I Was really hoping to make a fresh start at my new school, the preparatory international school tucked in-between the lovely hills of Metibe in Lusaka, Zambia. I particularly enjoyed the lovely weather of the place. It was sunshine all the way. The school itself was a paragon of beauty – no tall buildings, only lovely bungalow buildings that squatted in the well groomed lawn. The area was so posh and peaceful that you wouldn’t ever imagine a fly being hurt in that place. The glasses in the windows were all crystal clear. The classrooms were so spacious and we were a maximum of sixteen students in the class. The air was always cool and the fans blew a mixture of warm and cool air.
But instead, my life has been reduced to hell for more than two weeks due to the handwork of Asquith. From the very first day, Asquith was determined to make my life a ruin. He would taint and taunt me. He enjoyed bullying me, he delighted in seeing me miserable, and he was just in ecstasy seeing me in pains. Something had to be done, and that right quick too. If not, I would surely disintegrate!
Asquith was a very muscular boy, with almost all his veins showing. He had a very athletic build, and was always ready to demonstrate his strength. Almost everybody was scared of him. He had his way all the time and he was a compulsive liar. He looked a lot older than the rest of us.
Having suffered in silence for two weeks, I was determined to put an end to his menace. So it was that on a sunny afternoon that Junior, Kola, Effson and I were sitting in the far left corner of the handball pitch discussing how to end this nonsense.
“What should we do?” Kola queried.
“I have an idea” Junior echoed.
Each time Junior spoke, we couldn’t help laughing because we thought it would be connected to food. He was a compulsive eater, no wonder he looked so round, like a football. His cheeks looked thoroughly pumped, just short of bursting. To make matters worse he was quite short.
“What’s the idea?” Effson asked.
“I bet it’s about food” I joked.
“You all will love this, and it’s going to work” Junior continued.
“Say it then” we all chorused.
“Asquith has a dark past you know, I mean a terrible past.”
“Really?” I asked.
“What is it?” Effson quizzed.
“Just hold on everybody! I will tell you in a moment and you will love it. That is why Asquith never messes with me. I am the only one who knows his dark past. Next time he harasses you, just mention Entebbe.”
“Huh?” everyone wondered.
Junior narrated the entire story behind that magic word ‘Entebbe’. At the end of it all everyone admitted nothing could surpass that, and we were all willing to put it to use.
Two days later, I was rushing to my hostel to have my lunch when I met Asquith on the side walk combing his long hair. It seemed he had been waiting there to see me so he could bully me as usual. I said hello to him and walked past.
“Paul, come here!” he ordered.
“I aint coming.” I responded.
“What did you say? So you even talk back at me now.”
I pretended not to hear him and walked on.
“Paul, I repeat, come here!”
“I aint coming.”
“By the countdown of three, if I do not see you right here in front of me, consider yourself dead – three, two, one.”
Asquith charged at me, expecting me to cower in my usual old way. His strong arms grasped the collar of my shirt and he dragged me roughly to himself.
“I need 100 bucks” he said, breathing down on my face. His breath smelled terribly.
“Leave me alone Asquith, I don’t have any more money to give to you, my pocket money is all gone.”
“You have until this evening to bring it to my room” he barked, releasing my collar to grab me by the neck.
Asquith’s grip on my neck was tight; he was actually snuffing life out of me as I could hardly breathe. I knew I had to do something fast. At that instance, I remembered the magic word and I said it thrice as though I was chanting some incantations.
“Entebbe, Entebbe, Entebbe” I said, gasping for air.
It worked like magic, Asquith literally froze. His hands dropped off my neck and he looked at me with such regret. Seeing how bad the magic word had affected him, I gathered enough courage to challenge him.
“Now, you listen to me Asquith, I want all my money back; and you have until this evening to return it.”
“You said what?”
“Eh easy man, if by this evening I do not get my 800 bucks back, then the whole world will hear about Entebbe.”
Asquith’s eyes welled up with tears of frustration; he was in total confusion wondering how I got to know about his dirty old secret. He stood transfixed for about two minutes with his mouth getting wider in awe, and couldn’t gather himself to recover from the shock.
I walked away from him head high and chin up knowing that I was finally free from his assaults and harassments forever.