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This is not fiction

"Agbara! Okoko!", the hoarse voice of the conductor yelled.

He smelled of local gin. His washed brown shirt had lost the first two buttons.

"Aunty, hold your change o...I no get time to look Uche face o", he ranted in his rude horrible voice.

I was irked. What manner of rudeness was that? I swerved to board the next bus.

"Oya! No vex, abeg enter my bus. Aunty mi to sure ju", his lip-praise continued to buzz in my ear.

I took a stern look at him and changed my mind. Just like Aurora in Maleficient, I felt driven by a spell as I moved straight to his bus and boarded. It was unusual to see me seated on the front seat but there I was.

"Boy! Load fast make we waka", the driver drummed into the ears of his loquacious conductor. I slipped out my phone and slided my long finger across the face of my phone as I scrolled down the list of missed calls.

"Horrible hectic day!", I grunted. "Driver! Carry person comot for here nah", I said without raising my gaze. It was obvious that I was losing patience.

"Ifeatu! Were ya nwayo",a familiar voice said calmly. I looked up and it was the driver. Yea! It was Ugochukwu.

He now had white bears, his skin pretty darkened by the malicious sun. The smile was the same except that it looked faded.

"Ugochukwu!", I shouted. He laughed out in his usual cackle-like laughter.

"What the hell are you doing in Lagos?"

He flashed a feigned smile. "Life brought me here"

I exhaled. "You were supposed to be in South Africa", I looked quizzed.

He took a deep breathe and squinted his eyes probably to reduce the entrance of sunlight into his eyes. It also helped to hold back his tears.

 "I was deported", he forced it out.

"Hmmmm!", I muttered.

"I will tell you in details what happened, give me your number and address", he said.

The journey was short but filled with familiar jokes.

All that was going through my mind was "Ugo! What happened to you". I begged that moment to become fiction but it was real.

He was a role model for me. I looked up to him. Seeing him in his smart NYSC uniform when I was in J.S.S 3 fuelled me up to pass through the university and get adorned in the same uniform.

You advised me to read. You bought me my first copy of Things fall apart and The beautiful ones are not yet born.

During the Xenophobia, I worried about you. I wanted to see you again but not like this to tell you that the Ifeatu, you used to carry on your shoulders was now a big woman. I wanted to tell you how productive your inputs were.

The amazing part is that you are alive. I wonder why I cry. Maybe because its not where I expected to see you, I have a miracle worker and he will do great things for you.

I still see you working for the LAPD, FBI, CIA......keep your hope alive.


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