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*continues*

Uncle Francis quickly walked into the sitting room, nervously caressed my head as he stared at my siblings who quickly rushed up to hug him. I really felt uneasy seeing him. He was supposed to be at the village with my parents.
“what’s he doing here?” i wondered fearfully.

“we are leaving for the village early tomorrow. Your parents sent me to fetch you. Go pack your things. Tomorrow we will be heading to the village” he said quietly, drawing curious stares from us with the statement.

“i hope all is well?. I don’t understand. We have school to attend tomorrow, and we have never missed classes not for a day” i asked suspiciously. My siblings nodded in approval.

“yes everything is fine. Just go and boil water for me. I need to take a hot bath” he answered with a smile, lifted up my little sister and settled on a chair, avoiding my prying eyes. I knew something was terribly wrong but i simply obeyed and left for the kitchen.

I had a hard time sleeping that night. My siblings kept asking me questions almost all through the night, while i calmly played down their fears even though i was almost dead with worry.

“do you think mum and Dad are okay?”, “did uncle Francis tell you anything else?” they asked curiously. Their little innocent eyes searching hopefully for a good answer that never came. My mind never rested till the next day when we all headed to our hometown in Ekwulobia Anambra state.

My father was born in a good religious home. He was the overall head and first born of the family. After the death of his parents, he inherited his father’s large house, sharing it with uncle Francis {his immediate younger brother who instead of seeking greener pastures outside the little community, preferred staying behind in the village. Thus he lived with his wife popularly called mama Rose and three children in the village, while dad’s youngest brother Uncle Stanley moved to portharcourt. We had no problems with them and they treated us with respect. Little did we know that all the respect they accorded us were just nothing but pretence. Things immediately changed as soon as we got home and discovered our parents dead. We suddenly found ourselves all alone in the world.

The responsibility of my siblings immediately fell on my weak shoulders.

To be continued.

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