The Legend of Dayo…
THE LEGEND OF DAYO
SEASON 3: THE RIVALRY
The Princess And The Warrior
Princess Uvbi Akenzua couldn’t sleep.
She had been restless for some time now. She had always been restless, but it was worse now. Growing up alone in the tower hadn’t been easy for her. It was true that the tower was huge and had a lot of beautiful sections, like a garden on the roof, and a swimming-pool two floors down. It was true that she had made friends with some of the women that took care of her, but she still felt claustrophobic.
She felt like a prisoner!
Temitayo Anubi, the man who had killed her father, visited her every two weeks to chat with her, dine with her or walked with her in the exotic gardens. For years he had tried to convince her that his atrocious act had been as a direct result of the wishes of the Creator, but Princess Uvbi Akenzua knew better!
Temitayo had murdered her father for revenge, and for greed.
But she had no option than to marry her father’s killer because Temitayo had told her that Queen Kelly Philip, her mother, was a prisoner in his dungeons, and there was only one outcome for that: if Princess Uvbi rejected Temitayo, her mother would be killed.
Uvbi Akenzua couldn’t take that, no. She couldn’t be responsible for her mother’s death. She would have to marry the man who had killed her father so that her mother would live!
It was a horror the young princess just couldn’t find any way out of. Nowadays she had been having horrors, the same recurring horror where she had seen Temitayo stabbing her father over and again, blood spurting everywhere…
Princess Uvbi Akenzua sat up in bed with a muted scream.
She was so troubled because the day was drawing near when she would become the wife of the most despicable man she had ever seen!
Of course, she had never been allowed to see any other man except Temitayo. The tower was guarded by warriors who rotated from morning shifts to afternoon shifts to evening shifts.
None of them was supposed to go up the tower unless it was to save the princess from danger. All warriors who reported for duty had to wear a hideous iron mask that was locked by a resident supervisor, leaving only outlets for eyes and nose. Also, iron loin locks were locked across their groins so that even if they got an erection, they could not get rid of the iron groin girdle to harm the princess.
The masks stayed on until a warrior’s watch was over, and then the supervisor would unlock it for the warrior to leave the premises of the tower.
So, over the years, Princess Uvbi Akenzua had seen some of the warriors, but all she had seen had been the shapes of their noses and the colour of their eyes, and to her, they had all been the same.
The one with the fair, pointed nose and the steely grey gaze!
In every room of the tower were two knobs fixed to the walls. These knobs were coloured red and green.
If she was in need of anything except danger, she pressed the green button, which brought one of the women serving her to respond immediately and attend to the need of the princess.
When she felt threatened or was very ill, or anything happened that endangered her life, she pressed the red knob, which brought a warrior riding up to her aid immediately.
Princess Akenzua rarely used the red knobs because she simply hated seeing the warriors with the iron masks on their heads. It really depressed her.
One day, however, when she was twenty-two years old, she had found a lizard on her bed!
Frightened, she had pressed the red knob repeatedly, and eventually the warrior on duty had appeared. He had come by the special winding lift which had been rigged by the engineers.
The moment he entered her room, she had known he was different from the other warriors. Almost all of them sought to be friends whenever she summoned one, trying to engage her in conversations or be extra nice to her.
This one had come in to find her wearing only her chemise and standing in a corner of the room, pointing to the lizard with fright. He had simply held a corner of the bedsheet and tossed it over the lizard, and then he had bunched it up in the bedsheet and turned toward the door with the bundle in his hand.
“What are you doing?” Princess Akenzua had asked stridently. “Kill it! Kill it this instant! I order you!”
The warrior had turned and looked at her then, and she had seen his fine, fair nose sticking out of the iron mask, and his steely grey eyes had met hers calmly.
“It is quite harmless, Princess,” he had said gently. “I’ll take it down and release it into the grass.”
“No, I command you to kill it this instant!” she had screamed. “It would come back if you release it!”
“This lizard is harmless, Princess,” he had repeated. “It means you no harm.”
“Are you refusing a direct order from me?” she asked, stunned to her very core.
Those warriors had been warned to do her biding in any situation and to find one who was blatantly disobeying her orders filled her with an anger she had not felt in a very long time.
He had not said anything. He had just gotten out of the room and gone away.
At first, Princess Akenzua had been so incensed that she had planned to tell Temitayo about it and had that infidel punished severely. However, an hour later, still feeling peeved, she had pushed the red knob again, and sometime later another warrior came in.
“No, not you!” she had screamed. “The one who came here earlier! Tell him I require him here at once!”
The warrior had nodded with bright eyes, and left.
And not quite long after that, the one who had incurred the wrath of the princess came in once more, his steel-grey eyes calm as he regarded her.
“You didn’t kill that lizard!” she had said, shocked at herself for being so upset with the ruffian in front of her. “I want to tell you that I’m going to inform the king about your behaviour, and you should expect your punishment!”
He had looked at her levelly for a while, and then he had spoken calmly, his muffled voice coming from behind the iron mask.
“Perhaps, it was just a lost little lizard which had been kept in this tower against its will for so long, and it just wanted to get out of this tower and breathe the air outside for a change.”
And Princess Uvbi Akenzua had stared at him, and tears came into her eyes immediately as his words laid her innermost feelings bare. As the tears slowly fell down her cheeks, she had stared balefully at him.
“I hate you!” she had whispered.
“Can I leave now, Princess?” he had enquired calmly.
“No, you can’t!” she had said sharply. “What’s your name?”
He had looked stonily back at her.
“I’m not at liberty to disclose my name, Princess,” he had replied.
“What do you mean by you’re not at liberty to disclose your name?” she had asked furiously.
“Our rules of engagement at The Tower says none of us should ever mention his name to you, in the event that any of us finds himself in your presence!”
“You’ll tell me your name at once!” she had screamed. “It is a direct order from the Princess of the land!”
His gaze had not dropped from hers.
“I’m afraid I can’t tell you that,” he had said with infuriating calmness.
“What’s the matter with you?” she had demanded furiously. “All the others have been quick to give me their names! I know all their names if you must know! Do you think you’re so special?”
“No, Princess, I’m not,” he had replied calmly. “But I always follow the rules of engagement, please.”
Princess Uvbi Akenzua had flown into a rage, and driven him out of her room.
That had been the beginning.
Of course, she hadn’t told Temitayo anything about the incident between her and the strange warrior with the pointed fair nose and steel-grey eyes. As the days went on, however, the Princess found herself pressing on the red knob quite frequently.
Sometimes the warrior with the fair nose responded, and sometimes some other warriors came along. And, ever so slowly, she had begun to look forward to seeing him, until one day he stopped coming to the Tower.
She knew that they were rotated quite often, but they usually spent a month at the Tower before a new set of warriors came along. But this man had not spent more than three weeks!
She had waited patiently, but he had not come back.
The pain and frustration she felt at having lost contact with him really shocked her.
She had not seen him in over two months now, and she told herself firmly that she might probably not meet him again.
That night, when she bolted up in her bed and couldn’t sleep, she got up and pulled her gown around her. It was the dead of night, and she padded to the bathroom.
It was on her way back to the bed that she tripped and fell down. She screamed with pain when she felt a sharp twinge in her ankle. The pain was excruciating and brought tears of anguish to her eyes. She couldn’t get up from the floor for a while because her ankle was so swollen it was so painful.
Eventually, she hobbled to the low table near the bed and pressed the red knob.
She waited impatiently, and some minutes later there was a knock on the door.
“Come in here!” she shouted.
The door opened…and he entered!
The man with the fair nose and the penetrating gaze.
As he walked slowly toward her in his iron mask and iron groin lock, it dawned on her with the fierce kick of a mule that indeed, she had missed this cocky, arrogant warrior.
“My ankle!” she whispered. “I sprained it.”
He went to the bathroom and brought the Medicine Box. He picked her up and put her on the bed.
Gently, he sprayed some cool substance from a can on her ankle, and then he took out a bandage and bound her foot gently.
Uvbi liked his touch very much.
“You’ve been gone for a while,” she said, trying to force her voice to sound matter-of-fact.
“Took leave to help my sister,” he said softly. “I’m back now.”
Their eyes met and held.
“What’s your name?” Princess Uvbi Akenzua asked, surprised that she sounded so desperate. “Please, I want to know.”
He stared at her for a long time, his piercing eyes never blinking.
He seemed to sigh and got to his feet.
She reached out blindly and held his hand.
“Please!” she whispered.
“My name is Okakuo Agbons,” he said softly.
Princess Uvbi smiled broadly.
It was the only happiest moment she had felt ever in the tower!
And then he suddenly covered her hand with his other hand gently.
Princess Uvbi Akenzua shivered, and she gasped, and then without knowing what she was doing she raised her free hand and draped it along the right side of the iron mask on his face.
His gaze dropped, and then he quickly got to his feet and walked to the door. He paused for a while, but he didn’t turn around, and then he was gone.
The princess sighed heavily.
She could not understand the myriad of emotions that damn warrior raised in her, and she had not even seen his face…only that long, fair nose and those steely eyes![insert-comment-form]