Katya & Zolokhan Chapter 15.Trott Bailey Family
“ Hey where’s your master?” Katya asked the six month old tiger cubs.
Looking out further ahead, Katya spotted her husband on Quanza’s back. The two were excellent friends and with Katya’s encouragement, Zolokhan had started talking more often with Quanza to awaken his animal hearing sense.
They were leaving out for the East in one month’s time and would pass through the land of the Byzantines, Cappadocian, and the elusive Mongolians to get there. Kitabı would be left in charge of their army and other affairs, with the help of a few Elders who would oversee any matters in the tribes. So far the management of the two vast tribes had gone smoothly enough. Many Elders had taken the happy occasion of their marriage to step down and live out their lives along the warm coast, especially now that Katya and Zolokhan had changed the old system.
As they planned for their travels, the only thing to decide was whether Quanza and his family would travel with them. Katya told Zolokhan that it would be best not to take a rare pink elephant with them. But for some reason he thought it was a great idea to bring him along to attract crowds to sell their clothing and boots under their guise of being travelling traders.
Quanza’s cub was still young and would miss it’s father. Not to mention Quanza’s mate. She decided to point out these factors again tonight when they had their meal.
As she walked out from the pavilion to greet her soon coming husband, she took in the beauty of their new home. The already large six month tiger cubs walked beside her. They too wanted to come on the trip but were also told no by Katya.
Stopping under an oval shaped pergola, Katya stayed in the shade and waited for her husband’s approach. They had been taking life very easy and were spending their days lazying by their rivers, running with the tigers and hunting on their land.
“ My love, i just realized we should pack some warm clothes for Mongolia. By the time we pass through there it will be peak winter.” Zolokhan shouted out.
When he reached her, he dismounted and sat beside her excitedly.
Before Katya could say anything, her excited husband rushed to say,
“ Don’t worry you don’t have to tell me again, I agree that it’s not wise to travel so far with Quanza at this time. We already talked and i told him our decision.” Zolokhan said and threw his hands around her shoulders pulling her into a warm embrace.
Katya’s playful nature quickly surfaced and she switched positions with her dextorous moved. Before Zolokhan could catch what was happening, Katya had his head pinned under her underarms and gave him a long whiff of her sweaty armhole. He struggled to release his head as the onion scent of her arm hit his nostrils. Mockingly he began acting like he was choking from the scent and began dramatically coughing.
” Do you know why your scent is so high wife?” His change of attitude and tone put Katya on alert.
” You body needs some good sweat to release all to that pent up juices.” He whispered intimately.
Looking at him with raised eyebrows, she replied.
” And what do you suggest?” She questioned. She saw the lusty look in his eyes and she shot to her feet and took off gleefully screaming as he gave chase. She was able to dodge him for some time till finally, he caught her. Throwing her wiggling body over his shoulder they made their way to the bathhouse and enjoyed each other.
Back in Mabutu tribe:
“ Why do you need so much Kagobe leaves Acidah? You know it’s been forbidden in our tribe to grow the infertility leaves! İ do so already at great risk to my life.” Dugu, Acidah’s close friend, who lived in the Mabutu tribe, reminded her.
” İ only ever sell very tiny amounts, as you know it’s very potent.”
” Yes but this is the amount i need Dugu” Acidah replied.
“ İ ask you again Acidah, what or who are you buying this for?” Dugu whispered looking at her sternly
“ İt’s not for you to know or worry about. You won’t get in trouble, I’m sending it to somewhere far away. İ promise you won’t be implicated Dugu.” Acidah cajoled her.
” Plus i will give you a house along the coast, property, animals, and some gold treasures.” Seeing Dugu’s eyes gleam, Acidah knew she was tempted.
Dugu had always been ambitious for riches, having been a poor descendant from the now extinct Graffa tribe. She had been taken in by an aunt from the Mabutu tribe when she had escaped the slaughter of her tribe. Not being originally a Mabutu born tribe member, acceptance into the tribe had not been easy for her nor was she allotted any land as an inheritance. Dugu had always wanted land and property to set up herself independently away from her aunt’s family. Which had led her into this lucrative but forbidden way of acquiring gold.
It was forbidden in all of the three Major tribes to grow Kagobe leaves ever since the water poisoning a hundred years ago. Back then, the evil princess of the Mabutu tribe had poisoned the Mwebele tribe’s water wells with infertility leaves because she wanted to be the only one to be pregnant during the Kendu thunderstorms.
The birth of a girl in the Mwebele tribe during the Kendu Thunderstorms was the first sign of the next Mwebele Chieftess. However the evil Mabutu Princess had given birth to a boy. That’s when the three conspirators: The Mabutu Princess, Her father the Mabutu King and her husband the Chief Warrior of the Mwebele tribe conspired to steal the newborn baby girl of the Kezmizi Queen. This had led to a great fight between the tribes before the treacherous plot had been discovered. For peace and to appease the Kezmizi tribe for the stolen child who had ended up dying, the Mwebele people broke their tradition and a pact of marriage was made. The next Mwebele Chieftess to be born would also be the daughter of the Kezmizi tribe and would be given in marriage to the Kezmizi king. İt had taken eighty years after the incident before another Chieftess had been born. This Chieftess was Katya.
” King Vulcan is very strict about visitors. İt will take us three days to get that much Kagobe leaves and turn it into liquid. İ will have to report that I have a visitor staying for longer than a day to the gatekeepers.” Dugu informed Acidah. Her mind was turning as she thought out a plan.
“ Fortunately you have visited me several times before but İf they should ask you any questions, like why your staying three days, say that your bleeding cycle has started and you need to stay inside before you travel. That will shut them up very quick.” Dugu advised.
” There is an old blind woman that I take out every now and again. We will dress you in her clothes and leave the main town to go gather what you need. No one will bother us.” Dugu laid out the plan even further.
“ i want the covenant written right now for the property and animals.” Dugu turned to Acidah looking her square in the eye.
“ İ already have it right here with me Dugu.” Acidah said smugly, a small smirk tugging at her lips.
Taking the covenant delicately, as though almost afraid it would disappear. Dugu unfolded it and brought it to a lantern to read. Sure enough it promised vast amounts of land along with five hundred heads of mixed cattle, herds and horses. The blood finger prints of Acidah was their and two confirmational finger prints of two well known land officials from the Kezmizi tribe were there as well, along with an official seal.
Dugu couldn’t believe her fortune nor could her sharp mind not wonder who was willing to pay this much from the Kezmizi tribe. Shrugging her thoughts off, not wanting to get to involved she rolled up the covenant scroll delicately. Those Kezmizi men always kept many concubines.
“Nothing more than some jealous wife or wives trying to crush their concubines.” Dugu thought to herself.
Excitement and relief rushed over Dugu. Once again she wanted to look at the covenant, to see her good fortune. She could be independent. So many other women had inheritances of land from the tribe. But she, just because she wasn’t born here was denied! She would forever have to depend on the goodwill of her aunt who was now so old. Who would take care of her then? Her aunt’s sons who had their own wives and families to think about? Her disdainful female cousins? İt disgusted her to think of such a future. But here was light, here was freedom. She would take it with a clear conscience.
“ Alright come let’s go report your stay to the gatekeepers,” Dugu advised. True to form, the gatekeepers did ask some questions but were quickly hush-hush when Acidah mentioned her bleeding. They couldn’t send them off fast enough. The two women laughed all the way back to Dugu’s home.
After the two had eaten, Acidah said
” So even after you asked your aunt to give this house as an inheritance you still didn’t get it?”
” No, Aunt was willing but her greedy daughters refused and convinced Aunt to give it to her first grandchild. They of course promised my Aunt that they would take care of me and allow me to live here. But I know their plans for me when Aunt passes. Nothing more than turning me into a servant.” Dugu answered bitterly.
” Hmmm… it’s not easy for women like us. İ was born in my tribe but i was no beauty. Beauty is a big deal in Kezmizi. Hence we must use our wits even more” Acidah said bitterly.
” Sometimes I thought with this new Mwebele Chieftess and the prosperity she has brought to all of us, not just Mwebele…i thought maybe i could go there. They don’t prevent you from inheriting land, there’s much trade …i don’t know i thought to myself i could start over there. But now you have come with a newer better way.” Dugu ended with a big smile.
Nodding her head, Acidah steered clear from any conversation about Mwebele Chieftess. The fewer suspicions Dugu had the better. İt was very good that she was moving away to the coast.
” Dugu, one more thing! You must leave the tribe immediately after this agreement is done. Don’t linger around or get any funny ideas in your head about gloating to your family members. Do not arouse any suspicions or curiosity.” Acidah warned.
“ İ won’t. İ can’t wait to turn my back.” Dugu said with a smug smile.
” Pele Pele” ( it is good)” Acidah replied. The two women clicked wooden cups over some good wine and waited for tomorrow.
The next morning Acidah woke up impatiently in her quarters. Three days was a long time to be away from her husband Petra. However he was fairly used to her visiting Dugu. She had suggested he and the kids visit the clothing and food markets while she was away and had left them enough gold to pay for the delicious meals from the Ming people. Petra loved things like that.
The Mwebele men really did know how to make their women happy. Petra she knew had onced loved Nebuli very deeply. However Nebuli had set her eyes on the then Kezmizi King and had spurned Petra’s love.
She, Acidah had cajoled and pleaded with her father to get Petra for her. They had invited Petra to a feast one day and gotten him drunk. When he came to his senses he was in bed with Acidah. Her father had demanded they get married immediately. A year after, Nebuli had gotten married to the King.
For years she had watched him grieve for Nebuli in secret. İt was not until their first child that she saw some sparks of joy appear. İt was like he decided to pour all the love he once had for Nebuli into his children.
He had treated her well in their marriage but she knew he did not love her. He loved his children though, so much so, she was jealous of them. Sometimes she couldn’t stand the sight of her husband giving all his love to their daughters and son leaving none for her. Their children had gotten their good looks from their father. She was bitter. She often wondered
“ what if I had been beautiful?” but a small voice would always say that someone would have loved her had she not graspingly aspired for Nebuli’s discarded suitor.
Sitting up on her bed, she leaned her hand on her knuckled hands. The weight of her life, her hate for Nebuli and all beautiful women engulfing her. There was no turning back now. She had made choices which could not be undone. She just didn’t want Petra to know anything that she had done.
She heard a knock on her door. She called for them to enter. A young servant boy greeted her and delivered a basket and a message from Dugu. She asked him for directions to the bath house and for her bathwater to be prepared.
When he was gone, she read the small paper. All it said was to be ready at midday. She looked into the basket to find clothes belonging to that of an old woman.
She felt a rush of glee that the plan was going along steadily. She also had another scapegoat in Dugu who she could use to blackmail the great Queen Nebuli should the need ever arise. The thought of it made every risk worth it.
She went and took her bath. Acidah then returned and put on one of her regular outfits. She was invited to eat her morning meal on a large porch. The table was filled with traditional Mabutu foods. She indulged in some Grunga porridge sweetened with honey and some boiled eggs, ignoring the rest of food on the table.
She asked a servant who was clearing away the breakfast dishes
” Where is your mistress?”
” Mistress usually visits her aunt at this time of the day” the servant replied.
Returning to her room she decided to take a short nap. Dugu would have already prepared everything. After ten years of knowing each other she knew her meticulous nature. They had met at one of the Kezmizi festivities fifteen years ago. They had instantly gotten along and had kept up with each other since then. Dugu had never gotten married, having no dowry did not help.
“But even so Dugu was not bad looking, she could have married someone.” Acidah thought time and time again. Acidah had even asked to play matchmaker but Dugu had refused. Shrugging her shoulders Acidah realized that Dugu didn’t want to get married. Acidah fell asleep thinking about Petra and their imaginary love story. İn her love story built in her dreams, she was very beautiful and she was the one Petra loved and not Nebuli.
In what seemed like no time at all, Acidah felt herself being shook awake. Her dream started to slip away just when she and Petra were splashing each other in the river.
“ Acidah, Acidah. İt’s time to wake up my friend.” Dugu shook her friends shoulders firmly for the fourth time.
” What? Oh, Dugu it’s you.” Getting up slowly, Acidah went and put on her disguise, knowing that it must be time to go out. Dugu helped her to fix her disguise just right.
“ Walk with a slight limp and keep you head down. We will take a small chariot to go out.” Dugu said
“ What about your servants?” Acidah asked her.
” İ only have three, i gave them the rest of the day off to go to the markets.” Dugu replied.
” How long will our journey take?” Acidah asked her
” We will be back before sundown.” Dugu replied.
The two women made it discreetly out of the main tribes’ territory by carriage and journeyed off to a barren looking path. When they finally reached their destination, the place looked like a harmless flower field. Looking around her, Dugu checked for any onlookers. Wading through the flowers she walked in what seemed like a random pattern but was really an intricate step system to find her patches of Kagobe leaves.
The thing with Kagobe leaves was that they had a very distinct look to them which made them fairly easy to identify. They were green leaves with bright yellow tips. The plant grew on running vines. Hence the tall flowers field to cover up the location of potent plant.
“Come Acidah, you will have to help me reap since you want so much so fast.” Dugu said
Kneeling down the women began pulling at the vines.
” İt’s best not to break the vines, instead try to roll it into a bundle until you reach the natural end of a vine. Here is some cord to tie each bundle.” Dugu instructed
” How many bundles will we need?” Acidah asked.
“ We will need about twenty bundles.” Dugu answered.
” Where will you turn it into liquid? At your house?”
“ No never at my house, look over there..do you see too big boulders looking like they are kissing?” Dugu asked Acidah
“ Yes i see…but..so what” Acidah answered
” İ have my pots and firewood and other tools stashed away over there…when we are done here I will show you what I’m talking about,” Dugu answered.
After about an hour of reaping the Kagobe leaves, Acidah complained of pains in her back from bending.
Chuckling Dugu answered,
“ You now see that it’s not easy work..”
Not bothering to answer her, Acidah plopped herself on the ground in a shaded area and rested. After some time Dugu insisted that they get going to start to boil the bundled leaves.
When they came to the kissing boulders, Dugu took Acidah to a secret entrance. Acidah was surprised to see a table already set up, various pots neatly turned down in another corner and stacks of fire wood packed together.
Dugu wasted no time setting out to transform the Kagobe leaves into potent infirtility liquid.
Staying in a corner Acidah watched Dugu set to work lighting her fire.
“İ use Fifi wood to prevent smoke from rising and giving away my location.” Dugu said offhandedly to Acidah as she lit four fires and placed a pot on each fire.
” You must use very little water to boil the leaves if you want more of an effect.” said Dugu.
İt took two hours before all the leaves had been used up and the mixture was ready. Straining the liquid into a large goat skin pouch, Dugu finally spoke again after hours of silence.
” We are done Acidah.”
After hearing no response, Dugu turned around and saw a sleeping Acidah bundled in a corner. Shaking her head at the woman, Dugu could tell she wasn’t used to doing much physical labor.
” That’s alright…you have given my mind some rest from the thought of these cousins and the thought of my future…land by the coast, what a joy” these thoughts brought smiles to Dugu’s face.
Quickly cleaning up her space and outing the fires, Dugu then went over to tap Acidah awake.
” Acidah wake up my friend, we are done and ready to go.”
A red eyed Acidah slowly oriented herself and tried to take in what Dugu had just said.
“ İ said the Kagobe leaves have been prepared Acidah…let’s head back home.”
” Ok i hear you, hand it over to me Dugu.”
Not hesitating, Dugu passed her the goat skinned pouch.
“ That much Kagobe liquid could cause infertility in a whole Elephant Clan so i guess whoever your sending it to has a lot of people who are wanting to get their hands on some.”
Knowing that she needed to quell Dugu’s suspicions even further, Acidah made up a story about Egyptian traders willing to buy it to sell to rich Egyptian wives who have attractive slave girls and boys.
“they don’t want the slaves to multiply too quickly with pregnancies, these Egyptians and their thinking.” Acidah informed Dugu smirking.
“ Hey where’s your master?” Katya asked the six month old tiger cubs. Looking out further ahead, Katya spotted her husband on Quanza’s back. The two were excellent friends and with Katya’s encouragement, Zolokhan had started talking more often with Quanza to awaken his animal hearing sense. They were leaving out for the East in…Read MoreRead More