The Guest

The last time we had someone stay over at our house, she stole Daddy's money and ran away.

Daddy had come out from his room that evening, with a bitter smile on his face, an envelope rumpled in his hand, nodding as though in pity for Nneka — that was her name, Mummy's second cousin who'd come to spend her first-semester break with us after Mummy had refused Daddy — whatever it was, I still don't know — for one whole week. 

So when Mummy paused at my door, a day after Daddy told us Aunty Chiamaka would be coming, asking if I kept cash in my room, I knew what she was thinking. I said no, and waited for her to shut my door before taking my phone from beneath my pillow — where I had slid it hurriedly because I was watching Game Of Thrones.

Aunty Chiamaka had a man's face covered with long facial hair. "Ahh," she said when she saw me, pinching my cheek between her index and thumb. She pushed me by my shoulders to take a proper look at me. "So thin! Nwamu, have you been eating?" I wanted to say no, but that would not look good on Daddy and his big-man smile, so I ran my hands through my hair in embarrassment and took her bags instead.

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