Yinka sat by the water side on Alpha beach having a deep thought under a very hot sun. His unbuttoned beach-shirt and 3-quater pant allowed enough air to blow over key areas of his body; but that didn’t help; he was very hot inside his heart. His life was similar to the situation of that beach: The beach was beginning to overflow and cover the surrounding land-his problems were beginning to overflow and cover his life too. He has been full of various miseries lately: jobless, sick, abandoned by the remaining people he could call family. Well, that may be because they see him as a lazy young man: “After struggling to help the orphan through school, he couldn’t even get a job.” One of them once said.
The only set of people he could call family now were his two jobless friends, Elechi and Cyprian, whom they used to hustle together.
Together he and his friends have tried so many things, but they never hit money. Being an artistic person, he was the one who made more money, making art works and selling them. But the market has not been favourable on him. Every other option of making money failed woefully. And he didn’t want to consider the last option that came to his head; suicide. He used to see those who commit suicide as weaklings-why should such thought be coming to his head now?
While growing up in the ghetto the slogan of him and his peers was “Get rich or die trying.” He really wanted to die trying and not die committing suicide.
Something pitched in his thought and he looked up: There was commotion on the beach.
Some people were running out of the beach side while some others were running towards the water. He saw a woman crying so hard. She was tearing her cloths while threatening to jump into the beach. She would have fulfilled her threat if not for the ladies who held her. It was then that he saw a young boy being drawn away, far into the water.
Some men quickly jumped into the water and swam towards the boy. By the time the boy was brought out of the water he was dead. All effort of the good Samaritans to revive him failed.
Within a while everybody, who were supposed to be having a nice time at beach had disappeared. He just sat down, definitely thinking about his own problems. He didn’t realize on time that he was the only person remaining on the beach. The other people around were touts who take gate fee from those who come to the beach.
“What is wrong with all these people?” He heard the voice of a young boy beside him.
He turned around and reflexively jumped to his feet. He was the boy who drowned!
“Gosh! You are dead!”
The boy just stared while he stared back in shock. The boy’s shirt was no longer on him, having been removed after the drowning. He had just his shorts on. Sand and water spread over his body. “Why did they even come to this beach anyway? Didn’t they know this water is cursed?” He said as if in agony.
A cold chill ran through Yinka’s spine and settled on his legs. He wanted to run, but he could not. He also wanted to cry for help, but looking around, not even the touts were around anymore. He turned to look at the boy again but he was no longer there. A bigger level of fear gripped him like a Christmas chicken who realized the killer’s knife was being sharpened.
By the time he turned to run towards the exit gate, he saw his pastor staring at him.
“Brother Yinka,” He said, shedding tears himself. “WHY?”
“See what you have caused upon yourself…” He pointed to the beach.
When Yinka looked back at the water, the level has risen as high as a ten story building and was beginning to fall on him.
“Aaahhhhhh!!!” He screamed.
And he woke up... It was a dream!
He knew the meaning of the dream as soon as he woke up. But he could not tell the concerned neighbours who ran into his apartment after hearing his high pitched scream. Worse still, Elechi and Cyprian, his confidants were not around to witness the nightmare; they went out in search of jobs since morning.
He checked his time and saw it was 6:30pm, the day he finished Aro’s job.