“You are mine”
Those three words once made you melt, like shea butter in the sun. They made you feel like the sun rises from inside you, made you float, made you feel so light that you thought gravity could not pull you down.

“You are mine”
When those same words started to creep you out, you knew you were already at the edge of a large pot of boiling, peppery stew. You felt the heat, but it was already late. Descent into the pot was inevitable.

“You are mine”
You agree. You smile but deep down, you are scared because you know you can never leave without drama; the violent type.

“You are mine”
Bimbo’s words once made you melt, now they just scared the hell out of you. It seemed so long ago that you bumped into him at the cafeteria. No, it wasn’t the movie-style bump in. You were going to a table with a blue tray with white squares on the edge containing a plate of beans and dodo. You had spent your ‘last card’ on the food because you were craving it and you “cannot come and die”. You were staring at the food and smacking your lips at the endless possibilities of how you would savour it when it suddenly dropped. With a murderous look, you intended to slap the living daylights out of the person but you soon changed your mind.

It was not the straight white teeth of the stranger apologizing that got you stumped. No, it was not the mind-numbing smile on the glowing face nor was it the care with which he chose his words. In fact, you didn’t think about them until much later. It was the twinkle in his eyes, the innocence that seemed so similar to your deceased younger brother’s.

“It’s ok”, you managed to say while trying to keep the tears at bay. Tears for your unpleasant childhood memories, for your brother who died defending your mother from the man who vowed to protect her. Tears for the young girl in you who died that day; the day you promised yourself never to give a man power over you. So much power that he would starve you, beat you up and still mock your dependence on him. It was why you had so many side hustles even before you left school.

Even though you were very hungry and didn’t plan to cook, you refused his offer to buy another plate of food. You exchanged contacts and got to know each other. He had such a way with words that it was no surprise that he made you give up most of the misgivings you had about marriage. You got married not long after.

It was five years into your marriage and he had managed to make you give up your job, friends and anything that involved interacting with other people. When you realized what was going on, it was too late.

You thought about your mother, how bitter you felt towards her “weakness”. You finally understood what she went through. A taste of happiness and the darkness disappeared. You remembered the promise you made the day your brother died and a part of you felt alive.

“I will find a way out”, you swore. Another promise. One you would die trying to fulfill.



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What do you think?

  1. Very brilliant. How come you like DODO so much😁, but then, who doesn’t like dodo?

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