The wind grew stronger causing small waves to ripple across the surface of the ocean. Adofo leaned in and kissed Akosua. It was then that Henry heard a branch crack to his right. He walked over and parted the bushes and saw Kwao crouched in between some bushes. Henry turned to walk away but stepped on some dried leaves and stopped, Kwao looked around then stood up.
“What the hell you want Kindoki?” he shouted, and walked towards Henry and walked up to Henry.
“Your kind is the spurn of Djab and should be destroyed,” he said, Henry looked at him then looked down at Akosua and Adofo. Kwao looked down at the couple then turned to Henry, his face red with embarrassment,
“What do you think, I was spying on them?” Kwao said, his voice cracked with embarrassment. Henry did not say anything, he just smiled, and that sent Kwao into a rage. He charged at Henry, they hit the ground hard, Kwao landed on top of Henry knocking the wind out of him. Henry lay on his back gasping for air. Kwao wrapped his fingers around Henry’s neck.
“If I had my way you would be dead,” he screamed, drool dripped from his mouth landing on Henry’s chest. As the wind rushed across the top of the hill, it brought Akosua’s laughter with it. Kwao suddenly stood up and looked down at them for a second, turned back to Henry and kicked him in the stomach. Henry winched with pain as Kwao ran into the bushes screaming. Henry sat up and looked down at the couple. They were looking up in his direction. Henry ducked down so they could not see him and lay there looking up at the sky.
The next morning, the village was up early to see Akosua and the others off. Adofo tried again to get Akosua to let him go with her, but she insisted that he stayed. Kwao spoke up,
“I will make sure she is safe,” he said staring intensely at Adofo, they looked at each other for a second,
“Time we leave,” Akosua said, as she led her small entourage into the jungle.
The days went by lazily, at night, Henry sat around a bonfire with the villagers and listen to their stories of adventure in the jungle, or on the ocean. Some told funny stories about their parents as they laughed and cried at the same time. One night Adofo stood up, the kids became silent as he began talking,
“I was six years when the ship ran aground on the beach. Being on this island is the first time I felt freedom. I was born into slavery, and when I was old enough me and my mother was sold off. The new plantation owner was even crueler than the previous. Every day we were punished for the simplest things. The owner soon died of a tropical disease and we were sold once again. We were sold so many times all the different plantations seemed to be one big nightmare. I don’t remember what my father looked like, my mother told me he was sold to another plantation, and she never saw him again. I love this island, it’s the first place I feel like I have a real family,” he stopped talking and looked into the fire. For a second his eyes glowed bright red and pure evil seemed to creep into his being. He tied his dreadlocks into a bun and stated talking again.
“With the help of the Loas Akosua is going to get our parents back. Then we will live here happy, free and in peace. We need to have faith in the Loas, they will protect us all.” He stopped talking for a second. Sparks floated into the air, burning out just above the fire. Henry looked around at the yellow and black shadows on their faces; they were serious, intently looking at Adofo, waiting for him to continue. He turned to face the fire.
“Ampah” he said, a short young man stepped out of the crowd and stood in front of him, his dark skin glowed in the pale yellow light.
“Get the drummers tell them to get out their ManMan drums. Let everyone know tonight we will have a service, we must ask Papa Legba to guide us through these trying times. Mary, prepare the vegetables and meat for Papa Legba, we need to open the gates and let his wisdom protect us from our enemies.” He ordered, Ampah shook his head and walked away followed by Mary.
” Go prepare and have faith that Akosua is able to get the help of the Bokors,” he said. A chorus of mumbling voices erupted as the villagers went back to their huts to prepare. Henry stood not knowing what to do. A girl about ten years old took his arm and pulled him in the direction of the dining hut.
“Come on you can help us,” she said a big smile on her face. Henry allowed himself to be led.
Akosua, Kwao and the two warriors were trekking through the thick bushes. Kwao was in front cutting bushes and branches with a cutlass. It was hot, even in the shade. Sweat poured down his body, but Akosua looked unfazed by the heat. They got to a place where the trees were tallest, and the bushes seemed to congregate around their enormous trunks. Suddenly, a shadow darted between the trees in front of them,
“What was that?” Kwao asked and stopped abruptly. Akosua walked around him and peered into the bushes. The wind whipped the branches violently. Akosua stood, her dress flapped around her ankles disturbing the leaves on the ground; her dreadlocks seemed to have a mind of its own as it twirled around her body. Suddenly there was laughter that echoed around the trees. The wind grew stronger and the tree branches cracked and popped some falling to the ground. One of the trees broke from its roots and fell in front of Akosua. Kwao grabbed her arm and pulled her back. The tree hit the ground sounding like an explosion from a canon. The shadow darted in front of them again, followed by laughter so loud; the two warriors covered their ears. Kwao stood, his spear lifted over his head anticipating an attack, but the trees became still as the wind subsided. They stood looking around and then Akosua spoke.
“Someone sent Petite Pierre to pick a fight with us” she said, Kwao looked at her,
“You think it was the Bokors?” He said, for a second Akosua did not respond, she was looking into the bushes.
“If they did then they have gone deeper into black magic,” she said. They climbed over the fallen tree and continued their journey.
“How are we going to get them to help us, especially since they seem to love evoking evil spirits like Petite Pierre?” Kwao asked as he lowered his spear.
“We have to trust Yemaya, she knows best.” Akosua looked back at him,
“Now lets go, we have a long journey before us,” she said Kwao pushed his way in front of her and began cutting bushes.