ENSLAVED

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WRITTEN BY NZEH UCHE SUNNY

The full moon brightly shined, but the night could not be darker for Amunike as he ran through the woods for his life. His heart pounded, imprinting on his chest as he soared through the cold stable wind. They chased; some on horses, others on foot, with their huge dogs trailing his tracks which were very visible because the soil was muddy. He ran, not because he wasn’t strong enough to fight, or afraid to be devoured by the dogs, but because a servant should never drink from the master’s cup.

 

Amunike, an orphan who lived in the house of the hilly Umuwa kingdom’s librarian—a kingdom ruled by a king and his nobles. The librarian raised him up as one of his servants, and soon Amunike gradually rose to become his master’s favourite and he was made the head of the servants owing to his vim and bravura.

 

Amunike grew in his use of words and understanding—because of his usual stay in the library as he sought after how ordinary men could become king and fed his mind with the strategies of wielding the wisdom of the gods. With time he mastered the art of poetry with his tongue coated with rhymes and rhythms.

 

The handsome young man was always admired by women, especially the wives of the nobles whenever they paid the librarian’s wife a visit—his huge genital gave them what to stare at, as they always imagined its size through the material he was clothed with.

 

When Amunike was 17 years, he was deflowered by the wife of the librarian. She had made him her personal masseur; she knew he would not resist lusting after her if she was naked during the massage sessions. She would summon him to her chamber; where they would be intimate, which later became a norm.

 

The acts opened his mind to allow the female servants of the household have a fair share of his endowment—he loved his gift from the gods.

 

On the 50th birthday of Umuwa’s king, his twelve nobles gathered to merry with him. Every noble was obliged to give a presentation (talents or sitcoms) either by their servants or otherwise. The librarian prepared Amunike for an original poem and ditty; when he was called to the centre stage, he recited:

 

SONG

I have seen with fury’s eyes like a beast whose woman was slain before his eyes

I have never ignored the seductive touches of the evening bond with nobles

I have taught my eyes that the only way is pinpointing swirly directions

I have decreed in my heart to never give up till I give up

I have pinched my affluent skin ready for my people’s scratch

I have divided myself to be ubiquitous at their calls

I am king of the hilly lands of Umuwa.

 

After the song,

 

POEM

I know of a place in the centre of nowhere

The leaves are always green, the flowers so bright

Trees are so tall and branches shading the scorching sun

I know of a kingdom on the far side of history

Filled with milk and honey, fruits always fresh and nourishing

Lands very rich for planting with no pest and weeds

I know of a land in total harmony

Where greed is not in their heart’s diction, togetherness so sure

The love of happy endings, dwelling in them all

I know of this perfect land

Fantasy of men, I love the land I live in

So real, its name is Umuwa

 

As he recited, inquisitiveness loomed their minds; his performance was far beyond that of his counterparts. The king was cock-a-hoop and loved the young man immediately. And when it was time for gift presentation to the celebrant, the king ordered the librarian to offer him Amunike. The librarian pleaded, telling him that the young man wasn’t just a servant but his finest. The king insisted he had better use for him.

 

The librarian parted ways with Amunike telling him to satisfy the king’s every demand. The palace became his new home. The king was happy to have a very good poet and singer who would always sing to his depressed queen. The queen’s frequent bitterness was as a result of barrenness, and it hurt her most knowing the king always cheated on her with palace maids and servants.

 

Amunike sang to her in all possible places—he was her minstrel, but stayed at the door posts, when she took her baths and when the king was in her chambers. The queen soon liked Amunike, always laughing at his funny poetry. With time she noticed his huge genital that was barely covered by the servant’s apparels he always wore.

 

She devised a perfect plan to lure him to bed, which worked. The intimacy always kept her exhausted but seemingly renewed. She enjoyed his company, and to keep him always by her side, she demanded Amunike was taught how to become a gladiator so he would be her entertainer and personal guard.

 

The quick-to-learn servant, grew in strength, overpowering his instructors in training; he became the perfect gladiator and the invincible Queen guard.

 

The queen loved the feeling of a paramour with her—a handsome one was all her desire; as it felt like payback to what the King always did. The one memory she hardly forgot was dated about twenty years ago—the king’s affair with a maiden who conceived for him. This particular one always sent two-headed spares through her already bleeding heart.

 

Amunike became the queen’s new joy source and their affair went on for a while.

So, on one fateful day, the king returned from one of his hunts as the rain made the weather unfavourable, just to find his queen and her guard—hands wrapped around each other.

 

In disbelief and anger, he brought out his sword to end Amunike’s life but the gladiator ran off. The king immediately ordered his arrest.

 

Amunike, now a fugitive dashed through the woods being chased by guards and dogs. The dogs trailed his tracks to the cursed hills; these hills were forbidden and rumours had it that it inhabited a wicked sorceress of illusions.

 

Amunike knew about the legends of the hills but saw it as an escape route knowing his pursuers would not follow him through. He noticed so many domestic animals of various types loitering on the hills and stopped to catch his breath at the foot of a rock.

 

Before he could catch sleep, he felt the wind blow to his direction—he opened his eyes, but dust blurred his sight; restricting his vision. Amunike saw a very beautiful woman standing in front of him, looking straight at him.

“What do you want?” He inquired.

“I want you,” the woman responded.

“I am the sorceress that rules this part of Umuwa kingdom, and I have led you here.” She added.

 

The sorceress narrated to him how she had over the years, been behind his greatness and the reasons he was loved by many. She explained more precisely, how she was the one who made it clear for the librarian, dewing his promotions, also making the king and his nobles like his song and poem.

 

She told Amunike as they both walked up to her chamber how all came to be—from before he was even born:

“There were three sisters; one was wicked and a freeloader, the second kind-hearted and a damsel, and the third a young witch. The king married the wicked sister and later fell in love with the kind-hearted and she conceived for him; for the queen was barren. The Queen found out, ireful, demanded the death of her younger sister. The young witch brought her laboured sister to me for protection. So I did and you were born, but she didn’t survive the pains of labour.”

 

Amunike, dazed and in awe remained stunned and not totally convinced. He looked, staring deep into her eye in search of the truth, but her eyes wore innocence and guilt had no place in them.

“So what do you want from me?” He asked.

The Sorceress told him she wanted him to put his seed in her on a full moon so she could become a mother, raising a baby of her own. The whole story was confusing to Amunike as he wondered if there were no other men available to possibly do her biddings. In his young wisdom, he questioned her;

“Why have you not gotten other men to give you your desire?”

“I need a child with your strength and wisdom,” She replied.

 

Choices to pick from were really minimal as his life was sought for, so he considered her offer.

“So, what will be my take assuming I agree to your request?”

“With your strength and zest, you will be king. I’ll make you king of kings and nothing will stand in your way. All the lands will hear of AMUNIKE and tremble.”

 

He heard these words and the unborn royalty in him took over his ability to think rationally. All he could visualise was the Umuwa crown on his head. He quickly agreed to her terms and a blood covenant, votive sealed the deal.

 

She took Amunike atop the hills to another chamber—and as they came closer to it, the Hawks at the roof flew in circles as if in the glee of what was about to be done. They entered; the bed was in view. The bed was sedan bed with woods from the finest trees. The post of silver, its legs of gold, and the white mattress was lush with foliage.

 

Pleasurably true, Amunike had slept on various beds in his sex sprees, but at that moment he felt he was about having his first intimacy.

“Turn to the other side and undress,” She said.

He did, but while on it, took a sneak peek at her as she removed all that covered her from her head to her toes. Her hairs as black and wavy like a raven; He couldn’t get his eyes off her. She was the goddess of beauty.

 

They both laid totally nude and made love; she was absolutely beautiful with no imperfection in her.

After the act, the sorceress was filled with satisfaction. She gave him her ring and directed him to a far land inhabiting men who owed their lives to her and they had no ruler.

 

He was to go and make himself their king and build his army that would return with him to take his supposed throne of Umuwa. She also told him that the deal meant he would make love to her on every full moon until she conceived.

 

Amunike travelled far and met with his new followers, showed them the sorceress’ ring and they believed him—for they owed their lives to the sorceress. In three years, the gladiator trained the men day and night without rest. Young and old became warriors and they became 700 able gladiators and within these years, the sorceress had not yet conceived.

 

Amunike and his 700 men marched to the kingdom of Umuwa to take his assumed rightful place on the throne. They gathered their forces for wars close to the kingdom. The king and his men, though unprepared, assembled to defend what was theirs.

 

Amunike and his men stood on one hill and the kingdom of Umuwa another with a ravine between them. Umuwa had 10000-foot soldiers who marched out taking battle formation at the entrance of the kingdom. Amunike saw that there was a battle line drawn in front of him and another behind as 5000 men on chariots had gone round through the kingdoms back exit and surrounded them. He divided his troops equally facing both ends. The sky gradually turning dark by flying Hawks controlled by the sorceress from her hills and viewed the battle from their eyes. That was the sign Amunike and his men needed—their cue, as they charged, advancing towards their opposition.

 

The birds dived first, plucking the eyes of their enemies leaving them vulnerable to a swinging sword and they fell in their thousands—the war was unfair. The men on chariots collided with each other as the birds’ beaks pierced hard into their skins.

 

Amunike struck 9000-foot soldiers and 4000 charioteers. He also struck the king of Umuwa who died there but the regicide wasn’t by his sword. The remaining soldiers of Umuwa knew they were outmatched by Amunike, his men, and the Ravens, as they fled for their lives. He took over the kingdom crowning himself king. Now he’d gotten what he wanted but the Sorceress hadn’t yet conceived.

 

One morning in the second year of his rule, Amunike got up and strolled around the roof of the palace. From the roof, he saw a beautiful woman; a very beautiful one. So Amunike wooed her and after months they fell in love.

 

A herald loudly proclaimed,

“People of Umuwa, the king has found his bride and to be wedded in the next full moon.”

 

At full moon, after the befitting sovereign ceremony, Amunike made love to his wife pouring his seeds into her and while she slept, he also left for the hills to see the sorceress since it was a full moon and fortunately, both women conceived.

 

When the sorceress noticed that she had taken in, she quickly put up a supernatural guard on his seeds so her child will be without comparison but her effort was futile—it was too late.

 

One day a strange woman sought the presence of King Amunike and he gave her audience. She told him she knew something he needed to know, so she began to talk:

 

“I have come here to tell you the truth on how you came to be. Some years ago, I am my two elder sisters came to Umuwa.

The deceased king got married to the eldest and fell for the second; getting her pregnant. This made the queen furious and she demanded the head of her sister. I, a witch took my sister who was in labour to a friend sorceress to help hide the baby from the queen’s rage—which she agreed and did with her mixtures before the baby was born.

 

Little did I know that the sorceress had plans of her own; you see, two deities AMU (genital) and IKE (strength) , which was the origin of your name AMUNIKE, owed the sorceress a favour which they promised her a supernatural baby but since the seeds of gods could not directly just fertilise a woman’s egg, they poured her their seeds which she kept for use at an appointed time.

 

The opportunity presented itself and the sorceress did not hesitate to take it. She fed you the deities seeds in your mother’s womb, making you strong and with a huge genital. The final phase of her plan was whenever you came of age; you would make love to her to give her desired demi-god baby.”

 

Amunike, perplexed and speechless to what he had heard, barely moved a muscle. He felt like one who had eaten fine sand on a watermelon. The strange woman took her leave.

The sky roared with lighting and thunder, like in significance of something. A maiden ran to him with the news of his queen in labour. He immediately dashed to the scene as one of the midwives held his baby boy in her arms: At the same time, the sorceress also cried in labour—she birthed a baby boy too. The twin boys from different mothers were born.

 

Amunike in glee could not contain it and left to merry. The sorceress sensed the presence of another supernatural baby other than hers and traced it to the palace. She saw the queen and her new baby and passed a sword through their hearts. But as she did this, she felt a deep cut in her; like a life had left her.

“My baby,” She cried.

In weakness she returned to the hills and saw her baby dead—they were twins indeed.

“What have I done?” She wailed, held him in her hands as she wept.

 

Amunike after the celebration of his new son returned to see his wife and child. But the sight of his palace was obnoxious—it would scare even the bravest of men. He saw his maidens and guards lying dead. He rushed to see his family; life was not in them with their hearts bleeding all it could.

“What else would I live for?” he loudly cried in anguish, lamenting whatever his mouth could utter.

“I know who had done this,”

 

In a rage, he took his sword and rode on his fastest horse to the cursed hills. He screamed as he approached the sorceress’ chamber searching for her and did not find her. He heard the sound of her weeping atop the hills and followed through.

“What wicked thing did you do?” He furiously asked.

She ignored him and continued in agony. The king’s anger grew irately as he ran towards the sorceress and her dead baby; pushed, and the three fell towards the hill’s foot; to their ends. But as they fell, his mind raced through all he ever achieved; he now knew why the sages and savants say life is vanity; neither the throne nor the sex spree was true satisfaction.

 

Before reaching the foot of the hills, Amunike woke up; he was still seated at the foot of the rock on the cursed hills, where he rested, catching his breath from the guards and dogs.

“Was it all a dream or an illusion? So there was no beautiful woman standing anywhere to tell him about the life he had led.” He thought.

 

A shadow soon covered him from behind the small rock he retired; as he looked, there she was—the sorceress, a very old woman staring at him with huge eyeballs. Before he could utter a word, she turned him into a rooster, tied its feathers and added it to her collections of domestic animals.

 

“Welcome to the hills of illusions where you live your desires for a while,” She cunningly said.

The old sorceress wickedly smiled as she headed back to her chambers awaiting her next subject

 

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