Yes, I am about to kill off some folks. Hey, it's a horror novel so that's got to be expected at some point. Right?
Here's the excerpt for today:
Kukoyi and his brother hid among the leafy green bushes. They knelt among the tall grasses and sat still and patient as a lion assessing its prey. Nothing stirred them, not even the insects crawling across their toes or stinging their arms. Sweat ran freely down from their temples to their cheeks and still they watched, taking mental note of every detail before them.
The Yoruban chief followed his tribesman here to investigate reports of raids on neighboring tribes. There were many stories and rumors these lean years about raiders different than those of the normal intertribal disputes. These newer invaders destroyed villages, burning the homes and crops. They took the people away…those not left to rot in the hot sun.
The Nigerians were outmatched in weaponry, which more than made up for the lack of invading soldier numbers. Their tactics were strange as well—offering immunity for trade of enemies or outright buying children. Not the very young but those of an age to be easily influenced, yet not needing a mother’s careful watch. Those of eight to twelve rainy seasons of age were most at risk. It didn’t matter if they were married or nobility. All were taken the same.
All of the old were outright slaughtered, as were the sick and deformed. These men were unmerciful and unyielding. They cared nothing for death rites or burial rituals, which left many souls doomed to wander the savannah, following the red trails of blood in the dust.
They were careful with the pregnant women, which the men found curious. If one was to slaughter their enemies, why would they leave the possibility of one becoming two by allowing the birth? The other curious thing was the disturbing boldness of these bearded men from the northwest. They never employed stealth and negotiations were brief, if at all. It was as if they did not fear the Orishas or the power of the land.
The Portuguese slavers clapped iron bracelets and anklets, which were joined together by thick chains on each of their conquered people. Then they were led away towards the coast. Rumors were to a place whose name was feared: Elmina Castle. It’s Door of No Return was infamous and only spoke of in whispers. Kukoya believed it was a doorway into hell, as did most other Nigerians.