|Join Nairaland / LOGIN! / Trending / Recent / New|
Stats: 2,318,192 members, 5,110,511 topics. Date: Thursday, 22 August 2019 at 05:12 PM
|Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 6:16pm On Jul 27|
When they came it was from the north.
They came from beyond the farthest northern mountains, a place of unknown regions, and a distant land of shadowy and mysterious creatures.
Closer and closer they advanced running hard and stopping not for breath or victuals until they ascended into the forbidden forest, Igbo Ile-ikoko.
The forest was shrouded in silence as the strangers passed into its boundaries.
They ran under the protection of *Idaku-Oro the death spell. Beasts of the forest fled before them and scurried into hiding for to stumble across the spell-wielders was to fall to the arms of death.
Faster and faster they ran with each step bringing them unerringly closer to the destination.
Day passed into night and by the first light of dawn they broke through the eastern boundaries of the forest and came to the outskirts of Ile-ibosi.
The white-haired one uttered a command and dispelled Idaku-Oro.
His eyes watered from the strain of the recent spell and he stopped to regain his breath.
The others gathered around him protectively and viewed the surrounding bushes with suspicion.
Hungry beasts lurked plentiful in this part of the jungle.
Some so ferocious they attacked not only to feed but for the sheer purpose of killing.
Even a large party such as this would serve as no deterrent.
Soon the journey commenced.
On and on they ran and the ground vibrated with their coming.
Each armed with a sword and an assortment of charms. Underlying aggression was bellied in the coldness of their eyes. At the end of this crossing death lay plentiful.
The first man they came across was a farmer hoeing his yam ridges. It was dawn of a new day and the roots of the weeds were still succulent from dew and thus easy to separate from the soil. The weathered old man must have heard some sort of sound and thinking it some forest beast emboldened by hunger he reached out and picked up his short cutlass.
He straightened up and his jaw dropped open.
It all happened as if time itself slowed to witness the moment. Strange beings bore down from the bushes.
Hairy, long-limbed and black skinned figures thundered towards him.
The weapons they held were not so strange.
Swords and battle-axes were drawn with savage purpose.
The strangers picked up pace as they saw him and before the man could turn to flee he saw the white-haired leader began mouthing words under his breath and then point a finger at him.
“SPELL!” He opened his mouth to raise an alarm but a pressure of enormous proportions expanded in his chest and cut him short.
He choked and tasted blood.
Everything became as slow as the crawl of the snail, everything except the approaching horde of strange magic-wielding beings.
Then he began falling and falling until it seemed to him he had been falling for a time. His mind raced as he fell. Jumbled thoughts fueled by panic pushed an elusive word slowly to the surface. Thoughts of ancient folklores and myths, thoughts of….
The word surfaced.
“GHOMMIDS!” A gasp of despair escaped his lips as he thought of his wife and newly borne babe.
The horde reached him and without hesitation the white-haired one unsheathed his sword and sliced upwards in an arc.
The head made a leap from the body spraying blood as it rolled through the air. It came to rest with the face contorted in a grimace, a lasting expression of death. The headless body still trapped in slow motion fell and came to rest. Still they advanced. Faster now for the human settlement lay just ahead.
A group of children played in the sand a hundred paces away.
The horde had now entered a full run.
The children saw them too late.
The youngest, a tiny girl with untidy braids removed the piece of wood she was chewing from her mouth and let out a blood curdling scream.
The white-haired leader barked out orders in a strange guttural language.
The others overtook him and an unsightly massacre ensued.
The Ghommid leader stayed apart with three others and watched human after human fall to the blades of his invaders.
He hissed in disgust at their weakness and turned to the three standing by his side.
He shouted a word of command and all four figures vanished. Cries of the dying pierced the silence of the morning as the ones left behind unleashed terror on the once peaceful settlement.
It had begun.
Ade-ajaoye opened his eyes and stayed unmoving until they adjusted to the darkness of the room.
He had dreamt a very disturbing dream.
He was the highpriest of Orunmila, the one known as vengeful-cheetah, the keeper of the order of spiritual elders, Igbele-ikosi.
None other had obtained the eleventh power of mysticism for he had touched the robes of Orisa Obatala and looked into the face of the thunder god Orisa Sango and lived to tell the tale. He was the first and the highest and thus he was the priest of priests.
The priest of priests did not have meaningless dreams.
The dream was like no other, it had been a vision of horror.
A horror so real cold beads of sweat ran down his forehead and his neck until it became a damp patch on his sleeping mat.
He sprang to his feet and began pacing the room.
His thoughts raced frantically and he could not understand why he was so troubled.
Two days previously, he had arrived at his country house for eight days to spend time with his three wives.
He was exhausted and needed time away from the daily hustle and noise of the central city, Apoti Orisa Nla.
Even though his duty to the throne was unending the Oba Kabiyesi who was also his childhood friend had insisted that he take a rest.
The Oba had spoken and there could be no argument and with that and so he moved to the peaceful outskirts of the land happy to have the tranquility he had so missed while in the city.
So much for that, here was a dilemma he was quite unprepared for.
What could all this mean? Who was the boy he dreamt about? For once his gift of interpretation failed him.
All he knew was that there was a boy and there was a dream.
The dream revealed death, chaos and destruction until it filled the living earth and brimmed over.
The boy was the key to unlock the dream.
There was an image in his mind but he could not remember the name. It had been sung to him over and over in his dream until it became like the cry of the Ikoti bird. And now he could not remember.
He could think no further for at that instant Igbesinu manifested. Without thinking the highpriest crouched low making his body as small a target as possible for Igbesinu was never wrong and always urgent.
Igbesinu was a spell of forewarning.
A permanent and latent spell a wielder of magic cast over his Ori to warn of unseen or imminent danger to his being or any chosen party bonded to him.
His heart pounded in his chest as the spell urged him to move.
The blood flowing in his veins burned with urgency to move but he held firm knowing if there was a threat in the room it was best to first identify it. If the danger knew where he was exactly he would have been attacked already.
His eyes looked around the room and found nothing.
Igbesinu was never wrong.
He judged that a lunge would propel him across the room to the corner where his sword was kept.
If there was an unseen enemy in the room he would be laid bare to an attack.
There was no other choice. His wives lay unsuspecting in the rooms beyond the corridor.
He lunged and rolled and when he came up it was with his scabbard in his hands.
He unsheathed the charmed weapon and the hair-raising yowl of a cheetah echoed through the room.
He was Ade-ajaoye omo Orunmila the one the rains do not touch and his depiction was of the vengeful cheetah. Enemies beware! The cheetah has stirred!
He moved swiftly into the open.
Who dared enter under his roof with hostile intentions?
Have they not been told?
He stepped from his room into the dark passage with the forewarning spell raging like a storm in his head.
The urgency became overwhelming. He threw away caution and started to run.
“Abosede! Adejumoke! Abeni!” he called out their names. He got two replies almost instantly.
The voices were scared but not in danger…which meant.
“Abeni!” he hissed under his breath and made the turning to her room.
Slipping on the smooth earthen-floor he pushed against the wall and regained his balance.
“ABENI!” He screamed her name as he swept aside the curtains that served as a covering for her doorway.
What he saw gave him pause for thought.
From where she slept under the window an inhumanly long arm stretched into the room from the outside and pinned her to the mat by her throat.
She was being slowly smothered to death.
A face came into view and was partially illuminated by the lamplight.
It was enough to view the face of horror. Wild black-hair covered the face as if a bush had been placed on the head. Eyes that glowed red and a mouth that looked to wide to sit on such a narrow face. The creature opened its mouth in a growl and licked its lips revealing for a moment a space full of vicious looking teeth.
Abeni had been struggling violently against her attacker.
Frantic eyes fell on her husband and she immediately stopped her struggles.
Such was the trust she placed on him.
The creature also saw him and gave a harsh bark. It lifted her weightlessly off the bed meaning to drag her out through the window but her head hit the top of the sill and she fell limp.
Ade-ajaoye moved forward swiftly.
He knew not the nature of the creature but he was well accustomed to the nature of death, all creatures great and small must surely succumb to Iku.
Two steps to the window his sword came biting down, steel met with bone and ascertained supremacy as the arm was severed from just above the elbow. His youngest wife dropped to the floor with the hand holding on to her throat.
The creature bellowed in pain and made to flee as the Highpriest reversed his swing but it was not enough for a killing blow. He reached out and grabbed a handful of hair dragging it close as the beast pulled away, there were so close he could smell its rancid breathe and see his reflection in its red-glazed eyes. He opened his mind to the one-source and his body was flooded with magic.
“PADA!” he uttered almost insolently a word of command.
The spell was fueled with his anger and when it manifested it was with devastating effect.
There was a feeling of silent thunder as concentrated energy slammed into the beast. Its features dissolved in the blast and all that was left was hurled away into the coming morning.
The air was split by screams of hysteria. He turned inside the room and found the other wives waiting white-faced by the doorway. They glanced nervously in concern at Abeni waiting for their husband and master to grant them leave to proceed. The screams came with more urgency. There was no time to attend his wounded wife.
“Adejumoke!” he turned to his second wife for she was useful with a weapon. “Enter my room and retrieve my second sword. Hurry back and stand guard in the middle of the room with your backs to the wall and a clear view of both entrances.”
Adejumoke knelt on both knees before scurrying from the room.
“Attend to her” he spoke to his first wife for she was the eldest and most calm.
She handed him a cloth and he wiped the gore from his face and chest. “Give to her a mild dose of crushed Erugu mixed with a portion of calming roots and fresh water. Check her head for wounds before fixing the right poultice.”
The screams from outside came with more insistence. The people outside were dying. “I will be back shortly” he said and ran from the room.
The highpriest stepped outside into the morning and all around him was confusion.
The settlement was in chaos with people screaming and fleeing haphazardly.
The men, women and their children cried to the gods for intervention. Ade-ajaoye cast his eyes further down the road and found the cause of the problem.
A horde of beasts such as never seen hacked their way through the throngs of fleeing people.
They knew no disparity and brought equal death to the village-folk with every swing of their weapons.
The men from the settlement were mostly farmers with no knowledge of battle, they knew everything that could be told about the weather and the soil and of the plants of the forest and of every animal for ten leagues around but of killing a man they knew nothing. And these savage creatures were not men.
Something had to be done.
A middle-aged man ran past and the highpriest stretched a hand to stop him.
“Man! Come here!” He commanded as he pulled him close.
The man made to struggle but calmed down immediately when he saw who he faced.
“Vengeful cheetah!” he gasped and made to prostrate.
“This is neither the time nor place.” Ade-ajaoye stooped and held him up.
“We need to act quickly before the village is lost. Call to yourself as many able men as possible and lead the crowd into the market-square. None should run to the woods for the bushes veil any lurking dangers.” The man nodded as he listened to the words of his highpriest.
“I hear and obey.” He replied. All else forgotten he hurried to attend the bidding.
The highpriest called the next man.
This was an older man and Ade-ajaoye was instantly recognized. He stopped the aged man from prostrating in greeting.
“By my name I want you to rally every able father and every able son and tell them to take to arms. None should give ground without a fight! And in my name I command you to strike down anybody who deems it fit to disobey! Arm yourself man! And prepare to protect your women and children!”
“I HEAR AND OBEY!” the man shouted at the top of his voice as he hurried off.
The high priest strode forward with purpose. The people in the immediate surrounding became aware of his presence and there were hushed whispers of “highpriest! Highpriest! Behold the vengeful cheetah!”
The men ran to him and sought leadership.
“Arm yourself with anything that can be used as a weapon! ATTEND MY BIDDING NOW!” his voice carried with authority and all who heard hurried to obey.
He turned his attention further down the road were the butchery was taking place and began running as fast as his legs would allow over rough terrain. He was escorted by hails of vengeful cheetah! Vengeful cheetah! Vengeful cheetah!
Bearing down on the scene he charged the nearest creature.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 10:13pm On Jul 27|
Bearing down on the scene he charged the nearest creature.
The Ghommid had just impaled an unfortunate farmer to death and could not free its weapon fast enough for a block.
The highpriest leapt like a cat and his sword became the claw.
It whistled through the air in a vicious arc and the head tumbled down.
The vengeful cheetah landed nimbly and was on the move within the next breath.
“GATHER TO ME!” He raised his voice above the noise as he charged the next Ghommid from behind.
The creature died without seeing who delivered its death.
The farmers began to regroup. Armed with farming tools, hoes and cutlasses, they joined the fight now not as victims to be slaughtered but opponents to be fought.
The invaders had not expected such sudden recovery but still they came undeterred.
The farmers quickly formed a defensive line and pushed back at the enemy.
The highpriest stood at the head of the battle fighting shoulder to shoulder with the men while lending confidence with his presence.
It seemed surely they would prevail but then something totally unexpected happened.
He felt the usage of magic.
A very powerful spell had just been wielded.
There was an instant roar in his head as, Igbesinu, the forewarning spell manifested.
This time it was with such urgency the highpriest experienced an almost incapacitating feeling of paranoia.
What could this mean?
His wives were safe and his present situation was not such to initiate the forewarning spell.
Who had wielded such powerful magic?
The nature of the command was ‘Ofe’ the teleporting spell and it involved a tremendous amount of power.
Why did Igbesinu manifest when the magic was used?
His mind raced as he sought to fix the vital piece to the puzzle.
The attack was wrong from the start.
If the enemy wanted to invade the land coming through from Ile-ibosi was the surest way to fail.
The mountains gave cover to the back gates and took two days of hard climbing using the hidden foot-paths.
A small army could be sighted leagues before reaching the settlements, but then, what brought about the attack? Ile-ibosi was a lost cause to an invading army. All there was to conquer here were aged farmers and a handful of hunters.
The heart of the land lay in the central city, Apoti-orisa-nla, and the only way an army could to get to it was by forcing its way through the front gates.
What if the enemy needed no use of an army and had the use of a teleporting spell?
Ade-ajaoye what would you do? The question brought along its answer and everything became clear.
He now knew why the forewarning spell had manifested.
The Oba Kabiyesi was in danger. The Oba had been the main reason for the attack.
The invaders were truly after the heart of the land and wanted the strongest protection for the king out of the way.
The attack was merely a diversion to keep him busy and confused should Igbesinu manifest.
They were after the Oba! He dodged out of reach and weighed his options.
To leave the battle now was to leave the people to Iku. Without his leadership they all would surely be slaughtered.
To stay and fight was to leave the Oba Kabiyesi unprotected for a surprise attack.
Two options lay before him.
He was bound by an oath of protection upon his king.
There was only one choice to make.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Hamid7(m): 11:43am On Jul 28|
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 3:49pm On Jul 28|
THE DEMISE OF AN OBA
Adelehinti omo Akerele was the Oba kabiyesi of the central kingdom and of the five Yoruba provinces.
He was also Olori Gbogbo Ilu the seventh, the sole occupant and ruler of the ascending throne of the gods.
Bestowed upon him was the spiritual title of the overseer of seers and the possession of Isotele, the staff of office and the scepter of Orisa Oranmiyan.
The Oba Kabiyesi sat in attendance and watched as his daughter performed the ceremony of passage into womanhood, a ritual which ultimately identified her as the next-in-line to ascension on the throne.
Now, he felt neither like a king nor conqueror but like a father proudly watching the accomplishment of a cherished child.
He was gifted with many children, some already grown into fine young men and women and most capable of becoming decent rulers of the ascending throne but tradition prevailed since the time of the ancient fathers and only the children of the first wife could ever be allowed to take the step of ascension.
His first wife, Abinuwunmi Irelu Omo Akerele, had birthed only one child.
Princess Afolukemi irelu omo Akerele although coming later than most of her siblings would ultimately become the queen of the Middleland.
An ascension which delivered a great responsibility upon her shoulders while making her chosen male companion ‘the king’ only in name and not authority.
His daughter the princess would become ‘Olori the second’ of Yorubaland and its five provinces.
She would assume the title ‘overseer of seers’ but could never be the possessor of Isotele for that honor was granted only to a male successor.
The scepter could only be wielded by a disciple of Oranmiyan the god of war.
Such a person must be a warrior of might and valor.
A warrior tested on all-grounds who must have undergone the rigors of the ‘rites of passage’.
A warrior who laughs at his own fears and mocks his enemies while he makes away with their treasures, since the histories of long ago no woman had ever attained such a status.
It would be wrong to assume that the princess was not fit to be a warrior of warriors for it seemed she was born with a knife in her hands.
At ten seasons of age she killed her first man, by her twelfth season she could best four out of every five adept warriors.
Afolukemi was a natural fighter and was also as stubborn as a mule.
A trait her father had observed early in her youth and quickly made steps to harness her fiery temper.
Her learning and education was made the concern of the highpriest while the first warrior-chief had taken her to the limits of her physical abilities with endless sessions of grueling combat training.
She was a phenomenon. Her body and mind grasped the language of combat so fluently she put most men to shame.
Truly, she was possessed by a battle-spirit.
The same spirit of her great grandfather Oba Akinyade omo Akerele the fourth.
He was also known as ‘Akinyade the terrible’ by his enemies.
During his short reign in life as king he had been a terror, and so shall she also be.
She was as rebellious and hardened as he was when he single-handedly hunted down and slew ‘Ekerele the hungry’, a powerful and elusive forest dae’mon who always appeared in the form of a giant lion to prey on human flesh.
She was also as calculative and as cold as he was when he challenged and killed his elder brother in order to ascend the throne.
To look at her one could never tell for she was as beautiful as a queen had the right to be.
Hers was the figure of a nubile water-spirit and the face of breath-taking beauty and when she chose to sing her voice became like the beguiling sirens of the woods.
Her standing was such that she need not do battle with a man in-order to bring him to his knees.
And now she danced attired only in a spotless white wrapper for it was her ceremony. The Oba Kabiyesi as her father was the only male allowed in at the stage.
The priestesses hummed and chanted as some beat on the small ceremonial drums while the others played on the Se-kere.
The princess clapped and danced to the slow rhythm and then began to sing and recount the vows she had been taught as soon as she could speak. Wooing the guardian spirits of the royal-compound of Akerele and preparing them to meet, accept and bless a female monarch.
Today! Afolukemi Irelu has become a woman.
‘BE-NI!’ the priestesses chorused as one.
The spirits of my Fore! Fore-fathers bear me witness.
‘ASE!’ they chorused again.
Land of my fathers! Open your arms and receive your queen.
And let the teachings of Akilo be my watchword.
And should I stumble or falter may the gentle hand of Ikolo be my guardian.
And in illness and in health may the radiance of Iwe-ju be my light.
On and on she sang and on and on the priestesses chorused.
She danced till beads of sweat ran down her body.
This was her day. The Middlelands shall soon welcome a new queen.
The song picked up tempo and the princess was so engrossed in the dance she almost missed the peak of her pronouncement.
And just as she was declaring herself the forthcoming queen it happened without warning.
In the blink of an eye four tall creatures appeared in the midst of the ceremony.
Steel rang eagerly as weapons were drawn and within the next breath blood began to flow.
The Oba Kabiyesi was so startled he fell back from his stool dropping the scepter of Oranmiyan.
A costly misdeed indeed and he was to pay the price in full.
Afolukemi reacted like she had been expecting the attack all-day long.
So strong was her resolve in the face of confrontation that total surprise failed to dull her reflexes.
The ceremony was an initiation and thus everyone had been expected to be stripped of any item of aggression, but the princess had never been without a blade since her father had presented her with one.
‘Oro’ was the name she gave to it, an exquisite poison-bladed dagger which valued more than a small village because of the nature and rareness of its blade. She was only eight full-seasons of age when the dagger had been gifted to her and from then till present, she and her blade had been inseparable.
Her hand slid to her thigh and found her weapon. The sheathed dagger waited for her slender touch and when it was drawn the two became like one.
She crouched down and was gone.
And in the space she left behind swords slashed through the air missing her by a hair’s-breadth.
The Ghommids spread out and swept through the priestesses like a reaper through a corn-field.
The screams of the dying alerted the guards on the corridors and the adjoining veranda and they made a rush to rescue their king.
The princess rolled out of reach and surfaced facing her attacker.
Her left-hand pulled free her wrapper which only served as a hindrance.
Her unclothedness was unveiled even as her right-hand delivered death in form of a black-blade.
She struck home before she realized she was fighting not man but beast and yet she did not falter.
She buried Oro deep in its belly and the poison began eating greedily into its victim.
The ghommid bellowed in pain and she skipped back in time to avoid being skewered by its sword.
Twisting and ducking she began a new dance.
A dance much different from the earlier one, this was a dance of death calculated to put her just beyond reach of her adversaries.
Not being so nimble the priestesses were hacked down to the last woman and as they fell they cried the cries of the murdered.
The white-haired ghommid came for the Oba so swiftly his movements became a blur.
The surprise was total for the shrine had been well warded against any visitors be it friend or foe and the last thing Adelehinti expected was to be attacked in his very home.
He reached for his fallen staff but failed to see the slashing sword until it was too late. One blow was all it took and the king of the Middlelands met with Iku the harbinger of death.
Afolukemi screamed and made to run to her father but a fist as large as a melon slammed into the side of her face and she welcomed the darkness.
The white-haired ghommid gathered the staff of power from where it lay and in the same breath uttered a word of command. The shrine emptied of all-living...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by OluwabuqqyYOLO(m): 2:47pm On Jul 29|
Wow! So captivating!
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 8:09pm On Jul 29|
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 8:16pm On Jul 29|
The attack had all taken only a few moments but when the guards finally broke into the room to aid the king the horrors they found made them wail as a child would wail for the death of a parent.
The Oba Kabiyesi has been murdered!
Yorubaland has been betrayed!
There must be retribution for this transgression!
The cries spread through the royal-compound and when it reached the marketplace there was such uproar amongst the people that a riot spread through the streets.
There was a disorder such as never witnessed in the history of the land all because the late Oba Kabiyesi had been greatly loved by his people. The men and women cried and grieved.
The various factions drew apart in suspicion, each blamed the other and none blamed the gods, and it was not long before the people began to fight amongst themselves for no apparent reason as a frenzy of fear took over the city.
A while later they became aware that the scepter of Oranmiyan had also been stolen. It was soon to dawn that the next-in-line to ascension, Afolukemi irelu omo Akerele, the warrior princess was also missing.
In less time it takes the sun to greet the heavens a whole village lying at the north valley of Ile-ibosi had been razed to its foundations.
The village-folk who failed to flee all a witness heinous deaths.
The central city, Apoti-orisa-nla, was in confusion and the city-folk gathered before the compound of the late Oba Kabiyesi in mourning and despair.
The king is dead!
Princess Afolukemi the next-in-line to ascend the throne was missing!
The scepter of Oranmiyan had been stolen! Yorubaland had been invaded by powerful magic-wielding creatures!
The people wailed and lamented so sorrowfully that the creatures of the forests cried along with them.
The land of the ancestors has been betrayed.
The men shook their heads in shame and bit on their fingers in regret while the women tore at their hair in bitterness.
And even when the skies opened up and the rains poured down they stood diligently before the compound as if by that act alone the evils of the day would be washed away and their Oba would once again step outside to greet them once again.
The highpriest stood in the middle of the shrine and wept silently. The late Oba Adelehinti had been his life-long companion and did not deserve to meet such a sudden and shocking death.
He blamed himself for not reaching his king in time and for leaving the helpless farmers and their families to die.
He blamed himself for the deaths of his wives. His last words to them were to wait for him and he knew they would have chosen death over disobedience and stayed behind making no effort at escape.
He was responsible for their well-being and had betrayed their trust and left them to the mercy of the invaders, and all to what purpose?
He had commanded the spell of ‘seven mighty bounds’ and reached the palace in less than a moment, knowing in his heart of hearts that he would never be able to aid his king in time.
He arrived late and now the king was dead and princess Afolukemi his Goddaughter and the next-in-line to ascension was not to be found. The thought of any harm befalling her sent chills of fear down his spine.
Whatever happens, she must be found!
He walked around the shrine slowly, carefully reading the threads of lingering magic. He caught a scent and cast a revealing spell, Ishiri, mouthing the commands slow and clear.
The hairs at the back of his neck stood on end and his skin crawled as the spell manifested.
A graphic scene opened up in his mind’s eye and everything replayed itself in detail but without the pleasure of sound.
It became as if the highpriest had been present at the ceremony and all actions of the attack and the death of the Oba Kabiyesi were re-enacted. The knife-fight and the death of the Ghommid also got recreated.
He saw her look of anguish as she watched her father butchered before her eyes and his heart reached out to her, if she survived, her experience of today would surely leave scars. It seemed to him that she saw the blow coming but did nothing to avoid it.
She was knocked senseless but not killed and as she fell she simply vanished to the unknown. He stilled the images just as the white-haired Ghommid stooped to pick up the scepter of Oranmiyan and walked closer to the apparition.
What are you?
Where from the reaches of yonder did you come? You who performs such feats of magic?
You who has defeated a warrior of warriors with a single blow?
With a sad sigh Ade-ajaoye harnessed and dispelled Ishiri.
An urge for vengeance burned hot in his belly. Only six others knew he was not in attendance to the Oba Kabiyesi for that period. They also were aware the princess would perform her rites of passage today with the Oba Kabiyesi in attendance, unarmed and unguarded...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by OluwabuqqyYOLO(m): 9:41pm On Jul 29|
Thanks very much for continuing.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 5:20pm On Jul 30|
An urge for vengeance burned hot in his belly.
Only six others knew he was not in attendance to the Oba Kabiyesi for that period.
They also were aware the princess would perform her rites of passage today with the Oba Kabiyesi in attendance, unarmed and unguarded.
The members of Igbele-ikosi, the six spiritual Elders, knew everything about the workings of the palace.
If ever there was a traitor close to the royal family amongst them was the place to look.
An almost impossible task for each was genuinely close to the Oba Kabiyesi a reason as to why they were appointed in the first place.
Outwardly they appeared comradely towards each other but secretly each groveled to the throne seeking favors from the royal family to forward selfish ambitions.
But could their ambitions be so strong that they sought to harm the king?
Surely, someone has taken a stride wider than his step and there shall be a redress to this transgression.
He turned to Gbagilabi omo Ajegun, his apprentice and his second-in-office who had been with him and under his tutelage since infancy.
A full twenty and three seasons ago and now the man who stood obediently before him had become like a son to him, a devoted priest of Orisa Orunmila, spiritually stronger and wiser than his years.
He was the voice of the highpriest and thus carried considerable authority even though tradition placed much emphasis on age ascendancy.
Older and well-respected citizens always paid him homage in-passing.
“Announce a meeting of elders! It takes place here in the palace before three turns of the sun.
Prepare for confrontation for I foresee a disturbance.
Take every precaution and make sure the palace guards are alert. I need also in attendance Kalejaiye omo Esuola, the first-warrior chief.
Immediately the Elders settle with their entourage the compound is to be surrounded.
No one is allowed leave without word from me. Not a living soul! Is that clear?”
“I hear and obey.” Gbagilabi nodded in acknowledgment.
The highpriest stooped to study the body of the creature the princess had slain.
Already the body was decomposed almost beyond recognition and the stench had become unbearable.
Such was the nature of the poison from the black-blade.
The room had been stripped clean of all evidence of the earlier violence, wiped clean of the blood and gore that had been much a part of the shrine.
“Burn this creature discreetly for its presence will do more bad than good. A terrible omen is what it is and it reeks of the stench of darkness, of a place shunned by the blessed rays of the sun, No one is to be given any details until after the meeting of the elders.
Send out my spymaster and his men. I have no clues to offer but they know their trade well.
Whisper into the ears of Kalejaiye and have him send scouts to the far reaches of the land.
The invaders must have left a trail and I want it discovered before it blows cold. After which you, Gbagilabi, will address the people on behalf of the royal compound.”
He turned for the exit, “how is the Olori, Abinuwunmi taking this?”
“She mourns in her chamber and has forbidden anybody come pay her solace.
She grieves now as a widow and everyone suspects she will soon grieve as a mother. Her sorrow runs deep”
“Make sure she is well guarded.” The highpriest was taking no chances, “Go now and do my bidding!”
Gbagilabi hurried-off leaving him alone for the first time since he had been awakened by the dream.
The dream had come and so many evil things followed in its wake.
Suddenly, he was overwhelmed by the burden of his emotions and fell on all four in supplication to the gods.
He began to pray for the soul of the late Oba Adelehinti and for the souls of all who had woken this morning to the reality of never again waking to see another day.
May Iku treat them kindly and may their souls be admitted into, Igba-iwale, the land of rebirth.
And as he prayed he could feel his soul stir as if troubled.
This, he knew, was only the beginning.
His dream, the death of the king, the murder of his wives and of his people and the disappearance of the princess were just the first steps to a much greater catastrophe, a disaster now approaching slowly but surely like the sturdy steps of the burrowing tortoise.
The dream had been the warning a vision and a puzzle.
The boy was the key and yet his name eluded him. He needed his memory now more than ever for he was surrounded by traitors.
The throne was empty and the staff of Oranmiyan, a powerful talisman and the symbol of the people had been stolen.
In the hands of the enemy the talisman could mean the downfall of the ascending throne and he dreaded to think of the consequence.
He stood and wiped the tears from his eyes and with one last glance at the throne room made for his home in the city.
As he prepared for the meeting of Elders he made a silent vow, he who has erred shall be unveiled before the end of this day.
A MEETING OF ELDERS
Two turns of the sun had not yet passed before the palace was visited by a different manner of crowd.
Warriors came forth from the seven-ends of the city and from the five surrounding settlements as the Elders made a show of appearance one after the other.
Five men and a woman and each brought an entourage of elite warriors running into the hundreds.
The royal-compound was cramped full and most of the low-ranking warriors were camped out in the neighboring woods.
More were reported to be journeying down from the five provinces.
The word had spread faster than the winds. Each province was ruled by a chief and each chief was supported by an Elder.
Mean looking and battle scarred, the only thing separating them were the armbands.
There were six different colors and each represented an Elder.
There were three levels to the bands.
Three bands tied to the fore-arm meant the wearer was a commander, a conjurer, and a warrior that has proven himself on the field of battle time and time again.
Tied with two layers meant a warrior of middle-status, neither novice nor conjurer.
The others wore only one band, these were the lower-ranks, men who strived to find a mark in the vastness of a great and growing army.
The royal guards wore the colors of white and green and had been recently taken over by the second-in-arms.
His predecessor was being held in the dungeons and was at present undergoing a grueling session of questioning, if found guilty of neglect to his duties then his fate awaited him at the sharpened edge of the beheader’s sword.
The new first-in-arms bowed his head low in respect as he received orders from the first-warrior chief.
He wore his two-colored bands with the knots facing out which showed his latest status.
The first-warrior chief was adorned for battle.
He was adorned from head-to-foot with various charms of aggression.
And all who saw him recognized his superiority and gave a wide berth at his passage.
He turned and observed the palace compound and was not comfortable with the scene.
Hostility lingered in the air thick and palpable.
The different warrior-factions kept to themselves and viewed the others with open stares of suspicion.
Sensing an impending disaster he quickly took precautions, no weapon was allowed unto the grounds and only a handful of chosen high-ranking warriors were allowed into the palace.
The rank of first-warrior chief earned him a small band of his own elite-warriors even though in times of war all others fell under him and he was given total command.
In the case of extreme situations such as present things could happen and the higher-ranking warriors could undermine his authority.
He hoped it would never come to that but if it did, whatever happens, may the gods see him through.
The day had been hard and signs show it will soon be harder if the highpriest failed to hold the meeting and end it in peace.
He will demand explanations as the Elders will also demand answers.
It was not for him, Kalejaiye omo Esuola, to ponder on such his place was to keep the peace amongst the ranks and maintain order in all circumstances and at all costs.
And it seemed to him that the steady stream of wine that had since been flowing into the gourd of peace was soon to overflow.
Ade-ajaoye paced in front of the six seated elders. Gbagilabi was also present and the only other person allowed in from time to time was, the first-warrior chief. His was to keep the highpriest informed on the situation unfolding outside on the grounds.
Gbagilabi stood silently in a corner and watched over the proceedings with a wary eye in case his master was in sudden need of help.
The highpriest stopped and looked steadily into their eyes one after the other trying to read and intimidate but these were not children at play and he was matched gaze for gaze.
“Ade-ajaoye!” It was Ajakuna omo Agberege, the most recently Elder, who broke the silence.
“How dare you summon us like this? Like common suspects? Do you not know what the people will say? That the elders killed their king! Is it not bad enough that the king has been murdered? Without you prancing around pretending like you know what you don’t know? Who gave you the authority? How dare you? Summon me? Ajakuna, the unforgiving Jackal!”
his voice dripped with scorn as he beat his chest repeatedly for emphasis and his heavy jowls shook, “I was summoning spirits of great power while you played bare-buttock under the rains. I notice you have been developing airs of late. The vengeful cheetah stumbles only because it is on unfamiliar terrain, Orunmila shines on you but a stumbling cheetah can be a prey for an unforgiving jackal! You are insignificant to…”
“DAKE!!!” the highpriest commanded with a touch of his will.
The Elder fell back to his seat as if pushed.
Ade-ajaoye moved close until his face almost pressed against his.
“Who dares?” he asked. “Who dares summon all six of you to his presence?”
He looked at each of them and struggled to contain his anger. “I dare! I Ade-ajaoye omo Orunmila summoned you! I the vengeful-cheetah ordered you here. I the Ifa, the highpriest of Orunmila and the keeper of Igbele-ikosi commanded your presence here. And the fact that you are all seat before me bears witness to my right. Whichever of you who deems it fit to undermine my authority shall do so now while I stand before you or hold his or her peace for the good of the land!”
It was an open challenge and there was silence in the room.
Once again the highpriest looked at each of them.
His gaze rested on the only female, Oyunbikere ore omo Iyawaju.
She was an Elder of immense wealth and influence.
She came from an influential compound that had always been in power and blessed by the good graces of the ascending throne.
At forty full seasons of age she was stunningly beautiful and rumored to take youthful men to her bed without discretion.
She was also rumored to be a member of the Osho society, a witch, although there were no facts to confirm the stories she was secretly the most feared by the other Elders.
She looked back at him coolly her gaze never faltering.
He shifted his gaze and it fell on Ewefura omo Akinlaja. He was also called Oloju-opolo because of his large froglike eyes and his hump-backed physique.
Not to be fooled by his deformity Ewefura was easily the most intelligent and most wealthy of the six elders.
He owned numerous lands and properties in the city and in the various five provinces, his wives and children were abundant.
He was also the most spiritually powerful and had attained the ninth plane of mysticism.
Ewefura omo Akinlaja was always quiet and calculative.
He looked back at Ade-ajaoye with a smile which could have been interpreted as anything, he said nothing.
Having intimidated his two greatest threats he passed his gaze over, Adegbite omo Ashilaka, the eldest of the six and the closest friend and collaborator to the late Oba Kabiyesi.
Adegbite said nothing and looked away, lost in his sorrow over his friend.
The highpriest looked at last two, Adefunmisho omo Ibiwunmi and Adelawanni omo Ibiyere both of them were first cousins and both hated each other with a passion.
They both looked back at him and matched his gaze but said nothing.
None stood to his challenge for they knew better than to stand against him.
Sure that he had their attention he turned his intense gaze back to Ajakuna the unforgiving jackal.
“The reason I summoned you all here is to unveil a traitor amongst us in this room” He felt it before he finished the sentence.
The room was suddenly filled with a charged atmosphere as magic was wielded by each of the elders.
They all had conjured an impassable barrier to block their minds and shield their thoughts, barriers that even the strongest mind-readers, could not overcome...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by senrino(m): 7:18pm On Jul 30|
Wow! You good!
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by enm(m): 7:50pm On Jul 30|
Wow! What an update.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 8:31pm On Jul 30|
They all had conjured an impassable barrier to block their minds and shield their thoughts, barriers that even the strongest mind-readers, could not overcome.
Ade-ajaoye was taken aback by the suddenness of their actions, why did they take such an extreme step?
The thought of using magic to read their minds had not occurred to him because it was forbidden in a gathering such as this, what did they have to hide so urgently?
He laughed aloud and his eyes narrowed into slits, “what is the meaning of this? You! The Elders of Yorubaland do you defy the rules you are meant to impose? What madness? What do you all have to hide that you wield magic in a gathering and you wield it against me?”
he looked at the eldest, Adegbite. “Adegbite what does this mean? Do you have anything to hide? Do you know anything about the death of our king? For the love of the gods he was your friend!”
Adegbite shook his head in response but still he held on to his barrier.
With a hiss of frustration the highpriest opened his mind and embraced the one-source flooding his body with magic.
He probed the mind-barriers and found they were on the first plane of mysticism he needed something stronger to cast Ishiri.
He ascended into the second-plane but they all ascended with him.
He could feel their presence in the one-source, defiant and unyielding.
He felt Gbagilabi opening his mind and joining the contest of wills.
Soon he would learn he was out of his depth in this room.
They matched wills on the second plane.
To the Unclad eye it appeared eight people sat in a room with nothing to say but to a conjurer the room no longer existed.
They were in a place of such power where reality was theirs to be manipulated.
Ade-ajaoye probed again but still met resistance. He ascended into the third plane and they followed him.
This was sheer folly!
For how long could they keep this going?
He could feel them begin to feel the strains.
He ascended into the fourth-level.
Gbagilabi gave a sigh of exhaustion. He fell to the earthen-floor drained and tired beyond belief.
He closed his eyes and fell into a deep sleep.
The Elders ascended and still held the barriers.
After a while, Ewefura released his hold on magic.
The highpriest suspected not because he was incapable, it was because he had nothing important to hide.
Ade-ajaoye ascended another level and the next to fall was Adegbite omo Ashilaka.
The room shined with a light so bright and the floors quavered, it could now never be accessed from the physical world and kalejaiye the first-warrior found he was barred from admittance.
At the sixth-plane the warriors crowded outside began to feel the intensity of magic emanating from the meeting room.
They understood a contest of phenomenal proportions was taking place and this made them uneasy.
What happens if their patron was defeated? What would they do? Would they take to arms?
Back in the room the highpriest pushed harder and ascended into the seventh-plane.
At this level there was only blinding light, nothing could be seen, the earthen-floors and the walls ceased to exist and its occupants floated in the midst of nothingness.
He had prepared well for any form of confrontation.
In time, all their minds would be laid bare.
He opened his mind and ascended to the eighth-plane of the spirits.
The palace-building vibrated as if struck by the rumbling voice of Orisa Sango.
The low-ranking warriors panicked and sought cover in the surrounding woods.
The mind-barriers came crashing down for a moment. For a moment their minds became open to him and before he could cast a revealing-spell he felt…
…Adelawani omo Ibiyere was dying…
The Elder had been so desperate to match his will with the others that he followed into a plane beyond his ability.
He had been seen by the spirits and had listened to the voices of the occupants from the eighth-plane.
The rulers of the planes were intolerant entities and spared none who dared to enter unprepared.
When they came for him the sounds were like the rushing of the winds.
There was a smell of burning flesh as the dae’mons landed on Ile.
The heat in the room became oppressive.
They were three and yet they came as one.
Three heads but only one body, one head on the neck with another formed from the chest while the last protruded from the leathery belly.
The fiend looked around the room and its eyes fell on the Elder.
Adelawani knowing what would come next backed away and screamed in fear.
The dae’mon twisted and contorted as it came and entered into his opened mouth, seeking a claim for his soul.
The Elder made to talk and lifted a finger but then was hit with a spasm of violent coughing.
Everyone else stayed away and said nothing.
The laws of the planes of power were clear enough, the entities endured no transgressions.
Adelawani writhed on the floor until he lay still.
His spirit now made the journey to the eighth-plane to be forever trapped and tortured by the spirits and dae’mons abound.
Gradually everything sank back to its normal state.
They stood silence and watched each other through narrowed eyes.
The body of the late Elder lay on the ground.
Ade-ajaoye groaned and cradled his head in his hands.
“You murdered Adelawani!” Ajakuna screamed at the highpriest and backed away from him, “I want no more part of this insanity!” he gathered his fallen attire and staff of office.
“Try not my patience!” replied Ade-ajaoye taking a menacing step towards him, “Adelawani was responsible for his own actions. He knew the penalty for trying to fool the spirits”
“If he knew the consequences then why did he take such a risk?” Ewefura the humpback asked.
“Traitor! Betrayer!” Adefunmisho hawked phlegm out from his throat and spat on the body of his dead cousin.
“Show the dead some respect!” Adegbite looked at him in disgust, “for love of the gods he was of your blood!”
Ade-ajaoye signaled his apprentice with an imperceptible nod and Gbagilabi hurried to the doorway and swept aside the curtains. Kalejaiye the first-warrior chief stood waiting.
Gbagilabi moved closer and whispered in his ear.
The warrior chief nodded once and turned to give a quiet order to his first-in-arms.
The warrior hurried-off with a grave look of his face.
Almost immediately there came a noise of disturbance from outside as a brief scuffle ensued.
Within moments the whole silver arm-banded supporters and entourage of the late elder, Adelawani omo ibiyere had been taken by surprise and subdued before the news of his death became known.
The high-ranking warriors of his entourage were quickly put to death for they had sworn a blood-oath of protection on their patron, his death was also theirs.
The first-in-arms reported back to the first-warrior who passed the information to the high priest.
“There is nothing more to be achieved here today” Ade-ajaoye addressed the five remaining elders. “This unfortunate incidence will be sorted out by the first-warrior chief. I suggest we attend our personal affairs for the day. Unfailingly, you all will receive reports of my endeavors as events unfold”
Ewefura omo Akinlaja was the last to leave and as he passed he stopped and placed a gentle hand on his shoulder.
“The Etuku are known to be stealer of dreams. A conversation with the spirits might be enlightening” was all he said.
His words rang clear and true but he left the highpriest curious.
How did Ewefura know he had dreamt and had forgotten information of import?
He was right when he named the Etuku as the stealer of dreams but to converse with them?
The thought brought him no joy for the dream-spirits where bound by no rules and neither could they be held by any known spell.
These were the bandits of the dream-world and they stole away sweet dreams and replaced them with nightmares.
The spirits proffered help only when they saw fit, and that was seldom, even then you would be fortunate if they did not offer you deception for they were mischievous entities that enjoyed nothing more than playing pranks on those of the living...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by OluwabuqqyYOLO(m): 9:46pm On Jul 30|
Wow. The vengeful cheetah is so powerful. This is awesome!
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 10:08pm On Jul 31|
WALKING THE LAND OF DREAMS
The first-warrior walked into the room, he was closely followed by a young low-ranking warrior, a runner bringing grim news from Ile-ibosi.
The highpriest sat back and listened as his worst fears were confirmed.
The settlement had been razed to the ground and most of the inhabitants were dead, wounded or missing as the villagers had taken to the bushes after his departure.
Of his three wives there was no news.
Ade-ajaoye bore this with a heavy heart and no outer show of emotion, to show emotion would have been a sign of weakness and he needed to be strong for his people.
The next messenger announced his presence and was permitted entry, he was old and weather-beaten but he carried himself with a lightness that denied his true age.
He was named ‘Igan’ the best and most experienced tracker around for ten leagues, he brought with him worse news.
He had read the tracks made by the attackers and had found them not of man but of a fabled race of creatures called, Ghommids.
He had recognized the tracks by the stories passed down through the generations by his forebears and now he told the tale to his audience…
…. long ago a race of humans had been cursed by a resentful demy-goddess.
‘Agberun-ola’ she was named and it was said she was a favored mistress of the sun-god, Orisa Orunran.
The reason why she grew resentful has never been ascertained but it was said that when she uttered her curse it was in the name of Orunran.
The sun ceased to shine over their lands.
The crops died and the livestock soon followed.
There was famine and starvation.
The darkness brought with it many creatures of the dark and the land became overrun with evil.
A terrible pestilence swept across the dark-land.
The women died while the men who were strong enough to survive began to change shape and adapt to the perilous surroundings.
The longer they lived in the darkness the stronger they grew and more became their wrath and hatred for the beings that walked the daylight for they were jealous and desired themselves to walk in the light.
There came a period when the Ghommids consumed by their hatred entered into the land of light under the cover of night to kill and plunder from the sons of man quickly stealing back before the sun awoke.
The humans cried up into the heavens for the gods to deliver them from such a powerful and hateful enemy but the gods kept their silence and the ghommids persisted with their pillage and murder of men.
Not until the ghommids started feeding on the blood of humans did Orisa Ogun, the god of iron, intervened and caused for a great unseen and impassable divide to fall across the borders of the cursed land, imprisoning the ghommids for all eternity…
…The highpriest nodded his head thoughtfully. He had heard many tales as such during his childhood days while sitting before his mother under the moonlit sky.
“If these beings…these ghommids are what you say they are how would you know? The fable says they were banished for all eternity.”
The old tracker shrugged, “I know not, I am but an old man who unfortunate enough to know more than was good for one.
The beasts and dae’mons I have once tracked down have no reason to be in the existence in the first place but they are, with no explanation whatsoever for the omnipotent gods have made it so.
I know what I tracked tonight was a Ghommid for my great forefather, Alaruke omo Igborinle, the greatest tracker to ever walk the living earth came across the last set of Ghommid tracks ever seen until today.
His teachings have been passed down through the lineage and I stand confident here in this room that the best trackers in the land will give you the same findings.
Can you not remember the age-old song of the warrior legend Adelufemi Oloro ‘the great hunter’ the mightiest hunter to walk the land and the only mortal to ever bed a half-goddess.
Can you remember how he came across the goddess? The part of the song which says he saved her from being ravished by a powerful magic-wielding being? It was a being of darkness ‘the white-haired one’ Onirunfunfun Orandun.
Your holiness that creature was said to be a Ghommid.”
“Did you say white-haired?” Ade-ajaoye sat forward suddenly attentive.
“The song implied the creature was white-haired.” the tracker was baffled by the sudden worried look on the high-priest.
“Recite the song for me!”
Igan paused for breath and began to sing the folklore song composed for Adelufemi Oloro the hunter whose exploits were many and great indeed.
The highpriest made him recite it over and over again as he listened intently to every word.
“So” he said after a time, “you say this white-haired Ghommid was not defeated by Adelufemi Oloro?”
“Your holiness, he was not, it says they wrestled for many days and nights until finally the Ghommid threw the great hunter.
And before he could deliver the death-blow the demy-goddess beseeched Orisa Orunran and the sun woke up a full-turn early.
The Ghommid was of darkness and could not face the sun. It commanded a spell and vanished, promising vengeance on the injured hunter and his Halfgoddess.”
The highpriest gave a hiss of frustration and lifted a hand for silence. “Everyone please leave!” He commanded. They stood shocked by the sudden request and his unusual behavior.
“Did you not hear me?” Ade-ajaoye looked at everyone in turn, “I need to be left to my thoughts.”
The runner and the tracker prostrated and quickly left the room.
The first-warrior looked questioningly at the highpriest.
“Go and see to the order of the city and the surrounding settlements. kalejaiye I leave the city into your care till the morning for I have a few affairs to attend that need my full concentration.
I also need you to keep a watchful eye on the Elders.”
The first-warrior chief departed. Gbagilabi moved towards the doorway but the highpriest stayed him with a hand on his arm.
“No not you. I need you to make preparations for tonight. Tonight I travel to the place of dreams.” He sighed deeply, “Gbagilabi. Something terrible is about to befall the Middlelands and I need to know what to do.
In the morning I will walk the dreams of mortals and seek out the Etuku.”
“I hear and obey!” Gbagilabi replied and hurried-off to make preparations.
The day passed on into evening and then into the deep of night.
The period when even owls hooted in whispers for fear of what might emerge from the darkness of the bushes.
The moon put aside her shyness and shone in all her brilliance illuminating the land and unveiling its many shadows but there are places on Ile that even the brightest beams of moonlight dare not penetrate.
Places of evil and total darkness. Places where strange creatures and unfriendly entities roamed free and ruled the night as their domain.
In all entities and creatures of darkness none are as feared as the society of the ‘Osho’.
The ‘Aje’ as they are so often called by mortals are the most malicious dae’mons to walk the earth.
They sought only to cause death and hardship on anything not of their society.
Some say the Osho were in existence even before the first man created by Olodumare walked on Ile.
A tale, if true, explains why they harbored such hatred in their black-hearts for all mortals, seeking to dominate and punish them for being favorites of all Olodumare’s creations.
They existed on two simultaneous planes, in the spirit and in the flesh, and thus were able to live amongst mortals where their maliciousness could be sown effectively and without suspicion.
During the day, they exhibited the behavior of mortals and were ruled by the laws of nature and during the period of night when man was at his weakest they entered into the spirit world in form of the blackbird and perpetuated unspeakable acts of evil.
It is believed in the compound that when fresh milk suddenly turns sour a curse had been placed on the head of an intended victim.
Someone will fall terribly ill and suffer to death in less than seven days if drastic measures were not taken by the family to appease the offended witch with in most times was a lost cause for these dae’mons knew not the face of forgiveness.
On the other hand it was also believed that when a person alone sees a blackbird during the early period of morning which acted not in the manner of birds by dancing for the onlooker it meant a witch bound by the rules of Ile which sought a balance between good and evil was being forced to perform a good deed.
This happened only once in her lifetime but such is the evil of their nature that the good deed will most certainly bring about drastic repercussions on the head of the chosen.
The society was made up of numerous covens spread throughout humanity to the farthest reaches of Ile and each maintained thirteen members.
Their far-reaching influence made them exceptionally powerful and members attained positions of authority in the land of the living and every ruler or monarch in the kingdoms far and wide was in one way or the other influenced by their presence but still they sought power and dominion over man as since the beginning.
An ambition with a perpetually elusive attainment which only served to fan the flames of their loathing…
… Now as the last three-turns of the moon elapses the witching-period arrives and deep into the dark recess of the forest under the ethereal roots of an ancient ‘Ogede’ tree a gathering takes place but this is no ordinary gathering for it is a meeting of the first-thirteen.
The thirteen daughters of ‘Alukuluku’ the sovereign queen of darkness, a coven which defies time and has been in existence an era long before the war of the gods but even though they stood as ancient and powerful dae’mons they were bound by the laws of Ile.
They grew and died as mortals but then became reincarnated on the same instant of their death through a freshly born human-child becoming powerful and knowledgeable as at the moment of death, thus they survived the ages.
Thirteen figures stood cloaked in shadows, thirteen females, all wore nothing but a black wrapper tied above the breasts.
Thirteen figures of dark beauty stood in a circle. A large bonfire crackled in the centre of the circle but gave out little light.
The first to speak was no older than a child of eight full-seasons, “He is aware” she said, her beautiful face mirroring the innocence of the young.
Twelve pairs of eyes looked to a thirteenth figure.
The figure stepped forward and the bonfire cast a dull glow on her features.
“I think not for I would have been uncovered and they all would have turned on me. It is a good thing Adelawanni died when he did, ascending any higher would have revealed me. His death was timely indeed for he had served his purpose.
The Highpriest can never know the secrets Adelawanni died with for the consequences would be dire indeed…” The speaker was Oyunbikere ore omo Iyawaju, the female Elder of Yorubaland.
“Nonsense!” another shouted before she finished. She took the form of the blackbird and pranced around, her wings beat in agitation as the shadows followed the trail of her feathers.
“Nonsense!” she repeated, “Adelawanni would not have survived till the morning as we had agreed and Ade-ajaoye is nothing but a pawn of Orunmila and should be removed before his meddling frustrates our plans!”
“Our plans have not been hindered.
The Oba Kabiyesi is dead.” Said another figure, she was middle-aged and her hair was plaited in manner of the Upperlands, a land separated by a thousands of leagues of journey.
“Adelehinti was meant to die like we agreed! How? And who murdered him is of no importance to our cause!” the blackbird replied, still hopping and dancing like the earth beneath her feet was on fire.
“The scepter of Oranmiyan is missing!” Oyunbikere spoke again.
“The scepter is missing! The scepter is missing! The scepter is missing!” The circle of thirteen broke apart in dramatics as the witches pulled at their hair and gnashed their teeth in anxiety.
Some transformed into blackbirds and danced around in circles.
The scepter of Oranmiyan is missing! A thirteenth figure cloaked in the shadows stood apart saying nothing. Gradually, the witches settled and the circle became whole again but Oyunbikere was not quite finished.
“Afolukemi Irelu is alive and nowhere to be found” The circle broke again before she finished her sentence.
They wailed and tore out chunks of their hair and stamped their feet while the blackbirds flapped their wings and spun around in circles.
“The princess is alive! The princess is alive! The princess is alive!” They wailed over and over.
The princess is alive.
How can this be?
Still the thirteenth figure stood and said nothing.
“How can she be alive?” a blackbird asked, “she was meant to die after her oath!”
“She never finished her oath” Oyunbikere replied, “The ceremony was attacked and everyone was killed, the staff was stolen and the princess vanished without the use of a spell.”
“That’s impossible!” Another of the sisters spoke, “everything obtains from the one-source and can be felt once touched. A spell was used!”
“But I felt nothing! I walked the shrine and….” Oyunbikere started but was cut short.
“What you felt is of little consequence!” the thirteenth figure finally spoke and stepped closer to the bonfire, Abinuwunmi irelu omo Akerele, the Olori of the central-city and the five provinces stood and glared hatefully around the gathering.
“All our painstaking plans of over a decade will come to naught because you, Oyunbikere, failed at your duties to the coven!”
she stepped closer to as she accused her sister
“do you know the pains my barren womb endured to birth that whelp?
Do you know the humiliation I endured playing the groveling wife and lover to the late jester that called himself a king?
Do you know how many times I observed him slumber and thirsted for a drink of his soul?
All my pains will mean nothing because the scepter cannot be found and my daughter still lives!
I blame you!” she pronounced and moved so fast it was like she teleported within space, her fingers extended into claws and she slashed Oyunbikere across the face.
Her scream echoed like a thousand voices and she covered her face from another strike.
“The circle needs to be maintained!!” a blackbird hoped on one foot, “Your actions solve nothing, Abinuwunmi!”
Abinuwunmi glared at Oyunbikere and then reluctantly went back to her place in the circle.
“What happens now?” another asked.
“We have to find the scepter. If this is achieved with haste our plans will still bear fruit.”
“What about the princess?”
“We kill her!” She can never be allowed to live!”
“How?” another asked the Olori, “She is of your birthing, she has the power!”
“No! Her awakening starts on the first moon of her eighteenth season.
The changes will come but she can never understand unless she is taught.”
“How long do we have?”
“The next full-turn of the moon brings with it her sixteenth season.”
“There is no time!”
“And yet there is!”
“Yes, there is!”
A blackbird flapped its wings for attention,” if she is alive then she will surely walk the land and if she walks the land she can be found!”
“If she can be found, she can be killed!”
“Let’s send the word!”
“Yes, we send the word!” Abinuwunmi echoed, “Come the break of first light every member shall receive the pronouncement!”
“We hunt her down like the outcast she is!”
“And drink from her soul!”
“Yes, we send the word!”
“Her death will not be delayed!”
“What about the scepter?”
“It has to be found!”
“What about the high priest?”
“No! He lives. For now”
“We let him live! He will lead us to the scepter. Then he dies!”
“Tee! Hee! Hee!” an old crone giggled, “yes, I like that. Then he dies!”
“He is too powerful! He must not be made aware of our ultimate intentions. I say he dies now!”
“Who will lead us to the scepter?”
“We have influence in the world of man and our reach spreads wide and far! We will find it and punish the abductor!”
“We cannot be divided. The princess is to be found and her death is of utmost importance, even more so than the scepter!”
“He is a pawn and must be used as such!”
“He must be watched closely!”
“Without his suspicion”
“A daunting task”
“It can be done!” Oyunbikere said,” leave him to me, he is but a mortal no different from the ones we have conquered over the ages.”
Abinuwunmi glared at her, “you have failed us before you need not be told what will follow If you fail you duties again! My eyes will be on you!”
Oyunbikere glared back at her defiantly.
“We must act with haste!”
“Time is of utmost importance!”
“We send the word now!”
“And the princess dies!”
Yes! She dies! We follow her black-blade” Abinuwunmi tore her glare away from Oyunbikere, “a gift from me given through her father for she hates me above every other and would not have accepted it had I been the one to offer it to her.
Wherever the blade is found she will not be far, by my power I have made that possible”
“Then there is no more to be said”
“Yes, no more to be said. We have decided”
“The thirteen has decided”
“The thirteen has decided! The thirteen has decided! The thirteen has decided!”
The circle of thirteen females began dancing and gyrating as they chanted and sang.
One after the other they took the form of blackbirds and flew off into the darkness…
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by OluwabuqqyYOLO(m): 11:44pm On Jul 31|
Wow! This is breathtaking!
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by xaviercasmir(m): 7:28am On Aug 01|
Just one word. "BREATHTAKING "
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by senrino(m): 5:32pm On Aug 01|
You are gooddd!
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 7:13pm On Aug 01|
thanks guys. glad you're enjoying it.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by gbenga4sure(m): 9:11pm On Aug 01|
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by enm(m): 10:42pm On Aug 01|
O boy na story i dey read so ? I swear the tory make brain die no be small.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by sunkoye: 9:36am On Aug 02|
This is awesome!!!
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 10:54pm On Aug 02|
Ade-ajaoye was in deep sleep, and in his sleep, he dreamt, and in his dream, he walked, he walked on a different plane.
It is a place called the land of dreams.
A place situated just beyond the subconscious of every mortal at sleep.
This was a land of small realities and of the great imaginary.
A long time ago, when he was still a novice who sought enlightenment, he had almost been lost on this land.
It was an ordeal he wished never to experience again.
The land of dreams always welcomed visitors and was reluctant to let them go.
So many mortal souls were lost forever wandering the constantly changing surroundings looking for the way home but having nothing to offer guidance.
Dream-walkers and interpreters learn at an early stage to grow wary of the allure and enticements the land offered.
A life away from the harshness of reality sometimes proved too enticing for some and they wandered from the paths and became lost in the dreams.
Eventually they realize what they thought was attained was no more than a curse attired in the garbs of a blessing.
Sleep was an outcast on this land and for them there is only an eternity of reliving their innermost desires over and over without rest till the end of time.
Ade-ajaoye rejected such a fate and sought strength in the amulet hanging around his neck.
Worn by even the most astute dream-walker it served as an anchor to the physical-world pulling back the traveler into wakefulness at the slightest sign of a threat during his journey.
He had traveled half the night but yet it seemed to him that he walked on a spot while the land itself moved under him.
On both sides of the path vivid scenes moved towards and passed him by, changing form and appearance by the moment.
These were from the subconscious of those who now slept back at the physical-world.
They scenes blew by him faster than a tempest wind and he walked with his head lowered and his eyes to the ground.
An instance of self-indulgence was all it took for the onlooker to be held spellbound and forever lost to the dreams and nightmares that made up the very essence of the land.
As he journeyed he chanted the verses for the summons of the mischievous spirits, the Etuku, and called them forth to witness his presence.
On and on he journeyed, going deeper and deeper down the twisting endless roads of mortal dreams.
Eventually, only one spirit came and revealed itself but then she came in the form of his youngest wife.
She sat on a short stool by the side of the road with arms crossed over her breasts waiting patiently for him to draw near.
As soon as he was less than five paces from reaching her everything stopped and the windstorm of moving images fell away leaving only both of them on a piece of land floating softly in the midst of nothing.
She stood up slowly and approached looking every part and body like his lost wife but when she spoke it was with the silent whispery voice of the spirits and her tongue was of the Eyin-masi-laiye.
“Mortal of the eleventh dimension” Her breath blew icy cold on his face and for a moment her image seemed to flicker and become translucent.
“Priest of Orunmila… Why do you come? Your magic is useless here”
“Stealer of dreams! Stop your deception! You know what I seek. I the Ifa have summoned you and by the oath of ancients do I command you to do my bidding!”
“Hehehehehehehehehe!!!” She threw back her head and laughed hysterically and then stopped and gave him a look that would have made a lesser man tremble.
“Surely the priests of priests should know better! I choose to speak only if I choose to speak.
Mortals and their oaths! Mortals and their meddlesome ways! HA! The ‘chosen-ones’ you call yourselves and you walk on Ile with your heads held high lording over its creatures and now you crawl to my realm and demand subservience.
What do you give in return? Nothing! You mortals do nothing but take. Answer me why I should give what you ask?”
“Wraith! Do you think me a common-placed dream-walker? I am Ade-ajaoye omo Orunmila and I have summoned those far stronger. I have dined with Olukosi the gatekeeper and the ring-bearer of the seven heavens. I have danced with Iyewere ‘the banished one’ in her fiery holds within the deepest bowels of Ile.
Wrestled ‘Ayawani the fallen’ on the icy peaks of the highest mountains and cast him down into the very depths of *Afere-ga the shadowy oblivion.
I am the highpriest of Orunmila. I am the priest of priests. And I demand my due!” he beat on his chest for emphasis.
The Etuku shrank back from the outburst and when it spoke again it was with deference, “It is rumored amongst the spirits truly you are a mortal of great deeds. Say what you seek favored one of Orunmila.”
“I want the name”
The wraith moved closer and in the land of the living, Igbesinu, the forewarning spell manifested.
The amulet hanging around his neck began pulling his soul back into his body.
He fought against the pull. He was not going back without a name.
The spirit held him in a cold embrace and whispered in his ear.
There were five boys in all and one stood above the others, his name was Ofilaiyeje omo Adelufemi the great descendant of the legendary hunter Adelufemi Oloro.
The highpriest surfaced into wakefulness, he sat up and looked around him wildly.
Gbagilabi was by his side, “Master” he rushed to give assistance as Ade-ajaoye got to his feet unsteadily
“Ofilaiyeje omo Adelufemi is his name!” he repeated over to himself as he paced the room.
He stopped suddenly and began searching.
He found his sword and selected from an array of charms.
“Quick! Gbagilabi make haste and make preparations for a journey.
We leave as soon as we are able. Bring with you as you come, Kalejaiye, the first warrior for I have a task for him to accomplish before our return”
He found his clothes and began to dress hurriedly.
He stopped and looked at apprentice, “are you still here?”
“I hear and obey” Gbagilabi replied and left the room
THE SLAVE CARAVAN
Ofilaiyeje slept and as he slept he dreamt.
He was no stranger to this dream.
It had been re-occurring more often of late. It happened the same way every night and it started with the maiden.
A maiden so beautiful the sight of her always stole his breath away.
Adorned in gold and excessive finery she danced alone in a circle of thirteen women.
She was not aware of his presence but he saw her as clear as day.
What he also saw was that the thirteen women were not what they seemed.
The women who placed her in the circle meant her harm but the maiden was oblivious to the threat.
She was so consumed in the dance it seemed nothing else mattered.
Had she looked up she would have seen the loathing in their eyes.
She also would have seen the circle closing in on her as each woman drew a dagger and held it concealed in the small of her back.
Without knowing why Ofi felt an overwhelming urge to alert her to the danger and save her from the thirteen blades but no matter how hard he tried he found he could not move.
He tried to call to her but when he opened his mouth not a sound came forth.
The women closed in and raised their daggers and just as the weapons plunged…his dream changed.
He saw the approaching figure, a gigantic indistinguishable figure with steps of thunder followed by an army of shadowy creatures.
Every time he had the dream the figure got closer and this time he noticed the horns.
Its horns were blacker than the darkest shadows with the left one broken-off but that did nothing to hide its majestic bearing.
The figure stood over him and he was dwarfed as a rodent to the great elephant.
A giant hand reached down for him and this time when he opened his mouth the scream woke him up from his sleep.
He sat up in the darkness and struggled to control his breathing but he knew his mother was already awake.
The woman hardly ever slept and as expected she would wait till morning to ask the question she always did every time he had such an experience.
As usual he would keep it to himself.
But what did his dreams mean?
It probably was nothing to worry about and most likely due to his exhausting physical routine.
In a few days time he was going to be tried at the rites of passage into the brotherhood of warriors.
And a lot was expected from the great descendant of the legendary hunter Adelufemi Oloro.
A fact that has always been hard on the male descendants of the family, his father died bravely but foolishly trying to bear the burden of the compound name.
He managed to save the girl-child but had also been bitten by the rabid hyena.
He had suffered a lot and was made totally insane by the infected wound at the point of death and now his mother was without a companion and his sister would never know her father.
Little wonder why his mother had been inconsolable when he announced his intentions of becoming a warrior instead of the farmer she always wished he could be.
He did it because it was expected of him
As all the men in his direct descending line before him had done
It was like a curse for they were all now dead and their souls had taken the journey to the lands beyond.
This was why he had no time for ridiculous dreams he needed to be strong for his mother and his little sister.
Still, he could not deny the troubled stirrings of his soul. Who was the beautiful maiden in his dream?
Why did the thirteen women always sought to harm her?
And who or what was the horned mysterious figure?
Ofi stood up from his sleeping mat and walked to the window.
He leaned on the ledge and looked up at the moonlit sky.
The moon shone brightly on his face and seemed to caress and comfort him for a moment.
It was but a brief moment.
The distant crowing of a rooster shook him out of his revere.
He sighed deeply, gave the moon one last look, and left to perform his morning chores...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by sunkoye: 9:48am On Aug 03|
King of folklore....
My only worry is that you are too detailed. Are you.......?
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 3:04pm On Aug 03|
maybe i am. but all that will be sorted during the final edit. thanks for pointing it out.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by OluwabuqqyYOLO(m): 4:32pm On Aug 03|
Demosalesman:No, you aren't too detailed. Your work is good as it is.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 4:54pm On Aug 03|
Afolukemi Irelu omo Akerele opened her eyes and the first thing she saw was the moon.
It took a few moments for her memory to come into focus and when it did she jerked up in panic.
Her father was dead! Her father had been murdered!
What were these strange beasts?
Quickly! She had to get up and protect herself!
She struggled to rise for a few moments but it was to no avail it occurred to her that she could not move her hands and her feet.
What was that rocking motion?
Her heart sank down into the pits of her belly.
This was not a good sign.
There was a jingling of chains as she turned her head and to her surprise a Unclad girl-child lay by her side.
The princess judged her not more than ten full-seasons of age.
was totally Unclad and her hands were shackled behind her back.
Although she could not see it Afolukemi knew the girls feet had also been secured like hers bound hand and foot.
The situation seemed absurd.
The younger girl stared back at the princess through puffy red-rimmed eyes, an indication that she had dedicated a lot of her recent time to weeping.
Afolukemi twisted her body to the side as best as she could and saw three other similarly bound bodies, all females and they all wept silently.
She struggled for a while and finally succeeded in turning herself on her back and then to her other side.
What she saw made her groan in dismay even as she questioned the possibility of her circumstance.
Rows after rows of Unclad females marched silently behind under the moonlit sky. They were bound together by iron-collars fitted around the neck and on the right-foot. In-between the stumbling and falling women oxen pulled wagons loaded with more Unclad captives.
Afolukemi realized she was lying in a similar wagon and the rocking sensation was caused by the rough terrain.
Finally her eyes adjusted fully to the night and she could pick out certain male figures bearing whips and clubs walking amongst the females, slapping and whipping at random.
Her mind screamed out in confusion.
How did she get here? What was she doing on a slave caravan?
Her eyes looked around wildly and she knew they did not tell a lie.
She was no stranger to the workings of slavers having herself led hunts into the deep forests in the never-ending campaign against the outlawed trade.
She knew their kind and their nature.
Traders of women and children!
Liverless dogs! All of them!
She became aware of a gag when she tried to open her mouth to express discomfort and began struggling frantically in anger.
The other females shook their heads in fright and wriggled away from her trying to give her a warning as best as they could but it was already too late.
A male voice bawled just out of her line of sight. “WHORES! WHO DARES TO DISTURB THE WAGON I ABULU, THE ONE-EYED RIDES ON? WHO DARES?”
The wagon slowed to a halt and there was a sound of someone alighting and then of heavy footsteps.
A man stepped into vision.
He was a bull of a man towering over four and ten hands in height with his oiled pate glistening, he wore no upper garment and his breasts and shoulders rippled with muscles at his every movement.
He walked with a limp and a wicked-looking bloodstained whip was wrapped around his torso.
As soon as she saw him her struggles became more vigorous.
The man stepped forward and yanked away the gag with one hand while the other gave her a hard open-handed smack across the face, the sound echoed through the woods and such was the pain that the princess instantly ceased her struggles.
He bent forward and she noticed he had only one eye, the other socket was just a dark gapping hole, “LovePeddler! Quit your struggles or I’ll peel the skin from your back!” he waved his whip with intent but she stared back at him unflinchingly.
Suddenly his one eye narrowed and then he smiled displaying gold-capped teeth, “Ahh! It’s you! You have finally awakened?” he said and moved closer,
“You are a funny one. I would give a purse of cowries to know the tale of how you came to be lying in the woods, in the middle of nowhere Unclad and helpless, your body looking so fresh and inviting. You should be grateful I found you before you became a meal for some fortunate beast”
His one eye roamed the curves of her body lasciviously and her eyes roamed his physique in-turn taking in his shoulders and standing, sizing him up as she would an opponent but then her scrutiny stopped at his waist for sticking out of the band of his pants was the hilt of her black-blade.
He followed her stare.
“Dangerous toys turn on?” he asked as removed the knife from his pants.
The blade had been wrapped with a piece of white-cloth as protection against mishandling for a scratch from its horned edge would mean death if an antidote was not found.
Her eyes followed its every movement.
There was no denying the lecherous glint in his one eye as he placed the knife on the board beside her and then suddenly groped her Unclad body.
“I found it lying beside you” he said as he gripped a buttock and squeezed hard.
The princess turned her expressionless gaze back to him.
“A poison blade, a rare and priceless metal” his hand left her buttock and then sought her breast, he squeezed hard. “I wonder how you came by such a blade.”
Her expression remained unchanged.
“it will fetch me a heavy sum indeed for I have no use for such an evil weapon, such a blade eventually will turn on its owner, but you, you are different. You, I am tempted to keep, so fresh, so unmarked unlike the dirty whores I have to peddle for a pitiful sum, many a chief will pay richly to have a taste of the pleasures your nubile body promises.”
By now the main body of the caravan had driven past the wagon leaving it behind on the trail but Abulu seemed not to notice as his hand slid down her belly, seeking her womanhood.
“You belong to me now! And I will have you whenever the fancy takes me” his finger slid deeper and he gave a gasp of surprise, “Ah! I see your womanhood is intact and unsoiled. More the better.” he closed his eye and groaned.
Afolukemi remained impassive and continued to fix him with her steady expressionless stare. Her father, the Oba Kabiyesi of the central kingdom, the overseer of seers, was dead, murdered before her eyes and this lecherous swine was defiling her womanhood.
When he eventually opened his eye her look remained cold and deadpan.
She was the queen of all Yorubaland, Olori the second, the most powerful female a thousand leagues in every direction and she was being held captive and molested by a common thief, a peddler of women.
The princess watched him and she neither recoiled nor struggled.
Deep down in the pits of her stomach rage boiled with sweltering intensity and she made a silent oath to herself.
His death was pronounced by his actions.
Her reaction was such that he became uncomfortable.
He had expected her to struggle and squirm from his touch but the steady incomprehensible stare he was receiving was slowly sending a chill down his back.
He realized he was no more aroused and masked his embarrassment with anger.
“Frigid wench!” he hissed, “You do not even know what a real man feels like. I will give you a taste of this” he removed his member through his pants and shook it in her direction but still she remained inexpressive.
“STOP THAT!” He raised his voice, “STOP LOOKING AT ME IN SUCH MANNER!”
He took a step back, uncoiled the whip, and lashed out without hesitation.
The whip cracked and peeled away her flesh at its touch, but still, she looked coldly at him unmoving and showing no expression of pain.
The one-eyed slaver looked incredulously at her for a moment and then his face formed a mask of fury.
“I WILL TEACH YOU!” He shouted and swung the whip again and again until a loud call gave him cause for pause.
ABULU! STOP DEFACING HER!
A lone figure ran back up the tracks, a messenger from the main party coming to verify the cause of the delay. Abulu held the whip paused in the air indecisive to his next action.
The messenger arrived and wrestled the whip from him
“What good price will she fetch when you trash her so?”
“This wench will be broken or I am not a man!” Abulu vowed as tried to drag his weapon back from the messenger.
“Control your temper! We receive no gold for a female corpse!”
“I will kill this frigid bitch!” his one-eye twitched nervously, “She challenged my manhood!” he maintained.
The messenger looked at Afolukemi and then turned to Abulu, “How? She is bound hand and foot.”
The one- eyed one began to stutter an explanation
He was cut off, “enough of this nonsense! The day breaks and we need to go to ground.
This side of the forest is patrolled by day and our journey to Igbinle-awere is a good four turns of the moon away.
Stop your folly and let us make haste before we become guests of the executioner and his axe”
With that he walked to the oxen and urged them forward.
The old wooden wagon gave a lazy groan and a slight jerk as it started moving.
Abulu looked to see that he was not observed and moved forward quickly.
He grabbed a handful of her hair and lifted her head off the wagon floor.
“I will get you soon” he whispered into her ear and smacked her head against the rough board.
Hissing and muttering under his breath he ran to the front of the moving wagon and assisted in steering the oxen back on the paths.
She turned her head to the board by her right knowing exactly what she would find.
Her poison dagger lay within arms reach.
The exquisitely fashioned black hilt sticking out from the white cloth seemed to beckon for her touch.
The one-eyed, in his fury had forgotten to retrieve the blade as he departed.
Afolukemi tested her bonds again, her hands worked vigorously behind her back, but it was all in vain, the bonds held tight.
Her gaze never left her dagger as the other females on the wagon began shifting their bodies back into more comfortable positions.
The younger girl began to weep silently.
The wagon rolled on bumping and jerking on the rough terrain and taking her further away from her land and from the protection of her loyal subjects.
The sky lightened as it acknowledged the approach of the rising sun...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by sunkoye: 6:40pm On Aug 03|
Demosalesman:ahhhh...not what I meant oh. I was trying to point out that you know so much about mystic or spiritual stuffs. I want to believe no one can curl up such detailed spiritual things and sayings out of wind without being close to them. Either way... you are a raw genius bro.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 6:58pm On Aug 04|
The ghommid stood staring at the Unclad, bewildered woman. And then he licked his lips...
Rain fell in ceaseless torrents.
The storm was now into the third day and it fell in such a relentless torrent from the heavens that it seemed the gods themselves wept upon the land.
The winds blew furiously whistling through the trees and rustling their leaves making a wailing song befitting for the weeping gods.
The band of soldiers traveled the storm and journeyed through the hazardous woods nonetheless for the authority that drove them far surpassed the threat of a rainstorm.
The men sloshed through the ankle deep mud trying to find footing on the waterlogged forest floors.
Eyes shielded from the whipping winds they were attired in oilskins which gave a little protection against the storm but they themselves were drenched down to their very souls.
The band of twenty soldiers made slow but steady progress for the trails were waterlogged and most of the known paths had now become raging rivers.
They traveled with fifteen men offering protection to the pole-bearers who conveyed a massive silver chest.
The captain traveled ahead, his eyes watched around suspiciously for unlikely threats as he swung his heavy machete against the bushes effectively clearing a fresh trail for his soldiers.
He stopped to get his bearing and looked helplessly at the sky.
Curse on the weather! It seemed impossible that so much rain could fall without abating even for a while.
It was because of the accursed storm he separated from the main body of his command, a small army of over two hundred able soldiers waited back at the borders of the woods for the storm to subside before they followed.
The urgency for the safe deliverance of the casket had been so great that he made the decision to continue the journey with a small but select band.
A decision he desperately hoped he would not regret.
The silver casket was two days behind its delivery day and he would be damned if it arrived a day later still. Not on his watch.
He looked up and tested the direction of the wind.
Observing the treetops and his surroundings he then made a decision picking a path heading south into the winds and the journey resumed.
On and on they traversed the treacherous forests stopping occasionally to get their bearings with the storm accompanying them everywhere like a devoted follower.
By evening they all were weary and almost dropping from exhaustion, the little fortitude they previously possessed had been washed clean away by the rain.
The ambush took place at the start of a descent.
The unsuspecting soldiers were blind to the landscape ahead for a brief moment.
A brief moment was all that was needed.
The captain immediately sensed the danger as the charm hanging from his neck suddenly urged him to duck to the left.
He did so without thinking, moving just in time.
The arrow parted the rain as it traveled and whizzed past his right-ear missing by a whisker.
It missed the next soldier but found one of the chest-bearers.
The soldier screamed and fell holding the arrow shaft sticking from his chest and the silver casket became unbalanced and toppled over unto the muddy forest floor.
“AMBUSH!” the captain called out and then chaos broke loose.
A hail of arrows came at them from the sky as his soldiers dove into the protection of the thick bushes but three were not so fortunate for they fell dead within the next breath.
From the trees above men swung down from ropes, weapons slashing before their feet met with the ground.
The surprise had been total but these were also handpicked soldiers of no little mettle.
Weapons immediately rang out, steel met with steel and then a battle raged on but still the rains came down unrelenting and witnessed the skirmish.
The soldiers fought bravely but the bandits had numbers on their side.
Gradually the battle was decided as the soldiers fell one after the other to the steel of the opposition.
The captain stood with two of his soldiers.
There was a scream and then he stood with only one.
A moment later the man fell under a hail of blows and then he stood alone but such was the nature of his charm that it could foretell the attack of an opponent before the move was made.
As a result, bodies lay strewn around him while he stood defiant in their midst, machete in one hand and his sword in the other.
The bandits came at him persistently from all sides but he met them steel for steel and managed to stand his ground.
The leader of the bandits who stayed up in the trees to observe the ambush witnessed his men being cut down effortlessly by the lone figure and he cursed under his breath.
He moved into a suitable position and found his bow.
He strung an arrow and took aim carefully for the rain served as a hindrance to his target.
He waited for the next man to fall before he let the arrow take flight.
The charm warned the captain but he found it impossible to dodge the arrow and the slashing swords at the same time.
He threw himself out of the path of the flying arrow but was struck by a blow as he fell.
The sword bit into his side and he screamed in pain. He was buried under a rain of cutting swords within the instant but still he struggled and fought back.
The head-bandit scurried down the tree and drew his hunting-knife.
Rushing into the foray he shouted at his men and shouldered his way closer to the stubborn captain.
Without much ado he stabbed him in the belly driving the weapon down to its hilt.
Unbelievably the captain fought back.
“HOLD HIM STEADY!” the bandit commanded as he struck repeatedly.
Still the captain struggled with inhuman strength and dug the fingers of his hand into the eyes of the nearest man puncturing the eyeball and driving his finger in as deeply as he could.
The man squealed like a dying pig.
It was at that point the bandit leader suspected foul-play.
His hands searched the struggling man briefly and found the charm, he hissed and yanked it off and the captain died instantly.
Cursing under his breath the bandit stood up and threw the charm far into the bushes then surveyed his surroundings and counted his fallen men.
Over two dozen of his men lay dead in the mud and some were still unaccounted for.
A heavy loss considering that they initially possessed the element of surprise.
The soldiers had fought and died bravely, a little too bravely, it seemed they were possessed by spirits.
When you travel the woods in such weather and in such conditions things were bound to happen.
One thing was for sure; whatever was being conveyed in the silver casket would be of some value and valuable trophies brought good gold.
He shouted orders under the pelting rain and his men jumped to perform his commands.
The casket was retrieved and placed before him.
Three sharp blows from a hammer broke the lock away and he stepped forward and lifted the lid gently, cautiously.
His eyes opened wide in shock and the men behind him gasped in awe.
The casket was filled with treasure. Gold and silver trinkets stared back at them from inside the bowels of the chest.
What caught his attention and held it unmoving was the black-horn.
Darker than the darkest nights and longer than his arm the horn glowed with an oily sheen that could never be achieved by hand and polish.
Even the falling rain could not mar its shine.
The treasures in the chest, beautiful and attractive though they were, paled in comparison to the beauty and allure of the black-horn and he wondered for a moment what creature could bear such a horn.
None he knew for sure, one cannot make a lively-hood of the woods without knowing its creatures and never had he seen or heard of such a beast.
He reached for it and hesitated.
A feeling of dread crept across his mind but he was reminded of what was important.
Many of his men had lost their lives and the ones alive had lost friends, they would surely turn on him if he turned his back on the spoils.
The beauty of the horn beckoned to him and he wiped a nervous hand over his wet face and reached for it.
A crack of brilliant lightening split the sky and was followed by an ear-splitting thunderclap so loud the grounds shook with its passage.
The rain came harder.
EKUN AND OROLEGUN
Ade-ajaoye and Gbagilabi reached the first-province of Yorubaland and came to the city called Ilu-Offa.
Gbagilabi led the mule behind his master as they walked down the wet and crowded streets with everything dripping wet and fresh after the three day rainstorm.
The weary travelers made their way to the compound of the city ruler and announced themselves and were admitted and granted immediate audience.
After a brief rest the Highpriest and Adetiti omo Ojuolape sat in meeting for a time and when it concluded Adetiti was far from happy.
“Highpriest!” he protested, “You are not only talking about my son but my only child!”
“I am aware” Ade-ajaoye replied, “but your son is vital to the resolution of our present dilemma. Choosing him was no decision of mine.
He was chosen by the gods which should come as no surprise as we both are aware of the gift your boy possesses. Be grateful the gods see fit to grant your child such attention”
“How can I be grateful when they take back what they have so unwillingly given me? I have five wives and can only bear one child and now they seek to take him back.”
“Nobody seeks to bring harm to your boy, Adetiti calm down…”
“You think me a fool?” the chief asked, “the mere fact that you came yourself to fetch him tells me things do not bode well ‘the cheetah never seeks out the cat across the trail for the cat always knows to pay homage to its master.’ You tell me only what I need to know but my guts tell me the state of affairs is much graver than you claim it is. I put my son in your hands highpriest for it is the will of the gods and I‘m but a speck in the eye of the storm but let it be said that I give my child with great reluctance.”
“Then there is no more to be said” Ade-ajaoye looked him in the eye.
Adetiti shook his head, “Indeed, there is no more to be said.
The next time we meet it would be at the burial of our late king.
I pray the princess would be in attendance.”
“That also is my prayer. Do not bother sending a messenger for your son. I will meet him myself.” Ade-ajaoye replied and left the chief standing alone in his chamber.
The highpriest and his apprentice walked the rowdier and livelier parts of the city looking for Adetiti omo Ojuolape the second who was fondly called Ekun by everyone who knew him.
And everybody knew him.
Not because he was the only son of the chief and also not because of his special gift but mainly because of his mischievous and playful nature.
When he was not busied with his soldering duties he roamed the taverns with his group of equally mischievous friends.
Stopping to greet and chat with almost everyone he encountered.
Calling them familiarly by names and discussing intimate matters like he was part of their compound family.
Ekun with his good looks and carefree manner had given many a girl sleepless nights and had caused many a conflict between daughter and concerned parents, especially fathers.
He moved frequently from one scandal to another and his father had a tough time making amends for all his escapades but the truth was nobody could stay offended by Ekun for long, everyone loved him.
Today he seemed always a step ahead of the Highpriest for every watering hole Ade-ajaoye enquired he was told Ekun had just left for another tavern in the same vicinity.
As a nobleman and the son of a chief he could never lack for the cowries to pay his tabs and just as the highpriest began to weary of visiting tavern after tavern he finally came to the one where the young noble was still in his cups.
Gbagilabi entrusted the mule into the hands of a half-Unclad boy and then followed into the tavern after his master.
After questioning the keeper a table seating twelve warriors was pointed out to them. They both approached the table.
“Which one of you is Adetiti the second?” Gbagilabi asked.
The table and the tavern as a whole fell into silence. One of the warriors, a big lad with even bigger muscles held his palm-wine gourd in mid descent.
“Who wants to know?” his manner was insolent.
“It is not in your place question me” Gbagilabi replied, “are you the boy we seek?”
There were numerous scrapping sounds as stools were pushed back and eleven warriors stood up.
They wore two arm-bands each on their arm indicating they were all middle-class warriors. They towered menacingly over the two newcomers.
“I say its my place to ask you questions when you walk into my space and demand to know the son of my chief” there was a threatening edge in the young warriors voice.
Gbagilabi looked unimpressed as his gaze fell to the one still sitting, a handsome small-bodied young man of not more than eighteen full-seasons stared back at him.
“Ekun?” Gbagilabi mouthed the question silently. Ekun nodded his head and his eyes twinkled mischievously as he wondered at the next turn events would follow.
“I ask again, WHO WANTS TO KNOW?” the muscled warrior challenged Gbagilabi.
It was then Ade-ajaoye who had standing behind by a pace stepped forward and pulled back the hood from his cloak, revealing his face.
One of the warriors looked at him, then at Gbagilabi then back at him again.
Recognition dawned and chilled their blood like they had been doused with freezing water.
“Great gods…” the warrior exclaimed, “… the Highpriest!”
Not waiting to push aside the stools they prostrated instantly with their chins going so low that they touched the ground.
The young muscled warrior began apologizing profusely from where he lay stretched out explaining that he was one of the guards and was only performing his duties to his lord.
Ekun because of his nobleman status was not required to prostrate so he sat and stared blankly at the highpriest.
They both studied each other in silence and then finally Ekun picked up his palm-wine gourd and downed the contents in one large gulp.
He slammed the gourd down on the table and cocked his head to the side.
His gaze on the highpriest did not falter.
“I am in trouble again, aren’t I?” he asked.
Ade-ajaoye smiled, taking a liking to him immediately.
“You cannot possibly imagine” he replied, “come with me and I might be lenient”
Ekun grinned back at him, “well since you put it like that I have no other choice”
He stood up shakily for he had been drinking hard since midday and followed the highpriest and Gbagilabi out of the tavern taking care to step carefully around the prostrating bodies...
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by sunkoye: 10:08pm On Aug 04|
Please who took the princess..the gimmiods or slavers?
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by Demosalesman: 12:54am On Aug 05|
none of the above. she was transported away by a protective spell.
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by skyblueking(m): 1:57pm On Aug 05|
Demosalesman your story is just the best on nairaland so far..
The twist, description, suspense are just mindblowing..
I thought stories as these no longer exist on nairaland,..
Keep it coming bro...am following back2back..
|Re: Warriors And Gods. 'book 1 Of The Legend Of Ofi.' by sunkoye: 9:28pm On Aug 05|
skyblueking:sometimes while reading... part of me will think am one of the actors. Like that elders meeting at the palace. That scene dey burst my brain.
Viewing this topic: 1 guest(s)
|Sections: politics (1) business autos (1) jobs (1) career education (1) romance computers phones travel sports fashion health |
religion celebs tv-movies music-radio literature webmasters programming techmarket
Nairaland - Copyright © 2005 - 2019 Oluwaseun Osewa. All rights reserved. See How To Advertise. 818