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Must Read: The Beauty Queen (A Short Story By Akposb) - Season 1 - Episode 7
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‘’Rita,’’ she called.


‘’I wanted to ask if you are done.’’

‘’I will leave once you are ready,’’ Rita bent her neck a little to reply.

‘’All right.’’

They heard a knock on the door just at that moment. They exchanged looks and then, the sound came again.

‘’Hello, who is there?’’ Rita asked.

‘’It’s Betty.’’

Rita was about standing and then she turned around to look at Ewoma. Ewoma nodded her head, a subtle consent and immediately Rita went and opened the door. Eve walked into the room while Rita closed the door behind her. She was dressed in a gown made with Ankara material.

‘’So how are you queen?’’ Betty asked smiling.

‘’I am fine.’’

Ewoma was done with applying cream and she was sitting some distance away from the wardrobe. Betty came to sit beside her.

‘’I believe you will enjoy your reign.’’

‘’I hope so.’’

The smile receded from her face. Betty had come for business. She talked about the merit of holding the crown for a year and touted the advantages that came with it which could continue after the crown has been passed to another. Ewoma listened with rapt attention. Betty made an effort to put her at ease as she also talked about the benevolent activities of Madam Tiko and talked about the large number of ladies who had gained from her spirited efforts. The more she appraised the efforts of Madam Tiko, the more the feeling of déjà vu took over the thoughts of Ewoma. She was all too familiar with the tricks but she willingly gave Betty all the attention she needed. She looked all too innocent to encourage such immoral act. Several minutes had gone when she turned to the present task.

‘’I want you to co-operate with Madam Tiko.’’

‘’I have done just that but she is asking me to do something that I can’t engage in.’’

Betty smiled seeing the strain on Ewoma’s face as she got to the end of her reply. Ewoma’s reply also made her nervous. She knew she would need a lot of patience to convince her. She decided to address her vain thoughts. Everyone had that and she knew few could reject an opportunity to see their wishes fulfilled. Thus, she described her personal experience during her reign. She had travelled to countries in about three continents and have had the benefit of relating and working with several A-list fashion models. She sighed afterwards with a conviction that she had won Ewoma over.
Ewoma seemed to have absorbed her message. Instead, she was angry at the persistent salesmanship of Betty. Suddenly, she hated the moment she agreed to enter into the contest. Rita had listened to the conversation and their eyes met at that moment. Rita’s eyes held no objection. Ewoma could easily deduce that from the soft and teary look of her eyes.

‘’I will think about what you have said,’’ She said after a while.

Eve grinned and then hugged her. Afterwards, she walked out of the room.

‘’So what do you intend?’’

‘’I am leaving.’’

‘’Are you crazy?’’ Rita leapt to her feet. ’’How can you let go of such an opportunity like this, you must understand that a decision on this matter is beyond you. Madam Tiko does not deserve such a selfish decision.’’

Ewoma saw treachery in the eyes of Rita. Instead of sympathizing with Rita’s indifference, she felt anger and hate towards her. While she could easily spite her by not backing down from her decision, she saw beyond Rita in her decision not to be Miss Biebi. She was only interested in keeping her dignity as well as not to cheapen herself before any man. She averted her eyes and wore a gown. She started folding the clothes on the bed. Her mind was made up but she was still undecided on how to break the news to Madam Tiko and her entourage. Rita left the room after a while. Ewoma felt like her world was falling apart. Just yesterday, she had fought off the challenge of Cynthia to win the crown and now she was about letting go of the crown. She would have been consoled if tears could stream down her face but she was not used to a teary reprieve. She finished arranging her clothes and zipped the duffel bag.
Suddenly, the door opened. Madam Tiko was in the lead as the others followed closely.
‘’Ewoma, you have shown that you are so insensitive. How dare you reject our pleas,’’ Madam Tiko barked.

Ewoma suddenly felt anger surge in her mind. She was ready to confront this bunch of immoral agents.

‘’Madam, I do appreciate you for giving…’’

‘’Don’t you dare patronize me. I have given you several opportunities to come down from that unfounded high place you have placed yourself but you have proven to be a hard nut. You definitely cannot represent this brand if you are not willing to pass this small assignment.’’

‘’Ma, I am leaving your privileged position for good. I think it will be best if you replaced me,’’ Ewoma replied calmly.

She handed a pile of cloth on which she had placed the crown to Madam Tiko who refused to take it. She dropped the pile on the bed and then picked her bag and walked past Madam Tiko, Rita, Betty and Edward. His eyes met with hers and she almost hesitated. His eyes bore a trace of wonder. She did not need his seeming surprise to celebrate her resolve. She had only wanted to be a beauty queen and not a courtesan.


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