and no identifications. They got along well and were in the good books of their patrons. Each had six different passports that would take them out of the country in twenty-four hours flat if they felt the heat around the corner. They were living the lives they had always wanted.

This issue of having to travel to the village didn’t mean they were desperate for more cash. It was just another thing to hustle for. It was the next thing in town. He could picture some vivid scenes in his mind when he was still a kid and his parents would take them back home during the festive periods. They would go a week before Christmas and stay till two weeks after the New Year. It was pure bliss back then. They actually looked forward to it. They were treated like kings by other children that were unfortunate enough to have to spend the rest of their lives in the village. He was barely five years old then and the highlight of most of his holidays was in the evenings when his aged grandfather would tease him about his knowledge about a wide range of things after he might have told him beautiful stories that his teachers in the city didn’t know existed.

“Can you tell the time now, Chinedu?” His grandfather never called him Tommy. He would jokingly tell him that lazy boys were called Tommy in the village.

There was this big wall clock that hung on the wall directly opposite where his grandfather sat in his rickety armchair. It was a very old wall clock that had all the makings of an antique. It was exquisite and always in a polished form. Because his grandfather’s sitting room was sparsely furnished, the wall clock was very conspicuous in all of its glory. You couldn’t help but notice its presence when you entered the sparsely furnished room. It was big. Even Tommy could swear now that it was bigger than him then. And when it chimed to announce the hour of the day, its loud ‘gbaun’ would echo throughout the whole building and reach out to passersby on the quite street outside. It was needless to say that the activities of the house revolved around the big wall clock. It woke them up in the mornings and ushered them into the sitting room for their early morning mass service. Even Tommy’s storytelling time was announced by the clock and he would hear its loud ‘gbaun’ six times to signal six o’clock in the evening wherever he was in the house at that time. He would then rush with the other kids in the house to sit at his grandfather’s feet. They wouldn’t miss that time for all the adventures in the village; Tommy especially.

Tommy smiled to himself as he began to pack his bag. The stories were classic. His grandfather never repeated a story, he remembered. The kids would reel over with laughter at the special way he ended each story just to make them laugh. He would sit back after the story time while the other kids would go about some other duties before the wall clock chimed bedtime.

“Yes, I can, grandpa. But not everyone oooh…” Tommy would trail in his reply shyly. And his grandfather would proceed to give him a crash programme on how to read the time on the big wall clock.

Now he was thirty-two years old and he had to go and ‘steal’ his late grandfather’s wall clock because their foreign contact had informed them that wall clocks like that contained mercury which could be used to conjure different currencies of the world. That was the latest hustle in town. And he should know because he had an ear to the ground. The details were sketchy. According to the source, the tiny battery in the clock was made of pure mercury although its use had been banned a long time ago because of its hazardous nature. Mercury had been used in the times of the Mayas for divinatory purposes. They had also used it to conjure rare commodities. Their contact however gave them names of other contacts in Nigeria who testified to the efficacy of the arrangement. And no, though it was somehow a ‘spiritual something’, it would not require blood. Thank God for that, he said silently to himself because contrary to what most people believed, they were not murderers. They were just ordinary hustlers who would do anything but kill for money. He imagined how the house would be now ten years after the last occupant, his tireless grandmother, had passed on. His father, uncles and aunts had decided that they would not sell the property but instead use it as their country home whenever they had any need to go to the village even though they hardly went. Surely nobody would miss the big ‘grandfather’ clock. He wished he could keep it though instead of having to part with it. A lot of childhood memories lurked in that silent wall clock. His heart wept as he reminisced about the timeless time he had spent with his grandfather while the big clock silently tick-tocked.

Tommy instinctively looked at his left wrist and somewhere, simultaneously, in an abandoned building in the heart of Owaza, Abia state, a big clock announced the time of the day by sounding its characteristic ‘gbaun’ ten times.





  • Jidda

    A skillful weaving of a great story teller! A name to watch….I can not wait for your first book.

  • ofastupidwoman

    NICE ONE!!! Another one pls!

  • @ikeamadi

    Tell us whether he stole it or not na.


    Good one, boss.

    I already said that your descriptive capability is in tiptop shape

  • Panaqie

    More! More pls!!

Related Posts

Recent Posts

Kim Kardashain Poses Butt Naked On Hot Desert (PHOTOS)

Kim Kardashian gave her fans an absolute treat when she posted two pictures of her naked desert shoot to Instagram. While Kim has shown a preview of the shoot on her reality show, KUWTK, back in May, it's the first time the star has posted images from the day itself. See pics below:

France To Give Africa 2bn Euros For Green Energy

France will give African countries two billion euros ($2.1 billion) over the next four years to develop renewable energy and replace climate-harming fossil fuels, President Francois Hollande said Tuesday. “France will devote six billion euros between 2016 and 2020 for electricity provision on the continent” of Africa, he said on the sidelines of a UN climate conference in the outskirts of Paris. Credit: Vanguard

US Marine Convicted For Killing Transgender Filipino

A Philippine Court on Tuesday convicted a US Marine of homicide for killing a transgender Filipino in a motel in 2014. Lance Corporal Joseph Pemberton, who had been detained at the Philippine military’s headquarters, was sentenced to up to 12 years in prison for the crime. The victim, Jennifer Laude, was found strangled in the bathroom of a Motel...

SON Destroys N10bn Worth Of Fake Goods

The Director General of Standard Organisation of Nigeria, SON, Joseph Odumodu, on Monday said the organisation destroyed substandard goods worth N10 billion in the last four years. Mr. Odumodu disclosed this during his official visit to the headquarters of National Association of Government Approved Freight Forwarders in Lagos, saying the items were destroyed from 2011 to date. He urged the freight forwarders to collaborate with the organisation to halt importation of substandard products. Credit:...

Guess Which African Country Is Most Corrupt According To Transparency Intl.

Corruption is on the rise in Africa, with South Africa topping the list of countries where citizens believe the problem has got worse in the last year, said a Transparency International survey released Tuesday. According to the report, 83 percent of South Africans interviewed felt that corruption had increased, with Ghana and Nigeria also among the worst-affected nations. Across all 28 countries surveyed, the police, business executives, government officials and the courts were all perceived...

“Koko Master” D’banj Finally Getting Married, Wedding Billed To Hold On 12th December…..

Good news! The koko master and the music star D'banj is finally getting married. The identity of the lucky girl is yet unknown, He (koko master) has decided to keep it a top secret for now; but she is definitely from the western part of the country, Our inside source revealed. D'banj does not want too much hype and media coverage for his wedding, he added. According to the inside source, the wedding was originally billed for the...

Finance Minister Launches Cost Cutting Programme

The Minister of Finance in Nigeria, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, has inaugurated a government spending control team called ‘The Efficiency Unit’ (E-Unit). Mrs Adeosun on Monday launched the programme to monitor and cut recurrent expenditure across Federal government ministries. She said the Director at the Debt Management Office, Mrs Patricia Oniha, would be the leader of the unit. The Efficiency Unit will also assist the government in identifying opportunities to reduce wasteful...

Rivers State APC Mourn Victims Of Election Violence In The State

APC members in Rivers state yesterday held a procession to mourn the victims of election violence in the state, particularly those that died during the governorship election. See more photos below...

Tear Gas Released By Opposition In Kosovo Parliament

Nigeria is hardly the only country with an occasionally lively Parliament as these pictures prove. Kosovo's parliament is debating a bill to grant ethnic Serbs more power. Opposition members don't approve of the deal so they set off tear gas in the parliament chambers in protest. Glauk Konjufca, of the main opposition Self-Determination Movement Party, said party members would not allow sessions to be held until the government...

Kelly Rowland Shares Adorable Photos With Her Cute Son

Kelly Rowland shared these adorable photos she took with her son. More photos below...

Breasts of Little Girls Mutilated In Cameroon To Protect Them From Boko Haram

A brutal tradition akin to female genital mutilation is spreading in Cameroon’s war zone. Girls’ breasts are “flattened” with hot irons and stones to keep men at bay. When Grace Tchami started showing signs of puberty at age nine, her mother, hoping to protect her, began to torture her. At about seven o’clock every morning, her mother would take one of the heavy stone pestles used for grinding food and heat it burning hot over a charcoal fire,...

Environment Minister, Amina Mohammed, Poses For Vogue Magazine In Paris

Nigeria's Environment Minister of Nigeria stuns on Vogue Magazine's photo shoot in Paris.  The pretty Minister was among 13 women who posed for Vogue Magazine as a flag up campaign for  climate change at Cop21 in Paris.  

Operatives Of Department Of State Service Arrest Sambo Dasuki

Operatives of Department of State Service (DSS) on Tuesday morning arrested ex -National Security Adviser, Colonel Sambo Dasuki (rtd). Dasuki who was placed under house arrest and denied an opportunity to travel abroad by the DSS has now been arrested . Although the DSS did not state the reason for arresting Dasuki , it is strongly believed that new reports of a $ 2billion arms contract fraud might be the reason. It would be recalled that on Monday, a panel...

Rex Showunmi: The Big Issue; A Weekend Rave on Rape

Somehow on Saturday 28th November, I "ran" into the latest  Nigerian talk show in town, TVC's The Big Issue hosted by Oba Adeoye. Coincidentally, or rather deliberately, the debate issue was the same subject-matter that raved the Internet last week. The Rape issue. As with all debates there were two sides: One side led by a female Psychologist  held the agelong behavioural "dog and meat" psychology. The argument seem tilted to the campaign that stopping Indecent dressing...

20 Secrets Of Happily Married Couples

Never Go to Bed Angry "When we were first married, somebody gave us this advice: Never go to bed angry. It's an oldie but goodie, and we have passed it along to others. Whatever is bothering us, we talk it out before we go to sleep so each day, we wake up with a clean slate and a fresh perspective. Saying 'yes dear' a lot doesn't hurt either!" --Johanna and Brian, married 11 years Don't Keep Score "When...

How To Look Like J.Lo, Read Her Daily Beauty Routine

Jennifer Lopez got candid about maintaining her priorities and looks while starring in her first TV series, Shades of Blue. For the 46-year-old singer and actress, beauty rest is a necessity. "There is a limit," J.Lo stressed to ET. "You will fall down at a certain point, and mommies can't do that. Mommies have...

What Kylie Jenner’s Sold-out Lip Kit Looks Like On A Normal Person

If you wanted to get lips like Kylie Jenner, you're going to have to try again around Christmastime. The reality TV personality and social media celebrity (she has 43.6 million followers on Instagram) just unveiled her new "Lip Kit" ($29 per Kit), and it sold out. Because every lipstick she wears sells out. Fortunately, we got to meet up with Jenner in person at her Kylie Lip Kit event in the Los Angeles Dash store, and...

Pastor Marries Pregnant Teen With Wife’s Blessing

A 60-year-old Ohio mob enforcer-turned-pastor married his teenage bride and got her pregnant, all with the blessing of the other lady in his life — his 44-year-old wife. “The whole situation works for all three of us,” Thom Miller told Barcroft Media. “I am the only one who is allowed to have more than one partner — and both of my wives understand and appreciate that.” Miller is now building a bigger home so he...

PDP, People Of Benue South Behind David Mark – Metuh

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is solidly behind the former Senate President, Sen. David Mark, to repeat his electoral victory in the re-run election ordered by the Court of Appeal.   A statement signed by Chief Olisa Metuh, PDP National Publicity Secretary and made available to newsmen on Monday in Abuja, described Mark as 'an asset to the nation.’   He said that the party and the people of Benue-South Senatorial zone were solidly behind Mark in the forthcoming exercise.   He said that the...

Over-dependence On Oil Cause Of Corruption, Dwindling Economy- Osinbajo

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo has said Nigeria’s over-dependence on oil resources is responsible for the high level of corruption, dwindling economy and the redundant human resource base in the country. He also traced restiveness and agitation for resource control, especially in the South-south geo-political region, to over-reliance on oil. Osinbajo spoke on Monday in Port Harcourt at the inauguration of the Partners for Sustainable Development (PSD) Forum organised by the Niger Delta Development Commission. The vice president, who was represented...

Dangote’s Daughter Launches N7bn Health Facility In Kano

The daughter of the Africa’s richest businessman, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Halima Aliko Dangote has launched the construction of the ultra-modern health facility to be funded by Dangote foundation to the tune of N7 billion at Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital, Kano.   Halima Aliko Dangote disclosed this at the weekend when she paid a visit to Kano State governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje at his office at the Government House, Kano, where she informed him about the Dangote foundation intervention in health care...