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|Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 10:26am On Feb 20, 2019|
See episodes 1 to 10 here https://www.nairaland.com/4688758/nigerian-comics-animation-content-development
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 10:39am On Feb 20, 2019|
Episodes 1 to 10 here https://www.nairaland.com/4688758/nigerian-comics-animation-content-development
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 10:47am On Feb 20, 2019|
Don't Rock the Cradle - Episodes 1 - 10 here https://www.nairaland.com/4688758/nigerian-comics-animation-content-development
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 10:49am On Feb 20, 2019|
DON'T ROCK THE CRADLE - EPISODE XI
Omalicha: Otutu oma nna anyi (Good morning sir). We are looking for Mazi Edochie's house
The group has come across a middle-aged man with a hoe hanging from his shoulder and a chewing-stick in his mouth. He is most likely a farmer returning from the morning duty of tending to his crops. The chewing-stick has been aggressively gnawed, signalling that the man has been awake for a while; his protruding belly is quite distracting and the fact that he is massaging it is not helping. The stranger replies.
Stranger: Who?! Mazi Edochie, Ichie Mbeku himself!? Are you sure you know who you are looking for?? Ichie onye ne zu'Mbeku does not take kindly to strangers coming around his house. They say there are terrible things awaiting those who displease him, Ichie is not a forgiving man but he does not go out of his way to be angered either. Are you sure you know where you are going?
Omalicha: Nna anyi, that is where our grandmother said we should go.
Stranger: Hmmph, if you insist, but don't say it was me that sent you there. Children such as yourselves, what do you have to do with Mazi? Anyway, continue on this road, take the first right turn, then the next two left turns and finally the road in the middle, then you will see it. Ngwanu, bye-bye nu o.
Dotun: This place is huuuugggeeee!!!!
Uzo walks up to the front door, the other two in tow. He is about to knock but the door swings open before he does. Standing there is a girl of about Dotun's height with a rather dismissive expression on her face. She looks up at Uzo and Omalicha then back down at Dotun.
Girl: Go away.
Dotun: Ah ahn, that's not nice.
Girl: Go away.
Omalicha: We are here to see Mazi Edochie.
Girl: Well he doesn't want to see you, now go away.
She attempts to slam the door but Uzo puts his foot in the way before it bangs. From inside the house, a very calm yet unsettling voice speaks.
Man: Is there someone at my door?
Girl: Papa there are three of them o and I already told them to go.
Man: ...and they did not listen to you?
The sound of a hard walking-stick touching the floor echoes from beyond their line of sight and it is making its way towards them. Tension starts to fill the air as Omalicha senses what she can only describe as a strong force approaching. This presence makes the ghost encounter feel like an irrelevant mosquito-pestering in the night. Dotun's face seems to be reflecting a bit more sunlight, he is sweating lightly. In all the time that they have been traveling together, from wild animals to the ghost, Omalicha has never seen him sweat. Uzo on the other hand is gripping his machete tighter, somewhat reflexively; is he bracing for impact? Omalicha is squinting, trying to get a better look behind the door.
Girl: It's your fault, I told you to leave, now you'll see.
A figure is appearing and the palpable tension is made worse by a wind that starts to blow.
They see the walking-stick, it is made entirely of polished wood and has a random pattern of uneven darker and lighter shades of greenish brown that remind Omalicha of a turtle's skin. The hand holding it is firm, built, and must belong to a man that is equally made of lean muscles. They see a turtle shell hanging around a neck as the man to whom it belongs takes another step forward.
Mazi Edochie pulls the door wide open to see three children. Obviously, these are not the elders he was expecting. There is to be a meeting about his acquiring more land to add to his farms. These are children. "Who gave these urchins the audacity to come to my door", Mazi's blood boils as he rages in his mind. It is now noon and the sun hanging half way through the sky confirms this. The elders are late; Mazi detests lateness and any other form of indiscipline.
Mazi: Who sent you?
His anger is still hot, and as always, his perception of time is heightened when his blood boils, every second feels at least like two.
Mazi: Are you deaf!? Speak before I descend on you!
Uzo catches himself and responds, the other two are still feeling the pressure of Mazi's intimidating presence.
Uzo: My grandmother, Ebube of Onitsha, sent us to you great and wise Mazi.
Uzo himself can hear the insincerity in the flattery he is ascribing to the man. He has never seen the need to praise or bestow another person with elaborate titles, especially elders. This is why Ebube made sure to force him to memorize the, "great and wise" bit before leaving. She definitely knows Mazi Edochie because the honeyed words seem to have marginally cooled his temper.
Ebube's name sinks in and Mazi's anger towards the group subsides but is immediately replaced by another shade of annoyance; this time towards old memories of being tormented by Ebube herself. Mazi frowns, realizing how close he was to striking that woman's grandchild, a sure way to pick a fight that even he knows would not end well.
Mazi: ...and who are these behind you?
Uzo: Her name is Omalicha, my grandmother made me follow her here. The other one is Dotun
Mazi: So what do you want?
Omalicha raises her hand, like a toddler asking for permission to speak. Given the circumstance, talking without permission could be dangerous, from her point of view.
Mazi: What is it?
Uzo gives her a dirty look saying, "Don't say rubbish."
Omalicha: Nne Ebube said I should tell you what happened?
Mazi scowls at her then turns his back to the group and is heading inside.
Mazi: Will you come in before mosquitoes enter my house! That doesn't include you wiccan, you stay outside, I don't want wiccans in my house.
Dotun: Ah ahn!
Uzo: He fought with us against robbers and kidnappers...
Mazi: How does that concern me?
Uzo: ...and he helped us defeat a ghost.
Mazi pauses in his stride, glances round for a second, raises an eyebrow, then...
Mazi: Will you all get in and close my door! If I see a single mosquito, I will swat all of you! Adaobi close my door.
Uzo intervened only because he noticed Omalicha was about to protest and he knows the less any of the other two speak directly to the man, the better off they all will be and the earlier he can go home in peace. From the outside, Mazi's house is remarkable, the architecture is a masterpiece. It is unique and is one of the most modern houses Uzo has seen. The interior is equally impressive, Mazi is definitely a very rich man with exquisite taste. There is furniture made from expensive wood with intricate details etched into the pieces, bringing them to life; the lion skin tapestry strategically placed in the centre of the room is not a cheap item to come by. Uzo wonders how Mazi managed to amass this much wealth.
Mazi Edochie is revered as one of the wisest men in Akwa, and is one of the richest. He has no interest in politics as he considers it too petty and a waste of his time. Many would support a decision, if he so made it, to become the Igwe and this is why the current Igwe is always suspicious of him. Rumour of his scheduled meeting with the three elders had crept through the town and the Igwe feared that the meeting would be to plot to overthrow him, so he summoned all elders for a long meeting. This is why the elders have not come and Mazi for all his wisdom is not clairvoyant, it is not one of his many skills; he points to Omalicha.
Mazi: You, I'm listening, don't waste my time.
Omalicha repeats her story.
Mazi: So you swallowed it.
He concludes just as Mama Ebube had concluded and Omalicha is about to correct him but thinks it through and considers it unwise to display such childishness here. After all, if nne Ebube insisted she swallowed the egg then maybe they are both actually right and she actually did swallow it, she just didn't notice.
From a table not so far from Mazi, he picks up a cup, it is one of those fancy gourd-type cups that are mostly used for drinking palm-wine but apparently, the wealthy Mazi uses it to drink ordinary water as well. He takes a sip, swallows lightly, exhales briefly then empties the content of the cup in the direction of the group. If a moment could be captured, the expressions on their faces could be sold, the look of shock was as priceless as Igbo-ukwu art.
Dotun's mouth is wide open, his jaw drops as soon as Mazi empties the content of his cup. "Is this why the man finally let me in his house?", he can only think as there's barely time to react, definitely no time to dodge. Uzo is annoyed, "Why is this old man pouring water on me?" He chooses not to react and only closes his eyes, keeps his mouth shut and frowns. Omalicha shrieks, shuts her eyes and throws her hands up to her face to protect herself.
He squawks as the water makes contact, Uzo remains silent.
Omalicha doesn't feel it, she opens an eye to peep and sees the water hovering right in her face, even the droplets that bounced off the boys coming her way never made it. They are all held in place, wobbling in front of her. She shrieks again and it all splashes to the ground.
Mazi: I see. You are going to die. Adaobi...
The whole room is shook, nobody believes what they just heard, even Adaobi is shocked at the calmness with which her grandfather delivered the news, she answers.
Adaobi: Yes papa
Now blood is rushing out of Omalicha face, "Mazi can't be talking about her, can he?" she stutters in her mind. Did she come all the way to Awka from Onitsha to be told that she is going to die?? Even Uzo is shocked. He doesn't quite like the girl but he doesn't particularly want her to die. Dotun is crying on her behalf, grieving more than the victim.
Mazi: Bring me the nzu (native chalk)
Adaobi disappears for a moment then reappears with a bowl in her hand and hands it over to Mazi. He dips his fore and middle fingers into it and draws two lines across his right cheek with the white chalk. Omalicha catches a flash of light in his eyes as he does but she's not sure if its the tears obstructing her vision. I mean, she was just stone cold told that her death is neigh.
Mazi: No one knows how to get that egg back out, it comes from an old art. Even the true extent of its powers is unknown, we tried to test it in our day. There is only one option if you want to live...
Omalicha has never payed so much attention to an adult in her life!
Mazi: You will have to go there to get some of the core ingredients. Ebube will take care of the rest once you get them: uda, ulu-oyibo, red banana and 3 days old honey. Your only option is to try to destroy the egg before it kills you.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 12:08am On Mar 13, 2019|
DON'T ROCK THE CRADLE - EPISODE XII
Despite his wealth of knowledge, Mazi Edochie had to consult to find a solution for Omalicha's situation. It's not everyday one comes across the old hydrosapien art, not many even still know of it. The solution itself has never been tested but each of the core ingredients is potent on its own. Uda, a pepper that boosts healing and recovery, given to women after child birth. The milk of ulu-oyibo, an effective cleanser for injury, from bruises to lacerations. Red banana, a rich source of vitality, boosting immunity and strengthening the body. Honey, is the ultimate solvent.
Mazi has set the group on another journey, this time, they will have to travel for a day to reach their final destination. Uzo is furious but his temper is being cooled by Mazi's cold message to Omalicha, "You will die...". Even he was shocked at how unemotionally the grim message was delivered.
Awka is about five hours behind them now and the trio has just crossed the Oji River. Uzo has only been to their destination once and this was many years ago with his older brother. This time, he leads the way.
Mazi Edochie: Boy, do you know the path?
Uzo: I have been there once.
Mazi Edochie: Good. When you arrive, ask for Nnuku Ozo Ozioko, tell him I sent you and tell him to give you ripe red bananas straight from the tree and three days old honey.
Omalicha has been solemn ever since the words hit her ears. Adaobi, Mazi's granddaughter, tried to comfort her there and then but she has retained the weary expression of a falling plantain leaf. All the blood rushed out of her face as Mazi's words sunk deeper, and it is yet to return. Her demeanor is understandable, in fact it is expected, yet, she has forged ahead and made it this far without breaking down or bursting into tears. Not many, including men, would have managed this.
Dotun's attempts to cheer her up have all failed but his fooling around has succeeded in irritating Uzo who is rolling the grip of the new machete Mazi gave him, in his hand. There is a merger in the road up ahead, someone traveling in the opposite direction would call it a fork in the road. A sound, it's faint but as they get closer to the fork, it becomes clearer and more audible. A young girl, about their age grade, arrives at the junction before them. She is balancing a pot of water on her head, something Omalicha could easily do before she cut her hair; she misses her hair, she misses her father. The voice belongs to the girl, she is singing.
Girl: Onye mere nwa nebe akwa; Egbe mere nwa nebe akwa; Weta uziza weta ose; Weta ngaji nkuru ofe; Umu nnunu aracha ya; Eh! Eh! amaghim onye owu.
The girl catches a deep breathe and then turns back. She sees there are people behind her and realizing that they are young, she waves. She's pretty and has made good use of uli to highlight her natural beauty. She waits for them to catch up.
Girl: Kedu, my name's Ezinne, what's yours?
Dotun: I'm Dotun!
Omalicha: Kedu, I'm Oma
Dotun: His name is Uzodinma!
Uzo grimaces at Dotun and brandishes his new machete, Dotun hides behind Omalicha and the girl giggles. She looks at Omalicha.
Ezinne: Why the long face, did your brothers upset you?
Omalicha: No, it's not them...
Uzo: We're not related.
She moves closer and whispers something in Omalicha's ear. Immediately the blood rushes back to her face and she screams out while Dotun is pestering round, trying to eavesdrop.
Dotun: What what?? Tell me, tell me!!!
Ezinne bursts into an uncontrolled laughter while Dotun is still chanting, "Tell me, tell me...". Uzo scoffs and forges ahead.
Uzo: I'm leaving.
Ezinne: Who burst his bubble?
Omalicha whispers into Ezinne's ears and she bursts out again, this time tears are rolling down her cheeks. Dotun is now begging, tears pouring from his own eyes, catarrh running from his nose.
Dotun: Pleasssee te-h-ell me! Pleaasssseee!!!
Uzo looks back with scorn more corrosive than raw blended pepper and silence! Even the water in Ezinne's pot stands still. He returns his gaze to the road and forges ahead. The group follows behind.
This encounter seems to have lifted Omalicha's spirit and has made her forget the current situation. Dotun is now the one with the long face. The girls keep chatting.
Ezinne: So where are you people headed?
Omalicha: We are going to Nnsuka
Ezinne: Ohhh that's nice, me, I'm on my way back home, I'm from Udi.
I came to Oji to fetch clean water. My father likes to drink the water from the river so I come here often. Udi doesn't have so much fresh, clean water available because of the hills, so it's either Oji River or I head towards Ngwo.
Omalicha: I also used to get fresh water for my father but he's gone now.
Ezinne: Ewwwo, ooo, ndo o! I'm so sorry for your loss! I should have known, your head is shaved.
Omalicha: It's okay
The group gets to another junction and Uzo stops, he's still a few paces ahead of everyone else. There are three options to choose from and they all look the same to him, he's not sure which is right.
Uzo: Girl, which is the way?
Ezinne: Small boy, my name is Ezinne, not girl!
Dotun is back, his state of depression didn't last very long. Omalicha giggles, Uzo scoffs.
Ezinne: It's the path on the left.
Uzo marches on, Ezinne giggles and Omalicha joins in.
It has now almost been nine hours since their journey began. They have traveled quite a distance and have a longer way to go. Dotun is starting to whine.
Dotun: I'm hungry o! I can just faint now, somebody please help me pluck even fruit, I will eat. Even if they tied it with red cloth, I don't mind, I will eat.
Dotun peers ahead, Uzo has stopped walking again. He laughs,
Dotun: Ehehe, I think we're at another junction.
But Omalicha has stopped walking too, only Ezinne hasn't. He peeps beyond Uzo and there's a figure standing in front of a large udala tree. It can't be. Maybe the hunger is affecting his vision. He blinks, his eyes feel peppery. There's a hefty, muscular white looking person. Ezinne is still walking and is reaching halfway between Uzo and the figure.
Uzo: Come back, can't you see!
Ezinne turns back and the expression on her face is vicious. Everyone is shocked, Omalicha especially.
Dotun: Ezinne get away!! It's a ghost!
It's like she's hypnotised, Ezinne doesn't listen, she keeps walking and now she's standing in front of the figure. The figure scoops out some water from the pot on her head with the cup in its hand. It drinks and offers a deep sigh of satisfaction.
Figure: Fresh and Clean as always. Well done my daughter, you have even caught more witches in addition, your mother would be proud. The people of Udi will get quality service for what they have paid, we smellers will eliminate every last witch and their associates that live in or move passed this village!
The figure is a man not a ghost, this huge and ripped albino is Ezinne's father!
Uzo thinks back, "She took a deep breath when we first met.".
Uzo: I should have known, how could I be so careless!
Uzo catches a whiff of concentrated garlic and feels the slight irritation in his eyes, Omalicha screams, he turns back, they are surrounded! Smellers! Two men are holding Dotun down, trying to gag him and a third is pressing a cloth against his nose. Omalicha is kicking and flailing her arms against the two trying to subdue her. She just bit one. Two are coming for Uzo, but he's trying not to lose sight of Ezinne and her father.
Now a cloth is being forced over Omalicha's nose. It hits him! Garlic! Uzo has heard of this! They call it... ogu ula mmuo! A drug made from the extracts of some specific grasses that grow in deep waters, mixed with garlic, that sends people to sleep.
Dotun has passed out, Omalicha just did as well. Uzo re-grips the machete in his hand and readies himself for the incoming assault.
He takes a heavy blow to the base of the skull. His count was nine people in total: three taking Dotun, two taking Omalicha, the two in front of him, Ezinne, if that's her real name and her father. He staggers forward, he wasn't expecting this. Another blow covering his right eye follows, this time from one of the men in front. There was a tenth person, a young boy like himself that he didn't see and that's who knocked him silly from behind. Now they're restraining him too and there's a cloth over his nose and mouth! The garlic is pungent but there's an underlying sweet scent also emanating from the cloth. He's succumbing to it. He gets a blurry view of the attacker that came from behind, his hair looks like it is locked in dreads. Lights out.
Uli: Igbo traditional make-up
Udala: A fruit also known as Agbalumo or African Star Apple
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 9:04am On Apr 11, 2019|
Wow, I'm here finally
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 11:39pm On Apr 11, 2019|
Glad you could make it!
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 2:56pm On Apr 12, 2019|
Have u finished writing this story? so that ur readers can buy it, like on okadabooks or something like that.
I personally will want to have it
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 3:13pm On Apr 12, 2019|
There's more to come
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 10:26pm On Apr 12, 2019|
Alright, eagerly waiting.
But your updates are very slow o
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by Peteryt01: 10:15am On Apr 13, 2019|
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 3:42pm On Apr 13, 2019|
Annietan? That's not my name but I'll be happy to accept cake if you're offering
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 12:54am On Apr 24, 2019|
The screaming is loud but Omalicha can see Uzo pulling through, he was the last to be hit with the ogu that knocked the three of them out.
Uzo is still feeling the effects but is trying to pull himself together. The sound of the screaming is hitting his ears but isn't really registering. He opens his eyes and his vision is a blur, so he closes them again and shakes his head a little, slowly, then re-opens. Immediately, it hits! This is Dotun's voice!! He remembers what happened, his head jerks backwards... but something is wrong. Why is he looking straight up at the sky? Why do his hands and feet feel so tight?
Voice 2: Mechi'onu! Amoosu!
Uzo realises he is hanging upside down with his hands and feet bound to a branch. He looks up ahead and it's the same for Dotun who is being carried between the shoulders of two of the smellers. He turns back, Omalicha's hands are bound but she is walking on her own feet. She gives an awkward smile as if to say, "It's not my fault" but Uzo scoffs and throws his face forward.
The leader of this group of smellers is Anyanwu. He is walking like a man on a mission, a man with something to prove. The other smellers do not come across as experienced, they are probably still in training, but the boy on dreads, Omalicha can tell that there's something about him. His expression is bitter and his eyes tell that there is definitely more.
Dotun: Ouucchhhh! ...but I'm hungry!
Uzo shakes his head. Is that why he has been shouting? They are tied up and are being carted to a place that none of them has ever been but all he is bothered about is food?? The boy needs to see a Dibia to check his head.
Anyanwu: We are here.
Dotun: ehn!? Where?
Someone slaps Dotun again on the back of his head.
Voice 3: They said mechi'onu!! Amoosu!
Omalicha: Stop hitting him!
Ezinne turns back, the dark expression still on her face, she has been walking behind her father all this while, right beside the boy with the dreads. She smiles a disturbing smile and says in the most caring voice that Omalicha has ever heard:
Ezinne: Don't worry, you will all be fine, soon.
Omalicha thinks to herself, "This girl must be natural born liar"
Anyanwu gestures to three of his apprentices then throws out his hand with his palm spread wide to the ground and all fingers pointing out.
Anyanwu: Go and bring the other two and announce to the good people of Udi as you pass through that they should assemble at the village square. Another cleansing ceremony will begin shortly.
He clenches his fist which he has now brought to his face. There is a glint of excitement in his eyes and Uzo has a bad feeling about this. The boy on dreads let's out a fraction of a smile from the corner of his lips, and now Uzo has a really bad feeling about this.
The smellers and their captives are in the heart of Udi and as they pass by people and houses, the apprentices echo...
Apprentices: Bia nu! Bia nu! Anyanwu e nwudo go amoosu ozo o!
They are announcing that their boss has caught more witches and the people are coming out in droves to see who and what Anyanwu has caught. The number following them is growing and jeers and heckling are coming from every side. The people are hissing and cursing, things are flying.
Omalicha quickly ducks as eba flies through the air in her direction, it hits the smeller to the left. He didn't see it coming.
Crowd: Ekwensu! Alusi!! Amoosu!!!
The parade reaches the village square where there is an even larger crowd and the chanting of "Devils! Demons!! Witches!!!", continues. The apprentices that Anyanwu sent ahead are here as well and it appears that Anyanwu knowingly took a much longer route to allow for theatrics.
Omalicha gets it now, all three of them do. They can see the other two people that Anyanwu ordered be brought. One is an old woman, at least in her late 60s, she is quiet and the crowd is pelting her with all sorts of things, from pebbles to rocks to left over food. No one seems to care. The other is a little girl, "Chi'm o!" Omalicha exclaims in here mind. What crime has a girl so young commited to deserve this? A woman in the crowd is screaming, wailing at the top of her lungs and rolling around on the ground, tears pouring profusely from her eyes.
Woman: Biko nu o!! Biko nu!!! My daughter is not a witch o! Biko ooooo! She is my only child ooo! Heiiii! Unu ge gbum taata!
It is taking two of the heftier apprentices to restrain the woman and prevent her from running to meet her daughter. The girl is besides herself with tears, hyperventilating.
Girl: Muh-muh-muuhmmmyyyyy!!! Please hee-lllppp me!!! Muh-muh-mumyyy pleaassssseee!
Omalicha, Uzo and Dotun understand, things just quickly went from bad to a place that is well beyond worse. All three of their faces are bare and emotionless as the view before their eyes registers.
Anyanwu turns to the boy on dreads
Anyanwu: Ikemefuna, prepare them.
In front of them are six tall, equally spaced stakes buried in the ground, each with enough firewood to cook for an entire wedding. One of the stakes still has the remains of yesterday's. The crowd continues.
Crowd: Ekwensu! Alusi!! Amoosu!!!
The old woman and the young girl are already fastened to their stakes. Ezinne turns round and begins to laugh a wild uncontrollabled laugh. Is this what she meant by fine? Is this what Anyanwu meant by cleansing?? They are planning to burn them all at the stake!
Dotun: I'm too young to die!!!
Uzo is quiet but his hands are shaking a little, he can't see a way out of this one. If only his brother were here, not even his father or his uncle, only his brother would handle this. In fact, if his aunt were to show up, all hell would break lose but he's here alone...
Omalicha has never considered being burnt alive but she is more relaxed than she would have imagined. Maybe it is the news of her already impending death that has brought her this level of inner peace.
They have now all been tied up and Ikemefuna is holding the torch, lit and read to begin, Anyanwu is giving his speech.
Anyanwu: Ndi Udi! You have called me because you knew that evil has been living among you! You have done well.
Anyanwu: Ndi Udi! We have just begun and you can see the results even before the market day has come around!
Anyanwu: I, Anyanwu, will personally ensure that Udi is free from witchcraft and wickedness! I will exterminate every evil! Even those like these three that choose to pass by UdI!
Anyanwu: Udi must know peace!
Anyanwu: Udi must know progress!
Anyanwu: Udi must know prosperity!!!
Anyanwu: Ikemefuna! Set Udi free from these evil presenses.
Ikemefuna lights the fire around the old woman and for the first time, her voice is heard. She lets out a sound that could even scare a dying animal. Omalicha can see the reflexion of the flames in the old woman's eyes, someone just even threw another stone and this one hits her on the head, she's bleeding. Ikemefuna is at the girl's stake now, he looks up at her and drops another sadistic smile, the torch is in his hand, the girl's mother slumps, he is about to light the little girl up...
The evening sky was free from clouds but lightning has struck a nearby tree and peeled the bark right off. Dark clouds assemble and a sharp burst of rain dowses the torch in Ikemefuna's hands and even the fire burning around the old woman who at this point is shedding tears that pierce Omalicha's soul. She cannot help but feel her pain, this is one of the saddest scenes that she has ever seen and a tear drops as she blinks.
Ikemefuna sniffs twice.
Ikemefuna: They are here.
From the middle of a dark light, three hooded figures appear. From the crowd...
Voice: Ekwensu a bia o! (The devil is here!)
Chaos ensues! Many are running away but a good number remains.
Eba: a starchy local Nigerian dish used to eat soups
Ise: a chant of support or agreement in Igbo land generally meaning "so be it"
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 2:06pm On Apr 24, 2019|
This episode is too short na
Considering how long we have waited for it
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 5:15pm On Apr 24, 2019|
Hmm... apologies, that wasn't considered.
Thanks for the feedback, it is very well noted.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 11:17pm On Apr 24, 2019|
U r welcome
Expecting longer updates though
Thanks for the updates
Thanks in advance for the upcoming updates
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 8:45am On May 21, 2019|
Anyanwu moves! Ikemefuna hurls an object along his trajectory and he grabs it without breaking stride!
Uzo knew the man was dangerous but he might have been underestimating him. With Dotun, he should be able to take the man but with Ikemefuna in the picture, the odds might not be in their favour.
The jazz imbued blade cuts through the body of the first hooded figure without resistance and Anyanwu realizes that this is just an apparition. He curses under his breath...
Anyanwu: They must be close.
The hooded figure in the middle takes a step, ignoring Anyanwu and starts to speak, his voice cold and calm. Omalicha can tell it's a man from his voice.
Hooded Figure: Ndi Udi, we have lived among you for years, why have you chosen to repay our affection with such betrayal? You set these dogs loose on us and yesterday, a friend of mine had her life taken from her. This is nonsense and will stop immediately! If you try me, I will wipe this village clean, off the face of the earth.
*The hooded figure points to Anyawu*
Hooded Figure: Get rid of this dog and his pack or else...
The leader of the group turns his back and the dark light reappears. Simultaneously, a voice whispers into the ear of every villager, man woman and child, including those that are fleeing from the scene and those that never came out,
Hooded Figure: ...I will kill one person from the next hour, starting with the person that you love the most.
Men hear the name of their wives, their first sons, their only daughters. Women hear the name of their children, the name of a brother, a sister, a lover. Even children are not spared as pets, dogs and beloved goats, have been named. Dotun hears the message as well but the smellers, Uzo and Omalicha are completely oblivious. The hooded trio disappear back into the dark light.
Anyanwu: People of Udi do not fear this masked threat, give us some time and I promise you, every one of them will be cleansed. It is I Anyanwu, onwu amoosu, that is speaking.
Anyanwu knows that the wiccan is bluffing. Ever since he entered the town, he hasn't sensed any powerful wiccans. In fact, the most individually powerful forces he has sensed are tied up at the stake here now; one foolish boy and the other one. Anyanwu is completely unaware of the wiccan's threat.
Life is interesting, there is always something mysterious hiding around the corner, sometimes it is even the human mind. They say hidden in the brain is the ancestors' encounters with nature, the world and how to survive in it. When we think we are thinking, we mostly rely on thousands of years' worth of the elders' experience, a very old and powerful tool, although unconscious and underutilized. The human mind has more potential than many truly understand.
Anyanwu can see the elder that invited him to the village trying to raise his hand, the old man is shaking but is successfully able to point. Anyanwu follows his hand but there's nothing in the direction where the man is pointing, that's just where he dragged his captives through, the direction to the entrance to the village. He coerces, angrily.
Anyanwu: Ezedike! Speak! What is it!?
Before the old man's trembling lips could part for words, an exuberant young man frantically screams, "Get out!" A tear drops from the old man's eye.
Ezedike: My son...
Anyanwu looks around and realizes that every last person in the square has the look of despair, slapped on. "What did those despicable agents of Ekwensu do?", he thinks to himself, then this time an elder, "Leave us! We do not want your services again! My daughter..." Children start crying, the crowd is breaking down. Anyanwu shouts.
Anyanwu: What did they do!
Ikemefuna throws a rock towards Ezinne and it collides with another that was thrown from within the crowd. Anyanwu's eyes light up in fury.
Anyanwu: HOW DARE YOU! UDI! You throw a stone at my own daughter! My only child!
He turns to his crew
Anyanwu: ...we are leaving!
He turns to the crowd
Anyanwu: Udi! Even In the day that you will cry blood and beg me or any of my disciples to come and save you, I promise that we will not come! If you offer a thousand cows, your cries will still fall on def ears. Long after I am dead, I swear by this day that you have assaulted my own child, that no smeller descending from me or my disciples will ever raise a finger to save a son or daughter of Udi.
Anyanwu storms off and the smellers, including Ikemefuna, follow. Ezinne is moving directly by his side. The villagers silently start to disappear one after the other, like a solemn procession, and now there's no one left. Uzo heaves a sigh of relief, this couldn't have gone any better, no one was hurt. He looks round to check on the others, The old woman is still sobbing, the little girl is horrified and Omalicha is still tied to her stake. Dotun, where's that boy? He isn't tied up like he's supposed to be. Uzo's eyes dart back to Omalicha and he sees Dotun is helping her get loose. "How did he.."
Dotun: How did you do that?
Omalicha: Me? Do what?
Dotun: Hmm... never mind, ehehe
Omalicha runs to the little girl and sets her free and moves to the old lady. Dotun moves over to the little girl's mother who still hasn't come through. He taps the woman a little and applies a little something, and she starts to wake up. Before she fully regains consciousness, she picks right up from where she left off.
Woman: Where's my daughter!? Obiageli!
The little girl is free and runs straight into her mother's arms. The reunion is touching as both mother and daughter are very emotional. The mother looks up, she doesn't know what happened, she looks around, but only the trio and old woman are here, she turns back to Dotun and says, "Thank you."
Dotun: I didn't do anything, ehehhee.
The woman gathers herself and sets to getting herself and her daughter out of the square, she's in a hurry to leave and understandably so. She's almost breaking off into a run and is dragging her daughter with her, Dotun peers as they make their way and asks out loud.
Dotun: She doesn't know?
The woman turns back, looking a little confused and asks.
Woman: Are you talking to me?
Dotun says nothing and maintains a straight face. The woman returns her gaze and her focus to her exit. The little girl turns her head round after her mother's attention has refocused and holds her little finger up to her lip and makes a silent, "Shhhh.......". Omalicha is shocked, the old woman who has now been freed is shook as well. The mother and child disappear out of sight. Omalicha turns to the old lady.
Omalicha: Are you?
Old woman: No, no, I'm only a widow. My husband died years ago and his family members came and took everything from me. They said I was the one who killed him. I didn't even have enough to look after my only child and nobody helped us. My baby died a few years after and I have been shattered ever since. They say I killed my child as well. How could I?
The woman breaks down and starts to cry, these are feelings that she has been carrying for years, she has had no one to talk to. Omalicha starts to cry as well.
Omalicha: Please don't cry, I will be your daughter, please stop crying...
She starts to wipe the woman's tears and they both cry for a bit before the woman starts to calm down a little.
Woman: You are such a kind girl, my child would have had a child about your age by now, it's been such a long time. My name is Nneoma, what is yours my dear?
Omalicha: My name is Omalicha.
Nneoma: Such a beautiful name. What brought you to this unfortunate experience today?
Omalicha: We were on our way to Nnsuka before we came across that wicked girl and everything happened. Now, we don't even know the way from here.
Nneoma: Ah Nnsuka, I visited there a lot when I was younger, it's not so difficult from here although it is still quite a journey.
The old woman describes the route from Udi to Nnsuka and Omalicha is grateful. It's time to leave the square and move on.
Nobody bothered to untie Uzo, he's been there on the stake, just observing. Omalicha giggles, Dotun too and Uzo scoffs. They see the old woman off to her place and wave her goodbye. Omalicha bids her to take care of herself and promises to visit when next she can. They're off!
Dotun: Phew! That was a close one.
Omalicha: How did you even get loose from the stake?
Uzo feigns nonchalance but is paying very close attention.
Dotun: Me? Ehehehe...
They are now back at the major junction, the entrance to Udi if you will
Strange Voice: It's good to be back.
The strange man looks up ahead at them and smiles, he waves. The crew's eyes open in inexplicable fear and they all scream at the same time, "Smeller!"
They run like they have never run before, the stranger is left there gawking, confused.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 2:15pm On Aug 01, 2019|
DON'T ROCK THE CRADLE - EPISODE XV
Food, finally. Dotun has been wailing non-stop and the fruits he's been eating along the way have only made things worse. The group is passing through Ngwo, famous for a particular snack, and even Omalicha is a little famished now. It's been more than two hours since they left Udi.
Female Voice: Okpa di oku, okpa di oku, okpa! Okpa!! Okpaa!!
A woman with a baby on her back, a tray of food on her head and a dog on her tail is passing by. The dog is completely mesmerized by the aroma of the delicacy emanating from the tray and is sheepishly following the woman, praying for something to drop.
Hawker: Okpa di oku, okpa di oku, okpa! Okpa!! Okpaa!!
Omalicha waves to the woman and signals to her that the group is interested.
Omalicha: Anyi choro.
The woman comes over and the dog follows. Her baby is just waking up and is working his mouth, he turns his head to get a good look at the group and fixates on Uzo, even squinting his eyes.
*Grab!* *Munch!* *Swallow!*
Dotun: Can I have another one??
The lady has barely handed them the okpa and Dotun has demolished the first wrap of the soft, spongy, golden brown goodness; he is licking the plantain leaf wrapping. He downs another and a third, speaking through a full mouth and with teary eyes...
Dotun: shooo ghooood!
The lady responds with concern to his ravenous appetite...
Hawker: Ezigbo aguu na gu nwata a...
She hands him another wrap of okpa for free and her baby starts to giggle. Dotun is animatedly tearing through the okpa, as if he hasn't eaten in days and the dog is beside him, whining, rolling around with puppy eyes, begging for a morsel. The baby, finding it all funny, is laughing out loud. Reluctantly, with an even more animated display of sadness, Dotun gives the dog a piece of the action. The dog gobbles it up and barks in delight. The woman is off, she puts the tray back on her head and is walking away.
Hawker: Okpa di oku, okpa di oku, okpa! Okpa! Okpa!
Omalicha waves her goodbye and the dog follows, wagging its tail. The baby waves back.
Dotun: Tshenk yhou!!
Omalicha takes her time to enjoy her own okpa as they continue their journey but Uzo, no one even saw him make his disappear. "You've eaten it already??", Dotun sobs. It's getting late and the meal will do for the night, time to set up camp.
After more than a day and almost being burnt alive, they have finally made it to the red-earth town on the hills that is Nnsuka. The group meets two children running along the way, the first people they see and the children appear to be twins, about seven-ish from the look of it. Omalicha calls out.
Omalicha: Ejima, biko bia.
One of the chubby boys turns around and Dotun can swear that he literally "rolled" over.
Omalicha: What's your name?
Boy: Aham bu Ifenna and my brother's name is Ifezim
His brother remains where he is and scowls. It seems Ifenna took all the cheer and left only gloom for his brother. Either that or Ifezim is the one that paid attention when their mother must have told them not to talk to strangers, like every mother does.
Omalicha: Please we are going to Ozo Ozioko's place.
Nobody saw Ifezim appear, he is standing right beside his brother, now with a glint in his eyes. They really are identical. The mention of Ozo Ozioko has triggered some deep-seated euphoria.
Ifezim: Are you asking about Nnuku Ozo Ozioko, Ugo Uku!?!
Omalicha, trying to keep track of who is who, turns to the twin that asked the question and answers.
Omalicha: Well, yes... but I didn't know he was called The Great Eagle ("Ugo Ukwu".
Twins: Eh! You didn't knoowww Everybody knows Ozo the great hunter!!!
Now the twins are finishing each other's sentences.
Twins: They say the range of Ozo's spear is beyond compare, they say his sight is sharper than the greatest birds of the sky, some say that his vision is so clear that he even sees things before they happen!
The boys are clearly animated, including Dotun. Uzo's excitement isn't visible, but he is a hunter afterall and Ozo Ozioko sounds like the type of person he would like to meet.
Uzo: So where is his place?
Omalicha and Dotun tilt their heads simultaneously to look at Uzo, surprised that he is even speaking. The boys point in unison.
Uzo: Let's go.
As the group moves in the direction of Ozo Ozioko's house, the boys chorus out.
Twins: One of Ozo's daughters is getting married tomorrow and so they are preparing for a huuuuge feast!
Omalicha turns back and waves to the boys
Omalicha: Daalu! Don't talk to strangers!
Dotun & Uzo: Huh?!
The sound of a number of people cheering is audible and the group can see from this distance that there is a lot of activity around the estate. Ozo Ozioko's place cannot be described as a house or a compound, it is massive!
Crowd: Ngwanu! Cheiiii! Ewo!!!! Chukwunna!!
The group arrives at the source of the fanfare and it's a sand pit not too far from the main house. From the looks of it, it's a sparring ground.
Crowd: Kwuchaa ya! Kwuchaa ya!
The group and the crowd wince together as one of the men in the ring delivers a decisive suplex. The receiver is out cold! There are three men left standing, this was a match of three against one to begin with but the one man army seems to be putting up the show.
There is a large man by the side of the ring, drinking from a large palm wine cup. He is electrified and unmistakably emotionally invested in this match. His large, protruding belly is jiggling as he flinches and foreshadows responses to every move in the ring.
Half of the audience holds their chests as the one-man-army takes out the second man. He slams his well-defined arm across the breadth of the second man's chest, knocking the wind out of his lungs. The second man's feet are thrown up and he falls back first to the ground. Number two is down, gasping for air.
Taking advantage of his comrades's fall, the third man launches shoulder first for the one-man-army's guts, appearing from behind his comrades's falling body. His attack connects but the one-man-army isn't fazed. He takes the hit, even flowing with the motion to reduce the impact on his own body. As he glides backwards, a delinquent smile runs across his lips, his back is hanging inches from the ground.
He seizes the third man's head under his left arm and flexes his back to add more force to the impact he is about to deliver.
The third man's head connects with ground, the force is brute, he's out! The crowd goes wild!! They're chanting the one man army's name! It has to be, even Dotun joins in after hearing the name a second time.
Crowd: So-pu-lu! So-pu-lu! So-pu-lu! So-pu-lu! So-pu-lu!
Sopuluchukwu: Ozo! Where's my goat?? You owe me a BIG goat!
The large man with the large cup opens his mouth.
Ozo: Sopuluchukwu!! Ahahahahaha... Today you have defeated my sons, don't worry, they will come back with a vengence, ahahahahaha!
Uzo guessed right, the big man with the big belly is Ozo Ozioko, despite his friendly demeanor, the aura around the man is dense. A woman passes from behind the group, no one sensed her approaching, which is a bit strange. Omalicha can tell that she's early 50s but she could easily be mistaken for late 30s, she's that fit. The woman is holding in her hand a spear, not your average spear, this one looks heavier and is well adorned with intricate crafting along it's shaft. As she moves, Uzo notices a level of deference despite the busy atmosphere. The woman isn't joining in the euphoria around her, she comes across as... a little stern. That's it! She reminds him of his grandmother, Mama Ebube. The woman gets to Ozo Ozioko.
Woman: Chibuike, you're still drinking.
Ozo: Nwunye m (My wife), you're still looking beautiful.
Ozo smiles a little sheepishly, it appears he's actually been drinking a lot of the mmanya nkwu. Palm wine is sweet but can get to you. The woman is not moved by the flattery, she is as stoic as can be, she hands him the spear.
Woman: Over there...
She points up in the air to a distance that only she can see.
Woman: ...two rat tails to the right, now up by a bird's eye... there!
The spear tears through theair creating a vacuum tunnel that collapses on itself as it eats through. The power behind that launch is tremendous but the man does not seem to have put in any effort into it. The people continue with their jubilation, this is not new to them.
Crowd: So-pu-lu! So-pu-lu! So-pu-lu!
Ozo Ozioko turns to look at the group across the sand pit and then speaks to his wife.
Ozo: Chinwe look, Mazi Edochie's guests have arrived.
There is an odd gathering of men, about 23 or so.
Leader: We will take them by surprise!!
Leader: We will dance like the python!!!
Leader: We will...
Something bores a hole right through the large tree just in front of the group!
Man: Alusi!!!! (Evil Spirit!!!!)
A gaping hole stares the men in the face as the sinister object hurdles towards them, taking no prisoners as it guns forward.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 12:12pm On Aug 02, 2019|
Nice story. It took you almost 3 months to update o. I believe that's the major reason you are not getting comments and followership.
I'm one of your followers though
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 6:05pm On Aug 05, 2019|
I really appreciate your comments, could you send me a mail on email@example.com let's talk more.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 7:42am On Nov 19, 2019|
It's literally a close shave. The leader of the odd group of men has had an inch and a half of the hair on the top of his head chopped clean off. The once fervent man is now horribly feverish, his once dutiful crew, nowhere to be found, save for the man that fainted right in front of him.
The group goes around the sand pit to reach Ozo and on approaching him, the rich, sweet allure of the fresh palm wine permeating the air rushes into their lungs. The smell is soft, yet filling and is gradually inspiring confidence. Uzo takes a firm step forward to talk but Ozo speaks first.
Ozo: Who is this young lady that is almost as beautiful as my wife?
He is referring to Omalicha and for the first time, Ozo's wife, Chinwe, let's slip a smile, but it's just a flash, all signs of emotion are smothered immediately. The big man catches it, so he continues...
Ozo: Do you know that my wife is the most beautiful woman in the whole of Nnsuka and even beyond!?
The man peeps at his wife with peripheral vision, nothing. The woman was caught off guard the first time but it won't be happen again. Dotun looks left and right in panic, Uzo stays straight and Omalicha giggles delicately. The group is in an awkward position.
Ozo's wife looks beyond her shoulder at the people rejoicing over Sopulu's victory and the feast that is incoming, then she returns her attention to the group. There is something unique here, but not so unfamiliar, she can sense it and her sense of perception has always been, to say the least, exceptional. Ozo glances at the bottom of his empty cup and remembers his gourd of palm wine.
Ozo: Ebee ka agbe m ni di? (Where's my gourd?)
Chinwe: These children have come a long way, you should listen to them...
Ozo: Ezioku! (It's true!)
He sees the gourd and makes to pick it up.
Chinwe: ...besides, there's no more palm wine in that thing, there's more in the house.
Ozo: Ezioku, ezioku, they look exhausted. Let's all get to the house, I need more of this Okonkwo's mmanya nkwu, he has outdone himself this time, chukwunna! The touch of honey... the gods must have blessed the man with aka-mmanya nkwu, ahahahahahaha...
The aesthetics are not half as impressive on the outside as they are on the inside. On the exterior are intricate and very deliberate patterns covering the entire surface of the building. One could easily be convinced that these are all coded transcripts, brazenly hoisted for any who dare to translate.
Ozo: How is Mazi Edochie these days, I haven't visited my old friend in quite some time.
They are now in what is probably the house's reception and Ozo settles in to an intricately carved wooden seat while a young man comes in to deliver some gourds, no doubt filled with more palm wine.
Ozo: Still as serious and as pessimistic as they come I'm sure, ahahahahaha! Ichie Mbeku the pessimist! Ahahahahaha!
The exterior bows before what awaits on the inside. In one word, luxury. From the ceiling to the floor, (the windows are so high Dotun that could not hope to reach them)
Up on the broad wall behind where Ozo is seated, directly facing the main entrance, is a rectangular block of wood with seven equally spaced pegs. Hanging on each of these pegs, about halfway along its length, is an exact replica of the spear that Ozo jetted into the distance. This level of craftsmanship could only have been achieved by a master with several years' worth of experience, or a genius. Chinwe is standing slightly behind her husband, and looking at Omalicha, she arcs her brow as if to say, "Speak." Omalicha takes the command.
Omalicha: Great Ozo, Mazi Edochie sent us to you. He said we should ask for a couple of things to make a remedy that will save my life: uda, ulu-oyibo, red banana and three days old honey.
Ozo stops from drinking his palm wine, and looking away from his cup, asks, with his eyes slightly contracted, the right, more so than the left.
Ozo: So you swallowed that egg? Ahahahaha!! Let me guess, Nonso told you that your only option is to destroy it before it ki-ahaha, before it kills you?? Ahahahaha!!
Ozo is laughing his guts out, Dotun gets infected and joins in the contagious laughter. "How does he already know about the egg?", is the question running through Omalicha's mind. She's given up on trying to explain that she didn't swallow the thing, she's not even going to bother again. Besides, this is the third person saying the same thing, maybe she really did swallow it, she blacked out after all.
Chinwe taps Ozo a bit seriously on the back, discretely, because Omalicha is visibly disheartened by the fact that her impending death is, well, funny. Chinwe clears her throat.
Ozo: Ndo, ndo (sorry), what is your name again?
Omalicha: My name is Omalicha.
Ozo: ...and your friends?
Uzo: My name is Uzo.
Dotun: I'm Dotun, ehehehe.
Ozo leans back and takes a sip directly from his gourd, a bit of the palm wine spills on his thick black beard with grey strands. The wine in the cup is finished and what is left in the gourd is not enough to bother pouring into the cup. He takes a minute to study the girl.
The young man that brought the gourds of palm wine re-enters the room.
Ekene: Ozo, you called.
Ozo: Please bring me my nzu.
Ekene: Immediately, Ozo.
He disappears back into the door he came through
Ozo: In the mean time, what brings a Wiccan all the way from the far West, Dotun, was it?
Dotun: Beeni (Yes) sir, hmm...
Dotun rubs his chin, tilts his head up to the left and looks into the distance, a pose showing that he is truly about to think, or at least try to remember something, but before the pose yields fruit, as if thinking would be too much work, he blurts.
Dotun: ...travelling around sounded like a good idea, ehehehe.
Ozo & Dotun: Ahahahaha/ehehehehe
Ozo: Odiegwu! (Great!) I like that! People need to be more spontaneous.
Ekene returns with a calabash in his hand
Ekene: Ozo, as you requested.
Ozo: Thank you
Just as when Mazi applied the nzu, a glint appears in Ozo's eyes and Omalicha is sure of what she's seeing this time, after all, there are no tears in her eyes now. Ozo stands up to face the broad wall holding the spears.
It is as if there is something written that only he can see. He begins to speak while still not looking at any one.
Ozo: I see that you have discovered its history, this is quite the tale. Do you know why Ebube sent you to us, Omalicha?
Ozo: You see, Nonso my friend, Mazi Edochie as most people know him, is quite the pessimist and will always tell the worst. I, on the other hand, prefer to see the brighter side.
He turns around as if he were done reading whatever it is that only he can see.
Ozo: Neither is right and none is wrong, these are only two sides of the same leaf, but sometimes the wind may blow and both faces of a single leaf are exposed to a single eye within the same breath. What you have within you is a source of power, an old one perhaps, a taboo of the second bloodline.
The second ancient bloodline, the seconds, even in the time of our forefathers were not as many as the firsts, but those of that bloodline have often been gifted and their gifts usually became their curse. Many sought to steal these gifts, often killing the descendants of that bloodline to take the gifts for their own. Even those who did not seek the seconds for their gifts, often sought their blood as rare offerings to the gods. Which ever way, hydrosapiens have all but been driven into extinction and not many know about them today.
What makes that which is within you truly dangerous, my dear, is our ignorance. Men often fear what they cannot control and yes, Nonso is right, there is a chance that it could kill you. What he didn't mention, however, is that the odds of your death are not evenly split against the odds that you will live. To put it plainly, it is one new moon against twelve... in your favour, so not very likely. Nonso must have given you quite the scare, ahahahahaha!
To be fair, Mazi Edochie never actually said that her death was impending but she had assumed that it would be in a matter of just days. If ever she had felt relief in her life, this is it.
Omalicha: Ozo, so what do I do?
Ozo: What do you do?? With power!? Wouldn't you like to learn to control it??
Chinwe: Chibuike, no!
Ozo: Whaat? Ahahahaha, she's a big girl, let her decide.
Omalicha looks at Chinwe who has a very disapproving look on her face, she looks at Dotun who is star-eyed at the prospect of her learning to control this forbidden power and then Uzo who looks indifferent as usual. Omalicha thinks of her father, what would he have wanted her to do? She knows he would never have let her do anything so dangerous but there's no one left to protect her and if not for the boys, she might not have made it all the way here. Perhaps learning to control this power will teach her to hold her own against bandits, ghosts and smellers like Anyanwu that may attack her in the future. The answer is clear.
Omalicha: I want to control it.
Ozo: Ahahahaha, good, very good indeed.
Chinwe disapproves, that much is clear but she heaves a deep sigh as if she already knew how this would end.
Ozo: You can stay here with us for a few days, our daughter's hand will be given to her husband tomorrow and there will be a lot of festivities; music, food, palm wine, ahahaha!
Dotun’s ears prick up at the sound of food, he's definitely interested!
Ozo: After the wedding you will get what you need.
Chinwe calls out a name and a young man steps in. It's one of Sopulu's victims, the one that received the full impact of Sopulu's right hand across his chest. "He's still alive??" Omalicha quivers in her mind, recalling the savage attack.
Chibundu: Yes mummy.
Chinwe: Come and show these boys the guest chambers, and call your sister to take Omalicha to the chamber next to mine.
It hits Omalicha that she has not been alone at night for a couple of days now, not since she's learnt about Ebuiwa, Amenza, Izunna, her lineage, wiccans, that Chidinma and Kasara are wiccans and that she "might" die. Her mind travels back to Onitsha, what would Chidinma be up to now, trying to get at her through the spirit realm? That is what wiccans do, isn't it? Wait, she can ask Dotun, can't she? Maybe the only reason they haven’t gotten to her is because Dotun has been by her side all this while but tonight she would be...
Omalicha: All by my self?
Chinwe: Is there a problem?
Chinwe immediately looks and frowns at Uzo who equally counters with a scowl of, "I'm not guilty", "Don't accuse me of anything" and "I'm not interested."
Omalicha: Oh no ma, thank you very much ma.
Omalicha scans the room where she would enjoy a personal bed, walls to protect her from the cold winds and a roof to obstruct the clear skies. Her thoughts dart back to the reason the Wiccan’s were after her, she can't help but think of her father and what he would say to her, "My daughter don’t be scared, nothing can harm you." He would usually say while he held her hand or hugged her in his tight embrace , "...you’re safe with me."
Back in Ozo’s chamber he takes a sip of more fresh palm wine, his wife Chinwe now standing next to him, stares back through the door, nobody. There’s a look in her eyes, like she’s lost in thought. Ozo sets down his cup and with his left hand pulls his wife down to sit on his lap, she’s hardly even startled by his pull, he knows this mood very well, her senses have overwhelmed her, and she’s more conscious of her surroundings than she is of herself. She rests her head on her husbands broad shoulders, and her arms attempt to wrap around him. She whispers.
Chinwe: Something is coming...
To anyone else these words would be a cause for alarm, especially since it’s coming form her but Ozo laughs and replies,
Ozo: ...and it will pass, because you have me.
The sun is setting and Omalicha decides to go outside to join the women cooking at the back of the compound. As she gets closer, she notices Dotun hiding behind a hut, "What's he doing?" she says to herself.
Dotun is spying on three women sitting around a fire and a large pot, a fourth and younger woman, who looks like a newly wed, getting water to poor into one of the pots. The ladies are boiling beans, rice, yam and turning at least three different soups while they stew. The big basket next to the elderly woman, closest to Dotun, is filled with hundreds of already fried, hot, goat meat; large chunks of it!
Slowly, Omalicha notices three pieces of meat start to rise and move, passing behind the oldest woman and skillfully evading the other women's attention. "One... two... THREE"
The three pieces of meat shoot up far into the sky, too fast for any of the women to notice and in a few seconds, Dotun catches the first with his right, the second with his left and opens his mouth gleefully for the third.
A knife pins the last piece of meat to the wall of the hut just before it enters Dotun's mouth. He was so focused, with his eyes in the sky, that he didn't see the blade coming. His shaking eyes slowly turn towards the women and they are frowning at him in unison. It seems one of the younger women launched the attack, she has another knife ready in her hand.
He zooms off.
The elderly woman shakes her head and speaks.
Woman: Children of nowadays, very lazy, especially the boys, all they want to do is eat food, work they won't want to work, tufia.
Not looking where he was running, Dotun bumps into Omalicha.
Struggling to chew the large piece of meat he already threw in his mouth, he says with a sheepish grin.
Omalicha: What were you doing?
He says again with a full mouth and an even more sheepish grin.
Dotun: Dho youv wantsh swome?
Omalicha: No! That’s not a good thing to do, you should wait like every one else...
Then she remembers there’s something she wants to ask him.
Omalicha: How did you even do that?
Dotun swallows then replies, utterly confused.
Dotun: Do what??
Omalicha: How do you make things move without touching them?
Dotun: Owh that! Hmm... I just tell them to move and they move, I guess.
Omalicha: ...but how does it work, how much can you lift, can every other wiccan do it?
Dotun: Hmm... I'm not sure everyone else can but my grandpa could too! For now I can only lift things that are twice my weight but my grandpa was aweessoommeeee!
He flexes the hand still holding on to one piece of meat.
Dotun: If I exercise more I should be able to lift bigger stuff, yup.
He smiles, hoping he has satisfied her curiosity.
Omalicha: ...but how does it work? How do you do it”
Dotun stops for a moments, not sure how to explain further, he shoves the second meat in his mouth, still thinking hard. It feels like there's smoke coming out of his head, thinking is definitely stressful.
Uzo: What are you two doing?
Uzo is angry,
Uzo: Stealing meat! What’s wrong with you??
Omalicha: I didn’t steal anything, it’s Dotun
Uzo: Finish it quickly before...
Dotun jumps at the suggestion and swallows hard. Someone is coming, it sounds like more than one person, but their steps are almost in sync. They appear, then turn to look at the group.
The blank stare is directed at Dotun, this doesn't look good.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 12:16pm On Dec 24, 2019|
DON'T ROCK THE CRADLE - EPISODE XVII
Dotun jumps... and swallows hard. Someone is coming, it sounds like more than one person, but their steps are almost in sync. They appear, then turn to look at the group.
The blank stare is directed at Dotun, this doesn't look good.
It is Ozo's daughter. Omalicha can tell because the second set of footsteps belong to Ijeoma who showed Omalicha to her room. Also, Ijeoma is a miniature version of the older girl standing in front of her.
Ozo's Daughter: You!
Ozo’s elder daughter Olomma walks towards the group, she is slim and tall, having the best features of both of her parents, Ozo’s height and her mothers slender curves and beauty.
Olomma: I know what you did!
She scowls with a frown.
Olomma: To think that this is how you choose to repay my father's hospitality in allowing you into our home!
She's fuming and getting closer, Ijeoma is directly behind her.
Olomma: I will deal with you today!
Dotun’s eyes widen then shut in anticipation as Oloma lifts her hand, but the slap never finds its way to his face. When he opens his eyes, her face is merely inches away from his. She smells nice, of the perfumed oils massaged into her skin. two lines accentuating her undeniable beauty.
Olomma: But you know,
Her countenance changes unexpectedly and Dotun thinks, "This lady is scary." Olomma is erratic and definitely very scary.
Olomma: ...I could forgive this insult if you do something for me.
The grin on her face suggests that Dotun may not be willing to do the something but he asks slowly and suspiciously while nodding.
Dotun: Like what?
Olomma turns around and begins to speak.
Olomma: Last year, Ozo Ngwere's daughter got married and at her wedding her father had her path covered with flowers. I have no idea where they got those flowers from, no one does. I haven’t seen anything like them in the forest or in anyone’s garden but rumor has it that they were brought in by horses from the North. Regardless, the point is that I want something better than Afoma, I want my flowers to fall from the sky and cover the path, the guests, and the entire compound!
She turns back to look at Dotun dead in the eyes, her voice returning from warm fantasies to the cold sound she began with.
Olomma: Can you do that, Wiccan?
The menacing expression returns with the frosty voice and Dotun doesn't know when he answers.
Dotun: Yes, yes!
That was a lie and Olomma knew it.
Olomma: Okay, show us, give us a taste.
Dotun's eyes widen.
Olomma: Yes, now! I’m waiting...
This is one thing Dotun hates about magic, excellence in one area doesn't mean excellence in another. In fact, excellence in one drastically reduces your chances of being even mediocre in others. Dotun has mainly focused on magic that allows him move things, he's a pro at this, mastering it both on the macro and micro scales. He only needs to work on power and stamina which his grandfather had said would improve with time, but this, what Olomma is describing, is magic for materializing things from thin air. Dotun has never really worked on this but he remembers what his grandfather always told him after he died, "All magic is simple, if you can imagine it, then it can be done." So Dotun clears his mind from all thoughts of food and fun, battles and betrayals, abandonment and loss. He lets his soul flow to take a neutral form, breaking the form that allows his ability to move objects.
Dotun closes his eyes as he starts to take a deep breath, the veins on the side of his temple pop out and start to throb but Omalicha sees more than this. It's fuzzy but she sees a large pale blue ring around Dotun, she doesn't even notice that every other thing seems to fade into the background. The ring is so large that all five of them are inside it, but it's clear that the ring belongs to Dotun. When he closed his eyes it shattered into many pieces that now float around him like dust. The blue particles turn to dark red and disappear just as white fluffy petals begin to fall from the sky. It is a sight to see. The petals fall all around and the girls lose their cool, Oloma shrieks with excitement.
Olomma: Ewooo! Wonderful! I wasn't sure you could do it but this is exactly what I was hoping for!
She spreads her hands as she spins in circles, and when the ground and roof tops around them are covered with petals, the shower ceases. Olomma walks majestically, rehearsing for her walk to her betrothed, Azubike. Her thoughts drift to the handsome, rich young man she is to marry tomorrow. She can see him, his chest, his arms, his muscular, well defined frame. "He looks nothing like my father..." she thinks, because she does not remember the time when Ozo Ozioko, Ugo Ukwu was in his prime, she was young.
Three full moons ago, when Olomma and Azubike were formally introduced, she had fallen head over heels for her young merchant. They had met, years ago, when Olomma was ten but back then, Azubike was completely unremarkable; dark brown skin, lean frame, and a face that was too pretty to be a boy's.
On the introduction morning she had complained to her mother, she protested at the idea of not being able to choose for herself the man she would marry.
Olomma: I want to be like you mama.
She had said, but in reality she wanted to choose a man based on her vain desires. Her mother knew this, because Olomma is smart and strong in spirit. Her mother knows that she is a determined person and very persuasive when she wants to be but is a very emotional. Her rage can lift her, set her on fire, her pain can crush her under its weight, and jealousy can spin her around till she cannot differentiate between right and wrong. So her mother had taken it upon herself to find the perfect match for her daughter: a calm and collected man, an emotional rock, one to help her daughter through the storms of life. She found Azubike.
Azubike as well did not like the idea of marrying a girl he didn’t know, one chosen by his father. He thought of how unfair it would be for the maiden. Perhaps she had found a companion just as he had already found his heart longing for another. He had only seen her once, and before he could gather his thoughts to ask who she was, she was gone, but he is sure that he will find her again.
It had been a market day and Azubike with his father Mbadinuju had come to the market to monitor the sales of their merchandise, fabric. Mbadinuju imported expensive fabrics with intricate designs and this was the source of his wealth, but no matter how wealthy the man became, Mbadinuju loved hunting and his son has inherited his father's passion.
Mbadinuju laughed at his son’s suggestion, clearly his son was being as modest as always.
Mbadinuju: So the maiden might be in love with another man?
Mbadinuju: ...and you mean to tell me that you can’t persuade her to change her mind?
Azubuike: You can’t persuade someone out of love.
Mbadinuju broke out into hysterical laughter and Azubike was offended. His father only laughs like that when someone says something puerile and Azubike was no longer a child. Calming down, he father spoke.
Mbadinuju: Ngwanu, let’s meet this maiden and then when we are about to leave, ask her if there’s anyone else she is considering. If she says yes, we call off the arrangement, otherwise we proceed as planed.
Azubike thought of it for a moment and agreed it was fair. His father on the other hand knew that no maiden would be able to resist his son, if he tried, and once he saw his betrothed, his father knew he would more than try.
When Olomma was presented to her husband to be, her eyes stayed low, stylishly avoiding his, but as her gaze rose from his feet, she saw a stunned young man and he saw the maiden he had spotted at the market square. She was impossibly more beautiful now.
Olomma's attention returns to the petals, she looks like she is having fun. Dotun joins her and walks holding her hand like a groom, taking calculated steps, clashing an imaginary walking stick with his imaginary guests' who are now cheering him on. Omalicha and Ijeoma join in, pretending to be Olomma’s hand maidens dancing behind the couple, escorting her to her new home. In no time, the four of them begin to hold hands, forming a ring and skipping in circles, with heads tilted up watching the flowers fall; it was dizzing and soon they all fell down. Uzo watched them, not moved or compelled in the slightest to join.
After they hit the ground and regained their balance, Ijeoma scooped up a hand full of petals and blew them in Omalicha’s face and like that, a new game started. Uzo watched, resting with his back against a hut, thinking about how he would ensure they got back to Mazi’s house and then back to his grandma, Ebube. The trip here had not been easy and it seemed bad luck followed either Dotun or Omalicha or perhaps both of them. This was not the first time he had traveled alone but the challenges that they had come across on this trip has been suspicious. First bandits, then a ghost, then smellers, and if not for the intervention of an actual wiccan, they would have been burnt to a crisp.
He had to come up with a plan. He had to find out if it was Dotun causing all these mishaps, and if so, although he has been of some help, it would be best to part ways. Dotun and the girls were really going wild with the petals now, having a blast and Uzo thinks of what his older brother would have done, "I just have to get stronger.", he decides.
Mama Nnena looks up from the vegetables she's slicing. she sees three of the children and the wife to be, holding hands, skipping round in circles, their heads tilted at the the midday sky. Suddenly they break off and fall to the ground, one boy is sitting at the corner, lost in thought. The other four get up again, scooping nothing from the ground and blowing nothing at each other.
Mama Nnenna: Children of nowadays, very lazy, all they want to do is play.
She does not see any petals.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by CJAwele(m): 1:42pm On Mar 24, 2020|
Mama Nnena looks up from the vegetables she's slicing. she sees three of the children and the wife to be, holding hands, skipping round in circles, their heads tilted at the midday sky. Suddenly they break off and fall to the ground, one boy is at the corner, lost in thought. The other four get up again, scooping nothing from the ground and blowing nothing at each other.
Mama Nnenna: Children of nowadays, very lazy, all they want to do is play.
She does not see any petals.
Omalicha and Olomma hit it off, just as Omalicha had hit it off with Ijeoma. The girls talk for the rest of the day and then well into the night. Omalicha sleeps in the same chambers as the sisters, tactfully neglecting her own and whatever nightmares may be awaiting her.
Dotun got bored playing with the girls not too long after the flowers, so he went after Uzo who had gone looking for Ozo’s sons. The boys spent the afternoon shooting at game, not to kill, but for the bragging rights of marksmanship. Uzo was quite good, hitting difficult targets like between the legs of a perching bird and between the antennae of ogongolo (praying mantis). Ozo's second son, Chinedu, was even better, getting between the bird's toes and between ogongolo's praying hands. In the heat of the moment, Chizitaram, Ozo’s youngest son, and the first to be taken out by Sopulu earlier, took a poor shot that hit a bird squarely on the head. It fell from the branch with a spray of feathers and hit the ground with a soft thud. He watched with eyes wide open as the poor thing fell, he really does hate killing animals and that's why he prefers to be a farmer, not a hunter. Last time, he killed Ijeoma’s little bird while he was trying to feed it. He forgot to wet or at least mash the piece of leftover yam that he stuffed down the baby bird's throat like it's mother would have done. The bird chocked to death and he still has scars from Ijeoma's attacks... no one knew she could be that vicious, they say even Ozo ran away. He was also responsible for the death of Olomma’s cat... a long story, but ironically, he got away Scot-free when everyone was sure he was going to die, even Ozo gaev him his final blessings.
It was a riot, the other boys laughed and rolled around on the ground, boys will be boys. The sun was setting, the moon rising, and Chibundu started with his stories. He thinks Chizitaram and his older brother, Chinedu, are too emotional, "Men must be strong..." their father always says and although he is physically the weakest of his brothers, Chibundu sees himself as the strongest. What he lacks in physical prowess, he more than makes up for with mental fortitude. Chibundu's stories all sounded believable, not overly exaggerated or fantastically flawless, and that is probably what made them even scarier. "Koin, koin, koin...", he described the footsteps of an evil she-spirit that comes ime abali, at midnight, looking for her victims and dragging them mercilessly back to her lair . "No one has ever survived..." he said, looking from the corner of his eyes, over his shoulder, into the looming darkness.
Chibundu: Do you know that one time, a tortoise fell from the sky??
He began again, but this time with bright bulging eyes, attempting to convey the unimaginable disbelief to his audience; his story of the tortoise that tricked birds to give it feathers from their wings, and how greed led to the tortoise's epic fall. The story was full of jokes and intricate dialogue, Dotun was sure that Chibundu had added bits and pieces to the original tale because his own father had told him a similar story before he left home, but Chibundu's version is definitely better. The day slowly crept to an end as more and more stories were spun, they all knew he was making them up as he went, but he is quite the storyteller.
The next morning is a blur. Arrangements had been made for decorations and the guests' accommodation. There was to be a feast after the union, and no expense was to be spared. Young men moved swiftly and the women were not idle. Gourd after gourd after gourd of drinks were hauled in, there could be a shortage of anything, but there would definitely be no one in need of palm wine at Ozo’s daughters wedding. Omalicha watches as Olomma is pampered and dressed, her nails polished, her skin oiled, her face lined with tiro and slowly the wrapper put on her by the older women. The fabric is the finest that Omalicha has ever seen, a gift from the father of the groom. Lastly, beads are placed on Olomma's head and her neck, they are so many that she complains, the weight threatening to cripple her, but this is the custom. Perhaps, it is to slow the bride down, prevent her from running away, if she thinks to try. Omalicha is given a large hand fan to help keep Olomma cool while the other ladies add the finishing touches to her hair, and of course, more beads are added here.
Guests have begun to arrive and the different bands present are out performing themselves, this is a harmonious battle for supremacy! The sounds of the instruments: ekwe (slit-drum), ichaka (rattle), igba (drum), oja (flute), ubo (thumb paino) and all the others are melding melodiously and carrying through the air, hypnotically causing even the just arriving guests to disobey comportment and dance. In no time, the grooms family appear. Men pull goats, carry calabashes, more palm-wine, there are beads, fabric and the list of gifts go on. Ozo and his kinsmen take their seats and the ceremony begins. A spokesman emerges from the brides family introducing the men, starting with the eldest, of course. The floor is then opened to the grooms' family, who produce their own speaker. He introduces his family, in more detail, narrating their exploits and triumphs, then he proceeds to a play with words, hinting at the already obvious reason they are here. More palm-wine is passed around and after beating around the bush, they declare, “We have come to pluck a beautiful flower that we have seen in your garden.” Olomma is sent for.
Her mother has come to get her. Both ladies would walk to Ozo who would hand his daughter a cup of palm-wine and ask her to find her husband. She would hold the cup with one hand and cover the top with another. The groomsmen would try to deceive her that they each are Azubike, calling to her, "My wife, my wife, it is me o" but she would ignore them, smiling till she reaches her husband where she would kneel and present him with the cup after taking a sip. He would take the cup and finish what his wife has presented him to drink. No!! Olomma remembered, before all that, the flowers would fall. She turns and winks at Dotun as she leaves her hut and Dotun takes the cue, he assumes the same stance that he did yesterday.
Creating the illusion seems to be more tasking this time, so he adds more force, his dim red aura increasing in intensity to a richer red, still not enough, now a bright red. Strange, the petals covered a vast area yesterday, just about the same radius he needs to cover today, why is it more difficult? He revs things up and his aura is a dim orange, a richer orange, now a bight orange and the first petal falls, finally. He wobbles down to one knee, exhausted. Olomma was too happy to notice Dotun fall, but Omalicha ran out to help him back up. Dotun is panting and then...
Dotun: soooo huuungryyy!
He jet's out of Omalicha's helping hand and follows the smell of food, out of sight. Omalicha shakes her head and returns her more deserved attention to the ceremony. The guests and the host alike are surprised by this remarkable weather. It is undeniably like a dream and just as Olomma collects the palm wine from her father in this picture perfect wedding, the first drop hits Ozo between his brows. He frowns briefly, but remembering that his daughter is right before him, returns to a smile. There is no cloud in sight but a heavy downpour is about to begin. "The stupid wiccan boy has messed up this simple task", she thinks to herself but Olomma doesn't truly understand the ways of a wiccan, otherwise she would know that Dotun did not actually create any flowers and definitely has nothing to do with the impending rain. It was easier yesterday for him because there were only four targets but today the number is far more and there are a few powerful men who are probably aware of his tomfoolery but have allowed it. The falling flowers look even more beautiful today, maybe it's the impending rain mixed with the sunlight.
Olomma, like her mother knew, is determined and will not let even a thunderstorm ruin her wedding, she makes straight for her husband to be. The wind begins to howl and people start to move for cover. Ozo stays put. There is still no rain cloud in sight but now, there is thunder. "I will get to my husband, stupid rain. "The wet petals are falling faster and some have clung to Olomma’s well oiled skin. She smiles as she kneels before Azubuike and hands him the cup, he betrays a muted laugh as if to say, "I am getting married to one heck of a woman, she's not even bothered by this rain." He empty's the cup in two gulps and takes his wife's hand, bidding her to stand. He couldn't help but feel that they were meant to be, like they had fallen in love in a past life but were tragically separated and so have come back to tease fate. The crowd cheers, and Ozo smiles.
Azubike sees his wife looking even more beautiful as the rain washes off her tiro. He wants to kiss her but that is not part of the custom. Olomma is already leaning close, she is cold but the thought of stealing a quick kiss warms her up and with this new look in Azubike's eyes, that thought is here to stay. The wind is still in a frenzy, blowing things any- and everywhere, even up to the sky; now there is a large plantain leaf right above the wedding grounds. Omalicha looks up and giggles, it's quite funny to see a plantain leaf flying about and then, it begins...
The loudest clap of thunder yet, explodes!
The mid-rib of the plantain leaf Omalicha is looking at tears along its length! Lightning flashes! Something forces itself from the tear in the leaf and shoots straight down to the ground! It lands with a bang and another eerie clap of thunder echoes!
Ozo and his guests feel the tremors as it lands! Omalicha's jaw drops. There is a man, standing, in the center of the ceremony, between the bride's and groom's families. He points a hateful finger at Ozo.
Man: Taa'a ka i ga akwu ugwo maka'ihe ojoo niile imegoo! (Today is the day you pay for your wickedness!)
He turns and zooms towards Olomma and her groom, a dagger in hand, intent in his eyes, the intention is to kill.
|Re: Nigerian Anime: Don't Rock The Cradle (by #chemstudios) by drewsman(m): 11:54am On Sep 05, 2020|
Wow, its almost 6 months o. When are we expecting the next update?
Or possibly the complete story to buy
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