The rains had defeated the land during the night. Many agreed that it was arguably the heaviest rainfall throughout the year as it was preceded by heavy winds.

The leaves of the mango trees had not survived the onslaught from the rains with their accompanying winds. The sunny but scorching heat had been tamed and that gave the people of Derma a great deal of relief.

Something happened during the night. It cannot be directly told since no one could witness it except the two people who were involved in it. The rest of us could only engage in conjectures to come to a probable conclusion.

The grounds were soggy, the rains had made them so. Rumours were rife that Kwame Atta was no more and that he was lying lifeless somewhere.

Though I was young, curiosity led me to the very spot where he was lying. Before I got there, scores of people were already gathered around, murmuring, whispering with a few of them showing tears in their eyes.

‘Nanso 3b3n! Abrante3 wei ab) kor)noo saaa de awu’ one middle aged lady was saying. Others had similar expressions in the air, telling their own tales about the lifeless Kwame Atta. As to whether they were true or not, I had no way of knowing. I was virtually a child.

Getting closer, he was lying with his face down. He was sandwiched by some knives, a torchlight, and some items I couldn’t readily discern. I didn’t know their use anyway.

He was dressed as though he were going to farm. Blood kept on oozing from his nose and body. He had died of gun shots. The place was a ‘beer bar’. He had wanted to climb the small steps in order to get inside the bar but he couldn’t, might have tripped over the steps and fell down, lifeless.

Something else struck the townsfolk. Kwame Atta actually was running from somewhere to the place where he died. Actually, his house was not far away from where he died. One could trace lines of blood from some distances so we followed.

It was at a place where houses were not closely knitted together. Let me stress on this, that place had houses far apart from one another. Innocent people.

The police soon came around and started interrogating the people around. None heard anything. No one heard any gun shot. One man said that if he did not hear of the rains falling, it doesn’t mean that he wouldn’t see in the morning that the rains came.

This is what people were saying: Kwame Atta might have gone to steal someone’s sheep, the person saw him, followed him for some distance and shot him so that he wouldn’t be suspected to be the killer of Kwame Atta.

The matter was never resolved. All those who were picked up came from court unscathed since there was no strong evidence to bail anyone for the crime.

It’s been years but the killing of Kwame Atta still remains a mystery to the good people of Derma. It was said that he had given birth with a lady by name Selina. I later heard that she died. I don’t know about the child though. Derma, a town of memories! A lot to tell about my town, good stories, I must emphasize.

Source: P.K. Sarpong


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