“You nervous,” my lawyer leans over and asks me.

“Yeah, I don’t even know why I’m here.”

“Trial of the century, maybe. You could get the death penalty or have a long and glorious life. As glorious as you humans can be anyway.”

“What are you talking about?”

“Pay attention, the judge is coming.”

“All rise for The Supreme God of Life, Death and Renewal, the most honorable Gamab,” an ominous voice echoes through the empty room.

Gamab enters the room from seemingly nowhere. Draped in dried hide of some animal, he walked barefoot and carried a large bow and a bowl. He stops at our table and looks over me. I’m not afraid, but I can tell he’s powerful despite the big smile. He produces a bowl of a strange yellow liquid and places it on the table.

“You should have a drink, for good luck,” he waves his hand towards the bowl.

“That’s a good sign,” my lawyer assures me.

I do as I’m told and take the bowl, it’s warm but the way the liquid moves assures me he isn’t trying to make me drink urine. Gamab hasn’t given me a reason to distrust him, but I also don’t know why I’m in a court room. I’ve long given up on things making sense. I bring the bowl closer to my face, the smell is similar to cooking oil. I take a deep breath and bring it to my mouth. The liquid moves all at once forcing me to drink more than I planned to. The taste is bitter, but not as bad as I expected. Somehow it calms my nerves. Gamab smiles and passes the bowl to my lawyer who drinks deeply before leaving to take a seat on the opposite side of the room.

“Kayiikuuzi, are you ready,” Gamab asks.

“Yes, I’m ready,” my lawyer speaks.

“Then send him up.”

“Go ahead, take a seat,” Kayiikuuzi points to a chair that previously wasn’t in the room.

I make my way over to the chair and realize this isn’t the courtroom I had imagined it was. Instead I’m staring into the vastness of space, stars and magnificent colors radiating around us. The entire view is a lot to take in, yet I can’t seem to think of anything but this moment right now.

“I’ll tell you how this works,” Gamab speaks. “You must be confused.”

“Yes, I respond.”

“Well, Kayiikuuzi is going to ask you five questions. You’ll need to get three right. If not, I’ll shoot you with my bow and you’ll die. If you do get three correctly, your life will be renewed,” Gamab speaks in a nice, yet stern voice.

“Is there any other way,” I ask.

“No, you’ve already chosen to go through this trial. Don’t worry, Kayiikuuzi has a soft spot for humans, at least those who have been good during their time on Earth. You could have had Ogun or Shango prepare your test, which would not be good for you. Luckily, they’re locked in another battle,” Gamab’s last sentence causes Kayiikuuzi to laugh alongside him. I have no idea who either of those people are.

“Let’s start,” Kayiikuuzi speaks.

“I guess I don’t have a choice.”

“Excellent,” Gamab claps.

“Question one, are you a good person,” Kayiikuuzi asks.

My first thought is of course I’m a good person, but wouldn’t that arrogance mean I’m not? I try to help people as much as I can. But, I do buy a lot of bootleg CDs and that’s theft. Have I ever hurt anyone? No, but I’ve wanted to.

“It isn’t a multiple choice answer young man,” Gamab “It’s only your life in the balance. Don’t hesitate.”

“I think so,” is my answer. I feel a pressure surround me and Kayiikuuzi looks away. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out I answered wring. “I want to be a good person, but I’m just human. I can’t be perfect.” I try to save myself.

“Nobody asked if you were perfect, he asked if you were good,” Gamab shakes his head in disappointment.

“Next question. Have you ever given someone true happiness,” Kayiikuuzi moves on quickly.

“I don’t even know what happiness is,” I don’t realize the words have left my mouth.

More pressure surrounds me, almost as if gravity is trying to crush me. Kayiikuuzi covers his face with his hand while Gamab can’t seem to stop his laughter at my answer.

“Take this serious,” Kayiikuuzi seems upset with me.

“I’m trying, but this is stressful.”

“You never gave anyone happiness?”

“Is this one of the five questions?”

“No, are you brain dead,” Kayiikuuzi brings more laughter from Gamab.

“Elias, my brother,” I shrug.

More pressure surrounds me, “No, she’s trying to save you right now,” Kayiikuuzi seems irritated.

“Destiny,” I scream her name.

“Yes, why couldn’t you answer that thirty seconds ago?”

“This is stressful.”

“I could hold you at the end of my spear if that would help,” Kayiikuuzi only half jokes.

“I’ll be fine.”

“This is the best trial I’ve seen since Lesane had his trial,” Gamab speaks of another person I don’t know.

“Question three, what is your purpose in life,” Kayiikuuzi asks.

“I don’t know, is this rigged? How can you expect me to know my purpose in life? I haven’t even gotten to have a midlife crisis yet,” now I’m irritated.

“Correct,” Kayiikuuzi smiles.


“This is amazing,” Gamab continues to laugh.

“Question four,” Kayiikuuzi pauses as Gamab calms himself. “What do you have to offer the world?”

“All I can give the world is me. Anything else I give, can come from someone else,” I think I’ve got the game now.

“My boy, I knew you were a smart one,” Kayiikuuzi claps. “Last question. Do you want to live?”

“I haven’t always wanted to live, but right now, I want to live more than anything else.”

“Then you can live,” Kayiikuuzi pulls me from the chair and gives me a hug.

“Passing judgement is my job,” Gamab speaks. “You will not die yet, you are strong. Live so that you may give your best to the world and those that love you. Live so that you may change this world for the better. Live so that you may not only find your purpose, but fulfill it. Rise into the world, reborn anew, stronger than before.”


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