February 24,2011…Second year high school.
I had gone for lunch to serve my table and time prepare my mind for the German language test paper. My namesake in Form four tapped my back just as I was about to sit down to eat my plate of githeri ( boiled maize and beans)-worst meal ever.
“Hi! “she greeted me, ” She wants to talk to you.”
She pointed at a table behind her, Benedict 9. The club editor sat on a bench looking at me with a plate of githeri on one hand. She was a school senior and very famous.
I never expected any trouble, so in confidence I walked towards her…
Earlier that morning, I had not presented the science News to my thirsty audience and I felt guilty about it. Therefore, I was desperate for a plan to apologize to my ‘people’. I took the opportunity to hijack the Journalism Club news.
“On behalf of the Science News team, we are sorry for not compiling and presenting the news today… “
What a stupid move! That was the trouble I had unintentionally started.
I stood before the Journalism Club editor. What did she want to tell me? Does she want to congratulate me on my heartfelt apology I had given? A gut feeling told me that might not be the case.
There was no greeting, but a rude punchline that hit my senses into reality.
“Why did you make that announcement? “
My pulse quickened,my body temperature rose.
“Who told you Science and Journalism Club is one? “
“Who the hell do you think you are?
“Do I even know you? What’s your name? “
She wrinkled her face trying to remember my name . I was being confronted and I could not find a way to justify my actions. I could not think.
” Judy Bitutu ? “
Before I could answer she barked,
“ You are not a part of us! “
The whole dining hall went dead silent. All eyes were on me. Everyone seemed to be chewing in slow motion, some had actually stopped.
My eyes, hidden behind broken lenses, were filled with hot tears ready to stream down. I was sweating. Beneath it all, was a broken spirit. An oppressed lamb taken to slaughter.
More question-threatening words followed when the Club head joined her evil twin in undressing me verberly in front of the whole school. Her too was another senior and equally popular as her subordinate.
I played dumb, accepting and apologizing at the same time.
Their words stabbed my heart,one after another. I went back to my table at the furthest exit,after what seemed like forever. The hall was busy once more.
I was tensed and full of guilt. My appetite was gone and a choking sensation took over me. I abandoned my food and went to class with a brave face, not ready to take the test for I was blank. Panic and fear lead the way.
I rested my head on my desktop and covered myself with my arms. Hot tears soaked my sweater. I muffled my sobs so that no could hear me cry.
“I am forged by fire and I do not bend under pressure.”
This feeling will eventually go away, I told myself.