Binky and the aqeda dagger

Part 2 - Crossing the Omigoligosh River

The march from Kasoshi has gone pretty much according to plan.  Mudu Watah has been very useful in dealing with the porters and their petty problems.  Clarissa has also helped with her command over the Christian bearers.   

The march from the village has seen you passing through land teeming with game and you have been able to supplement the rations without difficulty.  This has raised spirits and the bearers sing as they march.  Yesterday there was quite a competition between the Christians, the Muslims and the tribesmen.  Today’s march has ended on the banks of the Omigoligosh River.  Usually it is not much of an obstacle.  But it is, as predicted, now wide and fast flowing after the rains.  The banks are flooded.   

You are now camped on a low rise above the river beside the trail.  The camp is secure, rations are plentiful and water is easy to come by.  The real problem is crossing the river. 

The only information that you have about Madassah Hattah is that the state of the rivers is blocking his attempts at reaching Mariba.  It is also making your life difficult.  Crossing the river will take time and protection of the expedition and its supplies is vital.  Pierre le Trou is a bit of a burden even though the natives carrying him are in good spirits just now.  He lapses in and out of fever but can walk with help. 

Adrian has been spending time hunting and collecting information.    Late yesterday a passing Wa’Tembi hunting party told him that there were “Wa’Dhiki” in the area.  After a bit of detective work and pembe (local beer) he was able to get them to expand on this.  Their story is that a sizeable band of raiders are in the area.  According to the natives they are “man-takers”.  Nobody is quite sure whether this means slavers or cannibals.  Either way the expedition is strong enough to tackle most war bands.   

Note:  Wa’Dhiki in Mogambu means “People of the Troubles”

Gerald has had a few discussions with Pierre le Trou.  He has been in Morvalistan for just under a year and has almost completed the survey of the trade trail area.  It started off well but has become a slow business with marauding bands of Madassah Hattah’s men scouring the land from the Omigoligosh River to Mariba.  If it is not them it is the tribes that they have displaced.  Last time he was in Mariba for supplies the local representative – a French Canadian - Lt “Lumber” Jacques Auquai was setting about fortifying the place with barricades and a converting a small paddle steamer into a gun boat of sorts.  The town is fairly secure with its fort, small garrison of Sikhs and a locally raised white and tribal militia. 

The “Wa’Dhiki” are what they call “man-takers” or “people-takers”.  What is not really clear is whether they are slavers, cannibals or followers of Madassah Hattah, a combination or something different entirely.  What they can say is that several hunting parties have disappeared and that a number of trading caravans have lost caravan members or bearers in inexplicable circumstances.

On to the Crossing of the Omigoligosh Part 2 of this tale of adventure

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