SHORT STORY Dec. 15, 2021

Writing takes away my power; writing gives me power.

                                -Amanda Nechesa. 


It’s 2.41 a.m and she has just quoted herself in her own writing. As if she is that adept. As if people should now be quoting her. But she loves it, so she continues writing and writing and writing until when she finally surrenders all her power to it and gains even more from it. 

It’s late now. Way, way late. Around 4.00a.m. So maybe, it’s not too late. Perhaps it’s just too early. She smiles at that. She has never been too early for anything in her life, but today, today she will even get to hear the rooster crow. 

Music is playing on her laptop. It’s from a new artist she just discovered. Elliphant. A Swedish rebel who sings and sings well. But even her beautiful guttural voice cannot rid her of the rising need in her stomach to hear the rooster crow today. 

She must. She certainly must hear the rooster crow. So she pauses the music and listens.

The silence that follows is one that can either be described as dead or alive depending on your level of cynicism. 

She prefers dead. It’s dead silent according to her. She continues to listen and it’s in that silence, that dead silence that she remembers her home. 

Her real home. Not this house she is in that is not a home. Not this house that when she wakes up, she has to have a smile on her face and pretend to be happy for the benefit of her mother. Definitely not this house that she cannot get to taste any whiskey. 

God, how she misses her home.

 Today, she has to hear the rooster crow. Its crow might be the only silver lining to being in this house.

Suddenly, she hears a sound. Not the sound of a rooster crowing. No. Luck has never loved her that much.

She hears the sound of someone rising up from the next room.

Her mother. 

She shuts her laptop immediately and feigns sleep. 

She then proceeds to listen to her mother’s movements to the washroom, each of her steps enunciated with a deep sigh. She listens some more, and then when the toilet flushes and her mother is back to her bedroom, she opens the laptop again and continues listening for the crow.

She loves her mother. She really does. But it is the kind of love that she is constantly afraid of having any conversation with her. The kind that she feels like fleeing whenever she is one foot away from her. 

She really loves her mother though, only, she feels she loves her much better when she is miles away from her. In her home perhaps? 

God, she misses her home. 

Shhh...is that the rooster??


It is. 

And it just crowed. She cannot believe the joy in her heart. She heard it. She heard the crow. 

She glances at the clock on her laptop. 

4.30 a.m.

Has he arrived yet? She wonders. The crow was the signal, wasn’t it? 

Slowly and careful not to wake up her mother, she rises from the bed, closes the laptop again, and shoves it in the already packed backpack under the bed. 

Tonight, or this morning if she will prefer, she has to go back. She has to go back to her home.  


“Hey,” she greets him once she reaches him. 

His response is a tight hug. The tightest he has ever given her.

It lasts for a second, but with the way he holds her, the way he breathes her in, it almost feels like an eternity. 

“How did you get past your mother?” he finally speaks. 

“I have my tricks.” 

It’s dark. Ghastly dark except for his flashlight. 

However, she can feel his cheeky smile and she involuntarily grins back. 

A genuinely happy grin. 

“She had already had her one trip to the washroom, huh?”

Now she laughs. She can’t believe she told him about her mother’s sleeping and toilet schedule. She can’t believe the rooster finally crowed. She can’t believe she is here, with her home, going to her home. 

“I have missed it.” 

She says and he immediately knows what she is talking about. He takes her hand and leads the way. 

“Then let’s get you home,” he says. 


by Amanda Nechesa 84


  • Madaraka

    June 16, 2020, 2:27 a.m.

    Where the heart belongs.

  • Billy

    June 16, 2020, 6:12 a.m.

    Quoting oneself.  That's some high level energy! I love it! 😅 Home is where the heart belongs. 

  • Mukonya

    June 16, 2020, 10:15 a.m.

    Where I come from, it crows like 'kurukukuuu...uuuu' 😂

  • 34

    June 16, 2020, 11:13 a.m.

    I know a "panya" route to home😂 but it's dangerous 

  • Kimathi Makini

    June 17, 2020, 3:55 a.m.

    Home is where the heart is. Beautiful read Amanda


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