The first thing Mark Makori Omakori thought when he came to at Lang’ata cemetery was that he was dead and someone had forgotten to bury his body.
He lay on hard surface that automatically disqualified bed, his arms at his sides. His eyes slit open, and the first blinding ray of light burned at the back of his eyes.
He looked into the sky, took a deep breath and roused himself up. He surveyed his milieu. He used the nearest gravestone to pull himself up. Everything blurred before his eyes. He decided to get the hell out of the godforsaken place. The inborn human fear of such places was beginning to get the better of him.
He put a hand to his forehead and felt it slip on something slick – his own blood. I was mugged, he said to himself. His heart started to palpitate, actually began to attack him. He was too young for a myocardial infarct. He reached for his cell phone in his jacket pocket. It was not there. The wallet too.
His head began to pound, legs grew weak and he sank to the ground and lay back against the gravestone he had used to haul himself up.
Mark felt the world crumpling around him and darkness closing in on him. The early morning sun slid behind a cloud as if it were embarrassed, and with it flashes and flashbulbs of what he could make of his failing memory: him driving his new wheels to Day Star University and picking three girls, the latest of his catch, and going to Carnivore and the revelry that followed; he drank a little too many, leaving the club astonished that the friends he thought he had were not actually friends – they let him drink and drive – he driving along Lang’ata Road towards 7th Battalion the Kenya Rifles (7KR) barracks where he worked and then…
At that moment three truths struck him: he had not been mugged. He had been robbed: the wheels – he had taken a loan immediately the army announced they were giving them a pay rise and upgraded from his second-hand noisy Subaru to an even noisier one, Ksh.1.8M gone like a wisp of smoke – a laptop, the latest Samsung Galaxy tablet, iPhone and money (both cash and plastic). And it was the girls who did this to him.