Photo: by [Lengaicamp]
Crawling night upon nights of hope and dreams, there came the birth of a boy named Ziog in the land of Tulundu . The king, king Addar had been blessed again by oriji the gods of the land.
Indeed, this was the first time the king would believe that he had truly been blessed by oriji, because, of all his wealth and influence in the land, he had concluded that nothing else would have mattered to him except the need for a son who was going to succeed the throne, which his own ancestors had passed down to him.
However, Ziog was the only legitimate child in the blood line of the dynasty who by tradition would take over the throne before his father, Addar when would join his fathers in the land of the great beyond.
Meanwhile, understanding the extent of rights and privileges enjoyed by the king, his royalty and those whom the king would favour, it was the common knowledge of every dweller of the land, that everyone who was born under any household within the kings’ arm of command must be taught by his or her own parents to respect every content of the (law) royal seal implying by whom should the throne be replaced after a seating king.
But for years, it had seemed to have caused a contradiction or rather an unresolvable quarrel since the discovery of this great land between the king and his brothers over who should rule, because they had argued that a King must let his own brothers succeed him, and not just passing on the throne down to his own children’s children: generation after generation.
In the royal family of King Addar, there were two lineages which made up the royalty of the palace. First, is the family of Addar which had originally been headed by King Atott, who was also the father of Kind Addar. Secondly, the family of Arrat, a brother to king Atott who was never a King till death.
Arratt during his time of life had repulsed taking part in anything considered leadership because he was one who would rather choose to be governed than to be in a position where he could give command. He hated everything having to do with the use of political wit to direct the affairs of the people. And his brother, Addar never liked him for this show of cowardice, that he wondered why would a man be seen to have such fears over directing the people and giving orders.
However, as a result of his power phobia, their father hated him, though, he was the first son; and vowed that Aratt and his generation would never be king but ruled by his own brother, Addar and his own children after him. Because, Atott was in great grief when he spelt out this curse on Aratt, it stood sure upon him: it was when Atott, the King was about to depart from life; and there was a need for someone from his own blood line to replace him because he was the first King in the land, and had made a law, that a King must be replaced by his own son, and not a commoner; nor would his own blood brother be deemed legitimate to ascend his throne.
Unfortunately for Aratt, such law hitherto had remained unfavorable to the descendants of his house. Although, they ghoulishly would crave for power and the throne, yet it all had appeared impossible for them to achieve. And now, after many years of no male child by King Addar, finally the gods had decided to favour him with Ziog, the legitimate heir to the throne by the law of the land.
Now, after many days and nights of life in the land, Ziog had grown into a man while the King, Addar his father was now a bit close to his grave by age. He had fortified Ziog with some (Oriji Obiara egbum gbu onwe ya) magical power of the gods, knowing so much hatred his brother’s sons would unleash upon him once he was gone.
Ziog could now fearless go around the kingdom without the fear of ambush because his father had earlier told him stories of everything about their position of leadership, and why the house of Aratt would never be king even while he was gone, and also after his own generation to come.
The descendants of Aratt had sought many ways by which they could amend the law. They had also on several occasions secretly attempted to kill Ziog, their niece, so as to take over the leadership role for their own household as his own father for years had kept the royal responsibility only for his children.
Ten moons later after his fortifications by the priest of Eru, the gods of the land, his father Addar joined his ancestors. Ziog then was crown King by his elders in council in ceremonial witness of the people of the land. It’s about time to start carrying out his own plans for the kingdom, according to the royal calendar. In his calendar of leadership, it was written that the house of Aratt would be wiped out by his command. That no other household would have to oppose the leadership of the descendants of Addar, which began from him, Ziog.
In no time, as it was command by King Ziog, he successfully killed all the sons of Aratt, and their male children but sparing only their daughters.
A few years later, the gods was angry and there came the death of every female child in the land. And the King was in need of a woman to betroth. Moreover, there was a young girl left in the house of Aratt, Eri , a beautiful but beguiling woman. She was given birth by a descendants of Aratt but had moved to live with a friend in neighbouring village before the death of her entire household by the hand of the King.
Ziog did not know her due to the distant relationship between her family and the king but she knew the King, anyway. After seeing how beautiful she was, the King was endeared to her. She accepted him, and he married her not knowing that the house of Aratt by descendants of his children had come to inherit back the throne.
Some years after her betrothal to Ziog, the King. She bore him two healthy male children. The king was happy, and they began to grow before them. Slevi and Vhom were their names, the first slevi and the second vhom, according to the name chosen for each by their father.
One day, as the king was in high excitement. His wife, Eri told him that she was truly the surviving daughter of Sattie from the descendants of Aratt. The king was enraged and sought to kill her but he could not because her children were already grown. “Oh, Oriji! The king wept, “the gods of our land you have made me and unmade me at the same time.” How much of a loser have I become if after destroying my enemies in the end destroyed myself with the same sword? “Here on the sword’s blade I can see not the blood of my enemies but mine and my father’s”, he murmured deeply within his heart as he dropped down dead immediately.
You can also watch the engaging video version of our short story (Prince Ziog of Tulundu) here, with some good voice over.