The Maa Nation is a gated community replete with many amenities: farms, a bazaar, dormitories, schools, many amenities. It is self-sufficient and self-reliant and no one needs to leave its gates for needs or wants. If an adult wants to be more sociable, the Maa Nation has a night club just for that. Dubbed “The Dance Hall,” up until the wee hours of night, Afrobeat can be heard pulsating from the club.
Zuberi walked confidently pass the Protectors outside and stopped by a table where a third Protector greeted him, “Ee em Htp.”
“Ee em Htp, Kwame.” Zuberi said, with his left foot forward and both his hands stretched toward Kwame but the left more forward than the right.
“I did not know you wished to be of the 3rd Brigade,” Kwame joked, referring to Zuberi tossing a man for not patronizing a Black business, a deed Carlos A. Cook’s African Nationalist Pioneer’s Movement’s 3rd Brigade might have done in the 1950s or Kwame’s 3rd Brigade. “I have done that a few times. But never to a man as he ate!” Kwame guffawed.
“Perhaps I will join your Brigade, or the 2nd, I may have earned a reputation.” As in the ANPM, there were three brigades in the Maa Nation. The 1st Brigade would suggest Black businesses for people to patronize, the 2nd would threaten people to patronize, and the 3rd would make good on the 2nd’s threats, sometimes at the person’s house. Something like patronizing the chinese when Africans were selling the same thing would have warranted a 2nd or 3rd Brigade response. “Shem e em Htp, Kwame,” closed their conversation.
As Zuberi entered the dance hall, he spotted then approached a crowd of women adjacent to the dance floor. He commanded, “Come dance.”
One woman asked, “Which one of us are you speaking to?”
“All of you,” Zuberi responded. He leads the group onto the main floor and becomes one with the polyrhythm: his hands, feet and torso almost independently doing their own dances.
The Emcee nods to the Selector who increases the tempo of the beats allowing Zuberi to meld with the music. The whole room begins to dance. There were no more sidelines. The men who were drinking wolfed down their drinks; the women who were eating, took their last bites. All around everyone was grinding and gyrating. Eventually, all of the best dancers navigated to the center. Overtime, only the best danced, everyone else felt compelled to watch the masters at their craft. Zuberi, another man and four women remained in the spotlight. The Emcee cheered them on.
Suddenly, the other male dancer, as if to challenge Zuberi, grabbed a woman and couple danced, launching her in the air, under his body and spinning her about. Zuberi undauntedly grabbed two of the remaining three and tossed, spun and launched them as the third woman gyrated for each feat Zuberi performed. His challenger conceded so Zuberi and the three women danced until the women were sweating to the point of discomfort while Zuberi remained dry. The selector stopped the music and a wild applause rang from the spectators. The dancers huffed around Zuberi, who only said, “I will sit. Follow if you choose.” Two followed him as the third stood back to be congratulated by her boyfriend. Zuberi walked away but winked at the woman. She tried her best to seem unimpressed but deep down she wished she had come alone.
As if in a throne room, Zuberi sits like a King, feet far apart. He welcomes the women to sit on his lap. One chooses to while handing him a glass of water, the other daintily sits like a Queen across from them after handing the other woman a glass, saving another for Zuberi and drinking one herself. “My lap is big enough.”
“So I noticed,” the woman across from him says smiling, “But I shall wait until you’ve made up your mind.”
“Then you shall wait a while. For matters of the bedroom, I do not rush.”
The woman on his lap places her arm down his chest, “You may rush with me, Hunter.”
“If I so choose, I will. What is your name?” Zuberi asks the woman as she kisses his neck.
“It is Myrkya, and yours?”
“Sba. And you, woman who waits for my mind to be made. What is your name?”
“That is not a name.”
“Neither is Sba and yet those are the names we claim as our own.” Zuberi smiles. “The music returned, Sba. Will you have me sit here?” Zuberi nudges Myrkya to rise, he then stands, holds her hand and reaches for Esad’s. He leads the two women back to the dance floor.
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