Thursday, 4 January 2018

Act Of Faith Episode 2

Act Of Faith
Episode: Episode 2
Title: Adanna Of Atata
" What do you mean dad? " I asked my old man . " I just find it difficult to believe that the gods of our land are the one doing this, the gods can't just decide to punish us for nothing. If we had truly offended the gods, they should have asked us for sacrifice like they had always asked" My dad said again " Dad do you have any proof that the gods are not the one doing this?" I asked him smiling but he shook his head the negative. " I am just thinking so, never in history has the gods decided to start killing its people most especially the youths" he said while I laughed. " maybe the gods are angry and doesn't want sacrifices " I told my dad , " Angry over what?" He asked me, " Angry over something you guys might have done sometimes back" I said to myself but found it difficult to believe that the gods happen to be serial killers.
• As a spy, I have to always be secretive, no one is meant to know my true identity, not even my family members except of course my uncle, he was the one who registered me in the institution, he surprisingly happens to be part of the founder of the institute in the late eighties, not even my dad knows of it. They only knew I went to the city to acquire the white man's knowledge. I had come back home the previous day with just my travelling bag and a briefcase, the travelling bag contained my clothes and the briefcase, contained my spying tools, like my small pistol and some small knives. The briefcase is locked in such a way that I alone can open it, a type of security lock.
• We finally got home after the long trekking with my dad, my once green trouser had gotten a new red decoration, all thanks to the dust from Atata road. My mom was roasting yam in a small hut which serves as our kitchen, my younger ones were with her. " Mama, good evening" I greeted trying to prevent the smokes from the firewood with which the yam was being roasted from getting into my eyes. " My son,you and your father just left us alone since morning, you know it has been six years now of not seeing you, you should always be by my side " she said turning the yam over, my dad must have entered into his quarters, he didn't branch to greet, he knew his wife wont let him rest with complains of him not coming back early. " Were you not hungry?" my mom asked me again, " Of course mom, we were hungry and that was why we came back now, we should have stayed a bit longer" I said smiling while she looked at me and hissed. " What took you people so long in the palace?" She asked me again, this time my siblings had all gone in. " Mom, whats up with all this death stuff here and there?" I asked her as she turned the yam again. Unlike my dad, my mom happens to be an indigene of Atata, my dad had met her when he had came to witness their new yam festival, that was a long time ago. The singular fact that my mom is an indigene of Atata land explains why she so much believe all this their ancient stuff. " my son, the gods are angry, no young girl or boy is safe in this land again, they die day by day, even the elderly ones are not safe again in this village, there had been some few cases of the old ones also being killed mysteriously" my mom told me without looking up at me. " Does it mean that the gods kill people with swords?" I asked her smiling. " my son, the gods can kill anyhow they want, they can make one's death look real or mysterious" my mom said again while I nodded and also went inside to rest, leaving my Mom alone in the small hut . Sooner or later, I plan to renovate this whole house.
• I sat in my room that evening, the room was a small tight one. I wonder why my family does not want to follow me to the city, I have a well furnished bungalow there. As I sat that evening, I remembered the mark of the sword made on that dead guy, with that mark, I was convinced that the gods must be good at sword fight, we can't tell if they are part of those Chinese gods, they might be well trained, skillful sword fighters. I tried picturing the scene of how the whole incidence must have happened,the young man must have been coming out from his hut that morning, probably going to the farm and then as he came out he was met by a sword circling the air, just as he was about to run away, the sword came down and cut him. How else could it have happened if not that way, very typical of African belief, and thanks to Nigerian movies, they made us believed all these. " But let's come to think of it, does these so called gods really exist?" I asked myself but got no answer. " I dont know what to believe anymore" I said to myself after a while . " Come of it gabi, you are a well trained spy, you shouldn't believe in all those superstitions" I said to myself again but I remembered I slept off that night still contemplating if anything like "the gods" really existed.
• Droplet of spherically shaped water could be seen hanging at the tip of a leaf of the avocado tree in the middle of our compound, at intervals, the drop would fall and another one would take its place. I stood outside tying a wrapper like the way most Young men of Atata normally tied theirs, I was carrying a wine keg and a cutlass. I had never for once ever tapped palm wine but today, I have decided to give it a try. I adjusted the wrapper which I tied across my arms, I wore a black singlet beneath it which made me look different from other young men of Atata who would only tie the wrapper beneath their bare chest. I whistled a song at I left my father big compound, I was heading to the Atata village stream. The Atata stream isn't a very big one as one would imagine, but the unique thing about it was that it happened to be surrounded with palm trees,not only palm trees but other trees although the palm trees dominated. That's where men tap their wine from. I didn't go with the climbing rope, you dont really expect a trained crime fighter like me to climb a common palm tree with a rope. I got to the stream after some minutes of trekking, there was no one there, even the village maidens had not come to fetch water or have their bath yet. I remembered as a little boy then, I would sneak away from home at the exact time the maidens of Atata are to have their bath and head to the stream to have a clear view of something beyond me, I usually take cover among the small trees near the stream then, I dont miss such things. I looked around for a matured palm tree and climb up it like a cat, the keg was at my back while the cutlass was by my side, it was in its shaft. I did the normal thing, and then tied the keg on the tree to receive the fresh wine till the next day. I came back to the ground after I was done . I turned around to go back home, and then I saw Joy approaching,she was coming to fetch water. Joy happen to be that girl who I had been trying so hard to get since my childhood days but couldn't, she also happen to be my neighbour, she lives with her parent opposite my father's house. I sure is not the only one trying to get her, virtually all the village young men . Who wouldn't want to have the village most beautiful maiden as his girl? Call her Joy or Adanna, she is the village most beautiful maiden.
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