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|Re: Ode: A Yoruba Urban Fantasy by sage1000: 9:14pm On Jun 05, 2015|
The last of the night fades away as the sun rises majestically, the morning light transforming the horrors of the forest into something truly beautiful. The colors of the forest being illuminated by the rays of the sun was something to behold. This was still not enough to wash away the tenseness in the group.
The bush babies had closed ranks immediately after Tope stopped screaming. Tolu and Tola both flanking her and were sitting beneath the Iroko tree. They were talking in whispers, in some ways oblivious to the world changing around them as dawn continued to break. They were also in many was a contrast to the other group standing together. Makinde, James and Bankole stood facing each other and engaged in a furious argument that was also carried in whispers. Beyond the age difference both groups had several striking difference, the compaderie for one. The younger group had a trust borne of living together and being in so many ways more than a family something similar to what I would describe my relationship with Sade as when compared with the older group, the men were drawn together by only a mutual goal and a keen distrust for one another and that partnership has been sorely tested by our recent misfortunes. The same situation that had caused the bush babies to pull together had caused the men who had been drinking and laughing the night before to be at the edge of their swords.
It was not the only relationship being tested here. Since our discussion Sade has pretty much been keeping to herself, taking Olodumare knows what notes in that journal she brought here. It wasn’t exactly visible but she was also tense, the way her shoulders were hunched and the way she kept staring off for a few seconds at a time told the story of just how hard a time she was having keeping it together. Whatever she was hiding from me must be pretty huge. That is another thing that is wrong with this trip and we have not even really started.
The argument apparently is over when Makinde makes his way to where the rest of us were resting and begins clearing his throat. The look on James face shows that he isn’t at all happy with whatever consensus that has been reached. Bankole’s face has returned to its default setting, a blank face so I can’t really tell from his face how he feels about what has been decided, his body posture however suggests that he isn’t going to be jumping for joy anytime soon, not that I could really tell, it could just as easily be his normal stance towards everything.
“So it appears we are off to a rough start.” He begins, his voice filled with that nasal quality that used to amuse me but right now it is just plain annoying. “and some of us have been a bit injured.” He continues. This time looking nervously at Tope, who takes time away from her pain to shoot him a look of pure evil.
“but that shouldn’t even deter us, we are perhaps one of the greatest expedition ever launched into this forest from this side of the law.” The incredulous looks most of us are shooting him just makes him pick up the tempo. “no joke, from the best guides one can get into this part of the forest, I mean there is no one alive who can say they have stayed longer in the forest than the Bush babies. Was it 11, 12 years?”
“13 years.” Tola speaks up form where she is tending to Tope’s hand.
“Yes, and we have amongst us an Aja-Orun, the guild created by Kankanfo Fadeyi himself during the Red night, the best of the best when it comes to spiritual combat. A member of the Ife Research Institute so there is precious little than we won’t be able to know how to deal with. A former apprentice Ode that was well on his way to beating the record held in that circle for the most distinguished trainee before his unfortunate incident.”
At this a frown covers my face.
“And someone who is an expert on the very creatures we are to bargain with.”
James as an expert? That is really pushing it. Sade voices my unspoken reservations
“Him really? Surviving the massive disaster that was the failed diplomatic mission does not make one an expert. Besides how are we sure they don’t also hate him.” She says as she puts her journal away and puts her full attention on him.
“Well he did survive, that has to count for something. Besides with what we have here, I daresay there isn’t anyone more capable of this mission and if that doesn’t appeal to your pride. Think of the money involved."
“Well the money involved didn’t talk of us taking along an idiot with the stench of enmity of the hordes of Aja-Oros that litter the forest in abundance.”Tolu growls angrily.
“Deal with it, Olodumare knows I’m paying you Bush babies more than enough for it. Or do you want to pull out now?” he replies as a sinister glint slowly crawls up his voice.
The early morning chirping of the forest is his reply.
His voice gains confidence and he turns to face us all.
“As for that matter, anyone else want to quit. I think not. So let’s get dust off the bad start and get ready to move. The beginning of the Journey doesn’t matter, only the end is important.”
“Well spoken, boy.”
At this everyone in the clearing is immediately at alert. My ada is already out, Tolu already has his remaining axe out as he slides in front of Tope with Tola following as she brings out her ada, Bankole has his super-sized hammer hefted on his shoulder waiting to swing, even Makinde already has the red goo or whatever it was that was covering his body, James…well almost everybody was on alert. James looked excited or at least a close approximation to it. It was strange as it was the first time that kind of expression has crossed his face since we entered the forest.
The figure that spoke resembled a small child but its bearing marked it definitely as not. The first thing I noted about its presence was the folded mat it was carrying. It was wearing a red agbada that should have looked ridiculous on it but instead it suited it. A lot of beads of varying colors and thickness covered its neck, head, hands and legs. Its head was shaved clean but for a single strand of hair that ran down its face. The face itself was filled with several tribal marks that I could not decipher. I could feel the power that rolled off it as the forest seemed to bend to accommodate its nature.
“Well what are you waiting for, the elders are expecting you.” It says an impatient looks crosses it face.
It dawns on me that I’m looking at a Ghommind. One of the mystical creatures that came to inhabit our world with us when we chased the gods away.
“Expecting us?” James loses his excitement at this. Even the bush babies look scared at its statement.
The Ghommind voice has a musical quality to it as his reply carries round the forest.
“Why yes. We’ve been waiting for you for a long time.” It says with a smile and yet somehow it sounds like the most ominous thing I’ve heard.
A.N: RL has kept offline for a while but that has been sorted out. Thanks for the offer whitemosquito. I've sent a pm.
|Re: Ode: A Yoruba Urban Fantasy by sage1000: 9:15pm On Jun 05, 2015|
Edit: Double post
|Re: Ode: A Yoruba Urban Fantasy by sage1000: 2:02am On Jun 09, 2015|
“Well that sounds like the most ominous thing I’ve heard.” I say, partly in jest as I try to numb the fear that is creeping through me. Nobody thought it funny, in fact nobody paid any attention to me.
“Really child? And one would think someone like you would know despair.” The thing, I can’t call it man because of the sheer otherness it exudes, replies.
It seemed like my life story has reached even the creatures of the forest. How charming.
“Baba, please what do you mean by you’ve been waiting for us for a long time?’ Sade asks, her voice oddly contrite as she curtseys in greeting. That raises my eyebrows, in all the years I’ve known her she has never curtseyed for anyone, not even the Kankanfo when he visited.
“Ah, Good, good it seems like at least one of you know how to show the proper respect.” The thing says as it turns to away in a manner expecting us to follow.
“Baba but you haven’t answered the question.” Makinde says softly as he shifts from one feet to the other. His body showing the restless sign of nervousness.
“It is not the place of the youth to question the elders.____”.
I stop hearing what his saying and only static fills my ears as he switches to the forgotten language. His command of it is stronger than anything
I’ve heard and considering what I heard on that fateful night it is worrying.
What is more worrying though is what suddenly happens to Makinde, his red skinlike armor covering him suddenly peals from his body taking huge quantities of his actual skin with it. Blood gushes from hat is left of his body. His screams rent the air and the rest of us are too stunned to react.
It is over just as quickly as everything returns to normal. Makinde is standing there with his face squeezed in agony but nothing has happened to him. His red skin armor is still on and he isn’t bleeding from anywhere.
“You should learn to respect your elders or you won’t last long were you are going.” The thing waggles his fingers and he smiles that toothy smile of his. I’m about to say something stupid when Sade grabs my hand and whispers
“Don’t, he isn’t just an ordinary ghommid, he is an Emere. You know, the spiritual and nastier cousins of the ghommids”
That immediately calms me down. An Emere here? I did in fact know what an Emere was and the thought scared me deeply. They were amongst the many creatures ejected from our world alongside the gods when humanity won the Red War. To find one out and about near human settlement spoke volumes of the security of the breach and it even raises a scarier question, if an Emere could be here what of the gods themselves.
“You understand now child, times a wasting. Let us hurry up, you wouldn’t want to be late now would you?”
A.N: The part is too short for my liking, blame Game of Thrones. Watched ep 9 while taking a break from writing and was to annoyed to get back into writing.
Also, a friend drew my attention to the fact that in my last AN, I might have come off as rude. If that is the case I apologize whitemosquito.
|Re: Ode: A Yoruba Urban Fantasy by whitemosquito(f): 11:18am On Jun 09, 2015|
Huh?? Lol. Nah, no offense taken jere. We good.. But we'll just let me hold onto the apology..Lol..for futuristic purposes..
Would have started your work o But my laptop charger got burnt courtesy my younger sister. May have to take time off work to replace it tomorrow..other jobs are even piling up. But don't worry I've disowned my sister as punishment.. Lol.
I can't wait to work on this story and present it to you brand new, spick and span and all cleaned up!! *giggles*
|Re: Ode: A Yoruba Urban Fantasy by sage1000: 6:38pm On Nov 02, 2015|
After some RL issues that forced me to leave the story for a while I couldn't muster the will to continue forward with it. I decided instead of abandoning to rewrite it and using Nanowrimo as a springboard I'll be rewriting the story here https://www.nairaland.com/2708502/ode-yoruba-urban-fantasy-rewrite#39617690. Hopefully I'll be able to write the 50,000 words target by the end of the month.
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