FICTION: The Rebirth Written by Dhee Sylvester.

You wrote down three names on a piece of paper. There the names of those you intend to kill over the next few hours. You fold the pieces into tiny wraps you bowl in your hand. The first name you drop is the first person you kill. One of the names is that of your best friend – he had been sleeping with your wife till he got her pregnant – while another was that of your wife.

You transfer the wraps into your left hand, shaking it like a lottery ball container just to make sure all is fair. After a few seconds, you allow one of the balls to slip through a narrow opening you create when you draw back your little finger. You allow the second, and the last wrap to fall the same way as the first, while you arrange them accordingly without knowing which wrap contains which name.

Three lives on the rug – power — but your heart beats in a bubble of fear and doubt. You ready your nerves for the big unveiling, while hoping you don’t get to pick your wife’s name first. You hope not because you would like to see the look on her face when you tell her you‘ve murdered her lover. Would she cry or would she frown? You wonder. Or would she just laugh in her belief you aren’t man enough to kill anyone? Most probably she’ll do the latter, for she stopped thinking you were worthy of being called a man the moment you couldn’t get her pregnant after eight years of marriage.

You pick the first wrap of paper and then you start to unfold. The unfolding takes longer than it should because you’re nervous. Your hand is shaking, and your body is burning with sweat. Finally, you get to the last fold and you slowly pull it apart. Your eyes pop in shock and your jaws drop in defeat as you stare at the name on the paper. But you don’t feel disappointed because the name you picked was your wife’s; you feel disappointed because the name is yours.

“It’s good.” You mutter, though the words feel like they left their sound at the back of your throat. “Yeah. It’s good.” You repeat the words perhaps to reassure yourself you were going to keep to your vow — a vow you made with the Bible. This must be how God wants it, you tell yourself. This must be him telling you to leave your vengeance to him. Yes, this must be how God wants it, and a good man does what God wants. And so without wanting to entertain the intrusion of contrary thoughts, you grab the gun and you swiftly pull the trigger.

Bang! Your body hits the ground just before your lifeless hand drops the gun. Your death happens so fast that when your eyes open as a newborn in your wife’s arms two months later, you had no memory of the life you had before.

“He looks cute.” The doctor says to your wife as he leans over her shoulder. “Yes, he does.” She replies as she looks down on you, her hands unconsciously running through an indentation by the side of your head. “He looks very much like my late husband too — your best friend.” “That’s true, but it’s also good isn’t it?” Your wife looks up, clearly understanding what he met as she says, “Yeah. It’s good. Your wife won’t suspect anything.”










Dhee Sylvester is a recluse living in a part of Lagos only few Lagosians have heard about. He’s the author of From Man To God, the co-author of Two Shades Of Crazy, and has been a part of four literary anthologies. He currently writes a weekly column for and was once a Football Writer at His poetry and short stories have been published in print and online, and he’s a screenwriter fascinated by psychopaths.


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