SOWE rekuDomboshava had been the pastor’s choice.
He had said that there was power in those mountains; power to unlock God’s favour.
His sermon on God’s favour had been inspiring.
He had said: “God’s favour will give you the job you don’t qualify to have.
“God’s favour will give you the spouse everyone thinks you don’t deserve.
“God’s favour will open doors for you.
“God’s favour will get you the visa to the UK and the US nyore nyore with no questions asked.”
The big woman who had appeared shabby, even in the dark, was trying to get her bearings in order
She was on the edge of panic, not knowing how she had gotten separated from the main flock
She remembered walking away with the flock after the beating of the man who was aspiring to be an opposition Member of Parliament in the up-coming elections
They had nicknamed him ‘Honourable’ and he had liked it, trusting kuti ‘God was in it’.
He had trusted kuti the pastor could not be wrong because the Almighty does not lie.
There are many things the man of God had said ‘se-funny so’ and yet they had come to pass.
He had called the man ‘Honourable’ on their way to the mountain and she, in particular, had surmised kuti it was a prophecy clothed in banter.
She had felt happy for him.
She wanted him to be Member of Parliament
She liked him, but with a mild disappointment that he was married and she knew the spindly wife, quite the opposite of her own ‘dhafu-dhunda’ bearing.
But then, she had thought she knew what African men wanted
She was, herself, a divorced single mother and ‘open for business’.
The cliché often made her smile with mischief.
She knew kuti the head of the church had divorced his old wife and married a ‘yellow-born’ pavana vesangano.
She wondered if chance had thrown the ‘Honourable’ and herself into the same pattern of God’s favour.
What if her secret desire actually turned into some favour of God extra-mural to the favours that had brought them into the mountain to seek?
Something she would defend as ‘God’s working in strange ways’!
She had closed her eyes and hummed Mathias Mhere’s hit gospel piece: “Mwari vakasimudza Hannah iye Peninah aripo!”
And then there had been the problems with the demons.
She wondered what had happened to such a promising dream – a dream with such blessed precedents.
While everyone had taken the whole thing yemadzinza and liberation war spirits with easy facility, she had, herself, a very bad feeling about it.
She had suspected kuti it would not end well and warned everyone not to entertain the demons.
But they had, instead, joked with them and about networks.
Favour yavainge vafambira mugomo pasi tsve-e!
Networking with demons!
And then, literally, half the flock had been possessed.
And now this.
There was a gap in her memory, a time lapse she could not account for; a time lapse from which she had emerged alone, without the others.
She had wanted to holler but had feared giving away her position to the demons.
She had decided to continue blindly walking in the direction she found herself walking, trusting kuti that was the direction she had been moving with the flock when the strange thing had happened to her.
And then she suddenly stopped in her tracks.
When they left after the beating, the sound of the demonic mbira music had been behind them.
Now it was sounding ahead of her.
She thought that she should be walking away from the sound, that she should be hearing the sound behind her and not ahead of her.
She turned and faced the opposite direction and started walking away from the sound of the demonic mbira.
The wooded darkness was spooky; every thicket turning into a ghostly figure waylaying her.
And after what seemed like a long, long time, she thought she heard voices and stepped out.
And in the haste, she tripped over a tree limb that lay across her path in the darkness.
And while she was down, the voices she thought she had heard became clearer.
It was the carefree laughter of women followed by shrill ululation.
And then she heard the sound of mbira again!
And it was coming from ahead of her!
She felt a cold sweat breaking and running down her spine.
And then she sensed something in the undergrowth; something that made her hair stand.
And just a few metres ahead of her, she made out the shadowy figures of women carrying baskets.
There was a long line of them.
And there appeared two men carrying weapons.
And they stopped to talk, letting the long line of women pass.
Her heart pounded in her chest.
The line of women was walking right through the trees without side-stepping them!
What had happened to her dream?
What was happening to her now?
How had the Pastor led them to this without seeing it coming?
How had the beating of the ‘Honourable’ escaped his prophetic sight?
Was it the beginning of something else?
The beginning of a prophetic decline?
She was lost.
She had taken a wrong turn.
She had lost orientation.
To be continued…