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Reflections ofSunshine
by Naija Stories   (Author)
Read First Three Chapters

Kelechi Njoku

For three reasons, Okwy could not believe that Ify would poison him. One, he did not believe in coincidence. What were the odds that at the same time he climbed the septic tank slab under the kitchen window to inspect a tear in the window’s netting, he would catch Ify squeezing drops of something thick and black from a tiny bottle into the bowl of soup he had asked Ify to dish out for him? Two – and this reason was the obvious one – Ify was his brother; he would never contemplate such a thing! When had they quarreled? Had they not both watched an early Chelsea-Madrid match this morning, and argued madly afterwards because Ify had lost their bet over the result of the match? Was that a quarrel?
The third reason Okwy did not believe what he had seen: He simply chose not to.
Thankfully, night had fallen. Okwy had been forgetting to fix the security light in the back of the house, so although Ify had his side facing the window he had not seen Okwy.
Okwy gently stepped down the slab, and seconds later made a lot of noise getting back into the house, switching on the TV and shouting a question to Ify from the parlor about the previous episode of Super Story. He had to act normal – as normal as the cream-and-brown rug, which had covered the parlor’s floor since June two years ago.
Ify came into the parlor to announce that food was on the dining table. Okwy said, ‘I’ll eat in my room. Could you take it there for me? Thanks.’ He avoided Ify’s gaze as he spoke.
He entered his room just as Ify was leaving it, locked the door, and allowed some time to pass before carrying the tray of food into the adjoining toilet.
Three hours had passed since Okwy shuffled out of his bedroom, clutching his stomach. Ify had quickly helped him into the backseat of the Nissan, and run round to get into the driver’s side. The tyres screeched as he backed out into the dirt road that led into the major street. The car jerked. Okwy rolled off the seat to the floor. He groaned but did not comment on his brother’s driving.
He was in the hospital now, sitting up on a hard bed covered in blue sheets. A drip needle was stuck in his arm. He was still groggy from the injections he’d been given when he was rushed in, and his head was thumping with the force of a pestle attacking a mortar. The drugs had made him sick; he didn’t have to act any longer.
So he had miraculously escaped death.
It was not often Okwy used the word ‘miracle.’ In fact he detested it, did not believe in it. There had been no miracles when he and his four siblings had eaten soaked garri with palm kernels morning, afternoon and night.
The miracles hadn’t been anywhere they could see when his father had been falsely accused of theft and dismissed from the Ministry where he worked as a laborer.
The amount they had said he had stolen was ridiculously paltry and yet was beyond what his father could afford anyway had he had the option of repaying it.
Right now, he was not expecting any miracle that would enable him carry drinks to his fiancée Matilda’s people this December; whatever part of his finances hadn’t gone into buying medicine for his father’s stroke had gone into paying the fees of his sisters Cheta and Uju who were in their final years in the university.
He hoped Matilda could wait.
‘What’s the matter?’
Okwy raised his head.
A nurse stood at the head of his bed. She yawned and retied the wrapper she wore over her white uniform.
Okwy shook his head. Nothing. ‘What’s the time?’
‘After ten.’
‘Did you see my – brother?’
The nurse raised her eyebrows.
‘My brother – the person who brought me here.’
‘Oh. Okay. He left about an hour ago. Said he will be back soon.’
‘Okay, thanks.’ He looked down at the drip needle in his arm. ‘Please, could you remove this? I feel like vomiting, let me stay outside for a while.’
The nurse disconnected the tube from the needle, but left the needle in his arm.
Okwy left the ward, bypassed the nurses’ station and went out through a door that opened out of the children’s ward into the night. He went down the walkway, taking the appropriate turns until he got to the white stone that welcomed people to Healing Hands Hospital in blue lettering.
‘Goodnight,’ he called to the gatemen.
Outside the gates he yanked the green-headed needle from his arm, and flagged down a taxi.

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Price: ₦500 ($3)
Product Details
Author: Naija Stories
Publisher: NS Publishing
Publication date: 2013
Pages: 45
Product dimensions: 428 x 601
More About This eBook
Reflections of Sunshine is a moving, elegantly written, incredibly insightful collection of stories that explore interpersonal relationships, loss, pain, and family - a man in coming of age feels he has to kill his brother, a couple cannot have children leading to cracks, a young woman mourns a crumbling engagement, a son has to take action as extended family squabble over his dead father's property, a young man pines for lost love and a young woman puts her own choice above that of her mother.
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About Author
Naija Stories is a social network for Nigerian writers of all skill levels and readers of both genre novels and literary fiction. It is an avenue for readers and publishers to discover new authors and for writers to share their work, gain recognition, and connect with their audience and each other.
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