Laana: An Excerpt

Lahaula visited me during the King’s mourning ceremony following an invitation from Prince Jabali to their kingdom with news. She smiled with renewed life and talked to me about the things she had seen at the palace and all the while I kept my thoughts hidden from her. It was something I had been learning while spending time in the singing forest.

“Laana, tell me why is it that your light and the Prince’s light are lost?”

“He blames me for the death of his father.”

“What else are you keeping from me Sister? I feel you slipping away into darkness, is there anything I can do to draw you back?”

“Do not worry about me Lahaula. Prince Jabali will come to ask for my hand in marriage after the King’s burial and I will accept. What I do not know is how I will cope with his anger.”

“Ei, I see, however, I want you to accept a gift. She comes from our kingdom and she will attend to you. Her name is Amina. Her tongue never stays still but when it comes to you, she will always do what’s right. I ask you to care for her, train her because I have a feeling that she knows more about the earth, what grows where and what it can be used for.”

I looked at the young girl standing behind Lahaula for the first time. Her eyes were the color of darkness, a quiet reminder of how far the dawn was. She looked at me then looked away. I smiled and asked her to sit beside me. She nodded and did so and I could see her beautiful toes, feet meant for a princess, but feet that told the story of wars unrivaled by any I had encountered. She lowered her eyes and folded her legs beneath her. Lahaula released the breath she was holding, but I had already seen the girl’s past and her future was only what she could make it to be.

Lahaula stayed with me as her father and his envoys stayed at the palace.

Laana and The Prince: A Conversation

“Well, my Father intends to travel to another kingdom, and has asked me to get my head in order and prepare for a trade visit to the kingdom at the far east, we are running low on provisions of salt, cassava and we need better spears for our warriors. He says that he knows the people despise us and would not trade with us, but he is hoping that their hate would not spill over to me and we can at least get salt and cassava. I leave in two days.”

“I wish you well on your journey Prince, may your meeting be a fruitful one.”

“Thank you Laana, and can I ask you something?”

“You are already asking Prince, what is it?”

“How is it that you haven’t asked whether I will succeed or not or wanted to know about the reason why they despise us? You just wished me well.”

“You will go, their hate will not stop you from asking for what your people need, so it serves no purpose dwelling on it.”

“I see. What do you do when the sun goes up and when she sleeps?”

“I wake up, thank the gods for life and good health and then go to the farm, and when the sun sleeps I sleep too. What do you do?”

“I wake up as well, the maidens draw my bath, I wash and join the family for breakfast. My father is keen on reminding me that now that I am of age, I would be much better eating from my wife’s pot and when he says such things I also remind him that if he could approve of the one I choose then all shall be well.”

“You argue when there is food before you and at dawn?”

“When you find the fowl grew horns you do not ask where it has been because whatever it fought in the night may still be chasing it.”

In the Quiet…Part 2

There are things no one tells you, like why your Fiancée dumps you and calls off the wedding in a café. More so why he’s invited his friend along to take a video of your humiliation and share it online.

You find out real soon that hell is empty for all the demons roam the earth.

When you become the laughing stock of a whole nation and pretty soon your face is not the kind to be seen in public because when your sin goes public everyone acts like they have none.

That video sparked the conversation of pushy and overbearing women and it was more of how much I pushed the man I loved into a life he never asked for. So for days I stayed home, crying and doing everything to see things through until the Caterer we’d hired called me on a Sunday evening. I remember because my neighbor was blasting his Rhumba music and he listened to the same playlist on Sunday evenings- so much so that everyone in the flat knew when he was in and when he wasn’t by the sound of music coming from his house.

“We need to talk and trust me this is for your own good.” She looked at me and asked me “what are you going to do with this pain and humiliation?”

“I don’t know, I can’t believe he did this to me.”

“Stop asking why or focusing on him- you give the devil the power every time you attribute an occurrence to him. How are you going to use your pain? The longer you hide the more his narrative is spun, so how about you start writing your own?”

….an excerpt from In the Quiet current WIP