BY ISRAEL USULOR

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Master called in another servant who brought in a knife made of shiny steel. “That knife must be very sharp,” I said in my heart. So that’s the knife that will end my life and I will be used for money ritual. So many thoughts were happening in my head. What was I to do? Nothing other than say my last prayers.

“God please, forgive my sins and accept my soul in heaven,” I said silently as Master approached me, still naked with the shiny knife-like someone going to the kitchen to chop ugu.

Master moved closer and then held my left hand which was still bound. He cut my wrist open. I shouted, making a very loud, frantic cry that must have gone through the ceiling. I was sure many passers-by must have heard my cries. But who would come to my aid? Nobody! Absolutely no one!

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In a matter of seconds, Master had collected a small cupful of my own blood. At first, my blood trickled into the cup in small percolations, but soon, it gushed like a tap when Master pressed my veins very hard. My own blood! My precious blood! He cocked it tightly, holding it up and observing it like a priest blessing Holy Communion.

There was a small refrigerator in one corner of the room. He opened the fridge and lowered the cup of blood slowly into it. He guided the blood like an egg as if his life depended on it. He put on his clothe and left the room in very loud silence.

I was still bleeding profusely. I thought I would be left to bleed to death, but I was mistaken. Soon, a man who looked like a doctor walked into the ritual room with what looked like a first aid box. He was a very short man who had a fairly long mustache like that of the man on Nigeria’s 10 Naira note.

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The man bent over me and slowly started dressing my wound in a ball of silky white wool clipped in a pair of stainless scissors. The cold iodine pain penetrated my head like a harmattan breeze. He bandaged my wrist and left in silence.

I was in pain but relieved that I wasn’t dead yet. At least, there was still hope that I could get out of the ritual room alive.

As soon as the doctor left, another servant emerged. This one was a female, a girl of about 13. But she was very neat and didn’t appear to be in any form of physical discomfort. Yet, she looked unhappy as if she was going through some sort of internal pain. I decided to get close to this one. She could be of help. She had a tray full of food which made my mouth salivate endlessly. It was already 12noon and close to 48 hours since I last tasted any food. So I was not just hungry but also famished.

“Good evening” I greeted her.

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Silence.

“Good evening,” I said again.

Silence.

“Please can we be friends?” I said.

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Silence.

“I can help you and you can help me. We can escape out of here together” I said. I was saying this out of necessity. I had no idea who she was or the circumstances under which she was in the ritual house. But she lifted up her head and looked at me as soon as I mentioned “escape.”

Nevertheless, she placed the food beside me and left in silence. A male servant sauntered into the room and removed the chain on my hands and legs. The ritual house was almost like a hotel, except that those in it are captives and held and attended at the whims of Master. Well, I gulped the food like a hungry lion. Afterward, I wasn’t chained again. I wondered why. I would soon find out.

A few hours after, I started feeling as if I wanted to poo poo. It became serious and unbearable. I constantly felt the poop knocking endlessly at the exit door down south. I shouted but no one heard me. Or they heard but didn’t bother. Besides, anytime I shouted, it felt as if the poop wanted to forcefully escape from my anus. There was no one in the ritual room anymore, and my hands and legs were no longer chained. I decided to do my thing. I took one of the plates with which food was brought to me. I gently squatted over it and poopooed inside. I then gently covered it and placed it back on the tray. I felt very relieved and happy.

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I sat down happily, even though within me, I knew that danger lay ahead. But for all I knew, Master didn’t want me dead. It seemed to keep me alive served his purpose more. I was sure the other girl I saw went through the same ordeal as myself. But one can never be truly sure. I could still die. I could still be killed. I was already being used for ritual since my blood was in the fridge. The only question now was “when will I die?”

Soon after I finished poopooing, Master rushed into the room. He entered as if something had alerted him that I have poopoed. Before my very eyes again, he stripped and became naked. I became scared and frantic. “What is he going to do to me?” I pondered within me. I didn’t look away. I kept my eyes straight so that I could at least see how I will be killed. He opened the refrigerator where he had stored my blood, removed the blood container, and stepped backward in an occultic manner. Every one of his moves was occultic and scary.

I thought he was done but not yet. He grabbed the plate of shit besides me like a very precious prize. I was shocked and stupefied. But Master was smiling merrily. He opened the blood container and poured a few drops into the plate of shit. “Akatishu, suhaiaraashu, shakitakatishu” He chanted.

Master chanted a few other incantations and then transformed into a dog. I mean he became a black dog. The dog was big and looked scary. In a matter of seconds, the dog ate up my shit which had been mixed with my blood. I was shocked. I shivered as a million goose pimples appeared on my arms.

Immediately he finished eating my shit mixed with my blood, about ten big cartons of money mysteriously appeared at every corner of the room. Servants sauntered in and evacuated the money.

He transformed back into a human, put on his clothes, and left the room in silence.

So that was it. It was my blood and my shit that was needed, not my life. But that was my life. My blood is my life. Taking it means taking my life. “I’m a dead girl alive,” I said to myself.

I decided to kill Master and escape. But how to kill him? I don’t know! But kill him, I must! And will do it tomorrow.

You can read part (2) HERE.

Israel Usulor is a journalist and short story writer. You can reach him via @JonalistIsrael and [email protected]



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