Chapter 2

Back at the Malaba district, Peninah could not keep these to herself. She had to share with her parents to hear their views and get advices from them. Upon her sharing it to them, their reaction surprised Peninah beyond her wits. They reacted as those whom expected such news from her, or, as if they had a clue of what she was about to say.

She could not understand why the reaction and yet, what she said was said to be taboo and most abolished. Just like anyone else, curiosity could not let her be. She had to ask a question.

Standing next to her mother, she looked straight to her, “mother, if I may ask, did you not tell me that talking to and being wooed by a stranger especially, those from the City was forbidden?” Peninah began. 

Her mother looked back at her, “of course my daughter, that’s true.” 

Peninah seemed disturbed, “why is it then that, you people seemed as those expecting this? What is happening?” 

“My daughter, as it seems, it has come time for you to know your true destiny. Sit down. I would like us to have a talk,” looking straight to her eyes and pulling Peninah closer, her mother answered. 

Peninah continued, “Mother, what providence is this that needs me to break our mores? What about the taboo?” in confusion, she queried. 

In a soothing and comforting voice, “Do not be afraid. The gods are with you my daughter. Be seated here for a while,” her mother advised.

Peninah seemed to relax a little, “Okay mother, lay it on me,” giving her mother time to narrate and enlighten about her so-called destiny.

“Back in time, during the year of your birth, there are things that happened. It was a period when yet another drought had struck the land intensely. Things here were appalling. Both people and animals had started to die just like in the one you have witnessed here past. All hope was lost. For your father, he had it rough. With me being pregnant of you, he made sure to work an extra mile single-handed to keep death away. Indeed, the gods were merciful and time for your birth was here…”

Curiously and impatiently, Peninah interrupted with question.

“What are these things that happened mother? Tell me!” she asked restlessly.

Her mother reached out to hold both of her hands, “just…listen to me my daughter…be patient,” She continued the story again “…after you were born, both your father and I knew that we could hardly survive. There were no more animals for us to hunt. They too had fled for greener pastures. We only had one last option on the table. To slaughter the only cow we had left and that fed us milk. It was tough but we had no other choice.

“We sacrificed her to cling to life hoping for a better tomorrow. The next day at around midday, still faced with the same predicaments, something bewildering happened. The scorching rays of the sun could be felt less and less. A thick blanket of dark clouds painted the sky. The rumbles busted so loud the deaf would hear.

“The trees were also dancing intensely swinging metrically because of the mammoth wind blowing across. Soon enough, the heavens responded to our cries, with a cry of its own. Drop after drop, the thirst was quenched. Rivers begun to swell up ending a reign of disaster. The end of our race as we saw it was averted.

“Not only that, but, according to the gods signifying a new era. A new beginning for this land. Like fresh seed blossoming in a fertile land, you were. Your destiny revealed majestically. As the rain meant to end the long lasted drought, you were meant to end a lifetime of misguided truths. A messenger of the gods you were.

“A messenger of a better tomorrow. Moses of this era. A deliverer of the people from the cacophony of misguided believes. Truth I tell you my dear, yours is a mission of valor. To teach you shall, to guide you have been chosen. Surprised you are, trust me I once was but, not anymore. Through the oracle, I learnt of your true destiny.

“As he said you would experience, someone did try to woo you. Listen my child, as your mother and a senior who has seen the results of our beliefs, embrace your destiny. The people need the awakening. It’s time to fight this ‘Pharaoh’ and lead us all to ‘Canaan’, our Promised Land,” her mother narrated.

“And who is this oracle you reference if I may ask mother?” Peninah asked.

“The oracle too my child is a messenger of the gods.”

In surprise and wonder, “Why then did they need another if he already exists?” she asked.

“Question not your role in all this my dear daughter. The oracle sees it all but cannot act upon the visions. Yours is responsibility, through you, people are meant to be enlightened.”

“I find this hard to believe. My birth just happened to coincide with the rains falling. There is nothing so special about that. Furthermore, I was not the only one born of this day unless I was. Was I?”

“No child. Many were but how then would I have known of the mystery man you talk about my daughter? I believe you shall arrive to the truth one way or the other. But, out of curiosity, do you not believe what I say?”

“Of course not mother, I do believe every word. It is just that, what you speak of is in the realms of humanly impossible. I am just yours and dad’s child. A normal child like the rest born on that remarkable day. Perhaps, the oracle is a wizard of treachery. One who fabricated this story to you engineered just to make me, being your only daughter, an outcast in the society.”

“And why do you think that’s the case Peninah?”

“It’s just a normal simple thought mother. Perhaps to teach you a lesson. A lifelong grunge possibly from your paths crossing at some point in life and the outcome ruled to his favor,” Peninah said.

“I assure you it’s nothing like that my daughter. He is here for the right reasons. We trust his messages just as we trust in the gods.”

 “What about the taboo, will I not be punished for this? The laws of the land are king and have not changed for years as my memory serves me. How can this be? Is there no other way?” She asked relentlessly.

“The Oracle told us not to worry about the taboo and to tell you the same thing. He said we should let the gods know what to do about it.” 

“And I am supposed to just heed to your word and just sit for the gods to know what to do? There must be something better! It’s not that I don’t believe in the gods but, those upholding this law.” 

“Actually my daughter, he told us to let you go to him for more answers. He surely knew you will be confused by all this information.” Peninah’s mother said.

“Who wouldn’t and… thank you for letting me know that. I am heading there right now! He owes me an explanation to all this…prophecy…thing!” Peninah said as she walked out to her room.

“Have faith in the gods my daughter and fear not your future. All shall be well.” 

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