I am the man with the boat. My people love me, but more importantly, they love my boat. Asubuhi Upepo is her name, or in your language, Morning Breeze. My land is very troubled and the honest worker can hardly live off his wages, so I perform certain errands for those poor souls who can’t make things work in this land.

They would always cry about how they needed somewhere to go and “Please bwana, my family, I give you all that I have”. What they had was a pittance, but I would take them on, and I would make a tidy little profit. Today was no different, and as usual, I had a large group of them, clamouring and howling like nyani for me to save them. It was profitable, and I was well liked. People treat you with a different sort of reverence when you can save their lives.

I strolled easily down the gang plank, letting them see me. Their muttering grew louder until I hushed them, “Kimya!”

Like a Caesar, I made my decision, selected the lucky few whose futures could be changed by my generosity, and we set off. We left the dilapidated port and headed out to the wide open bahari. This was further than most of my cargo had been, and my handpicked dozen were excited by the prospect of their future in some new land.

As the day progressed, the dozen or so Kenyans on my barge settled down, a few them throwing up overboard, the children had ceased crying, and as the sun set, they all laid down to sleep. As we descended into the land of ndoto, I kept on going further out into the water. They slept so peacefully, I hated to disturb them, but we were almost there.

The other ship pulled up next to us, and I roped us together. The six men came aboard, their weapons slung loosely across their shoulders. They knew they wouldn’t need them on a ship full of scared, weak wanakijiji. They walked around the sleeping mass and made their selections.

My passengers were woken by the barking pirates, scared and confused by the situation. One by one, they were taken aboard the other vessel, women and children first. The men were also taken aboard, but I knew that most were going to be tossed over-board. They could be trouble and people didn’t pay much money for grown men. Once my boat had been emptied of its cargo, the leader nodded at me, and gave me my money. It was a profitable business. I turned my boat and began the journey home, where I would be welcomed as a hero, a saviour to the poor souls of my mji. They would ask if their loved ones arrived safely, and if the new land was as good as they had been told, and I would say “yes” as I always did and that they were in a better place, because if I didn’t, who would I sell?

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