A Death In The Family - By Tessy Mordi

    Alice was finally able to get a quiet time. She sat alone in her once favourite spot at the restaurant directly opposite her house. For the first time in two weeks she could get herself to think about her life without being confronted by haters around.

   "Am I fit to live in this world?" she asked herself. It had happened so fast. The memories kept hunting her.

     Mr Bayo, her father, returned home that fateful day, but someone was missing. She recalled the whole episode as if she was watching it on a TV screen right in front of her. He came back without her twin sister, Alicia. She remembered running to meet him and the first words she uttered were "where is she, dad? Why are you not with Ali?"

    Her dad walked past, like she was invisible. Not a single word came from him. It dawned on her just then that her life would never be the same again. She remembered the words he spoke earlier that day "If anything should happen to your sister, believe me, you'll no longer be my daughter."

    As the words came fresh in her mind, she placed her head down on the table and wept. What had she done? How could she have done this evil? She had been warned to watch her tongue. But she never saw the evil that it harboured till that moment. Alicia had told her about the unwanted pregnancy with great remorse for her actions. But from that moment till she was seen by her bed side, overdosed with all kinds of drugs, she was never sympathetic towards her. Rather, she made Alicia's life miserable - mocking her in public, causing the news to spread further than it should have been.

  Ignoring her father's plea to be supportive and told Alicia she was a shameful whore to have gone out and slept with men. Now she was back with a bastard. It grew worse with each passing day, and so she failed to see the disaster that lurked around.

     Why was she surprised now? The bastard had gone and so had her precious twin sister; the one who became a sister, friend and even took over the role of their mother after she died some years back. The signs were obvious. Alicia became excessively quiet, locked herself in her room and ate little, even though she was pregnant. None of these disturbed her then. Her father had tried to reach out to Ali but it was no use. As all of these came to mind, she could not help but cry some more. What miserable life she was left to live on her own now. Her father had made sure no extended family member accepted her into their home. He told them blatantly that she killed her Twin sister and so was capable of killing anyone else. Its a miracle she was not arrested. Looking at it now, she wondered if it wouldn't have been better.

    In the midst of her sorrow at the restaurant, she felt a hand touch her shoulder.

  Who is new in town? she thought. Everyone in the area already knew her predicament and tried as much as possible to avoid her. So who could it be? The question stuck to her mind as she reluctantly turned around, with tears stained eyes, to see who it was. What or rather, who she saw got her jumping to her feet and racing out of the restaurant. How possible was it that Alicia was still alive? It either meant she was dreaming, she was seeing a ghost, or she was dead and was in the land of the spirits already - as her desire had been ever since Alicia died. All she heard as she ran was her own voice screaming,

  "Oh! I have not only killed my sister,  I am seeing ghosts, or I am now dead too."