Her place was well known. Spacious and well furnished. Lots of velvet and wine colored dressings. Her home during the day, ‘The Runt’ at night.
Lovely and sensual gait. Elegant poise. Beautiful. Coveted by high and lowly men alike. Even the King sent for her, especially on occasions when the Queen had travelled. Tales of her exploits in bed reverberated round the kingdom and beyond. She was the best of them all.
Her city, Jericho, had the greatest king ever. He had built and fortified the city, made it the envy of other nations around; magnificent, rich in culture and produce, strong economy and security, prosperous people and abundant weapons of war. Ronda was proud of her king. And she willingly gave herself for his pleasure.
There had been trouble outside Jericho. Many other kings had been attacked by a certain group of people. They had no king but had a leader. And a God to whom they aaccorded all their victories. By Ronda’s little understanding of battles and wars, this group of people were no match for the kings they eventually defeated. They were just roughlooking, turbaned, weather beaten men. Yet, they conquered and laid waste those kingdoms that stood in their way. And as it stood, Jericho was the next kingdom in their way and a war was inevitable.
Ronda had been in her room all day. She had been quiet and withdrawn over the past week. Many of her loyal customers had come with money and more money but she had found excuses not to see them.
She finally stood up to open the door. One of the girls, scantily clad and obviously drunk winked at her as she pulled in two men by their belts into her room. Ronda was about protesting when she noticed something strange about the men. She gave the girl a quick smile and pushed her out of the room. She offered the men seats and went to get glasses of wine.
Her silk scarf was loosely tied around her waist. She let it slip to the floor. The men gave no notice as their gaze was fixed outside her window. This was not the normal response of other men. She bent to serve the drinks, exposing her supple breasts and smiling slyly at the more handsome of the two. Quick as a cat, he removed his turban, wrapped it round her and made her sit on the bed.
“We are God’s servants. Our leader sent us to spy your land”.
Ronda smiled. She had been right about the men. They were not here for such business as The Runt offered. They had come for something of greater value and importance. They were spies. All she had to do was send word to the king. And the guards would be at her place immediately.
But, she was in awe of their God and the men had shown themselves honorable. So, she told them everything about the city and how it was run.
” Sirs, please, promise me my life and the life of my family when indeed you conquer the city”.
Her door was suddenly pushed open. Sefas, the newest recruit for the kings’s guard stood at her door. He had been sent by the king to get her but from the look on his face, she knew he had overheard her conversation with the men. Before she could utter a word, he was out of her room and she knew the king would soon hear about the men.
“My lords, please I need to hide you. Word gets to the king very fast. If you try to leave now, the guards would catch up with you and you’ll be dead”.
Just as she hid them properly, the king’s personal guard, Jorin, barged into her room. Of course, he wasn’t expecting to meet her naked. She saw him startle and momentarily pause as if to clear his head of the times they had been together, at her place and in the palace after she had been with the king.
” Jorin, to what do I owe this visit?” She slowly turned to face him properly, faking her sleepy eyes.
He was still not composed. His eyes were still all over her body.
Finally, he was able to focus. He was asking for the whereabouts of the men. She showed him the turban left by one of them and told him about how good he was to her, gentle and patient.
“In fact, I thought you were the best man I would ever meet in bed, but…”
This got him angry and he grabbed her by the neck, demanding to know where the men were.
“General, I don’t know who they were. But they said their leader would not approve of them being in a place like this. So, they had to hurry back before their leader would notice their absence. You should still meet them, they went towards the other entrance to the city”.
He pushed her away and started shouting orders at the other guards with him. They were going after the spies.
Ronda ensured they were long gone before she called out the men. They were very grateful and reminded her of the instructions they had given her concerning the war. She quickly let them down through her window and pointed them in the opposite direction, wishing them all the best back to their leader.
She was Ronda, a proud Jericho prostitute. But that day, she knew her allegiance had shifted. And much more, she knew her people had become the kingless people whose God had been granting victory over kingdoms.