“Your case is not too difficult …” It was Agbako, a renowned witch doctor of Abia, Ohafia. He was aged but physically and spiritually strong. He was speaking to a young couple who had come to seek help from him in order to bear children. They had been married for only a full year but Benjamin Kalu was impatient.
“In fact,” continued Agbako, “It is good news that I have for you. The Oracle says that one of your ancestor Njànsí, the great wizard of Akanu who dined with Ubina-Ukpabi, Amadioha and Kamalu-Ikere; who commanded men, wild beasts and evil spirits…” “… Njànsí wants to return to this world.”
Benjamin and Comfort looked at each other in amazement. “So are we going to have a child?” asked Benjamin “Iroha!” Agbako called the young man by his native name. “My father” answered Benjamin. “Your wife will bear a son, a great son” his eyes were set as he spoke.
Benjamin smiled. His wife must have been happy too but she didn’t show it. This whole idea of coming to a witch doctor didn’t go down well with her. She had been raised in a Christian home. Her father was one of the first elders of their church in Ohafia but she wasn’t firm in her faith. Besides, she was just twenty, she couldn’t but succumb to her husband’s persuasion.
“The oracle says you must call your son no other name but Njànsí. Also, do not forget this: when the child is born, your wife must put the after-birth in a small clay pot and bring it here to me alone”.
Agbako paused for a moment.
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I was standing by the staircase at Silverbird Galleria after a movie. Helen and I were gisting about what most 21st century girls gist about in their mid-twenties. I had not noticed Elvis until he got quite close to us. “Mademoiselle …”, he began. I stopped talking and looked at him. Helen cleared her throat and excused herself to take a look at some jewellery nearby.
We had been friends a while and she had gotten used to being completely ignored when men walked up to me. She wasn’t ugly though. In fact, in some environments, she was actually beautiful but standing beside me was, I dare say, like the moon, as beautiful as it is, standing beside the sun. Please forgive me Helen. I love you. Mmuah!
“Monsieur” I responded in the little French I knew wondering whether he would keep speaking French. His French must have been flawless from the way he pronounced Madmoiselle. He was definitely attractive and could have made a fortune just toasting girls for a fee (from the girls themselves). “How was your flight?” “Sorry…” I was actually stammering. Unbelievable. “How was your flight, ma belle dame?”
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This book is based on a true story. A story of sin and forgiveness, a story of sonship and slavery, a story of lust and love. A man fails because he has failed to accurately analyze his true strengths and weaknesses. He fails because he has not taken time to be honest with himself.
The filth hidden within his heart is suddenly exposed, embarrassing him, trapping him, enslaving him. He has judged others without first judging himself. He had no idea whatsoever what he was capable of until he was exposed to the right (or wrong) circumstances.
Good to see you too… “, Philip responded after a short lag. Zainab leaned back and smiled again. It could have disarmed a Russian soldier. Philip glanced at the yellow handbag dangling from her left arm while looking for something else to focus on asides Zainab’s face. She broke the brief silence.
“Please come help me with my big box”
Her hand slithered down his upper arm and back to her hand luggage as they both went back to the ninety-seater luxury bus. It was rowdy. Passengers were clamouring for their luggage while the bus conductors did their best to help maintain sanity. Zainab stayed an inch behind Philip pointing out her huge brown leather bag. It was out in a few minutes after just a little pushing and shoving and both walked side by side out of the park to the busy highway where Philip had parked on the covert.
The ride was very chatty. One chatty lady with one responsive man creates a chatty ride in a brand-new city. Much of the conversation was about her experience with the trip and her questions about Ghana.
“… I hate sitting for long…”
“Thank God you made it then. It’s not a problem for us…”
“When I was you we used to go home every Christmas like most Igbos. The bus ride is about ten hours…”
Out December 2017