‘Agatha’, not her real name was very beautiful, bright, smart, neat, organized and always cautious of what she said. You would find her smiling all over, and then another time, you find her with that “I mean business” look. Everyone called her “the no-nonsense woman” “the iron lady” “the woman with a heart of steel”. You would never find her laughing anyhow, or at any joke that was cracked. So, if you happened to be near her, you’d better behave because she was that kind of a girl who would put you in your rightful place once you mess things up.

She was also very wise and up to date in matters science, technology, politics and, current affairs. She was spotted many times reading almost everything that would give her information. Therefore, if you wanted to be her friend, you had to be up to date since she would challenge even the teachers and/or anyone who tried to argue with her. No boy would dare challenge her of even approach her because she would question your integrity first. To cut the long introduction about her short, she was full of knowledge and wisdom.

Boys would bet on who’s going to win her heart. Morgan, one of the naughtiest boys swore to other that Agatha was going to be his boyfriend and placed a bet of $100 with five other boys, which would translate to $600 if he won. Agatha knew all their games and she planned to play along. So, when Morgan came, she told him that she knew all that they were up to. Morgan accepted and told her everything. He told her if she agreed, they would share the money by half which she accepted.

What Agatha didn’t know was that Morgan was planning her downfall. He was planning to bring her down. As a matter of fact, Morgan did as per the agreement but with conditions that, they must start going out so as to show his friends that they are indeed a couple and that they may not know that they are playing games. She agreed to play along and they started dating, just like that. This went on for about three months and Agatha got tired of the game.

That made Morgan think quickly and he planned on how he would destroy her since. They went out on a date as usual but Agatha had told him that it was their last date. Morgan had planned to drug her and then take advantage of her. What he didn’t know was that Agatha was that kind of a girl who would read your mind. She had called two of her cousins to keep an eye on her from a distance.

They partied until it was about 10 Pm when Morgan thought that it was time to hit on her. She went to the washroom and he put drugs into her drink. On coming back, she pretended to drink but poured it and started to pretend that she is drunk and drowsy. Morgan thought that it was time and he carried her to one of the rooms he had rented only for him to find Agatha’s cousins inside and she very sober.

He has never been so frightened his entire life. His plans backfired and he was sore afraid of this “iron lady”.  She narrated to him how her mother was taken advantage of by a schoolboy, and that she was a product of rape. Her mother always taught her how to protect herself from unscrupulous people like Morgan and the rest. The following day, she stood in the assembly to educate boys and girls on how each and everyone was responsible to avoid rape and other forms of defilement. This is what she said in short:-

  1. Never go on a date alone, always go with a friend who will keep watch on you even if it’s from a distance.
  2. If you are drinking, never leave your drink unfinished, and if you did, don’t take it once you return. Something may have been added to poison you.
  3. Go on day dates. Avoid as much as you can, all night dates, many bad things happen at night which may not happen during the day.
  4. Always notify a person close to you about your whereabouts and keep on updating them on how you are faring.
  5. If you suspect that you have been drugged, excuse yourself to the washroom and call a close person immediately giving them exact information on where you are and close the room from inside.
  6. If you happen to be raped, do not be afraid. Visit the nearest health facility to get Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) to prevent the possibility of contracting HIV and Aids and other sexually transmitted diseases and unwanted pregnancies. Above all, get counseling on how to overcome and move on.

She said that, it was her mother who trained her on the ways to prevent and protect herself, and that she tested it and found out that it was true.

She silenced the murmurs when she confessed to the whole school that she had forgiven her father who is now a practicing Engineer, although her mother did not continue with her studies due to early pregnancy.  “My mother became pregnant at a time when it was looked at as a taboo and her parents disowned her for that action because she was very ashamed to tell it all to her parents.” Now she works as a gardener and also volunteers in a charitable organization that helps rape victims recover from the trauma. She is proud to have a daughter like her and says that she could never have asked for a better one.

She asked the boys, “What if it was your mother, sister, or even daughter who was raped, how would you react?” and they all said that they would not be happy. Morgan learned a very big lesson and all the boys in school learned how to respect girls, may it be their mothers, sisters and any other girl close to them. They also vowed to protect the girls in their lives and also respect them.

Putting others down will not prove you to be better than them, but respecting others and protecting them will.

Accepting one another regardless of our differences, may it be race, religion or social status.

Being our brothers’ keepers will make the world a better place to live in.