SENIOR BOYS (5)


(THE INITIATION)

 "Are you his son?!" The man asked me, raising his voice excitedly. I nodded and wondered why he smiled.

He was the same person I had seen some minutes ago whipping some students mercilessly on their buttocks at the assembly ground; wearing a straight face like he was the devil, or related to him. His name was Mr.Thompson; the school disciplinary master.


"When you were little, I carried you around" he said. Well that was the least I wanted to hear at the moment, but then he went on and on. 

"I cleaned your poop" he said, looking me in the eyes; he held that gaze for a while and then laughed loudly. 

"Thank you sir" I managed to say; I wondered if he really needed to remind me that.

Mr Thompson, like I later got to know, was a good old friend of my father. He explained that they attended the same university. They both lodged in the same apartment from year one to final year.  Well, his story got so boring along the line. I looked at the wall clock which hung directly above him in his little office; it read 8:15am.


I knew that classes would have commenced by then. I didn't want to go late for my fist class, so I coughed in a bid to interrupt him;

"Do you have cough?"

"A terrible one sir" I replied.

"You should visit the school clinic to get some drugs ok?" He said.

I nodded again and then I spoke;

"Uhm..can I get my personal desk and sitting stool? Mum directed me to get them from you" 


"Oh! That's true, sorry I was lost in the story I was telling you" he said.

Whether I was interested in it or not, I don't think he cared to know.

"It's over there" he pointed at a corner.

"Remove the canes on top of the desk and carry your property" he said to me, smiling.


I walked down to where he directed me to; I counted the blood thirsty canes which lay hungrily on my new desk, ready to devour any student who messed up; 27 in all. Well I didn't expect anything less, in a disciplinary master's office. I didn’t know why I was also expecting to see a gun too; incase they wished to sentence some random students to death also.


"Thank you so much sir" I said. I lifted the two wooden structures and moved to the door carefully. Mr.Thompson was still smiling at me. I wondered what triggered such an expression. I began to doubt if he was the one I'd seen whipping the defaulters so hard at the assembly ground.


But before I left, he told me something which I would never forget, something which would restructure my identity from the naïve and gullible student which I'd been, since my arrival to the school. Something which would transform me into a new personality, something which would later put my studentship at a high risk.


"Any small mistake can send you home, boy. Be careful with whom you associate with."

I stood, still looking at him; I figured he was going to say something else. He did.

"Not every student in this school is a normal human, some are agents of destruction. To be forewarned is to be fore armed"  Then his smile disappeared; he pulled up his usual serious face.

—————————————————————————-

"What took you so long man?" Tom asked. It was then that I remembered that he had been waiting for me outside the office.

"He was telling me a boring story" I said, as we moved to the class. 

"Here, let me help" he said and took the heavy desk which I carried, from me.

I held the stool in my right hand and walked behind him. 

I looked at the back of his head; it reminded me of yesterday when I'd just arrived. He was the same person whom sir Paul had called to help me carry my heavy luggage.

"You shouldn't sit at the back" 

"In the classroom you mean?" I asked.

Tom nodded and then spoke;

"That's where the bad boys like to sit"

"Oh I see, where do you sit then?"

"At the back"

"Gracious!" I exclaimed.

He turned and looked at me; then he laughed;

"I can handle them, you can't" he said.

"Oh I see". 

We soon got to the classroom; on the door post was boldly written "SSS1 (SCIENCE)"

—————————————————————————-

"Are you just joining us?" The teacher asked.


Questions like these always made me angry; why then was I standing in front of the class with my desk and sitting stool if I wasn't joining them for the first time?

I nodded.

"Come in, boys" he said softly. Then he looked at Tom;

"You too?" The expression on his face showed that Tom looked familiar and wasn't a new student.

"I went to help him carry his desk" Tom said.

The teacher nodded and walked outside; I could tell he wanted to give me some minutes to settle down.

As we walked in, I felt all eyes were on me; I knew all eyes were on me. The class was filled to the brim.

Boys and girls at different angles murmured. They all were neatly dressed; hats on; I could perceive the combination of different fragrances. They all stared at me with excitement: I was becoming uncomfortable. I really disliked attention.

I watched as Tom stood, scanning the classroom for any available space. The teacher came in at that moment.

"You can place it beside me" a girl said to him. It was Hilda; she sat in the second row from the white board.

"Awwwwwwwn, couple goals!" A boy shouted from behind and everyone burst out laughing. It didn't seem funny to me, maybe because I was the object of mockery or that I really wanted to settle down because the teacher had already come into the classroom.

Tom turned to look at me. His eyes seemed to ask me the question; "Is it ok by you?" 

I nodded; at least she was the first pretty girl who had talked to me in the school.

"Fine boy!" A girl shouted from behind; all the girls raised up their heads, they all looked at me to confirm if the statement was true or not. I heard some laugh, others murmured.

"Can you all behave yourselves?!" The teacher queried.

"Is it your first time seeing a new comer?" He asked.


"Welcome" Hilda said to me. 

"Thanks" I feigned a smile.

The teacher went on with the lesson; it was physics, I'd heard so much about the subject. Not that it was hard but it had been described like it was only meant for Gurus; those whose brains could handle it. 

"By next class you should submit the assignment; Differentiate between Fundamental and Derived quantities" he said. 

He lectured for few more minutes and then he left.

———————————————————————————

"A lot of things happen here at night" Hilda said to me; it was time for a short break and she had opted to walk me round the school with the little time left.


I widened my eyes in curiosity; 

"Really?" I asked; not that I wasn't aware already, I wanted to make her see that I was really interested.

"Yes, strong, people of your age, are always the targets"

"Targets?" 

"Yes, you could be unknowingly or forcefully initiated into one of these Occultic groups" she replied.


We arrived the security building shortly; I could see the mango tree behind the medium sized building, standing tall with all splendor, it seemed to be asking me; "Do you remember me, Strong?" 

"This is the security building, you can report any crimes here and action will be taken as soon as possible"

"Alright thanks" I said.


How was I going to explain to Hilda that I'd been there last night to pluck mangoes and had been stung by some ants; that I could have been reported for loitering around late at night; she wasn't even aware that I'd started embarking on night adventures. Anyways, I was enjoying the tour.


"I'll show you the girls hostel" she said as we walked past the Assembly ground and then to the car park, where sir Paul had met me yesterday.

"You we're talking about deadly groups?" I asked, trying to ignite a discussion 

"Hmmm, there a lot of evil groups in this school; they always lay ambush for the security officers and most of the school teachers.

"Do you know them?, Have you seen them?" I asked; I wondered why Tom had never told me this. 

"I don't know, but I heard they're all students like us" she said as we stood a considerable distance away from some buildings which seemed to be bound by a high perimeter fence.


"That's the girls hostel" she said, pointing to it. The gate was flung open and I could see some girls sitting outside and talking. 

"Boys are banned from crossing that gate" she said to me grinning.

I smiled; well she was the only one I knew, and nothing was going to make me cross the gate.


"Aren't you hungry? I can get you something to eat from the kiosk over there" Hilda offered.

Well, it was so nice of her. I was really impressed with her personality. 

"Don't worry" I said, despite the fact that my stomach rumbled quietly in hunger. Well I wanted to  impress her or perhaps prove a point; I wasn't a kid anymore.

"What are you thinking of?" She asked as we moved to another part of the large school compound.

"The group you were explaining earlier to me" I said.

"Ah come on strong! Don't tell me you're so scared" she laughed. 

"I'm not scared, I'm a bit worried" I said.

Well I couldn't help thinking about it; the thought of people of my age being the main targets made me a more worried.

"You just have to be careful with whom you associate with, and be mindful of what you take from other students to eat." She advised.

We soon heard the sound of the bell; the short break had ended. 

——————————————————————————-

——————————————————————————-

It was after one week of my stay in school , Just one week, when it all happened. 

Getting used to the environment, though not easy on my own part, was now a normal thing.

The Morning rising bell, the Morning Portion, the time for breakfast, Morning Assembly, Classes, break Period, Lunch, Afternoon siesta, Night Prep....an endless and ever revolving routine.


That evening I sat on my bed, just like a bored young boy would; I swayed my legs which couldn't touch the floor. I wasn't tall enough. 

The hostel was a bit scanty; few boys ran here and there throwing a pair of slippers at each other. I watched in amusement and laughed. I was beginning to understand the games they played. It was a Sunday evening; there was nothing to do; the other hostel mates must have probably gone to see their Babes or whatever they called such girls whom they were attracted to. 

I was a bit hungry; I made to my box to bring out some cereals.

Then someone called me from the window;

"Boy, come"

I looked keenly at the face of the person who had just beckoned on me. It wasn't a familiar face; neither was it one of my classmates trying to play pranks on me; it was a senior student.

I stood up and walked up to the window where he stood. He told me to come outside the hostel, which I did. 

"Follow me to my hostel" he said. It was the first time a senior student was telling me such. 

I'd never entered their hostel before; Tom had once told me that no junior boy dared to enter their den without being called. 

Well the main reason why I listened to him without suspecting anything was because he smiled and sounded cheerful as he spoke to me.


We arrived, few seconds later; I scanned the hostel; It was a bit scanty too, just like mine; Some Older senior students lay on the floor; with only their underwears on; they discussed and laughed loudly; a particular group discussed on the various girlfriends they'd had in the past.


We walked down to his corner; I didn't know his name yet and why he called me.

"Call me Senior Fred" he said.

"Ok senior"

He sat down on his bed and relaxed his body a bit. Then he looked me straight into the eyes.

"Barry strong right?" 

I nodded. 

"You'll be my school son" 

"School son? What's that?" I asked 

"Once you're my school son, I'll protect you from other senior students and you won't be whipped by anyone of them" 

It sounded nice to me; the offer would really relieve me of a lot of stress, but then I didn't know if there would be any price attached to it. 


"You will assist me in things which I don't have time to do, in fact you'll serve me." He said 

I widened my eyes in curiosity, trying to digest what he meant. 

"There" 

he said, pointing to a pile of school wears which lay on the floor; perhaps they were unwashed.


"Go and wash them, school son" 

I obeyed without questioning; even if I did, it wouldn't change anything. 


I fetched some water with two empty pails which he gave me and then made to the laundry area to wash the clothes. The clothes smelt of cigarettes and produced a disgusting stench. Well, that wasn't all; I saw packs of unopened cigarettes in one of his pockets; I was beginning to feel uncomfortable.


The clothes were too many. I was in a situation where I really didn't know what to do. I just had to wash and wash; he was my senior and I couldn't question him. Besides it was a normal thing for classmates to wash the clothes of the older senior boys. 

"Welcome to the gang Mon Amie" Tom said, as he walked to up my direction.

"Which gang?" I asked.

"Those who wash clothes for the older senior students"

"He just called me, I don't even know him" I said.

"You have no choice Mon Amie, he's your senior" he said. 

I showed him the packs of cigarettes which I'd seen in senior Fred's pocket. Tom laughed; 

"Those senior boys are monsters, have nothing to do with them" he said.


When I was done washing, I went back to where senior Fred lay; 

"I'm done washing, Senior Fred" I said.

He smiled and came down from his bed. 

"You're a good boy" he said, patting me on my back.

I didn't suspect anything, and I never did, even when he gave me some biscuits to eat.


"Here, have this" he said and handed me a yellow packet of crackers biscuit and climbed back to his bed.

"Thank you, Senior Fred" I said.

He must have suspected that I was bit hungry; from they way I tore it open and munched at the biscuits with the last strength in me. He asked me to stay and eat it. 

I sat comfortably on a bed close by and chewed the biscuits. Yet he gave me another packet, and another and another.

When I was filled, I stood up to leave; the thought of having someone to protect me in such a school was to me, at that moment, a great achievement.


"We'll meet in the bush by 9:15pm" he said and laughed loudly. 

"Who?" 

He didn't reply me, he just turned and rested his head on his pillow. 

I wondered if he was referring to me; well, at the long run, he was. 


The moment I left the Older seniors hostel, my stomach began to rumble and I began to feel really uncomfortable.


That night in class during the night prep, I could barely concentrate on the text book which was opened before me. I'd never felt that way before during night prep. Not only did I feel dizzy, I felt my legs burning. I wondered what was happening to me. I didn't want to point fingers to the biscuit I'd eaten from Senior Fred, but then it was all that I had taken into my stomach, that evening. 


I tried to focus on the chemistry textbook which had lay open before me for the past one hour. The letters seemed to flying around. I heard different voices in my head. I covered my ear; the noise seemed to be too much. 

"Are you ok, Strong?" Ben, one of my classmates who sat near me asked. 

He had been watching me for a while.

"The class is quiet, why are you covering your two ears?" He whispered.

I ignored him; he really didn't understand what I was going through.

"We'll meet in the bush by 10pm" the voice echoed In my head. 

Fear gripped me; I wondered what Senior Fred meant by that. 

 "Which bush?!!!" I didn't know when I shouted.

The whole class stopped and looked in my direction. I could tell for sure, they thought I was deranged.

I heard some of the boys laugh, others murmured.


"He must have planned to meet his babe tonight, maybe he has forgotten the location" I heard one of my class boys say and the others burst out laughing. 

They were interrupted shortly, by a senior student who warned them to stop the noise.


Tom walked up to me some minutes later. 

"Are you okay? What's the problem, Strong?" 

He had never called me by my name; it was the first time he did.  He looked me straight into the eyes. I could tell he was sensing something.

Well I don't think I'll ever forgive myself for not telling Tom what had transpired between I and Senior Fred, earlier that evening. I really wondered why I hid such a thing from him; knowing fully well that he would have saved me from the doom I was about to enter; or at least he would have tried his best to.


I nodded and told Tom that my stomach only ached. He suggested that I should visit the school clinic immediately after prep. 

"I'll drink plenty of water" I said and rested my head on my desk. He nodded and left. I was grateful that he really cared.

—————————————————————————-

The moment the bell was rung, signaling Prep-Over, everyone stood to leave. Boys chattered happily. 

I knew a lot of them had read nothing; they were only in class that night because it was compulsory to do so.

Some of them discussed on the popular football stars; Erling Haaland of Mancity and Kylian Mbappe of PSG. One of them shouted in confidence;

"Haaland is a giant, you can't outwit him, take it or leave it!!!".

The girls in the other classroom had started leaving to their hostels.

My stomach ache had died down and I felt a bit relieved. I packed my books into my desk and placed my padlock into the staple. The moment I locked my the desk and stool together and made for the door, then it happened.


My legs became heavy, I couldn't move. I decided to sit and wait for some minutes; though a risky one because the older senior students could come anytime to ensure the class was empty. 

"Aren't you leaving now?" Tom asked; he was already set to leave for the hostel. 

I shook my head, I explained to him that I would meet him in the hostel soon.

"The senior prefect will be here with his cane , anytime soon" he said, still looking at me.

"I'll leave before he arrives"'I replied.

"I do hope you're ok Mon Amie" he said and left.

I really wished I was, but I knew I wasn't. Something was wrong somewhere, something didn't feel right. 


Soon, the classroom filled with noisy students was empty; everyone had gone to the hostel.


My legs began to burn; they became so hot that I almost cried out in pains. Then I saw myself standing; my legs walked me outside the building and behind the classroom; I tried to resist what ever was pulling me in the direction of the bushes but it was practically impossible.


Going far into the bushes, I saw some people coming in my direction, others walked in front of me; it seemed like I wasn't the only person going to the same place.

The fact that I found myself walking towards the Initiation ground is something which I can't explain even till tomorrow.

——————————————————————

I still wondered on how I managed to scale through the Perimeter fence which defined the schoo territory. 


I found my self in a little forest, a bit far from the school premises that night. 

A group of students gathered round a fire at a distance, as I approached them.

The crowd was surprisingly large; I estimated that about fifty of us were there; we were all students of the secondary college.


"Enjoyment is the goal!"

"We Break the rules, We make new rules!"

"You vex us, we end torture or end your life!"


These, they echoed as they went round the fire, jubilating. Girls, shabbily dressed, boys roughly dressed. There were a lot to digest and understand.


I sighted Senior Fred from a distance; his high hair made it easy for me to identify him. He walked up to me shortly. 

"My son, I knew you would come" he said smiling. 

I stood, looking confused.


"We have a new member!" he shouted. 

Suddenly everywhere became calm; all eyes turned to me.

I tried to turn back and run, but my legs seemed heavy and stiff. 

I watched as they all stood in a single file to welcome me. One who seemed like their leader sat at a corner and smoked. 


"He's my school son, he'll take over from when I graduate from this useless college, take care of him" Senior Fred said; not referring to anyone in particular; perhaps all of them at once.


"Bring him!" A voice said. From under a tree close by. I couldn't see who it was; the darkness concealed him.

Again, I tried to run, but my legs were so heavy; I stood in fear as two hands grabbed me and pulled me closer to where the leader sat.

"Feel at home, welcome home!" He spoke. 

Home? Did he mean home? How was he expecting me to feel at home when I was still trying to understand what was happening.

"There's no turning back, you're one of us now" he said. 

I pinched myself to be sure I didn't hear what I just heard. 

"Of who?" 

"Tie his hands and legs!" The voice said. 

——————————————————————————

Soon they all sat round the fire; in groups. Some smoked in groups, others gulped heavy bottles of what seems like alcohol. Some other girls sat at a corner, smooching their male partners with intense pleasure.


"Please what do you want from me!" I pleaded

"Don't worry you'll be fine, son!" senior Fred voice out to me from where he sat with a female.


"Remove his clothes" the voice said. 

I felt so embarrassed; how could they pull off my clothes in the presence of everyone; the females especially.


"Please what do you want from me?" I pleaded yet again; despite the tight ropes which bound me firmly and the hands which gripped me tightly.

"You're working for the master, you must do his will whether you like it or not, Strong." A voice whispered into my ears as he pulled down my trousers.

I wondered how he got to know my name.

I perceived he must have known me back in school. I turned to look at him; the burning fire slightly illuminating his face. It was Badmus, the student who lacked table manners at the cafeteria earlier that morning. I'd recognized him by the shape of his nose; it was special I'd say; it was funny looking and seemed too big for his face.


He unbuttoned my shirt and soon, I was left with only a pair of boxers on, he seemed to be so keen with what he was doing. 

"You're among them too?" I asked in fear, trying to understand what was actually happening.

"Keep your mouth shut, you can be  killed right here for asking stupid questions" he whispered.


I froze; it was dawning on me that I was about to be forcefully initiated.

"The master dislikes stupid questions" he added.

I kept on wondering who the master could be. 


I heaved a sigh of relief when I noticed that the pair of boxers which I wore around my tiny waist wouldn't go down too.

————————————————————

My personality changed, that night. 

I wasn't the Barry Strong I used to be again. The moment I forcefully drank the concoction, I knew that this was a new me.

TO BE CONTINUED…


(You can also access the story SENIOR BOYZZ on Wattpad and Dreame) 

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