“ND this your grandfather was a mega big boy see mansion?” Odibo exclaimed,they both stood in awe staring at his ancestor’s family house, he remembered as a kid all the grown ups would pull their ears
“never go beyond the bush path to that house, it is haunted?” They would say, and being kids they never even ventured near here, but staring at the master piece he was not surprised.
The house was one of the biggest and oldest houses in the village, it was made of clear strong mud , with large carvings of snakes all over the place, at the center of the compound was a dried up well with lion markings carved all round the walls of the well, the house was surprisingly neat for somewhere that had not been touched for years, it was as if the grass and weeds themselves were scared to grow in this compound.
A statue of a woman holding an egg stood at the far corner of the house and just before the main entrance stood the statue of a man holding a bow and arrow, Nnamdi stared angrily at the statue this should be the man, the man who brought down the wrath of the gods on an entire generation, whose act had caused countless lives to be lost,
“you are staring at that statue as if you want to destroy it?’ Odibo whispered.
“I hate him, he ..” Nnamdi stammered with uncontrolled anger,
“I know, you told me what he did., lets go in and get this over with.” Odibo continued tapping him on the shoulder.
He had carefully left out the part of Odibo’s grandfather when narrating the old man’s story to his friend, he had been thinking of how to broach that subject and decided the time had not yet come.
They walked into the house and were not surprised to see cobwebs and dust all over the place,
“we need to find the master bedroom” Nnamdi directed as they both stood confused not knowing where to start ,suddenly they both froze as they heard a hiss,
“ND did you hear that?” “yes a snake” they stood still as they waited for another hiss , this time the hiss was louder, they stood still holding their machete tight whilst their eyes wandered , suddenly they spotted a movement at the far right of the house tiptoeing they inched closer ,the hiss was louder here, they saw several rooms built like mini thatched huts within the house, their ears and eyes were sensitized, waiting for any noise or movement but just as quickly as before , they heard it again this time around it came from the room at the far right corner, cutting through cobwebs ,kicking out dusts they burst into the room but saw nothing, suddenly the hissing noise stopped . looking around it seemed as if they had been led to exactly what they were looking for, his grandfather’s store room.
Peering round the room they saw long arrows covered in dust all over the place, in one part of the room stood a large unfinished wood work, it appeared as if drawers had not been invented when this house was built because everywhere just looked scattered, armed with a cloth tied round their face because of the dust , matchete and broomsticks to beat out the dust, they began their search.
“erm what exactly are we looking for??” Odibo asked after several minutes of discovering nothing but animals bones, patches of animal skin and several bows and arrows, they were both exhausted,
“I don’t know but if we find it we will know” suddenly Nnamdi’s feet hit something hard , doubling in pain he looked down, his eyes lit up”I think this is it” he exclaimed, picking up the object and cleaning it out they both stared in unbelief, right in Nnamdi’s hands appeared to be half of a large egg made solely of solid gold, from the sides it appeared as if some part of it had been melted off but apart from that it was in superb condition.
“where is the other half?” Odibo asked and Nnamdi knew without being asked, he had to tell his best friend his own family history.
Nnamdi was filled with a mixture of emotions as he watched his best friend chattering with excitement as they made their way home.
”mehn I feel as if I am that Indiana jones character,..”odibo continued, for several minutes Odibo had compared himself to Indiana jones, James Bond and Pete Edochie’s character in Things fall apart.
“I feel as if we just struck one against the gods, you know..chasing after an invisible snake, charging into that room with our machetes finding pure solid gold..” their white Tshirts and jeans which they had worn on this adventure had turned brown with dirt and Nnamdi could feel the scratches all over his palm, but feeling the weight of the treasure they had found which he had wrapped in a cloth and put in a bucket they found on the road, he felt an emotion he had not felt since he heard the news of his brother…hope , hope that he might end this tragedy once and for all. His heart beat faster as he remembered he had to tell his best friend one of the strangest stories he had ever heard of in his life, he sincerely hoped Odibo would believe his story if not all this would have been for nothing.
Mary sat motionless as the other reverend sisters recited today’s passage from the bible, her pretty eyes looked hollow from lack of sleep, she was worried that she had not heard from her brother since he went to their village. Last night an emotion had come over her, it felt as if an electric wave had hit her suddenly and all the hairs on her body had been sensitized. she knew she had nothing to worry about most of the deaths in her family had been the males and now that she was a reverend sister there was no possibility of her giving birth to a male child but still….her nights were long and uncomfortable .She felt as if she did not sleep alone, as if something watched her whilst she slept.
Last night she had wondered if the hyper sensitivity meant something bad had happened to her brother, suddenly the walls of the church didn’t seem so comforting anymore…she feared for her sanity, everything depended on Nnamdi if he didn’t end this they would come for her. she closed her eyes and prayed
“God please have mercy on us, have mercy on us.”
His uncle moses drank another full glass of whisky as Nnamdi briefed him on the result of his escapade to the family house yesterday, the man’s eyes seemed to be glowing like a torchlight in the dark.
”ND do you know what this means.?” His uncle asked scratching his white beard,
“ what you have in your hands could be worth millions and millions of naira…if just a little of the melted gold is what gave your ancestor all that wealth imagine what it is worth now.”
Nnamdi was taken aback, he stared aghast as the man licked his lips and poured himself another drink..
”so my son where is the gold right now..the one you found???” Nnamdi responded immediately ,
“I have given it to Agwu..erm yes Agwu will keep it for me till we find the other half.”
“so there is another half, incredible.”
Nnamdi got up as fast he could and went to find his best friend, they had to leave this house immediately it just occurred to him that people would kill for the gold he carried with him, right now he could not trust anyone.