His Blackberry phone gave a loud cry and the battery bar went red, glaring like a deep wound.

“Ahhh! Not again!”

Tares gnashed his teeth at the thought of another trip to the Cafe to charge his phone for the fourth time today. He grabbed his grey sleeveless top and reached for his charger.

“And I need to send this mail before 4pm”, he said to himself as he took an agitated trip to the wall clock and back. He turned clock-wise and counter clock-wise in search of his wallet, which was on his bed sheets, looking rather lost.

He found his Nike palm and went into the sun-scorched Friday.

He half-ran and half-walked. Time check was 3:56pm. He got to the busy Apex junction and turned left, facing a horde of people running for safety like a dismantled file of sugar ants.

A pothole had gotten the better of a heavy duty truck carrying a container, sending it somersaulting, tumbling ferociously, vaporizing all else on its way: cars, people, motorbikes. A woman selling Agbado by the side of the road scrammed with her two children, leaving her impatient customer to his own fate.

The screams from men, women and children was deafening, but the sound of chaos did not stop a goat from helping itself to the roasted corn left behind by the seller.

Tares found cover beside a wounded shop and then— silence! His phone and charger had vanished out of his hands and mind.

He managed to rise above what looked like a battlefield littered with fallen warriors, blood and more blood. Carbon monoxide was seething from crushed cars and motorbikes, clouding the atmosphere with horror.

As he stood, he noticed that he was not in his sleeveless top anymore. He was in a blinding white robe, and there were other people dressed in the same fashion, walking away from their former selves. All in celestial white.

He looked himself over, puzzled. He checked his surrounding and found his body sandwiched between the container of the truck and the blood-drenched earth, covered in his own blood.


Post image by Louis Kreusel via Flickr

About the Author:

Portrait - McdanielsBalogun Stanley Princewill McDaniels is a Nigerian poet, short story writer & realist who believes that humans are their own strangers- a mere sketch of that which dwells within. He won second prize at the 5th Korea/Nigeria Poetry Feast & he’s currently pursuing a degree in Political Science.

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I'm finishing up a phd at Duke University where I study African novels, which I believe are some of the loveliest things ever written. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

5 Responses to “Nine, Ten, Eleven | by Princewill McDaniels | African Flash Fiction” Subscribe

  1. Chiziterem 2015/11/06 at 8:06 am #

    Oh, Blackberry charger. Why?

  2. Ainehi Edoro 2015/11/06 at 9:01 am #

    Don Chizzy! How far na? Longest time.

  3. Tori 2015/11/07 at 3:00 am #

    Oh BEDC! If only he had light at home, he wld have stil bin alive wit a full battery.

  4. A-jay 2015/11/10 at 7:19 pm #

    At least he went to heaven. We cant predict fate

  5. john_onah 2016/10/13 at 4:16 am #

    oh my! What a tragedy, garnished with touches of prose’s beauty served covered with stainless plate of Sarcasm.

    I so love this piece.

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I hold a doctorate in English from Duke University and recently joined the Marquette University English faculty as an Assistant Professor. I love teaching African fiction and contemporary British novels. Brittle Paper is the virtual space/station where I play and experiment with ideas on how to reinvent African fiction and literary culture.

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