There are so many perks and advantages for me as a spectral, I don’t have to bath or brush or worry about my looks; I love the spirit form. This is my good morning to you.
So, even though there were other super important matters bothering the monarchs of Efik land, plus the decadent relaxation that they had last night, a mother is still a mother. Affy, short for Affiong, had not entirely forgotten about the abhorrent attitude of their only child.
The queen left her bed and the warmth of her husband early enough to have a heart to heart with her daughter. She decided to brush her teeth and then she decided to take her bath at once, as she was already in the bathroom. You know women, she then decided to dress casually but there was nothing stopping her from putting on light makeup. By the time she sauntered towards her daughter’s room, the guitarist had begun playing the wake up tunes of Celine Dion’s New Day.
Affy was a follower of modern trends and so, even though she hadn’t been in her prime when this song had been released, she still knew about it and had loved it. So, coming from a guitar, she was curious to find out if her daughter had a hubby, say like playing a musical classic on a guitar.
She smiled at that thought and hurried in without knocking, hoping to be pleasantly shocked that her daughter could play the guitar…she was shocked anyway but not pleasantly. Affy was appalled at what she saw…Nkoyo’s morning routine.
Yes, the king and queen hadn’t been aware that their daughter had such a routine. Now Affy understood why the king’s car was never completely washed when he was ready to leave the palace.
The workers looked shocked and held in place, they had no idea what to do, though I can tell you that most of them were glad that the queen was now aware of her daughter’s uniqueness – that was someone else’s thought, to me, it’s her daughter’s callousness.
Speechlessly, she turned and returned to the solace of her bedroom and her husband’s arms.
“What is it my love?”
“Asuquo, it is worse than we thought. Our daughter is something worse than a monster, how did this happen?” she sobbed.
The king wasn’t one to bear his wife’s tears, so he held her tenderly until she was able to relay what she’d seen that morning. They even called in the cook who was the center of command for all workers and she confirmed that their daughter’s routine had been going on for almost a year. The cook then revealed what even myself have been too ashamed to tell you, Nkoyo had commissioned one of the maids to be…my mouth is still heavy to say it, but it has to be said…one of the maids had been commissioned by yours truly, Princess Nkoyo to shave her privates.
I have to say here that the cook had almost…emphasis on the word almost, looked gleeful while reporting this depraved piece of news. I don’t blame her though, she must have wanted to say something, but anyone that values his or her work at the palace doesn’t go around telling tales about the princess to her parents.
“What do we do now?” Affy asked, trepidation clearly written on her face. As a good person, she couldn’t understand how her daughter had turned so conceited.
“Should we send her abroad, maybe to Russia where it’s bitterly cold?”
Yes, the king actually asked that stupid question; I know, he’s a human being sha and he’s allowed to be dumb on certain days, like today when he’s at his wits end. At his question, of course as a gossip spirit, I roll my eyes and wonder…who that one help?
His wife must be thinking almost what I’m thinking from the incredulous look she gives him. “But, Asuquo, darling, if the cook says this attitude is almost a year old, it must have been around the time she returned from France.”
Asuquo nodded, “That’s true, I recall when I asked why she walked stiffly and elongated her neck. She said its how royalty walked abroad, and that it wasn’t stiff but regal.”
“What are we going to do?” Affy asked again, she looked close to tears.
The king sighed heavily, his shoulders slumped, “I have absolutely no idea.”
I’m sorry, I know they are miserable but I can’t just stop laughing at the comic picture they make. Anyway, enough about the Efik kingdom, let’s go root out gist about the Atam kingdom; this is so much fun.
Atam kingdom was mostly about massive farming and food processing and then transporting these foods to other kingdoms, like Efik kingdom and Ibibio kingdom et al.
Compared to Efik kingdom, Atam was just a step behind modernism, meaning their lives included working hard, enjoying family and living simple. I can assure you, if the Efik people were to be sent over here, they would grumble much because they weren’t used to hard work, they were used to having it in a platter of gold…they were a people of leisure.
It wasn’t as though Atam kingdom wasn’t rich, far from it; they were but not just as much and as easily gotten like that of the Efik kingdom and definitely not as flamboyant. In the case were the Efiks dressed with bright colors, the Atams’ color was sort of tame. Arrogance wasn’t much of an issue in this kingdom, at least among the women and pride was taken in the lushness of a person’s farm and the bigness of a person’s game after a hunt.
Plump women weren’t rampant in this kingdom except those married from the Efik kingdom…yes, both kingdoms were that friendly, it’s 2016 after all and inter-racial marriages have become the norm.
Over this vast green land with pockets of rivers in between, king Liman, his name meant money, ruled with his lovely wife, Jesam, which meant, ‘say thanks’.
Let’s jump over the process of procreation to the procreated. Liman and Jesam had two children, a son and a daughter. The son and first child was named Onen, which literally means a person, but deeper interpretations point to it meaning ‘a great person’; and the daughter was named Wofai, which means a good thing or literally ‘that which is good’.
Forgive me, the Atam kingdom have names like the Apache Indians…it’s really not an issue, so deal with it.
And like the Apache Indians, the first born and son is brought up strong, courageous, hardworking and protective of women but not necessarily deferring to them. A little arrogance comes in to play here, women are supposed to defer to the men as they do the heavy and risky works, while the women are supposedly domestic.
But it’s 2016 and Liman and his wife did send their children to school. And in doing that, the daughter, Wofai, returned with an attitude that had over time been regarded as insolent by the natives, especially men.
She was out spoken and whenever her mouth opened, it was specifically to say something that demanded respect to her as a woman. Unfortunately, she was in this fight alone because, her mother was already the queen and nobody would dare demean her and keep their heads, no matter how confrontational she got…her husband always backed her up.
Wofai suffered most from her brother who used her as practice for when he had a wife. Onen’s character was laid back and mischievous to a point of meanness, which should give you an idea of what Wofai suffered in his hands and what made her turn into a kind of monster.
Because, as Onen used her for practice, she used him too, accordingly. To her, her brother was the epitome of what she was fighting…the epitome of what her husband would be like and act like.
The whole practice affair boiled down to one thing…Onen refused to listen to his sister because, what kind of useful idea does a woman have to share? …the arrogant son of a…the arrogant bastard! Okay, there are two things, he also refused or didn’t find it important to knock before entering her room, although that act was just to rile his easily riled sister.
Wofai then found creative ways of dealing with her brother’s arrogance; she screamed like a banshee, which was a point of concern for her parents because gossips went the rounds that she might be insane. And then she kept tennis balls at hand for when Onen entered without knocking; she had scored a few shots but when she didn’t because the bastard was good at dodging, she would resort to screaming like a banshee which would increase her parents’ concern for her.
Though the children, who were 29 and 25respectively, had been to schools of higher learning and had excelled, they’d been brought up with the consciousness that all their acquired knowledge and wisdom was extensively for the good of the kingdom. Unlike what is shown in movies, where royal children hate the idea of even returning to their father’s kingdom, here the children were glad to be using their qualifications to better the kingdom.
Onen had a Masters in Management and had furthered that qualification with several other monthly courses both home and abroad, he was a consummate administrator and his father was quite happy to relinquish the reins of the massive food processing plant which was the major place of employment to the natives…excluding their own farms.
The food plant employed more than five hundred people and Onen was in-charge of them all; both handling their welfare packages and supervising the work, sometimes joining in…I’m guessing it’s kind of okay for him to be arrogant, but whatever.
Wofai helped him in managing the accounts, having graduated with certifications in Economics and having an affinity for numbers; the girl was a whiz with the books. King Liman had no worries when it came to managing the resources and finances of his kingdom, no worries except for his daughter.
It was becoming increasingly difficult to control her screams, especially with the rumors making the rounds. I mean, come on, what did you expect? This is a 25 year old girl who thinks the best way to handle her issues was to scream; that is just bizarre. Men that were potential suitors began giving her a wide berth, nobody wanted to have anything to do with her and that didn’t help much, it only increased her propensity for screams.
“How was the plant today?” King Liman asked his children at the dinning table. They were having boiled yam and freshly prepared pumpkin vegetable sauce with palm-oil, lots of pepper and bush meat; it is pertinent to note that this was a favorite meal in this house.
Contrary to the nonsense we see on TV and despite the fact that this family was learned, this meal was eaten with their bare hands…no forks and knives in sight; because this is the best way to enjoy this meal, using cutleries in this situation would just be weird.
“It’s okay, but we need more people at the cassava peeling point,” Onen answered while munching on a particularly succulent piece of bush meat.
“Are you going to tell him that I noticed that since last week?” Wofai asked confrontationally.
“No, I’m not,” Onen replied with a casual shrug, even to me that was annoying.
“That’s lovely, Wofai, well done,” Queen Jesam jumped in, hoping to safe their ears from the imminent scream.
Wofai looked at her mother, seeing the soft smile of appreciation on her face, she simmered down with a deep breath.
“You did good,” Liman added when his wife promptly kicked him under the table without looking at him or changing expression.
“So, have you picked a dress for the soiree in honor of the minister’s son’s return?” Jesam asked her daughter in a bid to change the subject totally; but she ended up totally worsening the situation.
Onen scoffed, “Should she be allowed among humans?”
“Onen!” both parents reprimanded their son.
“Don’t talk to your sister like that,” the queen added.
The anger that had been simmering down in Wofai, was stoked and given life, she gave her brother the evil eye and growled in warning like an animal would.
“You see what I’m talking about,” Onen pointed out and chuckled insouciantly, and then continued with his meal as though his sister wasn’t worth the bother; the bastard.
Both the king and queen held their breaths; it wouldn’t be the first time this kind of scenario had played out. And in each of those cases, it had been worse than the previous melt downs.
Wofai turned away from her brother and focused on her food, the monarchs almost sighed in relief that she hadn’t reacted…emphasis on the word almost. In the next instant, Onen found his face and a large part of his starched white shirt covered in palm-oil vegetable sauce, I think some got into the idiot’s eyes, he was the one screaming this time around.
He jerked out of his seat and raced in search of water to wash his eyes, scattering the few servants at the palace out of his way. Both parents desisted from making any comments because my girl, Wofai, had calmly reached for her brother’s plate of food and proceeded to eat with a smile on her face.
You recall that silent communication that long married couples usually have, theirs was almost similar to that of the monarchs at Efik kingdom, they had no idea what to do for their daughter…but it was about to get worse at the soiree.
INSIDE OUT continues
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