Seun and Ubong had been avoiding capture for days. He was surprised at the strength of his new companion. She seemed to have more vigor than he did. And she was deadly with the bow and arrow. They had run into some scouts but she was the quintessential hunter, noticing the target first and shooting them down from cover.
The only peculiar thing about her was her fluctuating energy levels at night but Seun attributed it to the light show when they met.
Seun was thankful to have such a partner on such a dangerous mission like this. They had been fortunate to only have encountered regular soldiers so they quickly distanced themselves from the site of the battle and were even catching up with the hope for their escape.
Seun was surprised at how exact his pre-cognition was getting, he suspected it was because of his failing that resulted in Lola’s death. He had been exerting a lot more energy on the ability to aid in his escape but more importantly his revenge.
Seun’s reminiscing almost distracted him from a growing sense or better stated an itch in the back of his head that suggested they were heading for a trap. He couldn’t sense more despite all his effort which just indicated they were definitely professionals and there was something weird about the potential threat.
Seun signalled to Ubong to stop while he put more soul energy in feeling his predicament. Suddenly he felt danger quickly come from both sides trying to surround them. He now had to make a split second decision and was bitter his pre-cog was giving no assurances. Just when he was about to prepare them for a last stand, a light bulb light went off in his head and seemed to shine like a lighthouse 30 degrees to their left.
Seun knew this was their only hope even though he was not clear what it was; so he abandon all their supplies and charged in that direction with only his weapons. Ubong, after so many days together, overcoming close calls, followed swiftly without any objections as she had come to trust Seun instinctively.
When Madam Taiwo saw the hare rabbiting from the carefully constructed cage towards her on the right, she felt that this cat & mouse game with the leaders of the caravan was reaching its climax. Not being one to waste time, she ordered her girls to charge forward. But just as their formation had been disrupted, an unexpected surprise hit them in the rear.
As Seun and Ubong could now clearly make out the group on their left flank that was trying to surround them, they noticed a fast moving team of three people slam into the rear of the disrupted trap group; Seun finally realised it was the classic case of the mantis stalking the cicada, unaware of the oriole behind. He also suspected that his rescuers were the intended target of the trap.
In that short moment of wondering, three people were down. Furthermore, to make matters worse the whole group turned around to the new challenge, opening their backs to Ubong’s deadly arrows.
But the remaining Knights and Warriors channeled their abilities and charged outward from the old woman at the center such that the battle soon dissolved into was a maze of fleeting shadows, clanging weapons and loud grunts.
Seun kept leading Ubong towards the left flank of their attacks to meet up with their reinforcements as soon as possible as Ubong was running out of arrows fast. But when they were just inches away from grouping up, Osaze who was leading the team on the right had charged over and was closing in fast, followed by the rest of his team.
“Go get to the reinforcements and you may find some more arrows.” Seun insisted as he braced himself to face Osaze.
“What about you?” Ubong asked worriedly.
“I would hold him off and buy you enough time to get arrows and rescue me.”
“No! Not again!” Ubong screamed deliriously, no one could tell if she was refering to Chijioke’s sacrifice or her torture.
“Please go, I need you to cover me with your arrows…”
Ubong gathered her resolve and weaved her way through the battlefield keeping her eyes open for a quiver of arrows on the ground while still making her way towards the reinforcements. The second group arrived while Ubong was still looking for arrows and backing their approach. She had almost reached the cover of the caravan’s members who had ambushed their attackers and broken the trap, when she was viciously slashed on her defenseless back.
However, her attacker did not stop to confirm the kill, which allowed Ubong spring up behind him and bury her knife in his neck before he could run towards one of the caravan guards that was hanging by a thread.
Ignoring the look on the dying man’s face, Ubong noticed that he was with a crossbow, so in her desperation, she quickly used the crossbow bolts as arrows to rescue the struggling caravan guard even though the bolts were too short to bring to full draw and weighed more. She turned to check on Seun’s condition and saw his shield was almost all gone.
As she focused on the expanding battle scene she noticed her side was about to be run over. She channeled light essence into her eyes, concentrated the essence, before spreading it all over her body, then rushed into the heart of the battle. On her approach, all the combatants felt the touch of death when she looked at them. What happened next was a barrage and blood bath. Crossbow bolts were flying out from point blank range, faster than hand movement.
All Ubong was thinking was that she would not lose Seun like she lost Chijioke. Therefore, she was focused solely on the kill and ignored her defence. This opened her to many attacks but the opponents could only succumb to despair as the watched the wounds close back up with a warm light.
Although, she did not succeed in killing Osaze, she broke the enemy who choose to retreat. However, her group was equally to battered up to chase. As, Ubong began to calm down, she turned to look at Seun’s condition with tears entering her eyes.