Yaya Loves Me - One

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 I was a palace maid. I did not know how I got to be a slave in Alontan village but I was sure I was a captive. 

All the other maids envied me because of my beauty. The three princesses hated me. But with all my beauty, no man ever wooed me. I thought I was not lovable. I had no reason to be happy, so I wetted my bed with tears everyday. 


But one sunny day, I was on my way from the stream alone since I was isolated from others when Yaya suddenly jumped into my way from the bush. I was so frightened that I took a quick step backwards and in doing so, made a heavy splash of water from my pot on him. 

"Oh sorry," I said, realizing that it was him. 

He tittered. "I deserve it, my pretty."

Yaya was one of the king's guards. A handsome, brawny and dark man. He asked to help me with the pot of water. 

"Don't bother.  What will you say if you're caught by one of your friends?" I asked.

"That will be no problem. What I am leery of is one of your likes seeing me," he said. "Men will not snitch. It is you girls that can do that."

I chortled. "Where are you going to, Yaya?"

"I came here to talk to you," he said and paused in his tracks.

I paused too, readjusting the waterpot on my head. "Talk to me?"

"I love you," he said.

It came as a shock. "You... you... love... love me?" I stuttered.

He nodded. "Yes, and I am sure no man can love you as I do."

I smiled shyly. "Thank you, Yaya."

"Let us meet very early tomorrow at the market square, I need to show you how much I love you," he said. 

"Okay," I said.

He held my hands, looking straight into my eyes. I could see nothing but love. "Should I be expecting you at dawn tomorrow?" He asked.

I nodded affirmatively and watched as he hurried away towards the stream. 

I was so happy! ‘I am loved? Yaya loves me!’

I was sure the other maids in the palace noticed my change of mood that day because they all kept stealing glances at me. 

Yaya loves me! So I am loveable? I crooned all day. Doing my work with so much vigour. 

I slept early that night, having no reason to cry that night and I woke up very early the next day. I took a thorough bath, not wanting to irritate my Yaya who was always neat with odour. 


I got to the market square and waited for my Yaya. 

"Yaya?"

I was surprised at how he arrived. He appeared like someone who is absconding. He got to me, dropped the bags he was carrying and gave me a very warm embrace with his lips almost meeting mine. I felt my sense thaw like ice. I embraced him too. 

"We need to escape before it is light," he said as we disengaged from the embrace. 

I became befuddled. "Escape? Why? To where?"

He looked sober as always. "Ewatomi," he called.

I looked behind, thinking he saw someone. 

"I called you," he said.

"Me?" I asked.

"Yes."

I chuckled. "Who is Ewatomi? Have you quickly forgotten my name?"

He shook his head in objection. "No. Weren't you named Asake?"

"You remember? So why did you call me Ewatomi?" I asked.

"Because that is what our parents named you," he said.

I was more confused. "You and whose parents?"

"Ewa, I am Jide, your blood brother. We were captured from Jagun, our fatherland," he said.

It was a big surprise for me, really hard to believe. "My Yaya is my brother?" I thought.

"Look at this," he said.

He pulled up his white top a bit, showing me the mark below his navel. It is the same mark I have on the same spot. Then I believed him. 

"Let us go. I'll tell you more when we are out of Alontan," he said 

I followed him, helping him with one of his bags. I thought I had found love but instead, it was freedom and family.


Back with my parents and Yaya in Jagun, I realized that it was not love that I needed then but those sweet duo called freedom and family. 

Love followed graciously.


The Second Episode >>>


To be continued...

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