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acheampong
17th July 2012, 01:29 AM
'We intervened in the attack on the prison but most of the Fatekeepers managed to escape,' noted Dede that evening. Once more, the village heads were gathered before Princess Oforiwaa.

'However we managed to make Sumina give us vital information on the Fatekeepers' said Pokuaa.

'Such as?' asked Princess Oforiwaa.

'The location of their headquarters and their battle formations'

'What about the ten hidden paths?'

'He knew nothing about them. Apparently that was a closely guarded secret that would be revealed only on the day of the attack' replied Pokuaa.

'So, where are they now?'', Oforiwaa asked, after a long silence.

'On the other side of Ebour valley near an ancient river'. It is likely that with his capture, they will shift their position and go across the river.' said Serwaa.

'They will have at least 5 days before they become completely untraceable and 2 days to completely get ready to relocate' said Dede. 'They are in a period of transition so that will be the best time to take them head on.

'As the porcupine totem glinted in the moonlight on the linguist's staff, Oforiwaa ordered that two forces under two captains carry out a preemptive strike on the Fatekeepers. 'With their knowledge of the ten hidden paths, we cannot let them slip away again to wreak more havoc on this land ' she warned.

Overnight, Aba and the others discussed plans of action for their final confrontation with the Fatekeepers. Finally before turning in for the night, they decided to go with Aba's plan and Dede promised to train Aba, her friends and her vice captain
to enable them to play their roles the next day.

At dawn, they all trained harder than usual using the fighting skills Dede had taught them the previous night as Dede herself trained alone, breaking her practice staff thrice.

Asamoah trained with Araba with Kyeiwaa training elsewhere at the same time. The sun shone brightly that morning as the other Fatekepers began dismantling the temporary structures across the river. Weapons were moved and guards were on standby. Oti decided to 'take a leak' near a bush when a dart struck him in the neck!'

'As he fell, a guard noticed this and was about to raise an alarm when she too was struck and soon fell into a deep slumber. Slowly five ahintafour led by Pokuaa rose from the surrounding bushes soundlessly. When all the guards on watch duty had suffered a similar fate, they signalled to the asafo who darted in between the thick tree cover.

As one of them stepped on a thin piece of thread, it released a tied up log which swung towards them.....and stopped suddenly. Dede held the rope connected to the log tightly before releasing it slowly. 'Agyeiwaa rigged both sides of the forest' noted Pokuaa, 'That's impressive'.

'Ten asafo should take the right path and the rest should take the left path.' ordered Dede. 'They should be on to us by now'.

Suddenly several arrows flew wildly towards them but Dede quickly drew her matchetes and slashed at most of them as she doged behind a nearby tree, leading the asafo to the left.

Agyeiwaa and the other ahintafour watched their movements from above a ridge. 'She ruined the traps on the left.' No matter',she ordered the other ahintafour,'increase the volley of arrows and release the powder that we used at the Mampam prison.'

Suddenly she ducked as a dart buried itself in the neck of the ahintafour next to her. Pokuaa motioned for two other ahintafour units to emerge from the bushes and to Agyeiwaa's surprise, several ahintafour emerged on her left and right sides. On Pokuaa's signal, several darts flew towards Agyeiwaa's units, the last three hitting Agyeiwaa in the neck.

Pokuaa ordered the newly recruited ahintafour units to tie up the rogue ahintafour and signal to the rest of Dede's team that the first stage of Aba's plan was a success so the next two stages should be carried out.

The chirping of songbirds filled the air but Kyeiwaa recognised it as the signal used by the hidden ones of Nyansakrom. 'Stay sharp!' she warned the asafo with her.

Suddenly, five asafo units led by Dede burst out from the bushes and attacked them. Dede crossed blades with Kyeiwaa but she pushed Dede back into a tree.Dede leapt to her right as Kyeiwaa's slash ripped the bark where her head had rested moments ago. As sparks flew each time their blades clashed, Dede began to force Kyeiwaa back but she responded with multiple swings of her matchete that missed their mark.

Dede swung her matchete at Kyeiwaa but she sidestepped her attacks, meeting Dede equally with feints, parries, blocks and lunging attacks. They then drew back from each other, watching each other warily. Suddenly they rushed toward each other and Kyeiwaa's matchete slashed Dede's shoulder, drawing blood.

Despite her injury, she blocked a blow aimed at her neck and struck at Kyeiwaa, intending to break her blades. But Kyeiwaa noticed her intentions and swung at Dede with ferocious matchete swings, breaking one of Dede's matchetes instead!' However Dede was undeterred and despite having a single matchete, managed to break Kyeiwaa's matchete as well.

When both matchetes broke, they each pulled out an akofena and attacked each other again, Kyeiwaa's killing intent rising with each clash. Dede attacked with low and high slashes which Kyeiwaa nimbly sidestepped at first but then she noticed that the attacks were becoming faster and stronger than she could keep up with.

She was driven back until her akofena broke and Dede subdued her using the flat part of her blade to knock her into a bamboo tree, breaking it. She tore off part of her battle dress to staunch the flow of blood from her wound, perspiring heavily.

As Araba hurried towards the site of the disturbance with Asamoah and the rogue asafo, she was shocked when several Asafo led by Karrikari met her head on. Badu clashed with Araba, blocking her attack with two war staffs and dealing out two quick blows that hit their mark. As Araba stumbled back, Karikari dodged Asamoah's sword swings and struck him without fully releasing his akofena from his scabbard.

Using just his scabbard, he struck Asamoah using thrusts and swings to his chest. Asamoah swung at him again with both matchetes but he stepped out of range of the swing and knocked them out of his hands. He ended the fight with a punch to the face, flooring the asafo captain completely.

Using low and high strikes, Badu attacked Araba with shocking speed before delivering a swift uppercut that sent her sprawling next to Asamoah. The asafo attacked the obrafour together with Badu and Karikari defeating them promptly.

Nearby, the three mbrewanana ,sensing danger, began their steady retreat through a tunnel along with some select Fatekeepers. Suddenly a huge fog rolled in, covering everything.

'Unbelievable!,Ama thought, they've already caught up to us!'