The Diary of a Caged Teanager by Hassan Pelumi
Peju woke up in a different room. It was bright,a little clean and bigger than the last one. She sat up and the first thing she noticed was that her dress was gone. It had been replaced with big,old garment. She was pretty sure she wasn’t in heaven, neither was she home. “Where am I?”,she asked herself. She walked to the door,just then the doorknob was twisted opened by Felix. She couldn’t have been more disappointed to see Felix standing in front of her,she was hoping she had been rescued.” Great! You’re awake. “,Felix said smiling, while Peju rolled her eyes. ” I’m very sorry Wole tried to touch you. We had to take you out of the other room,it’s still bloody. Here;I found your diary.” ,Felix blabbed presenting the bloodstained book. Peju accepted it without saying a word. There was a prolonged silence between them for a while,then Felix stood up to leave; “Please, take me away from here. I can’t stay here,I can’t. please let me go!”,Peju pleaded before Felix could reach the door. He turned to face her,”I wish I could do that,but we need you to save my sister. I’m sorry.”, he replied and rushed out before she pleaded any further.
Peju was devastated as tears dropped from her eyes.”I caused this,I caused this” She sobbed pushing herself against the wooden window and it yanked open. At first she didn’t notice that the window was wide enough for a teenager to go through it. She had cried for five more minutes before she saw how wide the window was. She looked out through the window, coast was clear! and it was only five feet deep. She looked around and grabbed her diary.”Okay,Peju you can do this.” She breath in and out. She pictured herself doing the high jump,running with all attention and focus on the window,she jumped out of it…
It was Tolu;the fourth member of the gang,who found out about Peju’s disappearance. He was sent to fetch her, about 15 minutes after she jumped the window. Baba Comrade was raging with anger when he heard the situation. They searched the nearest places ,but there was no trace of Peju anywhere. “This is your fault, Felix!”Baba comrade cried. “We were this close to getting that money,so close!!!”,he complained bitterly pacing the building. “I’m so sorry,sir. ” Felix murmured. “We need a new plan”Baba Comrade said, ignoring Felix. Tolu suggested that they call the Jacobs to drop the money in a specific place. “Do you think they’d fall for it? They will surely ask for their daughter.”,Baba comrade commented in thought.”They will,they are desperate. They’d do anything.”,Felix complimented Tolu’s idea. Baba Comrade shrugged.
He reached Bode “We’re on our way with your daughter, just make sure the police are not present,or she dies!”, Baba Comrade dropped the line. “Are we going to look for the birthday girl?” ,Felix asked. “No,We’re are going for our money boy. Get the guns ready.” Baba Comrade replied.
Akani drove to Simpson street at 5:10.Folake was restless and calm,Bode held onto Jasmine’s phone tightly;expecting Baba Comrade’s call,Mrs Adegbesan was deep in prayer and Uncle Thomas was rather quiet;observant. “They should have arrived since. They are going to be tardy yet take our money? Cool.” Folake murmured. Bode was tapping his foot against the floor nervously,”They are on their way”,he said. “This is rubbish, total nonsense. This is a negotiation,they should have arrived.” Uncle Thomas spoke out. Folake nodded in agreement. “Why can’t you just involve the Police, Bode? This is senseless, dealing with criminals without a police?”,Folake stressed again. “If we call the police, they promised to kill Peju, I can’t let that happen.”, Bode replied. Folake gave him hard eyes and whispered,”I hope you had nothing to do with this.Trying to prove yourself as the best father, So Peju can praise and love you.”. Bode’s eyes widen as she finished” How dare you think I’d do something like that, ruin my daughter’s day and risk her safety. Folake, I am not an animal!!”,he bloated. “And how dare you think I don’t love my daughter! You think I’m a bad parent? What about you,Bode? You left that child while she was still a suckling for a job! I took care of her! So if you want to blame anyone, blame yourself.”, Folake fired immediately.”You have no right to talk to me like that,Folake no right!”, Bode resorted . On a normal day,uncle Thomas enjoys arguments like this. But today,his niece is missing and her parents are fighting like kids.”Hey,You two! Stop it! You should be ashamed of yourselves, fighting in a time like this,Peju is still missing. At least let’s get Peju and leave this scary street, then you can go home and argue in peace,ok?”He addressed them,Folake nodded while Bode looked away. Just then,a car stopped before them. Bode walked toward it,convinced that Peju was in it,but masked armed men alighted from the vehicle.”Where is the money?”,Baba Comrade asked, Bode inspected the car from where he stood, but there was no sign of Peju. “Where is my daughter?”,Bode asked. Baba Comrade pointed the gun at him,”You think I’m playing? Where is the money?!”Mrs Adegbesan and Folake screamed trying to run toward Bode but uncle Thomas restrained them.”Our deal was that you bring my daughter safe to me and you’d get the money. You won’t take a penny if I don’t see Peju.”,Bode said softly,trying to keep his cool talking to an armed man. Baba Comrade charged the gun,” I’d blow up your head,I swear it! Where is the money?!”, He cried with his hand on the trigger,Felix closed his eyes to avoid the sight. “Its in the car!!! Your money is in two briefcases! just go and take it .1456 and 6626 are passwords. ” Folake screamed over uncle Thomas’ shoulder. Baba Comrade ushered Felix to get the money. He found the briefcases,opened the locks and smiled. “Let’s go,I got the money,I’d drive this car.” Felix said, he turned to Mrs Adegbesan who was beside him,”We had your girl,she escaped, I don’t know where she went to, but I’m sure if you keep searching Simpson street, you’d find her. “He rapped as the car coughed to live, Baba Comrade and Tolu was in the other car and they sped off. Bode kicked a nearby stone really hard screaming,”This wasn’t the deal you lunatics!!!.”,afterwards sat on the floor crying, Folake ran towards Bode,crying too. Uncle Thomas cursed hard, while Mrs Adegbesan sat quietly trying to understand what Felix had told her,he was really fast.
After ten minutes of tears and regrets, “What’s the assurance that Peju is still alive?”,uncle Thomas asked and Folake shivered. “She’s alive”,Mrs Adegbesan said,” That boy was trying to tell me something,but he was too fast I think a heard ‘Find her in Simpson street’ Yes,that’s what he said”,she finalised. “Let’s search for her then”,Folake said. “This time,we’d involve the police”,Bode added and Folake smiled. “What kind of street is this? Dead quiet,no signal,no birds,nothing just dead”, Akani spoke. “So,now that we have no car,no network signal,no cash,we’ll have to trek to find Peju. Its the ultimate search in Simpson street. ” uncle Thomas said trying to cheer them up. They were all on their feets,Mrs Adegbesan stretched, “Peju ,where are you?!”.