We stared down at them from a cliff.
Even from this distance, the bass thump still reverberated the ground beneath us. Elderbrother looked heavily troubled at the crowd he was seeing below. They trooped in in drones. One could hear the trepidation in their laughing voices, one could see it in their gait. Yet they moved on. Into the lion’s den—literally. Some of the Bloodeaters, all scantily dressed, stood by the entrance, waving the crowd in. You would think the sight of those would have scared some people off… but curiosity is human’s biggest weakness. Actually, lust is the biggest weakness, curiosity comes next. And this party incited both curiosity and lust to an astounding pedigree.
Elderbrother pursed his lips and went through his usual routine check-up of his ammunitions. One would think he was going on a hunt. He didn’t notice that no one else even touched their weapons. Chidi’s eyes were transfixed on the entrance. It was night but I could have sworn he was salivating. He had never seen so many scandalously dressed females together in his life. Oke was bobbing his head rhythmically to the distant tune. That one, I was sure, would disappear and join the party the moment we set foot down.
“Oke, you were right. We need to be here to protect these our people,” Elderbrother said. Sometimes, his parochial mindset made him so blindly naïve to the obvious. Okeke didn’t give a rat’s ass about protecting anyone today. Everyone had heard tales about Bloodeater parties. There was absolutely no youth who hadn’t secretly fantasized about it. We hunters had seen a few from afar and that had helped alleviate our imaginations. So, when the Bloodeaters declared an open party to celebrate the unification, we all wanted to be there. Of course, Elderbrother would have heard nothing of it. We hunters were eternal enemies to them in his eyes. Oke had come to our rescue and pointed out that we hunters needed to be there to protect the unprotected civilians that would be in attendance.
“Civilians wouldn’t attend a bloodeater party,” Elderbrother had argued. “They know how dangerous it can be.” How naïve he truly was!
“Let’s go,” he said as he stuffed his double-barrel gun into his bag. “Make sure you keep your bag with you at all times. Be alert!”
I nodded, Chidi I think nodded. Oke, well, he was already nodding to the beat so I might as well say he nodded too.
We trudged to the entrance. The moment our presence was noticed on the walkway, the tension that broke out was almost physically visible. Civilians not knowing what to expect scrambled out of our path or hurried in. What did that say about us that the people we were allegedly protecting were more frightened by us than by the people we were supposed to protect them from? Some bloodeaters stared menacingly at us, even some heavily sexily dressed females among them. That was sad, the females that is.
Mustafa was at the door, waiting for us.
“Drop your bags and weapons here, then you can go inside,” he announced. His eyes trained on Elderbrother who stared back with equal measure of malevolence.
“God punish devil!” swore Elderbrother. “We are not dropping anything.”
We had already discussed these with the bloodeaters who had brought the invitation. I had calmly pointed out to them that they were already armed by nature and it was only fair that we too armed ourselves, for equity sake. We had reached a consensus on that point. But Mustafa was as big a loaf as Elderbrother and they both were openly hostile to the unification idea in general.
Mustafa grinned at Elderbrother, a humourless, ugly grin that only helped in showing his scissor sharp incisor fangs.
“You think your guns would make a difference? How fast do you think you can reach them before I rip out your head?”
“Try and see,” Elderbrother replied, and he certainly looked like he hoped Mustafa would make a move. “You think I need guns to deal with you?” Elderbrother bragged.
Oh, Elderbrother most certainly did, I assure you. I was one of the oh so very few people to have battled a bloodeater without arms and lives. I was extremely lucky to have escaped alive.
Mustafa’s eyes narrowed at the challenge like though he wasn’t the one who initiated it in the first place. Around me, my brothers had snapped from their reveries with the threat of a battle eminent. We had all dropped one hand to our bags, readying for an easy gun-reach.
“I’m faster than you,” Mustafa growled.
Elderbrother shrugged. “So you say.”
“I’m stronger than you,” Mustafa growled.
“So you say.”
They both paused, and believe you me, that pause was one of the scariest moments in my life. Then the Princess appeared out of nowhere and was standing between them, grinning as always, that amiable grin of hers that was worlds apart from the grin Mustafa had exhibited earlier.
“Guys, guys, guys,” she sang, “What’s the hold up?”
Chidi was ogling at her and I couldn’t really blame him. She wasn’t skimpily dressed like the others, her flowing white dress covering her entire body, yet, the way it clung to her seemed to draw more attention at what could not be seen. Curiosity. Lust.
“Please, come on in,” she waved us in. I think she experimented with the idea of holding Elderbrother’s arm but the hard-lined jaw discouraged her. I think Oke experimented with the idea of holding her waist, but Mustafa’s eyes discouraged him.
Say one thing about bloodeaters, say they know how to party!
It was a galor of debauchery! The lights were dim and flashing and it was so very hard to differentiate bloodeaters from normal folk. Almost everyone seemed happy, happy or crazy. There were so many females, all dressed in almost nothing, it was mouth-watering. I could see some members from other hunter packs hanging around corners, looking desperately as they resisted the urge to join in. They were quite scanty, meaning that the majority had fallen for the temptation. Drinks in cups were everywhere, were passing around from God knows where. One cup reached where we were and I grabbed it ahead of Oke’s outstretched hand. One sniff was enough to inform me, from my years of smell cultivation, that bloodeater’s blood, popularly known as blu-blood, had been dropped into the drink. Blu-blood was a powerful substance taken by so many people. It enhanced all senses, including the horny ones, and pushed away inhibitions. A few drops in a cup was enough to make anyone active. A few cups with a few drops was enough to turn up a party to a crazy level.
“Blu-blood,” I told Oke. He nodded, snatched the cup from me and downed it in one gulp. Elderbrother had ordered us to stay on guard, but the moment the Princess took him away to the high table, Oke and Chidi dived into the party proper.
“Stay close!” I called to them. Oke gave me a peace sign. I kind of trusted him. He was all fun and playing and flexing and all that but when shit hit the fans, he was always by your side, covering your flank. He was eager for any activity, play or fight regardless.
I turned in time to see a bloodeater, an absolute stud to be honest leading Jane, my supposed lover, and some other girls to an inner room. She actually turned, caught my eye, and with a laugh waved at me.
Ah! The effects of BluBlood.
Hours later and I could no longer ignore the resounding premonition I had of imminent danger. I had not seen any of my brothers in over two hours, and I had been walking around constantly. I became panicky all of a sudden. I started walking around faster till I came across Stella, a friend of Jane’s. She was absolutely high but I still had to ask.
“Where’s everybody? Where’s Jane… infact forget Jane, have you seen Oke or Chidi?”
She giggled and pointed to a door. I seriously doubted she even heard my question, but I went in that direction regardless.
What was happening inside, in the plainest of terms, was an orgy. There were naked people everywhere having sex. Groaning, moaning. I saw a fellow hunter grinding hard to the back of a sumptuous bloodeater female. He looked absolutely ecstatic. He was groaning, she was moaning. Wait, actually I think he was the one moaning and she groaning. I was immediately hit by an overwhelming desire to join in. I had never had a bloodeater before, and stories I had heard told me it was an experience to look forward to.
I somehow managed to stumble out. Tonight needed someone sane to watch out for danger. I made my way into the dance floor proper, trying vainly to search for my brothers. Something was not right. Bodies pressed on me, bodies and body parts that accentuated that lustful desire.
Then the light dimmed even more and the throng of bodies became impregnable. I couldn’t move backward or forward. The only movement I could make was dance. And I would have…
But I stared up, directed by intuition perhaps, and saw Elderbrother sitting calmly on a chair at the platform. But I had lived with Elderbrother all my life, and even from that distance, even with the poor lighting, I could tell something was wrong. He wasn’t moving. He was either dead or unconscious.
I started screaming but what a waste that was. The music was stupendously high and actually almost everybody on the dance floor was screaming. I turned around, looking for a way out.
Then someone took my bag off my shoulder.
I whipped around but all around me were dancing people, none of them paying me any mind. I stared to the ground, but it was bare. But not as bare as I felt in a den of bloodeaters without my guns.
Then the lights went completely off.