Gently batting her eyelids open, she awoke to a new day; the D day. Ordinarily, the D day should have been yesterday, the deed-day. But today she did not feel so good, there was some nervous anticipation for what the day would bring, mixed in with a bit of dread and a tinge of regret. No, it wasn’t regret that she was feeling, it couldn’t be, had to be something else.
She turned to face Cee-Cee where she lay beside her. Her face was turned away, facing the wall, but she looked like any other sleeping person. Mimi got up and left the room for the kitchen where she knew her mom would be. Stopping at the doorway, she drew a deep breath and went to her mother who was stirring a sauce on the cooker.
“Good morning mommy”.
“Good morning dear. Sleep well?”
“And Cee-Cee, is she still sleeping?”
“Okay, I cut two slices of yam for her, I’m not sure how many she would like.”
“That would do, she doesn’t eat much.”
“Alright, go set the table.”
They were half way through breakfast when:
“Mimi, I think you should go wake Cee-Cee up. This is not the first time she is sleeping over and she usually doesn’t sleep this much.”
“Okay mom.” Replied Mimi. She was nervous, she didn’t want to be but she was anyway. She got to her room and sat right next to Cee-Cee’s cold body. She took a minute or two to breathe and tried to clear her head. It was showtime. Showtime? Really Mimi?
She went back to the dining table and announced to her parents, “Cee-Cee is not waking up.”
Mrs Brown hesitated for about three seconds as if she was contemplating what her daughter had said. Then she stood up, more like jumped up instantly, and went to her daughter’s room. Mr. Brown followed shortly. Mimi watched from the doorway as they tried fruitlessly to wake the sleeping beauty up. They eventually took her to the hospital where she was confirmed dead as the Browns, especially Mimi had known.
8 days after…
It all happened very fast. Agitated as they were, the Browns had called Cee-Cee’s parents at the hospital. They got there in less than two hours and they’d had the police with them. The Okochas had the Browns arrested there and then, not minding that both families had been close friends for almost six years. They were able to get out of police custody later but the result of an autopsy done on Cee-Cee concluded that it was poison that had killed her and that the poison had been ingested not more than six hours before death. This meant that there was a very good chance that she’d been poisoned at the Brown’s, deliberately or nay.
Now, they were in court and it was Mimi’s turn to be questioned. She knew what to say, she knew she had to be afraid.
“Guilty or not guilty?” Pause. Everyone could taste the tension in the air getting stronger with every second that Mimi delayed her reply.
Naturally there was an uproar in the court. Mimi could hear her mother’s wailing, “my child, my only child o…why nowww?”
When she heard the door shut and stopped hearing her mother’s voice, she knew her mother had left or had been taken out of the courtroom. The judge prodded Mimi to tell the court how she had killed Cee-Cee. It was then that she broke down. It was then that she felt the weight of what she had done. It was then that she knew that her life was over. What had she been thinking. She said she was sorry over and over again and explained amidst sobs how she had added poison to Cee-Cee’s dinner. As to why she had done it, she’d thought it was because of a grudge she had against Cee-Cee; something about stealing her boyfriend, but now she was not so sure. When she was asked where she got the poison, she frankly could not remember – how strange, even to her. The judge gave her a life sentence.
Mimi had been here for two weeks and she’d only had a proper shower once, she had blisters on her palms from cutting grass, a broken tooth, and several bruises, most of which she’d gotten only yesterday. It was yesterday’s fight that landed her in solitary now. It was her first time in solitary and she might have liked it if it wasn’t so cold or wet or stinky. It was terribly dark too. Even if her eyes could adjust, there was nothing to see. It was like being locked in a concrete box, a concrete box with a hole for her waste.
“Mimi.” That voice always sent shivers down her spine.
“Mimi!” That voice – it was neither male nor female, child nor adult, one person nor more.
“So, you finally show up, after abandoning me.” Mimi spat.
“That was a fine show you put on at the court.”
“When am I getting out of here?” She thought she saw the source of the voice, a shadow. How could she see a shadow in such darkness?
“In two days” Now she was sure she saw it, she could not tell it’s shape or size, it was shapeless.
“I don’t mean solitary” She looked more closely. No, it was not shapeless, it was constantly changing shape from one thing she knew to another she didn’t.
“Oh. You got a life sentence, remember?” At that point, she snapped.
“WHAT?!! You never planned to get me out of here?!!! I killed my friend for you. God!! How could I have done that? What sort of spell was I under?” She broke down for real this time. She got up after a bit and slammed herself into the part of the wall where the shadow had been, but of course it was long gone by then. She repeatedly slammed into the wall, ranting all the way. The wardens could hear her and so could most of the other inmates. She sounded like the mad woman she’d just become or the one she’d been marked to become.