“Please drop your weapons before entering the stream, for the house of the goddess is a peaceful place.” The voice said.
Omifunke and Adedayo dropped their weapons and entered the stream, the followed the voice to the mouth of the mountain where the water flowed from. The water was very cold, but it was soothing in a weird way that both the priestess and the prince were reluctant to get out of the water.
“Please follow me,” the voice said.
Omifunke was not surprised that she could not see the messenger, she had heard great tales about the invisible messenger of the goddess and she knew it would be unwise to offend the messenger by asking questions. She gave the prince a look that meant he should obey quietly.
They went through the waterfall, but surprisingly they were not wet. The mountain cave was designed just like the shrine, but it was more beautiful and grand.
They kept on walking, they could no longer hear the voice, but they could feel its presence, and knew where to go. Finally, they got to a large room, its entrance was covered with a curtain made of water, that was not transparent.
“The prince can go no further.” The voice said.
“Why?” The prince asked, before Omifunke could stop him.
“You are not qualified to see her majesty, except you do not wish to return to your Kingdom alive.” The voice said.
The prince rolled his eyes in frustration and attempted to protest, but the voice had sealed his mouth shut. Omifunke, gave the prince an assuring look, and stepped through the curtain of water.
The goddess all dressed in white, was seated on her throne. Her hair was braided into large, thick cornrows, that reached her waist. Her skin was so fair, that it was almost white and her smile was so warm, that it could thaw the coldest of hearts. The most fascinating fact was that she did not look a day older that twenty years, but her eyes held the wisdom of a thousand years. Her throne was surrounded by soft white fur and low golden
“Welcome my child!” The goddess said as Omifunke approached, with her head bowed.
“Your Majesty, your humble servant is here.” Omifunke said, as she went on her knees.
“I know what’s on your mind. But, contrary to what you have been told, this is not the prince’s mission but yours. He is your protector and your destiny.” Omi said.
“Your majesty, I do not understand.” Omifunke answered.
Omi smiled, “You will understand soon enough. The heart of men is full of evil, do you know why I took back my gift? Great danger is upon your Kingdom. There is a dark stain among the pure. It is now up to you, to protect my house and prevent it from falling, because if it does, the kingdom falls with it.”
“You majesty, I still do not understand.”
“You will, soon enough. Follow your heart, and protect my kingdom.”
“Yes, your majesty.” Omifunke answered, but she was still confused.
“As I speak to you, the Calabash has been returned. Protect it with all your heart, and remember to follow your heart.”
The journey home was uneventful and silent as both travellers were occupied with their own thoughts. If Omifunke had been confused about her destiny, before embarking on the mission, she was even now more confused. Was she to allow her feelings for the prince grow? If she did, how would she protect the shrine.
Adedayo wondered, why he was chosen for the mission, if the priestess was the one to recover the Calabash? Why was he so attracted to the priestess when he had the Balogun’s daughter as his bethrothed? He was the future king, he could have as many women as he wanted. But, he did not want many, he wanted one, that would love, understand and rule the kingdom with him. In fact, he wanted a smart woman. Was Omifunke the one?
Thanks everyone for reading and following ‘The Golden Calabash’ this is just a prequel to the novel ‘Kingdom of Deceit’. In ‘Kingdom of Deciet’ all your questions will be answered, such as: Who are Omifunke’s parents? What is the relationship between the King, the Queen and the high priestess? Will Omifunke and Adedayo accept their feelings? What is the chief priest’s intention? And the most important one, What is Omifunke’s destiny?
These questions and many more will be answered in ‘Kingdom of Deciet’. Insha Allah, ‘The Golden Calabash’ will be published in my collection of short stories titled ‘Variance’.
Thanks so much for the support, please don’t forget to visit my blog and follow my stories at www.aminatawastories.wordpress.com