THE IGBO SORCERESS – Episode 9
“Look, there comes a little girl,” said Amaefule, pointing at Ifeoma. “This is a gift from the gods. Just what I need for my next sacrifice. You know the priest asked that I bring the tongue, head and the pr!v@te part of a young child. I can’t believe how lucky I am,” Emenike said excitedly. “Wait Emenike, she is mine. I saw her first,” Amaefule pointed out. “What do you need a little girl for Amaefule?” “I was asked to bring the same things as you, Emenike. You are not the only one seeking new levels of power. I can use an upgrade especially now that Lokpanta is down on its knees.” “Okay good friend, I will let you have her only on one condition.” “And what is the condition?” “That you help me abduct five other girls before we leave Lokpanta today.” “Is that is? I will help you abduct ten if you want.” “Comrades, I think this child is not wandering aimlessly. Look at what she is doing! She is not lost!” said Adaure, one of the five others who joined them to Lokpanta. They all turned back their attention to Ifeoma. She was leaning over mama Daniel and silently speaking words into her ears. “What is she doing?” asked Emenike, his eyes flaring. “Obviously trying to revive the lady we struck down,” Amaefule pointed out. “So as it is, elders of Lokpanta now send out children to do battle for them?” Emenike wondered aloud. “Since she is a warrior lets treat her like one” Amaefule said springing to his feet his magic wand ready to do harm warrior, lets treat her like one, Amaefule said, springing to his feet, his magic wand ready to do harm.
“Tread carefully Amaefule, I see strength in the little child!” Adaure warned. Her warning landed on deaf ears. Amaefule was racing toward Ifeoma, making incantations. Ifeoma had managed to revive mama Daniel. She opened her eyes only to behold in shock the face of the little girl she saw back in her house when the sorceress attacked her. “What are you doing here child?” mama Daniel asked. There was no time for Ifeoma to reply her. Several spells like thunder lightning were headed their way. In fact, Ifeoma was the target. At Udemezue’s yam farm, Daniel ran around maniacally in search of his mother. He called her name at the top of his voice but got no answer. He ran deeper and wider to see if he could pick up her tracks but found none. He was beside himself with fear and rage. Out of ideas about what to do, he decided to follow the track which led to the new government palm tree farm. As he drew nearer, he heard voices of men and saw sparks of re. He went to the ground and crouched on all fours, patiently moving closer to the group of witches and wizards ahead of him. While he schemed his attack, he ran into the revived beast, he was squatting over a young lady, eating her alive. With his fangs, he pulled out flesh from the lady’s thighs and fed the bloody chunk into his mouth. When the lady saw Daniel, she raised her hand toward him and cried for help. Though her words were inaudible, Daniel understood her. Her desperate gesticulations toward Daniel made the beast to turn. Daniel’s lost his breath when he saw the blood-filled mouth of the beast, his eyes which flamed like torchlight. When the beast stood on his feet and marched toward Daniel, he towered like a tree above him. On the forehead of the beast were two horns. He could tell they had just sprouted. The last time he saw the three beasts, none of them had horns. “Mama was right, this one is different,” he said to himself. Almost at the same time he said that, he heard within him, “But it is still made of clay and blood. The blood of the sorceress.” “Yes! Yes! I can destroy it from its cradle,” Daniel said to encourage himself. From the direction of the sparks of re and the voices he heard earlier, came his mother’s voice, shouting words he could not make out. He wanted to run to her aid, but the giant beast cut him off. Daniel fed more fresh opete leaves into his mouth as though the ones in his mouth were not enough. When the beast saw the opete leaves in Daniel’s hand, his anger flared. He made breathtaking moves toward Daniel and raised his long right arm to take Daniel’s head off with his thick, strong and sharp fangs. It was like watching one’s execution unfold. Daniel had no time to evade the attack as the long arm of the beast came toward his neck. Back in the village an irate, ground-shaking army of men and women with opete leaves in their mouths surged out from elder Obieze’s compound. They had one objective, and it was to kill anything considered an enemy. In front of the army was Uju, she was leading them to the place where she encountered the beasts and the sorceress. They didn’t have to go too far from their village when they got their first taste of battle that day. They were chanting war songs and pounding their feet on the ground when the beast and the cow which had fled from Daniel ran into them. At the sight of the beast and the mad cow, the entire army stood still. The fear of what they had seen the mad cow do immobilized them. The fearsomeness of the beast was not unknown to them either. Uju could smell fear amongst her people; and so also the mad cow and the beast. It was up to Uju now to show her people what fresh opete leaves could to. She could not let them flee in fear. If that were to happen, many of them would die and many more would flee from the village and would perhaps never return. The fear amongst the army of Lokpanta encouraged the beast and the mad cow to attack them. As they made their charge toward the army, Ujunwa ran to meet them head on. “I command you stop!!!” Uju shouted at the top of her voice. She felt unusual strength leave her mouth. It was like continuous waves of electromagnetic pulse. Like the sharp blades of a warrior, her words sunk into the flesh of the beast and the mad cow, sending them to the ground. The cry from the mad cow and the beast almost left the ears of those present deafened. From behind Ujunwa, her people echoed in pleasant surprise. Finally, Lokpanta regained their advantage. No more shall they be oppressed by any sorceress and her magical creations. Many amongst them may die, but they would never run from any oppressor. Uju looked back at her people and a smile, brighter than the sun spread over her face. She turned back toward the mad cow and the beast, her machete raised. Like a rabid dog she began to hack them. Them her people joined in. Machetes rose and landed on the beast and the mad cow in unbroken fashion and yet they would not die. Uju wanted to see the end of the cow and the beast to give her people greater hope, and so she asked that they stop butchering the monster cow and the beast of clay. Many of them were covered in blood and panting tiredly, yet they could not wait to finish of their dreaded enemy. Uju was convinced that if just one command from her opete-filled mouth could stop the beast of clay and the mad cow, the very leaves of opete on the bodies of their foes would end their miserable lives, and that she did. Reaching into the raffia bag slung across her shoulder, she removed a few fresh leaves of opete. When the beast of clay and the mad cow saw the leaves, they began to shiver. Uju wasted no time to drop it on them. While they all watched, the mad cow and the beast began to burn with a great re. The mere touch of opete leaves on their bodies set them ablaze. The joyful roar of the people of Lokpanta, reverberated far and near and went into the ears of their enemies. Even the revived beast of clay heard them. In times of old, it was commonly said that when Lokpanta roars, then the lions have awakened. And so it was in this time. As the people of Lokpanta celebrated the end of the mad cow which terrorized them, the sky above them darkened and torrents of flames began to rain down on them. The sorceress was back with great wrath, and she had returned to finish what she began. Amid the mayhem of running from the rain of flames, Uju lifted her eyes to the sky and spoke to the descending torrential rain of re. Many of her people heard her and did the same. The flames above them froze, hanging in the air and the ones on their bodies and on the ground quenched with great force. Now the real battle has begun ground quenched with great force. Now the real battle has begun.