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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
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“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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