Looks like Akosua have encountered another evil spirit. Now she will have to save her guest again. Where did he take the woman, what will he do with her, will Akosua be able to save her from any fate that may befall her. Come back Sunday morning to find out. Pa Pa Jumbie is waiting for you.
Akosua twisted and turned as she slid down on the salt. She came to a stop looking up at Adofo and Donkor. They took her arms and pulled her up. Henry and the others slid down after her, stood up and looked around. The ceiling of the cave was about twenty feet high. The roof of it was a layer of salt and the sun shined through it, creating a rainbow of colours on the white walls. The cave was salt, just like the white field they had just walked on. On the far side, large rocks of salt stood like steps that went about fifteen feet up. At the top, above the last steps of salt was the only natural rock visible.
“Right there,” Donkor said. Akosua looked up at the rock, its beige colour pronounced against the rocks of salt that surrounded it. She lay her gear down and was about to walk over to the steps when laughter filled the cave. Some of the salt rocks cracked and pieces fell, bounced off the salt floor, rolled towards Henry and stopped at his feet.
“Welcome girl witch,” the voice boomed. It echoed through the cave and Akosua looked around to see where it had come from. A man stepped out from behind a salt rock that was shaped like a headstone. It was six feet tall, and as Akosua and her friends watched, a black cross appeared on the front of it. Above the cross were the letters R.I.P, underneath was Akosua’s mother’s name written in red. There were smaller salt rocks surrounding it, they too were shaped like tombstones with the names of each child’s parent on it.
The man wore a black suit, and a black top hat, and dark sunglasses with the right lens knocked out of it. His exposed red eye rolled as he spoke. He used the smaller tombstones as steps to climb onto the bigger one and sat on top of it like a king on his throne.
“This is the perfect spot to sit and watch this momentous occasion. Little witch retrieves Spear of Salt so that she can save her people,” Guede said then threw his head back and laughed. Akosua stood calm and smiled, her eyes never moving away from the evil Loa,
“You don’t intimidate me, you are just a Lackey for Baron Samedi,” she responded. Guede’s laughter disappeared immediately. He puffed on his cigar then leaned forward.
“Go ahead little lady, go get your spear,” he said, and smiled a devilish smile. Akosua looked back at her friends. Adofo stepped forward.
“I will go with you,” he said, but Akosua waived him off.
“I have to do this alone,” She said and took a step.
“Ohhh brave little Obeah Woman,” Guede said and laughed. The salt crunched as Akosua stepped on it, it was the loudest sound she had ever heard, it echoed in her head as she took another step. She stepped lightly, but her left foot sank to her ankle in the salt and was slowly sinking more.
“Watch it now; you already stuck your foot in your mouth by challenging me. Be careful you don’t step into a salty grave.” Guede said and roared with laughter. She struggled to free her foot. Adofo started walking towards her, but once again she raised her hand and he stopped. She was finally able to pull her foot out, small chunks of wet salt rolled off her feet as she shook them one at a time. She steadied herself and took a step. Guede’s smile disappeared again; he had an impatient expression on his face. He looked over at Adofo and the others and then back to Akosua.
“You think you can save lives by getting this spear? Don’t you know that life and death is the biggest joke played on man. That’s why I can use the dead to do my evil works, and I can use the living to do my bidding also.” He boasted then laughed as Amelia took another tentative step. Guede continued talking,
“Ask yourself, are the Jab Jabs dead, or are you and your friends the dead ones. Did I order them to attack you, or is this all one big illusion, and you are actually in the afterlife, and I am in control, and you are doing exactly what I want you to do. Is there a spear over there, or is this just one of my games that I so love to play?” Akosua stopped and looked at him.
“As sure as I am standing here that spear exists, Yemaya says so,” she said and Guede rolled his exposed eye.
“Yemaya, Yemaya. She is no real Loa. She is loose and she is a trickster. Why would you believe her?” He asked staring at Akosua. She took another step then looked over at Guede,
“My mother brought it here Donkor can attest to that.” She said and took another step. Guede looked over at Donkor.
“Who him, the Bokor,” Guede clapped his hand and laughed, a red teardrop rolled out of his eyes,
“Hi old friend, been to any sacrifices lately. What, are you all of a sudden a good little Hougan. I seem to remember wanting my help. Remember the services, the food, and the human offerings. Thank you I was hungry for food, or hungry for souls, and you were quite willing to satisfy me.” he winked at Donkor, the man shifted from one leg to the next nervously.
“Look how nervous he is, do you think you can trust him?” Guede said,. Akosua looked over at Donkor and gave him a reassuring smile. She took another step, her legs shook a little. Guede sucked his teeth, shook his head, and then sneezed. The ground moved violently and Henry and his friends fell. Akosua braced herself, her hand stretched out at her sides for balance. The salt floor began to crack as the cave rumbled.
It was three in the morning and Akosua was still asleep in the corner. She had not dreamt all night, but now she tossed and turned. Her dark sleep had changed, and now she stood in a field that was engulfed in a thick fog that came up to her waist. She heard animals, and felt them brush against her legs. Birds flew just above the fog, as if in search of something. She heard laughter and tried to figure out where it had come from. The laughter echoed, and the macabre sound seemed to surround her. She saw a black top hat coming towards her; someone or something slowly ascended a flight of stairs. She waited, a face appeared, and it was skeletal like. Despite his dark glasses, his red eyes seemed to be floating in its sockets. He wore a black tuxedo and had cotton plugs in his nostrils like a corpse dressed and prepared for burial. Akosua recognized him; it was Baron Samedi Loa of death. He walked up to her and stopped about an arm’s length away and laughed. He lifted his hand and took a swig from a bottle of rum and puffed on a cigar that dangled from his mouth.
“Me little pickeny.” He said his voice was nasal. “You thik you go win a war with me,” he threw his head back and laughed. Smoke floated out of his mouth. He stopped laughing, took a drink, and then tossed the bottle into the fog. She heard the bottle hit the soft mud then roll a little. A wolf howled then scurried away. Baron Samedi laughed again.
“You don’t have the power to defeat we. Your parents will always be our slaves, Jumbies for life. We will destroy you chosen one or not. “He said, his eyes became a deathly stare, Akosua shivered a little in the damp air.
“You are not all powerful you can be defeated, it has happen in the past,” Akosua said. Baron Samedi threw his head back and laughed.
“That was no defeat, remember, a man who turns and run away, lives to fight another day, and furthermore, do you think I am going to let meself be defeated by a mere child. You should be out playing. Just because you have a boyfriend does not make you big woman,” he said and laughed, smoke bellowed out of his mouth.
“Yemaya and her good spirits will make sure you and your Ligaroos are destroyed,” she said, Baron Samedi took a drag from his cigar and looked at her.
“Yemaya, that Obeah witch, that lose woman, a little of me charm and she would be like sugar in me tea,” he said, a twisted smile on his face. Akosua smiled back and that enraged him.
“You should be afraid of me you little witch. Your services and offerings will not save you and soon you too will become me Jumbies just like you mother.” He shouted then laughed, and backed up. His red eyes flashed with a spark of orange. Slowly drowning out the sound of his laughter was a chorus of voices, some moaned woefully while others screamed causing the area around Akosua to vibrate. Behind him, she saw a human form above the mist. Akosua shook her head but kept on smiling;
“Your black magic doesn’t scare me,” Akosua said. Baron Samedi threw his head back and screamed then charged at her. Just before his body slammed into her, she woke up and looked around. A thick fog floated into the hut from the door. She saw a dark figure looking down on her and sat up, Kwao stood looking in at her. When he realized she was awake he turned and walked away.
Ian is trying to bring his life back to normal. A little romance, a little time for relaxation, but is he fooling himself into believing that all will be well. Ohhhh I guess will will have to see.
Well, well, well, looks like Ian did not get rid of the curse, looks like the La Diablesse. Oh my young doubting friend, looks like you should have believed the old Obeah woman, now here you are being stalked by the phantom woman. So what is next, what will she do to him, hmmmmm, tune in to find out.
Well, it looks like more confusion for Ian, political unrest is gripping the island, now he has to taker care of his students. He can only hope that the La Disblesse stays away, keep her cursed ways away from him, he has more pressing matters to attend to at this time. Tune in to see how Ian deals with the changing world around him.
I walked to the market square but all of the bloody busses were either full or had left the square, I looked round, man it was total pandemonium I mean looters were beginning to break into the stores, a man and a boy were carrying a stove across the empty market square, men, women and children were crashing into store windows grabbing anything they could find. One lady was carrying a lawn mower I knew she the damn woman did even not have a lawn. I stood watching in disbelief, I mean people were acting like bloody animals or something. Me mother had told me bout the riots of 1951, the labour unions had gone on strike and had burned most of the city down Sky Red she called it. I shook me head and walked out of the square, I did not what to stand in the middle of history repeating itself.
I reluctantly began walking the ten miles to me house, occasionally I would pass jeeps loaded with policemen dressed in riot gear, for us on the island that meant they had their guns, they were heading to the city they faces contorted with determination they British made riffles pointed towards the sky. Some of them yelled out me name they knew me as the son of the fearful Sergeant 94 Dickens.
I got to the beach stopped, took me shoes off and started walking, all the things that had happened to me in the last few days were running through me mind like crazy. I walked on the sand were the ocean broke onto the beach, small crabs scurried out of the way when me feet hit the sand next to them, seagulls flew overhead diving into the sea to get their food. I looked across the sea to the city and saw the mist from the teargas floating into the air. I looked away from that scene and tried to concentrate on the beach, it was real empty except for the one or two tourist lying on the sand. I walked up to the medical school and stopped, I knew that Jane might be in she dorm room so I decided to go see if she would like to go for a walk. I walked up a flight of concrete stairs and down a corridor. This building was once a hotel until the medical school bought the building to accommodate the students. I got to the door of she room and stood there for a second composing meself, I mean, I did not want to make she worry.
I knocked lightly on the door and heard rustling inside then the door opened and she stood looking at me, a nervous smile formed on she face but that was immediately replaced by a look of concern.
‘You’re bleeding” she said looking down at me shirt,” I looked down and saw the blood as she took me hand and guided me into the room.
“I am alright,” I said relaxing. “It must have come from one of the students.” She walked away from me and disappeared into she bathroom and returned with a wet washrag and began rubbing the red spots, I stood there enjoying the fact that she was touching me.
After a few seconds she gave up and invited me to sit down in a chair that sat next to a desk in the corner of the room, I sat down as she went back into the bathroom. I looked round at the room I had never been in here before; it was decorated like one of them country homes I had seen in magazines. On the desk was a picture of what I thought was she family, she father stood to the right of she mother and three children between the ages of ten and fifteen were sitting in chairs in front of the couple. There were other pictures hanging on the wall one was of a church covered with snow and the others were of mountains and valleys. She bed was neatly made covered with floral coloured sheet, lots and lots of stuffed animals and six pillows, I wondered where it was she slept on the bed. . There was another picture on the desk of she and she father, they were holding riffles in they hands and she father was holding this humongous turkey in one hand. I looked closely at the picture of she, man that was a real big gun for such a petit woman. She emerged from the bathroom she hair bouncing as she walked.
“I was listening to the radio and heard what happened.” I looked down at the floor and told she the story of the morning’s events, she did not interrupt me she just sat there with a concerned look in she eyes she soft hands cupped mine. When I was done she came over and hugged me and I relaxed closed me eyes as I felt the throbbing of she heart against me chest. After a few seconds she let go of me and returned to the bed.
I got up and went over to she desk, turned on she radio trying to get some news, but there was just music, I mean, all this trouble going on in the city and all they could do is play bloody music. I was getting real anxious so I told she I had to leave, I mean, I had to go somewhere to cool meself down. She moved as if she was going to come with me but I told she it would be safer for she to stay, I promised she that I would come back later to let her know I was alright. She followed me holding me hand and I could tell she did not want me to go, we went down the stairs and onto the beach all the while she tried to let me take she with me but I was adamant she did not. She looked up at me and smiled a weak smile god knows I did not want to leave, but I had to be alone. I turned to walk away but she pulled me back and kissed me, man, I got real light headed, slowly she turned, she hair whipping round she shoulder and walked back up the stairs, I watched she until she got to the door opened it and went in.
I walked the rest of the way home feeling like I was walking in another man’s body sweat rolled down me face dripping onto me shirt, damn, I hated sweating. Just up the street some children played in a yard happy that school had let out for the day, I wondered if they understood what had happened, will this affect the way they thought when they got older or will it be just another page in history they would learn in school. I got to the front of me house and found little Ken sitting on the bench in me yard, the poor little fella was crying real hard. I sat down next to him resting me hand on his shoulder.
“What’s wrong?” He fought to hold back the tears making it hard for him to speak.
“Dey arrest me broddrer,” he said and busted into tears again, I did not know what to say, I just sat there with me hands on he shoulder. Before I could think of what to say he mother called him and he got up and walked away without looking at me. The shock I felt earlier was fast being replaced by anger, I mean, it was wrong for the students to defy authority but it was insane what the hooligans did. I walked into the house and tried to settle down but I could not so I grabbed me transistor radio and walked out.
Ten minutes later I was at the edge of the island looking out to sea. I sat down and listened to the ocean crash against the rocks and the wind whistling through the tall grass. Dark clouds came in from the south and the rain swept across the ocean coming towards the land, I threw me head back waiting for the rain to reach me, the downpour hit the ocean below right before I felt the first drops bounce of me skin. I opened me eyes and looked out to sea the ocean was dark blue with occasional patches of black, white froth formed where the waves broke into each other sew mews struggled against the wind as they try to escape the sudden storm, rain created a kind of mist right above the surface of the water and I almost did not see the small fishing boat going by.
I sat there silently as the rain disappeared on the land behind me and white clouds hovered over the ocean and the sun came out bringing with it a welcomed heat. I thought bout the La Diablesse she seemed trivial compared to what I had seen today. I decided to come back to reality and stop letting some strange woman dictate the way I see the world, there was no such thing as a La Diablesse too many real tragedies were going on in the world round me, I must forget this blasted idea of the phantom woman. A flock of seagulls flew by occasionally diving into the ocean coming up with fish in their beaks, further out flying fish jumped in and out of the blue water they bodies shimmering sliver in the sunlight.
I don’t know how long I sat there but by the time I was ready to leave it was dark, I turned me radio on and listened to the announcer, he was talking about what had happened in the city. Most of what he said was bloody rhetoric against the opposition leader, there was no mention of whither there were any dead, just bout injuries suffered by the students and some of the hooligans. Some stupid government minister spoke of reeducating the youth so they don’t fall victim to an ungodly system, I tell you what, I was getting real fed up with them damn politicians.
I had gotten to a part in the dirt road that was lined by tall trees and thick bushes, crickets and frogs interrupted the silence that usually came with the tropical night. Suddenly, me whole damn body tingled and I stopped and looked round to see if there was anyone behind me, I saw no one and kept on walking shaking me head at how jumpy I was. I stopped and looked round and out of the corner of me eye I saw a white misty figure in the bushes just off the road, I froze, I mean, I could not move at all. The stinking figure froze with me and there it was that bloody feeling of helplessness, that same deafening silence, I could not decide what to do so I just stood there watching the figure. Then slowly it floated towards me no leaves moved, it seemed to walk right through them. I wanted to run so bad but me bloody feet felt like they had grown roots in the frigging dirt. Just as the figure came onto the road a car drove up and the figure disappeared, I mean, its like the damn car went right through it, I jumped out of the way the driver yelling at me as he went by. I stood there watching its rear lights fade away from me like eyes of a menacing animal. I turned back to the place where the white figure had stood nothing moved not even the leaves, I mean where the hell was all that damn wind, then like someone lit a fire under me feet I sprung into action and ran the rest of the way home. I got into the house and turned on all the lights and closed all the windows, sat on me bed breathing hard ever so often listening to hear if anyone or anything was trying to break into the house. upbeat, it was then I heard a voice whisper behind me it echoed through the suddenly windy night.
Ian is heading Back to his ordinary life, will there be more Obeah, more La Diablesse, hmmm, come back Tomorrow Wednesday to find out.
I woke up later in the morning sore all over, I swung me feet over the side of the bed and sat there I was real light headed and still a little nauseas. Memories of the night’s events came to me in flashes like a photographer taking black and white pictures and I shook me head trying to get the images out. The door opened and Alison walked in came up to the bed and sat next to me, I looked over at she, she was smiling and for the first time she eyes danced a little.
“How you feeling Mista Dickens?” she asked, I mumbled something unintelligible, but she ignored what I said and kept on talking
“You had a rough night last night huh?” she said as picked up the blood stained suit from the floor. I saw the blood and panicked checking me body to see if I was hurt. When I was satisfied that everything was in order I looked down at meself and saw that I was in me own clothes.
“Who changed me?” I blurted out. Allison looked over at me with a big smile on her face.
“Well,” I insisted, she walked towards the door and stopped there still smiling, damn girl better watch she step before I lose me temper.
“Some of the women in de village did, Dey said you was almost unconscious when dey left you.” She giggled a little knowing what me horrified look was.
“Me grandma wan see you before you leave.” She said and walked out the door holding the dirty clothes in she hands. I got up and followed she into the other room; the bowls, candles and incense were all lit. Alison was standing at a door that I did not notice before, I mean, good lord man how many frigging doors did this little house have? She beckoned me over to she as she pushed the door open. Light flowed out of the room creating streaks of misty silver in the smoke. I stepped through the door looking at she as I went. There was a bed in one corner and a maple coloured table in the other, the table was packed with ornaments and bottles some wrapped in cloth or other material. I stood looking at the table it reminded me of me mother’s bedroom, she had a small shrine in one corner of the room with a statue of Jesus as the centerpiece; I tell you what I used to be real afraid to go into that damn room at night, that statue might have slapped a sinner like me.
“Ahhh, you interested in me gifts to Erzili Frieda?” I jumped when I heard the voice, I was so engrossed with the damn shrine I did not notice the old woman sitting in a chair next to the bed, it was the same woman who had poured the liquid into me mouth the night before. She head hung loosely as if she was asleep she dress spread over the chair making it seem like she was a head without a body. She motioned for me to come closer and I stepped forward bending over so she could see me face.
“May god be wid you me son,” She said stroking me face, she bony fingers pinching me cheeks, bloody hell, why was it they all wanted to touch me blasted face? Skin hung off the sides of she face when she spoke, when she smiled the skin moved from side to side like the loose skin at the bottom of a turkey’s neck.
“You mus believe.” She emphasized lowering she hands she chin dropped to she chest and I heard she breath real deep, I guess she too was tired from the night events. I left the room as quietly as I could with Alison directly behind me, she walked me to the front door and opened it.
“Sorry Ah cant offer you breakfast but granma don like it when someone she did a ceremony for stick round too long.” I told she I understood and walked out of the house and I thanked god because I did not want to stay any longer than I had to anyway. The afternoon sun was almost in the middle of the sky and I was blinded by it for a second, the trees had that golden tint and I smelt the sweet scent of mangoes in the air. I walked over to me bike and climbed on, the dirt road was dry making it easier to maneuver through the potholes. The children stood at the end of the road waving goodbye, they chased after the bike until I was moving too fast for them to keep up.
So our friend Ian has participated in an Obeah ceremony, hmmmmm, now is he part of the culture, does he fully believe in the La Diablesse. Well why not, he danced, was in a trance, he drank their portions, I guess he is now one of them huh? hmmm, well tune in Wednesday to see if the curse of the La Diablesse was lifted from this confused soul.