Beverly just moved to Lagos 3 months ago, this was shortly after the start of the ASUU strike to live with one of her “street sisters”. She was home for a little while but being a dutiful girl, she started pestering her sister to help her find a job, whether menial or an internship, anyone would do.


Though studying pharmacy at the University of Ibadan before the unfailing hand of the strike sent her off campus, she didn’t care about working a menial job. Luckily for her, on the third week of her stay, she finally got a job as a waitress at St. Troppe, a restaurant adjacent to the popular Ikeja City Mall.

The restaurant was a workplace to more than 30 employees, some sharp-mouthed, some crooked, others looking for ways to cajole customers to tip them, but Beverly wasn’t popular around there. If not serving drinks and foods, she was basically serving boredom.

She’s the quiet type. She’s been given the nickname, Ms Cool. Ms taciturn, she had been called severally but it doesn’t bother her. Hers was to come each day, attend to her duty, get some criticisms sent her way, and act as if everything was all right.


There had been rumours that she may have been possessed because of her unusual way of behaviour. She could stay hours without uttering a word. Some had ascribed it to geekiness, to her choice of study, to her institution but no one had ever asked her the question.

At about the fourth week she started working, Remi, a real estate agent, walked in to get dozens of parfaits. He was already a popular face at the restaurant. He’s known as one of the biggest tippers that had ever graced the restaurant.

The ladies were always delighted to see him, his white teeth that had nowhere to hide whenever he smiled, broad shoulders forcing the elasticity of his shirts, and his dark skin that always stood him out amongst other people. Like the popular cliche, love at first sight, Beverly was mesmerized by him on the day she set her eyes on him.


She started admiring the white teeth first. He smiled almost always. She would imagine seeing his black body away from the cloth. She was always elated to have him around though they hadn’t for once shared pleasantries.

She would not greet or say hello but each day she thirsted to have a sight of him. On days that he didn’t come around, there were smoke of gloominess that covered her soul. On most of these occasions, her colleagues would call her more nicknames than her real name, without knowing her predicament.

On the first Friday of July, Remi came in with six of his colleagues. They had just secured a multi-million deal. The celebration was to begin at the restaurant before they moved to nightclubs. They sat at the corner seats with plates of assorted chicken and separate plates of different types of rice stationed on their tables as they coasted on in their celebration. Two bottles of Hennessy were left open. One is empty, the other, halfway into their tummies.

The loud talks, claps, and banters grew louder but Remi was a regular customer that the manager knew so well, so no one warned them of pollution. Other customers just hissed and stared in disgust or admiration at their table.


He stood up straight, at this point his figure showed more clearly, the waitress’ attention drifted from the work that paid them to the cute real estate agent. The broad shoulder became broader. The muscles wrestled for appearance through his shirt, his body was well shaped. His teeth, oh well his white teeth, Beverly could not stop staring at him all this while.

He appeared to be conscious of the eyes that were upon him, after raising the cup for a toast, a looked to the left and caught Beverly stealing a glance at him, he gave a faint smile and bounced back to his seat.

After an hour and almost thirty more minutes of drinking and merry, the group stood up to take their leave. They moved in twos and threes to exit the door with more than half of them drunk and the other half tipsy except for Fred, who as usual, went to the restaurant staff and tipped them graciously.

After giving the money to one of the workers, who had been the most serving them, he moved to the next cashier station, where Beverly was standing.


Seeing that he was coming, she looked down stylishly. He called her name.  “He knows my name,” she thought as she raised her head and smiled.

Remi reached into his pocket and gave her two minted notes of one thousand naira, which she sheepishly rejected, but he insisted, she took it and he left the place. They looked straight into each other eyes for some seconds, his face sparkled more than ever before.

Beverly couldn’t believe her existence, so she’s been noticeable to this handsome man all along. She wanted to run into the bathroom to scream her lungs into her apron.

It was about 11:30 in the night, the eventful night Remi and his colleagues had left the restaurant to close late, making the majority of the female workers who lived far away in places like Mushin, Island, and Oshodi decided to sleep over.


Beverly’s house wasn’t too far. She could walk some minutes down to her house. It was just some meters away from Kadiri street. She had said goodbye to her colleagues, while she picked up her oval black purse, flung it over her shoulder and left for the road.

Five minutes into the walk, she passed by a group of touts who whistle-called her but she refused to answer. One of them tried to touch her backside, but she quickly tiptoed, leaving the drunk fella to stagger while muttering some curses beneath his breath. He was visibly angry at his failure, his pain was further aggravated by the laughter of the group.

She kept walking. Now towards a band of policemen, who were busy waiting to waylay oblivious drivers who would drive through the one-way road of Kadiri road. While waiting, the policemen struck up a conversation with one of the concoction sellers that lined one side of the road

The conversation would go from the effectual power of the concoction to how far they could go if they tested it on the seller but generally, the police were some sort of unserious element who used the government uniform to earn themselves free concoction, neophyte prostitutes and money from not-so-lucky drivers.

When Beverly walked passed them, like the touts, they hissed-called her, she’s by now familiar with the area but hadn’t passed that same road this late. She slowed down but like being jerked to reality by an invisible knuckle, she picked pace again with the police trying to use their wasted baritone voices to make her stand at attention.

Beverly continued walking without looking back. She walked past the yellow-painted, cracked-fenced building that housed the Lagos police command. The disgrace of the dilapidated building was covered by the heaves of the night. Beverly was about to cut into a corner that led to her place when she heard footsteps charging toward her.

Her heart started beating so fast, her hands were shaking and her mouth going dry, she didn’t look back but she hated the feeling, while she walked on her toes as if there was a spring to catapult her forward.

The footsteps persisted, and her pace increased, she thought to herself, maybe it’s the tout that wanted to touch her or one of the policemen. Just as she was about to start running, she heard a man’s voice calling her name. She recognised the voice but couldn’t ascertain, so she dropped the thought of running and started walking but now slowly.

The voice called out again, she recognised it. She slowed down completely, stayed her ground, turned around and started fondling with her oval bag while waiting for the owner of the voice to show his face.

She first saw the white shirt, then the broad shoulder before the whiteness of the teeth dispelled the darkness standing between them.

“I hung around waiting for you to finish at work,” Remi said, as he moved close to her. So close at first that she felt like she could taste the fragrance that oozed from his body, then he held her right hand with his left hand, while he gently placed the other hand around her round waist.

They began to walk slowly toward the dark of the night, she was more confident, “it’s just some minutes walk away from home,” she thought, but she wanted it to last a long time. She started thinking about how much she would like to spend the rest of her life with this guy she doesn’t know well.

His hand was now doing wonders, he continued caressing her waist gently, then he would press his hand hard on her skin to feel the pulse of her tiny waist. He swiped down low and placed his hand on her butt, she loved it she didn’t stop him, a sort of unusual sensation ran through her spine.

They are now lonely on the dark, empty, and bumpy-less road that adjoined the Lagos state assembly, while still enjoying the minimal sensation, he dragged her to the side where in the afternoons served as the abode of the police along with the touts to assuage their affinity for gambling, he drew so close that before she could say “hey”, he kissed her.

It was too fast, too passionate to resist, she rested her back on the wall, and kissed him back. His hands remained on her waistline, he continued the sexy caressing, he moved his hand under her short skirt, and ran his fingers toward her private part, before he could reach there, Beverly regained her lost senses and forcefully muttered “stop, please, stop.”

Wasted in search of pleasure, Remi didn’t hear a thing but continued running his finger all over her. Still razed with passion but now with some residue of awareness, she spoke a little louder, “I beg you stop, please stop it”.

“You will love it,” he responded sharply and continued. Beverly became more uncomfortable, she tried to wade him off but she couldn’t get him off her skin. Sensing the resistance, he held her down violently as she struggled in futility to free herself.

He continued fondling her with one hand, while aimlessly operating under her with another. He took her hand away from her chest and used it to cover her mouth, pinned her against the wall and brushed her head through it and landed her on top of the two-legged table that served the business of gambling in the afternoon.

As he was busy trying to position her, while he tried to unzip himself as well, she fought with almost every iota of strength in her to push him off but he was too powerful for her.

She tried again, this time, he had only a hand on her, with the other hand drawing the zip down, she pushed forcefully again, his leg slipped, he had nothing to hold, as he landed with his head against the sharp edge of the acrid gutter that separated them from the main road. He gave a wimping sound that lasted for about 20 seconds before stopping.

She bent over him and struck him continuously, each nudge became more of a punch but he wouldn’t answer. She brought out her phone, turned on the flashlight, and saw blood gushing out of the rearward part of his head.

She turned off the flashlight, put the phone back into her oval purse, looked at the lifeless body again slowly and muttered “It has happened again”. She jumped the gutter to the main road and took to her heels.

By Kunle Daramola

Inspired by ‘Up in Michigan’ written by Ernest Herminway

Photo credit: Unsplash

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