ON THE LIONESS TAIL
By Amah’s Heart.
She stir the food up again for the second time with a full smile on her face.
she scoop little into her palm to taste with a wooden spoon.
She nodded happily to herself as she lowered the spoon and covered the pot.
Her stomach growls loudly followed by a movement.
She began to rub her stomach in a very sensitive way.
Just as she was about to turn, a strong arm grabbed her from behind.
She startled at first before relaxing.
“I was wondering where you might be and was told that you are in the kitchen, cooking. Opa you know you shouldn’t be stressing yourself in this condition. Our son needs all the rest he can get right there in the womb and you too…
She smiled sheepishly as her husband lowered his head to her stomach.
She began to tease him.
“You can’t feel anything yet Dre… the baby is still sleeping and doesn’t want any disturbance. Beside we don’t know if is a boy or girl, only God knows. you said that you wanted pottage, I decided to take the honor of preparing it just the way you like it. The maids can’t do it like I will… and is not stress at all. I hate to stay idle and do nothing. I was raised differently… you know.
He didn’t let go of her as he listen to her speak.
“Opa, I hate to say this but I actually enjoy your cooking more than any other person but I don’t want you to go stressing yourself. By the way, the food smell so nice… can I have a taste?
Opa laughed out and just as she was about to turn she heard another tiny voice coming right in.
“And me too Mama…I also want a taste.
Their daughter Maya came to stand beside the Dad.
Opa touched her smiling soft cheeks before going over to the food pot so that she can give them some to taste.
That same night, as they sat around a table eating dinner. Maya who was very inquisitive at just 3years said.
“Mama, father said very soon I will have a baby brother. Is it true? Mama am I going to have a baby brother soon?
Opa looked from her husband to their daughter.
She dropped her spoon tiredly.
“Maya, is only God that knows what baby it will be. It can either be a baby brother or a sister. But anyone that pleased God also please us. Go ahead and finish your meal so that you can go to bed…no more talking.
After they were through for the night, they all retired to bed.
Opa decided to confront her husband
“I don’t understand why you go about telling everyone that I’m carrying a boy…Dre. I did not really care all about that until now. You have also gotten into our daughter’s head with the same idea. This whole thing is no longer funny and I want you to stop.
Dre cleared his throat calmly before saying.
“Don’t say you don’t understand Opa. I’m the only surviving son of my father and heir to the throne of zukumo land. I’m the next chief of our people. My reign as a chief will be cut short without a son to take after me. My father’s brother Mario is eyeing the throne, i see and knows what’s he’s up to. I don’t want the reign to stop in my tenure because no heir to succeed me and the crown will go to my uncle’s house, Mario. I have prayed to the gods to favor me this time since it didn’t work out in our first issue and it was a girl. The kingship will be taking away from my father’s house if I fail to begeth a son. You of all people supposed to understand the fate we are in. Mario asked me the other day… that hope my wife will not be producing another useless egg this time, and I assured him that you are carrying a son for me….
Opa interrupted her husband.
“Wai…wait, you mean he actually refers to your own daughter as useless and you kept your cool and did nothing…all you were after is boasting to his face that I’m carrying a son. What kind of father are you Dre…
Dre gasped out harshly.
Opa, you are deviating from the main point. don’t pay attention to Mario, he thinks women are useless… their only use is childbearing. He wasn’t referring mainly to my daughter… that’s just his generally believe and I can’t start fighting my uncle over what he thinks. The main thing I’m after is having a son and that is why I tell those who cares to listen that my pregnant wife is carrying a heir to the throne. The chieftain will remain in my father’s house because the baby in your womb will make it so.
“What if is…is another girl Dre…what if the…
Dre shut her up.
“Enough of “what ifs” I don’t want to think of it Opa. Is time to start beseeching the gods, ask them to give us a son because that is the only thing that will keep our kingdom running in peace and our family together. A girl cannot wear a crown or knows how to rule a kingdom. women has no place in the throne. A daughter cannot make any difference in the thick soil of Zukumo land neither can a woman’s name be inscribed in the heart of the people as a ruler. You see why your “what if” is not necessary at this time. Opa, I’m going to give the people of Zukumo what they want…. and they want a son…so be it.
Everywhere fell silent, the oil lamp burn quietly, crickets can be heard singing loudly to the quiet yet scary night.
Dre exhale loudly, time went by and he thought Opa was already asleep.
” What exactly do you want Dre?
Dre turned and stare at her with the help of the oil lamp. He wasn’t sure he heard what she said.
“… what I meant is that what do you really want? You planned to give the people of Zukumo their wishes for a son to rule the Land and unit kingdoms alongside you. That is what the people want… which they feel is their right. How about you Dre? What do you truly want…
Dre remained quiet without replying her.
He sat up and watch as the lamp burns.
“Opa, my only wish is to be a good leader and please the people who are my responsibility. Father was a great Chief and has rule this kingdom from strength to strength. I want to pick up from wherever he stops and be a better versions of him. I want to please the people Opa. I don’t want a divided kingdom…I want unity, respect and support from the people of Zukumo. The respect can only come when I have sons… even if is just one son it will equals thousands of daughter to them. Whatever the people want is also my desires… I want a son Opa. It will gladden everybody, make father proud, shut uncle Mario up and it will also gladden me too Opa. End of discussion. please sleep, if you continue to be awake, our son may not get the adequate sleep that is needed for him. Stop worrying over what the gods has already perfected. Goodnight Opa…a good wife should not argue, challenge or question her husband for any reason.
Opa did as she was told and remain quiet.
She shut her eyes and pretend to be asleep. One hand was placed on her protruded belle and her heart was filled with one particular prayer.