From Dust to Dial Tone by Riian


“I need a roommate, only because the rent just increased and I’m not ready to move out of this house” She said to her mother over the phone. They continued their conversation and she promised to call her and give updates. 


Dropping her phone on the dining table, she walks to the kitchen to prepare a bowl of noodles and bites into a cookie while doing that. Her phone makes a chiming sound and she turns off the gas and goes to check. A notification had appeared on her screen “Call this number, the person needs a new place to stay too” The text was from a colleague of hers she had told about the need for a roommate. Making a mental note to thank her later for being so helpful, she immediately dials the number and after the second ring, someone picks up;

 “Hello, who am I speaking with please?” 

She looks at the screen of her phone and takes a sharp breath before responding; “Hello, a friend sent your number to me. She said you’re looking for a new place to stay?” 

“Yes, that’s right. My name’s Steve” 

“Alright, when exactly do you want to move in?”

“Is Friday fine? I could come over on Wednesday to check it out”

“Yes, sure it’s fine. Just let me know when you’ll arrive” 

“Alright, I’ll find you, sorry I meant I’ll call you” 


She ends the call abruptly and feels a wave of nausea coming on. Her heart is beating frantically and there are fearful tears in her eyes. That voice, it belonged to him. It belonged to Steve. She runs into her room and hurriedly starts to open all the drawers, searching for it. She hears a low clink as she shuts one of the drawers close and pauses. She slowly draws it back open and there it is, the small rectangular case that held his ashes. With bated breath, she picks it up and the lower lid falls to the floor; it’s empty.


About the author

Add Comment

Get in touch

Pencilmarks and Scribbles Magazine was founded in 2017 by Clara Jack to be a home for African writers, asking them to come as they are and giving them room for growth. The publication aims to give back to the Nigerian Literary scene for the things it has given us.