Osato sat in her father’s living room with Isoken seated on the floor between her laps. She was loosening the girl’s hair while they watched cartoons on cable TV. Isoken had a bowl of popcorn in front of her, which she was eating with her eyes glued to the television; Esther was cooking in the kitchen.
The bell pealed loudly and Osato got up slowly; she was still recovering from the beatings she had received from Chief Omuah. The bruises were fading away but the wound to her spirit still bled. She had told her father that she had been attacked by some boys but was saved by two men before they could do anything serious to her. The old man had complained about the university environment being unsafe for young girls with cultists and gangs roaming all over the place. She had agreed with him verbally, with Esther chipping in her own opinions. Her father will never know what she has been up to. She had wondered, though, how he would react to a second child born out of wedlock.
She opened the door and before her stood Jackson, smiling. She jerked the door close angrily but he placed his foot inside the door so it could not close.
Jackson: “ha…beautiful, is that how you treat guests? I have brought a friend.” He said, moving to the side.
Osato gasped in shock as the cruel smile on the sensual lips came into view. “Amadi!” A bell ringing in her head. She turned into the house and stared at Isoken, watching the television unconcernedly.
Osato: “Amadi, what are you doing here?” she asked, getting her voice back.
Amadi moved fast and grabbed her by the throat, choking the air out of her lungs. Osato struggled to free his muscled arm from her throat, rising panic in her eyes.
Amadi: “Bitch, don’t give me all that bull. I came to collect what’s mine. Where is the child?” he asked, his eyes furrowed in anger.
Jackson: “bro, she won’t be able to give you an answer with her choking in your grip now. Take am easy.” He said, looking about uncomfortably.
Amadi looked at him, released her and smiled. Immediately Osato ran inside, picked Isoken, entered her father’s room and barred the door. Amadi pushed in after her, Jackson following closely behind, a worried frown on his face. “This was not the plan o. I thought he was going to woo her and try to win her back. What is all this his macho stunt for? Because of pikin?” he thought to himself.
Amadi: “Bitch you better come out with my baby or am gonna burn this motherfucker down! Don’t think am kidding. You know me, I am crazy as hell. I will burn this house…” he stopped as Esther came out of the kitchen surprised at the noise.
He immediately grabbed her and gave her a slap. Jackson threw his hands in the air and rolled his eyes in exasperation. “I see why she left the fool, the first time.” He thought as he rushed to save the girl from the beating, he knew was coming.
Ruth took Damian back to the hotel. Damian’s body was hot all over and he was trembling. Ruth left him on the bed and ordered for a glass of whiskey. She then went into the bathroom and ran a bath for him. When the whiskey came, she gave it to Damian.
Ruth: “this will help the shock.” She said as she placed it in Damian’s trembling hand.
Damian gulped it and grimaced. He immediately got up, ran into the bathroom and started throwing up. After that, he entered the bath and immersed himself in the hot water. He laid in it for several minutes; his brain replaying the scene at Chief Omuah’s place over and over again.
He came out of the bathroom feeling a little bit better. He got dressed and sat down on a chair, facing the window where Ruth stood gazing outside.
Damian: “who are you?” he asked.
Ruth: “do you read your bible, Damian?” she asked, ignoring his question.
Damian: “of course. I am Christian.” He replied.
Ruth: “God has continually raised men to stand as crusaders against evil. From the Old Testament down to the New Testament, we see God making use of men in the exposure and destruction of satan and his works.” She continued.
Damian: “how does this sermon answer my question?” he asked.
Ruth: “each of these men and women, were told of their conscription into the war against evil by a messenger.” She continued.
Damian: “wait…you are like an angel?” he asked, disbelief creeping into his voice.
Ruth shrugged and turned away from the window to look at Damian.
Ruth: “it doesn’t matter. You have been conscripted to carry the vanguard of Christ into the midst of the enemy. You have been called to battle the enemy and save the souls of men.” She said solemnly.
Damian looked at her for three seconds then he burst into laughter. He laughed so hard, tears were streaming down his face.
Damian: “God wants me to become a warrior in his service, battling principalities and powers? Very funny… Woman, I am dying. I am HIV positive!” he replied.
Ruth: “God does not look for perfection when he seeks the people he will use to manifest his power. If God was looking for the healthiest, tallest, most handsome or beautiful men and women to gift his vision for man, many of the prophets and prophetesses of old would not have qualified. In our weakness, we find strength. It is our fears, pains, weakness and tears that make us strong enough to bear the weight of preaching the gospel and saving souls.” She replied slowly.
Damian: “I am no Man of God neither am I a warrior for Christ. I am just an accountant who has a deadly virus and is looking for ways to protect the wife he loves.” He replied sadly.
Ruth: “you will have to choose whom you will follow. You have been brought to the attention of evil and it will not let you be unless it consumes you in its darkness or destroy you. They are already peeling way your strength even as we speak.” She said.
Damian: “what do you think I can achieve against such monstrosities as I saw in Chief Omuah’s house. I am just a man.” He replied.
Ruth: “but your God is not just any god.” She replied, smiling at him.
Rebecca returned to the Order’s quarters at night. Time Keeper had invited her over for some strengthening. She had sensed worry in the man’s normally bored tones, but it never crossed her mind that the game had changed. She was led to another room and she was told to strip. The three adepts who were with her had masks on like her so she could not identify any of them.
When she was completely nude, she was led into a pool of milky liquid. A shape swam within its murky depths. Rebecca’s heartbeat increased beneath her ribs as she saw the obscure shape twisting in the pool. She stood before the pool undecided. She saw a figure glide from a door on the other side of the room. It was the master. He got to the edge of light and stopped
Master: “you will mate with the serpent within and you will become a priestess of the first circle. You will be invested with powers you have not dreamt of but there is a price.” He said in his characteristic whisper.
Rebecca: “price sir? What price?” she asked, her eyes reflecting her hunger for power.
Master: “you will forfeit the ability to conceive but you will be indeed powerful.” He whispered coldly.
Rebecca could hear the sneer in Pastor Jeremiah’s voice as he broke her weak attack and made her kneel. “Power…enough power to wipe the smirk of that beast’s face. It is a small price.” She thought as she stepped forward, her foot entering the cold pool.
Master cocked his head to the side like a bird and stared at her through the hood that covered his face.
Master: “have you thought this through, little one?” he asked, his voice a silky purr.
Rebecca looked at him, all fear gone from her. She raised her head regally and stepped into the murky depth. Immediately a serpentine tail wrapped around her and dragged her to the bottom of the pool. The Master looked on, a red gleam in his eyes. He sighed and sat down yoga style, to wait.
Osasu stood before the prophet naked. She had entered the sea and the prophet had bathed her with a native sponge and native soap. She now stood completely nude before the man.
The man unrolled a mat and told her to lie on it. She laid faced down on the mat, her eyes closed. The prophet brought out a cup and opened it. He dipped his fingers into it and smeared Osasu’s back with the content after which he rubbed the content into her skin from her neck down to her feet. She turned to face up and he does the same thing. By the time he was done, her eyes were blank. The prophet removed his garment and climbed on top of her. As he penetrated her, a demon rose from the sea and slowly crawled to where they laid. It sat before Osasu’s head and sank its claws into her skull. She screamed and screamed then she passed out.
The prophet got up after he was done and wore his clothes. He left the passed out form of Osasu on the mat. He walked to where Mummy Uyi sat smoking quietly.
Prophet: “It is done.” He said quietly.
Mummy Uyi opened her bag and brought out a bundle of naira notes. She handed it over to the prophet then turned back to smoking. The prophet looked at the money, turned to go but stopped
Prophet: “why are you doing this to your own sister?” he asked; curiosity overcoming caution.
Mummy Uyi: “why do lions hunt?” she asked, staring out to the restless sea, a satisfied smile on her lips.
Question: Powers are gathering for a showdown. It seems Osasu has been led to her own doom by her own sister! Will she be able to survive the demon’s possession? Will Osato let Amadi torment her and her family without doing anything about it? Will Damian be willing to fight the good fight despite his illness? So many questions… Don’t go anywhere, me dears!
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