Blood Psalms episode 9 recap: Horus risingWatch all of it now
Blood Psalms is set at a time of upheaval in Ancient Africa, around 11 000 years ago. Five tribes – the Akachi, the Uchawi, the Ku’ua, the Chini, and the Great Nziwemabwe – whose ancestors all fled the destruction of Atlantis together 1 000 years before the story begins – share a prophecy about the end of days. Signs are growing that the end is coming soon, and unstable tribal truces fall apart in the chaos after Mad King Letsha’s wedding goes south.
Episode 8 in 10 points
- King Letsha whipped the skin off the back of the Akachi’s General Toka (who was born Ku’ua) for impregnating Letsha’s daughter, Princess Zazi.
- Sithenjwa (Toka’s exiled former lover and sister of Zazi’s mother Queen Ndiya Zazi – who’s back in the Akachi palace as the consort of Senator Jabari of the Great Nziwemabwe) dropped her earring in the dungeon while consoling Toka, and Toka’s second in command, Lekoya, found it.
- Hlengu, second son of the Ku’ua leader Chief Xemantso, and Lala, wife to Xemantso’s heir, Qotha, plotted to frame Qotha for Xemantso’s murder while he was attending the wedding.
- Hlengu explored the Ku’ua’s prophecy that the Ku’ua will one day rule over the other tribes.
- Akachi royal governess Madlamini told Zazi that the Uchawi had lost their greatest Magi 18 years back, but did not explain that the Magi (the Uchawi’s most powerful magic user and rainmaker) was Queen Ndiya Zazi.
- Lekoya paraded the battered General Toka through the citadel streets in front of the citizens and soldiers, sentenced Toka to be buried alive for his crimes, and had the Akachi soldiers throw Toka’s sarcophagus off a cliff into the sea.
- Lekoya donned the General’s helmet, while a mermaid guided Toka to the reed boat that Captain Ahadi was on when he and his men investigated the blue vortex created by Princess Zazi diverting the meteorite into the sea island.
- Ahadi, now an old man with a white beard, welcomed General Toka to The Land Of The Dead.
- Madlamini’s daughter, circus performer Umna, swapped places with Princess Zazi during her wedding dance, and the performers smuggled Zazi out of the citadel in their carriage.
- Chaos erupted when King Letsha cut his own tongue out in front of his advisors, wedding guests and bride-to-be, Thozama. As Letsha choked on blood, he saw the bride he murdered, Queen Ndiya Zazi, poised to attack him.
Tales from the underground
In a series of flashbacks we saw Burutti (cousin to Princess Zazi, and daughter of Sithenjwa and Toka) tell the Chini Mother Superior, who adopted her at the age of two, about her spiritual connection to Princess Zazi. Queen Ndiya Zazi begged her sister Sithenjwa (seen holding baby Burutti in her arms) to watch over Zazi.
Queen Assili prepared to cut out Ndiya Zazi’s heart just after she gave birth to Zazi. And Umna smuggled 18-year-old Zazi out of the Akachi Citadel. In the present, Mother Superior told her young Chini students the story of creation, and Burutti (still in disgrace for infiltrating the Akachi citadel during the night of the full moon, when some Chini become were-hyenas) was distracted by a bustle of activity.
Her friend iLitye told her that something had happened in the Northern Forest. Meanwhile out in the open, Umna helped Princess Zazi to focus her powers, but they had to hide when Akachi soldiers galloped by on horseback.
A broken crown
In the Akachi Citadel, the citizens protested following King Letsha’s aborted wedding and horrifying self-mutilation, hurling insults and rotten veg at Letsha’s advisors: Akachi high priest Mfengetho, Queen Assili and the king’s uncle Nkamanzu. The only people who remained calm were the deeply unimpressed Ku’ua guests, and when Nkamanzu started moralising to the crowd, the Ku’ua, led by Lala, walked off dismissively.
In the Akachi guest quarters, Senator Jabari dictated a message for his superiors, revealing that the Akachi King has gone insane, and that he intends to close down the “cursed” Royal House and take custody of the Akachi throne for himself, awaiting the aid of the Great Nziwemabwe council.
In the Ku’ua camp outside the Akachi citadel walls, Lala and her escort of Ku’ua women returned from the citadel, and Lala whispered in Hlengu’s ear that the wedding had been “postponed”.
Down in the Chini caves, iLitye guided Burutti to the secret trapdoor into the Northern Forest. iLitye revealed that the original cave system was created by the Chini’s ancestors, and that her own grandfather mapped the cave network of exits, passages and trapdoors about 10 years before the Chini became cursed.
Burutti and iLitye emerged almost under the feet of the men who attacked the carriage bringing the Uchawi’s Prince Teborah and his father, Queen Assili’s husband Ntuka, to King Letsha and Thozama’s wedding. The Chini’s Overseer Mzini and his warriors confronted the trespassing Chini attackers (who were from another tribe) carrying Teborah and Ntuka. When they refused to release their prisoners after Mzini pointed out that their actions would lead to further persecution by the Akachi, Mzini and his warriors killed them all, hid the bodies, freed Teborah and Ntuka, and left them unconscious on the ground.
Nearby, the four Akachi riders that Umna and Zazi saw earlier seemed to be circling. But when Umna and Zazi tried to slip back to warn the other performers to move their camp and sneak away, they had all been massacred and they saw an Akachi soldier pay off one of Umna’s closest allies, Pee-erot.
Umna broke her arm in a fall as she and Zazi fled and Umna begged Zazi to leave her and run. Meanwhile, to iLitye’s horror, the moment the coast was clear, Burutti climbed out to sniff around Teborah and Ntuka, but when Princess Zazi came running up, fleeing the Akachi, iLitye knocked out Burutti and dragged her back underground, just before the Akachi soldiers captured Princess Zazi.
In the Akachi Citadel, Jabari told his Golden Army escort that as far back as you dig into the history of the Akachi royal house, you will find “the reign of the serpents”, and he and his warriors tossed a small dragon over the citadel wall! The dragon flew off after swooping over the Ku’ua camp. Later Jabari told his Golden Army that the Akachi had run mad and that it was time for them to take charge. As the Golden Army mounted their attack, escaped prisoners Onyo, Lord Of The Underworld, Kike the Chini were-hyena and the old man from the prison pit came out of a building dressed as Akachi soldiers. Kike, whose keen nose detected danger, quickly hustled them back inside as the Golden Army blasted Akachi soldiers with energy bolts from their weapons. And on the citadel wall, Jabari ordered the citadel gates to be shut.
Nkamanzu’s words finally won over the Akachi citizens as he promised them freedom from oppression and tyranny. Queen Assili tried to show Nkamanzu why she might still need her, and Mfengetho told them that Teborah and Ntuka had been found and were being brought safely into the citadel, along with the recaptured Princess Zazi.
Unaware of what Jabari is up to, Nkamanzu had Princess Zazi dragged out by soldiers and scapegoated her as the cause of all the Akachi’s misfortunes, and the embodiment of their sins against the gods. The crowd set upon Zazi in fury, beating and stripping her, as Nkamanzo announced that the god Annubis would claim his restitution when Zazi burned.
In the Ku’ua camp, Hlengu was snoring and farting in Lala’s bed and after grumbling about having to lead men to power, while Lala (spied on by Helngu’s right hand man) visited the Ku’ua’s mightiest warrior, her sister Kuthala, who was drunk out of her mind and talking to the spirits of dead Ku’ua. Lala asked Kuthala to name her price for killing a monarch … and agreed to pay it, setting Kuthala on a mission.
As night fell, Nkamanzo had the Snake Elementals’ Nymph bound to a stake ready to burn, but Assili, claiming to be merciful, had the Nymph released, and Zazi brought out to take her place.
Underground, Burutti woke suddenly, feeling Zazi’s terror, and she had iLitye guide her through the tunnels to the Temple of Heka. Burutti and iLitye took a cautious look around only to see Assili set the pyre alight. Realising they were too late and too far to help, a horrified iLitye and Burutti slipped back underground as Zazi screamed in the flames.