Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Episode 2: 'The 28th House' by T-Ralph Olaniyi (Featured Story)

Hey folks, I hope you enjoyed the first episode of the suspense filled story. I got lots of messages from people asking me to bring the concluding part of the story and incase you missed the first episode, click HERE

Thanks for the feedback guys, I really appreciate it. Meanwhile, if you have any interesting writeup you want me to feature on the blog, feel free to contact me via or

Here is the continuation of the story (below)..

Episode 2 - Making Friends

The following week, George was prepared for his first day of work at the zonal office. He was excited that he would own a bigger office this time with a name tag on the door and a higher salary. The most intriguing part of the promotion to him was that he felt satisfied and fulfilled because he could see himself climbing up the ladder in the company. George was arrayed in the new suit Sade bought for him as a promotion gift. Sade had given him some other things too like a new box of perfume and a screen-shield for his laptop due to his intense auditing work.

George arrived at the office early. Punctuality had always been his strong suit. Even George never could say how he developed the good habit of being punctual. All he knows is that it had always been a priority for him to be on time and to keep to time. The regional manager in the previous branch where he had worked always commended him on that. On arriving at the zonal branch, he met the zonal manager, Mr James Uche, on his way into the firm's building. They exchanged greetings. George introduced himself as the new zonal accountant. Mr James already knew because he had been earlier notified of George's posting and debriefed on his identity. They were alone in the whole building, apart from the guard who was also early. It is however difficult to tell whether the guard was early because punctuality was his habit or because it was his job description. Mr James showed George to his office and George was quite grateful. The first thing to get his attention was the absence of his name on the office door. Only the office position was on the door. After Mr James left, George started arranging things in his new office the way he had thought he would. Joy filled his heart as he took out of his bag item by item and placed them on his desk.

Mr James came by George's office to invite George to the conference room for a general meeting. James noticed George's family pictures of his wife and children, and another picture of George making a basketball shot, on the table. James smiled as he said to George, "Beautiful family, you've got there." George replied, "They mean more than the world to me." As those words reached James' eardrums, he thought to himself, "First, he is punctual. He is also a family man and a basketball aficionado. I like him already." That morning, James introduced George and the two other new members of the zonal branch to the rest of the workers in the conference room. And he presented them their name tags to be attached on their office doors. To George, getting the office-door name tags was like the final drop that makes the cup overflow; he couldn't be happier. At closing, George headed for his car while he turned around as he heard his name. It was James calling him. They stood and talked about today's work for a while, after which, James invited George for a family dinner at his home. James felt George would feel awkward about it since they had only known each other today. The two seconds it took for George to reply felt like hours to James as he felt embarrassed within. George smiled and said, "We would love to meet your family." James felt a huge relief like taking ice water on a sweaty sunny day. They fixed a weekend for the family dinner. George drove home as he whistled a song and moved his head to the rhythm; glamorously reminiscing to himself about how his day was fine.

Earlier that same day, Sade went into town to get some house supplies at the supermarket. On her way back, she was lost. She stopped to ask for directions. She was glad to be directed aright. And just as she was almost in her district, she got the road numbers mixed up. She had to ask for directions again. This time, she was lucky to meet a woman who was heading to the street next to hers. Her name was Julie. They spoke all the way till she alighted at her junction. Julie had earlier suggested some good schools in the neighborhood that her children could attend. They exchanged phone numbers before she left. It was only after some minutes that it occurred to Julie that Sade had introduced herself as a new member of the 8th street. "It can not be that same house! It definitely must be a different house", Julie said to herself.

George told Sade of the family dinner and she was glad about it. They were both happy that they were making friends. They took Julie's suggestions in making the decision on the school their children would attend. After days of deliberations and paying visits to the schools, they finally decided that Sarah was to attend a secondary school a little further away than her siblings. Iyanu, Ronke and John were to attend the school nearby.

Sarah spent the whole week talking about her new school to her friends on mobile chat applications. Although, she had not made any friend in her new school, she was contented because she was a very reserved person. On afternoon, during the break period, she was quietly taking a stroll to the buttery to get some snacks where she was greeted by a boy named Matthew. Matthew said, "Hello, you have a lovely voice." Matthew had heard her singing quietly as she walked by. She was surprised and a little offended at the intrusive greeting. She managed to murmur out, "Thank you" as she walked on. Matthew followed her and this time her face was squeezed in anger. Matthew continued listing out songs sand by the same musician who composed the song she sang. Gradually, Sarah was getting amused as she lightened up her face. Matthew then asked, "What other songs do you like?" This time she felt a little free to reply him and they both did not know how time flew by as they chatted over snacks till the break was over. Matthew ended their conversation with a striking remark, "With your nice voice, your church choir must be very lucky to have you in their midst." Sarah did not reply as they departed to their different classes because she considered it shameful to have such a Christian name but not belong to any church, let alone a choir. Nonetheless, she was happy she met someone that day.

That evening before she went to bed, she informed her friends on mobile chat apps about her new acquaintance. The following day was a Saturday. Sarah stood up from her bed at midnight to urinate. As she returned and passed by the mirror in her room, she thought she had seen a reflection other than herself. So, she took a few steps backwards to look into the mirror again. She saw the reflection of a child at about age 5, at some distance behind her. She had never seen the child before. She quickly turned around but did not see any child in her room. Thinking she was imagining things, she took another look at the mirror. This time, she saw the child again with blood all over his face and clothes, raising his hands and moving towards her. She was too scared to scream as she turned around to see no one in her room. She was so terrified to take another look at the mirror. She used her fingers to rub her sleepy eyes and took one more look at the mirror. This time, she only saw her reflection in the room. Her pacing heart settled as she made way to her bed to continue her sleep.

(Stay tuned for episode 3)

Credit: T-Ralph Olaniyi 

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