The lions’ throaty roars before dawn would send Ngabo scampering to his parents’ bed.
“Don’t be afraid,” Mother would whisper. “It’s just mama lion, keeping her babies safe.”
On Sundays Father taught him how to run silently through the jungle, to a dark, mossy gully they called the hiding place.
Now, a lifetime later, Ngabo walks beside a restless ocean, where a distant headland seems to him to be shaped like a crouching lion.
He has slept poorly, his dreams haunted by the night the men came with machetes, and his father’s strangled voice: “Run, Ngabo, to the hiding place.”
This is my offering for Friday Fictioneers. Thanks to Rochelle Wisoff-Fields for hosting this weekly flash fiction link-up .