The music was still blaring out from the speakers at the highest volume and most part of the hall might not have heard the gunshot but that did not mean they did not know what was going on as the usual commotion associated with gunshots took over. The first scream, panic, then people running at the same time, tumbling over bottles on the floor, the massive crash of human bodies to the floor not to mention chairs getting in the way leading to more people hitting the ground faster than anyone could have thrown them.
At the other end, those who did not hear the gunshot or probably thought the noise was from something else stood, looking ahead to figure out what was causing all the commotion. Some strong hearted ones even attempted to walk in the direction of the commotion to see if it is a fight they can pacify so as not to spoil the fun while those who are not so strong at heart just looked on and tried to figure out what could be causing the ruckus when another gun went off in another corner.
At this point, it was clear as day what was happening. Clear to all that there was either a gun fight or someone in the hall was getting killed.
Another gunshot. But this time, it was not met with the same reaction as the first group as some made for the windows, some for the exits and some just decided to lie face down on the floor wishing to be spared.
At the time Bear grabbed Wunmi’s hand and made for the door without uttering a word. Sunday followed behind him when the gunshots started. The first jolted Sunday right into his pants as he ran in the direction everyone went and lost contact with Bear. Bear on the other hand was not new to this and he was not about to let himself be intimidated by his enemies so still clutching Wunmi’s hand, he looked back, and held her head down. He turned around hoping to see Sunday behind him but he was gone. Bear spotted him run in one direction, he was hard to miss.
He thought of leaving him behind and going out with just Wunmi but what will be said that him, an Elder leaving behind a recruit he introduced and was handling at the mercy of the enemy so he grabbed Wunmi who was scared beyond words, still holding her head down and went after Sunday.
Sunday found it difficult to wade through the population. It was a filled hall and everyone trying to get out of it at the same time can’t be easy at all. The thought that he was there with Bear did not cross his mind. He just wanted to go out. The bravery he had to walk back and tell Bear about what he saw was gone; it fizzled out the moment the first gun went off. This was way beyond him and nobody prepared him for this. His mind was going wild with just one thing going through it which was to run, find an entrance/exit and get the hell out of there and keep running. As he ran his mind was still filled with survival when some guy in black suddenly stopped him.
“What is going on?”
Questions better left unanswered. He did not even have the thought to answer; he just kept struggling, trying to make head way from the shots. He looked back and saw the guy go in the direction he was coming from.
He shook his head; some people just have death wishes.
Bear still clinging onto Wunmi who by now was sobbing loudly headed for Sunday. He was big so it was easy for him to shove people out of his way and the fact that he had the strength was also working. He kept moving people off with one hand and the other hand was holding Wunmi whose brain has registered a couple of things. The place was not safe anymore, she had to get out or do something and Bear was there to save her. He tucked her head down once again which meant her head should stay down and follow him wherever he pulls her to. Not much thinking was going on in her head but that was the panic message her brain was sending to her.
She followed him without even stopping just like the proverbial sheep going to the slaughter house. While Sunday just kept going.
When Bear heard the second shot, the hand he was using to shove people out of his way went to one place alone. Underneath his jacket. He had kept a gun there and with the way things are going in this room, he might need it if he intends to walk out alive with Wunmi and Sunday.
He looked up and did not see Sunday ahead of him, he panicked, the thought of Sunday lying down in blood went through his head but he thought against it when he saw the Royal member standing on the chair. They were still making an introduction to get people in the mood. To make them fear.
Fear was something he knew about and dealt in. He had done things like this too so it did not really matter to him; he knew he still had some time before they started looking for all the Skulls in the hall. He was sure of it.
When the second gun went off, Sunday was still trying to get away but this time it seemed like the gun went off in front of him. He looked up and saw the shooter, short and bulky but he could move. The shooter had jumped on top of the nearest chair and was shouting some commands. His voice was drowned by the music coming from a nearby speaker. Sunday ducked behind a table and thought to himself, “Shit this is getting serious. What am I doing here?”
He remembered that there was still one entrance left and the thought to make for it came to his head but his legs will not move. He was shocked and scared. He was in despair and panic was setting in. The mood all around him was not helping at all as everyone was either running around or lying face down.
He thought of lying down but he was not that person. He had to leave here right now not just because of the guns going off, but because he knows what the shooters have in mind and the scary bit dawned on him. He was a target.
This did not help his fear at all. What will he do?
What if they know he is a member of the Skulls?
What will be his fate?
These thoughts plagued his mind and did not get him thinking straight. He was still lost in these thoughts when a firm strong hand gripped him like a vice!
Bear spotted Sunday sitting on the floor doing a good job of staying out of sight but a bad job of trying to survive. He walked up to him and grabbed him.
Sunday jumped and looked at him scared. His face had turned white and his eyes had lost color which Bear could not miss. If not for the situation, it would have been a perfect Kodak moment but such thoughts can’t be given prominence now. The third gun went off with Bear kneeling in front of Sunday. Wunmi was beside him lost in some land far away.
The music from the speakers stopped as the DJ turned it off and started to pack his equipment into his bags. He was familiar with this university and their usual fraternity fights. There was always a rule to respect the DJ but when bullets start flying around, it is better to be safe than dwell on something that might not happen.
Bear motioned to Sunday to follow him and this time, he brought out his gun from his jacket. The gun was silver and the steel shone in the lights of the hall. He put the gun and his hand under his shirt; no need to show everyone what he carrying. It will only come to use when he needs the situation gets insane. To him, the situation was still in control.
Sunday tried to understand what Bear was trying to say but his brain could not focus and when he saw the gun in Bear’s hand, some parts of his senses came back.
Bear got tired of that means of communicating with his hands and said “Come with me”.
Sunday’s eyes betrayed a lack of trust as he swallowed hard.
“Come with me or else you are a dead Skull”
The thought of him dead ran through his whole body and pumped adrenaline back into his system. He nodded at Bear in acknowledgement who looked at him again just to be sure before he turned and moved in the direction where the third gunshot came from.
Bear thought to himself. “This is crazy” but he realized that if they blocked all three entrances, and he had no way out, he might not be able to shoot his way through and he was not sure if the members outside might try to shoot their way inside the hall. It would be too messy.
He had only one chance and that was to get out and once outside, well, this can really go anyway. He was still holding on to Wunmi who was lost in some world and he preferred it like that. It was better than her freezing off or being hysterical. This was better; she should just shut up and follow. Sunday was behind him now. His only wish is that he does not cower again and run off. He might just leave him behind.
Sunday found himself following Bear for reasons he did not know. He just knew this guy had a plan and he had to go with it. As long as it was still good that is.
A voice called from the center of the hall, “We are looking for the Skulls. Anyone know where they are?”
Bear got near the entrance and noticed that it was guarded by one guy in purple. He looked around and saw that others in the club were either lying down or being slapped and hit by the guys with guns. They were also beginning to shine torches at people’s faces looking for their enemies. This was his moment and he had to take it now.
He released Wunmi’s hand and faced Sunday. “You are Sting, a member of the Skulls. You need to start acting like one. He ordered quietly. “Watch her; let me try to move this guy out of our way”.
He snuck up on the guy at the door who was distracted by his other friends checking the faces of those in the hall.
A voice yelled angrily, “Where are the Skulls? I know they are here, or did they realize that they are not strong enough and have run away?”
(Mynd is a final year student of Mechanical Engineering at one of Nigeria's universities. When he's not busy being a nerd he spends his time writing, playing basketball, listening to music and laughing! You can reach him on firstname.lastname@example.org)