Dial Episode 36 is on…
The witch did a very strange thing then; she reached out and took hold of my right hand, and she held it tightly. I could feel the slight tremor running through her, and I knew she was very terrified.
“Yao, please, for the love of God, do not resist them,” she said fearfully. “They’re incensed, and it will only take the very least provocation to drive them overboard, please.”
“And if I don’t resist what happens?” I asked, striving to keep calm as that murderous crowd drew nearer to us.[stextbox id=”download” caption=”WARNING”]Exlusive Content to aaron-ansah-agyeman.com Do not copy or share on any other site. Do not share on any WhatsApp, Facebook or Social Media page. ONLY SHARE THE LINKS TO THE STORY[/stextbox]
“They would take you to the palace, and you would be asked to lie down in front of Adobea to show your changed heart, and then they would fine you. Afterwards, because you’re a stranger, they would release you.”
I found my fury soaring again at the pure injustice in it all, but I did listen to her, and I stepped off the veranda to the yard, because I wanted them to deal with me alone, and not harm her in any way.
Their screams increased, and in a moment they surrounded me, their hideously-painted faces incensed. They reached out for me and hurled me to the ground. Their screams and incessant chanting almost drove me mad. I felt their coarse hands on me as they pulled me down on a piece of round tree trunk. I felt the cruel bite of cords as they tied me to the trunk. The tight ropes went around my body and arms and legs, and a moment later I was rendered completely immobile on that piece of tree trunk.
And, through it all, I saw Maame Ntiriwaa on the veranda, her hands on her head, and tears of anguish falling down her tears. That she cared for me that much, that she considered me a friend enough to cry for me, really warmed my heart, and it gave me a sort of inner strength as they lifted the tree trunk with me tied to it, and bore it away.
My mind really failed to grasp what was really happening.
Time and space passed in a blur. I was aware of being borne to the riverside, put into a huge canoe, and rowed across the river.
Once on the other side of the river, the maddened frenzy became worse!
The villagers drummed and screamed in a frenetic glee! Guns were fired into the air. I was pelted with rotten vegetables as they bore me along. Stinking water was thrown on me, and sharp objects I suspected to be tiny stones were hurled at me.
The stench alone was murderous, and the cords biting into my chafed skin was a torture. It was simply the most humiliating and painful position I had ever been in – except, of course, the forced aging Nana Bosomba had visited on me.
And this was happening because of that pompous and arrogant royal princess, Abena Adobea. My fury at – and my hatred for – her rose to dizzying heights.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, we entered the huge forecourt of the palace.
It was designed in a round manner, built with clay but coated with cement and painted blue at the base and white at the broader top. Drawings depicting warfare, royal animals, and portraits of past kings covered the surface of the walls.
There was a hole in the centre of the cemented forecourt, and they pushed the base of the tree trunk I was tied to into the hole so that I was suddenly upright.
In front of me was a huge veranda. There was a huge throne on the veranda, and several high-backed wooden chairs.
The king was sitting on the throne, and sitting on a low stool at his feet was Abena Adobea, looking incredibly beautiful but glowering with vengeful rage. She had changed into a sort of cloth attire that covered her whole body leaving her head.
Behind them were several gaunt and shrivelled old men in cloths, probably the kingmakers, Elders and sub-chiefs of the town.
The king, I saw, was a tall lean man with a long aquiline face and a bulbous nose. He was wearing the most colourful kente cloth I had ever seen. Abena Adobea was also in the cloth. There were gold ornaments around the king’s upper arms and down his arm. He was also wearing gigantic gold rings on each finger.
Behind me were many of the townsfolk, still chanting their angry jabbering.
A short, skinny man wearing only a raffia skirt and a tall feather hat came toward me. He was holding a horsetail whisk, and his eyes were dark orbs of wickedness as he stood in front of me. He was a fetish priest, and I had no doubt that this was indeed Okomfo Basabasa.
“Soooo!” he hissed in a terrible whisper. “You’re the stranger that wounded three of the guards, and dared lay a hand on the royal princess, our Queen Mother in the making? How dare you! Before we even hear your case, you will receive twenty strokes of lashes, as decreed by the gods!”
“You filthy bastard!” I hissed at him furiously, and that shut everybody up.
My sheer anger, my disrespectful tone, and my evident disregard for a fetish priest everybody feared now served as a balm of surprise that shook up everybody present.
Okomfo Basabasa smiled cruelly.
“You don’t know who you’re dealing with, stranger!”
“And you bloody don’t know who’re you’re dealing with, you piece of cow dung!” I shouted, overcome with such fury that he took a step back, and again I saw the shocked looks on the faces of the people.
Yao Biko, probably the wealthiest man on the continent of Africa, tied up and being ridiculed by this wicked person was more than my ego could tolerate. If I had been free, I probably would’ve beaten him to pulp.
The man saw the effect my apparent rudeness was wreaking on the people, and his tiny evil face suddenly became harder with cruel intent. He stepped back and barked out orders in their language.
The huge muscular men grabbed me. They cut the ropes binding me, and then turned me round to face the tree trunk. They used a knife to cut the T-shirt off my back, and then they tied me again to the tree trunk so that I was facing the gathered crowd.
I saw a huge man wearing only a pair of black shorts stepping forward. He was holding a horrible lash. It was made with rough leather, and had spiky metal rings around it.
My heart flipped with sudden fear. That thing lashing my bare back would be very painful, and the spiky metals would grab the skin of my back and break the skin, causing hideous wounds on my back.
This was barbaric, to say the least! These things still happened in the world? Goodness me, people were suffering atrocities not known to the rest of the civilized Ghana.
I struggled furiously, but of course I was tied solid.
The man smiled wickedly and moved behind me.
“He felt no remorse!” Okomfo Basabasa screamed. “Turn the tree round! I want him to face the royal princess as his back is laid bare, and then he will respect customs!”
The tree trunk was rotated, and now I was looking at the king, his elders, the kingmakers…and Abena Adobea.
I saw that her face was suddenly tight with apprehension, and for once that haughty and arrogant look was peeled off her face! Her eyes met mine, and she saw the look of disgust on my face, and she dropped her eyes quickly.
“Thirty strokes now!” Okomfo Basabasa screamed. “Give it to him!”
The man with the wicked leather lash was behind me, and just as I was about to close my eyes and receive the evident torture, I saw him.
He was hazy, as if he were in spiritual form, his shape shimmering and indistinct, his face not quite clear, a little bit blurred. But there was no mistaking the batakari and the grey hair, or the incredibly rugged and handsome face!
Yes, it was him…Nana Bosomba of Wowo!
Why was he here? Was he here to gloat, to find a perverse and sick macabre pleasure in my torture?
“Is this what you wanted?” I asked the spectral figure of Nana Bosomba in a face that was shaking with fear at the horror approaching me. “Are you entertained, Nana Bosomba?”
No one could see the ghostly figure except me, and so many thought, quite erroneously, that I was addressing the royal princess.
She evidently thought so too, because she gasped, and then her eyes dropped to her hands.
The man with the horrible leather drew back his hand, and then he grunted as he brought metal-studded leather lash crashing into my bare back. I looked defiantly at the ghostly figure of Nana Bosomba, and I saw him slashing the air with his hand just before the leather landed on my back.
I opened my eyes wide as I felt the strike on my back…because it felt like a feather was being used to tickle my back!
However, I heard a loud scream of anguish behind me, and suddenly the huge man who had given me the lash lurched past me, and I saw that his back was covered with blood!
There was a startled gasp all around!
Okomfo Basabasa was screaming, calling another man forward!
A second man picked up the leather strap, stepped back, and laid it across my back with all the strength he could gather.
Again, the spectral figure of Nana Bosomba slashed the air, and I felt a slight tickle on the back of my back, followed by the painful bellow of the man behind me as he dropped the leather strap and grabbed at his bleeding back!
Nana Bosomba, incredibly, was reversing the effects of the lashes back to the people trying to lash me!
I stared at him with sudden misunderstanding written all over my face!
What was he doing?
Why was he doing this?
With an angry bellow Okomfo Basabasa picked up the leather strap and walked behind me, evidently meaning to deliver the lashes himself. And that was when he paused suddenly, his eyes opening wide as he also saw the angry-looking face of Nana Bosomba standing just in front of me!
Evidently, Okomfo Basabasa had enough powers of his own to perceive Nana Bosomba!
“Ayieeeeeeee!” Okomfo Basabasa shouted, his face filled with a fear so complete that I couldn’t stop myself from giggling. “Ayiiiiiiiiiiiii! Ayiiiiieeeeeee! Bosomba Nana, is that you? Have I crossed you? Ayiiiiiiiiii! Ayieeeeeeeeee! What do you want with me, Bosomba Nana? Why have you crossed the space to face me, Bosomba Nana? Awoooooo!! I have no quarrel with you, Bosomba Nana! Ashooooo!”
And I began to laugh then.
“Koshia!” I said with a really mean spirit, totally enjoying his fear. “Now you get WoWoed, aboa like that!”[insert-comment-form] [stextbox id=”black” caption=”JOIN PREMIUM”]
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