Th£ SECRET OF DEATH
(Th£ WISE DON)
Written by Author Nath
Weary and scary, h£ soared through th£ mounta!ns, under a cave of wonders, h£ swung h¡s stick of light like a burn!ng fire from a dragon. h¡s footsteps, s1©w but steady grasped th£ texture of th£ rocky ground. On th£ walls of th£ cave illum!nated h¡s shadow; a [email protected]£d plumpy man with bushy bears. h¡s stomach, through th£ shadow was a barrier to th£ visibility of h¡s d*ck, but h¡s buttocks was as flat as a hammered metal. h£ s1©wed d©wΠ wh£n h£ arrived to h¡s dest!nation. h£ saw noth!ng but oth£r light on sticks hang!ng round like a sanctuary. Th£ sound of h¡s breath became a th!ng of h£ar!ng !n th£ cave. Before h£ could say anyth!ng, a female voice said, “Grief is th£ price we pay for love.”
Well comported, th£ man bowed h¡s h£ad at th£ h£ar!ng of th£ voice. “Love is an illusion!” h£ replied boldly with h¡s face up. “Love is confusion, love is deception, love is delusional, love is fantasy, halluc!nation and weakness! Love is an easy way to die unhappy death, yet with©vt know!ng your killer. I’m no man of love. I rath£r die by th£ sword of my enemies than my love ones.”
Silence creeped !n after h¡s voice echoed d©wΠ th£ hallow cave. h£ believed $h£ knew what h£ came for, so h£ exercised m©r£ patience to h£ar from h£r. j√$t as h£ anticipated, th£ voice said aga!n, “What you seek is beyond th£ gods and law of nature.”
“What I seek is th£ secret of death.”
“We will all, someday, experience death, and become obsolete as a dead leaf [email protected]||!ng from a tree, cru$h£d by pa$$ers-by to a$h£s underly!ng th£ earth”
“I refuse to be obsolete, to [email protected]|| like a dead leaf and most of all to be cru$h£d by pa$$ers-by. I do not want to die even by th£ sword of my enemies.”
“You’re no god. You must die as a human. Death is !nevitable, it is natural to die as to be born. How people die rema!ns !n th£ memory of those who live on” th£ voice faded away and light went off. Footsteps from afar startled th£ old man. h£ was persistent, h£ really wanted to know how to survive death, at least from humans. Luckily, h£ found th£ greatest secret !n h¡story; th£ secret of death!!
Th£ wear!ness of th£ night had gone, 5:00am, early morn!ng, Evan, a young man, opened th£ door of h¡s house sluggishly, closed it th£n sat beh!nd it with [email protected] on h¡s h£ad like one whose m©vth cannot tell th£ h£avy content of h¡s h£ad. h£ was poor with a pregnant wife. h£’s dark !n complexion and left h¡s beards unkept. j√$t as h£ contemplated, a b√|b shone light all over th£ room at th£ sound of a switch. h£ looked up to see h¡s wife com!ng.
“Evan, are you okay?” Alice, th£ young wife ₱v||ed h¡m up regardless th£ h£avy pregnancy. $h£ was lovely, beautiful and h£r voice can calm a disturb!ng ocean. $h£ sat th£ husband d©wΠ on a coach th£n stared !nto h¡s eyes. “What troubles you, my h£artb**t? I thought you’d be sleep!ng over at your boss'” $h£ asked.
Evan stood up, h£ reach£d th£ nearest refrigerator, ₱v||ed ©vt a bottle of water. Alice watch£d and h£ard th£ water ru$h£d d©wΠ h¡s gullet like a flood through a gully erosion. $h£ could do noth!ng but wonder what happened to h£r husband, a common driver.
“Alice…” Evan called ©vt beside th£ refrigerator while th£ wife adj√$ted from h£r seat. Th£ir eyes fixed at each oth£r, !ncreas!ng a disturb!ng curiosity. “I’m sorry for what I’m ab©vt say.” h£ cont!nued, tak!ng a few steps away from th£ refrigerator. “I never worked last night. My boss told me h£ would drive h¡mself. Secretly, I followed h¡m…”
“Followed h¡m to wh£re?” Alice !nterrupted obnoxiously.
“I have been obsessed with h¡m, to study h¡s life and know how h£ made such an !nvestment.” h£ swallowed [email protected] h£ could see disappo!ntment on th£ wife’s face after lett!ng silence trail. Anyways, h£ cont!nued. “I followed h¡m to a cave at a mounta!n..”
h£ar!ng that, Alice stood up s1©wly, glar!ng at h£r husband.
“Babe, listen” Evan cont!nued. “I was th!nk!ng h£ was th£re because of h¡s wealth, but surpris!ngly h£ was th£re because h£ wanted to know th£ secret of death.”
“Evan, what do you want to get yourself !nto!? All th£se big men are evil!” Alice lamented.
“Not th¡s one, Babe”
“I don’t understand. You j√$t witnessed it.”
“No, h£ didn’t go th£re to make m©r£ money neith£r did h£ get h¡s money diabolically through that way.” h£ turned h¡s [email protected]¢k on h¡s wife. “How can secret of death be what it is? It doesn’t sound right.” h£ turned [email protected]¢k to th£ wife. “I was on a mission to f!nd ©vt th£ secret of wealth but I got th£ secret of death.”
“You sound crazy to me. I don’t want to h£ar it.” th£ wife h¡ssed th£n left.
Day had broken, Evan, from a dream perceived th£ lovely aroma of h¡s wife’s fried planta!n. h£ [email protected] half asleep, stretch£d h¡s [email protected] !n accordance with th£ direction of h¡s morn!ng £r£¢tion. h£ jumped ©vt from th£ b£d to th£ bathroom. Before h£ could f!nish dress!ng up, Alice had served th£ breakf*st on a stool beside th£ir b£d !n that one b£droom apartment. h£ smiled at th£ look of it.
“I never noticed we had ripped planta!n.” h£ sat d©wΠ to devour th£ food while th£ wife sat beside h¡m.
“Kate, my friend, brought th£m last night.” Alice replied. “That rem!nds me, h£r child left th¡s wh£n th£y came.” $h£ stood up to a drawer wh£re $h£ brought ©vt [email protected] paper carved !n th£ shape of a [email protected] with four f!ng£rs.
Evan stopped eat!ng wh£n h£ saw it. “You mean th£ boy carved th¡s? What is it?” h£ asked as h£ collected th£ paper from h£r.
“You know th£ boy is deaf and dumb.” Alice sat d©wΠ aga!n. “Kate had tried to ask h¡m wh£re h£ saw such a th!ng but no reply. $h£ said h£ ch£ri$h£s it that’s why you must return it to th£m on your way to your boss’ house. I mean on your way to work.” $h£ placed h£r h£ad on th£ husband’s shoulder. Already, Evan had resumed eat!ng silently. Th£ same th!ng run through th£ir m!nds at th£ same time. As a man, h£ observed it.
“Babe, you don’t need to worry” h£ broke th£ silence, stand!ng on h¡s feet to knott h¡s belt.
Th£ wife looked up at h¡m. “Promise me you won’t spy on your boss or anyone aga!n. Your duty is to drive h¡m not to spy on h¡m. You’ll make your own money through your way not h¡s own way.” $h£ stood up to h¡m. “I don’t want anyth!ng to happen to you.”
Evan smiled attractively at h£r with palms on h£r two ch!n. “Noth!ng will happen to me. Not now that I know th£ secret of death.” h£ said.
“I still do not want to know. Death has no secret. It’s natural to die as an 0rg*nism.”
“Oh, you want to conv!nced me scientifically because you studied science, right?” Th£y chuckled and klzzed.
“We love you.” Alice said rubb!ng h£r big stomach.
“I love you both too, especially th£ baby” h£ replied from th£ door.
“What?!” Alice shrieked with a trace of smile on h£r face. “Go away, jooh! You love your child m©r£ than your wife.” $h£ could h£ar h£r husband’s laughter from ©vtside after say!ng that. $h£ practically sat d©wΠ on th£ edge of th£ b£d gr!nn!ng seriously.
Th£ tip of h¡s pen wiggled on a large book, h¡s writ!ngs sluggishly occupied several l!nes of th£ book like a footpr!nt of a snail on a sandy soil. One of h¡s feet tapped cleverly on th£ floor as though, th£ source of !nspiration was hooz!ng from th£re through th£ foot to h¡s bra!n wh£re it was courteously scrut!nized before go!ng ©vt through th£ pen as a by-product. h£ was a h*g£ man !n h¡s early sixties with grey bears and baldh£ad. h¡s wealth and networth was globally known, h£nce h£ was named ‘th£ Don’.
A break!ng news blasted ©vt from h¡s television dw!ndl!ng th£ translocation of th£ !nspiration th£reby s1©w!ng d©wΠ th£ m©v£ment of th£ pen which eventually left th£ texture of th£ book like a l¡p leav!ng anoth£r after an !nterrupted romantic klzz. h£ neith£r looked at th£ television nor th£ book on th£ table before h¡m but h¡s ears became th£ most active part of h¡s b©dy.
“… aga!n, th£ three children of don Mekus have earlier been reportedly engaged !n a physical combart over th£ possession of th£ir fath£r’s wealth. Th£y’ve threatened to kill one anoth£r. Leonard, th£ youngest of th£m has j√$t been ru$h£d to th£ hospital….” th£ news kept broadcast!ng.
Don Mekus placed th£ pen at th£ last dot of h¡s last s£ntence to cont!nue but h¡s wife’s voice !nterrupted h¡m.
“My lord,” $h£ called from a b£d beh!nd th£ old man, yet h£ neith£r looked at h£r nor th£ book rath£r fixed h¡s eyes on th£ wall of th£ master’s b£droom. “How long, my lord will you allow th¡s hatred among your sons to cont!nue? Why can’t you put th£m !n charge of many of your companies? Do you want th£m to die by kill!ng one anoth£r?”
“To die is to live. To live is to die.” Mekus replied h£r. h¡s voice was as deep as th£ h0l£ of a whore.
“I don’t understand you, my lord”
Mekus totally stood up from th£ chair wh£re gravity exacted h¡s wait on. Even th£ chair, regardless its !ns£nsitivity to life felt a relief of h¡s weight. h£ turned to h¡s wife say!ng, “Th£ bible says wh£n you die, you’ll live never to die aga!n, yet nob©dy wants to die to live aga!n?”
“Are you suggest!ng that your sons should kill….?”
“Adopted sons” h£ !nterrupted h£r.
Th£ statement rem!nded Mrs. Rose Mekus of h£r barr!ness. $h£ swallowed [email protected] pa!nfvlly, allow!ng th£ silence to speak for h£r. Mekus isn’t foolish, if h£ could understand th£ language of death, of course h£ understood th£ language of th£ quietness that surrounded th£ room. j√$t before h£ said anyth!ng, a knock came from th£ door. It cracked opened immediately.
“Don, th£ doctor is h£re.” Kalu, an everage man and h¡s P.A reported with©vt stepp!ng |ns!de th£ room th£n left immediately. Like a k!ng, Mekus pa$$ed h¡s wife, stood at th£ door with h¡s [email protected] on th£ knob. Already, tears had filled th£ woman’s eyes. h£ breaks th£ silence say!ng, “After your death you will be what you were before your birth, so I’m not obsess to have a child who is literally not !n existence anywh£re to me now. So why do you both£r yourself?”
Th£re was no reply except a broken cry of th£ poor, h£lpless woman who had waited for God to show h£r mercy. $h£ h£ard th£ door closed which !ncreased h£r tears.
Mekus’ mansion was large and beautified. It has a private medical room wh£re h£ laid on a b£d as th£ doctor runs h¡s blood pressure. Kalu stood at th£ door, watch!ng too. h£ was known to be wise also but hilariously. Quietly, th£ doctor ran all th£ test h£ needed th£n cleared h¡s throat and began to write on a book. Mekus sat up, h£nce mak!ng th£ rusty sound of th£ b£d th£ only wave !n th£ room.
“How’s it doctor?” h£ asked.
Th£ doctor adj√$ted h¡s eyegla$$es th£n looked at Kalu. Mekus understood that th£y needed some privacy. Th£refore h£ said, “Please, leave us, Kalu”
Th£ man cleared h¡s throat. “Don, is not wise to leave a patient and a doctor all alone.” h£ replied.
Mekus and th£ doctor stared at h¡m !ntensively. Th£ stare was like a warn!ng with a burn!ng fire that dra!ned h¡s salivary gland. So h£ swallowed [email protected] “Sorry, don, I mean a male doctor and a female patient. I j√$t realized.” h£ clutch£d th£ door.
“Kalu, set a meet!ng with my sons and families. I don’t ¢ar£ if anyone is !n th£ hospital at th£ verge of death. I want to see all of th£m !n th£ next one hour. Call my lawyer too.” Mekus !nstructed th£n turned to th£ doctor after th£ P.A left. “How many months do I have?” h£ asked quietly.
“Three weeks, don. Th£ cancer is $pr£@d!ng f*ster.” Th£ doctor replied.
“So I have three weeks to die”
Th£ doctor didn’t reply rath£r kept writ!ng on th£ book. Mekus stood up, faced th£ wall thoughtfvlly. h£ could h£ar th£ vigorous m©v£ment of th£ doctor’s pen on th£ paper. “What causes death, doctor?” h£ asked with©vt look!ng [email protected]¢k at h¡m.
Th£ m©v£ment of th£ pen stopped, th£ doctor looked up. “Th£ cause of death varies but it’s one th!ng everyb©dy must face.”
“I don’t want to be killed by anyb©dy or anyth!ng like th£ cancer. I j√$t want to lie on my b£d wh£n death comes th£n I’ll look straight !nto its eyes and say, ‘fv¢k you!'”
Th£ doctor smiled. “Have you told anyone?”
“No, it must rema!n our secret j√$t like th£ secret of death.” h£ began to walk ©vt, liv!ng th£ doctor confused.
One hour later, th£ three adopted sons of Mekus a$$embled !n th£ liv!ng room with th£ir families. Th£ wife and Kalu were also pres£nt wait!ng for th£ don to come d©wΠ. At th£ ma!n time, only th£ir eyes were th£ mode of communication. Suddenly, th£ lion h¡mself began to climb d©wΠ a staircase. h£ was ascend!ng th£ stairs like a h£ro, wear!ng a caftan with [email protected] beh!nd h¡m. At th£ sight of h¡m alone, h¡s might would cripple every morale you have and also have your h£art pound!ng like a morter of a grandmoth£r. That was th£ state everyb©dy !n th£ liv!ng room found th£mselves except th£ wife.
Mekus’ feet silently echoed through th£ staircase until h£ stopped at th£ f!nish!ng l!ne. Everyb©dy stood up with©vt know!ng it. h¡s might, what th£ Igbos call ‘EBUBE’ lifted th£ir butts from th£ir seats but had some of th£ir legs quiver!ng while stand!ng. Th£ don looked from th£ eldest son, David and h¡s wife and two children to th£ second son, [email protected], h¡s wife and a child. Th£n lastly to Leonard and h¡s pregnant wife. h£ cleared h¡s throat and began. “Why do you, my sons want to kill one anoth£r to take charge of my wealth? You want to kill wh£n you don’t know what you want to kill for and what it is to die. How foolish are you! S!nce all of you want th£ same th!ng, I stand before God and man to declare th¡s with©vt remorse; if any of you should be able to kill me, that person will be th£ next don. Your broth£r isn’t th£ target anym©r£, I am th£ target now. You have your lifetime to br!ng up a strategy to kill me, if you succeed, you become th£ next don and take charge of all i posses. My lawyer will make sure of that”
“What?!” Th£ wife exclaimed. “My Lord..”
“I have spoken!” h£ !nterrupted h£r.
“Fath£r,” David spoke up. “We know we were adopted. “But we can’t agree on th¡s. We won’t kill you!”
“But you all want to kill one anoth£r. If you don’t kill me !n any way possible, you will have noth!ng, all of you!” h£ po!nted at th£m all th£n proceeded towards th£ staircase. “Kalu, tell Evan to prepare th£ car, I’m leav!ng now.” h£ !nstructed while th£ wife ran after h¡m….
TO BE CONT!nUED
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