The Devil’s My Roommate     

The sound of him opening his whiskey bottle sipped through my laptop’s speakers as I sat there anxious, the weight of the tale I awaited holding me to my chair. “Nilikuambia siezi piga hii story nikiwa sober,” he winced, and I could almost feel the liquor burn a trench down his throat.

“I have no problem, bora usizime kati kati…”

“Haha, we ni ka hunijui…” he responded, his words pregnant with arrogance.

The room went quiet for a second, and at that moment, I almost closed my laptop and called it a day. Everything about him spelt trouble, and today wasn’t a day I wanted to play the hero. But I was here already, and whatever he had in store for me must’ve been important for him to use a fake name. He also reached me through a pseudo account on Instagram, and I couldn’t help but think this was his sick way of seeking retribution for whatever he was about to tell me.

“It all began when my uncle and his family left the country for the US, so their mansion had no babysitter. At first, no one really cared but when an attempted robbery was foiled by the local security guards, my uncle freaked out and asked my Dad to have one of his sons go stay at his house…”

This guy was taking his whiskey right off the bottle. Could never be me, I thought, surprised and impressed at the same time.

“So there I was, fresh out of campus… this was around kitu 2018 hapo… I was all about living large and throwing caution to the wind, you know…nilikuwa napeleka madem kwa hio keja wanakataa kutoka bana…kwanza when they were convinced I live there alone. Kwanza there was this Muslim chic I was messing with in campus chini ya maji,she had some trouble at home then kidogo kidogo hivi we’ve lived together for a whole month! Till today sijai elewa how I didn’t get that girl pregnant…”

“How did she end up going back home?”

“She didn’t…a police Land-rover just started hooting at the gate one morning, kumbe her parents were looking for her all this time and here we were, getting an overload of dopamine from all the sex and drugs we were doing… that one incident almost got my uncle in deep shit, and that’s how I stopped bringing people over…”

“Would you reveal where your uncle’s house was/is?”

“Aaah, hio siwezi sema… naeza jiseti…”

“Sure, just reveal what you’re comfortable with…”

“So that’s when he came up with the Airbnb idea… and since the house is humongous, I was to stay at the servant’s quarters and take care of everything from there…”

It had been a while since anyone I was having a conversation with used the word humongous.

“Did the business pick up well?”

“It did actually… the place was booked sometimes 2 months in advance. And the thing is, we never really met with our clients. They booked the premises, got their key-card at the gate and then the party started…”

“And all these time you were…?”

“I was in my servant’s quarters minding my business the best way I could…”

“You talk as if there’s a time minding your business didn’t work…”

“Lemme go to the loo kwanza nakam…” he said, and although our cameras were off, the sound of his flip flops smacking the floor echoed from his room to mine, and I couldn’t help but wonder if he now lived in a dining hall. I too needed to fix myself something as my throat was getting drier with each question I posed. He returned right after I got myself a glass of water.

“ati umeniuliza ni lini sikufanya nini?”

“Kuna time ilibidi you interact with your guests?”

“Mara mob, kwanza kuna wale wa kuvunja vyombo, I had to go let them know I was around na watalipia… lakini kuna wale it was purely unplanned… like this time I was asleep alafu I hear someone anakojoa nyuma ya keja yangu…Bro si I wake up fuming kwa sababu what the hell? Kumbe it’s a chic that was smoking a blunt huku nje and she was pressed…”

“haha, did she apologise?”

“She apologised alright… huskii tuliend up tumeingia hio keja yangu na yeye…I don’t even know if she came with her man or not, we just clicked from the moment I found her behind my house…She actually came over a couple more times after that…”

“How many more times?”

“Enough times to convince me I needed to install secret cameras in the main house… “

“She gave you the idea?”

“Kinda… I’d say yes and no. No because she didn’t know that I actually had cameras in the Airbnb, but yes because seeing her that night and what she was willing to do with me, a stranger, caught my attention in an exciting way. I got curious… nilikuwa nataka kujua hawa watu wakikuja hapa ni nini imewaleta…”

“And did you eventually find out?”

“Unfortunately yes… countless times kwanza”

“Let me get this right… you hooked up with one of your clients one day, and that gave you an epiphany to watch everyone else that was going to set foot in that house?”

“Kitu kaa hio…lakini you realise, I was kinda stuck here. All my days looked and felt the same. Sai my uncle alikuwa amenikazia kuleta people over ati it’s bad for business, so for me, this was my way of seeking something new and exciting…”

“So you watched people have sex?”

“Yea, every night… lakini it wasn’t just sex. Think of it, it’s like a bad movie… a group of people come over to have fun, they get drank, they play, run around, some make good food, others order takeout, others hide from the rest just to gerrit… like there was this chic that had sex with 3 guys on the same fucking night and no one knew but me… crazy, right?”

Yea, that really is crazy. Although his story felt authentic, I was still struggling to wrap my head around the idea that someone out here has been playing God for a while now.

“Are these tapes meant for anything else? Blackmail maybe?”

“Haha,zii…it’s honestly just a case of an idle mind been the devil’s workshop…”

“Have you ever seen something you regretted seeing?”

“Uuum…I think a girl almost got raped one night nikiwaangalia wasivunje vyombo tena…you know these spoilt kids that can’t take no for an answer? Yea, that bastard looked spoilt…”

“You said almost…what happened?”

“Nilitoka nikarusha mawe kwa dirisha alafu I rang the doorbell and returned to my crib. The guys came at the door, but that one bastard looked like he had seen a ghost so I guess it helped…”

I can’t believe I’m about to say this but; not all heroes wear capes, right? No? Okay.

“Would you say you’re now hooked on watching strangers…uuhm…”

“Have sex? I wouldn’t put it like that, but I also don’t remember the last time I didn’t watch them, so yea… maybe I’m a little addicted, but who isn’t?”

I know a million people who aren’t.

“What do you do when you’re watching them? Do you get snacks?”

“Sometimes…and lube too if I’m masturbating…”

God! Too much information dude. How is he even comfortable saying all of this?

“What are you drinking again?”

“You think it’s the liquor talking? Haha, I can’t blame you though… I know how crazy I sound, and I know that whatever I’m doing is supposed to be illegal but I don’t hurt anyone man… and most of these people are full of shit so I don’t feel sorry for them”

“If you were to give an award to the shittiest person you’ve watched, who would it be?”

“Haha, great question…uum… I think it would be this guy that’s a serial cheater and pretends to also own the premises… he’s brought like 4 girls here now, and all he does is lie, fuck them, then repeat… but the guy’s packing like a horse on steroids, so I guess I understand why, or not…”

“You’ve never seen an asshole with a small dick?”

“I have, but it is way easier to be an asshole if you’re arrogant, tall and with a kid’s arm between your legs…”

This one must have been a foreigner, Kenyan men are faithful.

“Do you still live at your uncle’s place?”

“Yea… I’m in the dining room as we speak…”

“Is it less lonely now that you keep your guests company?”

“I don’t know really… but the excitement is something I haven’t felt in a while…it’s like when you’re in your mum’s kitchen at the middle of the night munching on leftovers hoping no one’s gonna hear you… now multiply that by hundred or something…”

“Do you miss your old life?”

“I don’t think it matters if I do or not… where I’m at now may seem like a disaster to a lot but it doesn’t feel the same to me… I was a people’s person then, I still am, maybe in a different way…but let’s just say I’m enjoying my solitude now with everything I’m doing and having other people in my life would spoil that… I guess I made the devil my roommate.”

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