The sun peeped through the flapping curtains into Njugush’s bedroom. He hadn’t slept much the night before. When the light eventually overwhelmed the curtain and began to burst through the thin fabric, he rolled out of bed and sat upright bare-chested in his checkered boxers. His feet were planted on the floor, his palms pressed against the bed as he stared intently at the ground. There were so many thoughts running through his mind at the same time, that it almost seemed as if his mind went blank for almost 10 minutes.

With his shoulders hunched over and head hanging limb from his neck, he began to mumble something. It sounded like numbers that he was counting, but not quite,

“2,756, 2010, 156, 745” Njugush seemed to randomly call out numbers as if he was citing a sequence. But a sequence to what? He wasn’t a math whizz, an investigator or a scientist trying to break a code. Njugush was a High school dropout living in a friend’s apartment. He had the luxury of having the evenings to himself, because his housemate, Tony, was out in the town finding ways to pay the bills with what he felt was his, “God given gift to mankind.” Tony would thump his chest as a psyche up routine before he left the house every evening. “Man, people think doing what I do is easy. It’s work man. Look at these biceps and abs.” He would reach out for Njugush’s arm to feel them. Njugush would always fight Tony off.

“I really am not interested in how you make your money Tony! And the details you give are always so inappropriate. Just go to work!” That was always the last thing Njugush told Tony every evening. It would be a matter of time before Tony walked in smelling of a brothel soliciting information Njugush was repulsed by. And like clockwork at 8am. Stinking, drunk and singing an inappropriate banned Jamaican song, Tony would fling in to the house.

“Njugush! Njugush! You won’t believe who I gave it to tonight! He is so….You know…?” Njugush’s eyes glazed over Tony and he walked back to his bed to get some more sleep. Today he just wasn’t up to do anything. Tony was busy nudging him. “Go and shower…please…go and shower.” Njugush spoke so exasperated while gesturing to the bathroom. The front door flung open.

“Tony didn’t you close the door when you came in?” Tony wasn’t listening; he had proceeded to continue in his loud monologue over the sound of the shower. As Njugush walked toward the front door to close it, a hand with a gun pointed in his direction emerged from the other side of the door. Njugush tried to shut the door hard and hit the hand at the wrist. The gun went off; the hand disappeared and the sound of footsteps running down stairs succeeded the shot.


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