Ujanga Maa (The Saviour)
She ran for all she was worth. Fear, anguish and trepidation were clouded over by overwhelming anger. Nothing would stop her this time. She would run in, and taking them by surprise, grab her brother and be out of there before they even realized there was an intruder in their horrific act of vengeful bloodshed. These thoughts filled her mind, and so she did not see the obstacle in her way, for the ground was poorly illuminated by the cold light of the moon. She tripped over it, and fell hard, hitting her chin on the hard earth of the clearing, causing her teeth to sink sharply into her tongue. Squeezing her eyes shut against the intense pain, she shuddered, and remained on the ground.
“Nkanno hii!” She swore, after the pain subsided to a great extent. Efie gripped the earth with her fingers, looking to push herself up, when her hand closed around something small and hard. She squatted, and raised it up to the dim light. It was M’idawe’s ankle bracelet. Greatly alarmed, she turned around to see what she had tripped over.
Or rather, who.
“Brother. B-brother!” Efie called sharply, taking firm hold of the body of a young boy lying on the forest floor, his eyes frozen in the shock and anguish that only victims feel, of which they are too dead to describe to the living.
“M’idawe! M’idawe koo! ” Her grip grew harsh, as if she hoped to hurt him enough to cry and wake. She shook him violently, almost tearing his loin cloth.
“Do not do this to me, my love. Do not leave me. Noooo!”
Her body shook with the spasms of an epileptic, and her teeth chattered violently. She laid her head atop his chest, breathing in the copper like smell of spilled blood. Then Efie flung her head backwards and let out a long, shrill shriek of pain.
Ujanga Maa watched from a safe distance, hidden among the wild plants. He had not been asleep when the girl ran out of his cave, and he had followed her here, waiting, absorbing her anguish, breathing in the acrid scent of her anger. He saw her slowly get up, the bracelet gripped in her left palm.
She began to dance. He watched her sway to the rhythm of the wild, eyes devoid of emotion. Face unperturbed, revealing nothing, and yet revealing everything. Ujanga Maa bowed his head.
“It is time, Master. Time for everything You have planned to be fulfilled. It is time to heal, and mend. To set free. A sacrifice has been made, Master, and there is a helpless, angry soul that needs You. Help me reveal You, and nothing else.”
Raising his head, he saw her stop her crazy, fevered dance abrubtly, turn around and begin to hunt for something on the forest floor. Tracks.
Then, she crept, following these footprints until she was out of his sight. He stood, and stepped out from his hideout, fully ready for what lay ahead.
Salvation, or Waterloo.
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Toyin Uzoma is a vocalist, writer, motivational speaker, editor, content writer and TV presenter. A student of Imo State University, studying English Education and Chinese Language.