I am Ijemma Utaka, the princess of
Udala kingdom. My father, the warrior king, was one who never let me into battle, even though he had led so many in his time. To him, women had no place in the society, and were to serve the men, granting them their every desire. I hated that life, and despised the way he saw us. How can we be known if we’re not allowed to be heard? I would ask. But I had no one to answer my question.
Queen Mother would say, “Do not trouble your father, Princess. Do as he says—”
And I’d be left with no option but to return to my resting place. I knew father had a reason. He wanted to protect me but I didn’t need anyone doing that. Especially not him. I couldn’t help but wonder why he couldn’t see it—that I wasn’t the little girl he knew me to be.
“Princess, where are you going?” asked my dearest mother one day.
“T-to the stream.” my shaky response came.
“The stream?” her brows arched up. “Why are the maids not with you?” she asked.
“I do not need them, mother,” I replied. “I can protect myself.” I said to her.
And she shook her head, averting her gaze from me. “Ulomma!”
My trusty maid came running, “My Queen,” she answered and bowed at her feet.
“Please take that and go fetch us some water.” Queen Mother said to her.
I went back inside, hoping to fall asleep, as chants of war jerked me up from where I laid.
“What is this?” I panted and listened, a piercing cry getting to me. “Mother—” I recognized, hurrying to where my bow and arrows laid hidden.
I picked it up and rushed out of the hut, a blanket of smoke welcoming me as I tried to push through. I was eager to know where my mother and father were, as I caught sight of my mother sprawled on the floor.
“Mother!” I cried in pain, rushing towards her.
“Ijemma. Ijemma—” she could only say as blood gushed out of her mouth.
“No! I’m here, mother. Do not die on me. Do not die on me, mother!” I held her firmly, not able to hold back my tears.
Father was no where to be found, and no one was paying attention to us. I watched as my mother drew her last breath in my arms—and then I knew I was never going to be the same again.
♡ ♡ ♡
Just checking if I’ve still got the writing spirit. So sorry it isn’t long. These days I can’t tell why I can’t write 1K plus words without getting tired. Some say it’s school stress, but all I can say is that I need the ideas flowing like they were before. And I’m really looking forward to sharing my new story ideas with you guys. “His Son” still hasn’t ended, so I hope you stay glued to your seat and don’t go anywhere (whew)