100 pages • 3 hours readNnedi Okorafor
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An excerpt from Fast Facts for Free Agents explains what chittim is: the currency of Leopard People, metal rods earned by gaining knowledge.
Sunny sleeps well after her first encounter with juju, and she spends the whole next day with Chichi and Orlu. They don’t explain much about Leopard People, which frustrates her. The children take a cab and walk a long distance, finally arriving at a rushing river with a narrow bridge. Orlu tells her it’s the entrance to Leopard Knocks, a secret Leopard city, but Sunny is afraid to cross it. Chichi says they have to go to Anatov’s hut first. Anatov, a tall man with an American accent, says Sunny is “improper.” He draws a circle of powder around Sunny and does some juju, and she sees a red symbol float above her head. To her alarm, Sunny is pulled under the earth, through the water of the river, and finally lands back in the hut, where metallic objects (chittim) fall around her.
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Sunny feels strangely elegant, and now wears a dress of brown raffia instead of the clothes she had on before. Chichi tells her she passed, and Orlu puts the chittim all over the floor in Sunny’s purse.
By Nnedi Okorafor