Good to have you, peace

Mide’s Abor with Olamide Longe

Email: Twitter: @araokian

The clock on her bedside table said a quarter after six. She sighed and closed her eyes. The clock’s ticking was the only sound she heard. Everything was so peaceful.

Peace. It sounded so strange to her.

Soon, the monotonous sound lulled her to sleep.

Suddenly, a face was lunging over hers.

It was a familiar face. It wore a malevolent look; the mouth hovered over hers. With a snarl, it swooped down. Frightened, she turned away, whimpering. She struggled valiantly against it.

Another face appeared. It stood above the first one. Her heart pounded against her chest as if trying to get out. She opened her mouth; no sound came out. The second face overcame the first. It smiled down on her. Her heart calmed down. She heard a disembodied voice say, “Trust me.” She shook her head. “Trust me.” Again, she shook her head. She turned away. The face vanished and she let out a sigh.

She felt nothing, but peace.

Someone was calling her name. She knew this voice; it didn’t frighten her.

She opened her eyes.

The face leaning over her smiled down at her. “It must have been a tiring day.”

Rachel sat up slowly. She pushed her long plaits out of her face. “You’re back.”

It was Dunni, her cousin and flatmate. The flat actually belonged to Dunni; she had gladly welcomed Rachel to live with her.

“I cannot believe I fell asleep. When did you get back?” Rachel looked at the clock. It was 7:30. She’d slept for over an hour. It was unbelievable. She couldn’t remember the last time she napped after work. She never was able to relax enough.

“I just came in,” Dunni replied. “I thought I should wake you up since it’s late. Was it a very busy day? When did you get back?”

Rachel stifled a yawn. “I got back around 6, and, no, it wasn’t that busy. I only stretched out on the bed to rest for a while, didn’t intend to sleep off. How was your day?”

She knew the snarling face. Those eyes, those lips, she could never forget them as long as she lived. Eyes and lips so callous; they were only second to the devil’s. Surely, she’d exorcised him and her fear of him. What did the dream even mean, if it had any meaning at all? She sighed. She didn’t need this. She was finally rebuilding her life and rediscovering the joy of living.

“Are you all right?” Dunni asked. She had noticed the pensive look on her cousin’s face.

Rachel sighed. “I had a dream. He was in it and he meant no good.”

Dunni felt some heaviness in her throat, but quickly swallowed it. She didn’t want to make Rachel uncomfortable by becoming emotional. She would never forget the phone call she’d received one late night. Rachel had been able to get only a few words out in between heartrending sobs, but she had understood the ones she heard. “I am afraid. I’m at the end of my rope.”

Dunni had been so afraid that night for Rachel that she tried to keep her talking; she eventually ran out of airtime and could only pray. She’d reported to work early the next morning and begged her boss for two days off, almost on her knees, to attend to a family emergency. Her boss had been kind and given her enough time off to sort things out. The Rachel she saw when she arrived had tears rushing to her eyes.

That was months ago. Rachel was much better now. A change of job and change of cities had obviously helped. She’d known after hearing her story that the solution was to remove her far from that place. She had been able to do this with the assistance of Rachel’s brothers. Rachel hadn’t wanted them to get involved, but Dunni was adamant. Why have big brothers and influential ones at that, if you couldn’t turn to them in dire moments? The eldest of them all wielded great influence in the telecoms sector and it was that influence that got Rachel her present job. The other brothers had also wanted to have a nice job done on the cad that had maltreated their sister but Dunni had convinced them it would solve nothing, nor change what had happened. They should be thankful Rachel survived. The dog would get what was coming to him. And, if he didn’t, so be it. She wouldn’t waste energy on him.

Rachel was all that mattered. And, the last thing Dunni needed was this obvious setback, she couldn’t have her dreaming about him, not when she’d already started showing signs of recovery. She was enjoying her new job and smiling more. She leaned forward and held Rachel’s face in her palms. “That dream was just the dying snarl of a conquered foe,’ she said. “He is powerless. You however, have to get rid of that fear embedded in your subconscious.”

“I guess,” Rachel replied. Then a smile lit her face. “There was also this kindly face, obviously a man’s, asking me to trust it. What gives me comfort is the fact that his face overcame the malevolent one.”

Dunni beamed at her. “That is wonderful! I guess there is no fear lurking in your subconscious, then. Oh, my God. I believe the dream is a sign that something great awaits you around the corner and that you are in the right place.”

“Yes, Joseph. Rachel answered and burst into a hearty laugh.

Dunni laughed and hugged her, her eyes filling with tears. Her dear Rachel was well and truly back.