APOCALYPSE – A NIGHTMARE
Unlike every other day on the busy streets of Lagos, today, there was a form of decorum in the usually unruly Lagos market. Humans who used to crowd the pathways in Oshodi market, drowning out your thoughts by the unending plethora of voices emanating from every corner seemed to have assembled at some hidden place.
The various stalls filled with several wares ranging from fruits, beverages, sweets, to phones, clothes, phone batteries, wristwatches and almost everything sellable were lacking in just one thing – the sellers. Those who would shout at you, pathetically pleading for you to take just one look at their wares in the hope that you might patronize them were all absent.
In summary, the market was frighteningly quiet. Ayomide had always been a lad ruled by his good reasoning and common sense, so instead of giving over his peace of mind to the terrifying thoughts that plagued him as he walked through the market, he allayed his fears with the conclusion that there was a reasonable explanation for the seemingly deserted market.
“Maybe they have a meeting somewhere.” he said.
“Or maybe they were all summoned by the governor”, he added when his doubts seemed to mock his explanations.
“I’m sure something would have happened.” After these dissatisfying statements, he attempted to resume his usual brisk pace but the whole situation was unsettling. He couldn’t lie to himself; something had gone horribly wrong.
The Sunday School lessons he had taken when he hadn’t yet gotten his independence and so, couldn’t refuse going to church came back to taunt him. He remembered that woman’s voice as she tried to “scare them out of hell” as he and his friends normally put it.
“Jesus is coming back again. And when the trumpet blows and He comes, it’d be too late for anyone who did not give their lives to Him. They would suffer on this earth for a long time before judgement finally befalls them. All of God’s people who lived holy lives would ascend into heaven while the sinners remain on this earth. Markets would be abandoned… ” He stopped as he remembered her words. Markets…. Markets…
All his efforts to calm his pounding heart failed woefully, and soon, his long legs seemed to have taken control of his body as he found himself running. He ran as fast as his legs could carry him. He hoped that when he got to his bus-stop, he would meet human beings like himself and all his fears would finally go to sleep. He got to the bus-stop panting and sweating profusely. Wiping the tears and sweat from his eyes, all he saw were empty yellow buses. The impatient drivers, the energetic conductors, and the dramatic passengers were all missing. What exactly was happening?
In that moment, in that unsettling moment, Ayomide knew one thing and one thing only. THIS WAS THE END OF THE WORLD. He was doomed. What was he to do? Was there a way out for him? He was definitely doomed.
Suddenly, he began to hear voices coming from the street down the bus-stop. Voices could only mean humans and in one last desperate attempt to remain sane, he began to run. His sole goal was to get to where the voices were coming from and maybe he’d see where everyone was hiding. He ran and ran, the beeping on his wristwatch reminding him that he had been running for an hour. He stopped when his watch beeped again and looked around – he couldn’t see any living soul.
Tears flooded his eyes as the voices filled his ears. Had he run mad?
He continued running, when suddenly he felt a cold hand reach his arm and stop him. He couldn’t see the face. The hand tapped him continually, until suddenly, he woke up with a start from the nightmare he was having.
In a pool of sweat, amidst the loud pounding of his heart, he saw his sister who had saved him from the nightmare and he managed a weak smile.
“Of course, it was just a dream. Jesus is not coming back anytime soon.” He muttered to himself and gently went back to sleep.