Remember Success Akpojotor and his book, Sex and Lagos City? Well, he has published another one, titled The Rainbow Household. The book promises to be an enjoyable read. If you doubt me, here’s an excerpt for you to enjoy.
Sir Iweala washed his right hand and dabbed his mouth. “Achebe,” he called.
“Yes Papa,” Achebe replied after he swallowed munched abacha.
“You didn’t receive communion today. Why?”
Father Chinua smiled. “Maybe he was not worthy and that was the best he could have done instead of eating and drinking damnation unto himself.”
Iweala looked at Achebe. “You are not in a state of grace? My household is guided by rules and regulations. Every Friday, you must go to confession.”
Lady Adaeze was kicking Iweala’s left leg under the Glass-on-Wood dining table. She wanted him to stop.
“Achebe, you didn’t go for confession?” Iweala queried.
“Oh, Sir Iweala,” Father Chinua attempted to nip the situation in the bud before it got out of hand “There must be an explanation for why he d –”
“And I want to hear it,” Iweala snapped as he beckoned his son.
Adaeze whispered to him, “Nna anyi, Achebe has seen twenty-seven years. He is not a suckling!”
“It does not change the fact that my loins produced him,” he said to his wife and turned to Achebe, “Answer me so that Father Chinua can bless us and go before it gets dark.”
“Alright, fine,” Achebe took in a deep breath. “There couldn’t have been a better time than now.”
“I’m all ears.” Iweala was impatient.
“I’ve been searching for peace and the truth since after my matriculation six years ago, the truth which I couldn’t find in all my years of being a Catholic and j –”
“You are now a member of one of those mushroom protestant churches where con artists who parade themselves as pastors stage-manage gothic miracles, speak gibberish in the name of esoteric prayer and script fictitious testimonies just to get lazy and crazy Christians to empty their purse and bank accounts?” His father could not manage the anger that was building up in him.
“No, Papa.” Achebe swallowed spittle as his tongue fought with abacha crumbs that had escaped mastication by hiding in between a molar and incisor. “I’ve reverted to my true self; to what I really was at birth.”
“You’re not making sense. Stop this nonsense and tell me why you didn’t receive communion today or why you didn’t go to confession on Friday.”
“I have totally submitted myself to the will of Almighty Allah. I am now a Muslim.” Achebe measured the syllables as he spoke the words. “I worshipped at the mosque on Friday after several years of hiding in the closet since after I did my Shahada.”
“Sha-what?” Father Chinua said.
“Professing the oneness of Allah and believing that Mohammed is His prophet,” Achebe replied.
Adaeze’s glass of orange juice dropped from her right hand and shattered on the marble floor. “Alu!” she shrieked. “Abomination! Jesus Christ!”
Iweala grabbed a spoon from the cutlery set on the dining and threw it at Achebe. “You’ve had too much alcohol, too much wine!”
“No Papa, I’ve not had too much wine. I’ve not even had wine. A true Muslim doesn’t take alcohol.” Achebe was massaging his left jaw bone that had been struck by the spoon his father threw at him. “I professed Allah and His Holy Prophet during my final year at the university.”
“I should never have allowed you accept that admission. I regret letting you go to Zaria.” Sir Iweala was furious.
“You don’t even know how I went to school, Papa. You were busy with your job, your career.”
“I was working to put food on the table!” his father exploded at the censure in Achebe’s voice. “Working to give you all a perfect life!”
“Thank you for seeing me through life until now. But I’m an adult, a man and I cannot hide in the closet anymore. Islam gives me peace, true peace, which Christianity can never have to give.”
Sir Iweala threw another cutlery at Achebe. “Will you shut up your mouth!”
Father Chinua began addressing the other man, “Sir, you have –”
“Stay out of this Father, please.” Sir Iweala was breathing heavily. “This is my family.” He whirled around to face the other three people in the room. “Chimezie! Golibe! Nzemeke! You knew about this?”
The three flinched from his glare. “No,” they denied in unison.
“Have you converted to Islam too?”
“No Papa.” The three said like a trinity.
“Satan has entered my home.” Sir Iweala was now muttering to himself.
“But Papa, I’ve got something to tell you,” Golibe said.
Everyone turned to Golibe.
“You converted to Judaism?” her mother gasped, her hand quivering over her chest.
“No,” Golibe said.
“Then what is it you have to say?” Iweala was expecting bad news, something worse.
“I just published a book that will soon go viral. It’s in e-book and audio-book formats already and yet to be shelved on the e-book stores. This is how the paperback will be.” A paperback novel which she scooped from on top her laps passed from her through Chimezie and then to her father. “Also my blog which was designed to attract readers who consume the niche I write in now boasts of two thousand visits daily and still counting. URL is clitoritica dot com. I’ve decided to come out and let people know about my night job of writing.”
Sir Iweala beheld a paperback sample with bold texts emblazoned on a high resolution image of unclad men and nude women in a garden as they planted seeds and prepared for an orgy:
HIS PANT AND HER BRA
A Book By Golibe Adichie
“Holy Christ!” Sir Iweala burst out as the book dropped from his hand as though it had scalded it. “Golibe, you write porn!”
“No, Papa. It’s Erotica.”
“Chim o! My God!” Adaeze yelled and stood. “Heu, chim oo!”
“Father, please pray for us and go. It’s getting dark already.” Iweala waved at Father Chinua, giving him a go-ahead signal.
Father Chinua sighed. “May we b –”
“Please, don’t pray yet. I’ve got something to say too,” Chimezie interrupted.
The atmosphere in the room tautened some more.
The parents turned to look at Chimezie with his small red lips, which he had inherited from his father, from which they were wary of what was about to be said.
Chimezie passed his tongue over his lower lip. “I want to thank Achebe and Golibe for coming out. I am so inspired. I love them, Muslim or porn writer –”
“Erotica,” Golibe cut in curtly. “I don’t write porn.”
“I stand corrected,” Chimezie said. “Whether Achebe is a Muslim or Golibe writes erotica, they are still my brother and sister, and I pray you, Papa, Mama, that you love us irrespective of who and what we are.”
“What are you?” Adaeze said. It was almost an accusing question.
“You are now a Jehovah’s Witness?” his mother breathed out.
Chimezie sighed. “I’m twenty-five already, and in no time you would expect me to come show you the woman who I’m supposed to live the rest of my life with and with whom I would give you grandchildren.” His Adam’s apple moved up and down like a padlock that was quickly locked and opened with simultaneity. “And I may not be able to keep up with expectation.”
“Stop this riddle! Are you impotent? You have low sperm count? Syphilis? Gonorrhea?” Adaeze’s voice was a whiplash of anger and anxiety.
Chimezie took a deep breath and said, “No, mama. I am gay.”
“What!” The word exploded from his mother and siblings, Achebe and Golibe.
Nzemeke’s face was blank, unaffected.
Iweala suddenly looked like he was aging quicker now than in the years he’d endured on earth. He said huskily, “You mean gay? As in bright, cheerful, radiant, happy –”
Chimezie cut in. “Papa, no. I mean I’m attracted to men. I like men. The opposite sex doesn’t fascinate me. I knew I was what I am since after I clocked fourteen, and I wanted to talk to you about it but you were never around; and you never would have listened.”
“Saint Charles Borromeo!” Father Chinua spat out, effecting a shudder as he squeezed shut his eyes.
Sir Iweala reached for a glass of water and took a gulp. When he spoke however, his voice was still hoarse. “Thank you, my sons and daughter for this drama, for turning the House of Adichie into a house of coming-out cum self-discovery tales and themes. But I want to pretend that I haven’t heard all the nonsense that proceeded from your mouths and –”
“But –” Father Chinua attempted to speak.
“Stay out of this, Father. You are only but a priest. You don’t know how it feels when a lineage is reaching extinction.” Sir Iweala shared the focus of his glower among Achebe, Chimezie and Golibe. “And by tomorrow morning at six, I want your letters on this dining, recanting what you have said and attributing it to too much orange juice. Good night, and please, Fa –”
“I tested positive to HIV three years ago!”
Silence fell tomb-like in the room following Nzemeke’s pronouncement. Aghast expressions turned to him.
“AIDS!” His mother screeched. “You’re going to die?”
“HIV, mama, not AIDS,” Nzemeke corrected. “My CD4 count is still very high. I’m not dying. I’m very healthy, I want to believe. I’m very much around, at least for my great grandchildren.”
Adaeze’s legs suddenly grew too weak to hold her up. Gradually, she slumped into a dining chair.
Her husband’s breath tremored out of him as he turned to the priest. “Father, thank you…” He was struggling to hold back tears. “Thank you for coming. Put my family in your mass intentions tomorrow.”
And he turned and walked out of the room with a deformed gusto and a lopsided gait.
And here’s the book trailer.