The people of Ogba in grand style celebrates the Year of the gods after every ten years. This year’s celebration is about becoming bloody…!
Welcome to Ogba land…
It was the Eke market day in the feast year of the gods.
Everywhere was so quiet and the only sound heard was the chirping of birds.
The noise from the forest drew my attention.
Even though I was afraid, I still summoned courage to know what actually made that noise. After all, I am a hunter and the forest is my second home.
Drawing close to the noise I was hearing in the forest, it was becoming obvious that it was a human who was in need of my help.
The farther I track the voice, the closer it becomes.
On reaching a point, I stopped because of the spills of blood scattered around the scene.
I noticed something dangerous must have happened to someone.
From my observation I noticed that it was a fight between two human beings and the winner of the fight escaped with the victim.
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Though I was not sure of what could be the reason for the fight but I was pretty sure it was humans fighting.
Because I never wanted to meddle in issues that do not concern me, I left for my home.
The Chief Priest Addresses the King
While I was walking down home, I met the chief priest who was looking so disturbed.
As the custom demands, no one dares to talk to or stop the Chief Priest when he is on a motion.
The only thing expected of you is to bow your head while he crosses. This is because he is regarded as the only one who speaks to and hears from the gods.
From what he hears, he interprets and tells the people.
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Because of this great office, custom demands that we accord him all respect necessary.
When he passed me with his bell hung walking staff, I wondered what could be chasing him.
The Chief Priest has never been in a hurry like this. So what could be the problem?
Well I think it’s not my problem neither am I in the position to solve his problem. He is a Chief Priest so he will know how to solve his problems.
At the Palace
The Chief Priest who has been in a haste to meet with the king told the king that an evil act has been committed in the land. He further advised the king to step into action immediately before it becomes too late.
He also claimed that the gods had remained silent on revealing what the crime was.
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Even the king is as confused as the conveyer of the message from the gods.
How can one start fighting something he knows nothing about?
The Chief Priest left the palace after he had delivered the message from the gods.
I promised my grandmother that I would visit her today after I had finished with what I had for the day.
She prepared me dinner and we ate together.
My grandmother is the only family I have left.
My father died in the forest as a hunter. He was killed by a lion.
My mother died a few months after I was born. And as for my grandfather, he died even before my father married my mother.
These were the stories I heard from grandmother.
While we were eating and discussing how I was unlucky to catch any animal today, the town crier interrupted our discussion with his metal gung.
The message of the town crier has it that the king has warned anybody committing any crime in the community to stop it. He further asserted that the gods are already angry so demand a stop.
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After the town crier passed his information, he continued his movement.
When he had gone far, I asked my grandmother what could be the reason for the hastiness of the Chief Priest.
She told me that if truly I saw the Chief Priest walking towards the palace with a long face, then it has something to do with the message the town crier came to pass this night.
After a long night discussion we went inside to sleep.
Sleeping in grandmother’s hut especially beside her gives me sound soul fulfilment.
I feel very much okay each time I am around her. She is my family.
Under the Mango Tree
The sun was very high and the weather was very hot, I laid under the mango tree which brought with it more fresh air.
I was wondering all this while in the forest looking for where to cool my head and the gods just directed me to this mango tree.
While I was resting, another sound just like the one of the previous week came again.
I followed to know where the sound was coming from, behold I didn’t see anyone but spills of blood.
In two weeks, the same Eke market day, the same act has repeated itself.
“This is really getting out of hand,” I said to myself.
I took my time to go through the perimeters but didn’t find any human being.
While I made the search I was able to hunt an antelope.
Atleast, grandma can still have something to prepare for dinner tonight.
The gods have really blessed me with two different antelopes. I can sell one and give my grandmother one.
While I was walking back home, I came across the Chief Priest once again.
As he passed, he stopped and gazed at me.
I wondered why he did what he did. I can’t remember offending him. I did everything necessary to be done when the Eye of the gods is passing.
He turned around and continued with his movement. While myself who was still bothered about the look, remained adamant for countless minutes thinking.
When I was unable to come to a particular answer to why the Native Doctor was looking at me, I just waved at it and went home.
Still with grandmother that night, the town crier came again and repeated the same message of last week.
This time around, it was more frightening.
According to the town crier who just delivered the message from the king, he said; the gods are angry with this community and if what is happening repeats itself again, we are doomed.
Grandmother told me that in the year of the gods, atrocities are not supposed to be heard.
The feast is usually celebrated every 10 years and it comes up in the first three Eke market days in the second month of the year.
On these three days, the gods travel around their world and also in the world of mankind for a visit.
You can’t see them but they will see you.
Don’t commit any atrocity because it will spell doom on the community.
Everything sounded like a fiery tale to me.
I believed in all her stories but this one is unacceptable.
The night was already mature so we went inside and slept.
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This story, name of places and characters involved are the pure product of Saviosantos imagination. Please disregard every form of familiarity because it was a clash of coincidence.
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