Chapter Two

Chapter Two

A Chapter by Lonnie Paul Johnson

Haniyya (Hagar) prayed but has a strange dream.


Chapter Two


Weeks and months passed since the deployment of king Mamduh army against the Egyptian. Haniyya prayed nightly in her room for her father and brothers.   A shrine to Bass-Shaman is set in the corner of her room with candles and a stone image of the deity.  She lit the candles and burn the bowl of scented spies to create the proper mood for worship.  Chanting out loud a prayer for this god to grant her plea to bring home her father and brothers.


Haniyya abruptly stop chanting, she proceeded to pray again but the words did not flow easily from her soul like before.  She opens her eyes dissatisfied gazing at the stone image as the candle light is flickering on its face, she realizes what she perceived as God is just a piece of rock.  A strong gust of wind blew from her window blowing out the candle flame leaving her in complete darkness.  Startle by the flame going out she turned staring out the window.  Rolling dark clouds moved across the night sky covering the twinkling lights of the abundant stars.  Maybe God is out there unseen, she thought, but immediately her mind counter using childlike logic that Bass-shaman is god, there is no other.  She reasoned that she can see his image in stone, her parents are devoted followers attributing their wellbeing to this deity.


Haniyya tremble thinking a demon is trying to take her to the underworld.  Thunder is rumbling and flashes of lighting from the storm increasing her anxiety.  She quickly ran to her bed, curled herself tight wanting to cry out for her nursemaid Nido to sleep with her.  I’m not a child anymore, she told herself her heart is racing in her chest. A clap of thunder boom causing Haniyya to hold herself even tighter eyes closed wishing the stormy night would end. 


Soon the night is cool and peaceful, Haniyya is stretch out sound asleep.   Suddenly a black raven landed on the stone window ledge, it head rapidly moving around as it scans the area.  Then it hopped on the floor shaking its feathers and spinning in a circle the strange bird increase in mass reaches the size of a horse.  The large raven is looking down at the small girl.


“Awake Haniyya!” Spoke the bird in gentle feminine voice.


She open her eyes after hearing her name, a little blurry, making out a large figure at the end of her bed.  Astonished!   Realizing it’s a giant black bird she pop straight up, eyes wide.


“Fear not little princess, you must come with me to see a sight.”


Haniyya leap to her feet climb on the back of the raven, the creature turned facing the window, “Hold on tight!”  The raven leaps out the window dropping straight down to the earth.  Haniyya gripping the feathers seeing the ground getting closer braces for impact, but the massive wings of the blackbird unfolded catching all the air.  Stopping the freefall and they are moving forward up into the air, flap, there speed increase rapidly.  Haniyya looked back to see her palace home shrinking as she is traveling higher and farther away.  Each flap of the wings their speed surges faster that she can ever imagine and higher in the sky than any person can dream. 


She is enjoying the rushing wind blowing in her face, through her hair and flapping her night clothing vigorously.  Looking up, she sees the belly of massive clouds getting closer as they kept ascending.  She worried they might hit the clouds, but she figures the raven will level off and fly under it.  The black bird continuing getting closer Haniyya wanted to warn the bird about what might happen, before she can speak the huge wings of the raven flap shooting them toward the clouds.  The jolt cause Haniyya to grip harder to the feathers taking her breath away, she closed her eyes bracing for impact.




Hundreds of tiny rain pellets striking her face, quickly opening her eyes, she saw a sea of white all around her like a fog.  She realizes that they are flying inside of the clouds, raising her arm above her head, trying to grab a piece of the clouds laughing in the effort.  “This is great!” she shouted to her new friend.


“Your highness,” call out the raven, “hold on tight!”  Haniyya lock her arms around the great bird’s neck pressing her body firm waiting for the drop.  The massive wings became straight like a tip of an arrow. The great bird stretches her head forward tilling down descending rapidly. 


They blast out of the belly of the clouds plunging at an angle toward the earth at great speed. Haniyya eyes are wide open watching.  She notices they came out of the clouds in bright sunlight, but they went into it at night.  She did not care the rush of wind and the sight of the land approaching quickly is thrilling.  She knows that her large black feathered friend will keep her safe as they fall to the earth.


Haniyya is able to figure out the target the raven is approaching a plateau on top of a mountain overlooking an unusual valley.  The black bird stretches out her wings flapping them, reducing speed of their descent making a gentle landing.  Haniyya slid off the bird grinning still feeling the rush of the thrilling flight.


“AAAIIIEEE,” Haniyya scream expressing raw emotion of the experience, “can we do that again?”


The great bird turn to her, “Little princess I was assigned by the Almighty to bring you to this valley to see a sight.”


Haniyya gazing down into the valley, “I don’t see anything.”


“Look to the west,”  spoke the raven pointing her head, Haniyya face that direction focusing on the horizon she notes in the haze a wall city with high dome building similar to the palace city of her kingdom.  On the ground, she saw a great band of large animals marching together like a troop of soldiers.  The strange army is made up of elephants, rhinos, tall horses and huge bulls of all types unify as a fighting mass.  Its leader, she saw clearly a rhino twice as big of any beast having two horns, one with a shining gold crown around it.  This force looked invincible marching with their head held high prideful.


“Who can stand against this army?” ask Haniyya


“Look to the east child,” Haniyya turned to the east of the valley she saw a strange sight peeking out of a misty haze were giant pyramids shining golden in the sunlight.  On the ground, she observed hundreds of cats in all types of colors.  In the middle of this sea of felines lay a huge lion reclining head held high watching the approaching beast army.


King rhino forces reach the middle of the valley, their feet sank deep into the soft sand slowing their progress.  Each step became laborious as the entire army was on the soft sands.  Quickly the cats paired together rushed in mass onto the soft sands.  The sprinting cats did not sink into the soft sand, advancing at great speed toward the enemy.  The small creatures attacking their much larger opponents confusing them.


The bull spotting a cat approaching heave his large foot out from the deep sand to stomp the tiny creatures.  But before he can smash the second cat whips out its razor sharp claws slashing the flesh of the large animals.  The intense pain quickly draws his attention to that cat.   Then the first cat attacks using its claws striking the animal.  Blood flowing, the fast-moving cat hit and run tactics are bewildering the large creature trying to defend himself.  Soon its strong legs formed deep cracks.  The great bull legs shattered like broken clay pots into many fragments.  The great beast crash to the ground, unable to fight, bleeding.  


The swift cats are winning the battle as they drop the elephants to its knees, causing the rhinos to tumble in utter defeat into the sands.  The proud bulls are stunned and fearful from the rage of the fighting cats, they spin in confusion running for their lives crashing and falling.  Haniyya is astonished watching this battle on the mountain perch.


“How can those little creatures defeat the bigger and stronger animals?”  She perplex. 


“Sometime what makes a mighty army strong is its greatest weakness.”  Explain the raven, “The small cats lead them to come into their strength and are defeating them.”


The king lion stood on his feet and roared, the sound filled the valley, all of the fighting cats stop turning their head toward the big cat.  They all at once left the area of battle, leaving thousands of dead bloody defeated bodies on the battleground.  Suddenly coming out of the northern sky a swarm buzzard and vultures blacken the entire sky approach the battle scene.  Hundreds are flying together some as small as fly and other large as camels.  Over the dead bodies they all drop from the heavens diving with zeal toward their prey.  Twenty at a time would pounce on one body ripping and tearing into it, gorging themselves on the bloody flesh. 


Haniyya is horrified by the sight of ugly wild eyed birds mutilating bodies of previously strong animals.  Covering her ears so she won’t hear the sound of pulling flesh and cackling of bones.  Closing her eyes not wanting to see the awful spectacle.  Suddenly her feet are sinking into wet sand, but she on solid rock with the raven.  Opening her eyes spotting her feet cover in muddy sand, quickly looking up finding herself in the middle of the carnage.


Birds are jumping from body to body tearing into them pulling out flesh and inner organs.  Some ravenous creatures are fighting for prize organs.  Desperately wanting to leave, Haniyya turn trying to find a way out from this land of the dead.   


“Han-iy-ya!”  A deep voice straining and weak calling her name, she turn finding herself facing the huge king rhino lying on his side.  His eyes glazed over watching her in great pain, one of his two horns is broken off shatter into pieces.  All except for one leg has crumbled and his body had many deep scars.  All around him are gigantic vultures waiting out of reverence of the great king knowing his death in near.  Haniyya knew this great beast defeated and dying is her father, her hand went up to her face trying to shield her emotion of grief watching him taking his last breath of life.


“Hannniiiiyyaaaa, my daring da-ug-hter,” speaking each word is a struggle for the king rhino, “I lov.”  His eyes rolled his head sank into the sand, the vultures cried out leaping onto the body tearing into it.  One of the vultures is at the head, pulling flesh and another rip open the belly bursting from it a rushing title wave of blood.


“NOOOOOOO!”  Haniyya screamed deep within her soul in utter terror watching the horrible sight of the evil birds feeding on him.  She reaches out towards him, but a force is pulling her away from him, “Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!”  Yelling at the top of her lungs. 


The doors of her room flew open as Nido rush in awaken by the screams from the princess; she is on her knees, arms stretching out crying, “Daddy!”  Her voice is cracking and straining, the woman rushed to the girl to cradle her in her arms, trying to awaken her from the nightmare.  She opens her eyes bawling in the arms of her nursemaid as the dream is still fresh in her mind.


“Nido, my father is dead!” cried out Haniyya.


“No child, he is not dead, he will come back victorious from his battles with great stories to tell…”  Nido is explaining rocking Haniyya in her arms trying to console her, but she will not hear of it as she continues to weep out loud.  Behind the door in the darkness of the hallway Gamila stands silently outside the bedroom listening to Nido and her daughter. 

© 2015 Lonnie Paul Johnson

Author's Note

Lonnie Paul Johnson
Writing this story I debated of removing this chapter because I thought I didn't need it. Well re-reading it I couldn't take out I like it.

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Key = (omit)
Weeks and months passed since the deployment of king Mamduh army against the Egyptian(s). She lit (the=) candles and burn(ed) (the=) bowl(s) of scented spices (to=) create(ing) the proper mood for worship.Chanting out loud a prayer for this god to grant her plea to bring home her father and brothers. (Chanting loud prayers to her god to grant the safe return of her father and brothers.) Sometimes it's great to have another set of eyes look at your work and see if they're able to reword things in a way that smooths them out. light (is=) flicker(ing=)s.
Thunder (is=) rumble(ing=)s and flashes of lighting from the storm increase(ing=) her anxiety.
I’m not a child anymore, she told herself her heart is racing in her chest. Listen to how this sounds, (Heart racing in her chest, she tells herself, "I'm not a child anymore."
With some polishing this can be a really fascinating story to read. Hope the suggestions help craft your story. God bless!

Posted 8 Years Ago

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Added on March 24, 2015
Last Updated on March 24, 2015


Lonnie Paul Johnson
Lonnie Paul Johnson

fort Worth, TX

I loved writing stories, when I was young I wrote very simple and crude stories base off of TV shows and movies I seen at the time. An event happen when during that time I believe influence my writin.. more..