Posted in eNovel: SACRIPRICE | Kayode & Tola Olla

SACRIPRICE WebNovel: Chapter 26

THE miraculous escape Jakan had always secretly desired was finally here. But now that it was time, the chief priest had a mixed feeling about it.

Jakan had always wished the burden of priesthood could somehow be rolled off his heavy shoulders. He’d wished to be free from sacrificing several animals all his life.

And though Jakan knew he’d signed up both his life and his generation’s for this position and duty, the elderly priest still dearly hoped that he could someday escape the responsibility.

Or at the very least, his own offspring could be excused from the great burden.

Yet the giant escape Jakan needed was ready. With his sons’ recent advice, all that the old man had to do to set his family free was to simply transfer the spiritual mantle to another lineage in the clan.

But then, just when everything was all set and ready, old Jakan felt hesitant. The reverent office and title of the chief priest was leaving his own family overnight. Like it never meant a thing.

And this hit the old man hard. Like an angry buffalo running him through.


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Jakan’s feet dragged into a sudden halt in the moment, as he trudged down the pathway leading to his clan’s central meeting house.

Right then, the twilight sun in the yonder western sky stood still, too, and refused to set.

Jakan’s mind reminisced over his entire work life. But it wasn’t the blood of the horses he’d murdered that filled his memory. It was the honour and prestige that came with his office.

Being among the dignitaries of the Jaiye nation. Being the spiritual leader of the great empire. And being the only man who always heard the will of the Heavens in the entire kingdom.

Everything came back dawning on the old priest.

Jakan couldn’t help but agree that the office of the chief priest wasn’t as ordinary as he’d always thought it was.

Throughout his entire service, the old man had focused on the burdens of his office rather than on its essence.

Jakan felt sorry and terrible. The old priest admitted he’d spent ages in the spiritual office but hardly deserved commendation from the High Heavens. For his spirit hadn’t being in the work.

‘No wonder,’ Jakan moaned in a quiet, rueful murmur. ‘No wonder I have the glories of being the chief priest, but the Heavens have denied me a fulfilling life. No wonder I have it all but still feel I lack something,’ he lamented.


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But now that the ageing man was at last seeing things from the right perspective, he wished to see it through to the end.

He had just realised that his attitude to his spiritual office was possibly the reason why his sons weren’t interested in succeeding him.

‘Fote and Firi have watched me all their lives,’ he muttered to himself where he stood. ‘They’ve despised what I despised and liked only what I liked. No wonder they chose my alternative dreams as their own carriers,’ he reasoned.

The chief priest decided to turn a new leaf at that old age.

He turned around immediately and set his feet back home. Eastwards, where the sun had set out at dawn.

And just then, a memory of the green, juvenile days rolled back into the old man’s mind that quiet dusk as he strode back home.

◊◊◊

It was about fifty seasons ago. And young Ragun, along with a host of Jaiye warriors, had just arrived from a battle.

In those days, the young and fearless Ragun had risen from being a commander of a battalion to becoming the war chief and general. Upon the sudden death of his father Arogun, the immediate past war chief.

Ragun the young war chief led a fight against a little nation in that region. The nation had attempted to claim one of Jaiye’s border districts. And so, the Jaiye army were sent to the borders to crush the tiny thing.

And indeed the little nation was utterly crushed. Upon Ragun’s valiant return.

The ruling king of Jaiye, along with his other nobles, came out to welcome the Ragun-led army.

At that time, young Jakan had just been ordained as the chief priest of Jaiye in his father’s stead. Upon the latter’s untimely death.

Being only a youngster whose passion was merely reading and writing, Jakan was too soon introduced to the world of bloodshed that day.

Young Jakan had dressed himself in a delicately neat attire to welcome the warriors of Jaiye, too.

But when the young, refined civilian saw Ragun, with human blood splattered all over his body… And when he saw the heavy sword in Ragun’s hand still dripping with the crimson, Jakan’s eyeballs could only bulge out.


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Jakan could tell that the young war general was about three or four seasons younger than him. And the innocent chief priest shuddered where he stood.

Young Jakan couldn’t believe his eyes. He’d only witnessed the killing of horses by his father. He’d never seen a human blood drip as if it was mere ink on a writing quill.

And as though that wasn’t enough, Ragun the young warrior went ahead to present the captured commander of the enemy troupe to everyone. And right before everyone standing, he sliced the throat of his captive.

In that moment, a splash of blood covered the face of the young Jaiye hero.

Jakan was speechless.

It wasn’t too long that Jakan found an opportunity to have a brief talk with the young, brave colleague. But it was Ragun who sought him first.

Amid the victory celebrations, Ragun walked up to the newly ordained priest.

‘You must be the new priest?’ asked Ragun. ‘I couldn’t make your ordination since I was on the battle front. The Heavens be praised for the victory!’

‘Yes,’ replied Jakan. ‘Congratulations on this victory. I’ve heard so much about you,’ he added.

Ragun nodded in acknowledgement, a light smile appearing on his face. He turned to walk away. And just then, a question popped up from Jakan’s lips.

‘How do you do it? How do you do it and still sleep at night?’

The war chief turned back, bewildered by the question. He was sure the question was for him. ‘How do I do what?’ he queried.

Jakan pressed on. ‘How do you kill a man? Do you get to sleep at night?’


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Ragun let out a quiet breath. He knew what Jakan meant. It was the first time someone asked about his sleep. He could see the sincere concern on Jakan’s face.

Ragun decided to be bare.

‘On my first battle,’ began the young warrior, ‘I saw the enemy as humans so I couldn’t swing my sword. But then, the enemy killed my closest colleague right before my eyes. I tell you, I couldn’t bear it.’

Ragun paused a moment. And there was fire in his voice when he resumed in a bit.

‘I didn’t know where that madness came from all of a sudden. I began to swing my sword. And before I know it, many bodies were lying on the ground. My sword has killed so many.

‘Just then, it dawned on me that I had killed men in a fit of rage. I regretted and thought I had sinned against the Heavens.

‘I ran back to my father who was watching the battle on his horse and commanding the entire army. I shouted, “Fa-ther!” But before I could tell him what happened, he shouted down at me.

‘“Ragun, if one more of the men die, this will be the last time you will ever call me Father. If one more of my warrior fall on your side, the blood of slain will be on you!”

‘That was what my late father said. And that was what changed me.’

Ragun paused for breath, and Jakan swallowed quietly.

‘I realised my wrong,’ continued Ragun. ‘I shouldn’t have waited until the enemy attacked before I swing my sword. I shouldn’t have waited to fight for revenge. I should have rather fought to protect my people.’

Jakan heaved a quiet sigh.

Ragun went on. ‘When I sleep, I don’t see faces of the slain. What I see is the faces of our fallen warriors who I couldn’t protect.’

He looked Jakan in the face. ‘So, our new chief priest,’ he said to him. ‘I don’t slay for the fun of it. I think of what will happen if I’m not the first to draw my sword to kill.’


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Jakan breathed a heavy sigh as he pondered.

What will happen if I, too, fear to slaughter those many horses at the altar of sacrifice? Our land will be plagued with many disasters.

◊◊◊

When Jakan had the conversation with Ragun about fifty seasons back, he understood the essence of his duty and had held on to the wisdom in Ragun’s motivation.

But then, as the two incompatible men drifted apart as the seasons rolled by, the wisdom in Ragun’s story drifted away out of the chief priest’s mind.

Until Jakan had completely forgotten the essence of his work. And till his service became both void and empty.

But now that Jakan remembered what he’d long forgotten, the old man became determined to give all it would take to turn his life around.

And alongside his transformation, the chief priest decided to disciple his oldest grandson and Fote’s firstborn… Juwon.

Jakan would spend the rest of his life mending the past for the future.

He would live the rest of his days showing his grandson the way of the Heavens.


Click HERE to See Other Chapters of the Free Suspense WebNovel Sacriprice


© 2020 by Kayode & Tola Olla

Author:

A cute duo of God inspired novelists and with other lives as lecturer and as businesswoman || Email: contact@ktolla.com

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