Nnayelugo was on his way
home from the Isi Ewu joint when he felt some objects move around his body, he
began to move about in discomfort. Soon it was as though the objects were in
his brain and he screamed as he ran home calling out his mother’s name.
He arrived at the house
and ran into the sitting room where his father lay, his mother, Evangeline, pastor Emmanuel, and the ministers were there seated in the sitting room when he came in.

“Nnayelugo!” His mother
called in shock.
“Mama…please bring
cane…bring cane and help me beat these soldier ants that are climbing my
body. Arrrrggghhhh!” He shouted.
“Nnayelugo! What
happened to you? What are these on your body?” His mother asked.
Evangeline and her
husband looked at Nnayelugo, his face was reddened and he had heavy rashes all
over his skin.
“There are no soldier ants on your skin, only rashes…”  His mother said.
“What rashes? I am
asking that you beat me with cane and you’re talking about rashes, ehn! Beat me
with cane ooo…” He shouted louder as he kept scratching himself.
Ekweme lay there in
silence but was aware of everything that was going on, he was suddenly angry.
What was wrong with Nnayelugo? Where is Dibia that he promised to call ehn? What is
this talk of rashes?’ He thought.
Nnayelugo kept
scratching and fell to the ground in tears, he rolled from one side of the room
to the other screaming as he itched his body hard.
“Pastors! Please do
something!” Nnayelugo’s mother cried.
“Do something? What do
you expect us to do? We have no idea of what is going on with him.” One
minister said.
“But…God is all
powerful…He is almighty and victorious….there is nothing He can’t do.”
Nnayelugo’s mother cried, as she ran to her son and helped him itch.
Evangeline’s husband
walked up to Nnayelugo and asked.
“Where are you coming
from?”
Nnayelugo scratched
himself as he spoke, tears fell from his eyes in quick succession.
“I went
….to…eat….isi ewu…” He said as he scratched harder.
“Did you go to any other
place before going there?” Pastor Emmanuel asked.
“Arrrggghhhh…I went
to….arrrgggghhh….dibia’s place, my mother sent me there to call him to help
my father but he is busy…” Nnayelugo said.
“You called the dibia?”
Emmanuel asked Ekweme’s wife in surprise.
“That was before you
came….” Ekweme’s wife answered.
“Choose today, the God
that you would serve because as for me and my house, we will serve the living
God!” Pastor Emmanuel said.
“It’s the living God
that we promise to serve…” Ekweme’s wife cried. “I am a Christian…I don’t
follow the ways of my husband…please…help my son.”
Nnayelugo started
shouting in agony and beating himself against the ground.
“He will kill himself!
Oh…he will kill himself…please help him…help me….” His mother cried.
“Nnayelugo, I am told to
ask, where are you coming from and what did you take that doesn’t belong to you?” Pastor Emmanuel asked.
“Arrrgghhhh…I went to
dibia’s place…I took his palmy and….and….the money I saw in a moulded
idol’s pot. That was the money I used to buy the Isi Ewu I ate…” He cried.
“Give unto Caesar what
belongs to Caesar and give unto God what belongs to God.” Pastor Emmanuel said.
“Nnayelugo, you will have to return everything you took from the shrine back to
the shrine.
Nnayelugo kept scratching
himself and suddenly, his left eye began to itch and when he itched it, he
couldn’t see with the eye again.
“My eye…I can’t see
with my left eye…” He cried.
“Come let us go to the
dibia…come…let us go to the shrine. How much did you take? How much?” His
mother shouted.
“Four hundred and twenty
naira…” Nnayelugo cried. “Plus…palmy…”
Ekweme’s wife ran into
the room and quickly brought out some money and hurried back into the sitting
room.
“Come, let’s
go…come…” She shouted.
“Madam, when you get
there, let him go in alone…and drop the money from the place he took it. Do
not go in with him.” Pastor Emmanuel said.
“But…he’s
my…so….son, why shouldn’t I go with him? Why?”
“I have told you what I
am asked to say…” Pastor Emmanuel said.
Ekweme’s wife nodded as
she grabbed her son’s arm and they both rushed out of the house.
As soon as they left,
Evangeline asked.
“Now, what next? Thelma
and Chi have gone off to look for Obinna, should we go and search with them?”
“You can go ahead and
search with them, but as for the ministers and I, we have a powerful prayer
session to do in this house, we will begin with ransacking the house for any
charms and destroying them before beginning any prayers in this house.” Pastor
Emmanuel said.
Turning to the ministers, Pastor Emmanuel said. “Look for kerosene and matches…we are going to burn everything that is not of God in this house.”
Ekweme’s eyes widened in
fear as he listened to what the pastor said. Something told him that this was
his end.
*********
Stephanie was bound in
chains, she watched as they moved about her in circles, chanting and singing
with her name. Who are these people? She asked herself.
“What do we do with her?”
One of them asked.
“Maggie will decide!
This girl has caused so much harm to her!” Another answered.
‘My mother was saying the truth’
Stephanie thought, ‘Aunt Maggie is really a witch?’
They kept dancing around
her in circles and Stephanie couldn’t tell where they were or the time of day
as everywhere looked bleak and dark. Suddenly a cat ran up to her and she
shuddered.
“Me owwww…” The cat
purred and instantly transformed into a young girl.
“I know you!” Stephanie
said as her voice seemed to echo.
“Yes…you know me…I
have been with you for as long as I can remember, I followed you to Lagos and I
made sure I stuck with you all through…” The girl said in laughter.
“Why? Why did you follow
me? Who sent you?” Stephanie asked.
“Well, that’s what I was
assigned to do, I stalled all the men that were interested in marrying you, I
stopped good contracts from coming to you, I stalled your prayer life…I am
powerful.”
“To what end? Why did
you do this? What have I done to you?” Stephanie cried.
“Me? You haven’t done anything
to me…you have done something to her…” The cat girl purred.
“To who?”
“Maggie…” The cat girl
purred again and transformed into a cat once more.
Stephanie screamed and
beat herself on the ground, she was bound with strong chains so she couldn’t
escape and even if she succeeded, she had no idea of where she was or how to
get out.
“Stop struggling!” A
voice shouted at her.
She looked around at the
men and women dancing around her in circles, the voice didn’t come from any of
them.
“Stop struggling!”
Another voice shouted.
She stopped in fear, she
had no idea of what was happening or where the voice was coming from. Stephanie
knew at that point that she had to ask for help, so she said in her heart. “Help
me Lord…save me Jesus!” As soon as she said that within her, she felt a heavy
blow and she fell unconscious.
********
“Where is Steph?” Pamela
asked Elohor.
Pamela had just stepped
into Aunt Maggie’s side of the house as she needed to see her sister and
convince her to come and see a prayer minister from their mother’s church who had
come visiting.
“She’s in my room…”
Elohor said.
“You look drained, is
anything the matter?” She asked.
“No…nothing…” Elohor
said quickly as she disappeared into her mother’s room.
Pamela went into Elohor’s
room and felt some kind of stale smell coming from the room, she saw her sister
hurdled by the side of the bed as though asleep.
“Stephanie, is this the
best place to sleep? Don’t you think a bed would be more appropriate?” She
asked. “Anyway, that’s not why I’m here. I’m here because mom said I should call you….”
Stephanie didn’t
respond.
She walked up to her and
shook her, she still didn’t respond.
“Steph! Stephanie!” She
called out.
She pushed Stephanie and
she fell flat on her face to the ground, she noticed that the floor was with
blood, and she yelped in alarm as she rushed off from the room and ran to call
her mother.
**********
Elohor stared at her
mother’s sleeping form on the bed, she had shook her to no avail and she wasn’t
scared because she and her siblings were used to their mother’s deep slumbers.
She could sleep for hours and not wake up till she was ready to. She hissed in
frustration as her mother had told her to stay put in her room and not leave
the room for any reason whatsoever. Elohor was tired of sitting in her mother’s
room idly, her phone beeped and the she checked to see that there was a message
for her on Whatsapp.
She smiled when she saw
the sender, it was her crush.
“Hey you…I’m in your
neighbourhood. Would you like to hang out with me?”
She quickly typed a
reply.
“Sure…I’m on my way…”
She looked at her mom’s
still frame on the bed and quietly sneaked out.

To be
continued on Sunday…..

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