blue moon (2)

Thursday, December 02, 2010

The Red Clay: Part Twenty One ©

The smoke drifted up into the night sky dispersing as all dreams do in the morning light.
Thilivhali looked up through the smoke at the witchdoctor and asked the old man if this is what awaits him in the future.
To loose everything he loves, to die alone on some strange soil.

Was this his destiny or was there a way to change his future?
The old man look down at the boy and told him that you can’t run away from your destiny and history is what you make of it.
What is meant to be will be and in the end what is meant to happen will or there would never be a balance in the universe.

It doesn’t matter what path you take into the jungle they will all lead to the other side just that some will take longer, some shorter; others are perilous but in the end you will always find the other side.
What path you take the witchdoctor said, will determine how hard it will be.
The old man left the boy sitting in the night by the dieing fire to absorb his words and think on the events of this evening.
The future was his to dwell on, to create and make his own destiny.

As Jonas watched he saw a young couple get up and walk off towards a cluster of huts.
The woman was beautiful; she would fetch a nice price if he didn’t keep her for himselfhe thought or maybe he would just keep her for the trip across the ocean and then sell her when he was done with her.

Putting the looking glass away he sat down to wait for dawn’s early light before they strike.
They will go in before they could get a chance to fully wake up and their wits together to put up any resistance.
The idea would be to limit the casualties and increase the profits, it’s all about the profits.

Just before dawn as a fog drifted into the village from the jungle and with no one stirring, the slavers snuck out of their hiding places, stealthily moving out of the forest and into the village.
This trip had yet to produce any slaves or ivory.
Jonas was loosing money by the day with Smith less than a week away from picking them up on the coast.

A hundred slavers charged through the centre of the village letting out loud frightening screams all at once to startle the inhabitants just before they hit the huts to paralyse their victims as they barged into their lives throughout the village.
Hut to hut they entered and found nothing, not a soul was to be found anywhere in any of the huts.

Jonas stood in the centre of the village pistol in hand watching everything unfold before him.
It was the same story village after village that they had raided.
Nothing, no one, all were empty and had been for days.
His lieutenants reported to him that they had found no one in the whole village just the burning embers from celebrations of the night before.
Yes, the night before the village was full of people dancing around, and that young woman he saw through his spy glass was here but where were they now, where was she.

Jonas went from hut to hut to look for himself and true enough they were all empty of people but their belongings were still there.
He was starting to feel a little uneasy.
For some reason his senses told him that he was in trouble but just couldn’t put his finger on what it might be.
Jonas called his men in and they started gathering at the centre of the village to get new orders from their leader.

He was looking at a map of the area to see if there was some place they could go and find where the villagers had gone too.
Just then a baboon’s scream filled the morning air.
The trees of the jungle reached out with long fingers and even longer nails to touch them as spears rained down on the slavers while they all stood around in the open at the centre of the village.

Many fell in the first volley as the rest scattered looking for cover from the deadly rain.
Jonas barely survived a spear that went by his face.
He pressed up behind a hut for protection.
He had to gather his forces and get them to hold their fire because right now, they were only wasting powder shooting at shadows.

He stuck his head around the side of the hut and called for one of his lieutenants to come over, then watched the man get halfway to him before a spear downed him.
Cowering behind the hut he called out into the air for everyone to hold their fire.
As silence slowly fell across the village, an eerie silence that was interrupted by a loud roar that came from the jungle, a prelude to the next chapter of this history.

Destiny was being created as hundreds of warriors poured out of the edge of the jungle shaking shields and spears at the slavers in their village showing their courage and fierceness just before as one they all rushed out like a pride of wild lions.

Jonas looked at the mass of warriors wondering who they were and where they all had come from.
From what he had heard there was no other tribe in the area and none of this size.
Looking up to the other end of the village a warrior stood tall wrapped in a lion skin flanked by two other tall warriors, one older one younger.

Thilivhali looked down towards his enemy, and enemy who he had never met but one he had known so well for the last ten years of his life and leading up to this day.
Ten years he dreamt of this moment, this man, the thinking and planning for this, his wedding day, a day of rebirth for him and his people.
This is the day the shed any innocence they may have had left but not for glory but the right to live.
For the right to be free and exist to live as they wish.

The witchdoctor had said that destiny was written in history and it couldn’t be changed but each path was different to get to one’s destiny and it didn’t matter which he chose the end result would be the same.
For years he had been planning for this very day.
His whole existence so far in life was for this moment and its outcome will determine how his, they’re future will unfold.

They laughed at him when he first went to the chief and the elders with his story and explained what had to be done.
He told them his story and what was needed to be done, to prevent his dream from becoming reality but it fell on deaf ears so he had to win them over.
First his family who like the rest didn’t believe him either and then by gaining the respect of his elders.

As he grew in the years leading up to manhood, his many deeds for the tribe and by caring for them he gained the respect of the elders and they began to listen to him.
They had grown to trust his judgment over the years and the witchdoctor respected him also, so they decided it would do no harm in being cautious thus agreeing to his plan and the defences he proposed.

After convincing his elders he spent years talking to other villages and trying to bring then into his final plan.
He knew it was not enough for just them alone to fight, the more they were the better their chances were of succeeding.
At first they started thinking him insane as those who first heard him at his village thought until stories filtered back to them that whole villages had disappeared without a trace.

After hearing the stories from the survivors milling around in the jungle they were willing to listen to him and give their support.
The hardest thing was convincing the other villages to move all their people here to his village and prepare for this battle.
It’s hard to get people to leave their homes and belonging but it was essential that they were all close for their protection.
It took him almost another year to train the warriors and to prepare this trap for the slavers, a fitting wedding gift for his wife and their future he thought.

Now the time was here and he had to carve out his future but to do that he had to win or they were doomed along with everyone else as was their way of life, as it would vanish as does the spilled blood into the ground.
Like a general he stood at the top of the village and watched as his warriors charge the flaming sticks of the slavers, some falling but the rest rushing in fearlessly until both clashed against each other in the centre of the village.

Hali woke up in the morning and went down to the post office to mail his package then returned to the hotel before Ada had awakened.
They went for breakfast and then returned to get their luggage to take off for the African coast and their new future together.

Thilivhali started running towards the white man followed by his father and brother, side by side they charged towoards their future and that of their village as destiny beckoned them forward into time.
Three slavers jumped out at Thilivhali with a swords but Thilivhali blocked the blow of one with his shield and impaled him with the spear in his other hand as his brother lashed out at the other two killing one but was cut by the third before Thilivhali’s point silenced him forever.

His father had run past them and went onward towards the white man.
He remembered the stories his son had told him.
This was the demon he had to kill to save his children’s future.
Thilivhali and his brother turned and raced off behind their father when they saw their father stumble but then regained his step and kept on charging towards the white man.

Holding up his brother they ran together when they saw their father’s club come down on the white man hitting him on top of the shoulder and sending him back against the hut but before Thilivhali’s father could raise up the club once more to deliver the finishing blow he collapsed backwards to the ground.

The battle raged all around Jonas as it was now hand to hand combat with spears and swords.
He looked at the other end of the village and could see the three warriors coming towards him and he grabbed the pistol in his waistband, his sword in the other he waited for them to get closer.

Halfway to him his men jumped out and engaged the two of them but the old one pressed on until he was within range but gave him a little more so that he was sure before he raised the pistol and shot him in the chest, but he kept on coming.
Before he could grab the other pistol the warrior was upon him and coming down with a club hitting him in the shoulder sending him back against a hut before the old man fell at his feet.

A sharp pain shot through his shoulder as he lay back on the side of the hut.
He knew his collar bone was broken.
Looking back up the path he could see the other two now running towards him, he knew he was the focus of their attention but why?

Thilivhali’s brother fell to the ground, leaving him there he kept on until he got close to the man when he saw him raise his weapon.
Side stepping the thunder went past him as he move in for the kill and certain victory.
Stabbing out with the spear the white man knocked it away with his long knife and came at Thilivhali with a fury, hacking and slashing left and right at him.

With pain shooting through his left shoulder, Jonas regained his feet and stood up to meet the charging men.
The young one fell but the big warrior still came on.
Grabbing his gun with his good hand he pulled it out and took aim but his shot missed when the warrior dodged left.
Now it would be his skills with a blade that would be put to the test.

He parred the thrust of the spear and lashed out at him but the warrior was quick on his feet or had his wound slowed him down.
He charged in and started slashing and stabbing at the warrior but to now end until the man slipped on a stone and fell to the ground leaving him to the mercy of his blade.
Seeing his chance Jonas rushed in and stabbed down but the warrior got his shied up in time and deflected the attack.
Jonas stomped down with his boot on the shield and tried to hack off the others head but he couldn’t get a clean shot at it.

Even wounded the white man fought like a crazed beast refusing to give up and had put Thilivhali down to the ground.
He needed to get on his feet before he was cut badly by one of these wild blows that were raining down on him.
Pushing up with his shield he made an attempted to get up from the ground but the white man’s long knife came violently down cutting off the top of his shield.
Then with a back swing of his blade it was knocked from Thilivhali hands leaving him on the ground on his back defenceless and at this man’s mercy.

All around him the slavers were once again getting the upper hand on the villagers.
Their long knives overpowered the spears they used by cutting the heads off of them leaving his warriors with just the shafts to fight with.
Slowly the slavers pushed the warriors back towards the jungle.

Ada watched from the jungle at the battle unfolding before them and could see that the villagers were loosing.
She was looking at the beginning of the end of everyone she loved and cared for.
Her whole world was slowly being slaughtered.
Turning she looked at the other around her, old men, women and children.
She looked at her mother her sisters…

Ada leaped out of the jungle with a fury, screaming at the top of her lungs and holding a spear with both hands charging at he main body of combatants.
Behind her came hundreds of women, children and old people, all armed with anything they can use to fight with.
They followed Ada into the fray to fight along side their loved ones.

Ada stormed in ramming her spear into the throat of an unsuspecting slaver then watched as he crumpled to the ground blood gurgling from the gaping wound like a slaughtered goat.
Her father looked to his side and smiled at his daughter, her brother was next to him fighting with his life shining brightly through his eyes like the proud warrior that he was.
It was a vicious battle with everyone’s lives on the line.
People pressed up together, friend and foe, this was hand to hand combat with survival on the line for all of them, villagers and slavers included.

The slavers were pushed back by the weight of the new force that joined in the fight, turning the battle back in favor of the villagers.
Bodies piled up while the earth soaked up the river of blood as it flowed amidst the heat of battle.

Jonas looked down on this warrior and had to admire his strength and fighting skill but it wasn’t enough to beat him so now he will have his life spill out at the end of his sword.
Raising it over his head with his good arm he paused for a second to smile down at Thilivhali and was bringing it down when something pushed out the front of his shirt.
Jonas looked down in bewilderment as he saw the tip of a spear slowly emerging out the front of his shirt.

Jonas Beacham III was sitting in his study reading the newspaper when his butler walked in with the mail for the day and handed it to his master.
He told him to put the mail on his desk and he would look at it as soon as he was done with the newspaper.
He was going through the national section when something caught his eye.
There was a small piece about a shootout that happened at a desert bar in Nevada two months earlier.
It seems that a man shot it out with two bikers and was killed along with the bartender and the two bikers.
There were two survivors and they were both cleared of any wrong doing.
One was an old man who has never been seen since that day and the other a young black man on his way back to California for his final semester in medical school.

It seems that one of the dead men had given a satchel to one of the survivors and told him he could have it.
The police have decided to let him keep it along with the other contents that were in it since there was no one willing to stake claim to it or dispute the boy’s claim.

Jonas smiled and sank back into his leather chair.
He had finally shaken the family curse and he could sleep better at night knowing that he didn’t have to worry about what bad thing was to befall him next.
His whole family’s history has been nothing but blood and money with murder being the main tool.
They were cursed by someone for some thing his great great grandfather had done and all suffered for it since but now it was over.
He finally got rid of the cursed statue that bond him to the curse.
It wouldn’t let him throw it away like it did to his predecessors and he couldn’t give it away either but it could be stolen.
The $500,000 was the sum for the profits made by his ansestor that brought this curse on them.
He didn’t know if it would make a difference by repaying the curse back but he didn’t want anything connecting him personally or his family to the past or the curse and thought this would balance it out.

With a sigh of relief Jonas call his butler and told him to bring him a brandy, it was a good day to celebrate then got up and walked to his desk and started looking at the days mail when the butler came in and handed him his brandy, that’s when he saw a package sitting in front of him.
Picking up the brandy he took a sip from his glass and was wondering about that package, he wasn’t expecting anything from any one.
Drinking the rest of the brandy he put the glass down and began opening the package, inside he found a small object wrapped up in paper.
Unwrapping it he suddenly froze, it was in his hands again…but how?

He recoiled in fear and tried to toss it away but his hand held a tight grip around it and it was now starting to feel warmer.
Grabbing it with both hands to try and dislodge it only trapped the other hand and was now holding onto it just as tight as the other was and it was getting hotter.

He tried to pry his hands apart but they didn’t seem to want to let go, struggling only made his grip tighter around the statue.
The statue was beginning to glow red like a hot coal in his hands sending searing pain through his brain.
His clothes began to emit smoke when they burst in flames engulfing his whole body.
His screams went unanswered as he fell to the floor trying to put out the flames by rolling around to no avail as the flames rose to the ceiling.
Then as suddenly as it started it was over.

Thirty minutes later the butler walked into the study and found his master laying on the floor dead with a clay statue laying next to his right hand.
He reached inside his pocket and pulled out a blood stained handkerchief and tossed it next to the old man on the floor.
Mary Smith’s great grandson turned and walked out the door.
With every step John took down the street time ceased to exist as did Jonas Beacham III existence slowly dissolved into the the neverever as did the generation before him.

Thilivhali braced himself for the blow the white man was preparing to bring down on him when he saw him stop, his eyes frozen in a state of shock.
A spear emerged out of the man’s chest and he fell to his knees at his feet dropping the long knife next to him and grasped at the spear’s head.

Thilivhali pushed back to a safer distance and stood up just before the white man fell over on his face.
Standing there behind where the man was standing stood Ada, a scared look on her face.

She looked up at Thilivhali and he went to her, taking her in his arms while his eyes scanned the immediate area around them.

His brother had come up to them now and were joined by a handful of warriors.
Most of the slavers were killed but some got away into the jungle, Thilivhali stopped the warriors from chasing them.
Her wanted to let them go to tell others that there is a price to pay if they ever come back.
He told them to take the dead slavers and lay them out on the plain for the veltures to feast on and to let their bleached bones be a warning to others who don’t come in peace.

That night it was decided that they would move deep into the jungle and away from this new danger that had come upon them.
During the meeting of elders the other tribes decided to join them as it was also decided that Thilivhali would be the new Chief of all their people.

In the morning light 1000 men women and children lined the outskirts on the village waiting for their new chief to give the order to move on to their new home, a safer one they hoped.
Thilivhali signaled them to start and they moved into the jungle and out of sight as he stayed back until the last person had dusappeared into the bosom of their world.

Turning he stood there staring as the fire engulfed the main hut, his father laying at the entrance wrapped in his lionskin gaurding the entrance for eternity.
A small hand took his.and he looked over to Ada standing next to him smiling.
It took them a month to get to what was to become their new home before they started to building a new village.

Ada curled up to him when they lay down in their new hut and whispered to him that she was with child.
Smiling at his wife Thilivhali kissed her forhead and told her they would call him Hali Diego.
Ada gave him a strange look then laughed and asked him how did he know it was going to be a son, it might be a daughter.
Thilivhali smiled wrapped his arm around his wife and went to sleep.

Dalton Henry II was watching his son Dalton Henry III run up and down the long hallway of their Tripp St. home in Chicogo, while his wife was helping their daughter Annabelle get ready for the trip down to Georgia and their family reunion.
It was supposed to be a huge shindig with thousands of people.
His great grandfather Dalton Henry a banker before the civil war had married Annabelle Baker in 1856 and help save her father’s plantation.
Her brother had married Rebecca Baker and their children had later married into the Butler family creating one of the largest families in the south.

The end or is it just the beginning of another dream to a different tomorrow?
Life’s struggle is not the path taken but the choice to take it.



Opaque said...

Choices, eh? Yea. this is so true!

Peter said...

Well done my friend a great story written in true "Walker" style.

Just telling it like it is said...

You know the other day I had a dream that I was a lesbian can you believe

Walker said...

Opaque : We choose the path or choose not to choose.
It always comes down to choices

Walker said...

Peter: I had to finish it. Took me over a year but its done now

Walker said...

Just telling it like it is: This is what happens when you lick your fingers after spanking the monkey then fall asleep