In the middle of an alley, he lay, resting his head on a pile of cardboard. “This is weird,” said one of the onlookers who wondered in disbelief. “Is that him?” this lady was so shocked she couldn’t just wonder but ask. Wise men say, only fools rush in, played from one of the apartment that was opposite the spot the man laid. In this apartment stood a fairly black old man with a thick black mustache and a white and black beard wondering what was going on through the window. “Mr. Ripley Jonas” called from outside the apartment. “This is for you sir, you can sign here please” the young man continued. The young white boy is an apartment neighbor of Mr. Ripley, as most the occupants refer to him as. “Thank you, Johnny,” said Mr. Ripley in a husky weary voice. Johnny handed Mr. Ripley a brown envelope. Mr. Ripley entered and locked the door behind him as he gave out a big sigh. I think he was praying. “Please don’t be it, please don’t be it” he muttered as he walked straight to the single couch in his apartment. Inside his apartment was a coffee table that was right beside the couch Mr. Ripley sat on. He had no television just an F.M receiver that was on the table under the window. His room was very tidy for a man his age.
He gave out a big cry after he had read the content of the envelope, throwing it onto the floor while at it. The letter in the envelope read the divorce something, so I guess that was the reason why. “No” he screamed. The noise resonated in every room on the third floor of the five-story building. “Mr. Ripley” called Johnny. Johnny 25, is a young Jew who has just completed college. “Yeah am alright Johnny” he responded. Through the night he sobbed on the couch and dozing off intermittently. He would have these flashbacks of how he used to play catch with all his three daughters and his son. It wasn’t all nice with the flashbacks as he sometimes would have these visions of him and a lady who I believe to be his wife in a serious quarrel.
The telephone rang and he got up from the chair to receive it. “The child support is due tomorrow,” said the voice from the other side of the telephone. “Yes, I know Christie. And it will be available” the line cut and he placed the phone slowly on the holder crumbling to the floor in tears. THIS IS WHAT I HAVE SUNK TO, THIS IS NOT THE ENDING I EXPECTED. A voice from the F.M receiver. It is as if the whole world knew about his problem and was ridiculing him. OH NO, THIS IS NOT A TRICK IT IS REAL, REAL, REAL!
It was almost midnight, the drapes that covered the window danced to the rhythm of the wind as the time tick-tocked into the night. He was still on the floor asleep. Suddenly there was a knock on his door. He suddenly woke up but in wonder thought ‘who was outside the door by this time.’ He took a look at his Rolex watch, the most expensive thing in his life at the moment. It was exactly twelve noon. On top of his voice, he screamed “who is it” walking slowly towards the door. He picked up a baseball bat that was resting were the umbrella holder was. He peered through the peephole in the door but didn’t have a clear view of the person at the gate because the hallway was dark. “What do you want?” he asked.
“Mr. Ripley” called the voice from outside. It was from Johnny. He quickly unlocked the door and let him in. “what is the problem” he asked, “they are coming.” Were the words that came out of his mouth, before he fell revealing the knife that protruded through his belly from the back. It was a weird looking dagger as he fell on his side and the blood that came out of him forming a pool around him. Mr. Ripley could do nothing but let out a scream. In the middle of the confusion, he left his door ajar and in entered three average height hooded individual. “Who are you and what do you want?” asked Mr. Ripley
“Ripley, Ripley, Ripley,” said one of the hooded individuals, van 27. “You don’t recognize us, do you? Oh right! We are hooded and in a mask.” He continued. “He will never get to know,” said the one that stood behind locking the door behind him, Benjamin 26. Mr. Ripley was about to pick up his phone but the third half of the gang Raven 24, was quick to hit him on the back. “No sir, you don’t have permission for that,” she said. Mr. Ripley was in pain and wondered if the night would get any excruciating. He took off his Rolex watch thinking they were there for the money. “You really don’t remember?” said Van. They picked him up and tied him with his hand behind and taped his mouth. “Do you recognize them” one of them showed him the picture of his all grown three girls and the boy. He tried talking but nothing came out. “Aww! We can’t hear you sir” they set up a live streaming laptop in front of him. “We want to help you sir” in the feed on the laptop was the house of his oldest daughter sleeping in her bedroom, “they want you out of their lives, but we like you. We think they have to go starting from the oldest” said Raven.
A man in all black and a clown painted face, with a knife smiling at the camera. He held up a poster to the camera that read THIS IS FROM ME WITH LOVE SIR. He then gutted the oldest daughter in the Tommy seven times. Mr. Ripley heard every decibel of scream her daughter let out before she gave up. “Do you remember now” they now turned the feed to the twins in their hostel. Mr. Ripley had tears in his eyes. Although he didn’t recognize them he knew the lady could be the girl who he molested during his days as a teacher, lecturer of the dean he couldn’t remember for his life. The guy in the feed tied both twins and hanged them from the ceiling, placed coffee tables beneath them so they could stand.
“It’s their turn, sir,” said Benjamin moving right behind him making sure Mr. Ripley could feel the warmth of his breath. The lady removed the tape from his mouth. “Say something, sir,” she said. “Clifford” shouted Mr. Ripley. “No sir, just say one of our names and they will be left off the hook,” said Van. “Please I beg of you let them go” he pleaded. “Just mention one of our names,” they said. “Lizzy” “are you Lizzy?” asked van looking at Raven. “Do it?” said Benjamin. The guy in the feed kicked the chairs and the twins hanged struggling for their life. “No, no, no, don’t turn your face,” he said hitting Mr. Ripley’s head with the back of the gun.
Mr. Ripley looked on as his two daughters were motionless hanging from the ceiling. “Please, please. No” begged Mr. Ripley. “To the last one, he is in the military right? Damn, we can’t touch him, or can we? Change the feed” said van to Benjamin. “You see look he is going for a run at dawn. No boy no. now watch what’s gonna happen” a guy dressed like a mime crossed him and hit his face with a club with spikes. The blood spread all over the camera which was held by another guy who is also in a mask.
“I think we are done here,” said Benjamin. “Yeah that’s all of them,” said Raven. Van lifted the head of Mr. Ripley and placed a dagger to his throat. “Do you still not remember?” he asked. Raven, please turn the last feed. “Aww look he is so cute,” said Raven. “Look” screamed Van holding up Mr. Ripley’s head. “Remember, remember” he continued to scream. The baby was in a crib with an anvil hanging just above it. “No, please don’t. Am sorry” he said. “Oh! Don’t worry just mention my name” said Van. “Just your name?” asked Benjamin. “He can’t remember sh*t” he replied. “One, two, three. Drop it” he said through the coms in his ear. The anvil came crashing down. The guy in the feed pushed the anvil aside to reveal the mashed and flattened body of the baby. “Not so cute anymore,” said Raven.
“The last one will be outside your window sir so you can see through the pain.” said van walking towards the window. “Bring him” he instructed. They took him to the window and far in the distance were the wife and the side chic both mouths taped and hands tied at the back kneeling on the street with two bright yellow light on them. “Will you remember now?” asked Van. The old man was almost out, he was weak and almost given up, “please, please.” He whispered. The man with the husky voice was screeching the high pitch now. “Not so manly now,” said Raven. “Run them over,” said Benjamin. A big cargo track just runs over them leaving a trace of the blood the tires imprinted on the road. “No, no, no!” Mr. Ripley knew at that moment that it was all over. They sat him down again and lined up in front of him. They brought down the hood and the mask, Raven is black with braided hair and blue eyes. Benjamin is a Muslim from Pakistan with a fairly grown beard. Van was Caucasian with the perfect check bone and a thick eyebrow, to cut it short he was devilishly handsome. “Do you remember us now?” asked Van. “Yes I do,” said Mr. Ripley. In the face of Raven, he saw a black twelve-year-old girl he molested, in the face of Benjamin the Muslim kid he made them expel from school and in Van’s eyes he said “your father was a good man. But how?”
They turned and were on their way when Mr. Ripley called “please kill me.”
“No sir, we don’t want blood on our hands,” said Van.
“Oh, and we met online,” said Raven.
THE MAN BEHIND THE PAIN
By nyameye sky