ALGEBRA AFTERNOON, a short story by Folarin Olaniyi


    An excerpt of the Novel, BOYS ARE DOGS by Folarin Olaniyi

Uncle Kehinde told me to off the cloth that covered my chest and spread my legs, yakata, like a dead goat on fire. He then climbed on my chest and slipped his long thing inside of me.

Maybe he doesn’t know how painful it is, putting that long thing, thick like the rod Daddy uses to beat us whenever we score zero in our C.A test, inside of me.

Whenever I cry and beg him to stop, he places one of his fingers of the right on my two lips and robs my chest.

‘If you tell mummy, she will beat you and praise me for training you,’ he always told me.

He is the neighbour next door. Mama told me he knew Mathematics as a Pastor knows the Bible.

‘You are now my baby,’ that was the words that came out of his mouth the first day Mama handed me over to him.

When I told Mama that Uncle Kehinde uses his long rod on me, she laughed and laughed and pulled me by the right ear to his one room apartment.

‘She is spoilt, Aunty,’ Uncle Kehinde told Mama.


‘I saw red, mama.’

I was twelve. I had just woken up from one of those eat-and-sleep long holidays siesta, when something reddish appeared on my bed sheet.

‘Go and clean up,’ Mama said, handing over a roll of toilet tissue to me.


‘Go and clean yourself,’ Uncle Kehinde said to me.

The first day Uncle Kehinde slipped his long black thing inside of me, I saw red again.

‘Are you deaf?’ I shook off the pain coming from my waist region and rose up at Uncle Kehinde’s sharp baritone. I washed myself and walked back to the tip of the bed where he laid me.

‘Don’t tell mummy about this,’ Uncle Kehinde whispered to the ear of the left.

‘But I saw red.’

‘You are now a big girl.’


Seven afternoons after that day, that sunny afternoon Uncle Kehinde finished teaching me Algebra and then afterwards told me to spread my legs yakata and I saw red, Mama woke up from slumber.

I don’t know why whenever Uncle Kehinde gets horny, he directs his manhood at me and moan like a hungry Lion being fed with live goat? Nor do I know why he rubs me here and there, where it pleases and pains, and afterwards whistles down to the bathroom for a five minutes afternoon bath?

One of those Algebra afternoons, I had already spread my legs yakata and Uncle Kehinde was inside of me breathing hard like a castrated goat, when a loud knock landed on the door.

He withdrew himself from me, his two eyes partly closed, and ran for his blue towel.

‘Is Blessing inside with you?’ a voice, like that of mother, rang through from outside.

‘Yes, am here!’ I shouted, my legs spread yakata.

‘Dress up,’ Uncle Kehinde whispered, his face squeezed up like roughened sheet.


I dragged myself towards the door, half naked and ran back for a piece of cloth to cover my nakedness. The door was not locked.

‘Open the door!’

Mama’s voice ripped through the green painted door of the one room apartment. The door opened ajar and everything went blank, for I closed my eyes and the only words that passed by were that of Mama.


We never spoke. She would leave my food covered in the kitchen and run to work every day as if her job depended solely on not saying goodbye to her only daughter.

When July was dragging itself towards August, Mama held me tight for minutes and cried on my shoulders, like a baby girl hungry for her mother’s breast milk. A drop of tears never came from mine. When she prepared the Dinner on that night and served mine, I sobbed in between pieces of boiled yam that mixed with my saliva and goes down to my stomach.

Uncle Kehinde disappeared into thin air, like a fart. Days after that Algebra afternoon, his door was always closed and banged open and close late in the night. In between the opening and closure of his door, would emerge the laughing birdy voice of a lady and that of Uncle Kehinde’s.

When days went by and Mama had stopped leaving my food in the kitchen and running to work before I left for school, a group of young men late in the dawn of a sunny July, came into Uncle Kehinde’s apartment and parked all his properties into a brown truck.







About akinbowale

Africa's most influential literary blogger

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