Eric and Fred were two best friends living together in the same town. Living in a small town meant that everyone was easily identified by name and household. Life there was a bit rural.
The town could only boast of a single elementary school that could cater for the educational needs of her inhabitants. Eric's uncle lived in a much bigger city as an artisan. During one of his visits, he had the opportunity of discussing about Eric's education. "I will bring you over to the city to further your education at the government secondary school there", Eric's uncle promised.
Visiting and living in the city had been Eric's dream. He longed to see his primary education come to an end so that he could relocate to the city. Not all school pupils of Eric's day believed much in the future beyond the town. Eric was an exceptional child in this case. "I desire to become a teacher when am through with my tertiary education", was Eric's response each time his future ambition was sought from him by those who cared to ask. The performance of some teachers in his school had greatly influenced his choice of career. One of such teachers was Mr Philips.
Mr Philips was a mathematics teacher who made learning a fun thing. Eric enjoyed Mr Philips' class which also saw him loving the subject too. But his friend Fred was not impressed in the same regard. Fred was a well-known company around Eric. The town residents accepted them being brothers. But of the two, Eric was of better behaviour in the community, and much loved.
And Eric was Fred's saviour whenever the latter was caught up in a controversy. One of such moments of playing a saviour role was when Fred's action had led to the puncturing of one of the tires in the old farmer's van. It was a sunny afternoon when Fred decided to experiment on one of the scenes he always did see in movies. He intended to give the old farmer a chase on foot and later catch up with him when his car steps on the nails he had placed on a plank. He got what he desired but the response from the old farmer took him unawares.
Things were about to be messy when suddenly Eric arrived. "My son, your words and personality are the reasons I'll have to let your friend go", the old farmer hesitantly responded to the pleas from Eric. That was an event one too many for Eric and he said; "I will not always be here to save you. Soon we will be separated by the distance between the city and this town. I plead with you my friend to learn how to stay out of trouble. Do yourself the good by always being ready to accept responsibility for your actions. It will only cost you losing your dependency that you've been enjoying all along.
Those words sank deep into Fred's ears and heart. The fun of always having a saviour around was gradually coming to an end. Fred knew he had to look after himself from then onwards.
By Itoro Orok
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