I woke up later in the morning sore all over, I swung me feet over the side of the bed and sat there I was real light headed and still a little nauseas. Memories of the night’s events came to me in flashes like a photographer taking black and white pictures and I shook me head trying to get the images out. The door opened and Alison walked in came up to the bed and sat next to me, I looked over at she, she was smiling and for the first time she eyes danced a little.
“How you feeling Mista Dickens?” she asked, I mumbled something unintelligible, but she ignored what I said and kept on talking
“You had a rough night last night huh?” she said as picked up the blood stained suit from the floor. I saw the blood and panicked checking me body to see if I was hurt. When I was satisfied that everything was in order I looked down at meself and saw that I was in me own clothes.
“Who changed me?” I blurted out. Allison looked over at me with a big smile on her face.
“Well,” I insisted, she walked towards the door and stopped there still smiling, damn girl better watch she step before I lose me temper.
“Some of the women in de village did, Dey said you was almost unconscious when dey left you.” She giggled a little knowing what me horrified look was.
“Me grandma wan see you before you leave.” She said and walked out the door holding the dirty clothes in she hands. I got up and followed she into the other room; the bowls, candles and incense were all lit. Alison was standing at a door that I did not notice before, I mean, good lord man how many frigging doors did this little house have? She beckoned me over to she as she pushed the door open. Light flowed out of the room creating streaks of misty silver in the smoke. I stepped through the door looking at she as I went. There was a bed in one corner and a maple coloured table in the other, the table was packed with ornaments and bottles some wrapped in cloth or other material. I stood looking at the table it reminded me of me mother’s bedroom, she had a small shrine in one corner of the room with a statue of Jesus as the centerpiece; I tell you what I used to be real afraid to go into that damn room at night, that statue might have slapped a sinner like me.
“Ahhh, you interested in me gifts to Erzili Frieda?” I jumped when I heard the voice, I was so engrossed with the damn shrine I did not notice the old woman sitting in a chair next to the bed, it was the same woman who had poured the liquid into me mouth the night before. She head hung loosely as if she was asleep she dress spread over the chair making it seem like she was a head without a body. She motioned for me to come closer and I stepped forward bending over so she could see me face.
“May god be wid you me son,” She said stroking me face, she bony fingers pinching me cheeks, bloody hell, why was it they all wanted to touch me blasted face? Skin hung off the sides of she face when she spoke, when she smiled the skin moved from side to side like the loose skin at the bottom of a turkey’s neck.
“You mus believe.” She emphasized lowering she hands she chin dropped to she chest and I heard she breath real deep, I guess she too was tired from the night events. I left the room as quietly as I could with Alison directly behind me, she walked me to the front door and opened it.
“Sorry Ah cant offer you breakfast but granma don like it when someone she did a ceremony for stick round too long.” I told she I understood and walked out of the house and I thanked god because I did not want to stay any longer than I had to anyway. The afternoon sun was almost in the middle of the sky and I was blinded by it for a second, the trees had that golden tint and I smelt the sweet scent of mangoes in the air. I walked over to me bike and climbed on, the dirt road was dry making it easier to maneuver through the potholes. The children stood at the end of the road waving goodbye, they chased after the bike until I was moving too fast for them to keep up.