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[Story] O.G.B.A.N.J.E (The Child of Thunder) “Chapter 4”

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Ifeoma Isabella Okeke
If you miss any episode click here

“If the vulture fails to hover at the
end of a sacrifice, then you know that
something happened in the land of
spirits”. Ogbanje began softly, “Ebuka,
your mother has danced enough of
Surugede dance which is meant for
the spirits and now it is time to set
her free”.
“I don’t get you Ada, what do you
mean by that?” Ebuka asked as he
turned to look at Ogbanje.
He had gone that early morning to
Ogbanje house to seek for a solution
towards his mother strange illness.
And now he was leading her back
towards his house.
“Ebuka, I think there might be a way
after all to save your mother”.
Ogbanje told Ebuka as she escorted
him back to his parents house.
Ebuka became elated when he heard
those words.
“Really Ada?” He asked to be sure of
what he heard.
“Yes, there is a strong force following
your mother that we need to break the
bond that binds them together”.
Ogbanje said.
“Strong forces?” Ebuka echoed after
her in surprised.
“Well, I think your mother belongs to
the forces of darkness”.
“Is that why she was sent to kill me?”
Ebuka asked.
“Yeah or didn’t you heard what your
mother had confessed with her mouth
the other day eh gbo?” Ogbanje stops
as she turned to face Ebuka, “You are
doing as if weren’t there”.
Ebuka stops also and stare at Ogbanje
and then smiled. His dark ebony
handsome face lit up as he spoke “I
was there”. Ogbanje nodded her head
and turned to continue their walk, she
was uncomfortable with the way
Ebuka eyes were staring at her. His
next words stopped her movement.
“Ada mu, you are now adding more
beauty everyday by day, I just noticed
it now. You are beautiful Ada and I
am glad you are my friend, I wish we
were something more, who knows
what the future brings”. The last part
was whispered quietly but Ogbanje
heard it.
After making sure her heart beat has
return back to normal and her face
was no longer red she turned to face
Ebuka who had suddenly pick interest
on his sole of his feet.
“Ebuka, we still have much day, time,
years even to discuss more about this
but for now, let’s focused on your
mother, inugo?” Ogbanje told Ebuka
who nodded his head and they
continued their journey.
Once they got to Ebuka’s home, his
mother was still writhing in pains, his
siblings were around her crying and
fanning her.
Ogbanje shook her head sideways as
she pity the woman in front of her.
She left Ebuka side and over to meet
the woman. When she got closer, her
beautiful face was squeezed. She
turned to face Ebuka then his mother
and back to Ebuka. And motion Ebuka
to come with her at one corner of the
house.
“She doesn’t have much to live Ebuka”.
Ogbanje began only to get interrupted
by Ebuka.
“Meaning what Ada biko?”
“They have decided to take her life
tonight Ebuka”.
“Can’t you do something Ada? If not
for anything please save my mother
because of me, she is the only parents
I and my siblings has”. Ebuka said as
tears began forming in his eyes.
“I didn’t say I won’t help either, did I?
Ogbanje said rolling her eyes. “Biko
stop this your cry, you know I don’t
like it when I see tears in your eyes,
biko ebezina- please stop crying”.
“So what are we going to do Ada, how
will you stop this forces of darkness
from killing my mother?” Ebuka
asked, he was not worried again he
was only curious about how Ada’s
plan.
Ogbanje laughed out aloud. “Curiosity
killed the bird Ebuka but anyway,
Well, here is the plan”.
***************
Okoro has just returned from his farm
when Adaku came out from the hut
and helped him with the loads he was
carrying.
“Adaku, this one that you came out
today help, I hope you have not
quarrel with your daughters?” Okoro
asked as he was surprised to see his
wife instead of the children.
“Hmm Nnayi, so you mean to tell me
that I cannot help you again eh Nnayi
Ọ dị mma, enweghị nsogbu- Okay,
there is no problem, next time I will
come and carry myself to help you”.
Adaku said in annoyance.
“Aha Adaku, I just asked a simple
question, odikwegu oooo”. Okoro said
as they went inside.
*************
“Papa, biko tell us another story”.
Uzochi said as they had finished
eating roasted Yam with red oil.
Adaku had long gone to sleep.
“Yes papa, tell us a story”. Uzochi chip
in also in support of her twin sister.
“Yes papa, it’s been long you have told
us a story”, Ogbanje said also.
Okoro nodded his head as he heard his
three beautiful daughters.
“Uzochi, go and keep the plates we
used in eating in the kitchen before I
say any story”. Okoro said, Uzochi
doesn’t need to be told twice.
Okoro cleared his throat and began his
story.
“There was a time in a very very far
village when monsters torment little
children and teenagers at night. That
was a long time ago. The villagers
tried to capture and kill these
monsters but all their efforts ended up
in vain. In this same village, a
beautiful girl named Omana, lived
with her parents. She was very
beautiful that princes from faraway
lands competed to win her heart.
One day, Omana’s parents traveled to
the next village and left her yam and
snail to eat. Her parents warned her
not to leave the house at night because
of the dangerous monsters that roam
the village. They also warned her to
roast the yam before the snail because
the water from the snail would quench
the fire.
One night, when Omana’s parents
were away, she became very hungry
and made a fire with the last
matchstick in the house. Omana
roasted the snail first because of her
lust for meat. The water from the snail
quenched the fire and so, she couldn’t
roast the yam. Still hungry, she
disobeyed her parents and went out of
the house to collect a matchstick from
a neighbor. On her way she met a
very ugly monster that steals beauty
from young girls. She tried to run but
she couldn’t move her legs. The
monster stole her beauty and left her
with its ugliness.
Since that day, the beautiful Omana
who was once the talk of the village
now became the ugly girl no one
wanted to marry. That is the end”.
Okoro said finally.
“But Papa, what is the name of the
story?” Ogbanje asked.
“Well, you three can choose a name
for it”. Okoro told his waiting
daughters.
“I will name it ‘Omana, the stubborn
she-goat”. Uzochi said first.
“How can she be a stubborn she goat
when she is not a goat Uzochi”.
Ogbanje said in between laughter.
” Nyere m aka ma jua ya- Help me
and ask her oo. Anyway for me, I will
name it Omana, the stubborn child”
Ugochi said.
“The story ought to be name Omana
the disobedient daughter”. Ogbanje
said.
“That is all a good name you all have
got. Now it is time to get some sleep”.
“Good night papa”. The three girls
chorus together and went into their
various rooms. Okoro went inside
soon.
************
“Why is it that I haven’t heard the
death of Nnenna?” Eze Nwayi asked
her follow coven witches.
“I am surprised as you are, Eze
Nwayi”. Adaku told the gathering.
“This is strange, strange. A power is
daring the Almighty powers of Aku.
We are going to fish out whosoever
that is behind this and have him or
her dealt with. Tomorrow, you must go
and check on Nnenna and see if the
sickness has really killed her finally”.
Eze Nwayi said pointing at Adaku
with the end of her staff.
“I will do as you have told me, Eze
Nwayi”. Adaku replied.
“If you see anything that is not right,
inform me”.
***********
In The Realm of the gods.
Aku was seen hovering around the
dominion of Ikenga as he patiently
waited for the great Deity of old.
Aku was a smaller god who had once
seek the help of Ikenga. With the
powers Ikenga had bestowed on him,
he became more evil and wicked and
filled with bloodlust.
“What do you want Aku?” Ikenga’s
voice rang sharply through as Aku
came out of his thought.
“I came here to inform you that there
is a god stronger than you in the
realm of the mortals who has defeated
me”. Aku said.
“Hmm, do you know the name of this
person you just spoke of?”. Ikenga
questioned, his muscles moving in a
more flexible way.
“That is what I am afraid. I and my
followers are trying to find out where
the powers came out from”.
“Find out and inform me quickly, I
want to know who dares challenge
me”.
To Be Continued…

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[STORY] THE MISTAKES OF MY PARENTS- “EPISODE 4”

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MISTAKES OF MY PARENTS  EPISODE 3

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Back in Asaba Joe’s parents insisted on him getting another wife. “It has been three years my son, you cannot wait for a woman who abandoned you and her son. it’s time you move on and find a woman. You need her to help you raise Nathan.” his father explained.

“I don’t know dad. I have tried to look around but I cannot find the right person. I will marry again when time comes” he had told his parents.

One day he decided to go back to Jessy, he tried getting serious in the hope of taking their relationship to another level but unfortunately she was not as interested as he thought she would. She was still making demands of money and other things but when he proposed marriage to her, Jessy declined..

“Am sorry Joe ” she told him. “I can’t marry you.” Joe who had planned a romantic dinner at a hotel with a live band playing music, looked at her shocked. His knees still on the floor as he extended a gold ring to her. He was shocked she declined. “But I thought you loved me” Joe complained, lifting himself from the floor and trying so hard to compose himself and conceal the shame from those watching. He heard some murmuring. Joe couldn’t discern whether the murmuring was for pity or disappointment.

“I can’t” Jessy told him. “You cheated on your wife with me and now what guarantee do I have that you will not do the same to me? ” She paused as she finished her sentence, giving Joe a chance to speak. When she noticed his face bowed, she continued. “Besides I’m engaged to another man, at least I love him and I know he loves me. I’m sorry Joe” She added, “you are handsome and so generous and I appreciate it. But I cannot be your wife.”

Joe looked at her and saw she was serious.

“But Jessy I thought you loved me, you even made me neglect my marriage and contributed to my wife leaving me. Now you’re telling me you don’t want to marry me?”

Jessy shook her head.. ” I’m sorry” she said again. “Just look for another woman” she said before standing up and grabbing her hand bag. Joe Watched her as she walked away pulling down her mini skirt which was up slightly, her high heels making noise as she walked past the reception unit and out the glass door..

That night Joe didn’t bother going home early, instead he went to the nearest bar to cool his head off. He shed tears as he remembered his beautiful wife Rachael. The hurt he felt in his heart made him to drink even harder, fortunate enough, his friend who had gone to the same place that night grabbed him to the car park and drove him home.

“I have lost it all.” He cried. “I had a woman who loved me genuinely but now am even being rejected by a woman I had spent so much money and the valuable time I would have used in my marriage.” “Joe my friend, what can I tell you?” his friend told him as he led him to his bed. ” Just sleep and tomorrow is another day. Sit down and find a way of raising your son properly.”

“Oh my son” Joe murmered, his eyes closed. “He’s the only blessing I reaped from my marriage with Rachael. I wasted the rest of the blessings God had given me.” He cried.

His friend patted his back and walked out leaving him murmuring and crying.

Two years later, Joe managed to to marry again. Unfortunately, he married a woman he didn’t love. He was just hooked to her by his mother, after she saw how her son had started moving about, drinking lots of alcohol and sleeping with different women. She assured him Nancy was a good woman and a Christian too. Joe agreed just to please his parents and ease off the pressure. However, deep down he was still lost and couldn’t find exactly what he was looking for.

Being a Christian and prayerful woman, Nancy , over the years successfully brought Joe back to sanity and he started committing himself to work in his father’s company as he did before. He was still drinking alcohol though not as bad as before.

All this time Nathan his son had grown and was doing so great at school. His step mother was so good to him and raised him as her own. Joe never told Nathan that Nancy wasn’t his biological mother, all Nathan knew was that he was the only child of Joe and Nancy since Nancy could not have children of her own which somehow made Joe dislike her even more. Though he never said it and at the same time he never developed any special feelings for Nancy.

Ten years later, Nathan had turned 17 and was admitted in the University to study Medicine. Efforts by his father Joe to make him do some business courses so that he could run the business after him failed.

Since the demise of his father, the whole responsibility now rests on his shoulder and he had expanded it over the years .

Unfortunately Nancy didnt live to see Nathan who she had encouraged and motivated to follow his heart, become a doctor. She would always tell him. “My son, the passion you have to save people’s lives is the way to go. God has blessed you with a heart to help others” She would say. “So use it and let God work through you”

When Nathan graduated from the school of medicine he dedicated his success to his late mother Nancy. He had mourned his beloved mom for years. He loved his father of course, but Nathan felt so much connected to Nancy. She was always there for him and inspired him in a good and Christian way. Nathan grew up respecting women and living a honest and decent life. Even though he never had the guts to confront his father on his irresponsible way of alcohol consumption, and flirting with other women. Nathan hated the fact that his father was betraying his mother Nancy and when Nancy died, Nathan had blamed his father.

“You didn’t love her enough and you were always running here and there with other women” He accused him. “No wonder my mother had developed BP and died ”

Joe felt ashamed but couldn’t bring himself to tell Nathan Nancy wasn’t his mother and that his biological mother was the only woman he had loved sincerly.

The gap between them grew over the years, such that Nathan decided to move out of his father’s house immediately he completed his course, leaving Joe all alone and back to his heavy drinking way of life.

Despite the fact that his business was progressing, Joe’s life remained stagnant. He had lost all connections to his personal life and each day that passed. He felt his inner sadness growing, while resorting to drinking alcohol.

To be continued…

 

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[STORY] OGBANJE (The Child of Thunder) – “Chapter 6”

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THE CHILD OF THUNDER CHAPTER 6

By
Ifeoma Isabella Okeke
If you miss any episode click here

 

“My son Emeka, please find it in your heart to forgive me, remember that I am your mother, M na-ebu n’afọ m ruo ọnwa itoolu. Amaghị m ihe mere m- I carried in my womb for nine good months. I don’t really know what came over me. Biko gbaghara m nwa m nwoke- Please forgive me my son”. Nnenna pleaded with Ebuka that morning as he was about going out to the village river to fetch some water.

Nnenna called him and took him to a corner of their hut, knelt down and started begged her son.

“It’s okay mama, Ada was the one who had helped you if not for her you would have been dead by now”.

“May the gods of Udum bless her for me, tell her to come and see later in the day there is something I need to tell her”.

“I will mama, let me go and fetch water before our people gets there to dirty it”. Ebuka said and went towards their village river.

**********

“Ada, my mother said she want to see you”. Ebuka told Ogbanje once he saw her. He had quickly did his chores, warm some of the leftovers food for his siblings and went to visit Ogbanje.

“Really? What for?”

“I don’t really know Ada, with the way she had sounded it looks as if whatever she wants to tell you is important, whenever you are less busy you can go and see her, but it’s not a must you come today. You can come others days, inugo”, Ebuka said.

“I have heard you Ebuka”.

*******
“So who was it that came looking for you this morning”, Okoro asked his daughter Ogbanje as he prepare for farm. Ugochi and Uzochi were still sleeping.

“Oh papa, its my childhood friend, Ebuka. He came to tell me that his mother wants to speak with me urgently”.

“And what did you reply him? I know you did not say yes to go and see that witch of his mother. A mother who would kill her children for wealth and also kill her husband is a very wicked woman. If I was in Ebuka’s shoe, I would have poisoned her since, but nevertheless , the gods knows why they left her alive. But any day I find out that one of my household is a witch, hmm, M ga-emeso onye ahụ ihe na-enweghị obi ebere- I will so much deal with that person mercilessly”. Okoro said threatened.

“Papa, how could deal with someone who is a witch, who has powers, at times you make me laugh. Anyway you had better hurry up before the day gets any brighter”. Ogbanje said laughing.

“Me I have said my own”, Okoro said as he picked up his tools and left for his farm. He had told Ogbanje he wanted to go alone.

*******

“Nwa m nwanyị, Nwa m gwara m otú i si nyere m aka, kelee m- My daughter, My son told me how you had helped me, thank you. May the gods of our land, of Udum bless you for me”. Nnenna thanked Ogbanje as she shower her with prayers.

“Mama Ozigo, just thank the gods that you are alive and well to see today”.

“Dalu o, I know people will think I am evil, if I begin to mention the names of my fellow coven witches, you’d be surprised to know that we buy and sell from these people, but I won’t say a thing I won’t, I don’t want anything to do with them again”.

“Mama, nothing is hidden under the sun for long. I believe that a day shall come and they will be revealed”. Ogbanje said.

“As I was revealed disgraceful. Ogbanje the main reason why I had called you to see me is to tell you that you should be weary of your step-mother, she is very evil, so try as much as possible to stay clear of her”. Nnenna said.

“I have heard you mama, I better be on my way now mama, I don’t want my father to start looking for me when he is back from the farm, tell Ebuka to see once he returns from the farm”. Ogbanje told Nnenna as she got up to go.

“I will Omalica nwam, tell Adaku that I sent my regards to her”.

“Okay mama, take care ka ọ dịgodi- bye for now”. Ogbanje said and left Nnenna’s presence.

********

Ogbanje and her sisters went to fetch firewood they will use that evening. Akadu was creating an havoc that only Ogbanje would go and fetch the firewood, Okoro kicked against the idea and told Akaku Ogbanje will only step out the house if Uzochi and Ugochi followed her to fetch the firewood if not, no one is going anywhere. Okoro had came earlier home than usual when he saw Ogbanje preparing to go and fetch some firewood while his remaining two daughters were sleeping. Okoro remained adamant towards his decision. Adaku seeing she couldn’t persuaded her husband accepted and went to wake up her children.

“Have you not heard the latest news going around in this village?” Uzochi asked, breaking the silence around them as they walked towards where they usually pick their firewood.

“And what can that be Uzochi?” Ogbanje questioned.

“Obinwanne, the strongest wrestler son is back”.

Udum then has no king ruling over them. So everything decided in the village was done by those who are wealthy or their village warrior.

“I also heard that. We don’t even know where he has gone to all these while”. Ugochi chip in.

“Good for him, that one is not a news”.

“You need to see his son. Obinwanne has turned into a handsome young man and you won’t believe what his father said”. Uzochi said.

“And what is it?” Ogbanje asked.

“Obinwanne will soon choose a bride”, Uzochi said elated in happiness.

“Okay, I wish him luck in that”. Ogbanje said as they got to where they usually fetch their firewood and started picking the woods.

“You are only talking like this because you haven’t seen Obinwanne, if you had you would have been daydreaming like us”. Ugochi told Ogbanje.

“If I had seen him, I would have only greeted him and go my way besides Obinwanne or whatsoever you called him is not in my heart and please, let’s leave Obinwanne out of this and do what we came here for, the sky is not getting any brighter”. Ogbanje said as they picked up a sizeable amount of firewood and started home.

On their way home, they met an old woman who was has great injuries on her left leg and was walking with great difficulties and a pot of water rested on her head.

The twins were the first to notice her.

“Look at that old woman, she knew very well that she is injured and still yet carries a water pot on her head”. Ugochi spoke first

“I wonder too, now if we pass her and did not help her she will say they did not train us well. Any way let’s tell Ada who like helping people anywhere she went to, maybe she will help this one or know her too”. Uzochi said as they both turned to face Ogbanje.

Ogbanje mind has been elsewhere, but didn’t show any sign of shock when Ugochi tapped her.

“What is it?” Ogbanje asked.

“That old woman in front of us”, Uzochi said pointing at the old woman “Needs your help, you know you love helping people”.

“Tell your mother and papa, I will come back soon”. Ogbanje told her sisters as she gave them her own piece of firewood and went over to meet the old woman.

“Mama, how many times have I told you never to fetch water? I have told you if you keep stressing your wounds it won’t heal”

“My water in the house got finished and I was very tasty”.

“Is alright mama, let me carry the water for you”. Ogbanje said as she collected the water pot from the old woman and place it on her head. She followed the old woman to her hut.

According to the old woman all her children are dead, she doesn’t have any child and that is why Ogbanje usually help her in her leisure time. Ogbanje took the old woman as her mother.

*****

“Adaku, your favorite friend Nnenna, says I should greet you on her behalf”.

“The day I will cut of your mouth you use to eat abacha to call me by my name is coming soon, anuofia”.

“Is that not your given name again? Any time you stop calling me Ogbanje, I will stop calling you Adaku and start calling you ‘stepmother”.

“I don’t blame you, I will definitely deal with you one of these days”.

“Empty drums make the loudest noise”.

“You are biting more than you can chew”. Adaku retorted back.

“Ahh Adaku, I haven’t even gotten to the middle of the food yet, I have told you what your friend asked me to tell you. If you like go and see her if you like don’t, that isn’t my business, birds of the same feathers flock together”.

“We shall see Ogbanje”.

“Well see your self not me Adaku”.

********

“That my useless step daughter of mine is daring me and I need her to be dealt mercilessly Eze Nwayi”

“I have told you that girl isn’t a mere human, you that live with her should have know by now. She is being protected by a strange god it is totally impossible to lay a finger on her”.

“You keep saying that Eze Nwayi but we haven’t seen you dealing with her for once”. One of the coven witches said in support of what Adaku said.

“In my physical form whenever she comes to me and I try to poison her or strike her with illness, it backfires to me”.

“She comes to you? How? I don’t understand Eze Nwayi, when has ogbanje suddenly turned into your friend?” Adaku asked in surprised.

“Yes, my appearance deceived her into thinking I am a mere old woman who children are dead, but I tell you Adaku, who ever is guiding her guards her well”.

“Hmm, but there is many ways to kill a rat”, Adaku said slowly.

“Yes and now we should start our meeting. Adaku, you are the next to offer your sacrifice to aku”. Eze Nwayi said.

“Yes I know Eze Nwayi”.

“So who are you going to sacrifice this time around to receive more powers from Aku?”

“After killing Ogbanje’s mother for my powers and now I need more powers I think I will sacrifice her father also, at least Aku will give me more strength and powers so that I can kill that girl called Ogbanje. So my next sacrifice will be Okoro, my husband”. Adaku said, smiling as her fellow witches celebrated.

Each witches has different agendas as they joined, some joined to sacrifice their children for wealth, others joined to oppress others, while higher witches kill their friends and their husbands & children to acquire more powers, unlimited powers. Adaku had killed her friend, Ogbanje’s late mother, Chidinmma, and then married her friends husband. And now she wants to kill him too.

“This is good Adaku, but be careful of the one called Ogbanje, for she will stood in your way. You won’t get Okoro easily the way you got his first wife”.

“I know that Eze Nwayi and I am prepared for her”.

“Only a stubborn fly follows the corpse into the grave. Let it not be heard I did not warn you about her”.

To Be Continued

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[Story] Ogbanje (The Child of Thunder) “Chapter 5”

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THE CHILD OF THUNDER  CHAPTER 5

 

By
Ifeoma Isabella Okeke
If you miss any episode click here

Ogbanje sneaked out of her room late at night, gently and quietly passing her two sisters sleeping prone figures as their snores disturbed the silent night.

She quietly tip toed towards the front door, opened it and closing the door gently behind her. Then she ran towards Udum village river.

************

“It is time for Nnenna to die, Aku requires for her blood. Today marks the third day Nnenna’s life will end”. Eze Nwayi told her follow witches coven as they all laughed but were cut short when they had a voice.

“Nnenna won’t die ndị amoosu- you witches. As long as I live, you no longer have the powers over her”.

“Who dares interrupt the great gathering of Okosisi? Show yourself if you have the guts?” Bellowed Eze Nwayi in anger as she and her coven witches looks around them.

“Can you dare a lion to fight with you and you live to tell the tale? I have said what I needed to say, do not dare me, Nnenna will not die, I have spoken and so shall it be”.

“You lied, you are just a coward hiding behind your shadow. Aku will take his sacrifice, if you think you are made of iron then come out of your hiding place and face me coward”. Ezeb Nwayi said in anger.

The unknown voice gave out a hilarious laugh.

“I am already standing in front of you”, once the voice said that Eze Nwayi and her coven stare around them, the voice continued, “And your great Aku is a weaker and lesser god before me”.

“You dare insult the god who gave us riches and wealth and made us who we are, we shall see who loses this battle”, Eze Nwayi said and raised her staff up, all her coven witches also stretch our their arms towards the staff.

The voice continued laughing, “I have made my point clear, if you touch Nnenna, you all would receive my wrath”.

“Till then”, Eze Nwayi said and then continued “I invoke you ancient spirit of the death, go and kill Nnenna, her blood must be used tonight”.

Something full of darkness crept out of the raised staff and with an inhuman speed went towards Nnenna’s home.

Eze Nwayi started hitting her staff on the ground and was dancing in circle, her follow coven witches stood up and started dancing in circle, Eze Nwayi was in there middle.

**********

“They want to dare me”, The voice told Ogbanje as she made her way towards the hut of Nnenna. She had gone to the river as the voice had instructed and listen to the conversation between the voice and the witches.

And now the voice had told her to hurry up to Nnenna’s hut. She was a faster runner.

She got there waiting for whatever the witches has send.

Ebuka on the other hand wasn’t asleep in fact he was wide awake when he heard a noise, he quietly stood up from his bamboo bed and went towards where he usually kept his cutlass in one corner of his hut, took it and made his way towards the front door, he opened it soundlessly and peep outside and was surprised to see Ogbanje standing Akimbo in front of the hut.

He opened the door widely and stepped outside towards Ogbanje.

“So is this the plan you said you had?” Ebuka asked as he approaches Ogbanje. But Ogbanje remain silent and kept staring ahead.

“Ogbanje, what is it again, are they coming to kill my mother?” Ebuka questioned.

“Shhhhhh, I smell it”, Ogbanje said all of a sudden.

“Smell what Ogbanje”, Ebuka said.

“It is here already”.

**********

Eze Nwayi and her fellow witches were still dancing when the roar of a thunder was heard, lightening followed suit as it struck in their midst scattering them and flung some of them away.

Everyone including the Eze Nwayi disappeared and went back to their various bodies.

***********

Ogbanje eyes shone white and pointed a single finger towards the direction of the fast moving spirit.

Ebuka did not know what happened after that all he knew was when Ogbanje pointed her finger, the thunder that blasted was too much that he had to close his ear against the sound.

Ogabnje wiped off her hand from her waist wrapper and turned to Ebuka with a smiling face.

“The battle is over”.

“Does that mean my mother won’t die?”

Ogbanje nodded her head in affirmative. Ebuka jumped for joy and almost knocked down Ogbanje in his state of happiness.

“So what about my mother’s illness?”

“She will get well before the cock crows today”.

“Thank you Ada, thank you”. Ebuka said elated.

**********

Aku was restless in his aboard. How could a mere human girl stops his death spirit when it went to kill one of his followers, how is that possible!?

He has to see Ikenga once again.

***********

“Ogbanje, go and fetch me some fire wood so that I will use it in preparing our evening food”. Adaku told Ogbanje.

“If Uzochi and Ugochi are not coming with me to fetch the firewood then I am not going anywhere”. Ogbanje retorted.

“As your witch started again eh gbo Ogbanje? Don’t dare me this afternoon Ogbanje because the whole people of Udum will gathered me and you when I start my own”. Adaku shouted but Ogbanje wasn’t afraid.

“And I have told you that I won’t step any of my foot outside my father’s compound if my sisters are not coming with me. If you like talk from now till tomorrow or carry Ogene gong and beat around the village ị na-ahụ nke a ụkwụ m, ha agaghị aga ebe ọ bụla- you see this my legs, they will not go any where”. Ogbanje said and went inside her hut

“Enweghị ihe m ga-ahụ n’aka nwa agbọghọ ahụ- There is nothing I will not see in the hands of this girl”. Adaku said “But Chere oo- wait oo, who has given this girl the mind to talk back at me and walked out of me? If I tell her father, he would support her and not me. M ga-emeso nwa agbọghọ a nsogbu n’amaghị ama- I will deal with this girl mercilessly”.

Adaku went to fetch the water by herself at the village river.

*********

“Papa, the night has not yet eaten it’s supper, so please tell us a story”. Ogbanje told her father that evening. She, Ugochi and Uzochi were sited around him.

Okoro cleared his throat as he began “Long time ago in the animal kingdom”, Okoro began as his three daughter listened with rapt attention.

They had just finished a full plate of pounded yam with thick egusi soup garnished with bush meat, it’s aroma filled the air around them.

“Mbe had used up all his salt, and he found his meals so tasteless without it that he decided to call on his brother and ask him if he had any to spare.

His brother had plenty. “How will you get it back to your home?” he asked Mbe.

“If you will wrap the salt in a piece of bark cloth, and tie it up with string, then I can put the string over my shoulder and drag the parcel along the ground behind me,” said Mbe.

“A splendid idea!” exclaimed his brother, and between them they made a tidy package of the salt.

Then Mbe set off for his long, slow journey home, with the bundle going bump, bump, bump, along the ground behind him.

Suddenly he was pulled up short, and turning round, he saw that a large akwa- Lizard had jumped on to the parcel of salt and was sitting there, staring at him.

“Get off my salt!” exclaimed Mbe. “How do you expect me to drag it home with you on top of it?”

“It’s not your salt!’ replied the akwa. “I was just walking along the path when I found this bundle lying there, so I took possession of it and now it belongs to me.”

“What rubbish you talk!” said Mbe. “You know well it is mine, for I am holding the string that ties it.

“But the akwa still insisted that he had found the parcel lying in the road, and he refused to get off, unless Mbe went with him to the elders, to have their case tried in court.

Poor Mbe had to agree, and together they went before the old men at the court.

First Mbe put his case, explaining that as his arms and legs were so short he always had to carry bundles by dragging them along behind him.

Then the Akwa put his side of the matter, saying that he had found the bundle lying in the road. ‘”Surely anything that is picked up on the road belongs to the one who picks it up?” cried the Akwa.

The old men discussed the matter seriously for some time; but many of them were related to the Akwa and thought that they might perhaps get a share of the salt, so eventually they decreed that the bundle should be cut into two, each animal taking half.

Mbe was disappointed, because he knew it really was his salt, but he sighed with resignation and let them divide the parcel.

The Akwa immediately seized the half that was covered with the biggest piece of cloth, leaving poor Mbe with most of his salt escaping from his half of the parcel, and spilling out on to the ground.

In vain did Mbe try to gather his salt together. His hands were too small and there was too little cloth to wrap round it properly.

Finally he departed for home, with only a fraction of his share, wrapped up in leaves and what remained of the bark cloth, while the elders scraped up all that had been spilled, dirty though it was, and took it back to their wives.

Mbe’s wife was very disappointed when she saw how little salt he had brought with him, and when he told her the whole story she was most indignant at the way he had been treated. The long, slow journey had tired him, and he had to rest for several days.

But although Mbe was so slow, he was very cunning and eventually thought up a plan to get even with the Akwa.

So, after a few days of rest, and saying good-bye to his wife, he plodded along the road towards the akwa’s home with a gleam in his eye, and after some time he caught sight of the akwa, who was enjoying a solitary meal of flying ants.

Slowly and silently Mbe came upon him from behind and put his hands on the middle of the akwa body. “See what I’ve found!” called Mbe loudly.

“What are you doing?” asked the perplexed Akwa. “I was just walking along the path when I found something lying there,” explained Mbe. “So I picked it up and now it belongs to me, just as you picked up my salt the other day.”

When the akwa continued to wriggle and demanded that Mbe set him free, mbe insisted that they go to the court and get the elders to judge.

The old men listened attentively to both sides of the story, and then one said: “If we are to be perfectly fair, we must give the same judgment that we gave concerning the salt.”

“Yes,” said the others, nodding their white heads, “and we had the bag of salt cut in two.

Therefore we must cut the akwa in two, and mbe shall have half.”

“That is fair,” replied Mbe, and before the lizard could escape, he seized a knife from an elder’s belt and sliced him in half, and that was the end of the greedy lizard”. Okoro concluded his story and bid his daughters a good night sleep.

************

Ikenga was shown Ogbanje as she went towards the river.

“That was the girl the spirit of death says it had encountered with”. Aku told Ikenga.

“A pretty young lady”. Ikenga admired her beauty.

“If she is as strong as you have said. Then she is fit to become my Queen”. Ikenga said out of blue.

“I don’t get you wise one, she is human and you are a god and by the way how do you intend to make her your queen?”.

Ikenga laughed out loud. “I will be going to the mortal world as one of them”.

To Be Continued

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