Friday, 19 January 2018

THE GHOST VISITOR Episode 12

FINALE EPISODE
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Nwaraka was unmoved by the threat ekwu igwe posed, he knew how to maneuver things and turn the wrath of ekwu igwe on another. In this case he was going to turn it on Nneoma, and not just her, but upon her children and mazi Njoku. With a wry smile on his face he waited. On her part, Nneoma took all her children to a corner of the village squared and pleaded her case with the gods. “I am the only person to have seen the gods at Nwete and lived. I am the only person to have stood before the court of the gods and heard their judgment against another god and still lives. No doubt, I have found favour before your eyes oh gods. Now rise and vindicate me as I swear by ekwu igwe to prove my innocence… Ofeke my ancestor, Olekanma my husband, I appeal to you all to come to my defense; this evil native doctor called Nwaraka wants to bring me to a sudden end. I have done him no wrong,” Nneoma pleaded.
While she made her plea, Nwaraka called one of his apprentices, Udensi, and asked him to run to his shrine and put an ekwu igwe in a large pot, fill it with water, add some herbs in it and begin to cook it. Nwaraka was about to unleash a powerful voodoo. The moment the ekwu igwe would begin to boil, and emit vapour into the air, no amount of swearing would be able to harm Nwaraka. While Udensi made haste to do all he was told to do by Nwaraka, Uchenna returned to the village square with five sets of ekwu igwe and set them down in the middle of the village square. Since Nwaraka was going to be one of those to swear by the ekwu igwe, the elders needed someone else to administer the oaths. Yet again Uchenna was sent back to the village to bring the oldest man, mazi Ikpechi and the oldest woman, Ndaa Akauba. It was going to take a while to bring them to the square because of their ages. While everyone waited for them, the voodoo Nwaraka sent Udensi to cook began to boil. Nwaraka could feel it from where he sat.
His courage rose and he began to chant under his breath. He knew what would happen after the oaths were administered would shock the village, and he needed it so much to launder his much vilified image and to relaunch himself as a powerful dibia (native doctor). Nneoma had her gaze fixed on Nwaraka for long and knew he was up to something evil, but there was no way she could figure out what it was or even stop; so, she trusted the gods to vindicate her. When Uchenna arrived yet again at the square with the two oldest people in the village in the company of their relatives, the tension at the square rose. Already Uchenna had taken the liberty to tell the two oldest people what they were going to do at the square, he was not meant to do that, but he did it anyway. As they arrived, all the elders and those present stood to their feet and greeted them. After everyone had sat down, Mazi Obinwa waved his hands at the people and began, “This morning we were all summoned hurriedly to the square by Nwaraka. When we all gathered to hear him, it turned out he had great and damning accusations against Nneoma Uruaku. Some of the accusations are that she is a witch, killed her husband Olekanma and was the feet which went down to Nwete by night…” “Hahahahaha! Is that possible in this village? Can a mere mortal to go Nwete by night and live? Nwaraka, are you sure of this? Are the gods still with you?” Ndaa Akauba asked, flashing her set of teeth turned brown by kola nut and tobacco snuff. “Ndaa, I only speak of the things I see,” replied Nwaraka haughtily. Ndaa Akauba squirmed her shoulders and said nothing further. On his part, mazi Ikpechi, the oldest man in the village, spit on the ground and whispered to himself, “May I not see the day the powerful gods at Nwete would be emasculated by a mere widow.” Uchenna and some of the soldiers standing behind him mumbled, “Amen!” “Mazi Ikpechi and Ndaa Akauba, we have brought you here to administer oaths between Nwaraka and Nneoma Uruaku. Nneoma has asked to swear by ekwu igwe to prove her innocence. She also has demanded that Nwaraka do the same to prove his is telling the truth…” Mazi Ikpechi raised his hand, cutting mazi Obinwa short. “Nneoma cannot swear by ekwu Igwe to proof whether she is the feet which went down to Nwete by night! Have our gods become so weak that a mere young widow like Nneoma can subdue them? Let the spirits who revealed to Nwaraka the feet tell him who owns the feet! Even if Nneoma owns the feet he saw, she will not swear over that! Let the gods at Nwete judge her if they find her guilty.
I will only administer the oaths in respect to other accusations against Nneoma. I will not stand by and watch you people insult our gods,” declared mazi Ikpechi. “Ndaa you have heard what Nnanyi said, do you back him on that?” mazi Obinwa asked. “Of course! How can you ask a mortal to swear over such a thing as feet walking down to Nwete by night? Ask yourselves, if she was the one, why have the gods not killed her? I will not be a judge over what the gods have overlooked. Has anyone died since the feet were seen by Nwaraka?” Ndaa asked. “No one has died Ndaa,” replied mazi Obinwa. Nda Akauba waved her hands over her head, snapped them repeatedly and spit on the ground. “You have all heard from our oldest man and woman! They will not administer the oaths concerning the feet which Nwaraka claims he saw going down to Nwete…” mazi Obinwa was saying. “Mazi Obinwa, do not say I claimed. I only made known what the gods revealed to me,” Nwaraka interjected angrily. “Okay, I have heard you Nwaraka. Let the gods judge whoever owns the feet. Now let the ekwu igwe be brought closer to Nnanyi Ikpechi and Ndaa Akauba,” demanded mazi Obinwa. The warriors did that immediately. The two oldest people took time to speak to the five sets of ekwu igwe and the gods. When they were done, they tied the five of them together with ropes made from plantain stems. Raising his voice, mazi Ikpehi demanded, “Nneoma Uruaku come forth, lay your hands on these ekwu igwe and swear by them that you are not a witch and neither did not kill your husband. If you lie in your oath, you will die before sunrise by tomorrow!” Nneoma stepped forward confidently and took the oath. “Now, Nwaraka step forward and swear that your claims against Nneoma Uruaku are true. If you lie in your oath, you will not see the sun rise by tomorrow,” declared Ndaa Akauba. Nwaraka hurried to the ekwu igwe and took the oath. “Now the matter is settled! Let ekwu igwe prove who is telling the truth between these two!” mazi Obinwa declared. “Will I not take any oaths? I want to swear that Nneoma is telling the truth!” Mazi Njoku demanded.
“Njoku, you will not swear. The oath taken by your brother’s wife is okay,” said mazi Ikpechi. Mazi Njoku grumbled and stood to his feet. The elders stood up to leave and the warriors helped the two oldest people to their feet to lead them home. Nneoma took her children and began to walk home. There was a burning lump in her throat. She did not want to cough, lest she give Nwaraka reason to think the gods were after her. Sadly, she could not resist the burning sensation, so she began to cough. Her cough was loud. All those present stood still watching her in disbelief. Even mazi Njoku was scared. Nwaraka began to dance; and pointing at Nneoma, he shouted, “Ekwu igwe cannot even wait till tomorrow morning to declare who has lied!” While everyone watched Nneoma wrestling with the debilitating cough, two spirits appeared in the square. One was Ofeke, Nneoma’s ancestor and the other was Olekanma her husband. Raising their hands, they struck Nwaraka dead on the spot. His tongue pulled out of his mouth and his stomach began to swell.
Those were the signs of the death of an evil man. Immediately Nneoma’s cough ceased and she sat on the floor breathing heavily. While people tried to soak in what had happened, Udensi was seen running into the square naked. His whole body had been torn open by an invisible whip. Falling to the ground he began to confess how Nwaraka had sent him to his shrine to turn the oaths against Nneoma. At the end of his confession, his tongue pulled out of his mouth and his stomach rose like a hill. From that day on, no one bothered Nnneoma or her children again. A year later, Uchenna who also had lost his wife through childbirth, approached mazi Njoku and asked that Nneoma be given to him as wife. Mazi Njoku who had seen how their love was growing secretly, gave his permission and took Nneoma and her children to Uchenna’s house.
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THE END***************
My readers, I thank you all for your time, comments and thoughts.
To my ghost readers, I also thank you, but I hope you come out of your ghost mode *winks*
God bless you all!!!

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