Tade had always been a good wife. Right from the day she was married into this household at sixteen, she had made relentless efforts to cultivate all the characteristics of an exemplary spouse. She reminded me of myself at that age. From how she swivelled her hips playfully around Chief, to her perfectly pounded Iyan, to how she smiled and rubbed his chest sweetly. I envied her and so did the other wives, but her presence made marriage to Chief palatable. He had stopped beating us since she came here. If only I had that hold over him.
Chief would call her into his room in the late hours of the night and I would hear her tiptoe through the long corridor like a child on her way to steal a sweet treat, sure that she would be flogged for it in the morning. She would stall for a moment at my door, as if to seek my help; some solitude from someone who had been in the same position that she now was, but I think she knew that I was broken too. I had always been a little odd. All would go quiet for a few minutes until the savage ramming started and the walls began to shake. Tade would scream in agony over and again, each time more painfully. I wondered if she was under some sort of spell or just a plain old dunce to let Chief fulfill all his nasty fetishes on her over and over again but I was once like her, eager to please and doe-eyed. At this rate, this man would kill this girl one day or take another young wife and leave her scarred, much like he had done to me.
I noticed how Tade had become withdrawn. She stopped swivelling her hips and smiling, she developed a limp, and I felt sorry for her but I was helpless. I did not feel like her personal checker and neither did any of the other wives because nobody bothered to talk to her, we all just nursed the elephant in the room like we were used to. One night, Chief called her to his room as usual. Tade took longer to pass my door this one night. She had taken a detour to the kitchen. She did not stall at my door either. Her tiptoe was more stealthy, more purposeful. It was quiet for a few minutes and then I heard Chief let out a hoarse scream, not as horrid as Tade’s, but still a scream. I ran out of my room to Chief’s room. When I opened the door, Tade was standing there, bloody knife in hand with Chief sprawled on the floor, but he was not dead, his legs still shook. I took the knife from Tade, bent over and stabbed Chief a couple more times in the neck, pulled a dazed Tade by the hand and dragged her to my room, locking the door twice behind me.
Name: Ebenezer Osilama Yakubu