Planet SKULL, no one is talking about it. Scientists do not know it all, I am thankful I always held that opinion. The internet is not omniscient after all – it either omitted the inclusion of SKULL’s history, or just was not born before or during 500BC. SKULL was my first world; but unlike the BIG BANG theory, we literally dropped from the planet’s ball socket landing with our rib cage. Broken bones, scattered all over the hard terra firma, were fixed by RICHL (the expert). Healing did not start from Earth, SKULL had had the idea and expertise all along – was it politics, sports, education, sex clubs, pools, or full blooded scrimmage? It all began in SKULL (no knuckles to Earth).

RICHL knew it all. He taught us everything – he did not teach us how to roll in the hay though (he was very religious). His specialty was in teaching history. According to him, we were not skeletons but COLD BONES who were designed to live forever; we were not the first set of COLD BONES as the likes of ZACH (the torch), PORIN (the seer), ALIZDA (the shadow), and many other ancestors put their lives at the subterranean level of the crux that the generation 500BC breathe the air of life. How fascinating indeed. I just was not buying the history as it appeared to be an apologue or random saga told to make our dreams sweet, or to leave us in a tizzy. I had questions to ask but was considering leaving them for another night tale, only for RICHL to injure and entirely maim my comprehension with his last words: VASTA VAVI VIKO VIEN VIRA (we are BONES without feelings). There was an inward energy cooking up inside me, I had to disagree with my rabbi. I asked him why the ancestors died if indeed they were immortals; I asked him why he said we had no sense of feeling. He kept mute and this got me highly disgruntled and dissatisfied for I expected a hot boiling verbal fight, a bicker, or wrangling. My point had to be sunshiny that night, so I looked at one of the male student (not as tall as myself), reached for his skull, and left him with a damaging blow. He cried, he felt it, and so I went to my tent. I could not sleep – it was remote from our culture –, did I really have to go physical to prove a point? My emotions were soared, and had pungent compunction hit its brim; I wept. ZALIM, my friend, entered my tent and I was surprised that his countenance evinced quiescence, blue blood, and a heart at ease with understanding; when it was clear that I bungled the sweetened ancestry exegesis RICHL was unwrapping.

“VI VAE VAZ (I see your point)”, said ZALIM. He however did not come to appreciate my growing spirit of abolition, but to make me see the scoop behind RICHL’s tale. He went on pronto, saying VI VON VO’IL RICHL VOSINTA (but I seem to get RICHL’s reason for cleaving to that position). ZALIM knew my intentions right from the constriction of my knuckles, even to the point of nearly puncturing the skull of a young COLD BONE; he knew I wanted everyone to kiss RICHL’s tales goodnight as tears symbolize active feelings – he was not a crystal ball gazer, but due to his ever growing wits, I considered him pansophical. He was exposing me to the subtle gospel RICHL conveyed, and I was wowed to hear that another clan existed on SKULL known as the BONE COLLECTORS. 

They were the enemies of my clan who fought tirelessly to bring our clan under their fleshy feet. ZALIM was telling me how they dismembered the skulls of our age past activists in a bid to end our subsistence; he was telling me about the ruler of that clan, a very powerful hybrid called ADAM (the first) and his demonic mistress, TAMAR (the reaper). The belief was that they would live forever as it was impossible for our ancestors to kill them during the historic battle. ADAM was described by ZALIM to possess an uncomely short tail above his buttocks, ADAM was considered “hybrid” because he could change into a cold bone and, there and then, become a fleshy violent brute. ADAM’s signature move was putting 3 bullets in our skull, that of TAMAR was to use a “zachun” (legendary sword) and a black net to remove skulls and dump in her net accordingly; the rest of the clan were normal fleshy mortal servants who did their bidding both in the battle ground and the domestics. VUNVU VIT VASTA VOPI? (Wonder how we got the day and night?), he asked me. How unconcerned I had been; it dawned on me hastily that I really had not been asking myself weighty puzzles. VE (no), came my honest reply. Acting without awe or bewilderment, he continued in his revelation. He told me how ZACH (the torch) brought daylight to our clan; it was believed that he exchanged his visible existence here on SKULL that we may have the feel of the two periods. ZACH was our god. It was time for a goodnight winkle, so ZALIM said, RI DASHU VIUY VEGAN VIRA RICHL? VIOKI VAGHU VADS CEQ RON VAPOR (you know why RICHL said zero feelings, it is just to make us strong and great warriors). He left.

The gift from the gods

Plain talk, gospel, and a reason to get ready to accept that if my clan will survive, then I had a strong role to play. The inside track ZALIM averted my mind to, was what triggered my knee bone to touch the ground and vow before my fellows, the zeal to serve as a warrior of faith, shield, and invalidation. I watched the city, alongside warriors who took the sacral oath. We lynched all bone collectors who tried to cut into our terrain; we did this rather joylessly with no fear of ADAM’s possible reaction or the fear of death. I grew in courage, stiffness, and strength; it was not long before I was made the head of the watchmen. Many heads witnessed the cry of my blade, I was the conqueror of the East (the only part we raided and lost not); the black cloak was my reward – it symbolized THE CHOSEN ONE. The white mask was a gift from ZACH.

“ROGIO VOGO”, indeed emotions were malapropos for a warrior. It was bait in the hands of resigned and highly composed villains who struck only when your weakness is your emotional vulnerability. I had a test to pass one reckoning day; it was one that fate had brought to my face. I saw specie distinct from my framework, she was right there at the border, of very close resemblance to the BONE COLLECTORS. I approached this lassie, she was in outright fear; it just had to be because of my white mask (that was my sincere thought), so I took it off. We clearly could not communicate as she was not a COLD BONE. 

RICHL was about the best option I got, so I covered her with my cloak so that the COLD BONES would not have her for dinner – not like we fed on flesh or beef, we were clearly bone chewers. She was now in the hands of RICHL and I must say that I was extremely baffled how they got to relate altogether. She was going to be safe in the hands of RICHL – I was all confident about it.

My adorable lassie had grown into a treasure. Did she feed on bones? She probably did. After all, where would RICHL get livestock to feed her? But then, RICHL is not really a COLD BONE, he is way taller, and not bony a figure. Well there was no time to give such reflection a second thought, in fact, there was no point finding such answers (so I thought). She had learnt our language, VINTORA, and was named that. How sweet it was! We became love birds, the COLD BONES called her goddess upon accepting her stay. She really was warm, we were direct contrasts hence the more glorious. She was all I could think of, she was the reason why I cracked skulls of villains hurriedly in a bid to meeting her in the cold breezy night; I had found true love, I had found immortality. Serial killing was going on every hour. There had to be an intruder behind this mess. Going to ZACH for guidance was a long shot; I knew how splenetic and disappointed he was the moment I let my emotions crash upon the fealty I surrendered my entirety to – I deserved his unbridled rash comeuppance.” RICHL VOLO VUI (RICHL betrayed us)”, that seemed to be the only thing ingeminated by ZALIM. RICHL was never a COLD BONE, he fathered us for evil intentions, he wanted to know our weaknesses so that the day he ambushes us, there would be a total wipe out of my race. He had informed ADAM and his mistress to come to our clan as we were now vulnerable. Why am I just getting the picture now? Oh how cataclysmic had it already become?? RICHL was no more, where did he go?

Sobbing after suffering disjointedness in my skeletal frame, I limped to a tree. Indeed they were strangers to death. ADAM’s mistress was such a great wrestler, and a skull collecting psychopath. “WELL AYU PORINK, I GORINT YORU GYURL FRIEND”. What could this hard-featured witch want? And what did she just say?? From my studies, the closest language was English; she had to be manhandling my treasure: VIOPO RIO ESK (I must fight this love intruder). A vociferous voice was instructing me now, I felt empowered; it had to be ZACH. I came out with my bones all imperforate and intact, but was quickly pained when I saw my belle bleeding to death. ADAM’s reaper, TAMAR, was no more. I rushed towards my love bird, but I was not RICHL – I was not versed in thaumaturgy. I was broken in pieces; I had to make a point. ADAM!!!!! 

ADAM walked majestically towards me. He assumed me EASY MEAT. If only he knew the enigma and untold signs my sword possessed. He brought out his revolver and was clearly set to close the chapter; he really should not have bothered starting a conversation. This is the reason… a conversation could mar your chances of leaving the arena alive, a conversation could make your opponent study the possible fragility, feebleness, or inconstancy in the handling of your object of harm in a split second, and a conversation see your head decollated from its other sober members.

 ADAM had his head chopped off his neck; I swung like in a golf club, and my accuracy was far better than Tiger Woods. VATOP VABE RUYI VES (so he was it not immortal), I said in slight marvel. VUHD VEW VAQI (what sort of blood is this?), I got grossed out. His flesh gave way for a royal skull (so much to meet my eyes).

ZALIM survived. It was not shocking that it was only both of us. In fact, how he survived was even a question for another day. I told ZALIM about the bad news, and he gave me a spell book which would make my mistress wake up in my arms in a far away land. We kept her underneath for sixty days, she had become acidic; we were buried together so as to wake up together somewhere far, and in flesh and blood. This was real love, Romeo and Juliet could not even dream this far.

I am up from six feet; oh I knew what hell was. All I could see were Black people all around me. This had got to be Africa. I was completely negro, I saw young children, I saw the busy roads… where is my uhmm.. I could not remember her name. I could not remember my language. I was doomed, so doomed. I sought the best aid from people, but they were speaking dialects unknown to me. I tell a boy to help me find my way back to SKULL, he was confused – he was supposed to. 

I resorted to tears and was about starting a race to wherever; he grabbed me firmly, cried with me and said: BINU O YOO LAIPE WA (sorry she will soon come). I feel I heard some familiar tongue from his mouth, and I ask him quickly IBI TI EMI I (where am I?)…Lagos state was the reply, I am now a Nigerian and a Yoruba boy. I really hope I find my girl. I really long to see ZALIM, he probably could help me from this mess. TAMAR and RICHL escaped my blade, but then I have their names forgotten – they must be pleased. 

True love used to live here (my heart) before

                    

                                                         

                          OKOCHA OBED

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