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Home  ›  Romance  ›  Dreams of Yesterday
Dreams of Yesterday
by Lilian Amah   (Author)
Read First Three Chapters

CHAPTER ONE

Boom! Boom! Boom! The noise of falling bombs is punctuated by the crash of masonry and the screams of the wounded. Time after time, fires flare, lighting up the darkness where the falling bombs are ignited in the destroyed buildings. Nnena cowered in the bush behind her father’s house oblivious of the showers which drenched her scantily-clad frame. As suddenly as it started, the air-raid is over and with a weak burst of anti-aircraft gunfire in pursuit, the Nigerian planes bank smoothly as they leave the Biafran airspace.
Sobbing with fright, Nnena emerged from her hideout and surveyed the havoc wrought on the hitherto peaceful village in a matter of minutes. The dead littered the footpaths. Smoke poured out of still crumbling houses. Suddenly the deathly stillness of the night is broken by wild screams. As Nnena made to move in the direction of the screams, her mother appeared from the bushes and motioned her towards the house. Something in her mother’s frightened face silenced her and, obediently, she moved into their mercifully untouched house.
“Your father is dead,” her distraught mother informed her. Before she could take it in, the woman continued. “We took shelter in the bushes. He was lying beside me. Suddenly, I heard a whine and a buzzing sound. Your father slumped and blood appeared from everywhere.”
As Nnena moved to comfort her sobbing mother, she heard the surviving young men in the village summoning one another to clear up the debris of the air-raid. Soon her father, like other victims of bomb shrapnel or falling masonry from the air-raid, would be buried six feet below the earth. Nnena, having put her mother to bed, busied herself clearing the remnants of the meal which the air-raid interrupted. She did not give way to the tears which threatened to choke her. Having witnessed the death of two brothers, countless friends and now a beloved father, eighteen-year-old Nnena knew that the time for tears had come and gone for the time being. She had come from Port Harcourt with her parents and two brothers to live in their village in Obosi at the onset of the Nigeria-Biafra civil war. No one had expected the war to last. “The rebels”, as the stalwart Biafran troops were called by the Nigerians, had however put up stiff resistance. Days became weeks, which in turn merged into months, and finally dragged into years and the war was still on. Death became a faithful companion for the erstwhile Biafrans. One no longer lived for the day but for the minute. Your companion of a minute ago may soon be stretched out in his death throes on the sun-warmed tarmac. Death struck anywhere and everywhere.
The war had taken its toll on Nnena. The young girl was as careworn as a middle-aged woman. Apart from her mother, Nnena now had only one person close to her still alive. Chuka, her twenty-year-old boyfriend, had been conscripted into the Biafran army. Each day, Nnena prayed for his safety as well as that of several million unknown youths propelled into a war of which they knew nothing. Apart from the violent death, which stalked the Biafrans, there was a more subtle one which was equally as deadly. Kwashiorkor held the villagers in its grip. Many of the children and even a few adults bore its characteristic traces: thin reddish brown hair, sunken eyes, pale tightly-stretched skin and a grossly-distended stomach. Nnena, as well as her mother, worked in the village relief centre. Day after day, they gave out meager rations of cornmeal, milk, salt and nourishing soup to the starving villagers. The relief centers were stocked by the Red Cross, missionaries and a few affluent individuals. Apart from this, Nnena’s mother ran a centre in her house at night solely for the little ones. She was a great deal better off than most because her soldier husband was in a position of authority which enabled him get extra foodstuff which he brought home to them every now and then. It was one such mission that brought him to the village and to his death that fateful wet evening.
Several minutes later, Nnena crept out of the darkened house where her mother still sobbed in her sleep. Scared though she was of the impenetrable darkness which lay thick like a blanket around her, she kept resolutely to the path ahead. She had to get to Chuka’s house. His widowed mother was all alone, and heaven alone knew the state of the house after the air-raid. She forced herself to walk slowly as her ears got accustomed to the night sounds. Suddenly she stifled a scream as a shadowy figure loomed up out of the darkness. A hand clasped her mouth as the figure whispered urgently. Fear paralysed the sobbing girl. As her weakened knees gave way, she recognised the voice. Nduka bore the weight of the collapsing girl and continued talking urgently: “Nnena listen to me. Don’t scream. I have been following you since you left home. I couldn’t call out for fear of scaring you.”
Having established that she wasn’t going to scream, the soldier let go of Nnena and continued talking. As she was about to interrupt, he held up his hand for silence.
“I can’t stay long. I mustn’t be missed or it will be called desertion. I had to tell you, Chuka is missing in action. He is presumed dead, but the body is yet to be found,” he said, and as the fear on the girl’s face alerted him, he moved close and pulled her into his arms. “I must go. Be brave and take care of his mother.”
Abruptly, he pushed her from him and vanished as silently as he had appeared.
For several seconds, the distraught girl stood rooted to the spot. Her hands clutched her heaving breasts as she sought to contain the sobs that engulfed her. What she feared so much had come to pass. Chuka was dead! After regaining some control of herself, she trudged listlessly on. First it was her father; then Chuka. All these occurred in one evening. Who next? Scarcely had the question registered on her mind than she stepped into a clearing and was confronted with the answer.
A bomb had decimated the house where the widow slept while thinking of her soldier son. The embers of the burnt building still glowed in the darkness. Tentatively, she walked towards the destroyed building. On the edge of the clearing away from Nnena, a lone figure watched her progress. She was almost on it when the figure drew itself together and spoke: “My daughter, go home! There is nothing you can do here. The boys have taken the body away, but I must mourn the dead. Soon I too shall go.” Nnena recognised the old neighbour of the widow and bent down to greet her.
Once again, the stillness of the night was shattered as the boom of bombs and the crash of submachine gunfire interrupted one another. Nnena froze with fear, but the noise galvanised the old woman into action. She grabbed the girl and, with an agility which belied her age, dashed into the bush. The bush was alive with the sounds of running feet and crying children. On and on they ran, viciously pursued by the sound of gunfire. Now and then, a cry signified that a bullet had found its mark.
Subconsciously, Nnena moved in the direction of the house she had left several minutes ago. Fear for her mother lent speed to her aching limbs. Behind her, she could hear the old woman silently keeping up the race against death. Her heart thumped in her throat as she ran. She badly wanted to stop, but the fear stalking her from the rear kept her moving. She burst out of the bush behind her house and horror struck her dumb with disbelief. The house was in flames and, right beside it; her mother had been cut down as she tried to flee.
In a matter of minutes, Nnena had lost all who were dear to her. Even as she moved towards her mother’s motionless body, the instinct of self-preservation took over. The sounds of pursuit were closer than ever before. Sobbing quietly, the heart-broken girl whirled once more and took flight deeper and deeper into the forest, closely followed by the agile old woman.

CHAPTER TWO

Several days later, the bereaved girl still trudged her lonely way through the hostile forest. Somehow, she had lost track of the old woman and found herself alone in the company of strangers. The tears, which Nnena could no longer shed, lay like a weight on her leaden heart. Having fled without a pin, she was obliged to accept food from the strangers in whose company she found herself. After days of surviving in the wild, she was streaked with dirt from head to toe and her dress was in shreds all around her. Her carefully-braided hair was filled with burrs and its neatness was a thing of the past. She had lost her shoes and now walked on ten toes like most of the others. Her feet, not used to such harsh treatment, were torn and swollen in places.
The little band fleeing indiscriminately from sounds of pursuit and gunfire had totally lost their bearings. They had no idea where they were heading. The group was made up of women and kids. The only male shambled along with his limbs flapping loosely while a sheepish smile decorated his otherwise blank face. Onyinye as he was called had the mental capacity of a five year old though he was well over 25. He played with sand, stones and sticks like a toddler and was often found mumbling unintelligibly to himself as he played. Most other able bodied men had been conscripted into the army but Onyinye was left alone. Many had been killed because the Biafran army had little in the way of weapons. The troops however were not lacking in bravery and had started manufacturing their own bombs. One of these, the dreaded ogbunigwe (Igbo expression meaning ‘mass killer’), a locally-made bomb, became the scourge of the Nigerian army because of its ability to kill in hundreds.
Utterly weary, the sad little band settled down for another night in the forest. Nnena ate the little piece of dry bread which was her share of the evening meal. Chewing silently, her mind replayed scenes from the deaths of her mother and father. The tight knot that had lodged in her throat since she stood looking at her mother’s mutilated body remained in place. Try as she did, she could neither swallow nor cough it up. It prevented her from speaking and made eating or drinking painful. Sipping the cup of water handed her by one of the other women, she tried surreptitiously to force the lump from her throat. Failing at that simple task, Nnena separated herself from the group as was her custom and lay down to sleep with the shreds of her dress tucked around her legs. After several hours, she suddenly came awake. The night was still and she could not tell what woke her up. Instinct warned her to keep still and she did so as she listened to the even breathing of her still sleeping companions.
Suddenly, twigs crackled as their camp was surrounded by armed men. Nnena froze with fear and could not have moved even if she wanted to. As her eyes grew accustomed to the darkness, the dim figures slinking around her became clearer. The camouflage khakis worn by the men marked them out as soldiers. She quickly stifled the cry that leapt to her lips when she saw that their uniforms lacked the sign of the rising sun on the shoulders. She prayed her companions would sleep on and hoped in vain that the soldiers would move on. Unfortunately for the refugees, Onyinye woke up and instantly recognised the Nigerian soldiers. He screamed and got to his feet preparatory to rushing off into the surrounding forest.
Instantly, a burst of submachine gunfire cut him down. The others woke up and their cries filled the hitherto silent forest. More guns spoke and more people fell, adding to the confusion. Nnena was petrified and lay frozen on her back fifty feet from the affray. Above the chattering of the guns and the screams of the wounded, a voice could be heard. “Cease fire, you idiots! Can’t you see they are women?” One more shot rang out then the guns fell silent. Silently the speaker stepped forward surveying the damage. Striking a match, he lit a taper which a soldier hastily brought forward.
The dismal scene was revealed for all to see. Of the nineteen who lay down to sleep earlier, only four were left, besides Nnena. These four cowered together expecting to be shot dead like their companions. Pointing to the corpses littering the ground, the soldier who had earlier spoken addressed his companions in a cold harsh voice: “You butchers! You have succeeded in murdering defenceless women and children in cold blood. The next man who shoots at anything without my permission will be shot instantly. You are never this brave when faced by Biafran soldiers; but facing unarmed sleeping women and children, you develop itchy fingers.”
The soldiers stood shamefacedly staring closely at the ground. Seeing they were suitably chastened, he pointed at the survivors as he continued speaking. “Bring them over here and bury your victims. Do that fast and let’s move.” The survivors were quickly herded to the man as the soldiers set to work, digging shallow graves.
The tension which had been building up in Nnena since the death of her father reached its peak at that very moment. Something snapped in the girl’s mind and she started screaming. As the high pitched screams rang out, the soldiers spun around in surprise. The demented girl rose to her feet as she continued to scream. With quick steps, the leader moved to the side of the screaming girl. Her glazed eyes bore into his face as she continued screaming. He seized her by the arms and shook her. The screaming did not abate. Taking a quick decision, Captain Olalekan Lawson slapped the screaming girl twice in quick succession. Her glazed eyes snapped and quickly focused. As the shock receded from her features, she stopped screaming and started sobbing quietly.
All was quiet as the soldier pulled the sobbing girl into his arms. With his eyes, he instructed his staring soldiers to proceed with their task. Having calmed the girl, he set her down beside his backpack and faced the other four who were staring wide-eyed at this tall, fierce-looking but obviously gentle soldier.
“Where are you from and where are you going” Lekan asked the silent women. Gathering courage, the oldest of the four answered him: “Our village was attacked and burnt down. We ran away into the bush and have been wandering for days. We have no home and nowhere to go.”
The captain turned away thinking deeply as he watched his men work. Continuing their reconnaissance mission with prisoners in tow was out of the question. Leaving them to their fate was not a solution he liked. Taking them back to the base in Benin was the only choice left. Benin in Mid-Western Nigeria, at that time, was held by the Nigerians. Seeing his men eyeing the girls speculatively, he issued a warning in a deceptively quiet voice which nevertheless carried a threat: “These girls have just lost relatives and friends. We are soldiers not animals.” With that, he ordered them to march. With the girls in tow, the soldiers moved briskly in the direction of Benin.
By the time the group reached Benin, Captain Lawson had come to several decisions. First he would take the girls to a refugee camp in the city where they would be looked after. Secondly, he had noticed that the girl who screamed so wildly on the night of the shooting was still in shock, as she hardly ever spoke – even to her companions. She ate when she was asked to, but always kept to herself. Gradually, the other girls had relaxed enough to joke casually with the soldiers who, after the shooting incident, were always very kind to them. Lekan felt protective towards the lonely girl and resolved to take her to his home. He knew she would not survive the jungle toughness of the refugee camp.
After settling the girls in the camp, Lekan dismissed his soldiers and, asking Nnena to follow him, walked towards a waiting jeep. Heart thumping with trepidation, Nnena trailed the soldier to the jeep. She didn’t know what fate awaited her and really didn’t care as long as it included a quick death and no more senseless suffering. The sooner she died, the quicker her reunion with her loved ones, she reasoned. Silently, he held open the door for her. A short drive into the heart of the city brought them to a standstill in front of an isolated bungalow. Far away in the distance, she could see similar bungalows which she later learnt had been allocated to other officers.
A girl opened the door and ushered Nnena in. Lekan gave her some instructions in Yoruba and, nodding to Nnena, walked away. Several days later, Nnena, who hadn’t seen Lekan since the day he brought her to his home, sat in the kitchen quietly chatting with the girl whose name she had since learnt was Bisi. Bisi had grown to like the quiet Igbo girl who never spoke unless spoken to. She had provided her with clothes as instructed by Lekan and fed the girl regularly. Bisi also enjoyed the company which Nnena now provided, as Lekan was rarely at home. The girls chatted about the evils of war as they jointly prepared their evening meal.
Nnena had lost her fear, and the memories of violent death had gradually receded into the background. Both girls were so engrossed that they started violently when the door opened. The handsome young soldier who stood framed in the doorway in no way resembled the murdering swine that the enemy were reputed to be. Though clad in the battledress of the Nigerian soldiers, his gentle eyes in the battle-weary face drew Nnena to him. Shyly she smiled a welcome. Bisi ran forward to relieve the tired soldier of his backpack. As she took it out of the kitchen, Lekan strode in and took a stool facing the shy girl.
“How have you been? I’m sorry I had to leave so abruptly, but duty called. I hope you’ve been comfortable,” he explained. The unexpected concern in his voice was her undoing, and as she started sobbing, Lekan got up and took her hand. Pulling her gently to the door, he stepped out of the house. “You’ve been cooped up in the house for too long. Come for a walk with me and see a bit of the town.”
It became a ritual for Nnena and Lekan to go for walks whenever he was in Benin. Strolling through the quiet streets, the red mud houses seemingly devoid of human life intensified the feeling of being all alone in the world. Their lengthy walks down Akpapava and Ekewan roads often culminated in a stroll through Uselu, an area replete with the rich culture of the Binis. “Is it really true?” Nnena queried as Lekan told her a bit about the history of the Binis.
“It is my dear. The Edaiken (heir apparent to the throne) relocates to Uselu on his father’s ascension to the throne and the theory is that he never returns to the palace until his crowning on the death of the Oba.” Since the Nigerians recaptured it, the war had moved further and further away to the frontiers of Biafra. Consequently Benin and its residents found it hard occasionally to believe that the war was still on. Spending all Lekan’s free time walking the streets of the ancient city and telling each other stories from their past brought the couple closer. Nnena grew to like and trust the good-looking Yoruba man who was also very kind to her.
Unlike before, Lekan no longer hung out with his friends whenever he was in Benin. He spent his spare time with Bisi and Nnena playing cards or scrabbles. He hardly spoke during these games but never failed to appear every evening after dinner. Bisi noticed how Lekan watched Nnena whenever he was around. His eyes followed her all over the house. She also noticed how quickly he averted his eyes when she looked towards him even though she often very carefully avoided looking directly at him. She was also unusually quiet when Lekan was around though the two girls chattered endlessly when they were alone. Bisi would have been shocked to learn that whenever they spent time alone, Lekan asked her question after question in his deep low voice. From her answers he learnt all about the death of her boyfriend and the subsequent deaths of her parents. The tears sliding soundlessly down her cheeks as she relieved the deaths of her dear ones drew him to her and gently, he pulled her into his arms holding her close as she wept. He in turn told her how he lost his parents and how Bisi came to live with him after the deaths of her parents. Her mother had been the only sibling of Lekan’s father and theirs had been a close and loving relationship. Her gruesome death alongside her husband in a car crash when their only daughter turned ten was a sore point. Finally, he admitted to himself that he loved her. Not wanting anything to frighten her he kept her existence a secret even from his close friends.When any of his brother officers came to the house, only Bisi served them as before. On instructions from Lekan, Nnena stayed carefully hidden. He however worried about her future. What would become of her if anything happened to him? She would be all alone in the heart of enemy territory and Lekan knew well enough what some callous soldiers would do to such a girl.
One night about two months after Lekan brought Nnena to Benin, they both sat quietly drinking coffee after the evening meal. Lately, Bisi had started leaving them alone after dinner pretending she had to study. Having sat in silence for a while, Lekan brought out a briefcase which he placed on the table beside them. As she looked at him questioningly, he took her hand in both of his and began to speak. “Nnena, though I hate to remember it, we are in a war. As a soldier, anything can happen to me at anytime. I’d hate to leave you desolate. In this briefcase is fifty thousand pounds which is my inheritance from my late father. If I leave it in a bank, you won’t be able to lay hands on it if you should need it. There is a concealed safe in the bedroom which I will show you. In the event that anything happens to me, take this money and, if possible, buy your way back to the East. Among your own people, you will stand a chance of survival.”
Nnena’s eyes filled with hot tears as she stared at the man beside her. He brought out a gold chain on which hung a small key and put it around her neck, carefully concealing the key in her bosom. “That key will open the safe. Never take it off because your life may one day depend on it.” As the tears rolled down her cheeks, Lekan pulled her into his arms and muttered hoarsely. “I love you! Oh lord, how I love you.” Gently he caressed the weeping girl.
As she enthusiastically responded, Lekan’s caresses grew frantic as his need for her overwhelmed him. For the first time, he pulled her face to his and kissed her fully on the lips. The sensual parting of Nnena’s soft lips and the tighter hold she had of him while moaning uncontrollably sent him into frenzy as he let go the last vestiges of his self-control. Hurriedly, he undressed the shivering girl and pulled her into his arms. The attraction Nnena felt for Lekan made her responses as spontaneous as his actions. Fiercely he clutched her to him, and even her quickly stifled cry as he made love to her could not stop him.
When the storm of his passion abated, he held the shuddering girl in his arms and gently caressed her. “My darling, I didn’t realise it was your first time. I’m sorry I wasn’t gentler, but I couldn’t help myself. I love you so much and I’ll protect you, if necessary with my life.” Nnena bit back her sobs and lay quietly in his arms. Though she hurt a bit, she was glad that Lekan made love to her. His generosity of spirit and the love he so obviously had for her awakened an answering echo in her heart. Shyly she told him so and the tightening of his arms around her was all the answer she needed.

CHAPTER THREE

Irony is a predominant feature in the lives of so many affected by a civil war. Lekan, Nnena and Bisi were no exception, and each had their respective ways of dealing with it.
As she stirred the steaming pot of Ukwa (breadfruit) which she was making as a surprise for Bisi who loved the local Igbo delicacies, Nnena thought as she often did of Chuka and the scores of youth who had lost their lives thus far. As she relived in her minds eye bits of the letter a soldier returning from the front brought from Lekan, she brusquely remembered that her lover ‘is reluctantly’ an enemy of her Eastern brethren – at least of the Biafran soldiers who he had to kill in order to stay alive. Reading between the lines of his letter, she felt his pain as he told of the dead littering the streets with no one taking time to bury them. She sensed his grief as he wrote of bullet scored houses, burnt vehicles and her heart was seared by his description of the gut shot little girl he carried for two miles in his arms who finally died as he placed her in a Red Cross doctor’s arms. Did she at times feel like a traitor being in love with a representative of those causing all the mayhem in her homeland? The pogroms of May, July (and with even greater intensity in September) of 1966 that directly led to this conflict seemed a distant, albeit vivid memory to her.
Yes, but he loved her too! She knew that much. With hindsight, she realised that this love dated back to when they first met in the East. She owed her life to him in more ways than one, and worried about him while he’s away. What would the people she left behind think? All the terror and loss were what the Igbos got for their first trying to rid Nigeria of corrupt politicians and soldiers, then later just wanting to be left alone as an independent State, since they obviously were no longer appreciated nor wanted.
While on the battle front, Lekan ached to be close to Nnena. Away from all this, he was under orders to continue to defeat soldiers protecting his beloved’s homeland. It helped him to be, however, even more humane and honourable a soldier when dealing with women and children, as well as with his Biafran counterparts. It’s all he can do to restrain the seeming blood-thirsty animals in his unit. The Igbo (and Biafrans from other ethnic groups to a lesser extent) were only a few months ago his Nigerian brethren. Unwittingly, his mind drifted back to the days he strolled through Balogun market in Lagos with Bisi on his heels laughing heartily as the young Igbo traders lounging outside their shops taunted the youthful female shoppers. Cries of “anti, come check here” rang out from all sides.The more intrepid of the salesmen grabbed female hands and tried to steer them into their shops to the utter annoyance of the harassed young women. Now these same people are declared enemies. Slaughtered all over the North in May and September 1966 in pogroms (and on July 29, 1966 after then Head of State, General Aguiyi-Ironsi was abducted and murdered), they were mercilessly hounded as the pogrom continued. Scenes of horror flashed through Lekan’s mind. The lifeless body of the pregnant woman whose almost full term baby was ripped out of her womb and hacked to bits, the little boy in school uniform still clutching his school bag in his left hand while the handless right arm reached out in a mute plea for mercy. He clearly recalled a soldier’s mocking voice exhorting his comrades to “don’t spare the little bastards. They will only grow to be bigger bastards. Kill them while you can even in the womb.” As the raucous laughter of the others rang out, Lekan wondered if the world was going mad.
What would people from other parts of Nigeria, especially his native Western Nigeria, think? He loved a lady whose people tried to take over the country on January 15, 1966; killing mainly Northern and Western government officials – politicians and soldiers – but no Easterners! As his uncle Ladi put it bitterly, “The Supreme Commander, the late Gen. Johnson Thomas Umunnakwe Aguiyi-Ironsi, even had the effrontery to try to drive Igbo domination down the country’s throats with that wretched Decree 34, centralising the government further! Those arrogant, money-hungry people have a hand in having forced the country into this unnecessary war”.
In many ways, you can’t control those whom you love. Lekan and Nnena are a prime example. A consequence of this love is that Lekan ached emotionally when he put himself in his beloved’s shoes and realised what her conflicts could be. Nnena felt likewise with respect to Lekan’s position. She felt agony because her Lekan had to be in agony. They tried not to discuss this in too much detail. After all, they were connected and already knew how the other was feeling. While maximising Lekan’s visits by getting to know each other better – all likes, dislikes, idiosyncrasies, habits, family, hopes for the future, etc. were thoroughly discussed. They spoilt each other and did as much for each other as possible, before war mercilessly cut short their time and Lekan had to return to the war-front.
The time spent in each other's arms in the privacy of their bedroom became vital in dealing with their respective conflicts as people from opposite ends of the country in a civil war. They atoned for their ‘betrayal’ to their regions of origin through their love-making. They demonstrated their devotion to each other via the same avenue. She was not a contentious, materialistic, money-grabber as Igbo ladies are often accused of being. She had no interest at all in his fifty thousand Nigerian pounds; but only in maximising her time with him! She was so loving and so interested in speaking his native Yoruba language fluently and quickly, that he was humbled and thankful. He was therefore even more passionate, yet tender; patient and promptly attentive to Nnena’s every possible sexual need. Who knows? He could be shot tomorrow. He could be MIA or a POW. He felt obliged to always give her something by which to remember him, or to which to look forward after the tragic war. For him, the beautiful albeit brief time with Nnena more than made up for the pain of war.
Nnena as well was happy when making love with Lekan. He was no typical Nigerian soldier – that’s for sure. He’s just too loving, and thoughtful; too good to be true! The Nigerian soldiers raped and pillaged her homeland mercilessly, as they murdered innocent women and children in cold blood. Their task that “must be done” was certainly not “to keep Nigeria one,” contrary to what the then Head of State, Yakubu Gowon, often proclaimed to all who cared to listen. She knew. She saw it firsthand. The honourable man was her soul mate, for whom she had so much love. After Chuka was killed, Nnena never thought she would feel anything for anyone again. She was wrong. After all, where – and with whom – would she rather be? Who knows? He could be blown to bits tomorrow. On the other hand, the war could end tomorrow. Then she would have many children with this man and raise a large loving family. Let him know what he had to look forward to finally – forever. That would deal with the irony.
Bisi, to a point, imagined what had to be their conflict, feeling for each party immensely. She hoped to someday enjoy a love like the one her dear cousin shared with Nnena; however, under less extreme circumstances. She’d heard an occasional laugh, and other sounds on some of those evenings, and felt happy, for them, yet wistful. She enjoyed making each party happy with news of the other. Doing her best to support these very appreciative lovers while together and apart was Bisi’s best way to deal with this irony. Staying busy in other ways while wondering how her future would turn out after the war was yet another. At 20, she felt old. Not having really been a child since she lost her parents ten years earlier, Bisi already knew all about responsibility as she had had to mature much too quickly. It was only Lekan that still made her feel young because he never stopped treating her like the little sister she had always been to him.

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Product Details
Author: Lilian Amah
Publication date: 11/10/2014
Pages: 181
Product dimensions: 423 x 600
More About This eBook
Overview
Inter-ethnic relationships in a multi-ethnic country present a unique challenge. Throw a brutal 30-month civil war into the mix and what you get are even more challenges as the continued polarization of the country, uncertain and untrustworthy leadership merge with personal problems to create chaos. Lekan and Nnena Lawson soon find out that the war that brought them together leaves scars to go with the blessings, affecting those near and far.
While still fighting the war, Lekan gets missing in action and ends up in enemy territory. Captured by a rebel group and suffering from amnesia, he ends up joining the group. Meeting Ndidi a nurse working with the rebels, he gets attracted and then falls in love even though the memories of a woman whose name he can’t remember haunt him. The everyday problems of war like malnutrition, kwashiorkor, hunger, fear and death are seen through the eyes of Nnena and her compatriots as she tries to find her soul mate Lekan.
The war ends and Lekan settles with Ndidi and starts a new life. Just when all seems settled, he regains his memory and sets off in search of his wife and son. He finds them and realize he still loves his wife as much as he ever did. But he also loves Ndidi. Unable to let go of either woman, Lekan starts a love triangle that can only lead to disaster. Can one man love two women at the same time? Can a woman accept and learn to live with the knowledge that her husband loves her but also loves another woman? Here too, the shades of grey are everywhere, as each side has a different take on the same story. The lives, loves, triumphs and trials of a bi-ethnic couple on different sides of the divide in this war of brother against brother make up the story of "Dreams of Yesterday."
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About Author
Lilian Amah is a member of The Nigerian Institute of Management (NIM) as well as the immediate past Vice President of the Association of Movie Producers of Nigeria (AMP). The full time actor/producer who has a Master of Arts degree in English from the University of Lagos is a KUTH ambassador and a firm believer in the saying “this too shall pass”, Lillian’s motto is “Life is short so live it to the fullest.

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Dreams of Yesterday
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Tuesday, November 18th 2014

By Gbenga bolejo Ojo

EXCELLENT

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