A group of young boys are shown blurred. They are in a secret cult initiation ceremony and wear black all through. This scene is switched with another initiation scene. Both are the initiation ceremonies of two rival cult groups in a campus. When a member is held static his name is written on it and the names written includes- Tega, Taye aka Tee, while for the other groups the names of some of the members listed includes Philip aka Big P, Usman aka Saddam, Bankole aka Banks, Jerry. These are major players in the drama.
The ceremony involves some mystifying activities like drinking from an earthen pot, the marking of their bodies with a bone. One of the leaders of the group would be dressed as a fetish priest in an all-red attire, while a soulful music plays.
Scene 1. INT. ROOM. NIGHT
A typical campus room; with a table, a chair, a medium-sized foam on the floor, a small refrigerator, a 21-inch LCD television and a DVD machine. These are arranged neatly and they typify wealthy occupants. The table space is covered with very large textbooks and a closer camera shot reveals that they are medical texts. Philip popularly called Big P is a burly young man in his early twenties who dresses and behaves like the typical university student found today in every campus. He is tall and big which may have pre-empted his nickname and plaits his hair according to the current trend. Big P is sitting alone with his legs crossed on the books resting on the table. He is in deep thoughts and his countenance depicts suppressed anger. He is nursing a bottle of beer and also chain-smoking cigarettes, dropping the ash on a CD plate case, although some drops on the table. The number of cigarette butts and quantity of ash indicates that he has smoked many sticks. He is all the while fiddling with a pistol which it looks he is fairly accustomed to, and glances periodically at his wristwatch. When he stares at the pistol he is holding in his hand for a long time, it DISSOLVES into the next scene.
Scene 2. EXT. DRINKING JOINT. DAY (flashback)<br>
Big P is staring at the same gun but in company of two other guys. One of the boys BANKS from BANKOLE is smallish in nature and quiet while the other guy is as big as Big P with a very bushy moustache and dressed as a Muslim in caftan and skullcap. He is Saddam. They are in a beer parlour with a table for three, placed outside the main place. On the table are bottles of beer with cigarettes butts scattered about. They are all admiring the carefully concealed weapon in the hand of Big P.
Saddam: men, she is a beauty.
Big P: Why do you think I bought it at such an astronomical price? It is 16-rounds, low rebound, high precision, quick and automatic reloading and does not get hot easily. Bro, she is a queen
Banks stretches his hands and Big P hands it over to him.
Banks: I like the way it feels in my hand. Soft!
Big P looks up and sees Tega, holding some books in his hands. He is impeccably dressed, with a tie to complete it. He is slimly built with the airs of the 400 levels medical student, which he is. He sees Big P and walks down to meet him. When Big P sees that he is coming over, he excuses himself and walks down to meet his cousin.
Tega: Hey Bro?
Big P: Mi Doctor, how was classes today?
They shake hands
Tega: It was tedious as usual but okay, is that not Bankole the VC’s son?
Tega indicates with his head
Big P: yea, that’s Banks. Do you want to meet him? I could introduce you guys.
Tega: maybe some other time. I didn’t know you knew him.
Big P: Of course, I do. And you may not believe the guys around here that I call by their first names.
Tega: Don’t bother, I believe. Everybody knows you are a popular jingo in this campus.
Big P: listen Tega, it would be sheer stupidity if you go through this school without the school going through you. I can help you become a big boy, a VD in this campus without any stress, financial or otherwise. Some guys in this school grovel and beg to become a VD, others pay thousands of naira but with my reputation I could make it easy. You wouldn’t pay a dime nor be beaten all in the name of initiation.
Tega: That’s exactly what a checker told me last week. Anyway cousin, you know that the nature of my course would not allow that stuff.
Big P: skip it. Felix the best graduating medical student two sets ago was a VD in the same department as you. I am sure you know him?
Tega: I do. Don’t forget there are geniuses. Big P, you can’t understand but there is no way I can ever be a VD.
Big P: Tega the choice is yours but I will not always be here, I am leaving school this year.
Tega: I got to go home. I am hungry.
Big P: I am starving too, and will be home soon please prepare food at home.
Tega: I will
(They both separate. While Tega hails a bike, Big P walks back to his friends)
Scene 3. EXT. JOINT. DAY (flashback)
Banks: Do you know that guy you just spoke with?
Big P: Know? That’s my little cousin.
Banks: Little cousin? Do you know what he is?
Big P: He is nothing but he will soon be a VD, whether he likes it or not.
Saddam: Hmm, Big P you were supposed to be sharper than this.
Big P: Saddam, you guys know I have hot blood, can you please explain what you meant with that statement that I am supposed to be sharper than what?
Banks: Your “little” cousin is a BONE. He has been a BONE since his second year.
Big P: Banks, you know I don’t like personal jokes. You know if it were not you I would not be sitting here absorbing this shit from this scoundrel called whats-it.
Banks: Chill out, P. Your cousin is not just a Bone he is their Jaw Bone. He has been under suspicion for some time. He was the guy that blew away the head of that checker in their last fracas. That single blast ended the war.
Big P: Banks, you can’t be serious. You guys don’t know what you are talking about.
Saddam: the only obscure thing here Big P is not whether your cousin is a Bone, it is how many VDs he has killed.
(Big P looks at Saddam with a bad eye, which makes Saddam raise his hand in surrender and looks away. Banks signals him, he gets up and walks away.)
Banks: P, this is not a time to intimidate anybody. You know that I am not supposed to be telling you this myself but everybody is scared shitless to tell you.
(Big P becomes thoughtful and silent)
Banks: You see, the revelation that your cousin is a bloody Bone is hindering so many things from coming to you. You have been a priest for so long and it is now your turn to be High Priest but because of Tega nobody would contemplate it. If he was a mere Bone we may let him be but he is their bloody Jaw Bone, their hit man and so he cannot be allowed to live. It is not that we cannot do the job ourselves but he is your cousin and nobody would want such a job to be undertaken behind him. So the ball is in your court to fix him up under two weeks or lose your right to be the next High Priest of this organisation.
Big P: but Banks that’s unfair, that guy is my cousin for God sake.
Banks: If your so-called cousin can be a Bone for so many years without letting you know then he can pull the trigger on you on code.
Big P: All the same I can’t do that shit
Banks: It is your decision brother, not mine. Remember two weeks.
(Banks hands Big P’s gun to him)
Banks: Saddam lets go.
(Banks and Saddam leave Big P staring at their backs in confusion.)
Scene 4. INT. ROOM. NIGHT
Big P is shown in his moody situation in his room at school still staring at his gun. Voices are heard outside the corridor and he glances at the wall clock when his door is being opened. The time is 1 am. Tega comes in with a friend Taye; of average height and build.
Both Entrants: Good day, Bro.
(Big P is silent, he stares through them as if they are not there. He walks to the door, and opens it.)
Tega: Hey, Bro what’s up? You ain’t looking happy. What could be wrong?
Big P: Taye could you please excuse us for some seconds.
Tega: Hey! What is going on here?
Taye: Don’t worry Tega, big P just wants some few minutes with you. I will be right outside. When you guys are through holler me.
(Taye walks outs and Big P shuts the door behind him)
Tega: What’s going on?
Big P: You are a Bone.
Tega: is that a question or a statement?
Big P: Tega don’t for your life fool around with me. You are a Bone.
Tega: I am a Bone.
Big P: Hell. Why did you not tell me all this while? For God sake we are cousins.
Tega: you didn’t ask.
Big P: How could I ask when all along you pretended like someone who didn’t know the entrance to any bush.
Tega: I am no saint and I never pretended to be one. I just didn’t feel like telling you
Big P: You didn’t feel like blowing your cover, eh, even with me, your brother? After all we have been through together. You forgot everything for this silly campus madness?
(Tega sees the hurt in Big P’s eyes and turns away. He begins searching for a shirt to wear from the clothes rack. But Big P pulls Tega to himself)
Big P: Don’t turn away from me, cousin. What you did will make me never to trust you again. I can never sleep with both eyes closed again. You took this witch matter too far.
Tega: It wasn’t that. I didn’t know how you would react to it. I guessed you would take it just the same way you are doing now; personal.
Big P: tell that to the dogs. You and I know I would have preferred to hear it from you instead of from Banks. Everybody in this campus knows you are a Bone except me. Do you know what you made me feel like when I heard it from Banks two weeks ago? I still didn’t believe until I had concluded my own personal investigations. I felt like a fool. I let my reputation down simply because I trusted you. Just because of you everything I slaved for is going down the drain. I am supposed to be the High Priest but I didn’t know that because of you nobody was willing to take the risks. I am not too into positions but considering that you have not been fair to me I don’t see any reason why I should be fair to you either.
(Tega quickly wears his shirt and walks out of the room, while Philip is still speaking, he pauses at the door)
Tega: I am sorry Philip, I didn’t know you would know and I didn’t know it would hurt you so.
Big P: Fuck! It’s too late to cry. I don’t think I will ever see you as a brother again but rather as a Bone, a motherfucking, bloody Bone.
Scene 5 .EXT. UNDER A TREE. DAY
Tega and Taye are sitted under a tree and discussing. The scene has other students doing other things. Tega has just finished filling Taye in on what transpired yesterday.
Taye: So why didn’t you tell me all these yesterday?
Tega: I had to rearrange my thoughts
Taye: How was his reaction since then?
Tega: I am no longer there. I am hooking up with Iyke at the moment.
Taye: We told you to leave that guy long ago. Frat does not recognise kinship when the chips are down.
Tega: The chips have been down so many times but I did not take the war home. Blood is thicker than water.
Taye: yea, test him and see if blood is really thicker than water. That guy’s desperate and could do anything to you. You don’t like your life at all.
Tega: Taye you are talking about my cousin here, someone I consider my brother. I am the only son of my father while he is the only child so we practically grew up together as siblings. We can never hurt each other. We have gone through too much already to allow a petty thing as frat matter break our relationship.
Taye: When did frat matter become petty? Tega even if it is petty to you it definitely isn’t to Big P. Didn’t you see the anger in him? I am sure he was not angry because you did not tell him but because you joined a different org, bro, eh wise up. Time no dey.
Tega: TY freestyle that thing, how would you feel if your cousin pulls this kind of shit on you like I did to big P?
Taye: he wouldn’t. From the day a close cousin of mine enters this campus he becomes a Bone. Whether he likes it or not. He doesn’t have a choice I will do it even if I have to balm him inside his father’s living room.
(Tega looks at him surprised and shakes his head)
Tega: you are a devil.
Scene 6. INT. IYKE’S ROOM. DAY
Tega and Iyke are playing a game of chess in Iyke’s room. The room is comfortable without being flamboyant. Iyke is a friend of Tega with an afro hairstyle. Beside them are cans of Heineken. Iyke makes a move and waits for Tega to respond.
Iyke: What would you do if your cousin puts a rod on your head? Smile and say ‘remove am now’
Tega: I would not do anything. Even if I know that he is going to kill me. I will prefer that he kills me rather than I kill him. My conscience will never forgive me if I hit my own cousin. Makes a move Check your king.
Iyke: Me? I don’t allow anybody to stay in my way. I am a bulldozer wey no get brake o. Covers his king play
Tega: Normally I don’t allow people play pranks on me but there are times that you bend your rules because of some peculiar situations.
Iyke: Let me tell you about a film I once watched. The boss was a drug baron, a typical bad o. And you know these Italian mafias now; they are mean and merciless. But one day one of his aides disappeared into thin air with his money. After searching fruitlessly for him, he got hold of the guy’s brother and told him to tell his brother to refund his money or else all hell would be let loosed. He gave him the option of a clean slate if he personally returns the money within a stipulated period but if not… Within the period the absconder resurfaced with the money and do you know what the Baron told him?
(Tega shakes his head)
Iyke: He said (mimics) I know I gave you my word however, everybody in the fucking city knows you went away with my money so if I let you go scot-free people would start taking me for granted and do worse so I have to protect my reputation because it is all I have got as an old man. (Stops mimicking) And the absconder became history.
Iyke: The only thing a woman has to protect is her beauty and she would never run out of market while the only thing men have to uphold is their reputation especially in a jungle as this. Big P has a reputation to maintain and he doesn’t look like someone who jokes with it.
Tega: You know I once broke a guy’s head for stealing a girl from me. While everybody was screaming that I beat him for a mere girl I knew it was different. My grouse was not really the girl he stole from me but the audacity he had to steal the girl from me. If I had not done it he may have stolen my millions whenever I make them. That guy made me to detest intimate relationships and that farce called love. Till date the guy shirks me like the devil himself. I like it that way. But this case different.
Iyke: Witch matter is the same everywhere.
Tega: we shouldn’t allow it to control our lives.
Iyke: Do you know what I once read? I read that although it repeats itself, the only thing men have learnt from history is that we learn nothing from history. I totally agree with it. Play me game… No, you can’t move that or your king will be under check. Ehen, you don’t allow it to control your life but the skulls cannot take a decision without you being present there; you are just like your cousin although while everybody knows Big P nobody would believe you are the bloody jaw Bone that everyone dreads.
Tega: I never intended it to be that way but you see anything I do I don’t know why but I do it to perfection. My academics, the basketball that I play and even chess. So when I became a Bone I joined just to be a part of the school’s elite team I didn’t anticipate that everything would turn out the way it did. I gradually found myself sinking deeper into the quagmire of evilness. You may not believe but the guys that I have fallen was not because I enjoyed killing them but because I have sworn an oath of allegiance to the org, which my perfectionist attitude would not allow me renege from. I don’t enjoy being the bloody Bone of the org but I am like a prostitute who doesn’t like her profession but because of circumstances surrounding her existence, that she cannot control, she must continue doing something that she detests.
Iyke: I can’t believe what I am hearing.
Tega: Why? You think I am lying?
Iyke: Not that. But every young Bone wants to be like you and here you are saying you are not happy being what every guy is aspiring to be. Do you know that if you say you want the session to jogodo you can do it?
Tega: (amused) how?
Iyke: You simply order some guys to pull a stunt that would make the VC shut down the school and postpone the examinations indefinitely.
Tega: That was a joke in the bad light. Do you know why people who have seen ‘things’ always advise other people not to get involved in secret cult activities?
Tega: Because they have seen the fruitlessness of everything they have been doing. But we end up thinking that they don’t want us to enjoy what they are enjoying; the glitz, the girls, the popularity, the crowd they command, all these are vanities. Remember what the wisest man said after tasting all we consider enjoyment now
Iyke: Bro I can’t believe that you are preaching the bible to me
Tega: I am not preaching. You told me that we learn nothing from history which always repeats itself and that is true here. Nobody is willing to learn from Solomon. Do you know how we console ourselves? We say ‘eh, make we still try am, lets taste it first’ failing to know that it is a quicksand, when you get on it the only direction left is deeper inside.
Iyke: (looks up) Tega! Why all these words today?
Tega: I wish I knew but you see at times men still have to reason once in a while or maybe it is the melancholy of separating from my brother. Mate. (He ends the game and stands up)
Iyke: Shit! How did you do it?
Tega: How would you feel if your son is a confirmed murderer?
Iyke: it is his cup of tea not mine.
Tega: Listen brother, you are hearing the gospel truth even if it is from the devil but don’t ever get too involved in the org. you may have made the mistake of becoming a member but don’t ever make the mistake which we did, of becoming indispensable members. Because the moment you stop being in and indispensable to them you are out and dispensable. Take it or leave it.
(Tega leaves the room and Iyke is baffled)
Scene 7 EXT. OUTSIDE IYKE’S ROOM. DAY
Outside Tega leans on a banister outside and looks around. The house is a storey building. A girl approaches him. She is pretty in every sense and looks like she is searching for someone. She is simply dressed and exudes a captivating kind of beauty. Tega is immediately caught by her beauty as can be deciphered from his interested looks.
Tega: Good afternoon, looking for anybody?
Monica: Good afternoon. I am looking for a guy, Iyke by name. He gave me this address. (She hands over a piece of paper to Tega, who scrutinises it)
Tega: Your boyfriend?
Tega: he is in there. (Points disinterestedly at the room he came out from and looks away)
Monica: thank you very much. I am Monica.
(They shake hands and as she enters Tega looks at her and shakes his head. The voice of Iyke can be heard on the background screaming)
Iyke: My baby girl!
(The voices are now in low tones but it can be realised that people are conversing until after sometime Iyke hollers Tega’s name)
Iyke: Tega come meet my baby girl
Tega: (shouts back) Iyke free me now. You know that I am not in the mood for socialising.
Iyke: (shows his face through the curtain) that doesn’t mean you won’t say hello to my sister.
Tega: (swirls round rapidly) did you say that she is your sister?
Iyke: Yes, what did you think? My mother?
Tega: Gawd! I just met my wife. I never thought I would marry into your family. Congratulations! (Iyke pauses briefly wedging Tega from entering into the room.)
Iyke: (soberly) are you really serious?
Tega: I love her.
Iyke: Tega, please eh, she is my only sister and I don’t allow anybody to go near her. abeg try change mind if you been serious.
Tega: That does not mean you won’t allow me greet her now?
Iyke: You and I know I can’t do anything to you but please respect my wishes. She’s a small girl.
Tega: make I holler your sister now
(Iyke reluctantly moves away. Tega enters the room.)
Scene 8 INT. CLASS. DAY
A lecturer is lecturing in a laboratory as can be deduced from the equipments and apparatuses that dot it. The number of students does not exceed 15. The students are copiously taking down notes except for Tega whose mind seems to be elsewhere. The lecturer notices.
Lecturer: Tega! Tega!!
(Tega wakes up from his daydream and shuffles to his feet)
Lecturer: Tega, you were not listening
Tega: Sorry sir, I was momentarily distracted.
Lecturer: Since I can remember, this is the first time you are (mimics) momentarily distracted in a neurology class. Try to resolve the issue distracting you before my next class. Uh?
Tega: yes sir, I will.
(Lectures resume. When it ends, Tega hurriedly gathers his books together.)
Classmate: What could make our genius so distracted to the extent that he would miss lectures?
Tega: What else? A girl of course.
Classmate: You! Miss lectures because of a girl. You think everybody doesn’t know you are a reverend father.
Tega: Even reverend fathers nowadays break their oaths and marry talk less of me (Tega is leaving the hall)
Classmate: Tega don’t tell me that you are leaving because Akpabor is due any moment from now.
Tega: The bible says if a man finds a great jewel of inestimable value, he sells his other property to purchase that one jewel. I can trade Akpabor for… (Tega is now at the door)
Classmate: (hollers after him) for who Tega? Make we know her now.
Scene 9. EXT. IYKE’S FATHER’S HOUSE. DAY.
In front of Iyke’s parents’ house, the house is modest without being demeaning. A two-flat bungalow, with a car parked by the side. Tega meets Monica who is escorting a friend. He runs down to catch up with them.
Tega: hello! Monica!
(The two ladies stand still and look back at the guy calling. Monica recognises Tega)
Monica: Tega! What a surprise!
(Tega catches up with them)
Tega: Hello ladies
Monica: Kemi, meet Tega, Tega Kemi
(They exchange pleasantries)
Tega: I was passing by and I said let me see if Iyke came around.
Monica: No he didn’t. Weren’t you guys together last night
Tega: (stuttering a bit) We were however since I was going past I said let me do a little surprise and you know that was exactly the same words you shouted just now.
Monica: That is really nice of you. I was thinking maybe something had gone wrong.
Tega: Ladies! You always associate trouble with unexpectedness. May I join you to see Kemi off so we won’t hold her down with our meaningless banter?
(Monica agrees and together they see Kemi off. When she leaves them…
Tega: I want to be a neurologist…
Monica: (interrupts) a doctor of the brain?
(Tega nods his head in acquiescence)
Tega: I have ever loved neurology as a course, but for first the time in four years I was inattentive and distracted in Prof’s class to the extent that he noticed it.
Monica: so what could distract you from something you loved so well?
Tega: Without taxing my brain it has to be something that I love more than Prof and his neurology course combined.
Monica: it still boils down to the same question what distracted you and why am I being told?
Tega: To the first question of what distracted me is YOU and to the second I want you to free me. Please
Scene 10. INT. ROOM. DAY
Philip is in his room and he is smoking furiously, the many number of cigarettes butts lying carelessly about indicate that he has been in the activity for long. Hip-hop music plays at the background while he is thoughtful. His phone rings and he ignores the first and second rings but picks up at the third ring.
Philip: Hello? Banks what’s up
Banks: P, you been ignoring my calls, eh? When did our friendship degenerate to that level now?
Philip: I won’t deny that I wasn’t here but I was deeply embroiled in thoughts that it had to take me time to rouse up.
Banks: So what about my proposal? I need a reply in less than one week oh, and not only an affirmative reply in words, I need it in action.
Philip: Banks what you are asking me to do now is difficult.
Banks: Do you still remember the motto of the US navy?
Philip: the difficult we do now the impossible later
Banks: You are still intelligent.
Philip: this is not about intelligence. What you are proposing is neither difficult nor impossible, it is the unthinkable. For God sake that guy is my own brother, Bone or no Bone. (His pitch rises)
Banks: What I am proposing appeals to your vanity; it is a payment, a recompense for all your hard work. The guy you are screaming is your brother doesn’t consider you as such. I wonder why you are weeping over him. He won’t think twice about pulling the trigger on you. P, a week!
Philip: That’s a lie Banks… hello? Hello? (He looks at the handset) shit! Banks cut off on me.
(He tries calling the number but it is dead)
Philip: Dead. Fuck! Fuck!! Fuck!!!
(and slams the phone against the wall)
Scene 11. EXT. OUTSIDE. DAY
Tega picks up Monica at home with his car, a Toyota Camry. Someone watches them.
Scene 12. INT. RESTAURANT. DAY
They eat at a restaurant. The person is still watching.
Scene 13. EXT. MONICA’S FATHER’S GATE. DAY
Tega drops Monica at home. Someone watches them
Scene 14. EXT. DAY
Philip outside standing with some guys near a car, a Peugeot 406. They are gisting animatedly, his phone rings and when he sees who is calling he disengages himself from the group and walks a little distance away.
Philip: Banks why have you been avoiding me? And why did you cut the line the last time you called?
Voice: this is not Banks but Saddam. Banks asked me to tell you that you got 48 hours to take a decision.
Philip: Saddam! When did you start going on such errands? Saddam!
(He looks at the phone again and the line is dead. He shakes his head)
Philip: hmm, Saddam of all people
Scene 15. INT. IYKE’S PARENTS’ HOUSE. DAY
Voices are heard from the house as the camera draws near to the house from a wider angle.
Monica’s voice: hey brother, twasn’t long you left this house.
The camera shot goes through the door into the house and Iyke is shown in the sitting room with Monica. He is dressed in jeans and tee shirt while his sister is dressed casually
Iyke: (dropping his bag on the floor) Monica I came home because of you
Monica: Because of me?
Monica: Do you realise that this is the first time that you came home because of me and didn’t bring a gift? Other times that you didn’t come because of me you came along with a gift. Absurd.
Iyke: Monica this isn’t funny.
Monica: So what could be?
Iyke: Promise me that you will tell me the truth, the whole truth?
Monica: Have I ever lied to you?
Iyke: No. But you have started doing things that I don’t expect from you.
Monica: The tension is killing me.
Iyke: can we sit down?
Monica: since it is going to take a long time why not
(Monica flops on the ground while Iyke chooses a chair, he faces his sister.)
Monica: I’m all ears
Iyke: Are you going out with Tega?
Iyke: Monica! Don’t lie to me; tell me it is not true.
Monica: It is true. Anything wrong?
Iyke: shit! (looks downcast) When did you start going out with him? Why didn’t you tell me he was asking you out? How far have you guys gone?
Monica: It has not been long and I didn’t want to tell you because I want to go out with him. You see I liked him from the very first day I set my eyes on him.
Iyke: He’s my friend but he is not so good. Forget the gentle face, it’s a natural cover up
Monica: How come your friend is not so good and you still consider him a friend.
Iyke: Monica, it is a story you will not understand and neither do I want to bore you with it. But the Tega you are going out with is a farce, a fake; you will never in your life go near the real Tega if you get to know him.
Monica: So tell me about the real Tega.
Iyke: Don’t you believe me? For God sake I am your brother and would never lie to you.
Monica: Iyke, this is more than sibling’s issue. We are talking about a guy I profess to love who is incidentally your friend but whose image you are smearing without giving concrete proof. What would you do if it was you? Believe my unfounded story? What should make me not believe you are just being overly protective and … and jealous?
Iyke: I am not trying to smear his image because I am jealous, neither is my story concocted
Monica: Then tell me about the real Tega, tell me something I don’t know
Iyke: (pause) Tega is a member of a confraternity in school.
Monica: (calmly) He told me. Anything else?
Iyke: He did? (surprised) Listen Monica I am trying to protect you, Tega is not just an ordinary member he is a topshot, their hitman. Do you want to marry a killer, a murderer? Someone to whom life means absolutely nothing to?
Monica: How did you get to know about this Iyke? I thought they were really secret things
Iyke: I am in school, I move around
Monica: Don’t give me that piece. Do you think I don’t have eyes? You think I don’t see some absurd things in your possession? Such as the Bones Organisation of Nigeria tee shirt you have never allowed me wash for you. I guess both of you are members of the same dirty gang.
(Monica stands and begins to walk away)
Iyke: (recovering himself) Monica I am warning you…
Monica: (pauses in motion) you don’t have any warning to give to me. So long as he is good enough to be your friend then he is good enough for me. And come to think of it if even I consider severing the relationship I may consider the same for ours, ‘cos you are both birds of a feather.’
Scene 16. EXT. ALONG THE ROAD. DAY
The camera zooms from a hand band with BON written on it and diagram of crossbones underneath it, it enlarges to reveal Tega and Monica walking along the road. The serene environment depicts an academic setting. Monica is looking forlorn while the mood is tense.
Tega: I am sorry; I promised myself that I would tell you one day, only I never got the opportunity
Monica: I felt like a fool when he broke the news but covered up by telling him that I already knew. I guess he is a member of a secret cult too?
Tega: (hesitates) I wouldn’t know, the organisations are so many in school that you lose count of some that doesn’t really matter.
Monica: What is the name of yours?
Tega: (smiles) I will tell you but I think the less you know the better. It is called BON. Could we leave it at that?
Monica: Not until you resolve the puzzle of why a guy like you joined such a group in the first place.
Tega: okay only that we will have to find somewhere to sit.
Monica: I wouldn’t mind.
They stroll over to a chair by the wayside and sit down.
Tega: I walked into this school with the sole aim of reading my books and leaving the four walls of this school an academia but a man can never run from the truth about himself and the world he lives in. Youths of today are caught up in a vicious circle that a strong desire to belong to something necessitated. We are not sure of growing up and achieving satisfaction so we strive to get it now; through confraternities, G, sexual immoralities, and other vices. The people to lead and direct us are so busy making money for the physical that they forget the spiritual, the real thing. The society is now a jungle that for us to survive we have to be animals….
Scene 17 INT. CAR. DAY
A long-range gun is trained on them while Tega’s voice is heard in the background. Tega and Monica are watched through the telescopic sight. The side mirrors and car windows readily inform us that the watcher is in a car.
Scene 18 EXT. DAY
The camera zooms back to Tega and Monica who continue their discussion unaware of everything around them.
Scene 19 INT. CAR. DAY
The gun is still trained on them while a finger depresses the trigger gently. Tega’s voice is heard through out.
Scene 20 INT. CLASSROOM. DAY
Tega is in the classroom reading in a corner when Iyke walks up to him. The students are all in the same process of reading or discussing in quiet tones. It is evening and the encroaching dusk is visible through the open windows. He hollers some students around before walking down to meet Tega
Tega: Hello Iyke, its been sometime since we last saw.
Iyke: I been kinda busy. Could we talk outside please?
Tega: (seriously) hope nothing’s come up
Iyke: Naw, just personal talk.
They shuffled outside the classroom to a secluded place under a tree
Tega: so what’s the 4-1-1
Iyke: Just wanted to ask you a question
Tega: I’m all ears
Iyke: (flustered) em…. Its …are (pauses) why are you going out with Monica?
Tega: why? I like her that’s why.
Iyke: but you promised not to go near her.
Tega: I didn’t promise anything. You requested it. And by the way what’s wrong with my going out with your sister? Am I promiscuous? Do I run around with girls?
Iyke: That could have even been better, but you see she is our little baby and we cannot afford to see you go out with her.
Tega: what if I tell you that I intend settling down with her? That I want to marry her?
Iyke: If I wasn’t so pissed off I would have laughed. Tega you know jokes don’t suit you
Tega: Thank God you are aware of that. I don’t joke and I am not joking. Iyke, I like your sister very much.
Iyke: Tega, for our friendship sake please don’t like her.
Iyke: You are using your power to ride me. That’s not what friendship is all about.
Tega: I am not using any fucking power to do any fucking thing. I love, L-O-V-E your sister. It has absolutely nothing to do with our friendship or frat either.
Iyke: would you do nothing for a friend?
Tega: You know I would do everything only tell me why? Why should I leave your sister when I truly love her? Or do you think I am playing games?
Iyke: (looks at Tega for a long time, shakes his head) see ya soon then. (He walks away)
Tega: Iyke! Iyke!!
Iyke pauses mid-stride
Tega: Is anything really wrong?
Iyke: Sorry bro, I don’t know.
Tega: You told me that you would have preferred it if I was promiscuous to what?
(Iyke is silent.)
Tega: To what brother? To a murderer? A killer?
Iyke is surprised and tries denying but Tega walks off, wiping his teary eyes with the back of his hands.
Scene 21 EXT. OUTSIDE THE CLASSROOM. DAY
Iyke walks off and past the guy with him. He is deeply enmeshed in thoughts
Friend: Iyke! Iyke!! Come on, what is the problem with you? No be you I dey wait for?
Iyke: one day I’m going to make Tega pay for going out with my sister despite my pleas
Friend: Fuck who up? Tega? Hey you must be joking. I aint going to ever join you pull off that job.
Iyke: Power is a prostitute, it changes hands. Someday it is going to rotate into my hand then I will make Tega grovel on his knees begging me.
Friend: (stares at Iyke) you sure are nuts. I no dey here hear you talk this rubbish you are on your own.
Scene 22. INT. CORRIDOR. NIGHT
Philip is seeing off a friend Jerry who is thin and tall from his room. He is casually dressed with jeans, a singlet, and a towel thrown around his neck, while his friend is better dressed.
He holds his friend’s hand to stop.
Jerry: What’s up?
Philip: I want to ask you a question
Jerry: You didn’t have to make me stop. You know I’m in a fucking hurry.
Philip: brother, this is serious.
Jerry: Then ask me now? Are you sure you are okay?
Philip: I am not sure. Brother, I am no longer sure of anything again.
Jerry: Talk to me, what’s really the matter?
Philip: It is something you already know, would you fall a cousin just because you want to be chief priest?
Jerry: Tega’s wahala? Listen P, I always think about flimsy things but I am very sure I won’t lose my sleep over this affair. For crying out loud, do you know how many VDs have brothers that are in other frats? Banks elder brother before he left school was a confirmed checker, Baba Dejo had gone for a first round ‘ini’ as a K man and you know who carry am waka? His younger brother that graduated last year. That guy was their number 1 for two sessions, two fucking sessions. Did anybody kill anybody? Listen Bro eh, you dey fuck up. You dey fuck up. You mean that if you can be in a dilemma over your own brother then you would not even consider me, a mere friend.
Philip: but this guy could want my head. He is their hit man for God sake
Jerry: Are you not a hit man? Did you want to kill him? Guy listen, you have no ground whatsoever to run your brother down. Men I dey vex for you.
Jerry walks away angrily and refuses to stop even when Big P tries to stop him. Big P hesitates, shrugs and leaves him for his room. He enters his room and instinctively heads for the window where he catches sight of some suspicious young men. He snatches his car keys from the table, spies again, sees them taking orders and he hurriedly heads out from the room. Seconds later the young men barges in, guns in hand and discovers he is not in. They run after him.
Scene 23. EXT. PHILIP’S CAR. NIGHT
Big P runs into his car and starts searching for something in the pigeon hole of the car.
Voice behind him: If it is your tools you are looking for it is with me.
Philip: (looks into the mirror and screams) You!!!
Voice: yeah me. Sorry.
A shot is fired and blood stains the windscreen
Scene 24. INT. CLASSROOM. NIGHT
Tega is in the class when his phone vibrates. He looks at it and ignores but when it persists he excuses himself and goes out.
Tega: (impatiently) Hello?
Voice: Tega how far?
Tega: Taye wetin dey now? I was in class.
Taye: Sorry for the distraction only I got bad news
Tega: How bad?
Taye: very bad. Are you alone there?
Tega: yes, flow me the gist
Taye: Big P don fall
Taye; (pauses briefly) Take it easy bro, I say big P, your cousin don fall. Some men roll for the guy today, blow im skull at close range, inside e fine ride.
Tega: Jesus! Taye tell me it’s a lie
Tega: I wish it was.
Tega: Who pulled that shit? Who?
Taye: That na wetin we dey try find out we never get the gist. You know say your bro na everybody target so e go hard small. But we will…
Tega cuts the phone looking dazed and confused.
Tega: Jesus! Jesus!!
He runs confused into the class and out of it into his car. (Background music plays into the next three scenes)
Tega barges into big P’s room. He looks around mechanically as if he is searching for his cousin finally he stares into a pix that they both snapped at a beach and he reminisces with tears dropping out of his eyes.
Scene 25 (flashback)
When they took the pix at the beach, during a mutual friend’s party. There is a little crowd of young guys and girls, drinking, eating and dancing. The mood is festive. They all pile and snap a photograph, the one Tega’s holding.
Scene 26 (flashback)
Of scene 2. But from Tega’s perspective. He watches Big P leave his friends and walked down to him.
Monica walks into the room and meets Tega still staring at the pix. Tears are streaming down his face. Monica’s dressing looks hurried as if she rushed off without taking adequate time to dress properly
Monica: Tega! Tega!!
Tega wakes up from his reverie
Tega: what are you doing here?
Monica: I heard. I am sorry.
Tega: Who told you about it?
She hugs Tega who convulsively collapses on her crying out loud.
Scene 28 NIGHT. MORTUARY. INT
The music still continues, Tega, Monica and two of Tega friends are in a mortuary with a mortuary Attendant and a plainclothes policeman. Everywhere is brightly lit and Tega and Monica are both wearing the same clothes they wore in the last scene. The tray is pulled out and Tega spies inside it briefly and nods his head while Monica buries her face in Tega’s shoulder, too afraid to look. His friends stand nonchalantly some distance away.
Scene 28 NOON. CHURCH. INT
The family of Big P all crying and wiping the tears off their eyes. A sympathetic sight. Tega is stone faced and flagged on either side by his two friends, who watch everywhere all the time. A clergyman consoles the family and preaches,
Priest: …He who kills by the sword must surely die by one. We all understand the pains of immediate separation but God promised us resurrection when he resurrected his son from the dead. Philip had been a mass servant in this church, a lovable, well brought up Christian. He is surely resting in the bosom of the Lord…
(The droning by the priest continues but it is reduced to allow for a discussion by two friends of Philip, one of them is chewing a gum even inside the church and looks unkempt and rough while the other could easily blend as a Christian, he is well dressed to a fault and combs his hair intermittently)
First guy: If Big P is resting in the bosom of the Lord, then I am Angel Gabriel. (His friend doesn’t answer)
First guy: watch him pose like the choirboy he is not.
Second guy: Nobody inside this church looks like murderers even us. (They are quiet briefly while the words of the priest filters in)
Priest: Vengeance is the Lord he will surely repay, for the mills of God grinds slowly but surely…
First guy: I guess this message has been preached to the council before because I am still spiked why they would not allow me snuff out his life, bodyguards or no bodyguards.
Second guy: Are you sure he really did it? Kill his brother?
First guy: Wasn’t Big P ‘his brother’ (mimics the ‘his brother’) willing to light him until he changed his mind? I told Big P that if he doesn’t do it then Tega would. Hell, he is their bloody Bone, their hit man. Big P was my pally, fuck.
Second guy: Control your language, you’re in the church.
First guy: Fuck! And this time fuck in capital letters.
Some people around them look at him, he snarls at them and they right their faces. His friend smiles.
Scene 29. DAY.CEMETERY. EXT.
The discussion is carried over to the cemetery where the two guys remain inseparable. The family including Tega pours in sand. The shovels of sand go in. Weeping by the family members intensifies when the coffin is being lowered in and also when the sand goes in. The coffin is covered with a red cloth, and a voodoo member throws in another red cloth when flowers were thrown in. The Priest utters the normal graveside prayers.
Second guy: The council has got an ace under their sleeve; Tega has to find out who murdered his cousin. If he cannot produce someone then he will take the rap. If he is the culprit…
First guy: I don’t believe in this intelligence shit. I believe in an eye for an eye, which is the first, last and only law of the ghetto where we all come from.
Second guy: take this thing easy now. For every crime a man commits he pays for it, whether now or later, whether by the hand of a man or of God. But he surely must pay for it.
First guy: including us?
Second guy: God no send any man oh.
First guy: E no mean so long as before I account for my sin eh, I go first flex finish.
(After the burial ceremony, Tega is body shielded into a waiting car which speeds off.)
First guy; you see the guy is running.
Second guy: No man runs away from kamar. Nemesis must always catch up with him. He can run but he cannot hide. He may have bodyguards now but for how long?
Scene 30. INT. THE EFEJIRO’S HOUSE. DAY
Tega’s house. In his father’s sitting room. On the other side another sitting room is visible, denoting wealth. On the walls are picture frames of the parents and some of the children. The scenery depicts a close-knit, wealthy family. Tega’s other sibling is Lily who is seen on the picture frames. A flatscreen television is prominent on the other sitting room. Every item in the sitting room portrays wealth. The portraits on the wall are of the family of four; Tega, his parents and his younger sister. His mother, a middle-aged woman is in the sitting room listening to CNN and knitting at the same time. Tega’s father, Mr Efejiro comes into the sitting room. He was visibly present at the burial ceremony of Big P. He is a huge man whose comportment shows that he is well off. He is simply dressed but evidently angry about something. He drops his car keys on the glass table startling his wife who was not aware of his presence.
Mrs Efejiro: Welcome honey, you scared me. (Mr Efejiro nods his head in reply)
Mrs Efejiro: You are not looking happy
Mr Efejiro: (grunts) I am not happy. Where is Tega? Has he gone back to school?
Mrs Efejiro: No. He is upstairs
Mr Efejiro: (screams) Tega! Come downstairs now.
Mrs Efejiro: Honey, what is the problem?
Mr Efejiro: You will soon know. Tega!
(Tega walks in timidly while his mother ignores her knitting and watches)
Tega: Good evening, Daddy
Mr Efejiro: I am coming from my sister’s house and do you know the stories making the rounds in the family concerning the death of Philip?
(Tega is silent)
Mr Efejiro: Am I not talking to a living person?
(Tega shakes his head in reply)
Mr Efejiro: Everybody in the family is saying that you killed your cousin
Mrs Efejiro: Tony! When did you start believing family gossips?!
Mr Efejiro: (To his wife) I started when they gave me concrete proofs. (To Tega) are you not a member of the BONES confraternity in school?
(Tega is silent)
Mr Efejiro: Tega, neither silence nor denial would help you so answer my question
Tega: I am
Mrs Efejiro: Tega, that can’t be true.
Mr Efejiro: It is true and so many more, which I am not obliged to talk about.
Mrs Efejiro: Tega did… did you …kill your cousin?
Tega: Mom, Dad believe me I didn’t, couldn’t, wouldn’t kill Philip
Mr Efejiro: Couldn’t when you got yourself involved in secret cult activities and became an indispensable, diabolical tool. Tega why?
Tega: Dad, confra to me is just an association, a means of knowing what goes on in campus, of being an integral part of the school system.
Mr Efejiro: Tega, don’t give me that bullshit. I am giving you the benefit of doubt that you don’t have a hand in Philip’s death but you will absolve yourself from everything when you use the information conduit of your secret cult to tell me within two weeks who is responsible for the death of your cousin. When we are back from London we will discuss the issue of your evil association.
Tega: But Dad…
Mr Efejiro: No buts. A man should be responsible for his every action.
(Tega angrily walks to the glass table where his father put the car keys and picks them up)
Mr Efejiro: and Tega until we resolve this matter, you are guilty until proven innocent (he gets up and heads for the stairs still speaking) No money, no car, no trip abroad and every other benefits.
Mrs Efejiro: Tony isn’t that too harsh.
Mr Efejiro: Harsh? I have not started. You will see real harsh if all these insinuations are true.
Tega: But Dad know something, I am not doing anything that other guys are not doing. I am very sure that if you were in school now you would be doing exactly what I am doing now, associating with the same kind of people. We can’t help it. Everything is …
Mr Efejiro: (interrupts) that is not a reasonable excuse that you should be involved in such unspeakable activities simply because it is the tide of the times.
Mrs Efejiro: Tega!
Mr Efejiro: Let him be
(Mr Efejiro storms upstairs while Tega walks out of the room, his mother contemplates whether going with her son or her husband. She chooses her husband. Tears drop from Tega’s eyes as he walks off, he meets he sister at the door she is surprised to see him crying
Lily: Tega you are crying!
(Tega detours around her and heads out of the room)
Lily: Can somebody tell me what is going on here!
Scene 31. INT. RESTAURANT. DAY
A small school eatery, with few customers scattered about. A boy is pestering Monica who has been seating alone waiting for Tega but his friend drags him away.
Carl: (drags his friend away) Brother this chick na Iyke sister now, make you leave her.
Kunle: Am I going to eat her up? I simply told her that I liked her. The fucking Iyke no get girlfriend? No be person sister be that?
Carl: She is not interested, try elsewhere.
Kunle: (sotto voce) do me a favour
Kunle: Let’s rape her.
Carl: Jesus! Are you serious? I told you she is Iyke’s sister it is now you want to rape her.
Kunle: guy, I need this babe. I will buy a condom
Carl: you better buy a casket instead. She is Tega’s girlfriend
Kunle: (screams) Tega! Tega! Tega! Who is Tega in this org?
Tega materialises behind him and taps him on the shoulders
Kunle: (dumbfounded momentarily, Carl disappears) Bro I was only joking.
Tega: With my name in front of everybody? Disturbing your guy’s sister?
Kunle: I am sorry, I am drunk.
Tega: I can see that Taye is not giving his boys enough orientation.
Tega walks away enters into his car with Monica already inside
Tega: (to the young men with him) clean that man up nicely, let Taye come and ask me. (Drives off)
Monica: Tega I did not complain about his behaviour, it happens all the time.
Tega: He fooled the org and I cannot allow him go scot-free. He is not supposed to harass the sister of a member.
Monica: so you have finally blurted out that Iyke is a member?
Tega: I am sorry I have been lying all along but I am not supposed to cause a rift between you and your brother that relationship is special and nothing should come between it.
Scene 32. EXT. OUTSIDE A HOSTEL. DAY
Tega and three of his friends are seated on the lawn, and Tega downcast motions tell that all has not been going well with him. Tega is beginning to look unkempt unlike the previous neat young man we are used to.
Tega: But why would anybody believe I killed my cousin?
Bodyguard 1: Some people do it. The issue is who told Big P’s parents that you are a Bone and that you killed their son?
Tega: I wish I knew. At the moment I am without any means of livelihood. If not for my mother who sent some money into my account I would have been high and dry by now. I have stopped attending class frequently, always watching over my back as if I am expecting someone to light me. Which kind of life is this? Or am I the only confra man in this campus?
A car screeches to where Tega and his friends are and screeches to a stop. The little group is surprised and shows signs of being thrown off-balance. However, Tega quickly brings out a pistol from the bag beside him. They all relax when they discover it is Taye, who is evidently angry. He opens the car door with force and storms out of the car walking straight to Tega.
Taye: So you could beat up a bone simply because of a tart?
Tega: If it is Monica you are calling a tart, you would do well by refraining from it. I would assume you didn’t say that.
Taye: forget. You knew very well that Kunle is my boy and yet you beat him up to unconsciousness?
Tega: I should have beaten him to death.
Taye: Tega you dey overdo o. You forget that we ate this witch the same day, or is it because you became a skull before me? You forget that we were in the same ini ground yet you manhandled the guy wey I carry waka.
People start taking interest in the brewing melee. Tega looks at one of his bodyguards who draws out a gun and looks at the little crowd. They quickly disperse.
Tega: you see what are you causing in public Taye?
Taye: I am not causing anything. Everybody knows that I am a Bone. I am neither afraid nor ashamed to say it boldly unlike you.
Taye turns around and hollers as if addressing a crowd
Taye: I am a motherfucking Bone. (Turns to Tega) try am now? You no fit because you no wan blow your cover.
Tega: (getting angry) Taye leave here now.
Taye: I am on my way but remember that you are biting the hand that helped you else you would have been 6 feet under the ground. E good
Tega: (standing up) Taye what did you do for me?
Taye walks away ignoring Tega. Tega goes after him but his friends hold him.
Bodyguard 1: Bro chill, I will tell you.
Tega relents and looks enquiringly at his friend while Taye enters into the car and drives off.
Bodyguard 1: (stutters) Eh… it isn’t much…
Tega: I will shoot you in front of everybody if you don’t open that mouth now and tell me something useful
Bodyguard 2: (speaks for the first time) Na Taye fall big P. The guy was following you everywhere with a long range. The org had to do something about it
Tega is shocked and cannot speak for some seconds
Tega: You mean it was Taye? And you guys knew all along?
Bodyguard: Bro na small small. One day e go be Taye turn.
Tega is dumbf-ounded.
Scene 33. EXT. IYKE’S FATHER’S GATE. NIGHT
Iyke drives to his father’s gate and comes out to open the gate. When he opens his car door, (a golf 1) Tega materialises from behind him.
Tega: Hello Iyke.
Iyke: (Shocked) Yeah? You surprised me.
Tega: I know. I’m afraid of my shadow, even it can betray me.
Iyke: So bro why all these Jet Li acts?
Tega: I don’t know if you’ve forgotten this but I want to remind you that we have come so far confra or no confra.
Iyke: why are you telling me all these?
Tega: Because I want to ask you a question and I don’t want you to hedge about it. I need only the truth.
Iyke: You didn’t need that intro before you ask your question. Now what’s the question?
Tega: Who killed Philip?
(Iyke is silent briefly but when he answers he answers boldly)
Iyke: I wish I knew and I wish I know why you are asking me. Does your mind tell you that the org has a hand in Big P’s death?
Tega: A Bone killed my brother. What I want to know is which Bone killed my brother. And I am convinced that you know whom.
Iyke: Why are you accusing your pal now?
Tega: wasn’t it you who said you are never going to allow anybody stay in your way? Am I in your way? Listen Iyke, you are getting bolder with me as every day passes by but let me tell you something, if it were before you wouldn’t have those thoughts for too long. Ask anybody. When I am through with the killer of Big P I may come back for you.
Iyke: It’s not what you are thinking, Tega.
Tega: we shall see.
Tega walks off.
Scene 34. INT. TAYE’S ROOM. NIGHT
Taye wakes up to see himself securely bound by Tega who tells him that he has come to avenge big P’s death.
Tega: Oh you’ve woken up. You no dey hear word o. How many times have you been told to stop booze? It is not good for a hit man. Now you over drank and didn’t know when you drank sleeping tablets with it. Anyway, it is payback time Brother. You don’t take the law into your hand and kill my cousin just like that, like a mere fowl. You should have told me. I am not going to kill you for two reasons; one, I don’t want you to die a slow and easy death. 2, when I took the oaths during our initiation I swore never to kill my fellow Bone except under the authority of majority of the council of skulls. We were allowed to fight each other, break one or two bones but not to kill. So what I am going to do is paralyse you. You won’t be able to talk or write or walk or eat all by yourself and so many other things. You will eventually become a prey to any new ‘Make’ who wants to ‘shine’. I guess life’s going to be boring not being able to hold guns again, ‘cos that is your life. You live, breathe sleep and dream guns. So I would be doing civil society a favour by removing a scum like you off the streets. However I will bring you flowers everyday. It is not going to be painful, only a small prick by an injection (dangles the injection in front of Taye’s eyes.) and it is all over. There won’t be any mistakes because I am at present the best 400 level medical student. The solution contains a powerful atrophiser. It rapidly slows down the ability of your muscles to function and under 15 seconds you become a vegetable. Do you know what we mean by vegetable? I guess not. Don’t worry you will soon find out practically.
(Tega fills the injection with the light greenish liquid and injects Taye intravenously. The camera watches Tega as if it is the eyes of Taye)
Tega: You may not know it but I have become an outcast to my father, I am a murderer and cultist to my mother while my sister would not touch me with a ten-foot pole all because you were too eager to go on an errand you were not sent…
(The eyes go dimmer and dimmer even as Tega speaks until it finally closes and shuts Tega’s voice out.)
Scene 35. EXT. BUSH. NIGHT
The supreme council of skulls are in a meeting. It is a bush with 3 pots of fire on the ground to give light. The crowd is about 10 in a circle, and a leader stands at the middle. An eerie sound plays at the background while the camera revolves around the group.
Leader: This is not a gathering for children but rather for adults. For people who have gone through the bejewelled gates yet are still alive. For people who have sent others through those golden gates of hell and they never return.
A member saunters in; in a manner that depicts that he is without a care in the world. The leader’s voice continues
Leader: We should not be violent in asserting our authority but neither should we allow ourselves to be repressed. Repression is of darkness, freedom is of the light. We therefore welcome a bone into skullership. He has become a head, a leader since the incapacitation of a skull. He would be reborn from infancy to adulthood, from sanity to wisdom, from able to ability, from immaturity to maturity, from follower to leader…
A hooded guy walks into the midst and sheds his clothes. He stands naked before the assembly. The droning continues.
Leader: … His first duty to prove his election into this select council is by locating and terminating the life of the guy that pulled off that stunt on “Rage.”
Scene 36. INT. HOSPITAL. DAY
Tega in a group of about 5 students enter a hospital and walk upstairs into a room which turns out to be Taye’s. The camera watches them. Iyke is already in the room. Tega hug Taye after which he drops flowers on the bedside before leaving with one of the guys. Iyke stays behind and watches him.
Iyke: Tega did it
1st guy: Did what?
Iyke: Fucked Taye up
2nd guy: how did you get to know?
Iyke: I don’t have proof. It’s instinctive.
2nd guy: We don’t deal with instincts here we deal with proofs and don’t ever forget Tega is your superior officer many times over.
1st guy: What made you reach that conclusion?
2nd guy: (sneers) he said instinct.
1st guy: I didn’t ask you. Iyke what made you conclude thus?
Iyke: Three things. One, Tega promised to personally deal with anybody who had a hand in P’s death. Two, Tega is the best medical student and may know what to give Taye to drink…
1st guy: (interrupts) or inject
Iyke: …that can paralyse him like this. He may not want to kill him. And three why does he always bring flowers and hug Taye every time he comes visiting? He is not that hugging type.
1st Guy: it is plausible but the only person we can ask and get reliable information from is Taye and he cannot give us a damn.
Iyke: Let’s accost Tega?
1st guy: Tega! Tega!! Let us go we will think on something to end this conundrum
They all leave the room but at the door the 1st guy holds the door looks Taye for a long time. The door closes and opens almost immediately. They group walks in.
1st guy: Taye please help us. Can you move any part of your body? If you can hear me and you can move it please do. (To the others) watch out for any insignificant movement.
The group all stare intently at Taye
Iyke: his eyelids.
1st guy: Taye could you blink your eyelids for us again?
Taye blinks them
1st guy: fine. We are going to exact you but please bear with us. Any question I ask you if it is yes please blink your eyelids twice if no blink it once. Can you hear me?
Taye blinks his eyelids twice
1st guy: fine! Fine! Taye do you know who did this to you?
Taye blinks his eyelids twice
1st guy: That’s cute. Which confra? A checker
Taye blinks his eyelids once
1st guy: a VD?
Taye blinks his eyelids once
1st guy: a K-man?
Taye blinks his eyelids once
1st guy: a bone?
Taye blinks his eyelids twice
1st guy: A skull?
Taye blinks his eyelids twice
1st guy: is it me?
Taye blinks his eyelids once
1st guy: or Iyke?
Taye blinks his eyelids once
1st guy: Or Castro?
Taye blinks his eyelids once
1st guy: is it Tega?
Taye cannot reply, tears starts falling from his eyes.
1st guy: Taye you have to answer our question, is it Tega?
The scene dissolves before Taye answers
Scene 37. INT. CLASSROOM. DAY
Tega is with a course mate who is putting him through when his phone rings, he looks at it and discovers that it is an unknown number.
Tega: Rash, please excuse me
Tega walks out of the classroom
Tega: hello? Who is speaking?
Voice: Brother, don’t bother to know. Run and hide the SCS knows what happened to Taye. They are coming for you. Don’t attempt to go through the school gates. You are sealed in.
Tega: Sorry, this is not Tega.
Voice: Tega quit playing games. I can see you clearly on black trousers and a white shirt.
The line goes dead. Tega looks at his phone briefly spies around and takes off.
Scene 38. INT. HOSPITAl. DAY
The group are still in Taye’s room but this time with an additional three students. The diference in clothing indicates that it is another day.
1st guy: Taye, do you want to remain in this situation?
Taye blinks his eyes once
1st guy: Would you mind if I kill you?
Taye blinks his eyelids once.
1st guy: It’s been great knowing someone like you Taye, but we are sorry it all ended like this. We will ever remember you as Rage.
The 1st guy injects something into Taye drip and they watch him drift into sleep. They walk out and meet with an aged woman in the corridor, she is Taye’s mother and from her dressing it shows that all is not well with the family financially.
Taye’s mother: My son, how is your friend?
1st guy: Mama he is dead. He just drifted into sleep.
The old woman screams and drops on the floor. The 1st guy holds her gently
Scene 39. INT. CHURCH
Tega calls his father whose phone is on voicemail, he remembers that they have gone abroad when the phone enters voice mail, he calls his auntie, big P’s mother who seeing it is him cuts the phone and when he insists she switches off. So he calls Monica
Monica: Baby where are you?
Tega: I am in the university cathedral.
Monica: what are you doing there?
Tega: I’m hunted
Monica: by whom?
Tega: Don’t worry about whom, help me do this please
Tega: help me get a taxi and bring it to the Cathedral. I need to get out of this school fast.
Tega: And please Monica don’t tell anybody even Iyke.
Scene 40. EXT. IYKE’S PARENTS HOME
As Monica leaves the house, she hails a taxi that is opposite her house with the young driver eating inside his car.
Monica: charter to the university cathedral. To and fro and I won’t waste time it is matter of urgency.
Driver: University far oh, that one na N1500
Monica: no problem only get me there fast.
Monica climbs into the taxi but before she realises someone from behind clamps her mouth, while the driver binds her up. After which he brings out a phone and dials a number.
Driver: Bro, your sister got urgent business in the cathedral. Maybe Tega is there.
(Pause while the recipient speaks)
Driver: no I won’t hurt her.
Scene 41. INT. CHURCH
Tega is sitting down dejectedly when a priest walks up to meet him.
Priest: Good day my young man
Tega: Good afternoon father
Priest: it seems something weighty is on your mind?
Tega: (smiles sadly) A matter of life and death. I am of the opinion that I can get respite in the house of God.
Priest: You can. The Lord is a strong and mighty tower. The righteous runs into it and they are saved
Tega: Father what about the unrighteous?
Priest: He who comes to God he will in no wise cast out.
Tega: That is consoling but I know there are some sins that God will not forgive.
Priest: Why son?
Tega: It would be partial on God’s part to forgive a person who denied another an opportunity to get repentance.
Priest: the ways of God are mysterious. His mercies, the bible tells us are all encompassing; he puts no barriers between Greek or Jew; male or female; bond or free.
Tega: would he forgive a murderer? Someone whose hands are soiled with the blood of others innocent and otherwise?
Priest: If it is you, try it now. (The priest points towards the pulpit)
Tega: It is me but I am not going to turn tail and seek for forgiveness now when everything has gone sour. And I may still do some wrong things when I get out of the jam I’m in now. There are some scores I will not hesitate to settle with a smoking barrel.
Scene 42 EXT. OUTSIDE THECHURCH. NIGHT
Men surround the church, with Iyke in charge. They are fourteen and a dressed in black they all tumble out from three cars.
Scene 43 INT CHURCH
The priest walks away. Tega sits quiet briefly before walking up to the altar and kneeling down. Tega is praying at the pulpit when 3 masked men walk in with guns. One kicks him and he turns to look at them. The preacher does the sign of the cross and disappears.
Voice behind mask: Let’s not smear the church with your filthy blood. Could you please respect God at least for once and walk out please?
Tega: if you’ve got anything to say or do, do it here. I don’t have any intention of leaving this place
The voice looks at the man in the middle for direction and the man shrugs.
Tega: (stares at the middle man and shakes his head) Iyke? Et tu Brute?
Iyke: And me Brutus. (Pulls off his mask) I’m sorry Tega, but this is where your story ends and mine begins.
Tega: yeah, did you get my text? Are you doing this for the org?
Iyke: For the org. and for my sister. (to his accomplice) read him the bony act and verdict.
Voice behind mask : Those who betray the Bones Organisation of Nigeria get betrayed by the BON, he who shuts BON’s umbrella makes himself a prey to anyone. History though past may be accounted for either in the present or the future, by the errant or his protégées, in the generation or the next. The BON never forgets, forgives nor forbears. Every wrong must be made right. Tega you have wronged the BON and you must pay in this generation by death.
He cracks his pump action and the screen goes blank when a gunshot is heard and then a scream follows.
Scene 44 INT & EXT CHURCH
An ambulance with a team or paramedics, a body is on the stretcher completely covered up, the rain is drizzling.
Names of cast is displayed while words are uttered with Tega’s voice
Words that are spoken while casts are displayed.
They that kill by the sword shall die by the sword for no sinner shall go unpunished. Though, the mills of God grind slowly but surely. Neither can the Lord be mocked for whatsoever a man sows that he will reap.
I grew up in an Aceldama, a metropolitan Aceldama. This is no field of blood but rather a city of blood. In this city I resurrected from the vein, the rich vein that feeds the city its blood and gives it its name. Here we are reared in the exact opposite of how other normal or is it abnormal children are reared. In this area we hear gunshots as lullaby ‘cos if it is not happening in your yard then it is not real. We sleep soundly amidst the chaos. Our children’s bedtime story is Mario Puzo’s the last don and their playthings are loaded guns. Our favourite game is gang-rape while prostitution is the primary source of sex. Our family consist of our street gangs just as murder is the commonest form of death. The most lucrative business we transact is drugs, and we spend hours in cafes doing G. Our colour is red while black may be added for a touch of perfection. We sleep through the day and work at night. Where we grew up nothing is sacred even the house of God ‘cos we are all job-men from the same root heading towards the same destination albeit through different routes. Quarrels are best resolved with drawn swords. There, we have no little children, everyone is a man.